“My captain Raydor?” Sharon seethed. Brenda bit her bottom lip and twisted her hands together. She’d never seen Sharon this angry before, not even when she was still hiding evidence from the captain and tried to sabotage her investigations. The only time Sharon had gotten angry was that first time in Pope’s office after that she just appeared aloof. But now she was fuming.
“My captain Raydor! Jesus, Brenda, It might just be easier if you simply announce that we’re fucking,” Sharon sneered and shot a poisonous look at Brenda as she continued to pace the length of her small office. Brenda tracked her movements with her eyes, the incessant clacking of Sharon stilettos giving her a headache.
“I panicked. I hadn’t planned on you meeting my parents in front of my division and my husband. Actually I hadn’t planned on you meeting them at all,” Brenda confessed, getting slightly agitated by Sharon’s pacing and her increasingly bad mood. The older woman reached one end of her office and spun around, walking past Brenda toward the other end, arms crossed in front of her chest.
“So you thought it would be a phenomenal idea to introduce me as your friend when everybody else there knows how much we dislike each other.” Brenda cringed, thinking back of her not so smooth moment where it took her three tries to introduce Sharon without making it sound ridiculous. Friend probably hadn’t been the right word to choose for the brunette.
“I don’t dislike you.” Brenda resisted the urge to add anymore to that statement, not wanting to provoke Sharon. She was at a loss at how to deal with the brunette when she was in this state. Content, aroused, needy, disappointed, she knew what to in those situations, but anger was something she was unfamiliar with. “And no, obviously. But exactly how do you introduce your - -,”
“Extra-marital lover or mistress,” Sharon supplied, coming to a stop right in front of Brenda, her green eyes locked with Brenda’s. The hard look that had been in them had weakened and was replaced by a sadness that shocked Brenda. “It’s alright. I know what I am to you.”
The words stung more than Brenda could have imagined and she could see the pain reverberated in Sharon’s eyes before the brunette turned away her gaze and started pacing again, a little slower this time as if she was more absorbed in her thoughts somehow. For a brief moment all Brenda wanted to do was pull Sharon close and kiss her until that defeated look disappeared from her face, but the sound of heels on linoleum brought her back to the conversation.
“Right, how do you introduce your mistress to your parents?”
“In this particular situation? Like a colleague. Which is what we are. Most of the time anyway,” Sharon said with a sigh and leaned back against a filing cabinet as she put her hands in her pockets and closed her eyes, rolling her head back until it met the cabinet with a soft thud.
“I’m sorry, okay. But I said it and I can’t change it. Besides I don’t think anyone suspects,” she added softly, which was exactly the wrong thing to say. Sharon’s eyes snapped open and she pushed herself away from the cabinet, rattling the iron drawers in their hinges.
“Please tell me that’s your idea of a joke. Of course they suspect, now they do. We were so careful. I ensured that we were careful, that we wouldn’t get caught and you have just ruined it by opening that mouth of yours without thinking about the consequences.”
“Why would you care that people find out about us? You have nothing to lose,” Brenda snapped, losing her patience with Sharon’s attitude towards her.
“But you have everything to lose, your husband, your family, your job.” Sharon said, a hint of desperation in her voice. She paused, running a hand through her hair. “When will you get it into your head that I know perfectly well the world doesn’t revolve around me and that maybe I actually care about you?”
Whatever Brenda had planned to say, died on her tongue when Sharon said those words. Brenda snapped her mouth shut, staring at the woman she had been sleeping with for more than six months. The woman who had become such an integral part of her life that she had gotten so used to her constant presence that somehow she had failed to notice that Sharon had come to care about her.
“You care about me?” she whispered, her soft words bringing Sharon to a stop again. The older woman rolled her eyes at Brenda’s inaptitude to read other people’s feelings.
“God only knows why. You’re obnoxious, self-centered, you have a complete disregard of other people’s principles and feelings. You’re cheating on a wonderful man with a woman you don’t like much less know and I honestly can’t comprehend what you want with me, but despite or maybe because all of that, I care about you.”
Sharon’s voice broke a little at the end and despite all of the insults she had used to describe her, Brenda felt a lump come in her throat. She reached and grabbed Sharon, pulling her close to capture her lips in a bruising kiss to convey all the things she was afraid to think, let alone say out loud.
Brenda could feel how easily Sharon let herself be swept away in the kiss, pressing herself closer as she cupped the back of Brenda’s neck, moaning when their tongues met. This was why she was with Sharon, the unbridled passion that she awoke within her, something she hadn’t felt before the brunette. Sharon pulled back from the kiss, letting her forehead rest against Brenda as they breathed heavily.
“The thing is that I know that I shouldn’t, because we can never be together. You belong with another and I know that you will never leave him,” Sharon said softly, twirling a lock of Brenda’s hair around her finger. Brenda cupped her cheeks and kissed her quickly, fighting back the tears she felt pricking in her eyes.
“I can’t, even if I had the strength, I can’t leave him.” If she divorced him, she knew it would break him. Finding out that she was having an affair would too, but she could keep that part of her life hidden. Leaving Fritz would be so permanent and just the mere thought terrified her.
“I know. And I wouldn’t ask it of you. There are times I wish I had the courage to do so. But I couldn’t do that to you.” Brenda brushed her thumbs over Sharon’s cheekbones. It was completely unfair what she was doing to Sharon. The woman gave her so much, cared too much for her and Brenda could give her nothing in return, just a couple of hours a week with a woman who at the end of the day always went back to her unsuspecting husband.
“Do you - -,” Brenda choked, blinking back tears. “Do you want to end this?”
“It would be the best thing to do, but I can’t walk away from you,” Sharon confessed as she wiped away a tear that was rolling down Brenda’s cheek. Brenda didn’t know whether to be relieved or disappointed. She would have been devastated if Sharon had ended it, but at least she wouldn’t be trapped in this situation anymore. But she couldn’t end it herself either.
“I can’t either.” Sharon sighed in relief and Brenda saw a hint of a smile play around her lips before it disappeared again. The older woman swallowed and licked her lips as if they had suddenly gone dry.
“At one point you’re going to have to,” Sharon whispered, before she leaned in and kissed Brenda softly, just brushing their lips together, eliciting a small whimper from Brenda as she dragged her fingers through Sharon thick hair.
“Just not today. Please, not today.”
“No, not today,” Sharon said. Brenda closed her eyes in relief at Sharon’s words. She wasn’t ready to give this up, to give Sharon up. It scared her how much she needed the older woman sometimes. She had come to live for the moments she shared with Sharon, for those few precious hours they could spend together uninterrupted.
She crashed their lips together, spinning them around so she could pin Sharon against the door. It was a collision of noses, teeth and tongues, but Brenda couldn’t stop. She wanted Sharon more than she recalled ever wanting her. Sharon tried to put her hands on Brenda’s waist, but Brenda grabbed them, pushing them above her head against the cold wood of the door, intertwining their fingers.
Rolling her hips, she managed to get a thigh between Sharon’s legs, kissing her only harder when she felt the older woman involuntarily grind against her leg. Brenda pulled back, dragging her teeth over Sharon’s bottom lip before she started trailing her lips over Sharon’s jaw and down her throat, sucking softly, but not enough to leave a mark.
“Brenda, please, stop.” Sharon’s voice was so soft that Brenda thought she misunderstood her. she returned to Sharon’s mouth, kissing her softly. She was surprised when Sharon didn’t return her kiss. With a small frown she ended it, pulling back to look at the slightly disheveled woman.
“Don’t do this. Not now,” Sharon said, almost begged. Brenda immediately released her, stepping back as if Sharon had slapped her. She thought that Sharon hadn’t wanted to stop it. She made a move to open the door when Sharon grabbed her wrist. Brenda yanked it free and took a step back.
“Why?” she asked sharply, tugging on her blazer. Sharon smoothed her own blazer, but to Brenda’s surprise the woman had a small smile playing on her lips.
“Remember what I said about being careful? That is still important to me. We’ll wait until after the holidays, alright?” Sharon carefully placed two fingers under chin, tilting her head up so she was looking in Sharon’s eyes. All the anger from before was gone. The captain had returned to herself again. Brenda smiled when Sharon leaned in for a slow kiss.
“Okay, after the holidays,” she promised. She could manage to stay away from the brunette for that long. Brenda knew that she wouldn’t be able to keep balancing her professional and her two private lives for long. But as long as she still could, she wasn’t going to just end whatever it was she had going on with Sharon.
This affair with Sharon would bring her nothing but trouble, but at the same time, she hadn’t felt this at ease, this much like herself in a long time. But she doubted she would ever be able to admit to herself how much the captain meant to her. It was probably better that way for the both, for all three them.