By Margaret Price
"Dammit. The zipper's stuck," the Major growled while wondering how he had gotten himself in this position in the first place. One minute he was bored and uncomfortable at a formal gathering, the next the Earl was dragging him into a large clothes closet. The Earl in a full-length evening gown, no less.
"Major, hurry up!" Dorian said breathlessly, glancing back over his shoulder. "No, don't tear it!"
The Major growled again. "You said you wanted it off," he snapped as he struggled with the fabric. "How the hell did you talk me into this?"
"You can't resist a damsel in distress?" Dorian replied jokingly. He received a dangerous look in reply. "Just help me get out of this dress, will you? Before that dragon finds me."
This caused the Major to stop his struggles and look up. "What dragon?"
Dorian threw another glance over his shoulder. "That woman out there." He waved a hand at the door. "The one who's been stalking me all evening."
The Major's eyes widened. "Woman?" Then a smile curled the edges of his mouth. "You're being chased by a woman?"
"Don't you dare laugh!"
It was already too late.
Dorian gave the Major a cold look. "It isn't funny."
"Yes, it is."
"Fine. Now, the zipper, please?"
The Major had to fight to get hold of himself before returning to his attack on the zipper. The door to the closet opened just as he won the battle. There was the sound of the zipper opening followed by the Major's triumphant, "Got it!"
The woman who had been pursuing the Earl the whole evening stood at the door, her mouth agape as she took in scene. "Oh!" she gasped, then more angrily, "Oh, you…you…slut!" She turned away in tears, slamming the door behind her.
Dorian and the Major stood staring for a full minute, not quite certain what to do. Finally, the Earl turned. "I am never going to live this down."
"How the hell do I explain that I broke a woman's heart?"
The Major rolled his eyes. "You idiot."