person's thoughts are denoted with a *.
Instead, Stephanie burst out laughing, "Look whoís talking," she said, pointing at his outfit. Walking up to him, only inches away from his face, she hissed, "Manwhore!" Angrily, Chris surged forward only to have Amy grab his arm, in an attempt to hold him back.
"Alright you two, stop it!" Jeff commanded, somehow managing to squeeze his bulky, purple outfit in between the bickering couple. "Lay off each other, at least for tonight - for the sanity of the rest of us, please," Jeff pleaded.
"Fine with me," Stephanie said huffily.
Chris shrugged Amyís arm off, "Iíll be good," he said through gritted teeth. They both stormed off in opposite directions. Just then the doorbell rang.
"Iíll get it," Amy said, relieved to help break up the intensity of the moment. She opened the door to reveal Andrew, Perry and Dean. "Hey guys, you look great!" Amy said giving them each a hug. Amy felt a hand on her shoulder. She jumped.
"Are you okay?" Matt said from behind her, eyeing her slightly protruding tummy in concern.
"So you heard about the encounter huh?" Amy asked wryly.
"Oh yeah. I just finished talking to Steph."
"Weíre both fine, just a tense moment there, thatís all," Amy said absent-mindedly, rubbing her stomach.
"More like fireworks," Matt muttered as he disappeared back into the crowd.
Andrew grinned, "Was that Matt I just saw, dressed as Zorro?"
"In the flesh," Amy said with a laugh.
"So youíre his pretty, Spanish seŮorita," Perry surmised, grinning.
"You got it," Amy answered, blushing slightly. "Now why donít we see if we can find Bo Peep," Amy replied, linking her arms through his and Jeffís.
"Perry?" Trish asked, blinking in shock at his extra shiny bald head, black suit and tie.
"Bo Peep?" Perry asked in disbelief.
Taking that as her cue to bow out, Amy quickly made an unobtrusive exit.
*She looks so cute in her blond Shirley Temple like curls, and her blue dress with the crisp white and pink apron. Perry found his eyes traveling down to look at her light blue bobby socks and white Mary Janes. Perry closed his eyes for a second, picturing a colored lollipop with swirls in her hand, as she stood there methodically licking it.
"Perry, are you okay?" Trish asked, gently tugging on his coat sleeve.
"Huh, oh sure Iím fine."
Out of the corner of her eye, Trish saw Matt slip a CD into the stereo turntable, "Would you like to dance?" Trish asked shyly.
"Iíd love to," Perry said enthusiastically, taking her smaller hand in his own larger one, "as long as you donít mind dancing with a stooge," Perry said, grinning.
Trish laughed, "Not in the slightest - Curly."
Amyís long red and black hoop skirt swirled around her feet as she quietly made her way to the door. She opened it, only to find Al Snow and Nidia.
"Hey guys, Iím glad you could make it! Come on in," Amy said with a smile.
"Thanks babe," Al said, making a peace sign with his fingers. Dressed in a long, fringed shirt, with the peace symbol and love beads hanging around his neck, he came off quite well as a spaced out hippie. Pulling his hair back into a ponytail, he gave Nidiaís shoulders a squeeze.
Amy could tell Nidia was more than a little nervous. *I remember when Nidia first arrived in the WWF, Maven and Al were the only people she knew, but now without Maven here, it puts a whole new spin on things.* "So, how is Maven doing?" Amy asked, in an attempt to start casual conversation. "Heís doing great. Right now, he is visiting his Mom, to make sure she is doing okay. Iím very excited about continuing the storyline with him," Nidia continued, a smile lighting up her face.
"I bet you are," Amy said understandingly, "itís always best to start with who you are comfortable with. Here," Amy said, putting an arm around Nidiaís shoulders, "let me introduce you to everyone. I know you havenít met all of us yet." Smiling mischievously, Amy led Nidia off amongst the sea of wrestlers.
Nervously adjusting his collar, yet another wrestler stood outside the Hardyís door, poised to knock. *Man, I should have stayed at home. Iíd be more comfortable, all curled up with my laptop, than being all dressed up for a party,* he thought ruefully.
Nora squeezed through the crowd, in an attempt to find her hubby. *Oooh,* she thought irritably, *Youíd think I could find a 6í1 purple skittle in this crowd.* On her tip-toes, Nora desperately tried to see over peopleís heads.
"Looking for me?" a sultry voice whispered in her ear.
She turned around, "Most definitely," Nora replied eagerly.
She put her arms around Jeffís neck, while Jeff tried to wrap his arms around her waist. "I just canít do it honey, youíre too fat," Jeff whined.
Nora caught his wink though, and whispered softly in his ear, "I know a place where we can get much more cozy."
"Not now babe, though Iíd love to shed these hot clothes, Iím starting to melt," Jeff said, tugging at his collar.
Their inconspicuous moment was interrupted by a knock at the door.
"Iíll get it," Nora offered. She opened the door to see Spike there, with a feather in his cap. "Hey, Iím so glad you decided to come!" Nora exclaimed, giving him a big hug.
"Help, Iím being choked by an oversized pumpkin!" Spike yelped.
Spike could hear Jeffís laughter behind them, "Uh oh, now youíre going to get it," Jeff warned.
Sure enough, Nora released Spike and placed her hands on her hips, "Iíll have you know that Iím an M & M, not a pumpkin!" she cried indignantly.
"Okay, okay," Spike said, laughing. He held his hands up in mock surrender.
Nora looped her arm through his and smiled, "Come on, everyoneís going to try their hand at bobbing for apples."
Matt, taking a break from mingling, stuffing his face and being part-time waiter, sat down on an oversized chair out on the patio. A smile twitched at his lips, as he watched Trish take a step closer to Perry, her arms entwining around his neck. *Man, I have a good view of everyone from here,* he thought proudly. His eyes narrowed as he saw his very pale - faced wife, sweep gracefully by him, with Nidia, in a brown, felt knee-length skirt, a green felt top and a feather in her cap, following meekly behind Amy. *She loves entertaining,* Matt thought with a smile. "Perhaps a bit too much though," Matt said to himself, thinking of her pregnancy. As Amy passed by him again, she suddenly felt a feather light touch on her waist. As Matt plopped her onto his lap, she struggled, trying to escape his grip.
"Matt!" she gasped, "I have to keepÖ"
"You donít have to do anything right now, except relax," Matt soothed.
"I am utterly exhausted," Amy admitted, leaning back against his chest and shoulder.
Matt wrapped his arms around her, "Hon, youíre just trying to do too much thatís all. Besides, Iím sure Nidia can meet the rest of the wrestlers on her own," he assured her. He tipped his head and placed a kiss on her bare shoulder. "Youíre awfully pale," Matt commented suspiciously, absently mindedly tugging at the velour and lace fabric of her off-the-shoulder gown. "Did you take your vitamins this morning?" he questioned.
"No, Iíve been so busy cooking and getting everything ready," Amy trailed off.
"Hon, Iíve been helping you out all day, you had plenty of time to take those vitamins," Matt admonished Amy.
"I know, I just didnít want to stop what I was doing. I planned on getting around to it, eventually."
"You mean, youíve been busy playing lil matchmaker," Matt said playfully, nodding his head in the direction of Trish and Perry.
Amy blushed, "Theyíve been ducking each other for months, all they needed was a little nudge."
Matt smiled and shook his head, "Youíre as bad as Jeff, incorrigible. Now that youíre married, your main goal in life seems to be to marry off our friends as well."
"Hey," she defended, "I seem to recall you popped in a CD as soon as Trish and Perry started talking," Amy pointed out.
"Okay, okay," he admitted, bringing his hands up in surrender, "I noticed it too, in fact, I think everyone knows that they like each other," Matt said laughing.
"Whatís bobbing for apples?" the children asked simultaneously.
"Thatís when you pick apples up out of a bucket of water," their Mother explained.
"Well, thatís not hard," Bridgett said disappointedly, her lower lip jutting out in a pout.
"You pick the apples out of the bucket with your mouth-while your hands are behind your back," her Mother said with a smirk, merriment dancing in her eyes.
"Oh," Bridgett replied meekly, her eyes downcast.
"On with the story," the mother replied, a twinkle in her eyes.
Nidia was extremely grateful to Amy for making her feel a part of the team, but she still felt very much out of place. *Well, I think Amy introduced me to everyone. " ĎHey, youíre the new girl arenít you?í"* she thought in annoyance, recalling almost everyoneís first words to her. Head down, she threaded her way through the throng of people dancing and talking. So lost in her thoughts was she, Nidia didnít realize it until it was too late. She almost knocked down one of the wrestler guests standing directly in front of her! "Oh, Iím sorry, I didnít mean toÖ" she trailed off as the wrestler turned around. "Oh wow, youíre Matt Hyson, I mean Spike DudÖ"
"No, thatís okay, you can keep going with Matt," he replied, a warm smile spreading across his face. He extended his hand, "You must be Nidia."
Tucking a mousy brown strand of hair behind her ear, she leaned forward and whispered, a bit ruefully, "Youíre the first person tonight other than Matt and Amy, that hasnít started the conversation with, " ĎHey youíre the new girl, arenít you?í "
"Donít sweat it, weíve all been there," he said easily.
"Thanks. So, I take it youíre the Prince of Thieves eh?" Nidia asked with a laugh.
"Yeeess," he said slowly.
"Good, that works perfectly, because Iím Maid Marion!"
Feeling much more at ease, Matt asked with a smile, "How good are you at bobbing for apples?"