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All Wrapped Up: Sophomore Slump

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“Have you got the strap?” Ann asked urgently, her eyes wild as she searched her wife’s face.

Anne’s lips parted, her eyes wide; she took her wife by the hips and pulled her close, then kissed the top of her head. 

“Good Lord, don’t say it like that , Adney,” she chuckled. “Yes, I’ve got things to attach the tree to the Jeep.”

“Sorry,” Ann shrugged, turning in her wife’s arms to admire their Christmas tree. “I don’t want it to fall off.”

“A bit of trust, darling,” Anne said, breaking away and lifting the shiny saw. “Trust your wife, eh?”

Ann sighed and rolled her eyes, allowing her butch to do her thing. She knew better by now than to get between Anne Lister and a task. Anne had insisted they get a tree from Crow Nest this year; she hadn’t realized just how many trees Ann’s property provided to the surrounding area, and she’d been determined to have a “proper Walker tree” at Shibden this year. Now, though, by the way she was squinting and squatting, Ann wondered if she realized what she’d gotten herself into. 

All around them, the estate bustled with activity. Washington’s men crunched through the frosty grass, tending trees and chopping some down and arguing amongst themselves. It had been years since Ann had been a part of Crow Nest’s tree business; she made a mental note to ask Washington about it the next time she saw him. She wanted to be more hands-on, more like Anne. Well, she amended, perhaps not entirely like Anne, who was now grunting and mumbling curses under her breath. 

“Let someone help you, Pony.”

“No!” Anne said sharply; she caught herself, straightened her black beanie on her head, slipped off her heavy overcoat. Ann took the offending garment, watching her lumberjack as she leaned over to study the trunk of the tree. “I can do this.”

Ann nodded encouragingly, turning her head to admire the way Anne’s ass curved in those jeans. She had these braces on today as well, the sharp black contrasting with her weathered jeans and bright red flannel shirt. Anne knew how weak Ann was for her in suspenders.

Poor Pony. She was grunting and huffing and cursing. An unwitting man - one of Washington’s - wandered over to offer his assistance. Ann turned her head away. This would take a while yet.

She trundled inside, unwrapping her fluffy scarf and dropping it and her hat on the entryway table. James took their coats without a word, and Ann smiled in thanks. It felt good to be at Crow Nest. This wasn’t her home, not anymore, but it was comforting. Like being at a friend’s house or going back to camp. She followed her nose to the kitchen, where Mrs. Barclay had made hot chocolate. Gratefully, Ann took a mug and looked out the window.

From here, she could see her wife working on the tree. No doubt she was cursing and muttering and throwing her back out. Ann made a mental note to give her a massage when they got home. Home - to Shibden, she thought with a smile. Crow Nest seemed so stark in comparison - all new and sleek lines and without character. Shibden was alive - breathing and groaning along with the rest of them. A shiver raced along Ann’s spine at the thought; in the distance, the tree fell and Anne lifted her arms in victory. 

Chuckling and shaking her head, Ann took a second mug and trotted outside. Now that the tree had been felled, Anne seemed content to let the men take over. They met in the middle, Anne accepting the hot chocolate with a red-cheeked grin; her lips were cold against Ann’s, her strong fingers digging into Ann’s hip as she pulled her close. Ann giggled, and they made their way back toward the house.

“So you’ve done it,” Ann said proudly. “Will it fit in the door?”

“Guess Washington will find out,” Anne said grandly. “I’ve done the important part.”

Ann’s laughter lasted them the entire ride home. By the time they got there, Cordingley had filled Shibden with the scent of freshly baked biscuits. Ann pulled her wife close in the narrow, private entryway of the house, just before they revealed their arrival to the rest of the family. Her arms wrapped naturally around her wife’s neck; Anne’s hands fell to her waist. They swayed for a moment, smiling those dopey, we’re-in-love-on-Christmas smiles.

“You’re very strong, Pony.” Ann ran a hand appreciatively over her wife’s shoulder. “I wonder if you do it on purpose.”

“Do what?”

“Tease me.” Ann slipped her fingers under one of Anne’s braces. “Show off.”

“Oh, of course,” Anne grinned, dipping her head to catch Ann’s lips for a heated moment. “Can’t hit the sophomore slump.”

“The what?” Ann laughed as they twisted apart and moved toward the kitchen.

“It’s our second Christmas, love.” Anne turned around, winking at her and walking backward. “Would hate for you to be disappointed.”

Ann rolled her eyes, waiting for the inevitable collision. It never came - Anne knew every inch of this house, didn’t she? Effortlessly, she led them to the kitchen without once looking over her shoulder, without so much as a stumble. Ann bit her lip and shook her head, amazed - as usual - at the eccentric, incredible life she’d found.

“Decorating,” Cordingley said seriously. “I’d prefer it if you didn’t hang about if you’re not going to help.”

Captain Lister shuffled into the living room with hands upraised in self-defense. 

“We’re ready,” Anne said briskly, already washing her hands. 

“Me too,” Marian said, brandishing a tube of icing. “I do detail work only, ladies. Someone else will have to do the edges.”

“Could never color inside the lines,” Anne teased, bumping her wife’s hip.

“I’m down for a bit of edging!” Aunt Anne called happily, thumping her cane happily into the crowded.

“Aunt!” Anne’s eyes were wide and her face beet-red. “You can’t -”

“Hush, Pony, don’t you need an apron?” 

Ann tied the stained black apron around her wife’s slender frame, willing her not to push the subject. Not likely that Aunt Anne had any idea what she’d just said, and even if she did, Ann didn’t want to know anything about it. Stretching on her tiptoes, she kissed the back of her wife’s neck.

“Don’t let Big Anne anywhere near these,” Marian said. “She’s a menace.”

“I am not,” Anne pouted, but even so she took a half-step backward. 

It was almost too fun, being in the kitchen with Marian and Aunt Anne and Cordingley. Ann couldn’t remember the last time she’d laughed so hard and so often. Slowly, Anne migrated to the side, leaning against the counter and making jokes. Ann made a point to kiss her on the cheek, squeeze her hand, ask her opinion. It was a different look for Anne, standing on the sidelines, but she didn’t seem to mind. As the afternoon turned to evening, she even lit a few candles in the kitchen window.

“Festive,” Aunt Anne said.

“Leave it to this one to mess about with fire instead of helping us,” Marian added with a roll of her eyes.

“You told her to back up,” Ann reminded her sister-in-law.

“I’m trying to - oh, fuck!” Anne stuck her index finger in her mouth, sucking and grimacing. 

“Every year,” Cordingley murmured.

“What’s that?” Anne asked, her voice muffled around her finger.

“Nothing, ma’am.”

“Elizabeth,” Anne warned, her face souring.

“You do it every year,” Cordingley offered sheepishly. “The way that - that candle is set up, you’re always burning yourself.”

“She does, doesn’t she?” Marian laughed.

“I think you’re right,” Aunt Anne agreed.

Without another word, Ann ushered her wounded wife to the downstairs toilet. She shot a look at the rest of the family, as if to say “I know she’s ridiculous but she’s my wife.”

“Poor darling,” Ann cooed as they pressed together in the cramped bathroom. “And this is my favorite finger of all.”

“Is it?” Anne’s eyes were focused on their hands in the sink, Ann’s fingers gently wrapped around the injured digit, cool water running over them both. She wiggled her middle finger. “I always fancied it was this one.”

“Well, that’s quite nice too,” Ann said, carefully examining the red skin before kissing it softly. “Both together - that’s really my favorite.”

“Is that so?” Anne grinned, pulling Ann’s hips to her own. “Shit, fuck.”

“Be careful,” Ann laughed, reaching for the bandages in the cabinet. “You burned yourself pretty well, did you?”

“I always strive for exe- oh,shit - excellence.” Anne bit her lip as Ann carefully applied the plaster. “Thank you, darling.”

Ann smiled and tilted her chin upward; Anne caught her lips in a slow, searching kiss. Ann found herself backing up against the wall, her entire body angling upward and into her wife’s sturdy frame. Anne’s hands were in her hair, over her shoulders, on her waist and her hips and her ass.

“Let’s go upstairs,” Anne husked.

“The family -”

“I’ve got to rest.” She hiked one of Ann’s legs over her hip, grinding harshly between her legs. “You know, I am injured.”

“You’re impossible,” Ann sighed happily, taking Anne’s face in her hands and kissing her soundly. “I’m not done with decorating yet.”

“I have something to decorate,” Anne whispered against her neck. “Our bed would look so much better with you in it.”

“Oh, Pony,” Ann scoffed, lowering her leg and smoothing her hands along her wife’s suspenders. “You’ve got to work on that one.”

The fire abated between them, but it was never fully extinguished. Not as Anne’s arm looped over Ann’s shoulders while they admired the tree in the living room, not when Anne squeezed her ass playfully as they strung the lights, certainly not when Ann collapsed into her wife’s lap when the tree was finally, sparklingly complete.

“Another rousing success,” Captain Lister said from his chair, having retired nearly an hour ago. “Top notch, ladies.”

“A bit tall, don’t you think?” Aunt Anne turned her head as she sat down. “Barely enough space for the star.”

“I like it,” Ann said, winking at her wife.

“Oh, we know you like the tall ones,” Anne teased, kissing her cheek.

“Get a room ,” Marian groaned.

“We’ve got one,” Anne snapped back. “Shall we go right now, Adney?”

“No,” Ann giggled, wiggling her behind against Anne’s thighs. “We’ve got to watch our movie.”

The Listers had an intricate, immovable calendar regarding holiday watching. Ann kept getting the order confused, but she was happy to close her eyes and let the darkness and warmth of the room envelop her. Anne’s firm chest against her side, her strong arm around her waist, that bandaged finger tracing lazy circles over Ann’s leg. She didn’t even realize she’d fallen asleep until Tiny’s cold nose brushed her hand.

“Hello, baby,” Anne purred.

Sleepily, Ann opened her eyes. The whole room was dim, the only light coming from the white lights on the tree. They were alone, just their little subset of the family - Anne, Ann, Tiny. Ann curled a hand around her wife’s face, her thumb moving softly over the proud plane of her cheek. She leaned in, kissing Anne gently; Anne pulled her a little closer, urging her lips open and slipping her tongue inside.

“Upstairs,” Anne breathed, her hand slipping under Ann’s shirt; the plaster was rough in contrast to the soft pads of her fingertips.

They tumbled out of their chair, hands lacing together; together, they turned off the tree lights, extinguished every candle, stole a few biscuits and slipped up the stairs. 

“What’d you get me?” Anne asked as she closed the door. “Can I have it early?”

“No,” Ann said simply, draping her arms around her wife’s neck. 

“Cruel.” Anne kissed her slowly, backing her up toward the bed. “Totally unfair.” 

“Can I have mine?” Ann sat on the edge of the bed, wrapping her fingers around Anne’s suspenders as she stepped forward to stand between Ann’s spread legs. 

“Certainly not.”

“There you go.”

Anne narrowed her eyes, then shook her head. Their lips met again, a little hungrier this time. Ann moaned into her wife’s mouth, leaning backward and letting Anne climb over her. Warm hands slipped under her shirt, along her ribs and into her bra; Ann arched into the touch, satisfied hums spilling from her lips as Anne kissed her neck, the underside of her jaw. She started to move lower, but Ann caught her.

“Will you - could you -” She flicked one suspender lightly. “You know how I love these.”

Anne grinned that rakish, arrogant, you-better-ask-for-it-baby grin.

“And?” 

“And can you keep them on?” Ann asked. 

“All night?” Anne feigned confusion. “A bit uncomfortable.”

Ann sighed and rolled her eyes. After two and a half years with Anne Lister, she knew what she had to do. It would be nice, for once, if Anne would just get on with it, but not tonight, she supposed. She thrust a hand into Anne’s dark hair, tugging slightly and speaking slowly.

“I want you to get your cock and fuck me with it. Leave the braces on.”

“Is that all?” Anne asked innocently.

“Yes,” Ann paused, “Daddy.”

A fire ignited in Anne’s eyes as she scrambled out of bed and into the closet. It hadn’t slowed with them, not yet. This electricity that passed between them at all times - it was still as strong as ever. Ann felt properly settled now, nearly a full year of marriage under her belt, but it was still nice that they behaved a bit like teenagers. It hadn’t been a week since Anne had pressed her up against a grimy will in a pub bathroom, less than a fortnight since Ann had screamed so wantonly in the chaumière Washington had worried about an injured animal in the woods. 

Anne sauntered back to her, the bulge in her pants obvious, the swagger in her step intoxicating. Ann ripped off her own shirt, shuffled out of her trousers, nearly ripped her bra and panties from her body; by the time Anne reached her, she was naked and reaching for her. Anne kissed her once, fiercely and deeply - their tongues tangling and hands roaming and throats rumbling with desperate moans. She squeezed Ann’s hips once, then pulled away. 

“Turn over.”

A shiver of excitement raced along Ann’s spine as she turned eagerly onto her stomach. Anticipation coursed through her veins as Anne’s gentle hands trailed over her back, her hips, her ass. She whined as she heard Anne’s zipper open, the telltale rustling that meant only one thing. 

Then she flipped onto her back.

“Ann?” her wife said, brow furrowed in confusion, cock halfway out of her pants.

“I want to see you,” Ann said breathlessly. “I want to hold onto you and kiss you and - fuck - enjoy these.” She tugged on Anne’s suspenders. “You’re going to fuck me just like this, Daddy.”

Anne paused for a moment, her lips parted like she might disagree, then she grinned and shook her head. Ann pulled her backward, until Anne was kneeling between her spread legs. Their lips met in a sloppy kiss, hands roaming over cheeks and arms and breasts. Ann wrapped her hands around the open sides of her wife’s trousers.

“What are you waiting for?”

Anne growled and sat back on her knees; it was intoxicating, watching her prepare like this - the buckles, the angle, just the right amount of lubricant. Arousal coursed through Ann’s veins; she was positively aching by the time Anne leaned over her again. 

“Ready?” She husked

Ann nodded urgently, and then groaned as her wife pressed inside her. Slender arms wrapped around that muscular back, one hand curling around Anne’s suspender to pull her impossibly closer. It was almost too much - the cock too big - but then - Ann groaned - then it was perfect.

“Fuck, Pony,” she whined. “You feel so good.”

In response, Anne just brought their lips together. Her tongue slipped alongside Ann’s, her hips moving in a slow rhythm as she filled Ann deeply and fully. Deep, shaky moans rumbled through Ann, sharp gasps augmenting each thrust.

“You’re so beautiful,” Anne breathed in her ear. “You take me so well.”

Ann could only groan and nod, her hips rutting urgently into her wife. Fire burned between her legs, setting her whole body alight. Anne was kissing her neck, her chin, her breasts - how was she everywhere at once? Ann was so close; it was almost too much. She clutched her wife closer, wrapped her legs more tightly around her waist, urged her deeper. 

“Not yet,” Anne panted in her ear. “Wait -”

“I can’t,” Ann whined; “I’m so - I’m -”

Anne froze. Wild-eyed, Ann bucked her hips, desperate for her to move again. Anne grinned and pulled away, leaving Ann breathless and empty and so close she could nearly cry.

“C’mere,” Anne husked, sitting against the headboard and pulling Ann into her lap. 

“You’re evil,” Ann said, straddling her wife and sinking slowly onto her cock. She groaned, “I was almost there.”

“I know.” Anne grabbed a handful of her ass. “Where’s the fun in that?”

Ann rolled her eyes and kissed her. One hand wrapped around her cheek, the other around her suspender. Together, they found a slow, sensual rhythm. Ann moaned softly, a slack smile spreading over her face. 

“This is better,” she murmured appreciatively.

“I told you.” Anne spanked her crisply. “Talk to me.”

Ann hummed and closed her eyes. This was a fairly recent development, Anne asking for dirty talk. She seemed more and more desperate for it recently, ever since that phone call when Ann was in Scotland. Ann pulled her close by the braces, kissed her deeply, then whispered in her ear. 

“Youre fucking me so well, Daddy.” Her voice was low, breathless, underscored by Anne’s moans as she kissed and licked her way across Ann’s chest. “You’re so big, and you feel so good. I love you.” She nipped Anne’s earlobe. “I love your cock.” 

Anne squeezed her ass, urging her faster; Ann wasn’t sure how much longer she’d be able to form coherent sentences. Her voice was thin, needy, barely more than a whine.

“I love your cock, Daddy. I’m so close. I’m -” 

Ann sank her teeth into Anne’s shoulder as a single delicate fingertip pressed firmly against her clit. She was gone, muffling her cries in the firm muscle of Anne’s shoulder; her whole body quaked with the force of her release. With gentle hips and tender hands and soft encouragements, Anne eased every drop of pleasure from her. Finally, Ann slumped against her, panting and exhausted.

“I love you,” Anne puttered in her ear, stroking her back softly. “You’re stunning.”

“Oh, Pony,” Ann sighed before lazily catching Anne’s lips. “You’re incredible.”

“You are.” Anne kissed the underside of her jaw. “Fancy another?” 

No ,” Ann said with a shiver and a giggle; slowly she extricated herself, humming softly as the strap left her. “You’ve worn me out, Pony.”

She kissed her wife gently, then her neck, along her collarbones. Anne’s long fingers slipped in her hair as Ann moved lower, over her breasts and along the soft rolls of her belly. She reached the warm, wet silicone and kissed the top; Anne keened.

Never got old, did it?

Ann moaned at the taste of her own arousal on her wife’s cock; she took the silicone between her lips, sucking gently and knowing the effect this would have on Anne. After a long moment, Anne pulled her up into her arms and crashed their lips together. Ann eased the braces from her shoulders then pulled away.

“You have no business,” she said, “being this sexy.” She pulled Anne’s trousers off, leaving her in just that weathered old flannel and the harness. “You drive me crazy.”

“Ann.”

She knew when Anne said her name - her actual name - that she was desperate. It was a warning and a plea. For once, An decided not to tease her. She slipped the harness from her hips and hummed, low in her throat, at the sight of Anne’s bare, wet center

Dipping her head, she dragged her tongue along her folds. Anne tasted divine; she always did. Strong hands cradled her head, while slim hips rolled against her lips. Anne sucked, licked, kissed, and worshipped. She’d like to drown in this scent, this humid, slick world at the very core of Anne Lister.

“Ann.”

It was a whine this time, another warning, another plea. Ann chose mercy.

“Ann, Ann, Ann,” her wife chanted as her release shuddered through her. “Ann!”

With gentle strokes, she eased her beloved cheek though each wave of pleasure. At last, Anne slackened, her hands falling to the bed and a mighty sigh heaving from her chest. Ann kissed her belly in parting, then surfaced to kiss her lips.

“Adney,” Anne breathed as they parted. “I love you so much.”

“I love you.” 

Ann kissed her once more, just softly. They shuffled to snuggle under the covers, slick skin to slick skin; Anne’s shoulder made the perfect pillow. Her long arm wrapped around Ann, her nimble fingers stroking absently along her spine. Anne reached for her glasses and their paperback; Ann smiled and closed her eyes. Some things never changed.