She was dressed in Levi’s and a blue tank top underneath her lab coat. It was hot outside, the temperature getting close to 85F and it was only 10.30, but it was almost cold in the large marble hallway of the Justice Building.
Phoebe Janeway looked down from the ladder and smiled to herself. Perhaps it was because of all the serious matters that were being handled in these chambers. There were enough people in power suits here to keep the temperature down. Then again, she imagined that the argument in the courts could become quite heated.
She stepped down from the ladder to move it along the large wall where she was painting one of the three murals the city had commissioned her to do.
Taking a step to her left to move a bucket of paint, she bumped into someone. Sighing inwardly she turned to give the person a piece of her mind for having entered the roped off area.
"Oh, I’m sorry," the intruder said and took a step back. "I know I’m not supposed to be inside your work area but I’ve been watching you work for weeks now and …"
Phoebe looked at the elegant woman who was about her own height, with jet black hair pulled back in a full, low bun cradled in the curve of the back of her neck. She was dressed in a black suit, a tailored jacket over a hot pink shirt and a short black skirt.
"You’re not supposed to be in here," the artist explained and motioned towards the red and white plastic ribbon that closed off her working area. "It’s for your own safety and besides you don’t want to get paint all over that expensive power suit of yours." She grinned and wrinkled her nose.
The woman gave her a polite smile and took a step back.
"You’re absolutely right and normally I wouldn’t have … I mean, I don’t really have time for this. It’s just that your mural is taking form and I’m amazed at how you can work so fast and still do such a wonderful job of it."
To her amazement, Phoebe blushed.
The woman obviously worked in the Justice Building, which meant she was probably a lawyer. Still there was something about her, perhaps her unabashed appreciation for Phoebe’s art, or her audacity to just climb into the roped off area, that intrigued the artist.
"I’m Phoebe," she introduced herself and was about to extend a hand when she remembered it was stained with paint.
"Adriana de Leon," the other woman reciprocated. "Nice to meet you." She paused. "May I ask why you chose this particular motif?"
Phoebe turned to look at the images that were forming on the large wall. The mural would be about twenty-five by nine feet when she was done.
"This is the mural that won the city council’s approval when I submitted my suggestions. I’m also scheduled to do two other ones, one in City Hall and another one at Adamson Memorial Hospital. That will keep me in the city for at least six months, maybe more," Phoebe smiled crookedly.
"So you’re not from here?"
"No, I’m a country girl," the artist grinned and began moving the ladder.
"I should let you go back to work," Adriana de Leon said and took a step back. Ducking swiftly under the rope, still holding on to her heavy briefcase, the dark haired woman gave Phoebe a quick smile.
"Thank you for taking the time to talk to me. Maybe you can tell me more some other time?"
The artist cocked her head, a broad grin forming on her lips.
"Sure, and if you come dressed more appropriately, I’ll might let you help out."
Adriana de Leon’s eyes widened.
"I think I’d like that," she replied softly.
Janeway had gone up and left the house early. She walked along the path leading towards the tall cliffs on the east side of Raven’s Island. The CEO had arrived with Seven the previous evening; Jacob’s son Josh had taken them in the fishing boat. It had been a moment of truth of sorts for the tall blonde when she entered the boat from which she had been kidnapped two months ago.
Seven had worn a cast on her right foot for six weeks and now she was walking with just a cane. The healing had taken longer than expected and Janeway had been concerned. Now it looked like the young woman was finally on the mend. The doctor had advised Seven to walk as much as possible, but if it hurt too much, elevate her foot and rest.
For some reason, Janeway had not slept much the first night on Raven’s Island. Usually she slept like a log when she was out here with Seven, far from phones, far from the demands of being the CEO of a multibillion dollar conglomerate.
At 5AM she had given up and snuck out of bed, not wanting to disturb the exhausted woman sleeping next to her. She had put on a pair of worn jeans and a grey knitted sweater and gone out.
The sun was rising, casting a mild glow through the clouds over the ocean. Janeway knew why Seven loved her island so much. It was beautiful out here. The island had a small forest, a field that bloomed with all sorts of wild flowers right now when it was high summer. To the east, tall cliffs provided a magnificent view of the ocean. On the west side, there was a sandy beach towards the archipelago right next to the natural harbour.
The CEO wondered why it was that she somehow seemed to require the open view of nothing but the vast ocean. Reaching the tallest part of the cliffs, she sat down, balancing on the edge and stared at the violent waves crashing on the rocks forty-five feet below her. The force of the ocean rushing towards the island matched her inner turmoil.
Her eyes burned with unshed tears. She suddenly saw Seven in her mind's eye, the blonde dressed in a pyjamas, falling towards her death right in front of her … Janeway gasped, pressing a hand against her chest as if to still the thunder of her raging heart. She had almost lost Seven to a man whom she had opted to deal with privately, instead of pressing charges against him when he first showed his true colours by blackmailing Marion.
Marion McDunn had suffered from guilt when Seven was kidnapped, for having plotted together with Avery to undermine Seven’s position at the Stellar Corporation. In Janeway’s opinion, the greatest guilt lay with herself. She thought she had taken the appropriate measures and made sure Avery would not dare go near any of them again.
She had been wrong. Her former employee had returned to kidnap Seven, physically injuring Jacob Henderson, an old friend of Seven, in the process.
Janeway knew that engulfing herself in guilt did not lead to anything productive and now was not the time to fall apart. They had the upcoming trial to get ready for; the DA was preparing as a solid case against Avery as possible. Seven would have to testify which bothered the CEO a great deal. She wondered what reliving the whole ordeal would do to the younger woman.
During those days without Seven, she had lived with the most excruciating fear she had ever experienced in her entire life. The fear of never seeing the other woman again, of Seven becoming hurt or worse … if Avery had panicked and killed …
A sob broke through the CEO’s tightly closed throat. The thought of losing Seven, after all they had been through together, was overwhelming her. Seven had brought more joy, more love to her life than she had ever thought possible. The blonde had unknowingly brought Janeway and her mother and sister back together, making it possible for them to talk and to heal old issues. The auburn haired woman first thought the salty drops on her cheeks were the ocean waves spraying on her but then realised that she was crying.
The mere idea of never waking up next to the tall blonde again, to never hold her close and feel her softness, those full breasts and long legs that could drive her crazy … burying her face into her hands, Janeway kept crying.
Trembling with the emotions rolling inside her much like the ocean waves below, she let herself go, not caring that the panicky feelings rampaged freely. Seven had suffered greatly. She had had to endure the brutal kidnapping, the manhandling by Avery and his goons and it infuriated Janeway that both the woman, Cynthia, and the three men were still at large. The police were looking for them, but so far they had not been successful.
I can’t live without her. The thought came out of nowhere and startled the CEO, making her gasp. It was true. Seven was her everything. The Stellar Corporation, everything she had achieved in her life, meant nothing if she could not share it with the woman she loved.
She realised that she would have given her life to save Seven, had it come to that.
Janeway was about to rise and make her way back to the house, when a sound made her flinch and turn her head over her shoulder.
The sight took her breath away.
Seven had climbed a small cliff a bit to Janeway’s right. She stood there, still dressed in her long, white nightgown, looking positively regal with the long blonde hair flowing in the wind behind her. Janeway was reminded of how the younger woman had looked onboard the QE2 when they had dressed for the Captain’s Ball.
Getting to her feet, the CEO tried to surreptitiously wipe away her tears, not wanting her beloved to see her cry. Seven had been through enough as it was.
"Kathryn, I was worried when you were not there when I woke up," the blonde said as she approached. "What is wrong?"
"Nothing, darling," Janeway lied. "I woke up and just felt like taking a walk. You were sound asleep when I left and you still need your rest."
Seven stepped closer and looked at the auburn haired woman with narrowing eyes.
"You have been crying," she observed. "I know something is wrong. Please tell me."
Janeway sighed. She should have known it was futile to try to hide anything from Seven. Tears welled up again and without thinking she took a step back.
"Kathryn!" Seven quickly reached for her, pulling her close into her arms. "You’re right on the edge!"
Looking over her shoulder, down on the crashing waves, Janeway shuddered. As if the close call removed the last traces of her composure, she suddenly found herself clinging to the tall blonde, hiding her face against Seven’s shoulder as she cried.
She felt Seven move them both over to the large rocks and there the other woman pulled gently at her, making Janeway sit down. The blonde wrapped her arms around her fiancée, rocking her gently.
"I came … so close, to losing you," Janeway gasped. "I can’t live without you. If Avery had …"
"Shhh," Seven hushed. "He did not. He is in custody and thanks to your attorneys as well as the DA; he will remain so until the trial. I am sure the police soon will apprehend the people he hired to assist him."
Janeway tried to get a grip of her raging emotions but it was as if a dam had burst. She was making the collar of Seven’s robe wet as she buried her tearstained face against it.
"But I could have lost you …"
"I know. I could have lost you too."
Slowly, the violent sobs mellowed down as the sun rose further on the horizon. Janeway lifted her head and tucked an errant tress of hair behind her ear as she gazed up at Seven.
"I panicked," she confessed. "I thought I was handling it so well, everything that has been going on. Suddenly, when I woke up this morning, being out here, where it is supposedly safe … I felt the walls close in on me and I had to go outside on my own."
"Are you sorry that I followed you?"
"No, darling, of course not. I was just realising what was the source of this … entire well, I guess of all that I’ve been feeling lately."
Seven caressed her cheek, the pale, blue eyes soft.
"I had not let myself quite realise how incredibly lost and alone I’d be without you, Seven," Janeway explained. "As long as I was busy doing things, including taking care of you while you were in that cast, I could keep the feelings at bay … today everything just … exploded."
"My Kathryn," Seven whispered and pulled the other woman closer again. "You are always so collected and you try hard not to let anyone see your vulnerable side. I understand that you need to maintain that image as the CEO of the Stellar Corporation … but never around me. With me, you can freely express any emotion; you do not need to censor yourself in any way."
"In my mind, I know that," the CEO allowed. "I know we should be able to share everything. It’s just that … the thought of losing you, to Avery, to death; it frightens me more than I can say. It’s like being stabbed. I never thought I’d say this; but I’m not sure I could go on if anything happened to you. I’d be lost."
Janeway heard her own voice become husky and frail and hated it. It was not easy for her to confess what she thought were signs of extreme weakness.
Seven pulled her closer, burying her face in Janeway’s hair.
"I feel the same way," the blonde confessed. "I do not know how I could possibly be happy if you were not in my life. Only the strong conviction that you would want me to move on with my life and try to be happy would make it achievable."
Janeway raised her head and saw the serious expression on Seven’s face. The younger woman looked at her with tear filled eyes, her full lips trembling. This was hard on both of them.
"You’re right," the CEO managed. "I would want you to move on and eventually be happy if something happened to me. Right now I just don’t see how that could have been possible for me, had Avery harmed you or kept you."
"I know," Seven whispered. "Fortunately that is something we do not have to deal with. However, we do have to deal with the repercussion of the ordeal we both went through. I would prefer it if we did it together. I … I would like to feel safe again."
The words carved through Janeway’s heart. Pulling the blonde closer she kissed her with as much tenderness as she could muster, feeling new tears sting behind her eyelids.
"Oh, Seven," she breathed against the other woman’s soft lips. "We will get that feeling back. Once this is over and he is permanently behind bars, we will feel safe again."
She gazed up into Seven’s eyes. The blonde did not seem entirely convinced.
Phoebe pulled off her lab coat and headed for the door. She had worked non stop for the last five hours after a late lunch and now the outline of the motif was covering almost two thirds of the large wall. She usually did not work in public like this, as large canvases was not her normal format, but all the encouraging comments and an occasional surprised stare was quite invigorating, she smirked to herself.
Her thoughts went to the conversation she had had with Adriana de Leon earlier. The dark haired woman portrayed a tough, stern personality, but Phoebe thought she had seen more in those dark eyes. It bothered her that she could not stop thinking about the other woman. This was not like her.
She went out towards the parking lot across the street where she had managed to get a parking permit from the city. She was used to having her old pickup truck back home in Indiana, and the small rental car looked pathetic in her eyes as it sat in almost solitude on the parking lot. She checked the time. It was past 7.00 and the sun had begun to set behind the tall buildings around her.
Since the events around Seven’s kidnapping, she had decided to not lease the apartment offered by the city, but moved in to one of Kathryn’s large guestrooms. To her surprise, it was as if her older sister felt more comfortable with her close and she was enjoying a welcomed truce in the sibling rivalry that had been going on for so long – until Seven entered Kathryn’s life.
Phoebe’s eyes darkened as she thought of the ordeal her sister and Seven had been through. The artist honestly loved her blonde sister-in-law to be and had participated in her rescue, only happy to be of assistance. It had brought her and Kathryn even closer and they could now talk without falling into their old pattern of defensiveness against each other.
"You’ve worked late too?"
A deep, husky voice startled her as she put the key into the car door. Phoebe pivoted.
Adriana de Leon stood a few feet away, impeccably dressed in her power suit, holding a briefcase and computer bag in her hands.
"Hi," Phoebe managed, willing her heart to stop pounding in her throat. "I didn’t see you. Yes, I got a lot of work done tonight. And you?"
"Working on a major case that is taking most of my time these days," the other woman said. "Now, I’m in a bit of a jam. My car won’t start."
"Oh, can I give you a ride? Or have you called AAA?"
"Would you believe that my cell phone is dead too?" Adriana sighed. "This has not been my day."
Phoebe unlocked the central lock of her little car and gestured towards the passenger door.
"Jump in," she offered. "I’ll drive you home."
"Actually, I was on my way to get something to eat. How about I buy you dinner, if you drive me to my favourite restaurant that is right down the street from where I live?"
Phoebe felt her own tummy say yes before she even opened her mouth. She was starving.
"Sure, that’s a great idea," she decided. "Let’s go. I’m hungry."
Adriana gave a tired smile and put her things in the back seat of Phoebe’s car. "Thanks."
They got into the car and Phoebe carefully pulled out of the parking lot after asking Adriana which way to turn.
"I’m not so familiar with the inner city," the artist explained. "I’ve visited my sister many times but I normally don’t drive here so I don’t pay attention to the streets and where they lead to. I love to shop when I’m here though."
Adriana gave a lopsided smile.
"I used to love going on shopping sprees," she offered. "These days, there only seems to be room for work. If I’m not staying late working at the office, I bring the job home with me." She glanced back over her shoulder towards her things in the back seat.
"I know what you mean. When I’m in a particularly creative period, I forget to eat and I just paint at all hours of the day. Only the fact that the light isn’t right during night makes it impossible to paint then. I can still do sketches and outline though."
"So you’re a workaholic like me, sometimes?" she grinned.
"Yes, I guess I am," Phoebe agreed. "I think it runs in the family. My sister holds the title, I can sometimes compete for the crown and my mother occasionally joins in to the madness. Had it not been for my sister’s fiancée, I swear she’d live, eat and breathe her company."
The other woman gave a sigh.
"It can be so fulfilling, work, but it can also be such a curse when it takes over every aspect of your life. Your sister is happy to have someone in her life to balance it."
"She’s more than happy. She is downright fortunate."
Phoebe drove through the busy streets, still filled with people and cars. The sun was setting and she saw the streetlights go on.
"Take a left at the next crossing," Adriana said. "There is a small parking lot next to the restaurant. If we’re lucky it won’t be full yet."
The artist drove according to the other woman’s instructions and congratulated herself on finding the last empty spot just outside the restaurant.
"Here we are then," she smiled. "Is this it? Giovanni’s?"
"Yes, and I promise they have the best lasagne in the city. I’ve eaten here many times and never been disappointed."
"Then I’ll take your word for it," Phoebe grinned and stepped out of the car, taking a cardigan from the back seat.
Adriana reached for her briefcase and computer bag. Straightening her back, the dark haired woman grimaced.
"Are you okay?" Phoebe rounded the car when Adriana paled.
"Yes, I’m fine. It’s just a touch of lumbago. It’s been bothering me all day."
"Let me carry those for you, for now," the artist offered and simply took the bags away from the other woman.
Adriana looked like she wanted to object but relented.
The two women walked into the restaurant and were immediately greeted by a short, chubby man who walked up to Adriana, kissing her on both cheeks.
"My beautiful Adriana," he said, speaking without an Italian accent to Phoebe’s surprise. Somehow she had expected it. "How have you been? It’s been a while since you were here last."
"I know, Giovanni," the elegant woman smiled. "But now I’m here and I’ve brought a new friend. Giovanni, this is Phoebe. Phoebe, Giovanni. Phoebe is an artist and Giovanni is of course the owner of this fine establishment."
Phoebe extended her right hand but was instantly swept into a firm embrace and kissed on both cheeks.
"Welcome, Phoebe," Giovanni beamed. "A friend of Adriana is a friend of ours. Here, let me show you to our best table."
The artist glanced at Adriana and was surprised to see a broad smile on the strict woman’s lips. Her elegant, classical features together with her dark eyes, gave Adriana a solemn expression that completely changed when she smiled.
Phoebe caught herself wondering what the other woman would look like with the neat bun undone. Frowning at herself for the unexpected thought, she hurried after Giovanni and Adriana to a secluded booth in the back of the restaurant.
Giovanni lit two candles and moved a small pot of blue flowers to their table. It was a simple but elegant décor, white linen table cloths and tall glasses together with a nice set of silverware gave an exclusive impression.
Giovanni handed the women their menus and Phoebe browsed it quickly, looking for her favourite Italian dishes.
"I’ll begin with some carpaccio and then I’d like some angel hair pasta with steamed shrimps, please. Oh, and some ice water, please, Giovanni" she heard Adriana place her order.
Phoebe’s eyes grew wide as she peeked at the other woman over the menu.
"Are you kidding?" she blurted out. "That’s what I usually order! I’ll have the same, Giovanni, thank you."
Adriana returned the smile. Placing the white, starched napkin on her lap, she fastened her dark eyes on Phoebe. She let them follow the outline of the artist’s tall and slender frame, the long unruly hair that had escaped her pony tail, and the cardigan she had pulled over her tank top and jeans. Suddenly Phoebe felt self-conscious about being underdressed. She glanced around the restaurant, relieved when she spotted some young people by the window, dressed in a similar way as she was.
"You’re quite young to have been commissioned to do three murals," Adriana suddenly said, her eyes still firmly locked on Phoebe.
"Not that young," Phoebe assured her. "I’m old enough to have twenty years experience as an artist. People usually take me for a lot younger though. Could be my childish ways," she joked.
"Not very childish," she objected. "I get the same reaction sometimes. I too look younger than I am, although after the last six weeks, I feel pretty old. This case I’m preparing is taking a toll on me; there are so many loose ends."
Phoebe cocked her head.
"Are you a lawyer?" she asked.
"Yes, I’m an attorney."
"So you’re in court all day defending bad guys?"
Adriana suddenly tossed her head back and laughed.
"No, not really," she grinned. "The opposite, you could say."
Phoebe was not sure she understood. She began to speak, but was interrupted by Giovanni who apparently had decided to wait on them himself. He placed a decanter of ice water and sliced lemon between them after pouring some into their tall glasses. He then turned around and fetched two large plates of carpaccio. He put them down and the aroma of thin slices of raw beef, with olive oil, balsamic vinaigrette, capers and Parmesan cheese, made her mouth water.
They both picked up their utensils and began eating with obvious delight. As they sent each other a knowing smile, Phoebe realised that she was thoroughly enjoying Adriana de Leon’s company. It was a long time - since she had had time to socialise with anyone outside her professional contacts. The gallery she had opened in Indiana and her own painting took all of her time.
Now she looked across the table at the stunning woman sitting there. Why did she find her so intriguing? Was it because she had shown such interest in Phoebe’s work? The artist sighed inwardly. She was not going to worry about it.
She was just going to enjoy the moment.
Seven walked up the two steps to the porch. Kathryn was sitting on the railing, her back to one of the columns as she was overlooking the garden in the sunset. The sky was pink behind the blonde as she walked over to her fiancée.
"It is getting chilly," she noticed and folded her arms around the CEO. "Why not come inside and have some coffee?"
"Don’t faint now, Seven, but I don’t feel like coffee. I was just sitting here, admiring the sunset and thinking that a glass of red wine would be nice."
"We have all sorts of wine so that is a wish I can easily grant," the blonde smiled. "Do you want me to bring it out here?"
The auburn haired woman tipped her head back, a lopsided smile forming on her lips.
"No, not yet. You look absolutely exquisite in this light. The pink light makes your skin look like velvet."
Kathryn let her hands run over Seven’s neck, making the younger woman shiver.
Seven rested her hands on the column behind Kathryn. Leaning in, she brushed her lips against the other woman’s, teasing them open with the tip of her tongue. Deepening the kiss, she lost herself in Kathryn’s taste-; familiar, enticing. The CEO raised her hands and rested them on Seven’s hips, stealthily working them in under the loose fitting blue shirt. The blonde gasped when they made contact with her skin, making her shiver again.
"Are you cold?" Kathryn whispered into Seven’s mouth.
"No." Seven’s voice was hardly more than a breath.
Deciding that she wanted to keep the initiative she pulled Kathryn closer, stepping in between the older woman’s legs. Only Seven’s embrace was keeping them from falling backwards over the railing.
"I have you, Kathryn," Seven murmured against the quickening pulse on her fiancée’s neck. "I will not let you fall."
"I know you won’t," the auburn haired woman said in a breathless voice. "That’s not what I meant."
"What did you mean, then?"
"It’s been a while since … well, since you took charge like this …"
Seven let her tongue trace a frail collarbone underneath Kathryn’s half open shirt. Nudging the shirt off the faintly freckled shoulder, she planted open mouth kisses down towards the swelling of a breast.
"Do you like it?"
"Oh, god, yes …"
Making sure she had a good grip, Seven leaned Kathryn back over her arms, the CEO instinctively holding on tight to her.
"No, no," Seven objected in a low voice, "let go. I have you."
Slowly, Kathryn let go of Seven’s upper arms, not taking her eyes off the blonde.
"Take off your shirt, please," Seven suggested.
The large shirt easily fell off the older woman, folding over Seven’s arms where they laid securely around Kathryn’s waist.
"Now what?" Kathryn raised an eyebrow.
"Take off your bra."
Biting her lower lip, the CEO reached for the clasp between her breasts, unhooking it and letting it fall off her arms, behind her, disappearing into the shadows of the increasingly darker garden.
Seven looked at the two hardening nipples crowning Kathryn’s milky white breasts.
"Since I can not let go of you, you have to hold them up for me."
Breathing short, shallow breaths, Kathryn raised hands that were not quite steady and cupped her breasts, offering them with a shivering sigh to her lover.
Seven leaned down just enough to kiss first one taut nipple and then the other. Kathryn arched and pressed herself closer to the blonde. Opening her mouth, Seven flickered her tongue over a nipple, making it wet. The night then made it cold, causing it to harden even more.
"Seven, please, let me down. I have to …" Kathryn whimpered.
Keeping her grip of Kathryn for a fraction of a second longer, Seven relented and pulled the CEO up and into her arms, kissing her deeply. The shirt fell to the floor.
Naked arms folded around her neck, pulling her down further into the kiss. Their tongues danced, kept in constant contact as Seven pulled Kathryn with her in through the kitchen door. Not bothering to turn on the lights, she opened the buttons in the other woman’s jeans, pushing them down.
Kathryn unceremoniously stepped out of them, now only dressed in panties. Eager to feel her lover, Seven tugged at them, wanting the auburn haired woman to be naked before her.
Gently nudging her lover again, Seven guided Kathryn towards the stairs. When the CEO turned to start her ascent, the blonde stopped her.
"No, here," she husked, not sure why her blood burned so hot tonight. Ever since they had talked earlier that morning, she had been slightly on edge, not sure what she was sensing. Now all she could think of was feeling Kathryn close as it was humanly possible. "Sit down here on the stairs, my Kathryn. Let me make love to you."
Seven slid between Kathryn’s thighs, parting already slick folds with her fingers as she bent down to lavish her attention on a pebbled nipple again. Suckling hard at the puckered area, she began circling the aching ridge at the junction of Kathryn’s legs, making the older woman squirm on the stairs.
"Yes, I know. You need this, Kathryn. I need this."
Kathryn’s head fell back as the other woman moaned out loud. Seven could feel how ready her partner was, how soaked her own fingers were becoming as they caressed their way down to where all the wetness originated.
Plunging two fingers inside her fiancée, Seven simultaneously bit down gently on the nipple in her mouth. As she had guessed, this drove Kathryn closer to the edge. Curling her fingers up, pushing them in and out in a maddening slow pace, she made the CEO moan.
"Oh, god, Seven … oh, please …"
Strong arms wrapped around Seven’s neck as Kathryn rocked against the persistent fingers inside her. Rhythmic, sensuous movements that left the older woman trembling, clinging to her partner in abandon.
"Oh, Seven … Seven …"
The way Kathryn said her name made the blonde increase the pace, just enough to meet the fire in the smaller body beneath hers. She moved her mouth to Kathryn’s other breast, and as she suckled it into her mouth, she let her thumb find the swollen, slick nubbin again. Pressing down hard on it as she grazed the nipple in her mouth with her teeth, she could feel Kathryn begin to shudder.
Strong internal muscles gripped her fingers, clenched them over and over as Kathryn came. Sliding her free arm around the auburn haired woman, Seven held her close as she knelt between the slender, naked thighs. She continued to massage Kathryn inside until the last shudder had left the compact frame beneath her. She gently pulled her fingers out, and then in one fluid movement, she pulled Kathryn onto her lap.
Tears were streaming down the CEO’s flushed cheeks. Seven was not sure why, but she was certain that those were good tears. She held her partner close, wrapping the old shirt of her father’s that she wore, around them both.
Rocking, they sat on the stairs for a while, until Kathryn’s tears had ceased. She raised her head and looked at Seven.
"How did you know … that I needed something like this?"
The blonde shook her head.
"I am not sure. I saw you sitting on the railing and I could see how tense you were, even if you tried to act casual. I guess I just knew."
"I’m glad you knew. You were right. It was as if I needed to … well, I guess, I needed this to relax. I’ve been on edge since this morning, but now I feel so much calmer. I only have one thing on my mind right now."
"You do?" Seven smiled faintly as it was not all that hard to guess.
"Yes. If you’d allow me the comfort of a bed - now don’t get me wrong, it was very sexy and very exciting to do it on the stairs - then I’d like to take care of you … properly."
A full smile broke out on Seven’s lips. The gleam in Kathryn’s eyes was definitely back.
"Oh, you have no idea, how proper I can be."
"Are you coming to bed yet?"
Julia Williams stood in the doorway to the study, watching Marion check her emails.
"In a minute, honey." The Stellar Corporation’s sales manager sounded absent minded.
Julia padded over to the large leather chair and planted a kiss on top of Marion’s hair.
"There is something very wrong," she murmured and pulled up an Excel document. "When I compare the figures … it doesn’t add up. Damn!"
Julia jumped a little at the sudden curse.
"I have to get word to Kathryn tomorrow," Marion continued, her voice serious. "If these figures are correct, we have another problem on our hands. A serious one."
"Can it wait until tomorrow?" Julia asked.
"It’ll have to. They are still on the island and it will require that I radio her and arrange for a boat. I’ll get in touch with Jacob’s son tomorrow."
Marion closed her laptop and rose. Frowning again she rubbed her forehead.
"This was not what we needed just when things were getting back on track."
Continued in "The Seven Women of Raven's Island" - part 2