Robert sighed as he stared around the large room and the multitude of people around him. It was the annual holiday party and the museum was closed that night so the staff could enjoy the festivities. But he didn't feel particularly festive as this was only his first month interning and he knew virtually no one outside his small group of curator bosses, all three of whom were currently engrossed in conversations with their colleagues.
Robert shook his shaggy brown hair out of his silver eyes, pushed up his wire-framed glasses, and squared his narrow and bony shoulders before heading over to the drinks table. He'd always hated these functions, seeing as he was so shy and reserved. Surveying the meager options available, he selected a diet cola and nodded his thanks to the poor kid pouring the drinks as he headed off to a dark corner he'd spied earlier, determined to keep out of the way until he could officially call it a night.
The room they were holding the party was appropriately, if not entirely tastefully, decorated with red and green streamers on the walls and blue and white hanging from the tables, balloons of the same colors and the odd Poinsettia here and there. There were a few folding tables set up with finger-food appetizers, chips, dips and pretzels. There was also a platter of cookies that looked like a kid iced them, but they tasted all right when he'd sampled one earlier. He knew it wasn't as fancy as past holiday parties. His bosses had described some fairly lavishly catered affairs they'd attended in years past. But this was a new economy and museums weren't known for their bottomless coffers. They were likely lucky to be having a party at all this year, seeing as donations had dropped off sharply. And forget a bonus. But Robert knew what he was getting into when he began studying to become a curator, though how long he would probably have to take to pay back his student loans sometimes caused him moments of indigestion. At least he would love his career when he graduated. Right now he was a very low-paid intern.
"Hey, man," he heard a group of four guys say not too far away. Robert looked over, thinking they were talking to him, but they weren't. They were standing in a small group, drinking beers and laughing at the people around them. One of them, a Latino who was also the shortest, though he still had a good two or three inches on Robert's small frame, he recognized as the janitor he sometimes encountered when working late at night. He'd only exchanged a polite nod or two with him and didn't know his name. He was pointing and chuckling. "That guy is … damn!"
Robert followed their gaze and his eyes fell on a tall, awkward-looking tawny and gray-haired man in his mid- to late-40s who was decked out in authentic African garb and bidding everyone an early "Happy Kwanzaa". True the man was a bit over the top, but Robert didn't see anything wrong with acknowledging all of the winter holidays at the party. It was, after all, a holiday party, not a Christmas party. The invitation email was quite clear on that.
"Are you serious?" another guy in the group, this one blonde and tall, and very sexy if Robert could say so, hissed. "Now I think I've seen everything." He started to look around him and Robert quickly looked away to avoid his gaze, though he could swear he felt eyes boring into him from that direction.
"Everyone!" a middle-aged brassy-looking, blonde-from-the-bottle lady wearing a red dress and a string of large, plastic green beads called. "Gather around! It's time for our Secret Santa exchange! Remember, don't open the package until everyone has theirs."
There were many audible groans, Robert's included, but the people in the room all moved closer to the woman to wait for her direction. She waved over a couple of younger ladies to assist in passing out the packages and they began distributing. After he saw one of the younger ladies look at a package in confusion as she passed him, Robert surmised that she likely was looking for him, as he was the most recent hire and not many people had met him. He touched her arm and gave a small smile, when she showed him the package and he recognized his name he nodded and she smiled as she handed it to him. When the blonde in charge nodded that it was all right to open the presents, everyone tore into them, scattering crumpled wrapping paper all over the floor.
Robert sighed as he studied the box before him that displayed a picture of the purple Snuggie contained within. It could be worse, he thought as he stifled a giggle at the blonde guy from the group of janitors he watched earlier, who was scowling down at the stuffed elephant in his hands.
"Do you like it?" the man in the African outfit asked the blonde as he walked up. "It's a symbol of good luck in African culture if it's in the trunk-up position, like this one," he added.
The younger man nodded and forced a smile on his face, saying a polite, "Thanks." Robert had to give the guy some credit for not snapping right there. Who gives a guy they work with a stuffed toy? After the man walked away, the blonde guy muttered "You suck."
Robert chuckled under his breath and walked away toward his desk in the back of the museum to pick up his keys and phone so he could cut out. It looked as if the party would be winding down now anyway. People were milling around, saying their good-byes. Robert nodded a quick good bye to his main boss, a middle-aged man with a pot belly and an amiable smile. The man waved and turned to speak to an older lady with a gray bun. Robert went on his way and found his desk, collecting his things and putting the box into a plastic bag he'd snagged from the kitchen earlier that day, then he exited the back entrance into the parking lot and headed right to his orange Smart car, a gift from his parents in anticipation of his graduation the following May. They were very earth-conscious and wanted to make sure he left tiny carbon footprints. He liked that it was so fuel efficient.
"Leaving so soon?" drawled a deep voice from behind him.
Robert froze and didn't turn around, recognizing the blonde janitor's sexy tones from earlier. He hoped he wasn't about to get the crap beat out of him for checking the guy out earlier. After all, not everyone he encountered could be a live-and-let-live kind of person. Gulping after a minute or so of silence, Robert finally and slowly turned to him.
"Cat got your tongue, kid?" the guy asked with a smirk. Up closer like this, Robert could see the man had to be in his mid- to late-20s, sporting a lithe but well-muscled frame with sparkling green eyes and a sexy stubble covering his lower cheeks and chin. Robert had always had a huge attraction to the rugged-looking men he encountered, and this man clearly fit the bill.
"I … uh …"
The man stared back at him as he waited for Robert's voice to finally find its way out.
"H-hello," he finally stammered out awkwardly.
"I've seen you around recently, but don't know you."
"Yes, I know that," the guy laughed. "Only fresh meat we got us this year." He ran a leering gaze up and down Robert's slight firm and whistled, making the smaller man feel like a cheap floozy. "And you'll do nicely," he added as a wolfish grin took over his features.
"Shy's cute, kid," the man said as he leaned into Robert and let his musky scent envelope the smaller man. "But now I think I want to … unwrap you." He winked. "You'll be a much better surprise than that damned stuffed elephant."
Robert blinked owlishly at the guy. Was he really coming onto him? This was new. He'd never had that happen before. "Um …"
"Did I peg you wrong?" the guy asked, a bit uncertain. "Not that I mind … convincing you or anything. I just like to know in advance."
Robert's eyes widened in shock and disbelief. How does one handle such an ardent pursuer? Especially when one has absolutely no experience in the art of … well, he couldn't exactly call it romance now, could he? This guy wasn't even trying to be suave and seductive. He was just laying out what he wanted and daring Robert to refuse him. And while Robert was almost painfully shy, he was anything but a doormat. He may not have had admirers beating down his doors, but that didn't mean he had to desperately fall over his feet to accommodate the first dude who showed an interest.
"Look, you're attractive and all, but I'm exhausted," Robert said and turned to unlock his door. "Maybe we can pick this up another time."
"Why not now?"
Robert felt a sharp twinge in his rear and turned around in shock. "Please stop pinching my ass!"
"But, baby …"
"My name's Robert, not baby," he replied dryly, adjusting his specs on his nose. "In fact, I don't believe I've ever been someone's baby."
"Well, there's a first time for everything," the blonde said with a smirk. "My name's Nick, in case you wondered."
"I didn't, but thanks. Nice talking to you, nick, but I'm going to head out now."
"Head, now THERE'S a great idea," Nick exclaimed.
"Well, hopefully you're flexible enough to give yourself a good time!" Robert settled himself into the driver's seat of his car and moved to close the door, but Nick had quickly blocked the move with a palm against the inside of the window.
"C'mon, sexy boy …"
"I have to ask," Robert hissed. "Do these lines actually work for you? Because as attractive as I originally thought you were, you're hotness-value is dropping with every word out of your mouth."
The blonde's mouth dropped open as he assimilated everything Robert just said, then the smirk returned. "You think I'm hot?"
"I used to," the smaller man sighed. "Now I'm not so sure." He pushed Nick's palm off his window and slammed the car door shut before the other man could stop him again. He put his key into the ignition and turned on his car, ready to haul ass out of there.
"Hey!" Nick knocked on the window. Robert just shook head and smiled. He revved up his engine as much as the little car would allow, which wasn't much at all but it felt good, and then put the vehicle into drive and move forward. Mick swore and seemed to hop up and down on one foot, leading Robert to believe he may have been too close to the car when it pulled away. Oh well, he thought, unfazed. Serves the tool right! He drove home to his dorm in peace.
As Robert was in the midst of his semester finals, he was happy the museum had given him the rest of the week off so he could study. He was able to take a lighter course load, as the school was giving him credit for his internship, so he only had two finals to worry about. But worry he did! Robert hated the idea of messing up his GPA just because he was working part time. But he seemed to be on top of the two classes he was taking so far and the studying had gone fairly well. He was just coming back from the library when he happened upon a small coffee shop he hadn't been to in a long time. He went inside hoping to warm up a little and grab something caffeinated. As he glanced up at the menu, he heard a familiar voice drift into his ear.
"We in a better mood this morning, baby?" Nick asked, moving into his line of view.
"I'm not your baby," Robert hissed. He moved up as the line moved ahead and gave a long-suffering sigh as Nick moved up with him.
"You could be, though," Nick tried again. "I would really love that."
"Why what?" Nick looked confused.
"Why would you love that?" Robert asked patiently, trying to remember if he liked this coffee shop's cappuccino or not. Some places made it stronger than others, and he liked his strong.
"Because I think we could have a great time together," Nick finally responded. "And you would too if you took that stick out of your ass and let me replace it with something bigger but less sharp."
Robert actually smiled at that last statement. It seemed Nick could think of things to say that didn't include cheesy one-liners.
"Was that a smile?" the blonde asked as they both moved up with the line again.
"Maybe," the smaller man conceded. "That was better than the other lines you've been feeding me."
"Maybe I just didn't know what to say to you," the blonde said, shaking his head. "You don't exactly exude a social air about you, you know."
"A social air?" Robert laughed. "I would have been very happy to hold an actual conversation, you know. You never approached me."
"You didn't seemed like you'd want to talk," Nick shrugged. "I never saw anyone try unless they were bringing you work."
Robert thought about his short time at the museum for a minute and realized the guy might have a point. He wasn't really putting out a welcoming signal, but he was trying to do the best job he could for his internship credit. It would have been a shame, though, to leave the place without getting to know a few people.
"I guess you're right," he said. "Sorry about that."
"No biggie," the other man smiled. "We're talking now. Hmm." He looked up at the menu as he spoke. "Geez, I didn't know coffee cost so much these days." He glanced sheepishly at Robert. "Can I borrow two dollars?"
"The least I can do after nearly running you over last night is buy you a coffee," Robert laughed. They reached the front of the line and Robert ordered two large coffees.
Nick smiled as he accepted his cup and followed Robert over to the cream and sugar table where they could customize their beverages. Nick liked a lot of sugar in his, and Robert's eyes widened as the blonde added five sugar packets to his cup, along with about half a cup of light cream. But the man smiled when he took his first sip, and Robert found it too cute to comment on. After they finished doctoring their coffees, Robert led the way over to a small table so they could sit and chat for a bit, seeing as Nick had pointed out his less-than-social shortcoming earlier.
"So you go to that university down the road?" the blonde asked.
"Yeah. Graduating in May," Robert added, crossing his fingers theatrically.
"You're probably doing fine," Nick laughed.
"I'm doing okay," the brunette shrugged and pushed his glasses up again, blushing.
"Why so why all of a sudden?" the other man asked, clearly amused.
"No reason," Robert said and looked away … at the floor, at the counter … anywhere but at Nick.
"Hey," the blonde said softly and moved a finger to Robert's chin, bringing the smaller man's eyes back to him whether he wanted them to be there or not. "Shy is making you even more sexy to me, but I don't want to make you uncomfortable again. I still feel kind of bad about the other night."
Robert felt like a deer caught in the proverbial headlights. He couldn't draw his gaze away from the emerald green eyes trained on him no matter how hard he tried. Nick was giving him another hooded leer but unlike the other night, this one seemed focused and intense. Probably because the man wasn't inebriated today.
"I've um … I've never …" Robert faltered and waved a hand in front of him, hoping Nick got the point before the explanation became any more mortifying. The confusion in the man's eyes lasted for only a few seconds before realization seemed to dawn. Now Robert found himself waiting for the man to stutter out an apology and hightail it out of there, away from the dorky virgin. But that never happened. Instead, Nick shrugged and smiled widely.
"I'm game if you are."
Robert opened and closed his mouth like a fish for a few seconds. Why would this sexy man want to waste his time with a nerd like him? No one had wanted to before; well, no one in Nick's league, anyway. It hadn't been all bad, though. Robert had his friends, but there wasn't anything remotely romantic about any of them. But here was a man who was admittedly a walking wet dream saying he really wanted to have some fun with Robert. And the man wasn't drunk, either.
"Do you have anything to do right now?" Nick asked.
"N-not right now," he stammered.
"I live one block over," the blonde said nonchalantly.
"I have condoms and lube …" Nick added with a wicked grin. "And a very talented mouth, so I've been told."
Robert's eyes widened to saucers. How could he turn down THAT proposition?
Nick's small studio apartment was sparsely furnished and neatly kept. Robert loved the masculine scent that assaulted his nose the moment Nick pushed him inside the door. It had a sandalwood-kind-of smell with an underlying note of musk that drove the brunette almost crazy as he instantly felt himself harden.
Nick chuckled as he took Robert's messenger bag and tugged the brunette out of his coat, taking it over to a closet. "Make yourself comfortable."
Robert glanced around himself, unsure where to sit. There were no other rooms, so he expected to see a bed somewhere in the large room that served as the whole apartment, besides the bathroom. There was a futon against the far wall and two chairs that were parked under a small table in the kitchenette area. He chose the futon and sank down awkwardly atop it. Nick came back over and sat beside him ... shirtless. Robert's mind was screaming at him to look at those washboard abs. Look at them!
"Um … what do I … uh, do?" Robert asked, feeling his cheeks grow hot as his eyes never strayed from the blonde's hot torso.
"How about you let me take the lead," Nick suggested. He rubbed his fingers gently over Robert's arm in small circles.
Robert swallowed hard to tamp down his nerves and nodded slowly. The blonde's smile grew and he leaned in to capture the smaller man's lips in a heated kiss. Robert didn't close his eyes at first, too surprised to believe he was being kissed. But the sensation took him over and he moaned as his eyes slid shut.
"Just relax," Nick whispered, moving his lips down to Robert's chin and then his neck.
The brunette felt like his skin was on fire, but in a very good way. Everywhere the blonde's lips and tongue touched him, an electric sizzle lit up in their wake. Robert leaned backwards and sighed happily as he let the blonde completely take over the task. Nick pulled the brunette's sweater over his head and leaned down nipped at his left nipple, which immediately perked up into a hard nub.
"Oh … God!" Robert whimpered.
"Let me take these pesky pants off you." Nick made very quick work of Robert's shoes, socks and pants. He took his time with the brunette's boxers, though, unwrapping the smaller man like a present. Then, as soon as the boxers hit the floor, he leaned back and over to the side, taking a better look at Robert's ass. The brunette was confused at first then blushed, anticipating the coming question.
"Is that … is that Mickey Mouse on your left ass cheek?" Nick asked half in shock and half in awe.
"Yes," Robert replied in a small voice.
"So, let me get this straight," Nick said, once again amused. "You're a tattooed virgin?"
"Fraternity prank," the brunette shrugged.
"Fucking hot!" the blonde hissed.
Nick then ripped off his own pants and briefs in one motion. "I'm glad you picked the bed first off when we came in," the blonde rasped out. "Makes it easier to get on top of you."
Robert took in the sight before him in wonder. "You're a lot bigger than I'd imagined," he choked out.
"Don't worry about that now," Nick smiled. "When we're ready for that, I'll fit fine and you'll love every minute of it."
Robert's brow furrowed. "When we're ready for it?"
"We're only going so far today, baby. You didn't think this would be a one-nighter, did you?" The blonde laughed. "No way. Not after all the trouble I went through getting to you."
Robert laughed, too, until another hot kiss dragged him back under its passionate spell.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: This is a one-shot I wrote for jma from her challenge to me. I know there's no action in it, but I kind of liked the fluff. I hope you like it, too! Let me know.