A banging on the hatch woke Adama from a sound sleep. The military reflex that usually brought him instantly awake seemed to be absent, but the unaccustomed feel of a naked body against his filled that missing void nicely and brought him fully awake. Laura stirred.

"Go back to sleep," he whispered, kissing her bare shoulder and drawing the covers back over her body.

"Mmmm." She turned over, burrowing into the bedclothes.

He smiled tenderly: apparently Laura was not a morning person. The banging on the hatch was repeated.

With a muttered curse he launched himself off the rack and quickly donned his sweatpants, struggling into the t-shirt as he made his way to the hatch.


Saul Tigh barged into the cabin past him, looking less than pleased. The XO was not a morning person on the best of days and today was obviously not a good day for him. Bill knew how he felt: he could do with several more hours sleep himself.

"Morning, Bill," Tigh said, handing over the folder that contained the morning briefing reports. "Mind telling me why I got a wake up call from Cottle this morning, telling me to haul my ass out of bed at this gods-forsaken hour and deliver your morning report or he'd make my next physical very long and painful?"

Bill shrugged, flipping quickly through the report. And kept his eyes resolutely away from his rack.

"Doc is usually hard as nails," Tigh continued, "but the language he used could've made a marine sergeant blush. Told me that…" Saul broke off, his good eye widening.

Bill followed the gaze and swallowed a curse as his eyes landed on an article of feminine apparel on the floor. They hadn't tidied up before falling asleep last night, and the clothes were in a distinct line from the couch to the bed. He watched his XO's eye track from item to item and finally to the rack.

Even though that corner of his cabin was still dark, you could make out an occupant in the bed; one bare leg poking out from beneath the blankets; a mass of long hair drifting across the pillows.

"Well I'll be…" Saul breathed.

Bill shot him a warning glare, and his friend pulled himself to attention, although the formal pose was marred by the grin on his face.

"If there's nothing else, sir, I'll be about my duties."

Bill nodded permission, and Tigh saluted, about-faced and strode toward the hatch with a muttered: "about frakking time." Just before he opened it, he paused.

"You know, you look exhausted, Bill. Seems like you could do with a few more hours of rack-time. I'll alert CIC and your sentry to send everything to me."

Bill looked at his friend with gratitude.

"Thank you, Saul. I appreciate it."

Tigh nodded and exited the cabin.

Bill tossed the report on his desk, shucked his clothes and slid back into bed beside Laura. She snuggled back against him, making a contented sound.

"Was that the dulcet tones of Colonel Tigh I just heard?" she asked sleepily.

"Uh-huh," he replied, running his hand possessively over the curve of her hip, then the flat plane of her stomach. He drew back her hair and kissed the side of her neck, just where it met her shoulder, relishing the sound of her sigh.

"Apparently Cottle rousted him out of bed to help protect your reputation." He snorted. "I think Gaeta would have fainted if he'd been confronted by the sight of women's clothes strewn across my cabin."

There was a noise that sounded like a chuckle, and Laura turned towards him, propping her head up on one arm and sliding a leg between his. Her hair was tousled from sleep and there was something deliciously wicked about her look.

She traced a finger down his chest from the hollow of his throat, across his pectorals, to the sensitive skin over his hip.

"Hate to tell you this, Bill, but according to some of the rumors, we've been frakking ever since the fleet jumped beyond the red line."

He rolled her beneath him.

"That long? I guess we should start making up for lost time, then."

END Conflagration