Disclaimer: Not mine.
Author's Note: It's been a while since I wrote in this fandom.
Summary: Yet, she was here with him at this very moment, sitting in his private quarters and watching him very closely.
Everything was always a game to him.
Childlike, playful, sinful. The man had no concept of chivalry. No dignity. He would attempt to manipulate, insinuate, and even suggest unacceptable behaviors at any time, in any place, under any circumstance. This behavior appalled her.
Yet, she was here with him at this very moment, sitting in his private quarters and watching him very closely. Two wine glasses were full, never touched. She knew better than to drink around him. Judging by the fact his glass was full also, he knew better than to be drunk around her. She was seated in a desk chair, arms folded and legs crossed. He was sprawled out on his bed, propping his head up with his arm and grinning his face off. He was so damn cocky. If only she could figure out why she would let herself time and time again succumb to his "charms" so easily.
He wanted to play a game called 20 questions. It was obviously of American origin because she had never heard of it, but according to him, the game was quite simple. At that very instant he was thinking of an object. It could be anything. All she had to do was ask 20 questions. If she didn't know the answer after she had exhausted all her questions, then she would lose. Naturally, there was a catch. If she lost, they would go on a date. If she won, he would never ask her out again. It seemed like a fair bargain and judging her own intelligence, she felt fairly certain she could win this game.
"Okay, Mr. Parker. I'll play."
"Sweet!" he said excitedly, jumping off his bed and heading for his desk. He rummaged around for a bit and explained, "I figured you had never played the game before, so I printed off typical questions one may ask."
He handed it to her. She gave it a once over and then glanced at him, "You've been wanting to play this game for a while, I take it."
"Yes, Dr. Vukavitch, I have."
Olga couldn't stop smiling as she forced her eyes to stare at the paper and not at Mr. Parker. She cleared her throat and began, "Is it classified as an Animal, Vegetable, or Mineral?"
"Animal," came his quick reply. He was seated Indian style on the bed, leaning forward expectantly as he waited on her questions.
"Is it a common household object?"
"Is it manufactured?"
"God, I hope not."
The answer threw her off as she looked up to see his expression. He was still grinning, but trying desperately to be serious. She sighed, ignoring the warning bells sounding in her head. Maybe playing this game wasn't such a good idea. "I believe it has to be a yes or no answer, Mr. Parker."
He chuckled, "Sorry. I meant, no."
"Okay, Can you find it in a church?"
"Can you control it?"
"Ehh," Parker mumbled, tilting his head to the side and taking on a thoughtful expression. He finally settled on, "Sometimes." His quirky, yet forbidding grin had returned.
"Can you lift it?"
"Do most people use this daily?"
"Define the word 'use'," he said.
"Mr. Parker," she warned impatiently.
He shrugged and replied, "Well, not the way I'm thinking...so no."
"Is it straight?"
"Most definitely." His answers were perplexing, to say the least. If anything, she could base her conclusion on the fact that this object was an animal, but what animal, she was not sure. Were there any animals he could be possibly think of as being straight? A snake? Maybe. Only, she saw those as bendable beings. They weren't rigid unbowed creatures all the time. "Olga?"
"Sorry," she mumbled.
"You know, you still have 11 more questions," he reminded her with a wink. "You don't have to try and guess now."
Olga could see how confident he was that she would never guess what he was thinking of. She couldn't let him win. "Can you use it at school?"
"Does it move?"
"In more ways than one, I hope," he replied somewhat wistfully. He caught her stern glare and quickly corrected himself, "Yes, it moves."
She rolled her eyes and went on,"Is it found in a bathroom?"
"Does it like to play?"
"Do you make something with it?"
"Do you know any songs about it?"
"Does it make something move?" At that question, his answer was halfway between a grunt and a moan. It startled her and she caught the briefest look of bittersweet yearning, then he shook his head up and down in the affirmative. Just to ignore his strange behavior, she pushed, "Yes or no, Mr. Parker."
He cleared his throat and said with no uncertainty in his voice, "Yes, it makes something move."
It was at this point that she didn't care about losing or winning. She had four more questions left and one guess and was willing to just let him win and get out of here. She still had no idea what he was referring to and she was almost certain she didn't want to know. Or she was thinking she had a very good idea what he was referring to and was trying very hard to remind herself she didn't want to know. She shifted her weight uncomfortably in her chair, "Would you pay to use it?"
"Is it comforting?"
"All the time."
"Can you dress it up?"
"Is it smaller than a loaf of bread?"
"No," he answered, then folded his arms. "Okay, Dr. Vukavitch. That was 19 questions and no guesses. Your last question has to be your guess."
"Well, I definitely know it's an animal and based on all your other answers. . .," she thought aloud, searching for the best way to conjecture the reasoning behind all the answers. Then a thought came to her and she asked, "Is it a pug?"
"A pug. You know, a dog."
"I know what a pug is, Olga."
"Well, is it?"
"No, it's not a pug," he laughed. It was funny to hear him laugh this way. It wasn't childish or rude. It wasn't demonic or obnoxious. It was just a genuine laugh coming from deep within him and for a moment, that look of pure felicity made him very endearing. She, however, wasn't about to let him mock her, despite how sincere his amusement was. She stood up and he immediately objected, reaching up to grab her arm and keep her still. He stood next to her and apologized, "I'm sorry, Olga. I'm not laughing at you. I'm laughing at your guess."
"Well, why can't it be a dog?"
"Well, you usually don't find dogs in churches," he smiled, deciding to close the distance between them. Facing her completely, he added, "And I think most pugs are smaller than a loaf of bread."
"Well, you can certainly dress up your dog. It's playful sometimes and you can pick it up," she argued.
"Look, I'm sorry, but you lose," he grinned. "Which means, we're going on a date."
"Don't I at least get the courtesy of knowing what it was you were thinking of?" Olga huffed, crossing her arms across her chest. He held up one finger as a signal for her to hold on. He turned around, went back to his bed and reached under his pillow for something. She couldn't see what it was until he turned around. It was a long slender box with a bow and a small card. She felt a hitch in her breath and stared at it expectantly. "Uh, Mr. Parker?"
"I was thinking of you, Olga," he smiled seraphically, taking her hand and placing the present within. He closed her fingers around the gift and added, "Tomorrow's your birthday and since you lost, I can now take you out to dinner as well."
Olga was at a loss of words as she held the gift. A part of her was dying to open it, yet another part was still confused. "I don't get it. . .those questions. . ."
"First off, human beings are animals, albeit intelligent ones," he explained. "Secondly, you asked whether or not this animal was comforting. Or course that's a yes. You're always there when I need you or when I act like an idiot and push you away."
"Mr. Parker. . ."
"Let me finish," he insisted, then put on a wry grin. "You asked if it was straight. Judging by how much you talk about the perfect fairy tale romance, I would only imagine you are interested in men. You also asked if it was manufactured. I think every part of your anatomy is completely natural, baby, so you're not manufactured."
She surprised herself when she could only respond with a quick flush of her cheeks. In most cases, his use of sexual innuendos would anger her, but not this time. This time was different. She lowered her head to hide her crimson appreciation and mumbled something like, "Please, continue."
"Okay," Parker stood taller, picking up steam and feeling mighty confident. "I would never pay to use you. I don't know any songs about you, but if I could, I'd write one. You can be dressed up in the most elegant of attire. And you definitely can make a certain part of my anatomy move."
She gave him an askance glance as he waggled his eyebrows suggestively. She shook her head in pure amazement, still holding his gift. She stared at it thoughtfully and told him, "I would like to open this on my birthday. Tomorrow when we go to dinner."
"So, we're going?" he asked, somewhat astounded. It wasn't unusual for Olga to break a deal in order to avoid any type of intimacy with him.
"Well, we did have a bargain, Mr. Parker," she answered, handing the gift back to him. "Give this to me tomorrow."
She gave him a half smile before turning on her heel, leaving him speechless for a change.
The next night, they went out and celebrated her birthday. He gloated about the game they had played the day before. His eating habits were less than desirable and before too long, he had loosened his tie and took on a more relaxed, open sitting position. His behavior was growing increasingly more irritating.
Yet, she found that she was still with him at that very moment, agreeing to head back to his private quarters so that she could continue to watch him very closely.