Snap Shots Series: In Focus


"You ready?"

Willa looked up as Lance offered her a hand up. She had been watching the crowd and hadn’t noticed that he’d slid away from her and was now waiting for her to come with him.

"It’s time already?" she asked looking around. She didn’t know what time it was, but figured that Lance was keeping track. He’d told her earlier that he always made a toast at midnight so they’d agreed to get another drink just before the countdown began.

He smiled at her and she felt her insides melt. She loved the look in his eyes. She’d been flirting with him all night and he was matching her cat and mouse game perfectly. Now though she saw the need in his eyes that had been evident when she’d placed her hand on his leg. She’d done it on purpose, to test him a little. They hadn’t had much of a physical relationship and she wanted to see his reaction, which had been what she’d thought it would be. He wanted her. It was clear on his face and in the way he’d kept her hand off of his lap.

"Yeah, let’s go get a drink real quick."

They made their way to the bar just as everyone else was refilling their drinks to toast at midnight.

Lance handed her a glass a moment later and she took a sip of the almost overflowing glass. It turned out to be rum and coke and she could tell, unless she was drunker than she thought, that it was more coke than rum. Lance took her hand and moved through the crowd, pulling her along with him, out into the middle of the dance floor where everyone had stopped dancing and were now watching the huge clock near where the DJ had been set up.


Willa got bumped and was about to turn around and start a fight. The drink in her hand had almost spilled on her and she was definitely not going to have coke all over her when she left that night to go home.

"Sorry!" Joey’s wide smile greeted her. He hugged her a little and gave her a kiss on the cheek then pulled his date Kelly up to his side.


Britney and Justin appeared out of no where and joined the group.


JC made his way over with Bobbee and the group now made a circle. Everyone had glasses in their hands and all seemed excited about the countdown. Joey and Justin were making faces and JC was holding onto Bobbee tightly.


Finally Chris and Dani made it to the group and they moved with the crowd as everyone got ready to scream Happy New Year.


Somehow before the end of the countdown everyone was there with them. Willa looked around and felt at ease in their presence. She could see that her new little family was all glad to be there and she was glad to be with them.


The noise of screaming and noisemakers that filled the room made Willa’s ears ring. She let go of Lance’s hand and covered her ears. Lance smiled at her and slid his arms around her, pulling her against him again. She could feel him against her and knew that the night was far from over. They were going to be together that night, she’d tried to hint to him that’s what she’d wanted to happen and it seemed like it had worked.

She closed her eyes for a moment and tried to make a wish like she always did at midnight on New Years, but her thoughts were cut off when she felt Lance kissing her. Slowly she opened her eyes as his lips parted hers and stared into his eyes that were open and watching her. Her heartbeat went out of control as she saw the want in his eyes.

When they finally pulled back from their kiss they made their rounds and gave hugs and kisses to the others in the group then Lance pulled her back into his arms and held her close.

"You ready to go?" he asked in a whisper.

She nodded leaning into him she put her arms around him, slipping her hand into the back pocket of his slacks. She pressed herself against him and kissed his neck.

"Breakfast at four!" Justin called out then was pulled by Britney away from everyone.


Once inside the front door of the house, Lance closed and locked the door behind them then threw his keys onto the table near the door. Willa slid out of her shoes and was carrying them in her hands when he reached out and pulled her into his arms.

"What are you doing?" she asked with a laugh.

"Nothing." He let his hands slid around her so that his hands were pressing her against him. He ground his hips into hers with a mischievous smile on his face. "Just making a fool of myself." He glanced at the stairs then back at Willa. "You wanna go and change?"

Willa tried to speak but found that she couldn’t get the words out. Her voice caught in her throat so she nodded her head. She knew that changing wasn’t the real reason for them going up to the second floor. It was a simple excuse. They both suddenly seemed a bit nervous so his excuse was at least a way to get them from the front door to the bedroom without a hassle or any more nervousness than possible.

Willa slid out of his arms and held onto his hand with her free hand as they made their way up the stairs. She tucked her arm behind her and held her hand at the small of her back and as they ascended the steps his hands brushed against her backside. She enjoyed his hands on her. She couldn’t believe that a few weeks before she’d almost thrown a fit because he’d put his hands on her, now she thought she might throw a fit if he DIDN’T put his hands on her.

At the top of the stairs Lance slid past her and led the way to the bedroom. She thought back to that morning when they’d been making the bed together. She’d been making it while he was in the shower and he came out wearing a towel around his waist and had helped her finish the job. They’d only fallen asleep in each other’s arms the night before, being that they were so tired from traveling, but she remembered that she loved the idea of falling asleep and waking up in his arms. It had been months since she’d woken up in such a good mood.

"I forgot to give you your Christmas present."

"What’d you get me?" she asked.

She hadn’t really thought about their gift exchanging. She hadn’t gotten him much. She’d searched around New York and had found some stuff for his Dr. Sues bathroom downstairs. It had seemed silly getting him the CAT IN THE HAT toilet seat cover, cup, soap dish and toothbrush holder, but when he’d gotten them the night before he’d loved them. He’d thought that they were outrageous and had gone into the bathroom to put everything in there, which had distracted him from giving her the gift he’d told her he’d gotten her.

"Well, well. Aren’t we the greedy one?" he said.

"What did you want me to do?" She rolled her eyes. "Act like I’m not excited? If I remember correctly you ripped open your presents pretty quickly last night."

"It was Dr. Sues," he said with a boyish smile that ran from ear to ear. "What can I say?"

"I bet you go crazy in FAO Schwartz!" She laughed.

He stopped and gave her a sobering look. "How’d you know?"

"You’re a big child," she said with a laugh.

"You love it though," he said pulling her close he tickled her sides.

She slid away from him and into the bedroom. "Honey, I didn’t say I didn’t."

Willa went into the room and grabbed up her suitcase. She didn’t exactly know if she should be putting on her pajamas, but she thought she would try to act as normal as possible. After all she didn’t want to look too eager, although she was.

When she looked up after putting her bag back onto the floor Lance was standing in the doorway with a box in his hand. It was the size of the boxes that they gave when you bought clothes, although this one had been professionally wrapped in red and green wrapping paper that had hearts and Christmas trees all over it.

"My present?" she asked looking from his eyes to his hand and back again. She abandoned her clothes, throwing them onto the bed to wait to see what he was going to do next.

"Yep," he said with a smile. He held it out towards her and shook it a little. It made a soft crunching noise as if it was wrapped in tissue paper. "Santa came a little late this year, but I’m sure you won’t mind."

"What’s that supposed to mean?" she asked, "Are you saying that I’m spoiled?"

He smiled and came over to her. "No, just well taken care of."

"Quoting license plate covers now?" She reached out to grab the box, but he held it back to her, teasing her two times before he finally handed over the present. "I thought you’d be a little more original than that since you do seem to write songs that are pretty sincere."

Lance spoke modestly. "JC and Justin are the writers. I just sing bass."

"You can write," she said watching her from the side of her eye as she carefully began to slide the red bow off the box he’d handed her. "I still have the card you left with the roses."

Lance seemed to blush a little. "You do?"

"Of course. Romance like that can’t be thrown away. The card is in my wallet."

"That’s a strange place to keep it." Lance made a face.

"Guys keep condoms," she said, "I try to be a little more sentimental. I don’t have a picture of you so it’s the best substitute I could find."

"Did you say you don’t have a picture of me?" He laughed hard and fell onto the bed. "No picture of me…that’s a good one."

"I’m not going to shrink a 16 Magazine shot," she said.

"Well then we’ll have to get a picture of me," he looked around the room. "I think I can find one somewhere around here, although you may have to wait a while since my mom has most of the picture albums."

Willa smiled. "That would be good. We should also have someone take our picture together. I don’t have a picture of us together that isn’t from a tabloid. Elena has a copy of most of the tabloid ones. She insists she keep them with my file at the office."

Lance nodded and patted the bed next to him. She plopped down next to him and wrestled open the box. "I’ll try to get someone to take our picture then," he said, "Maybe we can find one of those picture booth things. I think there is one out on Paradise Island."

"Sounds good," she said and leaned and kissed him quickly.

When she got the box open she pushed back the delicate tissue paper to find a silky nightgown in the box.

"I know it’s predictable and corny and every guy buys their girlfriend…" He paused as she picked up the spaghetti straps of the garment and held it up to look at it. It wasn’t anything too special, she’d seen outfits like it before in Victoria’s Secret, but she loved the color. It was a midnight blue that shimmered just a little.

"It’s gorgeous," she said, "I love the color…blue is my favorite."

Lance suddenly seemed shy.

"I’m gonna go put this on and brush my teeth," she said.

"Ready for bed so soon?" he asked.

"I want to get out of these clothes. I smell like cigarette smoke and bar air."

"I’m gonna change too," he said softly.

She nodded, leaned and kissed him. "Thank you for my Christmas present."

He smiled up and her as she went to leave for the bathroom. "You’re welcome."

"I’ll be right back."

Willa went into the bathroom, leaving the door mostly open. She figured that he was going to see all of her in a few minutes so it seemed stupid to try to hide from him in the bathroom now. She slid out of her shirt and slid the cool fabric of the nightgown over her head. The bottom hem of it hung mid thigh, but didn’t show off her leg well until she removed the skirt from underneath it.

A moment later, as she was grabbing up her skirt off the floor there was a knock at the door.

"Fred?" she heard from the bedroom.

"Yeah Hon?" she said.

"Can I come in?"

"Sure," she said.

Lance pushed the door open, wearing only a pair of flannel looking pajama bottoms.

"You like it?" she asked when she saw him watching her. She spun around a little to show him.

He nodded, not moving from near the doorway.

"Did you need something Hon?" she asked.

"Brush my teeth," he said in a choppy manner never taking his eyes off of her.

She liked the feeling of him being so intrigued by her. It was nice to be appreciated that way. Brennan had been complimentary of her, but she always had a feeling that if they were in the bathroom together that he was staring at himself and not her in the mirror.

Lance made his way over to the sink and they stood side by side to brush their teeth.

"This is too funny," she said with a nervous smile as she grabbed up her toothbrush from where she’d left it near the sink that morning.

"What?" He looked at her sideways as he grabbed his and the toothpaste.

"Brushing my teeth with you." She held out the toothbrush and he put some Aquafresh on it for her.

"Stars brush their teeth too," Lance said. He put the toothpaste on his toothbrush then stuck the toothbrush into his mouth. "Actually I think many of them don’t. You’d be surprised at how many people there are in Hollywood and the music world with bad breath."

She laughed. "That’s not what I meant when I thought it was funny. It’s not funny haha. I just find it strange to think at how many women in the world I’m making jealous right now," she said and stuck her toothbrush into her mouth.

"Too many," he said.

It was a homey little scene that Willa hoped would happen on a regular basis. It was simple things like that, which kept Willa in love. If a person couldn’t do the simple things with their mate, like washing dishes or brushing teeth, then the bigger things that they did didn’t seem to be important either.

As they brushed their teeth Lance made faces at her in the mirror. At one point he tried to say something to her and almost choked. He had to spit because he started to choke, which made Willa need to spit because she started to laugh at him.

They rinsed their mouths out with water still laughing. Lance looked over. "Kiss?"

She kissed him and smiled. "Minty fresh," she said nervously with a laugh.

Lance slid his arms around her and hugged her to him. He kissed her shoulder then let his lips drag along her skin as he made his way towards her ear. "Did I tell you how I love this outfit on you?"

She smiled as he nibbled at the sensitive skin just under her earlobe. "This old thing? I’ve had this forever. This nice guy I met gave it to me," she said.

He smiled as he placed his lips against her cheek. "I figured you’d look great in it, but it’s a lot better than I imagined," he said, and rubbed her back through the material of the gown.

A few moments later they made their way back into the bedroom. Lance pulled back the covers and let her slide in then he went and turned off the lights. She thought it was a very traditional and old fashioned approach to the whole thing. She was soon delighted to find the room romantically lit up by a set of soft white lights, which ran along the junction of the ceiling and walls that were the size of Christmas tree lights.

"Who thought to put those in?" she asked.

"My sister actually," he said with a laugh. "As crazy as it sounds she knows that I'm a romantic at heart, but she also knows that I'm forgetful. She said that she didn’t want me to burn down the house with candles."

She laughed imagining Lance with candles all over the room.

"What time is it?" she asked nervously. All of a sudden she felt this great pressure on her. She hadn’t felt it a few moments before, but now that they were in bed together it was like there was no turning back.

"I love you Willa," he said softly.

She turned and buried herself in his arms when she saw him reaching for her. "I love you too." Her voice was weak when she said it, not because she wasn’t sure about her feelings, but because her nerves were getting to her.

"Then relax," he said rubbing her back again.

"I am relaxed," she said. She sounded stupid saying it because she knew how he probably could tell that she was so tense.

"Honey, it’s not like there is a film crew here or something," he laughed. "Although I can get the radio out and get the porno music going if want to." He made a noise like seventies porno music.

"No, no," she said with a smile trying not to laugh too loudly. Comedy was a good way to ease the tension between them. She remembered that day and how nervous she’d been to be in bed with him for the video, but it didn’t compare to the nervousness she felt now.

"Fred lay on your stomach and I’ll give you a back rub," he said.

"Don’t call me that," she said with a laugh then moved so that she was stomach down on the bed and waited, holding her breath until she felt his hands on her. He pushed the nightgown up her back until it was gathered up around her neck. She took the cue and slid it off, leaving her bare from the waist up, and Lance took the garment and threw it onto the end of the bed.

"So much for that outfit," she said with a smile.

"You know what?"

"Huh?" she said as his hands began to massage her back.

"I don’t understand sexy nightgowns and stuff like that."

"Huh?" she said, "Why not?"

"Well you buy them for someone to wear only for a few minutes." He sounded very philosophical about the whole thing, as if the idea of lingerie was some intriguing subject that needed to be debated. "I mean it seems like a waste."

"Well then you can return it," she said.

"No," he said, "I didn’t mean…"

"Lance, it’s ok. I know what you mean," she said and rolled over onto her back to face him before she thought about it.

Lance’s eyes stayed on her eyes, but his hands were now on her stomach just under her bra line. He took a breath. "I like you in that outfit," he said.

"I know," she said and moved her hands up around his back to pull him towards her. Bare chest to bare chest they lay there for a moment. They’d been like that before, at the video shoot in LA, but now it was just the two of them and no script. The freedom to do whatever they pleased in one hand set her at ease, but in the next moment scared her. She didn’t know what to expect and was having a hard time trying to figure out how to react to everything that was about to happen.

"You should have seen the hassle that it took to get that thing," he said.

"Lance honey?" she said.

"Yeah?" he asked.

"Shut up and kiss me," she said.

As Lance complied with her request she let her mind rest. It was just them again and it was about as perfect as it could get. They were there together and would be together in the morning, something that she’d been waiting for since San Diego.

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