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It’s so freaking cold.

Anna’s hands shiver like she’s suddenly aged six hundred years, but all she’s trying to do is reach into her bag to grab her wallet, damn it . She’s almost at the station, and she has to continue reminding herself that she has to keep on moving, lest her legs freeze and she falls over and breaks her nose or something. But, technically, with all this snow, even if she falls, she wouldn’t break anything. Anyway, yeah. She should just focus on making it to the station.

This storm is getting worse, the snow slapping at her face feels like ice needles, and she prays that the trains will wait for her before they inevitably shut down. For a moment, she envisions stepping into the train, feeling the blast of heat from within. Ah, how wonderful would that be?

Seriously, even the warmth of body heat is good. Y’know, the heat that comes from a crowd? The humidity of their breaths, all cramped in a tiny space? God, Anna is down for that. Just anything. Give her some warmth, please.  

With the station finally in sight, she laments on how it’s not one of those bigger structures. It’s a simple, outdoor one with a row of turnstiles. Beep-beep with her pass and she’s on the platform. She grabs something that feels like her wallet, fishes it out of her bag, and taps it on the sensor.

By default, the little gate would open up for her, and, similarly, by default, she can run for the approaching train (and get a taste of that delicious warmth).

… But what’s this?

She taps her wallet against the sensor, but there’s no beep-beep. The gate isn’t opening for her.

What the hell?

Anna opens up her wallet and – to her dismay – realizes that her pass isn’t in it.

In that moment, she may have experienced cardiac arrest. Legit. Her heart does this weird, dizzying, mocking beat. It makes her head spin. Blood has stopped circulating. She’s probably going to die. Or maybe she’s already dead?

Wait. No, no, no. Not now. She can’t die now. She’s too young! Search again. She has to search again.

Where can she possibly have dropped it? Is it in her bag somewhere? She steps off to the side so as to not block the way, and then she shuffles, digs, fishes for the stupid pass. How can it even slip out? This is so messed up!

The little jingle of the announcement plays, and Anna knows that if she doesn’t hurry, this is going to be it. She’s going to be stranded in the middle of butt-fuck nowhere, in the middle of a blizzard. And then, she will inevitably die. The only option she has left is to purchase an actual ticket. Okay. Okay. There is hope, yet. Anna books it towards those ticket machines that a local like her has never ever used. Turns out all but one is out of order, yay. She quickly assesses the buttons and options and deduces – screw it – any ticket will work! Just get something! Something that can let her through the gates!

“The next train to arrive on platform two is headed for Grand Central Terminal. Please stand back from the yellow line.”

Oh god, oh god, oh god. How do you pay for a ticket? Is it button first or payment first?! This is so unnecessarily confusing—

“Um, excuse me, if you’re not going to buy a ticket, do you mind stepping out of the way?”

To state that she’s offended is an understatement. How dare this person interrupt her when she’s trying to figure this infernal contraption out?! Anna’s striving to get some heat, damn it! She puffs up her cheeks, spins around, and is determined to give this lady a beating for having the audacity to rush her, but then—

Shit.

Round, cerulean eyes. Dark, thick lashes. Light, pale skin. White-gold, platinum blonde hair.

S-such a pretty face. No, not just pretty. She’s actually kind of hot. Totally her type – (wait, what?) – no, what? What the hell?! That is not what she should be thinking!

Anna reverts to her angry face, puffing up her cheeks and whatnot before starting, “Well, I’m sorry, but you’re not the only one trying to buy a ticket.”

The hot – er, t-the blonde’s expression twists in what seems to be shock and confusion. Her mouth hangs slightly open, offended, like she has something to say. She breathes in, her shoulders rise, and Anna is fully prepared to retort, whatever it is that this girl is going to say to her, but then—

Another jingle.

“Err… Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. This is your driver speaking. Due to the unforeseen weather, all trains headed for Grand Central Terminus have been cancelled. This will be the final train departing until further notice.”

“What?!” Anna exclaims, her neck stretching like a giraffe’s as she tries to peek at the platform.

The doors to the passenger cars are still ajar, so there is hope. There is freaking hope. Problem is, there is literally nobody on the platform and so the train has no reason to wait, and she highly doubts the driver can see anyone coming, but he had to make that warning because that’s his job and, oh man. Oh man oh man oh man. What the hell is she doing? Oh, just still repeating in her head that there is hope despite knowing it’s the complete opposite and – holy shit – she doesn’t want to freeze to death! She’s too young!

“I’m sorry, but are you done?”

And this stranger is not helping with her added stress!

“Will you be quiet?!” Anna snaps as she tries to figure out where to insert her credit card, which serves to be a mistake because the machine, as she can observe, is quite obviously ancient. So this means that it doesn’t actually accept anything but coins.

Which is, like, great.

“Can you get out of the way if you can’t figure it out? The train’s about to leave,” the girl behind her says, and anyone can tell that she’s losing her patience.

For the slightest moment, Anna considers standing her ground. If she’s going to suffer, then so will this stupid, pressure-inducing stranger. Screw her.

… not literally. But, like — wait, why is she thinking about this? What was she getting at?!

(This is probably her stress speaking. She’s had a long day.)

Anna exhales. Her breath comes out through her nostrils and the overall metaphoric implication behind this scene is almost comedic. Biting her lower lip, she takes a step back and points aggressively at the machine.

The blonde shoots her a brief glare before taking her step forward. Anna sees her analyze the machine meticulously – all focused and serious – and then she reaches into her bag, taking out this glossy, black, zipped coin purse (which Anna knows is Chanel because she herself has been eyeing it for a while and, oh, okay. So this girl’s rude and rich?! Who the hell needs a Chanel coin purse anyway!) to take out a few dollars to insert into the slot.

That should be the end of it. The blonde would have bought her ticket and be off, but then what happens?

The coins fall straight down to the deposit, and the metallic clanging makes a few hairs behind Anna’s neck rise. At this point, she doesn’t have the liberty to laugh. If it doesn’t work for someone who has coins, who’s to say that this damn ticket machine would work for anyone at all?

There’s only one option left.

She needs to head up the platform and get inside the train, fare evasion penalty be damned. Paying a few hundred dollars is way more worth it than staying out in the cold. Plus, if she does get a penalty, she can just dispute it, right? Not her fault the stupid ticket machine doesn’t work.

Yes, that’s the plan.

She has the plan laid out perfectly in her head, but just as she spins on her heels, she hears one more jingle.

“Thank you for your patience. The train will now depart. Please stand back from the doors…”

No. No, no, no, no!

“Wait!” Anna yells, knowing full well that the driver won’t be able to hear her, and then she sprints for the gate – leaping over it like an Olympic-tier hurdler and she bolts up the stairs. The snow stabs into the skin of her face and Anna swears that the gods are not on her side, because as soon as she arrives on the platform, the doors have closed.

She’s not giving up there, though. Anna runs for a door, knocking on it even though no one’s inside. No one can help. She thinks fast – “Hey!” she calls to the front of the train, waving her arms wildly. “Mr. Train-driver, please wait!” And then she runs. The train is already moving, but she runs as she flails her arms while making these desperate (yet futile) cries.

Anna does this until she’s reached the end of the platform. There’s nowhere else to run. Literally. The train’s already disappeared into the thick storm, as she can barely see the lights that trail behind it.

God.

She wants to cry. Anna clenches her eyes shut and throws her head back in agony. It’s cold and she’s hungry and she’s miles from home and she’s… ugh. She doesn’t want to die, yet. Anna pulls her scarf up to her nose, breathing into it to generate a bit of heat. Just a bit to last her a few more seconds, perhaps.

Alright. It’s fine. It’s okay.

She wants to believe that. Truly, she does. But how can she when everything’s looking so bleak? From the moment she realized that she didn’t have her pass, to the part where she basically got trolled by the ticket machine… her luck had already left the station. These thoughts consume her as she heads down the stairs. It’s simply way too cold up on the platform. At least down here, there’s some cover, even if she’s still outdoors.

And that’s when she makes eye contact with the blonde.

Yes, yes. It’s not her fault. Anna’s conscience tells her this, reminding her that getting trolled by the ticket machine is nobody’s fault. But she’s angry, okay?! She wants to vent it out on someone!

So, before she can even control herself, Anna does the bitchiest thing she has ever done. She scoffs, making it unnecessarily loud, and then proceeds to roll her eyes at the girl.

In response, the girl knits her brows together in fury, but she doesn’t say anything. Instead, she turns her back on Anna and crosses her arms. In spite of everything, the entire scene is quite dramatic. Mind you, it’s awkward too. Almost as awkward as bumping into your ex after a bad break up. Egh.

But instead of being the petty person that she may or may not be, the voice in her suggests that, perhaps, she should look for some sort of shelter? You know, before she actually freezes to death? Anna takes her phone and immediately opens up the maps. The ideal thing to do right now is to search for a hotel or something. There is no way she’s sleeping in the streets, a storm or not.

And is it luck? It has to be luck, because there’s a motel nearby!

She does a little internal cheer – fist in the air and everything – and shoves her phone back in her pocket. Out of curiosity, she shoots a glance at the stranger who, likewise, has her phone out and is – similarly – experiencing some sort of eureka! moment.

Yeah, that’s right. Look at her and those large, round eyes that sparkle effortlessly like the translucent, ice crystals of each snowflake. Look at her being all cocky with her pouty lips that have gone crimson because of the cold. And, yeah, totally look at her scrunching up her shoulders and crossing her arms and trying to keep warm while being so cute and huggable and…

Stop. Stop it, Anna.

She shakes her head, clearing her stupid thoughts away. And that’s when Anna realizes: does the stranger have the same idea? Is she headed to the same inn? Okay, well. Good for her if she is. It’s, like, whatever. Best not to think about it too much.

And with that last thought, Anna adjusts her scarf up one last time to her nose and starts pacing herself to the where Google Maps has directed her. It’s just a ten-minute walk. Yes, and she’s most certainly going to ignore the fact that the blonde is following closely behind her.

Yep. She definitely has the same idea.


So it goes without saying that once they arrive at the motel, the first thing they do simultaneously is to make their way towards the lobby.

… Even if the building looks old and beat up and, well, about to collapse.

For sure Anna physically cringed when the structure came into view. The sad little thing is like any haunted motel you’d see on TV. Actually, not just haunted –it looks like one of those locations where drug cartels make their deals. It’s… pretty scary.

The effect is increased tenfold when she enters (wherein she doesn’t bother holding the door for the girl following closely behind her), because the lights are eerily dim – flashing, even, and the wallpapers are decorated in this murky, disgusting shit- green that straight up looks like moss. Old, dead moss. It also doesn’t help that the receptionist is this big, burly dude with a joint between his lips, and, ugh, the smell of weed is suffocating! He’s just playing on his phone, leg up on a chair and all. Ew, and look at his gross, oily (fittingly dirty -blonde) hair! God, is he picking his nose?!

This is beyond gross. Anna physically cringes and considers turning away because, for real, she thinks she’s going to gag. Not only is the setting well, unsettling, and, oh, is she actually supposed to approach this disgusting dude who’s… wow, okay, he’s eating his boogers now! Ew, ew, ew! The only thing holding her back from bolting out is the heat, which she sure as hell isn’t going to get out there in the blizzard—

“Excuse me, I’d like to book a room for the night,” says a certain someone behind her.

It’s natural. Anna’s eyes widen so much her eyes threaten to fall out of their sockets. A newfound rage fills her and she spins around, jaw hanging loose and she’s going to let this girl have it—

“I’m sorry, but,” she starts as-a-matter-of-factly, “I was here first,” and Anna does this as she glares at her with this look that screams ‘You’re not going to do anything until I’m done booking my room.

The blonde quirks a brow – a sign of annoyance. “Well, I only spoke up because it appeared as though you were going to stall the queue. Again.”

“Stall the—” Anna gapes. Emphasis on again. “Excuse me. What exactly are you implicating, here?”

“Nothing,” the blonde shrugs, seemingly nonchalant, but anyone can tell that she’s just being passive aggressive. “Just bummed out that I couldn’t purchase my ticket in time for the train.”

Oh, she did not just say that!

“I’m sorry, what?”

She shrugs again. “Just stating facts.”

Alright. Okay, then. If this girl is going to gaslight her, then it is on.

Anna rests her hands on her hips, adjusting her tone to be just as passive aggressive as she responds, “Huh. Well, I’m surprised you’re not bummed out that the machine wasn’t actually functioning. Or did you continue to insert the coins as I attempted to chase after the train? Y’know. Actually tried to do something efficient?”

That probably triggered the stranger in some way, because right then, the façade of nonchalance falters. Her thin, perfect brows narrow and she crosses her arms in front of her chest.

Ooh. What a girl-boss, Anna thinks with an eye-roll.

With a more defiant tone, the blonde starts again, “If I had more time, I would’ve—”

“Fixed the machine yourself, right?” Anna cuts her off. Now she knows it’s her pettiness speaking, because she usually isn’t such a bitch. “Why didn’t you just build yourself a train while you were at it, hm?”

“I’m sorry, what are you—”

“Ladies, ladies…”

But before their voices can escalate any more, they are promptly interrupted by the stoner receptionist, who is now grinning at them. Dazed. Half-dead. Whatever. The dude’s clearly high.

“I’m sorry to tell you that our role-playing rooms are completely booked…” he slurs as he speaks, “… oh, wait… this isn’t a love hotel. Quit that job years ago, ha-ha.”

Anna’s instinct is to grimace. Did he just call her and this annoying stranger lovers ?! “We’re not—”

“—together.”

She turns to said stranger, realizing that they’ve said the sentence in sync. Before she can shoot the blonde a glare, however, the receptionist speaks up again.

“… No? Damn, what a waste.”

Her mouth hangs open, and if her intake of air – in preparation to scold this guy – did not remind her of how stale the space is, of how all she can smell is weed, then she would’ve forgotten that she’s dealing with someone who is stoned as hell. So it’s quite pointless to get angry at him. Instead, she composes herself, drawing in a few short breaths—

“We do just have one room left, though.”

“Wait—"

“—what?”

Anna gives up on glaring at the blonde again for finishing her sentence. Instead, she takes a step up to the counter, ready to bring out her inner-Karen before, once again, she’s interrupted—

“I’m the manager, so don’t even try,” he points to his nametag on his chest. It’s smudged with ashes and Anna can only make out ‘Kris’ and ‘Manager’.

She gawks, drooping her head in defeat.

“Well, then I’m taking it,” says the freaking girl. God, she’s relentless, isn’t she?

“No, you are not,” Anna growls. She turns back to the receptionist. “I was here first, and so I have every right to book the room first.”

“But I spoke up first,” the girl argues. “I spoke up, while you stood there, stalling.

Anna is about to retort, but Kris cuts her off with a chuckle. “She has a point. I do recall her speaking first while you were…” he pauses to… what is he doing? He’s just staring at the ceiling.

Confused, Anna follows his gaze and notes that whatever he’s looking at: the blinking, dying lightbulb… which is just a blinking, dying lightbulb. Nothing special. And then she remembers that the guy is high as a kite and it’s pointless to rely on his intake.

In turn, this only prolongs the girl’s triumphant look.

And, damn it, the nerve of her! This asshole-stoner-receptionist not helping aside, everything seems to be crumbling down. Her luck, the weather, her chance for a hot shower and a warm bed. What, is this platinum-blonde sent from hell (she meant to say heaven, considering her good looks, but that isn’t appropriate for her rant right now) to take her life? Was she doomed to lose from the start? Was this storm god’s plan to screw her over?!

Why does her day suck so much!

“Okay,” Anna raises her hands in surrender. “Fine. It’s fine,” she says, more so to herself than anyone in the stuffy room. “Do you, I dunno, know if there is another motel nearby?”

Kris, ever so chill, takes a toke before answering, “No? Know wha…? Probably. I don’t know this area so well.”

Anna just wants to face-palm. “Can I stay in the lobby then, at the very least? You don’t expect me to go out there and freeze to death trying to look for somewhere to stay.”

He coughs out a laughter, smoke coming out of his mouth. “Nah-uh. No can do, miss. Don’t want anyone homeless staying in the lobby. That’s bad rep for our five-star hotel.”

“This is a motel, Mr. Manager!

“You’re all here to fuck, anyway.”

“What?!”

“Just stay in the same room,” he takes another toke. “You’re both girls. What’s the big deal?”

“I am not staying in the same room as her!” Anna points an accusatory finger to the girl, whom she harbours an irrational hatred for.

“And I have no intention to be in the same room as you, either,” said girl states, taking a step forward, butting Anna out of the way as she reaches in her bag. “I’ll take the room, and I’ll pay right now. How much for one night?”

Anna pouts. Nothing she can do. She’s already lost the game. Perhaps she will die today. Just freeze to death and—

“Aw,” Kris looks to her, puffing up his cheeks. “Look at her, being so adorable!”

Her pout becomes a confused, half-jaw drop. What the hell is this guy on…?

(No, don’t answer that. She knows.)

“I can’t just leave her to die out there!” he continues. “Tell you what, pretty girl,” Kris says to the platinum-blonde. “I’ll give you a fifty-percent discount if you’d room with her.”

Is it surprising to hear an immediate “no”?

No, Anna thinks. Not at all.

“Oof. Seventy-five?”

“No.”

“Eighty?”

“No.”

“What about ninety? Literally five dollars for one night. You’re not going to get a deal like that anywhere else.”

“There is nowhere else to go, mister,” she says, slamming a fifty-dollar bill on the counter. “Now, please just give me the keys to the room.”

“Wow, I don’t like that attitude of yours,” he leans back in his chair. “Huh. I guess I’m just gonna choose to not serve you, my dear customer.”

“Wha… you can’t do that!”

Then comes a sly grin. “Oh, of course I can. I’m the manager.”

“That’s a violation against—”

“You letting that poor girl die out in the cold is a violation against humanity in itself.”

“You’re the one not letting her sleep in the lobby!”

“And you’re the one making her sleep in the lobby.”

As amusing their interaction is, even from Anna’s perspective, she can feel the frustration rising, alongside the heat in the room. Man, stoner-manager-Kris is having the time of his life, isn’t he? She’d feel bad for the platinum-blonde if she didn’t have a grudge against her. Or, like, if this entire ordeal started because of her being overbearing, so what the hell? Why is Anna remotely siding with her?

The argument lasts for another few minutes or so, until Kris, as high as he is, brings up an important point. “Listen. You either take my deal, or I’m just gonna let the next person who walks in take the last room. I don’t give a shit.”

Fuming by now, the platinum blonde takes a deep breath with her eyes shut. She seems to be looking for some sense of zen deep within, like she’s begging herself to calm down. It’s honestly hilarious.

“… Fine.”

Anna’s ears perk up.

“Fine,” the girl repeats, mumbling. “I’ll… take the deal.”

“See!” Kris exclaims. “That wasn’t so hard. Now you get to save forty-five bucks, and you get to save a life!” He pauses to wink at Anna, to which the latter responds with a forced smile.

“Now, just sign right here,” he hands the girl some form.

She does a quick squiggle and shoves the paper back to him, crossing her arms immediately after. It’s like her signature pose or something. Ugh. So extra.

Kris squints at the paper as he tries to make out the words. “So you are Elsa… something. Can’t read that. But, alright. Elsa. What a pretty name!” he exclaims, grabbing something under the counter – which turns out to be the key to the room. Elsa just yanks the key he’s spinning with his finger and turns on her heels to head out the door.

“Second floor, last room on your right!” Kris calls to her. As Anna follows after (because this is her room as well), she gets a wink from the guy, followed by a thumb’s up and a “Good luck!”

Her response is to smile, albeit hesitantly. It feels weird getting helped out by a stoner to such an extent. But hey, first time for everything, right? At least now, she has shelter. At least she can finally take a hot shower and snuggle into a warm bed.

The day’s been exhausting.


But it doesn’t end there. Oh, no. After all, life isn’t kind to her.

No, not one bit.

“What is this?” the blonde questions.

And Anna – poor, poor Anna – can quite literally feel her entirety collapse at the mere sight of, well, everything . Like, every fibre of her being has imploded, and she may as well have dissolved into nothingness. Because, just, look at this!

“To be fair…” Anna says through her face-palm, “… he never mentioned that it’s a single room.”

A scoff from her arch-nemesis, and then, “You’re defending him?”

“No, I’m just…” Anna sighs. She doesn’t have it left in her to argue. “Never mind,” she mumbles, thinking back to how, in a weird way, he did help her out. It’s strange as hell, but that’s the truth.

Silence fills the room, and at the corner of her eyes, Anna sees Elsa (damn it, fine. Her name is pretty. Whatever) fiddling with some device on the wall. It’s probably the controls to the heat, which is much desired right now, thank you very much. Meanwhile, Anna occupies herself. Her gaze shifts from the rather-cozy-but-still-too-small twin-sized bed, to the old TV placed on the wooden shelves opposite said bed. It’s actually an old TV, by the way. Not a flat screen. Jeez. Anna recalls the last time she’s seen one of these was when she watched one of those old, 70’s movies with her parents. Yeesh. The memory of such ancient-ness makes her cringe a little, and then she looks up at the single lightbulb that is, much like the lobby, flashing weakly. The wallpapers are of this ugly, yellow, flowery pattern that has next to nothing to do with aesthetics, and the carpet is one of those unbecoming, antique-style burgundy red stuff that Anna has thought to have been extinct.

Why is everything so ugly?!

To the point that when her eyes find Elsa’s – when, in that brief hint of a second, she is able to catch a glimpse of those bright, beautiful, blue eyes, the flawless strands of platinum-blonde tresses – she is stunned. Literally. Dumbfounded.

… T-that is, of course, erm, anyone can look beautiful when they’re compared to a shithole like this motel room. Yeah. Yes. No other reason.

Anna clears her throat and forces herself to roll her eyes. Because she hates this girl. Hates her for… why does she hate her again? Oh, yes, for making her miss the train. Hmph. Screw her. Yes.

“So,”

Anna nearly jumps at her soft, mellow voice that— no, no.

That’s bad, Anna. Bad.

“What?” she says instead.

“The bed,” Elsa continues. “Since there clearly is only one of it, I’ll declare this side,” she points to the right.

Anna quirks a brow upwards, bemused. “Huh. I’d half-expected you to tell me to take the chair,” she looks to the lonely, beat-up upholstered seat with its equally-beat up, sad ottoman next to the bed.

“You can if you want,” Elsa speaks, condescending with her tone, “No one’s stopping you.”

Anna scoffs. “And let people like you take all the good things in the world? Hell no.”

The blonde shoots her a look but doesn’t press on. Good thing too, because Anna isn’t in the mood to prolong their conversation. If it even is a conversation in the first place. More like an argument since they started interacting.

“If that’s settled, I’m using the shower.”

She has the urge to tell Elsa no. No, because Anna’s freezing. She wants to submerge herself into a bathtub, filled with warmth and bubbles and happiness and comfort and—

Click

… wait, what?

Anna blinks. Freaking for real?! That girl’s already gone into the bathroom! Anna hasn’t even answered her yet! God, she has got to stop spacing out – she’ll just end up getting taken advantage of, which basically just happened.

She huffs, blowing upwards to make her copper bangs jump.

Alright, fine. Whatever. She better hurry up, though. Anna will give her a maximum of ten minutes. Yes, when time is up, she’ll knock the door right down and drag her naked ass out.

… figuratively speaking, of course. Surely, Anna doesn’t have the balls to do that, ha-ha.

Plus, the water is already running, so hopefully she won’t take long—

“Ahh!”

Anna’s ears perk right up. That was a shriek just now, wasn’t it? Should she be worried? Like, technically, yeah, she should – this is somebody’s life. In fact, her instinct is to run to the bathroom to check up on her roommate, but, um. That stranger has nothing to do with her.

Still! She can’t just leave her for dead! That’d be on Anna, and she’ll probably go to jail for life or something!

Reluctantly, she walks up to the bathroom door. “Um,” she starts, awkwardly. “Are you okay in there?”

A few seconds pass.

No response.

She tries knocking. “Hello? Did you die or something?”

Again, no answer.

And it’s starting to worry her now. Genuinely so.

Anna knocks again, harder this time. “Uh, if you don’t say anything, I’m going to assume that you’re dead.”

Silence.

“… Oh my god, are you actually dead? Hello? Can you please answer me?!”

Shit. This is bad. She even said ‘please’, and the girl still didn’t answer! If she doesn’t do anything, Anna is going to jail. Okay, you know what? Screw it. She’s doing this.

Anna grips onto the brass doorknob, takes a deep breath, and turns it.

The first thing that strikes her is, no surprise, the bathroom being just as ugly as the rest of the room. Or, well, the motel in general. Though, she has to admit – seeing the beaten-up, disgusting green wall tiles and the murky grey-brown floor is nowhere as riveting (yes – that is the word that she has chosen to use) as seeing the girl, sitting on the toilet seat with her white trench coat wrapped around her, erm, very naked body. She appears to be shivering as well.

In fact, she’s shaking so much, she doesn’t even notice Anna at the door.

“Um…” Anna starts before she can stop herself.

Elsa looks to her, albeit in a slow-motion, stuttering sort of way because she’s very clearly freezing.

When their eyes meet, Anna finds the need to turn away and explain herself. “I… I heard a scream. I thought you slipped and fell or something.”

No response. Just the soft sound of the water at the shower. Drip. Drip. Drip.

Anna clears her throat.

And Elsa just remains seated on the toilet, hugging herself.

The silence prompts Anna to assess the situation. In the brief moment that she was able to take a glance at the bathroom, she’s noticed that there aren’t any towels, which explains why Elsa is using her own coat to dry up, but… that doesn’t actually explain why she needs to scream.

“… the water,” Elsa starts softly, teeth clattering. “It went from warm to freezing all of a sudden.”

Oh.

Well. Isn’t she glad she didn’t use the bathroom first, then?

“Um.” Anna stammers. She approaches the bathtub, looking away to give the girl some privacy in the meanwhile and turns on the water. Anna lets the water run down her fingers, but she instantly pulls away with a hiss. Jesus, it really is freezing. Did the motel’s hot water tank die or something?

“I-I’m…” comes a stutter from behind.

Anna takes note to not turn around, but she listens.

“I’m going to g-give the receptionist a call. M-maybe ask for some towels.”

She is lowkey amazed that the girl isn’t losing her shit. Or, well, maybe she is – it’s just that her dying from the cold isn’t really expressing such a temper. Anyway. More importantly, this is quite an ordeal, isn’t it? Now Anna can’t shower. Ugh. She shuts off the water and heads outside, only to find Elsa cooped at the corner of the bed by the nightstand, holding onto that old-ass telephone (complete with one of those plasticky-twisty wires) with her trembling hands.

Several moments pass by, and nobody speaks. By now, Anna figures that no one is going to pick up the phone. Feeling a tinge of sympathy, she heaves a sigh. Yes, she is caught in an unorthodox situation; yes, she hates this girl, and yes, she’s a god damn pushover. But god help her if she doesn’t offer any help to a freezing, naked, pretty girl.

“I’ll go up to the front desk,” she sighs, puffing up the collar of her coat. Her mind justifies that this isn’t for Elsa – this is strictly for herself. She wants that hot shower, damn it. Anna does not wait for the girl’s response and heads out, careful to not open the door too widely so that the freezing air would burst into the room.

Oddly, once she’s outside, the temperature is about the same. Was the heat even on? Whatever. She’ll check later.

Anna storms down the stairs and runs straight towards the lobby, where there previously was at least this gloomy, kind-of-freaky yellow light emitting from the inside. Now, it’s all but dark. Like… as if no one is inside. With the wind and snow hitting her face, Anna’s only option is to go closer for a look. Lo and behold, the door is locked.

What the hell? Anna scrunches her expression. She tries to look inside, creating a little tunnel with her palms.

No one.

There’s no one inside. The neon sign that previously read ‘open’ is dead as the night. And Kris, the self-proclaimed ‘manager’, is gone. This has got to be a joke. The more she thinks about it, the more she thinks that she’s living in a nightmare. Anna slumps against the glass door, her forehead making a thump sound when she hits the surface. What is she going to tell the blonde, now?

Or, well. Why does it even matter? The fact that she came out here in the cold for that girl is more than an act of heroism. Monuments should be erected in her honour, sheesh.

By now, though, Anna is convinced that she’s done more than enough. Of course she is. After all, she’s not obligated to, like, save that girl’s life. Who the hell is she, anyway?! She huffs at the thought, turning on her heels and heads back to the room. It’s not her fault the manager is high and everything. With a final huff, Anna turns on her heels and treks her way back up to her room.

She fights through the wind and the snow, hiding behind her scarf that’s doing very little to shield her from the sting of ice. Anna is certain that if she stays outside for half a second more, she’s going to succumb to frostbite. So as she reaches her motel room, she bursts in, and (this has nothing to do with dramatics) slams the door shut.

“Ugh, god damn.” She sighs. Anna pulls her scarf down and brushes the snow off her shoulders. “Yep. It’s legitimately a blizzard out there. Our guy has ditched his post, by the way. The front desk is empty, lights are off, and we are officially left to die in this beat up room.”

Anna had thought that she would get some sort of complaint from the blonde. Really? Did you even try? Y’know. She’d ask something along the lines. But when she turns to the bed, she sees that the girl is hiding under the covers. Wrapped up like a cocoon, Elsa is still shivering. Even from here, Anna can hear her teeth clattering. Jeez, she really must be freezing.

Speaking of.

Just as she had thought, the temperature outside is no different than the one inside. This really does mean that the heater’s busted as well. She could’ve sworn that the blonde turned it on when they came in. Anna heads over to the wall where the device is and sees that— lo and behold— the temperature indicator is dead. As in, the screen that’s supposed to show the numbers is blank. Empty. Nothing.

“Oh, man, please no.” Anna mutters. She presses at the buttons, not caring what they do, so long as they work. Much to her chagrin, her actions are not triggering any sort of response. Does this mean she has to live through the night with no hot bath or heat?!

She takes a second to turn around, to see if the girl is still with her.

Well, of course she’s still with her. What Anna means is, um… like, if she’s okay. Again, not because she’s worried or anything. Remember, she doesn’t know this stranger! They had a fight! If it weren’t for her, Anna would’ve made it onto the train. So, yeah. Anna is just checking. Just… being a good Samaritan.

And this girl is unmoving, save the shivering. The more Anna looks, the more her heart strains. Should she call an ambulance? It may not be a good idea, since no one’s actually hurt. Actually, in this storm, she doubts that anyone would even come to their aid. The fact that they’re in the middle of butt-fuck nowhere certainly does not help.

The straining in her heart can’t be ignored any longer. Anna heaves a deep sigh and makes her way towards the bed. She sits on the side and, very hesitantly, she begins, “Hey.”

Elsa peers from underneath the thin and sorry excuse of a blanket. Its material is cheap and rough to touch. Frays of wool split from the ends of the fabric. And at this point, Anna is quite done with hiding how sorry she feels for this girl.

Anna swallows. “Listen, whether you like it or not, there is no heat nor is there hot water. Pretty sure you’re going to get hypothermia if we don’t do something.”

“Y-you… you don’t say.”

Try as she will, Elsa’s teeth just would not stop clattering. The previous haughtiness she had in her voice when they were arguing at the station and at the front desk is gone; she’s left in a weak, sorry state. But that response just now was still kind of rude. “You talk pretty big for someone who’s about to die.”

Elsa glares, but with her curled up so defenselessly on the bed like that, there’s hardly any hostility. “I’m not g-going to die.”

Anna quirks a brow.

And immediately, Elsa curls herself up even tighter. The thin material of the blanket lets the redhead see that she’s very much curled into a ball. It’s a sad sight, and the natural kindness in Anna can’t bear to watch anymore. Because, y’know. She’s that kind of person. Benevolent and all.

“Move over,” she instructs—no, demands as she removes her scarf and coat.

Elsa blinks.

Anna tosses her clothing to the ugly, worn-down seat next to the bed. Though she had thought about it earlier, there is no way she is sleeping on that disgusting thing tonight. Nah-uh. She would rather sacrifice her body (figuratively speaking) and integrity than to die on a broken motel loveseat alone.

“W-what are you doing?”

“I,” Anna throws her hoodie off, tossing it with the rest of her clothes, “am about to,” she takes off her socks, her leggings, leaving herself in an oversized t-shirt and, yes, underwear, “save your life.”

The blonde stares. Eyes wide.

Anna shivers. Instinctively, she crosses her arms to retain the little bottle heat she’s generating. “So move over and let me in.”

There is no response. Elsa’s face is straight and it’s like she’s frozen to death already. “T-that’s… I—”

Oh my god, would you freaking move?! You offered to let me have this side of the bed, anyway!”

“I-I know, but, um… I’m—”

Anna doesn’t want to hear anymore. She herself is freezing and if she doesn’t get warm soon, then the one dying of the cold will probably be her. So, in a very, very unceremonious manner, she lifts the thin blanket up and— lo and behold— catches a glimpse of the blonde’s body underneath. In that small span of a second, Anna remembers to remember that what she’s about to do may have some… er, severe consequences.

“—naked.”

Takes a second, but Anna eventually responds. In the form of clearing her throat. “Um. Yes. R-right.”

Okay, well, she definitely wasn’t thinking ahead. As in, she didn’t think that seeing a naked girl’s body was going to make her feel so weird. Or, more specifically, so warm. Weirdly so. Hm. How… revolutionary. Seeing other girls’ naked bodies in the change room at the gym doesn’t get her feeling like this. And why the hell does she feel so guilty?! Her intention in the first place is to help this dying person out, but now, she’s having a… a panic attack? God, is she okay? What even is this!

“I-I mean…” Elsa speaks, breaking the redhead out of her trance. Slowly, she uncurls herself. Slowly, she opens up her arms, lifting a bit of the blanket up and, without making eye contact with Anna, continues to say, “… I-if you do anything inappropriate, I’m go—going to s-scream.”

Yet another urge to roll her eyes. Anna just sighs. “Uh, FYI, Your Royal Conceitedness, I don’t think anybody’s going to come and save your ass in this storm.”

Elsa audibly heaves a trembling sigh. “Whatever. J-just get in.” she mumbles.

Anna exhales, huffing in exasperation as though she’s just gone through some intensive trial. “Oh, gee. Thanks, Anna! Thank you for trying to save me even though I’ve been such a bitch to you!” she says in a pitch higher than usual, just as she slips under the covers. Anna snuggles close to the cold body next to her so that their backs would touch. She had anticipated a hint of warmth—just something that would give her some semblance of relief, but what she gets instead is the feeling of ice. It’s kind of scary, really, to imagine how cold the girl must be right now.

All those thoughts of concerns disappear, however, when Elsa goes on, “You were the one being rude at first.”

Anna blinks. She crosses her arms, curling herself up. “Oh, so trying to buy a ticket at a train station was rude of me? I’m sorry.”

“Trying to buy a ticket wasn’t the rude part,” Elsa tells her in that same, condescending tone she’d used earlier at the front desk. “But holding up the line and then proceeding to spaz at me because of your own distress was.”

“Wow, okay,” Anna starts, totally ready for an argument she’s about to have with the person who’s sleeping next to her. “And adding pressure onto someone who was clearly in distress wasn’t?”

“You literally told me to be quiet when all I wanted to do was buy a ticket.”

“I was in line first!”

“Well, clearly, that got you somewhere, didn’t it?”

For a moment, Anna is at a loss for words. It’s only when the girl squirms slightly that she is reminded of their current predicament. “Holy shit, you’re actually a bitch.”

“I can say the same for you.”

“The second this storm is over, I’m leaving. I don’t care if that means I’m leaving your dead body in this bed.”

Elsa hums. “Good riddance, I guess.”

Anna clucks her tongue. “We are in agreement, then. After tonight, I don’t ever want to see you again.”

“Fine.” Elsa says without hesitation.

Fine.” Anna repeats, affirming their hatred for each other. All this pent up frustration should be warming her up, getting her body all hot, but no, no. It’s still cold as hell.

She tries her utter best to ignore the fact that Elsa’s body isn’t generating any heat, especially not in their current position.


It is not known how long they’ve stayed like this. In fact, with her phone left in her coat, there is no way of telling the time. Anna sure as hell isn’t going to leave her place on the bed. It’s like a territorial thing, as petty as it may be. As in, what if Anna gets off and then the girl just rolls over and takes over?! Can’t be having none of that. But in the time since they’ve gone silent, Anna has fallen in and out of sleep quite a bit. Still, she at least knows that losing consciousness in this temperature is a dumb thing to do. She might as well never wake up.

… which reminds her.

The body next to her has stopped moving. Even the annoying teeth clattering has ceased. For the second time today, Anna thinks that the girl has died. And though the argument from earlier is begging her to be aloof about it, there is still this tiny part of her that wants to know.

Call it what you will, but Anna will argue with her life that it is merely curiosity. She turns, now facing the girl’s back. The loss of contact has left her feeling a bit empty, but she pushes away the thought. She has a more important matter at hand.

“Um,” Anna swallows. “Are you still alive?” Though her voice is quiet, with the meagre space between them, it should be enough.

But she doesn’t get a response.

Oh, god. Is she actually dead this time? “Uh…” Anna reaches out, placing a hand on the girl’s bicep.

“Y-you’d want… me t-to die.”

“Huh. That obvious?” Anna says that, but she can’t help but to notice that the girl’s voice has gotten weaker. The brief moment in which she touched her has made Anna realize that Elsa’s temperature has dropped significantly. If it were possible, she’s even colder than before. At this point, Anna should be more surprised that she’s still hanging on. And so, against better judgement, Anna snuggles even closer. She continues to tell herself that this is for her own sake. If she did this, she’d be able to get warmer as well.

“W-what are you do… doing?” Elsa stutters in her speech. The teeth clattering becomes more prominent each time she attempts to talk.

“Trying to stay alive,” Anna says, just as she wraps an arm around the girl’s tiny waist. The other one slips under the blonde’s neck and then over, her hand gripping at Elsa’s arm. Once it’s settled, she starts rubbing with the hopes of generating more heat.

For some time, Elsa’s only movements are the rise and fall of her breathing. Anna herself doesn’t think her actions are all that effective in keeping either of them warm, and, on the verge of passing out, she better come up with something, lest she never wake up in the morning.

“Don’t fall asleep,” Anna says. She didn’t mean to say it out loud, but perhaps the cold is somehow frying up her braincells.

“I-I can’t…” Elsa answers. “I’m s-so tired…”

“Just…” Anna tries to think of something to say. Something that doesn’t make her sound dumb. “Hey, turn around.”

Elsa doesn’t say anything. She continues to tremble, and the sound of her shaky breath fills the room. But eventually, she does as she’s instructed. Surprisingly. She turns in Anna’s arms, and upon doing so, they both realize how close they are. Literally an inch apart.

The realization of their distance heightens their senses—particularly their awareness of each other’s eyes. How, through their hazy vision, their gaze is interlocked. The cheap lights have gone off at some point during the night, but that’s the least of their concerns. Right now, the two are simply trying not to die. But amidst these thoughts, Anna can’t help but to think— damn. She wasn’t wrong earlier. This girl is hot as hell. To the point where it’s making her feel kinda… tingly? Weird to be thinking about this stuff when she’s on the brink of death. Her brain really is getting messed up by the cold.

Is this denial?

Wait, shut up, brain. She’s not feeling anything. T-there’s barely any heat! Even as Elsa’s arms circle around her waist, even as the aforementioned tingle runs down her spine, Anna goes on to tell herself no. No, it can’t be. Nah-uh. They hate each other.

Yes, they hate each other. They hate each other so much that there is no reason as to why their arms are moving, feeling. No particular reason as to why Anna’s hands are brushing tenderly at the girl’s smooth back. No reason that Elsa is doing the same. No reason that Anna’s fingers are running along the ridges of Elsa’s ribcage under her softness. She feels the girl’s breasts against her own and considers how much warmer they’d be if she took off her t-shirt. How, as Elsa breathes, the fullness of her chest presses that much closer. She feels Elsa’s cool breath. The tip of her nose touching her own. And most of all (and this is not her imagination) she feels a subtle warmth between the Elsa’s legs—right on her own thigh.

Ah, the smallest hint of heat.

How she craves it. How she’d kill for more of it. Anna would do anything. Sure, this stranger is rude and conceited and is a total bitch , but if it means to survive, then—

“Let’s have sex.”

Her abrupt, ridiculous, and totally inappropriate suggestion takes Anna herself aback. She’d imagined that if she were the recipient of these words, she would run the fuck out, but strangely, Elsa doesn’t react beyond widening her eyes.

And before she can kick herself in the face for saying such an outrageous thing, Anna continues, so as to reassure herself, “To keep warm.”

The girl keeps still. Her eyes still wide, unblinking.

“Think of it as a one-night stand. No strings attached.”

Elsa darts her pretty blue eyes away, her face now very evidently flushed.

Anna cringes. Shit. Gotta do something. Do something to fix this. Come on—

“Yes, yes. I hate you, and you hate me. The feeling’s mutual – I get that. But, like, we’re going to die in a few hours if we don’t do something. All this arm rubbing isn’t helping at all, so unless you can magically conjure hot water or fix the heat…”

Elsa squirms in her arms, and Anna doesn’t know if she knows, but the blonde’s blunt nails are kind of digging into her back. Is this a sign of nervousness? Uncertainty?

But then it dawns on her. Of all things she’s worried about, it’s— “Hold on,” she starts sternly, “You’re not a virgin, are you?”

At that, Elsa snaps her attention back to Anna. “O-of course I’m not!”

She raises a brow.

“Just…”

Anna rolls her eyes. “Got a boyfriend waiting for you at home? Pretty sure he’d be delighted to know that you’d slept with a pretty girl to stay alive.”

“Wha—how c-can you say such a thing?! You… you’re such an asshole!” Elsa exclaims, and this is the most energy she’s displayed since the front desk.

“And you’re a bitch.” Anna retorts easily.

“God, I… I can’t wait until I can get out of here!” The blonde’s nails dig a tad deeper into Anna’s back, pulling her slightly closer.

And the redhead hisses, reacting accordingly. “Believe me when I say with equal vigour that I can’t wait till you’re out of my life.”

Elsa’s jaw clenches. Her voice lowers. “How can anyone stand you?”

Anna comes closer. “I happen to have a lot of friends who enjoy my company, thank you very much. You, on the other hand, probably have a talent for driving everyone away. Boyfriend-number-twenty-three is likely having a blast without you helicoptering him.”

“I don’t helicopter.” Elsa mumbles. “And I don’t have a boyfriend.”

“Girlfriend, then.”

“Don’t have.”

Anna breathes out. Relief. “Okay.”

“Okay.” Elsa mutters.

They remain still, simply glaring—searching in each other’s eyes. Anna’s fingers trace along the bumps of the girl’s spine, pressing at the ridges, feeling. And when she feels Elsa drag a particularly long scratch down her shoulder blade, she inhales deeply. “So?”

Elsa’s gulp down her throat is especially audible this time.

And Anna finds encouragement in that. “Do you want to have sex or not?”

Yet another audible gulp. Only, this time, Elsa latches her fingers onto Anna’s skin. And it hurts. But…

She doesn’t necessarily hate it.

“Stop talking.” Elsa whispers.

With that, their distance is closed. Anna is unsure who leaned forward first—perhaps they did it at the same time? Whatever. What she does know is that they’re kissing. Lips mashing and tongue intertwining. The heat in the girl’s mouth draws her in like a magnetic force, and she desperately wants it to envelop her entire being. How lovely would it be to have her body get the same treatment? A primal instinct kicks in, and she is invigorated. It makes her slide her hand downwards, from Elsa’s smooth back to a curvy bottom. Anna takes the opportunity to squeeze, hard, nails digging into soft skin. Strange as it may be, Elsa seems to like it. How else can anyone describe that moan just now? The fact that the sound vibrates all over their bodies, or the fact that Elsa arches herself into Anna’s curves. She’s getting turned on, isn’t she?

Okay, Anna decides. Much easier. She grips onto the back of a knee, spreading the blonde wide before moving her to cup Elsa’s centre. The wetness there has become more than apparent, with a trail of slickness lingering at the inner thighs. Anna doesn’t think twice to gather it up—to run her fingers around the area, but she doesn’t make direct contact. No, not yet.

So of course it’d make Elsa whine. Her cold body writhes against Anna’s. Those arms wrapped around the redhead’s frame come to the front, slipping under Anna’s t-shirt, and the second those ice-cold fingers come in contact with her skin, Anna winces. It’s literally like having ice cubes touching her. Not to say that it’s uncomfortable, but it certainly is different. She would have intervened, had Elsa not place those same fingers over her breasts. And those hands, ever so slim and elegant, are admittedly skilful with their ministrations—especially when they start massaging her.

It’s Anna’s turn to moan, but why does this feel like a competition? The metaphorical spark ignites within, and Anna bites back. Actually bites back. Her teeth sink into Elsa’s lower lip, and with the little semblance of control she has left in her, Anna tugs as lightly as her mind would allow.

It is then they realize they’re staring at each other again. Elsa with her half-lidded, cloudy blue eyes gazing with an unspoken haziness, and Anna with a determined concentration. And this concentration extends to Anna’s limbs. To her fingers. With their eyes still locked, Anna runs her thumb over the hardened bud, peaking out from the apex of Elsa’s folds. It happens in an instant. The blonde’s eyes roll to the back of her head, she tries to pull away, but Anna bites harder to keep her in place.

Again and again, she runs light circles at the area. Slow, steady, torturous. The girl isn’t complaining, but it’s obvious that she wants more. But is Anna going to give in?

Well, if Elsa were a bit nicer to her before, then yeah, probably.

But after what has conspired, Anna can say with confidence that no. No way in hell is she going to give the girl what she wants. The point of doing this is to keep warm, and so long as Anna is buried in this girl, she’s achieved her goal. Who cares what Elsa thinks, what she wants? Who cares if Elsa’s touch is making her body react? Making her want more? No—no. She just wants to keep warm. Their ragged breaths are visible in the cold room as Anna maintains that cocky, teasing stride. Elsa’s eyes have gone from hazy to desperate, a trait that is blatantly noticeable with those beautifully shaped, thin, dark brows creased inwards like that. Are tears hanging at her waterline? Does she have something to say? Does she want to beg? God, Anna has a sudden urge—a need—to resume the kiss.

But no. Stop it. She bites. Sucks. Just a bit. To ease the pain, if she is causing any. Indeed, she harbours hatred towards this girl, but she isn’t a sadist.

(Maybe not.)

Wetness continues to pool between Elsa’s thighs—it’s getting hotter. The blonde slips her palms under Anna’s bra and with each brush, each stroke that she gives, there is an inherent need to reciprocate. Elsa’s hands are cold, but with the thin layer of sweat building between them, everything intensifies. The need to kiss this girl overwhelms Anna, but she fights it. Oh, she fights it with every fibre of her being. Instead, she releases Elsa’s lip, dipping low to hide in her neck, in the luscious, soft, platinum plait. Anna nudges the hair that smells so good aside and digs her teeth into the skin there, bruising the whiteness in a way that should make her feel guilty, but fuck, is it satisfying to hear Elsa cry next to her ear.

Perhaps as a means to channel the sensations, Elsa’s hands continue to knead, to massage at her breasts. The contact generating more than just heat alone, Anna arches into the touch, and she starts running larger, rougher circles on Elsa’s clit. The frigid temperature in the room an afterthought at this point, Anna squeezes her eyes shut when Elsa runs her index fingers and thumbs at her nipples. The cold, mixing so paradoxically with the heat, has rendered her more sensitive than usual, and the second that the blonde starts tugging, pinching at the peeks, Anna feels as though she’s short-circuited. The pattern that her thumb had followed earlier quickens—Anna presses harder, rubbing with more urgency, and Elsa trembles as she throws her head back.

“Oh… god!”

Fuck. The girl’s voice is so raspy, so filled with desire. It’s not supposed to turn her on—or, at least, it’s not supposed to give off such an impact. But it’s driving her crazy. Utterly insane.

And they haven’t even gotten far yet!

Anna hisses, refusing to give in. She rolls on top of the blonde to straddle her, throwing the rest of her clothes off—t-shirt, bra and all. Elsa, trapped between her thighs, watches in awe. Crystal blues dilated, the look she gives Anna is downright unfair. Look at her, all vulnerable and helpless and confused, as though unsure if she can have more. Unsure if she can ask for more. The sudden change in their position seems to have sent her in a state of disarray, and though this should be impacting Elsa much more than it should Anna, the latter finds herself wrestling with conflicting thoughts. On the one hand, the burning need grows stronger by the second; on the other hand, though the girl isn’t doing anything to her, Anna finds herself out of breath. It is as though the very notion of touching this girl is sending her off the edge.

Jeez. It’s been a while for her, yeah, but since when did she become such a horndog?

Must be the cold. Yep. It’s the cold for sure.

Having established the reasoning behind her weird behaviour, Anna pushes forth. She takes a hold of Elsa’s wrists, pinning them above the girl’s head with one hand. And this girl in question does not react—hell, there is barely any resistance. It’s like she’s waiting, anticipating. Has the cold fried her braincells up as well? Anna disregards the question, seeing no point in dwelling on the matter so long as she’s getting what she wants.

Warmth, she reminds herself.

The thin blanket covers the two of them like a tent, barely held at Anna’s shoulders. Just like this, the heat is indeed building up. Something else that’s building up is their joined scent. Anna’s mouth waters at the thought, grappling with the possibility of tasting this scent in a more direct way, but she doesn’t want to leave her position with their bare breasts pressed against each other, joined at the hip. Elsa surprises Anna when she wraps her legs around the latter’s waist, heels digging into the small of Anna’s back. The coldness of the blonde’s feet shoots an electrifying shiver up Anna’s spine, and the redhead can do very little than to let out a wavering moan.

She bites it back, just as Elsa runs a tongue along her lip. That action alone reinvigorates her. There isn’t another moment of torturous teasing—no, Anna is done with that. Her grip on Elsa’s wrists tightens, and that free hand slithers down from the blonde’s neck. Anna cups Elsa’s full breast, pinching the peak in the same way that the blonde did to her earlier, while her mouth finds the other nipple. No hesitation, no time to waste—Anna bites. Teeth and all, they tug at the stiff flesh, pulling and pulling. The whimpers and pants that fill her ears doing more than she can imagine encouraging her, Anna finally stops when Elsa’s body struggles. Like she’s trying to turn away. Like she’s protesting.

Just to check, Anna glances up. When they catch eyes, she notices the distress in Elsa. How she’s begging. No words, but she most definitely is begging.

“What?” Anna huffs, her hot breath fanning at the reddened nipple.

Elsa moans. Turns away from the condescending stare. Still, she tries, panting brokenly, “D-don’t…”

Is she hurting her? Anna acts on instinct. Elsa hasn’t even finished speaking and she’s already assuming things. Lightly, she flicks the nipple with her tongue while her fingers work gently on the other side.

“No…” Elsa whines.

Anna quirks a curious brow.

The girl tries again, this time hardening to look Anna in the eye. “Don’t stop biting.”

A wave—a hot, hot singeing flood rushes through her body, straight down between her thighs and Anna has to thrust forward to find some sense of relief. For a bit, their hips join impossibly closer.

“Harder.” Elsa’s breathes with a needy whine.

There is no explanation—no reason to have any other response in the world. Anna’s eyes flash and she responds in earnest. Greedily, her lips wrap around the same, puffed-up nipple and she tugs—hungry, aggressive. Elsa arches, her back now bent like a bow as endless moans escape her throat. With each tug of her teeth, each pinch from her fingers, Anna discovers a new reaction. She moves lower, and before Elsa can complain, her teeth sink into the swell of the same breast. The bed squeaks, protesting in place of Elsa as the girl sucks in a sharp gasp—writhing, fighting.

Anna doesn’t stop there. She has every intention to give this girl the strongest orgasm of her life in a way that is painful and violent. The vicious thought is planted, and her hand glides downwards, past the thin sheen of sweat on that flat, perfect abdomen. Blunt nails leaving red marks in their wake, Anna doesn’t waste time in finding Elsa’s opening. Only, she doesn’t move. She stays put. Anna already knows how her fingers would easily slide in. How, when it happens, Elsa’s inner muscles would clench, grip onto her. But still, Anna doesn’t move. Her delicate fingers simply linger at the opening that is dripping with arousal.

Elsa notices, of course, which is why she lets out a half desperate whimper and a half exasperated sob.

Anna, in response, smirks. Her thumb barely brushes at the nub, now peaking obnoxiously out from the slick folds.

Her actions achieve exactly what she wants. Elsa tugs at her bottom lip in silent frustration. Actual tears hang at her waterline, and she attempts to satiate this hunger by rocking her hips upwards. Anna holds her down easily, though, and she locks the girl in between thighs and presses down with her weight.

“Something wrong?” Anna feigns innocence by pursing her lips.

Elsa hiccups. She turns away, not bearing to look the redhead in the eye.

Just for a bit, Anna gives Elsa a taste of what she desires. She pushes a finger into the blonde—knuckle-deep, curls, and just as she hits a soft, rigid nerve, just as Elsa’s jaw hangs loose, Anna pulls out.

Elsa’s eyes widen in horror. “W-wait, I’m—”

“Close?” Anna cuts her off.

Again with the lip biting. Elsa wants to glare, she wants to fight, but she can’t. Physically and mentally, it’s impossible. One, she’s too worked up; and two, she’s literally trapped under Anna’s weight. There is only so much that she can do. And so, she nods. A single, weak bob of the head.

Anna hums. Who would’ve thought that this girl who presented herself with so much confidence, so much authority earlier can actually be so submissive? Well, Anna is definitely getting a kick out of this power trip, so she sure as hell isn’t going to stop. “Mmn. Anything I can do to help?”

Elsa’s response is a grunt of annoyance. She squirms again, hips rising to meet Anna’s fingers. But again, Anna pulls away, laughing.

“Ah-ah-ah,” she wriggles her digits directly above Elsa in an unceremonious manner. They smell of and are coated with the blonde’s arousal. “You have to tell me what you want.”

Elsa whimpers. Still being held down by Anna, her arms have become sore, but it comes to the redhead’s attention that Elsa is quite the stubborn one, isn’t she? If Anna were in her position, she’d fight with her life. Screw being held down; she’s black belt karate, damn it. She’d throw her abuser off effortlessly. Beat the shit out of the pervert while she’s at it, too.

Which leads her to just one conclusion.

The fact that Elsa isn’t fighting back, at least not so blatantly, the fact that she’s barely complaining, being so overtly yielding… this means, er… means she likes it, right…?

“I hate you so much.”

Anna blinks. Her attention is drawn back to the girl trapped below. She considers those words for a minute. How there is so little threat behind them. How, behind that delivery, Elsa’s voice is sweltering. Layered with a heat that is overwhelming enough to power up this room. One that makes Anna forget that they’re currently stranded in a shitty motel, cut off from society due to a bloody blizzard.

And so, she plays along.

“You’d think to be a bit nicer to someone who’s trying to save your life,” she says, leaning down so that her breath would brush Elsa’s ear. She runs her free hand along the blonde’s lips, smearing the thick smell of arousal on her. “So, why don’t we try that again?” Anna gnaws at an earlobe, and the blonde lets out a squeak. “What do you want?”

Elsa tries yet again to thrust her hips upwards for some form of contact, to ease the throbbing in her centre, but once more, she is held down by Anna’s weight. Why does she even bother at this point, she may be thinking. Not more than a few heartbeats later, Elsa releases a sigh, though it comes out in a broken sob. “T-touch…”

“Hmm?”

Her body tenses. Elsa turns, the prior glare now softening to a look of pure anguish. Like she’s defeated and has admitted it. “… Touch me.”

A corner of her lips arches upwards. “But I already am,” she hums, flexing her grip on Elsa’s wrists a little. “You mind being a bit more specific?”

“Just—” Elsa’s growling at this point, rocking her hips, squirming. And it is this frustrated, primal action that sends Anna’s nerves reeling, “—inside.”

Ooh.

Enough teasing. She slips two fingers in. Middle and ring, knuckle-deep. There is virtually no resistance. The blonde’s muscles are slick, juices drip from her opening and the need to taste her from the direct source grows ever more desperate. “Like this?” Anna asks in a husky voice.

Yes,” Elsa bucks her hips. Her eyes fall shut and her lips part. “God, yes…”

Anna grinds the heel of her palm onto Elsa’s throbbing clit. She swears, the little bud is twitching, begging for attention and, hell, she’s never encountered anyone whose body is so reactive before. On instinct, Anna’s mouth finds Elsa’s pulse point on her neck. She latches on, teeth sinking in harshly and she is empowered—a sudden urge to behave in a hungry, almost vampiric manner possesses her. Elsa’s arms continue to struggle under her grip, but the girl never says explicitly that she doesn’t like this.

No, Anna would know. She’s assertive as hell in bed, but she isn’t a sexual predator.

“So responsive,” she mumbles against Elsa’s skin. “Been a while since you’ve gotten off?”

The blonde lets out a choked cry. It sounded like a yes, to be honest. Even more so when she wriggles her lower body. Anna, in turn, curls her fingers just so.

Yes!” It’s uncontrolled. The sounds coming from her mouth, the flood that trails down her thigh, leaving a puddle of wetness on the mattress, Elsa’s entire body thrashes and her jaw hangs loose. “Yesyesyesyesyes…!”

Holy fuck. Anna watches in pure admiration. Her fingers pump at an aggressive speed, all the while making sure to give attention to that one, sensitive spot. She wants to keep this pace, wants to go faster even, but those muscles clenching at her fingers are so tight. The violent ripples and the possessive grip render Anna at a loss. She’s had her fair share of experience with girls in the past, yeah, but none of them were like this! So vocal and eager and, god, did she mention hot? This girl’s orgasm is out of this world! Jesus, Anna feels as though she herself has climaxed, even if all she’s been doing is rubbing her thighs together.

But then comes that hard press onto Elsa’s clit. When it happens—when the pressure registers, Elsa shatters.

Yet another flood, another tremor takes over Elsa’s body, and Anna can no longer hold on. Those arms pinned above the blonde’s head for so long are now free of her grip. They find their way to circle around Anna’s body, and though the coldness of Elsa’s skin wavers her focus for a second, she soon refocuses. Her thumb runs unrelenting circles at the throbbing bud, continuously, torturously, all the while stroking that same, sore spot inside to bring Elsa over the edge, again and again.

“I need—I’m gon… ahnn!” the blonde cries, speaking incoherently into Anna’s ear.

But it’s such a beautiful voice. Anna doesn’t care if she’s not making sense. God, it’s so hot. She’s so hot. Elsa’s so hot. So exposed and sultry and fuck— “Come for me,” Anna finds herself whispering right on Elsa’s lips, huffing lowly, “Come for me, Elsa.”

It’s instant. Elsa reacts to the call of her name like a moth to a flame. When she lets go, the waves crash upon her so violently she loses all sense of reality. Gravity is irrelevant as her body arches in an awkward angle that has her back lift from the bed, toes curling to the point that they cramp. Anna has some notion of what hypersensitivity is, and so she does all she can to soothe Elsa—a rather contradictory action, considering how her occupied hand is continuing on with its ministrations. Slick as she may be, Elsa’s convulsing muscles have literally trapped Anna’s fingers in place. Though, her thumb is still circling around the twitching nub. Anna’s free arm wraps around the girl’s tiny waist and her mouth finds its way to a nipple. She rolls the already-bruised peak at the tip of her tongue, alternating between gentle sucks and harsh bites.   

Elsa, meanwhile, seeks leverage. Her nails dig into Anna’s back where she claws, dragging red, delicate lines down freckled skin. Anna merely mewls to the burning sensation, too occupied by… well, everything else that she’s doing. The reasoning behind their escapade forgotten, all they know at this point is that they are shrouded by an agonizing heat that refuses to be subdued. Elsa pants breathlessly next to Anna’s ear, nails still dug into that back, and the latter—now finding herself planting kisses on the blonde’s chest—finally eases her fingers out.

The sudden emptiness may have rendered Elsa surprised, because as it stands, she’s shaking—the entirety of her body trembling, and Anna can say with confidence that it isn’t because of the cold. Her blue eyes, drunk with a lust-filled haze that is locked intimately with Anna’s own teal ones, reinforce this point.

And that does things to her.

The aforementioned, innate desire to kiss this girl returns. Fuck. Like, not just teasingly, not just as a means of receiving pleasure. But, shit, she doesn’t know. Why else do people kiss?! Anna bites down, clenching hard as she tries to deny these feelings.

It’s so confusing. She doesn’t know.

What she does know is that when she slips her drenched fingers into Elsa’s mouth and when the girl sucks with vigour—all the while maintaining that intimate gaze—another electrifying wave shoots to her centre. Anna moans, barely recalling how she got herself in such a predicament. One minute, she was fighting with this girl over the rights to this room. The next, she’s fucking her in it.

Anna thrusts a little too deeply in her trance and Elsa gags on reflex. She throws her head back, mouth widening to gasp for air. And it is at that exact second that Anna knows for a fact that she wants to kiss her. There is nothing else in this world that she desires at the moment. No, not even a hot shower. But stubborn as she is, Anna fights it. She growls under her breath and she fights. Instead, she pushes herself up and shuffles forward, all the way until she’s locked Elsa’s head between her thighs.

Anna holds onto the headboard with both her hands for balance, fully aware of how the lack of body heat from Elsa is making her feel the cold once more. But even more agonizing is her need for release—the fact that it is, at this point, a tension unfathomable.

“Use your tongue,” Wasting no time, Anna grunts at the girl below. She rocks her hips into Elsa’s mouth, too impatient for a response. “Now.”

Elsa whimpers but does as instructed, and Anna is unconditionally thankful for that, because the second that hot appendage touches her folds, she’s gone. Sky high. Her thighs shake at the release and Anna sinks her fingers into the cheap, wooden headboard. Her hips thrust forward, desperate for more, and on accident, her clit brushes against Elsa’s front teeth. The contact is too much—Anna yelps, throwing her head back. Sounds far too embarrassing and shameful escape the pit of her throat and through the dark, she makes out the old white paint peeling off the ceiling. In between flashes of her consciousness, bright, bright flashes dance behind her eyes.

She’s done a lot of questionable things in her life. Been mean to a few people when she didn’t know any better, gave into peer pressure several times, and is generally quite hotheaded. So if this is as close to heaven as she’s going to get, then sure. Yeah, she’ll take it.

She’ll take it a thousand times over.

Elsa’s dainty hands are on her thighs, seemingly pulling her in for more as her tongue works its way around the hardened bud. She traces meaningless patterns along Anna’s opening, but doesn’t dwell much longer before she plunges right in. Still in the midst of her high, Anna’s inner muscles pulse around that tongue, but Elsa skillfully retracts, enters, retracts—again and again as she takes every half interval kissing that throbbing bud.

That’s right, kissing.

Anna glances down, amazed at how concentrated Elsa is. Her platinum-blonde, windswept bangs have fallen out of place. Wisps of hair are clinging onto her forehead from the sweat. She can feel every vein, every wriggling motion of that tongue, and fuck, Anna swears, Elsa is purposely bumping her teeth against her clit. Each time it happens, her eyes roll to the back of her head and… ahh… she hasn’t noticed how close she is. For every wave that pushes her near the edge, Anna holds back. Not so soon, she tells herself. She wants this to last. She doesn’t want to show vulnerability around this girl, and, damn it, yes it’s cold as hell—yes she wants their bodies to join at the hip again to retain the body warmth she craves, but even more importantly, Anna wants command.

“Touch yourself.” She grunts.

Immediately, Elsa removes a hand from Anna’s thigh. No hesitation—it happens so naturally. And though Anna can’t see, the mere thought of Elsa getting herself off while her mouth is busy eating Anna out has her muscles pulsing. When Elsa so clearly groans in pleasure, the light vibrations of that delightful voice reverberate all over Anna, screaming how close she is.

Anna continues to watch. She is perplexed, amazed, utterly stricken at how enjoyable this is, truly. In spite of the cold, the dire situation, and all odds. It’s just… it really hurts that she’s going through such dilemmas. Like, she wants to come, but she wants this to last. She wants to get out of this freezing motel, but she aches for the heat that this girl gives her here and only here. Anna hates Elsa, she’s supposed to hate Elsa, but she is drawn in.

Fuck…” she loses her grip on reality when the girl brushes at high-strung nerve from within, and it is Anna’s turn to break. She chokes out a cry before her body involuntarily bends forward. Her thighs tremble, quaking at the thought that she’s coming so hard that she’s suffocating the girl beneath, but shit, everything’s crashing in so fast she can’t even think anymore. Anna grips onto the headboard for leverage—for balance—just as her hips take on a life of their own. They rock forward, relentless, urging in an unconcealable desire for more.

It certainly doesn’t help that Elsa’s moaning with her, and Anna can feel it—the blonde’s writhing not just her tongue, but her entire body as well. It feels as though she is performing a dance for Anna, and everything is heightened when she is reminded that all this time, their eyes are locked. God, it’s magnetic. Anna wants so many things at once. She wants to look, wants to turn around to watch Elsa’s fingers in herself, but even more so, she wants to maintain this connection—to be forever caught in Elsa’s alluring gaze.

So when she is finally able to take hold of her consciousness, when Anna is in control of her lungs once again, she slides down, resuming their earlier position where they were attached by the hip. A dazed Elsa stares at her in… what is this, awe? All the while Anna, with those turbulent, tumultuous thoughts swirling in her head, looks back with equal fervour. Against the little will she has left, a hand comes up to rest on Elsa’s cheek. It’s… instinctive. Borderline affectionate, which is the last thing she’d think she would do.

But when she does, Elsa exhales. A sound of satisfaction. Slowly, gently, she comes to take hold of Anna’s hand. Those fingers, so soft and warm, grip loosely. The subtle way in which Elsa tugs at them, in which she guides them downwards makes Anna’s heart swell. Because, soon, her hand is back at the blonde’s centre, where it is slick and pulsing and oh so inviting.

Who is Anna to deny such an invitation, then? She slides a finger in, finding that spot easily and Elsa keens. Those puffy red lips part and this time—this time, Anna can’t. She can’t hold back.

Mmn…!”

They touch, their tongues wrestle, and their voices clash. To an outsider, it may seem as though the two are devouring each other, because Anna sure as hell is swallowing everything she can get from this girl. She explores every inch of Elsa’s mouth, thrusting her tongue deep and with the advantage of being on top, she is able to have this girl at her mercy. Every time the pad of her finger brushes along the sensitive nerve, Elsa cries in her mouth, and at every opportunity, Anna would kiss deeper, thrust more .

I—” Elsa tears her mouth away as her body is abruptly overwhelmed by yet another violent tremor, “—harder, please… I’m coming I’m coming I’m coming!”

“Y-you’re…” Anna huffs, eyes blown wide, “… so fucking insatiable…”

Elsa buries her fingers into the redhead’s mane, combing wildly through silky softness. Their kiss is resumed, and this time the blonde gives herself in completely. Anna pours in everything that she has—everything that she is—closing her eyes, softening at her approach, giving Elsa undivided attention, unparalleled regard. It’s the most passionate kiss she has had in her young life, and though the cracks of her vulnerability begin to show to this sworn enemy of hers, Anna no longer cares.

Anna…”

God.

She’s only told this girl her name once. Indirectly. But, fuck, Elsa remembers. The way she says it isn’t fair, either. It’s layered with so much affection that it scares her. Because Anna isn’t sure if she’s interpreting this wrong or it’s just her brain getting fried up leading her to having these strange thoughts… or, that, just maybe she’s… right? That Elsa sees this more than a one-night stand?

No strings attached.

Anna draws back, thinking now how stupid that statement is. Deep down, she knows it’s too late. The second they kissed each other, the second they mutually agreed, it was too late. Anna finds the thin blanket that has slipped away from their bodies long ago. She pulls it up for cover, the warmth it gives pales in comparison to what they’ve just experienced, but just as Anna realizes what is conspiring in her head, the unwelcomed cold seeps in again.

This coldness and, more importantly, these thoughts, seem to be affecting Elsa as well, for she is the first to react. A shaky sigh breaks through; Elsa clings onto Anna all of a sudden, holding her with her dear life.  

Anna, on her part, doesn’t know what’s possessed the girl, but she finds herself kissing the temple of Elsa’s head. Just a small, comforting peck. Her arms circle around Elsa’s frame and her palms start rubbing at the girl’s sides. “Cold?” Anna asks quietly.

A nod. Elsa turns to hide in the crook of Anna’s shoulder.

“Don’t fall asleep.” She warns, still rubbing her hands along Elsa’s skin. “Stay awake.”

It is then the blonde threads her fingers into the tiny hairs at Anna’s nape. She pulls back a little, an undying urge rushing through her veins like the heat that the two of them having been seeking. A heat that pushes the two of them to see each other for who they are. At last, the sky and ocean touch, and Anna believes it to be the most beautiful thing in the world.

“Will you help me?”

Anna’s breath hitches.

Help me, Anna. Please.

She doesn’t need any more implications. Doesn’t need any more excuses. It’s pointless, anyway. If this is the only way for them to stay warm—

“Yeah,” she whispers, and their lips touch the slightest. “But I’m not going to stop.”

—even if it means that each time they do it, the more their surfaces would crack—

“Then don’t.”

—so be it.

She won’t hide what she wants anymore.


The sun rays pierce through the thin curtains, and Anna wakes to a soreness that throbs throughout. It takes her several moments to realize that a pair of arms are wrapped around her, and soft, warm hands are running up and down her back. The gesture is kind, overly affectionate, and it’s been so long since Anna’s felt such safety, such lov… 

Wait, what?

Her consciousness snaps right back to her. She gives herself several moments to blink. To comprehend her situation. Then, slowly, she pulls back. Just as slowly, the girl beneath her returns the gaze. For the umpteenth time in the past twelve hours, they are lost the swirling colours of cerulean and teal.

“Um,” Anna wets her lips, attempting with her utmost concentration to ignore the fact that this girl was probably keeping her warm the entire night by holding her like this. “… Hi.”

With the aid of the morning light, the reddened colour on Elsa’s cheeks is very, very prevalent. She responds with a shy nod, turning away in the meanwhile.

Anna clears her throat. She tries to think of something to say. Something that would break the awkwardness in the air, in spite of the situation. “Glad to see that neither of us has died, huh?”

Elsa’s blush deepens. She shirks, curling to make herself appear smaller.

“So,” Anna tries to push herself up, but the ache in her arms is telling her to hold on, give them one second, don’t ignore the fact that she quite literally had the workout of a lifetime last night . Her thoughts are so loud, Anna fears that Elsa can hear them. She clears her throat again, this time more forcefully than before, and finally gets off. Anna grabs her t-shirt that’s been discarded on the floor and slips it on. “… seems like the storm has stopped,” she finally finishes.

When she turns, Anna sees Elsa hugging the thin blanket at her chest. The sight of those bare shoulders and her hair, fallen out of place yet still maintaining a distinct beauty brings a powerful surge between her legs.

Stop it, Anna mentally scolds herself. She desperately needs a distraction. “I’m going to check if there’s hot water,” she says as she dashes into the washroom. Somehow, she can feel the blonde’s eyes on her. It’s intimidating, yes, but at the same time, Anna can’t shake the feeling that she’s also getting captured by a sense of flattery—of how, ultimately, she likes it when Elsa pays attention to her. 

She reaches the bathroom and turns on the tap. The coldness of the metal faucet nearly paralyzes her skin and yet again, she thinks about the warmth that Elsa gives her. A shiver runs down her spine, and Anna crosses her arms, hugging herself. She looks at her murky reflection in the old mirror and immediately spots the red marks along her neck. Though Anna is unsure when this had happened, she sure as hell isn’t bothered by it. 

The thought makes a sudden rush of redness spread up to her cheeks. Anna shakes it away (ineffectively) and refocuses. There is a more important situation she has to deal with right now, hello? But when she discovers that the water is still running cold despite having turned on the hot tap, Anna just sighs. Just for good measure, she heads over to the tub and checks the shower. Yep, same thing. 

Well, there’s no point placing hope on this hopeless motel any longer. Anna heaves one last sigh before heading out the washroom. “The water’s still ice-cold.”

Elsa, in the time of Anna’s absence, managed to get dressed. In fact, she’s already fixed her hair, touched up her makeup, and is in the process of buttoning up her shirt. She pushes a stray strand of hair behind an ear and looks to the ground, perhaps too shy to make eye contact with Anna. 

“I… figured as much.”

Anna tries not to think about how perfect the girl looks. More importantly, she tries not to think about how she’s only in her t-shirt and underwear. 

“The trains are running again,” Elsa tells her, gesturing at her phone. “I think we can head back to the city.”

“Oh,” Anna blinks. “That’s good news.” She says that, but she can’t shake the feeling that there isn’t much truth in her words. Is it really good news? “I’m, uh,” Does she really want this to end? “... Maybe we should return the key to this shitty room and get out of here, yeah?”

Elsa swallows, an evident bob of her throat. She takes a moment. Looks to Anna for a hint of a second. Then, she nods curtly. 

But Anna didn’t miss that. Her heart leaps, it swells for that hint of a second and her lips want so badly to arch upwards. A stupid, stupid need to smile. An embarrassingly giddy feeling. It’s so stupid. So annoying. So childish. So… nice. Y’know what this reminds Anna of? Butterflies. Butterflies in her stomach.

She shoves the thoughts away before she can actually emote anything more, though. Can’t keep Elsa hanging. “I’m gonna get dressed. You can, um, head out first if you like.”

“No, I…” Elsa starts before cutting herself off when she catches Anna’s intent stare. “I mean, um. I-I don’t mind waiting. For you.”

It’s not the response Anna is expecting. But because it is beyond her expectations, this time, Anna’s smile cracks. Like an idiotic, love-struck high school girl that she totally isn’t and has undoubtedly grown out of, Anna nods eagerly. “Okay,” she says, grabbing the rest of her clothes. “I’ll be just a bit.”

Just like that, Elsa’s the first to crack her demeanour. Her smile is soft, slow, and most importantly, giving Anna a lasting effect. The leaping in her heart persists—her breath catches in her throat, and god, these stupid butterflies!


“So?”

Anna raises a thin brow.

‘Kris the Manager’ leans in with a smirk, resting his chin on a palm. “How was the room?”

She grunts, almost gagging at his breath that still reeks of weed. “You want to talk about the room?! Okay, then, let’s talk about the room. The place had no heat, no hot water, and no electricity! Elsa and I nearly died!”

“Whoa,” Kris’ smirk widens into a grin. “Going on a first-name basis already?”

Anna feels her cheeks turn red. “T-that’s not the point! You could’ve found two dead bodies in the room!”

“But I didn’t,” he shrugs. Then, he gestures to Elsa, who is standing just outside this sorry excuse of a lobby. “And your new girlfriend seems to have enjoyed herself last night. You seem to have as well, if you ignore all this angst of yours.”

“Wha—I am not angsty!” Anna shrieks. “A-and Elsa’s not my… she’s…” that’s when she pauses, too scared (scared?) to finish the sentence. Because it’s, well, that’s the truth, right? They’re not together. No, they certainly aren’t. One-night stand. No strings attached. That was the deal.

Anna turns around to look at Elsa, who told her that she didn’t want to come in because she, and Anna quotes, “can’t stand the manager since he smells so bad.” Yeah, what a princess-y thing to say, but Anna can’t blame her. This Kris guy really is gross. So she’ll take the hit for Elsa. It’s okay. It’s totally okay since they’re affiliated now. Affiliated as companions. It’s a nice companionship. Mhmm. Nothing beyond that. They, um, certainly are not romantically linked. Yep, nope. Just. They’re not—

“Mmn, hurts when you put it that way, doesn’t it?” Kris does this pouty, annoying purse of his lips. Like he’s mocking Anna. “Listen, if you want my word of advice, establish whatever it is between the two of you before you part ways.” 

Anna doesn’t have the mindset to retort any longer, because as much as she doesn’t want to admit, there is some truth to his words.

“Now get outta here,” he does a spinning motion with his finger, telling her to turn around. “I’m gonna light up another joint.”

How else can Anna react than to roll her eyes? She heads out, not before pulling her scarf up to her nose out of habit. Though grimacing at the receptionist when she was inside, now, when she’s seeing Elsa again, she can’t help but to soften up. The storm has quelled, yes, but gentle snowflakes still fall lightly from the sky. Several tiny pieces cling onto Elsa’s platinum blonde hair like the decorative ornaments on a simple Christmas tree. Not those tacky, overly colourful ones you’d see in shopping malls, but the more simplistic ones with only two or three colour gradients. In the case of Elsa, it’s the light shades of white gold and ice blue. 

They don’t say a word to each other as they tread their way through the thick blanket of snow on the road. Their path, hindered by the snow that goes up to their knees, stretches far into the horizon, where they can only make out the tiny structure of their targeted train station in the distance. And though their walk is quiet, uninterrupted by the cars that pass by, Anna feels a familiar sense of safety. One that she felt when she woke up in the arms of this girl just this morning. It’s almost as if simply being close to this girl grants her this feeling.

How nice would it be to experience it again whenever she wants, whenever she needs it?

When they finally arrive at the station, Anna has long forgotten how the bigger picture—that being the cold—is the entire reason she was stranded here in the first place. She looks past the incident of Elsa telling her to hurry with the ticket machine, looks past fighting over the motel room. Anna looks past all of that, and she ponders. She thinks hard as Elsa works with the machine, this time successfully purchasing one for herself and, to Anna’s surprise, one for her as well. 

“You didn’t seem to have coins yesterday,” Elsa says and note—she is still smiling. “Isn’t that what led to our entire ordeal?”

Anna chuckles. Warmth spreads from her chest outwards to her body. She knows that she’s blushing, and it’s not from the cold. “Hey, but we lived.”

For the briefest moment, Elsa chews on her lip. A rather cute habit. It’s grown on Anna. 

They stay in silence as they wait for the train. They don’t talk to each other when they board the train, nor when it starts moving. They pretty much have the entire freight car to themselves, because nothing else matters. The world is quiet. The other passengers mind their own business. This space is their very own. Yet, still, they do not talk. They simply sit together with their shoulders touching, stiff. Like they have so much to say but don’t know how.

‘The next station is: Grand Central Terminus. This is the final stop for Railway Line—’

Anna’s head snaps up. The monitor above the door shows that the announcer isn’t lying (well, of course she isn’t), which means that her time with this girl, sitting so closely next to her, is coming to an end. Eventually, the train slows to a halt. The station is nearly empty, likely because of the storm, and that people are still seeking shelter indoors, but several passengers continue to come and go, minding their own business. Elsa stands after some time, and she only does so because the announcer comes on again, stating that the train will once again depart. Anna knows this, because she, just as well, does not want to leave. 

So when they stand together on the platform, they are still. Unmoving, just as they were earlier when they sat in silence. Just as they were when they looked each other in the eye last night. 

At last, their train departs. The shrieking of the wheels against the metal rails, the blast of wind that follows after the vehicle, they all come as a wake up call that time, as a matter of fact, does exist.

“I…” Elsa starts. She sounds nervous and quiet and lost, but she pushes herself. 

Somehow, Anna empathizes with that. The blonde is a few inches taller than herself, she is much more imposing and intimidating, but right now, Elsa looks so small.

“I should probably head home.”

She clenches her teeth. Anna nods, pathetically so. “Mhmm. Probably want a proper hot shower, huh?”

Elsa breathes out with amusement. “Yeah. It was dreadful last night,” she pauses, suddenly realizing what she’s just said, “I-I mean the shower. Or lack thereof.”

Anna understands the implication behind her words. Subtle as they may be, she gets it. Because—“I feel the same.”

They stand there for some more time, until the announcer comes on again. This time, for a different train, but on the same platform.

“Then, I’ll…” Anna hears herself say. She throws a thumb over her shoulder, pointing at a general exit. Truth is, it doesn’t matter which way she heads out. Every path would eventually lead her home, it just depends on whether or not she wants to get there faster. 

“Yeah,” Elsa says. She looks down at her shoes. “Good… goodbye.”

It came out like a question, one that Anna doesn’t have a response to. Stupidly, she just nods. “Yeah,” Anna repeats. “I’ll see y—”

See you around? That’s not… Elsa wouldn’t want that. 

“G-goodbye.” She finishes. 

They turn simultaneously, and then they walk forward, down their respective paths. Anna keeps her head lowered as she moves, too embarrassed by her own actions to maintain an upright posture. All the pride and confidence that she firmly holds have fled her body, because what she did just now really is pathetic.

‘Establish whatever it is between the two of you before you part ways,’ comes the echo of Kris’ ‘word of advice’. 

The more stubborn part of Anna picks up the pace, but the more rational, the firmer side of her holds her still. What a conundrum, being pushed and pulled by her own body like this. Several more steps later, Anna finally stops. She considers that once she turns, Elsa would be gone, and all she would be faced with is disappointment. Should she run after the girl? She shouldn’t have gone far. The station’s pretty big, there are countless exits, but if Anna tries, it’s possible.

Anna nods to herself. Yeah, it’s possible.

Taking a deep breath, Anna spins on her heels, determined to do this. She’s going to run. Anna is a fast runner. She can do it. She can

It is then that time stands still.

Anna is stunned. Of all the cliches human beings have ever come up with—be it rom coms or shitty CTV dramas—nothing can match this. Elsa, with her back to Anna, is still standing there. Her head is down, shoulders drooped. It’s like she doesn’t want to move. Like she’s waiting.

The thought of it reassures Anna. A smile finds its way back to her face, and she walks forward. 

“Elsa,” she calls her name with a gentle voice.

The gasp can almost be heard. The blonde spins around, her hair swaying beautifully with her sudden movement. “You came back.” 

Once more, Anna’s heart swells. Infinitely more this time. “Yeah. I… wanted to tell you something.”

“Oh?”

Anna really is improvising at this point. But oh well. When has she ever planned things that worked out? She sure as hell didn’t plan what happened last night, and did that work out? “Just… I,” Anna struggles to find the right words, but she tries. “Wanted to let you know that... about what I said earlier? L-last night, in particular. That I, er, don't actually hate you. I was just carried away by everything, y'know?”

Elsa’s expression changes from a look of confusion to shock, then to joy, and then all three mixed together. It’s adorable. She’s adorable. “I know,” Elsa says almost in a whisper, but the confidence she exudes is insurmountable. It is enough to spark a newfound warmth between them. "And I don't either."

She swallows, knowing full-well how difficult this is for both of them. “In that case,” Anna goes on, now feeling more motivated than ever, “Do you think it's possible for us to see each other again? Not, like, in the distant future or anything vague like that, but more so now,” she stammers. “Or, well, not  right now, but soon. T-to like, just… hang out. To know each other more. We can go to a coffee shop. Watch a movie. Have dinner. I-I’ll treat you, since you paid for my ticket.”

The adorable expression lingers, but Elsa’s beauty becomes more pronounced when she grins. Pearly white teeth show alongside her happiness, and Anna wants to kiss her again. 

“That sounds lovely,” Elsa says. “But…”

She blinks.

Elsa blushes. “I’d like to go home to wash up first. To, um, dress nicely if we’re really going on a d—ah, t-together?”

Date. She totally wants to say ‘date’. Anna breathes in. “Yeah,” she bobs her head, suppressing her grin. “May I have your number?”

As if it were possible, the redness on Elsa’s cheeks deepens. Beet-red. When handed Anna’s phone, she is very evidently shaking. Look at her fingers! Just struggling to type out the right numbers. 

“Thanks,” Anna says as she stares fondly at those digits. She isn’t good at memorization, but she will certainly capture this in her heart. Develop photographic memory for this. “Then, I’ll see you soon?”

“Yes,” Elsa nods. Subtly, she runs her tongue over her lower lip. She pushes a strand of hair behind her ear, a gesture that Anna realizes she does when she’s particularly nervous. For good reason, though. Because before she knows it, Elsa has leaned in, giving Anna a small peck on her cheek. 

And Anna, in that moment, thinks this is the very definition of euphoria.

“Thank you, Anna, for keeping me alive and, well, amongst other things," Elsa says as she pulls back. A pretty tint of pink is spread across her cheeks. "I'll call you.”

When Elsa finishes, she takes a step back and turns. As she walks away, she glances over a shoulder to shoot Anna a shy gaze.

Anna, in the meantime, believes it’s time to admit that she’s likely, kind of, probably, sorta developed a crush.

Oh, how she can't wait to see where this takes her.