Author's Note: This is set immediately following the season 6 episode of the same name. Written because GSR + burning references makes me into a dirty-minded pyro.

Disclaimer: Once upon a time, Grissom and Sara belonged to a girl named Bella. Then she woke up. The End.

Powerful, but uncontrollable. It burns and burns until it burns itself out, finally consuming both elements.

I guess some people just shouldn't be together.

She was waiting in his office when the shift ended. He tipped her a sideways glance and shut his office door carefully behind him, noting that his blinds were drawn and the lights in the room low. He set down the armful of files he was carrying and sunk into his chair, across from her, reaching for his glasses and sliding them onto his nose. He would make her speak first. It usually got her over-talking enough that he could figure out what was going on in her brilliant if convoluted mind without too much probing.

"Did you think I was talking about us?"

He lifted just his eyes, a pen poised over a case file requiring his signature. "What do you mean?" He was feigning ignorance, of course. Her casual comment, tossed out in a public setting, had given him no opportunity for inquiry, but he had shot her a look of surprise nonetheless. He had been badly startled, and a little concerned.

"When I said some people just shouldn't be together. Did you think I meant us?"

He sighed, pulled his glasses off and tossed them onto the file. "I don't know. Did you?"

"Gil," she said softly. She was so careful only to use his first name when they were alone, but the single syllable on her perfect lips still sent a shot of lust through his body. He shifted a little in his chair. "I was just making an observation. You're awfully sensitive."

"I don't know what you're talking about."

"You looked at me like a puppy I had just kicked."

"I certainly did not," he argued, a little offended. "I might have looked startled, but not like a wounded dog."

"Fine," she allowed. "But you should have known better."

"Should I?"

She rose, sauntered the few feet around his desk, perched herself on the corner close to him, and allowed one slender foot to slide from its sandal and up his calf. He drew in a breath, and his eyes darkened. "Not here, Sara."

"Then where?" Her delicate foot slipped beneath his pant leg and touched his skin. So simple, this movement, and from her it was erotica personified. He reached down, caught her ankle.

"I have a lot of work to do tonight."

She sighed. With sensual rolls of her shoulders, she let her dark jacket slip off them and down her arms. Pulling it off and tossing it onto one of the chairs on the other side of the desk, she stretched lazily, allowing her back to arch and her breasts to rise enticingly. She let her hands drop to her thighs and fixed beautiful dark eyes on his face.

"If you don't come home with me right now, you're going to force me to take matters into my own hands."

He arched one inquisitive brow. "How so?"

She smiled wickedly. "I'll just go home…run a bath…maybe add some of that lavender bubble bath Catherine got me for my birthday." He licked his lips slightly, and she knew what a tease this was becoming for him. He had commented only a week before that he loved the scent of lavender on her skin, so subtle that he had to have his lips pressed against her to smell it. "And then I'll think of you."

Another woman might have been more graphic, more lewd in her descriptions of self-pleasure, but Sara did not have to, and she knew it. Just mentioning the scent of lavender and thinking of him, and he was fighting the urge to tug her into a darkened corner of his office and do incredibly wonderful things to her lean, long-legged body.

He cleared his throat. "Go home, Sara."

Her face clearly showed her disappointment, and he reveled secretly for a moment in the sign that she wanted him as badly as he did her. Then he clarified. "Take matters into your own hands." Her frown only deepened, and he could not suppress a tiny smile as he delivered his last instruction. "And don't finish until I walk through your door."

She slid a hand through her silky dark hair and parted those sensual lips slightly. He watched her chest rise and fall with her quickened breath. Their romance was filled with subtlety and mystery that suited them both perfectly, never falling into the complacent or the crude, but moving beautifully in the throes of a passion that burned intensely behind closed doors. She did not say another word, did not tease him for detailed instructions or try to kiss or touch him again in this semi-public forum. She rose, picked up her jacket, and walked silently from the room, knowing his eyes were on her gently swaying hips and her perfect legs, and neither one of them questioned that she would obey his request.

He stayed in his office for an hour after she left, signing case forms, reviewing evidence documents, and torturing himself exquisitely with a well-honed patience that spoke to years of deprivation. He could see her in his mind, removing her clothing one piece at a time, testing the warmth of her bathwater with one lovely toe, sliding into the lavender-infused steam and sloshing water with a pleasurable sigh. Her hair would be clipped up with a simple barrette, strands slipping free and curling in the humid air, and her hands—strong, slender hands that encased themselves in latex and handled evidence with the same skill that she touched his skin—would slide down her slick body until…

At last, he stood, stretching his aching back, and turned off his desk lamp. He walked at a leisurely pace down the ghostly-blue lit halls, nodding to lab techs and bidding Catherine good night at the front desk. He drove home just under the speed limit, noting the garish neon lights and the bodies of tourists and locals mingling on city streets. He would not rush himself, would not rush her. If she did as he had asked, she would have been torturing herself as well as him for nearly an hour and a half when he reached her apartment, and he had no doubt that she would be eagerly waiting his return for her release. The thought made everything low in his body tighten in anticipation and desire.

He walked slowly across her parking lot and up the stairs, down the hall to her apartment. He did not knock, but twisted the doorknob and noted with a wry smile that it was unlocked. He let himself in quietly, closing the door behind him with only the faintest of clicks, and waited in the semi-darkness of her living room.

The air was a little heavy from the steam of hot running water, and the smell of lavender wreathed through it like an intoxicating perfume. He could see flickering light spilling out into the hall from the bathroom door—she had lit candles. He rubbed a hand over his beard and listened, and tense heat washed through him. The sounds of quick, hitched breathing danced on air currents down the hallways, punctuated seconds later by the softest, most desperate sounding moan he had ever heard pass her lips.

He moved silently down the hall, pausing at the doorway to the bathroom only to note with a bit of surprise that she was not inside. Candlelight still danced on the walls, and the tub was filled with slightly soapy water, but no Sara. He turned, saw that her bedroom door was ajar, and smiled faintly. So, she had finished with her bath and sought a change of scenery. So much the better—he loved the softness of her sheets, their high thread count an exceptional indulgence for the normally practical woman. He took the few short steps that would place him in the doorway of the bedroom and looked inside.

One candle burned on her bedside table, a fat ivory pillar with three wicks that were surrounded by warm pools of melted wax. On the bed, stretched out against black sheets and a burgundy blanket falling off to one side, was the beautiful woman he had longed for and loved for longer than he could remember. Her hands were clenched into fists by her sides, handfuls of sheet clutched in them, and her back was slightly arched, hips moving in small circles against the mattress, hair splayed out in slightly damp curls against her pillow. The candlelight turned her pale, slightly freckled skin into golden marble, and he noted with an investigator's keen eye the slight curling to her toes, the quick rise and fall of her lovely breasts, the slight tossing of her head from side to side. He also noticed that nothing—not a hand, or anything else—touched her between her gracefully parted thighs. His hand tightened on the doorframe.

She looked up, eyes black in her flushed face, and moaned just at the sight of him. Fighting the urge to cross the room and ravish her, he said huskily, "Is this how you take matters into your own hands?" He glanced pointedly at her fingers still clenching the sheets.

Breathlessly, she whispered, "I told you I would think of you. I have been."

He reached down, unzipped his black suede jacket, shrugged it off and folded it neatly. He would not be rushed. "For an hour and a half?"

She moaned again, and his body throbbed and hummed to the sound. "For however long you left me here alone, yes."

He crossed the room slowly, placing his jacket on a chair along the way, and gently uncurled one of her hands from its death grip on the black cotton. He lifted it to his lips, pressed a kiss along the back, and inhaled. Her skin smelled of lavender…and nothing else.

"You haven't touched yourself," he said in a low voice. Writhing a little, she nodded, her hips still circling, needy. "Why not?"

She smiled faintly through an expression so aroused that it made his head swim. "I told you I would think of you," she repeated.

He almost sank down onto the bed in shock, in arousal, in lust so fierce his brain fogged over. She had been thinking of him. His lovely, sensual Sara was trembling on the edge of orgasm from thinking about him, about what he could and would do to her when he arrived. It was the most erotic thing he had ever heard or seen.

She gripped his hand suddenly, so tightly that his eyes flew to her face. Her bottom lip was caught between her teeth so hard he feared she might draw blood, and her hips had arched high enough that her body was almost bowed. "Gil, please, tell me to."

In the way that he had always understood her, even when she thought he did not, he knew immediately what she wanted. Gazing deeply into her eyes, touching only her grasping fingers, he whispered, "Come."

And she did, instantly, her ecstatic moans filling the air as she writhed beside him, eyes slamming shut, thighs tightening with the intensity of the sensations filling her body. He watched her for a moment, entranced by her passion and her beauty and her wildness that captivated him, body and mind and heart, and then it was too much. In a blur, he pulled away, and clothes were lost, and he was over her, above her, staring down into her flushed face and blazing eyes. With one stroke he was buried inside her, their hips pressed so tightly together he thought that he might actually fuse with her body. The feeling of him filling her was enough to send her spiraling into orgasm again, tightening around him as he began to thrust into her hard, fast, no time for gentleness or patience. He had been patient long enough.

He dared not close his eyes, even when the gentle scrape of her nails on his back made him groan aloud, even when the moans of his name in her throaty, perfect voice made him throb from his scalp to the soles of his feet. He watched her every second he was inside her, watched her pant and move through every climax that his lovemaking guided her into until the almost-constant clenching of her body around his was too much. He growled her name into her hair as he relinquished all control and gave himself to her in every way he knew how, and she pressed her lips to his neck as he released, murmuring soft syllables of adoration into his skin.

They lay together on the softest sheets he had ever slept on, her head cradled on his chest, his fingers tracing patterns on the silky skin of her back, her hand gently stroking up and down his thigh. She lifted her head after a long, contented moment and said quietly, "We burn, very hot."

He turned inquisitive blue eyes to her. "Still thinking of science after that?"

She smiled wide. "Sort of. Not exactly. A little worried, maybe, about the implications the science might have for the elements involved."

He rolled over on his side, so he could face her, and ran his fingers through her gently curling hair. "Sara, I have burned for you for years," he said softly. He watched her eyes widen, and then the faint glisten of tears arose on their surface at his unexpected admission. She turned her head and kissed his palm, one tear slipping free and leaving a trail of wet salt on his fingers.

"Are we in danger of burning out?" she murmured into his skin. He slid his fingers under her chin and lifted it until she met his eyes.

"The only danger I can see would come from denying ourselves," he said simply. "'A life without love in it is like a heap of ashes upon a deserted hearth—with the fire dead, the laughter stilled, and the light extinguished.'"

Sara moved closer to him, laying her lips against his and kissing him deeply, like a drowning woman seeking her air. He could not help but respond in kind, until they parted, breathless, passions stirred again. He laid a hand on her stomach, kissed the smooth plane of her throat.

"I love you," he whispered into its pale warmth. "I think I might have loved you before I even knew it."

"I always knew," she murmured, and he pulled back to look into her eyes. She smiled, her face alight. "You've consumed me since the day I met you." She kissed him again, sweetly, her lips full of promises too precious to put into words.

"And I will love you until the moment my flame goes out."