Title: "Secrecy"
A stand-alone story.
Written by: Shawn

Summary: Passion is unpredictable, private, and part of the sheer essence of life.

Rated: R for adult language and adult situations. There is a NC-17 version as well. Just email me for it if you want it.
Category: Angsty Romance

Ship: Tommy/Kim

Timeline/Spoilers: After the Turbo powers were passed on all of the former Rangers went on with their lives. Dino Thunder never took place in this universe. All else is explained within the story.

Disclaimer: I own zip. Disney and Saban make all the money.

Email: personal archive: http/groups. Notes 1: The year is 2005, with friends and family meeting in Hawaii to celebrate Jason's impending marriage to Emily. Jason, Emily, Billy, Tommy, Aisha, Adam, and Kim live in Angel Grove, while the other former Rangers live in other parts of the country. But family is family, no matter where you live.

Authors Notes 2: Assume everyone is around the ages of 26 years old.

Authors Notes 3: Hopefully some of the more complex feelings and issues involved with passion and love will be explored here. This is a very adult story in every way beyond simply sexual.

Authors Notes 4: If you want the NC-17 version of this story email me or go to my personal archive.

Dedicated to: Irina, cause it's all her fault!

The Kamaole Sands Resort Condo 307#
Friday, July 22, 2005 9:45 PM Kihei, Maui, Hawaii

Kimberly Ann Hart, this is your life.

Her slinky little silk black dress exuded sensuality, confidence, and a air of quiet mystery that captivated every man she walked by. They wanted what she had, and so she denied them, furthering the eternal conflict between man and woman.

Sexy instrumental jazz music playing on a balmy summers night serenaded Kim as she made her way back inside the luxury condo rented for Jason and Emily to throw a party this weekend to celebrate their engagement. Everyone's here, and that's a highlight as well as a simmering distraction for reasons all her own. Having mediated a absolutely hilarious debate between Rocky and Emily's brother Joshua on UFO's and what exactly goes on at the legendary Area 51, she's in a great mood. Especially since like Rocky, she's actually been inside Area 51 in Nevada, and so Joshua's conspiracy-theorists personality was all the more entertaining.

Alas, as the humidity refused to let up, she needed the cooler temperatures of a controlled climate, and a chilled glass of wine. The spirits were flowing as freely as the well-wishes and congratulations. The hired bartender hooked Kim up with a drink as soon as he saw her.

Sipping her glass of wine as she made her way through the humongous living room, she's as relaxed as she can remember being in a very long time. She spent the entire day with her oldest, dearest friends; reunited once again. Only this time had nothing to do with saving the world, and everything to do with glorifying all the pain and suffering they lived through to reach this better place in all their lives. Jet-skiing, hang gliding and a BBQ on the beach were a blast, and everyone had the best time.

Work's back in California, thoughts for another day. Tonight is all about celebrating Jason's engagement to the girl he's been dating for over five years now. Kim watched them talking intimately with one another out on the terrace. The boy she's seen grow into such a good man is now ready to take a wife, and she couldn't be happier with his choice. Emily's a perfect fit for their little group, and since she knows their secret former lives, there are no lies to come back and haunt her. Also, marrying into a well-off family wasn't exactly a bad thing in the least, as Emily's parents sprung for this trip, renting this luxurious condo as well as flying fifty friends and family all the way to Hawaii just to give their daughter and her future husband the celebration of a lifetime.

Not bad at all.

Now that she works in a interior design company, Kimberly has a far greater appreciation for how things are decorated and arranged around her. This condo did nothing but impress, with it's amazing cathedral ceilings. Complete with seven bedrooms, four full bathrooms, and three Jacuzzi's. The condo is spacious and comfortable, with central air conditioning, truly elegant and upscale furnishings and decor, a gourmet-equipped kitchen and private lanai with views of the pool, courtyard garden, and the ocean. Enough, despite a few of the guys bunking together, to spoil them rotten for the next week of their lives.

Having paid their dues with blood, sweat, and tears for years, this vacation was well earned for the former Rangers.

The condo sat on Kamaole Sands, one of the most popular condominium beach resorts in South Maui. It's located directly across from the stunning Kamaole Beaches. Merely a stroll away from the beauty and majesty of the ocean.

It's mighty waves as tumultuous as Kim's inner turmoil in recent weeks over her personal life... her intimate personal life, as it was.

Kim would never reveal this to anyone because they would no doubt think she's crazy, but she can 'feel' him here. Nearby. Perhaps even watching her from afar. In some ways, she's always felt his presence. Connected by the soul despite miles, years, lovers, loves, and life. The more things change...

Pushing those feelings away from her has been a full time job as of late. Even now as she's supposed to be enjoying herself, unconsciously, she's looking for him, yet she doesn't want to find him. She could ask anyone and no doubt she'd have his location in a heartbeat. He's not part of her plan, and so she declines. On the plane ride here she swore to herself that outside of pleasantries, she wanted to leave all issues with him for another time.

She only needed to stop craving him so badly to make it through this trip. Could he say the same? Did he even want to try?

Having caught the eye of three handsome men, looking around her age with no rings on their fingers, more introductions and small talk ensured. Everyone's nice and down to Earth, so that's a goods thing. The music fits the heat of the night and there are some absolutely gorgeous men here. Single and dying to make eye contact with her. That feels so good, just the attention and the anticipation. Being single had it's benefits... but she can still feel 'him' nearby.

A refill of her wine glass is needed.

There's talk of a trip to see some volcano's tomorrow, and she's in right away. That new digital cameras of hers is gonna get one heck of a workout. She wished she had it with her now as Zack waved to her from one of the spacious Jacuzzi's, a girl on each arm. Ever the Player since high school, but never lost his sweetness or respect for women.

Let him have his fun.

"We need to steal a bottle of this stuff."

Standing by a piano near the other side of the condo, Kim heard Aisha walk up behind her. "I was thinking the same thing. You think we can pirate a bottle away without anyone noticing?"

"Well, Adam is the resident thief in our group, being the quiet one. He might do it for ten bucks."

"I got five on it."

"Sold, girlfriend." After refilling her glass, Aisha walked with Kim, touring the condo they both arrived at this morning. "Can you believe this place? It's incredible."

"I know. It must cost a fortune."

"The Connor's have a fortune."

Emily's parents were both doctors. Just around the pool area, they stopped when they found Katherine and Billy kissing. The newest Ranger couple were the shyest as well, choosing to not parade their affections around publicly. Everyone respected their privacy. Kimberly especially understood that well. "Is everyone falling in love these days?"

Aisha sighed, but not all that sadly. "Seems that way, doesn't it?"

"Must be nice." The unexpected find of their friends kissing gave Kim the hoped for segue way into whatever Aisha's been going through lately. She's been far to quiet and reserved. "I just saw Rocky out on the porch with Joshua."

Rolling her eyes at her best friends obvious poke, Aisha paid her no mind.

"Oh come on, give me some gossip," Kim half-begged, playfully pulling on her arm. "I haven't had any good gossip for weeks."

"Why does the gossip have to be about me?" Aisha asked, most amused. "Why do you think I have some?"

"Because you always have some or know of some. You are a gossip hound, and we all love you for it."

Kim's always pushing, but Aisha didn't really mind. Friends do that. "Okay, here's the short version. I'm in love with a guy who's best friend is in love with me. Oh, and the guy I'm in love with, he's not sure how he feels about me yet. That's my drama."

"Sucks to be you."

"Hey! Where's the support and encouragement?"

"Sha, this ain't Felicity."

They both got a laugh out of that one.

"It's a sticky situation," Aisha begrudgingly admitted, adding no details or names. Maybe she just needed to air things out at last. "Someone's going to get hurt. Someone that I care deeply about. That seems pretty inevitable."

"Breaking someone's heart is never easy," Kim spoke from experience.

Making their way upstairs, they settled on a second floor patio, looking out over the balcony at a fabulous night sky. Kim and Aisha looked on as the partygoers enjoyed themselves in the backyard, pairing off as the night went on, slow dancing to the seductive sounds of jazz.

Aisha's sadly introspective mood didn't sit well with Kim at all. "So what are you going to do?"

Holding her glass in the air, the former Yellow Ranger considered it. "My plan as far as tonight is concerned is to finish drinking this wine. I hear there's a answer at the bottom of this glass." Kim chuckled next to her, pondering thoughtfully if she had any at the bottom of hers. "I love them both, Kim."

"But you're only 'in' love with one of them, right?"

"... yeah."

"And you're afraid of losing both?"

"I'd just about go crazy if I lost one of them."

"What about the one who says he isn't sure about his feelings for you? What's up with him?"

Thankfully, Kim respected her privacy. She still didn't ask for names, though it obviously wasn't hard to guess at least who the two guys were. "I think he loves me, Kim. I can see it in his eyes, but he can't go there. He won't allow himself."

"Because of the other person?"

"Yes... no... some days I'm not sure. Men suck." The was the painful, honest truth. "I didn't ask for these new feelings after all these years."

"Feelings are tricky things, Sha. You never know when they'll come or go. Sometimes you wish they'd leave altogether," Kim finished softly at the end, tapering off.

Aisha could tell she wasn't the only person keeping secrets these days. Someone's holding out on her as well. As it is in her own life, everyone's so busy, and can't keep up with all that's going on with each other the way they used to. Such was the life of an adult. "What's happening in your neck of the woods?"

Asked at last, and now the gossip hunter becomes the prey. A gentle ocean breeze kiss her face as Kim shut her eyes to it, imagining the moonlight above. "What I'm about to share with you, I haven't shared with anyone else. Not even Trini. None of the guys know either."

"Is this something I should be worried about?"

"You tell me when I'm done talking."

"The floors open, Kim."

There's no right way to begin this story, so Kim just dove right in. "Three weeks ago Tommy stopped by my place on a Sunday night."

Tommy and Kim. The Rangers fairytale romance that nearly split the group in half, and surely broke both their hearts. No greater drama existed than between them, as Aisha listened on. "This keeps getting better and better. Do continue."

Kim had to shake herself free from the intense emotions threatening her all at once. "We've talked a few times in the last five months since I moved back to Angel Grove, but never alone and never about our old issues."

"And?" Aisha didn't even try to hide her eagerness. She could smell something good was just on the horizon. She could feel it in her bones. See it written all over Kim's face, now accompanied with a light blush. "Spill, Kim. Now."

Kim glanced at her at her, and then away, sighing. Recalling that night wasn't easy for some many complex reasons. "It's been almost ten years since our breakup. The letter conversation went pretty easy."

"Did you really believe it wouldn't?"

"No, of course not. It was so long ago. But..."

"But, nothing. Come on, girl. Don't hold out on me."

For Aisha, this is big-time juicy gossip. For Kim, this is recalling one of the single most profound nights of her entire life. "I thought he'd stay for a hour or so. I thought we'd say all the things we've avoided saying since the whole Divatox thing, apologize to each other, and then he'd leave on a hug." Film reel-like images invaded her mind with a ferocity matching what happened. "Well Sha, he didn't leave on a hug."

Kim's focused, pointed stare nearly knocked Sha off her feet with the implications. Suddenly, Aisha can barely catch her breath. "Uhm, okay, you need to start talking right now."

Leaning her back to the balcony, Kim gently tugged at her bottom lip, a nervous habit indeed. "The chemistry was still there," she confided in her best friend as if she barely could believe it herself. "We were flirting inside of ten minutes, and after the first hour we clicked in a way I haven't clicked with a guy in years. We talked about our lives and the things we've been through, laughed about our friends and family, drank a bottle of wine... we talked for three hours straight until Desperate Housewives came on."

"Three hours?" Aisha practically gasped.

"Three hours of talking, Sha."

Knowing Kim as well as she does means knowing her moods and reading what she doesn't say. Kim's a quiet soul when it comes to her intimate life. Her bubbly outgoing high school self evolved into a equally positive, though slightly reserved persona. The Kim standing before her now was in that far off place known as 'fond memories.' She's here with her, but not really. All at once, Aisha saw things clearly, as if a light switch was flipped on. "You hit it!" she almost shouted, causing Kim to duck her head, turning away, but with a ghost of a smile. "You hit it?" she asked only long enough to see her best friends face again. "Oh my God. You did hit it!"

"I didn't mean to."

"Oh, I suppose you just fell on his dick?"

Kimberly exhaled loudly, a little flushed. "One second we were looking through my DVD collection on the floor, talking about what we could watch and if we wanted to order a pizza. The next we were fucking so hard it's a wonder my neighbors didn't call the cops."

Eyes as wide as saucers. "Damn, girl!"

"After that first time..."

"Hold on. Wait a minute. You did it more than once? Did he come back the next day?"

"Uhm, ten minutes later."

Aisha's 'Oh Crap!' face was in full effect. "We're gonna need a whole bottle of wine for this." Throwing her arm around Kim's slim waist, she leaned beside her, offering whatever her friend needed. As much as she wanted to get all the naughty details, this went far deeper than sex. "What happened?"

"I don't know," she replied in a hushed, partly unsure tone of voice. "We did it and it was... oh God, Sha. It was so good. The best I've ever had."

"Which time?"

Suddenly, she could hear his moaning in her ear just the way he did that night. "All three times?"

"I hate you and all the great sex you're having."

"We didn't have a long talk or whisper sweet endearments or anything like that. It wasn't flowers and candy, or rose petals leading toward the bed with the Marvin Gaye music playing. It was raw, relentless, aggressive sex on my living room carpet." Turning to her best friend with a smile bordering a sneer, she added, "And it was incredible."

"And you wished it was more?"

Pausing for a moment, she considered the notion. "No, I loved it for what it was. That's what's shocking to me. We didn't talk for three days afterward and I wasn't crying my eyes out or staring at the phone wishing he'd call me. I was fine afterwards."

Okay, now Aisha's a little confused. "So, you're mad that you aren't more torn up about it?"

"I don't know what I feel. I just know we connected and it was incredible, and then afterwards it was like neither of us were nervous or scared or weirded out about it. It was like we did what we should have been doing for years and there wasn't anything that needed to be said. It's driving me nuts."

Interesting indeed. Aisha hadn't expected any of this. As far as the group goes, they all just assumed friendship was the most hoped for outcome for Tommy and Kim now that both live in California again. "Do you still love him?"

"I haven't thought about loving him in years, Sha. It's not like we've been pining away for each other for a decade. It's not like I stared at his picture every day or he kept the letter I wrote him in his wallet. We talked about past lovers and relationships and all that. It's not that we ever stopped caring about each other. We just had our own lives to live apart, and we did that."

"You still didn't answer my question."

Kim almost didn't realize that. "I don't know if I can," she quietly admitted at last. "That first night wasn't so much confusing as it was a culmination of something years in the making." Pausing, she laughed to herself. "There I go sounding all dramatic."

"Hey, life's like that sometimes. So what if you and Tommy did the naughty. You two had almost a decade of unresolved sexual tension. You had to get it out of your systems sooner or later. And you're both friends and single, so you weren't cheating on anyone. What's wrong with a one time deal?"

Oh boy... Kim knew she was in for it now. Part of her thought of lying and leaving this hidden part of her life in the shadows. Another, stronger part of her thought that it's time someone she loved hear what's been going on. "It wasn't a one time deal, Sha. It's been a three time deal so far." Her best friends shocked expression soon evolved into a round of giggles and a Hi-five. Sometimes you just had to laugh at life. "He asked me to lunch one afternoon a few days after our first time, and when he picked me up from my job," Kim struggled to verbalize as the memories flooded her subconscious, leaving her warm all over. "We went back to his place and neither one of us made it back to work that day." Jesus, they actually broke plaster on the wall behind his bed. Kim thought that was only possible in over-the-top romance novels. She surely had never experienced such fiery passion... such raw intensity before in her life. The sensitive skin of her neck was covered in his teeth marks for days, causing her to cover up at work.

While she's certainly no prude, Kim's been very selective in what she tells her closest friends about her sex life, and details were hardily ever part of the package. But here and now, Aisha could tell her best friend was... okay what in the world is she staring at?

And then Aisha saw it... saw what had captured her best friends focused attention. Below them, dancing under a full moon was Tommy and a blonde co-worker of Emily's. Nikita was tall and gorgeous, with the kind of breasts only a kind God would bestow upon a lucky woman, and legs that went on for days. With her head on his shoulder and her eyes shut, she looked the picture of quite content and in the arms of a handsome man. As they slow danced closer, moving rhythmically to the sensual music, Aisha considered the expression on Kimberly's face and smiled.

Not a hint of jealous or envy. No green-eyed monster. No tears threatening to fall. Nothing save a sliver of a smile as she watched them dance.

Curiously, Aisha stood just over her shoulder. "You want me to round up the girls and go kick her ass?"

Good friends were hard to find, and Sha was one of the best. "Not even. She's been eyeing him ever since we arrived this morning and the introductions were made. And I already knew Tommy had a thing for blondes." Katherine came to mind.

"She's hanging all over him."

"He's not really interested."

"How can you tell?"

"Because he just looked up here at me and smiled." Turning away from the balcony, Kim stretched her arms out, enjoying the sensation. "Let's get another drink and find some sexy dance partners of our own."

"More alcohol. Less worrying over men. I like the sound of that."

"I thought you might," Kim smirked as they descended the stairs.

2 hours later

"Let me see if I have it right. You're a former race car driver, martial arts instructor, and now co-owner of your own martial arts school," Nikita commented, smiling as they ascended the stairs. Hopefully, in her mind at least, for a pleasurable destination at the end of the evening. "You're quite the accomplished man."

Reaching the top of the stairs, Tommy gazed into her piercing baby blues. From the seductive sway of her hips when she walked, to her great sense of humor, she had the kind of style that captivated a man. "I do alright, I guess," he said. "I've lived an interesting life."

"I'm sure you've had plenty of wild nights."

"Wild nights..." he repeated in far off way, remembering days of old. High action and adventure. Once upon a time as they walked down the hall towards his room. "Being a ER nurse, I'm sure you've seen plenty as well."

"Yeah, but I'm trying to leave shop talk at home. I'm here to have some fun." Her intentions were obvious, and she felt confident he knew that. Especially after the slow dancing they exclusively indulged in. This isn't her normal operating procedure, but then again, she doesn't get all expense paid trips to Hawaii every day. With a condom in her purse and a absolutely gorgeous man who's charmed her silly for the last two hours, she's hoping to end the night on a high note. A passionate liaison to write about in her personal journal when she got home. "It occurs to me that I've enjoyed your company so much tonight I never asked if you have a girlfriend or not."

Reaching his bedroom door, before he could say another word she leaned her back against it. "I never asked you if you had a boyfriend back home either."

God, he smells so good, and has been such a gentleman all evening. "Maybe neither of us want to know," she tried to reason with a shy grin. "Maybe we just want a discreet, no strings attached good time. It happens."

Now comes the hard part. Tommy knows himself. While never one for a one-night stand, under any other circumstance on a night like tonight he'd be all over her. Despite the forwardness she's displayed, he could tell this wasn't something she did often or ever. He could tell from the way she talked and classy way she conducted herself. "Nikita, you are amazingly sexy and charming." He watched her face fall ever so much, as she must have seen what was apparent all over his. "I probably gave you the wrong idea by letting you walk me to my room. I'm sorry if I did."

She exhaled a deeply held breath, fighting off a slight wave of hurt ego. "So what's the problem?"

"I don't have a wife or a girlfriend, but there is someone in my life. Things between us are complicated right now, but she's here in Hawaii for the wedding party."

"So why aren't you with her?"

"Because I had a great time with you all evening," he expressed honestly, and when she smiled he felt a little better about things. "Until I figure things out with the other girl, I'm not really comfortable being with someone else in the same house she's staying in."

A lesser women might offer her hotel room ten minutes away, but she's played herself enough for one evening. "I hope you don't think badly of me for being so... for assuming?"

"No, not at all. You're absolutely ravishing. And if this other girl wasn't in the picture I wouldn't be wasting time out in this hallway."

Satisfied, if not physically, then surely that there are still some nice guys left in the world. Leaning in, she stole a whisper of a kiss he returned, just to mark the evening. She had a great time with a sexy guy on her arm all night. She had no regrets. Stepping aside, Nikita began backing down the hallway, her finger lazily brushing her lips where they touched. "Tommy, promise me one thing?"

"Name it."

"Promise me you'll regret this a little in the morning."

"Nikita, I regret this a little right now," he smiled as she laughed just out of sight. "Goodnight."

"Night, Tommy."

Nikita was sexy, smart, and had that casual sense of humor he loves in a woman. Sometimes he wished he was a jerk, but only sometimes. Shaking his head, he unlocked his bedroom door, walking inside the dark room. Before his hand flipped the light switch...

"Leave it off," came a hauntingly familiar voice from across the room. "I like the dark more these days."

His heart started beating faster the very second he heard her voice. Silhouetted in pale moonlight by the partially ajar window next to his bed, Kim reminded him of everything forbidden, untouchable, and irresistible. As if that little black dress hadn't drove him mad when he first saw it. Now it clung to her like the garment of a Goddess. At once he wanted to tear it off her body. "What are you doing here?"

"I don't know yet. We'll see."

Defiant, and so seductive. She's a mystery he'd love to spend the rest of his life unraveling. Two things were crystal clear to Tommy as he kicked off his shoes. Number one, she no doubt heard his entire conversation in the hallway. Number two, her shoes are already off, sitting in the corner. She's not going anywhere tonight. She's where she wants to be... just another chance to dance with the devil. "Her name is Nikita."

At least he had the decency to not pretend she didn't hear them in the hallway. "I saw you dancing with her. She looks good."

"You look better." Tommy took his time advancing on her. She's bathed in shadows, deliberately ripping his sanity to shreds. When he's upon her at last, he hands gently framed her lovely face. He lowered his head, and savored her soft lips with a moist, lingering kiss that saw her hands come to rest over his. Their mouths melded in a lushness as erotic as any either of them had ever felt before. The complex dynamics of their relationship were forgotten in these sweet moments when there's nothing else in the world save their kiss and the billion and one kisses they're owed by life for the last ten years.

As usual, Kim broke things off first... just barely. Her eyes were still shut when she side-stepped him, walking over to king-sized bed. She sat down at the edge, so sure of what she wanted, yet unsure if what she wanted was good for her. "I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired of loving you."

Has he ever known a more complex woman? "Then stop."

"I've tried."

So has he. Many, many times. "Do you want to hear how I got over you?"

She lifted her eyes toward him, curious. "Go ahead"
"I can't. I never have." He rested his back to the window ceil, adorning her with his undivided attention. "Do you ever wish we could go back in time and change things?"

"Not really. I have no regrets. I'm not ashamed or unhappy with my life." His handsome features are half-hidden in the shadows of his bedroom. His silence spoke volumes. Perhaps he wished she said something else. "If you want I can go find Nikita and tell her how great a lover you are."

Sudden anger rose within him. "Is that a nice way of saying you're going to hook up with someone tonight?"

"I'm here, aren't I."

Two steps forward. Five steps backwards. Four steps sideways. Tommy and Kim, all over again.

The bed sank next to her when Tommy sat down. Close enough to feel his presence all over her body, but not close enough to touch her. Maybe this is a mistake. Damn her traitorous body and it's sheer aching for him. She didn't have time for foolish sexual liaisons, or love for that matter. One broken heart was enough for a lifetime. "Do you want me to leave?"


She accepted the flattery, implicit in that it added to the allure. At the end of the day Tommy bore no similarity to any other man she had known. Maybe that's why he's the one she could never forget. "You drive me crazy," she confessed in the dark. Even his brooding took on a sensuous appearance.

"There hasn't been a night since our first time I haven't gone to bed thinking about you." Boldly stated as he struggled with his composure. Every single fantasy he ever had of her paled in comparison to the real Kim. The nearness of her tore at his senses. If only he didn't know the heavenly feel of her skin against his, or the noises she made when he's inside her, or the way she whimpers his name after he's made her... Knowing those things have ruined him for any other woman, though he'd never, ever admit it.

Her face was suddenly clouded with conflicted emotions. "Sex can't erase a decade, Tommy."

"Was that all it was to you? Just sex?"

"... no," she confided, as tough as it was.

"I don't think we want to talk about this," Tommy felt, rising to his feet. He unbuttoned his shirt, tossing it on the floor, revealing the white tank top he wore underneath it. Standing by the dresser, he turned to face her. "Every time we talk we don't solve anything."

"We talked for three hours that first night."

"We talked about our careers, how are families are doing, and the other people we've dated. Other people we had feelings for. But we never talked after we made..." He caught himself at the last moment. And yes, she wanted to hear him finish that statement. But was that a good thing or bad? He wasn't sure. "We never talked about what this all means for us."

"Because it's insane," she declared with a mildly sad laugh, forcing her eyes away from him. "We've wanted each other since high school, Tommy. We're single and maybe we just needed to get all this out of our systems."

"Is it all out off your system?"

Kim swallowed hard, looking away. If only she could hide from what he made her feel. If only she could hide it from herself. "It's not like you asked me out on a date or I ran into you at the laundromat and just struck up a conversation. What we did was give into desire."

One stride later he's before her, kneeling down at her feet. Leaning in, he's invaded her personal space. She does not cower nor fade away, simply holding her ground... holding his passionate stare. "Tell me you're not still in love with me?"

Kim felt as if she was on the edge of a cliff, helpless and about to fall. "I'm not in love with you."

"Then leave," he told her, motioning towards the door. "Or are you that good of a liar now?"

"Does it matter? Most men lie, anyway."

"I never lied to you."

She felt that in the pit of her soul, and knew it to be true. "I know you told me you and Kat grew apart, but what really happened between you two?"

Switching gears when the truth was so near. "The short story is that when Billy returned from Aquitar, they had a instant connection that we didn't anymore."

Judging by the moody look in his eyes, as well as she knew him, she concluded, "There's more, isn't there?"

"I couldn't love her the way she wanted me to. The way she deserved to be loved. And she didn't love me enough either. We lasted years because it we were comfortable and easy and we were lonely and close, trusting friends. Like I told you, sex played a major part because we were each others first. I think when we crossed that line we thought we had more than we did. It took us a while to understand that sex didn't equal love."

Kim understood that all to well.

"You never went into great detail on why you didn't marry Kyle."

A three-year relationship. The longest and most adult of her life. She told Tommy everything about them... mostly. "I didn't marry him because I was still in love with you."

They held a equally serious stare for around ten seconds until both started cracking up, laughing at it all. "That cliché is so old, Kim. Tell me the truth."

"It just didn't feel right for me. For my reasons. For my feelings," she explained as best she could. "I loved Kyle deeply, but I knew I didn't want to spend the rest of my life with him. I broke his heart, but I told him the truth."

"Did you write him a letter too?" Tommy just had to tease.

Tongue planted firmly in cheek, she replied, "I only use letters for the most important people."

"Well, please scratch me off that list. I don't want to ever get another letter from you again."

Gentle laughter soon evolved into a quiet erotic allure that bound them to each other. Such intense desire laced the moment, searing the very air around them... they craved each other, and that need felt endless and forever.

Reaching out a trembling hand, she caressed his face, sighing when he leaned into her touch, softly kissing her palm. "It scares me how badly I want you all the time."

While kissing her wrist, Tommy inhaled her strawberry perfume, nearly overcome by the sheer arousal of the scent of her. "I can't stop thinking about you."

"I dream about you."

Her beloved confession stole what he worked so hard to withhold from her. Try as he might to push, shove, and bulldoze every ounce of his feelings for her from his heart, he could never seem to accomplish his goal. "Last week when you had that date with Colin, I couldn't sleep all night. I kept picturing..."

"We didn't," she assured him even when she didn't need to. "I couldn't."


"He wasn't who I wanted."

"Then who do you wa..." Her greedy mouth answered his question, brushing firm and sensual against his, as her arms wrapped around his neck, holding him to her. Long, wet kisses shared in the dark, as their tongues worshiped the other. The heat they generated burning hotter by the second. Tommy laid Kim down on the bed, covering her body, devouring her mouth with his.

His lips taste of honey, so sweet to her. His intensely focused passion, coupled with that dark side of him she for years wanted to be filled with, she's consumed by her need. Addicted to his kiss. Her fingers are combing through his hair, possessive of all of him and even more than that.

The wild animal within Tommy roared possessively, at last plundering her warm mouth, inhaling her very breath. She's life eternal to him. As necessary as air, and twice as vital. No woman has ever compared to her. Surely she knew that she held his life in the palm of her small hands.

Unable to speak, his hunger ached for satisfaction, and so he lifted his lips from hers, staring down into the cloudy darkness of her warm brown eyes. "I need you," he swore to her as he moved down her body until his knees hit the floor.

"Oh God," Kim whimpered when she felt his hands caressing her legs.

He died. Simpy, utterly, dead. Gone. Lost. Nothing worked save his heart pumping blood and air. She's talking in his ear. Saying something. Holding him closely, kissing his face. His mind can't pull his hearing and thoughts together, so he says 'I love you' over and over to compensate. Nothing else really mattered anyway.

It's been said throughout the ages that any declarations made at the point of climax should be taken with a grain of salt, if that. But not here. Now with these two, who knew each other so well that they would never doubt, not even at the moment of highest pleasure, that the other would say something so important and not mean it from the bottom of their heart.

They're kissing again... softly.

The kiss was so lingering, so touching. Not anything like their ravaging first kiss. Nothing so hurried, so rushed. This was a tender thing, their lips pressing and yet fluid, moving, feeling, parting and joining together until the perfect fit was discovered and all the while their tongues dancing. Tommy's probing deep inside her mouth, touching the roof, playing along her teeth, coaxing her tongue to follow, to probe within his mouth. And, once there, the power he felt as he suckled it, deep, deeper into his mouth.

As the intensity waned, and the shaking slowed, their breathing came back under control. They collapsed together as Tommy hugged Kim close, feeling her rapid heart beat next to his own. "I love you, Beautiful."

"Say it again," she requested with a smile against his chest.

"I love you, Beautiful," he graciously complied, stroking her back in soothing circles, holding her to his chest with his other arm. "So is this big talk time?"

"What's there to talk about?" she smiled up at him, simply overjoyed. "This is crazy, and we know it's crazy, and we know we're crazy too. It's not like we're blind to that fact."

"But do you want to try again." She pressed her lips to his in a tender kiss.

"No, Tommy. I don't want to try. I want to succeed."

They cuddled in the dark, shifting only enough to drape the covers over them, lying in each others arms. This is that warm, happy time where you feel safe, secure, and loved. This is where they want to rebuild their lives together.

That new life however, did not include the insistent knocking at the door or the talking in the hallway they could clearly hear, amidst some laughter. Pressing a finger to Kim's lips, Tommy hoped whoever it was would just go away until the morning. When they didn't he frowned, much to Kim's amusement. Relinquishing his hold on her, he scrambled off the bed, found his pants and pulled them back on. If this wasn't a emergency he was going to kill someone. That was for certain.

Kim slipped on his shirt before he grabbed the door knob, so she's decent on short notice. When Tommy opened the door he found Jason, Emily, Zack, Trini, Katherine, Billy, Adam, Aisha, Tanya, and Rocky all standing there with the most wildly amused expressions on their faces. "What's up?" he asked in a higher voice than he intended. With the way he probably looked, and the way Kim's hair was going every which way on her head, he figured lying would be futile. "Is there a problem?"

Jason rubbed his chin like a proud King, his fiancée grinning just over his shoulder. "Uhm, bro. All of us hooked up again after the other people left and uhm," he looked around the group collected in the hallway, just smiling their asses off. "We were all next door in Rocky's room. We were putting together a little card game tournament. You know we haven't done that since high school."

Kim could feel Tommy's embarrassment just behind him, as her own grew to epic proportions. Oh God, how obvious this must look to them. Their clothes are strewn out all over the floor and the beds a mess. "Hi... Hi guys. What's going on?"

"Kim, I think your underwear is over there by the night stand," Rocky pointed out, and was pleased to do so. "I must say those are very nice. Did you buy them at..."

"Shut up, Rocky." Kim's threatening tone made him do that little zip-lock motion on his lips with his fingers.

Arms crossed, Trini stepped forward, smirk firmly in place. No way was she going to miss out on this. "It's so funny, really. We had three tables of games going, just having a great time. We figured you two were talking privately, so we decided to leave you alone. We thought that after while one of us would knock on the door and invite you to the games." She walked up to her oldest friend and shook her head in a parental sort of way. "Then all of a sudden loud moaning and groaning came through the thin walls and that air vent next to Tommy's bed. All of us eventually stopped playing as the 'Oh God's' came louder and louder."

"Don't forget the 'Oh Tommy's,'" Aisha added to further the humorous torture. Kim and Tommy looked like they wanted to crawl under a rock and die. "The moaning kept going..."

"And going," Adam chimed in.

"And going," Tanya shared.

"And going," Zack frowned, having known Kim long enough to see her as a sister. The thought of her having... ewww! He shuddered. "Then all of a sudden it stopped for a few minutes. We thought we might get lucky, but..."

"Even louder sex was heard after that brief period of peace," Katherine declared, hands on her hips, grinning at the blushing, quiet duo. They looked as guilty as sin. "For the last," she checked her watch, "Thirty minutes all we've heard are the sounds of nasty sweaty sex."

"Nasty," Trini pointed at them.

"Sweaty," Emily pointed as well.

"Sex," even Billy had to say, "Or the more appropriate term of sexual relations." Like Zack, he simply wanted no part of any of this.

Tommy wanted to say something, but this was one of those moments where there's absolutely nothing you can say. He surely wasn't getting any help from Kim, who stood just behind him, her head ducked down.

"We heard the bed rocking against the wall," Jason felt the need to tell them. "We heard the yells and shouting that sounded like those movies Rocky has under his bed."


"Boy, are you going to deny it?" Aisha stood up to him. He looked as if he was about to, then shrugged it off. "Thought so."

Katherine looked from her ex-boyfriend to his ex-girlfriend and back again. Despite looking ragged, they looked amazingly happy and well satisfied. If Billy weren't with her she knows she'd tease Kim about showing Tommy everything he knows about pleasing a woman. Nah, she'll hold that for another day. "So how long has this little secret relationship been going on, hmmm?"

Having heard enough, Kim said, "Goodnight. We'll see you all in the morning." She then shut the door in their faces, turned with her back to it, and burst out in a fit of giggles that threatened to double her over with glee. She could hear their friends laughing in the hallway as they walked off. Tommy's laughing as well, taking it all in stride. He pulled her into his arms, clutching her to his chest. "What a night."

"I couldn't say it better myself."

"We are the new King and Queen of gossip."

"And will be teased about this for years to come." She pulled from his embrace, grabbing his hand as she led him towards his bathroom.

"We need a shower. And you better keep your hands to yourself."

"Kim, I doubt I could do anymore tonight if I tried."

"Oh, I don't know about that," she continued with a sly grin. "All you would need is the right motivation."

"All I need is you."

"And to think it only took you ten years to figure that out."

"Hey, you dumped me, remember."

"I never stress the details."

"Okay, I'm going to get a pen and a piece of paper and write you a letter. Maybe I'll start by saying how this is the hardest letter I've ever written and how you're like a sister to me."

"You'll never let that go, will you."

"Just never let me go, Beautiful."

"I promise I never will again."

The End. No Sequel.