A/N: Another fic being collabed by me and Lord of Ki/Darkside360!!

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Penda Gota

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The ardent rays of the fiery sun above cloaked Sheva in a satisfying warmth; kissing her bronzed skin with a glowing tint.

A sparkling drizzle of sweat dotted her lean body while she sliced through the air with sharp kicks, moderate punches and exquisite somersaults

For about an hour, she passed the time doing this while waiting for a certain BSAA agent to join her in her activities.

They had planned to spar together today in the parking lot of an old abandoned building.

It had been a few months since Sheva last saw of that man. And due to the intensity of their mission, she actually doubted she'd ever see him again. Alone, that is.

Executing another perfect somersault, she resumed throwing punches.

She frowned to herself upon realizing how sloppy they were. "Ugh, still not good enough." she groused; her accented tone lowering, "How did I even get away with such awkward moves!?"

"Because you had a little help." a husky voice informed.

Whirling around, readying a kick, Sheva gave the visitor a small knowing smile. "Well, look who's finally made it!" she teased, placing a hand on her hip and looking up to the wall he sat atop.

"Chris! I didn't think you'd actually get here." she continued, and glanced at her watch. "You're still a bit late."

Hearing this, Chris chuckled politely, then hopped down from his perch. The items in his utility belt jingled as he landed. Its obsidian appearance melded seamlessly with the dark pants and gray top he wore, beneath a black vest. Fingerless gloves fit snugly around his hands and he lifted one to rub the back of his neck.

"Sorry about that. I had...a few loose ends to tie up." he added a bit distantly but still managed to give her a warm smile.

"Loose ends, eh? " Sheva flatly responded, turning her back to him. She understood his vague statement all too well.

But it was his business. Without saying another word, the bronzed woman continued her warm-ups.

Chris eyed her hesitantly.

His dusky eyes carefully trailed over the sun-kissed muscles of her shoulders; tickled playfully down the slope of her back and thrived about the swell of her curvaceous behind.

Absolute perfection.

A string of thoughts went through his mind, assimilating fascination with the faint desire of corruption.

And for one deceptive moment, he could taste the hotness of her skin on his lips as he licked them.

Feeling the heat of a wandering gaze that wasn't from the fiery globe above, Sheva turned to look behind her. "Chris?"

"Hmm?" he responded blandly, but his eyes were off in another direction.

"Is something wrong?" she inquired, appearing concerned; then her features became playful. "Don't tell me you're tired already."

" 'Tired?' " he scoffed "You've got to be kidding."

Sheva chuckled sarcastically a bit; her lips curving into a daring smile. "Hardly. We have a lot to practice today."

"Uh huh."

"And I don't want to continue this without you, but if you can't live up to your end of our agreement, then I'll go on without you!"

He sighed. "Calm down, I'm not going anywhere, Sheva. Just give me a few minutes, alright?" he added in a prompt tone. Then a faint smile tugged at his mouth. "I'm not a superhero, remember?"

Sheva only rolled her eyes and shook her head.

A breezy sound drifted from her as she resumed her warm-ups. She was counting, and didn't bother to give him a reply.

It crossed his mind he may have said either too little or too much.

But instead of an apology, he walked off near the off-side of the building.

Through her exercise, Sheva's curious eyes trailed over to the man's heavily built form. Speckles of rich sunlight accentuated his light skin and punctuated muscles as he began to remove his utility belt. Then, his vest.

Slow breaths escaped the observing woman as she paced her movements to focus more of her attention on the undressing male adjacent of her.

She watched him take off his gloves, then pause for a moment. The instant she saw his back starting to turn away from her, she darted her eyes elsewhere.

Sheva could have sworn she felt a sly smile from him burning into her flesh; causing her cheeks to tingle with fire.

'What are you doing?!' she silently scolded herself, ' You've got to keep your focus' she concluded, sneaking a glance towards him anyway. Much to her satisfaction, Chris had his shirt pulled halfway over his head.

Sheva unknowingly stopped in her training and unashamedly gazed at him. Her light brown eyes eagerly absorbed his rippling abs and solid pectorals dusted with brown curls as he lifted the shirt higher over his head.

Once he took it off, he ran a hand through his hair and flexed his chest; staring directly at her.

A tiny smile of accomplishment formed on his lips as he met eyes with her.

Sheva blinked, then played off her obvious ogling with a quip. "I said get ready, not strip! And we were supposed to start sparring over an hour ago!"

"Blame the heat." he commented simply, starting to head over to her.

"I'd rather blame you." she retaliated playfully.

"Whatever helps you sleep at night, Sheva." he responded, rolling his shoulders back and taking a readying stance.

Amused by his behavior, Sheva gave her comrade a delighted look "Oh, so you're ready now?"

"Yeah." he agreed, "Let's do this, partner."

'Partner?' Sheva's mind raced. She hadn't heard him call her, and only her, that title in a long while. She wondered how much sincerity it held.

Yet, inside, she was beaming, but on the outside, she only nodded promptly to Chris and also took a stance.

"Roger."

--

Hours passed as the two of them sparred. The invisible weight of the sun was evident on their sweat-dappled bodies as they engaged in their melee.

Every kick of Sheva's was either blocked or countered by Chris. She kept her feet steady and her movements agile while she avoided his retaliations of hay-makers and uppercuts.

Quick breaths melded into a chorus of pants as they fought. Both of them were almost evenly matched in terms of skill and patience.

Occasionally, they would lock hands and pressure the other into tiring to letting go first.

Chris was the one to best Sheva in terms of upper body strength, but she was able to catch him off guard with a lifted knee directly below his groin.

"Got you." she would whisper and they would separate, eager for another bout.

Another hour passed and fatigue had begun to wear on them.

"After this one, we'll take a short break, all right?" Chris declared, wiping the sweat from his brow with the back of his arm.

Sheva nodded promptly and flicked the matted strands of hair that lingered near her eyes out of her face.

"Sure." Then she quirked a taunting eyebrow. "Exhausted already, Chris? Certainly you have much more stamina than this."

He scoffed. "Yeah, well, it's not everyday you wake up and spar with someone more than 10 years younger than you."

"Don't give me that!" she laughed, masking the fact that she was catching her breath. Then suddenly, her tone was wrought with seriousness. "Are you leaving after this?"

Confused more than he was caught off guard, Chris gave the woman a dubious look.

"No. Why?"

"I wanted to know. We owe this to the both of us."

For some reason, hearing such a claim from her struck a chord hidden deep within him. Any words he would have said turned to silence, dancing on the tip of his tongue.

When he gave no answer, she continued on, lightening her tone slightly. "Anyway, the more we talk, the faster we'll get tired. So let's hurry and do this, all right? We're partners. To the end. Never forget that."

Chris still remained quiet, studying her attitude. She had shaken off her exhaustion and was instantly ready to fight.

The glittering sparkle in her eyes reached into his soul. The tenacity. The care.

He had become more and more astonished by this young woman as the minutes diminished with the steady descent of the sun.

A few hours more and it would be sunset.

But the glow of such a vision already basked thoughtfully within her hazel eyes.

"I never forgot." he responded, his tone airy as if he were reclaiming a distant memory.

She neared closer to him, still catching her breath. "Are you sure?" she asked, partially believing him and partially unsure.

One look into her eyes was all it took. One silent journey through her honest eyes was all his being needed.

His brows raised and his mouth opened in an expression of a freshly discovered yearning.

"Sheva..."

And at this point, he couldn't say no.

"Yeah. Yeah, I'm sure." he declared in such a way as if he actually began to believe the words himself.

But the belief was always there. He just needed his partner to remind him of where they stood.

"Yeah, of course." he spoke up confidently, patting her firmly on the shoulder.

With a proud smile, she returned the gesture. "Good. Let's do this, Chris!" she cheered, readying her stance.

"Yeah... Let's go!" he announced, throwing her a heavy punch that she nearly dodged this time. Back-dashing, she tossed a taut short punch towards him as a fake, then kicked him in the shin.

Accurately, he threw another punch and hit her in the arm, but she absorbed the blow and clamped her hands down atop his shoulders.

Chris' mind was racing. He had seen her do this move many times before and knew how it would end. His heart beat a quick and powerful protest while he froze in anticipation. Part of him wondered if she'd take his head off while the other part didn't seem to mind very much if this was how he was going to go.

Speedily, she lifted herself onto him and hooked her legs around him, practically sitting atop his shoulders.

Instinctively, Chris' hands went upto her back and clutched the thin fabric of her clothing; his thick fingers lightly clawing down her the curve of her back.

Sheva jumped. If she hadn't known any better, she would have thought Chris found this the perfect opportunity to steal a quick grope.

Her body tensed for a moment. She could feel the rapidness of his ragged breath seeping into the middle of her tight pants, turning the sweat on her thighs a tingling cold.

She squirmed a bit atop him and secretly waited for a sort of responsive signal from him. A signal that would allow them to trespass through unfound rapture, or to continue on as if nothing happened.

Unknown to her, Chris was contemplating the same and bit his bottom lip to control the urge to nuzzle against her.

But when no action was made after a few awkward seconds had passed, Sheva let her body fall backwards as she flipped Chris onto the ground.

Panting, she pushed herself up off the dusty concrete to look over at him. Her chest heaving, the shape of his name escaped her.

Laying a few inches away from her, Chris gave no response, but only stared into space.

Then, he sat up and sent his gaze over to the woman that called him.

He was surprised, although he probably shouldn't have been, to see her on all fours looking at him with eyes wide with concern.

As well as another emotion.

"I didn't hurt you, did I?" she wondered, starting to stand.

His words were stolen from him as his gaze rested upon her. The sun cast her in a vibrant glow that was only greatly enhanced by the strength in her eyes.

"I'm fine." he stated. "Are you...?"

"I'm fine too. I'm still in top shape." she boasted, attempting a smile. "You, on the other hand, have slacked a bit, I hate to say. You need to be a bit more well-rounded, Chris. Don't be afraid to use your whole body as a weapon if you have to." she stated broadly, ignoring the twinge of embarrassment from the reminder of where her own words had the two of them ending up a few minutes earlier.

Chris chuckled lowly to himself and leveled his eyes elsewhere. "Copy that."

"Come on." Sheva began softly, offering her hand to him. "Let's take our little break. Then after that, back to sparring."

"Looking forward to it." he agreed courteously back, taking her hand. But instead of standing to his feet, he yanked her down to the ground with him and put her in a slightly loose sleeper hold. "And you should work on putting more force behind your strikes!" he teased.

-

To be continued by Ki

Can I goto sleep now?! Lol

-Mel