Title: Not Making a Mistake
Author: Lola Lauriestein
Rating: PG
Pairing: Cuddy/Amber
Spoilers: Anything up to 4 x11, everything after that doesn't happen in this little world.
Summary: Somebody's fired, and somebody's lonely. (Femslash)

Apologies that this is un-beta'ed, I left it right until the last possible second to get this finished and there wasn't time.

For cuddyfest prompt 107: Cuddy/Amber, Amber will do anything to win. That doesn't change because she's out of a job (AU no Amber/Wilson)

When Amber kisses her, Cuddy knows it's probably some twisted scheme to get back at House; she kisses her back anyway.

It's late, and they're standing on a fire escape of all places. All Cuddy wanted to do was make sure the latest victim of House-a-palooza wasn't planning on hurling herself to the tarmac. A comforting pat on the shoulder somehow transformed into a hug, even though Cuddy is quite sure that neither of them is the hugging type. All she knows is that it felt nice to have a warm body pressed against her own, and once Amber's tears have dried she seeks out a kiss with the directness of a heat-seaking missile. How can someone as starved for affection as Lisa Cuddy possibly resist?

It's a tussle for dominance, two alpha forces competing to take control of the kiss, to dictate the terms of their pleasure. As Cuddy grabs the lapels of Amber's jacket, Amber tangles her fingers in Cuddy's perfectly curled hair, messing it up as she's longed to do every time she's seen her patrolling the halls of the hospital. It's just the right side of rough, a perfect clashing of lips and tongues that leaves them both increasingly short of breath.

A momentary panic grips Cuddy as they part for air, a small voice in her head suddenly sure that they'll turn to discover House lurking with a leer; worse still that he's down in the security office recording this for the Christmas party. She doesn't want to be thinking of him now, this enjoyable moment should not be spoiled by his intrusion. He is complication and stress, something to be planned for, the reason for contingencies. Here, in this ad-hoc comforting session she's been jumped by a horny and confused fellow who's looking to score some unknown point against the boss who let her go. These are the moments she replays when she lies awake in her overly elaborate bed, trying to convince herself that there's more to her life than budgets and yoga classes.

She's ready to make her excuses and leave, but Amber snatches at Cuddy's wrist, motioning for her to be quiet with one elegant finger to her lips.

"Want to get out of here? I feel like having company tonight."

Amber's voice is seductive, and Cuddy feels an unfamiliar pull in her abdomen. Has it really been so long since someone less than loathsome put the moves on her? How many dates has she feigned interest in just for a little affection at the end of the night? Here she is with a probably salacious proposition from a gorgeous woman ten years her junior. So she's a very recently ex-employee and Cuddy isn't technically a lesbian, not unless you count a little experimentation in college. Well actually, one girl is experimentation, by nine or ten it's really approaching a lifestyle choice. She doesn't have time to date the nice Jewish boys her mother insists on setting her up with, never mind hitting the gay bars in Princeton in search of a hot woman to take home for the night. Regardless of the morality, of whether Cuddy really is one thing or another, she's completely certain in this moment that she wants this.

It's not taking advantage, because if the PPTH grapevine is as credible as usual, nobody takes advantage of Dr Volakis. The nurses call her Frau Housina and there's little affection in that nickname. Cuddy shakes her head at even her love life being invaded by the grumpy doctor who spoils her days for fun. She used to think she loved him, but it's not something worth dwelling on when he'll never allow her to acknowledge it. Really, it could be worse than finding the female equivalent with a challenging mind, a delicious helping of arrogance, not to mention legs that go all the way down to the floor and the kind of flawless skin that makes Cuddy want to let her hands run wild.

Objectively, and Cuddy vaguely remembers feeling objective about life a few minutes ago, she knows that part of the attraction is knowing that Amber won't be here on Monday to make this awkward or embarrassing. They're kissing again, the urgency undiminished; with temperatures rising, Cuddy allows Amber to take her hand and lead her down the cold metal stairs. Each clip of their respective heels against the wrought iron punctuates the nagging doubts shooting through her mind, but Cuddy doesn't slow, doesn't stop. They reach the parking lot and Cuddy gives the newly unemployed doctor her address, needing to make a detour for her purse; they'll each need their own car for the morning. For such a snap decision, the routine seems pre-arranged, almost practiced. There's a moment to pause, too public for another instant of contact, and really the last chance to laugh and excuse all this as a moment of madness. As their eyes meet, Cuddy sees the raw passion rolling off Amber in waves, and she allows herself to consider that this tall, gorgeous woman might genuinely want her. Even if it is a way of stinging House, of being his property to be encroached upon, Cuddy is surprisingly okay with that. She recognizes that zeal in Amber, the willingness to do anything to win, scoring even the cheapest point; how could she not empathise when she can turn even Monopoly into a contact sport? Tonight she'll be going home to someone else in her bed (or on her sofa, her floor, or her dining room table should the mood strike her). Tomorrow she might be lonely all over again, or maybe the quiet optimist she's been slowly drowning all these years will get a whole weekend of inappropriate behavior to build false hopes on.

Twenty minutes later and she's standing in her own driveway, staring at the tall woman leaning against her porch rail. In this moment of lust, as all hesitancy finally dissipates, Cuddy thanks her lucky stars that she's not the kind to make mistakes. This certainly isn't going to be one.