The Dances and the Kiss

The moment she went into the hall where the party was in full swing, her eyes scanned the sea of faces for Daxon. She spotted him with a group of people. Erin was standing beside him.

“Is he here?” Daryl asked.

She glanced up at him. “Who?”

“Who else?”

“Yes, he’s over there.”

Daryl followed her gaze. “Let’s go and say hello,” he suggested.

Her heart skipped a beat at the thought. “All right,” she said. Might as well go and get it over with. She ran her hands nervously down the sides of her dress and then preceded the way over to the group. “Good evening,” she greeted them with a smile.

They all smiled and greeted her warmly, except Erin who didn’t look at all pleased to see her. “Good evening,” she said frostily.

“Good evening,” Daxon said.

He looked gorgeous in his suit. “Good evening,” she replied.

His eyes shifted to Daryl who stepped forward and introduced himself. “Daryl.”

“Daxon.” They shook hands. “This is Erin,” he said.

Daryl got a much warmer reception from the brunette who looked stunning in the strapless black dress. Her hair was swept up in a French chignon with a few tendrils brushing against her long neck. Alecia felt underdressed compared to her.

While the two of them chatted with the rest of the group, Daxon turned to her. In a low voice, he asked, “You brought a date?”

She stared at him. “You seriously expected me to show up to a New Year’s Eve party alone?”

“How about a dance?”

She stared at him. “You want to dance?”

“Yes. Is your date going to have a problem with that?”

“No. And, as you can see, he’s busy at the moment.”

Daxon followed her gaze and his features relaxed when he saw her date in a very deep conversation with another woman. The song they danced to was one of her favorite old school R&B songs, Possession. He was a great dancer and they just moved easily to the music. It felt so good being his arms and she loved the way he smelled. She wanted to close her eyes and imagine that it was just the two of them at his place or hers.

“How about another dance?” he asked, still holding her. He had such amazing eyes and the way he was looking at her made her breath quicken and her stomach do crazy things.

Heart pounding, she nodded and they began to move to Vanessa Williams’ Dreamin’.

When the dance was over, Daryl joined them.

Daxon released her and excused himself. “I thought it was time that I danced with my date,” Daryl told her.

Alecia didn’t answer. They danced apart because the song was another one of her favorites, Jill Scott’s He loves Me.

Daxon stood watching them, holding the mocktail which Erin had given him.

“They make an attractive couple, don’t they?” she remarked. She hated seeing him dance with Alecia and was relieved when Daryl said, “I think it’s time I danced with my date.”

Daxon didn’t answer. Were they dating or were they just friends?

“I’m going to have some more dessert. Would you like me to bring some for you?” Erin asked.

Daxon looked at her. “No, thanks. I think I’ve had enough dessert for one night.”

Grimacing, Erin walked away.

Daxon watched Alecia as she danced, the way she moved to the music–it was sexy and it gave him a hard on. He wanted to walk over there and…His fingers tightened its grip on the glass and a muscle throbbed in his cheek.

Alecia and Daryl left the dancefloor. “I’ll go and help myself to some of that spread,” Daryl said.

“I’ll be there shortly,” Alecia told him.

“So, are you dating him?” Daxon asked her as soon as they were alone.

“No. He’s my friend.”

“I thought he was your date.”

“He’s both.”

“So, there’s nothing between you two?”

“No. We’re just friends. I needed a date for tonight and he stepped up.”

“Good for him.”

“In forty-five minutes, we are going to ring in the New Year.”

“Yes. This year seemed to go by very quickly.”

“Yes. Oh, Erin is coming back.”

“You don’t have to leave.”

“Oh yes, I do. Besides, I’m going to have something to eat. Excuse me.” She walked past him and got a withering look from Erin.

For the rest of the night, she stuck with Daryl although her eyes kept drifting over to where Daxon was and several times, she caught him watching her. “Are you sure there isn’t anything between you and him?” Daryl asked her.

“Yes, I’m quite sure. We simply work together and we went for a bite to eat once.”

“Well, I can see that there’s chemistry between you and him, especially when you were dancing. His girlfriend saw it too and that’s why I came over there.”

“She’s the reason why you danced with me?”

“Yes. She was watching the two of you like a hawk. And when you and I were dancing, I saw him staring at you even though she was standing right there next to him. That guy is into you, Alecia.”

With all her heart, Alecia hoped that he was right. It was about five minutes or so before mid-night, so everyone gathered and had their glasses of champagne. As she stood there, she wondered what the new year would have in store for her. Would things change between Daxon and her? Would their working relationship evolve into something more? And what about Erin? She wasn’t going to just stand back and let another woman take away her man. She was standing very close to him as if she didn’t want to let him out of her sight.

Her gaze shifted to Daxon and her heart lurched when she caught him watching her. For several minutes they stared at each other and then, the countdown began. When the clock struck twelve, everyone raised their glasses and shouted, “Happy New Year.” There were handshakes and hugs as they wished each other the best for the year.

Alecia and Daryl hugged. “Happy New Year, Daryl.”

“Happy New Year, Alecia. Here’s hoping that you get everything your heart desires.”

“You too.” They toasted and then, Alecia set her glass down while Daryl went off to find the woman he had been talking to earlier.

Daxon went up to her. “Happy New Year, Alecia,” he said quietly.

“Happy New Year, Daxon.”

They hugged. It felt wonderful hugging him. His body felt nice and firm and she loved the cologne he was wearing. It was sexy and subtle. She closed her eyes and just reveled in being in his arms.

He drew back to gaze down at her and then, he lowered his head and kissed her at the corner of her mouth, making her catch her breath. All sorts of sensations coursed through her body. When, he raised his head, their eyes met and held for what seemed like an eternity until Erin suddenly materialized. They broke apart.

Erin clutched his arm and looked at Alecia, her expression extremely hostile. “I’d like to dance with my boyfriend now, if you don’t mind.”

Alecia didn’t answer.

Daxon excused himself and went off with Erin. Alecia watched them as they danced. She touched the side of her mouth where he had kissed her. The area tingled. For one heart-stopping moment, she thought that he was going to kiss her on the lips. If he had done that, she would have kissed him back for sure.

Daxon watched her as she stood there. He had been tempted to kiss her on the mouth but he couldn’t do that because he wasn’t a hundred percent sure what her reaction would have been and then, there was Erin. So, the next best thing was the corner of her mouth. His heart was racing as he leaned over and kissed her there. He found himself wishing that she would turn her head so that their lips touched. After the kiss, they had just stood there staring at each other and if Erin hadn’t walked up just then, who knows what would have happened next.

It was after one in the morning when the party started winding down and people were leaving. Daryl and Alecia bade farewell to everyone and thanked the host for a great evening. They went over to Daxon and Erin to say goodbye. This time Daxon and Alecia didn’t hug but there were lingering looks. “I’ll see you on Monday,” he said.

“See you then. Goodbye.”

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“Goodbye.” He watched them leave.

“I think it’s time we left too,” Erin said.

“Yes. Let’s go and say goodbye to everyone and then leave.”

“What’s going on between you and Alecia?” Erin demanded when they were walking to his car.

“Nothing’s going on between us.”

“I saw the way the two of you were dancing and the way you were looking at each other. And when she was doing that raunchy dance which was for your benefit, you just stood there, staring at her. You’re attracted to her, aren’t you? If I and Daryl weren’t there, you two would have been all over each other.”

“All right. I admit that I’m attracted to her but I’ve never acted on it because of you and because we work together.” He didn’t know how Alecia would feel about dating him although the company didn’t have a policy against people in the same department dating each other.

Erin glared at him and when he opened the door for her, she brushed past him and plopped down on the seat. “Well, if you would rather be with her instead of me, then good riddance to you,” she muttered when he got into the car.

Daxon didn’t answer. What was there to say? It was over between them.

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