Under the Mistletoe

It's that time of year again. Tiny, glaring lights everywhere you look, crowded mall parking lots, the massacre of thousands of evergreens. The diner's going to be a freak show - people coming in to eat between raids on department stores advertising holiday specials, carolers coming in out of the cold to demand free hot chocolate, other crazed Christmas lovers. I might actually keep busy during my shifts, might actually have to work. And all the gushy family spirit and love around will invariably remind me of my mother. Christmases spent wandering the streets of New York City, coming home past midnight and crashing, hearing Liz come home four, five hours later. Christmas. What a wonderful time of year.

Surprisingly enough, Luke actually attempted to decorate the place this year. Traces of tinsel all over the place. Something resembling a wreath outside. And can't forget the mistletoe above the door. All this "holiday spirit" stuff is just a front - Luke just wants to get caught under the mistletoe with Lorelai. The place is starting to make me sick.

"I'm leaving," I call to Luke, grabbing my keys from behind the counter.

"Hey-" he's about to protest, say something like he could use a little help.

He takes one look at me though, and I guess he changes his mind.

"Be back to help me close."

Huh. Maybe Christmas Luke isn't so bad after all. I start to head out.

I don't quite make it out of the madhouse, though. I collide straight on with, as the fates would have it, Rory Gilmore.

"Oooh, look who's caught under the mistletoe!" Miss Patty, of course, is all over this.

Rory look flustered. "Sorry. I wasn't paying attention."

We start to move past each other, but Miss Patty chimes in,

"You're not planning on breaking tradition, are you? Rory, I expected better from you of all people."

"Miss Patty..." Rory starts to protest, but Miss Patty interrupts,

"Come on, Jess, kiss her. You know she wants you to."

Jeez. This town is absolutely crazy, but for once I'm not arguing. I place my hands on both sides of Rory's face, pull her in, and kiss her.

She's not expecting it, and she'll a little shocked. She opens her mouth, though, responding. The flavor of coffee hits me. God, she tastes amazing.

This kiss... it's causing a vortex of emotions to swirl through me. We're really going at it. I can smell her, feel her; she's intoxicating.

The lack of oxygen is starting to get to me, but I don't pull back and neither does she. Instead I put my hand on the small of her back and pull her against me. My senses are overloaded by her... Her hands are in my hair, pulling my lips against hers. She's clawing at me, and I dimly realize I've backed her against the now closed door. The lack of control between us is scary. It's also absolutely incredible. Like a shot of adrenaline straight to the heart. My head is pounding, blood rushing through it. An instant high. Jesus, I should kiss her more often.

Neither of us is even trying to stop. The effect we have on each other is unexpected and incredibly powerful. You'd think we'd been kissing long enough to be satisfied, but instead the longer I kiss her the more I want her.

One of us needs to stop this though. She, however, is absolutely lost in this, forgetting about the world spinning around us. God, the realization that Rory has completely lost control because of me is a heady mix of surprise and amazement.

I finally gather my strength and break the kiss, though our bodies are still connected. She looks up at me, dazed. Her cheeks are flushed and her lips are a little swollen. She's beautiful. Like her, I'm breathing hard and unevenly. I can't seem to keep my emotions off my face, for once, and I can see her pupils dilate slightly when she sees what must be obvious in my eyes - right now all I want is her. A small smile involuntarily forms on my lips, and I separate myself from her completely. She smiles at me for a second, and I smile back at her.

We both suddenly become aware of the room around us, the people watching, Miss Patty grinning, Taylor nearly having a heart attack. I finally head out the door, and out of the corner of my eye I see Lorelai pulling Rory into the back, away from the curious, prying eyes, Luke following them.

I almost feel bad for her, but I know it'll be my turn later. Right now, though, the cold, crisp air feels good against my skin as I walk out into the night. I'm still smiling, coming down from my high. I think I might actually enjoy the holidays this year.

A/N: This little fic was actually written a while ago; and despite being posted here in May, have faith that it really was written during the Christmas season. :) I did post it in the RJLibrary yahoo group, back in January '03. Can't believe it's been that long. :)