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Alex's inbox lit up with messages confirming the reservations she had just made. There was a pile of things to be done on her desk, but she wanted to check once more to make sure every detail was right. She could have waited until after work, but the work could be done after work. Alex had a feeling that with the surprise, Patrice wouldn't mind if she stayed a bit too late once or twice that week. Finally, when she was satisfied that everything was in order, she picked up her phone. *Paris on the 22nd,* she texted to Patrice.

Patrice reached aimlessly for her phone across the desk, still reading the last sentence of the case she had looked up. She tapped it, bringing up the message. A look of confusion crossed her face as she read. *What about it?* She answered back.

With phone still in hand, Alex reached for her cup of coffee. She took a sip, making a face at just how cold it had gotten while she was buying tickets, and just as she managed to swallow, Patrice's reply showed up. A wisp of a smile crossed Alex's face. *It's a good place for Christmas,* she replied, knowing she could have been much more direct but enjoying imagining Patrice's response.

When she received the reply, Patrice finally stopped reading and focused on her phone. She still didn't understand quite what Alex was getting at. She laughed a bit as she wrote back playfully, *I'm sure it is, maybe we should go some time .*

Alex chuckled at the reply and got up as she texted back. She put a hand on her hip and paced the length of her small conference table as she typed. *Precisely. Tickets for the 22nd. I'm not packing for you, though.*

Patrice had been taking a sip of her latte when Alex's next reply came through, and it was only by the grace of God that she didn't spit it out all over her desk. She choked instead, coughing a few times before reading the text again. She shook her head and replied, *Wait....what? You're joking right?* She was sure Alex was kidding, but hoped she wasn't. She'd go just about anywhere with the blond, but this was just too good.

At the reply, Alex laughed outright. She finally just switched screens to her speed dial and called, crossing her arms and leaning against the table as the phone rang.

And Patrice wasn't too surprised when Alex called, not having yet put the phone down. Patrice smiled and brought the phone to her ear, "Hi Alex, calling to explain it to me?"

Alex was smirking before she could even begin. "Well, the flight leaves JFK at 3 PM on the 22nd, and it touches down in Paris on the 23rd. There is that whole passport and security thing to deal with, but I think that's a small price to pay for seven days in France with your incredibly thoughtful girlfriend."

So Alex wasn't joking. Patrice didn't know what the correct response to someone offering to take you on a surprise trip to Europe was, if there was one, they hadn't bothered to teach it to her in law school. She went for her best try anyway, "Are you serious? I.....you better be now because it sounds amazing."

The blonde blinked, realizing that Patrice really couldn't tell that she wasn't joking. "I'm taking you to Paris for Christmas, Patrice. it's not a joke." He smirk turned into a smile as she went back to her desk. "I just...I don't know if you've ever seen it at Christmas, but it's beautiful." She was thinking of her father now, and she knew that if he were still alive, they would be meeting there and that he would approve of her travel companion.

Patrice hadn't seen it at Christmas or any other time for that matter. In truth, most of her Christmas seasons had been spent amongst gaudily-lit palm trees, and faux-Spanish townhouses decorated with blinking lights and plastic snow. She sat back in her desk chair, needing a moment to compose herself before speaking, "Alex... that sounds wonderful, I, I've never been." She smiled and then continued, "I can't wait, really." Things were still sinking in, and two things came to mind—firstly, if her passport was still valid and secondly, if she would need to pack her heavy coat.

At that, Alex's smile brightened considerably. It had never occurred to her that Patrice had never been, and knowing made her all the more excited about it. "It's a perfect Christmas present then," she said softly. "I can't wait to show it to you."

Patrice was grinning stupidly at nothing in particular when her assistant came in. He stopped and gave her a curious glance from the door, and she struggled to put back on a professional expression. She nodded to him to leave the documents he was carrying on the desk. When he left Patrice focused again, "That sounds just perfect Alex, really." She looked over the paper Jacob had left and mentally cringed, now very glad to have such a good reason to take a real break. "Can I see you tonight? Drinks after work? I can't wait to thank you in person."

"I..." Alex made that face that was something between a cringe and the expression when gets from stubbing a toe. "I don't know that I'm going to get out of here before midnight," she admitted, sorely wishing she could put off the work for Patrice's half spoken promise.

Patrice knew that tone of voice well, having used it countless times before. However, nothing was going to dampen her mood at the moment. "Sorry to hear it, but if you catch a break my offer still stands." She smiled a little, "And I believe you might know where to find me when midnight rolls around."

Alex grinned at the invitation--one that she had silently been hoping for. It was amazing how quickly she had gotten used to simply crawling in bed with someone after a long day. "Yes, I think I can manage that. I'll email you the details of the trip," she said as she did just that. "Have a good day, Patrice."

She grinned, already anticipating being woken up by Alex later that night. "You too Alex, and I can't wait." She realized as she hung up that her statement hadn't been qualified, but it definitely didn't need to be.

Chapter Text

It was late in the day for an interview, but Alex didn't want to have the rest of the day before her when she finished. She wanted to have the time to herself, without the DA's office all around her, in order to think. Instead of going home, however, she went to Patrice's. The blonde wasn't home yet, but Alex let herself in and made the executive decision to open a bottle of wine, knowing that she might be a couple of glasses in when Patrice joined her to finish it.

Patrice was having a typical Monday. The e-mails had piled up over the weekend, her assistant was out "sick," and her latte was hazelnut instead of vanilla. By the time 6:00 rolled around, she had nearly subdued the project she had been working on, and was thinking about calling it a day. It was only as she was packing up that she remembered that Alex was supposed to have her meeting that afternoon, and sent her a quick text, *How did it go?*

The sound of her phone brought Alex out of the half nap she had almost been taking. She dug around in her purse for it, smiling to see Patrice's number. *Okay. I'm at your place.* She sent it and put the phone down, exchanging it for the glass of wine she had forgotten about.

Well that told her nothing. However, what she had been craving all day a night at home, and some time with Alex, 'how efficient' she thought, smiling. Patrice texted back, *Perfect, I'll be there soon.*

Alex smiled more broadly at the reply and stretched out fully on the sofa. She wondered just how long "soon" was going to be. Long enough, she decided, to order in. She got up to flip through Patrice's collection of takeout menus--not as large as her own but impressive nonetheless. Alex took her time about deciding, and she was more meticulous about ordering than usual. She focused on trying to remember everything that Patrice didn't like on her salad, and it was enough to keep her mind from other matters.

Patrice left the office and hurried home, it was cold outside and she was looking forward to a quiet evening and hearing more about Alex's meeting. She took the elevator up and let herself in, put her things down in their usual places, and went to the living room to find Alex.

Alex sat up from where she had gone back to lounging. "You look like you could use a glass of wine," she said. She knew her own face after having a day that wasn't necessarily bad but wasn't necessarily good, and Patrice's wasn't all that different.

She smiled and crossed the room to give Alex a kiss, then went to take off her coat, calling over her shoulder, "I definitely could."

Alex met the kiss briefly with a familiarity that had developed easily. She was already headed to the kitchen to get Patrice's a glass by the time Patrice was hanging off her coat. "I ordered dinner," Alex said as she returned to pour the wine. She put the glass on the table and cocked her head at Patrice as the other blonde came back. "Do I need to even ask about your day?

She returned and picked up the glass gratefully, giving Alex another kiss before taking a long sip. At Alex's mention of dinner, Patrice grinned, and led Alex back into the living room. "No, I just had a Monday is all. But care to tell me about your day, and what you ordered for dinner?"

When they both sat, Alex leaned against Patrice comfortably. "Mm, I got those big salads from the pizza place around the corner," she said. "They should be here soon." She smiled and began to trace imaginary patterns on Patrice's knee. "My day was typical...except for the part where I got offered a job making significantly more than what the DA's office has been paying me."

Patrice held back the instinct to smile, to get overly excited at the news. She knew Alex was still wrestling with the change, and it wasn't really about monetary gain. However, it never hurt. Her mood lightened: she couldn't help answering a little cheekily, "Oh, those salads are my favorite." She kissed the other blonde's neck before continuing, "And that's great, Alex…glad to hear it went so well."

"I think that in trying to remember what you do and don't get on them, I forgot to get the tomatoes taken off of mine." Alex stretched her neck, encouraging Patrice to continue. She could feel a sort of tightness in her chest--something between a thrill and sheer terror. It was real. She had gone into the interview, and she had said she would think it over. And she had begun drafting her resignation in her mind. Lettuce and bell peppers were becoming incredibly easy targets on which to focus.

Patrice smiled at the obvious evasion, and resisted the urge to cross-examine Alex only somewhat, "So, what did they tell you about the job? They obviously liked you as a candidate."

"Mmhm." Alex was saved from answering by the food arriving. She got up to go for it before Patrice could and came back smiling. "Dinner."

Patrice helped her unpack the food, and brought in some silverware from the kitchen, letting them get settled. After a few bites she looked pointedly at Alex, raising her eyebrows, "So?"

"So, I'm worried about what to do with the dogs when we go to Paris," Alex said as she gingerly dipped a bite in dressing. "I'd usually ask Liz, but I think she's planning on heading to Connecticut this year." She shook her head and sighed, bite still on her fork.

"Yes I suppose that could be a bit of an awkward request." Patrice nodded a little, content to let Alex change the subject for now, she'd get her answer eventually. She thought for a moment, "Do you have a kennel in the city you've used?"

The blonde made a face. She didn't like leaving Porcelain and Persia, even at the pricier dog hotels. "I just...don't like leaving them like that. They do better at home."

It was understandable, and Patrice smiled at her next thought, "I don't know too many people in the city. I mean, I suppose we could ask Donna if she's going out of town."

"Do you think she would?" Alex asked, sitting a little straighter.

Patrice really didn't have any idea, but Donna wasn't easily offended, nor would she feel obligated if it was too large of a request, "I don't know, but I could ask her."

Alex reached across the table to squeeze Patrice's hand. "Thank you." She smiled before withdrawing and going back to her salad. "But I can do it just as well."

Patrice took a bite and tried a different approach to her earlier question, "Did you find the office alright today? I know they have several floors and I always manage to get off on the wrong one."

Fork poised in the air, Alex pursed her lips. She hardly liked admitting something as simple and utterly ridiculous as getting lost, but it gave her more time to simply synthesize what had happened once she had finally gotten there. "There was a tense five minutes or so where I thought I was lost in a Kubrick film, to be honest. Thank God the interns weren't as sullen and lost as the ones at the DA's office seem to be."

"But I take it that you eventually figured it out?" Patrice laughed for a moment, wishing she had seen that.

"I did." Alex fell uncharacteristically quiet as she shifted the lettuce around in her takeout container. The decision to do this, she thought, had felt real enough, but this seemed entirely different--almost surreal. "There's a job if I want it," she said quietly. She knew Patrice knew that already, but what Alex needed to consider was whether this was the change she really wanted.

The blonde took a bite of her salad, chewing and nodding quietly. She had figured that would be the outcome, knowing it was harder for Alex to make a decision like this when it was actually offered, rather than being on the chase. "Does it sound like something you want, could see yourself doing?"

That was almost what Alex was afraid of. She thought back to her first year at SVU; it wasn't so long ago, but it seemed that way. She felt like she had grown, aged since then. Even what she had--what she and Patrice seemed to be building together probably wouldn't have been possible then. "You know...I actually had the hubris once to tell someone that I would be on the other end of the line when their lawyer was begging for a pardon from the death penalty?"

Patrice looked at her with a mixture of amusement and surprise. "I'm glad I wasn't your opposing counsel then." She shifted the topic slightly, "I assume they offered you a decent wage for your services?"

She chuckled lightly. "The package is almost obscene," she admitted. This decision, once she finally settled with her own reservations, her own demons, was not going to be easy even once it was made. Alex knew she would beat herself up about it, and only time would really put to rest her guilt.

Patrice knew it wasn't about the money for Alex, but also knew it didn't hurt. She smiled, "I figured that might be the case. But more importantly Alex, will you go home satisfied at the end of the day, or at least not upset?"

"Will I be coming home to you?" Alex asked before even contemplating keeping that thought unvoiced for quite a while yet. The look of shock the followed was one she let wash over her face before she could begin to control it.

If Patrice was surprised at the question, she had the good sense to hide it. She slid a little closer to the other blond, taking her hand and squeezing it reassuringly. "I hope so." She smiled, and leaned over to kiss her.

Alex met this kiss lightly and smiled. She flushed at how she had simply blurted out the words, but Patrice's response was soothing enough not to make her too worried. "I should probably make a decision before we leave for Paris," she said, more musing than making a statement of fact. She put her fork down and stood, picking up her container and Patrice's half empty one to take to the kitchen.

Patrice watched her go, knowing her statement didn't require an answer. She wondered for a minute if Alex had meant anything by her earlier comment, but decided to let it go; she was sure it would come up again when the time was right.

When Alex returned, she lightly put her hands on Patrice's shoulders and began to knead them. "It's been a long day for both of us..."

When Patrice leaned back into the touch, she let out a long breath. She was always surprised at how much tension she was holding, even at the start of a week. She let Alex continue for a moment and then pulled the other blonde around to sit next to her.

Twining her fingers through Patrice's Alex pressed the blonde's hand to her lips once she was sitting. "What is it?" she asked, settling close to Patrice and finally letting out a relaxed breath.

Patrice smiled and shook her head. "Nothing, it's nothing." She had just wanted to be close to Alex in that moment, and luxuriated in having someone she could be so comfortable with. Patrice leaned in and kissed her again, taking her time, sliding her hands through the other woman's hair.

"Mm." Alex closed her eyes as she leaned into the touch. "You're making me forget how many zeros are supposed to be on that first check..."

Patrice chuckled between kisses. "Well then, maybe I'll still be making more than you, I'm not *that good of a kisser."

Alex met each kiss with more intensity than the one before it. Soon, she was pulling Patrice up, pulling her close even as she started towards the bedroom. "I think you're...mmm," she murmured between kisses, "an incredibly good kisser..." She stopped for a moment, a smirk lighting her face, "among other things."

Willingly, Patrice let Alex take her to the bedroom. She knew the other blond was still trying to accept the choices she was making, and it would take longer than one night. She turned her and pressed her down onto the bed, leaning back to look mischievously into the other woman's eyes, "I think I like where this is going." She kissed her again, the day melting further away with each passing moment.

Alex closed her eyes and found herself pressing her hips into Patrice for the duration of the kiss. When it broke, she ran her hands up Patrice's sides, pushing them underneath her shirt so she could feel her skin. "Do you? Mm, well...you've also got excellent skin," she said, pressing her thumbs underneath Patrice's bra.

Patrice inhaled sharply at the touch, and leaned down to kiss Alex more deeply. Her body was responding quickly, and she smiled down at the other blond teasingly. "Oh... don't let me stop you there."

The blonde laughed lightly as she made quick work of removing Patrice's shirt, then bra. With a little effort, she reversed their positions, landing Patrice underneath her and settling easily on top. Alex let any concerns of the day fall away as she focused on how Patrice's dark eyes were lit sapphire with desire. "And your hair," she said, bending to nuzzle against Patrice's neck so her breath could skim it while she spoke, "Mmm sometimes I just want to run my fingers through it." She demonstrated, lightly running her fingers through Patrice's long locks before stopping, grasping it more firmly. "And sometimes I want to simply pull it."

Patrice let out a quiet whimper, breathing harder as Alex's fingers tightened. She fixed her eyes on Alex, willing her to continue, not being able to help squirming beneath her with growing pleasure.

"That too," Alex breathed, bending to Patrice's other side to nip at her earlobe. "You squirm so nicely." And Alex enjoyed that they could show so little restrain with each other. She was near squirming with her own desire.

She blushed and ran her hands up Alex's back under her shirt, pushing it up. She pressed Alex down, their lips meeting in another kiss.

Alex moaned into the kiss and pressed her body firmly against Patrice's. She drew out the kiss as long as she could before pulling away, her hands still tangled in Patrice's hair for a moment. "But...right now, I don't like how dressed both of us still are..."

Patrice grinned, "I concur." She didn't waste time, reaching up and unbuttoning Alex's shirt quickly, pushing it off, and reached for the zipper on her skirt.

She shifted off of Patrice, wriggling out of the skirt as she tried to pull Patrice's pants off. She very nearly fell off of the bed for a moment, but caught herself by falling on top of Patrice instead. Patrice laughed, enjoying the comfort that had developed. She lifted her hips and helped Alex pull her pants off, the panties going with them. When she was finished with Alex's clothes as well, she pulled the other blond to her, still smiling.

"Careful there, I'd hate you to have to explain how you got yourself hurt tomorrow at the office." She laughed again and kissed her.

Smiling as the kiss ended, Alex tangled her legs with Patrice's. She was content for a moment to lie there, to let the desire grow and fill them both. "Maybe if I just went ahead and handed in my resignation, no one would notice."

Patrice looked at her for a moment, trying to gauge if she was joking. Alex's expression didn't give away her intention, and so Patrice decided to let it go for now. She ran her hands over Alex' bare back, gently massaging the muscles, pulling her closer as she did so. She smiled and leaned up to begin kissing the other woman's neck softly, pausing to rest her lips on her pulse, enjoying the closeness and comfort.

"Mm," she murmured at the touch, pressing closer into the heat of Patrice's body. Alex was content to let her comment go as well; it wasn't important just then--though, it was important that she had actually said it. She let her fingers drift down Patrice's sides, idly placing fleeting caresses as she shifted to allow herself room to press her hand between the blonde's legs, fingers gently pushing apart the curls there.

Patrice moaned quietly and moved a hand up to tangle in Alex's hair, her lips pressed against the skin at the juncture of the blend's shoulder and neck. She couldn't help pressing her hips up to meet Alex's fingers willingly. And Alex gasped at how quickly, how unexpectedly her skin became sensitive to the touch of Patrice's lips. She pressed one finger inside of Patrice and then another, holding there for a moment, eyes closed while she felt Patrice's body warm and wanting around them.

"Alex...God..." Patrice couldn't help herself from letting out a needy whisper. She traced patterns over Alex's skin, lips kissing her neck up to her jaw and cheek between quickening breaths.

"You're beautiful," Alex murmured softly, almost as if to herself, as if it were a secret. She began to slowly pump her fingers, propping on her elbow to watch Patrice's face through her lashes. But it wasn't enough; she felt too far removed, so she pressed herself against the blonde, lying the length of her with their skin sticking.

Patrice moaned again, mindlessly tangling her legs with Alex's, pulling her closer. Her breath was coming in shorter rhythm as she got close and she tightened her fingers in Alex's hair, pulling her into a deep kiss.

Alex began to thrust with more intent, curling her fingers each time she pulled the back. Once the kiss broke, she merely started it again, pressing her body, her fingers into Patrice to be as close as she could get, to feel Patrice come as completely as she could.

"Oh....please...Alex..." Patrice hardly heard herself speak as she began to tremble, her body tightening around Alex's fingers in slow waves. She moved back, opening her eyes to look up at Alex as the last tremors went through her, breath ragged. She held her gaze as she slowly relaxed, and a dazed silence fell over her.

Alex kissed Patrice's neck, her collarbones, pushing until the blonde settled into the quiet. She let her hands rest, let her body relax as she closed her eyes, content to share the silence with Patrice. Nestling her head against Patrice's chest, she simply listened to her heartbeat, letting it lull her into a soft, aching need that could wait a little longer.

Patrice lay quietly for a moment, idly drawing her fingers through Alex's long hair. Eventually she kissed her, rolling them both onto their sides, facing each other. She took a few breaths, sliding her hand gently over Alex's arm, and down to grasp at her waist, tugging her a little closer. She kissed her again and without releasing her lips, began to slip her fingers over her breasts, teasing each nipple in turn.

At the touch, Alex moaned softly into Patrice's kiss. She pressed forward, encouraging it, wanting the immediacy of Patrice's warm skin against hers to be even more intense. Patrice continued, moving her hand lower, over Alex's stomach slowly and between her legs. She didn't release Alex's lips, kissing her deeply, only stopping when breathing was necessary.

The blonde squirmed underneath her, so caught in the intensity of the kiss. The touch made her shiver and press her hips up into Patrice's touch. She wanted it so deeply that she was whimpering into Patrice's lips.

Patrice smiled a little at her between kisses, enjoying the sounds she was making, and her obvious arousal. She slowly but firmly pressed two fingers inside of her, and began to move them in a steady rhythm.

Alex twisted the comforter in her fists before breaking the kiss. "Please," she said, voice thick and low.

Patrice didn't want to make Alex wait much longer. She dipped her head and took one of Alex's nipples in her mouth, licking and biting it gently, while increasing her pace with her fingers. She enjoyed holding Alex on the edge, but this time wanted to see her give in more quickly.

The warmth of Patrice's breath sent a shudder through Alex, and that only build as the blonde continued. She felt her blood rushing in her ears, and it wasn't much longer before Alex cried out, half lifting her body as she reached her climax. She threw her head back, moan low and from her throat until finally she sank back onto the covers, panting softly.

As Alex quieted, Patrice withdrew her fingers and moved up to lay beside the other blond, her head resting quietly on her shoulder. She was content to just stay there, feeling Alex's breath steady, and her pulse return to normal. Eventually their skin cooled, and she reached down to pull a blanket over them, settling back into her previous position, and let out a deep sigh.

Alex ran her fingers through Patrice's hair, finally stirring and breaking the almost profound silence that had fallen. "They want me...and they didn't really bother to be coy about it," she said at last as thoughts of the interview finally seeped back to the forefront of her mind.

Patrice didn't move, talking quietly with her lips still close to Alex's neck, "I'm not surprised...at either." She had assumed that the firm would jump at the chance to acquire someone with Alex's skill. She continued, "Did they give you a time to think about it?"

"Mmhm," she replied, turning slightly to kiss Patrice's forehead. "But I think I'd like to go ahead and make a decision before we leave for Paris."

She would rather have it be done than have it weight her thoughts when she wanted to be concentrated on Patrice. She nodded, wrapping her arms around the other woman more tightly, "Well, I can't tell you what to do, but you know I'm here if you want to talk it over."

"I keep asking myself why it is that I keep doing this. God knows it isn't the money." She shook her head. "The obvious answer is the victims, and I was so focused on the politics that maybe there were times when they were secondary. But now...I can't do it anymore. I can't look at another crime scene photo of a dead child...prep another rape victim...regardless of whether I help them get justice or not. I'm just...tired." She had gotten quiet, and her gaze was far away. "But if I do this...if I make this decision...am I going to be asking myself the same questions?" Probably. But Alex wasn't sure she would be handing out wordless answers as she was now.

Patrice pushed herself up on an elbow to look at Alex, "I think you know it won't be the same. Now, a few years ago that might have been a bad thing, but now..." her voice faded, looking for the right words,"...now, maybe it's what you need. It's still getting justice, just with less turmoil." She kissed her cheek, adding somewhat sheepishly, "And with a better 401k."

"I'm not supposed to admit that that's doing a very good job of tipping the scales, you know," Alex teased, not wanting to let the mood take too heavy a turn.

Patrice kissed her playfully, "We can't pretend that doesn't sway all of us at least a little. Besides, the rate you're going I'm going to be expecting trips all the time, with you spoiling me like this and all."

Alex was smirking by the time Patrice finished. "I'll let you know when I get use of the private jet." She kissed Patrice again and pulled her back into her arms, resting her chin on Patrice's head. "In truth I," she began, tone more serious, "think I made the decision before I could get out of the building."

She had expected as much, knowing it would have been her reaction too. Staying with the levity of the moment she replied in fake seriousness, "Well, it is a tall building."

"Oh, that was certainly it," Alex replied, mocking Patrice's tone before she broke into a smile. She sighed and closed her eyes. "I'll draft a letter of resignation tomorrow so I can be done with it and just...mmm...focus on Paris."

Patrice nodded and smiled, shifting to look at Alex. She glanced at the clock pointedly, silently asking if Alex would be staying the night.

"If you don't mind," Alex said as she took in the hour.

"Of course not." She took another moment to lie with her, then kissed the other woman and stood, going to get ready for bed, not bothering to get dressed again.

Alex followed after another beat, not really reflecting upon how this had already become an easy habit. How she both had a toothbrush and the night cream she liked in Patrice's bathroom. When she finished her shortened routine, she simply climbed back under the covers, almost drifting to sleep as she waited for Patrice to join her.

As she returned, Patrice paused in the doorway to look quietly at Alex. She still didn't quite know how they had reached this point, or where they might be heading. She was afraid to question fate's unexpected ways. Besides, it was late, and all she wanted to do was to slip into bed with this beautiful woman and fall asleep. So she just that, kissing Alex one more time before folding her body into the blonde's and drifting off to sleep.

Chapter Text

Alex was nearly pushed into the coffee shop by a kid rollerblading on the sidewalk. She turned to give him a glare as the door closed in her face, and it took her a moment to get her bearings. When she saw that Donna wasn't there yet, she got her latte and found a table facing the door.

Donna walked in a few minutes later, catching Alex's eye as she went to the counter to get her coffee. She joined Alex a few minutes later, glad to find that things weren't as awkward this time as they were the last they had met without Patrice. "Alex. Good to see you."

"Good to see you too." She smiled and it wasn't forced. "Thank you for agreeing to take care of the girls."

"Of course. I love dogs." Donna smiled. "Do you mind if I ask where you're going?"

Alex put down her cup after taking a sip. It surprised her that Patrice hadn't mentioned it, but she hadn't really known the nature of the conversation they had about this. "Oh...I'm taking her to Paris," she replied, smiling again.

"Well, I'm sure you'll have a great time." She sipped her coffee. "Is there anything I need to know about the dogs?"

Alex rummaged in her purse for a small planner and took a sheet of paper out. On it, she had the time the dog walker came and the times she took the dogs out, as well as when she fed them and how much they ate. "These are the basics. They'll both try to test what they can get away with you... Persia, the ginger colored one, will be pretty overt about it. But Porcelain can be tricky."

Donna nodded. "Well, I'm not much a pushover." She smirked slightly, remembering Alex trying to see what she could get away with.

Cheeks coloring slightly as if she knew just what Donna was thinking, Alex coughed lightly. "No...not at all. I'm sure you'll be fine. They just...need attention."

Donna raised her eyebrows slightly. "Then they'll have it."

"Thank you. I appreciate it." She played with the sleeve on the cup. "I'd take them if we could stay longer."

"Well, I really am happy to watch them." And now she had an idea for a Christmas present for Patrice other than the bottle of vodka that she was doing to fall back on.

"Thank you again." Alex pulled out a key and slid it over to Donna; her address was on the paper with the schedule. "I'm the penthouse, and I've let the doorman know your coming. If you want to take them home with you, feel free, but they're generally fine alone at night."

Donna nodded. "Alright."

Alex let out a long breath, about to speak again when her phone buzzed. She furrowed her brow as she looked at the screen. "I've got to go back to the office..."

"Of course." Donna smiled at her one last time. "I'll get this back to you when you get back in town."

"Thank you," she said as she stood. Alex nodded apologetically before hurrying out.

Chapter Text

Though she didn't do it often, Patrice wasn't one to be a nervous flier. She looked intently out of the window as the plane gained altitude, giving them a sweeping view of the Manhattan skyline. Alex, being somewhat of a discriminating traveler, had put them in first class, and Patrice smiled warmly over at her. The past few days had been a whirlwind of packing and planning. However none of that was remembered now in favor of savoring the moment. She paused for a moment and then raised her small glass in a silent toast to the journey ahead.

Alex met the glass with her own and returned the smile. She had been fighting becoming drowsy and dozing off during the long taxi to the runway, but the takeoff woke her up as it always seemed to do. There was something about Patrice's calm that she appreciated, that made the prospect of the long flight even more comfortable. "I'm already glad we're doing this," she said, taking Patrice's hand and raising it so she could kiss her fingers lightly.

"Me too, thank you again for everything." She relaxed as the plane leveled out, keeping her fingers lightly intertwined with Alex's. The flight attendant came by and re-filled their glasses. Patrice took a sip; it felt so strange to be flying away for a full week. She rarely took a full weekend off, let alone this. She smiled again, and leaned over and kissed Alex's cheek.

With the flight attendant retreating and the other passengers settling in, Alex saw no harm in turning into the kiss, meeting Patrice's lips with her own for a long moment. And she was smiling when she pulled away. "Well, I think it's as much a selfish present as anything else." She rubbed the back of Patrice's hand with her thumb.

The drinks on the plane not being their first of the day, Patrice was settling into a somewhat playful mood. Whether it was the drink or the euphoria of leaving the city she couldn't be sure. She squeezed Alex's hand and leaned over to whisper in her ear, flicking her tongue quickly along Alex's earlobe before speaking, "I don't think I've ever had such a beautiful travel companion before."

The sensation tightened Alex's chest in pleasant surprise, and she felt her cheeks flushed prettily. But Patrice's mood was more infectious than off putting. "I might be jealous if you had." Alex whispered, sliding a little bit closer to Patrice, as close as she could get given the circumstance.

The change in Alex's color and the slight quickening of breath was not lost on Patrice. She smiled pointedly at her companion, raising an eyebrow, "No need." She glanced around, lowering her voice, "However, I think I might be about to have gotten something in my eye that will require your assistance," she nodded toward the restroom at the back of the first class cabin, "If you don't mind of course." She had never felt the need to do such a thing before, but something about Alex made her feel at once mischievous and at ease and she couldn't resist asking.

Alex arched one of her eyebrows as she followed Patrice's glance. She had expected some cuddling under the blanket she had rolled and put in her carryon, but this was entirely a surprise. Licking her lips lightly, she glanced up and down the aisle. If she brought this out in the blonde, Patrice absolutely hindered Alex's ability to refuse. "Not at all," she whispered, voice already thick with the promise, the small thrill of the moment. She unbuckled her safety belt and slid out of her seat, offering her hand to Patrice and feeling like a teenager.

Patrice smiled and took Alex's hand lightly, doing her best to feign discomfort for the benefit of the other passengers, hoping their actions would be construed as friendly assistance. She slipped into the small restroom, quietly pulling Alex in after her. Once the door was locked behind them, her demeanor shifted immediately. Patrice's eyes flashed, and she turned, pushing Alex against the wall and kissed her fiercely.

As soon as she saw the look in Patrice's eyes once the door latched, Alex's stomach tightened and flopped in delight, but she barely had time to register it before meeting the kiss, grasping Patrice's hips to steady herself. Gradually, she matched Patrice's intensity, pushing the blonde back a little bit as she pressed her hands under her shirt. "What was it..." she began, breath catching, once they broke apart, "that you needed assistance with, hmm?"

Instead of offering a verbal answer, Patrice shot Alex a shameless smirk. The blood was pounding in her ears, threatening to drown out the noise of the engines, and she could feel her body key up quickly under Alex's touch. The thrill of the location only added to her excitement, and she wasted little time unzipping Alex's pants, leaving them open. Patrice growled in anticipation, and slid both hands under the other blonde's shirt, pressing her back, and kissing her again.

This time Alex let herself fall back against the door, the rush of heat between her thighs becoming as overwhelming as Patrice's actions. And she gave into it completely willingly, letting a small, soft moan escape her lips. Alex already had her arms around Patrice and was working to unclasp her bra, fumbling as she pushed into the blonde's touch. She broke the kiss and began to kiss down Patrice's jaw, her neck, finally settling on a spot to leave her mark while she rolled Patrice's nipples between her fingers. An hour from then, they would probably both realize that this had been a ridiculous and reckless idea, so Alex wasn't going to let it get away from her in the moment.

Patrice's breath quickened as Alex responded in kind, and she was almost painfully aroused, almost frantic for more contact. She ran her palms over Alex's breasts in smooth circles, feeling her nipples harden under her touch. Patrice moaned as she felt Alex's lips mark her skin, and released one of the other blonde's breasts, bringing a hand quickly lower to slide under the fabric of Alex's panties. Patrice whimpered with arousal as she felt Alex as wet as she knew she herself was, and didn't hesitate before pressing two fingers into her.

Alex swallowed back a moan that she knew would most certainly be heard by anyone near the door. She pressed into Patrice and steadied herself by freeing one of her hands only to tangle her fingers tightly in the blonde's hair. "God," she whispered against Patrice's ear, desire lacing the strain in her voice. She didn't want to make Patrice wait, wanted to see her release as much as she wanted her own, so Alex fumbled with the button on Patrice's jeans and pressed her hand in, pressing the zipper down as she pushed under Patrice's panties, mirroring the blonde's movements with her own fingers.

Patrice kissed Alex again deeply to muffle her strangled moan, moving faster, their rhythm increasing immediately. She knew they both were close, and she rolled Alex's nipple between her fingers, pinching it as she adjusted her other hand to brush her thumb over the blonde's clit in quick circles. Patrice didn't release the other blonde's lips and slipped her tongue into Alex's mouth, claiming her fully.

In that moment, Alex felt herself tense tightly and release with such intensity that she shuddered, losing control of the rhythm of her own fingers pushing into Patrice. She let her hand slide from Patrice's hair, grasping at her shoulder as she desperately held on, still pressing needily into the kiss. "Come...," she whispered when they broke apart gasping, "please...please come..."

Patrice barely heard Alex. At the first shudders from the other blond she had given in as well, following after with no less intensity. She pressed her lips to Alex's neck as the last waves hit her, sagging against her lanky frame. It took a few long moments before the world stopped swimming in front of her eyes, and she breathed deeply against Alex's skin.

When she finally thought she could speak again without gulping air every word, Alex pulled away slightly. "Better?" she asked, a small smile coming to her face.

Patrice shifted back, her pulse returning to normal. She smoothed her clothes, putting herself back together. "Much." She smiled broadly and leaned in to kiss Alex quickly.

Alex met the kiss, still smiling, and she smoothed her own clothes, giving herself a quick look in the mirror. She straightened her hair and turned to Patrice, doing the same. "Ready?"

She nodded and opened the door quietly, at once relieved to find no one waiting. They slipped mostly unnoticed by the other passengers, most of whom were already watching the in-flight entertainment. When they had sat back down, Patrice pulled out the menu from the pocket on the seat in front of her, glancing over it quickly before tucking it away. She took a sip of her drink that had been left behind moments earlier, and sat back with a coy glance at the other blond. "I think I'll have the chicken," She stated smugly.

Chapter Text

Alex was completely awake during the cab ride to the hotel, barely able to keep a smile off her face in enjoying Patrice's expressions as they drove through the city covered in a light dusting of snow. She kept her hand in Patrice's, rubbing the blonde's fingers lightly as they entered Saint Germain and arrive at Hotel de l'Abbaye. Alex had picked it based on the recommendation of a friend and more precisely because it was not a place she had ever been with her family. The garden and the terraces were decorated for Christmas and covered in white as they entered, and soon after checking in, they were shown up. While it might have been a bit excessive, Alex had secured one of the duplex apartments, knowing they would appreciate both the privacy and the view.

Patrice couldn't help smiling as she glanced around at the rooms. She could tell that Alex hadn't spared any expense on the accommodations. They were tastefully appointed, lavish without being gaudy, and unlike the almost austere modern trend that currently denoted exclusivity in New York. When they were alone, the blond pulled Alex close, her eyes still gazing out the window over the unfamiliar City. The history of the place was almost palatable. When she had moved to the East she had marveled at the relative history of the Northeast, but this was something entirely else, and seeing it embellished with holiday decor only added to the charm. Patrice finally looked away, turning to face Alex fully, "Alex, it's amazing... I'd never think to..." Her words faded, and she leaned in and kissed her slowly.

The air of the place immediately relaxed Alex. She finally felt like she was in Europe, in Paris, and it finally felt like Christmas. Patrice's reaction, solidified by the kiss, made her more entirely satisfied with the spur of the moment plans than she thought possible, and she met the blonde's lips quite happily. "I'm glad you like it," she whispered, drawing Patrice into her arms and resting her forehead on the blonde's. "We can get settled and go to some of the Christmas markets later."

Patrice settled into Alex's arms comfortably, and laid small kisses along her neck. "That sounds perfect." She smiled and pulled Alex gently toward the bed, needing a moment to simply be with the other woman after all the preparations and travel.

Willing, she went, lying down next to Patrice and taking a moment to breathe. Alex turned into the blond and grasped her hip, rubbing her thumb over it under Patrice's shirt. She was smiling down at Patrice, reading to kiss her lightly, but she caught something from the other room out of the corner of her eye. "What's that..." She sat up and adjusted her glasses. Alex wasn't sure how they missed it, but there was a bottle of champagne sitting in a bucket on a tray in the living room area. She smiled brightly. "Mm...I do love good service."

Patrice followed Alex's gaze curiously, and got up and followed after into the other room. It was simple, a bottle on ice, two glasses and a note. She supposed that when you booked a room as nice as this, little perks were to be expected.

"See what the note says," Alex said as she pulled the bottle out and dried it. Whether Patrice could read French or not...or if the note was even in French hadn't even occurred to her. Her own skills with the language were a little painful, but she did well enough. She set about uncorking the bottle and pouring while the other blonde picked up the envelope.

Patrice opened the note and glanced over it, her cheeks blushing suddenly. Realizing Alex had fallen silent and was waiting for her to respond, she looked up. "It's from Donna." She tilted her head curiously as she read, the note was simple, a 'hope you had a safe trip, and wishing you a wonderful stay' sort of note. However, she turned over the card and her eyes got a bit bigger. "There's an address here, and ..... the icon is familiar." She smiled a little bemusedly and held the note out to Alex. Very familiar, she thought.

Alex put her glass down and exchanged Patrice's for the note. She skimmed it, wondering just how the hell Donna had managed to find out where they were staying, and why she would go to such trouble for a Christmas present. "Three nights..." she murmured, the thought that it might have been some sort of dinner disappearing. When Alex looked up, she cocked her head at Patrice's expression. "You obviously know something I don't."

Patrice's blush increased, and she twisted the glass in her fingers. She supposed if anyone would understand, Alex would, "It's just, the crest on the back is, well, it's the icon for the club where Donna first took me out when we were together in LA."

"Club?" Alex was looking at the icon again, and she had taken up her glass, pausing as she raised it to her lips. Then it hit her. She hadn't been to the club in years, since before she was shot, but it made sense, somehow, that Donna might have continued that way. "Well..." She raised her eyebrows, having both learned something more about Patrice and something interesting about Donna as well. "That was...thoughtful of her." And the way it was making Patrice blush was a good start at the present its self.

Patrice watched as a hint of recognition crossed Alex's features and relaxed slightly. She was glad to see she was at least not bothered by the admission. Now her curiosity was getting the better of her, about more things than one. "I'll admit I hadn't given a thought to going out since I came to New York, or really since Donna." She shook her head, now blushing at the past rather than the present.

Alex topped off their glasses and grabbed the bucket. She headed back to the bedroom, expecting Patrice to follow; there was no reason they shouldn't relax while talking about this. And that blush of Patrice's was more suited to the bedroom anyway. "I haven't been out in..." Alex shook her head. "Since before I was shot." She lounged on the bed and sipped from her glass. The admission didn't bother her; it was easy to talk about with Patrice. "What do you think she means with this?"

Patrice slipped onto the bed next to the other blond, kissing her cheek before reclining back on the pillows. "I'm not sure. With Donna, going out was definitely part of the relationship, but it was always her decision when and how the night went once we got there." Patrice thought for a moment, "knowing Donna she'll have carefully planned such an invitation, and I doubt it would disappoint." She took a sip. "That is, if you'd be interested."

Alex's smile was catlike as she thought about it. She wouldn't pass up an invitation to a club in Paris--not for a moment. She simply wondered what roles Donna had expected them to play. "I'm glad I brought the black dress, but maybe we can go look for some...other things to wear." She smiled. She had brought lingerie--the pieces Patrice seemed to like the best--but this was a completely different prospect.

Patrice loved seeing that look on Alex's face, and was already looking forward to finding out where Donna was sending them. She flashed Alex a smile, "That sounds perfect, I'll admit I wasn't packing with this in mind." She grinned a little wider, "Though.... I don't suppose I might need much to wear. At least, I didn't usually the last times I went out." She smirked at Alex, "But I suppose this could be different."

She put her glass down and turned on her side, facing Patrice more fully. "I wonder what was going through her mind." Alex twirled a particularly gold strand of Patrice hair around her index finger. "Maybe I'm the one who doesn't need much. Or maybe..." Alex shook her head as a myriad of possibility began to surface. It certainly would add a dimension to the trip that she hadn't imagined.

Patrice set down her glass as well, sliding over closer to Alex and flashed her a wicked grin, "Or maybe what Alex?" She was enjoying the other blonde's obvious interest and couldn't help but play into it. She didn't give Alex time to answer, and kissed her. After a moment she leaned away, arching an eyebrow, waiting for a response.

Alex raised her eyebrows as the kiss broke. She nonchalantly picked up her glass again and took a sip. "I'm sure you can live with wondering," she replied as she put the glass back down. Alex leaned forward and kissed Patrice lightly. She absolutely knew what it meant when the blonde's eyes brightened that way, and while she planned on taking full advantage of that, she wasn't one to discount delayed gratification. "Maybe we'll talk about it tonight...but right now, I want to go shopping." And before Patrice would react, she slid off the bed and went to find something to change into.

Patrice watched her go, sighing quietly. After a moment, she got up as well and went to find something to change into after the flight. She followed Alex's lead and put on a warm sweater, and pulled out a scarf for good measure. "Will we need a cab?" She asked, wondering if she should call down to the desk.

Shaking her head, she held up Patrice's coat. "Not if you don't mind walking in the cold." Alex smiled; the city was most beautiful at Christmas, and she wanted Patrice to see it from the sidewalks. And there were always other ways to keep warm. She helped Patrice on with her coat and kissed her on the cheek lightly before pulling her own on. "I'll stop and get you a hot chocolate if it gets to you," she teased.

"I don't mind, and besides, I have been surviving the New York winters for almost three years now." She offered her hand to Alex, looking forward to walking with her after the long plane ride. "But I may take you up on that offer anyway."

"Good." Alex pulled her gloves on and took Patrice's hand. Once they were out, she felt truly refreshed by the cold air and the busy city. Along the way, she pointed out things to Patrice--things they might want to see later in the week. And when they went into the first shop, she told the salespeople in almost comically schoolgirl French that she and her friend were looking for something special and would prefer to find it themselves. She didn't think Patrice would mind the lack of service.

Patrice followed Alex through the shop, pausing now and then to look over the clothes. She wasn't entirely sure what she was looking for, but was hoping she'd know it when she saw it. She pretended to know what Alex had just said, though for all she knew the blond might have been discussing the weather. Though she knew a word here and there, French wasn't the most commonly spoken second language in southern California by a long shot.

Alex stopped and picked up a hanger with a dress that looked like little more than black materiel hanging in a haphazard way. She guessed, however, that its neckline would plunge elegantly and that it would leave very little of a woman's back to the imagination. As Patrice had gotten a little ahead of her, Alex took the opportunity to step close, placing a light, quick kiss on her neck before she said, "You should try this one."

Patrice raised an eyebrow at the garment. Usually she wouldn't consider something so obviously revealing, but given the turn their evenings seemed to be taking she took the hangar from Alex. "I'll humor you, but no promises I'll fit into it." She was smiling as she turned toward the back of the store to find a fitting room. A few moments, and some quick glances in the mirror later she called Alex over. "What do you think?" Alex had been right, it left little of anything to the imagination, but the fabric was elegant, and it fit well. Patrice held her hair off her shoulders as she turned for Alex's approval.

The blonde knew the sound of her breath catching was clearly audible. She did not stop herself from leaning in to kiss one of Patrice's shoulders and taking another moment to step back and simply admire it. it was precisely as she had pictured, but Alex had failed to take into account how stunning Patrice would be in the dress when she had considered how the dress would look on. "I think it's perfect." Whatever their roles would be, Alex no no one could argue with a woman dressed so elegantly.

Patrice smiled, "So you approve then?" The question was obviously perfunctory, and she stole quick kiss before turning back to consider her reflection again. She nodded slowly, enjoying how the material clung in all the right places.

A salesperson wandered back, and Alex said, not taking her eyes off of Patrice, that they would take the dress. She didn't want the staff getting anxious about the two American lesbians potentially fucking in the dressing room, after all. "It'll go well with your Christmas present," Alex murmured to Patrice.

Patrice gave Alex a curious look as she went back into the fitting room to change. "You mean the trip of course." She hadn't been expecting anything else, the trip being an amazingly generous gift to start with.

Alex followed her into the room and took a seat, watching unabashedly as Patrice pulled the dress off. "The trip was as much a gift to myself as it was to you," she said, half amused. "I just got you a little something..."

Patrice hung the garment back up, pausing to kiss Alex before getting dressed. She smiled, "Well thank you again, and I might just have packed a little something for you as well." In truth, she had been planning Alex's gift for weeks, having gone to her favorite custom designer. The blond had taken pleasure in picking out something that she thought was both unique and classic.

"I'll let you finish," Alex said, smiling as she took the dress and slipped out while Patrice put on her shoes and coat. She was ready when Patrice came out, waiting with it folded neatly and put in a bag that was now dangling from Alex fingers. "I thought we might stop by one of the lingerie shops before dinner..."

Patrice's expression clearly stated that she had intended to pay for the dress, but Alex's sure tone stopped her from protesting further. She resolved herself to making the next purchase, and thought Alex's suggestion was a good place to start, "I'd enjoy that," she said, opening the door for the blond and taking her hand again.

It was nice to be able to do something like this, to simply enjoy each other, and to be able to surprise Patrice in small ways. Alex squeezed Patrice's hand lightly, enjoying the slightly put out expression she had just seen. She wouldn't have said she was one for these sorts of things, but Alex found that Patrice brought out all sorts of impulses in her. After a few minutes of walking, she took them off the main thoroughfare and into a small intimates shop that she had found on one of her last trips alone.

Patrice glanced around at the small shop appreciatively. It was one of those places where the less something covered, the more it seemed to cost. She sidled up behind Alex, who was considering a quite alluring garment on display, "Yes, definitely," she said quietly.

A light flush colored Alex's cheeks as she tried to guess exactly what Patrice was thinking. She simply nodded, though, and moved on to the next display, picking up a few more things before glancing at Patrice and nodding towards the fitting rooms.
Already having a thing or two in hand, Patrice followed. She had a secret appreciation for good lingerie, though she could rarely convince herself she needed it.

The fitting room was small, obviously meant for one person, but Alex and Patrice managed to close the door and undress. "Hmm, which first?" Alex asked, holding up to different pieces as much to tease Patrice as to make a decision.

Patrice pretended to consider for a moment, but quickly picked up an ensemble she had noticed immediately, thinking it would look lovely on Alex. It was smooth creme colored fabric overlaid with black lace in flattering accents, and was definitely sexy without looking cheap. She held it out to Alex, smiling gently.

"Alright..." Alex returned the smile as she fingered the lace for a moment. She stripped off the rest of her clothing quickly, but as she dressed in Patrice's pick, she made a bit of a show of it, indulging what she knew Patrice must have been thinking. "What do you think?" she asked after pulling the tie out of her hair and letting it fall around her shoulders.

Patrice blushed, Alex looked amazing in just about anything, but this was definitely not an exception. "It's lovely." She was enjoying herself, and motioned for Alex to turn so she could see it from other angles.

A flush spread across Alex's chest as she turned. There had always been something about such a close display that thrilled her, and even though they were now in a club or in the middle of some other scene, Alex knew for certain that she was on display. When she completed the rotation, she looked up at Patrice through her lashes. "Do I need to even try the rest?"

Patrice kissed her shoulder, then shamelessly looked her over again, glancing at the pile of untouched clothes, "I'm not sure that will be necessary. Unless of course you'd like some stockings to go with." It wasn't obligatory with the outfit, but the store had some beautiful ones on display she had been admiring.

"I think stockings would be nice," Alex replied, leaning in to kiss Patrice deeply.

Patrice slipped out and picked out a few styles she thought would go nicely, and brought them back to the fitting room. When she returned she paused to slide her fingertips over the lace covering Alex's sides appreciatively. She held out one pair of stockings to the blond, "try these."

Alex looked over the choices and smiled--all beautiful and in incredibly good taste. She sat and began with the pair she thought Patrice might like the best. "I should take you shopping with me more often," she said, smiling as she paused to look up.

"I wouldn't complain," Patrice smiled and stepped back to appreciate the view. The stockings were simple, but with a thick band of lace at the tops, which accented Alex's, slender legs perfectly. "Perfect," she stated simply. At this rate, she was getting close to being ready to dispense with dinner altogether.

Smirking as if she read Patrice's mind, Alex began to undress slowly. "I believe you brought a few things in for yourself," she commented over her shoulder. Alex was just as eager to see Patrice's picks as she was to get back to the room.

Patrice had been so thoroughly distracted by Alex that she had almost forgotten. She glanced at the few garments hanging, "oh...yes I did. Which ones do you like?"

Alex smiled and tapped her chin as she regarded the choices. Finally, she picked one that was black with dark blue satin accents. "I think this one..." She held it up, a grin spreading across her face

Chapter Text

As she watched Alex getting ready to go out, Patrice was tempted to suggest they not leave the room at all, but the allure of the mystery kept her from suggesting it. She slipped into the dress Alex had picked, admiring her reflection briefly before putting on her coat and following Alex out to a cab. The ride was short, and if the driver was curious about the address he didn't show it. As the car stopped in front of a nondescript building between two restaurants, Patrice glanced around, looking for the entry. After a moment she noticed a small sign pointing to the staircase to the second floor, bearing an icon nearly identical to the one she knew from years ago. The blonde couldn't help but shiver pleasantly in anticipation, and the sudden chill of the air on her mostly bare legs as she got out of the cab had very little to do with it.

Alex followed Patrice's gaze and took the blonde's hand once she got out; snow was beginning to fall, only adding to the look of the place. She squeezed it lightly, smiling as they made their way to the stairs. The door at the top was old and heavy, and something told Alex that she should use the knocker before trying to go in. "Ready?" she asked, hand poised above the heavy brass molded in the same insignia that graced the note Donna left. She remotely recalled it from the New York club, but it was hardly as prominent a feature there. But they were all different in their ways.

In the soft light from the street, Patrice looked beautiful, but Alex resisted the urge to kiss her. Instead, she brushed flakes of snow out of the blonde's hair. Patrice took a breath, though she was feeling anticipation rather than trepidation. She smiled quietly and nodded at Alex. She had no idea how the night might play out, but was sure it would be memorable.

As she turned back to the door, Alex had a fleeting memory of the first time she went to the club with Adrian. Something of the same thrill--the tightening and delighted flop of her stomach--was there when she lifted the knocker and let it fall against the door once. The sound resonated in the air around them, and Alex did not realize that she was holding her breath in anticipation.

A moment later, the door opened, a nondescript man ushering them inside. "Bon soir, Mademoiselles. Do come in out of the cold. We've been told to expect you. Just this way then."

Patrice expected to have to name drop, or present the note, but this treatment was more than she had anticipated. Luckily she had the good composure to remain impassive, and nodded at their guide assuredly. They stepped in after him, and at once the warmth of the room enveloped them. She glanced around but could see little as the man led them to the right off of the entryway and down a dimly lit hallway. Subtle music floated through the air, and Patrice could hear voices of other patrons emanating from other rooms.

Already, the atmosphere was exactly what Alex had hoped it would be--warm, old, steeped in as much history as was the city it called home. The corridor opened up into a small receiving parlor, and Alex instinctively let go of Patrice's hand to remove her coat. She handed it to their guide before helping Patrice off with hers. The room itself was elegant with its dark, warm woods and high, shadowed ceiling, and Alex could hear laughter float in and out. But she knew this was barely the tip of what they were about to see.

"Oh yes, let me take those." He took their coats from Alex and handed them off to someone who seemed to melt out of, then back into the shadows. "A quick tour first, no? And then I shall show you to your room." He led them from the parlor down another hallway to a bar. "Anything you need in the way of sustenance, simply ask the bartender. There is a phone in your room with all of the numbers listed. She will send whatever you need." He picked up two drinks and handed them to the women.

The atmosphere of the place was almost hypnotic, and Patrice took her drink with a slightly crooked smile. She had never had a drink handed to her outright when she had been with Donna, and the moment was not lost on her. As they followed their guide through the club, she saw it in a different light than she had in LA, and she wondered a few things about herself as she took a slow sip from her glass. Caught being too introspective, his words didn't settle in for a few moments, "Excuse me, our room?" Patrice knew she should have been more subtle, but she was intrigued.

"Of course. It has been arranged. You are to have a private room for your use while you here. I believe that there is a surprise waiting there for you. Whomever likes you, likes you very much." He winked at Patrice.

Alex arched her eyebrows and smiled behind her glass before taking a sip of her drink. It seemed Donna had spared no expense in her gift, and in that, Alex wondered just what…or whom would be waiting for them. She glanced about the room, noting that they were both generating a quite murmur and cascade of glances. She put her hand on the small of Patrice's back, cool fingers brushing the exposed skin there, but as much as it was a possessive gesture, it did not speak fully to their roles. "I see no reason not to retire..." She looked to Patrice for confirmation.

Patrice's skin tingled pleasantly where Alex's hand touched her. She pondered how it was amazing how a simple gesture could take one back so quickly, and nodded in agreement. Donna never half-did something, and Patrice was getting the feeling tonight was to be no exception. They followed as he led them across the floor, threading through tables and chairs, some casually occupied by patrons with pets at their feet, to a doorway opposite the bar. Eyes followed them, and Patrice enjoyed the quiet pressure of Alex's hand on her bare skin, walking a little taller as they left the main room after their guide.

"It is just this way." He smiled. "Not too far from anything. A perfect location." He pulled a brass key from his pocket and unlocked a door, holding the key out to Alex. "For you. And everything else is waiting in the bedroom." He pressed a finger to the side of his nose. "If there is anything I can get you?"

"Nothing at the moment," Alex replied. She felt the weight of the key, still warm from his fingers, in her palm. "Thank you." Alex pressed Patrice's back as she leaned in, whispering, "After you," before a light kiss to the blonde's cheek.

Patrice felt the skin blush where Alex's lips touched, and she pushed the door open and stepped inside the room. She looked around curiously. Antique wall sconces lighted the room dimly, and a few stray candles had been placed around the perimeter on the aged furniture. It was decorated as restored parlor of the era of the rest of the club, with a tall mirror by the amour and formal sitting chairs. A door to one side clearly led to the bedroom, where a softly flickering light was already on.

Patrice turned to Alex, and pulled her in for a gentle kiss, one moment of normalcy before what turns the night might take.

Alex enjoyed the kiss until its end, and she offered Patrice a warm smile afterwards. Their welcoming host seemed to have melted away, and Alex had not even heard the door shut. Suddenly alone with Patrice, she felt her skin flush warm with the anticipation she had been holding in throughout their entrance. "Come..." she said, taking Patrice's hand and pulling her towards the bedroom.

Sabina knelt at the foot of the bed, waiting for whoever might be coming through the door. She hadn't been told much about just who had requested her for the night, only that they had arrived and she needed to be ready. She heard voices in the outer room and cleared her expression, gazing at the floor.

Patrice walked into the room, and nearly overlooked the beautiful young woman kneeling demurely at the foot of the bed. Other things in the space had caught her eye first, like the ornate bed frame and antique dresser on the far wall which she was sure did not contain clothes. When she did sight her, Patrice paused, her stomach quickening. Her purpose there was obvious, and she appeared to be even younger than she herself had been the first time she had been in the dark-haired woman's position.

Alex's eyes followed Patrice's, and she drew in a silent breath, going immediately to run her fingers through the girl's thick, dark hair. When she noticed the red, silk bow tied to the collar around the girl's neck, Alex chuckled lightly. It was the simplest detail in the ornate room, and she appreciated Donna's sense of humor, as well as her taste. It was all Sabina could do not to look up at the two women and she trembled slightly under Alex's hands.

"Our present, then," she said, amused as she looked up at Patrice, wanting to see her reactions.

Patrice nodded at Alex, matching her smile. She stepped close to Alex and kissed her neck gently, allowing the young woman on the floor a generous view of her legs. She turned from Alex to the other woman, and slipped her fingers thoughtfully over the ribbon adorning her collar. She looked up at Alex somewhat playfully. "May I unwrap our gift then?" Patrice mused at how they might thank Donna upon their return to New York. The thought was fleeting however, as in that moment their real lives seemed infinitely far away.

"By all means." Alex shivered delightedly under the touch, but she was content to step away, to admire the view of Patrice with the brunette. A quick glance and she found a chair--ornate in its carved arms and legs but not made for comfort; she sat, crossing her legs, knowing that the brunette could see them plainly.

Sabina stared at their legs, it was still all that she could see, and tried to hold still. She was on the verge of shaking, the anticipation getting to her. She hadn't been doing this long enough to maintain a perfect stillness. Alex leaned forward just slightly, watching intently as the dynamic of the evening began to solidify in the charged air.

Patrice's eyes watched Alex cross the room, and gave her a smile before turning back to the woman on the floor. She was happy to give Alex a good show, and just as happy to have such a beautiful way to do so. She was entering uncharted waters, having generally been in this position only when taking orders from Donna. To her surprise, however, it didn't feel forced, she had grown since the last time she was in such an establishment, and her mind focused quietly. Patrice reached her hand down and slowly unknotted the thick velvet bow from the leather, running her fingers over it, considering. She then smiled quietly at a thought, and tucked it under the bodice of her dress, knowing it might come in handy later. She placed a finger under the young woman's chin and tilted her face up gently, noticing the minute tremors starting to run through the muscles of her shoulders, "Your name?"

"Sabina... Madame." There was a hint of question in her voice. She flicked her eyes to Patrice's then quickly looked down. Her palms were starting to sweat and it was hard not to rub them against her thighs.

Patrice released her chin and slid her hand through her hair, "I'm Patrice, and my companion is Alex." She didn't think either of them needed the false confidence of making the girl call them by formal titles. Patrice tightened her fingers in the girl's dark hair, tugging upward with obvious intent. "Stand."

Nodding her agreement more to herself than anyone else, Alex sat back again, content to watch for the moment. She appreciated Patrice's line of thought, how close it was to her own. That spoke to an incredibly pleasant evening, and Alex smiled as she watched as Sabina did as she was told, her legs shaking underneath her—though she was not entirely inelegant.

Patrice extended a hand and took Sabina's chin in her fingers, gently pushing her back. She stepped away and circled behind the young woman, allowing Alex a full view of her slender body. Patrice paused behind her and ran her finger down the brunette's spine, appreciating the goosebumps that rose under her touch. She looked questioningly at Alex, silently asking for requests.

Alex licked her lips involuntarily and slowly uncross and recrossed her legs. "Pretty," she murmured, eyes following every curve of Sabina's body, down to her feet and back up again to her face. "I'd like to see how long it takes her to squirm."

Sabina's breath caught in her throat. She already wanted to squirm, but she suppressed that desire and stood still.

Patrice nodded in agreement at Alex, and pressed her heeled foot between Sabina's ankles, pushing them apart so she couldn't clench her legs together. Patrice leaned in close and whispered into the brunette's ear in low, seductive tones, "I want you to watch, silently." Then she stepped back, silently appraising the young woman from behind before crossing the room to Alex, and pulling her up from the chair.

Sabina flexed her legs but didn't move them. She clasped her hands behind her back and looked at Patrice and Alex as they kissed.

A rush of warmth went through Alex's core as she uncrossed her legs and stood willingly. She leaned in for a soft kiss, keeping one eye on the brunette. "Mm, you're quite a tease tonight," she whispered against Patrice's ear.

Patrice nodded, then deepened the kiss, and slid her hands up Alex's sides. Her hands then trailed over the other blonde's exposed skin on her shoulders shamelessly, letting out and appreciative moan. She had the impulse to make quick work of Alex's dress, but thought better of it, and slid her hands through her long hair instead, pulling her in for a deeper kiss.

The sound of Patrice's moan filled the room, but Alex could only hear the rising sound of her blood rushing in her ears. She wrapped her arms around Patrice, trailed her fingers down the blonde's back slowly. She wondered just how much experience Sabina had had, how much she had seen.

Sabina subtly clenched her hands, wanting to touch, wanting to be touched, wanting anything at all so long as it involved doing something. She sucked in a breath as the kiss continued, the smallest of whimpers escaping as she exhaled.

Years with Donna did not allow Patrice to ignore Sabina's loss of control, no matter how small. She broke the kiss only slightly, just enough to direct a command at the brunette. "You can turn around and face the other way since you can't seem to control yourself. And keep your legs apart." Patrice returned to Alex, kissing her again, and letting her hands brush over the other blonde's breasts, feeling her nipples already hard under the fabric of her dress. She didn't intend to leave the young woman untouched much longer, her own self-control was already waning, but the anticipation would only make the satisfaction better.

The girl was graceful as she turned, and Alex very much appreciated the view. She squirmed herself under Patrice's touch, moaning for the benefit of her companions. "Enough of this," she whispered to Patrice as she grasped the fabric of Patrice's dress at her hips. With an easy tug, the blonde's dress slipped from her shoulders, and Alex smiled, satisfied. Patrice moaned as it fell to the floor, and she stepped out of it quietly. The room was warm, but the air on her skin sent a shiver down her spine anyway.

Sabina heard the whisper, but could only guess at what was happening behind her. She was clenching and unclenching her legs, trying to do so without actually squirming. She was failing. At this point, she didn't care what sort of attention it got her, just so long as she stopped being ignored.

The heat between Alex's legs was almost unbearable, but she carefully, too slowly undid her zipper, letting her own dress fall to the floor. She ran her hands down Patrice's sides and pulled her back into a kiss. "I would hate to leave those dresses that way, wouldn't you?" Alex looked pointedly towards Sabina's back.

Patrice smiled and nodded; her first impulse had been to pick them up herself like she would have done years ago. She walked across the room quietly and placed her hands on Sabina's shoulders, gently working her fingers over the tense muscles. "You're very patient." She quickly kissed her neck as a reward before speaking again, "We've made a bit of a mess over there, be good and clean it up." She gently turned the young woman back toward the room.

Between Patrice's hands and the quick kiss, Sabina couldn't stop herself from letting out a quick moan, more exhalation than actual noise, and briefly closing her eyes. She nodded, not sure if she was allowed to speak and went to the pile of clothing, picking it up and taking it to the closet while sneaking glances at both of the women.

Alex took Patrice's hand and pulled her towards the bed. She simply raised her eyebrows at the moan, noting to punish the girl later. For now, she was content to lie next to Patrice and watch as she idly touched the blonde's skin. And Patrice went willingly, enjoying Alex's touch, and watching Sabina appreciatively. She was glad to have more than one night at the club on their visit. There were so many possibilities that came to mind, but tonight she was in the mood for simple enjoyment. Patrice motioned to Sabina to kneel by the side of the bed when she was finished.

Sabina did as she was instructed, kneeling beside the bed and waiting. The waiting was getting to her. Was there something about her that they didn't like? It wasn't something that she had really experienced before and it was making her nervous.

There was something about the brunette's posture that caught Alex's eye. She cocked her head, watching, wondering what the girl was thinking. Then she turned to Patrice and kissed her playfully. "I'm having trouble deciding what we should do next." She trailed her fingers down Patrice's side. "Any thoughts?"

"Quite a few." Patrice leaned over and brushed back the girl's hair from her face. "Especially with such a beautiful present." She slipped a finger through the girl's snug collar and drew her up onto the bed, settling her between herself and Alex.

Sabina sighed slightly as she snuggled between them, suddenly much happier. She let their words wash over her, basking in it, waiting for them to decide what to do with her and trying to think of how she might actively encourage it. She shamelessly squirmed further between them.

Alex chuckled as she looked down at the brunette. "I wonder just how much training she's had," she murmured, tweaking Sabina's nipples lightly just to see her squirm even more.

"She's well on her way I think." Patrice quietly reveled in the noises coming from the young brunette under Alex's touch. She brushed a hand over Sabina's side, fingers dancing over her smooth skin. The blonde lowered her head and kissed the young woman's cheek comfortingly, her lack of polish was endearing.

Sabina stilled at their words, going so far as to pull back slightly as Patrice kissed her cheek. She tried to compose herself again. She knew that she was a bit younger than most of the women involved in this, but she wasn't going to embarrass either herself or her minimal training. She didn't want to give them a reason to mock her, which was certainly what it seemed like they were doing. If they wanted perfection, then she would do her best to provide it.

Alex propped herself on her elbow, recognizing the response for what it was--or so she thought. In that moment, Sabina did look very much a girl, so Alex did not stop when instinct told her to be soothing. She ran her fingers through Sabina's hair and bent, capturing her lips for a firm yet reassuring kiss.

Sabina returned the kiss, her vow already forgotten as she pressed into Alex. She kiss and the hand in her hair were soothing and Patrice's words calmed her further. She relaxed, happy once again.

"None of that," Alex purred, once it broke.

Patrice did enjoy watching Alex with others, and this was definitely not an exception. Her hands continued to run over the young woman's skin, smoothing away the tension. "Beautiful..." she murmured, not to either of them in particular, more to the sight in general.

"You can come now," Alex whispered, nipping at Sabina's earlobe as she idly began to walk her fingers down her stomach. "But you'll have to pay for it later." She looked up to Patrice, fingers poised to touch the girl.

Patrice felt a small shiver at Alex's words, wanting to hear the girl moan between them. She reached around and began to roll one of the brunette's already hard nipples in her fingers. She smiled at Alex, and kissed the young girl's neck intently, quietly leaving a mark on her perfect skin as Sabina began to squirm again.

At their silent agreement on what should be done, Alex pushed two fingers slowly into Sabina, moaning softly at how wet the brunette already was. She began to thrust, taking her time as she admired Patrice's graceful attentions. The girl gasped and moaned, pressing herself into their hands and not giving a thought to what 'paying for it later' might involve. Future consequences were completely immaterial when compared to immediate satisfaction. She tilted her head up, silently requesting a kiss.

Patrice smiled at the perfect mark she had made and placed a row of lighter kisses and nips up Sabina's neck, and paused at her ear, licking her earlobe quickly before whispering, "Do you like this, beautiful?" She glanced at Alex, eyes shining with amusement and desire.

Alex drew in a sharp breath, her own desire intense as she met Patrice's smile. She began to thrust more quickly, though ignoring Sabina's clit still as she waited for an answer.

Sabina pushed herself onto Alex's fingers, "Please," she moaned. "Yes, please." She squirmed and writhed, trying to squeeze her legs together, trying to get Alex to touch her clit and let her come.

Patrice continued to roll Sabina's nipple, pinching it occasionally. At the young woman's obvious arousal, she brought the other hand lower and reached between the brunette's legs gently from behind, replacing Alex's fingers with her own, leaving Alex free to place her attention higher.

Originally, Alex had intended only a spanking, a paddling perhaps, for Sabina's punishment. But the brazen way the girl begged turned her mind to thoughts of marking her skin with a whip. She pressed her finger to Sabina's clit, circling roughly and moaning at the thought of how well her skin would mark.

Sabina pushed her ass back against Patrice's arm and jerked as Alex rubbed her clit. Her orgasm was almost instantaneous and she shuddered between them, her mind focused on nothing other than how very good she felt.

"Good girl," Patrice spoke quietly in appreciation as she felt the brunette tighten against her fingers. She kept her contact, pushing her through the last waves of orgasm until she quieted. Sabina's skin was pleasantly flushed, and Patrice laid soothing kisses over her shoulders as she drew her hand away. She knew that the young woman would learn a thing or two more tonight, but for now was content to let her recover quietly.

Alex pulled away and turned to Patrice, pulling her into an almost fiercely desperate kiss. She knew what she wanted to do, but she needed the clarity of her own release first, and she wanted Sabina squirming again at watching them.

It took Sabina a minute to recover, and once she did, she couldn't help but stare at Alex and Patrice as they kissed. She wanted to touch, she wanted to be involved, but she stopped herself and tried to lie still while she waited for instructions.

Patrice moaned into the kiss, pulling Alex closer. She knew that the young woman was watching intently but for the moment was content to focus on Alex. She brought both hands up to caress the other blonde's breasts, brushing her fingers over her nipples, enjoying Alex's obvious pleasure.

Moaning, Alex pressed into Patrice's hands. She raked her fingers through the blonde's hair and then down her back. She glanced at Sabina, smiling at her wide-eyed pleasure, her impatience, and she wondered just how she would take the whipping she was going to get. Patrice smiled and gently pressed Alex back onto the bed, making sure she was still in full view of Sabina. She began to work her lips lower across Alex's breasts and down her stomach, pausing to smile quickly at the young brunette as she settled between the blonde's slender legs.

Sabina kept watching them and squirmed slightly. They were just so pretty together. They looked perfect to her young eyes.

"Mm, yes," Alex whispered, fingers tangling then in Patrice's hair, encouraging her with light pressure. She settled her hips, legs spreading wider if only partially for Sabina's benefit but partially in her own anticipation.

Patrice took a moment to kiss along Alex's thigh, making a small mark with her lips before kissing and then licking the blonde's center, giving Alex what she needed. Patrice took her time, letting the rhythm build, listening intently for Alex's reactions.

Alex fell into the rhythm naturally, hiding none of her pleasure. She moaned at the touch, twisting Patrice's hair in her hands as she felt herself tighten and release. It was so simple, so pleasant that it seemed to last almost a moment too long.

Sabina whimpered when Alex came and had to clench her hands to keep from reaching out.

Patrice heard Sabina's reaction and smiled to herself as she kissed her way back up Alex's ivory skin, taking her time before reaching her lips and kissing her again deeply. Patrice released her lips after a long moment and whispered, just loud enough she knew Sabina would hear, "I think you weren't the only one who enjoyed that."

Before pulling Patrice into yet another kiss, Alex smiled. She could still taste herself on the blonde's lips. "I think," she said, matching Patrice's volume as they broke apart, "you're going to very much enjoy what I have planned for her."

Sabina squirmed again. If Alex had plans, then it meant she wasn't going to keep being ignored.

Patrice nodded, a pleasant shiver of anticipation running through her. She was already on edge from the night's activities, and her anticipation was still growing. "I'm sure I will, care to surprise me?"

"Mmhm." Alex kissed her cheek lightly as she went to the phone. She was answered almost as soon as she put it to her ear, and in her accented French, she inquired about setting up a public whipping. Patrice wouldn't understand--maintaining the surprise--but Sabina, she knew, would.

Sabina's eyes went wide and she squeaked in surprise when she hear what Alex was asking about and she scrambled to the other side of the bed in fear. She had never been whipped in public before. She had hardly even been whipped in private and she didn't know what she had done to deserve such treatment.

Patrice glanced from Alex to the young woman now nearly trembling at the corner of the bed. She raised an eyebrow at the other blond, wondering just what she had said to deserve such a sharp reaction from the brunette. Patrice slid off the bed and walked over to Sabina, quietly sliding a hand through her hair protectively, knowing that Alex wouldn't to anything to break the young woman, but might push her nonetheless.

Alex arched one of her own eyebrows in response as she watched the two. It was clearer than ever that girl had only just begun her training, but Alex saw enough potential to believe that she would eventually take the punishment without causing a scene. She let Patrice comfort her, enjoying seeing her in that role, and for her part, she dressed again, meticulous about every detail this time. "We're due in the common room in fifteen minute."

Sabina whimpered again, this time in fear, rather than pleasure, and leaned into Patrice's touch. If there was any reprieve to be had, she didn't think it would come from Alex. "Please..." she whispered up at Patrice, eyes pleading.

Patrice gently closed her fingers in the young woman's silky tresses, holding her gaze levelly. She was fairly sure that whatever Alex had planned would end in reward if Sabina behaved, and would be a good lesson for the young woman, but Patrice wasn't one to truly force anything. Firmly suggest, but never force. She spoke in calm tones, "You may choose if you are not ready." Patrice didn't break her hold on the girl, not stepping out of her role just yet since, though she didn't know Sabina's safety word, she doubted it was 'please.'

Alex crossed her arms as she watched, noting how Patrice handled the situation with such subtlety. She had never quite managed to learn to be soothing while still being firm, and she appreciated the trust that Patrice placed in her without knowing precisely what was going to happen. So she waited.

Sabina looked between them, no less frightened. She knew that if she refused, she would disappoint both of them, and she would only be punished for it later. She shook her head against Patrice's hand and slowly pulled away, crossing the room to kneel at Alex's feet and submit to whatever the other woman wanted, even if it involved a whip.

Patrice watched the young woman go with a quiet sense of pride, though she knew she had little to do with her training thus far. She showed an inner strength despite her obvious youth and inexperience, and Patrice had an urge to know more of what thoughts were running through her head, and where they came from. She smiled quietly and turned to pull her dress back on. As she wasn't in a collar tonight, she should not appear truly nude in the common room.

A strand of Sabina's pretty hair fell across her cheek, and Alex gently pushed it back into place. "Up," she said, gently placing her fingers under Sabina's chin and expecting her to stand. Once the young woman was on her feet, Alex circled her, making sure every inch of her looked perfect. Sabina was theirs for at least three nights, and Alex would not allow anything less than perfection in the common areas. Finally, she smiled to Patrice. "Shall we?"

Patrice smoothed her hair and dress, standing a little taller and nodding, "Of course."

Sabina's stomach was churning as she followed them out toward the common area. It had been a long time since she had felt quite so nervous and she was fighting to keep from fidgeting as she walked.

Even in such a short time, word seemed to have spread, as even more eyes were on them as they entered. Alex raised her chin as the doorman crossed the room to them. He merely nodded deferentially to the two blondes before leading Sabina to a lit dais in the center of the room. Alex spotted the whip, curled neatly next to the ornate post where the doorman was securing Sabina's wrists. She smiled and squeezed Patrice's hand. "I hope you'll enjoy yourself."

Patrice's breath quickened as her mind ran to the first time Donna had whipped her, remembering the sharp mixture of pain and pleasure. She didn't know if Sabina had been in this position before, but if her earlier reaction was any indication, she hadn't. She watched as the young woman was tied securely, her elegant body tense against the bonds. Patrice's attention then shifted to Alex, and her stomach dropped in anticipation, a sudden rush of heat building between her legs. She had seen Alex's skin beautifully marked, but had not thought of her making the marks before. A small, but quite vivid part of her mind was racing, preparing to feel Alex's work vicariously, and her eyes danced in anticipation.

Sabina pulled against her bonds, knowing that they were secure, know that only her safe word would get her out of this now. She took a deep breath, though there was nothing calming about it and tried to stop herself from crying. Even though Alex had yet to start, she could feel the tears gathering behind her eyes and she knew that she wouldn't last long before they started to fall. She always made a spectacle of herself when she was punished and she didn't want either of the women to be upset with her.

Taking Patrice's shoulders gently, Alex moved her to a seat--the best view. She bent and kissed her lightly, delighting in wondering just what sorts of thoughts were making Patrice flush that way. Then, she straightened herself and went to the dais, picking up the whip and uncurling it by running it through her fingers. Alex nodded to the room before circling Sabina, stopping in front of her. The sight of the girl there, bound and trying to be brave was enough to take one's breath away, but Alex remained impassive. "Your safeword?"

"Papillon, butter... butterfly." She tripped over the English, hoping that she would remember it if she needed it. She clenched her hands again, trying to get a better grip. She wasn't ready. She couldn't do it. She didn't say anything.

"Very well. Either will do," Alex said. She touched her cheek briefly before running the handle of the whip along Sabina's hip as she stepped behind her. Alex glanced to Patrice, seeing that she was comfortable, before turning back to the brunette. She began with no preamble, no showmanship in snapping the whip. Her first strokes were precise and just light enough to show her control, to see how the girl would react, but she began to lay the lashes with more force gradually.

The tears came as quickly as Sabina feared that they would. rolling down her cheeks in time with the strokes of Alex's whip. Her back was awash with nothing but pain and she was biting her lip hard in her effort not to cry out. She didn't know how much longer that would last. She bit down harder and tasted blood. The shock of it made her let go and a long sob escaped. She tried to pull herself away from the lashes, even though she knew it wouldn't do any good.

Patrice watched, her pulse rising with each stripe laid across the young woman's back, her skin tingling in response. The brunette was behaving admirably for what Patrice had surmised was her first experience, and her expression was making her concentration apparent. When Sabina sobbed, her stomach flipped, already anticipating how she and Alex would reward her.

The sound of the sob nearly broke Alex's concentration, bringing her back to the moment, to herself and just how warm and wet she had become in the act. She had counted fifteen; while she wanted to push the girl, Alex stopped, realizing that the very public nature of the whipping had laced that edge on each lash. She curled the whip carefully, putting it aside before stepping up to Sabina's back and kissing her shoulder as she ran her fingers down, feeling the welts. "Good girl," she whispered.

Sabina whimpered and cried as Alex touched the lash marks, but she still leaned into the touch, desperate for the comfort that came with the pain. She was still crying and she didn't know if she would be able to stop. She wasn't really trying.

Patrice nodded slowly, to herself as much as to the others, knowing the lights put her in shadow. She watched Alex approach the young woman, her heart skipping a beat at how beautiful Alex looked in control. The blonde's actions had been sure and precise, but were not without careful thought. Patrice watched the tears streaming from the young woman's face, and longed to approach her, to brush them away, but waited until the time was right.

Carefully, Alex undid Sabina's bonds. She did not see the doorman--more the all purpose manager, she supposed--approach until he was nearly upon them, but when she shook her head just slightly, he backed away. Alex glanced towards Patrice as she poised herself to catch Sabina once her wrists were free And Sabina collapsed into Alex's arms, burying her face in Alex's shoulder and wrapping her arms around her as she kept crying. Everything hurt and she just wanted it to stop.

Patrice stood quietly and moved near the doorway to their room, waiting for Alex to bring the young woman off the stage, she had to place hands behind her back for control. She was aching to touch Sabina, to tell her she had done well.

As they made their way back to the room, Alex was silent. Sabina's reward, whatever they decided it might be, was to be private. Though, Alex was already taking great pleasure in the thought of enjoying the social aspect of the club with Sabina at their feet. Handing the girl off to Patrice, she closed the door behind them, shutting the rest of the club out.

Sabina had calmed slightly as they made their way back to their room, but she clung to Patrice just as tightly as she had clung to Alex. She didn't know what was coming next and the pain in her back made it hard to think beyond the next second.

Patrice combed her fingers gently through the woman's dark hair as they crossed the room to stand by the bed. She met Alex's eyes, and then turned her attention back to Sabina, wiping her tears away as she spoke gently, "You were very good, what you just did is not easy." Her eyes conveyed that she knew all to well what she said was true. "Now, do you think you would be good again and undress me?" She knew the girl was nearly ready to collapse, but thought she might postpone the impulse to obey that request.

Sabina sniffed and nodded, stepping away just far enough to push Patrice's dress off of her shoulders and then pick it up off of the floor. She knew that she needed to hang it up, but she didn't want to have to go so very far away from Patrice to do it. She looked conflicted for a long moment before she stepped toward the closet.

Alex could not help but smile softly at the display, remembering how it was so easy to be torn between the instinct to be comforted and the training to do as one was told. She undressed herself to spare the girl from doing it again, knowing that she would be tired and trusting that Patrice would not mind the brunette's clinging. It was when she went to hang her own dress up that Alex noticed salve had been left on the dresser while they were gone. "Have her lie down," she said to Patrice as she went to the dresser to get it.

Patrice nodded, taking the girl's hands as she retuned and slipped onto the bed, leaning on the headboard, and pulled Sabina up to cover her. She quietly kissed the girl's cheek, allowing her to rest her head on her shoulder. The contact was more gratuitous, more relaxed than Donna would have allowed, but Patrice didn't mind, she was settling into her own style for the first time.

Sabina snuggled into Patrice's shoulder and wrapped an arm around her waist, hoping that that was okay. In fact, she was practically draped over Patrice and she hoped that they would let her stay like that for a while.

The salve was cool as Alex rubbed it over her hands. She sat beside the two women, chuckling indulgently. "She's sweet," she said to Patrice, smiling. As she was poised to begin working on Sabina's back, she looked down at the girl. "This will sting, but you'll feel better for it, I promise, and Patrice is there to hold you."

She nodded against Patrice's shoulder, wincing as Alex rubbed the salve into her back. It did sting, but it also cooled the pain and the sensation felt surprisingly good. She squirmed closer to Patrice.

"Be still." Alex tone was firm, indicating that Sabina was not finished, that her behavior was being scrutinized even then. She worked quickly, gently, and when she was done, she looked up to Patrice. "How would you like to reward her?"

Patrice held the young woman indulgently while Alex worked, encouraging her to be still and calm. Through the quiet of the moment, she couldn't help but feel her body responding to the closeness, to the brunette's skin against hers. She had been on edge most of the night, and it was still building. The feeling was confirmed and enhanced by Alex's sure demeanor. Patrice's smile grew, "I could think of a way or two," her expression made her intention obvious.

Sabina looked up at Patrice, hope and desire in her eyes. Patrice's intent might be obvious, but she couldn't do anything without permission.

Gently, Alex moved Sabina off of Patrice. She kissed the blonde possessively for a half a moment before withdrawing to part her legs. A nod to Sabina was her only command. Patrice moaned softly into the kiss, and then louder in anticipation as Alex moved her. She was already wet, her pulse racing.

Sabina scrambled between Patrice's legs, grinning. She hoped that Ale didn't expect her to wait for a command as she started licking Patrice's clit. And Patrice smiled at the her enthusiasm, arching her back into the mattress. She slipped her hands into her dark hair, steadying her, encouraging her into a slower rhythm. Patrice cleared her mind, enjoying the sensation, and shifting her gaze between the two women, settling on Alex's sapphire eyes.

Alex sat back on her heels, simply watching, nodding approvingly at Patrice's unspoken commands for the brunette. After their eyes locked, however, she sided with Patrice, bending to kiss her softly. "A very beautiful sight, the two of you," she purred, nipping at Patrice's ear.

Sabina kept licking enthusiastically, her hands on Patrice's legs, grasping them but trying not to be demanding. She tasted so good and Sabina didn't want to have to stop, so she slowed down, hoping to drag it out

Patrice's breath quickened, hips slowly moving with obvious pleasure. She continued to slide her hands through Sabina's hair, faster as she drew closer. Alex's expression was nearly enough to push her over the edge, and she raised her chin, silently asking to be kissed. Alex bent gracefully, lips touching Patrice's lightly. She teased for a moment, kissing too softly to satisfy, but when she thought Patrice was nearly there, Alex deepened the kiss, drawing the blonde in as she pressed into her.

When Alex deepened the kiss, Patrice reached a hand tangle in her hair, moaning into her lips as she came, closing her eyes. When she quieted, Patrice breathed for a moment, keeping one hand in Alex's hair, and drawing Sabina up next to her by her collar.

Breathless with the kiss, Alex settled beside Patrice. She ran her fingers lightly over the blonde's stomach before reaching out to stroke Sabina's cheek. "Good girl..." And too Patrice she whispered. "And an incredibly good present."

Sabina snuggled next to Patrice and allowed herself a small smile. She was glad that the women were going to be around for the next two nights.

Patrice nodded to Alex and stroked the brunette's hair, allowing a quiet to fall over the room. The lights were already low and she could feel Sabina's breath already slowing toward sleep. Patrice turned quietly to Alex and took her hand, pulling her a little closer and enjoying the moment.

Chapter Text

Patrice watched as Sabina's features relaxed into a deep sleep. The young girl was worn out, both mentally and physically and had fallen asleep between the two other women. She glanced at Alex, silently asking if they should return to their hotel for the night. They would see Sabina the next night she was sure. When the other woman nodded, Patrice laid a last kiss on the young brunette's head and gently eased off the bed, pulling a blanket around her so she wouldn't feel the cold when they left. Sabina whimpered in sleep and pulled the blanket tighter around herself as Patrice and Alex dressed in companionable silence and left the room. The manager nodded to them and helped them with their coats while a cab pulled up to the front of the building, its tires softly crunching the newly fallen snow that now coated the city. The short ride to the hotel was quiet and comfortable, and Patrice leaned against Alex, thoughtfully toying with her fingers, lacing them through the other blonde's as they watched the city roll by.

The silence was pleasant, and Alex had rarely seen the city so quiet, so late at night. It was the perfect end the evening, and when they got up to their suite, she realized she was just as tired as Sabina had to have been. That there were two nights left with the young woman both thrilled and saddened Alex. She would have liked more time with the girl; Patrice seemed quite taken with her, and there was something endearing about that. She took off her coat and laid it over the back of a chair before turning to Patrice, wrapping the blonde in her arms. "Tired?" she asked before kissing her softly.

Patrice nodded. "Very, come to bed with me." The blonde led Alex through to the bedroom and silently pushed the dress from the other woman's shoulders, kissing her neck as it fell to the floor. The hour was late, and she wanted nothing more than to go to bed with Alex and wake up still in her arms to the daylight pouring through the windows.

Alex couldn't argue with that, and she wouldn't have tried. She helped Patrice off with her dress and pulled back the covers, crawling in after the blonde. The sheets were pleasantly chilly, so she moved close to Patrice, wrapping her arms around her and tangling their legs together. "We're going to have to thank Donna for this..." she whispered, nuzzling Patrice's neck.

Patrice smiled, brushing the hair back from Alex's face, "Yes, I think we will. Sabina was very good, even though she still has a lot to learn. I hope whoever teaches her is careful." Patrice was silent for a moment, mind working over the night, she smiled to herself, "You were beautiful tonight, it obviously wasn't your first time."

"Thank you," Alex whispered, pulling Patrice closer as she thought about her watching the whipping. While Alex liked to give a show that had been just for Patrice; no one else, besides Sabina, had been on her mind. "You've got a knack, you know...you were wonderful with Sabina."

She kissed Alex gently, "She's beautiful and a blank slate...it...takes me back. Although, I wasn't quite so agreeable some of the time." She smiled at the memories, "Her lack of patience is endearing, but she'll be very adept with a little polish, I only wish we had the time to be the ones to give it to her." Patrice shifted a little closer to Alex, pulling her in as she relaxed.

"I'd like that," Alex replied quietly, sleepily. Her filters were gone because she was tired, but she didn't balk when she registered her own words. Sabina was beautiful, young...she had all of the potential that Adrian had seen in her, that Donna had seen in Patrice, and she was obviously willing. Alex wondered how she had come into it, where she would go with it.

Patrice felt her eyes growing heavy with sleep, and didn't fight it. She turned, pulling Alex's arms around her languidly. Though she couldn't know, she was wondering many of the same things as the other blond, as she had been doing at many times in the night. She nodded sleepily, "we have two more nights at least."

"Mmhm." Alex shifted so she could run her fingers through Patrice's hair. "I was thinking we could...mmm...extend that," she whispered, yawning.

"I wouldn't protest." Patrice smiled. She knew it was the understatement of the year, but it was the best she could do at the moment. "Besides, we haven't had a chance to show her off properly yet." Patrice was already anticipating spending a quieter night with them both in the common room enjoying the ambiance.

Alex sighed contentedly at the thought. She let her fingers drift down Patrice's chest, stopping to toy with her nipples lazily. "You're right; she seems to need more public exposure, and it'll be nice to be seen." She knew what a pretty picture she and Patrice made, and Sabina only complimented that.

Patrice let out a contented breath and relaxed into Alex's touch, allowing herself the luxury of enjoying the simple sensation. "Yes, agreed, and it will give her some time to let those marks fade." Patrice reached back to caress Alex's cheek, "Its almost a shame though, they are perfect. She won't forget tonight, ever."

Sabina's skin had marked as beautifully as Alex had expected it to, but she was happier with the simple pleasure that Patrice had taken in watching. "Thank you," she whispered, hand running down Patrice stomach. Alex began to touch her lightly, knowing she would be sensitive still from the night but wanting to feel her come one last time. "I hope she won't...I hope she enjoyed herself as much as we did."

"Mmmmnnn..." Patrice let out a quiet moan and shifted to allow Alex better access. She spoke through quickening breaths, "I think she did, she just might not realize it until the morning."

"I'm confident that she will." Alex shifted onto her elbow, bending then to kiss Patrice deeply. She was more awake now, but that wouldn't last. Besides, there were no dogs to work, no offices for them to run off to in the morning. The week stretched out before them, and Alex was still delighted to be spending it all with Patrice. She quickened her pace, touching with more intent, as she broke the kiss and smiled down at the blonde.

Patrice returned the smile, eyes already shining with arousal. Alex played her body expertly, and it didn't take long before the blond was rocking quickly against Alex's fingers quietly calling her name between breaths.

Alex settled next to her again, drawing Patrice close, pushing her through her climax as she placed soft kisses on her neck. She pressed her own legs together, content with that, happy to fall asleep wanting and wake to Patrice in the morning.

Chapter Text

The day had been amazing. Patrice had been more than happy to follow Alex's lead as they explored the city, and she was sure she'd only be able to remember half of what she had been shown, but it was more than enough. The food was amazing and the city was beautifully dusted with snow. Still, there was a lingering sense of anticipation between the women, in silent looks and touches—that they were both looking forward to the night. Well after the sun had set and dinner had been finished they arrived once again at the stairs to the club, and Patrice leaned over to kiss Alex one time before they entered.

Alex kissed Patrice back, deepening it and enjoying the quiet moment before the door opened. As soon as it did, she knew they would change mindsets, anticipation becoming focus. She squeezed Patrice's hand as the manager appeared, smiling in welcome. As they walked through the narrow halls, it seemed to her that they had been doing it forever, and she smiled, squeezing Patrice's hand in quiet familiarity. When they reached the bar and were handed drinks by a shadow, Alex stopped, taking a moment to take in the room. "Please have Sabina brought here, if you would." She looked at Patrice. "I thought we might enjoy the atmosphere a bit tonight."

Patrice nodded in agreement and took her drink, sipping it thoughtfully. She motioned to one of the alcoves set into the walls of the main room, well in view of the floor, but offering some comfort. Patrice took in the atmosphere of the club, the yet-empty stage, and the other patrons beginning their nights as she led Alex across the room. She relished the curious looks from the regulars as they took their seats, and she made a bit of a show of kissing Alex again, letting her hand rest shamelessly high on the other blonde's leg. Her heart was beating wildly when she came away from the kiss, but Alex made quite a show of being calm. She merely sipped her drink, surveying the room once again as she privately enjoyed Patrice's touch.

Sabina followed the manager out into the common room. Alex and Patrice were easy to spot, but she tried very hard not to look up at them. One quick glance was all she got before she was kneeling at their feet.

When Sabina entered, Alex watched carefully, looking for any flaw just as she was looking for any effort worth praising. And when the girl knelt, she all but ignored her, leaving gentleness to Patrice.

Patrice made herself pause before reaching out to run her fingers through the young woman's hair. She didn't smile too openly, though she was delighted to see Sabina again. She slipped a finger through the girl's collar and gently tugged her up, kissing her gently in greeting, and held her there for a moment in case Alex wanted to do the same. It was indulgent, but Patrice wasn't in the mood to deprive herself.

Sabina happily returned the kiss, doing her best to behave herself as she waited for Alex to make up her mind.

Alex tilted her head thoughtfully, but she merely stroked Sabina's cheek, appreciating her beauty as well as the eager, hungry look in her eyes. "Patrice and I would like something to drink," Alex said, wondering if her lack of specificity would throw the girl.
Patrice nodded at Alex and quietly pushed Sabina back onto her knees, enjoying seeing her get up on her own.

Sabina stood gracefully and headed toward the bar. She knew that the bartender would know what they drank, but she hoped that neither of them wanted something different that night.

Alex twined her fingers through Patrice's as she watched Sabina cross the room. There were pale marks on the young woman's back, and she couldn't help but admire her own handiwork. "She's very eager to please still," she murmured, shifting closer to Patrice.

It was still a bit of an adjustment to not being in her role, but Patrice was enjoying herself. She allowed herself a smile as she watched the beautiful girl walk away. However, there was a certain weight to being in control, a responsibility, and she appreciated Donna's ease with it more and more. She turned to Alex, "Yes, it appears we haven't put her off too much. She's doing very well." Patrice took a moment to kiss Alex, the atmosphere getting to her, making her want contact.

"Mm." Alex moaned lightly, appreciatively into the kiss. "I know you've been thinking about this all day," she purred, staying close. And in truth, so had she. Alex ran her palm up Patrice's leg as she watched Sabina wait patiently for the drinks.

The bartender carefully made the drinks. She took them just as carefully, making sure not to spill them as she turned back to Alex and Patrice. She started when she saw them kissing, sloshing a bit of their drinks over her hands. She frowned, not sure why the sight affected her and unhappy with herself for making a mistake.

Patrice looked over but ignored Sabina's loss of concentration, secretly enjoying the endearing expression on the young brunette's features. When she made her way back, Patrice motioned for her to put the drinks on the table and kneel again. She gave Alex another kiss for good measure, waiting to reward the younger woman until she had waited a bit longer.

Alex watched as well, but she was not content to ignore the simple mistake. Once the kiss broke, she bent and took Sabina's chin firmly. "That was incredibly ungraceful," she said, eyes amused behind their hardness as she looked at the brunette. "You're very lucky that Patrice seems to think it best to overlook it." Alex looked up to Patrice, smiling playfully. "I think Sabina should thank you for that."

Patrice smiled in return, glad to have Alex to keep her from spoiling Sabina; the girl had too much promise for that. "If you think it's best, of course." She looked down at the woman on the ground, maintaining her solemn expression, "Go to our room and wait." She made no move herself, going to give Sabina a few moments to contemplate on her own.

Sabina nodded and stood, trying to be as graceful as possible, trying not to let her disappointment show on her face. She headed toward their room and knelt in the center of the outer room, hoping that they would come soon, but not counting on it.

"Mm, she'll be fidgeting soon while she waits," Alex murmured, following Sabina's back until she disappeared. She then turned to Patrice, kissing her lightly one last time. "Why don't you go and see that she thanks your properly..." She squeezed Patrice's hip. "I'd like to find out what, if anything, is happening tonight."

Smiling, Patrice nodded in agreement, she wouldn't argue with Alex's suggestion, wanting both the time with the young woman for her own pleasure, as well as the chance to solidify her respect. She took a sip of her drink and set it on the table; she didn't want to lose her edge just yet. Patrice walked slowly to the room, nodding at the other patrons along the way, entering she quietly appraised Sabina, noting she was already wringing her hands behind her back. It was endearing, but she knew better.

Sabina didn't hear Patrice come in and kept wringing her hands, subtly shifting her weight from one side to the other. She bit her lip and kept hoping to be interrupted.

Patrice closed the door behind her and clicked the lock, making sure the sound resonated in the small room. She stayed out of Sabina's line of vision, wanting to keep her on edge. There was a simple fix to Sabina's habit, "Put your hands on your head, or on the floor." She didn't mind giving her the choice—either would be more than sufficient.

Sabina jumped and quickly put her hands behind her head. Patrice had been so quiet and now Sabina couldn't tell just how upset with her she was.

The blonde smiled behind the girl's back and walked by her, just close enough that she could feel her warmth, but she resisted the urge to touch her. Instead, she walked toward the closet while she spoke, "How did you come to be here?" She had often found that the easiest way to tell the truth was on one's knees.

"I..." Sabina swallowed, not used to being asked to talk. "I am going to the American University. And I took a class on sexuality last semester and when we talked about this..." She would have shrugged, but it was impossible with her hands behind her head. She didn't think that Patrice would appreciate it anyway.

Patrice changed quickly and emerged in a knee-length silk robe. She didn't feel that that answer warranted the reward of letting Sabina see her undressed, but the robe would show enough to make the girl want. "I doubt your class took tours, I asked you how you came to be here." She accented 'here,' details were important when learning how people chose this form of relationship.

"I was invited. I found another club on the internet and went to meet someone there." Sabina wrung her hands behind her back as she remembered. "But she found me...insufficient I suppose, and someone else took me from her and brought me here." The memory was still painful and confusing, and the young woman had not really spoken of it until then. She took a breath and brought the story to it's conclusion, "She has since..." She swallowed, not sure if Patrice would want to hear anything negative about the other woman. "Disappeared."

Patrice knew there was more, much more, to the statement, but it had been truthful at least. She stepped closer to Sabina and glanced over her slightly shaking shoulders appreciatively. The blonde ran her fingers through the brunette's hair and then went quietly to sit on one of the armchairs in the room. "Come here." She motioned to the carpet in front of her, making it clear that Sabina was not to stand to cross the room.

Sabina hesitated for a second before she started to crawl to Patrice. Most of the people she had been with since Therese had left, hadn't wanted her to do much beyond submit to a quick paddling and then have sex with them. She had begun to worry that she was doing something wrong, and that Patrice and Alex seemed to want more made her incredibly happy, if awkward.

Patrice noticed the hesitation and knew that there was more to the girl than a simple blank slate. She regarded her quietly for a moment, contemplating sending her back to do it again correctly. However, she didn't want to leave Alex alone for too long, and she was already aroused watching the girl trying so hard, if still wrestling with her own mind. She leaned down and kissed Sabina's cheek, loosening he collar a notch so she could comfortably slip her fingers under the leather. "Now, I think you were told to thank me properly, were you not?" She waited for an answer before she pulled the young woman closer.

Sabina nodded in response and stayed still until Patrice indicated just how she would like to be thanked.

The blonde smiled a little and with her free hand loosened the belt of the robe, letting it hang open. "I'd like to come." She stated it simply, and leaned back in the chair expectantly.

Sabina slid her hands under Patrice's robe, parting the sides almost reverently. She wanted so badly to make Patrice happy, to make her proud. She kissed down Patrice's chest, letting her hands rest on her hips. And Patrice relaxed, enjoying Sabina's touch. She kept her fingers lightly through the young woman's collar, gently guiding her lower.

She responded to Patrice's guidance and sank further onto her knees. She kissed over Patrice stomach, then dipped her tongue between Patrice's legs.

Patrice moaned appreciatively, holding Sabina there, allowing herself to reach the edge quickly. She was sure there would be many more pleasures to be had tonight, and wanted to reward the young woman's earnest efforts to thank her. And Sabina kept licking, trying to make Patrice come, wanting to make her happy.

Patrice smiled as she came, letting her breath out audibly. She closed her eyes and ran both hands through the young woman's hair for a moment before pulling her up and kissing her. "Your apology is accepted." Patrice knew she ran the risk of spoiling the girl, but her earlier admission had made Patrice wonder if she might not need a bit of strength before she was trained more strictly. She slipped an arm around the brunette's lithe body, letting her relax as well for a moment.

The manager tapped on the door to the room, waiting for a response before he opened it. Once he had permission, he walked in and addressed Patrice. "Alexandra would like for you to join her in the common room as soon as is convenient. The holiday festivities are about to begin."

Patrice nodded a "thank you" to the manager and he slipped back out of the room. She turned to Sabina again, "Be good and go get my dress."

Sabina nodded and found Patrice's dress, bringing it back out to her and helping her to get dressed. She was looking forward to the races, wanting to see just what it was that everyone else had been so excited about, and her impatience showed just a little.

Patrice chuckled at Sabina's obvious anticipation. "Go see if Alex needs another drink before the entertainment starts." She dismissed the girl and took a moment to look herself over in the mirror before following.

Alex picked up her drink and sipped as she stood. As she half expected, the manager was at her side, ready to make introductions. He also apologized for having been remiss in informing her of the night's very special entertainment. There were to be races--men's and women's, though he hoped she did not mind his presumption that she and her beautiful partner would be interested in the latter of the two--in honor of Christmas. Alex smiled, not trying to hide her delight, and then she began to job of mingling, of making connections and deciding whom to bet on.

Alex did not hesitate to be shown the pets who would be racing. She knew it was something that Patrice might like to see, but she wanted to lace her bet as a surprise. She settled upon a tall, lithe redhead named Sadie whose mistress was called Caterina.

The common room was bright with garland and candles, as well as excited people milling about. It was change from the first time they had been there and from the atmosphere of the bar earlier, but Alex was appreciating it. People were beginning to file down stairs and into a circular room that had been converted into a small arena enclosing a track. Pets were being made ready for the races--their arms secured behind their backs and their feet shod in tall boots so they could run on the dirt track that had been meticulously combed. Alex had been shown earlier, but now she waited upstairs for Patrice and Sabina to enter.

Sabina returned to the common room and knelt at Alex's feet. "Would you care for another drink, Madame?"

Alex looked down to Sabina, knowing that she must be wet and wanting. And she would stay that way. "Champaign for both of us," she said, finally smiling up to Patrice. "We will be in the arena, sitting with Caterina Saxton." And with that, Alex offered her arm to Patrice. "Shall we?"

Patrice was still looking interestedly in her surroundings, wondering just what was in store for the rest of the night. She gratefully took Alex's arm, shifting from playing with Sabina, to putting on an obvious show for whomever Alex had met while they were away. She kissed Alex's cheek and pushed her shoulders back as they walked. Sabina returned, following them, with their champaign and otherwise tried to remain as unobtrusive as she could while looking at everything.

They made quite a pair, and Alex knew it. When they entered, she smiled charmingly at those they passed, letting her own confidence and Patrice's speak for them. Finally, she found the English duchess. "Your Grace, thank you again for your hospitality tonight. Let me introduce Patrice LaRue." Alex smiled At Patrice and put her hand on the small of her back. "Patrice, this is Caterina Saxton...she's also graciously allowed us to bet on her pet tonight."

Patrice was impressed with the other woman's strength and obvious grace, and politely extended her hand, "Pleased to meet you, and thank you as well. I'm sure it is the best pick in the house tonight, good taste is easy to recognize." She gave a charming smile at the woman, and laced her fingers through Alex's, allowing her to introduce Sabina if she saw fit.

"You're quite welcome. And welcome to the club. I hope you're both enjoying your vacation." Caterina glanced at Sabina but didn't otherwise acknowledge her. She extended her hand towards the seats in her box. "Please, have a seat. Make yourselves comfortable.

Alex sat, expecting Sabina to kneel at her feet. The young woman wouldn't be able to really see the races, but that was hardly the point. She kept her hand in Patrice's, comfortable with the closeness even in this setting. "I have to admit, I've never seen races. They aren't common in New York."

Patrice scanned the room, enjoying the growing excitement. It was obvious that the races were about to start. She absentmindedly ran her fingers over Sabina's hair as she knelt at their feet. She leaned in to Alex. "Whom have we placed our bet on then?"

Caterina smiled down at Sadie as she knelt beside the track. "She's just down there. Sadie did very well in the Annual Races a few months ago. While these are not quite as important, there is a certain…symbolism to it." Caterina pointed as she smiled, catlike.

Alex nodded to Sadie and smiled. Her training was obvious from the way she moved, and there was something Alex recognized in the way she carried herself, something of herself when she had been young. "She's beautiful..."

Patrice nodded in agreement, the woman's polish was obvious, and she was naturally beautiful besides. She had a feeling their bets were well made.

Caterina smiled proudly. "Thank you. I've put quite a bit of effort into her and I'm very pleased with the result."

Sabina tried to sneak a glance at just whom they were talking about. It resulted in her looking like she was squirming and it was still impossible for her to see anything.

It was interesting to watch, and Patrice felt herself some place between the woman by the track and the elegant woman seated next to them. She pondered and looked quietly at Sabina, not overlooking the girl's squirming. She tugged at her hair firmly, "Patience," she whispered.

The crowd began to quiet, a hush falling over the room in a few moments. Alex watched Sadie lift her head at the start, eyes focused on nothing but the finish. She stood perfectly still, poised where some of the other pets squirmed in anticipation. And when they began to run, she was sure she had never seen anything more graceful. She smiled in delight, squeezing Patrice's hand. Patrice smiled as well and held Alex's hand as the race neared its conclusion. Sadie was elegant, and the blond could tell that their wager had been well placed. She knew that Sabina couldn't see the race well, but kept her hand in the brunette's hair, allowing her to feel the excitement vicariously.

Alex pulled her hand from Patrice's to clap and turned to Caterina. "That was wonderful."

Caterina smiled proudly as she clapped and caught Sadie's eyes as she glanced up. "Thank you. I'm glad she didn't disappoint you."

As the race finished Patrice released both Alex's hand and Sabina's hair to applaud the outcome. She smiled at both Alex and then Caterina, "Congratulations are in order, to both of you I see." She leaned over and whispered to Sabina, "you could learn a lot from the winner."

Sabina squirmed slightly. How in the world was she supposed to learn anything when she couldn't see? It was incredibly frustrating and not at all fair.

Caterina allowed herself a small smile at Sadie's performance, and her breath caught as she pulled ahead of her competitors. She had known the girl would do well, but seeing her faith proven was a pleasure. She would have to come up with some type of appropriate reward, but she was content then to watch the girl kneel as they placed a wreath of garland around her head.

Caterina stood. "Would you care to join me in the other room? I've no real interest in the men's race and I' like to see that Sadie is properly rewarded."

Alex followed suit. She was eager to see their wager come to fruition. She offered her hand to Patrice and they made their way back into the great room, which was now buzzing with even more activity.

Patrice glanced to Alex, but already knew what the answer would be, "Of course, we'd be honored." She looked down to Sabina and motioned her to follow.

Sadie saw her mistress and the two other women stand. And she thought she caught a glimpse of the girl they called Sabina, the one who everyone said was untouchable. But she did not crane her neck to see. She was being taken back to the great room to be displayed as the winner, and she knew her mistress and the guests would be there soon.

She knelt in the center of the room, wreath still on her head. She had been clean quickly and was now completely naked and quite enjoying the attention--small caresses, admiring looks--that she was now getting.

Caterina strode over to Sadie, a smile on her face. When she reached where the girl was kneeling, she cupped her face in both and tilted her head up for a fierce kiss. "I'm so proud of you," she whispered. She ran a hand over the wreath but left it in place. "Come over and meet my companions for the evening." She turned and walked over to where Patrice and Alex were waiting.

Patrice stepped quietly next to Alex, keeping Sabina standing behind her. She watched Caterina and Sadie approach and enjoyed the natural power and control they exuded. They were beautiful and polished together, and she looked forward to spending even part of the night with them.

Sadie stepped forward and knelt in front of the two blondes. They were certainly pretty in a very American way, but she hoped she wouldn't be made to do anything with Sabina. The girl was sweet enough from what she heard, but there was the reputation... "Thank you for your support, my ladies," she said, English elegant and clipped.

Alex smiled and glanced at Caterina before running her fingers through Sadie's hair. "My name is Alex and this is Patrice. And your performance was...mmm...impeccable."

Sabina glanced at Sadie, envious of her poise and the wreath on her head. She was certain that she would never be so good. She slid even further behind Patrice.

"Why don't you come sit with me and Sadie will get us all drinks." Caterina motioned to a collection of low sofas.

Patrice felt Sabina shrink away but ignored it for the moment. There would be time to build her confidence, but it could wait. Patrice knew that Sabina had it in her to be as polished as Sadie, but a bit of insecurity would only make her try harder. She nodded at Caterina and took a seat next to Alex when they reached the edge of the room, pushing Sabina gently to the ground by her feet.

Sadie strode off to the bar returning with drinks for the three women moments later. She knelt with the tray balanced on her hand, presenting champaign to each. "Compliments of the manager, mistress," she said, keeping her eyes low and settling at Caterina's feet when all of the glasses were gone. Sadie kept her eyes on the floor, not looking at Sabina or at anyone else around her. Her heart was beating with anticipation of what her reward would be and how it would involve, if at all, the two newcomers.

Caterina sipped her champagne and slid her fingers into Sadie's hair, careful not to disturb the wreath. "I believe the two of you won a bet?" She turned to Alex and Patrice.

"So we did." Alex smiled and ran her fingers through Sadie's thick hair again, twining it around them as she smiled at Patrice. "With your permission, of course, I think we'd like to see just how skilled Sadie is at...other things."

"I think you'll find that she's very well trained." Caterina let go of Sadie and nudged her toward Alex. "She'll do as you like."

Patrice smiled at Alex and nodded her agreement. She watched Alex toy with the redhead and enjoyed the view, allowing herself to anticipate slightly. She felt Sabina tense next to her and tugged at her hair, pulling her closer so she rested against her leg, and could be grounded with some contact. Patrice knew the young woman had little chance of staying quiet if she had to kneel untouched much longer.

Alex smiled at Sadie and simply took her time sipping her champaign for a moment. She touched the girl's hair absently before tilting her chin up to look at her more closely. "Beautiful," she murmured. Though, in her estimate, Sadie's natural beauty did not equal Sabina's. Finally, she touched her nipples lightly, tweaking each before opening her own legs just slightly and nodding.

Sadie inhaled slightly as Alex tweaked her nipples, but otherwise didn't react until Alex spread her legs. She obeyed the unspoken command, though she didn't rush. She leaned in and kissed up the inside of Alex's thigh before she pushed her head fully between Alex's legs and started licking.

A soft moan escaped Alex's lips. She wasn't looking for much of a production, but she did keep an eye on Sabina; this would teach the girl patience if nothing else, and that was the goal Alex had in mind. "Mm," she intoned, gripping Sadie's hair.

Patrice couldn't help but tighten her fingers in Sabina's hair as she watched, enjoying Alex's pleasure. She leaned over and began to lay quiet kisses over Alex's neck, pausing to whisper in her ear, "You're so beautiful... so beautiful."

Alex turned into Patrice, catching her lips in a hungry kiss. She knew she would not last much longer, as her arousal had been building all evening. The promise of seeing Sadie with Patrice was enough to push her incredibly close, and she arched into the brunette's mouth. Patrice deepened the kiss, wanting to feel Alex come. She released her hold on Sabina's hair and moved to caress Sadie's tresses instead, holding her, encouraging.

Alex moaned into it, her climax breaking as the girl pressed harder with her tongue. She gripped Patrice's hand in Sadie's hair, coming down quietly as she pulled away to draw in a deep breath and look down at Sadie, now kneeling demurely at her feet. "Mm...very good."

Sabina was trying very hard not to visibly sulk as Patrice's hand left her hair for Sadie's. She could tell that everyone else was enjoying the display, but she simply couldn't. She just wanted to go back to Alex and Patrice's room and curl up in the middle of their bed. They were hers. They were the first people to really pay attention to her since Therese left and she had possibly become a bit too attached.

Alex smiled to Caterina before turning to Patrice. "Mm, you really should indulge," she whispered as she stroked Sadie's hair.

Patrice gave Alex one more kiss as she quieted, glancing at her with a slight smile. She caressed Sadie's cheek gently, her stomach quickening in anticipation. Patrice took a moment to address Sabina, "Go sit by Alex, she needs some company for a moment I believe." She didn't want to make the young woman stay next to Sadie for the next few moments, it would be too much of a punishment she didn't deserve.

Sabina slid along the floor and knelt at Alex's feet, wanting to lean into her, but she not sure that she was allowed.

As Sabina slid next to Alex, Caterina slid a hand into her hair reassuringly. She hoped that Alex and Patrice wouldn't mind if she petted her a bit while she watched. Alex looked down at Sabina, a faint, reassuring smile on her lips. The girl was not hiding her feelings well, but she was being still and not making a scene. She watched as Sadie knelt before Patrice, quietly awaiting instruction as to what the blond wanted.

Patrice decided she had waited long enough, her breath increasing already; she leaned back quietly and slipped her skirt up her legs, nodding to the redhead. Sadie was grateful that the women did not want anything more elaborate, as the room was busy and there were plenty of distractions. And she had seen Alex whip Sabina the night before. Between that and what she knew her mistress could do, she preferred not to mess anything, no matter how small, up. She kissed carefully up Patrice's thighs before she back to lick her delicately, establishing a slow rhythm and waiting to feel Patrice's response.

Patrice let out a long breath as she relaxed into the touch, she was letting herself key up slowly, and laced her fingers through Alex's, pulling her a little closer. Alex nestled against Patrice, kissing her neck softly. She pressed her hand underneath the blonde's dress and began to roll one of her nipples between her fingers. "That's it," she whispered.

Her toes curled in her shoes, Sadie was very adept, as Patrice had hoped. The combination of Sadie's touch and Alex's voice were too much for her to resist for long, and she moaned deeply, letting go and enjoying the long moment. Sadie kissed Patrice's thigh once more before leaning back and kneeling up. She hoped the women enjoyed that as much as they seemed to have, and she hoped her mistress would take that, along with her victory, into account later that night.

Caterina kept petting Sabina lightly and Sabina tried to relax. It wasn't working well. She was tense with jealously as she watched Sadie and Patrice and it was all she could do not to just walk out.

"Thank you..." Alex murmured, turning towards Caterina. She could feel Sabina's tension and looped a finger through the girl's collar, just as a reminder. "Sadie is a credit to you."

Patrice took a moment to collect herself, straightening her clothes and picking up get glass again and taking a sip. She couldn't speak formally just then, but she nodded in agreement.

"Thank you, and you are very welcome." Caterina beckoned Sadie back over and patted the seat next to her, allowing her to curl up beside her as a reward.

Sadie carefully hid her delight as she climbed onto the seat next to Caterina and curled up tightly, leaning against her mistress. She was wet with anticipation of what was to come, but she was content to wait as long as Caterina deemed necessary

Alex smiled at the pair before standing gracefully and offering her hand to Patrice. "I trust you won't be offended if we take our leave..."

Patrice stood, finally regaining her composure. Though she was reluctant to leave their company, she didn't want to take too much of their night.

"Of course not." Caterina draped an arm around Sadie. "I hope you enjoy yourselves. And if you need anything while you're in Paris..."

"Thank you." Alex nodded gracefully before turning away, letting Sabina fall in step behind Patrice as they made their way back to their room. Alex found herself looking forward to the quiet after the festivities, and she was not disappointed to find that a fire had been lit in their absence. "Mm, cozy," she said, closing the door behind Patrice and the young woman.

Patrice thanked Caterina and they took their leave for the evening to retire to their room. She noted Sabina's restless mood, and was indulgent enough to take her by the arm and lead her down the hall. She knew the girl hadn't done anything to deserve the reward, but couldn't help herself.

Sabina tried not to press into Patrice's hand, but she was at the end of her limits and failed spectacularly, practically climbing into Patrice's arms.

Alex sat in a chair near the fire and regarded Sabina critically. Finally, after almost too long a moment had passed, she crossed her legs and spoke, "I think Sabina did well tonight, don't you?"

Patrice nodded, kissing the young girl's cheek before pressing her back gently, "Yes, it was quite a tempting night." She looked back at the brunette, suddenly wanting to feel her skin, "I'm a bit overdressed, be good and help with that."

Sabina forced herself not to grin like an idiot as she started undressing Patrice. She did it as quickly and as neatly as she could, folding her clothes neatly and putting them away when she was done.

"You can finish with me," Alex said as she rose. She smiled at the way the fire made Patrice's skin glow.

Patrice slipped onto the bed and watched Sabina undress Alex. She stretched out on the comforter, luxuriating in the view as Sabina put Alex's clothes away and knelt at her feet waiting for further instructions. Sabina was obviously glad that they were finally alone and that Sadie was nowhere in sight.

As she ran her fingers through Sabina's hair, Alex watched Patrice, simply enjoying seeing her there, so relaxed. "Should we reward her?" she asked, not moving towards the bet just yet.

Patrice flashed Alex a smile behind Sabina's back, her tone was serious but she knew Alex would see right through the facade, "I don't know... I'm not sure she really wants it." She wanted to see Sabina squirm just a little for her jealousy earlier.

Sabina did squirm, shifting her shoulders and trying not to pout.

"I think you're right," Alex said as she walked around Sabina in a half circle. She smiled at the squirming but went over to the bed, cupping Patrice's face to pull her into a long kiss, wondering if the brunette would make a sound at watching.

Patrice returned the kiss, thinking of the earlier sight of Alex and Sadie. She moaned against Alex's mouth, and eventually opened her eyes to glance at Sabina, anticipating pushing her to near loss before rewarding her fully.

Sabina bit the inside of her cheek, trying to let that distract her and keep her from making any noise. She couldn't help but watch, yearning to crawl into bed with them. Her eyes were wide with pleading and she was leaning toward the bed. "Please," she whispered, almost to herself. She needed the reassurance so badly.

Patrice flashed Alex a smile behind Sabina's back, her tone was serious but she knew Alex would see right through the facade, "I don't know... I'm not sure she really wants it." She wanted to see Sabina squirm just a little for her jealousy earlier.

Sabina did squirm, shifting her shoulders and trying not to pout.

"I think you're right," Alex said as she walked around Sabina in a half circle. She smiled at the squirming but went over to the bed, cupping Patrice's face to pull her into a long kiss, wondering if the brunette would make a sound at watching.

Patrice returned the kiss, thinking of the earlier sight of Alex and Sadie. She moaned against Alex's mouth, and eventually opened her eyes to glance at Sabina, anticipating pushing her to near loss before rewarding her fully.

Sabina bit the inside of her cheek, trying to let that distract her and keep her from making any noise. She couldn't help but watch, yearning to crawl into bed with them. Her eyes were wide with pleading and she was leaning toward the bed. "Please," she whispered, almost to herself. She needed the reassurance so badly.

It looked as if the girl would burst into tears at any moment, but Alex did not want to push her that far. Sabina had done well, all in all, and she did not have the heart to make her wait any longer. "Come here," she called, beckoning Sabina over with her fingers.

Patrice nodded and smiled just slightly at the young woman. She knew she was on edge, and the blond was already reaching to touch her as she moved to rise from the floor. Sabina scrambled onto the bed, the tears in her eyes falling in relief as she snuggled between them.

Alex stroked her side firmly but left drying her tears to Patrice. "You've been very well behaved tonight, Sabina," she whispered, bending to kiss her lightly before smiling to Patrice.

Patrice smiled approvingly at the girl and brushed her tears away with her fingers. She knew she was getting too attached too quickly for either of their sakes, but couldn't help herself. She looked for a moment longer into Sabina's dark eyes and then kissed her deeply, not releasing her until she needed to breathe. Patrice shifted, pulling Sabina to face her fully and kissed her again.

Sabina needily pressed her body along Patrice's and returned the kiss. She didn't know what she was going to do when they left, but she was trying desperately not to think about it.

As much as she enjoyed watching the two, Alex wanted to feel Sabina's skin more closely against hers. She pressed the length of her body into Sabina's back as she reached around the girl, gently fondling one of Patrice's nipples. Patrice moaned and pressed into Alex's touch. The feel and sight of them both there was too much, and she didn't want to wait any longer. Besides, Sabina had waited long enough. She brushed her hand along the girl's soft skin and slid it between her legs, pressing two fingers into her. It was a loss of control, but the moment was too much for her.

Sabina moaned, completely unable to help herself. The night's earlier events left her completely defenseless. She squirmed between Alex and Patrice, trying to get closer to both of them, wanting nothing more than to make them happy. Having to kneel at their feet as Sadie licked them had been far worse than any whipping.

Alex ran her fingers quickly down Patrice's side, wasting no time in pressing her fingers into Patrice. She was pleased to find the blonde as wet as she thought she would.

"God..." Patrice exhaled and pressed into Alex's touch. She closed her eyes and moved faster into Sabina, allowing her palm to brush the young woman's clit with each stroke.

Sabina moaned louder and arched into Patrice. "Please," she whimpered. She knew better, but she couldn't help herself. "Please..."

"Shhh," Alex whispered, kissing Sabina's shoulder. "You can come when Patrice does."

Patrice bit back a whimper at Alex's sure tone, so far from how she was sure she would sound trying to speak at that moment. She locked eyes with Alex for a moment, brushing against Sabina harder. The blond could only hold on a few more moments and lifted her chin toward the other blond, "kiss me...please...Alex."

Sabina squirmed and ducked her head under Patrice's to give Alex easier access. She wrapped her arms around Patrice and held on tightly.

Alex shifted, meeting Patrice's lips and kissing her fiercely. She wanted to feel her let go, to feel Sabina squirming for release between them. And she knew she was going to get just what she wished for. Patrice did let got, almost the moment Alex's lips met hers. She moaned, making no secret of her pleasure and moved to circle Sabina's clit with her thumb, though she wasn't sure it was entirely necessary. Their legs were tangling together, and she imagined for an instant how they must have looked. That alone made her shudder with pleasure, and moan again into Alex's mouth.

Sabina shuddered against Patrice, crying out against her shoulder. She squirmed between them, not capable of getting close enough to either of them to suit her.

Alex stilled, smiling at both of them. She could feel her own need pulsing between her thighs, but she could wait. She could allow them to catch their breaths. Sabina's dark hair smelled faintly of a sweet shampoo, and Alex kissed it as she stroked Patrice's hip. "Mm."

Patrice relaxed, lazily tugging Alex's arm across Sabina and over to her. She kissed the other blonde's palm and then draped it around them both. Sabina was slender, and Alex didn't' have far to reach. She lay for a moment and then whispered to Sabina, her lips brushing lightly over the younger woman's ear, "I think you should help me thank Alex for letting you come. I'm sure you can show her better than Sadie did earlier."

Sabina perked up at Patrice's words and nodded before turning to face Alex. She pressed her back into the bed, hoping that she wasn't being too presumptuous as she slid down Alex's body to start licking at her clit.

Alex could not help but smile at the girl's eagerness. She settled onto the pillows and looked to Patrice before pulling the blonde close. "An excellent idea," she whispered before moaning and pushing into Sabina's touch.

Patrice kissed Alex, and then moved behind her, shifting so the other blond was leaning against her. She slowly reached to lace her fingers through both of Alex's hands, pulling them to her, and then behind her. Wrapped in Alex's arms, she watched Sabina for a moment, and then began to kiss Alex's neck, quietly leaving a mark to remind her of the moment later.

It didn't take much more for Alex's release. She moaned into Patrice, pulling her even closer, kissing whatever skin she could reach. And when she finally calmed, she let her hand drift to Sabina's hair, stroking her gently.

Patrice kissed Alex a few more times, and then laid her back gently. She slid down next to her, and pulled Sabina up to join them, "you did very well," she spoke quietly to the young brunette.

Sabina snuggled between them. "Thank you," she said quietly.

Alex continued to stroke Sabina's hair soothingly, letting the girl begin to fall asleep, letting the pleasant silence fill the room. Finally, she looked to Patrice, smiling lazily. "I think it's time to head back," she whispered. "Why don't you go out and get our clothes and I'll tuck Sabina in..."

Patrice nodded. She could have been content to fall asleep right there, but it wasn't their home, even their temporary one. Reluctantly, she stood and dressed, leaving Alex' s dress at the foot of the bed. She kissed Sabina one more time, and left the room to see about a cab. She was too content to question Alex's motives.

After pulling on her dress, Alex pulled the covers up around Sabina's shoulders and bent to kiss her lightly. "I want you to have the manager leave an additional collar in our room tomorrow night," she whispered. "Don't forget."

Sabina looked up at her wide-eyed and nodded. Had she done something wrong? She must have if Alex was bringing someone else. She tried to get comfortable, but she couldn't. Not long after Alex left, she slid out of the bed and put her own clothing back on. She go back to her dorm and sleep there, if she could.

Chapter Text

Sabina approached the club with a feeling of trepidation. She didn't know why Alex had summoned her in the middle of the day and it made her nervous. She hadn't been sure what to wear, what to bring, anything. So she showed up in her typical jeans and a sweater and headed toward the room that Alex and Patrice had been using. She tapped on the door lightly when she got there.

Alex opened the door upon hearing the tap, and she smiled to see Sabina looking so much like a typical college student. She was even beautiful that way, but Alex was reminded of her youth. "Come in...have you had breakfast?" she asked as she stepped aside, then shut the door behind the brunette.

"Um... No. I came straight here after the Manger called." She blushed, not knowing if she should sit or kneel or do something different entirely.

"Sit..." Alex indicated the table which was laid with fruit and pastries. She sat herself and poured a cup of coffee. "Patrice is still sleeping...I wanted to talk to you about something."

"Thank you." She sat awkwardly and helped herself to a croissant. "What did you want to talk about?"

Alex stirred cream into her coffee, taking a moment to gather her thoughts. She had rehearsed this mentally the night before, but she wanted to be delicate with Sabina. "I...took the liberty of inquiring into your background. I'm sorry for what happened," she said quietly.

Sabina shrugged and pulled apart her pastry. "It isn't your fault."

No, it wasn't, but Alex wouldn't push about any of that just yet. There would be time for that...she hoped. "I know you're a student at the American University right now, and that must be very important to you. But I have a proposition for you, Sabina."

"You do?" Sabina shifted in her seat. "What sort of proposition?"

"Patrice has grown quite attached to you. Actually..." She smiled and took a moment to take a ship of her coffee. "so have I. So, I'd like you to come to New York."

Sabina almost choked. "New York? You want me to come to New York?" She couldn't believe that. No one just swept into your life and took you off to New York just because they were 'attached'. "Why?"

"I've talked to some friends...begun to pull a few strings to get you transferred to NYU and a student visa." She put down her cup and looked at Sabina directly, wanting the girl to see that she was serious. "I want you to come to New York so we can train you."

"You what?" Sabina said breathlessly. "This is crazy. You're crazy."

Alex gently took the girl's hand and kissed her fingers. "I'm serious..."

Sabina sucked in a breath as Alex kissed her fingers. "You're really serious about this? Really?" She was still having a hard time believing it But NYU was a good school, and it was in the US, and she would be with people who didn't look at her like she was cursed. "I..." She swallowed hard. "Okay."

A smile lit Alex's face immediately, but she tried to remain serious. "You can take some time to think about it...not much, I'm afraid. But...we'd love to have you, Sabina." She grinned, then, unabashedly.

"I don't need to think about it. I want to come." She smiled at Alex. "What do I need to do?"

"There are some things I need you to get together...I trust that you have a passport..." There were so many little details, but Alex had a friend at the US embassy, and he would help with a lot of those. "Oh...before we get into all of that, though," she smiled, almost blushing lightly, "it's a surprise...Patrice doesn't know."

Sabina thought that Alex looked completely charming when she blushed and that made her even more determined to go. She nodded at Alex's questions. "I won't tell her." She smiled and threw her arms around Alex. "Thank you."

Alex held her close for a moment, smelling the scent of her hair and hoping to God she was doing the right thing. "You're going to have to well in school or the deal is off, alright?"

Sabina nodded and nuzzled against Alex's neck, almost afraid that if she let go, Alex and her offer would evaporate.

After a moment, Alex pulled away. "I need to get back to the hotel, but we'll be at the club again tonight...we've been invited back. In the meantime, i need you to go see a friend of mine." She took out a card and handed it to the girl. "He'll get the process started."

Sabina nodded. "I can go now, if he's not busy."

"I'll call him and let him know you're coming." Alex cupped Sabina's face and kissed her lightly. "I'm happy you've accepted."

"Me too." She blushed slightly.

Chapter Text

Sabina walked into the club in jeans and a sweater, her backpack slung over her shoulders. She had been working on a research project with a professor over the break and their meeting had run long, so she hadn't had time to go back to her apartment and change. She smiled at the manager as he came to greet her and relayed Alex's request, her stomach knotting with nervousness. She took the second collar and placed it on the dresser before stashing her pack in the closet and removing her clothing. She wasn't sure if she would have time to shower before Alex and Patrice got there, but she risked it anyway, hoping to be finished before they showed up.

That it was their last night at the club was in the back of Alex's mind as they entered in what by now seemed a ritualistic matter. She was determined to make the night as unforgettable as the previous two had been. Holding Patrice's hand, she bypassed the bar and the common room to go directly to their own room, expecting to find Sabina waiting.

"I think you're going to enjoy yourself tonight," she whispered, kissing Patrice softly before they went in.

Patrice kissed her back and took the key from Alex to open the door. She led the other blond inside, "I'm sure I will." She looked around the small sitting room and surmised that Sabina was already waiting in the bedroom, as she had been the first night. She felt her stomach tighten pleasantly in anticipation.

Alex raised her eyebrows when she heard the sound of the shower and chuckled lightly. "Why don't you go and remind Sabina what time it is?" she said to Patrice. She had spotted the collar on the dresser, but she didn't want to put it on Patrice until all parties were present.

Patrice smiled and nodded, kissing Alex before turning to go and find Sabina. She stepped quietly into the bathroom and stopped just beside the shower. She could see the outline of Sabina's body through the fogged glass, and cleared her throat audibly to get the girl's attention without startling her too much.

Sabina jumped and squeaked at the sound. She spun toward it and pulled the shower door back to see who was there. Once she saw Patrice, she blushed, her skin turning red. "I... I... I'm sorry." She moved to get out of the shower, forgetting to turn it off and spinning around once she was halfway out once she remembered. She ended up sliding around inelegantly, flailing for something to keep her from falling.

It was all Patrice could do to not laugh at the young woman's antics. She bit the inside of her cheek to control herself and caught Sabina's arm to steady her. "It's alright, I'm sure we can find some way for you to make it up to us later." Sabina's skin smelled fresh, and she was even more alluring sodden, her hair lying slick against her back. Patrice straightened to keep from kissing her. "I don't think you need to bother getting dressed, dry off a bit and come join us."

Sabina nodded and looked down. She turned the shower off properly and wrapped a towel around herself. She was still damp when she stepped out into the bedroom and knelt.

Alex simply watched the display, quite enjoying the sight of Sabina fresh from the shower. After a moment, she sauntered towards her. "Sabina, I'd like you to undress Patrice."

Patrice's breath caught for a moment, but she recovered quickly. She felt the air in the room hang more thickly as Alex gave the order, and knew she was starting to blush.

Sabina got up and went to Patrice, her hands going to the buttons of Patrice's shirt. She brushed her fingertips over Patrice's skin as she did so. Alex watched, content with the time Sabina was taking. She wanted to draw out each moment tonight, so she began to walk in a slow circle around the pair, noting Patrice's flush, until Sabina was done.

"Now bring me the collar."

Patrice was just settling in and enjoying being undressed when she heard Alex's words and her eyes widened a little. She assumed the other blonde was letting her put Sabina's collar on for the night as the young girl hadn't taken the time to prepare herself properly yet. She chewed her lip, already looking forward to making Sabina kneel while she did so.

Sabina walked over and picked up the extra collar, taking it to Alex. She didn't know what was going on and she was trying hard not to guess.

The collar was not as soft as the one Donna had given Patrice, but the leather was supple enough. Alex rubbed her fingers against the leather before approaching Patrice. She kept the smirk off of her lips, but she barely hid it from her voice. "Kneel."

Patrice took only a brief moment to understand what Alex had in mind. She responded immediately, both with her mind and body. She bit back a whimper and let out a shuddering breath as she sunk to the floor, only lowering her eyes once her knees hit the carpet. It had been some time since Donna had taken off her collar for the last time, and she was surprised at how much she wanted it again. Something about the setting was right, the club, the room, and Alex all set a perfect tone. Already she was falling back into it, Alex's request giving her the chance to let her guard down and just respond.

Sabina's eyes widened slightly as she watched Patrice kneel. So that's what Alex wanted with the extra collar. She squirmed at the very thought.

"Hold your hair," Alex said, tone sure. She watched as Patrice gathered her hair, holding it off of her neck, and it was all she could do not to moan. But she kept a straight face, buckling the collar, fingers brushing Patrice's skin before she stepped away.

Patrice shivered when Alex buckled the leather snuggly around her neck. She straightened her back, pulling her shoulders together, but keeping her eyes down. If she was going to spend the evening at Alex's feet she would do it well, it would be good for Sabina too.

"And your collar, Sabina," she said, turning away from Patrice entirely.

Unexpectedly, Patrice lost her composure for a moment and looked up when Alex asked for the brunette's collar, having already been anticipating doing the honors herself. Quickly, she returned her eyes to the floor, hoping neither of them had noticed.

Sabina was too focused on getting her own collar and handing it to Alex to see Patrice slip. She knelt at Alex's feet and waited.

Alex repeated the motions with Sabina, and once she was finished, she stepped back to admire the women. The sight was pleasing, and Alex took a long moment to enjoy it. "Mm...on the bed...both of you."

Patrice bit her lip, not noticing how her old habits were beginning to resurface quickly. She stood, doing her best to remember herself, and slid onto the bed. She knelt again, knowing better than to relax just yet. Sabina joined her, kneeling. She glanced at Patrice, too curious to resist. She was impatient to see what Alex would do with them.

Taking her time to undress herself, Alex let them see what they could while they kept their eyes down. She wasn't paying attention to who was looking and who wasn't, but when she went to the bed, it was Sabina she pulled close and kissed. "I want to come," she whispered. Each night she had waited, and now she was not in the mood to be patient.

Patrice whimpered almost silently when Alex took Sabina from next to her. She glared in spite of herself, clasping her hands behind her more tightly to keep from moving. She wasn't prepared for how used to making decisions she had become. Sabina crawled on top of Alex and started kissing her. She wasn't paying attention to Patrice, as she was so focused on doing as Alex told her.

Patrice's glare, however, did not escape Alex's notice. She pulled away from Sabina and raised one of her eyebrows at Patrice. "Was there something you wished to express, Patrice?"

She glanced up, then immediately lowered her eyes again and shifted a little lower. She wasn't behaving well, and she knew it. The blonde fought to gather herself, she wasn't about to make a bad impression in front of Sabina, it wouldn't lend well to respect should they meet again. "No Alex." She fell silent and tried not to focus on what was happening in front of her.

"Good...hands on the back of your head," she said before turning her attention back to the brunette.

Patrice slowly raised her hands and did as she was told. She was quietly impressed at how well Alex could read her; she always had a hard time having to keep her hands steady when she couldn't grip them for control.

Sabina watched the interaction between Alex and Patrice. She wrapped herself around Alex and started kissing her again. She ran her hands down Alex's body and started touching her breasts.

"Mm..." Alex arched into the touch, moaning lightly, if only as a bit of a display for Patrice. It was the first time they had been so deeply in this type of arrangement, and she needed to see how far she could push. Keeping one eye on Patrice, Alex stroked Sabina's hair. "That's it, Sabina."

Patrice shifted slightly, trying to take her mind off of what she noted with surprise to be growing jealousy. She couldn't sort out just for what or whom, more likely for being made to watch. The clenching in her stomach, however, was offset by a growing warmth between her legs, and she allowed her breath to hiss with the anticipation. Patrice's arms were starting to tremble, and she couldn't help a discontented whimper when Alex spoke.

Sabina allowed herself a tiny smile and kept touching Alex, rubbing her fingers over Alex's clit and sucking on one of her nipples.

Silently, Alex noted Patrice's whimper, filing it away onto the list of transgressions she was mentally building. The arousal at seeing her that way, at knowing that the blond was jealous, left Alex wet, ready for Sabina's attentions. She shifted, moaning, not wanting to wait too much longer for her release.

"Curl them," Alex said in a sure whisper as Sabina pushed into her once again. She ran her fingers through the brunette's hair, twisting it tightly as she enjoyed herself. Her climax was close and would come quickly, but Alex was sure that there would be others.

At that Patrice did whimper, almost a whine at being left to watch. It wasn't the same as when she choose to watch Alex with someone else, this was a different challenge altogether. She started, and involuntarily leaned closer, one of her hands beginning to slip down towards the other women before she caught herself. She pulled it back quickly, ashamed at her behavior already. Shuddering quietly, she forced herself to think of what Donna's reaction would have been to her current demeanor.

As Alex came, she saw the shift, the slip in Patrice's demeanor, and she shuddered with the possibility of what she would do about it. But her mind was hazy once she came down and she pulled Sabina into a soft kiss. "Mm...good girl. Do you think you deserve a reward?"

Sabina looked at Alex hopefully, though she didn't dare say anything.

"Patrice," she said, looking up to the blonde, "Sabina deserves a reward. I'd like you to take care of Sabina. She's been a very good girl." She sat up and took Patrice's chin firmly in her hands, leaving the rest unspoken.

Patrice looked at Alex, instinctively leaning closer to her before catching herself. It had just become so natural to be with Alex without thinking. She organized her thoughts and turned to Sabina, her mind already jolted at how quickly her position had changed. She nodded quietly to Alex and slid closer to the younger woman, pressing her down gently onto the bed, and moving to kneel between her legs.

Sabina squirmed and wrapped her hands in the sheets. She looked down at Patrice and squirmed more. Just the thought was making her wet

Alex settled back against the pillows, watching thoughtfully. It was amazing to see how Patrice battled her instincts yet still moved so gracefully. And she would be the first to admit that the blonde was stunning. Patrice quietly allowed herself to enjoy Sabina's squirming. For tonight at least it wasn't her place to reprimand her. She lowered herself down slowly, trailing kisses down the younger woman's stomach while she methodically pressed her legs apart with her fingers.

Sabina spread her legs and pressed up into Patrice. She let go of the sheets and wrapped her finger in Patrice's hair. Patrice licked her indulgently, and moved to press two fingers into her, stroking her in rhythm. She pressed her legs together against her rising arousal, Patrice had been wet since Alex put her collar on for the night, and the anticipation was only increasing the sensation. In response, she quickened her pace with her fingers and tongue, felling the pleasure vicariously.

Alex smiled and gently began to roll one of Sabina's nipples in her fingers as she watched Sabina moan and squirm, as her orgasm hit her as Patrice licked at her clit. Sabina let go of Patrice's hair but she reached out, trying to pull both of them closer.

Patrice continued to lick as she felt Sabina let go. When the younger woman finally fell silent she leaned back on her heels, doing her best to play her part. She looked down and slowly brought her hands back to clasp behind her back.

Alex nodded to Patrice and pulled away from Sabina. She didn't want the girl completely running away with the moment of freedom. "Kneel up, Sabina," she commanded. "Patrice, find me a suitable dress." She guessed that there would be other things in the closet. "We're going to the lounge."

Sabina knelt on the bed as soon as Alex told her. Her knees were still weak, but she wanted to make Alex happy.

Patrice stood gracefully, now feeling more at home in the situation, at least for the moment. She crossed the room without looking back at Sabina and went to the closet. She emerged a few moments later with a simple black dress that she thought would fit Alex, and would be revealing without being too much. She knelt in front of the other blond, resisting the urge to touch her better this time, and held the dress out to her.

She nodded at the choice and took it from Patrice hands, drawing it on and slipping into her shoes. Alex let her fingers brush lightly through Patrice's hair before running her hands through her own. "Come," she called, expecting the two women to follow her into the lounge. The halls were a bit quieter that night, but the festive air was still there, as they smelled of fresh greens and holiday spices.

Sabina followed Alex and Patrice into lounge, keeping her eyes down and trying not to guess at what Alex would order her to do next.

Patrice felt every eye on her, whether they were really watching or not. There was something unsettling about being served one night, and serving the next. The feeling wasn't entirely unpleasant, however and she felt her skin tingle with anticipation as they made their way to an unoccupied set of couches along one of the walls.

Alex sat and pulled Sabina into her lap, encouraging the young woman to curl up there. She kissed her hair lightly, contentedly. "A drink," she said to Patrice before the blonde could kneel.

Patrice forgot herself, gazing jealously for a long moment at Sadie before turning on her heel and walking to the bar. When she came back a moment later she knelt close to Alex, doing her best to be as elegant as she knew she could be, seeking reward.

Alex gave her none, turning her attention away from Patrice and to the room. she had begum to recognize a few faces, and she was putting names with them from the night before. If Patrice was going to stew with jealousy on their last night, it was hardly her fault. And it was hardly a good example for Sabina. As she sipped her drink, she spotted Caterina, closely followed by Sadie, enter from a different hallway. Alex smiled and nodded towards her as she stroked Sabina's side.

Caterina looked around the room, seeing who was there and who wasn't. She raised an eyebrow when she noticed Patrice sitting at Alex's feet, but she wasn't overly surprised. She took her time looking at Patrice, not going to deprive herself of the pleasure. There was something about that dynamic that seemed to fit. She nodded back at Alex.

Patrice shifted and kept her eyes down. She knew she deserved, rather needed the reminder that she could still behave well despite the temptation. Besides, she had been already spoiling Sabina, and that wasn't good for either of them.

After a few moments, Alex nudged Sabina off of her lap and stood. She sauntered across the room to Caterina, expecting both Patrice and Sabina to follow and behave. Patrice was elegant and beautiful, and she had been well trained. She wanted Sabina to see that, and she also wanted to thank the duchess for the night before. "Your Grace, it's a pleasure to see you again. May I?"

Caterina smiled at Alex as she ran her fingers through Sadie's hair. "By all means." She indicated the seat next to her. "It's good to see you again. You really should speak to the manager about extending your visit."

When Alex sat, Patrice gracefully folded her legs and sank to the floor beside her, consciously kneeling between her and Caterina. There was more at stake now than just proving she hadn't forgotten her manners.

Alex smiled as she sat, drawing Sadie into her lap once again and letting her fingers fall into Patrice's hair once she knelt. "He has actually very graciously invited us back for the rest of our stay. We're looking forward to it." Alex hadn't yet told Patrice that fact, but now was as good as any time.

"Wonderful. You'll have a chance to explore a bit more. There are all sorts of things hidden in the nooks and crannies here. Have you made it down to the baths yet?" She reached over and brushed a knuckle over Sabina's cheek, then trailed her fingers over Patrice's shoulders.

Patrice felt her skin blush when Caterina touched her. It had been a long time since she'd been in a collar in public and she had grown unaccustomed to both the challenges and the simple pleasures. She couldn't help her breath catching just slightly.

"We haven't, but I'll certainly have to ask for a tour tomorrow." Alex smiled and settled back into the sofa as she idly fondled one of Sabina's nipples. "I was actually hoping that you'd allow me to properly thank you for last night."

Caterina smiled. "What did you have in mind?"

"Patrice has been well trained, but...mmm, she hasn't performed as well as I'd hoped tonight," she said, cupping Patrice's chin and forcing the blonde to look up at them as they regarded her. "But Sabina is still very green. Though, I'd like to offer you the choice."

Patrice hid her slight hurt at Alex's comment and looked levelly at the women, her skin tingling under their appraisal. She pulled her shoulders back and waited, ready to prove she could do better.

Caterina looked between Sabina and Patrice. It really wasn't a choice. After the amount of effort Sadie had taken, she was a bit leery of novices. "Patrice, I think." She ran her fingers over Patrice's collarbone.

"Excellent." Alex ran her fingers through Patrice's hair fondly before nudging her forward. She leaned down, "Show the Duchess our appreciation, Patrice."

Patrice felt her stomach quicken and she lowered herself to crawl the few feet over to Caterina. She knelt reverently in front of her, keeping on her best behavior, and waited for direction. She knew that if she did well, the night would end substantially better for her. Besides, if they were going to be allowed to come back, she didn't want to do so in disgrace.

Caterina ran her fingers through Patrice's hair, looking down at her. She looked like she was trying to pull herself together and Caterina appreciated that. She leaned down and kissed Patrice. "Whenever you're ready."

Alex settled back, watching Sadie for any sign of jealously. The girl was impassive and kept her eyes on the floor, but Sabina was squirming in Alex's lap. "Be still," she whispered. "And watch. You can learn from Patrice."

Patrice wanted to smile, but she didn't, feeling their eyes on her. She slid her fingers quietly up Caterina's legs and moved between them when the other woman parted them for her. The blond ducked her lips to kiss the inside of her legs moving steadily closer to her center, trying not to rush. Caterina kept her hands in Patrice's hair and slid into her touch. "That's it." She relaxed back against the sofa.

Encouraged by Caterina's voice, Patrice continued more surely, running her hands gently along the other woman's legs, hoping she wasn't taking too many liberties.

Caterina was content to let Patrice do as she wanted for the moment. She spread her legs further and drew Patrice upward. Patrice licked more intently, focusing on nothing but giving Caterina pleasure, listening for her breath to quicken. She wanted to both please Caterina, and to push Sadie whom she knew was watching.

Sadie straightened her posture. She wasn't all that impressed with Patrice anyway, and she was sure this would be nothing compared to the night she'd had with her mistress after the women had left the night before. And she had no idea what Sabina had done to be cuddled on Alex's lap.

Alex smiled watching the two. She reached out to brush her fingers down Sadie's spine, just idly touching the girl's skin. Sabina had quieted on her lap, and Alex was quite pleased with her behavior.

Caterina moaned softly. Patrice was certainly not a novice. She was distracted enough to ignore whatever Sadie was doing, her eyes closing as her body tensed. Patrice drew it out as best she could, trying to extend Caterina's pleasure as long as possible. When the other woman relaxed, she leaned back respectfully and lowered her head, "thank you," she said quietly.

She sighed contentedly and lay there for a moment before she opened her eyes. She petted Patrice and looked to Alex. "Thank you." Alex smiled and nudged Sabina off of her lap and onto her knees. She reached for Patrice, caressing her cheek for a moment, not bothering to hide how proud she was. "Of course. We should let you enjoy your evening." She smiled down at Sadie.

"I hope you enjoy yours." Caterina smiled at Alex. She motioned for Sadie to follow her and headed toward her rooms.

Alex decided it was time to retire as well. She had achieved everything she had wanted in front of other eyes. "Girls," she said, standing. She headed back to their rooms the way they had come, taking the time to decide what sort of punishment she wished to give Patrice—another lesson for Sabina, of course.

Patrice followed, making sure she entered the room before Sabina. They might both be wearing collars, but in her mind they were nowhere near the same level. She paused inside, not knowing what Alex wanted of her next. The blond was on edge, and hoped it was a reward, but couldn't be sure. Sabina didn't even register Patrice's posturing. She was simply happy following Alex around and sitting in her lap.

Alex had both of the women kneel on the bed. She did not undress herself, or ask either of them to do it, instead she paced lightly, still deciding on her next move. "Patrice...you made me very proud with Caterina, but I can hardly excuse your previous behavior." Alex sat in one of the high backed chairs. "Over my knees. Sabina, you are to watch; you need to learn how to gracefully accept a punishment."

Patrice shivered in anticipation at Alex's words. As much as she disliked the form of punishment, she did deserve it, and would not protest in front of Sabina. She slipped off the bed and walked across the room to Alex, taking a breath before neatly draping herself over her lap. She couldn't help but squirm a bit, trying to gain some balance. Her stomach clenched, and she hoped that Alex would overlook how obviously she had been anticipating a reward.

Sabina watched Patrice as she lay across Alex's lap. She would have been shifting and squirming with anticipation by now and she was amazed that Patrice wasn't.
Alex smiled mentally at Patrice's composure. She ran her hand down her back, appreciating the beauty of the lines before she began, swiftly beginning to spank Patrice in rhythm. In was something she enjoyed quite a bit while on the giving end, and she soon found herself as wet as she knew Patrice would be when she finished.

Patrice bit her lip to hold back her gasp; she was determined not to give in to surprise or embarrassment, though she felt both. Only Sabina's eyes kept her from kicking her heels as Alex continued, and she gently pulled her arms up when she thought she would loose control, hoping Alex would hold her still.

Alex did, taking Patrice wrists and holding her firmly. When she finally finished, she ran her hands over Patrice's red skin and smiled. "Good," she whispered as she pressed two fingers into Patrice, pleased to find her as wet as she expected.

Patrice exhaled as she felt Alex stop, and hung her head, relaxing enough to enjoy the touch. It was made better by knowing she deserved it, that she had redeemed herself for earlier. Sabina watched, her eyes wide. She wished that she could be like that, so in control and poised.

Alex continued, thrusting in Patrice slowly, her movements controlled. She still held the blonde's wrists, enjoying the visual. After a few moments, she pressed her thumb to Patrice's clit, focusing almost entirely on the spot. Patrice deserved the release, and Alex would deny it no longer.

Soon Patrice shuddered, her knees bending slightly as she finally gave in. She whispered Alex's name, thanking her quietly, before falling silent and relaxing fully.

Chapter Text

It had been a week, and Alex wasn't quite sure how she managed to pull strings, run errands, and get absolutely everything in order without Patrice noticing. The other blonde had been incredibly busy, however, since their return, and Alex was half certain that it was because of her own doing, given the level of sulking she had seen from Patrice. It was difficult not to simply tell her, to make her smile brightly that way, but she wanted the moment to be special.

She had taken most of the day to see that Sabina got to New York in one piece and got registered for classes, got books and all the rest. Alex felt more like a parent than anything, but that was easy to file away, to compartmentalize. It all needed to be done and quickly before Alex could really feel like it wasn't a dream, something that could be pulled away at any moment. And now it was very real as she felt her own heart beating quickly with anticipation while the elevator took her up to Patrice's floor. She had left Sabina to get settled, instructing her to be kneeling in the living room by five. The dogs, hopefully, would have grown accustomed to her. There had certainly been other people...but never like this.

The bell brought her out of her thoughts as the lift doors open and Alex headed towards Patrice's office. She smiled to Jacob, nodding toward the open door, and when he nodded in return she stepped in. "I was on my way home. I thought we could order in...have a quiet night."

Patrice looked up from the (rather thick) file she was reading and smiled quizzically at Alex. It was early still, and usually Alex would only start to ask her about coming home well after 6. Still, the day had already been long and Alex's offer was enticing. "That...that sounds nice." She glanced around, wondering what to take home. Patrice had buried herself in work since returning, partly because it needed to be done, and partly to try and regain some normalcy.

Alex sauntered forward and pressed the file in Patrice's hands down onto the desk. She had her own share of things to do, but she wanted Patrice to have a clear head as they made their way back to the penthouse. "Let's just leave it all for one night, hm? It'll be fine."

Patrice opened her mouth to respond, but closed it again, shrugging. She didn't have much energy left to argue. She kissed Alex lightly and allowed herself to be taken home.

They were quiet for the ride, but that wasn't unusual. Alex fished her keys out of her purse while they were in the elevator, and she could hear the dogs as she turned it in the lock. She took Patrice's coat, along with her own and hung them. Everything was as usual...except that her heart was pounding and she had to bite back a smile. "Why don't you go sit down...relax. I'll open a bottle of wine."

Patrice nodded and shuffled through into the living room. She stopped abruptly at the door and looked again, sure her tired eyes were playing tricks on her. "Sabina..." she breathed, a disbelieving tone in her voice.

Sabina had removed her clothing and knelt in the living room at 4:45, just in case Alex was early, and she had been drifting slightly when she heard the front door unlock. It was enough to rouse her, so she was kneeling perfectly when Patrice walked in. She raised her eyes when Patrice said her name, but quickly looked down again. It was everything she could do to stay in place and not throw herself at Patrice when she came into the room.

Instead of going to the kitchen, Alex hung a little behind Patrice to watch. Now, she was behind her, hands on her waist. The smile she had been fighting was bright on her face. "Surprise."

Patrice spun in Alex's arms to face her, eyes questioning, "What's going on? How did you?" Patrice's mind hadn't caught up yet, but she didn't wait for Alex to answer and crossed the room to Sabina. She ran her fingers only quickly through her hair before tugging her up and kissing her.

Sabina pressed herself into Patrice and wrapped her arms around her. She couldn't stop herself from smiling and she hoped that they wouldn't be too upset with her. Half an hour earlier she had been tired; the jet lag had been catching up with her and everything had an edge of surrealness to it. She couldn't quite believe that she had given up her life in Paris to move to New York on what seemed like nothing more than a whim. Now she was starting to remember why she had agreed to come.

Alex stood back, letting them have the moment, still smiling to see both women so delighted. She knew she wouldn't question the decision again, not after seeing Patrice's face. "I thought we could use a housegirl," she said, chuckling and petting Porcelain as she nuzzled her hand. "And I...pulled a few strings to see that we got the perfect one."

Patrice released Sabina for a moment and looked at Alex again, silently asking if she was serious. "I think there's more to this story than I know. Alex, how did you manage this?"

Sabina nuzzled lightly against Patrice's hand when Patrice let her go. She still had her arms wrapped around Patrice and she put her head on her shoulder.

"I have a friend at the American embassy in Paris...and I have a few friends at NYU." She smiled and drew the two apart, pulling Patrice to sit next to her on the sofa and allowing Sabina to kneel between them. Even in the reunion, Alex wanted to maintain some sense of the type of decorum she expected. "I asked Sabina after our second night and it was an absolute nightmare getting everything done in a week and a half without you noticing after that, but..." She laughed and pulled Patrice close, kissing her lightly. "That smile on your face is absolutely worth it..."

Sabina knelt between them and tried to clear her expression. It didn't work well, and she couldn't quite make her smile go away.

Patrice couldn't stop smiling, alternating between the two other women. She stroked her fingers through Sabina's hair as she realized the implications, and also that Alex had been speaking in the "we" throughout the conversation. She looked meaningfully at the other blonde. "I don't think I'll be wanting to go back to my condo much anymore."

"I was hoping you'd say that," Alex murmured as she stroked Patrice's cheek. That Sabina was still smiling and nearly squirming with delight didn't bother her at all. It was quite endearing, and there was something about having her there...having them both there that made the place feel more like home than it had since she'd come back to the city.

Patrice took Alex by the hand, suddenly feeling like dinner could wait a bit. She pulled her toward the bedroom, pausing at the door to notice that Sabina was still kneeling, behaving admirably. "You can come too," she said to her softly.

Sabina scrambled up, too excited to be elegant and followed them. She hadn't really explored the apartment at all, afraid to go someplace that Alex didn't want her in. She ran a hand over the back of one of the dogs, the feel of fur and muscle settling her just a bit. Porcelain liked the new girl immediately. She was someone she could protect, but when the three headed for the bedroom, she veered off into Sabina's room, content to take a nap there.

Alex looked over her shoulder and smiled when she was facing forward again. She let Sabina close the bedroom door and immediately wrapped her arms around Patrice, pulling her into a deep kiss. It seemed like they hadn't had a moment that wasn't full of distractions since the trip. Patrice returned the kiss, focusing completely on Alex. That Sabina was there made the air in the room resonate with more comfort and excitement. She leaned back only slightly after a moment to motion to Sabina to get on the bed, then turned back to Alex to kiss her again.

Without hesitation, Sabina crawled onto the bed and knelt close to Patrice and Alex. She wanted to be closer, to be touched, but she knew better than to try to push herself between them.

Alex pressed her fingers between Patrice's legs, pushing her skirt up and panties aside before pressing into her with quiet, forceful desire. Patrice moaned as she pulled her own shift off before fumbling to do the same with her bra, dropping it to the floor just as Alex bent, taking one of Patrice's nipples in her mouth, reveling in the salty taste of the blonde's skin, in the way she moved under her. Patrice moaned and closed her eyes, arching into the touch. She pulled Alex closer, encouraging. The other bond's skin was soft and warm against hers in contrast to the cool blankets under her back. Patrice traced the back of Alex's leg with the heel of her pump and let herself go, not trying to drag it out, she was already close.

Sabina slid off of her knees and sat cross-legged at the foot of the bed, watching so intently that she didn't realize that she was doing it.

When she felt Patrice's orgasm, Alex curled her fingers into it, coaxing the blonde through as she whispered her name against her chest. She stilled as Patrice stilled and listened to their heartbeats, their unsteady breaths as they came more slowly. Heat was pulsing between her legs, and without realizing, Alex found herself pressing her hips into Patrice's.

The blonde breathed for a moment, head still swimming from the rush of pleasure. When she felt Alex moving again, she reached down and slipped her hand between them, pressing into Alex, and rocked them gently, pushing her.

Alex arched as she rocked against Patrice's touch, establishing a well formed rhythm. She tossed her head back, eyes closed, moan escaping her lips unabashedly. She was close enough that a few more moments would be enough. Patrice looked up at Alex, her own pulse rising again as she took in how beautiful the other woman was. She never forgot it, but moments like these still left her breathless.

With a shuddering breath, Alex came quickly, her body clenching and releasing as she let herself fall into Patrice's waiting arms. She kissed the blonde's neck. She had almost completely forgotten that they were being watched.

She wrapped Alex tightly in her arms when she slipped down, and pressed her cheek to the other woman's pulse. Their heartbeats seemed to slow together, and Patrice idly ran her fingers under Alex's shirt and over her back, taking a moment before they would shift and reward Sabina for her patience. Finally, she simply removed Alex's shirt, wanting to feel the blonde's skin against hers.

Sabina was still sitting there, shifting with desire and watching them. She wanted to join them, but she was aware enough to know that she had to stay in place

After what seemed like a long moment, Alex's eyes fluttered open. She smiled at Patrice, finally feeling as if everything were back to normal, as if everything were really falling into place. She slipped out of her skirt and discarded her panties and bra before pulling Patrice's skirt and panties off as well. When she saw Sabina, however, she could not help but chuckle.

Patrice followed Alex's gaze and smiled as well. Sabina looked about ready to take a flying leap at them from across the bedspread. She shifted from under Alex and went to the girl, kneeling up in front of her so she could watch her dark eyes. The blonde paused for only a moment, and then began to work her fingers over Sabina's bare skin, teasingly moving lower. Sabina whimpered in relief at finally being touched. She pressed into Patrice and scrambled back onto her knees.

Alex propped herself on her elbow, content to watch. Their roles with Sabina were already clear, but Alex felt that the beginning of a stronger bond--the bond she shared with Adrian and Patrice with Donna--had begun to form there. Patrice had told her about what happened to Sabina, how she was introduced, and she could not help but want to give the girl a truly nurturing environment while they all took their pleasures.

Patrice didn't stop to reprimand Sabina for being off her knees, though it would be one of the last times such an oversight would be tolerated she was sure. The blond whispered to the young woman quietly as she touched her, keeping her focus split to pull out the moment, telling her how beautiful she was. Patrice smiled to herself when she moved in as if to kiss the young woman, Sabina instinctively reaching to meet her, but instead dipped her head and methodically and idly marked her creamy skin. As she did, she finally pressed her fingers between the brunette's legs. Sabina cried out softly as Patrice touched her. She jerked forward into the touch and wrapped an arm around Patrice to steady herself.

Licking her lips, Alex sat up to better see the mark Patrice had made. She moved to the two, kissing Patrice's shoulders softly. "Beautiful," she murmured before taking hold of the brunette and marking her skin opposite Patrice's work. She could hardly resist such a simple temptation.

Sabina squirmed and looked down at the matching marks on her skin. There was something about it that seemed right and she hoped that they would take a while to fade. She kept squirming under Patrice's hands, completely unable to stop herself.

Patrice smiled at Alex and pushed Sabina firmly between them, not breaking her contact with the young woman. She rolled one of Sabina's taut nipples in her fingers and took a moment to lean over the brunette's shoulder to kiss Alex again. She met the kiss with renewed force. Any thoughts of having Sabina serve them their dinner that night were long out of her mind. She pressed her palm firmly up Sabina's side, touching her more possessively than she had in Paris. When she stopped, she tweaked the young woman's nipple hard before moving her hand to the other.

Patrice released Alex's lips and shifted to bring her thumb to brush over Sabina's clit firmly. She whispered to the young woman again, "It's okay, you can come now." The girl felt so lithe between them, and Patrice could feel Alex's heat still close.

It only took Sabina a moment to do as she was told, the body curling around Patrice's fingers. She reached out for Alex at the same time, her hand finding purchase on Alex's hip.

She smiled and took Sabina into her arms, taking the girl's weight as Patrice brought her down slowly. "Good girl," she murmured, kissing the brunette's soft hair. "Very good." She smiled up at Patrice then.

Patrice moved her hands back up Sabina's body, caressing gently, thoughtfully. She let Alex hold her and relaxed on the bed, calming. After a few moments the blond realized just how hungry she was, that it had been many hours since lunch. She smiled again and wondered if Sabina had earned the reward of sitting with them at the table that night, or if she would be better off by their feet.

Sabina eyes were drifting closed as she soaked up the warmth between Alex and Patrice. Between the jet lag, the release of her orgasm, and the general feeling of contentedness being there with them, she was finding it impossible to keep her eyes open. She unconsciously snuggled between them, not thinking for a second that it might not be okay for her to fall asleep.

Alex chuckled softly, almost soundlessly as she stroked the girl's back, fingers glancing Patrice's. "Mm, I think it might be alright to let her sleep while we find something for dinner," Alex whispered.

Patrice nodded and slipped off the bed. They got dressed and silently went to the kitchen. Patrice took her time with Alex, preparing a simple meal, pausing occasionally to kiss her cheek or smile, imparting how amazed she still was by Alex's gesture. When the meal was nearly ready, Patrice moved to set the table but paused and looked at Alex, "Will we be needing two settings, or three?"

Pausing with her hands in the bowl of salad she was tossing, Alex cocked her head thoughtfully. "Two...I think the nap and everything else is enough of a reward tonight." She grinned to herself as she went back to her work. "I'd hate to start off by spoiling her too much...and we can always discuss all of the particulars after dinner."

Patrice smiled and nodded in agreement and set the table for two, lighting a few candles when she was done. She helped Alex bring the food to the table. "Would you like to wake her or shall I?"

"You." Alex kissed her lightly as an almost playful smile spread across her face. "You know you want to." But before Patrice could walk away, Alex suddenly pulled her into her arms, pressing their foreheads together. "I know this is a lot, all in all..." And even though Patrice seemed almost giddy, Alex didn't want her to wake the next morning overwhelmed.

Patrice nearly lost her breath again when Alex grabbed her. She smiled and nodded, "it is, but for some reason it seems to make sense." She wasn't entirely sure yet why, but was more than happy to see where life took them. She kissed Alex and then stepped back and went to the bedroom. Patrice paused in the door and looked at Sabina for a moment, then composed herself enough to wake her in a firm tone, "Sabina, it's time for dinner." When she saw the young woman look at her and nod sleepily, she turned back and joined Alex. It would be best if the young woman had a few moments to pull herself together.

Sabina rubbed her eyes after Patrice left. The nap hadn't been long enough and she could easily fall back asleep, but she forced herself out of the bed. She brushed her fingers through her hair to get rid of the tangles and walked out into the living room, then followed her nose to the kitchen. Once there, she knelt on the tile and tried not to shudder at just how cold it was under her knees.

Alex was there pouring the wine. She took up both of the glasses and glanced down at the girl. "You can go into the dining room." In truth, it was more of a generous nook off of the kitchen. The round table was set with two places, and it would soon be apparent to Sabina that she could easily kneel between the two chairs. Alex smiled at Patrice, already seated, and bent to kiss her cheek before handing her glass. "It's nice to have a shorter day every once in a while," she said conversationally as she sat. Alex began to help herself to the food, starting with a large bowl of couscous into which they had thrown odds and ends from the vegetable drawer in the fridge.

Patrice took the glass, sipping quietly. She served herself, taking more than she usually would. "It really is, perhaps we should try to make it a habit."

Sabina knelt between the chairs and tried to keep her eyes down. The smells coming from the table made her stomach rumble and she blushed.

"Once every week or two couldn't hurt, I think." She smiled as she delicately removed the lemon slices from her chicken breast with her knife and fork and began to cut it into smaller bites as usual. "Who know...it might even make me a little more productive in the mornings." She tasted the chicken and moaned softly. "That's so good." Though she ignored it, Alex had heard Sabina's stomach. As if it were a part of their every meal, she picked up a piece of the chicken and lowered her hand to the girl's mouth.

Sabina stared at Alex's hand for a second, startled by both it's sudden appearance and it's contents. But it only took her another second to figure out what was expected of her, and she lent in and delicately took the piece of chicken with her teeth. Alex was pleased that the girl responded so quickly and took a moment to smile down at her. She intended to feed her the chicken and bits of the tomatoes and carrots and zucchini in the couscous by hand, but it occurred to her that they might, as the meal progressed see if Sabina was poised enough to eat the slippery little circles off of a fork when offered. She leaned back and sipped her wine, enjoying the though, enjoying the moment.

Patrice couldn't help letting her eyes linger for a moment on Sabina as she adjusted to being fed. The girl was surprisingly adept, especially considering what the last few days must have been for her. The blond took a bite of chicken and looked at Alex, relaxation growing after her earlier surprise, "How was your week, as busy as mine?" It occurred to her that she and Alex had barely had time to speak since returning, and now she had a better idea of why. While she waited for Alex to answer, Patrice put a slice of carrot on her fork and lowered it to Sabina's lips, not taking her focus from the other blond.

The brunette took the piece of carrot from Patrice and chewed it thoughtfully. She had thought that she might just tune the conversation out all together, but now it seemed like it might be best if she paid attention. If they were having a busy week, then she would have to make sure that they could relax when they were at home. She didn't know how that was going to work when school started again and she had busy weeks, but that wouldn't happen until at least halfway through the semester.

Alex swirled the wine thoughtfully in her glass, watching Patrice move as easily as if she'd been doing this with a housegirl for years. "I feel like I spent most of it cleaning up a mess made from a mix-up in paperwork while we were gone." She shook her head before taking a long sip. "It's been one headache after another." The fact that she had juggled planning all of this on top of that went unsaid, but Alex felt completely compensated for that already. She lowered a bite of couscous to Sabina. "It's been a blur." A blur without much of Patrice in it.

The couscous was a bit more challenging, but Sabina managed it, delicately licking it from the fork.

"I think Jacob was preparing himself for my return for awhile, he'd even alphabetized my phone messages." Patrice chuckled, always amazed at how the boy seemed to anticipate her bad moods. "However, I think it was just an effort to distract me from the fact that we missed a motion deadline. It's not the end of the world, but took some smoothing over." Patrice took a sip from her water glass and then held it toward Sabina, silently asking if she wanted some. Sabina took a sip of the water, wishing that it would turn to wine in her mouth. She didn't know that she needed anyone to go to orientation with her. She was sure that if they pointed her toward the closest subway station, she would be fine, but she couldn't exactly tell them that.

Alex chuckled lightly. She was sure Jacob had quite a few horror stories about Patrice's moods. "Oh, that reminds me...Sabina has Transfer Student Orientation Monday morning. I have a client meeting that I don't think I can move..." She played at trying to get a tomato on her fork. "Do you think you can manage to go with her?"

Patrice finished her chicken and reached for the salad to finish, mentally going through her schedule, "I'm due in court for the 2:00 session, so that could work well. I don't have anything before."

Alex had no intention of babying Sabina; if she could get around in Paris, she would do fine in New York. But she wanted at least one of them at the orientation to make sure that they had all of the information they needed about her going to school. "Excellent. Mm, maybe I can meet you both for lunch."

Patrice nodded and held out a bite of lettuce to Sabina, "Sounds perfect. Hemersley's?" There was something eerily easy about this all, and Patrice found herself more at ease than she had been in a long time.

"Sounds good." Alex followed Patrice's piece of lettuce with her last bit of cucumber. She sat back and sighed, completely satisfied with the moment. 'We can take care of this later. Let's go sit." She stood, taking her glass of wine with one hand and offering the other to Patrice.

Patrice pushed her chair back and stood. She picked up her glass, and ran her fingers through Sabina's hair, "be good and clear the table? Then you can join us in the living room."

Sabina cleared the table quickly, pushing dishes in the dishwasher and straightening the kitchen, so it looked like how she assumed it was supposed to look. Still, it took time and almost ten minutes had passed before she was able to get to the living room and kneel.

Alex thought initially to take the time to discuss some things with Patrice before they talked to Sabina. But she decided it might be best if they all did this together, talked about it together so that it could evolve more naturally. Instead, the two sat close to each other, Persia coming to curl up on the sofa beside Patrice, and they ended up talking about moving Patrice's things. When Sabina entered, Alex raised her head from Patrice's shoulder and smiled. "We need to talk about some things,"

Patrice was already excitedly making plans in her head to move when Sabina came in. The girl knelt at their feet, looking up expectantly, and Patrice stroked her hair while Alex continued.

"I think it's fair to say that your room is your own, your space." She looked to Patrice for agreement before going on. "I think it's important that you have that since you're in school, so we won't come in without knocking, and we won't have any scenes in there. You can do what you want decorating it...all you need to do is ask."

Patrice nodded, "Also, you are here for us to train, but even more so, you are a student and that comes first. I think I speak for us both when I say that your performance there will go far in deciding whether this arrangement is working, you have a lot to gain by working hard." She paused to let that sink in before continuing, "rther, you are free to spend time in the rest of the apartment, but you may only come to our bedroom if specifically invited, and you shouldn't expect to sleep with us. That is a privilege, not a habit." She took a sip and raised an eyebrow at Alex, inviting her to add.

Sabina nodded her understanding. It seemed simple enough and she was looking forward to what the next few months would bring. She wanted to stay in New York, it was an amazing opportunity and she would work hard to live up to their expectations.

Alex smiled at how seamlessly Patrice's thinking went with her own. "When we know your class schedule, we'll adjust to something that works for us all, and we'll see how what we expect of you fits with what you need to do for school." She sat back, putting an arm around Patrice's shoulders. "Mm...and I think I'll have you walk the dogs," she added, almost as an after thought. That would be one more exercise in patience for Sabina,

Patrice bit back a small laugh, wondering just how long it would take Sabina to gain enough respect with Porcelain and Persia to not get hauled around the park. Her mind wandered, she was already looking forward to finding something suitable for the girl to wear around the house. She was more than pleasing nude, but there was a certain thrill in dictating her garments. Besides, Patrice liked being able to undress her now and then. She noted that Sabina, while content, looked tired from her day. "Do you have any questions? If not, you may get ready for bed."

"I... I don't think so." Sabina tried to think of anything that wasn't clear. Her bank card was with her things, and she had never really worried about money. She had told her parents that she had gotten an offer to study at NYU and they had accepted that. If they wanted to visit, she would deal with that later. "Is there anything that I shouldn't do? Or anyplace that I shouldn't go?"

Alex pursed her lips as she thought. "Obviously you know you should be discreet, and the rest...I think we can discover as we go." She leaned forward to stroke Sabina's hair. "But if there's something wrong or if something isn't working, you need to tell us that."

Patrice thought for a moment before adding, "Obviously as well you are to follow both of our requests without question, both here and if we go out." She smiled and added as an afterthought, "and of course you are too young to drink here, so you will only have a drink if we offer it to you and it will only be at home."

Sabina blinked at the last comment. She had completely forgotten about that. "But..." It was a completely instinctive reaction. She was from a family of winemakers. If her grandfather found out about this, he would kill her and nothing that Patrice or Alex could do to her would match up to that.

"No buts," Alex said quickly. "And that's something I do not want to have to say again. We'll get you a cell phone," she said, closing the conversation, "so that you can let us know if you're going to be late or if you need anything. And...mmm, I suppose that's all for now." She looked to Patrice for confirmation.

Patrice nodded, glad that Alex had stopped Sabina before she could say more. She wasn't in the mood to start correcting Sabina's behavior tonight while she was tired. The blond took the last sip of her wine and handed both of their empty glasses to the girl, "Put these in the kitchen on your way."

Sabina nodded and took the glasses. She was used to washing wine glasses, she had spent a summer doing it when she was 13, all of the glasses for the tastings at the vineyard, and the technique was still in her muscle memory. She was done in a flash and back in the living room at Patrice and Alex's feet.

Patrice looked her over and then nodded, "You can get ready for bed and wait by our bedroom door. It's been a long day."

The brunette got up and disappeared into her room. It was still pretty impersonal, but she'd do some decorating when she had the time. As she was fairly sure that putting on a nightgown or tee shirt was out of the question, getting ready for bed didn't take long. She knelt at the side of their bedroom door and waited.

Alex leaned forward and kissed Patrice softly. "I'm glad you're happy." She squeezed Patrice's hand before kissing her fingers and pulling her up so they could head to the bedroom.

Patrice smiled again at Alex and kissed her back, "I really am. Thank you." She went with Alex through to their bedroom and changed for the night, not asking Sabina to come in until they both had finished in the bathroom, and Alex had slipped under the blankets. Patrice went to the door and quietly drew Sabina up from her knees. She kissed her one more time and went to get in bed, expecting Sabina to follow.

Sabina followed her into the bedroom, and not sure what they wanted from her, she sank back to her knees in the middle of the floor. It was quickly becoming her default position when she didn't know what else to do. Alex chuckled and rolled on her side, letting Patrice tell Sabina what she expected.

"Come here." Patrice slipped into bed and nodded at the girl. "It's time for bed."

Sabina walked over to the bed and climbed up on it.

Patrice kissed her, but didn't move to pull her under the covers. She pointed at the space at their feet, "You can sleep there with us tonight, you were good today." It was a bit of a reward to not send the girl to her room, but still imposed their roles.

She nodded and curled up at their feet, pulling a conveniently placed blanket over herself. It wasn't as nice as being able to sleep between them , but it certainly wasn't as bad as being sent to her room alone.

Patrice leaned down and tucked the blanket around Sabina, stroking her hair a few times, "Good night." She lay back and snuggled into Alex, relaxing to the sound of both their breaths.

Alex was already half dozing, and she pulled Patrice close, kissing whatever skin was the closest. "Night," she whispered, nuzzling her lightly.

Chapter Text

Sabina pushed the door to the apartment open. For the first week of school, she had been so caught up in the excitement that she didn't really think about how hard it would be... or how lonely. Her friends were all in Paris or on Sardinia, and making new friends was... complicated. It was only the second week of school, but as the newness wore off, she was left feeling homesick. She put her books in her room and grabbed Porcelian and Persia's leashes.

Persia bounded forward, sliding a little as she tried to stop in front of Sabina. She tried to sit, though she barely touched the floor in her excitement at seeing the leashes. Sabina's newness, for her at least, had not worn off just yet.

Sabina smiled slightly at Persia's antics and started scratching her neck, prasing her in Italian. "You're a good dog, no?" she clipped the leash to her collar and looked around for Porcelain.

The white dog was lying on her side in the living room, and she looked up languidly when Sabina entered with Persia following. Once she saw the leashes, she stood, going to Sabina more obediently than she had ever approached Patrice.

"Good girl." Sabina clipped the leash to her collar and petted her head. "Andiamo. Let's go." She opened up the door and walked them into the hallway.

The dogs trotted to the elevator and they both sat as they waited for the doors to open. Persia wiggled, her tail wagging slightly.

The elevator arrived, and after a quick trip, they were out on the street and headed toward the park. Sabina's spirits were starting to lift, a small smile gracing her lips. There was something about the dogs and being outside, no matter how cold it was, that cheered her up.

When Persia began to pull at her leash, wanting to trot out in front, to drag Sabina along in her excitement, Porcelain gave a low growl and nipped at the other dog's ear.

Sabina chuckled at their antics, a real smile finally lighting her eyes. She guided them under the snow covered trees and onto the path. She didn't know why Patrice seemed to have such issues with the dogs. They were perfectly obedient for her.

Jacob was hurrying along the path, taking a shortcut that didn't seem to be so short. He had Patrice's dry cleaning, hangers hooked over his fingers, draped over his shoulder and coffee in the other hand. The place was closer to Alex's than to Patrice's office, but she had insisted that it needed to be picked up so she could wear a particular suit to court the next day, and she wouldn't be home before the place closed. Of course had done it. And of course he had stopped to get coffee for himself. and he knew he would stop again closer to the office to get coffee for her. She was staying late, and that meant he would be staying late. But he didn't really mind because it was what it was, and he was so lost in to do lists and emails and the ten other things she wanted him to do and the five she hadn't asked for yet that he nearly ran into Sabina and the dogs.

Sabina reached a hand out to steady the man, only then realizing that he looked slightly familiar. "James...?" She thought that was his name, but hse couldn't really remember. He was someone from Patrice's office, but that was all that she could remember.

"What? Oh..." He stopped short of spilling his coffee all over the big, almost terrifying white dog that he instantly recognized as belonging to Alex, who was equally as terrifying, though possibly less likely than the dog, or Patrice, for that matter, to take his arm or leg off. The other dog seemed nicer, but he wasn't really a fan of dogs in the first place. The girl, he recognized immediately. "Sabina, right?" Event hough he knew it was Sabina because Patrice had introduced them briefly, and the girl had come in a couple of times. And she was totally hot in an almost accessible way. "It's...Jacob, actually. But yeah...hey."

"Oh, sorry. I've just, um, met a lot of new people lately." Sabina smiled sheepishly. "You... work with Patrice, right." She scratched Porcelian's neck, knowing that she could be temperamental with new people.

"I'm her assistant," He said, raising her dry cleaning slightly as if that would illustrate it. Porcelain, for her part, merely sat. From Jacob, she sensed the appropriate amount of fear and respect, so there was no need to assert herself as she had to with Patrice. Though, she ignored him equally as much as she did the blonde.

"Right." Sabina nodded, placing him in his proper context now. She flashed him another smile. "You, uh, probably need to be getting back... Did you want me to..." She gestured at the dry cleaning.

"Oh, that would be...I mean, yeah it would make sense." He smiled, shifting from one foot to the other. Dry cleaning was not exactly what he would want to talk about with a girl like her, but it was something. "But you've got the dogs...and yeah...I mean, whatever."

"No. It's fine." She reached out and took the hangers from him. "The dogs won't give me any trouble." She looked down at them "Will you?"

Porcelain looked up as if she were indicating that they wouldn't, and she would make sure of it on Persia's end. Jacob just thought the dog was creepy. "Thanks. Well, I should...yeah, Patrice has court tomorrow. So...maybe I'll see you around?"

"Yeah, maybe so." Sabina shrugged. She'd certainly be going back to Patrice's office, so it seemed logical. "Have a good night." She waved her fingers and turned back into the park.

"You too," he called after her. Free of the dry cleaning, he headed back to work. But with his thoughts on whether Sabina was just being nice or if that was maybe an opening to ask her out or if he should have asked for her number, except that her number was probably the same as Patrice's house number now, he completely forgot to stop for Patrice's coffee.

Chapter Text

Sabina let herself into the apartment and tossed her keys in the bowl by the door. Alex and Patrice were both supposed to be working late that night, so she had the place to herself for the conceivable future. She had finished her homework at the library before she had come home. She liked to keep the two places separate, as something about doing her homework at the dining room table when she'd have to kneel under it a few hours later didn't sit quite right. She wandered through the apartment, making sure that everything was straight and neat, and as she wandered through the kitchen, she poured herself a glass of wine. She knew that neither Alex nor Patrice would notice if there was one less glass in the already open bottle and it was just wine. It wasn't her fault that Americans were weird about alcohol. She took the glass with her to the living room and curled up on the couch with a book.

Patrice went through the filing cabinet, the shelves, even her already reorganized desk several times before admitting defeat. She had known where it was before beginning the search but had to try out of habit. This was the one issue with bringing work home; you had to remember to take it back again. She sighed and reluctantly started to pull her things together to go home. Patrice had made a point not to do as much work at home, but tonight it couldn't be helped, that hearing wasn't going to prepare for itself. Before long she was riding up in the elevator and turning her keys in the lock. The lights were already on, and she went through to the kitchen to get a snack before starting work again. The blonde looked curiously at the bottle of wine on the counter, "Alex?" She called questioningly—last she had heard they both were pulling long days today. However, if Alex was home it would be a nice surprise.

Sabina was so engrossed in her book that she had completely forgotten about the half empty glass of wine sitting on the coffee table, so she wasn't thinking about the consequences when she responded to Patrice. She didn't even bother to look up. "She isn't here. It's just me."

Patrice quirked an eyebrow and followed the voice into the living room. When she saw Sabina so nonchalantly disobeying their basic ground rules she crossed her arms and glared across the room, "What do you think you're doing?"

Sabina looked up from her book, not sure exactly why Patrice sounded upset. "I'm reading..."

Patrice crossed the room and snatched the glass off the coffee table, "That's obviously not what I meant." She looked pointedly at the young woman, waiting for her to explain.

The brunette pursed her lips and tossed her book onto the coffee table before crossing her arms over her chest. She didn't bother to offer an explanation; she just looked down sullenly instead.

Patrice mentally scoffed at the young woman's petulant expression. She wasn't in the mood to deal with this ridiculous insubordinate behavior, but knew she couldn't let it go. She held the glass out to her expectantly, "Go take this to the kitchen. It better have been your first glass."

Sabina got up and took the glass, possibly muttering, "It's a stupid rule," as she did. As she walked into the kitchen, she downed the wine, refusing to waste it by pouring it down the drain. She took the time to wash and dry the glass before she headed toward her room. She simply didn't feel like dealing with Patrice or her stupid rules. She was supposed to have the afternoon to herself anyway.

Watching her go, Patrice noted how brazenly the girl finished the glass. As the brunette walked toward her room, Patrice stepped behind her in the hall. She didn't even stop to ask her to turn around and reached out and grabbed Sabina by a handful of her hair, shoving her back against the wall with a satisfying thud. "I didn't tell you to go to your room, just like I most certainly didn't tell you to finish the wine you know you're not allowed in the first place."

"Let me go." Sabina tried to pull away from Patrice. She didn't want to deal with following rules or doing what she was told. She just wanted to have a glass of wine and now she just wanted to go to her room. It occurred to Sabina that she could use her safeword if she really just wanted to be left alone, but some mild sense of thrill stopped her

Patrice didn't move, but twisted her already firm grip on Sabina's hair. Whatever had gotten into the young girl might go beyond a glass of wine, but it was no excuse for such petulant behavior. "No, Sabina, not until I hear a proper apology. And trust me, you don't want to make me force it out of you." Patrice was already tired of Sabina's tone, and hoped the girl didn't make her do anything she might later forget.

Sabina winced. "Whatever. I'm sorry." It wasn't a particularly sincere apology but she didn't try to pull away again.

Instinctively, Patrice brought her hand across Sabina's cheek. It wasn't a particularly hard slap, but would be enough to surprise the young brunette she was sure. "Don't ever say 'whatever' to me. Now, try again." Patrice stared almost unblinking into Sabina's darker eyes waiting for her answer.

More than surprise Sabina, the slap made her angry. "Get off of me." She tried to shove Patrice away.

Patrice didn't let go, but paused a moment to see if Sabina's safety word was going to follow the request. Hearing nothing she continued, whatever was bothering Sabina needed to get worked out. Patrice continued in a calm but firm tone, "No, I haven't' heard an apology yet, and you're owing me one more by the minute."

Sabina glared at Patrice, tears of anger forming at the corners of her eyes. "Well, you're not going to get one." Not being able to have a glass of wine was stupid. She'd put more work into that bottle than Patrice ever had. She didn't think for a moment that Patrice might not know that she and Alex had been drinking a bottle from her family's vineyards.

Patrice noted the tears and could be fairly sure this wasn't about one glass of wine. Still, Sabina's behavior was inexcusable. She held the young woman's stare as she spoke, "Sabina, you have two choices then. You either tell me what this is really about and then accept your punishment for speaking to me like this, or you will wait in the corner until you're calm enough to tell me what this is really about and then accept your punishment. Either way, it's your choice."

Sabina glared at Patrice, furiously wiping at her eyes before the tears could fall. "It's a stupid rule."

Patrice raised an eyebrow, trying not to have her judgment swayed by Sabina's tears. She shook her head slowly. "Not ready yet I see." Patrice tugged Sabina off the wall, not letting go of her hair and grabbed the young woman's arm, twisting it behind her back as she marched her to the corner of the living room, one without decoration or windows. Patrice pressed her down onto her knees, "You let me know when you're ready to tell me the truth."

Sabina glared up at Patrice, then focused on the wall. She would sit there all night if she had to. They would have to let her up to go to class the next day. She shifted around a little. The corner wasn't covered with any sort of rug and the floor was harder than she was used to. Still, she didn't want to talk about it and she was determined to wait Patrice out.

Patrice mentally dismissed her for the moment and went about what she had come home for in the first place. When she found the file she brought it back to the living room and settled on the couch where she could watch Sabina out of the corner of her eye. Patrice pondered what was bothering the brunette, hoping it would be out of her system before Alex got home.

It didn't take long for Sabina to get bored. She shifted uncomfortably. She could still taste the wine on the back of her tongue and it made her miss home, the hot sun and the dirt and the vines and walking beside her father as he checked to make sure everything was going the way it was supposed to. She sniffled and tried to wipe new tears away. She wished that she could curl up next to Patrice, just to have the comfort of her body heat. "Patrice..." Her voice was soft, though she tried not to sound needy.

Patrice hadn't been correcting Sabina's shifting but had taken note nonetheless. When she heard Sabina, she looked back up from the file, the defiant edge in the young girl's voice had faded and Patrice answered her calmly, "Yes Sabina?"

"I'm sorry." Sabina looked at the ground and wiped her eyes again. She hoped that Patrice would forgive her. She didn't think she would get through the rest of the semester if she had to leave.

Patrice had to steady herself not to cross the room and pick the girl up and wipe away her tears. She was glad that Sabina was still facing the corner. Still, it wouldn't be good to spoil the girl so easily, "I can tell, but what was your behavior really about?"

Sabina shifted again, uncomfortable for different reasons now. "The wine was from my family's estate. It just... it tasted like home."

Patrice let a surprised expression cross her features for a moment, now beginning to see through the young girl's facade. The sadness in Sabina's voice was getting to her, and now thoughts of sending her to her room for the rest of the night were fading. Still, she couldn't ignore the brunette's earlier outbursts. "I see. Still Sabina, you know you were told not to drink. If you had needed a taste so badly you should have asked us, and I doubt you would have been denied."

"You weren't supposed to come home for hours." Sabina bit her lip and kept looking at the floor. She knew it wasn't really an excuse, but it was what she had been thinking.

"You know better Sabina, and you should have had the patience and control to wait and ask. You're young, not stupid." Patrice found herself wanting to touch Sabina, comfort her, but this little struggle wasn't over just yet. "I do accept your apology, that is if you are ready to accept your punishment for earlier." Sabina nodded at Patrice's words. She would do whatever Patrice wanted her to do.

Patrice stood, having made up her mind earlier what would be appropriate. She wanted Sabina to remember it, but not make her wait too much longer for comfort. "You can stand, but don't turn around. Take off your shirt and put your hands on the wall." As she waited for Sabina to do what she was told, Patrice stalked over to stand a few feet behind the brunette.

Sabina stood, pulling her shirt off as she did so. As she placed her hands on the wall, she tried not to wonder about what Patrice was going to do to her, but she couldn't help it. She stretched her shoulders out slightly and waited.

Patrice reached around and unbuttoned Sabina's pants and pushed them down, along with her panties. The blonde stepped back and took off her belt, knowing Sabina would be able to hear what she was doing. She quietly wrapped the buckle end around her hand a few times. The leather was thick, and would sting less than a whip, especially as Patrice didn't intend to put much force into it. Sabina's real test was already over. She addressed her quietly, "Are you ready?"

Sabina nodded and tried not to squirm. She could hear exactly what Patrice was doing, and it wasn't hard to guess what her intentions were.

Patrice paused to run a finger down the girl's spine, then stepped back and began to bring the leather across her skin. She was deliberate, letting Sabina think about each blow as she made them, slowly counting to twenty in her head.

Sabina flinched each time the leather hit her skin, and she was crying before Patrice got to fifteen. Still, she didn't move away or try to avoid Patrice's belt. She stayed there after Patrice finished, her chest heaving as she tried to catch her breath, tears running down her face.

Patrice felt her heart tug a little as she watched Sabina's tears fall but managed to control herself. She finished at and quietly put her belt back on. She took a breath and then moved closer to the brunette, kissing her shoulder, before leaning down to pull Sabina's pants away from her ankles, letting her step out as there would be no need for her clothes for the rest of the night. Patrice stood again and pulled Sabina to face her, letting the younger girl lean into her as she quieted.

Sabina wrapped her arms around Patrice as she finished crying. She held her a little too tightly, but it felt so good to be held. She wrapped a fist in Patrice's shirt, and buried her face in Patrice's shoulder.

Patrice muttered a few words of comfort, more for tone than substance as Sabina let go. After a few moments she pulled the girl away just enough that she could walk her to the bedroom. Patrice pulled her down to lie with her on top of the blankets, and gently ran her fingers through her dark hair. "You were very good, and I forgive you for earlier. We know there are a lot of adjustments for you, but in the future we do expect you to tell us so we can help rather than directly disobeying."

Sabina nodded against Patrice's shoulder and snuggled closer. She kissed Patrice's neck lightly and hoped that it was okay.

The blonde didn't correct her, she was feeling indulgent now and was enjoying the contact every bit as much as Sabina. She was surprised to find she was tired despite the early hour and closed her eyes to rest for a moment before Alex got home.

Alex ran her fingers through her hair, letting out a long sigh just before the elevator doors opened. The day had been particularly tedious for lack of any good reason, and she was glad to finally be getting away. It seemed quiet when she opened her door, and she realized that neither of the dogs was waiting, meaning Patrice or Sabina had to be there. Alex didn't call out, however. She put her keys in the bowl and spotting Sabina's discarded clothes near the bare corner in the living room--a small bit of disorder but one that made her raise her eyebrows. And as if to confirm her instincts about where to look next for either of the women, Porcelain stepped out of the bedroom and padded down the hall. Alex smiled as she stroked her ears, lingering only a moment before discovering Sabina curled in Patrice's arms. She almost turned to go back tot he kitchen, to pour herself a glass of wine and let them sleep a moment longer so she could finish up a few things, but the most delicious welt across Sabina's buttocks caught her attention. She stepped closer, standing over the sleeping forms to examine it and its companions.

Sabina stretched slightly in her sleep and nuzzled closer to Patrice. The afternoon had been emotionally exhausting and she was sleeping hard, despite the welt on her back and the attendant soreness. Patrice vaguely heard Alex's keys in the lock, and was slowly waking, realizing she was still dressed from the office. When she sensed Alex's presence in the room she slowly opened her eyes and smiled at her quietly, whispering, "Hey, did you just get home?" She didn't move yet, not wanting to wake Sabina.

"Mmhm." As Sabina shifted in the blonde's arms, Alex saw the glint of Patrice's belt buckle and instantly knew what had gone on. She felt a rush of heat through her core and didn't think twice about leaning down to kiss Patrice soundly. "I can see you've been here for a while."

The voices around her started to wake Sabina up, but she was more than content to stay asleep. She pressed her face more tightly against Patrice, trying to block out the light and the noise and made a generally disgruntled sound.

Patrice, now more awake, returned the kiss. She smiled a little at the look in Alex's eyes and felt compelled to explain. "I came home early to get a file I needed for court tomorrow and found Miss Sabina having a nice glass of wine while we were working late. I think the issue has been resolved now though." She didn't want Alex to feel the need to express her displeasure as well since it was quite clear the girl had learned the lesson. She smiled down at Sabina, "and it seems to have worn her out."

"So it has," Alex replied, following Patrice's gaze. She was only sorry that she hadn't been there to witness the punishment. She ran her fingers lightly over Sabina's bottom at the same time cupping Patrice's cheek almost possessively as she pressed into her. "Why don't you tell me about it..." It was most certainly not a question.

It seemed like the voices weren't going to go away, so Sabina gave in and opened her eyes. She blinked up at Alex, still nestled against Patrice. The words weren't quite making sense yet, but she wasn't worried about it.

Patrice raised an eyebrow at Alex, enjoying her expression for a moment, "she was a bit difficult at first, but took her punishment very well." Patrice stroked Sabina's hair, "Tell Alex that you deserved what you got and that you'll ask before having a drink next time." She wanted to cement the lesson, and also to enjoy Alex's interest.

She was already pushing her hands up Patrice's shirt, not bothering to try to push it off. But Alex was looking directly to Sabina, expecting her to obey Patrice without question. She pressed into Patrice's thigh, squirming slightly to push her own skirt up.

"I deserved it, and I'll ask next time." She looked straight at Alex, wanting Alex to believe her.

Patrice moaned at Alex's sudden and intent movements, she shifted as best she could to allow her access and with the hand not tucked under Sabina, pulled Alex down and kissed her. Alex responded to the kiss with an immediacy that was unlike her but the desire was genuine nonetheless. She was imagining Patrice marking Sabina's skin as her own fingers pressed under the blonde's bra and found her nipples. "And you haven't allowed her to come?" she said, husky whisper blowing in Patrice's ear.

Patrice whimpered and breathed more quickly under Alex's touch, arching into it slightly. "No.....I... not yet." Her hand was now twisting in Sabina's hair perhaps a bit too roughly for their earlier peaceful moments, but Alex was causing Patrice to start to lose control.

Sabina shifted against Patrice. The whipping had left her more exhausted than aroused, but that was quickly changing. The marks ached and Patrice's hand in her hair was starting to hurt and it was making her wet.

"Mm..." Alex nipped Patrice's earlobe, suddenly even more aroused by how jagged the blonde's breaths had become. "But she was..." She kissed down her neck, stopping to mark the pristine skin. "sufficiently apologetic?"

Patrice squirmed under Alex's lips, knowing exactly how her skin would look the next day. She spoke through quick breaths, "Yes...she... was....oh..." her voice dropped off and she grabbed Alex again, pulling her up into a deep kiss. Her other hand wandered down Sabina's back, feeling the heat still rising off the stripes she had put there earlier. Suddenly she couldn't take the anticipation any longer, "undress me," she released Sabina's skin with a gentle but firm slap to her shoulder.

Shifting, Alex allowed Sabina access, but she was in no mood to make it easy. She continued to roll Patrice's nipples roughly between her fingers, eager for Sabina to get on with it. "Should she be rewarded?" she asked, staring down at Patrice pointedly. "Or should you...for making such..." She smirked, running her fingers down Sabina's back. "Lovely marks?"

Sabina shivered at Alex's touch, her ass wiggling just a bit. She was trying her best to get Patrice's clothing off, but she wasn't being particularly elegant about it. Still, she grinned when she finally got her naked despite Alex making it difficult.

Patrice had lost all sense of keeping calm and was practically squirming under Alex, alternating between kissing her and trying to shift so Sabina could get her clothes off. She knew Sabina should be rewarded, but couldn't control herself long enough for that. She nearly growled and pulled Alex to her, "Please..." It was Alex's fault anyway for coming on while she had her defenses down, and Patrice had decided the other blond at least should finish what she started, then Sabina would be well taken care of she was sure.

Half a beat was too long, and Alex barely let Patrice finish before she pressed her slender fingers inside of her, curling them before pressing forward again. She licked her lips as she looked to Sabina, nodding to Patrice's taut nipples.

Sabina immediately started licking and pinching Patrice's nipples, using the opportunity to squirm closer to both of them.

Patrice gasped in pleasure and squirmed under both of them, alternating between kissing Alex and twisting Sabina's hair, encouraging them both to continue. She was so close, and closed her eyes, whimpering and saying their names. Alex shuddered at the sound of her name. She continued to thrust as she bent, nipping at Patrice's clit lightly before pressing her tongue to it. She knew it wouldn't take anything more than that, and she delighted in so easily pushing the blonde over the edge.

That was enough, Patrice wanted to draw it out, to prolong her enjoyment, but they were too much. She curled her toes into the blankets and pulled Sabina up so she could bury her face in her hair, breath catching as she came. She panted into the girl's dark hair, slowly calming down. Sabina nuzzled against Patrice's cheek as she calmed, trying not to squirm too much.

Alex, however, was having none of the calm. She barely waited a moment before crawling back up Patrice's body, pressing hers against it fully knowing that her clothes against Patrice's now sensitive skin would make the blonde shudder. She placed her hand firmly on the small of Sabina's back as she kissed Patrice firmly, making it very clear that she was not so content.

Patrice breathed against Alex's skin, and instinctively brought her hands up under the other blonde's shirt, unfastening her bra, and tugging the clothing off. Alex's intent was contagious, and she found herself pressing up and turning Alex on her back, pinning her to the bed. Patrice smiled down at her and captured each of Alex's hands, kissing the wrists before placing them both firmly above the other blonde's head.

Sabina watched Patrice flip their positions, her hands going from Patrice's breasts to Alex's, and she didn't wait for Patrice to give her instructions before she started pull off Alex's clothing.

The blonde drew in a sharp breath and smirked as she looked up to Patrice. Alex grasped her own wrists and arched out of instinct into the touch. She lifted her chin, silently asking for a kiss and wondering if Patrice would continue to oblige.

Patrice indulged her for a few more moments, kissing her intently while stroking the back of Sabina's head, holding her against Alex's skin. Eventually she released her lips and began working down Alex's body, stopping to pull Sabina up and kiss her on the way.

Sabina pressed into the kiss. She hadn't really seen Alex like that before and it made her wonder about the other woman. She might know favorite colors or favorite foods, but she didn't really know much about either of their lives before she met them in Paris. Alex moaned, watching, waiting, her desire building with her impatience. But she kept her position even as she squirmed insistently under Patrice.

Patrice smiled against Alex's skin and worked lower, settling between her legs. She slid her fingers up Alex's skin, pushing her legs further apart and then leaned in, sliding her fingers between the other blonde's legs and lowering her mouth to lick her at the same time. Sabina rolled Alex's nipples between her fingers and watched Patrice lick her. She was squirming next to Alex, but it didn't seem like either of them minded when she squirmed.

For a moment, Alex's grip on her own wrists faltered as she squirmed into the touch. She wanted her release more than perfection, but Sabina's touch reminded her of her role. She rested her head back into the pillow and moaned softly, closing her eyes to everything but what she felt.

Patrice continued, encouraged by Alex's moan. She couldn't help herself, and slid the hand that wasn't touching Alex up to brush across Sabina's thigh, fingers finding a perfect mark, tracing it gently.

The brunette shivered and whimpered as Patrice touched her. She rubbed her thighs together, trying to find just a bit of relief, hoping that they would pay attention to her soon.

It was only a moment later that Alex arched sharply, coming hard against Patrice's fingers and marking her own skin where she dug her nails into her wrists. She stilled, chest still heaving as she finally opened her eyes. "Mm."

Patrice pushed her gently through, and then slowed, working her way back up to lie next to Alex. She sighed and kissed her, hands pressing over her now warm and flushed skin. Slowly her focus shifted to Sabina, who was now looking back at them somewhere between expectant and ready to beg.

Sabina looked at Patrice hopefully and squirmed.

Alex ran her fingers through Sabina's hair lazily and drew in a contented breath. "Mm...I think she's done well enough tonight for a reward." Sabina had, after all, been attentive and had not needed much prompting.

Patrice sat up, nodding. She pulled Sabina over and turned her to face her, leaving Alex a view of her marked back. The blond lifted Sabina's chin and kissed her, taking a moment of simplicity before she pushed things further.

Sabina returned the kiss, pressing in lightly against Patrice. She knew that she had been disobedient earlier and she knew that she deserved the punishment, and now she want to prove to Patrice that she could be good. She could be really, really good.

Alex propped herself on one of her elbows and walked her fingers down Sabina's back, reminding her that she was there, that she was still watching.

Patrice released Sabina's lips only to move lower and bite at her neck, closing her teeth firmly as she lowered her hands to tease the young woman's nipples. She glanced at Alex over Sabina's shoulder, her eyes smiling. Sabina whimpered slightly and tried to stay still. She knew there would be a mark on her neck, and the thought made her flush, and depending on just what Patrice and Alex wanted her to wear the next day, it would probably be impossible to cover up.

On a whim, Alex took Sabina's wrists, gently holding them behind the girl's back, leaving her completely on display for Patrice. She kissed the girl's shoulder then returned Patrice's glance, hers longer, more intense as she waited and watched.

Patrice swallowed back a moan and leaned back for a moment, gazing from the mark she had just made, down Sabina's body and back up to meet Alex's eyes again. She smiled and slipped her fingers into the brunette, controlling her pleasure and allowing Alex to temper it as she saw fit.

"Oh." Sabina arched forward as far as she could with her arms pinned. Just the position was enough to excite her, and Patrice's fingers were driving her crazy.

Alex held her firmly without pulling her back. She enjoyed seeing Sabina's body stretched that way, seeking her pleasure but also taking it in being partially denied. She licked her lips, enjoying Patrice's responses as well.

Patrice slowed, teasing Sabina quietly, the moment being too good to waste. She looked back to the younger woman, letting a small smile cross her features when she saw how beautiful the brunette looked on the edge. "Say please," she intoned softly.

"Please." Sabina didn't think about what she was saying before she said it. It could have been anything, and it came out desperate and breathy.

It was so simple and charming that Alex couldn't help but smile. She looked to Patrice, indicating that she thought Sabina's entreaty was enough but leaving the final decision to the blonde.

Patrice smiled at Sabina and nodded. She didn't want to make her wait any longer and kissed her, while shifting to brush her fingers gently but firmly over her clit. Sabina shuddered as Patrice nodded and pressed down into her hand. She knew that she looked completely shameless like that, but she didn't care. She wanted to come and she was so close. It only took a few more minutes before her muscles were clenching and she was pulling against Alex's hands on her wrists.

Alex held firm, smiling as she watched. She met Patrice's eyes and gently let Sabina go, pulling the girl down next to her and reaching for Patrice to follow them. Patrice collapsed alongside them contentedly, idly running her fingers through Sabina's hair to quiet her.

Sabina caught her breath and pressed herself into Patrice's hands, loving how they felt in her hair. Her back was still sore, and the muscles in her arms and shoulders were tight, but it felt good.

"Very good," Alex murmured without making clear to whom the praise was directed.

"Mmmmm.." Patrice relaxed with them, content to wait a moment before they all had to go on with their night.

Sabina sighed contently. She wasn't homesick anymore, though she doubted that it was the last time she would feel that way.

Chapter Text

Sabina found a chair near the door of the shop and sat down to wait for Patrice. She looked around the lingerie store and tried not to shift uncomfortably. There had been fabulous lingerie stores in Paris, but she had never gotten up the nerve to go in them. This store had to rival any of them, and her eyes were wide as she tried to take it all in. She wasn't sure why Patrice wanted her to come shopping with her, but if she wanted the company, then that was fine with Sabina. It would certainly be one of the easier things Patrice had asked her to do.

"Go wait by the fitting room." Patrice instructed Sabina quietly, giving her a small smile. She had considered just bringing a few things home for the young woman but earlier that day decided that getting to watch her try them on would be far more pleasurable. Besides, it would be a lovely way to surprise Alex that night. She had gone right to the lingerie, deciding she would start with a few things for the girl to wear on normal days, and then would find her something for when company was over.

Patrice wandered through the store, pausing now and then to take something with her that might look nice. She wanted something simple to start; Sabina's natural beauty didn't need enhancing with unnecessary decoration. She returned to the fitting rooms with several garments over her arm. "Come with me," she nodded at Sabina and stepped into one of the rooms.

Sabina scrambled up and followed Patrice. Maybe she needed some help with something, or a second opinion or... well, she couldn't really think of anything else. Once she was in the room, she moved to sit on the bench that lined one wall.

Patrice chuckled quietly and held out a simple black slip to Sabina. She was sure most people would wear it with panties as it was very short, but Sabina definitely wasn't most people. "I think this one first." She handed over the garment and sat back on the bench to watch.

"I... Me?" Sabina looked at her confused.

Patrice looked meaningfully at the small bit of cloth the girl was now holding. "Does that seriously look like my size to you?" She smiled at Sabina's confusion.

Sabina looked from the slip to Patrice and had to admit that it didn't particularly look like it would fit Patrice. Of course, it didn't look like it would fit her either. Still, it didn't look like Patrice was giving her much of a choice, so she started pulling off her own clothing. She blushed when she went to unhook her bra. She didn't know why. It wasn't as if she didn't spend most of her time with Patrice naked, but it normally wasn't in such a public setting. She tossed it aside as quickly as she could and pulled on the slip. It was... incredibly short and she tried to tug it down further.

Patrice watched Sabina, her amusement growing. When the girl started fidgeting with the fabric, she made a disapproving noise and stood quietly, "don't bother, that's how it's supposed to fit." Sabina looked beautiful, and Patrice turned her around in front of her to face the mirror, considering. She decided she needed the full effect. "Take your panties off too; you won't be wearing them with this."

"I won't?" Sabina turned bright red, but slid her panties off.

Patrice tilted her head to the side slightly, appraising the younger woman, "No of course not." She couldn't resist, and slipped her hand down to caress Sabina's ass, which was only barely covered by the silk.

Sabina jumped a little at the feel of Patrice's hand and tried to slide away from it. It hadn't occurred to her that they would be shopping for her, and now that it was clear what Patrice's intentions were, she was acutely embarrassed. The last thing that she had really gone shopping for was her leather motorcycle jacket, which she had left in Italy. Otherwise, she just wore whatever was on hand. She was happy to come with Patrice, but she didn't particularly like shopping for herself.

Patrice smiled at Sabina's reaction, and slid an arm around her, kissing her shoulder. "You look beautiful." She released her, the girl was going to have to get comfortable with this since she was enjoying herself thoroughly. Patrice considered the pile of clothes she had brought in and pulled out a cream and black lace set and held them out to Sabina, "I think these next."

Sabina changed as quickly as she could, Patrice's words not really registering. Once she was dressed, she looked at herself in the mirror, and frowned slightly. The person standing there didn't really look like her.

"Is there a problem Sabina?" Patrice was already standing to shift the clothes, considering them.

"I just..." Sabina shrugged. "I'm just not used to looking like this." She didn't want Patrice to think that she was ungrateful, and she stood still while Patrice adjusted things.

"I would guess you're also not used to being fed dinner, but you've gotten accustomed to that yes?" Her voice was still gentle, but Sabina needed a small reminder of the nature of the relationship. "And we're not here shopping for your school clothes anyway." She brushed her fingers over Sabina's nipple under the silk.

Sabina whimpered slightly and closed her eyes when Patrice touched her, leaning back against the other woman. There just... weren't quite so many mirrors in the apartment. Doing as she was told was one thing. Having to watch herself do it was another. "I'm sorry."

"Shh... it's alright..." Patrice kissed her cheek reassuringly and gently worked her fingers under the silk to touch the girl's nipple, tugging it gently. She couldn't help herself, the visual and the slightly public location were too much and she silently slid her other hand down Sabina's exposed stomach.

The brunette made another slightly noise, then bit her lip, trying to stay quiet as Patrice touched her. She leaned back against her, and grabbed at Patrice's thigh to steady herself. She couldn't stop herself from pushing against hand on her stomach, and watching Patrice do it made her blush even redder.

Patrice didn't correct her, already enjoying herself far too much. She knew the girl's potential embarrassment at being caught would keep her quiet enough. The blond smiled and nipped the girl's ear, whispering, "watch" as she slipped her fingers down the front of Sabina's panties and slowly stroked her.

Oh God. She wanted to say it out loud and only just stopped herself. She arched into Patrice's touch. She was already wet, and she had a feeling she would probably stay that way for the rest of their shopping trip. She was embarrassingly close to coming, and she bit down harder on her lip to try to distract herself.

Patrice smiled again at the girl's reflection, deciding not to let her have her reward just yet. She removed her hands quietly. "yes I think those will do." She turned and picked the slip up out of the pile of clothes, deciding to get two of them as well.

Patrice nodded in amusement, already anticipating their next stop, "you may change back now."

Sabina stumbled slightly as Patrice let her go. She knew better than to try to protest. "Um... thank you." She didn't know what else to say, but she felt like she needed to say something Sabina nodded and started pulling off the lingerie. Just as she was sort of getting used to the process, she pulled off the panties and noticed that they were slightly damp. Any relief from her blushing was gone as she handed them over to Patrice and quickly got dressed.

Patrice smiled at the poor girl's blush and took the slip, leaving the rest of the garments in the room. When Sabina was dressed, she led her out of the room and paused on her way to the counter to pick up another slip and set from the racks. She didn't want to embarrass the girl further knowing she was already bright red.

She trailed after Patrice, certain that all of the sales people knew exactly what they had been doing in the fitting room. She was quiet as Patrice paid, as she tried not to shift restlessly.

Patrice noted Sabina's unease but didn't comment, it was a good lesson for the girl in trust. They walked down a few storefronts and Patrice led her into their next destination. She nodded again at the fitting rooms in the back, "I will be there in a minute."

Sabina nodded and once again headed to the back of the store to wait. She let out a slight breath when she realized that this wasn't another lingerie store. This couldn't possibly be as embarrassing.

Patrice wandered, picking up a few things. She wanted to find something that Sabina could wear for special occasions or for going out that would reflect well on her and Alex. She brought back a few things to where Sabina was waiting and gestured to a fitting room again, closing the door after them. The store was upscale and the rooms were generous. To her pleasure, the doors reached to the ground, and afforded more privacy. She picked up a short black dress that fastened in a halter-top and left most of the back bare, holding it out to Sabina.

Sabina slipped out of her clothing and took the dress. A dress she could handle. Dress shopping was at least somewhat normal. She pulled the dress on and let it fall over her hips and thighs.

Patrice considered her for a moment, liking the effect. The dress was short enough, only falling to mid- thigh. She felt they might not need to try the others she had brought, but she had one more thing to see before she decided. "Stay here and don't change yet." Patrice turned and left the room, coming back a moment later with a choker made of black beads. She had no intention of buying the necklace, but needed the full effect. She smiled and decided to complete the look. "Kneel, " she said quietly but firmly.

Sabina swallowed nervously, but got to her knees. She tried to avoid looking in the mirrors and instead focused on the floor.

Patrice smiled, keeping her demeanor light and fastened the necklace snugly around the girl's neck. She circled her once, fingers brushing over her bare shoulders. "What do you think?" She spoke conversationally, as if it were any other shopping trip.

"I..." Sabina forced herself to look in the mirror. "It looks nice."

Seeing Sabina kneeling in a $400.00 outfit was too good to resist and Patrice was already looking forward to surprising Alex. She ran her fingers through the young girl's hair and sat, pulling her over closer.

Sabina willingly slid closer to Patrice. She knew that if Patrice like the dress, then her opinion didn't really matter. She bumped her forehead against Patrice's knee and waited to be told what to do.

It was against her better judgment, but Patrice couldn't help it. She pushed her skirt up and slid her panties down, slipping a finger through the choker, pulling the girl in with purpose. Sabina pushed her head between Patrice's knees, under the edge of her skirt, and started licking. Patrice's hand on her neck was comforting and the strength behind it let her forget about everything else. She didn't have a choice, so she didn't think to fight it.

Patrice leaned her head back, rubbing her fingers over Sabina's skin where she could reach, and whispered encouragement to the brunette shamelessly. Once she caught sight of their reflection in the mirror, the beautiful girl's back gracefully leaning over to touch her; it didn't take long for Patrice to push over the edge. Sabina kept licking until Patrice calmed, then she pressed her cheek into Patrice's thigh. She didn't try to pull away from where she was, content to let Patrice direct her actions.

Patrice relaxed, petting Sabina for a few moments, then stood, pulling the girl up with her. She ran her hands down the brunette's sides gently, and started pulling the dress up and off. "Yes I think this one will do."

Sabina lifted her arms for Patrice, letting her pulled the dress off. Once she was naked, she reached for her clothing, hoping that they were done shopping for the day.

Patrice caught Sabina's arm as she reached for her clothes. "Wait." She knew Sabina would still be wanting from earlier, and wasn't going to take her home that way.

The girl stopped and looked at Patrice expectantly. There were some other dresses hanging on the wall, but Patrice had seemed like she was finished.

Patrice smiled, "We're done with the clothes, yes Sabina. Now turn around and wait while I hang this back up." She busied herself with putting things back on hangers.

Sabina turned her back to Patrice, but that only afforded her a better view in the mirror. She tried not to fidget, but only partially succeeded.

Patrice hung the clothes up and turned to Sabina, running her fingers up the girl's back to her shoulders. She made an approving noise and leaned in to kiss her neck. Patrice's hands continued to wander, fingers brushing over Sabina's nipples, enjoying her body's reaction. Sabina's nipples stiffened under Patrice's fingers and she couldn't stop herself from staring at Patrice's hands in the mirror. She shivered as Patrice touched her and she tried not to squirm. Patrice would do what she wanted, when she wanted, and they were in far too public a place for Sabina to beg.

"Mmmmnn.." Patrice moaned almost silently against Sabina's skin and looked up to catch the young woman looking at their reflection. The sight was enough for her to take pity on the girl, and didn't make her wait longer. Patrice pushed Sabina's panties down to her ankles and nudged her legs apart, encouraging her to step out of them. That done, she slipped her fingers between the girl's legs and began to touch her firmly but gently.

"Oh..." Sabina swallowed the rest of her moan and pressed into Patrice's hand shamelessly. She grabbed at Patrice's hips again, trying to steady herself, trying to make her head stop spinning. It didn't really work, but Patrice felt much steadier behind her, so Sabina trusted that she wouldn't let her fall.

Patrice loved to see Sabina lose herself, and actively encouraged it. She brought her free hand up to the girl's chin and turned her face so she could kiss her possessively. Her other hand was still between Sabina's legs, and she moved faster and with more purpose before the brunette could remember where she was.

The kiss was more than enough to push her over the edge and she pressed into Patrice desperately as she came. She sucked in a breath as soon as she could think to breath again and clung to Patrice, still not capable of standing up on her own.

Patrice let her hang there, and moved her hand up to Sabina's waist, steadying her. She slowly turned the brunette around and pulled her into her arms to let her recover, gently running her fingers through the younger woman's hair. Sabina wrapped her arms around Patrice and took a few more steadying breaths before she managed to let her go. Just as she always did afterwards, she wanted to stay there, pressed into Patrice, but that was hardly an option. Her sense of place came rushing back and Sabina practically dove for her clothing, not waiting for Patrice to tell her it was okay.

The blonde smiled at the girl, watching her thought process run to natural conclusions. She knew she had pushed her, but hadn't taken it too far. Patrice let Sabina dress and then paused to kiss her softly, "you were very good and Alex will be proud when I tell her later." She smiled warmly and took off the choker, then led Sabina from the room to go pay for the dress.

Sabina followed Patrice out and hoped that they would be going home soon. She didn't know how much more shopping she could take.

Patrice finished at the register and checked her watch, "We should get home, or Alex will think I've kidnapped you and run off." She smiled, looking forward to the other blond's reaction to their purchases.

Sabina blushed again, not used to their unconventional relationship being addressed in public. She hoped that the saleswoman hadn't overheard and she hurried to follow Patrice.

When they arrived home Patrice smiled and nodded to Sabina. "Alex let me know she's on her way home and I think we should go out to dinner tonight. I've made reservations and you should look nice, go put on the dress and wait for us in the living room." She had made the plans on her way home, inspired by surprising Alex with a treat. They hadn't had enough time to enjoy things lately, and Patrice wanted to do something to thank Alex for all her work in bringing Sabina to New York, even if dinner was the best she could do just then.

Sabina nodded and went into her room to change. She slipped on the dress, put on a little makeup, and walked back out into the living room. There was something about dress against her bare skin after the excitement of the afternoon that left her slightly breathless. She knelt in the middle of the living room to wait for Alex to get home.

The prospect of dinner out took a different meaning with Sabina involved, and Alex found herself almost over eager to get home. They had been staying in, which was in itself always nice, but the social aspect would complete, cement the arrangement. And Alex felt a beginning in this little outing. When she came inside, she was smiling, and she didn't bother to take off her coat. "Patrice, I..." She stepped into the living room and her smile widened at the sight of Sabina. "Mm...well..."

Patrice stepped up behind Alex and wrapped her arms around her, kissing her neck. She had taken a few moments to change and was wearing a simple but flattering dress, not too unlike Sabina's, but more demure and suited to her form. She smiled, "welcome home."

Alex turned into Patrice, catching her lips as best she could to kiss her softly. "Mm, thank you." She pulled away to take in both women and began unbuttoning her coat. "You both look...stunning." There was something entirely thrilling about Patrice in such an understated dress. She leaned in to kiss her again before turning to Sabina, running her fingers along the girl's shoulders as she circled her. "Stand up...let me see you."

Sabina stood up, and keeping her head down, looked up at Alex. There was a slight smile on her lips and she shivered as the fabric of the dress brushed against her skin

Pleased with what she saw, Alex circled the dark haired girl again. She ran her fingers down Sabina's spine, feeling her shiver underneath the light fabric. Sabina's training thus far only made her elegance more striking. "You two have had a busy afternoon," Alex murmured, looking up to Patrice. She smiled again as she leaned in to kiss Sabina's shoulder. "Let me just go change."

Patrice crossed her arms casually and leaned in the doorway, smiling broadly as she watched Alex admire the girl. Yes, the money had been well spent though it was extravagant, but she was looking forward to a very pleasant evening. Patrice watched as Alex went off to change and called the restaurant again, asking for a booth in the back where it would be quiet.

Alex glanced at the partially opened closet and pulled out a simple green cocktail dress with a boatneck that showed her collarbones and left the rest to imagination. She checked herself in the mirror, deciding to pull her hair up into a simply messy bun, and when she returned, she was putting in a different pair of earrings. "I'd hate for us to be late."

Sabina glanced at Alex, then Patrice. She was anxious to go.

Patrice took a moment to look them both over, smiling then stepped over and kissed Alex, taking her by the hand and moving to the door. "You look beautiful, and don't worry, we'll be in plenty of time." She smiled again and nodded at Sabina as she led Alex to the door, letting the young woman follow them down to a cab.

The cab ride was quiet, and Alex was happy to have Sabina between them. She kept her hand on the girl's knee, rubbing her thumb over it lightly. When they arrived, they were shown to an incredibly private table, and Alex smiled at Patrice, realizing that she should have known the blonde would have taken care of that as well.

Sabina slid into the booth between them and smiled at the maitre d' as she accepted her menu. She wondered if she would be allowed to order for herself, or if Patrice or Alex would do it for her. She brushed her fingertips against the side of Patrice's thigh and crossed her legs.

Patrice took the menu as well and ordered a their drinks, getting Sabina a soda. When the waiter left she raised an eyebrow at the girl, letting her know she hadn't overlooked her seemingly innocent touch. The blond wasn't in the mood to discipline Sabina, and so kept her tone playful, though the girl would catch her meaning well enough, "just because you're all dressed up doesn't mean you can take liberties without asking." To soften the statement she brushed the back of her hand over the young woman's cheek appreciatively, before turning back to Alex, "It's been too long since we were here last, I'd forgotten how nice the atmosphere is."

"Mm, and how many things on the menu I wanted to come back and try." Alex smiled at the touch and settled back, content to watch the two women interact. When the waiter appeared against with their drinks, she ordered for herself and for Sabina before letting Patrice go ahead. And once the menus were gone, she found that she could better appreciate both women in the soft light. "How was your day?"

Sabina nodded to Patrice and whispered a quick, "I'm sorry," before falling silent again. She bypassed her soda for the glass of water next to it, wishing that it was mineral water but knowing better than to complain. She looked to Patrice to see how she would answer Alex.

"Well..." She smiled at a few choice memories from the day. "Work was fine, filed a motion for continuance in one of my cases seeing as how my client keeps suddenly going to Bermuda, and then I took the liberty of doing a little shopping with Sabina here, as you can probably tell." The blond turned to Sabina, smiling, "you can show Alex what else you got later tonight."

Sabina blushed and nodded. "I'd like that." She smiled at Alex.

"Mm, I'm looking forward to that." Alex swirled her wine in her glass before taking an almost reflective sip. She let her hand rest of Sabina's knee again for a moment before sliding her fingers up the brunette's leg, her touch light, teasing. "You know, I wouldn't mind making more of a habit of this..."

Patrice smiled and took a sip of her vodka, "Me either." She noted where Alex's hand was disappearing under the tablecloth and could tell the other blond was appreciative of her efforts, making it more than worthwhile. The waiter brought their food, and the wine Alex had ordered to go with, pouring a bit in Alex's glass for approval. When she smiled and nodded, he took his leave, letting them enjoy their dinner in peace.

Sabina pressed her leg into Alex's touch and tried not stare at the bottle of wine. She found that it was easier if she simply didn't know what they were drinking.

Alex was content with simply making small talk as they ate, with stealing glances at the way the light played on Patrice's soft curls, with brushing her fingers across Sabina's lap. She poured herself a fresh glass half way through and offered it to Sabina. "A little taste...I think you'll find it pairs well with your duck."

Patrice raised an eyebrow at Alex's indulgence, but didn't say anything, glad to be enjoying the night out.

Sabina took the glass and inhaled deeply. "Thank you." She took a sip and held the wine in her mouth, tasting all of the nuances. "Plum jam, coffee, and...black pepper. " She sighed in contentment.

Chuckling, Alex took the glass away. "I wonder if we might have a private tasting at home. Sabina could probably teach to two of us something." She smiled to Patrice as she brushed the toe of her shoe against the blonde's leg.

Patrice nodded, still a little impressed by the girl. "I think that might be in order." She had relaxed, and brushed a strand of the girl's hair back from her face, the touch lingering, "And how are your classes, you hardly ever talk about them."

Sabina closed her eyes for a moment at Patrice's touch. "They're good. I'm taking a class on script adaptation that I really like."

"Mm, that sounds interesting," Alex said. She let Sabina and Patrice chat about school while they finished and Sabina had dessert, but by the time they were finished, she was quite content to finish the last of her coffee and catch a cab home, Sabina situated between them.

Patrice led them upstairs, unlocking the door. It had been a lovely evening and she was anticipating it getting even better still. "Sabina, why don't you go and pick out something you got today to wear for the rest of the night," she looked at Alex for confirmation, "I think we'll be having a little nightcap."

Sabina nodded and went into her room. She pulled one of the slips out of the bag. She picked out the cream one, thinking that it would look nice after spending the night in the black dress. She didn't bother to pull on a pair of panties, as Patrice hadn't picked out a pair to go with it. She returned to the living room and knelt.

Alex gave Patrice a soft kiss before going to the wet bar, mixing a brandy alexander for each of them as something of a treat. "I'm curious to see what else you picked out," she said, smiling as she handed Patrice her drink. And when she saw Sabina return in the slip, curiosity was no longer the correct term for what she felt. "Mm...have I ever told you that you have...excellent taste?"

Patrice smiled at Alex over her glass and took a sip, nodding at the girl on the floor. "I thought it would be nice...just something to wear around the apartment." She took a seat on the couch and crossed her legs, tapping the toe of her shoe casually against the coffee table. "Sabina, stand up and show Alex how nicely it fits."

Sabina stood and clutched her hands behind her back to stop herself from tugging the slip down.

The silky fabric stood in relief against Sabina's olive skin, and Alex smiled at the simple beauty of it. She circled the girl, running her fingers along her shoulders, pushing one of the thin straps down. "Very pretty..." She looked up to Patrice. "She wears it well."

Patrice was still smiling gently, enjoying the view, "doesn't she? I think she was a little unsure when we were shopping today, but she behaved well." She took a sip, "I think she deserves a reward."

Sabina shivered at Alex's touch and blushed as they talked about her as if she couldn't hear them.

"Mm, does she? She's already had wine tonight." Alex remained behind Sabina and ran her fingers down the girl's back. She pushed under the slip, pressing her fingers between Sabina's legs, teasing. And she looked up to Patrice, making sure the blonde was enjoying.

Patrice got up to refresh her drink, perching on the arm of the couch on her way back instead of sitting down as she watched, "Yes, I think she does." She took a sip and relaxed, "Please..."

Sabina pulled away in surprise, but then stilled herself. She whimpered as Alex touched her and tried not to squirm.

"Since you asked so nicely..." Alex smirked before taking a long sip of her drink. She held it casually as she slid her fingers into Sabina, fucking her lightly, slowly, enjoying how warm and wet she was.

Patrice watched them for a few long moments, savoring the picture they made; Alex clearly enjoying herself, and Sabina trying to maintain her composure against growing arousal. Once she couldn't wait any longer, she stood and crossed the room to stand in front of Sabina, pulling the other strap of her slip down, exposing her chest. Patrice paused, then raised her fingers to casually stroke the girl's nipples in turn. Sabina opened her mouth wordlessly and closed her eyes. Her knees were weakening and it was getting harder not to push into Alex's fingers. She loved standing between them, having them touch her like she really belonged to them and it was becoming overwhelming.

"Good girl," Alex whispered, increasing her pace. She pushed forward, catching Patrice's lips lightly as she pushed more firmly into Sabina.

Patrice moved the hand that wasn't touching Sabina to wrap around Alex's head, pulling her more deeply into the kiss. She moaned deeply, and slipped her fingers lower, over Sabina's stomach. Sabina moaned and pressed into Alex's touch as she leaned against Patrice. She kissed Patrice's collarbone and nuzzled against her neck.

Alex moaned into the kiss, pulling away only when she had to. She pressed her thumb to Sabina's clit, smirking to Patrice. "Mm, should we let her come?"

Patrice had been moving her hand lower, and smiled when her fingers touched Alex's, slipping through the dark curls between Sabina's legs. She kissed Alex again quickly, "Yes...of course, only if she wants it." She looked at Sabina, wanting to hear her try to speak at that moment.

"P.... please..." She leaned harder against Patrice, nuzzling against her neck, wordlessly begging for a kiss.

"I think she does," Alex replied, smirking as she leaned back. She sipped her drink thoughtfully, still rolling Sabina's clit under her thumb, showing no haste.

Patrice couldn't help but smile, both out of the pleasure of the moment, and at the thoughts of how the night might end. Alex was obviously enjoying herself, and Patrice knew that look in the other blonde's eye, and her stomach quickened in anticipation. Patrice played her fingers over Alex's feeling her as she touched Sabina, and lowered her lips to the younger woman's neck, nipping, then marking her skin.

Sabina moaned, tilting her head to the side to allow Patrice better access to the skin there. If she wanted to leave a trail of marks down her neck, Sabina would make it easier for her. She shuddered against Alex's fingers, whimpering.

"That's it." Alex slid two fingers into the girl easily, smiling at her wetness. She continued to take her time, wanting to draw it out but knowing that Sabina wouldn't hold much longer.

Patrice didn't move her lips from Sabina's skin, and continued to mark her, claim her. She was enjoying how the younger woman responded, and rewarded Sabina by taking up circling her clit when Alex moved her fingers into her.

Sabina shook between them, trying to hold off her orgasm until one of them gave her permission, but ultimately, she failed. She pitched forward into Patrice's arms, unable to help herself as her muscles contracted. Alex pulled her fingers away and pressed them to her lips, tasting Sabina, satisfied, before tasting her drink. She let Patrice hold the girl, enjoying the site, enjoying the vulnerability that Sabina displayed. "Mm, Patrice, why don't you take Sabina to her room?" And in that, she knew Patrice would know she was taking Sabina to be...to sleep.

Patrice watched Alex's fingers intently, pulse rising. She quieted the girl for a moment as she calmed and then began to lead the brunette to her room. Patrice pulled off the now disheveled slip and pressed the young woman into bed. Sabina looked tired and more than a little satisfied and Patrice knew the girl would be asleep before she turned out the lights. Sabina curled into the middle of her bed and let her eyes drift closed.

She closed Sabina's door quietly and then had to stop herself from running down the hall after Alex. As she reached the bedroom, she paused in the doorway and felt her knees nearly go weak when she saw Alex looking at her with such obvious intent. Though there was an element of normalcy creeping into their relationship, the girl could still take her breath away.

At Patrice's reaction to simply seeing her through the doorway, Alex felt a thrill in her core. But she kept calm. She was sitting on the bed, legs crossed as she sipped her now refreshed drink. She didn't want another, didn't need another. In fact, she was drinking tonic with lime this time, but Patrice hardly needed to know that. "That was a lovely evening." She smiled as she let her shoe dangle from her toes.

Patrice smiled broadly, knowing Alex could read her breath, her stare, easily. "Glad you enjoyed it, I did too." The blond crossed the room easily and leaned down to kiss Alex, brushing her tongue along the other woman's lips as she pulled away teasingly, "Well I suppose we should get to sleep now, you're probably tired."

"Are you tired?" Alex stared up at Patrice, icy eyes penetrating. She caught the blonde around the waist with her free arm and pulled her close, smirking.

Patrice let out a surprised and delighted moan and pressed against Alex, leaning down to nip at her ear, "not at all."

The blonde tightened her hold, holding back a pleased grin at Patrice's reaction. Patrice made her feel younger, nearly reckless, and she couldn't get enough of it that night. "I didn't think so," she purred, nipping at Patrice's nipple through the fabric of her dress.

"Oh..." Patrice exclaimed and squirmed under Alex's touch. She reached and took the still half-full glass from the other blonde's fingers, taking a sip before giving it back to her and slipping to the floor between Alex's knees. She only half-registered that there was no alcohol in it on the second round, and smiled up at her companion as she worked her fingers up under Alex's dress.

Alex opened her knees wider to accommodate Patrice and she slipped her fingers through the blonde's soft, carefully messy curls. She could not help but smile down, her anticipation readily visible in her eyes. "Mmm, Patrice..."

 

"Yes Alex?" Patrice's voice was teasing, playful as she hooked her fingers through the waist of Alex's panties and slid them off. "Would you like something?" She was smiling openly, and kissed the other blonde's thigh while she waited for an answer.

"I would like," Alex said as she ran her fingers down Patrice's jaw and under her chin, "to enjoy how pretty you look with your head between my legs, while you're tasting me." She smirked, cocking her head in silent questions of whether that was an adequate answer.

Patrice smiled, not really in the mood to teas too long that night. "Then I hope you will," She leaned down and began to lick Alex, letting a small moan out now and then, imparting how much she was enjoying the moment.

Alex watched, moaning softly as she stroked Patrice's hair. She wanted her to know that she appreciated this, that she appreciated the evening. And in that, in the pure pleasure of the moment, her thoughts were hazy and light. She pictured Sabina in her dress, thoughts vaguely focused on how well behaved the girl was. But she kept coming back to simply seeing Patrice before her, feeling her tongue. It was not long before Alex reached her climax, fingers gripping Patrice's hair tightly for a moment before releasing.

Patrice knew Alex's reactions well, and pushed the moment as long as she could, then kissed down the other blonde's thigh. She took a moment to let Alex relax, and waited on the carpet in front of her, looking up at the other woman quietly.

"Come here," Alex whispered after a moment. She coaxed Patrice up and laid back, pulling the blonde with her, half on top of her as she carefully held the glass with her free hand. Patrice's skin was flushed, warm, and Alex pressed their cheeks together, wrapping her arms tightly around the other woman. "Thank you for tonight."

"I'm glad you enjoyed it, I know I did." Patrice kissed Alex deeply, feeling the other woman's comfortable warmth.

Alex returned the kiss, becoming quickly caught up in it before feeling a too cold splash on her hip. "Shit..." She sat up, quickly putting the tumbler on the bedside table as she grabbed a handful of Kleenex to dab the spread. She turned to Patrice, an almost sheepish smile on her face. "Sorry..."

Patrice was holding back laughter, and took the kleenex from Alex, tossing them in the trash. She turned back to the other blond and looked at her with an expression of mock-dismay, "You had better take that dress off now."

"Only if you let me take yours off first," Alex replied before pulling her into a kiss, finishing what the last had started.

Patrice wasn't one to argue with the request and turned to let Alex help her out of the garment.

The blonde made quick work of pulling the zipper down and getting Patrice out of it, and she finished by pulling off her own dress. She was all too eager to feel Patrice's skin against her and pressed back into her, running her hands down Patrice's sides.

Patrice moaned deeply and pushed them toward the bed, tipping as the backs of her knees hit the edge of the mattress, pulling Alex up to cover her. She was more than ready, shivering from a combination of anticipation and the air on her skin.

Alex pressed her thigh between Patrice's legs as she kissed down her jaw, to her neck to leave a light mark there. She had little interest in prolonging the moment too long, but Patrice was as beautiful in it as ever.

She pressed up against Alex's touch, running her fingers through the other blond's hair, loosening it, letting it fall. Her heart was beating faster, aching for release after the night's events.

Moaning softly, Alex shifted to Patrice's side. She pressed her fingers into the blonde, pushing firmly without being rough. And instead of waiting, she began to circle Patrice's clit with her thumb. There was nothing she needed to say; she simply wanted Patrice to feel.

She kept her hand in Alex's hair, and brushed the other over the other woman's skin, feeling her warmth, lingering over her nipples, tracing patterns with increasing pace as she got closer.

Alex smiled, continued to push, meeting Patrice's pace as she stared into the blonde's intensely bright eyes. She licked her lips, eagerness showing even though she knew they were both tired, both ready to fall into each other's arms and sleep.

It didn't take long before Patrice shuddered, fingers twisting in Alex's hair. She slowly quieted, pulling her over, wrapping Alex's slender form tightly in her arms. "Mmmn...you're perfect..." Her eyes were already closing and she felt like she could fall asleep right there without even getting into bed.

She drew in a long breath and smiled against Patrice's flushed skin. "And you're...mmm..." Alex nuzzled her lightly before fumbling to pull the covers back, knowing if they fell asleep there and then, one of them might wake up in the middle of the night and be utterly unable to resist temptation.

She shifted, allowing Alex to cover them and settled into the other woman's arms to sleep. The day, the night, had been a perfect escape from the daily monotony of worries and tasks and Patrice was already planning, dreaming about the next chance she might have to surprise Alex. She smiled as she turned out the light. "Goodnight Alex."

Chapter Text

Patrice slammed the door to her office, hard. She strode past Jacob's desk with such purpose that he swore he could see the papers flutter. He mentally cowered, it was never good when she slammed her door....especially on a Friday. He opened his mouth to say something, but Patrice was already reaching the elevators, and he heard her swear under her breath when she was made to wait even a moment for them to open. As the doors closed again she yelled something about the Frasier case and him needing to come in on Saturday.

Patrice nearly stomped out of the building and headed over the three blocks to Alex's office. She had a suspicion that their relationship was sneaking into this case, though she hoped for Alex's sake she was mistaken. Patrice didn't even bother to ask if Alex was in her office, but with the mess of papers that had been delivered to her that afternoon, she was sure she was working overtime. The blonde was presumptuous enough to mutter, "Hold her calls, she's expecting me," to the flustered secretary outside Alex's door on her way in. She turned back to Caroline. "Actually, you can probably go for the day." The girl looked more than a little confused, but Patrice ignored it; she didn't want to jeopardize Alex's standing in the firm, and was fairly sure this was going to be a louder than normal conversation. She pushed open the door, and closed it, locking it behind her. "What the hell was that you sent me today Alex? Not even a courtesy call? I'd give even my least favorite ADA's that."

Alex raised her eyebrows at the commotion outside when she had heard it, but when she realized it was Patrice, she simply stayed seated at her desk. It was probably better if her secretary did go for the day; anything else she needed, she could get herself. While she had anticipated that Patrice wasn't going to be happy, Alex hadn't quiet expected this, though. After letting a long moment pass, she took off her glasses. "I apologize...I've been busy, and it slipped my mind." And the state of her desk was a testament to that.

Patrice wasn't impressed. She crossed the room and presumptuously tossed her briefcase in one of the chairs but remained standing facing the desk. Had she taken a moment to consider, she might have surmised that her anger was at herself for not being prepared for the angle from which Alex had decided to attack her case, but she hadn't wanted to think of it just yet. She crossed her arms, anger making her eyes narrow as she spoke, "That's not an excuse. We're both busy, hell, even the underpaid and overworked assistants at the DA's office could have managed to follow protocol here." She knew that the dig was dangerously close to home for the other blond but didn't care.

At that, Alex pursed her lips. There was something of an ungodly attractiveness in Patrice's demeanor, but if there had been an inkling of desire beginning there, Patrice had completely squelched it. She put her hands on her desk, but she didn't stand even though it was obvious that she had bristled. "You didn't need to come all the way over here to tell me that, so what's your problem?" she asked, trying to rise to it but failing miserably.

Her eyes flashed and she moved closer to Alex, there was something maddening in how cool Alex could stay at moments like these. Patrice suddenly wanted to see her yell, get upset, hell...even get out of her damn seat. They usually managed to maintain very clear boundaries, even when their cases were at odds, and that Patrice believed Alex had broken this unspoken rule was making her lash out. "What's my problem? My problem is that I think it's a little convenient for your client that you had all the dates moved up in the Frasier case when you know damn well I'm booked solid that month. Who else would know that Alex?" She was nearly shaking inside, and crossed her arms to keep from doing anything she might later regret.

Alex might have been poised to apologize--she hadn't been thinking about Patrice schedule. In fact, keeping up with her own schedule was quite enough, especially with Sabina's and Patrice's to juggle with it. At work, she tried to focus on that--work. And with Patrice's behavior, which was nothing short of a tantrum, she wasn't about to make any concessions. She crossed her arms, sitting back in the chair, knowing it was only going to make the other blonde angrier. "Go back to your office, Patrice. You might want to think about beating yourself up for not getting an extension, or you might want to consider stopping for a latte and calming down," she said with chilly calm.

Patrice glared at her; the other blonde's demeanor was absolutely infuriating. No one talked to her like that, and that Alex thought she could was pushing Patrice over the edge. She didn't think, letting her emotion control her. What she did next was against her better judgment, but her better judgment had taken a flying jump out the window with Alex's last comment. She stepped around the desk and kicked the other blonde's chair back with her foot, hard enough it rolled away from her desk and hit the wall a few feet behind her. "Get up," she snarled.

The movement came as a complete surprise to Alex, so she nearly toppled out of the chair as it rolled. And she certainly didn't look dignified as the chair landed and her legs were sprawled as she tried to steady herself, gripping arms tightly. She huffed as she straightened herself out, smoothing her hair and thinking that Patrice was lucky her head hadn't snapped back when the chair hit the wall. It was a damned ridiculous thing to do, but Alex knew that there would be very few people in the office now, and there was something decidedly arousing, even though she would rather there not be, about Patrice's growling. Alex thought about not complying, but she finally stood slowly, taking a deep breath to calm herself. "Just what do you think you're doing?" she put her hands on her hips before thinking better of it.

Patrice didn't have an answer to that herself, but it didn't stop her from fabricating one, no matter how ridiculous. "Teaching you to remember your ethics next time you think of prejudicing my clients." She stepped close to the other blonde, challenging with her mere proximity, breath rising and falling more quickly. In that moment, her anger and desire began to mingle, and Alex's haughty beauty only made her more determined to prevail. Without warning she reached out and tugged at the other blonde's hair. She didn't stop to worry about her roughness as she snatched the pins from it, causing Alex's gold locks to fall around her shoulders. Alex's cheek's flushed at the outright accusation, but she only had time to wince and let out a sharp breath before Patrice tugged at her hair. She moved to stop her, lifting her hand before dropping it when something else kicked in.
Before the other woman could recover, Patrice was on her, pulling her into a fierce and passionate kiss. Alex wasn't sure if it was her desire getting the better of her or if it was years of training that made her stand straighter under the pain. At the kiss, she bit back and moan, stiffening herself against the harsh embrace but responding with her mouth.

Patrice registered Alex's internal confusion, and the outcome wasn't satisfactory. Under it all, Alex was still mastering herself. It created a stark juxtaposition to Patrice's lack of control, and she felt the need to break her, to put them on equal footing. It was irrational, but Patrice knew that Alex was well aware of how to stop it if she wanted to, but had not thus far. She was reluctant to release Alex's lips, wanting to even control when the other blond could breathe, but relented just enough to push her back against the wall, "Stop it. Stop thinking." She hadn't changed her tone, and her frustration was still building.

"No," Alex replied, raising her chin. She had rarely seen Patrice this off balance, this fueled by raw anger, but it only pushed her, as irrational as it was, to become more cold, more composed. If Patrice wanted to think she had made a breech of ethics, she would not dispute her out right again, but her pride wouldn't let her stop the situation. She would push through it until one of them broke.

"Shut up." Patrice knew she had asked for a response, but she didn't like what she had been given. She knew Alex well enough to see she was shifting, moving out of her mind and falling back on her training. Patrice needed more than that right now, needed to know that Alex would care enough to respond more truthfully to her. Without thinking why she took a handful of Alex's hair in one hand, and cupped her ear in the other, pressing her onto the floor. "Down." She knew it would be unexpected, but that was the point, and she needed even a false sense of concession from Alex just then.

She cried out at the unexpected move but sank to the floor as gracefully as she could manage. That had thrown her back into herself for a moment and she looked up to Patrice, a question in her eyes before she lowered them to the floor. Alex wasn't ready to give up the fight just yet, but she needed to be calmer, to find out what exactly was happening with Patrice, and if she had to do it from her knees, then so be it.

Patrice's stomach clenched with arousal in spite of her lingering anger. She was too far gone with this to behave with any sort of control, and didn't try too hard. Patrice released her hold on the other blond just long enough to slip her panties down and off, not bothering with the rest of her clothes before pushing her skirt up part way and pulling Alex to her by the hair. Her pulse was racing, and she would later wonder where her behavior had come from, but in that instant she didn't care about anything but releasing her tension.

Complying, Alex arched into the touch as if she was born to nothing else. She pressed her tongue between Patrice's legs, but she kept her hands clasped behind her back as she began to lick her methodically. Her calm had returned, even though the other blonde's taste was always dizzying. She couldn't deny wanting this, her own wetness betraying that even if her actions didn't.

Patrice arched her neck back and exhaled slowly. She was not yet letting herself moan, it wasn't that kind of release. The blond slid her leg up to rest on Alex's shoulder and pulled her even closer, rocking only slightly, not enough to show Alex just how much she was aroused or how close to release she was.

Suddenly seized with the desire to see just how cool Patrice was playing it, just how much she was holding back, Alex, against her better judgment, pulled back just slightly, leaving her touches feather light. She wasn't ready to let the intensity of the encounter fade, and she hadn't completely given up control just yet.

Patrice couldn't help a small shudder from escaping, giving hint that her anger was turning quickly to desire. "Don't...Alex..." she muttered under her breath in warning tones and pulled her in as best she could. Patrice was so close, and feeling Alex's breath on her between touches was almost painfully arousing.

Alex pressed in again; she couldn't resist that tone, that need. She wanted to feel Patrice come, to see what her release did for her attitude. For a moment, she flicked her eyes upward and moaned at what she could see of the blonde's face. She might have done anything just then.

Patrice let out a shuddering breath as she came against Alex's tongue. She slowly stilled and tilted the other blonde's head up to look at her, the anger now nearly gone. She felt a shiver run through her involuntarily as she looked down at Alex, and her features softened for a moment, silently imparting the change in the encounter, the understanding. Seeing desire flash back at her, she straightened, determined to continue the encounter, only now for their mutual benefit. The rest could be worked out later. She took a breath and then shifted back from Alex, and then drew her up from the floor to kiss her deeply.

The understanding calmed Alex more than her own training, her own detachment could, and she met the kiss with loving submission. She wanted to show Patrice that she was willing to continue, that she would be party to whatever Patrice needed to finish working out...and that she wanted it, that she needed to have her own release. She kept her hands clasped behind her back, even though her shoulders ached from it, but she pressed her body forward into Patrice's.

Patrice had the urge to draw it out, to tease, to make her beg, but this wasn't the time or place. She felt her body beginning to rise again, and her hands itched to touch Alex. The blond turned her with a firm grip on her slender shoulders and pressed her against the cool glass of the large window of her office. Being on the top floor had its benefits, as did the tinted windows, and not just for the view or the glare. She pulled Alex's hands from behind her back and pressed them into the glass so she could brace herself. Patrice didn't hesitate much longer, and pushed her hand between the other blonde's legs under her skirt. She brushed her panties to the side and slid a finger under them, hissing with approval when she felt how wet Alex was already.

Alex let her fingers curl before flattening them again against the cool glass. It warmed under her sweating palms as she moaned softly, almost a whine. "God..." Alex curled her toes in her heels, squirming, trying to stand straight against Patrice's attentions. She wanted it, wanted to show Patrice that she did, and all facades she had built melted.

Patrice allowed the first hint of a smile to escape her at the sound before covering and stepping back only long enough to snatch her discarded panties off the floor. She stepped back behind the other blond and turned her head to the side with a firm grip on her hair again. "Open your mouth," she directed smoothly. When Alex complied, she pressed the silken garment between the other blonde's lips, and spoke in quiet but serious tones. "Quiet Alex, people are still working, you wouldn't want to disturb them now would you?" She didn't wait for a response and released her slightly, turning Alex to face her before bringing her hand back between Alex's slender legs.

She was shaking her head, even knowing that Patrice was no longer paying attention, that she wasn't waiting for a response. She drew in a shaking breath, tasting Patrice lightly on the on the silk, her moan muffled by it. Alex braced herself against the window and pressed into the touch, closing her eyes to feel it more intensely. Patrice didn't take the time to undress Alex, but pressed two fingers into her, watching their reflection in the glass as she did so. Despite her release, she was already aroused again watching Alex's expression change to one of outright pleasure. She pressed harder, snaking her other hand around to lift the blonde's skirt higher, poised to slide her fingers down the front of her panties.

Alex wanted to whisper her name, but it came out as a muffled whimper. She said it over and over again in her mind, opening her eyes to look at the blonde. She was desperate and close, so close, and she wanted it, wanted Patrice to see her coming. Perhaps it was not what she had come for, but it was what Alex was offering her now, and her icy blue eyes conveyed that beautifully.

Patrice knew Alex well enough to read her silent request, and slid her fingers down, stroking her clit firmly. Her eyes gazed at the other blonde's reflection for a moment, and then shifted their focus briefly to the sun dipping below the Manhattan skyline. She unclenched her jaw, and leaned in toward Alex's ear, unwilling to keep either her touch or her voice to herself any longer. She whispered, ignoring the irony of being the one to beg. "Please.... come for me...please Alex.." She looked back at the other woman's reflection again, allowing her to see the need in her eyes slightly clouded with remorse over what she had said and done earlier, her voice trailed off with a final "please."

Alex moaned, her mind screaming "yes." Yes, that she would do anything for Patrice in that moment, that she forgave, that it didn't matter, had already been forgotten. And her orgasm came slowly, rising at her center, and her muffled moans were grateful and intense. And when Alex finally began to come down, when the sun was finally disappearing below the skyline, she rested her forehead against Patrice's and allowed herself to wrap her arms around the blonde, holding her gently.

Patrice didn't hold back and moaned to fill the silence Alex couldn't when she let go. As the other blonde stilled, Patrice slid her hands away and smoothed down her skirt, gently tugging the cloth from the other woman's mouth. She kissed her gently, still reeling and breathless from the moment, the wild emotions of the encounter. Patrice relaxed, feeling balanced for the first time since she left her office that afternoon, and leaned, almost collapsing against Alex. "Thank you...I'm..." she didn't finish since just those words caused her inflection to rise with emotion. She just waited, nearly melting into Alex, needing the moment before returning to reality.

Patrice didn't need to say anything else. Alex caught her weight and held her close. She smoothed the blonde's soft hair with her long fingers and simply waited, simply let the moment live as it would. As they stood there together, Alex kissed Patrice's forehead and stroked her back as she sighed softly, contentedly. As their skin began to cool, she pulled away but only enough to look into Patrice's bright eyes. "Mm...let's go home...alright?" They could talk about it later...they would talk about it later.

Patrice breathed more contentedly and picked up her things, taking Alex by the hand when she was ready. With one final kiss, she allowed herself to be led to the door and towards home. She stayed silent as they walked, the irrationality and anger long forgotten, replaced by a contemplative quiet. A flash of the city sky painted red and gold danced in front of her eyes, and Patrice squeezed Alex's hand again, closing the door gently behind them.

She let Alex open the door and followed her in. The lights were already on, and she knew Sabina must not have a late class. She had been silent the whole way home, pensive and still upset at her behavior though she knew Alex understood even without being told that her outburst hadn't really been about her. Once inside, a heavy tiredness came over the blonde, and she let go of Alex's hand to drop her briefcase of the floor, followed by her coat, not bothering to pick either up. She still didn't feel settled, and walked silently toward the bedroom, tugging off her clothes and dropping them along the way.

Sabina would come along after them for their things, but Alex and Patrice were generally both in the habit of putting their work and their coats away. Still, it wasn't until Alex silently watched Patrice head into the bedroom that she furrowed her brow, more worried than perplexed. Their silence had not bothered her; it was as comfortable as most but heavier. She followed the trail, picking up the articles of clothing and folding them over her arm. Sabina's door was closed, a sign that she was working on schoolwork, so Alex left her to it. She went into their bedroom and closed the door, discarding the clothes in a pile on the chair. Patrice's shoulders were bare, and Alex took hold of them gently. "Hey..."

Patrice stood in front of Alex, nearly naked but for a bit of lace and silk. She looked into the other blonde's sapphire eyes, and felt her own start to sting with uncertainty. She couldn't speak just then and shook her head slowly, stepping back and going down the hall. Patrice opened Sabina's door, though she would generally not disturb her at such a time, she needed her comfort. The blond ignored the young girl's confused expression, and pulled her with her back to the bedroom. Without speaking to either of them she pulled Sabina's clothes off and slipped into bed with her, wrapping her in a tight embrace. It was rare that Sabina would be so rewarded as to be allowed to sleep with them without reason, but Patrice didn't care. She pulled Sabina closer and hoped Alex would understand and follow, she needed them both that night.

Alex bit her lip watching Patrice go. She felt herself clenching her fist, knowing she was helpless then to really help Patrice, that there was nothing she could do but wait until the blonde talked to her about whatever was really going on. But seeing her return with Sabina and strip her carefully, seeing her snuggled there and waiting, simply needing to be held by people who cared for her, who loved her made any questions Alex wanted to ask vanish. She pulled off her own clothes and dropped them in a pile with Patrice's before turning off the lights and slipping into bed behind Patrice, wrapping her arms around her. Alex nuzzled her shoulder before kissing it, not knowing what to say but somehow knowing that that was all right just then.

Finally, Patrice let out a deep breath and relaxed between them. She mindlessly ran her fingers through Sabina's hair a few times, slowing with each stroke as she gave in to her exhaustion and slipped into sleep. The next day would come, and she would have to face life again was a certainty, but for a few hours she felt safe, if not completely at ease.

Chapter Text

Patrice glanced at the coat rack by her office door. No, she most definitely did not have the blazer that matched her skirt, and was suddenly due in court that afternoon. She sighed and picked up the phone to call the apartment, hoping Sabina might not have left for class yet.

Sabina was on her way out when the phone rang. She thought about not answering it, but once she saw Patrice's office number on the caller id, she dismissed that thought entirely. "Pronto."

Patrice smiled, both out of relief that Sabina was still home and just because she loved hearing the girl's voice. "Sabina, glad you're home, will you bring me my navy blazer that's hanging on the closet door on your way out?" She didn't usually ask her to run such errands, but today could be an exception.

"Of course." Sabina bit her lip at the sound of Patrice's voice. "I'll be there in 15." She would be cutting it close to get to class on time, but she couldn't say no to Patrice, even when she was allowed to say no.

"See you soon then." Patrice hung up the phone and then called Jacob's extension to let him know to let Sabina in. The few times the girl had been to her office had been enough for Patrice to be well aware of his tragically misguided crush on the young brunette, but Patrice wasn't about to say anything.

It only took Sabina 10 minutes to get to Patrice's office building, and she smiled at Jacob as she breezed past him and into Patrice's office. "One suit jacket, as you requested." She flourished the jacket and hung it on Patrice's coat rack.

Patrice smiled at the girl and checked her desk clock, it was noon and most of the staff was out for lunch already. "Do you have class soon or can you stay a minute?" Sabina looked lovely as always, and whenever she pulled her hair up like that Patrice had an almost uncontrollable urge to take it down for her.

"I have a little bit of time." Sabina rounded Patrice's desk and perched on the edge of it. Given the choice, she'd stay with Patrice rather than go to class.

Patrice quietly ran her finger up the girl's leg, "Good to hear; then why don't you go close the door." Patrice smiled and leaned back in her chair, toying with a pen, twisting it through her fingers.

Sabina smiled widely and hopped off of Patrice's desk. She had about ten minutes before she would have to give up on the class for good for the day, and if Patrice wanted to fill those 10 minutes, she would happily let her. She closed the door and returned to Patrice's side. "Closed and locked," she reported.

Patrice smiled and arched an eyebrow at Sabina's eager attitude, however, though she was better at covering, the blond was already anticipating a very enjoyable lunch hour. She pointed to the floor in front of her, "You know your manners, they apply here as well."

Sabina happily dropped to her knees beside Patrice, though she didn't try to erase her smile. She looked down and waited for Patrice's next instruction.

Instead of giving an order right away, Patrice reached for the girl's hair, taking it down and running her fingers through it. She was glad that Sabina was behaving well enough to be looking down, and couldn't see the look of outright desire that was building across the blonde's features.

Sabina shook her head a little to encourage her hair to fall, and because she knew that Patrice liked it when it looked messy. She had put on one of the outfits that Patrice had picked out for her on one of their shopping trips, and while it wasn't anything that would draw too much attention in class, it was easy enough to push aside, or remove entirely if that's what Patrice wanted. Sabina tried not to fidget or anticipate what Patrice would have her do. She took a deep breath.

Patrice couldn't wait much longer, and she quickly undid the few buttons on Sabina's shirt, letting it hang open. She pressed a hand inside and tweaked the girl's already taut nipples each in turn, feeling her own arousal build. She then leaned down and kissed Sabina's cheek, then pausing to nip at her ear and whisper. "Much better....so beautiful."

The brunette squirmed and pressed her breasts forward. Just that quick action on Patrice's part was enough to make her wet and she turned into Patrice as she whispered in her ear.

Patrice smirked at how eager the girl was and decided to indulge herself. She whispered again, but more firmly this time, "Get under the desk if you want to stay, I have things to do."

Sabina eyes lit up at Patrice's words and it didn't take her any time to do as she was told. She crawled into the space under Patrice's desk and settled on her knees. Her shirt was still hanging open and her nipples were still hard, and if she brushed them against Patrice's legs as she got situated, Patrice couldn't really blame her.

Patrice's stomach quickened markedly as Sabina hurried to comply and she didn't want to wait much longer. She reached and smoothly slid her panties off, tossing them under after Sabina since the girl would have to put them back on her eventually, then turned back to her desk as if it was a normal moment at work, brushing her toe over the girl's legs casually. Sabina had to stop herself from pushing against Patrice's shoe. She looked behind herself at the solid from of the desk and briefly wondered just how long Patrice would let her stay there. She really couldn't think of a better place to spend her afternoon, but she doubted that Patrice would indulge her for that long. She turned back to Patrice's legs and slid her hands up the outsides, pushing her skirt up just a bit. Then she kissed the inside of Patrice's knee, silently asking for permission.

The blonde let herself shiver when she felt Sabina's touch, there was something decidedly erotic about knowing the girl was there but hidden from anyone else's sight. With one hand the blond picked up the file she had been reading, and slid the other under the desk to pull Sabina firmly between her legs.

Sabina started licking at Patrice's lips, running her tongue over them, content to take her time. There was no way that she was getting to class that day. She steadied herself against Patice's legs and lazily kept licking, in absolutely no hurry to make Patrice come.

Patrice moved her hand away from Sabina's hair, and shuffled through the papers. She wanted the girl to hear her at least pretending not to be paying attention. Her attempts at nonchalance were foiled, however, by the way she hooked her feet through the base of her chair, holding her legs apart to allow Sabina better access.

With Patrice holding her legs apart for her, Sabina was free to use her hands to other purposes. As she licked, she shimmied her own skirt upward, hoping that Patrice wouldn't notice when she started touching herself. She was completely hidden from view after all. She nipped at Patrice's clit, then soothed over it with her tongue, doing her best to prolong the experience.

Patrice's fingers closed on the paper she was holding, creasing it slightly. She wanted to tangle both hands in Sabina's hair, to hold her and make the girl push her over the edge, but the sensation was too guiltily pleasant and she wanted to prolong it. Patrice leaned back in her chair, breath quickening.

Sabina rubbed her own clit and tried to suppress the pumping of her hips as she licked Patrice. She was entirely caught up in the moment and if Patrice had wanted her to spend the rest of her life kneeling under her desk, in that moment, she would have agreed.

Time had gotten away from Alex, so she was running a little late in picking Patrice up for lunch. Her text had gone unanswered, so she simply assumed that the same was true of the blonde. And that wasn't so unusual, after all. When she reached Patrice's floor, she noticed that Jacob's desk was empty and Patrice's door closed. Alex casually glanced at the open calendar on Jacob's screen, noting that Patrice didn't have any meetings immediately before the lunch hour, so she decided to knock casually and stick her head in, hoping she wasn't interrupting an impromptu meeting.

Patrice had her eyes half closed and her head leaning back into the leather of her chair, enjoying Sabina's touch and very nearly reaching the point where she couldn't resist letting go any longer. The blonde didn't register the door opening until Alex was in the room. Startled, Sabina jumped at the sound of the door and hit her head against the underside of the desk. The thump was obvious, and she only just managed to bite her lip to stop from cursing. She prayed that Patrice would manage some kind of cover story as she shrunk back against the front of the desk. She was blushing furiously as she tugged her skit down.

Alex raised her eyebrows immediately at the look she had seen on Patrice's face before the blonde registered surprise. And if she hadn't known what was going on before, she certainly had a very clear idea when, she could assume, Sabina became startled and hit her head. "Forget to lock the door?" She put her hands on her hips and pursed her lips, unimpressed.

Everything seemed to happen at once: Patrice registered that the door had been opened, she saw Alex, and heard Sabina hit the desk. The blond blushed furiously and pushed her chair back, standing and trying to push her skirt back down. It wasn't that Alex hadn't seen her in far more compromising positions before, but the location and the surprise got the better of her, "Alex! I...was....umm.."

Sabina let out a breath in relief at hearing Alex's voice. At least she wasn't going to get Patrice fired. Her shirt was still unbuttoned as she slid out from under Patrice's desk. She supposed that she was still under orders to stay there, but she didn't think Patrice would remember that.

"I believe Sabina is late for class." If Alex was right, the brunette had missed most of the beginning. Her eyes lingered on Sabina's unbuttoned shirt for a moment before she turned them again to Patrice. The situation presented irresponsibility heaped upon irresponsibility.

Patrice let her eyes shift from one woman to the other, feeling totally off balance. She was still uncomfortably wet, and her underwear were most definitely still under her desk. She looked down and despite Alex's demeanor, couldn't help smiling a little at the situation, "I....Sabina brought me my jacket I forgot and ...we must have lost track of time."

Alex crossed her arms, absolutely unswayed by Patrice's little moment. "Button up your shirt and go to class," she said to Sabina, her tone leaving no room for argument.

"But..." Sabina was already buttoning up her shirt, but it seemed at bit pointless to go to class now. By the time she got there it would almost be over and thinking that she'd be able to concentrate was really just asking too much.

Patrice watched Sabina comply and pulled herself together, noting that Alex was less amused by the situation than she was. The blond hadn't intended to keep the girl from class, and in retrospect knew she shouldn't have let things linger, but temptation had gotten the best of her.

"Go," Alex said. She turned back to Patrice, giving her a pointed look. "I don't think you have time to come out to lunch. Be home early." Her morning had been long and particularly full of frustrations, so she was in no mood to negotiate with either of them.

Sabina grabbed her bag and slipped out, wondering just how trouble she was going to be in that night.

Patrice crossed her arms, not entirely receptive to Alex speaking to her in the same tone as Sabina. However, she wasn't in the mood to put up a fight, seeing the other blonde's mood written over her features and nodded, "fine, I'll do my best."

Alex licked her lips as she took two self-assured steps toward the blonde. She took her chin firmly, forcing Patrice to look into her stony eyes. "See to it."

Patrice glared back at her, pulse rising again as she never could stop when Alex looked at her that way. She leaned in and kissed the other blonde forcefully before Alex could react, acting on instinct. Patrice pulled back, out of Alex's reach and stood taller, "I'll be there."

She met the kiss, surprise giving way to equal force. Without responding, Alex turned on her heel, determined already to simply head back to the office. Her mind, however, was already on plans for the evening.

Chapter Text

When Alex came home, Sabina was still closed up in her room doing her homework. Even with her mood, she refused to overstep the strict boundaries between Sabina's obligations to school and her obligations as their housegirl. And that was precisely what Patrice had done, Alex felt. She satisfied herself with doing a little more work until Sabina emerged. "Undress and go and get me Patrice's collar," Alex said, forgoing a greeting.

Sabina blinked at Alex for a second while she processed her orders. She hadn't really been aware that Alex was home. Now that she knew she was, she went back in her room to remove her clothing (it was easier to make sure it got put up that way) and then she retrieved Patrice's collar. She returned to Alex and wordlessly knelt at her feet

Alex went back to her work, barely acknowledging that Sabina had returned. They would remain that way until Patrice arrived.

Patrice hadn't gotten much done that afternoon, but she wasn't overly worried. Her hearing had gone as expected, and she had reorganized her desk. Riding up in the elevator, however, she started to think back to Alex's temper upon finding Sabina out of class and hoped that either she was home early enough for the other blond, or that Alex had calmed down. Patrice arrived and went into the apartment, casually hanging up her coat and tossing her keys on the counter. She put down her briefcase and went to see if she had beat Alex home. She stepped into the living room, "Hi....how was your..." Patrice's voice trailed off when she saw Sabina already on her knees and recognized what she was holding. She shivered out of pure habit, now realizing Alex probably wasn't entirely over the earlier incident.

Alex rose with fluid grace after taking the collar from Sabina. She regarded Patrice as she might have any new pet that walked into the lounge in the club, eyes appraising, estimating what she would find underneath the clothing even though she knew very well. "Undress."

Patrice felt her stomach drop familiarly under Alex's appraisal and her body reacted quickly like it did when Donna used to look her over. She suddenly didn't care what the reason for Alex's behavior was, still not convinced her earlier actions warranted the other blonde's strong disapproval. Instead of dwelling on it or protesting at the treatment, she raised her fingers to her shirt and started to unbutton it obediently, the temptation too much to resist.

"We make strict rules for Sabina in order that she might be successful both in school and in the Scene," Alex began, satisfied with Patrice's quick move to action. "And I'm concerned that your selfish and casual disregard for those rules is setting a terrible example when she is at a most impressionable stage in her training." And there was also the fact that Sabina nearly worshiped the ground Patrice walked on, but Alex kept that to herself. She hardly minded, but she wouldn't be surprised if the girl didn't end up following in Patrice's footsteps somehow.

Sabina shifted a bit uncomfortably at Alex's words. She didn't think that Patrice should get all of the blame for keeping her from getting to class. She had known what time it was, and she had made the decision to stay. She knew that she was supposed to remain silent, but if Alex was going to be mad at Patrice, she might as well be mad at her too. "It wasn't entirely her fault," she kept her eyes down. "She asked me if I had time..."

Alex pursed her lips. "I hardly need to be reminded that you're partially to blame," she replied sharply. Seeing Patrice punished, however, might be punishment enough for Sabina.

At Alex's tone, Patrice narrowed her eyes and stopped undressing, her shirt already off. She knew it had been a lapse in judgment, but wasn't prepared for Alex's reaction, especially not in front of Sabina. Patrice crossed her arms defensively, cutting Sabina off, glancing at the girl reassuringly, "Yes I asked her to stay, but I had no intention of jeopardizing her training, and I take this every bit as seriously as you do." She stopped herself before she could add 'maybe more so.' If Alex wanted to punish her that was fine, but she didn't like being spoken to like an unruly pet, she had moved on from that.

"Sabina, finish undressing Patrice," Alex said, sighing softly as if almost bored. She rubbed her thumbs over the collar, not once questioning her decision to reprimand Patrice, not once considering what she would have done in that situation.

Sabina stood and did a she was told, removing Patrice's clothing and folding it neatly. She bit her lip as she did it, regretting her decision not to tell Patrice no. She should have gone to class and now it seemed like Alex and Patrice were fighting. That certainly wasn't something that she wanted. Patrice let Sabina undress her, not wanting to upset the girl further. She automatically reached and brushed her fingers through the brunette's hair when she bent to take off her stockings.

Alex narrowed her eyes at the easy fondness, even though it was commonplace. She quickly stepped in, buckling the collar around Patrice's neck with a touch that was almost cold enough to be out of place. Then she stepped back to appraise once more. Patrice looked up at Alex and knew from her demeanor this wasn't entirely about Sabina missing half of her class that afternoon. Perhaps she had been a bit lax with Sabina's training of late, but Alex seemed to be taking it quite seriously. Patrice waited for the next move pensively, preparing to walk through whatever tests Alex thought she deserved. Though she wasn't entirely convinced the treatment was warranted, she still trusted Alex and in truth enjoyed the occasional night at her feet, if the other blond convinced her it was appropriate, of course.

Sabina brushed the back of her fingers against Patrice's thigh. She wanted to tell her that she was sorry, but she didn't think Alex would appreciate that.

"Kneel, both of you. And you are under no circumstances to touch each other." Alex stepped back, admiring the two women before turning on her heel. She went to to take a shower, but it was more than a simple device to make Patrice and Sabina wait. She knew she needed to collect her thoughts, to calm herself. Though, she was still going to punish Patrice.

Patrice did as Alex said, but didn't look down until the other blond left. She didn't shift, didn't fidget, even though she was tantalizingly close to Sabina. If Alex wanted to make her point this way, then she wasn't going to give in and both act like and be treated as a novice. Sabina glanced at Patrice, and seeing how still she was, tried to imitate her. She didn't want to give either of them a reason to be displeased with her behavior. As much as she wanted to lean against Patrice, just to feel her skin, she didn't.

When Alex returned, she was dressed more casually, dressed so that she would be able to move. While she was calmer, her anger had not entirely disappeared, and she carried a whip with her. "Patrice." She stepped into front of the blonde. "Get up. Hands against the wall."

Patrice glanced up as Alex approached and ran her eyes over the other blond, then to the whip. She stood gracefully and paused, looking Alex in the eye, "In a mood, are we?" She knew it was completely out of line, but wanted to see where Alex was coming from before she submitted to such treatment, and Alex's response, whether physical or verbal, would tell her plenty.

"Not much of an example, are we?" Alex quipped as she gripped Patrice's shoulder firmly and turned her towards the wall. Instead of waiting for Patrice to brace herself, Alex stepped back and laid a lash squarely in the middle of Patrice's back. It wasn't a forceful blow, but she knew, ironically, that it had been an irresponsible choice.

Sabina's eyes were wide as Patrice and Alex snipped at each other, and she flinched slightly when the first blow landed on Patrice's back.

Patrice let out a sharp breath when Alex pressed her to the wall, punctuated by a small yelp when the lash fell. She closed her eyes, her mind both preparing for the next one, and registering that she had been correct about Alex. If this was just a disciplined effort to make Patrice remember herself, and show Sabina a few things along the way Alex wouldn't have succumbed to impulse so quickly. The blond braced, prepared to take what Alex felt the need to give.

"Count," Alex commanded, and without waiting, she began to lay the lashes firmly, symmetrically on Patrice's back. She was good at controlling her passions, at denying herself what she wanted, at ignoring her impulses. That Patrice allowed herself to be so undisciplined with Sabina was unnerving, and she focused on that rather than reminding herself that she was allowing any control she thought she had to completely slip in this moment.

Sabina flinched with each lash that Patrice counted, as if feeling them on her own back. She knew just what a whipping from Alex felt like and she didn't envy Patrice. Her guilt at putting Patrice in the situation only grew.

After the first few lashes, Patrice managed to get her hands in front of her and braced on the wall, counting as best she could. Alex was very skilled at the task, and was laying the stripes firmly, with more force than Donna even usually had. The blond closed her eyes and tried to let her mind drift away, but that it was Alex doling out the punishment made it harder to focus, and she felt the other blonde's loss of control slipping over her as though transmitted one lash at a time through the leather.

After twenty-five, Alex made herself step back. She could have continued; it would have been easy to simply forget herself, but she forced herself to remember that it was Patrice in front of her, that she was trying to teach a lesson, no vent her own anger. For a moment, she looked lost, torn, and then she dropped the whip. "Sabina...take care of Patrice's back," she said quietly before she walked into the kitchen, leaning against the counter to try and better collect herself.

Sabina quickly got up and started tending to Patrice's back, rubbing salve into it and otherwise making sure that she was okay.

Patrice took a breath and collected herself, allowing the girl to begin, but when she registered that Alex had left, she held up a hand, halting her. Patrice turned and walked into the kitchen after Alex, pausing at the door, edge gone. "Alex....come here."

Hands pressed against the counter and eyes glued to it, Alex tensed and shook her head. "Let Sabina take care of you," she said, words more biting than she intended. Jealousy had never been something she had had to deal with, and even now, she knew her relationship with Patrice was secure. But the bond Patrice and Sabina were forming, the casual breaks it etiquette it caused made Alex feel extra to it.

Patrice felt the mood shift, and stepped back to take a light robe that had been draped over one of the dining room chairs and slipped it on gingerly. She stepped back toward Alex and reached up and removed her own collar, something she had never had the liberty to do before. Patrice set it on the counter without further thought and gently took Alex by the wrists, pulling her around so she could look her in the eye. "In a moment," she said simply, watching Alex's expression.

The simple movements registered to Alex, but she merely looked up at Patrice through her lashes. She wasn't sure where to begin--an explanation, an apology. Neither was easy to grasp, so she merely opted for silence.

Sabina stood in the doorway to the kitchen, watching Patrice and Alex and only somewhat understanding what was going on. She could tell that something was wrong though, and she was almost certain that it was her fault.

Patrice released one of Alex's wrists and lifted her chin, looking her in the eye before leaning in and kissing her softly, letting it linger, imparting that nothing had been broken. In reality, the scene had given them all a check in different but needed ways. Patrice leaned back and smiled quietly at Alex, realizing in their chaotic lives there had been fewer and fewer of these simple moments.

"Patrice..." Alex closed her eyes and touched Patrice's cheek, the feel of the tender kiss still on her lips. She squeezed her eyes shut as if to block out the irrational, reckless anger she had felt upon realizing what was going on in Patrice's office. She shook her head lightly, wishing she knew how to vocalize what she had felt.

She kissed Alex again, quieting her, then turned to Sabina. "Come here." The order was soft but firm.

Patrice slipped her hand into Sabina's hair and pulled her into a deep kiss, then released her, "You were well behaved tonight and I'm proud of you," she looked at Alex briefly, "We both are. You may go to your room now and we'll talk about your attendance later."

Sabina bit her lip and nodded. She shouldn't have stayed in Patrice's office, and despite Patrice's words, she knew that Alex, at least, was angry with her. She turned and went to her room, curling up in the middle of her bed once she was there.

Alex sighed as she watched Sabina retreat. She would have to talk to her later, take her out to lunch or treat her in some way. She didn't want Sabina thinking that anything that had happened that day was a poor reflection upon her. But there would be time for that. She still needed to sort why seeing the two of them together that afternoon had made her react so violently. She turned towards Patrice, quietly saying, "Let me take care of your back."

Patrice kissed Alex again and nodded, letting the other blonde lead her to their bedroom. She closed the door and stretched out carefully on the bed, turning her face to look at Alex, but didn't ask anything right away, seeing the pensive look on the woman's face, knowing Alex didn't have an answer to give just yet.

Alex took a jar of salve from the bedside table and began to gently but firmly massage it into Patrice's back. Her touch was in direct opposition to the way she had touched Patrice earlier, and she was all too aware of that.

Patrice held as still as she could and let Alex attend to her marks, she couldn't help cringing a few times as the other woman touched some of the particularly red welts. When Alex finished, Patrice sat up and kissed her, then slipped quietly onto the ground next to the bed and reached underneath to remove a box. She opened it and took out a set of handcuffs, setting them on the bed and holding her wrists out to Alex with her eyes lowered. She wanted and needed to finish this with her, but out of desire rather than anger, and it seemed right now.

"Patrice, I..." Alex shook her head. She hadn't expected that, hadn't expected for the scene to continue after such an interruption. And she felt...fragile in seeing what Patrice wanted.

She kept looking down with her arms outstretched, need growing steadily. "Please...."

After chewing her lip for a moment, Alex took the cuffs, running her fingers over the supple leather. She carefully, almost reverently placed them on Patrice's wrists and hooked them together behind her back.

Patrice let out a slow breath when she felt her arms secured and knelt quietly facing away from Alex. Her heart was beating a little faster, and she pressed her thighs together against her growing arousal.

"Legs apart," Alex said quietly, almost automatically. She ran her fingers down Patrice's spine, stopping on some of the more outstanding welts. "Have you learned your lesson?" Her voice was low, still unsure.

Patrice shifted, spreading her knees apart as she pressed into Alex's fingers, needing the contact no matter the form. She nodded, "I went to far, it was careless and I forgot myself."

"Mm. You forgot yourself, yes, and you set a bad example for Sabina." She pressed her fingers between Patrice's legs, pushing into her slowly. "And do you think you've been thoroughly punished?"

"Oh..." Patrice pressed back into the long-denied contact, closing her eyes. She had been punished, and it hadn't been light but she couldn't promise to herself she would be able to stop herself in the face of that temptation again once the marks faded. She tried to speak again, "I think so."

Alex nodded, more to herself, and continued. She tried to push Patrice, to bring her close to the edge, and only when she thought Patrice was there did she stop. "Help me undress." It would be difficult to do while cuffed, but Alex had been asked the same in the past, and she wanted to see if it would take Patrice off balance.

Patrice had been moaning shamelessly, pressing into Alex, very close to the edge when the other woman moved away. She whimpered discontentedly and slumped forward, her hands not there to brace her. Patrice took a moment, then turned and looked Alex over, preparing herself to take this second, more pleasurable punishment. She moved closer and bent down, working her lips under the hem of Alex's t-shirt, kissing and brushing her tongue over the other blonde's skin for a moment before tugging the fabric up with her teeth.

Alex caught the fabric and tugged it off. Her insecurities were slowly melting away with the ease at which Patrice had slipped back into the role. There was some of the thrill of their first few nights together there, and Alex found her body responding to it

Patrice hid a small smile and ducked down again to Alex's jeans, taking a few moments before she was able to get them unfastened. Once she succeeded, she kissed the blond again and waited for her to slip them off.

She took her time slipping her slender legs out of the jeans. Alex's panties were already damp with watching Patrice's careful actions. She stroked her hair lightly before letting her continue.

Patrice didn't want to wait and take the time to try and unclasp Alex's bra, and so dragged each strap down off her shoulders, allowing her to pull the fabric away. She brushed her tongue over each of the other blond's nipples, then worked her way down to the last bit of fabric untouched. Patrice smiled up at Alex, then took the waistband of her panties in her teeth and dragged it down off her hips.

Discarding the bra, Alex stepped out of the almost but not quite pragmatic panties and kicked them away. She took Patrice's chin, holding the blonde so she could look into her eyes, so she could smile. Then Alex went to the bed, tugging Patrice with her. "Make me come...and I'll consider doing the same for you."

Patrice waited a moment while Alex got settled, steadying herself on her knees on the carpet in front of her. She smiled back at Alex, then folded down and kissed her ankles, slowly but steadily working up her long shapely legs, encouraging her to part them for her as she rose.

Alex did, sighing lightly as her fingers found Patrice's hair. She let herself relax, let all thought, all worry leave her. "That's it," she murmured, encouraging Patrice upwards.

Despite Alex's encouragement, Patrice took her time, nipping at the insides of each knee, then moving higher. When she finally settled fully between Alex's thighs, Patrice knew making the other woman wait much longer would be nearing cruelty.

When Patrice's tongue finally touched her, Alex could not stop a moan. She shifted her hips, leaning back slightly. It wouldn't be long. The heightened moments, the prolonged sensation...they had pushed her without her realizing.

Patrice pressed her tongue into Alex intently, having spent enough time teasing her already. She continued, licking firmly, wanting to draw more moans from the other woman, to make her let go.

She gripped Patrice's hair, winding it tightly around her fingers as she moaned, shifted. Alex whimpered as she came closer and finally cried out as she went over the edge, tensing and releasing. Patrice continued, lightening her touch as Alex relaxed, reveling in the noises she was eliciting from the beautiful woman in front of her. When she fell quiet, Patrice waited, pressing her lips to Alex's thigh, breathing with her.

Finally, Alex drew in a slow breath. She pulled Patrice up carefully and into a long kiss. She took her time, drawing it out, trying to show Patrice how appreciative she was.

Patrice moaned and leaned into the kiss, lingering for as long as Alex would let her. Sometimes it was the simplest moments she found the most pleasurable.

Alex slipped to her knees, forcing Patrice to stand unaided as she pressed her tongue to her clit. She was eager to see the blonde come, to hear her, to catch her when she couldn't stand any longer.

"Oh...god...." Patrice hadn't been totally prepared and swayed for a moment before steadying herself. She involuntarily pressed her hips forward, shivering at the touch.

She continued, pressing her fingers into Patrice, pumping firmly, slowly, almost playing.

Patrice moaned and shifted to rest her leg over Alex's shoulder, allowing the other blond better access. She was sure she couldn't' remain on her feet much longer, but also knew that wouldn't be necessary.

She pushed, not giving Patrice balance but trying to bring her down, trying to push her over the edge and make her lose all control, both physically and mentally.

Patrice's ragged breathing finally gave over to frantic silence as she felt her body shake, tension releasing. She tugged at her bonds with each wave as it hit her, aching to grab Alex, to hold her closer while she came. With the last tremors subsiding Patrice registered herself collapsing, sinking to the carpet.

Alex shifted, caught her as best she could and carefully pulled Patrice closer. She knew the touches to her back, to the welts would be painful, but that would only pull Patrice thought. And Alex held her, suddenly needing as much comfort as she needed to comfort.

Patrice barely registered the sting on her back, focusing instead on the closeness of the moment. She was still breathing heavily, and pressed her forehead to Alex's bare shoulder, recovering.

Alex stroked Patrice's hair, the action calming her as she let the golden strands slip through her fingers. "I'm sorry," she said softly into them as she finally let herself relax.

Patrice felt Alex let her last barriers down, and relaxed into her touch. "Don't be, we both needed to let something out tonight." She pondered, wondering if she should press on, "I shouldn't take such liberties with Sabina, it's out of line." Patrice felt the sting in her back returning as she spoke, but it didn't speak to guilt, that was fading with their honesty.

"No, it's..." Alex shook her head and laughed humorlessly at herself as she pulled away slightly. "Sabina's very attached to you. And I..." Was irrationally jealous. But she couldn't say that just yet.

Patrice knew Alex well enough to see where her train of thought was going, and she couldn't wait any longer to hold her. She turned away and held her wrists toward Alex, asking to be released.

Within half a moment, Alex released Patrice and took the cuffs off, discarding them.

Patrice stretched her shoulders forward, working the stiffness out, then pulled Alex up and climbed onto the bed with her. She felt this was a conversation best had while comfortable. She took a breath, idly stroking Alex's hair, "We are close, but she respects you in a way she never will me. She needs that too."

Alex shook her head and sighed as she rested a hand on Patrice's hip. "I know. I'd had a long morning, but I know that's no excuse. I'm not sure what got into me," she admitted.

Patrice kissed her forehead, smiling slightly, "It's alright, you know I wouldn't let it go too far, neither of us are exactly new to this." In truth, Patrice didn't quite want to consider just how far she would go if Alex asked, scared of what the answer might be there, but that wasn't the problem tonight. She shifted her thoughts, "Maybe you should take her out, I think she would relate differently, learn more, if I wasn't there sometimes. She needs to learn to adjust. Besides, I have that hearing for my corporate case in Chicago next week."

The blonde made a face, not at the idea of taking Sabina out--an idea that she thought was probably for the best--but at being reminded that Patrice wouldn't be there the next week. "Mm, I'd forgotten about that," she said as she pulled the blonde closer. "I suppose that would give us the opportunity...but I think we'll both miss coming home to you."

Patrice smiled and kissed the other woman, "Glad to hear I'll be missed, but it's only three days, and I'll make it up to you when I get back." She was already thinking of an appropriate surprise for Alex upon her return.

"Well...I can't be too upset then." Alex smiled as she brought Patrice's fingers to her lips and kissed them. "And I suppose Sabina can show you what she's learned when you get back."

Patrice grinned broadly, "I can't wait." She reached down and pulled the blankets over them, knowing they would get up again soon and get ready for the next day, but wanting to take a few quiet moments first.

Chapter Text

It had only taken half a night for Alex to really feel Patrice's absence. She hadn't slept as well, finally giving up near 3 AM. And two days later, the house felt lonely, even with Sabina and the dogs there. Alex uncurled her legs and pushed herself off from the sofa, sitting her work aside. She scratched Persia's head discontentedly before heading to Sabina's room and tapping on the door.

Sabina had her music on and was pretending to study for her midterms, but it wasn't going well. She could tell Alex was upset, restless but didn't know how to help. Alex wasn't as easy for her to read as Patrice was, and without the other woman there, Sabina was repeatedly at a loss. The young brunette wanted to do better; she respected Alex in a different way than Patrice and took great pleasure in even small expressions of approval. The girl had followed Alex's orders and tried to comfort her, but there was an element missing. The young woman started when she heard the knock and got up hurriedly, opening the door, "Yes?"

"Are you busy?" Alex asked. There was something almost sheepish about her expression when she poked her head in the room. She respected the boundary there almost as if it were sacred. "I thought we could go out...get some air." Mostly, Alex didn't want to be alone. And her restlessness was making the dogs pace.

Sabina smiled and looked down deferentially, happy to be asked, "Of course, what should I wear?" She wanted to be appropriate for whatever Alex wanted.

The blonde waved that off. Sabina's jeans and tee were fine with her. In fact, she thought the especially relaxed look appealing next to the girl's almost exotic beauty. "You're fine...I think we'll take the dogs. Do you mind walking Persia?" It was less of a question, but there was not much of a command in Alex's voice. She had noticed that the ginger dog seemed calmer around the girl.

Sabina smiled, relaxing at Alex's calm attitude. "Of course." She followed Alex as they got ready to go, taking Persia's leash when it was offered, whispering a few words under her breath, and Persia sat quietly, waiting for them to go.

Alex merely shook her head. "I don't know how you do it with her..." She smiled as they headed to the elevator then out to the street. The night was crisp, but she was not uncomfortable; she hoped the same was true of Sadie. "School is good?" she asked, trying to make simple conversation. It seemed so easy with Patrice, but Alex found it difficult to push past the barriers formed by their arrangement sometimes.

The brunette walked, stealing glances at the tall blonde as they walked through the city, wondering where Alex was taking her, "Yes, very, I'm working on some projects I'm excited about." She pressed her hands into her pockets against the chill, and watched as their breath was increasingly visible in the night air as the night got further from sundown.

"Good. I'm glad you're enjoying it." Without realizing it, Alex directed her steps towards the wine bar to which she had taken Patrice on her first date. It didn't occur to her until she saw it, and a wisp of a smile came to her face. "Let's stop here...they'll let us take the dogs inside. The little tables were lit with tea lights, and a jazz trio was playing softly in the corner. The bartender smiled at Alex as they walked in. She could hear strains of Italian floating from the back and wondered if Sabina would feel at home.

"Let's sit..." She guided them to a table in the corner, their backs to the half wall of mirrors that made the narrow place seem bigger.

Sabina couldn't help but smile and take a deep breath, feeling immediately closer to home than she had been since crossing the Atlantic. She looked at Alex, silently thanking her for the reward as she sat, Persia lying down at her feet.

Porcelain sat, almost as if on guard, and Alex scratched her head. She met Sabina's look and smiled indulgently. "Why don't we share a bottle... I don't think we' have to tell Patrice about it."

The girl's face brightened considerably, smiling almost conspiratorially back at Alex. She couldn't think of something that sounded nicer than a bottle of wine in that moment. Pausing, she shivered as a new thought crossed her mind and she chewed her lip, wondering just exactly might happen if Patrice found out.

Alex passed her the leather-bound menu and let her pick; though, it was she who ordered when the waiter appeared. She sat back, enjoying the warmth and the soft light as they waited. "Mm...this is the first place I brought Patrice..."

Sabina's eyes got a little wider, she had still been immersed in the excitement of being allowed to choose from such an extensive wine list, for America anyway, trying to find something that Alex might enjoy. "Really?" She glanced around at the place again, trying to imagine the two of them meeting there.

Liz stepped into the wine bar. She was looking around for a free table when she saw Alex and the much younger woman sitting with her. She didn't see Patrice anywhere, which she thought was curious, but she headed toward Alex's table anyway.

"Mmhm," Alex said thoughtfully as she smiled. "It was..." She shook her head. "Well, you can see how it turned out." And when she glanced around, she noticed Liz approaching. For a moment, she went pale, remembering that she hadn't told Liz anything about Sabina. But things were not the same...she wasn't obligated anymore. "Liz..."

Sabina looked up at the older woman as she approached, noting Alex's marked change in mood.

"Alex." Liz smiled and bent down to kiss Alex's cheek. "I hope I'm not interrupting..."

"No..." She caught Liz's cheek with her lips before motioning to an empty seat. "Not at all. Patrice was out of town on business..." She blushed, realizing that did not make the situation sound any better. "This is Sabina...she's...staying with us...going to school." And learning so much beyond that.

Liz raised her eyebrows as she took the empty seat. "Well, It's lovely to meet you." She nodded toward Sabina.

Alex sat back as Porcelain nuzzled the Liz's hand. She looked to Sabina, hoping that the girls' training would unconsciously kick in, that she would mind her manners.

Sabina glanced between the women and tried to read the situation. Alex seemed more formal, poised now, and the brunette sat a little taller subconsciously. "You too." She nodded back and then fell silent, sensing the older woman was looking her over closely.

"We don't talk in a month and all sorts of things change." Liz looked Sabina over one last time before turning back to Alex.

"Why don't you join us." The waiter brought the bottle and poured for Alex to taste. She nodded her approval, luxuriating in Sabina's choice before indicating that he should bring another glass. "Sabina..." She smiled, thinking of Patrice. "We met her at the club in Paris."

"And brought her home with you?" Liz chuckled. "That's surprisingly impulsive of you."

Sabina felt her cheeks blush almost violently, but she kept silent, hoping to not say anything incorrect, Alex had told her to be discreet.

Alex put a reassuring hand on Sabina's knee. "We arranged for her to stay with us while she goes to school here." Her tone indicated that that was the official story. "Her father is very over protective."

"Of course," Liz smirked. "The two of you are being very altruistic." She turned to Sabina. "I hope they're letting you see some of the city while you're here."

Sabina nodded, answering deferentially, "Yes, I'm just learning my way around still." She could tell there was considerable history between the two women, and wondered if Alex would tell her later.

"It's hardly as if we don't give her free time, Liz," Alex said, smiling still. She felt easy having this conversation with Liz, but there was still an urge there to please the older woman, to seek her approval. "Sabina picked the wine," she said as the waiter brought Liz's glass and filled it.

"Sabina looks like she's 16," Liz muttered. It was an overstatement, but she felt it needed pointing out. "But it's very good wine." She said more loudly as she nodded to Sabina.

Sabina's earlier blush had not faded, and at Liz's last comments it increased, "I'm 18, " she blurted out perhaps a little too loudly. The young woman fell silent, catching herself and adding demurely, "I'm glad you like it."

Alex pursed her lips. "Christ, Liz," she said under hear breath. She shifted in her chair, squeezing Sabina's knee. "We were just out for a walk. Patrice is in Chicago, and the house has been quiet without her."

Liz blinked. She couldn't remember a time when Alex so easily admitted to that kind of attachment. "You really love her, don't you?" She temporarily forgot about Sabina.

The blonde nearly choked on the sip of wine she had been swallowing. She fingered the stem of the glass as she coughed lightly and tried to present herself more calmly. "I..." Alex tilted her head before looking down into the glass. "Yes, I...I care about her a great deal."

Sabina jumped visibly at Alex's sudden reaction but stayed quiet, watching the conversation unfold.

Liz nodded. That was as close as Alex would get to saying it and it was good enough for her. "The two of you should start coming to the club. We've missed you."

"I..." Alex looked to Sabina thoughtfully. She wasn't sure if the girl was ready--that was her first thought, at least. But in truth, she wasn't sure that she was ready...to go back, to share Sabina, to share Patrice. "Maybe so."

"Think about it." Liz took another sip of her wine. "So, Patrice is out of town?"

Sabina listened intently as the talk shifted, she wondered what type of place they were talking about, but by the way their voices thickened with obvious double-meanings the young brunette pondered, considering the likely possibilities.

"Business," Alex said, glad for the change in subject. "She should be coming home on Sunday night." And as the spark of a half formed idea lit Alex's mind, she turned to Sabina, smiling. "We should surprise her with something nice. Wasn't there a recipe she saw in one of your magazines that she wanted to try?"

Sabina smiled as Alex visibly brightened. "Yes, I wrote it down." Patrice hadn't asked her to, but she had done it anyway, just in case.

"Excellent. We can go pick up what we'll need tomorrow." Alex was no cook, but she was certain that between the two of them, they could figure it out. And Patrice had said she wanted them to spend more time together. "I think Patrice will be pleased."

Sabina smiled and nodded at Alex, glad that she seemed happier than earlier. She was enjoying the night, especially now that the bit of wine was softening her mood.

Liz hid her smile in her wine glass. It was good to see Alex happy, even if she could never have predicted just how it would happen. She couldn't believe that she was thinking it, but there was something adorable about the way that Alex and Sabina were interacting.

She took another sip of her wine. "So, how's life now that you don't have to deal with the DA's office on a regular basis?"

The blonde chuckled and absently swirled the wine in her glass. "Oh, I'm still dealing with the DA's office in some way or another." She pushed a strand of her hair back. "It's good...I'm enjoying the change...especially when I'm not getting calls at 3 AM." And she was certainly enjoying the flexibility to come home to Sabina early from time to time.

As the conversation shifted to things she didn't particularly know much about, Sabina paid less attention to what was being said and more to the interaction of the other women. She tried to think of what history might be there, though she couldn't get a very good grasp. The young girl relaxed, stroking Persia's side with her toe under the table.

They continued their conversation about Alex's new firm, Liz inquiring about a few acquaintances and Alex's current caseload. "Well, it seems like it was a good move. I have to admit, I started sleeping much better after I became a judge."

"I think there are a number of reasons why I'm sleeping better these days," Alex said, offering a soft smile as she squeezed Sabina's leg under the table. With Patrice gone, she realized just how easily they had fallen into a pattern of existence depending upon each other. Sabina blushed at the touch but stayed silent, glancing down slightly. Persia nuzzled her leg, flicking it with her tongue lazily before rolling on her side.

"I'm sure." Liz smirked at Sabina, though she wasn't trying to be mean.

"You know you're always welcome to join us," Alex said, dropping her eyes in deference to Liz. The invitation was merely a formality, just as Patrice would have given Donna in the same situation. They would always have ties to their mistresses, and to share Sabina with them, should they wish it, was to be expected.

"Thank you." Liz swirled the last of her wine in her glass before finishing it. "The two of you really should bring her by the club. Things have been quiet lately. It would be a nice change."

Sabina glanced up as they talked about her, heart beating a little faster. She wanted to ask what they meant so badly but knew it wasn't her place.

"I'm not sure, Liz," Alex said quietly. She unconsciously touched her shoulder, feeling the scar through her clothing, or so she imagined. "It's been a long time."

"Mmm..." Liz said noncommittally. As far as she was concerned, it was something that Alex needed do, but this wasn't the time to press her.

"I'll talk to Patrice about it," Alex said finally as she refilled their glasses, save Liz's when the older woman shook her head. It was a concession, but she felt the she owed that to Liz.

Sabina happily took her now re-filled glass and sipped it, making a mental note to see if Patrice would explain a few things to her when she got back.

Liz nodded. "Good. Actually, I should be getting home."

With pleasantries exchanged, Alex let Liz go. She and Sabina finished the bottle, heading home afterwards. "Are you finished with your homework?" Alex asked int he elevator on the way up.

Sabina nodded. "For the night. I have a paper due next week, but I've got an outline finished…and I was going to start writing it tomorrow."

"Excellent." She smiled slightly as they stepped out of the elevator. "I'm glad you're staying on top of things," she said, unlocking the door.

Sabina was bursting with curiosity, but she couldn't tell if Alex was in the mood to answer any of her questions, so she just followed her inside. "It's something my mother always insisted on." She didn't often talk about her mother; it was her father that she had always been close to, but her organizational abilities were entirely her mother's doing.

"My mother was incredibly good at pretending she was more organized than she could ever hope to be." Alex chuckled as she tossed her keys onto the table and went about taking the dogs' leashes off. "I'm going to give Patrice a call; can you feed the dogs?"

The girl smiled at the anecdote, trying to hide her surprise. Alex didn't really share much about her life from before Sabina moved in with them. "Of course." she nodded. "C'mon girls. Let's go eat." She rested a hand on Porcelain's neck as they walked to the kitchen, knowing that Persia would follow.

Alex headed to the bedroom and slipped out of her shoes as she climbed onto the bed. She crossed her legs as she pulled out the phone, speed dialing Patrice and sighing as it began to ring. She missed her, but having Sabina there made it easier not to feel lonely.

Patrice jumped when her phone rang, then smiled when Alex's picture came up on the caller ID. She picked it up and turned to back to the large hotel window, watching the snow falling quietly, obscuring the view of the lake in the distance, "Hey.... how's your night?"

"It's been good." She smiled brightly immediately and rolled onto her side. "Sabina and I took the dogs out for a walk and ran into Liz at the little place I took you on our first date." Alex absently fingered the case on Patrice's pillow. "I think we both miss you."

Patrice smiled: she didn't like to think of Alex as lonely, but it was good to know she wasn't the only one looking forward to the week being over, "I miss you too." She shifted her tone somewhat, "How was that? Meeting Liz I mean?"

"Mm..." Alex paused, organizing her thoughts as she lay on her back. "I think she was surprised...but not unpleasantly. She wants us to come to the club." And at the last, she couldn't quite keep her voice from dropping out of her own misgivings about what reentering the Scene so formally in New York meant.

"Does she?" Patrice caught Alex's tone, they had had fun in Paris, but she knew Alex had history with it in New York. Patrice wasn't opposed to such things, but would never pressure Alex. "I'm sure we can talk about it when I get back, it's not something I need if you'd rather keep to ourselves."

Alex smiled at how well Patrice could read her, even from a distance. "We'll talk about it...yeah. So, you'll be hone day after tomorrow, then?" she asked, tone becoming lighter.

"Yes, I get in at six, so I'll be home soon after. I can't wait to get back, Chicago in January is less than ideal." She pressed her palm to the glass, feeling the icy temperature seeping through. "I won't keep you, it's later there. Glad you called."

"I'm looking forward to it..." She glanced towards the door, seeing Sabina coming down the hall. "We both are." Alex let out a long breath, not wanting to let Patrice go, to break the link with her soft voice. "Love you," she said quietly, hoping that the uncharacteristic utterance of what they generally kept to silent gestures and looks wouldn't upset the blonde.

Patrice paused, smiling blindly at her own reflection in the window, the response was automatic though not unmeaning, "Love you too, goodnight Alex."

"Night." Alex stared at Patrice's picture on the phone for a moment before hanging up and turning towards Sabina, a smile on her face.

Sabina lingered at the threshold to Alex's room, knowing better than to go in without permission. The blonde waved her in as she sat up. "Do you want to order in or figure out something from leftovers?" she asked. She moved aside and patted the bed for Sabina to sit next to her.

Crawling up onto the bed, Sabina considered the question. "I'm fine with ordering in." She didn't particularly feel like cooking, and Alex's cooking was... iffy, though she hoped that didn't show on her face.

"Alright." Alex didn't move immediately though. She drew Sabina close, wanting to simply hold the girl just then.

Sabina settled into Alex's arms and tried to relax. She wasn't really used to Alex treating her like this, but she wasn't complaining. She nuzzled affectionately against Alex's neck.

The blonde kissed her hair and breathed in the scent--the same shampoo Patrice used. She smiled to herself, amused at the way Sabina seemed to idolize Patrice. "I thought you might sleep in here tonight."

"Thank you." Sabina closed her eyes briefly, just enjoying being in Alex's arms. "I'd like that." She bit her lip, uncertain about asking a question, but she went ahead. "Is everything alright in Chicago?"

Alex furrowed her brow as she settled against Sabina, kissing her neck lightly. She wondered why the girl would think something was amiss. "Mmhm. Seems that way."

Sabina squirmed at Alex's lips and smiled. "Good." She pressed closer to Alex, just enjoying the contact.

Sabina tilted her hip up for Alex, nodding. "It isn't really pizza, you know." The American version sounded good, but she couldn't resist point it out.

Alex chuckled and rolled on top of Sabina, her hand still under the girl's shirt. "Is that so?" She smirked down at the girl, suddenly playful, almost taking on Patrice's roll in her absence.

Sabina squeaked as Alex ended up on top of her, not at all expecting it. She nodded. "Real pizza is... different."

"Mmm..." Alex kissed Sabina's neck with more intent this time. Pizza was fast becoming the last thing on Alex's mind. She smiled against the girl's skin. "Real pizza is different...anything else I should know?" she asked, breath warm against Sabina's neck.

Sabina squirmed again. "I... I don't think so." She hooked one of her legs around Alex, hoping that it wouldn't be too much, even as she was hoping that it was.

"Are you sure about that?" Alex teased. She pushed her fingers under Sabina's bra and toyed with one of her nipples lightly. Like with the wine, she had no intention of telling Patrice what they did that evening, of her now forming plans of simply indulging in Sabina's youth and beauty in an almost thrillingly vanilla way--if she could manage it. But if Patrice did find out, Alex would be amused and delighted to see what she did about it.

Sabina arched up into Alex's hand. "I... can't think of anything." She wrapped her other leg around Alex, pulling her closer.

Alex chuckled lightly before pulling Sabina into a playful kiss and settling there on top of her between her legs. She almost felt like a teenager again...almost.

Sabina slid her hands under Alex's shirt, wondering just how far Alex would let her go. Alex's skin was cool under her hands and she reached up and unhooked Alex's bra.

The blonde smiled as she pulled up, allowing Sabina to finish removing both articles of clothing. She rolled, pulling the girl on top of her, wondering if Sabina would take advantage of the situation and her mood.

Sabina straddled Alex's hips and pulled off her own shirt. It seemed like Alex was going to let her get away with quite a bit. Once that was done, she leaned down and started sucking on one of Alex's nipples. "Americans dress differently, sloppier." Now that Alex wasn't touching her, it was much easier to think.

Alex relaxed into the touch and put her hands behind her head as she closed her eyes. She shifted, arching slightly to encourage the girl. "Oh? Mm...is that how we come across then?" She smirked.

"No you... Just, in general. But you do have better hair dye." She switched to Alex's other nipple. "And better jeans." Speaking of, Sabina reached down and started unbuttoning Alex's pants.

She had to laugh at the things that so obviously concerned Sabina as a teenager. Alex shifted her hips, allowing the brunette to pull her jeans off. Her panties, simple cotton with bits of lace, were already damp. "But not better taste in wine..." she teased.

Sabina rolled her eyes. "Americans will drink anything with a pretty picture on the label." It was something that she had heard her grandfather say. She rubbed her hand across the front of Alex's panties, then slid down and teasingly licked her through them.

Alex twitched under the touch in an effort not to squirm. But her breath became jagged as greater evidence of her arousal. "I hadn't realized you were such an authority..."

"My grandfather is." Sabina pulled Alex's panties off, eager to taste her.

She squirmed openly then, showing Sabina that she was ready, that while she was willing to play, it had better end with her getting what she wanted. "Mm...and are Italians better with their tongues?" she teased. "Why don't you show me."

"Italians are better at everything." She smirked as she pressed her tongue to Alex's clit. She licked intently, enjoying the way Alex tasted, enjoying the freedom that Alex was allowing.

Alex moaned and relaxed back into the pillow, simply allowing herself time to enjoy the sensation. So often, she was plotting what was to come next wen it came to Sabina. This was quite an indulgence.

Sabina pushed her fingers into Alex and curled them up as she pulled them back out. She wanted to prove to Alex just how good she could be, that her words weren't just idle boasting. She pulled away for a second, only to reapply herself with even more determination.

Even as she raised her eyebrows, Alex was moaning, arching into the touch. She closed her eyes, letting herself just feel, knowing she was close but wanting to draw it out just a little while long. "Sabina," she moaned.

Sabina immediately stopped and looked up. Had she assumed too much?

"God, don't stop," Alex said immediately, desperation lacing her voice.

Sabina's eyes widened and she bent her head again. She licked at Alex's clit, the started sucking on it, her fingers deep inside of Alex as she did. It only took a few more moments before Alex dug her heels into the sheets, her breath, her moan caught in her throat as her climax overwhelmed her.

Sabina stayed where she was until Alex had calmed, then she crawled up to Alex's side, lying down and putting her still jean clad leg across Alex's hips.

After a moment, Alex chuckled at the gesture. She pulled Sabina into her arms and smiled. "Mm, thank you. Now...why don't you go ahead and order that pizza, hm?" She had every intention of making the girl wait until Patrice came home before she would let her come.

Sabina's eyes widened, but she obediently got out of bed and headed toward the living room. She picked her favorite pizza place and dialed the number, wondering if Alex would touch her later that night.

Chapter Text

Patrice was tired. She had worked on a particularly annoying case in Chicago all week, with opposing counsel she especially didn't care for, and then jumped on a flight out of O'Hare under questionable weather conditions without a second thought because she couldn't face the empty hotel room for one more night. By the time she got home, she was so looking forward to being there that she tipped the cab driver a ten and nearly ran for the building, closing her eyes as she rode the elevator to the top floor.

Sabina heard the elevator ding as it reached the top floor. The doorman hadn't called up, so it could only mean one thing. She jumped up and headed toward the door, with Persia at her heels.

Patrice sighed in relief and turned her key in the lock, opening the door and dragging herself and luggage inside, nearly running into Sabina. She smiled, "Hey, how was your week?"

"Good." Sabina wanted to wrap her arms around Patrice, but didn't. Instead, she just reached for her bag. "I'm glad you're back."

"Me too." Patrice gratefully let Sabina take her things and put them down. When her coat was hung up, she turned back to the expectant young girl, noting with amusement how tenuously she was controlling herself. She casually held out her arms, inviting Sabina in, "well?" Sabina smiled and pratically threw herself at Patrice, hugging her tightly.

The sound of the elevator bell hadn't even registered with Alex. She sat on the sofa, one leg curled underneath her, and it was when she heard the sound of Sabina, apparently bounding down the hall, that she looked up from the paper. When she got home, she had changed into her favorite pair of jeans and the Columbia sweatshirt she should have thrown out a year or so before--it slipped off her shoulder now as she looked over her glasses and reached for her glass of wine. She could hear Patrice in the entry, but she waited.

Persia whined from the floor where she was wiggling, waiting for her turn to say hello to Patrice. Alex listened to the commotion, but made herself remain where she was even though she wanted nothing more than to go to Patrice herself. Her restraint was wearing thin, but there was something delicious in the anticipation.

Patrice wrapped her arms around the girl and kissed her hair, letting her linger before releasing her. "Alex is home, yes?" At Sabina's nod Patrice took her hand and led them down the hall to the living room. When she saw Alex, her smile grew...yes, she had definitely been gone too long.

Upon seeing her, Alex couldn't hold back her smile. She took off her glasses before standing. "Welcome home." There was something fitting and comforting about seeing Patrice with Sabina beside her, so obviously ecstatic. And in a moment, she was pulling Patrice into her arms, breathing in the smell of her perfume, her shampoo, feeling her skin and clothes, and finally just letting herself revel in the fact that Patrice was home.

Sabina let go of Patrice's hand, knowing that she wasn't really needed in that moment. She bit her lip as she watched them hug. Despite Alex being really nice while Patrice was away, she preferred having Patrice there. Everything suddenly felt normal again.

Patrice didn't let Alex go, slowly walking her backward toward the couch, talking between kisses, "I...Missed...you...." It wasn't until she had gotten home that she realized properly how much she had missed it "...so...much....Chicago...really is...cold..."

"Mm...I..." Between kisses and falling back onto the sofa, pulling Patrice with her, Alex couldn't really get a word out. She hardly minded, and instead of finishing, instead of answering, she pulled Patrice on top of her and kissed her thoroughly. "That's better," she said finally, hands already wandering under Patrice's shirt. "Bit warmer now?"

"Much..." Patrice slid her fingers quickly under Alex's shirt, tugging it off.

Sabina knew that they had probably forgotten that she was there, and she thought about going back to her room before she dismissed the idea. Instead, she just sat on the floor beside one of the armchairs and waited.

Alex responded by doing the same with Patrice's and making quick work of her pants as well. She didn't want to wait and didn't want to show any restraint in welcoming the blonde home. And as she pushed Patrice's panties aside and pushed her fingers into Patrice, Alex was thoroughly delighted to find that she was already wet. "God...missed you," she said breathlessly.

Patrice moaned, out of both contentment and arousal. She paused a moment to feel Alex inside her and then reached down to unbutton the other blonde's jeans, tugging them, then pushing them down with her toes. She kissed Alex again, returning the other woman's actions, pressing into her.

After a small struggle that ended with getting only one leg out of her jeans, Alex gave up and focused on Patrice, moaning as the blonde touched her in kind. She held her close and kissed her neck before beginning to taste her skin, to mark it as she brushed her thumb over Patrice's clit.

"God...Alex...yes..." Patrice was moving with the other blond, kissing her neck, her cheek, lips. She wanted to be surrounded by Alex's skin, committing the feel and scent to memory again.

Alex was so close. She pulled Patrice into a fierce kiss, pressing into her with desperate force. All she wanted in that moment was the blonde, to feel her shuddering in her arms, around her fingers.

"Oh..." Her voice trailed off into a passionate whimper as she came, still pressing into Alex, rubbing her palm firmly over the other woman's clit.

She drew in a shuddering breath and pulled Patrice tight against her as she shuddered through her orgasm, eyes closed and lips parted in a silent moan. When she opened her eyes again, the room seemed brighter, almost unreal. Alex smiled before kissing Patrice softly. "Glad you're back..."

Patrice relaxed against Alex, feeling their breath steady together, skin still cooling, covered with a light sheen of sweat. "Me too."

Mm." Alex kissed her cheek and nuzzled her skin lightly, content to stay there in silence

Chapter Text

Patrice glared at Dan Levin's back as he walked out her door. She couldn't believe she was about to have to live this nightmare of a case again, say those things, hear herself say those things. As soon as he was out of earshot she slammed the file shut, she couldn't' even bear to keep it open, let alone take it home for the weekend like he had instructed. Patrice stood and grabbed her things; she had to get out of there, even if it was only 4 PM. 20 minutes later she was slamming open the front door of the apartment and moving to get a drink as fast as she could. The blonde didn't make it to the kitchen though, tripping over Sabina's backpack and shoes in the hall and nearly falling. The she caught herself and immediately swore, glaring down the hall, "Sabina! Get over here!" She knew it wasn't smart to deal with this now, and she had come home early, but it was the third time that week.

Sabina poked her head out of her bedroom and found Patrice glaring her. She wasn't exactly sure what she had done, but she knew better than to ignore the other women. She stepped out of her room and toward Patrice.

Patrice was further annoyed by Sabina's calm demeanor. She crossed her arms and glared again, "Today please." She motioned to the items she had just tripped over. "Pick those up; you've been told before."

"Oh. Sorry." Sabina grabbed her shoes and her backpack and carried them to her room. "You're, um, home early..."

Patrice followed behind the brunette, close enough that she would feel it and stopped just at the door to the girl's room. "That's not an excuse, just as it wasn't one the last time. Go wait in the corner."

Sabina wasn't exactly trying to use it as an excuse, merely an observation, but something told her that Patrice didn't really care about the difference. She didn't say anything as she headed to the corner and knelt.

The blonde tried to calm down, but it was all too much. She felt a wave of anger rise up again and walked into the living room and was almost more upset to see Sabina kneeling as she was told. Patrice was upset and was starting to feel a rising panic she couldn't quite control, "Get up," she spat at the young girl.

She got back up again, utterly confused about what it was she had done wrong this time. She looked at Patrice questioningly. "Are you okay?"

Patrice stood more rigidly and crossed her arms, trying to ignore that her eyes were starting to sting. She raised her voice louder to compensate, "Did I tell you that you could turn around!?" As if to punctuate the fact, she crossed the room and grabbed Sabina's shoulders and turned her roughly to face the wall.

Sabina's breath caught in her as she stumbled into the wall. Something wasn't right, but there was something about the way that Patrice was talking to her, touching her, and she couldn't ignore how appealing it was. Her chest was heaving and she pressed her shoulder blades back into Patrice's hands. Patrice was a little past thinking rationally, and Sabina's just accepting her behavior wasn't calming her. She stepped back half a pace and brought her palm down hard across the brunette's ass, then again before the girl could react.

"I asked you a question!" She leaned in as she yelled at her and bit the young woman's skin, marking her neck before she could reply.

"Oh God," Sabina whimpered and tried to clutch at the wall. "No... No, ma'am." She didn't normally use any sort of honorific, but it seemed somehow appropriate.

Patrice stared at the girl for a moment and quietly closed her fingers around the back of her neck, holding her to the wall. The blonde was breathing hard, not even trying to control it. With the other hand she quickly unbuttoned the girl's jeans and pushed them down, then reached between her legs from behind, nearly growling when she found Sabina already wet. "If you like this so much, then it's not much of a punishment is it?"

Sabina whimpered as Patrice touched her. "I'm sorry... I'm sorry." She pushed her hips forward against Patrice's hand, completely unable to stop herself. "Please..."

Patrice yanked her hand away and smacked Sabina's ass again, "Shut up and get undressed, you look ridiculous like that." She didn't move away, standing uncomfortably close to the brunette, letting her feel her breath as she stood over the younger woman.

Sabina scrambled out of her clothing, letting it drop in a pile on the floor. Patrice didn't normally act like this and there was something distinctly thrilling about it. Sabina had no idea what was happening, or what was going to happen. Her chest was flushed and she felt like she couldn't quite catch her breath. She turned back to the wall, hoping that was what Patrice wanted, but fairly sure that no mater what she did, Patrice would find a reason to be unhappy.

It wasn't good enough, it just wasn't. What was worse was that Patrice couldn't decide why. It didn't matter, Sabina didn't deserve a reason. She grabbed the girl by the hair with one hand and the arm with the other and dragged her down the hall to the bedroom, throwing her down across the bed. Patrice opened a bedside drawer and pulled out a set of leather cuffs and roughly caught the younger woman's wrists, binding them over her head as she lay face down. "You're not good at apologies yet. Try again."

Sabina squirmed as Patrice cuffed her, flexing against the slightly too tight cuffs. "I'm sorry. I'm sorry," she said breathlessly. "Please, I'm sorry." She was getting frantic with desire for Patrice to believe her and just desire in general. She rubbed her thighs together and tried to get closer to Patrice, no matter how angry she was. It was so sexy, so hot, and Sabina just wanted. She wasn't even sure exactly what it was she wanted, but it didn't matter.

Patrice wasn't entirely listening to Sabina's apologies, she was instead noticing how shamelessly the girl was enjoying the treatment and she started to feel arousal of her own mix with the anger and frustration. She reached for the drawer again and took a short length of rope, then hauled the brunette by the cuffs up to the head of the bed and tied her wrists to the headboard. "I don't believe you." Patrice stated flatly, now upset at herself for her own growing enjoyment in the moment.

Sabina wasn't sure what she could do to get Patrice to believe her, so she just kept repeating herself, telling her that she was sorry over and over. She pulled against the rope, even as she knew it wouldn't do any good. "Please..." She didn't know what she was asking for, but Patrice was starting to upset her and tears started to run down her face. It did nothing to lessen her arousal.

While Alex's day hadn't been particularly terrible, it had been full of small headaches and tedium. She was tired and eager enough to get home that she already had her shoes in her hand when the elevator doors opened to her floor. She thought she might put together something light for dinner to have waiting for Patrice when she got home. But the moment she unlocked the door, hearing a sound smack at the same time as seeing Patrice's things left in the entryway, Alex knew something was distinctly wrong. She furrowed her brow, noting that neither of the dogs came out to great her. "Patrice, Sabina..." she called, heading down the hallway.

Alex furrowed her brows, quickening her step as she heard Sabina's entries, which seemed to be turning into sobs. She stepped into the bedroom, seeing immediately that the rope was too tight, that the entire mood of the situation was somehow tilted. And Sabina looked genuinely upset, but it was the distant, angry stare she met from Patrice that made Alex turn cold. "Patrice, what the hell do you think you're doing?" Her voice was hard as she crossed her arms.

Patrice turned quickly, Alex's appearance startling her. "I..." she paused realizing she didn't know exactly what she was doing, then continued when she remembered how Alex's name kept coming up in her workweek, her surprise turning back to almost unbalanced anger, "... I'm teaching a lesson." She concluded the statement harshly and moved over Sabina, tangling her fingers harshly in her hair.

Sabina moaned through her tears and arched up into Patrice. She wrapped her legs around Patrice's waist and wished that she would just fuck her.

Narrowing her eyes, Alex watched the moment unfold as if it were hours ticking before her eyes. Despite Sabina's obvious enjoyment, she caught Patrice's wrist, holding it firmly even as she tried to extract the blonde's fingers from Sabina's hair without doing too much damage. Perhaps it was new, perhaps it was exciting, but Alex would not have Patrice doing more harm than intended. She pulled her away, pursing her lips as she tried to imagine what Sabina had done to cause so much anger in Patrice, but Alex it had barely been two weeks since she had seen the same look in Patrice's eyes, had felt the same anger directed towards her. "I'm not entirely sure you are." She closed her fingers more tightly around Patrice wrist, grip bruising as she began to tug her towards the hallway.

Patrice turned her stare on Alex, icy blue eyes narrowed out of anger, and in an attempt to hide her emotional panic at her own behavior. She yanked at Alex's grasp, though not quite hard enough to free herself. "Don't touch me!" Her voice was sharp, and she yelled to cover any loss of control, though Patrice knew if Alex didn't let go she would realize her hands were starting to tremble. The blonde possessively reached with her free hand and covered Sabina's lips with her fingers; she didn't want to hear the girl's continued pleading. Sabina went quiet when Patrice covered her mouth, and looked between the two of them, trying to figure out just what was going on.

Alex watched the gesture, both possessive and almost possessing of gentleness at the same time. She was glad of Sabina's quietness, but it only left the blood rushing in her ears to the ring of Patrice's words. But Alex did not hesitate, did not pause to tell herself that something was wrong, something had been wrong. She resisted the instinct to evaluate a collection of moments since Patrice barged into her office, to categorize and look for what she had been missing. Instead, she pulled Patrice close, locking her stare with Patrice and setting her jaw. "In the hallway," she growled, voice low, uncompromising. "Now."

Patrice struggled against Alex as she was nearly dragged away from Sabina and off the bed. She fought to stay on her feet as she half stood, half fell and was yanked toward the door. Patrice barely registered when Alex slammed the bedroom door behind them on Sabina, as she finally managed to twist out of the other blonde's grasp. "What the...hell... Alex?!?" Patrice was seething, and could barely speak from the shock of it. She yanked her other wrist away and shoved Alex roughly back against the wall, staying where she was, and stared at the other woman defiantly. "I said don't touch me." Her hands were now visibly shaking, and she crossed them over her chest, still glaring at Alex.

For a moment, Alex thought Patrice had knocked the breath out of her. She flattened her palms against the wall, steadying herself, but she did not remain slumped there for long. Alex straightened, standing face to face with Patrice and holding her eyes, daring her to look away. She was angry that Patrice would take this--whatever this was--out on Sabina without trying to talk to her, without being rational in her approach to dealing with it.

Patrice looked, Alex realized, almost like a frightened child, lashing out because she didn't have the tools to deal with whatever it was that she was facing. But Patrice did have the tools. Alex felt deeper color rising in her cheeks with her annoyance. "Do you realize how irresponsible you're being?" She gripped Patrice's shoulders and nearly yelled, words clipped. "Do you, Patrice? This is absolutely unacceptable."

Alex's stare and the accusations caught Patrice off guard and she bit back a dismissive retort. She stared back at the other blonde and saw genuine concern mixed with the other woman's anger. Her stomach dropped and she finally didn't have the strength to hold her stare any longer and looked away, eyes trailing to the ceiling. Patrice's pulse was beginning to slow, and though the hot anger was fading, it was being replaced with panic that she had broken something that couldn't be easily fixed. "I...can't.." Her voice caught, and she took a shaky breath, "I can't do it again." She didn't qualify the statement, too shaken to go further, and pulled away from Alex again, mind already looking for an exit strategy.

When Patrice broke the stare, Alex let herself sigh inwardly as a small part of the tension disappeared. But she did not let herself relax for fear that her focus would disappear. The anger, however, became less important than concern when Alex saw Patrice's eyes dark with a heaviness that she had only seen matched once before. Sensing the blonde's instinct to fly, Alex gently but firmly took her chin. She forced Patrice to focus once again on her face, and she kept her tone even as she spoke, "You don't run away from things."

Patrice felt her heart lighten briefly when Alex stopped her, and she didn't pull harder. She would realize in the calm of the next day that it was the first time someone had cared enough to keep her from running. However in that moment her mind was tired, worn out from her earlier fury and she couldn't make sense of it all. A few tears finally started to roll down her cheeks, and she tried to explain, "I just can't say those things again, I can't stand to listen to myself." That wasn't the extent, she knew that the more she prepared, the more she would have to believe what she said and it made her sick. There had been so many cases, so many lines she had delivered with utmost conviction before, serving her purpose, but for some reason this one was a step too far.

Alex put her forehead on Patrice's as she continued to hold her shoulders. Between the intense anger that Patrice directed towards her and that look, that look of utter loss gave Alex an inkling of just what Patrice couldn't stand to do again. Of course she wouldn't have known; had she stayed in the DA's office, this would have been on her mind for weeks as well. But as it stood, Alex had had no idea Patrice was going to have to suffer through it again, and she knew in her gut just how that had come about. "I'm so sorry," she whispered, pulling Patrice into a tight embrace.

The tears were falling freely now, less over her dread at taking the case, but more turning to her fear at how she had reacted and why. The blonde kept her face turned to the floor and started to speak again quietly, "I'm sorry. It's just worse now to take on...with...us and..." Her eyes moved from the carpet and back toward the closed bedroom door. Patrice let out a quiet sob in place of words and wiped away a few of her tears with her palm. She had always been able to do her job, and well, because she could see clients as starkly opposed to her own sense of control and morals. Now she was panicked, dreading she had finally lost herself in a maze of mental illusion and moral gray areas.

"Patrice..." Alex smoothed the blonde's hair and wiped her tears away with her thumbs, the gesture more important than its effectiveness. She remembered her sleepless nights, her moments of feeling so lost that she became desperate to the point of making stupid decisions. But this was more than that, and Patrice needed more than a censure, a wake up call, more than a suspension or a firm hand. And Alex needed to know that Patrice would trust her enough to come to her, to let her in. She followed Patrice's gaze, holding her tighter. What Patrice needed was clear, but Alex couldn't let her go to Sabina just yet, not like this. She pulled back just enough to cup Patrice's cheeks, told her face gently. "I'm here..." she said, aching to calm her, to let her know that she wasn't facing this entirely alone. "I'm here, and I love you, and I need...I need you to know that and trust that." She needed Patrice to know that she could turn to her instead of let such destruction build and build.

Patrice's eyes opened a little wider and she looked back to focus on Alex again. Her mind was still spinning and she was trying to decide what part of Alex's statement to answer. In the end she stopped thinking, and replied simply, "I love you too." She felt a flicker of a smile build behind her tears at how natural the words felt, at how she needed to say them, and kissed Alex quietly, closing her eyes as the last few tears streamed over her skin.

Alex held her, leaning into the kiss and enjoying its calm until its natural end. She pressed her cheek to Patrice's as she stroked her back soothingly, letting the not unwelcome gravity of their words fill the silence around them. Finally, she pulled away, wiping Patrice's tears in earnest this time. "Go on," she said softly, nodding towards the door. Patrice needed to finish, needed to know that it was really what they all wanted.

Patrice swallowed, her anger long gone, and her panic diminishing. However, when she looked at the door she felt it rise again, remembering what she had done. Patrice nodded, knowing Alex was right, that this was a bridge that had to be crossed before their lives could continue, and having Alex there knowing she could manage helped. Patrice turned and quietly opened the bedroom door. She kept herself in check and looked into Sabina's confused eyes as she moved toward her. "I accept your apology, and now I need you to tell me what you want." She didn't' care what the response was, how Sabina would interpret the question as long as it was honest.

Having been left alone to calm down, Sabina didn't know what she wanted anymore. It had been easier when Patrice wasn't giving her a choice, when she didn't have a chance to think about it. "I... I don't know... I..."

Alex followed behind Patrice, but she purposefully kept a slight distance between them. Patrice needed her there, she knew, but this was also something that the blonde needed to do herself. Sabina was young, and Alex knew she would come to understand all of this later. For now, she simply closed the door behind her and watched.

Patrice waited for a moment, then slipped onto the bed, straddling Sabina's hips lightly. She looked into the girl's eyes and gently brushed her fingertips over her soft skin, lingering in the moment. "It's ok whatever the answer is, I just need to know."

Sabina tugged at the rope tying her to the bed. She wanted to touch Patrice, yet at the same time, she loved that she couldn't. "I don't know. I don't. Please..." She squirmed under Patrice.

Patrice had regained her control, and seeing Sabina squirm under her with renewed desire forced a smile from the blonde. She gently tilted her head and considered the girl, mindlessly brushing her palms over the brunette's nipples. "Please what Sabina?" She let her voice take on a controlled edge, "full sentences please."

Sabina whimpered under Patrice's hands. "I don't know..." She was getting frantic again. "I don't know... Please just don't stop." She tugged at the rope, fighting it, and the fight making her wetter. She rubbed her thighs together.

Sabina's plea was concrete enough; Alex crossed her arms as she watched, as she tried to piece together what had happened before she arrived. The girl wanted it, wanted whatever Patrice had been giving her. And she felt relief in seeing Patrice so self assured. In fact, she felt her own desire rising.

Patrice nodded, relieved that the girl wasn't scared, not too much anyway. She pinched the girl's nipples, tugging at them as she spoke, "I need you to know that what happened earlier will not happen again. I was out of line to take my anger out on you." She leaned down and kissed the brunette's neck, grazing her teeth over the already red mark on her skin, "However, it appears it wasn't entirely uninteresting to you." She tried not to smile again, enjoying feeling the girl shifting under her, "am I wrong Sabina?"

"No," Sabina breathed, arching up as Patrice's bit her neck. "Please..." She knew that Patrice wanted full sentences but she simply wasn't that coherent.

"Full sentences, Sabina," Alex said firmly. She sauntered forward, stopping to kiss Patrice firmly. Then, she merely perched on the edge of the bed, making her presence obvious without interjecting herself into the situation completely.

Patrice shivered when Alex spoke. Even with their familiarity, Alex could make Patrice's stomach drop with a simple change of tone. She turned back to Sabina and waited for a reply, continuing to roll the brunette's nipples, more roughly now.

Sabina whimpered. "Please..." She bucked and twisted under Patrice. "Keep touching me..." She blushed furiously, "Keep hurting me," she whispered.

Alex raised her eyebrows, surprised at the last. It was easy to think of Sabina as delicate, scared, as a pretty girl to be coddled even as she was taught. But this...this was new, interesting. She found herself leaning forward, her breath quickening.

Patrice's pulse quickened at Sabina's last plea, and she leaned over her, trying not to look surprised. If that was what the girl wanted, needed to try then she wasn't going to be one to make her feel ashamed. She pinched a little harder with one hand and gripped the brunette's chin with the other, focusing her and reading the desire in her eyes. There was confusion and surprise there as well, and Patrice decided to oblige her, but slowly. She turned to Alex and raised an eyebrow, "Well, I think someone could use the rest of the lesson she didn't get earlier."

Sabina arched into the touch, flashes of pain leaving desire in it's wake. She sucked in a breath. "Yes...God..."

Patrice didn't need any more reassurance, and she reached up and untied Sabina from the headboard, keeping the cuffs on. Patrice leaned down and kissed her possessively, then addressed Alex, "get me a blindfold." Patrice wanted to push Sabina gently at first, and with this she would have to trust them, as well as the added confusion of not knowing who was touching her at any given moment.

Sabina's eyes went wide, at least until her eyes were covered. She squirmed more, trying to reach out for Patrice or Alex or anything.

Without hesitation, Alex went to get the blindfold. She tied it around Sabina's eyes with expert care, and when she was finished, she smiled to Patrice. Such sensory deprivation had always been a delight to her, and she hoped it would be the same for the girl. Silently, she asked what her partner would like from her.

Patrice looked at Alex and smiled slightly, taking a moment to prepare herself, getting in the right mindset this time. She tightened her fingers in Sabina's hair and drug her up from the bed to her knees, making room for Alex to move behind Sabina. She was already anticipating, it had been awhile since she had seen the girl marked properly.

Sabina tried to find her balance, but it was difficult with the blindfold on. She ended up swaying against whoever was behind her. Her breath was coming more rapidly and everything seemed slightly surreal.

Alex steadied the girl before moving away. She kissed Patrice briefly but with intent; however, she did not linger as she disappeared into the closet. After a moment, she returned, a harness and dildo situated perfectly on her hips. She smirked to Patrice as she took up position behind Sabina, pressing into the girl.

Patrice smiled back at Alex over the girl's shoulder, holding her steady. The brunette's gasp turned into a moan. She pressed into the dildo, trying desperately to remain upright. She wanted... She didn't know what she wanted, but she knew that she didn't want them to stop.

"Quiet." Patrice ordered to Sabina, keeping one hand still gripping the girl's shoulder, pushing her back against Alex, she brought the other down to toy with the girl's nipples, twisting them, rolling them between her fingers.

Alex smirked even as she felt her desire quicken at Patrice's sure tone. She began to press into Sabina harder, her strokes firm. She knew that they would not be entirely comfortable for the girl, but Alex guessed that Sabina would respond well to the treatment. And with that force behind her movements, she was pushing her into Patrice. "That's it," she said, voice low, almost a groan. She set her gaze upon the blonde and stared intensely.

Sabina winced and bit her lip to stop from making any noise. The pain only made her want it more, and she kept pressing back. Her head was swimming, and her awareness had shrunk to the dildo pressing into her and the fingers on her already sore nipples.

When Patrice registered Sabina's growing tension she moved her hand from the girl's breast to lightly tease her clit, letting Alex's thrusts press Sabina into her hand.

Pressing her chest against Sabina's back, Alex leaned forward and caught Patrice in a fierce kiss, holding here there until it was necessary to pull away. And when she did, she nipped lightly at the blonde's bottom lip before smiling. A whimper escaped from Sabina's throat as she felt them pressed against her. She was so close, and she squirmed against the fingers on her clit. Her lip was bleeding slightly and as she tasted the blood, she whimpered again.

Patrice didn't move on her first instinct upon hearing the girl's whimper. She looked so innocent, so young, bound and blinded. Still, Patrice couldn't deny her the earlier request, and the poignant way she was squirming told her she wasn't going too far. The blonde raised her hand and slapped Sabina across the cheek. The blow was enough to startle her, though not to leave a mark. Alex's breath caught in her throat, but she merely continued, her thrusts even, forceful. She lowered her head with the intent to kiss Sabina's shoulder, but as soon as her lips touched the delicate skin, she opened them to bit, marking the girl just lightly. She looked up through her lashes as she kissed the skin once again. Patrice's push against her own instinct was clear in her bright eyes, but her determination, her attention to the girl and the precise, sure way she moved made Alex moan softly.

At the slap, Sabina reeled back, but it only made her moan. She shuddered between them, grabbing at anything she could as her orgasm overwhelmed her.

When she felt the girl let go, Patrice leaned in and kissed her almost forcefully, drawing the moment out as long as she could. When the girl's grip slackened and she sagged between them, Patrice held Sabina, letting her come down in her own time. She brushed her fingers over the girl's slightly flushed cheek, smoothing her previous actions.

Alex pulled away, letting Patrice bring Sabina down, letting her finish what she had started. She watched as Patrice closed her eyes, the weight of the past few hours, of the past few weeks lifting at least a little off of her shoulders. But she did not let the moment last too long. Alex put her hands on her hips and glanced down tot he dildo. "Patrice..." she said firmly.

Patrice shifted, laying Sabina down on the bed gently. She raised an eyebrow at Alex, asking both what she had in mind, and also whether they should let Sabina watch.

The blonde moved to the bed and pulled Sabina's blindfold away, indicating that it was alright if she watched.. The girl was likely too tired for much else at the moment. She went back to Patrice and stroked her cheek as she cocked her head. "How should I punish Patrice, Sabina?"

"I..." Sabina looked between the two of them, utterly lost. "I think...," she tried to stall, until her brain could catch up to what was happening. "Why are you punishing her?" Sabaina was confused, not sure what Patrice had done that needed punishing.

Alex pursed her lips even though the question actually amused her. She went to Sabina again, this time running her hands up the girl's sides, stopping to tease her tender nipples. "Why do you think I'm punishing her?" she asked, smirking.

"I... I don't know." Sabina looked up at Alex. Patrice's actions hadn't really made sense earlier, when she had been so angry, had she done something wrong? Sabina wasn't sure. She had been enjoying it so much. "She... was angry?"

"I think you liked that a bit too much," Alex whispered, tweaking the girl's nipples harder. "I think you might not have been paying attention because of that."

Sabina whimpered and arched upward. "I'm sorry...I'll try to do better."

"Yes. You will." Alex bent, kissing her firmly. "Mm. I think it's time to make your training more rigorous. Perhaps I'll give you a whipping tomorrow." She turned back, glancing at Patrice. "But I think only a spanking for Patrice tonight." The blonde's tears were still fresh in her mind, and Alex could not help but let that soften her.

Sabina whimpered again and squirmed, already looking forward to the next day.

Alex went back to Patrice, pulling her into a soft kiss before holding her at arm's length, looking at her discerningly. "Take this off of me," she said softly, glancing down to the toy.

She watched the exchange with rapt interest, enjoying Alex's calm demeanor in the middle of such a night. She shivered at the other blonde's promises, anticipating the next night with what she judged to be only slightly less excitement than Sabina. She moved to Alex, fingers going immediately to her waist, unbuckling the leather and helping it off of the other blonde. She never looked forward to a spanking, but knew she deserved it that night.

In truth, Alex was not looking forward to giving the punishment, but she felt it necessary for Sabina to see, even if the girl didn't understand why it was being given. She would at some point. It was afterwards, when she could feel Patrice's warm skin, when she could hold her close, that Alex found herself wanting. She drew Patrice with her to the chair they kept in the bedroom and used for this more often than the reading either of them claimed to do there at any given time. Once she sat, Alex carefully pulled Patrice over her lap. She ran her hand down her back, stopping to knead some of the tense muscles. And with a breath, a pause to let Patrice know she was about to begin, Alex finally brought her hand down without bidding the blonde to count. She looked up to make sure Sabina was paying attention.

Sabina was rapt as Alex spanked Patrice. She rubbed her legs together, reveling in how sticky her thighs were.

Patrice clenched her hands into fists, pressing her knuckles into the carpet for the first few blows, steadying her mind as much as her body. By the 5th, she was pulling her hands up, crossing her wrists behind her back to give Alex complete control. She didn't squirm, didn't kick, Patrice not one to show weakness twice in one night.

Alex took her wrists, only smiling for a moment at the absolutely poise. At twenty, she stopped. Liz would say she let her feelings get the better of her...Donna probably would too. But for Alex, it was enough. The symbolism of the punishment would weigh more to Patrice, she knew, than the pain. Finally, she released the blonde's wrists and rubbed her back warmly. "Come here," she whispered.

Patrice breathed deeply, the punishment had been long enough to allow her to organize her thoughts, but not so severe as to cause her body to move her to tears again. She slipped off the other blonde's lap, landing on her knees only briefly before climbing lightly onto her, straddling her. Patrice leaned against Alex, pressing her face into the other woman's neck for a moment. "Thank you."

The moment ended the scene for Alex, and she wrapped her arms around Patrice and held her close, soaking in her warmth. Alex kissed her shoulder and nuzzled it lightly. "You're all right?"

Patrice nodded against Alex's skin, feeling calmer by the moment. "Yes. I'm sorry for earlier."

"Don't." Alex pulled back just enough to kiss Patrice softly. "It's the past." She smiled and glanced to the bed where Sabina seemed almost in a trance as she watched. "Why don't we let Sabina sleep at the foot of the bed tonight, hmm?"

Sabina brightened at that, hoping that Patrice would agree.

"Good." Alex kissed Patrice again, this time more thoroughly before letting her go. She had a long day the next day and would not forget that she had promised Sabina a whipping. Slipping into bed with Patrice at her side and Sabina at her feet seemed the most inviting thing she could imagine.

Chapter Text

Sabina dropped her paper off, smiling. Class was canceled otherwise and she was looking forward to a free afternoon. With that in mind, she headed toward what she knew was Patrice's favorite bakery and bought her an afternoon snack. It was something that Patrice probably wouldn't indulge in but would appreciate. From there, she headed toward Patrice's office building. She smiled at Jacob as she opened the outer door to Patrice's office. "Is she in?"

Jacob had been leaning back in his chair, stretching, and at the sight of Sabina, he nearly fell over. He tried to quickly recover himself and flashed a smile. "Sabina...hey..." He wished Patrice had been on the phone or something, but he had lousy luck. "Yep, she's...let me just..." He saw the bakery bag and recognized the logo. "Uh, did you want to surprise her? Or...I mean, i could take that in, and you know it's lunch, so we could maybe grab a bite..."

"Oh, that's um, sweet, but I wanted to give it to her personally." Sabina smiled at him. "There was something I needed to talk to her about." Sabina crossed her fingers at the lie and hoped that he wouldn't ask her just what that something was.

"Yeah…oh, of course. You can go in."

"Thank you." Sabina opened Patrice's office door and stepped in. She hoped that she hadn't hurt Jacob's feelings.

Patrice looked up, expecting to see Jacob but smiled at Sabina, and what she was carrying. After a moment her expression changed slightly, "Aren't you supposed to be in class?"

"Canceled." Sabina walked over and put the bag on Patrice's desk. "I thought you might like a snack."

Patrice put down her pen carefully, and smiled up at her. "How thoughtful." She noted the smile on the girl's face, "So is this just a quick stop before you head to the library?"

Sabina rolled her eyes. "This isn't exactly on the way to the library. I'm done for the day. I was heading home." She shrugged and leaned against Patrice's desk. It was quickly becoming her favorite place in her office.

Patrice smiled and slowly shook her head at the girl's antics, "You know so well when I take lunch." She leaned back, "And since I happen to know Alex is tied up all day at the office, you might not even get us into trouble this time." The blond was already anticipating, and leaned over to stroke the girl's arm with obvious intent.

Sabina shivered. She had been hoping that Patrice might see the opportunity for what it was. She slid off of Patrice's desk and locked the door without having to be told. "You... might want to send Jacob to lunch..." It was just a suggestion and if Patrice just wanted her to be quiet, she would do that instead.

She chuckled and picked up the phone, releasing Jacob for a rare lunch break. She hung up the phone and kicked her chair back a few feet, as Sabina returned and dropped to her knees.

Patrice raised an eyebrow and clicked her tongue disapprovingly. "Not that fast, though I do appreciate your enthusiasm." She opened a drawer of her desk, removing a set of leather cuffs, snaps, and a short chain. "Don't think I didn't see you enjoying yourself a little too much last time. Stand up and turn around."

Sabina's eyes went wide. She had thought that Patrice hadn't seen, that she had been too distracted. And the implications that Patrice had kept a set of cuffs in her desk... It made her shiver as she stood and turned.

Patrice weighed the cuffs in her hand, pretending to consider the girl in front of her. Without another word she buckled Sabina's hands securely behind her and turned her around. She smiled and pulled the brunette down into a fierce kiss, releasing her only to press her to her knees, "Well...I think you know where to go from here, I just need to finish my reading."

The brunette crawled under Patrice's desk and worked on trying to get Patrice's skirt pushed up, which was easier than she thought it would be, and getting her panties off, which was more difficult and required the judicious use of her teeth. Patrice had to focus to keep from reaching under the desk to help Sabina, but the girl was so adept and eager that she let her finish. Patrice picked up the code section she was reading and glanced it over, spreading her legs to give Sabina better access.

With no preamble, Sabina started licking the second that Patrice spread her legs. She pressed her own legs together as tightly as she could and still keep her balance. She knew that she was wet, but there was nothing that she could do about it. She pulled at the restraints and pressed her tongue more firmly into Patrice's clit.

Patrice reached a hand down to run through the girl's hair, gripping it firmly as a bit of a reward, steadying her. "Good girl."

Sabina pressed her head up into Patrice's hand for a brief moment, before she pressed her tongue into Patrice, who smiled, relaxing into the touch and letting Sabina push her closer slowly. Patrice was enjoying herself immensely, and even more thinking of how ready Sabina would be when she was finished with her task.

Sabina squirmed more, she hadn't gotten to finish the last time and she was eager to hear Patrice come. Luckily for her, Patrice didn't want to wait much longer and pressed into Sabina as she came slowly, letting out a low moan. And Sabina let out her own moan as she felt Patrice come, her clit pulsing slightly against Sabina's tongue. She stayed there until Patrice released her head, then leaned back.

She breathed, relaxing for a moment, then leaned back and drew the young woman up, letting her get to her feet. She looked up at her, smiling, noting the desire on her young features. "Thank you, you can turn around."

Sabina turned wondering what Patrice would do with her now and desperately hoping that it involved getting to come.

Patrice noted Sabina's anticipation, and grinned to herself, pulling out a pad of post-its and writing a few choice words. She then stood and moved as if to release Sabina's arms but instead lifted her shirt, taking a moment to brush her fingers over the girl's warm skin. "Mmm...are you ready for your next request then?"

"I..." Sabina stumbled. "Of course." She looked over her shoulder at Patrice, waiting for instructions. She couldn't begging to guess at what Patrice might want her to do.

"Eyes forward." Patrice couldn't help a smirk. Now, you've been very good, and you deserve a reward if you'll do one simple thing for me." She took a small binder clip from her desk and neatly pinned the note to Sabina's bra, directly in the back where she wouldn't be able to see it. "Go to Alex's office and show her this note." Patrice didn't let on what she had written, wanting to let the girl try and imagine what it might say. The blond smirked, knowing that Alex would be out of court by now and would probably enjoy the distraction.

Sabina nodded, blushing. She could only imagine the sort of conversation that she would have to have with Alex to get her to read the note. She took a deep breath, jiggling her arms slightly to remind Patrice to untie her.

"Patience." Patrice was still smirking, and slipped her hand between the girl's legs, offering her only the promise of more contact before withdrawing to untie her. "Alright, off you go then." She stood and kissed the brunette before settling back in to work, putting her clothes back in order.

Patrice smiled as she watched the girl leave, and picked up the phone when the door closed, calling Alex's secretary. "Yes, can you just give Alex a message for me? No, you don't need to interrupt her, a written note will be fine. Just let her know I'm sending something over from my office. I'm quite pleased with it so far, and just thought she might want to look it over." She was grinning broadly as she finished up, "Thank you very much." Patrice put the phone down and leaned back in her chair. Alex would get the picture, and she was looking forward to hearing how and if the other blond chose to reward Sabina.

Caroline took the message and just shook her head. If something had come in, it must have been on her lunch break or by email. She simply put it on Alex's desk, careful not to disturb the blonde who was on the phone. When Sabina arrived, she simply smiled. The girl seemed nice enough, and she thought it was nice of Alex and Patrice to have her. "Hello, Sabina, what can I do for you?"

"I, um, needed to talk to Alex about something. Will you tell her I'm here?" She hoped that Caroline was as uncurious as Jacob, or simply didn't think it her place to ask.

"Sure, let me just make sure she isn't on the phone." Caroline picked up the phone on her desk and spoke quietly before looking up and smiling once again. "Go on in."

"Thank you." Sabina opened Alex's office door and walked in, stopping in front of Alex's desk.

Alex looked up from her computer as she waved Sabina to a chair. "Is everything alright? I thought you had class..."

"Class got canceled..." Sabina looked at the chair but didn't sit. "Patrice wanted me to bring you a message." She blushed, turning red.

At that mention of Patrice, Alex remembered glancing at the message Caroline had brought in a few minutes earlier. She picked it up, rereading it with new understanding. "Caroline," Alex said after she picked up her phone, "can you go and get me a latte...from that little vegan coffee shop?" The one across town. "Thanks." Once she put down the phone, she stood and crossed the room to close the door. "Patrice seems to be in quite a good mood."

Sabina blushed more. "Yeah..." she smiled a little. "The message... It's clipped to the back of my bra." She thought it was better to just say than to wait until Alex asked.

The blond raised her eyebrows. "Mm, take off your shirt."

Sabina squirmed a bit, but did as she was told, unbuttoning her shirt and shrugging it off. She instinctively crossed her arms over her chest.

When Alex saw the post it clipped there she smirked and crossed to Sabina to read it silently. "Happy Tuesday." She chuckled lightly and ran her fingertip down Sabina's spine. "Well...this is a surprise." She circled Sabina, looking her up and down thoughtfully. Sabina shivered at Alex's touch and tried to stay still under Alex's scrutiny.

"Bend over the desk and pull your jeans down," Alex said finally.

"Yes, Madame." Sabina swallowed and unbuttoned her jeans. She knew that her panties would still be wet and she didn't know how Alex would react to that. Once they were down, she bent over the desk and waited.

Alex stood behind her, arms crossed as she savored the sight of the girl along with the view from her office. She stepped forward and pressed her palm between Sabina's legs and simply shook her head. "I'm not even going to ask what the two of you were up to..."

Sabina bit back a moan and tried to stay still, though it was difficult. She was blushing again, and she knew it had to be from the location.

Alex began to touch her through her panties. She leaned down, kissed the girl's shoulder. "I think Patrice thinks you deserve a reward."

Sabina whimpered and pressed back into Alex's hand. Patrice had barely touched her, and she was so eager for the contact that she couldn't help herself. "Please..."

"Mm." She pushed the panties aside and began to circle Sabina's clit in earnest. Alex knew very well what had happened, but if Sabina's class had been canceled, she couldn't punish either of the women. "I'll expect Patrice to be in a good mood when I see her tonight."

The girl's hips bucked and she nodded emphatically. Patrice had been in a good mood when she had left, and she would do everything she could to make sure it stayed good when she got home.

"If she isn't, I'm going to punish you," Alex warned. She pressed her fingers into the girls, establishing a quick rhythm.

Sabina moaned and wantonly pushed back. "Y-yes, of course."

Perhaps she would punish her anyway. Alex smirked as she considered it. Yes, she decided that it might be a delight to pick up something for Sabina to spend the night crawling through the apartment fetching. But for the moment, she continued, content to let the girl come.

Sabina was already so close. It only took a few more thrusts from Alex to send her over the edge and leave her shuddering on the desktop.

"Good girl," Alex said soothingly as she kissed across Sabina's shoulders. She pulled away to admire the picture once again. "Mm, how much longer do you think my assistant will be?" She knew Sabina would have no idea.

"I..." She tried to remember where Alex had sent her, but she had been so distracted at the time. And she had no idea how much time had passed. "10 minutes?" She hoped that she was somewhere close to correct.

"And what do you think you can do in ten minutes?" Alex asked as she pulled Sabina up.

"Anything you want." She pressed into Alex, not bothering to pull her pants back up.

"Pull those up and come here," Alex said, amused. She sauntered over to the small sofa on the other side of her office and sat, keeping her legs uncrossed.

After pulling her pants up, Sabina crossed over to the sofa and hit her knees in front of Alex.

The blonde opened her legs as she leaned back. "Well, go on." She closed her eyes, trying to imagine Sabina in the same position before Patrice. She could see the girl having been eager, where in her presence, Sabina was more reserved.

Sabina happily pressed between Alex's legs, reaching up and under her skirt to slide down her panties. She wondered if she could arrange her schedule in the fall to have an afternoon free. She pushed Alex's shirt up and pressed her tongue between her thighs.

She sighed softly and pushed her fingers through Sabina's hair, encouraging her. "I'm watching the clock," Alex murmured, even though she was clearly not.

Sabina started licking more intently, knowing that she didn't have time to be as through as she would like. She pushed her fingers into Alex and started fucking her. Maybe they would both be in good moods that night.

"God..." Alex moaned softly, focusing her thoughts on Patrice, on whether the blonde was distracted just then with thinking about what sort of reward she had sent Sabina to. It didn't take long for her to reach her climax, and she pushed through it silently, her body shuddering around Sabina's fingers.

Pulling away, Sabina pushed Alex's panties back up. She hoped that she had been fast enough and that Alex was pleased.

"Thank you, Sabina." Alex stroked her cheek fondly before standing and going back to her desk. "I'm sure you've other things to do this afternoon."

Sabina nodded and wiped her mouth. "I'll see you tonight." She was smiling as she left, and relieved to see that Caroline hadn't gotten back yet.

Chapter Text

Alex sighed as she looked at the clock. It was just after five, but she needed to get away from her desk. She stood, stretching, thinking about going home, where she knew Sabina would be. But her mind revolted at that, as it did at the thought of stopping by Patrice's office and convincing her to leave earlier than usual as well. She paced. The day had been mostly quiet, but her shoulder had ached from tension, from thoughts she was trying to push away. Things had been excellent since Patrice's return from Chicago, and it was precisely that, that room to breathe and enjoy, that gave Alex room to worry. Finally, she grabbed her things, resolved to revisit the club and wondering if Liz would be there.

When she stepped into the lounge and saw Liz with a beautiful boy sitting at her feet, Alex stopped for a moment. The blonde took a deep breath, trying to calm herself, to allow the memories to come back without letting them overwhelm her. Once she saw Liz, she made her way over to her. "I thought I might find you here," she said as she sat. Part of her felt guilty for being there without telling Sabina or Patrice, but she needed the moment away. She needed to remember that she was grounded before letting fears that everything would disappear...again...take hold.

Liz smiled and sent the boy to go get them drinks. "You know me too well. What brings you back?" After Alex's reluctance the last time they talked, she assumed that she would have to order Alex back.

"Mmm." Something told Liz it was more than that, but she wasn't ready to press yet. She smiled at the boy as he came back with their drinks. "Alex, this is Thomas. Thomas, be a good boy and say hello to Alex."

Thomas handed Alex her drink and inclined his head. "Good evening ma'am."

"Hello, Thomas." Alex smiled as he knelt, and she ran her fingers through his luxurious hair. "Pretty," she said to Liz. "Have you taken him on full time?" She was glad to talk about anything other than herself.

"No, he's a bit too young for me." Liz shook her head. "I'm just borrowing him for the night."

"Ah." The small surge of jealousy that Alex was beginning to feel disappeared immediately, and she took a moment to admire the young man with his bright hair and sharp eyes. Finally, she sipped her drink thoughtfully.

"Worried that I had replaced you?" Liz smirked. "Actually, I was thinking of making a gift of him. Jonas likes his men younger than I do, and I think they would get along well." Liz was glad that she had an ex-husband who would appreciate such things.

"I'm not sure I'll ever really understand how the two of you manage," Alex said quietly. She wondered...if something happened between she and Patrice if they would be so amiable.

"Time and distance." Liz raised her drink for emphasis. "If I had to live with him again, one of us would probably end up dead."

Alex merely nodded, her eyes distant. There was always some possibility that it could happen again, that something could pull her away, could yank her life from underneath her again. And this time there was more at stake.

Liz let her remain silent for a long moment before she interrupted. "Are you ready to talk about it yet?"

"About what?" Alex asked, forcing herself to push the thoughts aside.

"The reason that you showed up tonight. Clearly there's something on your mind."

"I just wanted a drink, Liz." Alex smiled and took another sip that quickly became a gulp.

"You passed a lot of bars on your way here if the only thing you want is a drink." Liz tugged on the ring in Thomas' collar to pull him up onto the couch with her. He laid down and put his head in her lap, just as she wanted.

"You wanted me to start coming back. Here I am." Alex pursed her lips as she finished the martini, the last of it tasting bitter.

Liz raised her eyebrows. "Fine." She stood and motioned for Thomas to follow her. If Alex wanted to play this game, she could find someone else to be a willing party. Liz wasn't going to indulge. "You've had your drink. Have a good night." She turned toward one of the back corridors.

The blonde frowned, but she did not try to follow. She called for another drink, halfheartedly stroking the side of the girl who brought it. Whether Liz was present or not, she was determined to stay a little while longer. And it ended up being close to eight when she finally decided to go home.

*****

Patrice sighed as she opened the door to their apartment. She had had a very long day and an even longer week. The blond wanted nothing more than to spend a relaxing night in with Alex and Sabina, maybe a good bottle of wine, or a movie, maybe all sorts of things. She stepped inside and started to take off her coat, "Alex? Sabina?"

Sabina pulled her headphones off, letting them hang around her neck and she came out of her room. "Alex isn't home yet. Did you want me to start dinner?"

"Oh... Did she say when she was getting home?" Alex hadn't said she was going to be late when they'd talked at lunch. Patrice kicked off her shoes and went to get changed, "No, it's alright, we should wait a bit for her."

"I haven't talked to her," Sabina shrugged. She made Patrice a drink and put it on the sideboard for when she came back. Then she went and stood at the door to the bedroom in case Patrice wanted any help.

Alex ran her fingers through her hair as she stepped off of the elevator and fiddled with her keys. She didn't really think about what time it was and whether Patrice would be home or not. Dinner was the last thing on her mind. And she didn't call out as she opened the door and tossed her keys onto the table. She simply slipped out of her coat and went to hang it up.

Patrice looked up, she had been waiting in the living room, sipping her drink for the better part of an hour, trying valiantly not to worry or get upset that Alex hadn't called. She had come home more than a little after quitting time and wasn't expecting to have to wait. "Alex? Get caught at the office?"

"Uh...no," Alex said, voice tired. She ran her fingers through her hair again as she lingered in the doorway. For the first time since leaving her office, Alex looked at her watch. "Have you been waiting? I'm sorry."

Sabina discreetly stood and went to the kitchen to start making dinner. She was sure that they would want to eat soon.

Patrice tried to look nonchalant, "Oh, not too long I guess." She hated to pry, but it was her nature, "Errands?"

"I went to the club...had a few drinks with Liz." Alex went to one of the armchairs and dropped into it as she slipped off her shoes. It was as if she was watching someone else have this conversation. She knew she shouldn't so detached. She knew she should have talked to Liz about it. But to alleviate her fear, she pushed it...and everything else with it, away.

Patrice didn't bother to hide her surprise, "You did what?" She was pretty sure what Alex meant but couldn't imagine the other woman would just take up going out without telling her. She tried not to get upset, she really did, but it bothered her more than she could admit.

Alex sat up straighter and finally looked at Patrice. "I went to the club and had a few drinks with Liz," she repeated, tone more sure, almost annoyed. It was hardly as if she did anything else, after all.

Sabina leaned out to of the kitchen into the living room. Something didn't seem right, so she decided to retreat back to the dinner preparations.

Patrice couldn't believe what she was hearing; she tried to not get more upset. She just felt like re-entering the Scene formally in the City would be something they choose to do together, if at all. "Yes, I realize that, and it's not the activity that surprises me, it's the location Alex." These things had the potential to be volatile even when they were both involved, but Alex so easily going off on her own was too much for Patrice's comfort.

The blonde pursed her lips, eyes harder than she intended as she stared at Patrice. Part of her knew that what she had done was unreasonable, but part of her needed to know that they could survive that. And if they couldn't... Alex knew she couldn't stand to lose everything again without being prepared. She knew she was pushing. But all of that was in the back of her mind, and what covered it was a mild sense of outrage that Patrice would question her choosing to have a drink at the club with her mentor. "I'm not sure what the problem is here, Patrice," she said briskly as she stood and made for the kitchen.

That was it; Patrice lost whatever sense of control she had been clinging to, insecurity taking over. She stalked after the other blonde. "If you don't know that Alex, then maybe we have bigger problems here." She stopped in the doorway as she said the last words, crossing her arms protectively in front of her.

Sabina looked up from the stove, eyes wide with surprised when Alex, then Patrice, stormed in. She instinctively stepped back.

Ignoring what she could see of Sabina's reaction, Alex licked her lips. She put her hands firmly on her hips as if she were in court, dealing with a troublesome witness. "You need to calm down," she said simply.

Patrice returned the posturing, defenses kicking in. "Don't tell me what to do Alex, it's not your place and you know it. I'm not the one refusing to face reality here." She couldn't be around Alex when she was like this, knowing neither of them would give. Patrice turned and walked to the bedroom. Maybe things were too much for Alex, maybe they were too much for her and she just couldn't admit it to herself yet. "I'm leaving until you can figure out why you did this tonight. Just do me the small favor of letting me know when you do."

Alex watched her walk away and tried to ignore the pang of guilt she felt in her stomach. Instead, she let anger and outrage take over. Patrice had absolutely no reason, no right to absolutely walk out that way over something so simple, so ridiculous. And Alex clung to that rather than face what both women knew she needed to face. She turned to Sabina. "Don't bother setting the table."

Sabina just nodded and turned the burner off. She didn't think that Alex was going to be eating. Actually, she didn't know what was going on, but she definitely wasn't going to ask.

Patrice slammed the door to the bedroom, taking out her suitcase she hadn't even bothered to put back up in the closet again and threw together a few days' worth of clothes. She wasn't entirely sure why she was doing this, or exactly where she was headed, but she did know she needed to leave and as quickly as possible. She hauled herself toward the door, refusing to calm down enough to let out the frustration that was fast growing a lump in her throat.

Alex turned away so as not to show any weakness, not to show her eyes glassing over. But she blinked that away before it could come to fruition. Persia followed Patrice down the hall, whining, knowing something was wrong. She looked from one woman to the other as if questioning them on what was happening. "Where will you be?" Alex asked, conceding that, at least.

She paused, hand on the doorknob without turning around, "I don't know, I guess I'll let you know when I do." Patrice took a breath, wondering just when the seemingly involuntary act had become so difficult, and opened the door, closing it firmly behind her, tears starting to fall even before the elevator arrived at her floor.

"Shit..." Alex muttered under her breath. She took forcibly measured steps away from the door, down the hall to the bedroom, and despite her best efforts, she slammed the door. It was difficult to keep the anger bubbling, and she was already tired, already wanting to just forget and fall asleep. The bed, however, looked appallingly empty.

Chapter Text

Donna sighed as she accepted a drink from the bartender. It had been a long week and she was tired; and a quiet night at the club was exactly what she needed. She found the most comfortable looking couch she could find and lounged there.

It was a surprise when Liz came into the bar and found her usual seat occupied. It afforded the best view of the room in addition to being comfortable. She got her drink, determined to either scare the occupant off or negotiate something more equitable. But as she approached, she realized just who was sitting there. Liz arched one of her eyebrows in interest. "Ms. Geysen, what a surprise."

"Judge Donnelly." Donna looked up at her in surprise as she sat up straighter.

"Liz, please." Liz smiled, waving off the formalities as she sat. One of the dangers of the club was that elements of work often filtered into it. But she had become adept at that balancing act. "Welcome to the club."

"Thank you." Donna smiled. "I haven't taken your seat, have I?"

The judge smirked as she sat next to Donna, turning to face the younger woman. "I can hardly blame you...it's the best spot in the room."

"I was more concerned with how comfortable it looked." Donna sipped her drink. "Though I think I'm going to abandon it for the sauna in a few minutes."

"And you haven't found anyone with which to enjoy them?" Liz sipped her drink as she glanced about the room. There would certainly be quite a few willing parties for someone like the AUSA.

"Truthfully, I haven't been here long enough." Donna subtly looked over Liz, then the rest of the room. "Any suggestions about whom I might want to meet?"

Throughout the low-lit room--more modern and sleek than any of the clubs in Europe--shadowy forms clad in simple, black underwear moved about, serving drinks, performing other services. There were pets in various states of undress, but those that served the club had a look, a carriage about them. "Any of the ones in black would be happy to serve you, but I do have my favorites. Why don't I join you?"

"I can't turn that offer down." Donna stood and offered Liz her hand. "I've only been here a couple of times, so I haven't really had a chance to explore." The club in DC was outside of the city in an old plantation house and she was almost finding it difficult to have one so conveniently located.

Liz took the proffered hand and stood, leaving her almost empty drink on a small table beside the sofa. "That's a pity; it has its allure." She smiled as she led Donna to the sauna through a back corridor. "But we're happy to have you."

"Thank you, again." Donna followed Liz through the unfamiliar corridors, smiling when they emerged in a hallway that she recognized.

As soon as they entered the anteroom to the sauna, a young blonde appeared at Liz's side. She kept her eyes down, but there was a slight smile on her face. It was always a treat, a pleasure to serve Liz Donnelly. She quickly and carefully undressed the judge and without question moved to her friend to do the same.

Donna smiled indulgently at the girl as she allowed herself to be undressed. She was certainly attractive enough and she wondered if the girl would be joining them. Recognizing Liz's attractiveness took even less time.

"Mm, good girl, Helene." Liz stroked the blonde's hair thoughtfully. "Shall we?" She led Donna into the sauna, choosing a secluded corner. Helene went to her knees in front of Liz, waiting for instruction and content to simply be there between the two women. "It's not the baths in Paris, but..." She smiled. "I think our clientele values this a bit more."

"I haven't been to the club in Paris, but it certainly sounds nice." Donna leaned back and closed her eyes "Though I can see how most New Yorkers would like this better."

Liz took that moment to let her eyes linger on Donna, and she was certainly appreciative of what she saw. "So..." She let her fingers brush against Donna's thigh. "How did an AUSA end up here?" She had a few guesses.

Donna shifted her thigh under Liz's touch. "I've just been promoted to EAUSA for the southern district of New York."

Liz chuckled. "That was hardly the question." She smirked as she blatantly put the plat of her palm on Donna's thigh, luxuriating in the warmth of her soft skin.

"Mmmm... You mean more specifically?" Donna still had her eyes closed as she soaked in the moist heat. "I found the club in LA not long after I got my first job there." She shrugged lightly. "I had a friend in law school that was into the scene and introduced me to it."

"Ah." Liz relaxed, fingers walking upward, inward. She could see that much practice in Donna, from her posture, her nonchalance. Her touch was light but sure. It was not the way she would touch Helene, but she was still appraising the other woman.

"May I ask the same of you?" Donna finally opened her eyes and looked at Liz intently.

The judge opened her mouth slightly, pressing her tongue into her cheek. "It was a bit more complicated than that." She opened her eyes and shifted to turn more directly towards Donna. "I was introduced to the Scene in a most unfortunate way, and this place..." She swept the room with her eyes. "I've been here a very long time."

"I'm sorry to hear that." Donna covered Liz's hand with her own, offering easy sympathy.

"It was a long time ago, and more good than bad." She twined her fingers through Donna's and pulled the woman closer until their lips nearly touched. "Mm."

Donna leaned in and completed the motion, pressing her lips to Liz's. She reached up and tangled her fingers in slightly sweat-damped hair, though she kept the kiss light, almost lazy.

Liz smiled into it, settling, content with the languid movements for the moment. Though, she was vaguely aware that she would not be content for long. Donna eventually let the kiss end and sat back.

"Are you planning on taking a new pet here?" Liz asked, fingers running through Helene's damp hair lazily. She remained turned towards Donna, her other hand still on her leg, brushing circles on her inner thigh.

"Mmm, I don't think I'm looking for anything so involved yet. I haven't entirely settled in and it doesn't seem fair. But that could change if I met someone interesting enough." Donna ran her hand up Liz's arm, but otherwise didn't impede her touch. She was really starting to feel at peace with herself for the first time in a long time and she didn't want to complicated that just yet.

"How long has it been?" Liz could sense a past there. She pressed her fingers forward and teased Donna's lips lazily, without real intent.

Donna spread her legs slightly, letting Liz touch her. "There was someone in DC, but that ended almost a year ago. What about you? I don't see anyone devotedly following you around." It wasn't a criticism, merely an observation.

"No one in my collar at least." Liz pressed forward, ignoring Helene entirely then in favor of Donna. She brushed the younger woman's clit lightly. "I let my last go about five years ago, but she came back to me when she needed it, and now...I think she's found someone." Liz smiled slightly proudly as she thought of Alex. "She floundered coming back here, and this...this served to ground her."

"Mmm." Donna arched into the touch. "Sounds like things worked out for her then." She leaned in a kissed Liz again. "I actually just ran into one of my former companions. Apparently she mover here from LA not too long ago. It was good to see her. We got to clear the air a bit."

Liz returned this kiss but paused her touches, wondering, thinking. "What a coincidence. Has she been here yet; I wonder if I would know her..."

"I don't think she has, but she might have ended up in you courtroom. Patrice LaRue?" Donna waited to see if the name was familiar.

After a pause, Liz arched one of her heavy brows. "It seems our former pets have made a connection between us." Patrice had appeared before her in chambers, but Liz had much more extensive experience with the blonde.

Donna raised her eyebrows. "Really? So you have met?" This could prove interesting.

"Intimately." Liz pursed her lips, eyes trained intently on Donna. "You've met Alex Cabot, perhaps?"

"I have." She didn't think she needed to point out that that meeting had been of an intimate nature as well. "This is certainly a coincidence."

"Mm. It's a pity we've seen neither of them here." Liz's hand went back to helene's hair. "Perhaps we should remedy that."

Donna chuckled. "That could lead to an interesting night." One that she wouldn't be opposed to participating in.

"I think so, yes." Liz smirked to herself. "Perhaps I'll have a little chat with Alex."

"You'll have to let me know. I think it would be quite the surprise for them to find that we had met." and Donna wasn't above using that to tease them.

"I will." Liz smiled thoughtfully. "If you'll excuse me, I have a few things to take care of. But I'll leave Helene for you to enjoy."

Chapter Text

Sabina looked at the bank of elevators and hoped that she had the right information. She'd had to flirt with the hotel's desk clerk to it and she hoped that he hadn't given her the wrong room number. She stepped into the elevator, backpack slung over her shoulder, and pressed the button for Patrice's floor. The room wasn't that far down the hallway, and after taking a deep breath, Sabina knocked.

Patrice had spent the better part of the afternoon out running mindless errands, trying to spend as little time in the empty hotel room as possible. When she had finally run out of plausible excuses, and the cold seeped through her layers, she relented and went back, curling up to watch some TV. She had gotten over the shock of leaving, and now was listless, having texted both Alex and Sabina the name of the hotel, and not having gotten a reply.

The blonde jumped at the knock on the door, wondering if the room next to her had ordered dinner in again. She got up and opened the door, not able to help both her surprise and trepidation to see Sabina, "Sabina...is everything alright?" She knew the question was outlandish, obviously very little was right at the moment.

"I just... can I come in?" Sabina shuffled her feet. She was relieved to see Patrice, but now she had to say what she had come here to say, and she was finding it more difficult that she realized.

Patrice noted the girl's impatience and stepped aside, nodding, to let her in. She wasn't particularly in the mood for neither company, nor anything further but couldn't deny Sabina a few moments. Sabina stepped into the hotel room and looked around, only mildly curious. She put her backpack down and crossed her arms.

Patrice closed the door, "Well? Do you need something?"

"I just..." Sabina shifted uncomfortably. She was hurt by Patrice's curt tone, but that only strengthened her resolve. "I'm moving out."

At that, Patrice truly focused on the girl for the first time. "You're what?" She couldn't help the confused look that came across her already tired features, "Why?"

Sabina took a deep breath. "You left... and Alex is barely speaking to me and you weren't having problems before I moved in. I just... I'm sorry that I messed things up. So I'm just going to stay with a friend from school until I can find a place and I'll go back to Paris at the end of the semester, and you can go back home."

The girl's speech brought Patrice fully back to herself for the first time since she had walked out, and she moved to hold her, stopping just short of doing so. "Sabina, we're not fighting because of you. If you really want to leave because you're unhappy that's one thing, but ..." things sunk in and she started to see how ridiculous the entire thing was, "Does Alex know about this?"

Sabina shook her head. "I... She wasn't home when I left." Sabina had barely been able to pay attention in class, and when she got home, she had just stuffed her essentials into her backpack and left. She hadn't wanted to face Alex, certain that her courage would have failed her. She thought that she could just get the rest of her things while Alex was at work the next day.

Patrice shook her head; it was obvious that this had gone too far. She wasn't about to have the girl wandering around New York on account of Alex's stubbornness and her own sensitivities. "I'm taking you home." It wasn't a request, and if the girl wanted to leave once things had settled down, she was free to do so, but something told Patrice that wouldn't be happening.

Sabina blinked and stepped back. "No." Her voice was firmer now.

"Is that no because you don't like living with us, or out of your own self-righteous attempt to fix things yourself Sabina?" She hadn't stopped picking things up from around the room, re-packing what few things she had gotten out.

Sabina looked down. "It will fix things."

"I doubt that. We're going now." Patrice had finished packing, and the girl's demeanor told her what she needed to know. She stopped by the door, waiting for Sabina to follow.

When the girl did so, Patrice noted Sabina's reluctant compliance and led her down to a cab, giving the driver the address. She was silent on the way, and went determinedly into the building, letting Sabina follow the whole way. Arriving at the door she automatically reached for her keys, then thought better of it and knocked.

While Alex had spent the morning at her office, she hadn't gotten much done. It was too quiet, just like the apartment had been since Patrice walked out. On the way home, she'd gotten a call that Sabina's collar was ready, and her heart sank when she went to pick it up and examined the soft leather. A silver inlay of her initials combined with Patrice's shone on the back near the buckle. She put it away, slipping the box into her bag when she headed home, and she left it there once she arrived, unwilling to face what it might mean if Patrice didn't come back. Alex knew she should have responded more calmly to Patrice's reaction to her going to the club, and the anger she had been clinging to was nothing now next to the fear.

When she heard the knock, she put down the magazine she had been listlessly flipping through. The doorman hadn't called up, so Alex just assumed Sabina had forgotten her keys or something similar. She didn't bother to look through the peep hole before opening the door.

"I brought you something." Patrice stepped aside and motioned to the still disgruntled young woman next to her, "I think we almost lost more than we realized." She tried a small smile, seeing is she could read Alex's expression through the tension of the moment.

Alex rubbed her eyes, making the circles underneath them stand out in relief. She softened at Patrice's smile, but confusion was what registered on her face in response. "What's going on?"

Sabina shifted restlessly. She was still partially convinced that this was all her fault.

Patrice turned to Sabina, "Why don't you explain it to her?" She knew that the girl's reasoning was likely to have the same effect on the other blond as it had on her.

Sabina shrugged. "I'm moving out," she said sullenly.

"What?" Alex shook her head as if to shake herself out of a fog. She put her hand on the small of Patrice's back, ushering her inside knowing that the girl would have to come with her. Alex closed the door behind them and stood in front of it, crossing her arms. "You're moving out?"

She nodded. "If I leave, then Patrice can come back. You guys weren't fighting before I moved in..." She shrugged.

"Oh, Sabina..." Alex rubbed her head, hesitating a moment before pulling the girl into her arms. "This has nothing to do with you...nothing at all." Of course, it absolutely affected Sabina, and Alex instantly felt a wave of guilt and not considering that.

Sabina wrapped her arms around Alex and tried not to cry. She was so worried, worried that she had done something, that she had cause their fight, and that Alex just hadn't gotten around to throwing her out yet. Alex's hug was more reassuring that anything that Patrice could have said.

Patrice watched, and moved a little closer, running her hand over the girl's hair gently. She looked from Sabina to Alex, meeting her eyes, seeing her own now calm expression mirrored back at her. Things would be all right, eventually anyway. For the first time she realized that she had built something that could be lost, that would leave a void in her life. The thought both scared her and left her slightly awed.

"Why don't we go sit down," Alex said softly before kissing Sabina's hair. She maintained eye contact with Patrice and knew that the blonde was ready to listen if she was ready to talk. "There's something Patrice and I were going to give you...and I think it might be alright to go ahead and do that now." Then she and the blonde could talk.

It took Patrice a moment to remember what Alex was talking about. They had commissioned the collar weeks earlier, it being a special order to have their monogram put on it. She couldn't help a smile as she sat and watched Alex bring over a small box.

Alex smiled to Patrice, glad she remembered. "I would have had it wrapped, but..." She rubbed her thumb over the top of the box and put it on Sabina's lap. It might have been a necklace from a high-end jeweler, but Alex thought Sabina might guess what was really inside. She sat and put her hands in her lap, realizing that they were trembling slightly. Seeing that Sabina was comfortable once again was simply the first step in making this right, but it also reaffirmed to Alex that there was so much at stake, so much that could be so easily ripped out from underneath her. She looked up to Patrice, anger, stubbornness completely gone.

Sabina bit her lip and opened the box. What she saw stole her breath. "It's..." The tears that she had been repressing finally fell.

Patrice moved a little closer to the girl and stroked her back, the collar was just as they had planned, "We ordered it specially weeks ago. Do you like it?" She smiled over Sabina's shoulder at Alex. Sabina just nodded, completely unable to speak.

Alex smiled and took the collar out of the box. She held it out to Patrice, allowing her to do the honors, thinking it was what the girl might need. "I don't want to hear anything else about you coming between us," Alex said softly as she squeezed the girl's shoulders. She looked up to Patrice and smiled softly. "We want you to have this; you deserve it."

Patrice leaned over and kissed Alex lightly, smiling. She then turned back to Sabina and brushed her fingers through her hair, "if you're ready..." She looked at the floor in front of her, waiting for the girl to move from the couch.

Sabina impulsively threw herself at Alex, holding her tightly, then slid to the floor. She wiped her eyes and looked down.

The blonde caught her and returned the hug, closing her eyes for a brief moment at Sabina's uncharacteristic warmth towards her. She could only imagine what the girl had been thinking. And with her kneeling there, Alex slid closer to Patrice.

Patrice held back a small laugh at the girl's sudden shift in attitude. She leaned down and kissed the brunette's cheek, speaking quietly as she sat back. "Lift your hair." Sabina did as she was told and shifted around, settling into the position. She was finally calming down and starting to feel better.

Patrice continued to smile as she buckled the leather around the girl's neck, then sat back to admire. It fit perfectly, and the refined rolled leather sat beautifully on the slender girl's neck. "Turn around." She wanting to see how the inlaid silver letters looked near the buckle. Sabina slid around where Patrice could see the back. She twisted her neck where she could feel the leather rubbing against her neck.

Alex took in a shallow breath and clasped Patrice's hand, squeezing it. "It's beautiful," she murmured. "It's...perfect."

Patrice returned the gesture, "I agree." Patrice gave herself a few moments longer to admire, and then drew Sabina up between them, finally kissing her fully. Sabina returned Patrice's kiss, pressing up into her.

A sigh of relief escaped Alex's lips as she watched the two women. She stroked Sabina's hair thoughtfully, letting them finish before leaning back a bit. "Sabina, why don't you go and wait in our bedroom," she said quietly, knowing the girl would take the location as anticipation of a reward rather than a punishment. "I need to talk to Patrice for a little while." Sabina did as she was told and quietly left the room, kneeling at the foot of Alex and Patrice's bed, waiting for them to join her.

Alex took Patrice's hands and squeezed them as she tried focus her thoughts. She looked up at the blonde, swallowing the lump in her throat. it was hard to begin, hard to admit that she had been wrong, and even harder to admit that she had been afraid. "I suppose I have some explaining to do..."

Patrice was past anger, and it had been replaced by overwhelming relief. "I don't need an apology Alex, but..." she shrugged, knowing the other woman might need to get things off her chest.

"Let me give it to you anyway." Alex moved closer. She rubbed her thumb over the back of Patrice's hand, taking her time about continuing. "I was afraid," she said quietly, almost too quietly.

"Of what Alex?" She searched the other blonde's eyes, instinctively raising Alex's hand to her lips and kissing her knuckles reassuringly.

The blonde let out a long sigh and closed her eyes for a moment. She could feel the too cold winters in her bones, and she wondered if that memory would ever go away. "Of losing this...of losing all of this...you, Sabina..."

Patrice was caught between laughter and tears at Alex's admission. "Alex..." She pulled the other woman forward and kissed her before speaking again, still holding her close, "You won't, at least I'm not going anywhere." She laughed quietly then, "I hate moving anyway." She didn't want to belittle the other woman's fears, having had some of them herself, but felt the need to lighten the moment.

Alex couldn't help but laugh in response. She kissed Patrice's neck lightly and smiled against her skin. "Thank you," she whispered. "I know...I...it's ridiculous. But...God, Patrice, this means so much to me... You mean so much."

Despite a few tears, Patrice was smiling, still holding Alex close. "Alex...I....I love you, you know that. I can't imagine having to let this all go."

"I shouldn't have gone to the club without you..." Alex pulled Patrice in, holding her almost too tightly. "That was out of line...it was..." She shook her head. She had tried, without thinking, to completely sabotage everything.

Patrice held her for a long moment, the pressed back, "I'll admit I was surprised, hurt even...but it's not worth the fight. If you need to go on your own....I can learn to live with that." Patrice wasn't really comfortable with the idea, but felt she had too much at stake.

"I don't... I don't," she repeated, quietly nuzzling Patrice's neck. "I needed...I'm not sure what I needed. But it's done now, and the next time I walk through those doors, I want it to be with you and Sabina, alright?"

Patrice nodded, smiling more fully now, and tugged Alex back, kissing her deeply, hands running over the other blonde's back, pressing closer. Beyond the reassurance, Patrice suddenly wanted that too, and all it might mean.

Alex shivered into the touch, kissing Patrice back just as deeply, almost desperately. She pressed her hands under Patrice's shirt, feeling her skin, craving the feel, as if it had been weeks. "Mm," she moaned, kissing down Patrice's jaw, down her neck.

"God..." Patrice leaned back, offering Alex better access to her skin, pulse rising. Her hands found their way under the other woman's shirt, sliding over her warm skin. She pulled her up, kissing her again. "Mmmmnn....should we go to the bedroom?" Sabina had waited long enough, they all had.

"I..." Alex said between kisses, "think...that's an...excellent idea..." She twined her fingers through Patrice's and got up, pulling her towards the bedroom. When they crossed the threshold, she smiled at the sight waiting for them. "I'd hate to wake her," she whispered, seeing Sabina curled at the foot of the bed asleep. Alex could not help but chuckle when she saw the girl's hand on her collar.

Patrice leaned against Alex, taking a moment to look with her. She kissed her cheek and quietly went to pull a blanket over the girl, tucking it gently around her. "I think she's glad we're all here," Patrice whispered, noting that the young brunette had fallen asleep with a contented smile on her lips.

Chapter Text

That she had been summoned to Liz's chambers with no explanation did not bode well for Alex. It had been some time since she'd received such a terse message, and she hadn't been expecting it at all. But as she was ushered into the room, she straightened herself, holding her chin up. "You wanted to see me?"

Liz cleared her desk when Alex came in, putting her work aside and clearing her mind. "Yes. I'm having a small get together at the Club this weekend and I wanted to make sure that you and Patrice would be there."

Alex licked her lips lightly. "I'm not sure what Patrice had planned." In the back of her mind, she knew they would be summoned sooner are later, especially after her last encounter with Liz. But she wasn't ready to quickly and easily submit.

"Well, Jonas is in town for the weekend and Therese had to go back to Rome to take care of something that she won't tell me about, so I've gotten stuck hosting the party. It's been far too long since you've come to the Club in earnest, and Therese is having a hard time justifying letting you keep your rooms there if you never use them. Surely I don't have to explain the politics to you." There was an edge to Liz's voice that easily gave away her irritation at Alex's attempts to prevaricate.

Alex crossed her arms, determined still to show her own annoyance. "Of course, Liz. I'll see to it that we're there." In truth, she had only been vaguely aware that they were keeping her rooms, but that was all well enough. She and Patrice needed to start taking Sabina anyway, to make their entrance together.

"Good." Liz pursed her lips, dismissing Alex.

She paused, knowing that she had been dismissed. "Have a good day then." Exasperation crept into Alex's voice in spite of her instincts and training. But she knew better than to push more. She turned on her heel and left, knowing she was going to have to tell Patrice to cancel something or move something around in order that they might be at the club as promised.
*****

Alex fingered one of Sabina's curls, smiling at the softness. Patrice had taken her time in getting the girl ready, insisting that she wear the dress Patrice had given her. There was something striking in the contrast of it and the soft, almost innocent way Patrice had done Sabina's hair. She paid the cabbie and ushered the two women to the entrance to the club. Alex still had her keycard, and the doorman swiped it as they passed.

The soft light in the elevator caught Patrice's hair, and her skin reflected it, making her almost bare shoulder glow. Alex smiled, thinking of Paris, of picking out the dress Patrice was wearing. She had opted for simple black pants with a draped top. They were striking together, she knew. And she wondered if Liz had been thinking of that aesthetic when inviting them. Finally, they reached the lounge, and Alex took a breath. It had been a long time, it seemed.

On the ride over and in the elevator Patrice tried to clear her mind. Since Alex had informed her that their presence was requested she had been anticipating the night, though she didn't know what to expect. In place of self-assurance, she had nearly obsessed over the preparation, focusing on the details.

She casually reached over as they entered and brushed away a lock of Sabina's hair so she could run her finger over the silver monogram at the buckle of the girl's collar. Patrice was more than thrilled with how it looked on the brunette and was looking forward to showing her off. The room she entered just half a step behind Alex was dim and shadowed, reflecting a history in decades rather than centuries, much like the club she had debuted at, rather than the place in Paris.

Liz smiled as she saw Alex and Patrice walk in. She excused herself from group she was with and made her way over to them. "I'm glad that you could both make it." She leaned in and kissed both of their cheeks. "I know that Jonas is going to be thrilled to see you," she said to Alex, and she was sure that at least one of the other guests would take an interest in their presence. She hadn't seen Donna yet, but she was certain that the other woman would arrive soon.
"Thank you for inviting us." Alex smiled but her tone was dry. She put her hand on the small of Patrice's back, fingers caressing the skin there. "Sabina, go and get the three of us drink, hm?" Alex surveyed the crowd, picking out the faces she knew and the ones that were unfamiliar. Now that she was there, she felt more at ease. It came back so quickly, so immediately.

Sabina nodded and headed toward the bar, trying to stay focused and praying that she didn't spill anything.

Alex watched, proud of how Sabina was holding herself. She knew there would be mistakes; that was to be expected in any new place. But she was confident that the girl would settle in nicely. She was about to speak again, to make an offer to show Patrice around a bit before the night ended when she caught sight of Donna out of the corner of her eye. Alex straightened. It was no surprise that the brunette had transferred her membership, if she had had one in DC. But she wondered if she was there that night by coincidence or if Liz had something to do with it. As she was walking toward them, Alex knew they were about to find out. "Well, isn't this..." She shook her head, trying to find the appropriate word.

"Serendipitous?" Donna smiled at the group as she joined them. She nodded to Liz before smiling at Patrice and Alex.

Patrice just managed to keep her draw from dropping and hanging open as she saw Donna approach. There was a look on the older woman's face--a knowing look that Patrice had seen before. She would be willing to bet that the encounter had been well orchestrated, but she couldn't think of how Donna and Liz would really know each other. Still...the club, the night...and they were both there. She forced a smile, her social graces taking over for the moment. "Seems that way." And from Donna's next look to Liz, she could answer some of her own questions.

Liz merely smiled as Sabina returned with their drinks. She girl handed them off perfectly and was soon sent off to get one for Donna as well. "Indeed. Mm, your Sabina makes a lovely addition to the party, I think. Though she is rather overdressed."

Alex licked her lips. "First impressions." She had no doubt Sabina's dress would come off sooner than later. And the girl's perfect skin against the collar would speak volumes. "It's nice to see you, Donna. I wasn't aware you and Liz were...acquainted."

"We've only met recently, but we were amazed to find that we had so much in common." She looked at them pointedly, almost predatory. "I hope the souvenir," she nodded at Sabina, "means that you enjoyed Paris."

That gaze, that tone... They sent shivers down Patrice's back, and she knew Alex was not unaware of them. She swallowed her drink and carefully licked a drop of it off of the middle of her bottom lip. "It..she does..yes. Thank you, Donna."

In Patrice's voice, Alex knew immediately that the dynamics had just changed. Liz was giving her a pointed look, telling her silently that she should never forget that she wasn't above being on her knees whenever Liz wished it.

For her part, Sabina could feel the tension in the air, but she wasn't entirely sure what was going on. The sentiment was different than when Patrice and Alex normally took her out and she couldn't stop herself from shifting slightly.

"Finish your drinks, girls," Liz said, choosing the word very purposefully. She caressed Alex's cheek, making her intentions clear. "The two of you are overdressed."

Patrice stiffened at Liz's obvious intent. Though she couldn't express what she had really expected out of the night, somehow she had imagined that she would have been giving some of the orders. However, Donna's presence changed the balance, the past not being easily swept away. This being especially true in surroundings that took one back, away from the rest of life.

Patrice watched Liz touch Alex and instinctively shifted her stare to Donna, if she was going to follow someone other than Alex, she wasn't sure it would be Liz. Donna met Patrice's gaze and didn't flinch. She fully expected Patrice to do as she was told. "You heard her." At that, Patrice took a long moment while a familiar shiver ran through her before slowly raising her glass and taking a long sip.

The other blonde sipped her drink, taking her time, letting it sink in that she would be on her knees. She had not been to the club more than fleetingly since she returned from the program, and she thought perhaps Liz was punishing her in retrospect for it. "Shall we go to my rooms...or yours?" she asked

Liz pursed her lips, "I hardly care where you take your clothes off, Alexandra. You'll be returning to the lounge."

Patrice couldn't help another glance at Donna when she heard the exchange, she was already mentally shifting, preparing, and let her fingers drift across Sabina's bare shoulders, the touch as much for her own comfort as for the girl's.

"The longer you delay, the more upset we're going to get." Donna looked at Patrice intently. "Do you really want to have to deal with both of us when we're unhappy?"

Sabina looked back at Patrice, then at Alex. Until that moment, her world has made sense, and now she didn't have any idea what was expected of her. She didn't even know who she should be look to for guidance. Patrice closed her fingers on the girl's shoulder and then turned her to face Donna, pressing her to the floor as she leaned in to whisper to her, "Mind your manners and be good, she's the reason we found you." That done, she straightened and glanced to the floor, answering the woman's earlier question simply, "No Donna."

Alex squeezed Sabina's shoulder, adding her own reassurance to Patrice's. She took the blonde's hand then and silently led her to Liz's rooms, where they would undress. Liz watched them go, a slight smirk on her face. She looked Sabina over then and turned to Donna. "Why don't we go and make ourselves comfortable?"

Donna smiled back at her. "I think that sounds like a lovely idea." She motioned for Sabina to follow them as they made their way to a low couch. She patted the space between them, indicating that Sabina should sit there. Donna wanted her within easy reach and she thought Liz would appreciate the same.

And Liz did, quite a bit. She ran her fingers through Sabina's curls and chuckled. "Patrice took great care with dressing her tonight." She knew Alex wouldn't have paid such meticulous attention to the girl's hair. It would have been up, tight. She liked the aesthetic, though, liked that she could see Patrice in some details and Alex in others, such as the collar.

Donna nodded and gently untied the strings that held the top of Sabina's dress on, letting them grow slack, and the fabric pool around her waist. "Patrice always has had a thing for finding the right outfit." It was something that Donna had enjoyed indulging and she was amused to see that Patrice was doing the same now that she was in charge.

Sabina sat between the two women and tried her best not to squirm or whimper, but their touch was just so sure and firm, and them talking about her, about Patrice and Alex like that was getting to her. She couldn't help a quiet moan as her dress fell slack over her chest, and she closed her eyes under Donna's touch.

"Mm." Liz flicked one of Sabina's nipples lightly, a small punishment for the display, which she had otherwise thoroughly enjoyed. "This one suits them, I think...as they seem to suit each other." And she was looking forward to having the pair at her feet.

When they reached Liz's rooms, Alex shut the door behind them, closing out the rest of the patrons if only for a few last minutes. Patrice took a moment to pull Alex into her arms, kissing her lingeringly before starting to untie her shirt, pulling it off. The indulgence of undressing Alex was not dictated by the older women, but Patrice took the liberty as a last small rebellion before settling into the night.

Alex reveled in it, letting herself get worked up while fully knowing that she would not have release soon. She began to undress Patrice in turn, placing small kisses along her collarbones when she was done. "It seems they've been doing some plotting." She chuckled. "At our expense."

Patrice leaned back to look at Alex as she reached for the buttons of the other blonde's pants. "I'm still a bit shocked to see Donna here, I mean I knew she obviously would find it sooner or later, but just...and Liz..." She started to pull the pants down Alex's long legs, sinking to the floor as she did so, "I guess it's just about the last thing I expected tonight."

"I should have known," Alex said flatly. She stepped out of her pants and looked down to Patrice. The image was almost overwhelming, as it always was, as Alex hoped it always would be. She drew in a shaking breath and gently, fleetingly ran her fingers down Patrice's cheek, down her jaw. "I'm curious, though," she managed, "to see what happens."

Patrice nodded in agreement, even at their most settled, Donna had always been able to keep Patrice guessing. She paused for a moment in front of Alex and kissed up her thigh, then stood and turned, waiting for Alex to unzip her dress.

Without hesitation, Alex did, slowly pulling the zipper down, letting her fingers linger on Patrice's skin as she did so. She let the dress fall, bending to pick it up as Patrice stepped out of it. But before the blonde could turn, Alex was standing again; she took hold of Patrice's shoulders and kissed one of them softly. "We'll manage," she said, lips moving against Patrice skin.

Allowing a smile to escape, Patrice turned to place a kiss on Alex's hair. "Yes, and I won't pretend not to be intrigued by the opportunity." When their clothes were put away, and last steadying breaths had been taken, Patrice let Alex lead her back down to where Liz and Donna were waiting with a quite contented looking Sabina between them. Patrice stood a few feet back, Alex close, knowing the next moves would not be theirs to make.

When Alex made to kneel in front of Liz, the elder blonde shook her head and nodded casually towards Donna. She relished the way Alex carefully controlled her surprise, the way it flickered on her face before it was hidden away in her bright eyes. Alex knelt facing Donna, fully expecting to be told to go and fetch a drink half a moment later. Then again, she had been fully expecting to spend the night at Liz's complete mercy.

Patrice watched the exchange with a mixture of surprise and appreciation. Alex looked beautiful with anyone, but there was something of an echo in the image for Patrice, like watching oneself from the outside. She then looked back to Liz, now looking expectantly at her and completed the rest of the equation for the night, mentally stiffening slightly.

Patrice hesitated for only a moment. Donna, she had been preparing herself for; she was strict but Patrice was comfortable with that. Liz, however, put Patrice on edge, especially tonight when she was in a position of such obvious power in her surroundings. Still, Patrice was trained, and wasn't about to step out of line so easily in front of any of them. She took a step forward and sank respectfully to her knees in front of Liz, drawing her shoulders down and back, letting muscle memory take over.

Donna reached down and ran her fingers through Alex's hair before she looked over to Patrice. Her smile had a hint of pride in it, and she was certainly happy that Alex was deciding to behave herself. "So, what do you think we should do with them?"

Liz took Patrice's chin, forcing the blonde to look up at her. She turned her face one way and then the other, studying her appraisingly. "I wonder...I wonder just which of them is better trained." She wasn't one to make wagers, but games could be interesting, especially with women as competitive as Patrice and Alex.

Donna raised one of her eyebrows. "What did you have in mind?"

Alex kept her eyes on the floor and her back straight. She wasn't sure either of them were going to like what was next

Before pulling Sabina half into her lap and stroking her side, Liz looked at the other woman thoughtfully. "Mm, I'm not entirely sure." There were any manner of little tests, little competitions--from carrying too full drinks without spilling to standing in one place for too long a time. Liz found herself at a loss as to where to start.

Patrice, for her part, listened to the exchange with growing apprehension. Being forced to compete with Alex had its obvious troubles, as well as its intrigue, but depending on how seriously it was taken there was a bit of pride at stake.

"Maybe we should start with something simple..." Donna smiled down at them before looking at Liz. "You're friend, Jonas, he carries a handkerchief?"

Liz arched her eyebrows. "Almost certainly." She rounded one of Sabina's nipples with her fingers. "What did you have in mind?"

Sabina whimpered a little at the touch, still enjoying the attention. She was trying to pay attention to the others, to how Alex and Patrice were behaving, but kept losing focus, reveling in the older women's attentions. Besides, Patrice had told her to behave for them, and they seemed please with her so far.

"Whomever comes back with the handkerchief wins." Donna shrugged. "That doesn't seem like it should be too taxing." That Alex already knew Jonas could be in her favor, but Donna thought that it was just as likely that it would make the assignment harder.

Alex had to bite back a smile. She was itching to stand, to go...to win. But Liz had given no command yet.

Liz chuckled thoughtfully. "Fair enough." She looked down to the blondes, pausing for a moment. "You heard Donna. Go." And at that, Alex was up, surveying the room for Jonas.

Patrice didn't find the challenge a fair one and had to stop herself from saying as much. She didn't even know who Jonas was, less what to say to him. She opted for her best course of action and just followed Alex through the crowd.

Jonas was mingling beside one of the windows, a glass of champagne in his hand. He caught sight of Alex in the corner of his eye, and turned to smile appreciatively. If she was naked, it meant that she was with Liz, and maybe the night would turn out to be even more interesting than he anticipated. A second later, he caught sight of her companion and his grin widened. Alex met his smile and only brightened hers to keep his attention when she saw him looking to Patrice. Immediately, she draped herself on his arm and nuzzled his neck. "Jonas..."

Patrice caught up with Alex just in time to see her shamelessly touching who she assumed to be Jonas and immediately bristled, much less out of competitiveness than jealousy. She was well aware Alex's actions were all in fun, trying to win the challenge, but Patrice was unprepared for her reaction to them. She stepped up behind Alex, offering Jonas only the slightest of smiles and dragged the other blond roughly off of him, pushing her away with a glare and stepped purposefully between them. Before Alex could reply Patrice turned back to Jonas, hoping her intuition was right about what might serve both her purposes, "Liz sent me to ask for your handkerchief, she said she would consider it a personal favor."

"She did?" Jonas was a bit taken aback by having Alex pulled away so suddenly, before he'd really even gotten a chance to properly say hello. He looked over at Liz, who seemed to watching him very intently. Her companion didn't go unnoticed either. Finally, he addressed Alex. "And would you be here to ask that same favor?"

Alex was rubbing her arm where Patrice yanked her away. She did her best not to look petulant, but the blonde's reaction had come as a complete surprise...one that might cost her the game. She licked her lips and looked to Donna, nodding in her direction, but she was still stunned to press herself to Jonas once again. "For Donna Geysen...yes."

Patrice tried to remember herself, the flash of jealousy subsiding. She looked back at Jonas more pleadingly, hearing in Alex's voice that she had the upper hand for the time being, but hoping she hadn't gotten carried away.

"Mmm..." Jonas pulled his handkerchief out then slipped his arms around both of their shoulders. "Well, it seems this is a bit of a conundrum. Two beautiful women, and I only have one of these. Tell me," he turned his head toward Patrice, "what's your name, my dear?"

Patrice did her best not to stiffen at his touch; Donna had learned early on in their relationship just how set the blonde's preferences were, and nothing had changed. She eyed the handkerchief dangling tantalizingly close and weighed the potential punishment against getting away from the moment quickly and still technically winning the challenge. Yes...it seemed worth it. Patrice took a breath and turned toward Jonas, giving him her most ingratiating smile, "Patrice." She waited until he shifted his attention back to Alex momentarily, and then quickly snatched the bit of cloth away and twisted from his embrace, and was threading her way back through the crowd to Liz before either of them had the chance to react.

Alex glared after Patrice and sighed at her defeat. She quickly twisted out of Jonas's arm and pecked him on the cheek. "And she doesn't sleep with men," she added before following Patrice back. Jonas watched Alex walk away and shook his head "Pity." He would have to make sure he said hello later.

When Patrice returned with the token, Liz was chuckling lightly. It was hardly how she expected the scenario to play out, but she was pleasantly surprised. She took the handkerchief from Patrice and folded it before handing it to Donna. "A solid win for Patrice, I think. And..." She leaned forward to tweak to blonde's nipples lightly. "Mm, I appreciate her...innovative thinking."

Patrice blushed slightly at both the touch and the praise. She was relieved that Liz was more amused than anything at her tactics. Hopefully that would be sufficient for the night and they could get back to simpler pleasures.

Donna took the handkerchief, amused. "Indeed." She passed the piece of fabric to Sabina. "Why don't you go return this?" Then she looked back at Liz. "That was more entertaining than I thought it would be. Did you have any other ideas?"

Sabina started as Donna addressed her, having been relaxing and only paying half attention to the conversation. She collected herself somewhat and took the handkerchief, stumbling to her feet and trying to straighten her dress as she went hurriedly off to try and complete the task.

"I'm sure I could think of plenty, but..." She ran her fingers through Patrice's hair, loosening it, pulling it down. "I think I wouldn't mind retiring for the evening. Would you?"

"No, I think you're right." Donna stood and offered Liz a hand. "I'm afraid that I don't quite remember the way to your rooms." Liz took it and stood, expecting both Alex and Patrice to follow. She snaked her arm through Donna's as they navigated their way through the crowd and into one of the hallways. It was much quieter towards Liz's suite.

Alex followed, keeping her eyes forward. She didn't like that she had lost, and she was sure that she would be punished for it. But she was convinced that Patrice should have been punished for the way she won. When they entered Liz's rooms, she knelt in the center of the sitting room as she was accustomed to doing.

As the other blond moved to the ground, Patrice had to do her best not to walk over and touch Alex's hair or shoulder. She controlled herself well enough to simply kneel next to her demurely, forcing her eyes to the carpet. Patrice was sure the challenges had just begun in earnest for the night, and tried to prepare.

Donna paused to admire the simple beauty of the situation, then stepped up behind the pair and brushed her hands across both women's shoulders, smiling quietly at Liz, "I don't know if the two of them particularly appreciated out surprise tonight." She motioned to one of the black clad slaves in the hall and asked him to show Sabina where they were.

Liz nodded and walked around them in a half circle. "You're right. They seem to have grown rather complacent in their roles." She looked up to Donna, appreciating the aesthetic of her touching both women..

Patrice listened to Liz silently, knowing that the older woman was correct in her assumptions, and that it would make the night both challenging and pleasurable. She let out a small breath and closed her eyes slightly. She knew that Donna's touch was to be only fleeting, that the night would move on, would progress. Still, it was comforting as it always had been. Out of the edge of her vision, she saw Alex also readying herself, elegantly waiting, and started to feel her anticipation build.

Alex closed her eyes for half a moment at Donna's soft touch. She risked steeling a glance at Patrice, reminding herself why she had been wanting and ready so early in the night. If they pushed through, if they performed well, it would be all the sweeter when they were allowed to be together that night.

The two blondes' mutual glances were not lost on Donna.. She looked to Liz. "Blindfolds?" Liz gave her a crooked smile before disappearing into the bedroom. She returned with two blindfolds and two sets of cuffs, handing one of each to Donna. "Shall we leave them uncollared?"

Patrice had nearly whimpered under her breath at Donna's suggestion, though she shouldn't have been so surprised. Donna had a tendency to read her better than she could read herself, which had always kept things challenging, given their encounters an extra sense of anticipation. She looked at Liz as the older blond returned, a shiver running through her.

Liz tilted Patrice's chin up before carefully wrapping the blindfolding around her head, covering her eyes. She gently pushed the blonde's head forward, pausing to tie a firm knot. Alex clasped her fingers more tightly behind her back. She wanted to watch, to see Patrice that way, but she kept her eyes lowered, knowing that would only lead to more severe punishment.

Patrice felt the dark envelop her as Liz secured the blindfold, and immediately her other senses sharpened, skin sensitive, listening to Donna and trying to picture how she was handling Alex. She shifted, unable to fight off a growing arousal at the treatment.

While Liz attended to Patrice, Donna took Alex's hands and buckled the restraints to them, though she didn't bind them. "They do look good like this," she held back a smirk as she looked at Liz. "It suits them." Liz stepped back to take in the pair. She had appreciated the aesthetic the first night she had been with Patrice and Alex, but something about the club made it all the more enjoyable.

Noting her subtle shifting, Liz put a firm, quieting hand on Patrice's shoulder. She waited a moment before putting the cuffs on her wrists and hooking them together. "Eager, are we?" She ran her fingernail down Patrice's spine before gently pulling her up. "You may have won our little test earlier, but don't think I am not about to give you a spanking for the inelegant way you went about it...no matter how amusing it was." Patrice took in a breath as she was pulled up, body responding immediately to Liz's promise. She could feel her pulse race while she stood, waiting.

Alex fought to remain still upon hearing Liz's words. She could feel the air shift and guessed that Liz was having Patrice stand up. And while she knew she would not be able to see the spanking, there was the promise of Patrice's whimpers to keep her on edge.

Donna put her hand under Alex's arm and helped her stand. "I think that we're going to go into the other room where I can punish you for losing without you getting distracted." She knew that Alex and Patrice were still trying to focus on each other and she wanted to do everything she could to stop it.

A smirk immediately came to Liz's face. Donna had read her mind, and she would have done the same with Alex. The blonde, she could see wanted to whimper, but Liz was proud to see that Alex held it back. She watched them disappear into the bedroom, Alex's steps forcibly sure.

However Patrice failed where Alex succeeded and let out a discontented, almost panicked noise as she heard the footsteps recede. Without thinking, she tried to turn to where she thought Alex had gone, but stopped short of taking a step.

"That's enough," Liz said, firmly gripping Patrice's arm and turning her back. She sat in one of the imposing, high backed chairs and skillfully pulled Patrice face down over her lap, running the flat of her palm down her back and over her buttocks. "I know you have better manners than that, Patrice."

Patrice's mind was brought back to Liz immediately, and she tried to focus, to calm herself for the punishment. She was better trained, had the manners for this, and when she was with Donna it would have been nearly easy. However now, with Alex, things were changing and she had to press herself harder to behave.

"Good." Liz sensed Patrice's renewed focus. She let her have a moment as she stroked her, calming her. Then, without warming, she brought her hand down against the backs of Patrice's thighs. The hit was not as hard as Liz could have made it, but she wanted to indicate to Patrice that the punishment was about to begin.

Patrice jolted, her body was even more on edge because of her blindness, and it was involuntary. However, she didn't cry out, her training not having faded completely.
*****

Donna pulled Alex into the bedroom, clipped her wrists together, and pushed her down over the edge of the bed. Once she was there, she closed the door, happy that the sounds from the other room were effectively silenced. Alex only let out a soft whimper, swallowing most of it back. She tried to relax, to center her mind.

She opened a drawer and smiled when she guess correctly and found a paddle. She spun it in her hand, letting Alex guess at the sound. "What do you think is appropriate." She wondered just how much Alex was going to take the blame on herself and how much she would assign to Patrice or Jonas.
*****

"Count." Liz was impressed by Patrice's quiet, especially when she showed such little control moments before. But her tone was cold, authoritative. She kept the rest to herself as she began to level blows against Patrice's ass.

Patrice steadied her voice, starting at "one." Liz wasn't holding back any longer, and she knew her skin would be flushed by then and growing redder. The rest of the world faded as Liz continued, and Patrice focused only on the numbers as they got larger.

Her hand was stinging, but Liz continued until she reached thirty-five. When she stopped, she stretched her fingers, curling and uncurling her fist, letting Patrice draw in uneven breaths. "Do you think that was adequate?" The words were clipped.
*****

She could hear each drawer open and close and the sound of the air shifting. Alex tried to think, tried to picture the drawers in her mind in order to guess what Donna might be holding. It had been too long, though, and she couldn't clearly decide. "I'm not sure," she said, lifting her chin.

Donna tapped the back of Alex's hip with the side of the paddle. "Fine. You can tell me when to stop." She swung the paddle against Alex's ass.

The blonde drew in a breath and instinctively bent, trying to steady herself. Her cheeks reddened at the blows, each expected but each more painful than the last. And soon enough, she felt tears saturate the fabric of the blindfold.
*****

Patrice's skin was stinging, and she was sure she'd be feeling it tomorrow. She nodded, it wasn't the worst punishments she had received by far, but her lack of sight combined with having to wonder what Donna was doing to Alex made it much sharper.

Liz could feel the heat from Patrice's skin, and she admired her handiwork. She shifted under Patrice, seeing that the blonde was already wet, already wanting. "And what do you think Alex deserves for losing?" she asked, pressing her fingers through Patrice's curls, teasing her.

"Oh...." Patrice had been relaxing, still focusing on her abused skin when Liz touched her and she wasn't prepared. After a moment she registered she had been asked a question that needed an answer, "I'm sure Donna will find something appropriate." In her mind, Alex wasn't sure what would be worse, Alex getting a punishment or Donna rewarding her without being there to watch. Patrice wondered at herself for a moment, surprised at the revelation.
*****

Donna kept up the paddling, waiting for Alex to give some indication that she should stop. Alex bit her tongue, not wanting to give in, not wanting to give up. She felt herself stumbling forward, falling to her face with no means of catching herself.

Donna pursed her lips when Alex fell forward onto the bed. She helped her back to her feet. "Ready to stop yet?"

"I..." Alex swallowed and tried to steady her breathing. "Yes. Please." She tried to lift her chin, to be dignified about conceding. But she felt like a child.

Donna tossed the paddle onto the bed. She rubbed Alex's back. "That's better." She ran a hand over Alex's ass. "There's no need to be so proud."

She would have narrowed her eyes had they not been covered. Alex raised her chin and straightened her back. "Of course there is," she said coldly.

Donna rolled her eyes, knowing that Alex couldn't see her. "Of course." She slipped her fingers into Alex. "Then I suppose that you can stay here for a while." She pulled her fingers out and turned toward the door.
*****

 

"That isn't what I asked." Liz's tone was stern, as if Patrice was standing in front of her desk rather than lying over her lap. She scraped Patrice's clit idly with her fingernail before withdrawing just slightly. Alex had learned very quickly that she liked direct answers; she would make sure Patrice did as well.

Patrice whimpered and shifted on Liz's lap, uncomfortable to still be held there while she tried to think, "She...deserves to be punished. She lost...and....she lost." Patrice concluded her answer lamely, deciding it was good enough. Besides, what she said made more sense than what she was thinking.

Liz's fingers moved mechanically, rewarding Patrice's effort. Donna knew the blonde's limits, knew how far to push and how long to leave her wanting. Liz knew better than to ruin the evening with her ignorance of that. She circled Patrice's clit slowly, delighting in how wet the blonde was. But there was something in her strangled response that made Liz wonder what she was thinking.

Patrice sighed and let out a small moan, almost surprised at how ready she had become during the punishment. She controlled the urge to press back into Liz's fingers as she got closer.

"Good," Liz said, voice soothing more than giving praise. She rested her other hand on Patrice's red skin, a reminder that her punishment had not been so far off. But for the moment, she was content to let her think she would get to come soon.
*****

"No, please..." The words flew out of Alex's mouth before she thought better of it. She didn't want to be isolate from Patrice any longer, isolated from them all. There were so many nights she had spent alone...

Donna stopped the second that she heard Alex's plea. There was something in it that she couldn't ignore. She unhooked Alex's hands and removed the blindfold. "Stay quiet." She soundlessly opened the door to the sitting room and ushered Alex through.

Alex blinked as the light, though low, seemed brighter. She followed Donna and remained behind her as they entered the other room. Once Patrice and Liz came into view, she sucked in a quiet breath. If this was a reward, she would gladly accept it. But there was something else...relief at seeing Patrice there and so obviously enjoying herself. Donna kept her hand on the small of Alex's back and let her stand there and watch.

Patrice had been focusing on the touch and didn't hear them come back. She was near to reaching her climax, whimpering slightly when her mind rebelled as an overwhelming need came over her. Patrice let out a louder whimper tinged with panic, she needed to see Alex, and immediately. It wasn't that she didn't trust Donna with Alex, far from it. Instead her own insecurities overwhelmed her and she gave in, "Alex...please.." she was quiet at first, and then the exclamation got louder and more frantic as she found her voice, and realized she had started to cry.

Liz looked up, eyes widening. She quickly withdrew her hand and pulled Patrice's blindfold off without question. It occurred to her that she didn't know Patrice's safeword, and Liz admonished herself the simple and potentially dangerous oversight. She did not, however, let Patrice get up, as she waited to see if Alex's presence would calm her.

Alex pressed past Donna as soon as she heard the strain in Patrice's voice. She knelt before and took the blonde's face in her hands. "I'm here..."

Patrice started, voice quieting when the blindfold was removed and the room reappeared in front of her. She felt a rush and then Alex was there, quieting her. She took a shuddering breath, regaining her senses but her tears didn't halt, now falling out of shame at her behavior rather than panic. She pressed into Alex's touch, "Alex...I...." her voice caught and she just kissed the other blonde's palm, silently apologizing for her weaknesses.

While Liz appeared detached, she watched with interest. The Alex she had known five years, even a year before would not have taken well to the sight. But the blonde was stroking Patrice's cheeks, quietly telling her it was all right. She began to lightly touch Patrice again as Alex slipped fully to her knees. Donna joined them, resting her hand on Liz's shoulder. As much as she wanted to comfort Patrice, she let Alex do it. It had never been more clear that it wasn't her place anymore

Alex pressed her forehead to Patrice's, reassuring her that she was there. She didn't care about the moment of weakness, about the barriers that had fallen down. If they were to be punished, they could be punished later. And for now, Liz seemed content to continue to bring Patrice close to the edge. Patrice looked back up at Alex and relaxed again into Liz's touch slowly, feeling herself work back into it, quickening.

Sabina lightly tapped on the door and pushed it open. She had gotten a little lost trying to find Liz's rooms and she hoped that Liz and Donna weren't upset with her. Liz smiled and waved Sabina in. "There you are." She chuckled lightly as she pulled her fingers away from Patrice. "That will do, Patrice."

Patrice had to force herself to behave, and whimpered as she slid off Liz's lap, wiping at her cheeks and trying to hide her tears from Sabina. She settled inelegantly on the floor, body aching in more ways than one, Alex now tantalizingly close. Alex for her part slipped next to the other blond but kept a respectable distance.

Donna looked down at them, then at Liz. "I think that we can let them enjoy each other's company for a minute, don't you?"

Liz smiled, eyes drifting to Donna and then to Sabina. "I'm not opposed to that." She reached out,, running her fingers down Sabina's side.

Patrice hesitated, not wanting to take yet another misstep that night, but itching to touch Alex, needing it.

"Go on," Donna nudged Patrice toward Alex.

Alex was already opening her arms for Patrice, pulling her closer. She kissed her fiercely, trying to reassure her by laying claim to her once again. Liz took in the sight, smiling for half a moment before turning back to Donna and Sabina. "Why don't we retire to the bedroom?"

"Mmm." Donna wrapped her arm around Sabina and waited for Liz to join her.

Patrice barely registered the others leaving, kissing Alex back with equal force. She melted into the embrace, wrists still bound where Liz had left them, but she didn't mind, needing to let Alex continue unfettered. "You're beautiful," Alex whispered, rubbing her thumbs over Patrice's cheeks. She ran her fingers down her arms, tips playing at the cuffs against Patrice's skin. Alex leaned back, smiled playfully. She was asking a silent question, wondering if Patrice would be all right with remaining that way.

Patrice nodded, leaning back toward Alex again, imparting her consent. "You are too, but you already know that." She was starting to relax, recover from her earlier loss of control. Alex pushed her back against the chair, not bothering to move from the floor. She pressed against Patrice, kissing her shoulders, her collarbones, down to her nipples. "Don't..." she flicked one with her tongue before continuing, "get too sentimental with me."

"Oh...God Alex." Patrice strained against the cuffs, instinctively moving to touch the other Blond. She moaned as Alex moved lower, the restraint and Alex's touch were a powerful combination. Patrice's skin was flushed, salty, and that combined with the faint scent of her perfume nearly drove Alex to distraction. She kissed lower, pushing herself flat to the floor as she pressed her tongue to Patrice's center, licking her intently. Patrice let out a low moan, shifting to give Alex better access. She had been made to wait so long, through so much, and she couldn't hold out much longer. "Alex...please...."
*****

Liz followed and smiled as she looked over the girl. "I think we should take care of that dress, don't you?" She tugged at the ties of the girl's dress.

"I agree." Donna smirked at Sabina and pulled the halter top the rest of the way off.

Sabina's pulse immediately raced, she had already been on edge from many of the things she had seen in the club that night while she searched for Liz's rooms, and their touch was almost too much.

The older blonde undid the zipper and let Sabina's dress fall around her feet. It was an almost breathtaking picture. "Mm...if we could all be so lucky to bring something so...lovely back from our travels."

"It makes me want to go on vacation more often." Donna grabbed Sabina's dress from the floor and put it aside.
"You may undress Donna now," Liz said, standing back to watch. She wanted to see how well Sabina's training had taken. Sabina shuddered, and had to force herself to move to the older brunette, scared she would trip over herself if she tried to take a step. She managed eventually, and reached to unbutton Donna's shirt, remembering by the second button to keep her eyes lowered.

"Better." Donna ran her fingers through Sabina's hair, then shrugged her shirt off.

Liz shifted. "She has very good posture, but it's clear that they indulge her a bit too often." As if Sabina's undressing Donna wasn't a complete indulgence. But she and Donna were not Sabina's dommes, and she planned to continue indulging the girl if only in indulging herself.

Sabina moved to Donna's pants, hands progressively shaking. She had gotten used to being with Patrice and Alex, but Donna and Liz were obviously so strong, so practiced, and she wanted to be good for them. The young brunette managed the lass button and sunk to her knees, pulling the garment to the floor with her.

Donna stepped out of her pants and let Sabina put them away. "Well, I suppose that we should make it clear to them that that's simply unacceptable." Donna smiled at Liz.

Liz returned the smile as she waited for Sabina to undress her. Her mind was already racing ahead, calculating just what Alex and Patrice were doing, how long it was taking. She fingered one of the girl's curls thoughtfully. "Mm, perhaps, yes."

Sabina's hands were still shaking when she moved to undress Liz, and she made the mistake of wondering how many times Alex had done this same ritual in the past. At that thought she whimpered quietly, arousal and nervousness welling up anew. Eventually she managed to remove the last of the garments and slipped back to the floor, trying to fold them as best she could.

Donna looked the two of them over and smiled at the sight. "She certainly is pretty."

"Pretty is just the word." Liz smiled down at Sabina. "On the bed, my dear," she ordered before going to a chest of drawers and pulling out a third set of cuffs, this one more ornate, obviously meant for public use. She took Sabina's wrists, carefully sliding the cuffs around them and finally hooking them together and then to a carefully hidden hook in the center of the headboard.

Sabina could barely hear the noises in the room over the blood pounding in her ears while she waited. Patrice and Alex rarely had been so formal with her, and she pressed against the pleasantly tight bonds, glancing wantingly from one woman to the other.

"Oh, by all means." Donna motioned at Sabina. It seemed like Liz had something specific in mind and she didn't want to get in the way of that.

"Do they often deny you, Sabina?" Liz asked as she produced a set of nipple clamps and fixed them to the girls already taut nipples. She slid onto the bed and ran her hand down Sabina's side, through the girls between her thighs.

Sabina squealed slightly in surprise, then held back the rest of her moan when Liz touched her. She wasn't really paying attention to her words, and it took her a moment to answer, "I...no...yes...?" She had no idea what she was supposed to say, but Liz's tone and actions were getting the better of her and she said the next thing that came to mind, "Patrice doesn't...much." She closed her mouth, realizing that probably wasn't a good answer for the moment.

Donna chuckled. "For some reason, I'm not particularly surprised by that." She sat on the end of the bed to watch.

How interesting. Liz pulled away from Sabina and smiled indulgently at her. "Mm. Thank you, Sabina." She sauntered into the other room, merely shaking her head, clucking her tongue softly when she saw Patrice, head thrown back and Alex's head between her legs. "Alexandra, get up," she said sternly. And Alex's eyes widened as she pushed herself to her knees. She was sure they would have enough time alone, that Liz and Donna would keep themselves busy with their new toy. But she had been wrong. Before she could move again, Liz was pulling her up literally by the scruff of her neck. And with Alex standing, Liz tangled her fingers in Patrice's hair, lifting her as well. "Mm, yes...much too indulgent, I think..."

Patrice's mind was still in a haze, relaxing from Alex's touch, and she barely registered Liz's presence before it was too late and she found herself yanked up. She stumbled, mind trying to focus, keep from falling with her wrists still bound behind her. Liz pulled them both into the bedroom, ignoring Alex's soft whimper upon seeing Sabina bound so. "The two of you have been rather lax with Sabina. It's time to rectify that."

Alex bristled slightly, but she tried to focus, to tell herself that Liz was only trying to orchestrate a punishment, a scene.

Donna got off of the bed. "What would you like me to do?" She asked Liz.

Liz nodded towards the chest of drawers. "There's a strap on in the top drawer on the right. Perhaps Sabina would benefit from observing a display." She left it to Donna to decide what that display would be and on whom. And she turned to Sabina. "Keep your legs spread or I will punish you."

Patrice finally got her bearings, pulse slowing again. She watched Donna closely, anticipating. The blond was calmer now, but still felt the urge to go to Sabina and touch her, comfort her like Alex had to herself moments ago. The girl's expression said volumes as it shifted from determination to surprise and back again.

Donna crooked her finger at Patrice, and when she joined her, she buckled the strap-on onto her. "Do you think that you can give Sabina a proper demonstration?" She nodded toward Alex.

Alex tried to hide her surprise, but the flush that spread across her chest and cheeks at seeing Patrice that way spoke enough to what she was thinking. Her center was throbbing with want, even more now that she knew she would most likely be denied.

Patrice nodded silently at Donna, starting to focus again. Her earlier release had settled her, and she regarded the scene with a greater sense of pageantry again. The challenge was there, but so was the purpose. Sabina hadn't seen this before, not with them, and she didn't look at the girl, already knowing she would be watching intently. Patrice took a few steps toward Alex, looking her in the eye levelly, seeking her trust before sliding her fingers into her hair, and firmly pressing her to the ground, bringing the toy to her lips.

The blonde sank elegantly, opening her mouth at Patrice's unspoken command and taking the cock into it. She flicked her gaze upwards, affirming that she would bend to Patrice's will, that she trusted her with everything, before she lowered her gaze. Liz nodded approvingly as she slid on the bed next to Sabina, tweaking one of her clamped nipples.

"Pay attention." She smiled to Donna. "I doubt Sabina realizes that her behavior is a reflection of us as well as her mistresses."

"I'm sure she doesn't." She settled on Sabina's other side to watch the show.

Patrice's body quickened again as she looked down at Alex following so willingly. She worked her fingers through the other blonde's hair, finally letting it fall around her shoulders. After a moment to ready herself, Patrice drew Alex back up and kissed her, then turned her toward the bed, "on your hands and knees." The command was firm, but without edge, Patrice knew Alex would do as she asked without questioning.

There was no hesitation in Alex's following of the command. She climbed upon the bed, turning with her side facing the other women, trying to anticipate the view they might like best to see. And if they wanted a change, she would follow that command as well. She arched her back, staring forward, making herself ready for Patrice. If Donna and Liz wanted to show the sum of their teachings, Alex would have no part is destroying that. She fully realized that this moment could be formative for Sabina. But in the back of her mind, she always wanted Patrice to enjoy her willingness.

Donna idly started running her hand over Sabina's thigh, letting her fingers trail over the inside. She hadn't often seen Patrice like this, and it was a treat for her as well.

Patrice caught the movements of their audience out of the edge of her vision, but didn't turn, focusing instead on Alex waiting for her. She slipped onto the bed behind the other blond and allowed the toy to press between her thighs first, teasingly brushing back over Alex's clit before moving slightly higher and firmly moving it into her. Patrice was methodical, and tried not to show the effect the scene was having on her as she began a steady but agonizingly slow rhythm.

Even though she held herself still, Alex could not bite back a moan. She wanted to press back into Patrice, to show the blonde how much she was enjoying herself, how she was thinking only of her. But Alex could feel Donna's and Liz's eyes on her...and most importantly Sabina's. The girl had bad habits, yes, but they were endearing enough, and they were, Alex thought, quite possibly the result of her own indulgences with Patrice in regards to the girl.

Patrice caught the moan and, though she truly enjoyed the noise from Alex under any circumstances, couldn't let it go unnoticed in that atmosphere. She quickly moved and brought her palm down across Alex's bare thigh, while continuing to thrust into her, unhurried.

Alex's breath caught and she lowered her head even as she reveled in the sting. She wondered how long the spectacle was meant to last, how long Liz and Donna would watch before wanting to see something else, something more.

"It seems that they have both regained some poise," Liz remarked nonchalantly, raising a pleased eyebrow.

"Mmhmm." Donna rubbed a finger against Sabina's clit, just enough to tease her. She smiled almost proudly as Patrice slapped Alex.

"Which one of them should get to come, Sabina?" Liz asked. "Why don't you..." She smirked. "Indulge us by picking..."

Sabina's attention was alternating between trying not to squirm with pleasure under Donna's touch, and watching the scene play out. She hadn't witnessed them like this, so focused and directed, at least not with each other before. She was near to breaking and begging Donna to let her come when Patrice hit Alex, and she hadn't been ready for it. She whimpered in shock, less at the display, and more at how desperately she suddenly wanted to be receiving the same treatment. Sabina's mind had just begun to churn over the urge when Liz's question brought her back and she stumbled over it, shocked by being asked, "I don't know....I can't.." She didn't want to choose, didn't like being asked such a thing in that moment.

Donna pulled her hand away and grasped Sabina chin, forcing her to look away from the scene. "You can, and you will, or no one is going to get to come, you included."

Sabina whimpered, unprepared for Donna's shift in tone, "Alex!" She said it without thinking, wanting to see Patrice finish with her, take her fully.

Alex's breath hitched and her moan was strangled as she tried to hold it back. She pressed back into Patrice, wanting to smirking wanting to gloat. Liz chuckled lightly. "No, I believe Patrice will have the honor. Mm, I don't think your decision was carefully considered, Sabina." At that, Donna's lips formed a quiet smile, and she returned to touching Sabina.

Patrice vaguely registered the exchange and pressed into Alex a few more times, then pulled back, taking a moment to brush her hands over the backs of the other blond's thighs, a small indulgence before stopping and waiting for her next direction. She wished that she had been allowed to take Alex, but disobeying would have been too large a breach of etiquette.

"Alex..." Liz nodded, leaving the rest for the blonde to interpret. Alex got to her knees, facing Patrice. She carefully pressed the other woman back until she was lying half on top of her, and finally, she began to place small, quick kisses down her middle. She took the toy into her mouth when she came to it, tasting herself, moaning, and she as she began to work it with her tongue, she slipped her fingers underneath, pressing them into Patrice, feeling just how wet she was. Patrice moaned and brought her hands down to tangle in Alex's hair indulgently. She was breathing faster already, and squirmed as she watched the other blonde's actions.

Donna watched with interest, wondering just how long Patrice would be able to hold out, if she would even try. And she wondered just how long it would take her to reciprocate once she had and they gave her permission.

Alex pressed harder and abandoned her attentions to the toy in favor of kissing up to Patrice's nipples, nipping each one in turn. She curled her fingers before pulling them out and simply applying her touch to Patrice's clit. Patrice continued to move wantonly under Alex, a few almost frantic whispers escaping as she got closer. The night had already been long, and she had little guard left.

"We're waiting, Patrice," Liz said, fingers hovering over one of Sabina's nipples. "Don't make me regret my decision." Patrice's eyes opened fully. At the older woman's demand she moaned again, pressing into Alex's fingers and finally letting go, breath catching and then shuddering as she started to relax.

Alex continued to circle her clit, pushing her through, drawing every last bit out of Patrice for Donna's and Liz's benefit. She withdrew when the blonde stilled, and she got back on her knees, quietly waiting for what was to come next.

Donna leaned over Sabina to whisper to Liz, brushing her nose against Liz's ear in the process. "I want to see her finish with Alex."

"As you wish." Liz smirked, turning back to Patrice. "Well?"
Patrice got up slowly, and smiled slightly when she heard the command. She nodded and turned to press Alex back onto the bed. Seeing the other blond already so wanting she pressed the toy into her again, but this time with more intent, leaning close and letting their skin press together, building heat as she moved.

"Patrice," Alex whispered softly, pressing into the blonde. She kept her eyes on Liz and Donna as she arched, showing them how much she appreciated their indulgence, their kindness. She was close enough that it wouldn't take much longer, especially with such an audience. Patrice continued faster, and pressed her lips to Alex's neck, and instinctively started to nip and mark her while sliding a hand between them, circling the other blonde's clit firmly.

Liz smiled at the moment she saw Alex's eyes widened and close. The blonde opened her mouth but her moan was silent. She held to Patrice, digging her nails into her hips until she finally stilled, hands slipping to her sides.

"Thank you." Donna nuzzled Liz's ear again, nipping at it slightly. "Not at all." Liz turned into Donna, catching her lips in a playful kiss. She pulled the other woman close, over Sabina's middle to deepen it. Donna confidently returned the kiss, wrapping her hand in Liz's hair, not at all paying attention to their possible audience. "I think we've both been a bit neglected, don't you?"

Patrice felt Alex still, and slipped off of her, sitting up just in time to see the other women kiss. She sank back to her heels, watching, surprise written over her features.

 

"Oh, yes." Liz kissed along Donna's jaw as she let her fingers trail down the other woman's chest. "I think we have. Mm... What would you like to do about that?"

"Well, there are two of them, and two of us. It seems like an elegant solution to me." Donna ran her hand up the outside of Liz's thigh. Liz chuckled and turned her sparkling eyes to Alex and Patrice. "Patrice, come here," she said, crooking her finger.

Patrice shook herself, still reeling slightly from seeing Donna behaving so easily with Liz, so casually. She crawled over and stopped in front of the older blond, far beyond second guessing or even stopping to consider either of their demands.

"That's it." Liz stroked her hair soothingly as if she were a timid thing, enjoying the blonde's obvious surprise. She smiled, pulling her in for a soft kiss. "I don't think you need to be told what to do." And before Alex was called, she went to Donna, kneeling before her, waiting expectantly. Donna smiled at Alex and drew her up. "Good girl." She kissed her hungrily. "I wonder which one of you wins this little competition," she teased, then let Alex go.

She didn't need further instruction, and sunk to the bed in front of Liz, quietly and obediently pressing her head between the older woman's legs and started to lick her intently.

Liz moaned, watching as Alex did the same to Donna. She wondered if the other woman was as close as she was, wondered if Sabina would simple come from having watched so much, having waited so long. "Good..." She ran her fingers through Patrice's hair still, every breath measured, calm even in her fervor.

Donna ran her fingers through Alex's hair and arched up into her mouth. In contrast to Liz, her breathing was becoming ragged and she was starting to squirm. Alex pressed on, pushing her fingers into Donna to heighten the moment. She shut Patrice out, shut Liz out and focused on the woman before her.

Patrice could hear Donna, could see Alex out of the corner of her eye, and touched Liz more intently, wanting to please her as best she could. Despite her calm, Liz was close, closer than she knew Alex realized. She smiled down at Patrice, letting herself relax, letting her body do as it wished. and when she began to push over the edge, she moaned softly.

Donna was only seconds behind Liz, moaning and twisting, holding Alex close. Alex pressed, continued to lick Donna until the older woman's grip on her lessened. She remained for a moment, breathing in her scent before kissing Donna's thigh and getting back to her knees. She had lost again, but this time she knew she wouldn't be punished. Liz was smiling, pleased, ready, Alex thought, to bring the night to a close, though she still had her hands in Patrice's hair.

Patrice didn't stop, continuing to lick Liz until she was released. She had only barely been listening to the other sounds in the room, and didn't notice that Alex had sat up, still focused on Liz.

A still settled over the room, punctuated only by a soft whimper from Sabina. The girl pulled at her bonds almost pitifully, but as the women turned, they found her legs still dutifully spread. Alex smirked.

Donna turned to look at Sabina and chuckled, unhooking her arms and releasing the restraints. "Maybe if you keep being good, they'll reward you when they get you home."

Alex raised her eyebrows and pursed her lips. "Oh, no, I think Sabina should reward us all." She slid off of her knees, perching on her hip, changing the balance of power without asking for or wanting permission to do so. "Sabina, make yourself come for us." Patrice had been resting contently next to Liz, and now sat back, watching the girl's expression.

Sabina whimpered, movements still stiff from being bound so long, but didn't protest and slid her fingers between her legs. She was already so near, had been on edge almost painfully for so long and nearly came just at the command.

The mood shifted, and Liz was content to let it stay that way. She, and she would wager Donna as well, had gotten what she wanted from Patrice and Alex, and watching Sabina, so young, so eager, was a delight. As the girl began to come, squirming and moaning unabashedly, she smiled to the two blondes. "Don't stay away so long, hmm?"
Donna smirked as she watched Sabina touch herself, occasionally reaching a hand out to flick one of her nipples.

Sabina barely heard Liz, and let out a contented sigh, automatically collapsing and curling up on the bed, unable to control herself any longer. She didn't care what happened next, and relaxed, a few small tremors still running through her.

Alex kissed Liz's cheek softly before sliding off of the bed. She removed her cuffs and Patrice's, putting them away carefully before retrieving their clothing. "Thank you both," she said, handing Patrice her dress.

Donna pulled a pillow down and curled up with it. "You're welcome."

Patrice petted Sabina quietly for a moment, then smiled at Donna, still getting used to seeing her there and so relaxed. She took the dress from Alex and slipped it on, turning to let the other blond do up the zipper. It was only upon standing that she realized she was nearly as tired as Sabina from the night.

Alex pulled her pants on, settling them over her hips before pulling Patrice's zipper up and then pulling on her top. She placed a soft kiss on one of the blonde's shoulders before turning back to the bed. "Come on Sabina. It's time to go home." She caressed the girl's cheek.

Sabina stirred and whimpered sleepily. She managed to pull herself up and off the bed, following Alex's touch. Patrice had already found the girl's dress and let the older woman put it back on her. Patrice kissed her head and took the young brunette's hand comfortingly, "Say goodnight to Liz and Donna, and thank them for the evening." Sabina managed a smile, though she couldn't bring herself to look them in the eye, "Goodnight, and thank you," she said quietly.

Alex smiled and caressed Sabina's curls fondly. She was proud of the girl for holding until the last, for her promise and her eagerness.

"Mm, goodnight, Sabina." Liz looked to Alex and Patrice, and she could not help but smile. They were quite a pair...in any situation. She stretched out leisurely next to Donna. "I meant it, Alexandra. Don't be a stranger." To which Alex replied with a nod as she took Patrice's hand.

Patrice gave a last glance at the other women, her mind wanting to ask a few things, but knew it was far from her place. "Goodnight," she nodded to them deferentially and allowed Alex to lead her out, Sabina following quietly behind.

Alex was quiet, and once they reached the elevator, she leaned against one of its walls, pulling Patrice close. She was tired, sore...but it wasn't unpleasant. The evening, in her mind, had gone supremely well for something so unexpected.

Patrice kissed Sabina on the forehead and turned out the light. The girl was completely worn out, physically and mentally and had started to fall asleep in the cab, draped across her shoulder. Patrice closed the door and went to their bedroom, where Alex was already getting changed. She had grown more and more contemplative on the ride home, mind working over the night's events. Overall it had been pleasurable, challenging, erotic, all the things she would expect from a night out with Donna, plus the added complexities of Alex and Liz. Still, something was nagging at her in how she had reacted to Alex's presence at times, something she was getting closer to formulating. Patrice stepped into the bedroom and came up behind Alex, slipping her arms around the other woman, kissing her neck, "Hey....are you as tired as I am?"

"Mmhm." Alex half turned, giving Patrice a brief kiss on the cheek before pulling away to take her bra off. She tossed it onto a chair with the rest of her clothes and pulled on a worn, oversized tee. It wasn't the most chic of sleepwear, but she didn't think Patrice would mind that night. Going to bed was foremost on her mind. Porcelain was already half asleep at the end of it, and she expected Persia was in much the same position in Sabina's room. While Alex had been wary of returning to the club that night, that way, she was now glad that things had turned out so well. It was the perfect reintroduction, and on the way home, she had been thinking about when they might go back, establish themselves as a couple with Sabina beside them. She smiled to herself as she slipped into bed and pulled the covers back for Patrice. "Sabina's asleep?"

Patrice smiled and nodded, "I'm surprised she managed to stand on her own in the elevator after that nap in the cab, maybe she's better trained than we give her credit for." She slipped into bed beside Alex and waited for her to turn out the light before pulling the other blonde's arms around her tightly.

"She did well tonight. I think Liz was impressed..." She nuzzled Patrice's neck lightly as she situated herself more comfortably, pulling the blonde closer. "I'm not sure I can speak for Donna, but..." Alex smiled against Patrice's warm skin. "I think she was as well."

Patrice smiled into the darkness and kissed Alex's hands, "I know she was." She felt her eyes getting heavy and let out a long breath.

"Mm, get some sleep," Alex said, taking the breath for Patrice simply settling in. She felt heavy against the blonde, and it was comfortable.

Patrice could feel Alex quiet, and wrapped in Alex's arms in the dark she finally came to the question that had been bothering her, feeling the need to be truthful that night. "Alex....can I ask you something?" She hated to keep Alex up, but she couldn't hold it in.

Alex felt herself being pulled back to wakefulness and blinked, shifting her body around Patrice. "Of course."

"Is it enough?" Patrice felt the words start to pour out of her, "I mean, this...me....us, is it enough?" They had never really talked about it, and it had been bothering Patrice to think that there might be things that she couldn't offer Alex. "I just...later I mean, when Sabina moves onto her real life, and Donna and Liz settle down or move away, will you still be happy with me?" She was on the edge of tears at the words and her fatigue, but waited quietly for an answer.

The words cut through the silence, and at first, Alex thought she had already half fallen asleep. But as Patrice continued, she tensed, awake and confused. After a moment she rolled over to turn on the light, sitting up to rub her head. "Patrice, where..." She rubbed her head, and only then did she catch sight of Patrice's face. "Why would you even need to ask?" she said softly.

Patrice studied Alex's expression, hoping she hadn't taken things too far, "Alex..I...I just...I know you have a past, and I just don't want you to find that someday you realize you want to go back to it, to something else." She was starting to feel silly, the words not coming out as she thought they should, "Just....I guess I need to know that you won't get bored if in the future I'm all that's left of all this." She fell silent, hoping Alex understood. Patrice was more than happy in their current situation, but there were so many interests in it, and she knew the balance couldn't last forever, nor could they keep bringing housegirls home from vacations.

Alex licked her lips, searching for an answering, trying to weigh what she needed to say against what she thought Patrice wanted to hear. She looked down at her hands, realizing the question; the concern was a perfectly legitimate one. "I can't..." She licked her lips again, searching. "I wish I could say that I would walk away from this right now if it would make you feel more...secure, but we both know that would be..." Alex shook her head. She took Patrice's hand in hers and squeezed it before kissing her fingertips. "But I don't want or need this forever... And when it's all said and done...Patrice...where did this come from?" Alex closed her eyes for half a moment. She knew it wasn't exactly the right way to end that.

Patrice followed Alex's response, mind quieting. It was what she needed to hear, "Oh, Alex I'm not asking it to change now, I don't want it to, I'm happy." She pulled Alex a little closer and kissed her shoulder, "I just wanted to know that if someday I'm all that's left over from this you won't find your life lacking." She paused, lowering her eyes, "I mean, theoretically of course." Patrice took a breath before continuing, "as for where it's coming from, I'm not entirely sure myself, just something in tonight with Jonas hit me that you have desires that I can't satisfy. I know it had nothing to do with him, it was just the realization I think."

She had almost forgotten about the look on Patrice's face upon seeing her draped against Jonas's shoulder. But it came back to Alex suddenly, and she pulled Patrice close, almost protectively. "We haven't really talked about that, have we?" she asked quietly, taking a moment to breath in the scent of Patrice's hair.
Patrice shook her head slowly, starting to relax back into Alex's arms. "No, and really I feel silly that it bothers me, I guess it's just something that's been in the back of my mind." She kissed the other woman's wrist.

"You shouldn't..." Alex shook her head. "Feel silly, I mean," she said, clarifying. "It was...I was almost married, for all the wrong reasons at that." She sighed softly, suddenly realizing how much happier she was lying next to Patrice, feeling her soft skin. "I like men, Patrice, but I prefer women. And I'm not..." She shook her head, chuckling lightly. "I'm not going to be trolling the internet for...cybercock if I'm dissatisfied with this..."

Patrice couldn't help but laugh, turning over to lay half covering the other blond, "I certainly hope not." She kissed Alex, starting to finally relax, the answers appeasing her worries for then. She reached across the other woman to switch the light back off, smiling coyly, "At least tell me first." Patrice settled back in, voice dropping back, quieter, "And thank you for humoring me, I just needed to know."

Alex smiled at how quickly the mood had become easy again. She pulled Patrice close, nuzzling her neck softly once more before kissing it. "Patrice, I'm happy..." Alex's voice was soft, serious. She wanted the blonde to know that she meant it, that this was something she could joke about but didn't take lightly. "...and I think I'll keep being happy with you right here." She stroked her hair. "But if all of this is too much, if it gets to be too much, I need to know."

Patrice smiled at Alex's answer and closed her eyes, "I promise, but you know this is not new to me, the club, the others, I know myself well enough around it." She kissed Alex's skin thoughtfully, "But I'm glad you're happy too." The blond was nearing sleep again, mind finally as relaxed as the rest of her.

"Mm." Alex rubbed Patrice's arm before kissing the top of her head thoughtfully. She knew nothing else needed to be said, not then at least. They were content together, and she was happy to fall asleep that way.