"Absolutely not, McGinnis, now get outta my face!" Max growled at her best friend, not even bothering to look up from her textbook. Her eyes were fixed on the page, but she wasn't actually reading anything. Her best friend's begging had taken care of her concentration so far.

"Come on, Max, I need you to do this for me. Halloween's only one night out of the year. This is all Matt has to look forward to!" Terry continued in an exasperated voice. Max wished she could go the immature route and bury her head in the pillow to muffle how desperate he sounded.

"You already owe me enough: studying, finding bad guys for you at three in the morning, covering for you with Dana, babysitting? I'm not sure if this is a friendship or if I'm just your slave!" The pink-haired girl snapped, finally sending a glare at him over her shoulder. He was sitting beside her stretched out form, trying his best to win her over.

"I know that, believe me. Please. He'll hate me forever if he doesn't get to do this."

Max groaned, feeling her will starting to buckle under his pale blue gaze now fixed in "puppy dog" mode. She hated that Terry was so damned handsome. Whenever they argued, she always made a point not to look at him. He always won.

"How are you gonna pay me back?"

Terry winced, scratching the back of his neck. Max's "payments" were always steep. "Er, what exactly do you want?"

Max rolled over onto her back and settled back against the pillow, folding her arms over her chest. "I wanna see the Cave."

Terry sighed. "That is nowhere near fair."

"I think it is, considering how much I've done for you." She replied stubbornly. His eyes narrowed a bit.

"Oh, so we're keeping count now? How about the time I saved your butt because you got hooked on Spellbinder's VR? Or when you disobeyed me and almost got chopped in half by Curare? Should I keep going?"

Max felt her cheeks flush slightly in embarrassment. "You know I'm right. When are you gonna start trusting me? I want to be your partner, your equal, not just your errand girl."

"I do trust you, Max. The old man is just unwilling to risk another person in this."

Max sucked her teeth. "Same old story. You need to come up with a new one, at least."

Terry glanced at the clock and winced. It was getting later while they argued. Matt needed to be taken out soon. What else could he possibly exchange for a favor? Max was a damn hard girl to please. Girl. Wait.

Then Terry got an idea. An awful idea. Terry got a wonderful, awful idea.

"It's because I'm a girl, isn't it? Who knew Bruce Wayne was so sex—" Max was still continuing her tirade when she felt Terry's large, warm hands gently pushing on her shoulders until she was lying back on the pillow. Her brown eyes widened in shock when he suddenly pressed those full, soft lips against her mouth and promptly kissed the living daylights out of her. Her brain told her to punch him in the stomach and demand what the hell he was doing but it was a faint, almost muted voice somewhere in her ear. The rest of Maxine Gibson—usually a tough, logical, smart-mouthed bombshell—somehow turned into a quivering pile of mush. She couldn't even remember the last time a guy kissed her, let alone one as good-looking as Terry.

She didn't exactly count the seconds of the kiss on account of concentrating on slipping her tongue inside his mouth but she later estimated it was probably around twelve. She would have liked to think she pulled away first, but that was an outright lie. His bottom lip was still trapped between her lips when he sat up straight and it was then she regained composure and let go. The first logical thing to do would have been to ask what the hell that was all about, but she couldn't exactly muster words at the moment.

Terry flashed her a very smug, winsome smile. "Are we even?"

Max blushed and glared at him. "You condescending bastard."

"That wasn't a no."

"Fine, I'll do it but we are so talking about this when you get back."

He hopped to his feet and winked at her, heading for the door.

"Can't wait."



A/N: Hope you enjoyed that. I wish I had thought of it on Halloween, but my muse works in mysterious ways. It's just a little holiday one-shot for your enjoyment and yes, there is a How The Grinch Stole Christmas quote in it. I'm sorry, it was too epic not to do. Thanks for reading and please review to let me know how you like it.