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A Possible Christmas Love

12/31/2006

(When I originally posted this, the ending was chopped
off. This is a new posting with the story intact. Although
there is sex toward the end, this is not a fuck-fest story,
it is more romantic with submissive tendencies)


Christmas is the time of year when people spread love and
cheer.


My husband passed away a little over two years ago. If not
for my grown children and my family I really think I would
have went off the deep end, into depression. Be that as it
may, the holidays are still difficult. I have been on a few
dates with men, but the hard part for me is the fact that I
am a submissive. My husband was my Master. We discovered
the lifestyle during our marriage; our progression into
it was natural. No one knew this about us; they just knew
us as a very special loving couple.


With no intentions of finding anyone that could ever fill
that void in me, I prepared for the company Christmas party.
This year the party is supposed to be different than usual.
Since it is the 20th anniversary of our facility, the head
honchos from corporate will be there. I decided to dress
extra special for the evening. Other women in the office
spoke about going to a place to rent evening gowns for the
elegant event.


I went to the dress shop and found a dress as well. An elegant
black dress seemed appropriate, but a red velvet dress
with rhinestones caught my eye. I suppose it was a little
brazen of me, but it was simple and beautiful. The dress
flowed over my breasts and hips. A slit up the back of the
fishtail skirt showed a hint of my legs. Small delicate
rhinestones were randomly sewn into the velvet fabric,
giving the gown a life of its own. The shoes to match the dress
were red with dainty straps that wound up and around my ankles,
where they fastened. After purchasing a pair of dangling
rhinestone earrings and necklace to match, I was prepared
for the Christmas festivities.


The day of the party I went to my hairdresser, who piled my
hair up on my head in an elegant fashion. It was not tight
or old fashioned, but rather a modern upsweep with just
a few clips to hold it in place. A few tendrils of hair hung
loosely around my face. The rhinestone earrings and necklace
complimented the tiny rhinestones on the gown, when I donned
the entire outfit. The strapless dress had built in cups
for my ample breasts that heaved at the top of the gown.


Feeling every bit the princess it soon dawned on me that
I had no clutch purse for my outfit. There was no way I could
use my usual leather purse wearing an evening gown. I called
the dress shop, praying they were still open. The mousy
woman at the shop told me they would be there for one more
hour. Grabbing what I needed, I headed out the door for the
dress shop. I arrived to find her flipping the open sign,
to closed.


She graciously smiled and let me in. “You look absolutely
stunning!”


“Thank you, ” I smiled in return. I did feel beautiful tonight,
perhaps a bit overdone compared to my usual attire, but
beautiful nonetheless.


“I remembered the dress you rented and found this rhinestone
clutch purse for you, ” she offered cheerfully, while
handing it to me.


“Oh, it’s perfect!” I responded with appreciation.
“Please have a wonderful evening. I’m sure all the men will
be ogling you, and the women will envy you.” She said with
reassurance and pride.


I was humbled by her expertise in these matters. “Thank
you Ma’am, I could not have done this without your help, ”



“It was my pleasure darling, now run along and enjoy your
evening. You deserve it.” She whisked me toward the door,
waving her hand for me to go and enjoy.


I stepped outside the dress shop and hailed a taxi to take
me the final leg of my journey. When I arrived at the huge
conference complex where the event was being held, I felt
a lump in my throat. I prayed I was not over or under dressed
for the evening. In all of my years, I had never rented, much
less worn, an evening gown. The cab driver spurred me from
my hesitancy by telling me the cab fee. After paying and
tipping him I stepped from the vehicle.


Looking up at the marquee, I saw the facility was hosting
several different Christmas affairs. Upon entering,
there was an usher to assist me, pointing toward a board
with all the events and their room numbers. Our party was
being held in the mezzanine level of the Radcliff Center.
How appropriate, since Mr. Radcliff owned our company
as well as this Convention Center. From above and below
the mezzanine level, other parties would be privy to the
style of party that Mr. Radcliff held for his employees.



A glass elevator took me to the appropriate level, while
I looked down into the center of the facility. Greenery
and crystal shown brightly with white Christmas lights
all around. Any fear of feeling overdressed was soon put
to rest when I witnessed several other women in gorgeous
evening gowns. As they entered the elevator I overheard
one of the women say her designer was Oscar De La Renta. No
rhinestones encircled her neck, she had diamonds; more
diamonds than I had seen in one place in my life. Their scent
was even expensive, probably Amouage that I read about
in a fashion magazine. The flask it comes in is made of 24K
gold.


Holding the rhinestone clutch to my body, I enjoyed my brush
with the upper crust of society during my brief ride on the
elevator, even if their attitudes were a bit snobbish.
When I left the elevator I nodded my head softly and smiled
at the women. Truth be told, I left out a long sigh of relief
when the elevator door closed behind me.


The mezzanine level was decorated in Radcliff fashion.
At the edge of the balcony that overlooked the other levels,
a tall Christmas tree was decorated to the hilt. A few of
the girls from the office saw me and headed my way, smiling
from ear to ear.


“Wow, Christine you look wonderful!” Sue spoke in her usual
sweet sappy receptionist voice. She is a wonderful person,
but at times her sappy voice makes a person want to say, ‘don’t
you ever get pissed and just yell at someone?’


“Thank you Sue.” I didn’t want to tell her I rented the dress,
although I’m sure most of the women did this evening.


“Come and get some champagne, ” Janet chimed in cheerfully,
“Mr. Radcliff has really put on a nice party for us this evening.”



Janet, Sue and myself walked to the appetizer display.
A three-tier fountain was continually flowing with champagne.
Shrimp cocktail and various cheeses were on ice while crab
stuffed pastries and baked Spanakopita was kept warm on
hot plates. A chocolate fountain stood beside a display
of various fruits and berries, ready for dipping. We sampled
a few items and each of us filled a crystal champagne goblet.
Slipping into the crowd of people, we mingled and enjoyed
what would turn out to be a beautiful evening.


After a main course of prime-rib and shrimp scampi with
all the trimmings, the caterers removed most of the tables
so the partygoers could kick up their heels. During intermissions
Mr. Radcliff drew names of employees from a large bowl,
to distribute Christmas gifts to each and every one of us.
He did not give out small gifts; in true Radcliff style he
gave out gifts that were over indulgent. The smallest gift
he gave was a $100 gift certificate to a ritzy restaurant.
When my name was called I approached the podium where he
stood.


“You must be Christine, ” he commented with a gentle nod,
looking over his reading glasses.


“Yes Sir, I am Christine.” My hands shook; I was nervous
standing this close to the infamous Mr. Radcliff. He reeked
of wealth, from his Armani suit to the Rolex watch on his
wrist.


“Is your husband with you tonight, Christine?” He smiled
and waited for my reply.


“No Sir, he isn’t.” I felt the familiar pain of Steven’s
death creep into my body.


“Too bad, ” he joked, “you will have to share your good fortune
with him when you return home this evening. You have won
a weekend getaway for two, at a resort in Key West Florida.”
He beamed at what he offered, while a hush fell over the crowd.


“Thank you Sir.” I looked up at him with a tear in my eye. His
brow furrowed; he did not know what was wrong. Without lingering
I took the certificate from him and drifted back into the
crowd.


Janet followed me to the restroom. “Are you ok Christine?”
She asked with sincerity.


“Yes, I will be fine.” I lied, feeling like an idiot. I tried
so hard but I could not keep the tears at bay.


Janet put her arms around me, “I wish I knew what to say Chris.”


“There is nothing to say, Janet.” I knew that only time would
heal my empty heart. Staring down at the certificate for
two, the tears welled in my eyes again.


Janet saw me looking at the certificate and looked with
me. “It says it is good for a whole year Chris, maybe you will
find someone to share it with before then.”


“If not, I guess I will just have to take you.” I looked up
at her with a smile.


“Nonsense, you are radiant tonight.” Brushing aside one
of my tears, she added, “Come back to the party with me. We’ll
find a good man for you, come hell or high water.”


We left the restroom and went straight to the dance area.
Several other people from the office were feeling the effects
of the champagne. We couldn’t help laugh at some of their
dance moves. A tap on my shoulder made me turn around; it
was Mr. Radcliff.


He leaned toward my ear, “Christine, may I have a word with
you please?” he asked in a deep voice, over the din of music.



Janet had gone to dance, so I followed him to the edge of the
mezzanine level, by the tree. When we walked he took the
liberty of placing his hand at the small of my back. In a politically
correct world that does not tolerate sexual harassment,
his move was bold, but I was not offended. His 55-year-old
features had weathered well, he was ruggedly handsome.
His dark brown hair was noticeable gray at the temples and
slightly longer on top; with it cut short on the sides and
back. He combed it straight back, which added to his flair
for fashion. Tanned skin, compliments of some tropical
oasis, accented his handsome features. He was not a large
man, only standing about four or five inches taller than
me, with my heels on. When we arrived at the balcony he turned
to face me.


Taking a deep breath, he looked at me, “Please accept my
sincere apology for earlier this evening. I did not know
your husband had passed away.”


“Apology accepted Mr. Radcliff. You had no way of knowing.”


“On the contrary, I have always prided myself on knowing
about people in my employ.” He appeared more frustrated
with his lack of knowledge.


It had to be next to impossible for him to know everything
about everyone. “You employee a lot of people Mr. Radcliff,
I understand.”


“Our company has grown tremendously in the last ten years,
but that is still no excuse. If I forgot a birthday that is
one thing, but this has been such a horrible loss for you.”


“I’m doing ok Sir, ” I lied to aleve his bad feelings, “it
just takes time.”


“Yes, I know.” His mind drifted from our conversation;
I saw it in his eyes.


“Are you ok, Sir?”


He looked deep into my eyes as he spoke. “Yes, I’m fine. I
feel bad because I know exactly how it feels to lose someone
you love Christine. My wife Carol succumbed to breast cancer
four years ago.”


I had only worked for the company for three years. “I did
not know Sir.”


“She battled hard and valiant, but ultimately it was to
no avail.” Changing the subject from his pain, back to mine,
he continued, “Just know that my apology is truly sincere
and heartfelt Christine.”


He was sincere, it shown in his eyes. “I accept your apology
Sir, all is well.”


As we spoke, the lady that I encountered in the elevator
approached us. She stepped up to speak to Mr. Radcliff,
like I did not exist. “Hello John, how are you this evening?”


Mr. Radcliff’s facial expression changed from sincerity
to annoyance, then to false graciousness. “I’m doing well
Evelyn.” He extended a hand toward me, while looking at
her, “Please meet Christine, we were about to share a dance.”


She glared at me with a distant look of recognition in her
eyes, “Pleased to meet you Christine.” Quickly, she turned
back to Mr. Radcliff, “Will you save a dance for me?”


“Don’t you have a Christmas party to preside over this evening?”
He asked with a bit of malice interlaced.


“Yes, but everyone is drunk on champagne. I don’t feel like
having them clinging all over my expensive gown and jewels
in that condition.” Her voice echoed of distain.


Mr. Radcliff looked at Evelyn, “Excuse us Evelyn. Please
try to enjoy the rest of your evening.” He turned to me, “Are
you ready for our dance Christine?”


“Yes John, ” I added, to annoy Evelyn, “I am ready.”


He held his arm out to the side for me to interlock, and escorted
us away from the venomous Evelyn, who remained on the balcony
glaring into our backs as we departed. After we had walked
a short distance he took us into another doorway, then turned
to look over his shoulder briefly. “I’m afraid I owe you
another apology this evening.”


“An apology for what, Mr. Radcliff?” I asked with a grin.


“You know exactly what I mean, ” he laughed, “that woman
is as rude as they come!”


“I know, I encountered her in the elevator on my way here
tonight.” I did not dawdle on her arrogance; he already
knew about it.


“I should thank you for rescuing me from her, by going along
with my dance ploy.”


I offered my most jilted look to him, “We aren’t going to
dance?”


“I haven’t danced in years Christine. I fear I would make
a fool of myself, and you in the process.”


I don’t know if the champagne softened my tongue, or this
handsome man, but I looked directly at him and said one word,
“Chicken.”


His eyes widened; he held up his hands in feigned surprise,
“You are calling me, John Radcliff, a chicken?”


At that point I did not know if I had overstepped my bounds
to the point of losing my job, or if he was going to play along
with me. “Yes Sir, I think I just did.”


He was stoic for a moment, then he started laughing, “I like
you Christine, you have guts. Lesser men have backed down
from me on even smaller issues than a dance.”


“If you don’t want to dance with me, I understand. I was only
teasing. I know you have a reputation to uphold with the
employees.” After all, he was the one that started the rouse
about a dance, when Evelyn approached us.


“No, you have challenged me now. I can’t back down from a
challenge, it isn’t in my blood to back down from anything.”
He eyes bore into me and yet I knew he wasn’t angry.


“Mr. Radcliff, you’re on!” I laughed, as we walked toward
the music.


We approached the dance area and blended in rapidly. Janet
caught my attention with hand gestures. Her eyes were expressively
large; she pointed at his back, while pretending to fan
her self. I tried hard not to laugh, but I found myself laughing
anyway. Mr. Radcliff spoke loudly over the music, “Is my
dancing that bad?”


“No Sir, your dancing is fine, really.” I yelled back at
him. The DJ’s finished the song and said he was going to slow
things down a bit. Instead of leaving the dance floor Mr.
Radcliff put one hand at my waist and raised his other hand
to the side, for me to hold in a slow dance. He kept his body
from touching mine, which I expected, given his title as
CEO.


The music progressed; he proved to be agile on his feet during
the slow song. I had not slow danced like this since Steven
died. It felt good to be held this way again. Mr. Radcliff
seemed focused on his dancing, while my mind drifted to
old emotions I had not felt in a long time. Eventually the
dance floor cleared until we were the only two remaining.
A few went for more champagne, while others remained watching
and talking. When the music ended, he released my hand and
bowed in front of me. “Thank you Christine, you have honored
me this evening.”


Reaching to lift the skirt of my evening gown slightly,
I curtsied in response, “It was my pleasure, Sir.”


He extended his arm for me again, which I held as we left the
dance floor. Janet was in the midst of the onlookers, offering
me a raised eyebrow when we walked by. Smiling at her, I walked
back to the balcony with Mr. Radcliff. I did not want to overstay
my welcome with him so I pulled my arm from his and turned
toward him. “Thank you Mr. Radcliff. You have made me very
happy tonight, in many ways.”


“Please call me John, Christine.” He offered with a smile.


“Thank you, John.” I said to appease him.


He looked into my eyes again, “I know this may not be appropriate
to say, but I have not felt this alive since Carolyn was well.
She was very much like you, not afraid to stand up to me. She
was always gracious in her approach and submissive in his
response. I’m sorry to compare the two of you, but I cannot
help myself.”


I understood what he felt. “No need to feel sorry, I actually
felt the same thing while we were dancing. Steve was very
intense, like you and yet he treated me like I was the most
precious woman on earth.” I paused for a moment, “If nothing
else, we understand one another and how it feels to lose
someone who loves us completely… John.”


He took both my hands into his and held them, “Thank you again
Christine. I will remain in touch with you, to see how you
are doing.” Raising one of my hands to his lips, he kissed
it softly. I watched his movements, knowing what he was
about to do, but did not stop him. His warm lips grazed my
skin and his eyes never left mine. The heat rushed to my face,
then he lowered my hand and released it.


“Good night John.” I said softly, before I walked away.
My heart was beating wantonly in my chest. I knew I had to
leave, so I grabbed my clutch purse from the table where
I had left it, and walked toward the elevator. When I reached
the lower level, the elevator opened for my exit. Evelyn
saw me walking toward the door and stopped me. “How was your
dance, Christine?” she asked in a sarcastic tone.


“It was wonderful, thank you for asking, ” I answered in
a hurried fashion, “I really need to go Evelyn. Enjoy your
evening.”


Excusing myself from her spiteful presence, I heard her
yell behind me, “You will never get him. He’s out of your
league!”


I wanted to yell back that she was nowhere near the league
he was in, but held my composure and left the building to
hail a taxi. Tears welled in my eyes after I was in the safety
of the cab. I did not know if they were tears of happiness
or sadness. A part of me felt guilty to have felt the things
I did tonight, but another part of me reminded myself that
Steve had been gone for two years. At forty-five I was in
the prime of my life and yet I was alone. Tonight was a subtle
reminder of what was missing in my life, but it was also a
reminder that not just any man could fill that void in me.
I knew I needed someone strong-willed, yet compassionate.
A man that was secure enough in his own right to feel empathy
toward others. I knew I could never be with a man that has
self-doubts, because if he doubted his self, he would doubt
his dominance.


------


John watched over the balcony as Christine exited the elevator,
to get one more glimpse of her before she left. He saw the
interlude with Evelyn and heard her biting words toward
Christine when she departed. Evelyn had been after him
since Carolyn became ill and before she lost her battle
with cancer. He knew what a cold-hearted bitch she was from
that moment. To avoid conflict he brushed aside her advances,
but tonight she attacked Christine and that troubled him
deeply. He wasn’t sure why her actions toward Christine
bothered him so much, but she had gone too far this time.


He watched Christine leave the building without resorting
to a shouting match with Evelyn, which pleased him. Christine
had an old-fashioned style of modesty about her that he
enjoyed; it was refreshing in his world. Her evening gown
hugged her body like a glove and yet it was not overly indulgent.
While they danced he wanted to hold her body close, but knew
he was under scrutiny. His fingers ached to pull the clips
from her brunette hair, then watch it flow down over her
shoulders while she looked up at him in wide-eyed surprise.
She knew the art of being a lady and she also knew how to pick
her battles. The battle she picked with him tonight, over
their dance, was a battle she knew she could win with her
wiles. He smiled, remembering her expression when she
called him a chicken. Toying with her he put on his best poker
face, but could not keep from laughing. She stirred things
inside him tonight and they weren’t all physical. She pulled
at his heart, which he had tucked away for safekeeping.



He knew what he had to do, and he knew it would be difficult
on Christine, but it had to be this way. Making a mental note
to contact her supervisor on Monday. He would set the wheels
in motion to have her terminated, so that he would be free
to date her when she was no longer in his employment. He would
also make sure that a friend of his hired her, to fill a vacancy
in his office, so she would not be without an income. Smiling
to him self, he realized that wealth and power did have its
perks. After all his years in business he felt he was a pretty
good judge of character; Christine was someone he wanted
in his life. He prayed that she would feel the same about
him, after being terminated.


---------


Christine arrived at work Monday morning to find everyone
abuzz about the Christmas party. Janet didn’t waste much
time approaching her, “You sure seemed to be enjoying yourself
on the dance floor Chris.”


I laughed openly. “I did enjoy myself Janet, but I am also
a realist.”


“I’m serious Chris, there were some major vibes passing
between you two out there.” She spoke like she was Dear Abby,
adding her romantic advise.


I tried to dispel her cupid moment. “Ok, I did feel good vibes,
but he IS the CEO of the company. Who wouldn’t feel special
in that atmosphere?”


“All right, I’ll shut up, ” she laughed, adding as she walked
away, “He is single.”


I buried my nose in my papers and sent her a parting shot,
“Don’t you have some work, or something else to do?”


My supervisor brushed past Janet when she left and asked
me to come to her office. I assumed we were starting a new
assignment and joined her a few minutes later. She fidgeted
in her chair, swiveling it side to side, prior to speaking.
“Chris, there is no good way to say what I have to say, so I
am going to be upfront with you. Your job is being eliminated,
due to downsizing.”


I sat in disbelief, “I thought the company was growing?”


“Things are more competitive, so we have to make cuts. You
were the last person hired in the office, so you are the first
to go.” Her voice trailed off, at a loss for words.


Something didn’t set right with me. “Did I do something
wrong? This all seems so sudden.”


“No Christine, you have not done anything wrong. In two
weeks it will be a new year, the fiscal budget needs to be
adjusted before then.”


“Oh gosh, what am I going to do about Christmas? This is such
horrible timing, with winter heating bills and everything
else this time of year.”


She was clearly distressed. “I’m really sorry Christine.
I’m just following orders.”


“I know. I don’t mean to yell at you. It’s just such horrible
timing, that’s all.”


“You have 30 minutes to clear your work area. I will have
Bo, from security, help you to your car.” She stood and shook
my hand, remaining in professional mode, and then reopened
her office door for me to leave.


Bo arrived at my desk a short time later, prepared to help
me to the car. I felt like a common criminal, even though
I know this is deemed proper procedure in the business world.
Janet watched me leave and knew we would not be allowed to
talk, but made a motion with her hand like she was holding
a phone to her ear, saying she would call me that evening.



When I left for home many thoughts went through my mind,
the first of which was how I was going to pay my bills. Secondly,
I wondered if my dance with Mr. Radcliff had anything to
do with this untimely loss of my job. I realized in my haste
to leave that I had not taken a phone directory, so there
was no way to call him and beg for my job. The further I drove
the more I realized that I would not stoop to that level anyway,
it was simply a thought that crossed my mind. I would survive;
somehow I would survive.


---------


John sat at his desk, impatiently waiting for the phone
call from Christine’s supervisor. When she called to announce
the deed was done, he immediately called his friend to find
her another job. One time when he was at a conference, he
had done Mark a favor. Mark in turn told John, he owed him
one. After some finagling, John secured a job for Christine
at Mark’s establishment. Now all he had to do was get word
to Christine that a job was available without her knowing
he was behind it.


He knew Mark would only hire Christine. If a rumor started
in the office about a job at Johnson’s, no matter who applied,
she would be safe. He also knew that her friend Janet would
surely tell her about the rumor. A quick call to the person
he deemed his ‘inside spy’, started the rumor in haste.



Later that evening Christine informed her daughter what
had happened, as well as her son. They were both grown, living
on their own. Each offered to help her in any way they could,
but as usual she declined, with a reminder that Christmas
gifts may be lean this year. When she hung up the phone it
rang again.


“Hello Chris, God I wanted to give you a hug or something
when you left today, but I knew I couldn’t. I hope you’re
ok.” Janet spoke in a hurried voice.


“I’ll be fine Janet. It just sucks that it happened this
time of year. I have to find work, and fast.” I offered in
a frustrated tone.


“I heard a rumor today about Mark Johnson’s company. I guess
he is adding a new position but it won’t start until the first
of the year.”


“Ok, I’m on it. Thanks Janet. Say a little prayer for me.
I’m going to hang up now, I’m not really in the mood to talk.”
I was literally exhausted from worry.


“I understand. If you need me, you know where to find me.”
She knew me well enough to know that I probably wouldn’t
call her, but offered anyway.
We hung up the phone and I sat with my face in my hands, crying.
After I cleansed my soul with tears it was time to update
my resume and email it off to the new job opportunity. It
didn’t take much time to find their website and apply online.
After a few other searches I found a few jobs to apply for
as well. Hopefully one of them would pan out so I could keep
my gas and lights on.


-----------


Mark called John the next morning after he received Christine’s
application. They agreed that calling her about the job
right away may seem obvious, so Mark waited a few days to
have his secretary call. She would come in for an interview
as a formality, but ultimately she would have a new job by
the New Year.


On Saturday evening, a week after the Christmas party,
Mr. Radcliff called Christine at home, as an innocent attempt
to check on her.


I answered the phone call, which shown on the id as private,
“Hello.”


“Hello Christine, it’s John.” He spoke softly, “How are
you?” There was silence on the line, “Hello.” He said again.


“Hello Mr. Radcliff.” I tried to hide my pain and feeling
of betrayal from him.


“Are you ok Christine? And remember, it’s John.” He offered
as a reminder.


“I’m fine Mr. Radcliff. I was just leaving, if you will excuse
me.” I needed an excuse to hang up the phone. After what had
happened I refused to address him with his casual name.


John knew what had happened and waited for her to tell him,
but she would not. “Are you sure you’re ok? You sound a little
distressed.”


I lied. “I’m absolutely wonderful, now if you will excuse
me I have a date tonight.”


“Oh ok, I understand. Enjoy yourself Christine. Perhaps
we can talk another time.” John hung up the phone wondering
if his plan would back fire on him.


--------


I laid the phone in the cradle and saw how badly my hands were
shaking. I was angry, sad and excited all at the same time.
Mr. Radcliff made me feel like a princess for an evening
then turned my world upside down a few days later by firing
me. It would be a cold day in hell before I would allow myself
to feel emotions with someone, ever again.


-------


John needed to know if Christine really had a date, or if
it was a ruse. After a quick search in his files he found her
physical address. He was not busy so he decided to take a
drive. He arrived in the apartment complex and found the
number on the building where her apartment existed. After
parking and turning the car off, he waited. He couldn’t
help laughing inwardly at what he was doing. Some may call
it stalking, but he laughed more at the merit of this experience.
He was a very wealthy and powerful man who could have anyone
he wanted and here he sat in an apartment complex waiting
for a glimpse of Christine, the secretary.


Through a window he saw a tree on a table. Christine stood
and hung ornaments on the tree. Although he was a distance
away, he could sense her mood by her actions. She was sad
but trying to make the most of the holiday. Every fiber of
him wanted to go knock on her door, but he refrained and watched
her from afar.


----------


I decided that Christmas would go on, whether I had a job
or not so I rummaged through my storage closet for ornaments
to put on the tree. The crown jewels were the two ornaments
my kids made for me when they were younger. I held each one
in my hands and kissed them before placing them on the tree.
Standing back, I smiled while a tiny tear ran down my cheek.
Wiping the tear away, I reminded myself that I am a strong
woman. I survived the death of my husband, who I loved dearly.
If I could survive that, I could survive anything.


-----------


John saw Christine step back from the tree and wondered
about the special ornaments that she kissed before hanging.
He saw her wipe the tear from her cheek and wanted to be there
to kiss it away for her. His emotions were getting the best
of him, so using the business sense that had seen him through
many years, he started the car and left to collect his thoughts.


-----------


I looked out the window and saw a dark car as it left the parking
lot. It seemed to be a rather nice vehicle for the apartment
complex, but thought maybe it belonged to someone visiting
and didn’t give it another thought.


The next morning, which was Thursday, I received a phone
call from the application I placed online at Johnson’s.
They scheduled me for an interview the next morning. I called
my daughter immediately and told her the good news.


She encouraged me, “See Mom, there really is a Santa Claus, ”
she laughed.


“It’s just an interview, nothing is certain, but it feels
good to know I have a chance.”


“Just be yourself Mom, they can’t help but love you.”


Her words did encourage me, just as I had encouraged her
while she struggled through college on my meager income
after her fathers dead. “Thank you baby girl, I love you.”


I prepared for my interview the next morning, dressing
business casual. Mark Johnson seemed like a nice man, and
the women I encountered in the office seemed just as nice.
When we shook hands and parted, he told me they would make
a decision by the end of the day. I went window-shopping,
to alleviate my feelings of wanting to know if I had the job
or not. My cell phone was set on high so I would not miss hearing
it ring above the hum of Christmas music in the store.


When my phone rang I dropped everything to answer it. “Hello.”


“Hello Christine, this is Mark Johnson. I would like to
offer you a job.”


“Yes Sir, I’m listening.”


“If you are interested, it starts immediately after the
New Year.”


“I accept your offer, thank you very much. You won’t be disappointed.”


I closed the cell phone and tried to mask my excitement,
as I scurried out of the store. Even though Christmas was
only one week away I had to trim my present buying to a minimum
with the loss of income. I called Janet on my way to the car.


“Janet, I got a job!” I exclaimed to her.


“Wow, that’s awesome Chris. I’m so happy for you!”


“I can’t talk long. I just wanted to let you know.”


“Thanks for calling. This is a great Christmas present.
I was worried about you.”


“I’ll talk to you later, Merry Christmas my friend.” My
voice trailed off.


“Merry Christmas Chris.” She replied.


--------


John received a call from Mark Johnson, saying that Christine
had taken the job. After hanging up the phone he smiled,
content that she had an income again. He still was not certain
how she felt about him. After their last phone call, when
she lied saying she had a date, it was apparent that she did
not want to see or hear from him. He reached in his desk drawer
for the boxed present he bought her, a thin gold anklet.
The evening of the Christmas party he caught a glimpse of
her delicate ankles under the dress and knew he wanted to
buy this, for her to wear. He had it wrapped in gold foil paper
with a hand-tied bow to match. He could have anything that
money could buy, but it appeared he could not have the one
thing he wanted… Christine. He summoned a friend that worked
for him to deliver the package to her door. Purposely he
did not put a card on it; she would know whom it was from, purely
from the value of the gift.


------------


I arrived at my apartment to find a package at the front door.
There was no name on it, but it was elegant in its wrapping.
After I unlocked the door and entered I placed the package
under the tree and wondered about it. Any sane person would
have opened it immediately, but I didn’t. Something inside
me told me it was from Mr. Radcliff and he wasn’t exactly
my favorite person at the moment.


My daughter Amy came to visit while I was fixing supper.
She saw the gift under the tree and asked about it. “Who is
this from Mom?”


“I don’t know.” I offered her.


“You don’t know?” she quizzed again.


“Nope.” I wished she would quit asking.


“Mom, you’re acting weird.” She commented, with a strange
glance toward me.


I attempted to change the subject. “Let’s decide what we’re
doing for Christmas this year.”


Sighing, she told me. “Unfortunately it’s my turn to work
the holiday at the hospital. Maybe you and Tim can get together.”



I responded, “Tim has to work security on Christmas also.”


She hugged me, “I’m sorry Mom. I know Christmas is hard for
you. I don’t want you to be alone.”


I reassured her with a smile, “I will be fine honey. Christmas
is just a day out of the year, times like this, are what is
important.”


“I hate to run Mom, but I have to work this evening.” She left
our embrace, with a quick kiss on my cheek and reached for
her coat.


When the door closed I felt the quiet emptiness. I had raised
my children to be self-sufficient and they were. I should
be enjoying life now, but I was merely surviving.
I answered the phone when it rang; it was Mr. Radcliff.


“Hello Christine, did you open your package yet?” he asked
quietly, waiting for a response.


“No, I did not open your gift Mr. Radcliff. I would much rather
you take it and return it, whatever it is.” I suppose I was
a bit curt, but given the turn of events I didn’t feel the
need to have him watch over me.


“Christine, I heard about your job. I’m sorry, I didn’t
realize you would be the one impacted by the decision, ”
he lied.


I pulled strength from deep inside to respond, “No harm,
no foul. I have found another job so you don’t need to worry
about me.”


“I don’t worry about you Christine, ” his voice went silent.


“Then why do you continue to call and sent a present to me?”
I asked.


“The Christmas party was wonderful. I hoped that we could
continue where we left off.”


“We shared a dance and a laugh, Mr. Radcliff. I had a wonderful
time, but you are Mr. Radcliff and I am quite simply… Christine.
I don’t belong in your world.” There I said it, I thought
to myself.


“As you wish Christine. Have a Merry Christmas.” He finished,
then hung up the phone.


As before, my hands shook when I hung up the phone. This man
was caring and loving, but he was also living in a realm that
I could only imagine. There was no way I could deal with the
likes of Evelyn, in that world. I am content to live a simple
life; it is all I have ever known. I was not about to let him
into my heart, only to break it into a million pieces. I knew
he was dominant, his personality reeked of dominance,
but his world is too different from mine.


--------


John hung up the phone and looked at the picture of his deceased
wife that sat on his desk. He picked it up and held it in his
hands, thinking out loud, as if Carolyn were there with
him.


“You would like her Carolyn, she has spunk. You fought me
much the same way when we first met. She is proud and stubborn
to a fault. I know if you were here you would give me your blessing.”
He took her picture and placed it face up in his drawer, then
closed it and left his office.


---------


Christmas eve arrived and I sat down with an old photo album.
Pictures of Steve, the kids and myself made me smile in remembrance.
He was such a strong man, yet so loving. I thought back to
our last Christmas Eve together. Amy went to a friends and
Tim was working that night. We lay on the couch together,
holding one another. His fingers stroked my arm while we
reminisced about the years and where they had gone. For
all the moments that we experienced physical sex, there
were just as many moments we experienced physical love.
Snow started to fall outside the window of our home so we
went outside. I opened my mouth to catch snowflakes on my
tongue, while he held me in his arms and looked to the heavens.


My thoughts were interrupted by a knock on the door. I answered
it to find Mr. Radcliff standing at the threshold. My body
tingled and my face flushed when he brushed past me to enter
without an invitation.


“Christine, we need to talk, ” he informed me.


I answered in a slightly annoyed tone. “So talk, I’m listening, ”



“Why do you fight this?” he asked.


“Fight what?” I asked him.


“Us.” He said in one word.


“There is no “us”, we shared a dance and a good time, nothing
more.” I replied, knowing what he meant, but wanting to
avoid discussing it.


He walked toward the couch and found my open photo album.
Picking it up he flipped through a few pages. “Is this your
idea of celebrating Christmas?”


“Put it down please.” I ordered him.


“Make me, ” he offered in reply.


I reached for the album. His hand fell on mine. “Show me your
pictures Christine, share yourself with me. I want to know
you.”


“I can’t, Mr. Radcliff.” my voice shook.


“Make it quit hurting Christine. Do you think the last four
years of my life have been easy?” he spoke solemnly.


“No.” I spoke with full knowledge of his loss.


“Then let me in. Show me your pictures.” He sat on the couch
and patted the spot beside him.
I walked around the couch and sat beside him, feeling nervous
and apprehensive. He flipped to the front of the album.
“Is this one of your children?”


“Yes, that is Tim. He was about four in that picture. Amy
was still a baby.” I answered his question without a lot
of emotion, but inside my emotions were churning.


“And, is this your husband Steven?” he pointed to another
picture.


“Yes, ” was all I could manage to say. The picture was the
four of us together. Steven had set the timer on the camera,
while I held Amy in my arms. Tim nestled up beside me and Steve
ran back to put his arm around me just before the timer took
our picture.


“Tell me about him, Christine.”


“Who?”


“Steven.”


“I can’t Mr. Radcliff, not after feeling what I felt with
you at the Christmas party.”


“You can Christine. I had a wonderful talk with Carolyn
about you yesterday.”


“Excuse me?” I asked, “I thought she was gone.”


“Oh she is, but she will always be with me, just as Steven
will always be with you.” He smiled.


He closed the photo album and took my hands into his. “We
will never forget Steven or Carolyn, but you taught me something
at the Christmas party Christine.”


“What could I possibly teach you Mr. Radcliff?”


“You taught me that life is for the living. I know I have said
it before, but you really do remind me very much of Carolyn.
Do you know that she didn’t want anything to do with me when
we first met?”


“Really?” I smiled at him.


“Yup, she told me to go to hell, as a matter of fact.” He laughed
boisterously.


“Imagine that, ” I said with a raised eyebrow.


He reached for the lone present remaining under my tree,
handing it to me. I pulled the bow to untie it and pulled the
gold foil paper away to reveal a jewelers box with their
name on the top. Pulling the black velvet lid open, I caught
a glimpse of the gold anklet inside. “It’s beautiful Mr.
Radcliff.”
“John, please.”


“It’s beautiful, John.”


His face lit up at the mention of his name. “Thank you Christine.”
He looked at me knowingly, “It has not gone unnoticed by
me that I’m in hot water when you call me Mr. Radcliff.”


“Would I do that?” I asked with a tilted grin.


“Most certainly, young lady. Now, will you allow me to put
the anklet on you?”


“I suppose, since you asked so nice.” I felt giddy with excitement.



As much as I fought it, I couldn’t help myself. He took the
box from my fingers and removed the gold chain. Lowering
to the floor he reached for my ankle, which I offered to him.
He pushed the end of my jeans up while his warm hand held my
naked foot. He laid my foot in his lap so he could use both
hands to fasten the clasp. I felt his excitement through
his jeans, and toyed with him by wiggling my toes.


He looked up at me with merriment in his eyes, “Careful little
one, you may awaken the monster.”


I laughed, “Yes Sir, I have been warned.” I couldn’t help
the effect he had on me, calling me his little one.


“There, it is finally on. These cursed little clasps are
hard to match up with my aging eyes.” He remarked before
raising my foot to have a look. “You have beautiful feet
Christine, I love when a woman paints her toenails.”


“Thank you, Sir.” My breathing increased as he stroked
my foot, then raised it to his mouth to kiss. I could not move
and felt such strong sensations from his touch. His warm
mouth covered my toes and sucked gently.


“You better quit Mr. Radcliff, or you will be the one facing
a monster.” I looked at him through narrowed slits.


“I fancy myself a dragon slayer, young lady.” He kept kissing
and sucking my toes.


My voice was laced with passion. “I have never felt anything
like this before, your mouth is so warm.”


He paused for a moment to look at me, “I suppose now would
be a good time for me to invite you to a News Years party with
me?”


“John, you know I …” he silenced me by sucking my toes back
into his mouth.


“As you were saying Christine?” he asked again.


“You know I can’t…” his tongue darted over my chilly toes
and warmed them more.


“I think you were about to say, ‘Yes John, I would love to
join you’.” He added with a coy grin.


“Will Evelyn be there?” I asked without a show of emotion.


“Most likely.”


“Ok, I’ll go.” I answered in haste.


He put my foot aside and remained on his knees. He crawled
the few inches to be in front of me, raised his upper body
and looked up into my eyes. “Kiss me Christine.”


I lowered my upper body, offering him my lips. He reached
to place his hands on each side of my head and pulled me to
the floor with him. We rolled and laughed together until
he had me pinned, looking down at me. His eyes were menacing,
yet loving. I knew he was going to kiss me, when he lowered
his mouth. Our lips touched. His tongue darted against
my lips, tasting me. I was embroiled with a passion I had
not felt in years. He reached around to hold me, grabbing
my brunette hair at the nape of my neck, tugging gently.
I didn’t resist as he pulled my head back to taste my neck.


The vibrato of the sounds coming from deep inside him echoed
the emotions coursing through my body. He pulled up and
looked at me, while touching the top button on my blouse,
“May I?”


“Yes John, ” I uttered breathlessly.


Both of us had denied physical urges for far too long. Our
passions were matched and ready to explode together. His
fingers shook with anticipation while he tried to undo
the buttons. I reached my hand to help him, but he pushed
me aside.


“No, I want to unwrap this gift alone.” He offered in defiance.


His reference to my being a gift warmed my heart that was
beating solidly in my chest. He deftly undid each button
with painstaking care, kissing me after each was unfastened.
There was no greater torment than having his every move,
be in slow motion. He gently unfastened the button on my
jeans and unzipped them. Grabbing the denim material in
his fingers he tugged them down from my hips and slid them
from my legs. He worked over me like he was unveiling a treasured
piece of art. When I was naked he lay beside me, partially
covering my body with his bent leg. Time had no meaning;
this was one of those moments that stood still.


“John, ” I spoke softly.


“Yes, Christine?” he replied.


“Please make love to me. It is all I want for Christmas this
year.” Tears formed at the corner of my eye.


“Are you sure you’re ready?” he asked hesitantly.


“I’m ready John. I need to feel you.” My voice crackled.


He rose and stood above me to remove his clothing. His body
was solid, proof that he made time to work out during his
busy schedule. Taunt abdominal muscles and broad shoulders
enhanced his masculinity. It was with confidence that
he lowered his body to mine again, not impetuousness. Slowly
and deliberately, he placed his hands on my knees to spread
my legs. His mouth found my warm mound. Skilled fingers
found my soft button and rubbed it gently, while he kissed
and probed other places. My back arched and swayed while
he tortured me with pleasure.


My legs clamped shut on his head when my body reached the
summit. He used his hands and head to forge onward. Unrelenting
he continued this until I was panting and begging him to
stop. Rising upright on his knees, between my bent legs
he looked upon me. “Are you ready Christine, or shall I stop
now?”


“Don’t stop, please don’t stop.” I urged him on with a passionate
cry.


He reached to guide his self toward my opening, where no
one had been since Steve had passed away. I remembered how
it felt, but I had forgotten the intensity of making love.
Resting on the verge of entering, he raised his hips and
lowered into my silky wetness. I watched his pained expression
when he was enveloped deep inside. Lowering his body on
top of mine he made love to me, slow and meticulously. My
legs wrapped around his body, hugging him for dear life.
Our mouths found one another again, kissing with such intensity
that I fell over the brink again. A whimper slipped from
my lips, while we continued kissing hungrily. Riding the
wave, my body continued edging closer to that magical place.



“Christine, Christine!”


“WHAT?” I asked at his urgency, “What John?”


“Look into my eyes, now Christine!” he demanded.


Our eyes locked. He drove inside me deep and held there.
Pulsing, he reached his climax staring into my eyes with
a deep moan rolling from his lips. My body clutched his and
held him there, unwilling to release. One last time, my
body tensed and found release. He fell on top of me, panting
and sweating.
We lay there together for a long time, enjoying the feeling
of making love again. He never left my body as we kissed and
touched one another. When he rolled to lie beside me, he
propped his head up in his hand to look at me.


He spoke first, “Thank you Christine, you are a beautiful
Christmas gift.”


“Thank you for reminding me that we aren’t really all that
different John.” I offered to this man who could have anything
he wanted, and yet he chose me.


He glanced out the window of my apartment to find snowflakes
falling from the sky. After a small kiss he summoned me to
get dressed with him. We walked outside in the snow. Opening
my mouth I let the snowflakes land on my tongue. With his
arms wrapped around me, he spoke again. “I can’t wait to
see Evelyn’s face when you come to the New Years bash with
me.”


“Oh, so I will be there purely for your amusement?” I teased
him.


“Not really, because I’m not that kind of man.” He spoke
with honesty.


“But you are the kind of guy that doesn’t back down from a
challenge.” I endearingly reminded him.


“You’re right.” He remarked, “I knew you were special the
moment I laid eyes on you Christine. I knew that eventually
you would be mine.”


“I’m not yours yet, ” I added sarcastically.


He looked up into the sky, with confidence in his voice.
“You will be.”


“Time will tell, ” I told him as I pushed away and ran through
the snow. He laughed and walked back inside, closing the
door behind him. I went to find the door locked and began
pounding on it, “LET ME IN!”


I could hear him laughing inside. “Say you’ll be mine and
I will unlock it.”


“Nope, now LET ME IN!” I yelled back.


I pounded on the door, willing him to open it. Soon the door
opened and my arm, which was set to land on the door, hit him
square in the chest. He grabbed me and pulled me inside,
holding me in a strong hold. His breath was at my ear, “Go
ahead, and say it Christine.”


I was bound and determined. “Nope, not gonna do it.”


“Ok, you asked for it.” He mused.


“Asked for what?” I wondered what he meant.


“A good old-fashioned spanking, young lady.” He laughed
and hauled me to the couch placing me across his knee.


I reminded him of my determination. “I still won’t say it,
no matter what.”


For all of our antics, he knew I was full of wind and I knew
he was full of bravado. I was not being punished against
my will, any more than he was being abusive. We joked and
laughed, bantering back and forth until we ended up lying
on the couch together. At midnight the chimes on the clock
reminded us it was officially Christmas.


He kissed me softly on the cheek, “Merry Christmas, my Christine.”


I pulled him to my lips and whispered, “Merry Christmas
John, ” then kissed him with the passion stored up inside
me. I knew in my heart that I was already his, but I didn’t
have to let him know… not yet anyway.

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Member Responses Post Your Comment

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Thank you for such a lovely story. It is so much better then
the drivel that has been written here before.

12/31/2006

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Wow, what a marvelous story, quite a nice change of pace!
Thanks and please tell us the next chapter of "John"
and "Christine." J

12/31/2006

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That was beautiful! I agree with Diver0500, can't
wait for the next chapter...

12/31/2006

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Thank You. As a widower that was fantastic.

12/31/2006

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Wow !! This makes my heart ache and rejoice in the power of
love and romance at the same time.Look forward to hearing
the 'end' of this fairytale romance !

1/1/2007

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thanks for such a beautiful christmas story.i went thru
about a dozen change of moods reading it..my eyes watered
an lower extremities got very excited.please give us more
about you an john.have a wonderful 2007.

1/1/2007

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A beautiful story. What more can I say? My eyes teared up.
Thank you for sharing it.

1/1/2007