Author's Note: This is an idea that has been rattling around in my head ever since the scene in "Reach For the Sky" when Lee and Amanda were talking about him breaking into the Kappa house and the fact that Amanda was a Kappa. That got me to thinking, what if Lee and Amanda had met in college? That would certainly explain why, out of all the people in the train station, Lee picked Amanda to give the package to and why she was willing to take it. It also would explain why in "The First Time," they both seemed so comfortable dancing so closely for two people who supposedly just met. Those thoughts led to other questions. Why was Amanda so unwilling to talk to Lee about what went wrong in her marriage when she talked to him about everything else? What exactly was Amanda doing with Jim Saarinan in 1976 when she was still married to Joe and why would it draw the attention of The Agency? What really went wrong with their marriage? Isn't it very coincidental that Phillip resembles Lee more than he resembles Joe? Why was it that Lee was so easily able to bond with Phillip and not with Jamie? This fic is an attempt to answer all those questions and a few others. I should warn anyone reading, this is completely AU and may not be to some people's liking, especially in the portrayal of a twenty-something Amanda, but I feel it explains a lot about the character of Lee Stetson.

I want to give a special thanks to AbbyGibbs and JennieJoy72 both of whom have been my test audience for this work since it is so outside the mainstream.

June 1972

Amanda West sat in her room at the Kappa house brooding. Tears filled her eyes as she glanced at the bare ring finger on her left hand. Could it be possible that just twenty-four hours ago, she'd been so happy? She was graduating from college a week from tomorrow and two weeks from today, she was supposed to be getting married. She was still graduating, but she was no longer getting married. She cringed as she thought back to the fight she and Joe had last night.

"Don't forget, you've got your final tux fitting on Sunday," Amanda said cheerfully as they left the restaurant where they'd just had dinner.

'Ugh," Joe groaned.

"What's the matter," Amanda said worriedly.

"I'm just not looking forward to one more day of standing stock-still while being used as a human pin cushion."

"Oh, come on, you wouldn't have been stuck with pins that last time if you'd have just held still long enough for the tailor. He didn't intentionally stick you, you know?"

"I know," he admitted. "It's not just that. It's this whole damn thing that bugs me, the tux, the caterers, the photographers, all this crap."

Amanda took offense to that. "This whole damn thing, as you put it, is our wedding. Doesn't that mean something to you?"She said, her temper flaring.

"The wedding, no," He said. "I don't see why we can't have just a quiet, simple wedding, just close family and friends and be done with it."

"So, you're saying you don't care about our wedding? I seem to recall you were pretty gung-ho about it, oh, about six months or so ago, when you asked me to marry you," Amanda replied hotly getting madder by the minute.

"I am gung-ho about marrying you. I want to marry you; you know that. I just...I guess...I just didn't realize that it would be this much...or this soon."

"This soon?"Amanda questioned. "You're the one who suggested a summer wedding when it would be warm."

"Yeah, but I didn't necessarily mean this summer. Your mother decided that all on her own."

"Hey, don't you go blaming my mother just because you're getting cold feet. If you don't want to marry me, you should never have asked me."

"I never said I didn't want to marry you. I'm just thinking that maybe we should wait a while. I mean, you haven't even graduated college yet and I just graduated last week."

"That's only a week away," Amanda pointed out. "That's why we set the date when we did, so it would be after graduation."

"Yes, and you'll be done with school, but I won't be. I'm starting law school at Georgetown in the fall, remember?"

"Yes, I know. We've made all our plans around it. We even found an apartment in the city for that very reason and I've already got a job lined up teaching English as a Second Language with the learning annex."

"That's part of the problem. You'll be working and supporting me when it should be the other way around."

"That's a very old-fashioned idea that a man has to support a woman. I'm perfectly capable of taking care of myself, you know," Amanda said feeling insulted. "I don't plan to be the "little woman" that you have to take care of"

"I know that, Amanda," Joe said. "That's not what I meant."

"What's really going on here?"

"I don't know, Amanda. The more I think about it, the more I think that maybe we should wait a while to get married, postpone the wedding until I graduate."

"Nice of you to tell me this now that my mother's made all the plans, lined up the church, rented a reception hall, mailed out invitations, the whole works."

"Well, who asked her to? God, you're an adult for Christ's sake! Why does she have to stick her nose in our business?"

"She's just trying to be a supportive mother, which is a hell of a lot more than I can say for your mother."

"What's this got to do with my mother?"

"Haven't you ever noticed the way she treats me like I'm just some gold digger out to marry a rich lawyer?"

"Oh, that's ridiculous, Amanda. She loves you."

"No, she doesn't. I doubt she'd love anyone she thought would take her precious boy away from her. Look, why don't we just leave both of our mothers out of this? This isn't about either of them. This is about you and me. Here's the thing, if you don't want to marry me now, you're never going to want to marry me. What exactly is it that you think is going to change in three years when you graduate from law school?"

"Would you quit saying that? I still want to marry you, just not right now," Joe said. "You know what, you don't understand. Just forget it, I'm done!"

"No, I'm done!"Amanda shouted as she wrenched the diamond ring from her finger and flung it at him before turning on her heel and storming away, tears streaming down her face that only increased when he made no effort to follow her.

Amanda's thoughts were interrupted by her sorority sisters, Kitty Holcomb and Barbara Taylor entering the room all giggles. They each grabbed her by one arm and dragged her off her bed.

"What are you guys doing?" she protested.

"We are getting you out of this room," her best friend, Kitty said. "You have been holed up in here last night, moping over your break-up with Joe and as you best friend, I can't allow that."

"Absolutely," Barbara said enthusiastically. "It's time to get back on the horse."

"And exactly which horse would that be, Barbie," Amanda said warily. She knew exactly how many "horses" she'd ridden.

"Does it matter?" Barbie said with a giggle. "As they say, a horse is horse, of course, of course."

"There will be plenty of horses to choose from at Delta Sig's pre-graduation party tonight and you are going with us to find one," Kitty said.

"No," Amanda argued. "I'm not in the mood for a party tonight. Not after what happened."

"That is exactly why you need a party," Kitty said. "It'll get your mind off it. Think about it, free booze, boys, music, dancing..."

"...boys," Barbie said. "Come on, this is going to be the last party of your college career. Next week, we'll all be out of here. We should have one last night to enjoy being young before we have to join the real world and be responsible adults."

Amanda knew instantly what Barbie meant when talking about enjoying being young and cringed a little. She wasn't a prude by any means. She and Joe had slept together, after all, but she believed that you had to feel something for a guy before jumping into bed with him. Even though she didn't approve of Barbie's free love attitude, she did have to admit that she made a good point. This was going to be the last party of the year, since final exams were this week, followed by graduation next weekend. "All right," she conceded, but she had no intention of "getting back on the horse." She just wasn't interested in casual sex.

"Good, now get yourself cleaned up and wear something that'll have every guy at that party drooling over you. We're going to make Joe King regret ever letting a catch like you go."


An hour later, she had to admit, her friends were right. She was enjoying herself. She'd had a couple of beers and had danced with her friends. While it didn't take the pain of her break-up away, it did help keep her mind occupied so that she wasn't dwelling on it so much. She was just leaving the dance floor where she'd being dancing with her girlfriends to hit the bar again and couldn't help but smile as she noticed all the fraternity guys gaping at her as she walked by them. Her friends had been unwilling to let her hide behind her normal conservative wardrobe, so she was wearing a halter top of Barbie's paired with a bright multi-colored wrap skirt of Kitty's. A few guys had flirted with her since she'd been there and she'd been flattered enough by the attention that she'd casually flirted back but had always returned to the safety of her friends before it could go any further than that. She'd turned down every guy that asked her to dance, stating that she was having a girls' night with her sorority sisters.

As she reached the bar, a stocky guy who already had the beginnings of a beer gut sidled up to her and slurred, "Hey, Beautiful, how 'bout I buy you a drink?"

Amanda glared at him and said pointedly, "The drinks are free," before turning back to the bartender. She shook her head thinking he'd obviously started the party a little early.

"Then, how about a dance," He said scooting closer to her. "I saw you dancing out there and you Smokin' hot."

"No, thank you," she said still trying to be polite as she turned again and asked the bartender for another beer.

The drunken frat boy became more aggressive, grabbed her arm and persisted, "Jus' one dance."

"The lady said no," a husky make voice said from behind her taking the brute's hand forcefully from Amanda's arm. "Now, take a hike, Pal." The guy looked at him challengingly, but when he saw that steely gaze in the other young man's eyes, decided not to take any chances.

Amanda turned and found herself staring into the most beautiful eyes she'd ever seen on a man. " don't to say...thank you," she stammered nervously.

"You're welcome," He said giving her a warm smile flashing the most adorable dimples at her, his eyes sparkling. "I'm Lee," he introduced himself offering her his hand.

"Amanda," she replied as she reached for his offered hand and felt a jolt of electricity at the simple contact. She released his hand quickly and looked up at him. Oh my, she thought. She couldn't get lost in that smile, those eyes. Bedroom eyes, her mother would call them.

"Is this yours," he asked gesturing to the cup the bartender had just set down.

"Um...yeah," Amanda answered shyly, but made no effort to reach for it because she was still mesmerized by the young man in front of her.

"Can I get one too?" he requested of the bartender. That was actually what he'd come over there for until he saw this poor girl being hassled and had felt the need to step in. The bartender poured another beer. Lee reached for both of them and handed one to her. "Here you go."

"Thanks," she replied gratefully, finally tearing herself away from his gaze. "And thank you for the rescue."

"My pleasure," he said with a smile as they turned away from the bar together. "So, you're a Kappa," he mused indicating the necklace she was wearing bearing the Greek letters.

"Um, yeah," she responded nervously. "I'm...just here with a couple of my sisters. They insisted that I needed a night out."

"You don't sound too enthused," Lee noted. He couldn't help but notice a hint of sadness in her eyes and wondered what was behind it.

"Well, I...uh...just broke up with someone and..." her voice trailed off as her heartbreak threatened to overwhelm her again.

"I'm sorry," Lee apologized with a guilt-ridden note in his voice once he realized that his question had brought more sadness to her pretty face. "I didn't mean to pry. It's none of my business."

"No, it's ok. In a way, they're right. This is something I have to get over. It's's soon. It just happened last night."

"Well, for what it's worth, the guy must be an idiot. If I were lucky enough to have you as my girl, I'd never be able to take my eyes off you, let alone let you get away," he told her sincerely.

Amanda blushed slightly at the way he was looking at her. "That's very sweet. Thank you."

"Listen, I should let you get back to your girlfriends," he said. "I didn't mean to intrude on your girls' night out." Truth be told, he'd been observing her the whole night and had found himself intrigued by her. He'd seen her turn down every guy in the place who'd hit on her with the reasoning that she was hanging out with her friends. The lewd comments and the leers that followed her didn't seem to faze her in the slightest. It was as if she didn't even notice them. Now, he understood why. She was nursing a broken heart. He found his own heart hurting for her.

Amanda frowned slightly. She surprised herself in not really wanting to leave his company just yet. He was the first guy she'd seen in the whole place tonight who hadn't looked at her as if he wanted to devour her whole and who'd just been...nice. "What if that goon comes back? Who'd rescue me then," she teased. "The girls may be supportive friends, but they're not much good at threatening big, dumb jocks."

"Hey, not all of us jocks are dumb, you know," he fired back with a warm smile.

"Sorry." She ducked her head sheepishly. It was then that she remembered she'd seen him on the football field. "You play football, right?"

"Well, I did. Season's over now," he reminded her. "Speaking of which, haven't I seen you on the top of the pyramid a time or two?" He knew he had. He'd noticed her at every game, cheering harder than all the other cheerleaders combined, and when performing at half time, he couldn't help but notice her agility during their routines. He to admit that his mind had drifted to the gutter a time or two, wondering if she put that much enthusiasm and agility to work in all her activities. If she did, then that guy who'd broken her heart, whoever he was, he was most definitely a moron.

"Yeah, that's me. Head cheerleader," Amanda responded with a light chuckle. "But that's over too with graduation next weekend. Not for you, though. You just started this year, didn't you?" She'd been a cheerleader all four years and she didn't recall ever having seen him until this year.

"Here at UVA, yeah, but I'm graduating too. I transferred from another school this past fall. This is my last hurrah," he mock-cheered as he held up his cup in a toasting gesture.

They had made it back to the dance floor at this point where Amanda noticed her friends had occupied themselves in her absence each now dancing with a guy. "Well, it seems my friends didn't miss me," she observed with a gestured toward Kitty and Barbie.

"Their loss is my gain," Lee replied with a smile. He just couldn't seem to stop smiling around her. "It seems to have worked out nicely. I know that I'd miss you if you were gone."

"Aww..." She was touched by his sweetness. She gave him a sideways look, sensing that he had something more on his mind. She hoped that his sweetness wasn't just a ruse to cover up the fact that he was just another of the same sex-crazed frat brothers, just with a different hook. Searching his eyes in an attempt to gauge the depth of his sincerity, she didn't believe that he was like the others. She just had this sixth sense about him, something that told her instinctively that this was a man she could trust with her life.

Lee, in seeing her intense scrutiny of him, wondered if he should press his luck. She was the most fascinating woman he'd met since his transfer. He decided to take the chance. "Maybe you'd like to join in...With me, I mean?" he offered hesitantly. Damn, what is it about her that makes me so nervous? He thought. He'd done this before and he was usually a lot smoother than this with the ladies. "No...Never said you weren't interested with that drunken lout. I don't know what I was thinking." Having overstepped his bounds, he decided it was best to just walk away.

Amanda tugged on his arm and clarified, "I said no to him, but you don't appear to be a drunken lout. I would love to dance with you."

"Good," he said with a smile. They set their drinks down on a nearby table. He then took her hand and led her to the dance floor. He took her in his arms and they swayed to the music.

Amanda felt more relaxed than she had been since the whole blow-up with Joe had started. The man holding her had been so attentive, but not in the leering, seductive way that the other guys at the party had been. It was nice just to be held. She felt a little shudder go through her as his hand moved slightly from her waist to her lower back where her skin was bared by the halter she wore. "This is nice," she told him as she gazed up at him.

"You haven't seen anything yet," he said as he grabbed her and dramatically dipped her causing her to squeal in delight.

"Wow," she gasped as he stood her upright again. The heady sensation of being in his arms was making her feel a little dizzy with anticipation. She'd never imagined that she could feel this much attraction to a guy she'd just met, especially since she and Joe had just split last night. Of course, he wasn't a complete stranger, even though they'd just been formally introduced. She had seen him around campus and she thought he'd even been in her composition class last semester.

Kitty and Barbie had noticed the interaction and Barbie yelled, "Go for it, Amanda!"

"Your friend?" Lee inquired with a chuckle.

"Yeah," Amanda said a little embarrassed. "Sorry, about that. She's insisting that I need to get back out there and get back on the horse." She flushed slightly in hearing how that had sounded. What must he think of her now?

"Well, knowing her, there aren't too many horses she hasn't ridden," Lee snorted sarcastically. He despised women like her who just threw themselves at the nearest warm body available.

"Oh? Do you know her?" Amanda asked and hope that she sounded as nonchalant as she was trying to, but desperately wanting to know if her new companion had been one of them.

"Not really," Lee said. "I just know of her. It's fitting that her name is Barbie, like the doll. The guys in the locker room call her Easy Rider Barbie."

Amanda laughed heartily and sputtered, "No, no, they don't." She playfully slapped at him. "Do they?"

"Yes, they really do," he confirmed.

"Okay, yes, so she does have a bit of a reputation, but aside from that, she has a really good heart. She's joining the Peace Corps right after graduation. She wants to help people."

"Well, she's already helped me," Lee he responded in a flirty tone.

"Oh? How so," she asked with a twinkle in her eye wondering if she could bait him into telling her if he'd been one of her many conquests. He had said he know of her, but how? Was it just locker room talk or was there something more to it?

He pulled her closer and whispered in her ear, "She brought you to the party."

"So, you and she..."

"No," Lee answered right away before she could finish the question. "God no! Not my type. I'm not interested in girls who throw themselves at guys. I prefer to get to know a girl, you know, talk," He paused then whispered low against her skin, "...Maybe a little romance."

Amanda sighed as she felt Lee nuzzle her neck lightly. His warm breath on her skin sent shivers up her spine, but the spell was soon broken as the music changed to a more up-tempo song. Amanda pulled herself from his arms, but couldn't help looking up into his eyes. He was staring at her intently. "You know, this song's not really great for a couple to dance to. No romance," she said throwing his words back in his face.

Lee couldn't help the laughter that erupted at her comment. "Well, how about we take a walk then? Find someplace that's a little quieter so we can talk?"

"That sounds nice," she agreed with a smile.

They grabbed their beer cups. Lee placed his free hand on the small of her back, guided her through the crowded room and out of the party area until they reached the fraternity house's dining room. He held out a chair for her and helped her sit and then took a seat opposite her, not wanting to crowd her.

Amanda was finding it a little difficult to breathe. She'd felt so comfortable, so relaxed in Lee's arms on the dance floor, but now she was overcome with an incredible sense of guilt, feeling like she was cheating on Joe. No, he made his choice, she argued with herself.

Lee couldn't help noticing that the troubled look was back on her face. "So, do you want to talk about it? The break-up, I mean?" Maybe if she got it out, and could start to heal. Maybe then, he'd be gifted with one of her beautiful smiles again.

"There's not really much to talk about. We were supposed to be getting married in two weeks and now we're not," she stated simply with a shrug.

"Wow, that's a sudden shift," he said with a note of concern. "You're planning a wedding and all of a sudden, it's over, just like that?" He couldn't believe that a guy who was going to be lucky enough to have this amazingly beautiful woman be his for the rest of his life had been stupid enough to let her go.

Amanda sighed. She really did need someone to talk to and while her girlfriends had been supportive, they hadn't really wanted to hear all the details. They were more interested in making sure that she wasn't dwelling on it and wanted to see her move on. Of course, they'd never thought that Joe was the catch that her mother thought he was even if he was going to be a lawyer some day. Before she knew it, she was spilling her guts, telling him all the sordid details leading up to her tossing the ring at her now ex-fiancé'. "...And the worst part of it is, that he didn't even try to stop me. That doesn't say a lot about his feelings for me," she finished with a deep sigh.

"Well, it's his loss," Lee assured her as he reached for her hand across the table and squeezed it comfortingly. He was struck by how much that light touch jolted him. He would like nothing better than to be the one she had those kind of feelings for. Before the conversation could continue, they were interrupted by one of Lee's fraternity brothers and his girl bursting in falling all over each other. "Let's get out of here," Lee suggested as rose from the table and reached for her hand.

"Where do you suggest we go," Amanda questioned as she took his hand. The whole place was pretty much overrun with people, so she couldn't see a good solution.

"My room, maybe?" He offered. He hoped he wasn't sounding too forward or giving her the wrong impression when they were just starting to get to know one another. He had a feeling that she was a great girl to know and the last thing he wanted was to screw this up before he had that chance. He also knew how some of his boorish brothers could be, that they would invite a girl to their room for just one thing. He had no doubt that Amanda, being a sorority girl would know their reputation as well, so it would be pretty easy for her to mistake his invitation. "Just to talk, I mean," he quickly added.

Alarm bells rang violently in Amanda's head, but she shook them off. She reminded herself of the thoughts she'd just had of him on the dance floor, that he inspired her trust. He had said it was just to talk. Plus it would be a lot quieter and with less chance of being interrupted. Besides, she argued with herself, He had been chivalrous enough to rescue me from one of his brothers. Surely, that was a sign that he wasn't your typical frat boy just out to get laid. "Lead the way," she agreed with more confidence than she felt. Would it really be so bad even if things did progress between them? He'd been so sweet and there was no denying there was an intense attraction between them. She cast a sideways glance at him and wondered if he felt it too. Besides, Joe had made his choice. It was interesting to her that Lee had said the same thing her friends had, that it was Joe's loss.

They walked hand in hand up the stairs and when they entered the room, Lee hesitated. He suddenly began to think that this was a bad idea. He'd been so busy studying for his upcoming finals and powering up on takeout for brain food that he hadn't cleaned the place up in a week other than taking the trash out. "You' to excuse the mess." He gave her an apologetic look as set his cup down, picked up a pile of clothes from the loveseat situated against one wall and dropped them into a laundry basket in the corner of the room. "With finals coming up, I've been a bit lax about cleaning up the place and I...uh...really wasn't expecting to have a guest up here."

Well, that answered her question about his intentions. If he'd only invited her up here because he thought she was an easy mark...if that had been his plan in attending the party, he'd have cleaned up the place. "It's okay; my room's kind of a mess for the same reason." She waved off his concerns as she took a seat on the now cleared loveseat."My mother would cringe if she saw it," she said as she drained the last of her beer and stared down into the empty cup.

Lee looked at her nervously as he too had emptied his cup. He wanted to sit next to her, but wasn't sure if he should. She was vulnerable right now and he didn't want her to think that he was trying to take advantage of the situation. "Looks like you're empty," he said awkwardly.

"Yeah," she confirmed.

"Maybe we should have stopped by the bar again before coming up here. I don't have any beer up here."

Amanda nodded toward the liquor bottles lined up on a shelf on the opposite wall and said hopefully, "Maybe something a little stronger then. The way I feel right now, I could sure use it."

"Sure," Lee agreed as he walked to the shelf and pulled down a bottle of scotch. He preferred it to beer anyway. He normally only drank beer at parties like this. He reached for Amanda's cup and poured a drink for her and for himself, placing the bottle on a small end table on Amanda's side of the loveseat reaching over her as he did so.

Amanda hadn't even taken a drink of the amber liquid and she already felt intoxicated, not by the beer she'd drunk, but by the nearness of him. His scent was overpowering her. All too soon, he moved away and was standing opposite her. "You can sit down, you know," she coaxed invitingly as she took a sip of her drink for courage. Her friends had told her to get back on the horse and this guy was someone she definitely felt like she could do that with. Stop it, Amanda, she scolded herself and flushed at the thought, but she had to admit that he was incredibly sexy.

Lee swallowed hard and took a healthy swig of his drink before sitting down next to her. He wasn't sure being that close to her was a good idea. He felt an undeniable attraction to her, more than he had to any other girl he'd ever met. "So, your ex, he just let you walk away?" he inquired trying to remind himself that she was wounded and fragile. "That's what you were saying before we were so rudely interrupted."

Amanda nodded and replied, "But I don't really want to talk about him anymore. I feel like I've been monopolizing the conversation all night. Why don't you tell me a little bit about yourself?"

"Where do you want me to start?"

"I don't know. Where are from?"

"That's a tough question to answer. I was born in DC, but I grew up a little bit of everywhere," he explained and began to tell her tales of being dragged all over the world by his uncle. During his storytelling, they'd shared a couple more drinks, their cups being refilled as soon as they were emptied. They'd both kicked off their shoes and were just relaxing as they talked, facing each other. Lee had rested his arm on the back of the loveseat, his fingers barely grazing Amanda's shoulder.

"Where were your parents?" She asked in concern as she sensed some sadness in him when he talked about his childhood.

"They're dead. They died when I was only five," he answered, but didn't elaborate.

"Oh, I'm so sorry to hear that," Amanda said genuinely as she affectionately patted his knee. "I don't know what I would have done if I didn't have my parents growing up."

"Well, I still turned out ok," Lee responded nonchalantly as he tried to shrug it off. He didn't want to dwell on the past. He was more interested in Amanda's hand on his leg, his hand on her shoulder. He couldn't believe that such a simple, comforting touch could turn him on so much. You're a cad, Stetson, he scolded himself. But really, he wasn't. It was just...her. He'd only really known her for a couple of hours, but he already felt that he'd found someone that he could really be with, maybe even forever.

Amanda wasn't convinced that that was all there was to it. She sensed some deep-seated pain in him, but she didn't want to pry. She'd just met him after all. "So, what are your plans after graduation?" she asked changing the subject to safer territory.

"I haven't really decided yet," he lied. He couldn't really tell her what his plans were even though he wanted to. He'd only just met her, but he already felt like he could trust her, yet he wasn't sure he could trust her quite that much just yet. He'd planned from the time he was a young boy to follow his parents' example, but he knew that meant a life of secrecy, even from people he cared about and he was already beginning to care about Amanda. Maybe if things progressed between them and he felt that they could build something that he was sure would be permanent, he would tell her the truth. He had this instinct that he could trust her with his life, but he also didn't want to scare her off. He knew what he planned to do would be dangerous, but he felt he had to do it. "I know that right after graduation, I'm going to visit my uncle for a while. After that, who knows?"

"You don't have a solid plan for your future?"

"The only future I see is right here," he crooned softly, the scotch giving him more courage than he'd normally have had. He took Amanda's cup from her hand and placed both cups on the table next to her since there wasn't one on the other side. That maneuver brought her in close contact with her again. Before he could stop himself, he knelt in front of her and lowered his lips to hers relishing the gentle contact.

Amanda leaned into his kiss sliding one hand up to caress his face and the other to the back of his head tangling her fingers in his hair as their kiss deepened. She opened her mouth to his as they explored each other tentatively. She savored the bittersweet taste of the scotch on his lips. She felt his hands roaming up and down her bare back that was exposed by the halter-top she wore and felt electrified by his touch.

Lee was elated to feel Amanda responding to him so eagerly and moved in closer wanting to feel every inch of her. Before he knew it, he was on his back on the floor with her lying atop him pressing herself into him. God, she was amazing. How could her fiancé' have ever tossed her aside? That thought crossing his mind hit him like a truckload of dynamite. He pushed her off him. "Amanda, stop," he gasped breathlessly as he pulled himself to his feet and walked across the room from her. "We shouldn't do this. You just broke up with someone and you're needy. It wouldn't be right."

"Yes, I am needy," she replied honestly as she got to her feet. "And right now, what I need more than anything is to feel wanted..." She inched closer to him. "...and desired..." She moved a step closer. "...and you make me feel that way just by being you." She closed the distance between them and kissed him firmly as she wrapped her arms around his neck to urge him to continue what they'd started. She didn't normally do things like this and she needed to let him know that she was doing so because she wanted to, not because she was brokenhearted, but because of him.

Lee didn't know if it was the liquor or just the intoxication of being around her, but he couldn't resist giving into her. He reached for the ties on her top and undid them swiftly before lowering her to his bed. The rest of the night was a blur of sensations as they kissed, touched, teased and explored each other, learning all the things that turned each other on. He found the very sensitive spot at base of her neck just above her collarbone while she found his right below his ear. He lost count of how many times they made love that night. All he knew was that he couldn't stop touching her, couldn't get enough of her. They made love repeatedly until they were both too exhausted to move and fell into a deep sleep wrapped up in each other.

Just before dawn, Amanda woke with a start at the realization that she was in a strange bed. She tried to move, but found a heavy arm draped across her holding her in place. It was then that all the memories of the previous night came flooding back. She shifted slightly and the pleasantly numb feeling left behind by the prior night's exertions made her smile for a moment. Lee had been so amazing. He'd taken great care to find out each and everything that pleased her the most. But then as reality sank in, she cringed slightly at the thought that she'd just spent the night with a guy she'd only known for a few hours.

What a guy he is, though, an inner voice taunted her. He'd listened attentively as she'd told him of her heartbreak and they'd talked for a long time. Had he done that only to get her into this position? No, she told herself firmly. He'd tried to stop it, to cool things down and she'd pushed. She had wanted him so fiercely, more than she'd ever wanted any man and the result had been incredible, her body was still humming, if a bit achy, from the previous night's activities. He'd invoked feelings in her she'd never thought she was capable of feeling.

She knew, though, that he was not the kind of guy she could have a real future with, no matter how great the sex was. The way he'd talked, he didn't even have a real plan for his own future, let alone sharing it with someone else. She glanced over at his sleeping form and smiled. She was struck again by just how sexy he was...and sweet with the way he'd held her post-lovemaking and cuddled up with her while they were sleeping. Still, she knew it couldn't continue so she wriggled out from his grasp while trying her best not to wake him. As she slipped out of bed, she took a quick look back to make sure he was still asleep. Assured that he was, she hurriedly gathered up her scattered clothing and dressed as quietly as she could. She was about to leave when it occurred to her that as kind as he'd been to her, she should at least give him some kind of good-bye. She searched the piles of stuff on his desk until she found a steno pad and a pen. She hastily jotted a note and hurried out the door. The memories of the night before kept running through her mind throughout the entire walk back to her sorority house.