Title: Playing for Keeps

Author: AnitaB

Chapter 7: Together, remember?

He was gorgeous, naked, breathless and reaching for her. Her name fell from his lips and Kate helplessly melted into his kiss and his body. "Please, darling," Those strong arms positioned her perfectly to feel every hard, desperate inch of him against her hungry skin. //Heaven, my Nick…\\ "Need you… need more."

She adored the way his arms held her tight but his kiss. That was really heaven. Kate loved the way Nick kissed her, like he needed her more than air. Like she needed him. She loved the feeling of Nick so close.

She loved Nick. Loved the touch of his hands, the taste of his kiss, the strength of his arms. The sound of his voice. "Kate, I want to touch you." His fingers hesitated, warm and strong, against the inside of her thigh. It was like he didn't want her to breathe. Nodding against his shoulder, Kate shifted higher on her knees and threaded both hands into his hair.

The first touch of his fingertips between her legs threw her head back and his name to her lips. Those fingers slid deep and those lips traced the arching line of her throat. //Nick, please.\\ He was going to shatter her, right here in his arms, with only his hands and lips. And as good as it felt, Kate wanted more. She wanted to make him feel this good. To shatter him. Kate needed more than Nick's fingers inside her. She needed him. "Nick," Forcing her fingers open, Kate slid both hands down his chest to wrap around the steel hard length of his erection. She adored his breathless groan and the sudden, urgent grip of his hands on her waist. "Not me, Nick. Us. Together, remember?"

Kate played exploring fingertips up and down his length watching his face as he fought to breathe and open his eyes. "Kate," Those deep, dark eyes locked to hers and Kate knew that he was as far out of control as she was. And that was beautiful. As beautiful as the fierce grip of his arms pulling her closer. "Us, together. Now, Kate."

His arms and hers tweaked the position until his lips claimed hers and his hands pulled her hips down over his. Hard, smooth, and hot, Nick pressed slow and deep inside her. No one had ever felt this good before, ever. Breathing in the desperate rasp of his groan, Kate deepened this precious kiss and pulled Nick closer against her skin. His hands held her still in his lap, fingers clinging tightly to the curve of her hips. "Nick, I need…" Kate locked her eyes to his and let her body finish the plea, trying to rock over his.

"No, darlin'. Not yet." His arms tightened, pressing his length deeper and stopping the restless movement of her hips. "We only get one first time." He pressed an urgent kiss to her lips, one hand rising to cup her cheek. "And I want to feel you, Kate, as long as I can."

The look in his eyes, the sound of his voice, both put a shiver through her every nerve. This was so much more than just sex. This was enough caring, trust, and loyalty, and maybe even love to choke any succubus. This was her partner and her best friend in her arms, in her body, holding and treasuring her. For as long as she could keep him. "You got me, Nick, I'm here as long as you want me." Threading her fingers through his hair, Kate melted eagerly into his arms and his kiss, willingly resting quietly to feel every inch of Nick against her skin.

His hands slid the length of her back and it took every ounce of her control to stay still at the grip of his fingers at her hips. Every nerve in her body begged for movement, pleaded for more of him. "Please, Nick,"

"I got you, Kate, right here." Those hands tightened, guiding the first rise and fall of her body over his. He groaned against her lips, eyes locked to her face. "Again, darling."

"Yes," Kate shifted her knees against his hips, tightened her hands on his shoulders, and moved above him. //Slow, stay slow… wanna feel…\\ It took every ounce of her self-control to follow the grip of his hands in a long, slow plunge. She could feel … all of him with each arch of her body in his arms. "Nick, you feel… so good. More."

She felt his body shift under hers and suddenly it was more. The new angle of his hips dragged a gasp to her lips and tightened her nails against his back. "That's it, my sweet Kate. Feel me, feel us, right here." His lips caught hers in a deep and breathless kiss, his hands holding her close and tight. //I feel you, Nick, I feel all of you.\\

000

His Kate was … Heaven, perfection. She was everything. No one, ever, had felt so good, so right. Her hair fell like silk against his shoulders as she moved so sweetly and slowly above him. Her nails dug into his back as her hips danced around him, stealing his breath and his reason. Her voice moaning his name made his hands clench. Nick was going to leave bruises on her hips if she said his name like that again.

//You want more, My Kate, I got more for you.\\ Angling those gorgeous hips against his own, Nick searched inside her. Her sudden gasp and the sharp bit of her nails told him he'd found it. "That's it, my sweet Kate. Feel me, feel us. Right here."

Nick simply adored the look on her face as her hips moved a little faster. Pulling her closer, he leaned in to taste that sound on her lips, diving deeper to dance his tongue around and against hers. This was heaven, but he wanted even more. He wanted to be so deep inside her that his sweet Kate wouldn't feel whole without him there. //My Kate, my everything.\\

Her lips were suddenly out of reach and Nick needed them back. His hands clenched against his hips to pull her against his chest. "Kate,"

"I'm not going to break, Nick." Her fingers curved along his jaw and her eyes locked to his. "I want you, my Nick. Don't hold back." He adored the little twist in her smile. "Not from me."

Together they could be anything. Tender or wild. And if his girl wanted wild… then wild she'd get. "Hold on, Kate." An arm tight around her waist held her hips hard against his own as he rolled. Her back barely hit the sheets before Nick kissed her laughter off her lips.

At the next thrust of his hips, she groaned and tightened around him. Every single inch of him felt the ripple and strength of her body holding him closer, harder, tighter. "Oh, yes, Nick."

Just that sound in her voice had him a nerve's edge from losing all control. And Nick wanted nothing more in the world than to see her climax wash over her face, to taste it in her kiss. She was going to reach that peak before him, no matter how incredible she felt around him, under him, clinging to him.

Kissing him. Nick buried a hand in her hair to deepen the kiss as the other helped angled her hips to take him even deeper. Every inch of her gorgeous body arched and clenched around his. Beautifully. His Kate was on the edge, a breath, a thrust, a touch away from shattering in his arms. She was so close to giving him everything he'd ever wanted. This woman's trust and pleasure. Kate warm and caring in his arms, holding him.

He wanted her love, wanted to make her feel his love. Nick wanted, needed all of her, for real and for keeps. Weakly pulling back from her lips, he watched the arch of her neck.

"Kate, my sweet Kate." He watched her eyes close and felt the tension in her grip get tighter with every delicious thrust of their hips. So damn close. Nick put his lips to the arched line of her throat, words spilled out. "I love you, sweet Kate. Always need you."

He felt her nails clench in his back, watched her eyes open and her lips start a word before everything happened all at once. A climax crashed through every inch of Kate's body, dragging a shout of his name from her lips and a strange gold mist from her skin. His remaining working brain cell barely thought. //It's working.\\ Before every single nerve in his body helplessly followed her into that golden rush of heat and pleasure. Nick got lost in the taste, the touch of his Kate. He got buried in the utter rightness, perfection, and unity of this moment with his Kate.

He still couldn't breathe when the need for her taste forced his muscles to work. Shaking fingers slid to her face, turned her chin to get those beautiful lips against his.

Her fingers seemed to work again, releasing her death grip on his shoulders to slide through his hair, deepening this slow, sweet, precious kiss. //My Kate, my sweet Kate.\\

Those beautiful hands pushed just a little and Nick reluctantly pulled away from her lips. She was glowing, hot eyes locked to his. "Nick," Her voice made him want another kiss, to always hear that much heat wrapped around the sound of his name on her lips.

"Right here, Kate. I'm not going anywhere." Not ever if he had anything to say about it. Her soft smile said she might agree.

"'Cause you love me, right?" Her hands kept him from jerking back. Trust his brilliant Kate to hear him even as her every nerve went nuclear in his arms. "That was what you said, right before we shoved her out, wasn't it, Nick?" Her eyes stared up at his with a wealth of heat and the tiniest hint of fear. "You said you love me, right, Nick?"

"Yes, Kate." He dipped his head enough to kiss that fear away. Sweet warmth and need made him tremble in the tight grip of her arms. "I said it, Kate, and I meant every word. I love you, Kate Benson."

He felt her believe him, felt her every nerve melt and shake. He watched her love fill up every inch of her face until there wasn't room left for anything else. But Nick still wanted the words. //Say it, Kate, please.\\ "I love you, Nick." Her face was suddenly in his hands, lips almost touching his as the words kept coming. "And it's not gratitude, Nick, or anything else. It's you, Nick O'Malley. My partner, my Nick. The only man I couldn't scare away."

"And why would I get scared of the only girl to ever keep up with me?" He stole a quick kiss, adoring the sweet response and the sharp bite of her nails. "Take me home, my Kate, my partner, and I'll show you I don't scare off. Even with your whips and chains. Even with that tight, black outfit I know you own but you never wear." He trailed hungry fingertips over her racing heart. "Well, Kate? You gonna let me keep up with you?"

He saw her smile turn just a little wicked before a soft "yes" melting into a passionate kiss. //That's my Kate.\\

000

She was still lost in the breathless, golden haze of this feeling when Nick's fingers caught her chin and led her into a deep, slow, hot kiss. Kate dove into the desperate heat of his lips as aftershocks wracked both their bodies. Heaven. This was heaven. Nick's arms around her, his body over and inside hers, his lips pressing hers, his words echoing inside her head. //You love me, Nick.\\

Kate fisted both her hands in his hair and tried to show him every little bit of the feelings swirling inside her with this kiss. But it still wasn't enough. She had to tell him…pushing just enough to look into his gorgeous brown eyes. "Nick,"

"Right here, Kate. I'm not going anywhere." Gentle fingers cupped her cheek as he smiled down at her. God, he was gorgeous.

Kate found her hands around his jaw. "'Cause you love me, right?" She watched his eyes widen as he jerked, but not in denial. Nick hadn't thought she'd heard him. An act of God couldn't have kept those words from sinking in. "That was what you said, right before we shoved her out, wasn't it, Nick? " His eyes softened, melted even more. But Kate couldn't stop her voice. "You said you love me, right, Nick?" Those eyes glowed down at hers. He cupped her face in his hands to lock their eyes, to show her his heart.

"Yes, Kate," He kissed her, so gentle and so desperate, trembling in her arms. His hands ran through her hair, changing the angle for an even deeper kiss. //Say it, Nick, please say it.\\ "I said it, Kate, and I meant every word. I love you, Kate Benson."

He never said anything he didn't mean and Kate could never disbelieve the heat in his face, the love in his eyes. "I love you, Nick." He cupped her face and she found herself whispering against his lips, words that kept coming until his voice cut in.

"And why would I get scared of the only girl to ever keep up with me?" He interrupted himself with a kiss that tightened nerves all over her body. And then his next words turned that tightening into a whole body shiver. "Take me home, my Kate, my partner, and I'll show you I don't scare off. Even with your whips and chains. Even with that tight, black outfit I know you own but you never wear." Nick was grinning down at her, trailing his fingers over her pounding heart. He was offering her everything she'd ever wanted. A man that both respected her and wanted her. Someone who saw both the breasts and the gun. Someone who could keep up with her. "Well, Kate? You gonna let me keep up with you?"

She saw it, Nick handcuffed to her headboard, those big brown eyes following her gloved fingers over her own body. "Yes," fisting her hands in his hair, Kate dragged his lips to hers and fed on the heat and groan her kiss pulled from him. The sharp drag of her nails down his back made his hips arch against hers. A gasp on her lips encouraged him to do it again. Kate knew they were about three seconds from testing his recovery time and going at round two right here. Weakly pulling away from his lips, Kate put both hands on his chest. "Nick, we should go."

Looking almost pained, Nick nodded against her throat and reluctantly pulled out of her body and her arms. "Yeah, before Carl's personality rises back to the surface and he turns the cameras on."

Kate knew, exactly how he felt. It took every last ounce of her self-control to keep from dragging him back against her skin and locking her legs around his hips. But it must be killing Carl to stay away from the camera controls. Helplessly, Kate stole a quick kiss before she let him all the way out of her arms. "Yeah, but that does mean we both have to get dressed."

Nick sat back on his heels and reached for her hands. His eyes moved along her body to lock on hers. "It'll be a shame to cover you up. But walking naked to the car makes turning off the cameras pointless, huh, Kate?"

She couldn't help a smile of leaning forward for a quick kiss. "Get dressed, you letch, this won't be the last time you see me naked." Kate had a hard time following her own advice when he looked so damn stripped to the skin. Even his hands made her want to pull those clothes away and keep him naked. Kate dragged her eyes off his hands at his zipper and reached for her own clothes. "Yes, getting dressed." Kate didn't dare look up until her shirt was buttoned and her belt was buckled. "Ready, Nick?"

"Almost," His hands caught hers, pressed her fingers to the heat of his chest. "I need a kiss, Kate. One more, before I let you out of my arms."

The liquid heat in his eyes and the racing heart under her hands made her response as necessary as breathing. "Nick," Spreading her fingers wide against his skin, Kate leaned in for a kiss so deep and sweet it made her heart ache. It took all her restraint to pull back and close his shirt. "Come on, Nick, let's go home."

His smile brought one of her own Kate walked out of the cell grinning and holding his hand.

The End (for now anyway).