Claire is standing at the edge of the room, watching the party unfold, a wine glass in one hand. Park is in the middle of the room, dancing with the nurses. Audrey is sitting at the bar drinking whiskey, looking like she’s being given some good advice from Glassman. Shaun and Lea are singing and dancing, glasses of tequila in their hands.
Morgan walks over to her. "Not in the mood for celebration?"
Claire sighs. "I am, I’m just... tired. It’s been a long day. Hell, it’s been a long year."
"It’s a New Year’s party. We’re here to celebrate the end of a long year," Morgan smirks.
Claire can’t stop herself from smiling back. Morgan glances over to the bar. "I’m going to get a refill. Want one?"
Shrugging, Claire looks down at her
now-empty glass. "Sure," she flashes Morgan a quick grin, which the other woman returns before she walks away.
Claire watches Morgan walk away, admiring the blonde’s confidence as she saunters across the floor, her blonde hair flowing behind her. Morgan steps up to the bar to order the drinks, and Claire can’t help but notice the way her black dress is tight in all the right places, accentuating her graceful figure. Claire sighs, reluctantly drawing her eyes away from Morgan’s silhouette and back to the middle of the room. She laughs as Park does an enthusiastic pirouette and falls onto the floor.
"Two glasses of champagne, please."
Morgan gives the bartender a polite smile. She turns away from the bar, glancing back towards where Claire stands on the other side of the room. Morgan watches a smile spread across the brunette’s face when Park (who is at least a little bit tipsy) ends up sprawled on the ground, after trying to show off how good his balance apparently is. Everyone laughs as Park gives a thumbs up from where he’s lying on the floor, but Morgan’s not looking at anyone but Claire.
Claire looks back to see Morgan walking back towards her with two full wine glasses. As Claire is taking one of the glasses from her, their fingers touch and it’s like an electric shock. Claire’s heart speeds up and as much as she wants to pull her hand away, she wants to stay touching Morgan more. Morgan moves the glass toward Claire and Claire suddenly remembers what she’s doing. Blushing, she takes the glass and looks down at her shoes. "Thanks," she murmurs.
Morgan shrugs, seemingly oblivious to Claire’s panic. "I got champagne. I hope that was what you wanted."
Claire chuckles. "Yeah, that was exactly what I wanted, thanks."
When Claire’s hand brushes hers, Morgan swears she’s about to faint. She rolls her eyes at herself. How can the smallest touch make her feel so many things at once?
Claire glances down to check the time on her watch. "Two minutes left til midnight," she looks back up at Morgan, slipping her a gentle smile. Morgan laughs softly. "Let’s hope next year is better," she smirks.
"Cheers to that." Claire raises her glass. Morgan tips her glass to meet Claire’s with a wry smile. They both turn back to watch the party unfold.
Morgan occasionally glances back at Claire to try and take in everything, every tiny detail of the way she looks; the way her dress sways when she walks, the way her curly hair frames her face, the way her lipstick looks on her soft lips, the way her shoes give her that extra bit of height, the way her eyes seem to twinkle when she smiles, the way Morgan just adores her. She wants to remember everything about Claire tonight. Trying to freeze this moment in her head forever; one minute until the new year, with Claire Browne standing next to her, laughing out loud at Park, Shaun, and Lea all dancing together, her smile wide and her eyes full of joy. Morgan never wants to forget the way Claire looks right in this moment.
"Thirty, twenty nine, twenty eight, twenty seven..."
Claire looks up at Morgan as people start counting down the seconds. Morgan’s hair falls softly across her shoulders, as she looks forward, grinning. She turns to Claire. Their eyes meet, and Morgan’s gaze turns into something gentler. Claire can’t stop her eyes from flicking down to Morgan’s lips. When she brings her gaze back up to Morgan’s eyes, she can see a flash of excited shock before her expression turns to analytical, the other doctor trying to figure out what’s going through Claire’s head.
"Twenty, nineteen, eighteen..."
Claire’s lips curve up in a coy half smile, but Morgan is still trying to figure out if there’s even a possibility that Claire might feel the same way about her.
"Fourteen, thirteen, twelve..."
Seeing the cautious hope on Morgan’s face, Claire decides to take a risk. She steps forward, closer to Morgan, and takes Morgan’s hand into hers.
"Eight, seven, six..."
Claire’s hand is soft and warm and Morgan never wants to let go. She squeezes Claire’s hand, to let her know she’s not going to pull away, and grins as a hopeful smile spreads across the brunette’s face.
Morgan takes a step in so the two women are only inches apart.
Claire swears her heart melts as a gentle smile spreads across Morgan’s face.
"Happy New Year, Morgan," Claire murmurs, still staring into the blonde’s soft blue eyes.
"Happy New Year," Morgan whispers.
They stand there like that for a second, just staring at each other, wondering what the other is going to do next.
Claire breaks the silence between them, by suddenly stepping forward, wrapping her arms around Morgan’s neck and pressing her lips to Morgan’s softly, before pulling away quickly.
Claire tastes like wine and warmth and everything Morgan has ever wanted. But she’s too shocked to kiss her back, and all too soon, Claire is pulling away.
Claire’s kiss has given Morgan a rush of confidence, and she needs Claire, and it’s a new year, and they’re slightly drunk, so she pulls Claire back, wrapping her arms around the other doctor’s waist, holding her close.
Claire melts into Morgan’s embrace, tilting her head slightly upwards to meet the other woman’s lips. The feel of them together, bodies pressed close, makes Claire feel so many emotions she doesn’t even know how to name. She has never wanted someone so badly, and finally being in Morgan’s arms makes Claire’s heart feel too big for her ribcage. Claire opens her mouth slightly, and Morgan slips her tongue into Claire’s mouth, deepening the kiss.
It feels like months pass before they finally pull apart, arms still wrapped around each other. Claire rests her forehead against Morgan’s as they both catch their breath. Morgan breaks into a big grin.
Claire has a good feeling about this year.