I yawned for what seemed like the hundredth time this morning. I felt more exhausted than I had in a long time. I think the last time I could recall being this tired was over a year ago, when Peter's sexual scandal was plastered on the front pages of the papers and leading the local newscasts. The strange events of the previous night certainly had not helped matters, but they were not to blame. I'd shoved the parting comments from Laura White out of my mind. I'd decided not to linger on the memories of dealing with the media during the past year. I would have slept well if it hadn't been for the dreams. Multiple dreams of Kalinda. One especially pissed-off Kalinda with a baseball bat, bashing in the windows and battering the doors of Glenn Childs' car. Over and over and over again.
Kalinda Sharma seemed fearless to me. I could not imagine carrying a baseball bat in my car, much less using it to thrash and vandalize a car. Rumor around the office was she'd wreaked the havoc on the rental car of the firm's newest investigator. I knew better. I knew it to be truth, not just rumor. None of the senior partners seemed concerned about the cost of the damage. Or if they did, I hadn't heard about it. Nor had Courtney made mention of anything, and she usually kept me abreast of the office gossip.
Before the infamous car incident, I’d told Blake to keep me out of this game he played with Kalinda. But it seems Mr. Calamar chose to ignore my advice and pushed one Ms. Sharma too far. It amused me that she’d shown him who carried the bigger stick. I wouldn’t admit it to anyone else, but the image of her carrying a bat and wreaking mayhem sent a secret thrill through me.
Some days I envied her that fearlessness. Bold, ballsy, a woman to be reckoned with, or maybe even a force of nature. When I recalled the day she told me to take whatever steps necessary to be the junior associate selected, I had to smile to myself. She seemed to think nothing of encouraging me to indulge in an affair with Will in order to keep my job. I wondered just how free and easy she was with her own charms when procuring information for the various cases at the firm. I knew she considered her breasts to be better at getting information than subpoenas. She’d told me so in almost those exact words.
I lacked the boldness to ask her how far she’d gone, but it did not stop me from wondering what she’d done and with whom. Like that disheveled police detective who’d been involved in a few of our cases. I’m not sure what her type was, but he evidently was to her liking.
The thought of her striding through the office in her short, tight skirts and form-fitting, cleavage-revealing sweaters could set my pulse racing. I never expected to find myself in this quandary. I never thought knee-high boots with stiletto heels would set my heart pounding but my mouth went dry when I thought about those black leather boots. I stared blankly at the papers on my desk. I let out a heavy sigh. When my thoughts took this turn, they inevitably took another one soon thereafter.
I’ve been playing the good wife for so long, standing by Peter for better, for worse, through thick and thin and a sex scandal too. But this good wife had grown tired of being good. I wanted to take a page out of the fearless one’s book. I wanted to be reckless and daring, but my overblown sense of responsibility stopped me. Since my first day here at the firm, the closest I’d ever come to being irresponsible was the night Kalinda took me to celebrate being named Junior Associate. I do not remember how many shots of tequila I drank.
Shutting my eyes for a few seconds, I gave a shake of my head to change the direction of my thoughts. If not for Will’s call to go pick up those papers at Colin Sweeney’s house, I’m not sure what might have happened. I shook my head again, recalling the intensely personal question I’d asked her while under the influence of the tequila. I licked my lips then worried my bottom lip with my teeth.
Even now, I cannot bring myself to admit the true reason I asked her. If she’d said yes, I think I would have asked her to take me somewhere private, to a place where I could leave behind the events of the past year and lose myself in pleasure with her. Instead, she politely rebuffed my question then my phone interrupted us.
I opened my eyes and grabbed the water bottle near my left hand. I swigged several long sips of water. It did nothing to calm me. I stood, smoothed my hands down my skirt. With slow, deliberate moves, I opened the door and made my way to the restroom.
I liked my coffee like I liked my lovers, hot and steamy. The sludge in my cup, attempting to masquerade as java, was neither. I strode to the nearest garbage can and chucked the cup into it. With my hands shoved into the pockets of my leather coat, I walked back to wait just outside the office building.
I tapped my toe impatiently, waiting for my source to show. As much as I enjoyed the challenges of being an investigator for the law firm of Lockhart Gardner and Bond, I rarely liked waiting around for a source to show, especially on a cold day like today. If that source happened to be a former co-worker, my patience level generally dropped to nil.
I leaned back against the wall, resting my foot on the brick exterior. I pulled my cell phone from my pocket and checked the time. I glared at the display. Cary Agos was already fifteen minutes late. I’d walk off and leave, if it weren’t for his parting words on the phone. He mentioned her name and I knew I’d wait, no matter how late he was.
Without the coffee to warm me up, I needed to think of something hot and steamy to while away my time. I decided to go with second-year associate Alicia Florrick. Make that Alicia Florrick and her elegant string of pearls. No, wait, Alicia Florrick, wearing nothing but that string of pearls. And yet, this image still missed something. I tried to smother a smile as I thought of the missing item. Ah yes, Alicia Florrick, wearing nothing but her infamous string of pearls and a blindfold. Now that was a hot and steamy thought.
I don’t care if I sound like an oversexed slut for thinking it. I don’t care if it’s considered inappropriate to indulge in sexual fantasies of a co-worker. I was not alone in committing that crime.
Alicia was sexy in that repressed-sensuality-simmering-under-the-surface kind of way. Her tailored suits included skirts that were always the right length. I’ll even admit I’ve had a few fantasies of grabbing one of those skirts at the hem and ripping it up to the waistband to reveal her shapely thighs. I’d also wondered what cool-as-a-cucumber Alicia would do if I gripped one of those prim and proper blouses by the lapels and yanked it open, sending buttons flying everywhere.
No more tailored skirt to hide behind, no more chaste blouses covering her sensational rack. Just Alicia, sexy as fuck with her string of pearls around her neck. And that blindfold. With all of that lusciousness before me, I’m not sure where I’d start. Would I go for her nipples, suck on them until she squirmed and pleaded for more? Would I kiss her, claim her mouth in a kiss that started tender but worked its way up to bruising and passionate? Or would I throw all tenderness aside and go in for the kill, dropping to my knees in front of her and pressing my face against her pussy?
I swallowed and blew out my breath. Perhaps I should save my fantasies of Alicia for later, at least until I was in the office and could sneak into the ladies room to relieve the pressure. Standing in the cold, thinking about what it would be like to strip her, put a blindfold on her, and then fuck her senseless. I don’t get paid enough for this shit. The things I do for Alicia. I grabbed my cell from pocket. Damn Cary! He was now twenty-five minutes late.
“Well, I wasn’t sure you’d still be out here.” Cary’s voice cut through the haze of my desire.
I gave him a sidelong glance. “You’re nearly half an hour late. Were you stuck in court or were you playing some sort of control game and left me waiting deliberately?”
He dropped his gaze to the folder in his hand. “Does it matter?”
I shrugged. “Probably not.” I nodded at the folder. “What is that?”
“Follow-up information from last night. You know, the whole Joe Kent assault thing. It’s the little bit of information I dug up prior to sending Laura White to Alicia.” He handed me the folder. “You never know when you might need to use it.”
“Cary, I’m not sure what game you’re playing.” I gazed at him intently. “I’m not sure if Childs is behind it or you’re doing this on your own.” I tilted my head.
“Again, does it matter? What if this is just me following my moral compass?”
“Perhaps, it is. But you don’t do these things without a good reason. Plus, this moral compass you keep referencing wasn’t always so particular.”
He chuckled. “A person can’t change, right?”
“Others maybe. But not you.” I smirked at him then let it slide into a genuine smile. “Cary, just know this. If something goes wrong, he won’t protect you. Childs will protect his own ass, but don’t expect him to cover yours.”
He nodded but said nothing.
“We both know he hired you because you worked with Alicia. He’s using you.”
“Who says I’m not using him? Maybe that’s the mark on my moral compass.”
I sighed then shrugged. “Suit yourself. Just watch your back.” I shook the folder at him. “Thanks again for this.”
I strode away from him without a backward glance. I’d done my duty for the day.
Before hopping out of my SUV, I glanced around the garage. I half expected Blake to be waiting for me again. For some reason, he still seemed a bit pissed about the bashing I gave his rental car. I shook my head, trying to dislodge thoughts of him. I would much rather focus on Alicia again. I smiled to myself as I strode through the garage.
I arrived to find Alicia missing from her office. I dropped the folder on her desk then considered it before moving it to one of the drawers in her desk. I did not trust certain people in this office. Well, make that one particular person in this office, even if he had been part of the previous night’s investigation. Grabbing the folder from the drawer, I shoved it inside my jacket. I'd put it in Alicia's hot little hand myself.
Casting sidelong glances to either side, searching for Alicia, I made my way to the bathroom. In my left pocket, I stroked the small sex toy. If no one else was in the bathroom, I’d lock the door and take the edge off. Those images of Alicia still danced in my head and I needed release. If someone was in the bathroom, I’d suffer through.
With my right hand I grabbed the handle and yanked the door open. Inside the restroom, I heard water running and muttered a curse under my breath. My moment of solitude was ruined. I wanted to stomp my foot in frustration.
My heart stopped for a few beats then began to hammer in my chest. “Alicia?” Of all the people to be in here, it had to be her. Someone was smiling down on me. I turned around and turned the lock.
“Kalinda?” Alicia’s voice was a bit louder and her tone a bit more wary. Water dripped off her chin. She looked flustered, her cheeks flushed. Wet spots dotted the front of her white blouse.
I took a step toward her. I caught myself licking my lips.
She turned to face me, droplets of waters fell from her fingertips. Damn, she looked hot and sexy in her disconcerted state.
I took another step toward her then stopped when she began walking toward me. My breath caught in my throat. I’d never seen that intense look in her eyes and it took me off guard. I waited for her to make the next move.
Her wet fingers caressed my cheeks and tangled in my upswept hair. I swallowed as I watched her mouth descending. The brush of her lips on mine elicited a soft sigh from me.
I whispered her name, our lips brushing as I spoke. Her mouth covered mine, the kiss deeper and more intense. I moaned when her tongue slipped between my lips and touched mine. Everything about this kiss aroused me. Her tentativeness added to the heat. I clenched my hands into fists. The hand in my pocket wrapped around the small toy I carried there. I forced myself to let her control the kiss.
She pulled back from the kiss, panting softly. “I…”
I smiled at her. “I’m not offended, Alicia.”
“I don’t know what came over me.”
I reached out with my right hand and stroked her cheek. “I liked it.” I slid my fingers into her hair and twisted them slightly and tugged her face toward mine. My lips brushed her cheek and I nipped her earlobe. “I’ve wanted this from the first day you walked in.”
She let out the softest of whimpers. I wanted to ask her, to dare her to let me use the toy on her, here in the women’s restroom at work. Would she be bold enough to accept my challenge?
“I shouldn’t be doing this, shouldn’t be in here with you.”
Her words stung. I started to slide my hand from her hair but she covered my hand with hers.
“That’s the responsible Alicia speaking. The Alicia who is still with Peter despite what he’s done. The Alicia who constantly thinks of her children when she’d rather be thinking of her own needs. The Alicia who lets the firm use her name to further its prominence. But there’s another Alicia inside me.”
“Tell me about her,” I murmured. I hoped she’d tell me. I wanted to see if this other Alicia would accept my dare.
“The other Alicia is the one who asked you a certain question because she had a hidden agenda. She wanted you to proposition her the night we went out to celebrate. That other Alicia wants to be reckless and fearless like you.” She let out a resigned sigh. “Even if I know I will never be as intrepid as you, at least not anywhere except in my mind.”
I slipped the cylindrical toy from my pocket and held it up to her. “Be reckless with me.”
Her eyes grew wide. “What is that?”
“It’s a sex toy. Let me show you how it works.” I flashed a sly grin at her. “I dare you.”
I stared at Kalinda then gazed at the small white cylinder in her hand. She said it was a sex toy, and I felt my cheeks grow warm at the implications. Kalinda stood in front of me, offering me the perfect opportunity to be fearless and wild. Even better, she wanted me to be bold and uninhibited with her.
My heart raced. I nibbled at my bottom lip, unsure what to do. The responsible half screamed at me to refuse her offer. The side that wanted to be as daring as Kalinda screamed back to accept her challenge.
Should I or shouldn’t I? Should I or shouldn’t I?
“Well?” She waved the toy at me. “What’s it to be?”
I swallowed then grabbed her hand and started moving back toward the sink. “What do I do?”
The intense sexual gleam in her eyes almost scared me. Almost. Somehow I knew I would enjoy this even if I regretted it for years to come. I shoved all thoughts of regrets and qualms from my mind.
“Pull your skirt up around your waist.”
I obeyed her. I started tugging the skirt in a hasty move then paused and glanced at her. Her gaze rested on my knees. A wicked thought came to me and I decided to listen to that little devil in my head. I slowly lifted the skirt, offering her a teasing peek of my legs until I reached the juncture of my legs.
“Tease,” she growled with a wicked smile on her face.
I yanked the skirt up to my waist and waited for her next command.
“Take your panties off and give them to me.”
I lifted my head and stared at her. I blinked a few times. “Will you return them when we’re done?”
She arched a brow then shook her head. “No, they will be mine to keep.”
I swallowed. Was I prepared to spend the rest of the day without my panties? Was I ready to attend a few strategy meetings bare beneath my skirt? I looked at the toy in her hand then back at her. It was now or never. Would I or wouldn’t I? I took a deep breath then shimmied out of my panties and offered them to her.
Kalinda took the lace panties and shoved them into her pocket. She gazed at me so intently I felt my cheeks grow warm. Even in our most intimate moments, Peter had never stared at me with such an intense, hungry look. At least not since I’d been pregnant with Zach. Maybe when we first dated or on our honeymoon, but it had been long enough that I couldn’t clearly recall.
“Lean back against the counter and spread your legs.”
Her softly spoken order took me by surprise. My acquiescence shocked me even more. I fully expected the responsible Alicia to rear her repressed head and tell me to stop being so careless and irresponsible. A hint of a smile lifted the corners of my mouth.
“What’s that for?”
“Just wondering what’s going to happen when Responsible Alicia jumps into the fray.”
Kalinda strode over to me, slid her fingers into my hair and wrapped it around her hand. She tugged me in for a deep, long kiss. I leaned into the kiss, letting her take complete control. She pulled back. Somewhat breathless, she smirked. “Tell her to fuck off.”
I nodded. “What now?”
She flicked the switch on the toy and it started humming. “Now we play.” She nudged it between my legs.
“Oh,” I gasped. I sucked in a sharp breath when she pressed the vibrating toy against my clit. “Oh fuck!” The sensations were unlike any pleasure I experienced with Peter. This was amazing and scintillating. I felt uncontrolled, reckless and flying high on delight. I gripped the counter and dropped my head back.
She moved the vibrating head around my clit, circling then moving back and forth, right and left. My legs trembled. Am I going to be able to remain upright or will I drop like a graceless pile to the floor? Do I even care? I decided I didn’t care, as long as the pleasure continued.
My breath sloughed in and out of me. Nothing prepared me for this. Orgasms during sex felt pleasant, but this was far more than pleasant. This…damn, this was incessant, rampant bliss. I dropped my gaze to the top of Kalinda’s head.
She knelt in front of me, on one knee, her free hand resting on her upraised knee. My gaze dropped lower, to her boots. Those sexy, black leather knee-high boots drove me crazy.
I closed my eyes and imagined her striding toward my office. The hint of cleavage, the sway of her hips, the fit of her skirt, and those boots. I shuddered and felt the pleasure explode inside me. No gentle rush of pleasure, no slide up to a peak, just a huge blast of sensation from my pussy to my fingertips. “Kalinda!”
She laughed, a throaty sound of satisfaction. “You are amazing.”
I nodded absently, staring blankly at her. “You, too.”
She pushed a hand between my legs, and I felt fingers ease inside me. “I want a taste.”
I stared at her. She slid those slick fingers into her mouth, lifted her gaze and returned my stare. My eyes never lost contact with hers as she licked her fingers. I shivered.
Kalinda stood. Her hand cupped my cheek and she leaned in close. Her lips brushed mine. “You’re a magnificent woman, Alicia. If we weren’t here, I’d show my appreciation by fucking you senseless.”
I licked my lips, nodded. Her words thrilled me. If this was a foretaste, I wanted all she offered.
“Now, push your skirt back down.” She kissed me again then rinsed off her sex toy. I watched her slip it into her pocket.
“I didn’t know…”
“Didn’t know what?” She tilted her head and smirked.
“I didn’t know it could be like that,” I whispered.
Kalinda kissed me again, something between a simple brush of lips and a passionate joining of mouths. “I would like to show you how much more there can be, but this is not the place, nor the time.” She chuckled. “Who knows who will be waiting outside that door for us, as it is.”
I nodded. “What do we say? I mean, if someone is on the other side of that door”
“We say we met in here to discuss this.” She pulled a folder from inside her jacket and set it on the counter. “It’s backup paperwork from last night.”
I shoved my skirt down then glanced at her. “Where did you get this?”
“Does it matter?”
“No.” I shook my head. I smiled. “You would think I’d learned not to question you by now.”
Kalinda laughed. “You would, wouldn’t you?”
I took a deep breath, smoothed my hands over my thighs then took another deep breath. “I do not know what to do next.”
“We go out there, present the image that nothing unusual happened, and then we decide when we want to escalate this.”
I liked her term. ‘Escalate’ showed intent and power. She wanted more, and after my taste of recklessness, I wanted more. “Escalate how?”
“Your next victory in court. Shots of tequila.” She grinned, mischievous glints in her eyes. “At my place.” She gave me a leering onceover. “With you in nothing but a blindfold and your string of pearls.”
My face grew hot. I stared at her. I would not be able to properly focus for the rest of the day after that proposition.
She turned and unlocked the door, the snick of the latch serving as a final reminder that our moment had ended. With a swift tug, she opened the door and stepped out. I followed her then stopped when I saw Will.
I held my breath.
“Is everything okay?” He glanced between the pair of us then his gaze landed on the folder I carried. He arched his brow.
“It’s more information to add to the files from last night.”
Will nodded. “Good. Never know when we might need to revisit that file.” He walked away, and I let out a sigh of relief.
When I cast a glance at Kalinda, she chuckled. “Worried about something?”
Her seeming nonchalance rattled me for a moment before I realized she was playing it cool as if nothing had happened. When I looked at her with an intent gaze, an attempt to see if she would reveal any flicker of emotion about what we’d just shared, she winked at me.
I smiled then smoothed my hands on my skirt and felt my cheeks grow a bit warm when I remembered I wore no panties. That fact alone would ensure I remembered our encounter for the rest of the day. I felt brave, bold and unfettered. Kalinda’s fearlessness was rubbing off on me in a most pleasant manner.