“Happy Christmas everyone!” Julia screamed for the fiftieth time. She was really drunk by then.

Mark had been watching her from afar throughout the party. She seemed to follow her own rules of behavior, taking drinks away from people and giving them to others, or changing the music. She danced with everyone and no one. She made out with random people. She vomited in the kitchen sink and got back to the punch bowl right away. She grabbed people by the shoulders to tell them stories she found important, told the stories with childlike involvement, with eyes wide open, with passion. People nodded.

“Oh, Julia,” Mark said to himself, “I would love to hear your stories. I would hold your hand and tell you you are beautiful until you realized you don’t have to be like this. The world loves you, and I love you.”

“What was that?” a guy next to him asked. Mark ignored it and sprung forward. He overtook Julia under the mistletoe.

“Hey,” he said, stopping her from falling over.

“Hi,” she exclaimed, to drunk to notice his intense gaze. She laughed like crazy. “Thanks, you saved me.”

“Can I have a kiss?” he pointed up, to the mistletoe.

“Oh,” she noticed it with a smile, “Yeah, sure. Why not?”

Their lips touched. She was soft and tasted like alcohol. She was so warm and pleasant, he embraced her and made the kiss longer than he planned. She became even softer in his arms, so he squeezed her tighter. He let passion overtake him, until the back of his head tingled and his muscles began to spasm. He slip his tongue in her mouth. She struggled to pry herself free, but he would not let her. He hoped she would feel the fire too. No, he did not. He did not care. He wanted to be inside her and thrust.

She tried to scream.

Using all of his will, he let her go. He felt angry at himself, disgusted with himself, he felt suicidal. He ran outside before she could protest any further, ran down the stairs, into the parking lot. In the cold of night, he realized he had a huge hard on, so he ran to his car fast.

Sitting there alone, he thought this must be how rapists begin. Crazy with love, blinded by passion, they cannot control themselves.

No, he would not become that. Instead, he would punish her for seducing him all of her being. For disregarding his love, taking away his dignity. He would cut her with a sharp knife and let her blood escape. As he imagined the scene, he realized with sudden terror that he was beginning to orgasm.

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