Written: December 19, 2006
A/N: Written for Raven, who wanted use of the song "When It Rains I Pour" and the mention of eggnog.
This is the third year in a row that we've had this little shindig, beginning the year that we buried Sunnydale. We all went our own ways, but the Scoobs made a pact to meet up every year, regardless of distance or circumstances, to celebrate the holidays.
Lucky for me, they've decided to keep the festivities right here in LA, so I don't have to travel far. I guess that they kept it this way so that the Angel crew could come too. Of course, I never realized that they actually intended for me to join them at their little parties, but . . . I guess it's nice to be wanted around anyhow.
I'll never forget the first year we had the party. Everyone coming in from all areas of the globe, people arriving and getting swooped up and brought to the hotel where the big party was at. Naturally, most people had rooms right at the hotel. They'd stay in town for a few days before going back to their lives.
But me, I didn't need a room. A five minute ride on my Harley got me there safe and sound and kept the $200 room rate tucked safely away in my pocket.
So, yeah, the first year was . . . probably the most memorable. Everyone was so excited to see one another after their first six months apart ever. I even borrowed one of Angel's cars so that I could cart people from the airport to the hotel. What can I say? I was feeling festive.
After making a few trips, I finally got a call on my cell from the one person that I was actually looking forward to seeing: Buffy. She and Dawn had arrived and were waiting on my chauffeuring services.
When I got to the airport, the traffic was crazy as hell and there were literally hundreds of people waiting around for cabs and rides, but I saw Buffy's shining blonde hair from far away. I pulled up to the curb and got out to help her and was completely taken by surprise when I was pulled into a group hug with her and Dawn.
"Wow, you guys must have really been desperate for a ride then, huh?" I joked, and Buffy pulled back to look at me.
"It's great to see you too, Faith," she said with a smile.
I smiled back and began to grab her bags, but Dawn grabbed them from me. She said something about not wanting to bother me with stuff like lifting bags when I'd already gone through the trouble of coming to get then. Whatever, man . . . I was just glad I didn't have to lug those things around.
I looked from Dawn back to Buffy and noticed that she was just kinda looking at me, smiling. I wiped my forearm across my face.
"What, do I have a booger or something?" I asked, genuinely confused.
Buffy smiled again before shaking her head with a chuckle, then bent to help Dawn with the bags.
"Always the charmer, Faith."
I shrugged it off and got back into the car. I dunno what those six months did to Buffy, but I liked the seemingly happy person that she had become.
Flash forward to the night of the party. Everyone was there . . . Giles, Xander, Red, Kennedy, B and Dawn, a few of the older Slayers, Angel and his gang, and even Spike. I half expected Buffy to disappear into the bathroom with him, but she pretty much stuck to my side for the night.
I had a drink, she had a drink. I did a shot, she did a shot. It was a bit awkward and confusing, but fun nonetheless. Especially when we were both getting past the point of tipsy and became a bit more . . . friendly.
I'm not exactly sure when it happened, but at some point during the night, we ended up making out in the coat room together. The coat attendant ran off when I growled for him to get the fuck out, and Buffy pretty much was all over me the second that he disappeared. I could taste the tequila and beer that she drank earlier, but underneath it all, I still tasted what was distinctly Buffy . . . peach flavored lip gloss and peppermint tic-tacs.
How do I know those tastes? Well, I was in her body, of course. And I enjoyed every minute of it.
She didn't even stop me when I drunkenly began to fumble with the buttons on her top. I wanted to feel her skin again. I wanted to taste it. But yeah . . . drunk fingers aren't nimble, and Drunk Faith isn't patient. I lowered my head and began to suck on her nipple over her shirt.
After a few moments of her moaning and groaning, she pulled my face back up to hers and began kissing me nice and deep again.
I couldn't take it anymore . . . between the alcohol and the raging hormones and the hard pumping of my blood, I blurted,
"You wanna take this to your room, B?"
And the brakes came screeching down and the reality of the situation hit home.
Yeah, go ahead and kick me. I kicked myself too.
She politely excused herself after she fixed her rumpled clothing and apologized for going to far in her drunken state. I apologized too and watched her leave the coat room, my heart beating fast and my panties drenched.
God damn, she always knew how to get me so worked up.
I sat in the coat room for awhile, seriously pondering stealing her jacket so that I could have a keepsake. But after a few minutes, I shook it off and grabbed my leather jacket. The situation was what it was . . . a drunken fumble.
After saying a few goodbyes, I made my way toward the exit and looked back to see if I could spot Buffy. She was sat at a table with a tall glass of ice water, running a piece of ice along the side of her neck. Yeah, princess was worked up too.
I gave her a small wink and couldn't help but chuckle at the guilty yet goofy smile that she gave me. I was pretty sure that had been the best Christmas party that I had ever been to, and I left with a smile on my face and a skip in my step.
The next morning, I went back to the hotel to pick up my bike. The nice doorman called me a cab cos I was pretty fucked up. In any case, just as I was pulling out of the parking garage, B and Dawn were crossing the street, coming toward me with shopping bags in their hands.
I smiled at Dawn and winked at B, and without another thought, I revved up my bike and ripped outta there. Nothing left but the memories. I was happy enough with that.
In fact, I coulda been happy with that for the next ten years or so. But the very next year at the Christmas gathering, almost the same thing happened. B and Dawn took a cab from the airport to hotel so I didn't see her until I got to the party.
When I got to the party, I walked across the room and towards the coat room, smiling at everyone that saw me come in. As it so happens, Buffy was checking her shawl at the coat room as I was walking up to check my jacket. She turned around and nearly knocked me over cos she hadn't noticed that I was there.
She wished me a Merry Christmas and gave me a big hug, and then she dragged me right to the bar. We went drink for drink, shot for shot, and before long, we were in the coat room again. Funny thing is the coat room attendant was the same from the previous year. The minute he saw us stumbling over, he got out of there before we could scare him away.
I'd say we spent a bit more time in the coat room that year. Maybe they were serving up stronger drinks than the year before, but we were both pretty messed up. I mean, yeah . . . the kissing was hot as hell, but we were also in that goofy stage where Buffy slipped backwards off of a table and I went tumbling over with her. We lay there laughing, just enjoying ourselves, not even worried about how it would look if someone came in looking for their jacket.
But after a few minutes, the urges started calling to me again. I stilled myself, and then I leaned over towards B and looked right into her eyes. Before I knew it, we were kissing again, hard but gentle at the same time. I rested on one hand and let my free hand rest on her stomach, cautiously letting my fingers creep up a bit every few seconds.
It was when I felt the lacey material of her bra that she finally stopped me, putting her hand on mine to still it. I lifted my head up and looked down at her, a guilty smile on my face.
"You can't blame a girl for trying," I said, and I sat up the rest of the way.
She smiled as she sat up, fixing her rumpled clothing again.
"I certainly can't," she said, smiling softly.
And I guess that both of us knew that we didn't have to have the awkward small talk before we went our separate ways. I made my way back out to the party and had a few beers with Xander and Kennedy, and B did the girly gossip talk with Willow and Dawn. I heard Dawn let slip that B had a boyfriend in Rome, but I didn't even let it bother me.
As the year before, I let the situation stay what it was: a drunken fumble.
But damn . . . I found myself thinking about what might have happened if we didn't stop ourselves . . .
And I guess that brings us to this year.
Again, B and Dawnie got a cab from the airport, so I knew I wouldn't see them until the party. I got there pretty early; I dunno, I guess that I was hoping to prolong the night a bit.
And just to be safe . . . I stuck with club soda. Didn't wanna be able to blame it again on drunken fumbling. It if was gonna happen this yeah, it was gonna happen with a clear mind and a clear conscience.
Most of the gang showed up, and we were just waiting on Buffy and Dawn. About a half hour later, Buffy and Dawn finally walked in the door . . . with two hot Italian guys following them.
I smiled at B across the room, waved to Dawn, and then I turned around to face the bartender.
"Whiskey. Make it a double."
At some point in the night, between the copious amounts of Whiskey and eggnog, I felt myself start to get bitter. And it wasn't the alcohol. But honestly . . . what the fuck is eggnog? I mean . . . I know what the yolk is, and I know what the whites are . . . but what the fuck is a nog?
But yeah, I started to get bitter. Not because B had brought some guy to the party. It was because I had myself looking forward to our annual romp in the coat room so much that it was pretty much all I had been thinking about for two months. Maybe even a full year.
I noticed that B wasn't drinking either . . . maybe she wanted to avoid the whole drunken fumble this year. Ah well. It was good while it lasted.
I didn't know exactly how I let myself fall into that situation . . . the whole pining for Buffy deal . . . but it made me bitter, I guess. I had avoided her mostly the entire night, no matter how many times she tried to join me for drinks or even to talk to me. And after stewing for a few hours, I was done.
With a smile and wave, I said my goodbyes to the room and went to get my jacket.
As I stood at the coat room, the attendant fetching my jacket, I felt a small tap on my shoulder. I turned and saw B stood there.
"Still avoiding me?" She asked, a shy smile on her face.
"Nah, B," I shrugged, "I've just got a bad head and . . . yeah. I'm gonna get outta here. Have a merry merry and all that."
I leaned over and gave her a small peck on the cheek, letting my lips linger for just a second. As I pulled away, I saw the coat boy trying to plot out his best means of escape. I looked at him and smiled.
"It's okay, my man . . . you're safe for tonight."
I grabbed my jacket and threw a fiver in his tip jar, then made my way out of the room and out of the hotel.
It was time to go home and do something I never thought I'd do . . . brood and listen to country music. Xander explained the mechanics of it to me before, and I definitely understood it now.
Fifteen minutes later, I make my way into my apartment and toss my keys on the counter, wincing a bit as I hear them scratch the surface. I'll be mad at myself for that tomorrow.
Right away, I find myself in front of my stereo, trying to find a country station. As soon as I hear that old steel guitar, I know that I've found it. I crank up the sound and turn around, making my way over to the fridge.
My buzz worked off and it's time to numb up the pain again.
The lyrics stream from the stereo, and right away I'm there with the singer.
When it rains I pour a couple more rounds,
I don't have to have a girls night out
And it's like the saying says . . . when it rains, it pours. `Cept for the fact that when it rains in my world, I usually end up going crazy and killing people. But luckily, I've found a much more reasonable and sane outlet for my frustrations: beer. Lots of it. It rains, and I pour one after another until it all just . . . melts away.
My six pack is my best support group.
Just as I'm kicking off my boots, intent on plopping down onto the couch and eating enough Doritos to get the nasty taste of egg-nog outta my mouth, I hear a knock at the door.
Annoyed, I walk over to the door and swing it open, ready to beat down whomever it is that's intent on interrupting my time to brood.
"B? I ask as soon as I see her standing there, but she can't answer me.
She's too busy jumping into my arms and kissing me.
And wouldn't you know that I drop my damn six pack? Damn. Those were nice guys too.
But I don't really care about that now, because Buffy is kissing me like there's no tomorrow and I've been waiting for this for a year, I think.
I walk backwards, trying to be as stealthy as possible. In all honestly, I don't know where I'm walking to. I could head to the bedroom, but that might be presumptuous of me. I'd offer her a beer, but she'd have to lick it from the floor. Maybe she'd like some Doritos . . .
And then my back hits a wall and it jars us both, causing her to pull back and look at me, her sweet breath coming out in hard puffs against my face.
"You left too quickly for me to do that," she says. "I've been looking forward to it since . . . last year."
I smile, but it's bittersweet. "Did your boy give you a ride here, B? Is he gonna be up here to join us soon, cos I'm really not much into three-ways."
She gives me a head-butt that's gentle, but still enough to rattle my teeth.
"If you would have asked, you'd know that they're Paolo and Dante, Dawn's roommates. They didn't have anywhere to go for Christmas, so she insisted on bringing them."
I smile shyly now, a bit because I acted like a twat, and a bit because I got caught listening to country music.
We look at each other for a few moments, and she moves her hand from behind my neck to tuck a piece of my hair behind my ear. She caresses the side of my face then and leans in to kiss me again, but I stop her just before our lips meet.
"B . . . it can't be blamed on drunken antics if we're not drunk, yunno."
I wait for her response. To see her hop down to the floor and walk out of my door - and my life - until next Christmas. Instead, a few moments later, I see a serious look upon her face.
"I guess we're gonna have to blame it on years of unresolved sexual tension then, huh."
She cracks a small smile.
And I can't stop a huge smile from appearing on my face and the chuckle that escapes me.
Before I can comment, she leans in and kisses me again, but soft this time. Slow, and taking every moment to savor it.
I almost wish that I had a coat room in my apartment, just for old time's sake, but I find my feet leading us towards the bedroom instead. I'm sure we'll be able to work something out. And if all else fails, we'll just toss lots of jackets and gloves on the bed and roll around on it for awhile.
Ahh, memories. I can't wait to see what memories I'll be recalling at the next Christmas party. Either way, I know they'll be happy ones.
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