Zat You Too?

By Breezy Walsh

Disclaimer: They belong to Shoot the Moon and WB, wish it'd been me.

Feedback: Oh yeah, I'd like lots and lots, but I'll settle for whatever I get.

Notes: This is in reply to the death threats I got after leaving `Zat You Santa Claus' the way I did. I suggest reading it first, it's posted on if you missed it. For those I didn't get back to, I'm sorry, I was trying to get this guy out of the way. I would also like to thank my lovely betas, Heather and Dawn. You guys would be the men if you were not female.

Archiving: Sure thing! Just let me know if it's not the list archive, that is a given.

Story in short: Why was Lee there and what was he doing?

Story in long:

      "Damn," Lee Stetson cursed. He had been trying all afternoon to get Amanda King's attention, but she never seemed to be alone. He never realized how much stamina it took to be a housewife with two sons and a mortgage.          

   Seeing how much activity there was in the King household, Lee decided to give up so he could get some dinner. He figured he could catch her later on after everyone else was in bed. If he hadn't had the breakthrough of the century he wouldn't even have to sit around in this domestic fantasy land.            

He turned to walk back to his car when he felt his foot crushing something. He looked down to see what had been hidden among the dusty miller and witch broom. It appeared to be a plastic action figure of some kind. He just wasn't sure what it was.      

      "Aww no," he grumbled as he bent down to pick up the torso. He examined it carefully noting as many of the major marks he could. Before he could take too many notes, he heard the back door open. "This is not my day," he groaned as he ran back to his car.    

   "Okay mom, I promise I'll be back," Phillip called over his shoulder. He felt his foot crunch something on the ground as he started to run off. He looked down and saw Jaime's Captain Crazy action figure in bits all over the walk. "Oh no. I'll tell him when I get home."

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      'I can't believe I am in a toy store. This is ridiculous.' Lee was carefully going over each and every action figure that the store had. For the life of him, he couldn't figure out which three-inch figure he had crushed.          

   He decided rather than get the wrong one he would pick up the fifteen he had it narrowed down to. He also knew that if he bought all of these action figures he would need to leave something for Phillip also.      

Lee had been rather impressed with the way he had found out who the owner was. A little bit of covert listening had told him whom the

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   "Thanks a lot dufus." Jaime was furious with his brother. Not only had Phillip crushed his Captain Crazy, but he had hidden most of it in his grandmother's flowers. If he hadn't seen the arm waving at him from the edge of the phlox he never would've known.      

"I was going to tell you. And I swear I didn't hide him. I must've kicked it when I was running. I had planned on telling you when I got home, but I needed to get that comic from Stew. Since you found him though, I'm very sorry and please don't tell Mom." Phillip had been in enough trouble for running off before taking care of his chores this afternoon. If his mother had found out that he had broken Jaime's toy he knew his world would be over.

      Lee had been walking to the backyard when he heard the boys talking. Well, at least one problem had been solved.

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      So now he was sitting in the sports section wondering what he could get for Phillip. He knew it had to be something good. Not only did he need something that equaled the number of action figures, but also something that said sorry to the boy.

      He grabbed a soccer ball, a baseball, basketball, and Frisbee. He figured this would help. As he hauled all of the toys up to the checkout he realized he still needed to get something for Amanda. He knew if he picked up all this stuff for the boys he should get her something nice and if he got her something he needed to get something for Dottie. She shouldn't be left out.  

     As he packed away the boy's gifts he racked his brain for ideas. Amanda would be extremely difficult, what do you buy a mother of two who is a good friend and nothing more? A scarf seemed a little impersonal, but speaking of impersonal, what would he get her mother?      

  He supposed that he wouldn't have enough time to take care of either of them since he was using his lunch time to get this stuff. He decided he would run by a little gift shop that he had seen before near Amanda's tonight on his way to her place.

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   The day went by pretty fast. Between meetings and paperwork he barely had time to call the costume store. He figured he would just leave the presents off while no one was around, but if someone walked in he wanted to have a backup. All good agents have a backup plan.

      If anyone walked in on Santa, he had no doubt that they'd be a little shocked, but it'd give him time to disappear before they could do anything about it. And with the beard no one would see his face.

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   Lee slowly perused each aisle wondering what Amanda would think of each item. He had never bought something for a woman that wasn't meant to be a ticket to a four-posted paradise. He knew when he pulled into the parking lot that this place would have something for her. With a name like 'Grandma's Treasures' it dripped with white picket fences and paper boys.      

He turned the last corner and saw it. The perfect gift. A quilt that looked like it was taken right out of the background of Amanda's living room. He picked it up and looked around wondering what to get Dottie. He remembered a ceramic potpourri warmer that he saw in the first row.

      As he paid for his purchases, which he had no idea would be quite so pricey, he plotted out his scheme. He was going to pick up his costume and change at the shop. From there he was hoping that everyone in the King household would be out like Amanda had said they would be. He would wrap Dottie's gift and leave a card from "Santa" with a clue for Amanda.          

   'All this because I broke a silly little plastic toy. Stetson, you're getting soft.'             

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           Santa costumes were in short supply around December, Lee soon found out. He had to wait in line at the costume shop for a half hour before he even got to the clerk.           

  "What can I do for you?" The shopkeeper asked.

      "My name is Lee Stetson. I reserved a costume earlier."

      "Oh! Yeah, you're the guy who got the last suit for the night. I hope it fits," the stout man sized up Lee's tall figure, "Well, it'll be a little snug, but no one will be able to tell."

      The man ambled into the back room and returned with a suit bag on a hanger.

      "That'll be twenty-five fifty, please," the chrome-topped merchant stated.     

  "Wow, I didn't think being Santa was so pricey. Oh well. Thank you," Lee smiled as he handed over the money. "Do you have a place where I can change now?"

      The other man pointed to a changing booth on the opposite side of the small shop.


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  Snug. That didn't even begin to describe how the costume fit. His pants were like a red velour prison. They were too short and squeezed in all the wrong places. The shoulders of the jacket left him enough space to lift his arms about 2 inches from his sides. And the hat. He didn't even want to think about the hat. It looked like about five thousand people had worn it and no one thought to toss it in a washer. He put on the wig without examining the inside, hoping against hope that he wouldn't need to buy lice shampoo.

      After changing into the costume he hobbled out to his car and drove over to 4247 Maplewood Drive. He pulled up and saw that there was no car around. Things might just work in his favor.    

   He surveyed the neighborhood and found no one was even on the street. Now seemed to be the time. He slowly climbed out of the low seat, grimacing. The pants were really too tight. After gathering all of the King family loot, he moved fast across the street and around to the back.      

He pulled out his lock pick and made fast work of it. He carefully slunk in to the den where he knew the Christmas tree was and set down the bags. Taking a minute to make sure he was alone, he walked around the entire first floor. When he didn't hear any movement around the house he went back to his work.

      The first item he pulled out of one of the bags was a tape deck that ran on batteries. He knew he would need to get into the mood. He pulled a tape out of his pocket and examined it by tree light.    

   "Christmas Songs For Agents. Leave it to Jeannie to think of something like that." Lee chuckled to himself and at the present he had received just the other day from Billy Melrose's wife.      

As the first strains of 'Zat You Santa Claus' came on, Lee was hard at work. He pulled out the bag he had bought to put Dottie's burner in and filled it with the gift and lots of tissue paper.      

      Next he needed to put a tag Amanda's quilt. Which bag did he put those tags in? He thought they were great. They had little mice dressed up as elves, all working on different toys. If he were to enjoy Christmas, these would be the little things that would make the season for him, but he didn't.    

   "I should have carried those separately," he growled, "I'll have to improvise."      

Lee started to walk across the room to another bag when he heard a voice.

      "I know someone is here. I am not helpless and before my family comes home I will find you." Amanda stated.      

Lee jumped, but his pants caught his legs and forced him to fall against the coffee table.    

   "Ouch!" He whispered.

      He pulled himself up and lifted the constricting garment to look at his shins. He started to rub gingerly looking for blood or bumps. He was too busy looking for said battle wounds when he saw stars.      

"Ouch!" He yelled this time and collapsed to the floor. He shifted to a sitting position and rubbed where he had been hit as the lights came on.    

   Amanda demanded, "Lee! What are you doing here and why are you listening to that song?"

      Lee wasn't sure of how to explain himself. He was a hard-nosed tough as nails spy. He didn't care about Christmas, but here he was dressed up as Santa in Amanda "World's Biggest Hassle" King's house delivering presents to her and her family, and worst of all listening to Christmas music.      

If Francine found out... well, he wouldn't go there for now.    

   "Uh, Amanda. Do you have any ice? My head is killing me." Lee was stalling for more time to come up with a way to explain.

      "No, not until you tell me why you are here dressed like," she pointed to him trying to come up with a description, "that. Listening to a song that I haven't heard in years, lurking around in the dark next to my Christmas tree, with all of those bags, does this have to do with some case or something?"      

"No. It doesn't have anything to do with a case. You are entitled to a reason, but I can't think right now. I have a splitting headache," Lee grumbled, obviously upset.  "Can I please have some ice? I can," he caught himself starting to yell and calmed down, "I can explain everything to you after."    

   Lee put on his best wounded puppy look and stared deep into Amanda's eyes willing her to believe him, "I promise," he pleaded.

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   With Lee's head and shins taken care of he realized he needed to start explaining himself or he could potentially be in more trouble. He shifted in his seat looking for a position that would minimize the throbbing and cleared his throat.

      Amanda looked at him expectantly, "Why are you wearing that suit? It looks like it was made for a munchkin."      

Lee smiled, "Heh, well, I, uh, I thought it'd be a good cover if I got caught by your mother or the boys," he figured this is about as much help as Amanda would give him, so he took the plunge.    

   "Last week, I had a lead I wanted to talk to you about. I waited for about three hours trying to get your attention, but you were really busy. When I walked back to my car, I stepped on an action figure that was buried in some flowers."

      "Captain Crazy, Phillip thought he had broken him," Amanda stated.      

Lee continued, "I know. I had memorized some of the markings on it, but I guess it wasn't enough, but I'll get to that. I had decided to replace it, but I wanted to see who it belonged to before I did. I over heard Phillip and Jaime talking about it and I felt really bad that Jaime was so angry with Phillip for it. When I went to the toy store I bought Jaime any action figure that resembled what I could remember. Then I figured I owed Phillip for taking the fall for me, so I bought him some stuff to try to make up for his trouble."    

   "Lee, you could have just told me that you had stepped on it and I could have taken care of it," Amanda interrupted.

      "I guess so, but I didn't think of that," he smirked, "Anyway, I looked at how much I had bought for the boys and figured I should get something for you and your mother. So I have gifts in there for the two of you also. I had to wrap your mother's and leave you a note sort of explaining where the gifts had come from. I figured I'd have a chance tonight without anyone being around. You had said something about everyone was going to be out for the night, including you."

      Amanda chimed, "I needed to finish wrapping some things for the boys, so mother took them to the movies for me. Why were you listening to music if you didn't want to get caught? It's not really something I pictured you listening to."       

Lee felt like he was getting the third degree even though the questions were simple and easy enough to answer. It just didn't do much for his image. He chewed on his lip thinking of the best way to answer.    

   "I, uh, well," the infallible Scarecrow was stumped, "I needed something to get into the mood," he shrugged.

"Why did you have to pick that song? It had me scared to death," Amanda asked.    

   "Jeannie made me a tape for the holidays when she found out I didn't own any Christmas music. 'Christmas Songs for Agents,' since it was the only Christmas music I had, I listened to it," he answered simply.  "I'm sorry I scared you, but you did the right thing," he winced as he touched the back of his head.

      "I'm sorry I hit you like that. If I had known I would have helped you," she smiled and reached across the table to touch his arm, "Would you like some cookies? I can make some hot cocoa and we can finish the wrapping together."      

Lee thought about the invitation for a minute, "What about your mother in the boys?"    

   Amanda looked at the clock, "She promised that she'd keep the boys out until ten. We still have two hours."

      "In that case, I don't know how I could say no. I love cookies and I'm not in much shape to drive right now."    

   "Good," Amanda stood up to get the plate, "Now how do I explain to everyone how these gifts got here?"

      Lee's eyes twinkled for a second, "Santa."