Baby, It's Cold Outside
The hour was late. The clock chimed cheerily in the hallway, reminding them of the passing time that was flying by too quickly. 
The lights were all off in the house, save for the soft glow of the Christmas tree in the corner and the merry crackling fire in the hearth. Against the far wall of the den a table lamp offered a subtle guide to light the way to the foyer, where the heavy oak door blocked out the city outside. 
Snow piled in the corners of the windows, until it was nearly impossible to see outside. Through the frost-smitten glass, the christmas lights outside were smudges of color. 
She twirled the glass in her hand and found herself smiling sheepishly again, and to hide it she took another sip of an expensive imported glass of merlot. The wine bite her tongue playfully and she swallowed it slowly, hoping the sensation would save her from looking up into his eyes again. 
He grinned to himself, and swirled his own newly-refilled drink. She was playfully shy and coy, and after their candle-lit dinner at the up-class restaurant downtown had readily agreed to come to his place for a drink or two. They now reclined on the thick rug in front of the fireplace, enjoying the heat of both the flames and each other's attention. It was nearing midnight, and he knew her friends was expecting her to return home, no doubt eager to hear all the details about the date with the man she'd met on the metro. But somehow she wasn't eager to leave, and in truth he didn't want her to leave, not yet. 
He licked his lips once and tilted his head slightly in appraisal. She was pretty, there was no room for arguement. Her blonde hair curled slightly around her shoulders, and the firelight made her face glow with a soft warmth. Under darkened eyelashes and subtle shades of green eyeshadow, her dark eyes danced with the bright shadows of the fire, and those soft full lips couldn't keep from smiling. She wore a modest sweater in shades of green and red, offset by a simple pair of silver reindeer-shaped earrings. A single silver ring claimed each hand, on the middle finger. Clear and shiny fingernails held her wine glass in a gentle, lady-like grip. Her rosy cheeks hinted at the birth of another smile, but he couldn't tell if their color was from blushing or her cosmetics.
It turns out it was because of his attention. Her cheeks burned under his gaze, and she forced herself to meet his dark eyes. He mentioned it was late, and she agreed she should go. But neither of them moved, and for a minute they heard nothing but the crackling of the fire. The cd player in the room switched tracks and began to play light jazz and blues christmas carols, making the situation both more intriguing and more tense. Softly, she excused herself and said she should get her coat. He made a move to get up to, and insisted it was cold outside. The snow was up to her knees at least, couldn't she give it another hour or two until it let up a little?
She giggled a little and shook her head, but not very convincingly. What was she supposed to do, stay here all night?
The look in his eyes answered her question.
Oh no, she said. She couldn't. Mother would be worried. Her friends would talk. Rumors would fly.
Would that be really so bad? he replied, as he slowly relaxed. She didn't, however, and still sat as though she were ready to rise and leave. He almost had her. She didn't want to leave, she really didn't, and they both knew it. For a few moments her mind swam in that horrible stalemate battle between her heart and her head, resulting in another deep drink of wine. Her unspoken indecision was obvious to him, who took the oppertunity to reach out and take hold of her hand in his own. 
You'll catch your death of cold, he argued gently. Don't hurry out. Please, stay a while.
Oh, I wish I knew how to break this spell, she thought to herself. Slowly he moved closer, and the smell of his cologne and the intoxicating aspect of his closeness was very quickly making up her mind. I have to get home, but....I don't want to...
He felt a soft smile tug at his lips as his face neared hers. His hair had fallen forward into his eyes a little, but it didn't obstruct his view. He still saw the confusion on her face, the plain longing in her eyes. His smile turned into a smirk, knowing that even if she didn't realize it yet, he'd won the battle. 
I have to go home, she thought in one last desperate attempt to ignore his advances. I have to go....home....
But then he kissed her, and all thoughts of home and family and snow fled her mind. She set down her wine glass and reached out with both hands to frame his face. 
He wasn't sure if it was the wine in his system or the taste of her kiss that made him so light-headed, but he decided he didn't mind it. The fire crackled merrily, the music played steadily, and the Christmas Tree radiated a cozy atmosphere that made the entire room warm and inviting. She felt welcome and safe, and suddenly there was no problem staying a little longer. The wind howled outside and the snow flew by the window so fast it blurred the glow of christmas lights outside. 
I suppose I could stay, she mused while he dotted her lips before pulling away. This isn't so bad...after all, it is cold outside....

StarPoet   StarPoet wrote
on 4/8/2009 3:38:13 AM
There's nothing that would warm you up faster than alcohol or a kiss or two like this on a cold day. I would not want to leave either!

Moonrose   Moonrose wrote
on 4/6/2009 6:59:02 PM
Wow, I especially like how cozy you make it right from the beginning. You should use quotation marks (I'm just being picky there) but otherwise, nice job :D

Short Story
writing MaHensley8706
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Another old holiday story I found, inspired by the song that shares the title.