DISCLAIMER: Unfortunately, Paris Gellar and Rory Gilmore don't belong to me. They are the property of Amy Sherman-Palladino and Warner Bros. Television. I feel they've been kept in the closet a little too long, and you know, it was my civic duty to allow them to come out and play. Hehe…all sorts of puns were intended there. Anyway, Olivia Hughes is mine, and any resemblance to other characters or real-life women is pure coincidence. (Though, if you do happen to be like Olivia Hughes, perhaps you wouldn't mind stopping by my dorm room…?)
AUTHOR'S NOTE: This is basically where I worship the ground that Nate walks on, for pushing me to finally finish this chapter and for Beta-ing and for coming up with a brilliant title. Without him, this would probably not be floating around the Internet but instead sitting incomplete on my hard drive. Also, feedback is a beautiful thing, and any you are willing to give will make me a happy gal.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
SPOILERS: Coincides with Season 3.

By UbiquitousMixie


Part 1

As Paris turned off the ignition, she recognized that her car and her mother's were not the only ones parked in the drive. An unfamiliar sleek blue BMW glinted beside Sharon's in the sunlight, and Paris groaned to herself. Mommy Dearest was entertaining. She sighed, hoisted her bookbag over her shoulder and got out of her car.

She wondered momentarily if she could slip past them unnoticed. She could signal to Nanny that she didn't want to be stalled from her homework by Sharon and her posh, stuck up friend. She could also use another entrance to the house. But what would be the point? Sharon had no doubt heard the car pull up. Had she attempted to avoid her mother, she would have still had to amuse her company and ice a stinging handprint upon her cheek.

Still, she closed the door as quietly as possible, but the icy voice of her mother rang into the foyer. "Paris! Come into the sitting room!"

Paris inhaled deeply, preparing herself for the worst. She ran her fingers through her long dark blonde hair and stepped into the lion's den.

"Yes, Mother?" She was right; Sharon was entertaining. Without looking at the guest seated upon the loveseat, Paris could tell by the extra effort put into Sharon's appearance. She had broken out the heavy artillery; diamonds rather than pearls, Versace instead of Donna Karan. Paris mildly wondered why Sharon was attempting to make such an impression.

"Paris, you remember Olivia Hughes?" Sharon gestured towards the woman, and Paris turned her gaze away from her mother.

Of course she remembered Olivia Hughes. Her husband, Paul, was a former senator turned high-powered lawyer. He was offered a partnership in New York and the family jumped at the chance to advance in society whilst the other high-class Hartfordians dwelled in their dust. Their daughter, Bree, was currently excelling in Harvard. Bitch. But, apparently, the Hughes had returned. She hadn't seen Olivia since the goodbye gala Paul's parents threw for them five years ago. It then made sense to Paris why Sharon was turning on the charm and hiding her inner hydra; why remain in a mediocre social circle when she could advance?

Olivia hadn't changed. The woman, somewhere in her mid-forties, had aged well thanks to the advancement of aesthetic technology. Her skin glowed from the infusion of expensive creams and her hair remained unnaturally blonde. Beyond this critique, Paris allowed herself to admit that Olivia looked more elegant and beautiful than that event five years ago. She sat regally upon the loveseat, her ankles crossed. The cream color of her blouse offset nicely the ivory porcelain of her skin and was tucked neatly into a burgundy knee-length skirt. Olivia's blue eyes shone brightly as she glanced over Paris.

"Hello, Mrs. Hughes," Paris said, her grip tightening on the handle of her bookbag. She detested awkward meetings with her mother and her friends and longed to run upstairs to the comfort of her bedroom.

"Please, Paris, call me Olivia." Olivia stood and closed the gap between them with a few short steps before enclosing Paris in a light hug. "My my, Sharon, you best be careful! Once this girl graduates you'll have some competition here!"

Paris had difficulty reading Olivia's tone. Paris had perfected the art of analyzing what people were really saying, but this time she found herself lost. Her confusion was strengthened by the intensity with which Olivia's eyes bore over her petite frame.

"Just take a look at you. You were how old, twelve, thirteen, when I last saw you? You've blossomed into a beautiful young woman." Paris gulped under the force of Olivia's gaze and felt herself flush as the woman's eyes glanced at her chest. Certainly all women did this when observing the growth of an adolescent woman that they haven't seen in years, right?

"Yes, she has turned into quite the young lady," Sharon bitterly agreed. "Though I wish she would do something about that hair of hers. And I still think she prefers her left hand when writing, which is unbelievable to me. She's the only lefty in the history of my lineage."

"Nonsense, Sharon," Olivia said, hushing her friend's negative comments. "This hair is gorgeous. I'd love to say that I had hair like this. And don't you fret about her left-handedness; I've known some very skilled left-handed women. Paris here should be proud of these supposed flaws."

Paris blushed, surprised at the force with which Olivia defended her. No one had ever disagreed with Sharon before regarding the endless list of her flaws. She felt her fondness grow for Olivia Hughes and smiled triumphantly at her mother. She knew the awkwardness of Olivia's comments irritated her, and she would no doubt take out her frustration on a maid after Olivia left, but Paris felt confident in the fact that Sharon would never argue with the woman who would decide her social status.

Olivia reclaimed her seat, sipping from a glass of what Paris assumed to be wine. Sharon patted the spot beside her and Paris begrudgingly sat down, placing her bookbag on the floor beside her feet. She crossed her legs, folded her hands in her lap and sat quietly as Sharon and Olivia resumed their discussion about Olivia's return to Hartford.

"Well, you know that the firm was angry to lose Paul to bigger and better things, and so it was only a matter of time before they would make him a better offer and snatch him back. So here we are."

Paris tuned out the words that Olivia spoke and focused instead on this interesting female specimen sitting across from her. Paris was intrigued; to hear words of admiration spoken about her by someone other than Nanny were refreshing. For once she found herself feeling beautiful and longed to toy with the hair that she had long considered cutting just to please her mother.

Olivia spoke with confidence, a trait that Paris admired. She imagined the process in which Olivia chose her words, the way in which they formulated in her head and rolled off her tongue with precision and clarity. She appreciated the ability to speak well; the only other person Paris knew to accomplish this flawlessly, aside from herself, was Rory Gilmore.

Paris licked her lips as she felt them chap slightly. She hoped Sharon wouldn't notice. She had forgotten her chap stick in her car and would no doubt be chastised if her mother happened to realize the state of her lips. Paris was surprised to note Olivia's eyes dart to her lips as she licked them and then return to Sharon once her tongue retreated to her mouth. How odd.

Paris was snapped back into reality when she noticed Rita, Sharon's personal maid, standing at the doorway. "Miss Sharon, you have a call in the library." Rita quickly retreated and Sharon stood.

"Please excuse me, Olivia. I'll only be a moment." Her heels clicked noisily as she left the room.

"So," Olivia said, standing and seating herself beside Paris. "How is Chilton?"

"It's great. I'm class president and editor of The Franklin."

"Are you? Paul was editor during our school days. It's a challenging job; you must be very talented."

"I try my best." Paris shifted slightly away from Olivia, unsettled by her nearness. She could not comprehend why the woman needed to relocate to have this conversation.

"And I see they have taken the skirts up a few inches," Olivia quipped, motioning towards the blue plaid resting upon Paris's thighs. With her fingers she measured the distance between the hemline and her knee and smiled, her fingers brushing against the smooth flesh as she withdrew her fingers. "I remember the days when a glimpse of the knees was a scandal."

Paris swallowed, feeling a sudden need to uncross and recross her legs. She didn't dare move; the readjustment would have brought her leg flush against Olivia's. "Well, it was a relatively new change, very popular amongst the footballers."

Olivia laughed. "Now tell me, Paris, girl to girl: are the girls still planning romantic trysts in the Franklin's darkroom as they once used to?"

Paris was suddenly confused. "I don't see how the girls and guys could manage it," she began and then quieted when she saw the humor in Olivia's eyes.

"That's not what I meant. I meant girls and girls."

Paris swallowed. Her mind raced with feverish thoughts, contemplating the Sapphic happenings of that darkroom. As far as she knew, any homosexual tendencies had been kept completely quiet. To be outed at Chilton would be social suicide. But where was this coming from? It was almost as if Olivia was speaking from experience…Paris swallowed again. "I wouldn't know," she muttered, finding her curiosity building into a strong desire to know what was indeed happening.

Olivia laughed and smiled. "You strike me as the knowledgeable type, Paris. I'm surprised. All of my girlfriends in school experimented in that darkroom. I assumed it was a tradition."

"Are you speaking from experience then, Mrs. Hughes?" Paris found the words slipping from her mouth before she could stop them. The addition of Olivia's surname sounded incredibly rude. "I'm sorry. That's none of my business."

Olivia smiled, sipping from her wine. She brushed a strand of her blonde hair from her forehead and leaned closer to Paris. Her cream blouse dipped forward and Paris was amazed at her body's reaction as her eyes stole a quick glance, catching a small glimpse of a lacy tan bra encasing her ample cleavage. What was going on here?

"Curiosity killed the cat, Paris," Olivia said, her voice dropping to a low, husky tone, "but, if you really want to know, I may have seen the inside of that darkroom once or twice. How do you think they got the key to get into the office to begin with?"

Paris blinked, shocked. Was Olivia Hughes actually telling her that she and other women took advantage of her current husband so that they could fool around in the darkroom? She thought to all of the time she and Rory spent in there for the paper and never once imagined the history it had. Oh, to be a fly on the wall…

"Do you have a boyfriend, Paris?" Olivia asked, leaning back into the loveseat. Paris's eyes swept over Olivia's body as the blouse hugged her chest, the lines of the bra shining through.

Paris smiled and nodded. "Yes, I do. His name is Jamie." Paris felt her confidence build knowing that they were now on safe ground. She thought of her boyfriend, handsome and intelligent, and attempted to change the sexual nature of her thoughts to him. She found it difficult to remember how he looked bare-chested and couldn't figure out why.

"If I may offer some advice," Olivia said, leaning in close to Paris's ear, "don't let that stop you from having some fun." With that, Olivia stood and reclaimed her original seat.

Paris gulped. Was she in the Twilight Zone? Was Olivia Hughes flirting with her? Was she really considering sexual thoughts involving this woman? As her befuddled mind attempted to work through her confusion to reach an appropriate answer, Sharon returned.

"I'm so sorry about that, Olivia! Did you two have an interesting chat? I hope Paris didn't bore you with her political theories and such," Sharon said, offering a tight lipped smile at her daughter. Paris glared.

"On the contrary, Paris and I had a very stimulating conversation. You've got quite the daughter, Sharon."

Again, Paris felt the blush creep onto her skin. She could not be imagining this. She could never, even in her most creative of thought-processes, make up the conversation she just had with Olivia. She could never imagine one of the soulless creatures of high-class Hartford society flirting with her. But, since it did happen, Paris could not resolve why. What could Olivia Hughes possibly have had in mind to start such a conversation? Was she joking with her, playing some sort of sick game that she and her socialite friends would laugh about at the nail salon? Or was she interested in embarrassing her? If that was the case, Paris wished she would know so she could set the record straight. She was far from prudish, initiating the more colorful aspects of her sexual life with Jamie. Or was she, as Paris both feared and hoped, attracted to her? She had never gotten such attention. Of course, she would never willingly want to be reduced to a sexual object by some drooling ape of a man, but somehow she found the attention from Olivia arousing. The heat between her legs could attest to that. All that Paris knew for sure was that she needed to get out of that room.

"Well, I've got studying to do," Paris began, standing and collecting her bag from off the floor. Olivia smiled at Paris, sipping from her wine.

"Before you go, make sure you reserve this Saturday at 7 in your date book."

"Why? What's the occasion?"

"The Hartford Art Museum is having a private preview of their newest exhibition for the elite of the community, and we're attending the opening," Sharon said, her voice proud.

Olivia smiled and nodded. "Yes, Paul and I helped fund the exhibit. I thought your mother and you might enjoy attending."

Paris couldn't deny that Olivia looked pleased. She felt her irritation grow. "I don't believe I have anything appropriate to wear."

Sharon sighed, undoubtedly a sign of her exasperation with Paris's disinterest in social functions. "I'm sure you can ask your father for an advance in your allowance and go shopping tomorrow for something."

"Oh, nonsense! I was given some beautiful designer dresses for Bree from a dear friend of mine in Manhattan, and I would hate to see them go to waste! You're just about Bree's size. You've got the perfect figure for them. You simply can't refuse."

"How gracious of you, Olivia!" Sharon exclaimed, her jealously flaring slightly.

Paris knew better than to pass up the opportunity to upstage her mother. "Thank you, Olivia. That's very kind of you."

"Why don't you stop by the estate after school tomorrow?"

"That sounds great. I'll be there."

"Fantastic. It was lovely to see you again, Paris."

"And you as well, Olivia. Have a good afternoon."

Paris turned and left the room, all the while feeling Olivia's eyes on her back. Was she staring at her ass? The exposed flesh between her skirt and knee socks? She nearly stumbled as she climbed the stairs and briskly entered her bedroom.

When the door was safely closed and locked, Paris sat on her bed and sighed heavily. She felt slightly more at ease now that she was away from her mother and Olivia.

Olivia. What was going on in that woman's mind? Since when did overly-privileged socialites hit on their friend's daughters? And since when did Paris enjoy the attention of women?

As she peeled off her uniform, she wondered where this arousal came from. Displaced feelings for Jamie? That could be it; the flirtatious manner of Olivia's words and the sexual attention may have reminded her body of similar experiences with Jamie and reacted in response.

But how did that explain Paris's heightened awareness of Olivia's body? And the glimpses at Olivia's chest? As Paris turned on the faucets to fill her private bath she recalled the heat she felt when eyeing Olivia's breasts. For a woman her age, she had maintained them nicely. But where did this sudden desire to see them outside of the lace come from?

She poured into the bath a small amount of lavender liquid and watched the water stir and mix into light foam. She twirled her finger into the mixture, shivering slightly as the cool air of the room prickled her bare flesh.

Paris placed her cell phone on the floor beside the bath and stepped into the water. Steam rose and swirled around her as she slipped beneath the near-scalding surface and sighed as the water immediately soothed the aches in her back from the long day of school. She twisted her hair into a knot at the top of her head, fastened with a clip, and closed her eyes in relaxation.

Olivia Hughes. What a woman. Sharon would be lucky to be friends with her.

The phone chirped noisily on the floor and she looked over the edge to view the caller ID, an assigned ringtone for the caller blaring out. It was Jamie. Paris contemplated answering the phone, but she decided against it. It wasn't until after the phone was silent and her thoughts returned to a particular busty older blonde that she realized she should have.

Why wouldn't she want to talk to her boyfriend? She was fond of him. She might even toy with the word love. But she wasn't sure how long the relationship would last. She felt at times like she was a trophy for him, a trophy that he would no doubt keep shiny and on display for the extent of their relationship. She felt annoyed with the thought of being valued for her upbringing and looks and for nothing else.

The phone began to ring once more. Paris, annoyed with her train of thoughts regarding Jamie, resolved not to answer it. But, her curiosity got the better of her and she peeked at the caller ID. A small picture of a brunette girl appeared above the line Rory Gilmore calling. She brushed her hand along a towel near the phone to dry it off, then picked up and opened the clamshell object, putting it to her ear.


"Hey, Par. How are you?"

Paris contemplated her response. Stressed? Annoyed? Confused? She shifted slightly in the tub, her thighs rubbing together and reigniting the heat that was nagging at her loins for the extent of her conversation with Olivia. "Tense. You?"

"Oh, just tired. Are you okay?"

"I'm fine. I just had a particularly perplexing conversation with my mother and her friend."


"To an extent."

"Well, you're out of their clutches now, right?"

Paris laughed to herself. She wondered how much Olivia wanted to be clutching her. "Yes."

"Good. Now you can unwind and prepare for the grueling eight page essay we have to write for next week."

"You say it's time for me to unwind and you bring up the essay of death?"

"Sorry. I'm trying not to forget that it's due so I can scare myself into working on it this weekend."

"Ah," Paris said, smirking, "Is someone afraid she can't handle the length and intricacy of the essay?"

"On the contrary, Paris, just giving myself more time to perfect it."

Paris laughed. Their grade feud amused her to no end and Paris constantly surprised herself with the increasing effort she had been putting forth into her work. Before Rory, she easily knew that she would dominate the top spot in her classes. But with the brunette coyly vying for that spot, Paris did her best to fall level with her rather than behind.

"I'm going to ace it, you know," Paris commented, sticking her leg out of the water. She watched the water cascade down her leg.

Rory giggled, causing Paris to smile. "Of course, it doesn't help to know that we will have piles of work to do for The Franklin on top of it."

Paris groaned. "I wish that for once the staff could come through and submit pieces that were decently written. I sometimes wonder if you and I are the only ones making use of the education we've received, or if everyone else is just that incompetent."

Rory laughed and agreed, "Oh I know. I'm becoming better at photo developing than the photographer! Developing the images of baseball players based on who has the nicest butt does not a photographer make."

"You are quite talented in that darkroom, Gilmore, I've got to give you that." As the words flowed from her mouth, Paris's eyes widened as she recognized the entendre behind them. Olivia reappeared, younger and lither in the standard Chilton uniform. She imagined Olivia and a conquest in that darkroom, hands thrust up skirts and buried deep within soft folds and damp curls. Paris shifted in the tub, water furling around her, as she rested her free hand atop her stomach. Her fingers fought to remain upon her abdomen, but they slowly trailed down to the cleft betwixt her thighs. The wetness she found had little to do with the bathwater, and she languidly began to stroke, imagining Olivia doing the same to her companion who looked eerily similar to Rory Gilmore.

"Paris, what are you doing?" The brunette's voice broke her from her reverie. She felt caught, exposed, but she remembered that a phone and some thirty-odd minutes separated them.

Paris resumed her stroking and replied, "Taking a bath."

"Oh! I'm sorry; I didn't mean to interrupt you. I'll let you go then."

"It's fine. I don't mind talking. I'm just doing as you said…unwinding."

"I feel so intrusive right now though."

"It's only intrusive if you're thinking of me in my bath."

Rory paused for a beat and answered, "Damn, you caught me. I rushed home so I could wait until just the moment I thought you'd be taking a bath."

"I knew it. I've got you spot-on, Gilmore." Paris again was shocked at the nature of her words. Had Olivia made her bold? What would possess her to flirt with her best friend?

"Anyway, I'm going to step out of that awkward bit of conversation and get back to the original point of my calling: what page did we have to have read for tomorrow?"

"245, I think."

"Thanks, Par. I'll let you get back to your bath. Have a good afternoon."

"I'll try. You too."

"I'm sure I will. I've got a date with Jess."

"Oooh, well, you kids have fun," Paris said, her voice teasing. She could imagine the smirk on Rory's face as she spoke.

"Oh we will. Maybe you should let the cold water run for a bit in that bath of yours before you get started on your homework."

"What makes you so sure I'm not getting together with Jamie?"

"It would make sense considering your train of thought this afternoon."

Paris laughed. "Ah well, I'll leave that up to your imagination. I'll see you tomorrow, Rory."

"See ya, Par."

Paris turned off her phone, dropping it to the ground. The tension that her fingers were creating was building, and she knew it would be distracting if she left herself this way. She felt guilt well up within her, guilt over her arousal caused by someone other than her significant other. She tried hard as she teased her clit to conjure his image. She attempted desperately to imagine the last time they made love, but all she could see behind closed lids were the images of Olivia fucking a Rory look-alike in the darkroom. She bit her lip, trying to force the image of her best friend out of her head but her efforts were fruitless. When her finger grazed her clit the final time and her climax sent her body into fast convulsions of intense pleasure, the final image she saw was of Olivia's legs spread wide to Rory's awaiting mouth.

When Paris opened her eyes and took deep, ragged breaths, she felt the cooling water caress her flesh and blinked back the thoughts that had previously been haunting her mind. She hoped, as she pulled the stopper and allowed the water to drain away, that she had gotten these strange and foreign thoughts out of her head. As she stood and felt the cold air of the bathroom tighten her nipples and produce goosebumps on her skin, she grabbed her towel and resolved not to let her thoughts stray to Olivia Hughes or indecent, misplaced images of her best friend for the rest of that night.

Paris spent her Friday thinking of nothing but Olivia. Classes were difficult to get through with the knowledge that she was soon to be alone with Olivia, trying on dresses. The thought unsettled her despite her attempts to diverge her musings regarding Olivia. She attributed yesterday with stress and pent-up arousal from not spending intimate time with Jamie, an excuse she was more than happy to accept. However, she was finding that her thoughts throughout the day were fighting that theory, especially when she stopped by the Franklin office to drop off a memo.

Paris had hoped to make it through the day without Rory noticing her peculiar behavior, but her hopes were dashed at lunchtime when Rory sat across from her and directly asked, "Are you seeing Jamie after school?"

"What? Jamie? Why do you ask?"

"You've been distracted all day. I know for a fact that you could have answered that question on the French Enlightenment, but you let me have it. Paris Gellar never lets a question slip unanswered. So what's going on?"

"Nothing, just distracted." Could Rory see through her? Did she see what was eating away at her?

Rory looked on either side of them, confident that the white noise around them would keep their conversation private. "Are you guys fighting?"

Paris sighed, knowing that Gilmore wouldn't give in and stop questioning her. "No, it's not Jamie. There's just this thing that I have to go to tomorrow and I have to visit a friend of my mother's for something to wear to it."

"Who's the friend? Maybe I know her."

Paris contemplated whether or not to tell Rory. "Olivia Hughes."

"I've heard of her. My grandmother was complaining about her re-emergence in Hartford society at dinner last Friday."

"Yes, well, Sharon's got her hooks in deep to climb with her to the top, and it seems that I may be stuck in the middle."

"Is that what's got you so uncomfortable, Paris? You shouldn't let that get to you. You're smarter than that."

Paris sighed, taking a bite of her salad. That aspect did contribute to her unease, but she was more concerned with Olivia's sexual predatory demeanor. "I know."

"Just try not to let her get to you."

Paris swallowed. "Easier said than done." She paused. "Let's change the subject."

Paris tried her best to concentrate on what Rory was saying during their lunch together, but could not get her mind off of Olivia. She spent the remainder of her school day contemplating what would transpire at the Hughes mansion and resolved to harden her icy exterior to prohibit Olivia from getting to her, but as she rung the doorbell to the mansion later that day she felt the ice melting away. She rubbed her arms, hoping to circulate warmth, as she bounced on her heels. She had left her coat in the car and wished now that she were wrapped in the warmth of it as she waited.

She was surprised when Olivia herself answered the door, welcoming Paris with a short hug.

"Paris! So nice to see you again," began Olivia, guiding Paris by the small of her back into the house.

"It's nice to see you too, Olivia."

Olivia led her into the sitting room, where she poured herself a small glass of wine. "I'd offer you a glass, but I wouldn't want to get in trouble with your mother."

"Well, either way, I don't expect I'd tell my mother."

"Do I sense some animosity between the two of you?"

Paris looked away, unsure of whether or not she could trust this woman.

"Please don't think I'm acting as a spy for her. I've got more important things on my mind than to act on Sharon's wishes to divulge whatever we may discuss."

Paris's laugh was bitter in her throat. "So she asked you, then?"

"Of course she did. Wouldn't you want to know what she might say about you? But, as I've said, I'm not interested in starting problems."

Paris felt another wave of respect for the woman, surprised that she would be so protective of someone's vulnerable thoughts. She felt as though she could easily let go and vent to Olivia, but held it in. "I'd actually prefer not to talk about my mother."

"Your wish is my command." Olivia smiled. "Why don't we head upstairs? I've laid out several dresses on Bree's bed for you to try on."

Paris followed Olivia as they headed up the staircase, trying to avert her eyes from focusing on the woman's backside. Paris found she couldn't help it; Olivia was wearing navy slacks that hugged her backside firmly and fell loosely once the material passed her hips. The effect was hypnotic. While the pants rippled in waves by her ankles, they managed to do wonders for the woman's ass. Paris swallowed and clasped her hands together behind her back.

"So Paris, have you decided where you'll go to college?" Olivia said, looking over her shoulder as she stepped onto the landing.

"Um, not quite. I take it Sharon told you about Harvard?"

"Not exactly. I saw your television debut."

Paris froze, her face flushing with embarrassment. "How humiliating," she said, turning away. She no longer had the desire to parade around in designer dresses. Suddenly, All My Children and her bed were looking very inviting.

"There's nothing to be embarrassed about," Olivia began, placing a hand on her shoulder. "We all have bad days."

"You can't tell me you didn't laugh when I broke down. I had a momentary lapse in sanity. It was like watching a train wreck."

"That may be true, but you can't base your entire life on one rejection letter and one bad speech gone wrong. From what I hear, you excel in debate. You should just look at this as a debate lost and move on."

"But that's my problem; I don't move on. I dwell. I've watched that interview countless times and each viewing just brings back the pain and anger I felt on that stage."

"Look at this way. It's over. But at least you looked great."

"Right. Rory looked great. I looked like I had fallen into toxic waste."

Olivia laughed as she opened a door for Paris. She stepped into the room and sat on the bed, sipping her wine. "Paris, stop. You were flustered and upset, but you didn't need a team of hair and make-up artists to make you look beautiful; you pulled that off all on your own."

Paris blushed again. Where was this attention coming from? And why was she talking to this woman about the most humiliating moment of her life? She mumbled out a thank you and looked around the room, finally settling her eyes on the several dresses that were laid upon the bed. She noticed that they were of varying colors, greens, burgundies, blacks. She also happened to notice that each of the dresses on top had low neck lines. Very interesting.

Olivia slowly stood and headed for the door. "Make sure you show me each dress. I want to see you in them."

Paris dumbly nodded, watching the blonde's face disappear behind the door. She exhaled deeply and pulled off her blazer. As she unbuttoned her blouse, she felt her body becoming oddly warm with the knowledge that Olivia was standing just outside the door. She didn't know why, but she felt anxious to don one of these expensive garments and feel Olivia's gaze settle upon her.

She chose a deep green dress that was slightly loose at the hips. She loved the color, finding that it flattered her complexion immensely. The top was slightly loose as well, but hugged her breasts slightly more because she decided to keep her bra secured upon her.

Olivia knocked. "Are you ready?"

"Yes," Paris called in response.

Olivia stepped back into the room, smiling at Paris as she did so. She brushed a strand of her blonde hair aside and closed the distance between them. She laughed. "Paris, these dresses are not meant to be worn with a bra. You'll need to take that off."

Paris nodded, playing it off as forgetfulness, though she had hoped to have the extra material to hide the evidence of her slight arousal. Her nipples had remained taut since the view of Olivia's backside. She fumbled with the clasp and felt her body jerk slightly as Olivia stepped in, unhooking the two hooks of Paris's bra. Her fingers brushed slightly against Paris's back, and she quickly shifted away to remove the straps from her arms, finally pulling the bra through the deep V at the front. She folded the bra and placed in on the nightstand.

"Now let's take a proper look," Olivia began, placing her hands on Paris's shoulders and turning her body slightly for a better view. "It's too bad the opening is tomorrow night; I could have had this taken in a bit for you." She stepped back, her eyes sweeping over Paris's form. "Those damn Chilton uniforms don't do your body justice, Paris. You're a tad smaller than Bree; I had no idea that you were hiding away a beautiful figure under that blazer. Hopefully something here will fit."

Paris blushed from the compliment. Despite the slight discomfort she felt as the top sagged slightly from the excess material, leaving her breasts slightly exposed, she was able to feel better about her body than she had in a long time. Sharon had been picking on her weight since the age of twelve when her breasts started to develop, making Paris feel ashamed of her body. She wondered why she always set so much stock in what Sharon told her, but she realized it was because no one had ever told her otherwise before.

Olivia toyed with the gold necklace sitting upon her throat, pursing her lips as she scrutinized the pile of dresses. "Try on the crimson one next. I think it'll flatter your complexion as much as the green."

Olivia left the room and Paris bit her lip as she removed the dress. She imagined the feathery touches of Olivia's fingers upon the hollow of her throat, and she wondered absently what they'd feel like brushing in a similar way on her own skin. She looked through the pile and took hold of the crimson dress, noticing immediately that it would barely reach her knees. She stepped into it regardless, knowing that Olivia would scold her if she objected to her wishes.

She looked in the mirror as she called to Olivia. She hated this dress; the cocktail-style opted for a more fitted look, but it fit snugly in the top and nowhere else. The fabric around her hips was loose and completely unflattering.

Olivia reentered the room once more, crossing it swiftly to observe the second garment. "That's really too bad," she began, pulling the fabric to the small of Paris's back to make the dress tighter. "This is a gorgeous color on you."

Paris cocked her head to the side, inwardly agreeing with the woman. One of the many reasons she preferred Harvard was because of the way the crimson and gold looked on her.

"The top fits well, not too tight but not too loose, but the bottom half is all wrong. It does nothing to flatter your ass."

Paris's eyes widened in shock as she laughed.

"Oh please, like you've never heard an adult swear."

"Oh no, it's not that. I'm just surprised that I need to have my ass on display at this function."

"Everyone is going to be there, Paris. You need to make a good impression, and if the dress looks bad, everyone may just assume that you don't care enough about your appearance and therefore don't care about your status, thus lowering your own position in society."

Paris raised an eyebrow skeptically. "I will give off that appearance just by a loosely fitting dress?"


"I never realized my ass would be the deciding factor for my future standings. I'd better get this dress off at once before it jeopardizes my social life," Paris added with a smirk.

"You laugh now, but one day you'll thank me for that bit of advice. But I should add, you might want to wear a thinner panty with whatever we choose for tomorrow. The ones you're wearing are too visible."

Paris swallowed. So Olivia was looking, was she? It became clear that having a flattering ass was more to benefit Olivia rather than herself.

"Sure. Not a problem."

"It's a shame though about this dress…the length is perfect on you."

"It's all right. It's about the same as my Chilton uniform, but I don't like having the backs of my knees exposed. I've got a few freckles and moles on my legs that Sharon insists need to be lasered off."

"You're kidding me? Your mother criticizes everything, doesn't she? What's wrong with a few moles?"

"She thinks they are imperfections that can be easily dealt with."

"Please. Moles give character. They draw attention to your beautiful skin. You're of Mediterranean heritage, correct?" Paris nodded. "Good. You're lucky not to have inherited your mother's skin tone. What you have is lovely, so don't fret about your moles. I've got a few as well and I love them."

Paris raked her eyes swiftly over the areas of Olivia's body that were uncovered by clothing. She raised an eyebrow.

Olivia laughed and placed her hand on her blouse. She pulled the fabric down until the swell of her breast was uncovered, her bra nearly showing. Paris bit her tongue and forced her eyes to refrain from widening at the expanse of flesh bared before her. "See? I'm so proud of them I flaunt them. You need to embrace your body, Paris!" Olivia straightened her top.

"Easier said than done, Olivia," Paris said, sighing. She sat on the bed and stared at her hands folded neatly in her lap. "After years of Sharon's brainwashing, you tend to just start believing her."

Olivia, frowning, seated herself beside Paris on the bed. "I know I said earlier that I wasn't going to be taking sides, but knowing that she is so eager to deconstruct your self-esteem to elevate her own appearance is just absurd. You should be proud of your appearance, proud of every freckle and mole on your body."

"I know. And I'm working on it, really I am. I guess it just seems like a waste of time sometimes when no one really notices my appearance. Most of them see Angry Paris, not Pretty Paris. Granted, they probably deserved my anger and for that I wouldn't care if they thought I was good looking, but still."

"Firstly, Paris, you need to think you're worth the looking before anyone else. I can't count the number of times my own daughter gussied herself up, only for the satisfaction of her boyfriends. She still doesn't think herself beautiful, though she should. She got my looks, after all." Olivia smiled at her joke, waiting for a reaction.

Paris gave forth a half smile, and sighed. "I don't know, I guess I just get stuck up on the fact that first and foremost, people see my breasts and that's it. Most people don't see the point in looking any further."

"Perhaps you're looking at the wrong people for reactions. Sure, horny adolescent men are going to look at your breasts and they wouldn't care if you had a horse's head. They only want one thing, and I think you know what I mean. What about Jamie? Where does he fit into this?"

Paris pulled at a hangnail, tapping her foot nervously. "He thinks I'm beautiful, I mean, he's told me a few times. But he is overly fond of my body, which just ends up resulting in unsatisfying sex because of the stale way he gropes at me."

"Paris, if you have a problem with your body and your boyfriend is doing nothing to persuade you otherwise, there's a problem here. He should be revering you! Is he a good looking young man?"

"I suppose he is, yes."

"Then he's probably too stuck up on his own looks to compliment yours. That's one thing I hate about conceited lovers; no matter how much attention you seek, you'll just be let down in the end."

"But Jamie does love me…"

"But do you love him? Relationships are a two-way street; you both need to be happy and satisfied."

Paris paused for a moment, looking up at Olivia. The woman's face was devoid of curiosity and appeared for the first time to be completely genuine. She felt herself open a little more. "I'm not sure if I do. I mean, I said the words, but I just don't feel any sparks with him. I think I felt more sparks when Rory was doing my hair before my first date with rather than when I opened the door to greet him. I think of him more as a cousin."

Olivia smirked. "Aren't we past the age of marrying our cousins?"

"You know, I took a cousin to the school dance once. Everyone was attached to boyfriends and I, being the loser that I am, took my cousin."

Olivia laughed and tucked a straying strand of hair behind her ear. "No one found out, I hope?"

"Of course they did. It was my own fault that they found out, but nonetheless they did. It wasn't a good dance anyway; I hated my dress."

"If we were at Chilton together, I'd have taken you myself. No one deserves to go a dance alone or with a family member."

Raising an eyebrow, Paris asked, "you mean two women attending a dance together was acceptable then? Headmaster Charleston would have a coronary if two girls were dancing hip to hip at a Chilton function."

"You'd be surprised. It was completely innocent, or so it seemed. The things that went on in the ladies' room during those dances…" Olivia's voice trailed off, her hand rubbing the back of her neck. Paris laughed.

"Well, that sounds great for you, Olivia, but that does nothing to help my situation. I'm stuck with Jamie in all of his unsatisfactory glory."

"Paris, you're eighteen! You're not bound to your high school sweetheart forever!" She paused, and then added, "nor are you bonded to one gender."

Paris laughed. "Right, right. So you're saying that it is a choice then?"

"Absolutely not! Nor is there some sort of gay gene. But what I'm saying is this: how will you know if you like red wine if you never try it? You could be born a red wine lover and miss out on years of it until the opportunity arises again."

"I don't know that I could ever just go out and find some random red wine to taste. This may sound ignorant, but I just don't understand how it works. Where's the compatibility? I always just assumed that with that certain something missing, it would all be unsatisfying in the end."

Olivia's eyes widened in shock, in complete surprise at the younger woman's comments. "Paris, my dear, you need to realize that there is much more to sex and satisfaction than a man penetrating a woman. Has Jamie ever gone down on you? You touched you until you came?"

Paris blushed and gave a half-hearted nod.

"Try, if you can, to imagine someone who is familiar with the anatomy doing the same thing. A woman knows her body; she knows what she likes, where she likes to be touched and teased. A man could try every day of his life and never be able to give the same satisfaction as a woman can."

"But what about the countless number of women who are completely sexually satisfied with men? You can't really be saying that every single woman is missing out of she's not getting any from another woman."

"No, that's not what I'm saying at all. I only mean to argue that for those willing to open themselves up and try new things, they may find themselves pleasantly surprised. And every woman I've ever slept with has always preferred my…companionship…to her husband's."

Paris swallowed and contemplated what was being discussed. She had difficulty grasping the concept that multiple women had been in her company in such a way. These woman may have even been in her social circle, and she had never suspected anyone of dallying sexually with partners of the same sex. It seemed that upper-class Hartford wasn't as boring as she thought.

She shifted slightly, not knowing what to say in response. She certainly wasn't going to comment on the high opinions of Olivia's bedside manners, nor was she going to remark on the number of women she had slept with. Curiosity gnawed at her.

Olivia filled the silence. "And I suppose I would add that, based on experience, women are more considerate partners. Paul was never much for taking my feelings into account, so it would be rare that he'd check to make sure I'd climaxed before rolling off of me to fall asleep."

Paris nodded. "It's the same way with Jamie. It's like he forgets sometimes that I'm in bed with him. It's kind of depressing, really. There are times when I try to…"

Paris paused, her face flushing as she neared admitting her thoughts.

"Don't be shy, Paris. You can tell me anything. What'll I look like if I continue to spill all of my juicy secrets to you when you keep mum?"

Paris looked down at her lap, her eyes stealing a glance at Olivia's crossed legs beside her. "There are times when I need to finish myself off once Jamie hops out of bed to wash himself off."

"He washes himself off?"

"Yea. I guess it's too much for him to have any remnants of me leftover afterwards. It doesn't matter if we're just going to sleep; he always cleans up."

"What a pig." Olivia glanced at Paris's face. "I don't mean to insult him, but what does that say if he has to rush to erase the evidence of your lovemaking? That's exactly what I was saying about female partners; they actually care. You deserve better than that, Paris." She paused and listened to the girl sigh heavily. "Why do you think I've been stepping out on Paul for so many years? He's just an older version of Jamie, but I wasn't smart enough to run when I had the chance."

"But don't you love him? You could've left anytime you wanted, but you're still with him after all these years."

Olivia sighed, glancing wistfully at an 8x10 family photo propped upon the wall. "In a way, I suppose I do. But then again, I've had years of experience blocking out certain things to maintain our relationship. Sexually, he only summons me from my room about every two weeks, but uses me like a whore. I've done my best to take my mind elsewhere; that's the only way I know how to be with him and maintain some semblance of a relationship. And he'll take lovers, though he has no idea that I do as well."

"How can you let him treat you this way? Why don't you just leave him?"

Olivia sniffed back tears and replied with a solemn, "You can't leave a man with a career in politics. He may be safe within his job, but you never are. It becomes everybody's business and you are never really free to live the way you want to."

"But from what I've gathered from having only really known you for a day, you don't care what other people think. Why let them dictate your life? And how can you expect me to follow your advice when you can't even use it on yourself?"

Olivia gave a half-hearted smile. "You're quick. That's what I like about you. You understand things. I wish I could follow it for myself, but I'm way in over my head. But you, you're not even out of high school, and you've got years ahead of you to make the best choices for yourself. You've got ages to enjoy yourself and figure out what you like, instead of other people telling you. Take advantage of it. It's only a matter of time before he pops the question and Sharon attempts to brainwash you into accepting the proposal. I know how she works. You should think about it."

"Can I ask a question?" Paris waiting until Olivia nodded before asking, "What do you really think of Sharon? You've mentioned her a lot and I guess part of me wonders if you've taken me under your wing to please her."

"I hope you're not subtly implying that I'm interested in her; that's far from the case. Sharon is hardly my taste, and my interest in you has nothing to do with her. We've been friends for a long time and while we may be very different, I still occasionally enjoy her company. And the friendship has allowed me to get to know your better. There's something about you, Paris. You remind me a lot of me. You're underappreciated in so many ways…I suppose that's why I feel the need to help you. I don't want you to end up like me. Loneliness is a sad place to be."

"I'm sorry if my question sounded harsh. It's just hard for me to accept singular attention that isn't centered around academic achievement; I so rarely get it."

"It's a shame, I tell you," Olivia remarked. She placed a hand reassuringly on Paris's bare knee, her fingertips brushing again smooth, shaven flesh. "One day you will be. When you've opened yourself up and allowed someone in, you'll be shown exactly how special you are."

Paris glanced down at the long, slim fingers resting upon her knee, trying not to react to the jolt she felt when the digits touched her flesh. In an attempt to distract herself, she quickly blurted out, "I like your ring."

Olivia smiled and held up her hand, displaying the silver band imbedded with several diamonds. "Thank you. It's very special to me. Paul assumes it's some sort of anniversary gift he gave me early on. Little does he know it's from a past lover. Kristin. We were together for several months before Paul nearly discovered us. She's relocated to London now, living with a very lovely older woman."

Paris swallowed. "Why did you tell me? You could've lied and told me it was from him. But you didn't."

"I trust you, Paris. There's a lot I've shared with you that I've never told anyone else. I know that my secrets are safe with you, and I hope you know yours are safe with me."

"I do. I don't know why I do-I mean, I barely know you, and here I am, telling you more than I've ever told my best friend. Well, that is assuming I've had a best friend." She sighed, wistfully wondering if anyone had ever held that title in her life; certainly Louise and Madeline were no more than friends. If anyone, Rory would have come the closest to being a best friend.

"We have a connection. We understand each other."

Paris's fingers twitched with the desire to grasp Olivia's hand, but something stopped. What would Olivia think if she did that? Would she consider it an invitation? Furthermore, did she want Olivia to consider it an invitation?

Olivia slowly stood, watching Paris expectantly until the younger woman stood as well. "Thank you, Paris, for listening and for sharing with me. I'm coming to treasure your company."

"I've enjoyed the talk as well. I've never quite been able to open up like that. I appreciate having that ability."

"I'm glad I've been able to give that to you. And I hope I've been able to give you much more than that."

"You have."

Olivia opened her arms and enveloped the younger woman in a kind embrace, her body communicating the thanks that she had just given. Paris's eyes immediately closed as they hugged, their arms reassuringly rubbing each other's backs. As their bodies stayed firmly locked in the hug for several beats longer than normal, Paris found herself assaulted by images of the two of them engaged in a kiss. She bit her lip at the thought and pulled away, shocked that her mind would jump to such a place.

"Now why don't you try on that other dress? I expect it to fit slightly better than this one."

Paris nodded and Olivia left the room once more. Paris felt oddly alone without Olivia's presence nearby, and as she as she stripped off the dress and picked up the black one, she wished that the woman had stayed. She felt more comfortable around her than nearly anyone she had ever known, Rory excluded, and was surprised to note that she would have been just as comfortable changing with the older woman still in the room. She held the dress out in front of her. It was a beautiful dress, a halter that, of course, plunged exceptionally low. The waist seemed tight and she hoped it would fit. She'd hate to disappoint Olivia if none of the dresses worked properly.

She pulled the dress over her head, the fabric sliding effortlessly over her body. She could feel the knotted straps of the halter settling comfortably behind her neck and the waist sitting in just the right position. Paris reached behind, zipping the back and sighing happily as the fabric pulled tautly over her stomach but did not constrain her. It felt amazing.

Looking down, her breath caught at the amount of exposed breast that was to be found. She had never, ever felt the need to wear anything that would draw extra attention to her already gazed-upon breasts, but Paris realized that she had never had a dress that made her feel so beautiful that a bit of bared flesh was inconsequential.

Olivia rapped on the door slightly and walked in. "Perfect," she sighed as she caught a glimpse of Paris. She pulled Paris's arm and guided her in front of the vanity. Olivia entwined her fingers in Paris's hair, pulling it up and holding it to simulate an up-do. As her fingers scraped Paris's scalp, the younger woman shivered. "Isn't that just exquisite?"

Paris smiled and caught Olivia's eye in the mirror. Her deep browns held onto Olivia's crisp blues before Paris's confidence wavered and she looked away. "I've got just the thing to finalize this look. I'll be right back."

Paris didn't watch Olivia leave. She stared in the mirror, wondering who this woman was staring back at her. Wearing this dress made her feel so much older, so much more womanly, that she ever had before. She could feel her confidence build and at once felt an overwhelming urge to demonstrate what Olivia was doing to her.

She turned in the mirror, glancing over her shoulder to see how the back of the dress fell around her backside. On every occasion she preferred to avoid looking in that general direction, for Paris was often disconcerted with what she found. However, as she noticed the rippling of fabric clinging to her hips and falling loosely around her legs, she smiled. Her ass actually didn't look that bad.

"Here we are," Olivia said, her voice startling Paris. She jumped slightly, hoping not to have been caught examining herself.

Olivia stood behind Paris, instructing the younger woman to lift up her hair so she could clasp a long gold chain. The woman fumbled slightly with the chain, her fingers brushing upon her skin. Paris shivered lightly as Olivia's nails just barely grazed her skin.

"I bought this for myself when I traveled to India with my husband a few years ago. I love it."

Paris allowed herself to look down at what Olivia had adorned her with. It was a tear-dropped shaped emerald, gorgeously shimmering in the light of the vanity. "I couldn't wear your necklace…it's too much."

"It's just right. It looks beautiful on you." Olivia maneuvered her way in front of Paris, gazing down at the jewel nestled just above Paris's deep cleavage. She tentatively reached out and took the jewel between her fingers, careful not to touch Paris's breasts. Paris sighed, hoping that Olivia would accidentally brush against her, but she was cautious. The close proximity made Paris shiver; no one had ever been so close to her breasts and could make her feel this heated from such a trivial action. Jamie was a distant figment in her imagination.

Paris swept her eyes up over Olivia's face while the older woman gazed wistfully upon her pendant. She watched as the small lines around Olivia's eyes crinkle slightly with a smile at a memory and longed to know what she was thinking. As she prepared to ask, Olivia dropped the necklace and connected with Paris's eyes.

Olivia's smile faded.

"Is something wrong?" Paris asked as Olivia moved away.

"No, no, of course not." Olivia touched the back of her neck, her hand resting on her shoulder.

"Are you sure?"

"Yes. It's just….you reminded me of someone for a moment."

"Kristin?" Paris asked, referring to the giver of Olivia's ring.

"No…no. Someone from the past, quite some time ago."

"I'm sorry…I don't know what I did but I didn't mean to bring back any unpleasant memories."

"You did nothing wrong. It's just been a long time, that's all." Olivia took a large sip of her wine. She set down the glass and ran her fingers through her hair. "Anyway, why don't you change and I will meet you downstairs?"

"All right," Paris began. She began to unclasp the necklace, but Olivia sprang forward.

"No. Keep it on. I like how it looks."

Paris blushed as she watched Olivia leave the room. She slowly made her way to the bed, untying the knot of the halter as she walked. The two strips of fabric fell forward, releasing her breasts from the confines of the material. She noticed that her nipples were still puckered and erect.

She shook her head, wondering where this fascination with Olivia was coming from. Almost a half-hour ago she was convincing herself to ignore this woman's attention, and here she was reacting in the most terrible way possible. She should ignore it, or approach Olivia about it and embarrass the socialite, but she couldn't. She found Olivia's eyes to be hungry, and Paris felt her own appetite growing.

As she unzipped the back of the dress and allowed it to slide in a pool of fabric at her feet, she attempted to remember the last time Jamie made her feel like this. Certainly the first time they made it to third base, before she put a halt to things, was just as arousing? Paris couldn't help but shake her head. It wasn't. Jamie offered a bland, straight-forward sexuality that left nothing to the imagination. When she wanted something done, she had to instruct him on what to do; she recalled with a bitter smirk the first and only time he went down on her. He complained about the taste and didn't want to make a mess.

Paris sighed, bending over to pick up the dress. No, Jamie didn't compare to the way these feelings of desire were buzzing within her.

As Paris was straightening herself, she heard a short knock at the door, followed by Olivia's immediate entrance.

"I'm sorry, I just forgot my—"

Paris stood and spun around, her face blank in shock at Olivia's intrusion, before realizing that the older woman's eyes were fixed upon her bared breasts. Paris shuddered under the woman's wanton, unabashed gaze, feeling like a piece of fruit that Olivia was examining before she sank her teeth in. Trapped between her strengthening boldness and her modesty, she was slow to shield herself with the dress.

"I…I'm sorry," Olivia stammered, her face flushed. Paris watched the splash of red wash over her pale flesh and felt her thighs tingle at the knowledge that her body caused this reaction. She smirked as Olivia grabbed her wine, downed the glass, and left the room.

Paris swallowed the dry air swarming in her throat. She quickly grabbed her bra, slipping her arms through the straps and fastening it. Her body stung with heat as she contemplated what just happened. She felt like a fool standing there, naked. But, she countered to herself, Olivia didn't have to stare.

As she shrugged on her blouse, she felt her embarrassment fade. What did she have to be ashamed of? For once she had felt proud of her body and didn't cringe as someone looked her over. She felt the remnants of her girlhood slip away and as she stepped into her skirt, she took a small step into her womanhood. She realized immediately that there had been a shift in control between the two of them. Olivia had been toying with her, baiting her, flirting recklessly without expecting Paris to react. Ha, Paris thought as she draped her blazer over her arm. Olivia misjudged her; she was one woman who would never back down when provoked. She wondered what would happen now that the tables were turned.

As she grabbed the dress and left the room, she heard heels clicking on the floor of the foyer. Olivia was pacing. She smiled and descended the staircase.

Olivia turned and looked at Paris as she stepped off the last step. "I've gotten out a garment bag for you."

Paris followed Olivia into the sitting room and watched as Olivia bent at the waist to unzip the bag. She smiled appreciatively, taking in the sight of the woman's backside. Paris wondered how it would feel against the palm of her hand.

Olivia looked over her shoulder, extending an arm to retrieve the dress. Paris was slow to remove her eyes from her ass, but she did so, her eyes noticing a hint of lust in the deep pools of blue staring back at her. She stepped forward, handing Olivia the dress.

"Thank you again, Olivia. I'm sure I'd have ended up in one of Sharon's matronly concoctions or my bat mitzvah dress if it weren't for you."

"Well, we couldn't have that, could we? It would be such a shame, you hiding away. You deserve to flatter your body more often."

Paris smiled, watching as Olivia carefully tucked the dress into its secure spot. A smirk pulled at the corners of her lips; Olivia was going to pretend it never happened. She knew better than to push it but would enjoy the toying that had happened until then.

"Now, what do you have in the way of shoes?"

Paris thought to the shoes in her closet. "I have one pair of black pumps. Not quite as nice as the dress they'll be worn with, but they'll do I suppose."

"Oh no. I won't have you wearing an exquisite creation with a pair of ugly shoes!"

"But I don't think I could walk in anything else if I wanted to."

"I take it then that the shoes you have are of a thicker heel?"


"Don't be fooled by the thought that a thicker heel will be more secure. You can twist your ankle in a combat boot if you wore them the wrong way and it's the same with heels. A thin heel can be just as secure if you are paying attention to the placement of your feet. Just stand up straight and walk with confidence and you will be fine. And besides, a slimmer heel will make you look taller and elongate your body."

Paris raised an eyebrow.

"Trust me, Paris. You'll be fine. Now wait here; I've got just the pair to match this dress up in my closet."

"Are you sure? I think I'll be fine with what I have."

"Nonsense. You've got beautiful ankles, Paris; accentuate them. Stop hiding in your comfort, dear. You'll never be able to take any of the advice I gave you to heart if you are afraid to try new things. Now just sit on the couch and trust me."

Paris immediately quieted and watched as Olivia left the room, hurriedly climbing the stairs. She licked her lips and wondered where her confidence had escaped to. Only seconds before she had felt secure and calm, but now she felt slightly uneasy. Olivia seemed to be dealing fine with the stolen view of her naked form, and now it was Paris who was reacting. Was she unimpressed and unattracted to what she saw? Or was she just hiding it better than Paris had hoped?

Before she could allow her mind to continue its ponderings, Olivia reappeared with two shoeboxes.

"I grabbed another pair just in case." She took a seat beside Paris and raised an eyebrow when she noticed that the younger woman was still wearing her shoes and socks.

Paris closed her eyes in momentary embarrassment as she began to quickly kick off her shoes. She had been too lost in her thoughts to do the menial task. "Sorry," she muttered.

"Now let's take a look at what we're working with here." Olivia reached for a foot at the same time Paris tucked them further from reach. "Now, now, Paris, this is certainly not the time to be shy." Olivia flashed Paris a look before taking hold of one of Paris's feet.

Paris shuddered at the command with which Olivia grabbed her foot and at the double entendre she had just uttered. So she hadn't been displeased, Paris thought, considering the smirk and the depth of the gaze. It occurred to Paris that the older woman had something up her sleeve since she was obviously not going to pretend it never happened.

"You have lovely feet! All the more reason to wear a more flattering shoe. A little polish and these beauties will be a perfect addition to the total package you'll be presenting."

Paris groaned at the mention of the polish, turning her lip up in a slight sneer.

Olivia laughed. "Don't tell me you don't like nail polish either."

"I just don't see the point of it. It looks nice for about five minutes and then it chips for no apparent reason. Then you have to touch it up despite the fact that you can see exactly where it chipped, only for another nail to chip and the process to begin again."

"Just this once, Paris. You don't even need to use a color; clear will suffice and add a nice little shine. I think that a color can be tacky. See," Olivia slipped off one of her shoes to reveal a manicured foot with clear lacquer adorning her nails, "how clean and elegant it looks?"

Paris leaned forward, looking at the smooth slopes of Olivia's foot. "Fine, I suppose. Now let's see these terror shoes you've got for me." She smirked slightly, proud of her ability to joke with the woman she had formerly been extremely uncomfortable with. She could see by Olivia's feigned shock and genuine eyes that the older woman was pleased with the playful banter they had created.

Olivia swept her foot to slip it back into her shoe, brushing causally against Paris's bare feet. The younger woman felt a shiver skitter down her back, settling in a pool in her abdomen. "Let's try this pair first," Olivia was saying as she opened the lid of one of the boxes. "These aren't the specific ones I had in mind, but could work as a back-up if needed."

Paris reached for the shoe, but Olivia pushed the box out of reach. "Allow me." She kneeled down at Paris's feet, holding the plain black heel in one hand as she reached for one of the younger woman's feet with the other.

"I could've done that myself, you know. There's no reason to recreate Cinderella here."

"It's nice to play Prince Charming every one and a while. Why not let someone pamper you for once?"

"It's just strange for me. I'm not used to this."

"I can see that, princess. Now how do these feel?"

Paris stood and looked down at the pumps encasing her feet. Her feet throbbed slightly at the pressure of the tense shoe. These had clearly never been worn. "They're tight. They actually hurt a little."

"They're new. And besides, they're just for back-up in case these doesn't work. Let's try these instead."

Paris once more sat, taking notice of Olivia's eyes slowly panning down her legs as she took her seat. Olivia removed the shoes, placing them carefully back in the box before reaching for the second box. As Olivia opened the lid, Paris couldn't help but smile as the shoes were uncovered. This set was much more to her liking; the slender heel wasn't as high as she had feared, and a strap that would encircle her ankle was a simple yet elegant touch.

"If these don't fit, I think I'll cry," Olivia mentioned, smiling at Paris.

"You'll cry? I'm the one who might be stuck in ugly shoes."

Olivia smirked and unbuckled the small fastening before sliding the shoe onto Paris's foot. Paris wiggled her toes, surprised at her ability to do so. This pair certainly fit better, and as she looked down at her foot wedged between Olivia's legs, she decided that she liked the look of them. For multiple reasons.

As Olivia's fingers brushed against her ankle as they worked the small fastening to a secure close, Paris could feel the hot tingling creeping along her thighs and settling at the apex of her legs. Unwittingly, she separated her knees slightly, accidentally giving Olivia the faintest of glances up her skirt and causing the older woman's eyebrow to twitch slightly. Paris quickly locked her knees together though and mentally kicked herself for making her actions all the more obvious. She attempted to keep her face composed as Olivia worked on the second shoe.

"So pantyhose: yea or nay?" Paris asked, clearing her throat slightly.

"Definitely nay. There's no need for them whatsoever. Despite being slightly pale, you've got a great coloring that makes them unnecessary. I personally hate them for a number of reasons."

"Such as? You're talking to the offspring of the woman who had a Macy's shopgirl stand between her legs during labor to catch my newborn form with pantyhose to condition me to like them."

"You actually like them because your mother makes you? I'm surprised to hear that; I didn't think you'd let Sharon make decisions like that for you."

"Well, actually, I hate them. It wasn't until I realized the wonder of knee socks that I was able to avoid them almost all the time."

"I think they're terribly uncomfortable. Itchy. And a pain to get off of yourself, and even more of a pain to get off someone else."

"I should have expected that sort of answer," Paris said, attempting to ignore the visions of Olivia ripping the pantyhose off of another Hartford socialite in the bathroom of a restaurant.

Olivia stood, holding her hand out to help Paris. Paris took the extended hand, her legs feeling slightly wobbly as she stood in the heels. She was surprised to find, as she straightened, that she and Olivia were now of equal height.

"You should know by now that I prefer bluntness over subtlety, Paris." Olivia smiled warmly, her lip turning up into the faintest of smirks before she took a step back. "I just love what these heels do for your height. Your legs look amazing with the slight elevation. How do they feel?"

"Surprisingly good, actually. I haven't sprained anything yet."

"You also haven't moved yet. Let's see you walk."

Paris scrunched her eyebrows together in uncertainly.

"Don't worry, my dear. Your Prince Charming will be right here in case you fall."

Paris smiled at the reference and took a tentative step. Feeling secure, she took another and another until she had cross the room. "Well, do I walk like a total idiot?"

"Not at all. On the contrary, I think the more confident you feel and the less you think about the shoes, you'll do just fine."

Paris smiled, straightening her back and heading back towards her chair. As she neared her seat, her foot caught slightly on the flooring beneath her. She let out a small yelp as she fell, barely noticing Olivia rush to her with a start. Paris closed her eyes, waiting for her arms to instinctively jerk out to support her fall, only to fall into the soft, warm body of Olivia Hughes.

Paris opened her eyes, her nostrils taking in the heady aroma of Olivia's perfume, her eyes taking in the sight of Olivia's chest, upon which her head rested. She could feel her arms wrapped snugly around Olivia's waist, and Olivia supportively grasping her arms. Paris shivered, a reflex she knew Olivia had picked up on, as she considered the close proximity between them.

"Falling for me so soon?" Olivia asked wryly, helping Paris to gain footing. The younger girl blushed furiously at the joke, the apex of her thighs contracting tightly at the though of her face buried within Olivia's bosom, and slowly made her way to her chair.

"Thanks for catching me…I'm sure bruises would've gone just wonderfully with that dress."

"I think you were thinking too much about the shoes."

"I think I was. I'll try to relax a bit more so this sort of thing doesn't happen again, though it would be priceless to see the mortified look on Sharon's face if I were to fall in front of her friends."

"That would be quite the laugh."

Paris sighed and shook her head as she leaned forward to unbuckle her shoes.

"What's wrong?"

"Nothing…you know, it just isn't a full day in the life of Paris Gellar unless I humiliate myself."

"You mean falling because of the shoes? Please, Paris, don't be embarrassed. It happens to the best of us. I remember once on a vacation in Italy, Paul and I were taking a trans-national train to get in some sight seeing, and there was this gorgeous Italian beauty a few seats ahead of us. I followed her to the deserted dining car and as I tried my best to saunter over to her as seductively as possible, the train lurched and I completely lost my balance. I fell flat on my face right at her feet."

Paris laughed, unbuckling and removing the second shoe. "That mustn't have helped your chances with her."

Olivia giggled knowingly. "Actually, it helped quite a bit. She was awfully concerned about my knee and very eager to play nurse."

Paris shook her head, surprised at the lengths Olivia had gone to for the sake of a tryst with a woman. "She must have been something special to risk your husband being so close by.

"He's oblivious, really. He's too wrapped up in his own sexual conquests to notice my own." Olivia smiled wistfully. "God, I hadn't thought of that in years."

Paris watched as Olivia's eyes glazed over as her thoughts departed to the memory and pictured Olivia fucking a Monica Bellucci look-a-like on a train. She could feel goosebumps prickle her skin at the thought and quickly pushed them aside as she thrust her feet into her socks.

"I suppose you'll have to be going, then?" Olivia asked, her eyes focusing on Paris once more.

"It would probably be in my best interest. If we want tomorrow to be an enjoyable evening, there's quite a bit of homework calling my name to be done."

"Then get working, my dear. I expect tomorrow not to be anything less than exquisite."

Paris felt a blush begin to form once more and stood once she finished sliding into her shoes.

"Here you are, Paris," Olivia began, handing her back the dress. "I've very much enjoyed spending the afternoon with you. It was…" Olivia searched for the right word, "revealing."

Paris smirked, recalling with vividness the eyeful that Olivia managed to get. "I've enjoyed myself as well. Thank you for everything."

"It's been my pleasure. Now, get to work. I hope you enjoy the exhibit tomorrow night."

"I'm sure I will. How can I complain about good art and good company?" She smiled, her eyes connecting with Olivia's. Olivia held the gaze; Paris noticed something was growing stronger within her eyes.

"You and I will need to have an intelligent discussion over the artwork presented. It's so hard to find women my age willing to talk about the depth of a painting, rather than how it would look in their guestrooms."

"Well, when you need a reprieve, I'll be the one glowering in the corner, oozing intellectuality."

"I hope you don't hide in the corner; I won't be able to see you."

"So you'll be watching me then?"

"Naturally." Olivia smiled, sipping her refilled wine. She set down the glass and walked Paris to the door, holding it open as the young blonde stepped through with the garment bag and shoe box.

Paris glanced over her shoulder, watching the woman appraise her as she set the items into her car. As she slid into the driver's seat, Olivia called out to her and tapped on the window.

"Before I forget," Olivia began after Paris rolled down the window. She bent forward, her blouse falling and allowing Paris another glimpse at her silk-encased breasts. Her blood grew warm as she stole the glance, her thighs clenching involuntarily as she saw a dark freckle enticingly beckon from the swell of Olivia's breast, and she immediately returned her eyes to Olivia's. "I would wear a different panty if I were you; something more flattering to your shape and something a little thinner. Those cotton briefs are certainly enticing…but you can do better with something a little sexier."

Paris watched Olivia saunter back to the door, her mouth open in shock. The woman clearly was not ashamed to admit her participation in what happened. The tables had once again turned. As much as Paris would have loved to tease Olivia for staring at her nearly nude form, she knew she never could.

As she backed out of the driveway and headed home, she knew she would be too distracted to accomplish anything that night, or for the rest of the weekend for that matter. Whatever would take place at the art exhibit, Paris knew she would go to Chilton Monday morning a slightly changed person.

To Be Continued

Return to Gilmore Girls Fiction

Return to Main Page