“I really can’t believe you took this case. There is nothing mystical about the Cubs’ so called curse; it’s simply poor management and owner decisions!” Murphy was incredulous.
“Of course it is.” I agreed, “But look at how great these seats are. Why not take advantage of the opportunity.”
She tried to look scandalized but her inability to keep from laughing ruined the effect.
“Fine. You are buying the overpriced hot dogs, though.” She conceded, her smile all dimples and wrinkled nose.
The food line took a good inning and a half, and I by the time I got back to our seats, some asshole the next row up was twisted all the way over to lean in towards Murphy. I glared at him from behind her back until he made himself scarce, hoping she wouldn’t realize. It annoyed her when I got overprotective.
“Spot anything suspicious while you were up?”
“Nope. What about you?”
“The only bending going on with the laws of physics involves this pitcher’s curve ball. You know, Dresden, if you wanted to take me to a ballgame you could have just asked.” She teased.
“If I were going to ask you out, it wouldn’t be a baseball game.” I countered.
“How do you know I don’t think baseball games are super romantic.” She bantered back, mirroring the way I’d moved in towards her.
That is when we realized the kisscam was on us. I didn’t have time to decide what to do about that information either. The next thing I knew Murphy was halfway out of her seat and her tongue was halfway down my throat.
I’ll never know what might have happened next; because, that was when all of the lights in the stadium decided to suddenly go out and panic erupted.
Murphy pulled away and went reaching in her jacket pockets for her flashlight.
“You know, if you wanted to jump me… you could have just said something.” I joked.
“That was just for show for the cameras… to maintain our cover.” she snapped.
I thought to myself that the cameras couldn’t see what was going on inside either of our mouths, but I kept that thought to myself. I happen to like being in one piece.
The three hour car trip out into the middle of nowhere had been a complete waste of time. There was no sign of anything remotely supernatural or sinister going on in or around the farm.
“If I didn’t know any better, Murph. I’d say you dragged me all the way out here as a pretext for something else. If SI was a warrant and you wanted to search my place while I wasn’t around again, I’m telling you it is a waste of time.”
She turned around on the hay bale she’d been standing on to peer up into the rafters of the barn.
“As I recall, it was your idea to come out here in the first place, Dresden.”
“You know.” I continued, walking towards her, “Standing on that thing, you are actually about my height. Did you bring me all the way out here just so you could find a hay bale to stand on?”
I watched annoyance and amusement compete in her expression.
“I’m pretty sure I am actually taller than you right now.” She replied, settling on amused, “Maybe I need to get one of these for my office.”
She was right, as we came face to face I had to tilt mine up just a little.
“You’ve got straw in your hair.” She smiled, reaching to pick in out and I was suddenly aware of how close our lips were. It was like one of those stupid teenage moments full of tension and anticipation. Then, just like those fumbling experiences, our mouths were on each other without me being sure of who moved first.
Her fingers stayed in my hair, her other hand reaching around to join the first. I leaned into the kiss, opening my mouth to her probing tongue.
Unfortunately, that was when the portal to the Nevernever opened up right on top of us.
“You know, I tried microchipping you once.” Murphy admitted, finally giving up on getting out of my grave without outside assistance.
“How’d that go?” I asked, even though I was pretty sure I knew the answer.
“Your magic fried it just like my phone.” She sighed.
“Figures.” I commiserated, watching her start to shiver now that the adrenaline was wearing off.
“If we ever get out of here, I am going murder that Black Court bitch so hard.” She swore, huddling in the opposite corner of the grave, miserably.
“I think there is is probably a line for that one.”
“And yet she lives… or unlives? Whatever.” Murphy’s teeth were visibly chattering and I wasn’t feeling so warm myself.
“Can I make a suggestion that we cling together for warmth? Just for warmth… I’m not trying to get kneed in the balls or anything.”
The joke cheered her up visibly, even though trying to get ourselves arranged proved awkward. Eventually we managed though, me lying sideways and her cradled face first up against me.
“You know, Harry, if we are going to die in here…”
“If we are going to die in here, what?”
“We might as well give it a go… last chances and all.”
I would have thought she was kidding, if she hadn’t wriggled her way upwards so that her face met my face instead of my chest.
“Murph…” I murmured, feeling the heat of her breath against mine.
Her kisses were hungry and I responded in kind, sliding my hands into the back pockets of her jeans and pulling her closer against me. I silently cursed the cramped and freezing conditions. Rolling over onto my back, I was able to shift Murphy on top of me, where she at least had some maneuverability.
She sat up, still straddling my chest, and that allowed me to get my hands up under her shift and jacket. She bent back down and started in on my neck as my fingers slid over her bra, feeling her nipples reacting to my touch on the other side of the fabric.
It was probably a good thing that Murphy’s torso only covered about half of mine, because it meant she couldn’t feel how overeager my body already was.
Then suddenly there was light shining down on us.
Sanya looked confused and I felt the same way about being rescued at such an inopportune moment.
“Hop on. I’ll give you a ride.” Murph smiled, head tilted to the side at an angle I would have called adorable if I hadn’t been so invested in all my bodyparts.
“You aren’t afraid that I’ll make your bike malfunction?” I asked.
“Nah.” She grinned, “This thing is a classic.”
I slid on behind her, trying not to think about the way her jeans were hugging her shapely ass and thighs.
“It’s sweet that you picked out your ride just for me.” I whispered against her ear.
“Shut up and hold on.” She grumbled, with feigned annoyance.
The best and worst thing about riding on the back of someone’s motorcycle is that you have to hold on tight and keep your body pressed against theirs. It requires a certain amount of unavoidable intimacy. That combined with the adrenaline rush of the air moving past your face, always gives me an adrenaline rush.
The fact that we were being chased didn’t hurt either.
By the time we reached the boundary of their territory, my blood was pumping hard and so was hers.
“That was close.” I gasped, letting go of Murph and stumbling backwards off the bike.
“You have got to stop pissing off local spirits.”
Murph’s breathing was heavy too; her light hair shone in the moonlight, even in this dark warehouse district.
“What can I say? I see to have a knack for getting people worked up.”
“You sure do.” She replied, an odd tightness in her voice.
“Thanks for the heroic rescue by the way. I-”
My thought was cut off short as I was slammed against the side of the nearest building with more force than such a tiny person should have been able to muster.
“Shut up, Harry.” She breathed, grabbing my neck and pulling my head down to meet hers as she pinned me to the wall.
I lifted her up, placing my hands on the back of her thighs, and she wrapped her legs firmly around my waist, gripping me tightly.
I moved my mouth over to her ears and neck, hoisting her up a little higher so I could reach her collarbone. I mentally cursed the sensible high necked shirts she always wore. I made a joke about it once and she asked me if I had any idea how much hot shell casing hurt when they got down your shirt. I spun us around, pressing her against the wall instead, and switching my grip on her backside to allow me a free hand to yank her shirt aside so that I could continue exploring her skin with my lips.
She gave this little shudder and arched her spine towards me, gripping my shoulders with her hands in an attempt to leverage herself upwards a little further. I got the hint and reached back around to help boost her, ending up with her legs looped over my shoulders.
“Tease.” She growled, as I ran my thumbs along the ring of flesh exposed where her top no longer met the top of her jeans since it had been pushed up, my eyes canvassing the smooth muscular skin.
I leaned forward and my mouth made contact just to the side of her belly button. My fingers were clumsy as I reached for the button of her jeans, hands a little shaky.
“Don’t stop on my account. ” Drawled a velvety voice I knew only too well.
Twisting my head around, I realized that it was indeed Lara Raith, the power behind the White Court throne. I cursed her timing silently.
Now that I was the Winter Knight, the cold didn’t really bother me anymore, but wet clothes were still uncomfortable as ever; which was why, I was sitting in Karrin’s living room, wearing only a Karrin sized towel.
“The dryer should be done in about fifteen minutes.” Karrin informed me, emerging from the steaming bathroom in a matching towel, post shower, “Sorry I don’t have anything that would fit you.”
“I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t want to know how the clothes of someone else my size ended up in your possession.” I responded without thinking.
“Harry…” Karrin’s voice dropped as she sat down next to me on the couch, “I know this isn’t a very good time to talk about this but…”
“...it never is.” I finished.
“I know you are afraid of how the Mantle impacts you, but Harry, you are still you. You know that if you weren’t…”
“I’m still dangerous. Karrin, the Mantle is a predator and-”
She cut me off. One minute Karrin was sitting next to me and the next she had straddled my lap and was pushing me against the back of the couch with the force of her petite frame as she kissed me without a trace of hesitation.
I didn’t realize that my hands moving to her back until they hit bare flesh, realizing her towel had fallen down, or that I was pulling her closer until her bare breasts pressed against my chest. I tried to push down the urge to take but my body didn’t want to listen to me instead of Winter.
“Karrin I…” I managed to stammer, between ragged kisses.
“Has it ever occured to you, that maybe I might enjoy it if you get all rough and feral? That I could want that.”
What was left of my brain was losing the battle. It thought that Winter and Karrin both made excellent points. After all, she had chosen to get involved with the Hellhound, repeatedly. I seriously doubted that he was about gentle lovemaking.
Thinking about the fact that Karrin had ever been remotely involved with Kincaid was a dumb idea. Some neanderthal part of myself, who agreed with Winter’s possessive demands, was determined that the only course of action was to pin Karrin down underneath me and mark every last inch of her completely as mine.
She was down on the couch cushions before I realized I’d make a decision, my hands gripping her thighs as I savaged my way down her neck, kneeling in front of her.
A sharp piece of glass digging into my leg broke my focus momentarily. I was horrified to realize I hadn’t noticed knocking the coffee table over in my haste. I looked down and felt sick to see the bruises that were already beginning to become visible where my thumbs had dug into her inner thighs.
“It doesn’t matter.” She tried to tell me, “You don’t have to hold yourself back…”
“It matters to me.” I realized, “This isn’t how I want it to be, at least not to start with. Laugh at me for being a pansy about it, but you are special to me… and I want it to be special.”
She sighed, resting her hand on my face, “We will figure it out then. I promise.”
I found myself wishing that I was still impacted by cold showers.
And One Time They Weren’t
“Where are we going?” I found myself asking, not for the first time, but Karrin just ignored me and continued down the trail.
I could have caught up, long legs and all, but I was sort of enjoying the way her athletic frame was hugged by her black exercise pants. To put it bluntly: I was staring at her ass (well... her ass, thighs, and hips).
I let that realization wash over me without freaking out about it or focusing on it too hard.
We’d been hiking for almost an hour, when we finally took an abrupt turn and I got a sudden view of a ravine with a picturesque waterfall, ending in a shallow stream.
“Nice spot.” I commented, “Are you trying to seduce me?”
“Yes.” Karrin replied without batting an eyelash, “Put down the picnic basket. I have something for you.”
She pulled out two man sized metal bracelet cuffs, the kind that latch shut and go completely around your wrist.
“Aren’t I the one who is supposed to be buying you jewelry.” I protested, I am a little old fashioned that way sometimes.
“They’re iron. They should cut you off from the Mantle temporarily. I’ve been thinking about how we might get a little time alone, without the Winter Knight wanting to join in.”
“And the scenic location?” Karrin, pulled my arms towards her and snapped the iron around my wrists, severing the low grade connection I always feel to my unseelie powers.
“Running water to short you out if you feel like you are losing control.”
I was touched that Karrin had thought this out so thoroughly. It was sweet. It also meant that we might finally be able to take things to the next level physically, without the Winter Mantle taking over. I’m a guy. It isn’t like I didn’t really really want that, even though I’d been being careful.
“Shut up and get naked.” She interrupted, kicking off her own shoes and then reaching across her body to pull her tank top up over her head.
“Hey…” I pretended to be hurt, “That’s not very romantic sounding.”
“Harry, please take off your clothes so that I don’t rip them off you in impatience… darling.” She added.
She didn’t have to ask twice… well she did… but she didn’t have to ask me a third time. I unbuckled my belt and kicked my pants off, along with my shoes in one motion. Karrin was already naked and halfway to the waterfall, so I tore off my shirt and used my leg span to catch up with her.
“Hey you…” I murmured, closing the last of the distance between us, I looked down into her eyes and we both smiled. I wrapped my hands around either side of her waist and hoisted her up until our lips were level.
Karrin closed those vital inches, wrapping her legs around my torso as she initiated a slow deep kiss. The water flowing down our bodies made them slippery, leaving just enough friction to be tantalizing as her body slid against mine. I lost myself in the warmth of her mouth and the feeling of her skin against mine, the contrast of our body heat with the cool water making every inch of my flesh feel more sensitive.
Setting her back down on the ground, I knelt down, hands free to caress her skin and enjoy the curves of her body. My hands cupped her breasts, enjoying the way each movement made her shudder slightly. I kissed her stomach and hips, hands sliding down her sides and then around to her backside. I nudged my mouth down, kissing her thighs and feeling her legs shake slightly.
“Harry…” She moaned, as I breathed against her clit, before gently pressing my tongue against her opening, tasting her arousal. I was determined to be patient and take my time with this, no matter how long it had been. I wasn’t some over eager teenager.
That didn’t stop me from burying my head and doing everything I could to get more of that kind of reaction out of her. Fortunately, it seemed like everything I did with my mouth or tongue made her breath quicken and her body shake.
I guess I might have forgotten that she’d been waiting on me as well.
“Harry, if you don’t get back up here and fuck me soon I am going to take away for pretty bracelets and force you to take me.”
Her threat’s impact was mitigated by gasping for breath and whimpering between words.
“Far be it from me, to deny a lady a boon she has requested.” I teased, moving to oblige as I used my grip on her backside to lift her up against the rock face, “But I am going to make love to you, not fuck you.”
“Shut up, you big dummy.” Karrin smiled, arching her hips up against me, pushing me part way inside of her. I took the hint, sliding all the way in until I was buried completely, holding her close as possible. Our eyes stayed locked as we both found our rhythm, deliberate and slow at first, but with growing intensity.
It is probably a good thing that Karrin was already really close to the edge; because, I am not sure I could have held out that long. I certainly finished quickly enough after her.
“I love you.” She whispered against my chest as we stayed leaning against the support of the rocks, heartbeats slowly moving back towards their usual pace..
“What was that?” I asked, daring her to repeat it.
“Next time we are doing this in the comfort of a bed.” She teased, “I’ll handcuff you to it if you feel nervous.”
“Karrin.” I replied, ignoring that she’d changed her tone, “I love you, too… always.”