Lady in Red Ch. 02byHarddaysknight©
Half an hour later, Steve and Gwen pulled into the Anderson driveway. At least they pulled into the bottom of the drive, as it was full of cars. Gwen looked the cars over and turned to Steve.
"I'm so sorry. It looks like every relative and friend my family knows has decided to meet at our place. I think it may be to inspect you and maybe grill you as boyfriend material. I'm not saying you're my boyfriend or anything, but I know everyone inside will say it. I have to invite you in or they'd give me the devil, but you can leave if you want. I wouldn't blame you," admitted Gwen.
"For some reason, you don't seem to understand that I really enjoy your family. I'd be glad to meet all your family and friends. In fact, I want to meet them, if you're okay with it."
"Okay, but don't say that I didn't warn you. They'll talk like we're getting married next week and ask all kinds of embarrassing questions. The Inquisition was a walk in the park compared to an evening in our house when you're dating one of the Anderson girls," warned Gwen.
As Steve and Gwen reached the door, Gwen turned to Steve and leaned into him. Steve bent down to kiss Gwen when the door opened.
"Oops!" gasped Kate as she quickly slammed the door shut again.
"Oh, no!" cried Gwen. "Could you see if anyone was looking at us?"
"It wasn't too bad," soothed Steve. "It looked like it was just your sisters, parents, Aunt Diane, and a few other people I don't know. All of them were looking at us. Other than that, I think we went unnoticed."
The door slowly opened and Paula stuck her head out and grimaced. "Gwen, Kate is so sorry! She saw you coming up the drive and was so excited to see you and Steve. She thought you were going to walk right in, so she hurried to the door to welcome you. She wasn't trying to be cruel. She's just so excited she couldn't contain herself. Steve, will you please come in for awhile and meet everyone. It'll be fine. We were all young once."
With that, Paula swung the door open and gestured for Gwen and Steve to enter. Every person in the room was straining to keep a straight face, except Kate. She had a look of utter dread. Steve grabbed her and pulled her to him.
"What should I do with a little sister that tries to ruin my night? Are you ticklish? Maybe afraid of heights?" joked Steve as he gently tossed her into the air and caught her with no apparent effort. "I guess I'll just have to spank you then."
"That's supposed to be punishment?" laughed Kate. "Sis, I'm really sorry about opening the door on you. I wasn't thinking clearly. I should have known you'd want a little private time with Steve. That was unforgivable. Will you forgive me?"
"That sounds like a paradox, Kate. If something cannot be done, it follows that I cannot do it. So you're not off the hook," threatened Gwen.
"Now that Kate's back on the floor, if not in her sister's good graces, we can show you two the videos of the evening's activities," offered Aunt Diane. "We can watch on the big screen. Ted hooked his laptop up to it so we can all watch it. Your classmate, Dave Kite, is doing an amazing job of catching things on video and posting to YouTube. "The Lady in Red" dance already has 120 views. We were just getting ready to watch it when you pulled in, walked up the drive, and for some unknown reason, stalled on the porch."
Ted hit the "play" icon and Gwen was amazed at the sight on the screen. She and Steve were dancing in high definition on a 55 inch screen and it looked amazing. She realized what a great job Lisa had done with her hair and makeup. Gwen had been transformed her into a princess, a curvy princess with cleavage! When the camera focused on Steve, Kate let out a whimper and Paula sighed. He was simply amazing. No one could call him a pretty boy, but he looked great in a very masculine way. Once again the room was silent as the dance ended, until Kate called out for her dad to play it again.
After watching it several times, Ted played the video of Steve dancing with Mrs. Davis and everyone had a big laugh. When the video of Lisa and Steve dancing together ended, Kate once again told her father to play it over. Paula was wiping her eyes when the lights were turned back up.
"Steve, I was caught short this evening, much to my embarrassment. I'll write you a check to cover what it cost you for the dance with Lisa," offered Ted. "You really saved her. Paula was calling me every name in the book when that fat bastard, excuse my French, started up to the stage to claim his dance with Lisa."
"Sir, I'm sure that as a gentleman yourself, you'll reconsider what you just suggested. I didn't dance with Lisa to save her. Gwen simply indicated that she'd be fine with me winning the bid for the dance with Lisa. That's all it took. It was my great pleasure and honor to share that dance with Lisa. Please don't suggest otherwise," concluded Steve.
Suddenly, Lisa was back in his arms hugging him like her life depended on it. "Sis, I don't know how you found this guy, but I hope he's got a brother. He's a keeper!"
As Steve knew would eventually happen, the conversation turned to his family and background.
"Steve, did any of your family go to the dance tonight? I didn't see anyone that appeared to be related to you. Were your parents there?" asked Paula.
"My parents are deceased, Mrs. Anderson," responded Steve with as little emotion as he was able to show.
Gwen gave an audible gasp and moved to hug Steve as she admitted, "I've been so selfish, Steve. I should have shown more interest in your family situation. If your parents have passed on, where do you live, and with whom do you live?"
"My father's uncle has a small place downtown and I live with him. I turned 18 this summer, so I don't really need a legal guardian, except the school requires it for their records. He's kind of a recluse, but he welcomed me into his home and treats me well enough. He just refuses to go out unless he really must. I don't try to change him and he doesn't interfere with my comings and goings, so it works for us."
"Steve, I'm so sorry to hear about your parents. Would I be too insensitive if I asked how they died?" questioned Paula. "If it's too upsetting, you needn't go into it."
"It's okay. My mom died when I was 14 in a car accident. My father died almost a year ago. He was in the military and died in combat. We traveled a lot and I received most of my education in the schools in embassies and military basis around the world, along with some home schooling and private tutoring. I haven't attended a school in the states since I was nine. Going to high school here is quite exciting for me, although I worry about keeping up with kids like Gwen," admitted Steve.
"I've got a rather personal question, Steve," stated Gwen's father, Ted. "Can you actually afford all that money that you spent on the girls tonight?"
"I honestly can, Mr. Anderson. My parents had life insurance and a trust that went to me. I can't spend like that on every date, but it wasn't a problem for a special occasion like tonight," revealed Steve. "Thanks for the hospitality, everyone, but I should get going. There's nothing worse than company that overstays its welcome."
Paula jumped to her feet and nudged Gwen, as Steve started for the door. "I'll walk you out," volunteered Gwen.
"And I'll keep the door closed!" promised Kate with a laugh.
Gwen was smiling as she pulled the door closed behind her. She stood with Steve on the front porch for a while before she spoke. "We're having a Labor Day pool party here Monday afternoon. Would you like to come, Steve? It's okay with my folks. In fact, Mom insisted that I invite you," confessed Gwen.
"How do you feel about it? Do you want me to come? Your mom is great, but if I come, it'll be mostly to see you," stated Steve frankly.
"You like to bring me out of my comfort zone all the time, don't you? Okay, then. I was trying to invite you without seeming all needy and desperate, so I used Mom as an excuse. I'm inviting you to the party because I want you to come. I want you to come to spend time with me. Is that direct enough?" asked a surprised Gwen as Steve stepped close and kissed her lips just as she finished speaking.
"Should I take that as a "yes" then?" smiled Gwen as she looked into his grey eyes and saw his desire.
"Do I need to repeat it, Gwen? I will, if you're unclear about my response," promised Steve.
"You'd better not. I wouldn't be surprised if more than one set of eyes is trained on us at this minute. Please don't force my father to thrash you within an inch of your life. He will if he has to. You know that, right?" chuckled Gwen.
"Gwen, I will try to never give your dad cause to thrash me, although the temptation you create for me is tremendous. I'll see you Monday afternoon," promised Steve as he retreated down the driveway, and then added. "This was one of the best nights I've ever had."
Gwen opened the door and stepped back into the house. The women in the living room were looking at her with huge smiles pasted on their faces.
"I'm going to bed now, everyone. I persuaded Steve to come to the Labor Day Party, Mom, so you can stop worrying about that," offered Gwen as she made her way to the stairs.
"You have some very remarkable powers of persuasion!" called Lisa, eliciting laughter from the other women present.
Steve had to park his car down the street because the Anderson driveway was filled to capacity. Kate greeted him with a hug as he walked up the driveway.
"I'm so glad you came, Steve. I've got a few girlfriends here, and I kind of told them we're real close since you're dating my sister. I'm not going to embarrass you or Sis, but it would be greatly appreciated if you'd act like you really liked me," begged Kate.
"Kate, I really do like you, but let's make this clear. I like you like the sister that I never had. I may start loving you like the sister I never had, but it's always going to be like a sister, okay?"
"Oh, Steve! You'll be my big brother? I never had one before, but I think I'm going to enjoy it a lot! That sounds perfect. I'll be sure to tell Sis that I'm not trying to steal you away. Thanks so much!" squealed Kate in delight as she led Steve around to the pool area behind the house.
"I think this guy is stalking me!" called Charlotte as she walked up to Steve and gave him a hug. "There's a lot of eye candy here today. Mark and Barry have been drooling since they arrived. Your girlfriend and her sisters could make a good man go bad, but I don't have to tell you that. You've already gone bad! The grape vine indicates that there are some disappointed cheerleaders trying to figure out where Gwen got that body, and how she found you first. Everyone always thought she was just a regular nerd that dressed conservatively to hide a plump figure. Boy! Were they wrong!"
Steve had been looking around, trying to find Gwen when she stepped out of the house with a six pack of soda and placed the cans in the cooler. Then she walked over by the corner of the pool area and looked out over the fence.
"She's looking for you, Steve. She didn't see you walk in with Kate. You should stroll over and tell her she can stop scanning the street." Charlotte laughed before she added quietly, "She's my best friend and a really great person, so don't take advantage or hurt her, okay? She's got it bad for you, and you're her first boyfriend."
Steve slipped up behind Gwen as she surveyed the driveway, and as much of the street as she could see.
"What are you looking for, Gwen? Maybe I can help you find it," offered Steve innocently.
Gwen whirled around and blushed fiercely as she recognized Steve. Then she slapped him lightly on the shoulder and smiled as she answered, "I was looking for Sam Briggs, if you must know, wise guy. I just can't get him out of my mind. Come on. Let me introduce you to all the girls. They've been asking every five minutes if you were really coming"
Steve and Gwen spent the next few minutes going around making introductions. Just as they completed that task, Kate ran up to Steve and insisted that he race her in the pool. She was wearing a fairly modest bikini, but it was evident that Kate was destined to be another statuesque Anderson sister.
"Okay, Kate. How many laps and how much of a head start do you want?" asked Steve. "Are there any rules and what does the winner get?"
"You sound pretty cocky!" observed Kate. "I've been swimming since I could walk. Gwen is the only one here that can beat me, and I'm getting closer to her every time we race. How about five laps? If I win, you have to be my partner in some chicken fights later on."
"Sounds good! Let's make it that the loser carries the winner in those chicken fights. We'll win as long as your legs hold out," teased Steve.
"Okay, we have a deal because I know that I won't lose. Everybody move back from the middle of the pool. Steve and I are racing five laps," declared Kate as she dove into the pool and began swimming furiously.
Calmly, Steve pulled his shirt off and watched Kate until she reached the far end and started back. Then he dove into the water while barely disturbing the surface. Gwen had been standing next to Steve as he pulled his shirt off. She only managed a brief glance before he joined the race with Kate, but what she had seen astounded her.
"Good God!" explained Diane to Lisa and Paula. "Did you see that boy's body? He could model for Michelangelo! The way your tongues are hanging out, I'd say that you saw what I saw. You'd better get Gwen on the pill, if she isn't already, Paula. Just looking at the boy gets me hot. Look at Kate's friends. They're speechless."
Steve never broke the surface until he hit the far end and kicked to start his return. He seemed to expend very little effort but he was moving extremely fast. He was halfway back as Kate made her turn. By the time Kate reached the far side again, Steve was a mere five yards behind her. They were neck and neck the rest of the race. On the final lap, Kate pulled ahead to touch the pool deck just before Steve.
Kate climbed up the ladder and exited the pool laughing as she called back to Steve, "I won! I wooo...."
Kate stood watching Steve climb up the ladder and step out of the pool. Water streamed down his torso and his muscles glistened in the bright sunlight. The act of climbing the ladder had flexed Steve's upper body and arms. Chiseled didn't begin to describe his chest and abs. The silence became obvious and Steve began to feel self conscious.
That was when Charlotte launched herself at Steve. She jumped into his arms as he stood near the top of the ladder. As they tumbled backward into the pool, Charlotte yelled, "He's mine. All mine!" before they dropped below the surface of the pool.
Soon they both came to the surface with Charlotte still clinging to Steve. Steve walked to the shallow end and carried Charlotte up to the deck and gently placed her on a chair. As he released her, Charlotte made a swooning sound and pretended to pass out.
By this time, everyone has laughing heartily. Gwen walked over to her friend and felt her pulse. Then she turned to the group and cried," Someone dial 911! This poor girl is all twitter-pated!"
Charlotte's clowning around had succeeded in relaxing Steve and gave everyone time to recover, at least until Gwen took off her cover up a few minutes later. Steve had asked if she wanted to go for a swim and she agreed. She slowly pulled an oversized shirt over her head to reveal her amazing curves. This time all the males at the pool began drooling.
"My God!" exclaimed Diane again. "Can you imagine how beautiful their kids would be? Look at those two standing there. I've never seen anything like either of them. Together, they're incredible!"
Steve had been watching Gwen as she pulled off her shirt to reveal a bright red bikini that covered all of the important areas. He wasn't prepared for the amazing figure that Gwen displayed. Her breasts were larger than he had expected and stood high on her chest. Her stomach muscles rippled as she pulled the shirt over her ponytail. At five foot ten, her legs were long and toned. Steve stared, much like all the other boys at the pool.
"Is something wrong, Steve?" asked a worried Gwen. "Is something showing that shouldn't be? Am I too fat?"
Shaking off his momentary stupor, Steve quickly grabbed Gwen and easily tossed her into the pool. Then he jumped in after her. It was several seconds before they broke the surface next to each other. Gwen had her hands on Steve's shoulders as she shook her hair and laughed.
"Mom, Gwen has it bad, but so does Steve," Lisa whispered so only her mother and aunt could hear. "And I can't blame her. Look at them. I've never seen a better looking couple, not even in the movies. Gwen always raves about my looks, but she's drop dead gorgeous and doesn't even realize it, but Steve does. He knew it even when she was wearing a baggy sweatshirt and jeans at the mall. He saw it before we did. This is going to be a romance for the ages!"
Gwen had never been so nervous about the first day of school. She took a seat next to Charlotte and waited for attendance to be taken. The homeroom teacher, Ms. Angela Walker, looked over the room as she waited for quiet, and then she began.
"Thomas Acker?" was the first name on her list. She glanced at him when he signaled that he was present. "Gwen Anderson, also known as "The Lady in Red"? You seem to be living a double life. By day, you're a meek, mild mannered straight A student, and by night a ravishing enchantress. I saw that video on YouTube, Gwen. I was very impressed. You both are very good dancers. I thought I was going to have your new friend in my homeroom, but it appears not. Perhaps the principal decided ...."
"I apologize for being late, Ms. Walker. I had to pick up some paperwork at the office. I have a written excuse from the principal," offered Steve as he burst into the room. "I'm...."
"I know very well who you are, Mr. Hammer. Your fame precedes you. So, I'm going to have the pleasure of Gwen Anderson and Steven Hammer in my homeroom this year, after all? In all honesty, I'm looking forward to this year. I've been a teacher here for twenty years now, and somehow I think this'll be a very remarkable year. We even have our self appointed class videographer in this room, don't we, Dave Kite?"
Steve had taken an empty seat as Ms. Walker spoke to Dave Kite. Out of curiosity, he turned to see what the fellow looked like. Steve was surprised to see that he recognized the kid. He had been at the pool party at the Andersons! Steve made a mental note to pay more attention to boy's names when he was introduced to them.
"Yes, Ms. Walker. I'm really glad to be in this homeroom. I try to keep my camera close at hand. This morning, I got around to posting some video that'll probably get even more views than the "Lady in Red" dance video. Thanks to a pool party the other day with our "Lady in Red" and her new boyfriend. I've posted a disclaimer on my YouTube and FaceBook pages. I'll make it available to everyone in the school. It states that anyone the may opt out of being in any photos and/or videos I post on the web. If people don't opt out, it'll mean that they're in. I don't know how legal it is, but I'm doing it. After all, I'm just a kid."
"Since there's just a half day of school today, and since I'm the senior class advisor, I'm asking all seniors that are able, to remain after school for a short meeting. I especially want you, Dave, as well as Gwen and Steve. I have a feeling this will be a year like no other," added Ms. Walker.
Gwen had debated whether to dress in her usual style, or rather lack of style, or to attempt to be more fashionable now that she had a boy interested in her. In the end, she had decided that Steve first met her dressed down at the mall so he shouldn't be surprised or disappointed by the way she looked. If he didn't like her as she was, then he should find someone else to date!