"You really gotta tell her, Tim," Barry whispered as the microwave beeped.
Barry was a heavy-set, 16-year-old with a head full of puffy hair. He had a round head, complete with brown eyes and a short nose. His arms were clothed by the long sleeves of a plaid, blue shirt. He also wore a blue pair of jeans and black sneakers.
"Yeah, but not now," Tim fired back, opening the oven door and retrieving a paper cup.
The shorter boy wore a long-sleeved, red shirt with blue jeans and black and red sneakers. Big, green eyes were spaced closely above his small nose. Black hair was combed neatly atop his head.
"But tomorrow's Christmas! If she likes you back, it could be the best Christmas you'll ever have."
"And if she doesn't like me back, it'll be the worst. Next to you, she's my best friend, and I'm not about to screw that up. I'll tell her when I'm ready." He put a white straw into the cup and slowly took a sip of hot chocolate. Are you done?"
Barry sighed. "Fine."
Tim left the kitchen.
"This guy..." Barry thought to himself.
Tim, his neighbor, Victoria, and Barry were at Tim's house. The trio spent the most part of the afternoon engaged in a snowball fight. Their clothes were still wet, for they planned to go right back outside after the hot chocolate break.
Barry knew about Tim's crush on Victoria for as long as Tim had it. No matter how hard he tried to get him to confess to the girl, Tim just would not go through with it.
Barry strolled through the kitchen doorway, then casually returned as if he forgot something. In reality, he wanted to make sure his two friends were not going to walk in on him. Quickly, he reached into his pocket and pulled out a sprig of mistletoe. The shrub had a small hook attached.
Being nearly six feet tall had its advantages. He easily jumped up and hooked the plant onto the decoration that was above the doorway. Then he stepped backward, making sure it would not fall down. Satisfied, he left for the living room.
Victoria picked up her empty cup and walked away.
The tan-skinned girl had curly, black hair that flowed down her shoulders. Her round face held a pair of green eyes and a short nose. She was wearing a white sweater with black sweatpants and boots.
"Hey, are you about to get more hot chocolate?" asked Barry.
Victoria turned her head. "Yeah, why?"
"I'll help you. It's in the higher shelf." He stood and looked at Tim's cup, which was on the table. The impulsive move gave him an idea. "Tim, you want some more hot chocolate?"
Leaning forward, Tim peered into his cup. His beverage was gone. "Yeah." He handed the cup to Barry, who successfully hid a smile.
Before walking into the kitchen, Barry stopped to see if Victoria was near the doorway. There was no telling what would happen if he ended up kissing his friend's crush in a backfired plan.
Victoria had her back turned and was attempting to reach the yellow box of hot chocolate. Even standing on her tiptoes, she could barely touch it.
"I told you I was here to help," Barry reminded Victoria. Barely making an effort, he grabbed the box and handed it to her. "Here, you go, shorty."
"Thanks, Hercules," Victoria smirked, playfully snatching the box.
When Victoria took her hot chocolate out of the microwave, Barry saw his chance.
"Hey, Tim! Come here, I gotta show you something!"
Tim stood and headed for the kitchen. Just as the boy walked through the doorway, he literally bumped into Victoria.
"Sorry," Tim muttered.
"Wait, stay right there, Victoria." The girl quizzically looked at Barry. "Now look up."
Together, Victoria and Tim looked up.
Tim's heart skipped a beat when he noticed the shrub that hung over them.
Victoria half-smiled and looked down when Tim's head slowly sunk to gaze at her. Blushes slowly crept up their faces.
Tim looked at Barry. Judging by his wide smile, it was obvious that the teen set them up on purpose. Then Tim gazed back at the girl standing several inches shorter than him.
Victoria was looking at the mistletoe.
"Come on, Tim, kiss her!" Barry smirked.
Both of Tim's red-tipped ears wiggled at the suggestion. His eyes went to the floor as he contemplated whether he should go through with it. Kiss the beautiful girl and maybe ruin their friendship, or chicken out and miss his chance to kiss the aforementioned girl?
Time seemed frozen, waiting for a decision from either of them.
Finally, Victoria broke the silence, causing Tim to flinch a bit, even though it was in a soft-spoken voice.
"You can kiss me if you want to." Tim's questioning eyes immediately met hers. Victoria was smiling directly at him. She shook her head. "I don't mind." Keeping her eyes on him, she turned her head and offered her right cheek.
Tim studied her face. The smooth, brown flesh of her cheek. The pout of her pink lips. His mouth quivered into a half smile. After taking a deep breath through his nose, he slowly leaned forth.
As Tim got closer to his crush, he forced his grin to a pucker. The aroma of apple-scented shampoo entered his nostrils when he was close enough. Her body heat made him swoon.
His lips connected to the center of her soft, warm cheek. The peck lasted a few seconds before he leaned backwards and stood straight.
"Ooooooooh..." Barry teased.
Victoria's head turned to the slightly taller boy. Her eyes avoided his and went to his neck. A shade of crimson was visible on her cheeks. A smile was spread on her face.
If there was any spot on Tim's face that managed to maintain its actual color before, it was red now. His eyes looked the girl up and down. He could feel his heart thumping against his chest. His mouth opened a bit, then closed and curved into a goofy grin.
"Uh... thanks," he stammered.
Victoria smiled and went into the living room.
"Bravo! Bravo!" Barry cheered, with a solo round of applause.
Tim nearly ran to the refrigerator, and opened the door. He peered inside, pretending to look for something. Knowing that his face was now hidden from Barry, he allowed his lips to contort themselves into the shy, nervous, and ultimately silly grins he had been holding back.
When he got it all out of his system, he closed the refrigerator door and noticed that Barry was still staring.
The rest of the day went by normally, much to Tim's relief. When his two guests went home that evening, he still could not stop thinking about that kiss.
Did she do it because of the mistletoe? Was she just caught up in the excitement? Did she like the kiss? Does she like me?
Tim was shaken out of his thoughts when he heard his phone vibrate on the dresser. He picked it up and read the text message.
"Wasn't that a merry Xmas eve?" was sent by Barry.
Sitting up, Tim began to reply.
Before Tim could put the 'Y' in "I'll kill you," he got another message.
"Look out your window."
Tim was surprised at the name of the sender. It was Victoria.
Quickly, Tim scooted over to the window and looked at the one that was several feet away.
Victoria was leaning out and smiling at him.
Nervously, Tim smiled and waved at her.
She blew a kiss in his direction and waved back. Then she went back into her room and let her blinds down.
Tim stayed by the window and watched her lights go out.
This was definitely his favorite Christmas Eve.