Shirts vs Skins

Disclaimer: I do not own Voltron or any of its characters.

Mylari's KAEX "Sports Team" Challenge. I was all set to do just one challenge piece this time, but then I had this idea... you see I actually have a multi-chapter story that I will start publishing soon with a different sport. This is the 2nd story I wrote and it is the next part of "Just a Kiss." I actually played this sport and have watched untold hours of it so at least I'm pretty familiar with the terminology. ; - D

Rating/Setting: Rating is T. Setting is DotU and is a short sequel to "Just a Kiss." I had planned to have a basketball scene in the follow-up story, so I thought I'd go ahead and write this part and add to it later…

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Allura had been thinking really hard about that kiss with Keith. It had been a week to the day since it happened and except for a wink at dinner that night, he hadn't even hinted that anything had happened. Keith was still his calm, cool, unflappable self. She, on the other hand, was consumed with the memories and feelings that kiss had created. However, whether he had been thinking about it or not, she had… a lot. She was still trying to figure out if the feelings she had from that kiss were because of Keith or just because it was her first kiss. Kissing Lance to test part of the hypothesis was still an option… but she really wanted to kiss Keith again, because if she felt the same feelings with a second kiss…. Well, that meant it wasn't just physical attraction right? It meant more? Oh, I'm so confused, she thought as she put a hand to her head.

She was on her way to the gym to work. Her hope was that the exercise would help her focus and clear her mind. As the gym door opened, she realized that she wouldn't get much exercise. At least for her body, her eyes however, was about it have an intense workout.

Walking in, she saw that the guys had enlisted four of the castle guards for a pick-up game of basketball. About a month ago, the guys had used tape to mark the floor of the gym and Hunk and welded two metal circles to make something the guys called a 'hoop.' She had listened to their complaints about the 'court' not being 'regulation' and that they would have to be careful when 'dunking' using Hunk's 'rim' as it wasn't as sturdy. At first they had tried to explain the game of basketball and it's rules, but then they said it would be easier to show her. They had tried, but she hadn't been very good at whatever they called bouncing the ball or guarding other players. She told them she'd just watch for now and pick up on the rules before she tried to play. But she hadn't seen them play, things had been too busy.

It seems that some of the guards had agreed to learn though and that they had played with the guys at least some over the last month. Walking to a bench where a couple of off-duty guards were sitting and watching, she asked, "What's going on?"

"They're getting ready to start a game of four on four - shirts versus skins," Monty said.

Allura's eyes bugged out as she looked at the guys while asking, "Shirts versus WHAT?"

Monty laughed at her expression. "Skins. Since they don't have uniforms, the guys with shirts on are on one team while the guys without shirts are on the other. Let's you know really easy who's on who's side."

And provides eye candy for anyone watching, Allura thought with a smirk. Looking at the court, it seemed that Lance, Hunk, and two castle guards were the shirts. And heaven help her, Keith, Pidge, and two other guards were the skins. Keith looked just as attractive now as he had when he stood up in the water in his swimsuit.

"Hey! Princess is here!" Pidge called out waving and walked over to speak to her.

Lance joined him and asked her, "Want to play? We'd let you be on the skins team."

Pidge glanced worriedly back at Keith. "Watch out, Lieutenant. You know if Keith hears you…"

"Yeah, yeah, I know. The stick-in-the-mud will put me on my backside. But he's so caught up in procedures, he probably wouldn't even notice if Princess were on his team."

Allura couldn't help but smirk. After that kiss, there was no way in that situation where he wouldn't be aware of her, no matter how much he pretended otherwise. "Thanks for the offer, Lance, but I'm still learning the game. I'll be sure to keep an eye on your skills so I can learn from the best."

"Ha! If you want to learn from the best, watch Keith and me. Lance and the big guy won't be able to hang with us for long." The enthusiasm in Pidge's voice was clear as well as his confidence.

Laughing gently, she said, "I'll be sure to watch both teams equally then." Looking between them to the center of the taped court, she informed them, "Looks like they're ready to hit the ball."

Snorting, Lance said, "Newbie. It's called 'tipping the ball' and you'll see who's better." Lance gave her a quick wink and jogged out to 'center court' with Pidge right behind.

Allura smiled as they left. This was going to be fun. She caught Keith's eye and gave him a wink and was surprised and intrigued when he winked back. Ah. He's probably going to show off because he and Lance are on opposite sides. Could it be that you are a little jealous Keith? The game is going to be even better than I thought…

Keith and Lance faced each other across the center circle while the rest of their teammates were standing around just outside the circle. Monty stood in between them with the basketball and when he tossed it in the air, Keith and Lance both jumped for it. Keith was able to tip the ball in Pidge's direction and the little speedster was down the court in a heartbeat putting the ball through the hoop in a reverse layup.

Hunk moved out of bounds and threw the ball to Lance who began to dribble the ball up the court. At mid-court, Keith came up to press him one-on-one. Lance spun around bumped Keith with his butt, but Keith stayed on him with his arms out-stretched in defense. Unfortunately for Keith, Hunk set a screen and no one called it out to Keith. As Lance spun to go around Hunk's screen, Keith backed into the large man rather hard and went to the floor. Lance then pulled up for a ten foot jumper that was nothing but net.

The game continued back and forth with a pretty close score. At times they would stop the game and explain a point to the guards who were still learning. Allura was rather impressed at the time they took and the patience they had. She shouldn't have been surprised as they usually took the same care with her. Keith and Lance took turns guarding one of the castle guards while Pidge and Hunk usually guarded each other. Having one of the guards pair up against them might be a little difficult due to Hunk's and Pidge's extreme height differences. However, Hunk and Pidge were used to each other.

The boys took their game seriously and wore looks of concentration most of the time as they played. However, there were times it when it was just all fun with lots of smack talk, smiles, and laughs. The fun was usually following a three point shot, a steal, or a dunk.

In fact, Allura thought a little of that fun was coming up right now as Pidge stole the ball from a bewildered Lance. Dribbling quickly down the court, Pidge cast a glance behind him. Seeing his trailer was Keith, Pidge did a behind the back pass to him. Catching the pass on the fly, Keith jumped and spun doing a backward dunk. Hanging from the rim for just a moment, he dropped to the makeshift court and high-fived Pidge.

"Yeah, yeah, showboater!" Lance said with a smile. "But check out the score. We're still ahead by ten."

Unable to resist, Keith shot back, "Only because we're not doing points for style. That play was awesome." Checking out the clock, he said, "Game over. Back to work everyone." Turning to Hunk and Lance he added, "You two get to choose the movie for tonight."

Everyone headed for the showers or out into the hall to return to work, everyone but Keith and Allura. Allura sat on the bench and admired Keith's body as he walked toward her. His skin was slightly flushed from the exercise and his hair and body were sweaty. However, she found that the sweat didn't bother her. It just highlighted in glistening detail all the curves of his muscles.

Keith noticed her perusal of his body and grinned. He had caught her glances ever since their kiss. He had tried not to let her know how much that kiss affected him, but he thought she might need a reminder of what had happened betweent them. After all, he had seen her staring at Lance during the game too. Walking up to stand in front of her, he put his hands on his hips instead of his usual arm cross in the front. If he wasn't already flushed from the exercise he probably would have blushed, as he rarely, if ever, flaunted his body. However, he was in a battle for Allura's affections and all was fair in love and war.

"Enjoy the game, Princess?"

"Hmmmm?" Allura was watching a drop of sweat travel from just in front of Keith's ear to his jaw and then down his neck.

"The game? Did you enjoy watching it?"

Her eyes snapped to his and she could see the merriment in them. Then she realized he knew what he was doing, and if he wanted to flirt… well, two could do that. "I did, Keith. In fact, I was hoping that you could help me with a few moves. If I ever what to play a game with you guys, I need to practice."

Keith glanced toward the locker and back before answering. "Sure."

Picking up the ball, Allura started to dribble. "I want you to guard me like you did Lance."

"Whatever you say, Princess." Keith moved over and began to guard and harass her, eventually taking the ball from her and then he passed it back. He then gave her some pointers about using her non-dribbling hand to help fend him off.

"Okay, got it. Now I want you to guard me from behind." She turned and began dribbling. "Well?"

"Um, okay…" Keith moved up cautiously and began guarding her from the rear.

Laughing, Allura said, "Aw, come on Keith, that's not how you guarded Lance."

It was definitely NOT how he guarded Lance, but he wasn't sure he could handle his body's reaction if he got as close to her body as he had Lance's. He wasn't attracted to Lance but he sure as hell was to Allura. Groaning softly, he moved in closer and bumped into her back and rear several times as he guarded her.

Allura knew she had him. He was definitely not immune to her. With that knowledge, she bumped into him with her rear and then spun around him.

Distracted by the feel of her body as she bumped him, he wasn't prepared for her spin move. As her layup shot came through the net, she laughed softly.

Smiling on the inside and outside, Keith said, "Okay, my turn. You guard me from behind." He was rewarded as her eyes grew wide.

Keith was full of surprises and she liked that. She didn't realize that he could joke around and flirt like this. He was becoming more attractive all the time. Passing him the ball, she moved behind him. It was very distracting bumping into his butt and touching the sweaty muscles of his back. He was giving her tips but she didn't hear any of them. Finally, she just gave up and wrapped her arms around him.

Since Keith didn't know what she was doing, the pair went down in a tangle of arms and legs. As Keith lay on his stomach, he watched the basketball bounce away and roll across the floor. A moment later, he felt Allura shift her weight off of him. Rolling over to his back, he was surprised when she laid her upper body back across his. The move was intimate and intentional.

His arm went around her body to gently hold her as he informed her, "That wasn't the proper way to guard someone, Princess. In fact, I believe that was an intentional foul."

She shrugged as her fingers absentmindedly traced circles on his chest. "Sometimes I'm tired of being proper and… you really don't seem to mind." She was well aware of the rapid beat of his heart under her hands. She knew it had nothing to do with exercise and everything to do with her. Staring into his eyes, she huskily whispered, "You had me wondering until today, Keith, but now I know you want this as much as I do."

Keith didn't deny it but brought his other hand to her waist so he could pull her higher on his chest as they lay on the floor.

Allura moved her forearms so they were on either side of Keith's head. Their mouths were only inches apart. She could feel his hand rubbing her back through her thin shirt as we well as the heat from his body. She brought her lips to within an inch of his and whispered, "It's time for another kiss." Her lips descended to his and she once again felt the jolt of electricity pulse through her. Her feelings at the lakeshore definitely weren't just from a first kiss. She was feeling them again… perhaps even more intensely. She slanted her mouth and licked across his lower lip. She could taste his sweat on his lips and instead of repelling her, it made her want to taste him more. As his lips parted below hers, she felt in control and powerful. As her tongue teased his, she heard voices and became aware of where they were. Pulling back, she glanced to the locker room door where she heard the voices.

Keith had been totally caught up in the kiss. Only when she broke it, did he think about what they were doing and where. He had feelings for Allura, but this wasn't the time or place to reveal them. He watched her glance at the locker room door and then a frown marred her lovely face.

Quiet laughter made his chest shake.

Allura had been frowning at the door and now she was frowning at him. "What?"

"You know what. We need to get up, unless we're willing to explain what's going on to whoever comes out. And then we'll have to explain to Coran and Nanny." He was smiling but there was a hint of seriousness in his tone.

Keith was right. She didn't want to explain anything to anyone right now. She couldn't even explain what was going on to herself. Letting out a sigh, she replied, "You're right, but…"

"But what?"

She ran a quick finger across his lip as she whispered, "What you do to me, Keith Kogane…" Standing, she walked away, leaving him on the floor. She didn't look back.

Keith watched her leave and then lay back on the floor and stared at the ceiling with a smile on his face. "What you do to me, Allura Altaire… what you do to me."