AN: Here it is! Thank you, my dearest Woodshrew and Spry, for waiting this long!


Granyt led us into the auditorium, Sparta-kicked the door shut, and ran back in front of us to lean against the stage.

Mouse sighed. "What are we doing here?"

"Honey's gonna sing something!" Granyt declared, catching me off guard.

"I am?" I asked, surprised.

"Yay!" Whistle chirped, smiling at me.

"If you want to," Jewels said quickly, giving me the impression that Granyt had already discussed this with her, though I had no idea when.

I thought a moment. "Okay. But The Duke has to help." I turned to look at him.

He looked a bit surprised, then shrugged. "Sure. What song?"

I turned back to everyone else. "Go find a seat. We'll be ready in a sec." They listened. The girls clumped in the middle of the second row, while Mouse sat in the back corner, looking annoyed, as usual.

I dug my iPod out of my pocket, found the song, and started climbing the stairs up to the stage as I showed it to The Duke.

He smiled. "Of course."

I stuck my tongue out at him, smiling, and plugged my iPod into the speaker behind the curtain. I hit play and ran back to the center of the stage, where he was standing. As everyone recognized the music, the girls giggled, while Mouse groaned.

"I really can't stay," I sang, feigning some innocence.

"But, baby, it's cold outside," he sang, edging closer and obviously trying not to grin.

"I've got to go away," I sang, taking a step away from him.

"But, baby, it's cold outside," he sang again, taking the same-sized step in the same direction.

"This evening has been," I sang, repeating the action.

"Been hoping that you'd drop in," he sang, doing the same.

"So very nice," I sang, turning and walking back around him.

He managed to catch my right hand. "I'll hold your hands, they're just like ice"

I giggled and pulled it out of his grasp. "My mother will start to worry"

He gently put his hand on my arm, smiling almost seductively, but I could see the laughter he was trying to hide in his eyes. "Beautiful, what's your hurry?"

I pulled away, letting myself smirk just a bit as I slowly crossed the stage. "My father will be pacing the floor"

He caught up to me and leaned in too close, trying to make me laugh. "Listen to the fireplace roar"

I pressed my lips together for a moment to keep myself from laughing as I stepped away from him again. "So, really, I'd better scurry"

He pouted. "Beautiful, please don't hurry"

I let myself grin, still struggling not to laugh. "But maybe just a half a drink more"

He grinned back. "Put some records on while I pour" He stepped away, confusing me.

I rocked back on the balls of my feet a bit. "The neighbors might faint"

He stepped back over and pretended to hand me a drink, winking at me and making keeping a straight face ten times harder. "Baby, it's bad out there"

I pretended to take it and sip, managing to keep my smiling at a minimum. "Say, what's in this drink?"

He gestured stage right, obviously pretending it was a door or window, though I couldn't tell which. "No cabs to be had out there"

I took a step away again, turning my back to him but glancing back over my shoulder. "I wish I knew how"

He ducked in front of me and put his hand under my chin to tilt it up our inch of height difference and made a face, making it even harder for me to keep my sweet smile. "Your eyes are like starlight now"

I slipped out of his grasp and started walking the other way, my smile becoming a bit more mischievous. "To break this spell"

He slipped in front of me again and gently took a piece of my hair in his hand, his expression far too sweet for him. "I'll hold your hat, your hair looks swell"

I giggled quietly and turned my back to him again, effectively making him let go, though I didn't move away this time. "I ought to say no, no, no, sir"

He stepped closer as I turned to face the audience I'd all but forgotten. "Mind if I move in closer?"

I shrugged and started walking away from him again. "At least I'm gonna say that I tried"

He didn't pop up in front of me again, but I glanced back to see his hands on his hips, making me giggle again, "What's the sense in hurtin' my pride?"

I sighed too loudly, still smiling. "I really can't stay"

He slid next to me, leaning in so his shoulder touched the base of my neck. "Oh, baby, don't hold out"

I turned to face him again, looking as sweet as possible. He joined in on the third word of the next line. "Oh, but it's cold outside" He took my hand and we did an amateur waltz for the next two bars.

I pulled away, grinning, and looked in the other direction, trying to look innocent again. "I simply must go"

He leaned in a ridiculous amount, his hands on my shoulder, his chin on top. "But, baby, it's cold outside"

I giggled and stepped away, feeling my hair hit him as I turned and he stumbled. "The answer is no"

He stepped up behind me and set his hand on my shoulder. "But, baby, it's cold outside"

I slipped away and slowly walked backwards as I sang, hands clasped behind my back. "This welcome has been"

He kept my pace, grinning slightly. "How lucky that you dropped in"

I pushed my hair behind my shoulder, turning to walk parallel to the edge of the stage. "So nice and warm"

He placed his hand on my shoulder again, effectively making me stop, and gestured stage right. "Look out the window out that storm"

I turned and walked downstage, smirking slightly but fluttering my eyelashes innocently. "My sister will be suspicious"

He slipped in front of me and something about his expression put me off guard, but I couldn't pinpoint it. "Gosh, your lips look delicious"

I brushed it off and looked off to the right. "My brother will be there at the door"

He gently placed his hand on my waist, surprising me. "Waves upon the tropical shore"

I didn't move, confused. "My maiden aunt's mind is vicious"

He leaned in, his lips barely brushing mine. "Ooh, your lips are delicious"

My breath caught in my throat and I missed my cue. I rushed my words a bit to catch up, matching my scrambled thoughts. "But maybe just a cigarette more"

He looked confused from my reaction, his hand dropping. "Never such a blizzard before"

I stumbled backwards, still in shock. "I-I've gotta get home"

He stepped closer, nearly pleading with his eyes. "But, baby, you'd freeze out there"

I turned right and started walking, resisting the urge to run. "Say, lend me a coat?"

He kept my pace, walking next to me and therefore forcing me to see how hurt he looked. "It's up to your knees out there"

I shook my head, still trying to get my thoughts together, turned, and started in the other direction. "You've really been grand"

He grabbed my hand, stopping me, trying to catch my eyes. "I thrill when you touch my hand"

I turned to him and pulled out of his grasp, my eyes locked on his. "But don't you see?"

He looked like I'd just punched him in the face. "How can you do this thing to me?"

I swallowed hard and turned away from him. "There's bound to be talk tomorrow"

He didn't come up next to me, but I glanced back to see him looking at the ground, slumped slightly. "Think of my lifelong sorrow"

I looked off to the side, trying to get rid of the guilt and unbelievable temptation to grab him and press my lips against his. "At least there will be plenty implied"

My next glance revealed him looking at me, almost pained and suffocatingly sad. "If you got pneumonia and died"

I attempted a smile, knowing that the song was almost over. "I really can't stay"

He stepped up behind me, to my left, and ghosted his arm around my waist, never actually touching me, silently pleading. "Get over that old out"

I lightly placed my hand on his, leading it to rest on my hip, surprising him, as we sang the last line together. "Oh, but it's cold outside"

My lips were four inches away from his. Three… two… one and a half… one–

A catcall made me jump away.

I looked down and saw Tails and Melody standing at the doors. I glanced back at The Duke, who looked surprised, tore myself out of his grasp, and took off running down the stairs.

"Did that come out right?" Melody was asking Tails.

The younger girl nodded, smiling. "Perfect!"

I practically sprinted to the entrance, ignoring Granyt and Jewels yelling my name, surprised, only to have Melody grab my arm.

"Honey, are you okay?" Tails asked, looking surprised and confused. More so than usual. Melody looked at me meaningfully.

I hesitated a moment, then nodded. "Yeah. Yeah, I just need a minute alone." I pulled out of her grasp and ran out the door.

AN: Ohhhhhhhh, the draaaaaaaaaaaaaaaama... ^^

Challenge: Write this scene from The Duke's point of view. I'm not writing the next chapter until someone does this.

Song: Baby, It's Cold Outside