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do you think you have the time (to hold my hand for a while)

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Erin hates New Year’s Eve parties.


No, hates isn't strong enough a word.


She loathes them.


They're contrived and full of people she would never normally spend any time with, full of fake smiles and faker pleasantries and she loathes them.


But she's here.


She's here because it's not as simple as just declining an invitation anymore because they're an important presence in the community now, and they have to make appearances.


Or so Abby and Patty tell her at least.


Which is why she's here making small talk with the Mayor’s secretary and one of the local politicians, musing on the empty glass of champagne in her hand but trying to look suitably engaged in their tremendously boring conversation.


At last Holtzmann looks similarly unhappy to be here, Erin thinks as she looks around the room for the immaculate tailed suit Holtz had had specially made, or she had when Erin had seen her last.


Erin smoothes down the front of her own floor-length black cocktail dress as she hazards a polite glance around for a flash of blonde hair, holding her breath on the off-chance she finds it engaged in charming conversation with an equally beautiful female companion Holtzmann might have picked up somewhere in the last half hour.


She does well, Erin thinks, to hide the attraction and longing for the blonde during the course of their working weeks but it gets harder at events like this, because Jillian on a bad day is beautiful but Jillian in skintight dress pants and a shirt and tie is something else.


And she knows the other woman knows something is there because Erin's caught her gaze lingering on Erin's shoulders more than once, but neither of them has ever said anything, equally afraid of rejection.


Or maybe what the consequences of reciprocation would be too.


Erin's not an idiot, she knows the blonde flirts with anything that moves, would find tonight like shooting fish in a barrel if she really wanted because beautiful women fall at her feet, Erin included, but she thinks there's something different in the way she flirts with Erin.


Something deeper.


But maybe she's just crazy. It wouldn't be the first time she's thought so. Maybe it's all in her head and she's imagined the intimacy in the way Jillian's hand slides across her lower back when they walk out of a room together, and that Jillian is only placating her.


And she could just ask but that's far too adult and she's far too afraid of the actual answer so she'll just have another sip of champagne instead.


Except it's empty.


She's about to excuse herself for a moment to fetch another as she hazards one last look around the room for Holtzmann when she feels a soft hand glance the lowest part of her back.


She spins quickly, half-ready to berate whoever it is that's assumed an intimacy she's not comfortable with, half-holding in a smile though because actually she thinks she knows that touch.


Jillian leans in to whisper in Erin's ear, the hand that's not at her back passing her a fresh glass as her quick fingers switch out the empty glass and set it on the table behind them.


“You doing ok there, Gilbert?” Holtz says quietly. “Another glass sufficient or do you need a full-on rescue?”


“Can I have both?” Erin asks with a little smile as she takes a grateful sip, warming when the blonde doesn't move her hand away.


“Of course,” Jillian says with a wicked smile or her own. “I'll create a distraction on three and we'll both make our escape. Deal?”


“Deal,” Erin says with a wider grin, her eyes dropping to admire the curve of black and white over the blonde's body as she looks around the room and over Erin's shoulder.


“One,” Jillian says still facing away.


“Two,” as she looks in the opposite direction.




“Oh good, Phil. You are here,” the politician on Erin’s other side says with a genial wave. “These ladies are into all that scientific la-la that you're wrapped up in, too. Perhaps you ought to meet?”


“This is Erin Gilbert, oh excuse me, Doctor Erin Gilbert and her colleague, Doctor Jillian Holtzmann. Maybe you recognise them from the news?” The ruddy-faced gentleman says kindly enough, although Erin's blood is already running cold.


“We’re actually already acquainted,” Phil says coolly as his eyes look Erin up and down before they flick to Jillian with a little less appreciation and a little more cynicism.


“Of course you are,” the politician says cordially. “Scientific circles being what they are, of course.”


“Yes,” Erin says with a frown as she tries to concentrate on her professionalism and not how much she wants to run from the room. “Something like that.”


Holtz has been quiet beside her for the entirety of their brief reintroduction but she holds her hand out for Phil to shake smoothly, a frown across her own features.


“Doctor Jillian Holtzmann,” the blonde says evenly. “Erin certainly knows you but I don't believe I've had the pleasure yet.”


He looks at Jillian's perfectly extended hand carefully, half expecting her to take a swing at him but eventually he shakes it quickly before returning his hand to his side.


“So, Erin,” Phil says a little snidely. “Here unaccompanied are we?”


“She's not, actually,” Jillian says smoothly, her eyes narrowing at him. “Perhaps I should re-introduce myself. Doctor Jillian Holtzmann, girlfriend .”


It's so quick and so seamless and so unexpected that it takes Erin's breath away, and Erin wonders how long Jillian's been waiting to use that, ready at a moment's notice to defend her.


She's stunned into silence for a moment before she looks to Phil and watches as he looks between the two of them unbelieving before he catches the position of Jillian's hand on her lower back and the way they're almost curved into each other's bodies.


“Really?” He says with a frown. “You're dating Erin?”


“Christ, that makes a lot of sense,” the Mayor’s secretary says next to them. “You never stop looking at each other when you come in for your monthly updates. It's like eye-tag.”


Jillian looks to Erin then, obviously terrified she's crossed some sort of line and Erin's still a little in shock and equally trying to process the secretaries comment but she manages a soft smile in response, eager to settle Jillian's nerves.


“Yes,” Erin says easily as she moves against Jillian's body. “She is.”


Jillian beans a little in response and her hand settles a little more comfortably against Erin's back before they both turn to Phil.


“Problem?” Holtz asks him with a raised eyebrow, a clear challenge in front of their company.


“Not at all,” he says with a fake smile. “I'm sure you two deserve each other.”


It's about as much as Erin can take, even with Jillian at her side and she mutters a quick apology before she turns away from their group towards the bar, throwing back her fresh glass of champagne on the way there.


She has her palms on the bar, half way through an order for a scotch when she feels someone come up beside her.


“Well at least we know why you were never really interested in me like that,” Phil says with a satisfied smirk as he moves to stand next to Erin.


“What do you want, Phil?” Erin asks with a sigh as she reaches for the measure of scotch, grateful for the burn it sends down her throat when she takes a sip.


“Just to congratulate you on your budding new relationship,” he says with a shrug. “I meant it when I said you two deserve each other.”


“Well she's certainly a step up from you,” Erin says coldly as she takes her glass in her hand and moves to walk away when his hand on her forearm stops her.


“You're damn lucky, you know that,” he says lowly. “I don't know how your academic reputation isn't in tatters after this nonsense you've gotten yourself embroiled in.”


Erin's just starting to panic a little because she doesn't actually know what to say when she feels a familiar presence at her side.


“Hey asshole,” Holtzmann says carefully, sliding next to Erin gently. “Care you take your hand off Erin before I do it for you?”


“Gladly,” he says with a smile before he looks between the two of them. “You know, I just don't buy it, the two of you. I think poor Erin here looked a little pathetic for your liking so you swooped in and covered for her.”


“You know what, I don't think that's any of your business either way,” Holtz says with a frown as she moves to lead Erin away.


They get clear of him in about two steps, Jillian's arm warm around her waist when Erin hears him mutter something under his breath and something in Erin growls dangerously.


She should just leave it because really he's not worth it, but she's so tired of a life spend worried about people talking behind her back so she waits until they're far enough away from him that he won't think this is just for his benefit when she stops and turns to Holtz.


Jillian turns to her, her face a mask of confusion before Erin's gaze drops to her lips and something changes as she understands.


Erin's eyes flick up to hers asking for a silent ok before Jillian nods ever so slightly, taking her lip between her teeth as she leans in.


Erin's hands slide up the lapels of Jillian's coat to bring them closer as her lips brush over the blonde's, chaste at first, and Erin's shocked at how soft they are.


The electric current runs through them both instantly and Erin feels Jillian shiver slightly beneath her hands as her own come to rest at Erin's hip and over her shoulder blade as she holds them together.


It would be enough, Erin thinks, because she can feel how realistic it feels to her and can only imagine how buyable it would be to the strangers in the room but now that she's here she's not quite ready to stop, so her tongue sneaks to the edge of her own lips before it runs lightly against Jillian's, teasing.


She hears Holtz moan ever so softly against her and she mirrors Erin's action and the next happens as easily as falling.


She slides her tongue into Jillian's mouth, audibly groaning when the blonde responds and she feels the heat settle into her gut, very real and very hot and very much not for show before they both part with a sigh, breathing a little heavily against one another.


She pulls away slightly, a little shocked at her own actions and Jillian does too, her gaze never leaving Erin's lips. Her fingers come to brush where she can feel the weight of Jillian's eyes, the sensitive skin beneath her fingertips still tingling slightly.


They just stare at each other a little dumbly for a moment, only distracted from one another when a voice booms around the room, giving them ten minutes until the midnight countdown.


She feels light, euphoric even, and then the significance of what she's just done hits her in the stomach too and she looks to Jillian a little horrified. Because she had wanted that, yes, and this act has been the blonde's idea, also yes, but something in Erin feels unlocked now, opened like pandora’s box and she has no idea if she's crossed a massive line in being so forward.


“Oh my god,” Erin says a little dumbly as her fingers come away red, covered in Jillian's lipstick, and she panics. “Jill, I'm so sorry. I….”


She moves as quickly as she can, away from Jillian's face, confused and then worried and a little hurt maybe, through the immaculately dressed guests and beneath the soft fairy lights towards the front door.


“Erin. Erin, wait… .” Jillian calls after her but she doesn't stop because what if it's just so she can look at Erin with a soft pitying smile and say something like ‘I'm sorry Erin, I just don't feel that way about you’ or something equally devastating, so she keeps walking.


She catches Erin eventually though as Erin's trying to make her way down the steps into City Hall, heavily impeded by the length of her dress and height of her heels, her voice soft behind Erin.


“Er, will you just stop. Please.”


So she stops. Because Jillian's voice is quiet and kind and she never has been able to say no to her. She turns, wiping at the stray tear on her cheek and hoping it passes unnoticed but of course it doesn't.


Jillian's hand comes to rest on her jaw softly, catching the tear Erin missed as she steps closer.


“Why did you run?” Jillian asks softly as she steps back and out of Erin's space a little. “Did I….I'm sorry if I crossed a line, I just got a little carried away.”


“I was worried I'd crossed a line,” Erin says as she sniffs a little. “Did I?”


“No,” Jillian says smiling softly as she threads a bit of her own long hair behind her ear when it drops around her face, long and free around her shoulders. “Not at all. Not one bit.”


“Really?” Erin asks with a shy smile. “That was ok?”


“Very,” Jillian says nodding firmly. “Very, very ok.”


“Oh,” Erin says a little surprised. “Would I….do you think I'd be able to do it again sometime?”


“Yeah,” Holtz says as her hand moves to touch Erin's jaw again gently. “I think that would be really great.”


And it's as simple as that. All the worry and tension and fear draining away in an instant.


Erin leans in before her nerves can get the better of her, smiling into the kiss as their lips meet again and something beautiful cracks bright behind Jillian's eyes.


They breath slow and measured against one another as they move in close, Jillian's hands sliding around her waist to bump their hips together and Erin moans a little when the kiss deepens, Jillian's hands sliding into her hair.


When they break apart Erin's shivering slightly and it's only then that she realises she's standing outside in late December with bare skin, and that her bag and all her things are still inside.


“Here,” Holtz says quickly, sliding her jacket off her shoulders as she pulls it around Erin's, smiling when the collar pops framing Erin's face beautifully. “You want to go back and get it?”


“Not really,” Erin says with a frown.


“I can go if you don't want to?” Jillian asks softly as Erin winds their hands together.


“No,” Erin says quickly. “Stay. Please?”


Holtz smiles as Erin pulls the jacket more firmly around herself, matching Erin's frown when her brow creases moment later.


“What's wrong?” Jillian asks softly.


“My keys are inside my jacket,” Erin says with a grimace. “And my phone. Not that I could call the super anyway given it's what, about two minutes to midnight.”


“Not that I'm assuming anything,” Jillian says with a careful look. “And I'll absolutely take the couch, but you're more than welcome to come back to my place for the night.”


“Are you sure?” Erin says with a frown, trying not to give away too clearly how very, very much she’d like that.


“Of course,” Jillian says easily, pulling Erin close to her again. “But, I'm not….”


“I know,” Erin says with a smile, a little disappointed at the thought that more might be off the table but warm at the thought of spending the night with Jillian regardless. “I'd love that, Jill. As long as I'm not too much of an imposition.”


“Never,” Jillian says with a smile at the exact moment that a firework goes off far above both their heads. “Hey, Erin. Happy New Year.”


“Hey, Jillian,” Erin answers as she slides her hands into long blonde hair to bring their lips an inch apart. “Happy New Year to you too.”


“To seeing the year in as we mean to see it through?” Jillian asks her, her voice light and a little nervous.


Absolutely ,” Erin says with a wide smile as she crashes their mouths together and the sky goes bright with colour.


They pull apart and the piece of Erin's heart that has always felt empty, always felt lonely, fills with the scent of Jillian's perfume and she feels warm .


“Come on,” Holtz says with a smile as she draws back a little. “Come home with me.”


It's not far to Jillian's place, not that Erin's ever been inside but they've all been outside at least, to drop her home after a bust.


It's surprisingly nice, in a surprisingly well to do part of the city, and not for the first time Erin wonders just how much more there is to the blonde that what she knows or what she's been able to glean beyond what Jillian has shared with her so far.


Because she's different around Erin sometimes, less noise and smoke and mirrors and more quiet, and sometimes Erin knows she seeks Erin out to find that when she needs it during the week too.


They walk up the steps to the little townhouse, hand in hand, and Jillian turns at the top of the stairs so she can fish in Erin's pocket for the keys.


Her breath is warm and vaguely minty against Erin's cheek and for the second time that evening Erin starts to feel a little nervous. Holtz just smiles though, unlocking the door and pushing it open for Erin to walk through.


They walk up to the third floor and stop outside a rather respectable looking white front door before Holtz smiles and unlocks that too.


The apartment is big, warmer and more IKEA than Erin had been expecting, the walls a gentle grey with white trim.


“This place is nice, Jill,” Erin says with a smile as she looks around, running her hand across the immaculately clean stainless steel benchtop. “Really nice.”


It's tidy but there are pockets that are undeniably Jillian Holtzmann around the place, one end of the small kitchen table strewn with a couple pairs of pliers and something that looks like it might have been an alarm clock in another life, a stack of engineering books on the coffee table with a copy of Ghost’s by A. Yates and E. Gilbert at the very bottom.


“What did you expect?” Holtz says with a smirk as she walks over, picking the central heating remote up and turning it to high as she rubs at her arms trying to warm up.


“I don’t know?” Erin says shrugging shyly. “Something a little more….chaotic?”


“I've got enough chaos up here,” Holtz says with a wink as she taps her forehead gently. “I like to be able to come home to quiet.”


Huh, Erin thinks to herself as she takes a step towards the blonde. Home. Quiet . She wonders not for the first time if that's what Jillian is doing when she seeks her out.


The blonde doesn't make a move to match Erin's step and for a second Erin's worried but then her eyes find a soft smile and she realises that Jillian isn't just not acting, she's letting Erin set the pace.


And it's more than a little terrifying, quite beside the fact she hasn't ever done this before, it's more too because this is Jillian Holtzmann and really, if she's honest with herself, she's been waiting to do this for a very long time and she doesn't want to fuck it up.


So she measures her steps and walks slowly but surely across to Jillian to move her hands up and down the blonde's arms too, trying to start a fire with her bare hands.


“Cold?” Erin asks with a smirk.


“A little,” Holtz says as she meets Erin's eyes heavily before they flick down to watch as Erin's hands sweep over her skin. “Had to give my jacket to a pretty girl.”


“Well aren't you chivalrous?” Erin says with a grin. “I'm sure she appreciated it a lot. I'm sure she appreciates a number of things you do, come to that. And I'm sure she'd be more than happy to help you warm up if you needed, too.”


Jillian closes her eyes and shudders a little, biting her lip at Erin's insinuation before she inhales deep and looks to Erin with dark, heavy eyes.


“Erin,” Holtz says with a low, unmistakably turned on note to her voice. “You don't have to.”


“I want to though,” Erin says as she extends her claws and drags her nails lightly down Jillian's biceps over the fabric of her shirt. “I really, really do.”


“You do?” Holtz says as she looks to Erin a little surprised.


“Can't you tell?” Erin asks with a raised eyebrow as she takes another step into Jillian's personal space, smiling when the blonde accommodates her.


“Kind of,” Holtz says a little shyly. “I mean, I'd hoped but I just didn't want to assume….”


“Well now you don't have to assume, ok?” Erin says as she leans in to press a kiss to the corner of Jillian's mouth. “I want. Very much. I just don't….”


“It's ok,” Jillian says gently as she picks the thread from between Erin's hands and leads, sliding her hands around her waist to bring them closer together again. “I'll show you.”


She runs one hand up the side of Erin's body, skirting over her ribs and just around the curve of her breast before it comes to rest just under Erin's chin, tilting ever so slightly to take Erin's lips gently against her own.


It starts chaste but again it doesn't stay that way for long. Because Jillian makes Erin's blood feel like it's been set against the sun and it's all Erin can do to stop herself throwing both of them into the fire.


But she doesn't know what she's doing and that slows her a little, makes her pliant and pliable in Jillian's hands as the blonde tries to keep the kiss measured.


It's obvious they're both struggling with that though because both of their hands are shaking when they break apart after a few minutes.


“God, where are my manners,” Holtz says as she trails her index finger along the line of Erin's jaw. “Can I get you anything? A nightcap?”


“No,” Erin says a little nervously but feeling brave for Jillian's touch on her skin. “Just you? And maybe the couch?”


“I'm all yours,” Jillian says with a smirk as her hands drop and she bends to lift Erin bodily, wrapping Erin around her waist easily as she walks them back towards the couch, pulling Erin on top of her when she sits down.


They change positions and something in them changes too, lights a match dangerously close to a naked flame and they come together hot and hungry.


Erin melts into the body beneath hers, bites her lip to halt a moan when Jillian's tongue slides into her mouth and her hands slide around to cup Erin's ass. The hands squeeze and Erin feels herself throb, unable to stop the moan then as she grinds down on Jillian's lap a little.


“I'm sorry,” Holtz says against her lips, breathing hard when they part. “Was that too much?”


“No,” Erin says with a gasp as she rocks down again. “Not enough.”


“Who knew Erin Gilbert would be so insatiable,” Holtz says smiling against her lips.


“Shut up,” Erin says with an answering smirk.


“Make me,” Jillian says with a glint in her eye as her hands squeeze again and Erin feels her heart race faster. “God, I can't believe I'm actually kissing you.”


“Why?” Erin asks slightly curious. “I'm just me.”


“Exactly,” Jillian says deadpan. “You can't see the value in that?”


“Honestly?” Erin asks as Holtz’s hands slide lower, down to her ankles so she can slip her hands against Erin's bare skin and work her dress up her legs. “God, that's distracting. But no, not really.”


“Guess I'll just have to show you then?” Jillian says with a smirk before she leans in and kisses Erin long and slow and deep.


Her hands continue their journey up Erin's legs, sliding over the outside of her knee as her mouth moves from Erin's lips to her jaw to her neck.


“Do you ever want to run away?” Jillian asks against Erin's skin and Erin's not sure she even spoke at first, wondering if perhaps she imagined it, the only lingering sign the feel of the vibration against Erin's pulse.


“Yes,” Erin says easily. Because sometimes she does. Or rather she did. “Do you?”


“Not anymore,” Holtz says whisper quiet. “Not since you walked into our lab and stayed.”


She pulls back to look at Erin properly, her eyes studying Erin's intensely for a moment before she leans in to place an achingly gentle kiss to Erin's lips.


“You’re very beautiful, Erin,” Jillian says to her softly, winding a bit of loose hair around her finger as she traces Erin's jaw.


“So are you,” Erin says equally softly, her voice almost breaking a little as she leans in to kiss Holtz again. “Very, very beautiful. And smart. And funny. And….”


“Yours?” Holtz asks her a little uncertainly.


“Mine?” Erin asks, feeling a little warmer at the question in Jillian's words.


“If you want?” Holtz says with a shrug. “I mean, I told you I didn't want to assume anything, but I like you. A lot.”


“I like you too,” Erin says with a smile as she places her hands over Jillian's on her cheeks.


“You do?” Holtz asks with a small, hopeful grin.


“Yeah,” Erin says as she nods easily. “I do.”


“Good,” Holtz says with a wider smile. “Because I have to confess I've had some wildly inappropriate thoughts about someone who was just my colleague, but if you like me too….”


“Inappropriate thoughts, huh?” Erin asks with a smile. “Like what?”


“I don't know, like how lovely you look with flushed cheeks from the cold. Or how sturdy I think the desk in our lab is.”


Jillian Holtzmann .”


“Yes, Erin Gilbert?”


Holtz’s smile is light and true but something changes, passing over her eyes as her gaze drops to Erin's lips as Erin's name leaves her own, and suddenly she looks ready to eat Erin alive.


“Show me,” Erin says quietly, almost struck mute by the hunger in Jillian's face, shivering as it passes through into her hands where they touch Erin too. “Show me what you've been thinking about.”


“You don't think this is too fast?” Holtz asks as her hands pause halfway up Erin's thighs, bunched in her dress.


“I like you, Jill,” Erin says slowly. “I think we've both waited long enough, don't you?”


“Yes,” Holtz says as she nods. “But I don't want you to feel rushed or….”


“I'm a big girl,” Erin says as she winds her hand into Holtz’s hair. “I say yes. Unless you want….”


“I want you,” Jillian says easily. “I want to show you….”


“Show me what?” Erin asks as she takes her lip between her teeth.


“Everything,” Jillian says and every last brick they've set holding them apart crumbles into dust because Erin pulls them together and time stops, just for a moment.


Just long enough for Erin to feel Jillian's heartbeat beneath her hands and to memorise the exact constellation of almost invisible freckles across the bridge of her nose and for Erin to move them, to slide off her lap and onto the couch and pull Jillian on top of her, flush between her legs.


Jillian doesn't ask again, because there's an affirmation in every single one of Erin's kisses, a yes in each throb of her pulse, and just like that they light a fire that consumes them.


They move against each other, silk and fluid like water and it's beautiful.


Jillian's hands pull her dress further up her legs and she writhes slightly to accommodate the movement, moaning when the hem and the blonde's hands hits her upper thigh and Jillian's leg can press comfortably against her core.


Erin's hands scramble against the buttons of Jillian's shirt, shaking a little in anticipation and heavy with need. She manages to get the top few undone as she leans up to close her lips over Jillian's clavicle and sucks hard prompting Holtz to reach between Erin's hands and tug hard at her own shirt, spilling the buttons over the floor.


Erin growls and it thrums against the skin of Jillian's neck as she nips lightly and Jillian's hands paw at her thighs in response.


“Jesus, Erin,” Holtz says with a moan as she pulls back and rolls her body down and against Erin. “You sure you're new at this?”


“Yes,” Erin says a little coyly as her fingers wind in the hair at the base of Jillian's neck. “Of course. Why?”


“You know why,” Jillian growls as her teeth take one of the straps of Erin's dress and pull it down over her shoulder.


Erin smiles as her hands slide easily beneath Jillian's shirt and pull the fabric down her arms before Holtz takes it from her and throws it roughly behind them.


She's an absolute vision above Erin, thousands of miles of creamy skin interspersed with the marks of Erin's attention, her chest heaving and her breasts straining against the fabric of her bra.


“I never took you for a black lace kind of girl, Miss Holtzmann,” Erin says as she runs her finger along the line where lace meets skin above her nipple, watching the flesh quake in response.


“Maybe I was trying to catch someone's eye,” Holtz says with a smirk as she kisses the line left by the strap on Erin's shoulder.


“Really?” Erin asks with a raised eyebrow. “Me?”


“A girl can dream, right?” Jillian says quietly as she smiles down. “Come on, Erin. You're the only one whose eye I've been trying to catch for a year now. You really didn't know?”


“I thought you were like that with everyone?” Erin says feeling a little guilty.


“I used to be like that with everyone,” Holtz says with a smirk. “And then I met you. Have you seen me act like I do around you with anyone else lately?”


“No,” Erin says with a jolt to her stomach as she thinks carefully. And as she thinks, fast and swift but thorough, she realises there hasn't actually been anyone else. Only her. “It's just me?”


“It's only ever been you, I think Er,” Jillian says with a smile that illuminates her entire body. “I just hadn't met you yet.”


It settles against her skin like a current and all of a sudden Erin feels powerful so she surges up and takes Jillian's smile with her lungs and they fall back to the softness of the couch as one body.


Erin's tongue slides hotly into the blonde's mouth and they kiss like Erin's never kissed before, her whole body alight and active with it as Jillian's hands slide higher and her own move down the blonde's stomach to rest on the top of the last main article between them.


“Not here,” Jillian says with a pant, her hand stilling Erin's on the top of her trousers. “I want to have you in my bed. Please?”


The arousal and desire in her voice makes Erin shiver and her core throb and she squeezes her thighs together as she nods, her voice rough when it does come.


“Yes,” Erin moans, her fingers winding in the blonde's belt loops. “Please. Now, or I think I might die.”


Jillian doesn't say anything, she just reaches down and takes Erin's hand but she takes her soul too, and leads them both towards her room.


Erin feels her nerves start to set in as they walk softly between rooms, but Jillian's fingers are warm between her own and it calms her a little. They stop at the end of the bed and Jillian moves in to run her finger lightly down Erin's arm.


“Can I….?” Jillian asks, gesturing to Erin's dress and Erin nods heavily, trying not to hold her breath as Jillian spins Erin in her arms so she can run the zip down the length of Erin's spine.


She's not wearing a bra, the dress hadn't allowed for it. The gasp that falls from Jillian's lips makes Erin's heart stop because it sounds floored and all she can see at this stage is Erin’s back.


Her hands run delicate and soft up the line of Erin's back, over muscles that jump nervously at her touch before her mouth closes over the point of bone on Erin's shoulder.


“You're beautiful, Erin,” Jillian says again as she meets Erin's eyes, walking around but holding eye contact until Erin gives her a signal that it's ok for her gaze to drop.


“You are allowed to look you know,” Erin says a little shyly. “That's kind of the point.”


“Is it?” Holtz says with a gentle mocking and Erin pushes lightly at her arm in response before her eyes go a little serious. “I think you might be the most wonderful thing I've ever seen in my life Ms Gilbert.”


“But you've been to the LHC,” Erin says teasing as her hands drop to Jillian's waist again.


“I know,” Jillian says with a wide-eyed nod. “That's how breathtaking you are.”


“Is this ok?” Erin asks as her fingers run over the black fabric, stopping to wait for Jillian's nod.


“Very very,” Jillian replies nodding as her hands cover Erin's for a moment. “But you don't have to do anything you're not comfortable with.”


“I know,” Erin says smiling as she meets Holtz’s gaze again, her eyes still steadfastly high as Erin pops the button open, running her fingers around and under the edge before she bites her lip and, eyes never leaving Jillian's, sinks to the floor, taking Jillian's pants with her.


She hears a soft exhalation from above as she helps Holtz out of them, smiling a little at the red of Jillian's cheeks as she rises to meet her once more. Her eyes drop for a second and the resulting groan is one of the most satisfying sounds Erin has ever heard in her entire life.


“I can't believe this is actually happening,” Jillian says softly as her hands move over Erin's arms and down to rest on the curve of her hips.


“Neither can I,” Erin says with a little laugh as her eyes fall to the swell of Jillian's breast and she takes a steadying breath of her own before she loses her nerve. “But it is. Now, Ms Holtzmann, how would you like to show me some of those things you've spent so long thinking about?”


Jillian is a flawless lover.


She presses Erin back and settles beneath her thighs and takes Erin's breath away with her hands and her lips and her fingers.


Her hands move over Erin tirelessly, always connected, never once breaking the embrace and it only heightens the sensation because there's never a reprieve, there's never a moment where Erin loses the contact and it floors her.


Her hair is loose and free across her shoulders as she moves from Erin's mouth across the line of her jaw before she takes Erin's earlobe between her teeth and whispers beautiful obscenities that set the bed beneath them alight.


“You have the most kissable skin I've ever tasted Ms Gilbert,” Jillian breathes to her pulse as her hand moves up to brush the underside of Erin's breast.


“As do you,” Erin says as she takes Jillian's hand from her chest and brings it to her mouth, kissing her palm before she takes Jillian's thumb into her mouth and sucks.


The blonde groans quiet and low but it frowns louder when Erin replaces her hand to cover her breast.


“God, I'm glad you forgot your keys,” Jillian says as she drops her head to join her hand, kissing the sensitive flesh beneath it making Erin jump up into her arms.


She smirks at Erin's reaction before she takes Erin's hands and places them either side of her head, pinning her down lightly.


“Do I have to hold you down?” Jillian says with a smile before she kisses and nips at the skin of her neck.


“Keep doing that and you're going to have to tie me to the damn bed, Jill,” Erin says with a moan as she arches up into Jillian's body, pushing the blonde's leg firmer between her own.


“Don't tempt me,” Holtz says smirking a little as her teeth nip a little harder.


Erin feels her whole body flush at that because she's never done anything like that in her entire life but the idea of doing that with Jillian just makes the heat between her thighs sear hotter.


She's starting to feel a little desperate, starving for a heavier touch and Jillian notices too, grinning at Erin's shortening patience. Ever the multitasker Holtz keeps both of Erin's arms above her head with one hand as she drops the other to move over Erin's stomach.


Her muscles leap beneath the gentle touch and she bites her lip to stop from moving further and widening Jillian's smirk. It doesn't work at all though, because Jillian's hands pause at the top of her underwear, looking to her once before Erin nods and her fingers slide lower and then her body cracks like lightning.


There's something truly otherworldly about the first touch when you've spent time working yourself up to an idea and they've spent the better part of a year making their way to this so Erin almost passes out at the sensation of Jillian moving against her.


The touch is light and testing as she moves against Erin, but the expression that crosses her face when she feels how ready Erin is is heavy .


“Oh my god….” Jillian husks as her fingers spread gently, and Erin's eyes flutter closed as she drops her head heavily against the pillow.


“You've only got yourself to blame,” Erin breathes as Holtz starts moving in a rhythm, drawing circles and love poems against her before her fingers dip lower and Erin's breath catches.


“Can I….?” Holtz asks softly, her smile a little wicked in anticipation as her fingers tease just over Erin, her hand tightening above their heads as Erin nods her eyes still closed.


“Please,” Erin moans when her voice finds a bit of strength. “Please, Jill I want to feel you inside me.”


She opens her eyes to see the blonde's close in response to her words. She licks her lips and Erin feels herself flood and then Jillian pushes in gently and Erin's vision just fails.  


She starts easy with one finger, sliding into Erin with a seamlessness that would have been matched if it were two or three but she wants to drag this out, Erin can tell. Because she smiles as she moves inside Erin, her grin broadening when she feels Erin try and pull her deeper.


“Tease,” Erin says with a huff as she strains against Jillian's grip.


“Don't worry,” Holtz says as she leans in and kisses Erin hard. “We'll get there eventually, I plan on making sure you'll feel me every time you take a step tomorrow, I just want to make this last. I want to make this so good for you.”


“You are,” Erin moans as Jillian's finger sides out and in again and then pushes in with two. “Jesus Christ you are.”


“Good,” Jillian says with a smirk as she increases the pace of her hand, pressing down as Erin surges up.


Erin knew she'd be good because she's good at everything she does, but this is so much better than she was anticipating, far beyond any intimacy she's ever experienced before. Because her mouth moves in perfect synchronicity with her hands, drawing a nipple into her mouth as her fingers tease and then slide in or nipping at her earlobe as she moves circles through Erin's arousal.


She's never been loud. Ever. Bit Jillian is drawing sounds from her bones, pretty little sighs that make Erin flutter or low moans when Erin starts wriggling and she slides in with a third, and they just seem to drive her on harder, make her move sleeker against Erin as she seeks to take as much pleasure from Erin as she can.


At some stage she releases Erin's hands from above her head to use them both to that end, the now free hand palming at Erin's breast as she rolls her nipple between quick fingers and it's perfectly timed for Erin too because she's getting close now, so close and she feels like she needs something to hold on to.


She loosens her teeth from the crook of Jillian's shoulder to press a kiss, and then another, and then another until Jillian sighs beneath the soft affection before she pushes into Erin hard and renewed and Erin's nails find a home in the milky white skin of her back.


“God, I'm so close,” Erin sighs as Jillian keeps pushing and pushing, arching into the bite of Erin's claws in her back until Erin is a shaking, quivering mess, ready to come apart with a single breath.


“I know,” Jillian sighs with a smile against Erin's lips before she melts against them, sinking her tongue into Erin's mouth. “Let go, Erin. I want you to come for me.”


It's simultaneously the most erotic and softest thing anyone has ever said to her, Jillian's words washing over her like a summer breeze and she pulls tight at Jillian's fingers before she comes hard.


She drags her nails hard down the line of the blonde's back, hears her hiss in pleasure somewhere in the rough distance as wave after wave after wave overwhelm her.


Jillian doesn't move away either, she rides Erin down slowly and just when she thinks it's over Jillian starts pushing again, hard and quick with two fingers buried to the knuckle with each thrust and a second release buckles between their bodies, taking Erin's breath away with a hitch in her throat.


She's a mess when Jillian finally draws away, lowering Erin from her high and drawing her fingers back gently before she slides into Erin's side and leans in for a soft kiss.


“Good god, Jill,” Erin says with a sigh when they part, her hand stroking at the blonde's cheek.


“That was ok?” Jillian asks with a shy smile. “I really wanted it to be ok.”


“Ok?” Erin asks with a little smile. “You're joking, right? I can barely feel my hands, Jill.”


“So it was good?” Jillian asks so earnestly and it makes Erin's heart clench because she's never seen this side of Jillian before, soft and unsure. Even quiet Holtz is still confident, but this gentle warm version seems to have been reserved for Erin until now.


“It was amazing,” Erin says with a smile as she winds her fingers in long blonde hair. “God, I should have been sleeping with women the whole time if it's this much better.”


“Not that I can attest to the other but it's pretty amazing,” Holtz says with a slightly dangerous smile and Erin can see the surer version sitting beneath the skin now. “I haven't even shown you the half of it.”


“Oh yeah?” Erin asks with a smirk. “What pray-tell is there to show me? I mean, that's kind of it, right?”


“Oh, Erin no,” Jillian says with a soft laugh. “That's a drop in the bucket baby.”


“Really?” Erin asks genuinely curious. “I just kind of always thought sex was sex, you know? Not much to diversify on?”


“There's a lot to diversify on. And around. And over. From different angles,” Jillian says punctuating her words with kisses. “From behind and in the shower and….”


“You'll show me?” Erin asks as her hands slide up Jillian's back as her lips fix to Erin's neck again.


“I'll show you everything,” Holtz says with a smile against her skin.


“You'll show me how?” Erin asks a little shyly as she moves her hands up to settle against the strap of Jillian's bra.


“You don't have to,” Holtz says with a genuine smile down at Erin. “We can take it slow if you want too.”


“But aren't you….” Erin breaks off a little shyly.


“Turned on?” Holtz asks with a raised eyebrow. “Yes. Very. But I'm a big girl. I can deal. Or deal to it myself.”


“You'd do that?” Erin asks as her cheeks redden, her heart fluttering at the insinuation. “In front of me? To watch?”


“Yeah,” Holtz says with a little shrug and a grin. “If you wanted.”


“I want,” Erin says quickly, nodding with a grin. “I definitely want. Maybe not tonight because I kind of want to try but….yeah, I really want.”


“That can definitely be arranged,” Holtz says with a smirk as she shivers slightly beneath Erin’s touch. “Can I ask you a question?”


“Of course,” Erin answers, eyes a little hesitant. “What is it?”


“Have you ever been attracted to women before?” Holtz asks, genuinely curious.


“Yes,” Erin says easily. “Since I was a teenager, I think. Never enough to act on it though, I was always too afraid, I mean beyond kissing a girl or two at the parties Abby dragged me to in college. Does it bother you that I haven't?”


“No,” Holtz says as she smiles a little shyly. “Makes me feel special, actually. That you felt enough to do something.”


“You're very special, Jill,” Erin says as she looks up to the blonde softly, her body still buzzing post orgasm.


Holtz doesn't say anything in return, just ducks her head a little embarrassed as she scrunches her nose as Erin's hands skirt up her sides. Neither of them had said anything, spoken a word more aloud but suddenly Erin feels the mood and temperature of the room change.


“May I?” Erin asks gently as her fingers pause over the clasp at the back of her bra.


Holtz nods, worrying her lip between her teeth as her eyes darken slightly as Erin's fingers unhook each claw, one at a time. And she might not know exactly what she's doing but she knows what feels good at least and she's nothing if not a quick learner, so she sets her mind on making this as good for Jillian as she can.


The blonde is still leaning over her, warm between her thighs but Erin realises the logistics of their current physical arrangement won't exactly lend itself to her being able to explore very thoroughly so she leans up, one hand holding the clasp shut as Holtz sits back kneeling between Erin's legs.  


“Hi,” she says with a smile as she lets the clasp go, pulling the straps slowly down Jillian's arms, letting her gaze follow.  


“Hi,” Jillian says, her face a little blank as she watches Erin watching her.


“Wow,” Erin says a little dumbly as she moves her hand slowly from Jillian's collarbone down to the swell of her breast before she pauses. “You're so lovely, Jill.”


“You think so?” Holtz says quietly. “Not too scary?”


“God, no,” Erin says quickly. “The opposite. I don't know what I want to touch first.”


“Well, you could start here,” Holtz says as she moves her hand over Erin's, leading it down so Erin's palm is covering her fully, cupping the whole weight of her breast.


She feels Jillian's hand flex over hers, showing her it's ok for her to touch, to test what Jillian's body feels like beneath her own, how it responds to her.


Erin for her part is utterly transfixed because she's seen women naked before but honestly, Jillian is exquisite . Utterly incomparable to anything else and here and hers apparently too.


She moves her hand a little and feels Jillian's nipple pebble beneath her palm and she gasps a little, moves it again before she sweeps it back so she can draw her thumb over and she looks up to see Jillian's eyes black before she leans forward and takes it between her lips.


The groan that falls from between her lips is guttural and it makes Erin wet again because she's never, ever elicited a sound like that from another person before and it's intoxicating. She sucks a little and moans in turn when Jillian's hand moves to wind in the hair at the base of her neck, holding Erin to her.


“Women are much more responsive, huh?” Erin says with a smile as she moves away, pressing happily back against Jillian's hand.


“One of the many pros,” Holtz says with a slightly rough voice as she lips her lips.


“And they're softer,” Erin says as she smoothes her cheek against Jillian's and the blonde moans. “And they make nicer noises.”


Erin moves them properly then, rolling to shift Jillian onto her back as she moves to half settle between her legs, one of her thighs wedged between the blonde's.


Jillian leans back into the softness of the blankets of her bed her eyes following Erin's bright and keen as she leans in to press a kiss to the blonde.


She feels the first kicks of fear seep back in so she pours the nervous energy into the kiss, channelling it, and Jillian responds, taking it in and giving it back as affirmation and affection and arousal and the nerves skittering over her skin dissipate almost entirely.


She drags her fingers ever so lightly across the blonde's stomach, smiling a little satisfied when she watches the way she jumps into Erin's touch. She moves her hand lower and lower until her fingertips meet the top of Jillian's underwear, looking up to her when she feels the soft lace beneath them.


“You'll tell me if I do anything wrong?” Erin says nervously as her fingers slide just underneath.


“You won't,” Jillian says, her lip fixed between her teeth as her eyes move from Erin's face to her hand.


“Jill,” Erin says with a frown.


“Of course I will,” Jillian says with a smirk. “But you won't. God, I think I could just about get off just watching you again.”


“Really?” Erin says a little disbelieving as her hand dips lower still, brushing past short neatly trimmed curls not sure if it's the words or the sensation of finally almost feeling Jillian that's having the biggest effect on her.


“Really,” Holtz says with a heavy nod but it's lost in a moan because Erin's fingers slide against a roaring warm heat and she loses the ability to speak full sentences.


“Oh, Jill ,” Erin says with a gasp as she feels how wet the blonde is, because she knew she was enjoying herself but this is truly something else.


“You only have yourself to blame,” Holtz says with a smirk, mirroring Erin's earlier words as she rolls her entire body down into the bed and then up into Erin's hand.


She's dripping and the underwear is doing an excellent job of keeping Erin pressed tight but she wants room to move so she withdraws her hands before resting them softly on the top of the offending scrap of material, shifting her leg out of the way.


“Can I take these off?” Erin asks as she worries her own lip. “I want to move more….I want to see….”


Jillian doesn't reply verbally, just lifts her hips off the bed instead, facilitating their removal and shivering when Erin slides down and then up her legs and if she thought the sight of Jillian half-naked was incredible, it's nothing on the full thing.


Erin's a little speechless for a few seconds because it's magnificent and it's only when Jillian speaks that she snaps out of it.


“Is this still ok?” Holtz asks, moving to cover herself which Erin halts with a quick hand.


“Yes,” Erin says quickly. “Very, very ok. Sorry it's just a little distracting. You're beautiful, Jill.”


“Am not,” Holtz says with a smile as she reaches for Erin.


“Are too,” Erin replies as she slides her hands down Jillian's body between them over the curve of rib and hip to her prize. “Are too, are too, are too.”


“Oh god,” Holtz moans when Erin touches her again, surer and a little less hesitant this time, and the sound spurs Erin on.


She starts with circles, and then strokes, listening to the way Jillian reacts to each movement, recording her responses and breaths and the way her whole body leaps when Erin brushes past her clit. And it's easy, it's so easy because Jillian is so wet and so responsive and slowly Erin starts to build a picture of how she might begin to dismantle the body beneath her.


She can tell Jillian is holding back after she finds a rhythm, suppressing the moans between her teeth, so Erin leans down to whisper against her lips.


“Don't hold it in Jill,” Erin says with a smile. “If you like it I want to hear.”


The first moan falls from her like a physical relief.


The second Erin takes .


Women, Erin learns, are so much more satisfying to have in bed.


If Erin thought Jillian was like glass with her pleasure, transparent and so easy to read, it's nothing once she starts to get properly worked up.


And Erin learns, too. She learns that Jillian is sensitive the more aroused she gets, jumping at Erin's touch as she moves across her body. She's quiet when she begins but she grows louder as she loses herself more and more to Erin's touch.


She dips her fingers low after she works Jillian up to a point, her fingers brushing against the source of the heat as she looks up to the blonde, her cheeks flushed and hair messy.


“Do you like this?” Erin asks with a curious smile because she knows she does but honestly, she's not so sure about Jillian.


“Not as many, one or two at most but yes ,” Jillian moans as her hand comes down to cover Erin's, leading her and Erin dips just inside. “ Please .”


She's never had this experience, well, has done this to herself but never to another person where you can't anticipate the movement or the draw around fingers so when she does push in slowly she almost loses her breath because it's incredible.


Jillian's mouth falls open beautifully and Erin can only stare, totally and completely taken by the vision in front of her.


“You can move,” Jillian says after a moment, her hand encouraging Erin and Erin only realises then that she's stopped again but Jillian doesn't seem to mind, seemingly too caught up by Erin inside her to mind. “I'm ok, sometimes I just need a second. It's not something I tend to do too often.”


“And you're sure you want me to?” Erin asks a little hesitant as she holds still.


“God, yes,” Holtz moans again. “I want to feel that ache tomorrow and know it was you.”


That turns Erin's skin red hot and she gulps as she finally starts to move slowly. Jillian's wet enough that she's met with not a lick of resistance but she still moves at an almost glacial pace to begin with, waiting for Jillian to start moving in frustration before she smiles and picks up the pace.


“Are you….are you sure you've never done this before,” Holtz gasps when Erin finally slides in a second, the hiss that issues from Jillian's lips settling in her own core.


“Pretty damn sure,” Erin says as she curls her fingers subtly, trying to get a feel for what Jillian will react to. “I think I'd remember this, don't you? It's pretty fucking memorable.”


Jillian's back buckles. She'll remember that for next time.


Jillian grows loud as she nears collapse, Erin learns, but she's silent when she comes.


It takes a while, Erin's arm is burning with the exertion by the time she pushes her up and over the crest, her wrist on fire and her teeth clenched but when she comes, good god is it worth it.


Erin's fingers are buried deep and she tries to swipe roughly at Jillian's clit with every thrust like she'd done with Erin because the penetration alone isn't enough but she doesn't need much else, just a little bit more.


Her lips seal over Jillian's pulse and she sets her teeth against the skin ever so lightly and Jillian's hands tighten at her back, her short but perfectly clipped nails carving little crescents into the flesh of Erin's shoulder, and Erin makes note of that as well.


She sucks, seeks the vessels just beneath the skin and calls them to her like a siren's song when she feels Jillian start to move differently around her fingers.


“I'm so close,” she mutters into Erin's ear, half-desperation, half-prayer. “Erin I'm so, so close.”


“I know,” Erin says drunk on the power that comes from pushing pleasure into another person. “I know, Jill.”


She's about to ask what else Jillian needs when she had an idea, silky and a little devilish. She wonders….


“I wonder,” she murmurs against Jillian's neck. “Will you come for me too, Jill. Can you do that for me?”


And just like that, Jillian breaks. She breaks like she's been waiting her whole life for the release. Her mouth falls open and she bends up into Erin and she pulses around Erin's fingers as she continues thrusting, slowing to match the fall of Jillian's body.


Her moan is silent but her body speaks beautifully loud volumes, singing hymns in Erin's name as she pulls Erin's body closer, closer, closer to her own, draws Erin's fingers deeper, deeper, deeper in too.


And Erin just drinks it in, trying to remember every sigh and twist of muscle, the way her mouth looks as it worries for air and how deeply blue her eyes are when she comes down finally and looks to Erin with a flushed, slightly shy expression.


She's still inside Jillian when the last wave leaves, reluctant to draw away but she does eventually and Jillian bites her lip at the loss before she smoothes over the temporary emptiness with a long, slow kiss.


“I think you're a liar,” Jillian mumbles against Erin's lips between kisses. “Because that was very good for a first-timer.”


“Really?” Erin asks with a smile, ever the overachiever.


“Well, there's always room for improvement,” Jillian says teasing before Erin nips her lip softly and she groans a little. “But you're a fast learner. See?”


“Maybe I just need you to show me more?” Erin says with a smirk before she drops to Jillian's side, running her fingers over the curve of her collarbones, down to the top her breast.


“Gladly,” Jillian says as she drapes her leg over Erin's, pulling Erin closer into her body. “Hey, I don't want to spoil the moment so tell me to back off if you want, but what does this….is this a one-off thing for you?”


“I don't want it to be,” Erin says a little shyly. “But if that's what you want….”


“It's not,” Holtz says quickly, her eyes soft and nervous. “It's definitely not.”


“Does that mean you want this to be a thing?” Erin asks with a small hesitant smile on the edge of her lips. “A casual sex thing, or a dating thing?”


“A dating thing?” Holtz says half as a question, and Erin can tell that she wants this now, maybe as much as Erin does too. “If that's what you want?”


“I want,” Erin says with a grin, nodding her head. “I definitely want.”


“Me too,” Jillian says softly as she pulls Erin to her before sliding on top of her again. “Lucky too because there are about a million things I want to do with you now, and I don't know what I would have done if you'd said this was a one-time thing.”


“What kind of things do you want to do with me?” Erin asks as Jillian settles between her legs, her blood heating again as she realises Jillian's poised to move down her body.


“With you,” Jillian says with a kiss to Erin's breast before she moves down an inch. “To you. Potato, potatoe.”


There's so much more Erin wants to say, a million things she wants to ask but for now, the only coherent thought she's capable of producing is Jillian, Jillian, Jillian.


Because Jillian's mouth is hot on her stomach and then on her hip and then Erin feels breath on the curve where her groin meets her thigh and her breath hitches in anticipation.


“Happy New-Year, Erin,” Jillian says just as her mouth closes over Erin, hot and whole and beautiful.


“Jesus, Jill,” Erin moans, as her hand slides down her stomach, into long blonde hair.


“Happy New-Year to you too.”