Falling Down the Rabbit Hole Ch. 3bycaptivate©
After Doug left, Betsy was ready to go inside. She carefully locked the front door behind her and entered her bedroom, once again overwhelmed by the beauty of it. She started the CD player, Bernadette Peters filling the air with a sad love song. She climbed into her bed, pulling the quilt under her chin and thought about home and her friends and love and...Doug. She felt the tears gathering in her eyes, slipping down her cheeks and she sobbed with loneliness. It was all right during the day, when Renee was with her, sharing time and making her laugh. But now, in the dark night, she missed all her chums and her parents. She listened to the love songs softly playing and wondered if she would ever dream of her own lover. Sad as she was, tiredness won out, and Betsy fell asleep, to dream of a Prince driving a shiny car and holding her hand with long,elegant fingers.
The rest of the week passed quickly. Renee kept her busy, getting her new home organized, selecting work outfits and accessories, even just tanning by the pool. It seemed everywhere she turned, she found Doug. He was always there, moving furniture for her, carrying her packages, driving her through Denver, showing her around.
After a few days of being driven, Betsy insisted on sitting up front with Doug. He was against it, but too polite to argue with the Boss's family. He took her everywhere, showing her the Red Rock Canyon and the massive outdoor stage, the new football stadium, various college campuses, and, of course, shopping malls. He was an excellent companion. It took her awhile to break him down, but now he acted like a friend, and they had so much fun together.
As they drove around, Betsy learned more about him. After the Air Force, Doug had attended Denver University and majored in business courses, then decided he wasn't ready to settle down and become a "Suit". When this job was posted, it seemed to be exactly what he wanted. Driving her uncle had given him many opportunities to listen to business talk and he was savvy about investments and corporate affairs. Betsy had never found anyone who enjoyed business talk as much as she did. Now they shared hours of it.
She was learning about her new home town. It was a wonderful place to be. The weather was cool and cloudless. The people seemed very nice. Doug had friends everywhere and he delighted in introducing her to them. Renee came along on some trips, but mostly, it was just the two of them. Doug eased her loneliness and made Betsy feel she had found a good friend.
Then her new job started and Betsy loved it. It was not a known fact that her uncle ran the company. She was introduced as a new intern and only a few executives knew of her relationships within the office. Her entry level position was marvelous. She was training under a skilled executive named Greg Levy. He was her uncle's favorite protegee. Greg was being groomed for high management and Uncle Giles felt he was the best man to train Betsy in the ways of high finance. He was a consumate businessman and liked the intensity of Betsy's attitude. They worked well together. From the start, they shared ideas, took chances and created great deals.
Greg was no fool. He wanted to be a business success and this company was the place he wanted to make his mark. He also knew that Betsy was Giles' favorite niece and he was being trusted with her. What he hadn't counted on was how easy falling for Betsy would be. He planned to woo her, take her small town breath away, but he didn't anticipate the wonderfulness that was Betsy. As they worked, he marveled at her charm and brains, her sweetness and cut-throat business dealings. He looked forward to late working nights with her, so he could take her out to eat or for a drink before driving her home. He knew she was shy and not at all ready for a major romance and was willing to take his time, move slowly into her heart. That was his plan and he was pleased with it.
True to her promise, Amy came to visit in mid-July. She stayed in Betsy's wonderful home and immediately felt like a family member. Before long, she was calling them Uncle Giles and Aunt Fiona and comfortably wandering in and out of the main house. She even went to work with Betsy, meeting her coworkers. They would sit up every night discussing Betsy's new friends and job. During her visit, Amy also spent time with Doug and Greg. She could see the subtle rivalry there, although Betsy seemed unaware. Both men looked at Betsy as if they could devour her, but Betsy was oblivious. Amy hesitated to mention it, preferring to let Betsy make her own discovery. The holiday passed quickly and suddenly it was time for Amy to return to Sanctuary. Their last night together was full of happiness and sadness. Amy was pleased to see her friend so comfortable and content in her new life. She was also happy to find two men doting on her, wanting her. As wonderful as Sanctuary was, the men there were all lifetime friends and romance was hard to find.
Doug and Betsy took Amy to the airport, both hugging her tightly as she was called to board. Doug held Betsy's hand as she bravely watched her best friend walk away. Then he held her as she cried uncontrollably. He understood. He cared. And, without ever admitting it aloud, he loved Betsy and wanted her happy.
In a few days, things returned to normal. Greg continued his slow seduction of Betsy, taking her out on weekends to fun places, showing her the wonderful sites of Denver and the surrounding towns. They spent whole days exploring Fort Collins and Boulder, going to state parks and hiking, or just driving through the magnificent land that was Colorado. He seemed to be making headway with her. Often in the evenings, after returning home from an enjoyable day, they would sit together on the veranda, holding hands and kissing. Kissing Betsy was a joy. Her mouth was soft and sweet and made for rubbing lips. Sometimes it seemed she wanted more, but pulled away if Greg touched her. Still, Greg appreciated her innocence and was determined to wait for her to want him. He felt things were progressing nicely. Very according to plan.
Until late one night, after they had been working together into the early evening. He was walking her downstairs, hoping to take her to dinner. They opened the lobby doors and walked outside, both seeing the shiny limo at the same time. There stood Doug, with the sign in bright red paint, saying "BETSY QUINN". It made her heart smile. And, apparently, her eyes and mouth joined in as she lit up just for Doug. Their eyes met and locked. All of this was observed by Greg, who suddenly realized he needed to alter his plan. He never thought he would have competition for this woman, especially from the chauffeur.
Before he even had a chance to suggest dinner, Betsy turned to him and said goodnight. "I will work on that problem tonight and hopefully have an answer in the morning, Greg" she said.
Then Doug opened the passenger door for her and settled her into the front seat, closing the door carefully and heading around the car. She gave Greg a tiny wave as they drove away.
She turned to Doug, smiling. "What a nice surprise! I was thinking of you, wondering what you were doing tonight, and there you were! Thank you for coming for me!"
She happily began discussing her current project while Doug drove skillfully through the evening traffic. He loved the naturalness he felt with her. Even if they were apart for days, they seemed to pick up right where they stopped. They were outside Denver now, making good time as he headed for his destination. It was then that she noticed he wasn't in his dressy suit. He was dressed in nice gray slacks and a blue shirt that matched his eyes. In the days since she had seen him, he had started a trim beard. it was nicely masculine, enhancing his strong jaw and highlighting his full lips. She found herself watching his lips as he talked or laughed or smiled. Suddenly, they seemed so delicious, so enticing.
Doug pulled into a parking lot and walked around the car to help Betsy. They were at a large building, aglow with twinkling lights. As they entered, the hostess greeted Doug by name and led them to a table overlooking the mountains. All around them, greenery was decorated with white lights, glowing against the darkness. They ordered drinks and then Doug took her hand and led her to the dance floor.
The music was perfect, right out of the '40's. He held her close and they danced to "Someone to Watch Over Me" and "My Funny Valentine." It seemed they would barely return to the table for a sip of their drinks and another wonderful song would start. They fit so well together. He was tall and full-bodied, holding her short frame with respect and care. Dancing with Doug seemed so natural. Betsy's mind drifted as they circled the dance floor.
Betsy realized that she had worked so hard today that she had forgotten lunch. Now, her drink was going directly to her head. Not making her drunk, but nicely tipsy, enough to loosen her and let her do something she had wanted to do for a long time. She reached up and caressed his face. She felt his beard against her palm, soft and warm. They stood still and looked into each other's eyes, smiling. She felt her heart begin to pound harder, something that never happened with Greg. Doug's mouth was so lovely, his lips full and pink, looking so sweet and tantalizing. Later, she thought it must have been the drink that gave her the courage, but she stood on tiptoe and kissed him. She felt the jolt as their lips touched, felt the desire coursing through her body, just from this simple kiss.
Doug took Betsy's hand and led her to the table. They sat beside each other and continued to entwine fingers. Betsy felt her hand belonged in his, that he was meant to be near her. Her mind was whirling with wonder. "This is how it should be, this is how I should feel!" she thought. Her hand fit nicely in his, she felt right and safe and very happy. She realized Doug was talking to her, asking her something.
"....dinner? What would you like?" he was asking. Betsy wanted to yell, "I want you!" Her innate shyness kept her from saying it, but the thought was filling her head, making her heart pound and her body ache.
Doug ordered dinner and they began talking, both at once, feelings spilling from their hearts and souls. They ate sporadically, feeding each other, forgetting to eat for long minutes as they gazed at each other. Her eyes couldn't move from his lips, and she wondered how he would taste now, with a tiny drop of salsa there. She couldn't help herself, she leaned forward and swept his lower lip with her tongue, her eyes closing with delight. They stayed close together, their faces inches away, their eyes probing.
Doug couldn't wait any longer. He threw some money on the table and took Betsy's hand, pulling her behind him. They left the club and walked quickly to the car. There, Doug turned to Betsy and pulled her into his arms, against his body, and kissed her. Not a routine, run of the mill kiss, but a kiss that took her breath away, a kiss that reached her soul. Their mouths fit perfectly together, their tongues searched for each other, creating sparks of excitement as they touched. Doug's hands covered her back, caressing her spine and creating heat in his wake. Betsy kept trying to get closer to him, just into his skin if possible. Doug was the first to pull away. His hand cupped her flushed cheek and his fingers nearly burned her soft skin with desire.
Betsy looked up at him, the man she thought of as her friend, and realized she loved him. She was in love with him. Now she wanted all the attending joys of that love. She wanted Doug.
TO BE CONTINUED....