"Deidre," I groaned, knocking on her door. "Come on. We're going to be late!"
"I have no clue what to wear!"
I rolled my eyes. "Let me in and I'll show you."
"No! I'm half naked!" she said in a high voice.
"All the more reason to let me in," I teased. I jumped when I heard something hit the door and laughed. "All right, listen. Do you have a pair of jeans?"
"Black tank top and a button up shirt?"
"Yeah," she repeated.
She came out five minutes later. I laughed and shook my head. I unbuttoned the shirt, ignoring her trying to slap my hands.
"Tuck the tank top in," I said, "and come with me."
"What now?" she groaned.
I opened the bathroom door and sat her down on the toilet.
"I'm going to do your makeup," I said. "If you tell anyone that I can do makeup, I'll beat you up."
She scoffed. "Sure you will. That would be domestic violence, my dear."
I laughed. "Just shut up and close your eyes."
I got out grey and green eye shadow, black eye liner, some foundation, mascara and lip gloss. Probably the best part of doing her makeup was the mascara. She kept leaning away from the wand until I forced her head still with my other hand. I made even lines around her eyes.
"I won't do wings, though," I said, stepping back to look at her. "They look tacky. There: Look at yourself."
She stood in front of the bathroom mirror and froze. She looked gorgeous. She wasn't the kind of girl to need any contouring so I stuck with a simple base. Her green eyes seemed to pop from the smoky eye makeup.
"Should I put my hair up?" she asked as we left.
"Nah. I like it better when it's down."
She pursed her lips, putting her jacket on. "What about what I like?"
I smirked and opened the car door for her. "Well, I'm your fiancé so I get the say tonight."
She rolled her eyes good naturedly. On the way there, though, she kept fidgeting with her sleeves. Her left leg bounced. I sighed and put my hand on her knee. It froze and she pushed my hand off.
"Just relax," I said.
"What if they don't like me?"
I pulled up to the curb. The party was already in full swing. Some people were on the lawn, bottles and red Solo cups in hand. I smiled at her, moving some hair from her face.
"Then that's their problem," I said and she returned my smile nervously. "Come on. Do you drink?"
"I've never tried it."
She hesitated so I held her hand as we walked up to the front door.
"He always has soda so you'll be okay," I said, knocking. "Just don't let him get your drink for you; I'll get it."
"Why?" she asked.
"Because Mike likes to add a shot anyway," I frowned. "It's annoying."
The door opened and Mike stood there, beaming at me. He was already slightly drunk.
"Hey man!" he said, pounding me on the back. His eyes slid to Deidre. "This must be your lady!"
She smiled shyly and held her hand out. "Deidre," she said in a small voice.
He shook it sloppily.
"Well, come on in, Dee," he said. "We've got beer, vodka, tequila, nachos, and music!"
She was holding onto my arm and walking close. I put it around her so she gripped my black shirt. People were staring at us as we walked past and some took pictures on their phones. I sighed quietly, knowing Facebook would be on fire tomorrow morning.
"There ya go!" Mike said, pushing a red cup at her.
I took the cup instead and poured her some Coke. She accepted it gratefully. I took a sip from the cup and grimaced. He had tried to give her vodka. Definitely not what a first time drinker should have.
"So, how long have you two been dating?" Mike asked.
"Almost two weeks," I answered, putting my arm around her again.
"Is it," he wiggled his eyebrows, "serious? And I don't mean just regular serious. I mean Artemis Kilgore serious."
I glared at him and Deidre took a drink to avoid answering the question. This wasn't going the way I hoped it was. Then she spotted the dog.
"I'm going to go...."
I nodded and put her drink on the counter. She sat on the couch and the Golden Retriever immediately ran to her. She laughed as he jumped on her with his front paws and tried to lick her face.
"She's hot," Mike said approvingly. "Where'd you find her?"
"A coffee shop," I answered. "She works there."
"Ah. So she's not a bar whore."
I clenched my jaw. "She's not a whore at all."
He frowned at me. "You mean you haven't fucked her yet?"
I was spared having to answer by the arrival of my two other friends, James and Vince. They accepted beer and leaned against the counter. Vince saw Deidre first.
"I think I just found my hookup," he said with a smirk and I shoved him.
"Careful. That's Artemis' girl," Mike warned.
"Dude, you haven't been with a girl in nearly two years," James said, now looking appraisingly at Deidre. "What's her name?"
"Deidre," I answered.
"I still say she's hot," Vince shrugged and I glared at him. "What? I'm just stating the obvious."
I scoffed and finished the shot of vodka. "Just beer for me," I said, handing the cup back to Mike.
"You got it," he said.
"Uh oh," Vince muttered.
"What?" I asked, turning around.
"Looks like I'm not the only one that noticed her," he said and gestured at the living room.
I followed his gaze. Some guy was sitting beside her, talking to her about dogs. I narrowed my eyes, stopping myself from going over there.
"Maybe she's just making friends," I muttered and Vince shook his head at me.
Mike passed me the beer but I didn't open it. We all stood still and watched as the guy moved closer until was practically on top of Deidre. Before I could move, she stood up and excused herself. He grabbed her hand and I put the beer down. It turns out, though, that I didn't have anything to worry about.
She slapped him. He looked stunned and she started to walk away again. He grabbed her waist, thinking she was playing hard to get. I moved to help.
"Hold on," Vince said.
"Are you kidding me? He's practically groping her!" I said but he was smirking.
"Check out your girl."
I frowned and looked closer. The guy was whispering in her ear and she was rolling her eyes. He leaned his head closer and she threw her fist into his face. His head snapped back as she elbowed him in the groin. I could hear his grunt from here as my friends made approving noises. Then he spun her around so she grabbed his shoulders, pulling down and kicking up with her knee. He stumbled and she added a kick to his stomach.
He fell to the floor and she walked over as people stared. She was about to say something but Vince interrupted her.
"Man, that was awesome!" he said. "Dude, get her a drink!"
She smiled a little as Mike pressed a beer in her hand. I put my arm around her waist and looked at the guy. He was on all fours, gripping his stomach. He looked up and I grinned cheekily at him, waving.
"You showed that guy who's boss," Mike snorted. "Maybe you should be the one being Artemis' personal trainer."
She rubbed the back of her neck. "I took some self-defense classes."
"They definitely paid off," Vince said. He held his hand out. "I'm Vince."
She shook his hand. "Deidre."
James pushed Vince. "My turn, dude. James," he said and she shook his hand. "You know, you'd really get along with my girlfriend Nancy."
"Where is Nancy?" I asked, just noticing she wasn't there.
"School," he pouted. "Finals week starts on Monday."
"Ouch," I said sympathetically.
As the night wore on, Deidre started leaning on me more and more. At first I thought she was doing it out of nerves, but she seemed to be having fun. She laughed and joked with the guys. Mike gave her shit for not drinking her beer but she played it off that she didn't drink cheap beer. That earned her more points with the guys and I was proud of her. Then I realized she was getting sleepy. I looked at my phone.
"Well, we're turning into pumpkins," I announced and the guys groaned. "Sorry but it's one in the morning and this boy is tired."
"Do you want to stay, Dee?" Vince asked.
"No," she said quickly. "Thanks but... I have work in the morning."
"Hey, we'll come visit some time. Where do you work?"
"The Wholly Grind."
"Well, you guys have fun." I looked into the living room and snorted. "Get him some ice."
The guy she beat up was lying out on the couch, pinching his bleeding nose. Deidre smiled sheepishly but I have her a quick squeeze. She whistled and the Golden came over and she bent over to give him a kiss on the nose.
"Eyes off the ass," she said and we all looked away, clearing our throats.
"Let's get you home," I laughed.