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"Ah, gee whiz, lady," hollered a man down the end of the counter.
LB raised her eyebrows at Santa and turned to see who made the comment.
"You gotta have dinner with Santa."
"Yeah, you can't turn down Santa," joined a man from across the room.
"Yeah," remarked another listener.
A quick glance around the tables found all eyes glued to them. LB turned back to Santa and from his expressive eyes, she could tell he was thoroughly enjoying the moment.
"Keep it up, guys," Santa's deep voice encouraged, as he motioned with black gloved hands "She's weakening."
"Hey," echoed the man from the far end of the counter, "A lady that has Here Come Santa Claus on her cell phone can't turn down an invitation from him."
Then to her shock, the man bellowed out "Here Comes Santa Claus, here comes Santa Claus," and everyone joined him.
Dropping her head in her hands, she couldn't help but laugh. Finally, she threw up her hands toward the crowd and agreed. "Okay, okay, I'll have dinner with him." Turning to Santa, she noted a satisfied expression.
He leaned over, put an arm around her shoulder, and whispered close to her ear, "Meet me at Metish around eight. Will that give you enough time to change?"
Standing, he turned to the customers and waved. "Thanks, guys, it's a date. Ho, ho, ho, and a merry Christmas to all."
With a twinkle in his eyes, he left her sitting there with a red face, a latte, and everyone clapping their hands.