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Will Gardner wasn't a jealous man, certainly not a possessive one, and most definitely not when it came to a woman he wasn’t even in a relationship with. No, he wasn’t the envious type, and yet there was something about the way the firm’s newest client seemed to latch onto his business partner.

Mark Lindbergh; a business mogul with too much money for his own good, had managed to worm his way into a spot next to Diane. His hand grazing her too often and dipping just a little too low on her back. He grinned as she innocently laughed along to his joke, his smile almost predatory. There was something about him, touching and taking liberties with his co-worker that had Will’s fist clenching and blood boiling.

Will had only been working with Diane Lockhart for the past six months. Her reputation had preceded her, as had his and so the merge into Stern, Lockhart and Gardner had clicked almost instantaneously. The pair worked well together and with Stern gallivanting all over the world, they had grown close fast.

Diane was smart, witty and one hell of a litigator; she also had the uncanny ability to drive him absolutely mad. Yes, they agreed on most things but their disagreements were nothing short of extraordinary. He’d yet to meet a woman that could match, if not best him in an argument. The fights were fierce, intense and if he was being honest, ridiculously fun. She met him toe for toe, questioned his logic with sinful diction and blue eyes that could pierce through your very soul. Their sparing had soon become one of his favourite pastimes. They were the perfect match in almost every way and the firm was thriving as a result.

The Christmas party had actually been his idea, an evening of festivities to commend the staff on the hard work they’d accomplished over the past year, however in this very moment, as he watched Mark Lindbergh slyly eye his partner up and down, Will was deeply regretting the entire thing.

Will wasn’t blind, he was well aware Diane was an attractive woman, gorgeous even, but he’d never even entertained the thought of her as anything more than a business partner and friend. Sure she was beautiful, slim, toned figure, eyes like sapphires, golden curls and of course there were her legs. God, those legs, you could write sonnets about Diane’s legs; no man on earth could help but gape. Yes, she was downright beautiful, but Will had honestly never thought of her as anything other than a platonic friend, until now.

Perhaps it was the third or fourth bourbon burning its way down his throat, or maybe it was left over tension from their spat just prior to the party. It could possibly be the way Mark’s hands slid casually over her dress, his gaze anything but innocent. Maybe, it was the dress itself. Diane had chosen a dark red dress; of course to tie into the Christmas theme and it  was glued to her body like a second skin. It was a few daring inches shorter than she’d normally wear to the office and absolutely stunning. The black pumps only added to the appeal of the outfit and whatever the reason, envy, lust or alcohol, Will was suddenly thinking of his new business partner in a very unprofessional way. Imagining that dress hiked up and those legs wrapped around him.

Will watched Diane, his eyes greedily taking her in, following a path from those shining shoes all the way up to her sparkling smile. His heart pounded wildly as he glared at the other man taking the liberty of sliding his hand ever so subtly over her ass. Suddenly the only thing Will Gardner could think of was that he had to put a stop to it immediately. Screw the ramifications of offending such a high profile client, screw the consequences of Diane’s wrath, he just had to get her away from that slimy bastard and then hopefully alone in a dark corner.

Throwing back the last of the amber liquid in his glass, he slammed it to the table beside him and moved swiftly across the room.

“Will,” Diane greeted happily with a smile that didn’t quite meet her eyes. Will grinned back anyway before turning his attention to the man across from him.

“Sorry to interrupt,” He began his voice laced with obligatory politeness. “But unfortunately I need to steal Diane away, bit of an emergency” The other man’s hard eyes darkened and Will could tell he didn’t believe a word of what he’d said.

“Oh,” Diane remarked. “I’m sorry Mark, if you’ll excuse me.” She said sweetly.

“Of course,” Mark’s eyes thinned in Will’s direction. “I’ll just get you another drink, Scotch was it?”

“Bourbon.” Will and Diane corrected simultaneously. Mark smiled bitterly; nodding as Will gently took Diane by the elbow and led her away.

“Thank you!” Diane whispered under her breath. “I’ve been desperate for a way out of that conversation for the last 20 minutes!” Will chuckled still leading her away.

“And if his hand got any lower…” Will added.

Diane turned to him eyes wide. “You saw that too? I was honestly about to castrate him!”

Will let out a loud, genuine laugh and moved his hand to her lower back, guiding her around the clusters of people toward the door. The thin material of her dress hardly disguising the heat radiating from her body and making Will swallow hard. God, how was it possible to want her so badly, when just an hour ago, she was just his friend, colleague; just Diane.

“Where are we going?” She asked, frowning as they exited the conference room that was currently doubling as the main party area. Will merely shook his head, gliding her alongside him into an abandoned office; dark and intimately private.

“Will?” Diane questioned concern etched onto her blue eyes. Will remained silent and closed the door, flicking the lock. Diane’s frown deepened as he turned to face her. “What’s wrong?” Will stared intensely at her and suddenly she was truly worried.

“Just don’t think for a minute, okay?” Diane gulped, unsure of where this was going.

“Why-“ Her question was cut off abruptly, as Will encroached on her; gently pushing her against the wall of the darkened room. “Will?” She whispered, confused.

“Just don’t think.” He repeated and Diane’s eyes went wide as he stepped closer still. Her heart raced, her breath mixing with his. Smiling comfortingly, Will’s hand moved to her waist while the other moved to the nape of her neck; just brushing her blonde locks. “Don’t think.” He said again as he leant into her; his lips just barely touching hers.

Diane froze, her body suddenly all too aware what was about to happen.

Will kissed her softly, testing her reaction, desperate to have her but also understanding she may not want this. Diane remained frozen, her lips unmoving for what felt like an eternity, until as if on instinct, her arms which, up until then, had been stationary at her sides, moved to envelope him. Deepening the kiss her hands gripped either side of his face, pulling him more forcefully into her.

Diane’s eyes slid closed as she moaned, suddenly hungry for his kisses, her tongue tangling with his. Will’s hand drifted up from her waist, lightly grazing the side of her breast.

“Ahhh,” She gasped, pulling away from the kiss. Will began trailing his lips down her neck, toward her exposed collarbone, her hands holding him tightly to her. “What are we doing?” Diane asked breathlessly, confused but not wanting it to stop.

“Your dress,” Will murmured as he sucked on the skin below her ear, his hands both moving to the hem of the fitted red outfit.

“My dress?” She asked her voice husky, slowly she used her hands to pull his mouth back to hers for another desperate, hot kiss and her question went unanswered. She could taste the bourbon on his tongue and knew she’d be blaming this whole situation on that in the future.

His tongue slipped easily into her mouth and they both groaned. Will’s hands continued on their path, stopping as they reached the lace of her panties. Diane panted, muddled and yet desperate for his hands to travel just a little further. This made no sense, this was Will, her business partner, her friend, this was wrong. They shouldn’t.

Pulling away from him suddenly, her hands that had been curling into his hair were now firmly braced against his chest; holding him from her. Blinking her eyes open; desperately denying the desire to devour him, she locked eyes with him.

“Will,” She began, gulping as his thumbs slipped beneath the lace covering her hips. “We shouldn’t. We can’t.” Will stared intently at her, his eyes honest and lust filled.

“Tell me to stop,” He breathed as one of his hands slipped beneath the dainty lace and cupped her.

“Jesus.” She gasped, her eyes rolling back into her head.

“Tell me to stop, Diane.” He spoke again and she shivered as he moved his fingers ever so slightly, touching her right there.

Diane rocked her hips toward his hand and her own slipped to his shoulders pulling him closer.

“Why?” She asked needing to know but also not really caring. This felt too good.

“Your dress, Mark Lindbergh, bourbon, you take your pick.” He replied honestly, finally dipping his fingers into her.

“Oh!” Diane sighed, her head tilting back, opening her neck up for more of his bruising kisses. Will’s free hand snuck back up her body, cupping her breast, his thumb grazing her nipple and causing her to gasp.

“Just this once.” She said, almost lost to the sensation of his touch.

“Yes,” He confirmed, his tongue mimicking the movements of his fingers as he kissed her passionately. Diane arched her back as his thumb circled her clit, her whole body shivering.

“Please,” She begged and Will let out a small laugh. The Infamous Diane Lockhart begging, who would have thought? Too far gone to care, Diane ground her hips against his hand as he slid his fingers slickly in and out of her.

Will leaned in for one more breathless kiss, before pulling back to watch her face as he circled his thumb harder.

“Yes!” She cried and Will bit his lip watching her come undone. Her hair messed from his hands, her lipstick smeared from his kisses, her face flushed from his touch. Diane bulked and shook in his arms, pleasure washing over her unexpectedly.  

Will smirked, slowly removing his hand from her panties and bringing his fingers to his mouth making sure she was watching as he licked them clean. Diane blinked, still shivering slightly.

“What was that?” She asked gasping for air; suddenly feeling this was all too intimate, too real. What had they just done?

“Well, if you have to ask...” He replied cockily. Diane frowned, her expression unimpressed.

“Will,” She said her meaning clear as she pushed her red dress back down her thighs, almost embarrassed as to the situation she’d found herself in. She’d just let her business partner make her come. What the hell had she been thinking?

“I know.” He answered her.

“We work together.” She added, no longer sure who she was trying to convince.


“It can’t ever happen again.” Diane mumbled as the pair backed away from each other slowly. “We can’t.”

“I know,” Will agreed. “It won’t” He assured her, smiling sadly at her. “Just promise me you’ll stay away from Lindbergh?”

Diane let out a shaky laugh running a hand through her hair, attempting to tame it.

“So that’s what this was about?” She smirked. “Jealousy?”

“And that dress.” He joked back and she knew they’d be okay, that this would be written off as a drunken mishap, or at least that’s what they’d call it. Walking over to him, Diane smiled before placing a kiss on his cheek.

“If you were a few years older,” She added in jest making Will laugh loudly.

“If wishing made it so!” He grinned back.

“Indeed.” Diane said knowingly. Using her thumb she swiped away her lipstick that had ended up on his lips. “Are we okay?” She questioned in a slightly more serious tone.

“Always,” Will responded kindly.

“We should get back out there,” Diane nodded in the direction of the Christmas party.

“You go ahead, I’m gonna hang back a few minutes.” Will said and Diane frowned confused, before Will tilted his head downwards and her eyes followed.

“Oh!” She gasped surprised, suddenly realizing that while he’d taken care of her, she hadn’t exactly returned the favour. “Did you want me to-?” She hinted, casting her blue eyes back to his pants.

“Nah, it’s fine.“ He smiled and Diane nodded feeling bad but also understanding that it was probably for the best that she didn’t.

“If you’re sure…” She said not meaning it.

“I am. I’ll see you out there.” Diane flashed him one last grin before she turned and flicked the lock on the door. Hesitating slightly on the handle, she looked back over her shoulder.

“Thank you, Will”

“Merry Christmas, Diane.”