He still wondered how the hell it happened.

When he traced the faint outline of her hipbone, or lowered himself gently to taste the light trail of her navel, he couldn't honestly trace back the path that had led him here.

She was light and full in his arms, her brittle, feeble nails clutching his back with a pronounced urgency; one that matched his own vigor and somewhat reckless inclinations.

He still didn't know how to phrase it. Something about their encounters made it frenzied and rushed. Something that bordered on intuition and biological necessity, that whispered hurry. That called to the sense of the fleeting and brief.

For this could only last so long.

Her little caliced hands now clutched his shoulder blades, applying pressure for him in no uncertain terms. Apparently, this was one of the frenzied and relentlessly rough times. Some were reserved for the quiet, muffled occasions that might be called tender, though they were no less rushed.

Fear of discovery had dissipated long ago. Whether it was from arrogance or simple indifference had yet to be determined.

He liked to prop her hips up with his hands. He liked tracing the freckles that aligned her collarbone like tiny intricate constellations. He liked spreading that impractically long hair of hers, and letting it spread out around her body like an idealized odalisque of a Flemish painter.

"An odalisque is a prostitute," she pointed out with a wry grin.

He hadn't known how to respond to that. Hell, he hadn't known he had said these things out loud.

They both had their own preferences regarding the eyepatch. She said that she preferred looking at his battle scars, tracing the uneven skin with sweaty fingers. He himself maintained the cover for several reasons, most of which boiled down to the fact that he thought he looked rather dashing with it. And not, as Havoc had mentioned, like a deranged and lecherous pirate.