Bound to be a while
One mile to every inch of
Your skin like porcelain
One pair of candy lips and
Your bubblegum tongue
-Wonderland, John Mayer
41 degrees with scattered clouds. LT stood on the Nachton Point Breeze pier with his hands shoved in the pockets of his leather jacket. The weather felt balmy to him, almost warm. The winter months in Johannesburg were colder than Nachton, sometimes evening temperatures dipping to below zero, but usually hovering around 25 degrees during the day. So he wore his leather jacket out of habit, but didn't really need it. His pale blue button up was tucked into his denim cargo pants and was topped off with a pair of leather sporty sketchers. Although used to wearing crisp creases, he preferred comfort and durability to high end fashion.
Looking around he spotted a coffee stand and walked in its direction. The little stand was shaped like a coffee cup with a roof, much to his amusement, but his face was void of emotion as he looked at the young woman behind the counter and ordered two disgustingly sweet mochas. The young woman was noticeably attractive and tried talking to LT.
'Two for you?'
LT replied, 'No, for a friend.'
'Oh,' she said openly disappointed, but then turned with a smile. 'Lucky friend.'
LT frowned for a moment at her disappointed tone and then realized she was flirting with him. With a snort he rocked on his heels slightly and watched the woman make his coffees. Within a minute she was done and turned back with two cups in hand.
'One for you, one for your friend. $8.50'
LT took a ten dollar bill out of his wallet with wide eyes and handed it to her. 'Pricey.'
'Yeah, but the customer service is free.'
LT's hands paused over the coffee cups as she leaned forward and smiled at him. He mustered a grin and gave her a wink as he took the cups and walked over to empty picnic tables about fifty yards away. As he set the cups down, a familiar scent wafted by him and he turned around to see Carol walking up to him from the parking lot.
She was wearing black combat boots that she managed to make look feminine and they reached up to just below her knees. The rest of her was covered by a curious garment. With a wry grin, he greeted her.
'Well hello, little red riding hood.'
Jamesons apparently weren't that hard to find, with his six foot two height standing out amongst the crowd, not that there were many enjoying the cloudy weather in Nachton that day. She trotted across the parking lot and came up behind him, ready to give him a good goose when he turned around.
'Well hello, little red riding hood.'
Carol grinned and reached out to take his hand as he looked her up and down. His outfit was painfully casual, but she decided she liked it. Not everyday was a Prada day, and silently she prayed she wouldn't be struck dead for even thinking that.
He grinned down at her with his half smile and she felt her face flush with desire and the bubble of a giggle wanting to emerge. Instead she entwined her fingers with his, to which he responded by squeezing back.
'So, if I'm little red riding hood, does that make you the big bad wolf?'
Lothias' grin broke into a full smile and chuckled as he pointed at the coffees.
'Oh, yummy! I hope this isn't skinny, non fat, blah blah whatever.'
'Oh, yummy! I hope this isn't skinny, non fat, blah blah whatever.'
'It's just warm non fat milk, you're a little fat, you know.'
'Oh you dick!' Carol squealed and punched him, almost making him spill his coffee. He watched her take a sip and then do the most sensual sounding purr of delight he had ever heard.
'I'd buy you one every day, but apparently I can't afford it. Why is coffee so much money in this country? It's coffee!'
LT put down his drink and sat backwards at the picnic bench, pulling Carol in between his legs. He had hoped his intrusion into her personal space was acceptable, clearly he was taking a chance pulling her so close, but he figured their near end of the evening of their first date dictated a close proximity as being tolerated. It certainly was worthwhile.
She easily came into his arms, pressing her small body against him. LT picked up the hem of her wrap and felt the soft cashmere, pressing it up against his lips. They locked eyes as he rubbed the achingly soft material across his lips. It reminded him of the feel of her bare thigh under his hand and he had hoped his look conveyed it. Slowly Carol pulled the material from his hand and cupped his cheek with her right hand, running her thumb over his lips, gently pulling at them. He watched as she put her cup down and pushed back the hood of her cape letting her long blond hair be lifted into the slight wind. Pulling her down into his lap, she sat on one leg, and they pressed their foreheads together, lips almost touching.
Jesus he had missed seeing her since their first meeting, three days prior. The Pipers had been deployed into the city to find traces of the other pack, utilizing the sewer map system that LT had taken a silver bullet in the shoulder to get. It had been a month already and his arm had healed, but his body could not regenerate tissue damaged by silver, and it had left a horrible scar.
Those three days he did not think of Carol once, he could say proudly, not until he had been off duty and alone in bed or out hunting in the Long run. That was his life, there were no distractions between his Pack duties and his personal life. Probably why he had never married, unlike his uncle (he lost count on how many ex wives he had), and was more like his cousin, the Beta. LT embraced the Hammerthynn blood in him - it kept his pack and men safe. Being able to tap into the strong suits of one family, but still be able to appreciate the other, made him the perfect mix between two families. He was proud of this, but as Carol sat in his lap with her lips less than an inch away from his, he appreciated what kept his uncle looking for the next Ex Mrs Jameson. His uncle loved life as much as Hammer felt the need to guard himself from it.
LT closed the distance and pressed his lips against hers, slowly kissing her closed mouth once, but then moved in and separated them with his tongue. They kissed slowly, feeling every bit of skin as possible, touching his tongue to hers with deep, aching movements. She whimpered and hungrily teased his bottom lip with her teeth making LT felt dizzy with want as he squeezed her closer with his arm, embracing her waist, and with the other, tangled his fingers in her silky blond hair. He had no idea how long they stayed like that, kissing slowly and with open, naked want, but finally they pulled away but just barely. Pressing their foreheads together, he could feel her warm breath on his lips and they were both just short of panting.
He wanted to tell her how he woke up in the morning with her being the first thing on his mind and ended the day with her being the last. How he had yet to wash the shirt he wore when he met her because he could still smell her scent on it. How much he wanted her right then, even though he had really only known her two hours at best. It was ridiculous feeling so much for her in such a little time, but he knew it wasn't his hormones raging, it wasn't just sex, but just having her near him was enough. LT wanted her, all of her.
'Hi,' he said with an ache he could hear in his voice.
She had been afraid that she would compare Lothias to Simon, in fact she had developed a nervous tick about it in the three days she had seen Lothias. Her impromptu visit with Simon was probably a subconscious test to see if she had in fact moved on.
She hadn't, of course.
But she had started to heal and that was the important part. Her short time with Simon had been like a fire burning bright in the night - intense, hot, and blinding, but the inevitable had happened, something she had considered from the very beginning. Would she ever be a suitable, or rather a better, replacement to Ellis?
No, of course not.
Then in came Brian; handsome, charismatic, fun, and maybe a little too old for her. She was fine with the age difference, however it would appear that Brian had not, so out with the old, in with the new...as it were. Brian was dear, Lothias was.... Carol's mind drew a blank as she sighed deeply into his kiss. She was comfortable with him, relaxed, and when she was near him, it was like her skin was on fire. He was different, aloof, but charming, and Jesus Christ he could kiss.
She spent the three days away from him thinking of his lingering good bye kiss, the touch of his hands, and the musky smell of his skin. He was friendly and respectful, handsome and strong, a characteristic she could easily see in his personality. The way he smiled at her, the bright blue of his eyes and those lips.
Did she mention that already?
Carol smiled into his soul searching kiss, relishing the difference in Lothias and forgetting everything that hurt and was unfair. Should she know better? Probably. If this was a fairy tale, then she was happy being the princess that got her swept off her feet by the knight in shining armor.
Their kiss came to a tentative end and she pressed her forehead against his.
'Hi,' he said.
His voice was so thick with desire that it made Carol feel fairly certain that she could set the air on fire with her skin. Was it cold out with the wind sweeping by them? Did it matter that they were in public in full view of the marina? Did she care?
No. She didn't.
Standing, LT took her hand and tucked it under his arm, letting her adjust how close she wanted to be to him, which was pretty close. The warmth of her body was apparent, even through his jacket. She held onto him with both hands and gave him a sweet smile before turning to look out at the bay.
Lt considered his situation: after having barely known her for three hours, he had become quite smitten with Carol and, of course, seen her in almost nothing. What had they talked about? They talked on their walk back to her place from the taxi, discussing the nuances of ketchup hate against hot dogs, then maybe a few other small chit chatty things that really didn't give insight into a person. Yet the feel of her touch sent him into a dizzying, desire filled frenzy. Other than her place of business and her last name, he didn't know much about her.
'So,' he started, and Carol turned to look back at him, 'are you from the east coast? Did you go to school here?'
Carol kept telling herself that as she looked past Lothias, out at the bay. The weather was cloudy and gray, but her wrap did an outstanding job keeping her warm, and looking spectacular, but the cozy feeling of her arms around Lothias' arm was perfect. She could tell that he was staring straight ahead, but his eyebrows were knotted together in thought. He's one of those types that nervous chatters or becomes painfully quiet, she noticed. It was cute. Despite no sun, she could still see the deep red highlights in his hair. And it wasn't just brown hair, it was auburn or burnt sienna...or some shit. She snorted softly to herself when he finally asked her something.
'Oh yeah, born and raised in Nachton. Went to school up north in New York, but came back down for my internship at Duibne. I enjoy it.'
The fear of slipping up and giving too much information was never something that bothered her too much. From the beginning she learned to make up a story and stick to it. Always. She had prepared answers for her job at Duibne, what she did, how much she made, little stories about the secretarial school that had the tiniest bit of truth to them, and never once did she stray from her story. It wasn't like she was lying, it was part of her life. Weaving in as much of the truth that was allowable was easier than just flat out lying, anyway.
'What about you? Where are you from?'
'My family is from Scotland...'
'...but I was raised in England, went to school there and ended up staying until recently.'
'My uncle started his security company and I signed up about two years ago.'
That one started off true, but that statement didn't end that way. LT had been a Piper for going on twenty years. At 9 LT moved in with his uncle's family and at 18 he took his father's place within the Pipers. Uncle Brian had started LT's training the second his uncle became his guardian and by the time LT stepped up into the Pipers, he had ten years of military training and combat skills. Becoming the LT was never questioned, at least not publicly.
'We've traveled all over. Europe, Asia,' LT shrugged absently. 'The U.S. from time to time, but usually not for long.'
'But you're staying here for good now, right?'
LT noticed the hopefulness in her tone and grinned. 'As far as I know, we're here for a while.'
The pier was full of shopping and restaurants with plenty of people walking back and forth as they got closer to the end of it. They chose one of the smaller, more intimate places and were seated quickly. Over lunch they talked about their childhood and a little of their parents. Lothias didn't say much about his, other than he looked like his mother, more than his father.
'I don't talk to my parents much anymore. I just...I don't know, not much to tell them, I guess.'
She had strayed off her normal path of truth mixed with lies and she found it curious. Stopping for a moment, she felt the confusion rise up her back and gather into a little knot in between her eyebrows. But, she continued.
'My job is my life, unfortunately. Or...it was. Been thinking about leaving it lately, but it's all I know.' Carol paused and looked down at her shrimp tempura. 'Yeah...' Her voice trailed off.
Snapping out of it, she shook her head and smiled prettily at Lothias who was watching her closely from across the table. He had one hand in his lap, but the other on the table, and when he leaned forward, he moved it closer to her with his palm up, like an open invitation.
'So,' she started, 'ever been married?'
'No,' he said simply. 'Never.'
LT began picking at the bread basket separating them, busing the hand on the table. She hadn't asked for an explanation, but he knew she was waiting for one.
'I've never,' LT paused, trying to phrase his words properly. The pause lasted almost thirty seconds. 'I can honestly say that I have never felt that deep, resounding, soul penetrating love enough to want to marry someone.'
Carol blushed as a her bitterness reared its ugly head. Lothias sat quietly with his eyebrows up in surprise. Even the surrounding patrons were casting odd looks in her direction. She cleared her throat and shifted in her seat.
'Consider yourself lucky that you haven't felt that way for someone yet. It's no fucking ride in the forest.'
'No. I don't consider myself lucky. There's something to be said for unrequited love. Men are notorious for not knowing what they have till it's gone.' LT considered what he had planned on saying next, wondering how far this rabbit hole was going to take him. With a sigh, he looked up at her with hooded eyes, not moving his head, and tapped his index finger on the table top. His voice rumbled with a quiet intensity.
'I'm fairly certain that if my uncle, or the aforementioned ass, saw in you what I do, he would have never let you go.' LT shrugged slowly, looking across the table with as much intensity as he could muster and said, 'Their loss.'
Carol murmured to herself as Lothias looked at her with a stare that was akin, if not closely related to, a serious promise of what's to come. They looked into each others eyes so long that she felt her eyes burn, and when she blinked, her mind twisted and flipped over in wonderment. As their waiter walked by their table, Carol reached out and grabbed him by the arm, stopping him.
'Yes ma'am, I'll be right back...'
'No,' she said, breaking her stare with Lothias and looked up into the face of their perplexed waiter. 'Guess if you fucking have to.' When she looked back at Lothias, he had the barest hint of a smile and it made her skin break out in goosebumps.
They hurriedly paid their bill after the water blurted out a number and Carol was up and out of her chair, grabbing Lothias' hand and heading for the door. As they stepped out, she saw that the rain clouds had moved in and was starting to rain. Throwing her hood up over her head, Carol tugged on Lothias' arm and they ran out into the rain, back to her jeep.
((OOC LT and Carol out.))
The kiosk phone began to ring and she picked it up without looking. It was her friend Michelle.
'No, nothing much.' Pause. 'It's dead.' Another pause. 'Wait, I did get this video. Lemme send it to you.'
Lisa emailed the video attachment to Michelle and waited a few moments.
'Did you get it?' Pause. 'Yeah, I met the man of my dreams and his beautiful wife. What kind of shit is that, right?' Another pause. 'Meh, I'll youtube it, I guess. Maybe I'll get some hits. Yeah. No. Ok. I'll talk to you later.'
Lisa hung up the phone without looking and used her Iphone browser to connect to youtube.com. Her account was full of stupid, crotch hitting videos, but maybe this one would get some hits under 'make out'.
Without any consideration toward the parties involved, namely LT Jameson and Carol Hedley, Lisa uploaded the video of them kissing passionately onto the internet.
Continued in Gravity