"Happy Holidays" by DieselJester. Edited by Lady Katheryne.
A/N: Winter Holiday Story Contest 2013 Submission. Thank you for reading. Please be sure to vote!
Will you hold me sacred? Will you hold me tight?
Can you colorize my life; I'm so sick of black and white?
Can you make it all a little less old?
I can do that...
-Meat Loaf, "I'd do anything for love" (1993)
Emily brushed the snow off of her jacket as she entered the main doors of the lodge with her friends. The blowing snow had picked up just a bit right as they arrived. "I don't see why we had to take separate cars," Emily said as she watched her three friends shuck off their coats to hang in the nearby closet. Her brow furrowed with confusion as they each then took their car keys and tossed them into a large bowl in the entryway that already had a lot of sets inside.
"Come on, Emi, your turn," her closest friend, Samantha prompted her. Behind her Jenna and Danielle wore big, knowing smiles.
"Is this for sobriety or something?" Emily asked. She had no intention of getting drunk tonight. If anything, she'd maybe have one drink and be done with the whole evening.
"More of the 'or something' category," Jenna giggled.
Rolling her eyes, Emily tossed her keys in amid the cheers of her friends. She ditched her coat in the closet and followed them out into the main area. At first she was overwhelmed by the loud holiday music and myriad of decorations all over the place. Outside, the mountain lodge looked a bit unassuming with its wooden exterior jutting up two levels out of the serene area covered with soft, newly fallen snow. The inside, however, was decked out with miles of tinsel, enough wreaths to cover every door in a small town, and more mistletoe that she'd ever seen in her life.
Milling around the lodge, and sashaying across the designated dance floor, were a few traditional Santas, each with a sexy Mrs. Santa on his arm; a few buff Santas that looked like they could double as holiday Chippendale dancers; and way too many sexy elves--both male and female--than she could count. At one end of the large hall, stockings hung on the mantle above the huge fireplace; at the other end, a giant tree that had been fully trimmed stood proudly next to two story windows, showing the snow covered pine forest beyond; a silent reminder as to just how cold it was outside.
By the time their little quartet had arrived, the party was already in full swing. Off in one corner, a woman dressed in Mrs. Santa lingerie was tending bar. Tables to either side had rows of eggnog waiting to be taken. Emily hesitated at the entryway, feeling woefully out of place in the little black dress her friends had convinced her to wear for the occasion, stating that she really needed to get out more. In her opinion, the dress, which left her shoulders bare, showed way too much leg and cleavage. Judging by the abundance of lustful looks she was getting from the guys, and even a couple of girls, she was probably alone in that opinion.
Her friends grabbed her by either wrist to haul her over to the bar for a drink to get her to loosen up. Emily ordered a fuzzy navel and fended off a few advances and a couple of outright propositions as she quickly made her way to a dark recess under an overhang where she could sit with her back to the wall and watch the party with morbid fascination. There, in her quiet little nook, she could observe and feel relatively safe. Her friends hardly noticed her departure as they took their drinks and disappeared into the crowd. More power to them. She just wanted to stay out of sight and out of mind while she silently gauged how long she would need to stay until she could call it an early night and drive home to her college dorm room.
As Emily sat and sipped at her drink in silence, she began to notice little things happening around the massive room. It wasn't long before she got a sinking suspicion that this was more than just a mere winter holiday bash. First, it was the couple that started necking on the faux fur rug in front of the roaring fire. Then there was the couple feeling each other up on a couch by one of the widows. And when she saw two pairs of stockinged legs, both decidedly female, sticking out from underneath the Christmas tree, her jaw dropped. There was little imagination required to figure out what was going on amongst those fake presents.
Emily was aghast at the sheer brazenness of it all. Then, a few minutes later, something even more unexpected happened: she found herself oddly turned on by the spectacle, growing damp between her legs. Subconsciously she rubbed her knees together and clenched her loins causing the soft material of her black thigh high hose to make a gentle swishing sound. Her skirt rode up a little bit and she tugged it down further over her thighs in hopes that no one would notice. Her breasts swelled inside of her dress and her nipples stood on end, demanding attention, as her eyes darted from one sexual escapade to another. She let out a little gasp when she noticed that Jenna and Samantha were now engaged in some very close and very intimate dancing out in the middle of the floor.
"Enjoying the show?" A deep voice laced with amusement off to her right suddenly asked, shocking her out of her newfound voyeurism.
Emily, caught completely off guard, squeaked and jumped in her seat. She blushed furiously and brushed a stray strand of her auburn hair out of her face in what she hoped was a nonchalant manner. Planning to take a quick sip to buy time, her hand darted out to grab her glass. When she fumbled, sloshing the contents, the man chuckled and sat off to her right. She strained, in the dim light, to see who it was. He was wearing a causal business suit and looked somewhat familiar; she'd seen him around campus before. "It's Cole, isn't it," she asked. The man nodded and smiled at her recognition. She let out an irritated huff of air as the adrenaline surge from being spooked subsided. "Don't you ever make any noise when you move around?"
"No, not really," Cole replied, his dazzling smile evident even in the poor light. He made it a habit to move around in such a way that no one ever seemed to know where he was. When he saw her sitting out of the way of the main floor, he couldn't help but come over to say hi in his own way.
His steel eyes seemed to dance with the lighting as he casually leaned back in the loveseat, his drink in hand, as he turned his attention to the dancing on the main floor. "You still haven't answered my question."
"No, I'm not, as a matter of fact," she said as she felt her face flush. His gaze returned to her, seeming to bore into her very soul.
Cole let out a harrumph. "Aren't you a terrible liar." He took a sip of his soda while he continued to look her up and down. She appeared the typical "girl next door," and looked out of place for this kind of party. The distant firelight caught the red highlights in her hair perfectly. She had curves in just the right places and it looked to him as if she were poured into the black dress. Her nice, full breasts and slightly flared hips were evident. He caught just the hint of garters running down her well defined thighs, holding her black hose up, and his cock bulged in his pants as he imagined what she was wearing underneath the dress. Not many girls these days bothered with garters. "I'd be willing to bet good money that you have damp panties right now," he commented, crossing his legs to hide his growing arousal.
"Only because the fire is keeping things extremely hot in here," Emily replied as she shifted uncomfortably in her seat.
"Hm, a deft parry, but the touch still lands," Cole said with amusement. "You're one of Sam's friends, aren't you, the quiet one always in the back of her little quartet?" Emily swallowed hard but managed to nod. There was something hypnotic about his gaze. "So what should I call you," Cole asked, searching for her name.
Cole chuckled. "Okay, 'Not Interested', I must say that is a mouthful and will make future conversation a bit awkward." When she bit her lip and looked down at her drink he decided that he'd let the line out a bit to give her time. He rose to his feet, took her hand into his, and brushed his lips across her knuckles. "I'm going to go mingle a bit, but I wouldn't mind talking to you later. I will say this, Miss Not Interested, if you wind up with another man tonight, I will be extremely disappointed."
Emily felt a cold chill run through her body from his kiss. She couldn't help but shiver as her eyes met his. He was tall, at least six feet, and extremely handsome. Her insides melted at his charming smile, and she was slightly disappointed that he walked off, seemingly fading back into the darkness. He was the first man not to outright proposition her tonight and it made her curious. Should she be worried or should she be thrilled?
"Emi! There you are!" Danielle's voice called out. Emily's head whipped around and she saw her friend coming towards her from the opposite direction.
Danielle was beside her within a minute, locking arms, and prying her away from the lounge chair. "What are you doing hiding here? You should be out amongst the crowd, meeting people, making new friends, and maybe getting some before the party ends."
"But-But I've already met someone," Emily protested as she was drug from her safe spot, dropping her drink in the process.
"Oooooo..." Danielle squealed with delight. "Really? Where is he? Who is he?"
Emily stammered for a bit, unsure of telling Danielle who she'd met. "Uhm, some guy from around campus," she said. "I hardly know him," she quickly blurted out.
"Hm, but we might. Come on, give, did you get his name at least?"
Before she could answer, Jenna broke out of the crowd and joined them. "Oh my god, Emily I can't believe it. I just heard that Cole Grafton is asking around about you!" Jenna threw her arms around Emily and squeezed hard. "You are SO lucky!"
Danielle gaped at Jenna, "As in the Cole Grafton? No way!" she gave a playful dirty look to Emily. "Tell me the truth; was he the guy you met?"
Emily felt uncomfortable under her friends' questioning looks; they practically held their breath waiting for her to answer. She let out a tiny sigh of resignation. "Uhm... maybe," she gave them a weak smile; both squealed with glee.
"He is so hot!" Danielle gushed.
"He'd be so good for you, not like that last asshole you dated," Jenna added, practically bouncing up and down.
"You mean the last five assholes," Danielle pointed out.
"Right," Jenna conceded, "I'll go see if I can find Sam. She can find Cole and talk to him," she shared a conspiratorial smile with Danielle.
"I'll make sure she doesn't slink off anywhere," Danielle said sweetly, linking arms with Emily again. Jenna turned on her heel and disappeared into the crowd.
"Wait, what?" Things were happening too fast and Emily's head was spinning. "Whoa, wait a minute, when did I log in to this dating service?" She made a futile attempt to pull her arm free but Danielle's grip remained firm. "I don't even know this guy,"
Danielle's eyes rolled. "I swear; you have to get out from under that rock. You've been hiding there for the past two years, Emi." She let out a huff of air at just how clueless Emily was. "He's a business major in his senior year, captain of the fencing team, and the starting kicker for the football team. He's involved in a lot of different volunteer organizations and he's really fucking hot. He looks like he's chiseled from granite." Danielle practically swooned. "Come on, let's go to someplace where they can easily find us," she pointed up to one of the empty balconies, "there, that one should work," she said as she led Emily through the crowd towards the stairs.
Emily frowned. "I heard that he was a ladies man." She wasn't sure if she was up to someone who was looking for a mere one night stand. In fact, she wasn't even sure that she should be here. Emily had the sudden urge to bolt for the front door.
Danielle gave her a half shrug. "He's been around, dated a few girls here and there, and probably slept with a lot of them. No one really says anything. All the guys say they know nothing, and girls just get goofy looks on their faces when you ask them."
"So you haven't been with him then?"
"I wish," Danielle sighed. Once they reached the relative quiet and seclusion of the balcony, she pulled Emily over to a small couch. "Okay, so you were alone with him, so now give; what's he like when no one else is around?"
"I-I don't know," Emily protested. "We only talked for a minute before he walked off and you showed up. He said that he was going to mingle,"
Now Danielle frowned. "That's it? You just got his name and he walked off? Jeez, what'd you say to him?"
When Emil relayed the encounter, Danielle buried her face in her hands. "You didn't even give him your name," she practically cried out, "he's obviously in to you and you told him that you weren't even interested? My god, Emi, you have got to get out of that shell of yours! I mean, seriously, what are you going to do when it comes time to divvy up the keys at the end of the night? Tell the guy 'sorry, not interested'?"
"What do you mean divvy up the keys," Emily asked in alarm.
"You don't honestly think that it's for sobrieties sake, do you?" Danielle rolled her eyes when Emily nodded hesitantly. "Ugh! At the end of the night, provided that you didn't want to simply go home with the beau of your choice, the guys select a random set of keys, and go home with the girl whose keys he pulled. Hence the term: Key Party."
Emily was aghast. "I thought that you all said this was a 'Christmassy Party', not a Key Party. I can't take a random guy back to my place."
"You don't have to. You drive to his place so that he can get home and, god forbid, if for some odd reason the night doesn't go well, you can drive yourself back home," Danielle explained. "It's an added safety measure just in case."
That was a relief to Emily as she was uncomfortable enough as it was. She looked up when a man approached them from the stairs and she found herself disappointed when it wasn't Cole. The man smiled at them both but his eyes were on her. "Hello ladies," he crooned.
Danielle gave him a cold stare. "Beat it, buster, she's Cole's."
The man backed away, his hands in the air. "Whoa, sorry about that, my bad," he quickly said as he made a hasty getaway.
Emily couldn't help but be amazed that the mere mention of Cole's name made him go away when earlier she had to practically beat men off with a stick. Just what kind of man was Cole, she wondered, to have that kind of effect on people? She dislodged herself from Danielle to walk to the railing and gazed down upon the main floor, wondering what kind of situation she had gotten herself into. Her heart did a strange flutter and she tingled all over as she imagined Cole's hands running up and down her body.
Danielle, still on the couch, looked intently at her phone when it started buzzing inside her purse. "Well, I'm going to go downstairs to find the girls. You gonna be alright here by yourself?" she asked.
"Yeah, whatever," Emily mumbled waving a dismissive hand over her shoulder, too lost in her thoughts to think straight right.
"Okay, have fun!" Danielle bounced up and headed for the stairs.
Alone again, Emily breathed a sigh of relief. She was unsure what to think about her friends' attempts to hook her up with someone tonight. What was she thinking? She had to be crazy to even contemplate it. Fishing her phone from her pocketbook to check the time, she figured she'd stay fifteen minutes before she was out the door and gone. In her opinion, she'd more than satisfied her social requirements for the next decade.
"So here we are again," Cole's baritone voice resonated behind her. Emily stiffened and her eyes went wide as she suddenly found herself gripping the railing for support. Why the hell couldn't he make some kind of noise? The man needed a cowbell or something so that she could know when he was near.
Emily swallowed hard and her breathing hitched. Her nostrils flared as she caught just the hint of his cologne when walked up behind her. Her heart thudded in her chest, threatening to burst outward. This was insane. Why was she riveted in place like a deer caught in headlights? The sudden feeling of Fight or Flight surged within her. "Cole," she practically breathed his name and her voice sounded husky even to her. She turned her head slightly to gaze at him. Danielle's description was correct; he was definitely eye candy and she could stand there looking at him all night. "Uhm, it's good to see you again," she croaked out, trying to cover it with a nervous smile.
"Is it?" Cole asked, the hint of a smile gracing his lips. "Is it really, Emily?"
Startled, she fully turned and stared at him with wide eyes. "How?"
"Your friends told me," Cole said, giving her his charming smile. "Since you didn't give me your name, I had to ask down on the dance floor. Word spread like wildfire and Samantha and Jenna found me within minutes. They couldn't stop talking about you." When she turned her head slightly in embarrassment he grew concerned. "I hope that I'm not intruding on anything?"
Emily recovered, giving him a genuine smile. "No, not at all," she said. "I was just...thinking."
Cole sidled up beside her to lean against the railing. "About?"
"Nothing, really," she said and turned back to the railing. The corners of his mouth twitched up and he arched an eyebrow at her. "Okay, you; I was thinking about you," she admitted.
"Glad to see you speaking the truth now," he quipped. "So what about me, exactly, was preoccupying your thoughts?"
"Does it really matter?"
"It does to me."
Emily turned on him. "What do you even want with me?" She couldn't believe that she'd just blurted that out.
"I want to give you pleasure." Cole retorted with a grin.
Emily couldn't believe that was it. "I'm nobody, I'm someone that possibly one of the hottest guys on campus has seen in passing and haven't really talked to before now, and you're the only person who hasn't asked me to do anything with them yet," her hand gestured to the mass of writhing bodies below on the dance floor, "you could be out there screwing any other girl and you yet come after me, why?"
Cole wore an amused expression for the duration of Emily's tirade. "First off, exhibitionism and group sex isn't really my thing. I'll do the occasional three or foursome, but that's about it. So that's why I'm not out there. Second, I've been attracted to you for some time now and I just haven't had ample opportunity to talk to you in private yet since you're always surrounded by your friends. Third, I see a beautiful girl who's really freaking tense that all I want to do right now is try to get her to relax and enjoy the moment rather than worry about little mundane details." He held up a hand to forestall her protest. "Don't get me wrong; thinking and intelligence are excellent qualities to possess, but sometimes you have to throw all reason and logic to the wind and just go with what feels right."
He placed a hand on hers and smiled. "So tell me, what feels right to you," he asked as he ran his hand gently up her forearm, sending chills down her spine.
"That does," Emily sighed softly. She felt the heat rise to her face; her breasts suddenly felt heavy as they begged to be touched. Her body tingled with just the anticipation of what he might do and she felt her pussy go slick.
"Keep in mind that you can stop me at any time," Cole murmured, stepping closer to kiss her bare shoulder. He switched hands on her arm to caress her while his other hand rested at her waist.