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distilled into difference

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They’re just two agents with two shots of tequila who happen to have two hotel rooms. Yet, they – the two – sit in one. The reason for this stands thick in the air of the hotel room. The obvious nature of it, the words: want to go back to my room, and the accompanying nod – with a smile (more of a grin) that presents itself so clear in Kara’s head despite the whiskey that is currently sitting in her stomach.

Yes. The air is indeed thick and heavy, filling in the space between two agents, settling snug in between two poured shot glasses of tequila. And the air must be stifling to Martine who sits still and half way frozen – staring staring staring at Kara and waiting for something.

An order. That’s what it is, Kara thinks, and knows like she knows the feeling of a gun in her hand (that was once heavy too, but now it has the weight of a feather). But yes, that is what Martine Rousseau wants.

All of these agents want that, all of them are the same. Uptight with narrowed backs and scowls and some have neatly done yellow hair that Kara wants to see sprawled out on top of a pillow beneath her.

All of the agents -- no matter whom Kara Stanton is working for, or what Kara Stanton is doing – all of them are the same. Martine Rousseau is no different.

Except for the fact that Kara thinks she is. That there is something there loose, something in Martine that made her willingly want to go to Kara’s room, something beyond the obvious need to be touched.

Or maybe Kara Stanton just likes the lovely curve of Martine Rousseau’s jaw and wants to believe she’s different. Maybe for a night she needs to believe that not everything is the same everywhere she goes and that her new partner has something the others did not.

The thick, hovering air runs up Kara’s arm as she moves it forward to grab her shot glass. Kara looks at Martine, glass in hand; tilts her head to the side a little with a grin that’s a test more than it is a gesture.

Whiskey is neat. Gin is classic. Vodka is pure.

Tequila is messy. 

Kara knocks back the shot and lets her lip curl and teeth clench for a second before setting the glass down. The salt is grainy against her lower lip, but the lime she sticks in her mouth a second later wipes it away.

Martine is still watching. Waiting. But there is something that looks like play in her eyes, a shining glimmer.

Kara settles back in her chair and watches right back, arms folding over and mouth tugged up, half to the side. Her lips form a smile that says a thousand things. Her lips say nothing.

It’s then -- after two more minutes of staring and silence and thick air -- that Martine Rousseau leans forward and takes the other shot into her hands. Her soft, smooth hands that are so bloody even though she’s so clean.

Martine does not drink her shot. She sets the glass down, closer to herself on the wooden table that stands between the two of them.

And Kara thinks that perhaps Martine is drunk. That maybe she had too much wine at the bar downstairs earlier.

Kara Stanton thinks Martine Rousseau is drunk because Martine is placing her soft, smooth hands to the top of her blouse. Martine – Kara notes very quickly – is unbuttoning her blouse, still staring staring staring just like before, eyes trained on Kara, but this time, she doesn’t look like she’s looking for any sort of order. This time it’s a challenge; they are dueling with no words or swords or cocked back guns.

Of course – Kara watches this display. It’s hard not to, when fingers are so precise, a button at a time so, so slow in their reveal. One button – collarbone; protruding long and elegant under white skin. Another, the top of black lace (and again; of course, of course: black lace). Button three is when Kara can see the valley of breast.

And as each button drops, lower and lower to where there is an expanse of naval, to where black slacks meet skin – Kara wonders how badly Martine wants this. Is she wet right now? Has she been wet since: want to go back to my room?

Is she uncomfortable between her legs like Kara is right now? Need rushing to her skin like blood, under the surface and boiling?

The shirt is undone, and Martine begins to fold it. The image is so ridiculous – Martine, an agent -- half naked and folding her shirt, settling it neatly on the arm of the chair.

Kara looks at Martine who is smiling as evil as ever, then she looks at the still full glass of tequila. Pushing her body off of the chair and walking forward, Kara grabs the little glass, warm in her hand. Then, with all of the amusement she can muster up when Martine is half naked in front of her so, so pretty and clean; Kara brings the glass to Martine’s lips, tilts it back and waits.

Martine seems surprised at first, for a moment – then, with only a trickle of liquor dribbling down her lip and chin – she opens her mouth.

There is a hard swallow. It does not come from Martine. Martine’s swallow is soft and demure like a drop of rain falling into a lake. Kara’s swallow is hard and her eyes are trained on a wet mouth shaped around glass.

Kara takes the glass away; replaces it with her lips.

This is the first time Kara has kissed Martine, the first time she has kissed anyone since Greer and a hospital and this new life, the first time she has tasted tequila off of Martine’s tongue just after her own sweeps damp lips.

And what she expected was for the taste of Martine to be more bitter than the tequila. For it to sting more, and burn more in her throat. But Martine just had to be different.

Because instead she is sweet. She is honey and where she is, there are bees nearby with sharp, pointed stingers.

Kara’s hands brace the sides of Martine. And she continues to kiss Martine and it’s messy with no real rhythm, noses bumping, tongues teasing, teeth scraping. Hands that Kara can’t see as she kisses with her eyes shut, hands that are soft and smooth tangle in her hair. They pull and she hisses into the mouth opposite of her own.

They’re pulling her up, up until they are standing in the middle of a hotel room with two empty shot glasses nearby. Kara’s hands find Martine’s waist, her thumbs brush warm skin above the edge of black slacks.

Kara isn’t sure if it’s her who’s pushing Martine to the bed, or if it’s Martine who’s dragging Kara to the bed – but that’s where they end up. Kara on top of Martine, straddling her, smiling down at her – if you can call it a smile; the twisted, half-cocked thing that it is.

Martine leans up fast – and like an eagle would dig its talons into prey – Martine divests Kara of her shirt. Kara does the same of black trousers, arching her back down as she drags them off along with shoes. And it’s just this for moments, ripping each other apart until Kara can finally see Martine and Martine can see all of Kara.

Naked and bared in the only way that’s possible in their line of work.

Kara leans over Martine, pins her arms above her head and kisses her again. Mouth on mouth, then mouth on neck, then tongue laving down Martine’s clavicle and then lips wrapped around Martine’s nipple.

There is a moan. A canting of hips.

Kara thinks about how nice it feels to be wanted. Nice, manifested against her thigh – warm, wet, willing, wanting; smearing against her skin.

It’s nice to want back as well. This blood that pumps through Kara’s veins has an expiration date, and that day is soon – she knows this; and it’s just fucking nice to feel it so heavily under her skin.

Kara drags her hand down Martine’s body, feeling it tense and hearing sighs and then a hiss when one index finger glides against her; low and missing Martine’s clit.

Kara laughs against Martine’s breast when an annoyed exhale leaves the mouth hovering above her.

And Kara’s chuckle still hums against Martine’s breast as she inches her fingers inside of Martine. Just two: slow and shallow and sticky. And she begins to trail her lips down Martine’s body. They’ve barely started and Martine’s skin already taste like sex. Like sweat, like want and need and clutching hands.

Martine is still watching Kara, just like before except her breathing is labored and her gaze more questioning.

What are you going to do?

Kara imagines that’s what Martine is thinking.

Kara pushes in harder, her other hand wrapped tight against Martine’s thigh. She bites the inside of Martine’s thigh and adds a third finger. She licks the now raised skin and slows her pace.

A hand in her black hair, and Kara is nudging Martine’s clit with her nose. Bucking hips and a tug and a push later – and Kara realizes that she’s not really doing anything as she lies down on the bed, belly down, face and fingers buried in Martine Rousseau.

Martine comes against Kara, Kara’s lips around her clit, and fingers deep inside. She thrashes, groans, clutches – this is Martine when she comes, this is how she looks. Carnal and sweaty and messy and Kara doesn’t think the word beautiful at all (except she does).

Kara watches, eyes dilated and cheek resting on Martine’s inner thigh; staring staring staring.

Martine catches her breath seconds later, looks down at Kara. There is a sort of lightness to it, a smile in her eyes that teases at her lips.

And then, that’s when Kara speaks for the first time since they entered the hotel room. That’s when she says, “What do you want?” Her cheek is still pressed against a sticky thigh, her eyes dark, her teeth biting down on her lower lip.

In that moment, and second, and fragment of time – Martine Rousseau tells the current truth to Kara Stanton. In that moment they are not two agents, there are not two full shots of tequila and they inhabit only one hotel room.

In that moment, Martine Rousseau – who might just be different, and who might be searching for something that isn’t an order - for something more; says, “You.”