(spin around in the highest heels)

"Rory, dear, I'm so glad you could come," Emily said between clenched teeth, knowing full well that Rory was here against her will.

Rory gave a small smile, trying to make her grandmother stop talking. Not possible, though, once Emily had seen just who was next to Rory in her entry way. Rory covered her eyes in exhaustion as she listened to Emily coo over her boy of choice.

"I didn't know you know the Huntzberger's, Rory."

"You saw us at the last party, Grandma. You know, we're going to go find Mom. We'll talk to you later."

Emily raised her champagne flute to her lips as she watched her granddaughter walk away, the boy's arm wrapped tightly around her waist, their faces turned to one another as he told her something.

Rory adjusted the thin strap of her black dress, her body turned to him unconsciously as she slid the material back up her shoulder and his grasp tightened. They didn't look like friends to Emily, but more like lovers. A married couple, almost. His grip seemed possessive, if not protective. Her manner seemed relaxed in his care, almost needing it. What did Shira Huntzberger think of this ordeal?

"Next thing I know," she mumbled, "She'll be telling me that I'm engaged to a scheming socialite pushing three hundred pounds."

"At least she'd tell you," he said with a smirk.

"As I pulled up my wedding disguised as a funeral, and that would be what I wish it was."

"At least you're optimistic about the whole ordeal."

"And you'd be the first one to give me away."

"I resent that," he said, handing her a champagne glass from the bar counter that they were now standing at. She smiled at him in thanks, blue eyes sparkling. The lights were dim, the magnificent ballroom packed with people.

It was strange, them being there together. Though, she really shouldn't have that so. While his looks were equivalent to a god's and his brains being almost smarter than her, his social standing was one she purposely avoided. And she was more of a plain jane; what did he want with her? She didn't know, and it bothered her. As the night wore on, she tried to shrug off the feeling of uncertainty and try to enjoy herself, though that being a hard feat, with the company of her grandparents and almost the whole of Hartford society.

Her arms were twined around his neck after Emily had forced them into dancing after the auction for the charity. It was some slow jazz song, the live singer's sultry voice echoing off the walls.

"This isn't so bad, is it?" he asked jokingly.

She cocked a perfectly plucked eyebrow, "The night's not over yet."

Logan turned when he felt someone tapping him on the shoulder. "May I cut in?" the voice of Robert Carnegie brought Rory back to reality from whatever la-la land she was in.

"I rest my case," she deadpanned as Logan glanced back at her worriedly.

"I think you should go, Robert."

"You know, Logan, I never pegged you as someone to go after someone else's leftovers. I guess our fair Rory here is an exception. Did she tell you about our night out?"

"Robert, I'm not against kicking the shit out of you at a children's auction. Hell, I might even take a pool as to who would win."

Robert ignored him, his eyes focused on Rory, "We had fun, didn't we, Rory?" He gave a small chuckle. "I personally didn't think it would be that easy-"

He didn't finish his sentence as Logan punched him in the jaw. "Logan!" Rory yelled. Robert rubbed his jaw momentarily before tackling Logan. She tried to wedge her way between the two, her palm flat on Logan's chest in attempt to hold him back.

He simply glared at her, "He tried to fucking rape you, Rory. He's an asshole just getting what he deserves." He lunged at Robert again but was held back by Colin, who had grabbed his forearms from behind.

"Let him go, man."

"You know what he did to her."

"I know, and he'll get it soon. Besides, I think he got a black eye and broken nose already from you."

"That's not enough," he said angrily.

Rory grabbed his tie, dragging him behind her to the bathroom. She was pissed, now, he noticed, as he followed. Not that he had much of a choice. She pulled him into a lavish bathroom, slamming the door shut behind him.

"What the hell were you thinking? Didn't I specifically tell you not to beat him up or kill him? I wasn't kidding!"

Logan ran a hand over his face tiredly. "I know, and I'm sorry. But Jesus, Rory, he's a letch who was going to use the dance as an excuse to grope you."

"I can take care of myself!" she yelled.

"Oh, right, like drinking yourself into oblivion or locking yourself in your room as you've done for the past few months."

"Fuck you, Logan. I didn't ask for your help, and I sure as hell don't need you beating up people for me. Why do you even care?!" she was still yelling.

"Because I do! Because I like you! Okay?! Is that so fucking hard to believe? Yes, Rory, somebody likes you. And yes, that person is someone you're not particularly fond of and from a different social niche than what you'd prefer, but tough. That's how it is. I like you." He ended on a low note, his voice dropping to mere talking as opposed to their earlier yelling escapade.

Her eyes went wide in shock before she pressed him against the perfectly painted bathroom wall of an exquisite mansion, her lips firmly on his. His mind blanked for a moment before registering what was happening. Was she kissing him? Before he could actually respond she had pulled away. His hands moved to her waist and he pulled her back to him fervently.

Her hands were in his hair, his on her waist as his lips nearly melded to hers. She pulled back and he smirked. "We should fight more often."

She smiled, then frowned, a manicured forefinger tracing around his eye. "You're getting a black eye."

He shrugged, "I'll be fine."

"Come on. We can go to your place because I'm sure you actually have edible food and ice there."

"You don't? You eat more than anyone else I know."

"Yeah, fast food and take out," she explained as they walked out of the bathroom the same way they had entered the party; his arm tightly around her waist.