"Oh my God, he's coming here Nic." David informed her excitedly.

"Aah… ok… how do I look?" she was facing her friend with eyes wide open.

"The truth…?" he shrinked his face teasing her.

"Shut up Dave! How's my teeth?" she brushed her index finger over her front teeth.

"Teeth is fine… the eye shadow on the other hand…" he was enjoying this so much.

"You know, one of these days…" she tried to sound threatening, but she knew she would always fail with Dave.

"Shut up, he's here." he whispered nudging her elbow slightly, smiling towards the man approaching.

"Good evening."

She heard Tom's smooth voice and got up to meet him.

"Hi Tom. How are you?" she said extending her hand to shake his.

He took her hand and kissed the back of it politely. Nicky felt like all the blood in her body was now residing on her face. 'Please God, don't make me look like a huge tomato! I should've settled for the black dress instead. At least I would look a bit slimmer' she thought.

"A lot better now that I can talk to you. You are very difficult to find and talk to, Nicky." He was still holding her hand in his.

She tilted her head, eyes wide open. 'Was that a hint? Ok, say something Nic and stop fidgeting.'

"Yeah… errrm… let me introduce you to my friends. This is Sam and Ted Ashmore, they're both lawyers working at the legal aid office downtown. I believe you already know Mr. Heidenberk our legal advisor. Miss Jackson, she works as a nurse at pediatrics. And this is David Newman, he is an architect… Everybody, this is Tom Stadler. For those who don't know him, he is our top orthopedic surgeon." she was still fidgeting. He was still holding her hand.

'Snap out of it, West!' she commanded herself in silence. 'He's holding your hand because he kissed it and he's still in your company... and I hope you're not sweating there right now!' she cringed mentally and tried to pry her hand away from his. He sensed her uneasiness and let her hand go without a second of hesitation.

After all the necessary formalities of everybody greeting each other, a silence fell among them and David took the situation in his hands.

"Would you like to join us for a drink, Tom? We're going to the Pink Mandarin downtown for a nightcap. Are you game?"

"That's a brilliant idea thank you, but I have to be up at five tomorrow morning." he turned towards Nicky while David was heard in the back.

"Oh, that's so bad… but I guess we'll see you some other time, right? Nicky can arrange it." He was now looking at his friend daring her to say the opposite.

"Sure thing. I guess I'll see you tomorrow and we can arrange the dinner details as well. I'll be at the…" she started talking without taking a breath in between words, looking in his blue eyes.

"Why don't we discuss this over a dance Nicky?" he cut her politely, giving her a small smile.

'I dance now and God knows, what will happen or where I might land this time!' she was trying to find excuses to deny him. 'Don't be a wuss, Nic. The man spent a small fortune on you and all he's asking is a dance. Plus, how embarrassing would it be if you refused him in front of the whole table?'

"Well, I'm not a pro, but if you're willing to bear with my two left feet…" she really couldn't say no. She was smiling her usual idiot's smile now. He was so irresistible in his tux, so gorgeous…

He leaned to her side and whispered to her ear.

"I'm willing to bear with a lot of things that are yours, Nicky." his sexy smirk making an appearance on his face.

'Did he just blow in my ear? Oh God, I think I just had an orgasm.' she just couldn't take her eyes off of him. 'Is that possible? I hope I don't show it on my face.'

"You're too kind, Tom." she blushed and averted her eyes from his.

"Not really… shall we?" he touched her waist and turned to greet the others.

"It was a pleasure." nodding towards the big group, he turned his attention to Nicky.

"I'll hold you to that promise of yours for that drink." she heard David shouting somewhere in the back.

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"It's amazing what some women would do to get noticed."

"You have no such problem, Veronica." he swirled her around once. She was quite graceful after all.

"Of course not, but Dr. Moron over there does. Did she really have to wear red?"

She was sneering nastily looking at Nicky dancing with Tom. Alex turned his gaze toward them.

"I think I know her… yes, yes… I interviewed her for the pathologist's position a few months ago."

"Really? You didn't tell me about her." her grip on his shoulder became tighter.

"What's there to tell? We needed a pathologist, we did some interviews, wild luck had it that I did that interview, she was qualified, and we chose her." he shrunk his shoulders in indifference.

"She's fat." she stated brutally.

Alex exhaled with a laugh. "She's not fat, Ronnie."

"She is, Alex. Wearing red isn't helping her either. Being pretty would help a little I suppose, but she's not even that."

"Why are you so mean if you don't know her at all? Is that a female thing?"

"Pfff, I can hardly call her female." she said in a dismissive tone.

"Mmm… I don't know Ronnie. She is quite cute… interesting person too, if my memory serves me well from that morning" he didn't even take a second look at Nicky, he still thought she was too much of a smartass for her own good, but he hated it when Veronica was talking like that. She deserved his teasing.

"Yeah, I guess you're right she's not fat…"

'Not what I expected' he thought. 'I should have given her more credit than that.'

"… she's obese." she finished with apparent disgust.

'That's more like it… that's the Ronnie I know' he thought rolling his eyes.

"It's true. She's…" she started talking.

"You look exquisite tonight." 'That should change her focus' he thought.

"That was the whole point Alex darling. Only for you." she whispered sexily.

She was now rubbing her body against his.

"Ronnie, I think you should stop doing this. Your husband is ten feet away."

"My husband is a fool." she squeezed impossibly closer to him.

"A very rich fool, Ronnie." he was starting to get irritated.

"Well, you can't blame a girl for trying to do something in her life." she exclaimed faking insult.

"And I suppose the only thing a girl can do in her life is land a filthy rich husband by the age of twenty and spent the rest of her life being a pampered socialite cheating on him." his eyebrows were creased now.

She suddenly stopped moving and removed her hands from his body but still close enough to him.

"Do you really mean that?" her blue eyes throwing fires.

"Ronnie, you're making a scene." he looked around in apprehension.

"I don't care. Do you really mean that?" she was determined to get an answer.

"Of course not. But, you really need to be more careful around others, Veronica." he was trying to cover the space she set between them.

"Come here, let's dance. I don't think we'll get another chance for the rest of the night. I really missed you, you know…" this time, he tried to take her in his arms again.

"I'm not in the mood anymore." she passed by him furious trying not to show it to everyone else around them.

Alex was left there in the middle of the dance floor not knowing what had just surpassed. He touched his forehead thinking he shouldn't have talked to her like that and that this night would probably cost him more than the usual diamond ring.

He also couldn't help but notice that the reason this whole mess happened, was that annoying new doctor and smiled when he actually recalled their dialogue about her place of birth and previous residency and how she had managed to annoy him in under ten minutes. Yes, that was strike one. He looked at her across the floor only to see her dancing intimately with another new doctor. Yes, yes… she was definitely trouble tonight as well… even from a distance. That's strike two doc, he thought to himself.

((()))

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"You know, you should wear your hair up more often. It really suits you." Tom was staring deeply in her eyes.

'Ugh, I hate it when I have to wear my hair up.' she mentally wrinkled her nose.

"Yeah, I like it like this too." Nicky lied.

"Listen, Tom. I want to thank you for bidding on me and…"

"It was my pleasure Nicky, really. I was quite determined to get that dinner with you." he made his words stronger by gently pushing her onto him a bit more.

'Yeah, I saw that, but why? Why me? Why now? Oh God, your body feels perfect.'

"You didn't have to pay so much… in fact you didn't have to pay at all. You could have simply asked me." she smiled nervously at him. She had the strangest urge to sink her hands in his hair and feel it.

"As I told you before, you are a difficult person to trace… besides, would you have accepted had I asked you?" he raised his eyebrows questioningly.

"Uhmm… I don't know. I guess…" she started.

"No." he answered for her.

'Will you let me finish a sentence, man?'

"It's not about you Tom. My life is a bit hectic right now, that's why I don't date and risk…"she tried to explain as calmly as she could given the situation.

"That's why I bid on you tonight Nicky. I promise you, you're not risking anything with me."

'Shit, shit, double shit. What do you answer to that?'

"Nice cologne… smells very… very… nice." she chanced a weak smile at him.

'Smooth Nicky, really smooth.'

He sensed her embarrassment and found it rather cute.

"Thank you Nicky." he smiled down at her and caressed her back with his open palm.

'Oh God. I think I'm having another orgasm. He is so… manly.' she just couldn't stop feeling like an idiot, smiling like one too.

'Great! Now I sound like David on a Friday night!'

The orchestra stopped playing their music and Nicky couldn't be more glad. Although, she wouldn't say no to some more of his hands on her back.

They parted from each other and she instantly felt like screaming at him to get his body next to hers ASAP.

She looked at him one more time timidly. "Thank you very much for everything again, Tom. I really appreciate it."

He quickly leaned over and whispered in her ear. "My pleasure, Nicky."

She felt like a million tiny fires were starting burning up inside her and their flames were eating her alive. 'Something close to spontaneous combustion' she thought. "Right. Well, I'll see you tomorrow morning."

"Tomorrow morning it is then." his hands seeking hers.

"Good night Tom." she extended her hand to shake his, once more.

"Good night sweet Nicky." he said placing a soft, almost feathery kiss at the back of her hand, never taking his eyes off her.

He then turned around and walked out of the room. She stood there watching him leaving for a good whole minute, rubbing the hand his lips had touched seconds earlier.

"You know, if you don't do anything with him please, please, please give him my phone number." David was now standing a bit behind towering over her, as they both looked at Tom's back.

She raised her shoulders and let a long sigh out. "I don't think he's into men, Davey."

"One can never stop hoping." he retorted crossing his fingers.

They laughed on their way back to their table. As they were approaching it, he warned her.

"He's a catch Nic. He seems to be interested in you. Don't let this one go away."

She thought his words for a few seconds before she started talking again. "I just don't know why…"

"Don't start again, Nic, for heaven's sake!" he interrupted. "Why wouldn't he like you?"

She shrugged and closed her eyes shortly. "Mmm, maybe. You know, he said he liked my hair like this and…"

"Oh, I hate it when you wear your hair like this." He cut in again, this time making sure he took her in his arms.

"Aaaand he called me sweet and kissed my hand again. Yeah, perhaps he does like me!" she had a smug look on her face now.

"You… Einstein!" he gave her a small kiss on her temple.

"Shut up and stand still, your bow is about to get untied."

While being on her toes messing around with his bowtie she noticed how green his eyes were tonight and how gorgeous his smile was… as always. 'Too bad he's gay, damn it.' She had a crush on him for a couple of months when she first met him. There was no sign that he could be gay. He was tall, blond, dark, and lean. Just like what that Weather Girls song says. She actually tried to approach him a few times, but nothing happened. Later on, he had confessed that he had a crush on a guy from his work. 'Well, that's a waste' she first thought to herself.

"You are very handsome tonight, you know that?" she asked giving him a kiss on his cheek.

"I know." He tried to sound arrogant.

"You're so full of it."

She flicked him and started towards their table.

"Nicky and Tommy sitting on a tree, K i s s i n g!" he followed her singing the tune over and over.

"You will so pay for this Newman!"

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That was chapter 4, guys. As always, thank you all very much for your comments! :)

Also, I have a question. I haven't done it before, but I don't know if you want me to upload pictures of the characters. If you wish it, I can always search and find some images for you. Let me know. :)

Question 2: Do you find the chapters posted so far really long? I could make them shorter and this way update quicker.

Until next time. Susan :)