There was something about Bumi that brought out a playful streak in Lin. It was odd, yes, but nice in a lot of ways.
She was never frivolous. She worked hard. She could bend earth and metal to her will.
Sometimes she wondered if that was why she and Tenzin had grown apart. They were both too serious.
But with Bumi, she laughed.
She first got the idea after hearing Bumi boast that he could get her out of her brassiere with one hand tied behind his back. They were having drinks, and he was red faced, telling outlandish stories that no one would ever believe, and making Lin snicker into her cup. It was more relaxed than she’d been in a long time.
Maybe it was the booze, or maybe it had just been too long since she did something even a little outrageous, but after hearing Bumi’s claims about his skill in the removal of women’s undergarments, Lin raised a brow and said, “Prove it.”
For at least ten seconds, Bumi looked completely shocked. That was a victory in and of itself.
But then he laughed, his lips stretching into a wolfish smirk. “Is that a challenge, sweetheart? I always knew you had a thing for me!”
Lin rolled her eyes at being called ‘sweetheart,’ but forged on. “What do I get if you can’t do it?”
Bumi leered. “What do I get if I can?”
Lin’s lips twitched. She made a show of inspecting her nails. “I think that’s obvious, don’t you?”
“Hot damn!” Bumi stood, pounding his hand on the table to have the server bring their check.
He gallantly paid their tab, and Lin allowed it, though as the sole heir of the Bei Fong estate she had more than a few coins to rub together. But Bumi was trying to be charming, and so she let him.
They stepped out of the pub, into the dark. Of course in the city it was never truly dark. Even with the damage following the Equalist attack, lights gave the buildings around them a faint orange glow.
There was a cold bite in the air that signaled the approaching winter.
“Your place or mine?” Bumi growled at her, that self-satisfied grin still on his face.
Lin glared at him. Bumi was staying at Air Temple Island, with Tenzin and his family.
“Right, dumb question. Your place it is.”
The first thing Bumi did when they entered Lin’s house in the city was push her against the wall, thread his hands into her short hair, and press his lips to hers in a kiss that left her a bit breathless and wobbly-kneed.
Lin Bei Fong did not get wobbly-kneed. Not over anyone.
And yet here she was, heart racing, lips tingling, fingers flexing and unflexing as she tensed, not sure what to do with herself.
Bumi pulled back eventually, to look her in the eye.
She could feel herself blushing.
“What do you think you’re doing?”
She meant to demand. To remind Bumi who, exactly, was in charge here.
Her voice came out in a whisper, soft and lustful.
“Kissing you,” was the growled response.
“This isn’t what we came here to do, Bumi.”
“No. We have a bet to settle.”
There, that sounded much more normal.
Lin put a hand on Bumi’s chest and shoved him back. He seemed to like the rough treatment, if the look he gave her and the bulge in his pants was any indication.
“The bedroom’s this way.”
He followed her like an eager puppy.
Getting him to sit on the bed was easy enough. Then it took just a few quick gestures to send a metal cable snaking from her sleeve to wrap around Bumi’s torso, trapping his right arm against his side.
“Ooh, kinky,” Bumi licked his lips. “Want me to call you Mistress?”
Lin snorted, firmly ignoring the little jolt of electricity the idea elicited in her.
“You said you could get my bra off with one hand tied behind your back. Now,” Lin slid into a metalbending stance, sending her uniform flying off to drape itself over the chair next to the dresser, the thick metal plates clinking loudly, “you’ll prove it.”
She was peeling off the cotton undershirt and pants she wore under her armor as padding when Bumi moaned.
“That was one of the hottest things I’ve ever seen.”
Lin blushed again, unsure what to say. So she kept silent. She wasn’t used to people saying those kinds of things to her.
Bumi made her feel desirable.
Once she was in only her plain black bra and underwear, she sank down next to Bumi on the bed, hyper aware of every place their bodies touched.
Bumi ran his free hand up her back, his fingers surprisingly gentle.
He looked her in the eye as he easily undid the clasp of her bra with three fingers, then let it go, expecting the garment to fall away to reveal her breasts.
Lin wiggled her thumb, and the two metal hooks did themselves back up.
Bumi frowned, not yet catching on that Lin was cheating.
It took him three more tries and the spreading grin that Lin was unable to contain to realize what she was up to.
“Lin Bei Fong!” he exclaimed at last. “The Chief of Police! Cheating in a bet! The shame of it.”
The way he said ‘shame’ was positively sinful.
“I never said I wouldn’t use metalbending,” she retorted, feeling impish.
Bumi’s response was to snarl at her like some kind of beast man, and pin her down to the bed. He grasped her bra with his free hand, and then his face was between her breasts, and his beard tickled, and Lin wasn’t sure if she wanted to knock him over or pull him closer, and –
There was a vicious ripping sound.
Bumi sat up, a scrap of black fabric hanging between his lips.
Lin looked down to see that he had torn her bra in half, ripping out the strip of black cloth that held the cups together.
“You never said you wouldn’t use metalbending. I never said I wouldn’t use my teeth,” Bumi said, the fabric still dangling from his mouth. He spat it out, letting it fall to the bed.
“That was my favorite bra,” was the only thing Lin could think of to say.
“Don’t worry, sweetheart. I’ll make it up to you,” Bumi replied, before claiming his reward.