Mistletoe Dreams
by
Daniele Marx

Dana walked into the foyer, reading her watch turn eleven-fifty. Jordan should be here soon, she thought, grabbing her coat from the hook and holding it over her arm. She had behaved and was completely sober, and she kept responsible company as she was told to. She was awake but extremely tired and glad she wasn't driving home, but she wasn't sure she liked her parting company. Jordan, though lenient enough to allow her attendance to this Christmas party, was an agent of the one national government she despised: her own.

The doorbell rang. Dana said her farewells to her acquaintances and the hostess, Cade, when Jordan stepped into the foyer.

"You ready?" he said. She nodded and he reached for her coat, taking it from her arm carefully. He held it up and let her slip into the sleeves. "It dropped twenty degrees since nightfall." Dana zipped up her coat and both turned as Cade cleared her throat from the entrance to the living room. Plastering on the best imitation of a happy but tired guest, Dana looked at the woman, beckoning her to say her peace. When she said nothing, Dana searched for what she was trying to show her. After a moment, the woman glanced up to the ceiling.

At first the sight of the mistletoe didn't and couldn't faze her; but after a few seconds her logic faded away and her imagination began to fill the void instead.

Dana Winifred Eiseley never catered to a daydream. She had always believed that logical reasoning was enough to drive any reverie away, no matter how possible a situation may have seemed. It was always easy to change her mind about small, miniscule daydreams when they reared their ugly head. This one just happened to be very vivid, which was a change she wasn't prepared for.

Jordan had leaned over and kissed her. It was a simple thought, really. Jordan's dry lips touched hers in such a soft way which sent a single chill down her spine. He'd been walking around in the cold; she could tell by his chilled nose which was pressed against her cheek. She had brought up her hand to touch his cheek, and he wrapped his arms around her, pulling her close to him. The kiss stayed innocent, as she imagined it would be considering their connection. Wait, she thought. Her logic was abandoning her to join the imagination. Traitor.

The reverie disappeared. She looked up to see Jordan's lack of interest in the decoration. She tried to calm her nerves as he reached for the doorknob, choosing not to humor Cade's mistletoe. Upon Dana's face came a burning sensation, something she hid. Looking away was something she'd never done before now. Boy, she thought with a twist to her stomach in case Jordan noticed her discomfort. There really was no limit to how much a person could discover about herself. Jordan opened the door and she exited the house, walking towards the street where his sedan was parked. The air was colder than Dana had anticipated and she focused on the weather now that she realized there were more important things at hand. Like focusing on sleep or trying to stay warm. Suddenly, they didn't seem so important, though. She had dreamt that Jordan had kissed her, and he was the only person whom she saw on an everyday basis; this was turning for the worst.

She suddenly realized something, something that could help her think in logical terms. Most likely the only reason for her behavior was that she was lacking companionship, losing touch with people her age. The fact that she spoke with only those who were several years older than her hadn't seemed that important until just recently, and maybe it was taking its toll on her. Since she only spent time with him, it was only natural that she would begin to feel affection for him. She would only need to suppress the mundane emotion so she could get on with her life. Government workers were not to get emotionally connected with their charges, so logic would say that she needed to trust her reason with this issue, touchy or not.

"Dana?" She looked up to see Jordan looking down at her with slight concern on his features. The way his hazel blue eyes reflected the overhead streetlamp made her begin to blush again. At first sight, she was positive that the cold air made her cheeks red instead of what she was feeling.

"Yes?"

"I asked if you had fun." Dana didn't say anything at first. She thought back to the party. The guests and Cade made her feel at home, not judging her on her past or trying to get her to do anything she didn't wish to do. No one asked her where she came from or why she moved up north, but they did let her join in a game of trivial pursuit and scrabble; of course, she was good at both games, but so were they. Everyone was nice and she fit in and joined in the festivities as they had offered. She felt wanted, loved, even in a straightforward way, a friendly way. She hadn't felt that comfortable since before her mother died, when she met the blues band at J.D.'s Sandwich Shop. It felt as if a warm security blanket had been pulled over her, and she just didn't know how to respond to Jordan's query. She couldn't answer him truthfully. He wouldn't understand.

"It was fine. I'm just a little tired." When they reached the car, Jordan opened the door for her and let her sit down. Since he came to know her, he discovered that she had been raised with very traditional manners, and he had somehow adopted them as well after awhile. It somehow took hold of him. When he saw the mistletoe hanging from the roof beam, he had the oddest vision of kissing Dana, which was something he had dismissed almost immediately because of proper protocol. He admitted her lips had felt good during the small flash when he relished in the moment, but knew better. Being older than Dana, maybe not as old emotionally, he had some control over his actions; when he looked downwards towards the doorknob, he had gotten a glance of her reaction. She was pink in the cheeks as she thought probably the same thing as he. He wasn't going to tell her he knew, though. She would more and likely chastise him for saying such a thing about anything so personal. So he changed the line of thought completely.

"Well, we've got some work to do. Colin sent us another case and wants information within the week." She nodded in understanding. They needed to change the subject otherwise they would exchange words that were best left silent. Jordan sat down in the driver's seat and they drove back to his place.