Red and White



The elevator opened, two women spilling out, all giggles and smiles. Jim raised his eyebrows at Sandburg, who wasn't showing any signs of leaving, and stepped inside.

"We have to stop meeting like this. Weren't you in here when I went down to Records thirty minutes ago?"

"Mmm."

There was a certain suppressed amusement in Sandburg's voice and Jim gave him a suspicious look "Did you ever get off?"

The amusement became a snicker and Jim sighed, glancing up.

Mistletoe. Of course.

"Sandburg, you're a menace."

"No one's complained."

No, they wouldn't. Jim was willing to bet that by the time the Christmas Eve shift ended, there wouldn't be a woman in the building who hadn't been kissed by Sandburg, who was dispensing cheer with a lavish, impartial hand.

"How much longer are you going to ride this?"

"Last trip," Blair assured him. "I was just waiting."

"What for?" Jim amended that. "Who for? Linda? Or maybe --?"

"You, and no witnesses."

"What?" Jim blinked, wondering if he'd heard that correctly or if the constant barrage of carols had done something to his senses.

Blair leaned in, tilted his head back, and slipped his hand behind Jim's neck, pulling his mouth within reach. "Do it, man. I'm right here."

Jim could taste every single kiss that had landed on Blair's lips as he brushed his own over them in a token surrender to the inevitable. He grimaced, pulled back, and then sighed at Blair's hurt look. "You kissed someone with that peppermint lip balm on; makes my mouth go numb."

"Sue." Blair shook his head, his smiles all gone now. "Forget it. I was just fooling around."

Somehow, Jim didn't think so. Blair had been in this elevator a long time…

"It's supposed to be a kiss, right? Doesn't say where…"

"Yeah?"

There was something like hope in Blair's eyes now but they were running out of time. Jim hit the emergency button to pause the elevator for a moment and studied Blair. Not the mouth, not the cheeks; he'd have had some kisses there, too…

He put a finger under Blair's chin and pushed up and to the side and then let his lips press gently on the taut skin of Blair's neck, smooth under the scratch of afternoon stubble. He could feel the answering flush of warmth rise to the surface and hear Blair's pulse quicken. He pulled back and drew his tongue over his lips, tasting nothing but Blair.

Blair swallowed and started to speak but Jim shook his head. Not here. He turned away, opened the door and got out, Blair falling into step beside him.

A radio three rooms away was caroling out a command to deck the halls with boughs of holly. Jim didn't think so. He wanted to decorate with white berries, not red...



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