Kelly didn't even try to hide the immense disbelief clear in her tone. The look on her face was a dead giveaway, in any case. Her blue eyes were wide, her mouth open slightly showing a glimpse of pearly teeth. Tracey blushed furiously, dropping her head in embarrassment. Normally a feeling very out of character for her, Tracey's discomfiture was heightened by her junior ADA's reaction. Damn, you could hear Kelly's jaw hit the ground. Tracey mentally sighed.
"Yes. Kelly, it's not that strange. Lots of women do it." Tracey looked up into the stunned blonde's eyes. "And can you close your mouth? Please?" Tracey's voice was pleading and Kelly hurriedly shut her mouth, licking her lips in search of something to say to her partner. Something encouraging. Nothing came.
"Uh… so, how long have you been….?" Kelly gestured hesitantly, searching for words that would not come. She was shell shocked and no mistake but she was trying to avoid upsetting Tracey any further. Still, her brain wasn't working at it's usual level. Tracey cocked an eyebrow, the slightest hint of a smile touching the edge of her mouth.
"…Playing around?" she supplied, amused by Kelly's tentativeness in discussing the subject. Kelly nodded once, gulping down her own embarrassment. As Tracey's eyes slid along the object of her derision, she was struck yet again by her almost painful attraction to her junior. Embarrassment forgot, Tracey let herself enjoy the view from where she sat. Kelly was leaning back on a bookcase, arms folded loosely across her chest, legs crossed at the ankle. She was wearing a blue skirt that stopped halfway down her thigh and a light pink sweater with an admirable dip at the front, just showing the edging of a thin white top she wore underneath. Not one to stare openly (not when Kelly was facing her, anyway), Tracey smiled inwardly that she could take advantage of the situation and drink in the sight of her partner's gorgeous body. Oh, the irony.
"A few years. It's nothing serious. Just one day I saw an extremely tall, exceptionally good looking blonde walking down the street and decided I wanted to be part of that scene." Kelly winced at the mention of a leggy blonde, stupidly wishing for a moment, that she was taller. Tracey continued, "I think it's the outfits that get me, though. There's something very appealing about the clothes they wear." Tracey practically raked her gaze up and down Kelly's body, allowing herself a quick grin at the innuendo she was throwing into the room. She didn't really need to mention the beauty of her blonde inspiration but she was using Kelly's embarrassment to escape her own. Cruel but self preserving. Also, she thought wickedly, a little fun.
"I just… I never would have picked you…" Kelly's eyes seemed glued to the floor, somewhere near Tracey's shoes. The pink blush that had crept up her neck hung over her cheeks like a glowing veil. She was still in shock that Tracey was choosing to share this part of her life with her. It was strange beyond all comprehension and it creeped her out a little but she was intrigued, her attraction to her boss playing no small part in the matter.
"We come in all shapes and sizes, Kel." Tracey said gently, trying to coax Kelly out of her daze. Confident that she could control herself and that the lovely blonde in front of her wouldn't pass out from an information overload, Tracey wanted to bring the conversation back into the room. Make it a little more comfortable. Suddenly, she was struck with an idea. Tracey mentally grinned like a Cheshire cat before opening her mouth again.
"Why don't you join me? Tonight?"
Kelly looked up abruptly, her eyes wide, a panicked look on her face. Her arms dropped and her hands gripped the edge of the bookcase behind her.
"Tracey… I… No!" She had only just regained a little composure when the tiny brunette jumped her with the invitation. Fuck, what the hell? Where in the name of God did that come from? She saw the flash of disappointment in Tracey's eyes and she immediately regretted her words. But she was so damn freaked out by it all.
"I mean… Christ. Look Trace, I wouldn't know what to do. I'm just… I'm not like that. I'm such a girly girl!" It all tumbled out. She was just trying to explain her reaction, not hurt the woman she respected so much and harboured a few unspoken feelings for. But Tracey laughed outright at that last remark. Kelly took a deep breath, absorbing the sound. She loved Tracey's laugh. She smiled timidly at her colleague, sending a prayer to whoever was listening that she hadn't screwed everything up.
"I suppose you are." Kelly looked a little alarmed but said nothing. Tracey was seriously amused by the range of expressions the blonde was presenting her with. She had felt her heart drop as Kelly refused her offer but she recovered somewhat with the help of Kelly's flustered attempts to appease her. "But there's an adventurous spirit in you somewhere, Kelly. Meet me at 7, my place." She bent to reach under her desk and pulled out a plastic bag, throwing it to her partner. Kelly caught it, feeling some light clothing through the crackling plastic. "Wear those."
"Tracey, this is such a bad idea." Kelly whispered into the dark ringlets hanging down her partners back. They'd been tamed into a ponytail for the night and Kelly still found the spirals alluring, if restrained from their usual rampant glory. Tracey looked over her shoulder at Kelly and gave her an encouraging wink, reaching her left hand back to pat her reassuringly on the hip. Kelly tried not to shiver noticeably. She blinked instead.
"You'll be fine. Just keep your eye on the ball." Tracey turned back to the centre of the court, settling herself into a position of readiness, knees bent, eyes focussed on the players at the circle. Kelly couldn't help but admire the look of Tracey in those red shorts, made of light, aerated fabric and the yellow singlet with FLASH 07 printed in big block letters on the back. She'd been unable to control her laughter when she saw the words emblazoned on Tracey's uniform. The tiny brunette had informed her with a self deprecating chuckle that it was her team nickname, awarded for her apparent lightening speed on the court. Kelly grinned as she recalled the look of mild embarrassment on her partners face.
The whistle blew and Tracey shot out to receive the ball as it was tipped by her centre. Kelly tried to stay in the game and be of some use to Tracey and the rest of the team but she was quite gob smacked at Tracey's reaction. Already, she'd dribbled the ball expertly into the backcourt, dodging under the arms of the comparative giants of the other team and delivered an awesome pass to her team mate at the hoop. The tall blonde grabbed the ball and popped it into the basket with no trouble, scoring the team's first point. Kelly was quite astounded and hadn't moved a step away from her original position. She watched Tracey approach her at a light jog, grinning at her new team mate's expression.
"Can you say easy win?" Tracey smiled, reaching Kelly's side. The tall blonde who'd scored the point passed them and shot Tracey an appreciative look.
"Nice work, Trace." Tracey nodded, glowing like Kelly had never seen before, her eyes sparkling with adrenaline and success. A brunette with cropped hair shot her a thumbs up from the bench and her friend dressed in jeans and a v necked sweater called out "Come on Flash!" Kelly couldn't think of much to say.
"Yeah, good on you, Flash." She managed, bumping Tracey's bare shoulder with her own. The older ADA winked at her as she turned to face the opposing team and their current possession of the ball.
"You gonna join in this time, Kelly, or do I have to do all the work myself?" She asked, her eyes already scoping out the set up on court. A big red head was edging her way in front of them and Tracey appraised her. Kelly grinned at the strangeness of it all.
"I told you I can't play! You were the one who wanted me here tonight." She looked down at her own red shorts and baggy singlet. She felt ever so slightly ridiculous. "I look like such a clown." As the other team passed the ball down the court, Tracey smirked and eyed her companion. Before turning to follow the redhead who'd just received the ball and was pounding down towards the goal, she threw over her shoulder..
"I don't know. I think you look kinda cute." Kelly took a moment to register the comment, then narrowed her eyes slightly and smiled, jogging after Tracey in pursuit of the ball. Good shot Flash, she thought.
"I bring coffee." Tracey announced as she stepped into their office, red coat over her arm, briefcase in one hand and a cardboard tray with drinks in the other. Kelly looked up from the files on her desk and sighed, taking the proffered drink gratefully. She leaned back in her chair and sipped the hot beverage slowly, closing her eyes. Tracey glanced her way, trademark smirk at the ready to ward away any overtly desirous looks. To be that cup in her hands, she thought. Shaking her head, she tossed her coat over the back of a chair and put down the tray along with her briefcase, facing outwards, on the desk.
"You were good last night." She remarked, settling into her chair and picking up the coffee. Kelly's blue eyes opened and she caught the look on her partner's face, knowing that she was well aware of the undertones in her statement. She rolled her eyes comically and looked down at her drink.
"Yeah, brilliant. Once I stopped staring at you and your amazing plays." Tracey chuckled, taking a sip of her coffee.
"Really, Kelly, you were good. We've never had a better sub in. That point you scored was incredible." Kelly blushed winningly and took a hurried gulp of her coffee, trying to cover her smile. She knew it didn't work.
"Actually, I was pretty proud of that. As I haven't played since high school. What you did to that defender was wild, though. I've never seen charging like that! I thought the redhead was going to attack you." Tracey laughed outright, remembering her flagrant foul on an infuriating opposition player. She didn't like being blocked.
"You think that'll scar?" Kelly grinned. "If it weren't for you, I think she probably would have jumped me in the car park afterwards. It was a good thing you were there to protect me." Tracey smiled across at her partner, toying with the cup in her hands. Kelly shifted in her chair and winced. Tracey shot her a questioning look and Kelly snorted lightly, putting down her coffee and tugging the edge of her shirt out of her skirt. Tracey nearly stopped breathing.
"You bruised me!" Kelly pointed out, rather unnecessarily, the deep purple mark above her hip. Tracey's eyes widened and she leaned forward in her chair, coughing as she swallowed a mouthful of latte a little quickly.
"Oh Christ, Kelly. Fuck, I'm sorry. Was that when I caught you?" The blonde laughed lightly at the concerned look on Tracey's face. She shook her head and lowered her shirt, vaguely disappointed that Tracey hadn't stared a little longer. Testament to her guilt, she thought, which is obviously greater than any attraction. Damn.
"I wouldn't say you caught me. It was more a train wreck. I just landed on you." Kelly smiled, picking up her cup again. "But I guess that's what happens when you double team a player to death." Tracey didn't look reassured at all. She caught Kelly's eye and tossed out a Kibre smirk, just to lessen to appearance of dismay. She couldn't bare to think that she'd hurt Kelly in some way.
"I like to think that I caught you." She leaned back in her chair, regarding Kelly for a few moments. "So, you enjoyed yourself then?" Kelly beamed.
"Definitely. I was a little sceptical at first…" Tracey raised an eyebrow. "Ok, very sceptical but I had lots of fun. Your team is really nice. And winning something that's not a court case was refreshing." Tracey stared at her empty coffee cup a moment longer and then set it down, a look of resolve on her face.
"Ok then… well, I think you should look in my briefcase." Kelly gave her an incredulous look. She waited for Tracey to offer her something more but nothing came. So, hesitantly, she stood up and moved towards Tracey's desk. Glancing at the brunette, who nodded carefully, Kelly flipped the locks on either side of the handle and opened the briefcase. On the left side was something wrapped in white packing paper and to the right, two perfect cupcakes, one pink and one a dark chocolate, each in their own plastic casings. Kelly's eyes sparkled as she raised her head to look at Tracey who was smiling indulgently at her partner.
"The cupcakes are from me. To thank you for filling in at the last minute and also agreeing to do something with me. I really appreciate it." Kelly lifted the pink cupcake as Tracey spoke, examining it from all angles through it's plastic shell. Tracey continued, pausing a moment, steeling herself.
"The other thing… well, it's from the team." Kelly stroked the paper thoughtfully before pushing it aside and reaching in to pull out the item. It was a yellow and red singlet with "NYC AllStars", the name of the team, across the front. It was a fair bit smaller than the baggy version she had worn the night before, Kelly noticed with relief.
"I didn't really mention but last night was a bit of a tryout. The girl you were replacing has broken her arm and won't be able to play for the rest of the season. The team agreed unanimously, which is amazing in itself, that you should be her replacement. If you want to keep playing."
Kelly didn't know what to say. She'd never thought that this was where yesterday's conversation would lead. She glanced at Tracey, looking for some sort of explanation, but she seemed preoccupied. Tracey was in fact struggling with wanting to hear the right answer from Kelly and keeping the laughter that was bubbling inside her down. Say yes and then I can laugh.
"Well, I.. I didn't think I was good enough but if the team wants me… if you want me.." She gave Tracey a significant look as she sorted through her emotions. "I guess… I'll be happy to!"
Tracey grinned at her partner, extremely pleased with the response. Kelly smiled herself, looking back down at the uniform, turning it over on her hand. Her jaw dropped and Tracey burst out laughing. As Kelly lifted the singlet up, Tracey's eyes fell again on the word she'd relayed to the perplexed shop assistant at the sports store and she gasped as another wave of laughter escaped her lips. Right there, above the numbers 08 was written in red block letters… Cupcake.
Kelly looked daggers at Tracey as she stalked to the windows and flicked the blinds closed. Slamming the door with well aimed kick, she advanced on the helpless EADA, still taken over by fits of giggles.
"You'd better pray to god that you're as fast in heels as sneakers, Flash…"