Cover Me in Warmth
Disclaimer: Don't own anything.
Spoiler: (1.09) Flame Red
A/N: This is probably the quickest one shot I've ever written. It's inspired by and dedicated to Chiisana Minako, for being as sweet and encouraging as she's been and also for giving me the idea. Thank you!
Also, I've recently acquired a beta for Running Through Red Lights, so the next chapter is done but being edited. It should be up no later than Friday, hopefully before. Thank you to everyone who is reading RTRL and who is about to read this. You guys are amazing! Let me know what you think.
She doesn't open the door for him, not because she's annoyed or bothered by his flippant attitude.
Despite being all those things, her main incentive for keeping the passenger door locked is actually purely subconscious. When Lisbon first slides into the car, her instinct is to let Jane in too, but when she catches sight of him staring up at the stormy sky, tongue out, with the most child like expression of unadulterated enjoyment on his face, she simply cannot look away.
It's only a moment later, as he tries the door handle again and looks at her with an amused smile when he sees that she's staring at him, that Lisbon realizes she has inadvertently been hypnotized by Jane and he wasn't even trying.
All he had to do was lose his damn mask for just one moment, let himself indulge in the simple exhilarating feeling of rain against his skin, and she's putty.
The blush is unmistakable and when Jane's eyebrows rise, she's tempted to keep the door closed for just a little while longer. Yet somehow the idea of a wet Jane, clothes sticking to his body, only intensifies her slight embarrassment, so she quickly leans over the console and pushes the car door open.
He slides in rather stealthily, nearly colliding with her as she takes too long retreating. Yet she gracefully brushes her slightly damp curls behind her ear, before starting the engine as if the silent moment of unabashed staring didn't happen.
But of course, Jane doesn't let her forget it.
"You know it's too cold outside to be flushed. What's got you so hot, Lisbon?"
She hasn't actually pulled out of the spot and is eternally grateful, because sly comment nearly gives her whiplash as she turns to look at him, and she's pretty certain the SUV would've crashed into something if she'd been driving already.
If possible, Jane's impish and somewhat knowing stare sends a wave of heat through her entire body and Lisbon itches to steal a glance in the review mirror just to check if she hasn't broken out in hives by this point. Her shy nature has invariably gotten the best of her, especially under Jane's slightly domineering and equally seductive gaze.
Nevertheless, she simply matches his look with one of her own, making sure he knows just how annoyed she is by his attempt to put her on the spot.
Because she is annoyed, perhaps not as much by his current comment, as by the fact that despite his sinister views regarding Red John, his blatant disregard for rules, and slight penchant for mocking her authority, she still feels this incredible magnetic pull towards him, an attraction that she fears runs far deeper than the physical.
"Well…" Jane's voice trails off. He leans back slightly, obviously expecting a reply and this time, Lisbon doesn't hesitate rolling her eyes at him.
The moment has passed, and her skin feels slightly cooler, so she looks over her shoulder and expertly reverses the Chevy out of the makeshift parking spot before answering,
"Well nothing. It was probably your ego sucking all the oxygen out of the car."
Jane looks offended for a minute, but then grins again, pressing the automatic button on the passenger door to roll the window down just slightly, a teasing response to her jib.
Fresh air, smelling faintly of rain, rushes in and Lisbon can't help but inhale, momentarily forgetting Jane's presence.
He watches her slightly transfixed, as she closes her eyes in content, a small sound of pleasure escaping her mouth as her usual pout dissolves into an almost smile.
It's only a second, but it's enough to have the image of her pale skin, dark curls, and pink lips forever itched into his mind, and Jane has to look away to conceal his wistful expression.
"You like rain."
He asserts quietly as Lisbon opens her eyes, dark lashes barely concealing the surprise her green orbs express at his soft statement.
"I do," She nods in affirmative, but doesn't explain further and Jane doesn't expect her to.
He knows how extremely private Lisbon is, how getting even such a tiny detail out of her should feel like a triumph. So he lets everything else go, in favor of the quietude that surrounds them, only slightly punctuated by the incessant tapping of the rain against the car as they drive.
He'd noticed her staring at him when she first got into the car and though he couldn't quite make out her expression, the slight rouge on her cheeks exposed exactly what she was thinking.
It reminded him of earlier that week when he teased her about reading her mind and she'd blushed, fruitlessly denying what he was inadvertently claiming.
But even then there was a barrier about her, something he couldn't quite break through, which was conspicuously absent from the look she gave him as he waited for her to open the car door.
Curiosity peaked, Jane couldn't help the observation that escaped his mouth, even though he anticipated that the fiercely guarded brunette would close herself off right away.
She's like an intriguing and tightly sealed clam, but he knows that inside is a beautiful pearl and he wonders if perhaps it's something worth pursuing.
He's alerted when he watches the window roll up and looks over at Lisbon, who has just moved her hand off the automatic switch on her side.
"What? Your whole pant leg is soaked." She explains, nodding towards his dark blue pants and Jane follows her gaze to confirm that there is a noticeable water stain on his right thigh.
He waves it off, shrugging, "how will you breathe now with my ego taking up so much room?"
He asks cheekily, but Lisbon just smirks, her lips forming into that half smile again, right dimple ever present,
She replies wryly, and Jane can't deny that the deep green side glance she throws him sparks something inside him.
It's barely a flutter, more like a muted, tiny flicker, but it reverberates through his entire system and he remembers it long after Lisbon turns her attention back to the dark road ahead.
When they arrive back at CBI, almost the entire floor is dark and empty. Save for the janitor and Van Pelt, who dutifully finishes her paperwork before clocking out for the night, the headquarters seems ready for respite.
Lisbon of course immediately disappears into her office with a giant cup of tea, an expression on her face that warns Jane not to disturb her. He lets it go for once.
Inwardly pleased that she's chosen a chamomile green tea instead of the sludge that's sadly mistaken for coffee quite often in their kitchen.
He decides against bothering Van Pelt.
She looks tired, but determined and aside from a quick suggestion of a tea break with him, (which is of course denied with a somewhat apologetic smile) Jane finds himself dozing off on the couch, the sound of Van Pelt's typing actually soothing in the otherwise silent atmosphere.
He doesn't know how long he sleeps for, but when Jane opens his eyes, he registers two things.
The entire floor is now dead silent and equally dark, and there's something draped over him, shielding him against the unheated bullpen.
It's only when he sits up, running his hand through his hair, and folding the plaid blanket, that he catches the whiff of a familiar scent on the material.
It's faint, almost imperceptible, but he identifies it, and takes the solitary moment to inhale it, letting the fragrance consume him, the hint of cinnamon and sandalwood leaving his senses almost inebriated.
He can't help the smile that slides over his features, or the memory of Lisbon's eyes closed while she inhaled the sweet smelling rain air as it wafted into the car just hours before.
His eyes fall on her office door, but it's closed, the blinds drawn. He knows she's not there and a part of him feels bereft, disappointed.
He carries an ache in his heart permanently, day and day out, so it shouldn't feel any different with this, but it does.
The intensity of his grief for his family is something he's used to, an emotion he knows he'll never be able to part with, so it's manageable, far more so than this recent attraction and that something more that he feels whenever the brunette detective is around.
It's very new and just as terrifying.
He's like a newborn taking his first steps, but there's also an excitement that somehow trumps any fear he may feel. And when he looks out the window to find the rain still going strong, still beating against the glass, blanketing the streets in sheets of water, Jane decides that instead of feeling sorry for himself, he'll go for a drive.
He doesn't realize he's clutching the blanket in his hand until he's already in the elevator.
She'd been on her way out, already outside, but when she saw the rain, coming down as hard as it was, she was struck by its beauty, the rhythmic sounds against the extended roof of the CBI entrance.
The water fell in perfect drops, distorting the shroud of night, creating large puddles on the ground.
She found herself unable to move, feeling a sense of calm as she stopped to watch the heavy pour.
She closed her eyes only to discover a mental picture of Jane in her mind, that same carefree expression she remembered as he stood underneath the drizzle, blue eyes twinkling, and golden curls seemingly impervious to the dreary backdrop, just like his whole demeanor.
He still managed to look like something of a Greek god even in this miserable weather.
Though, to Lisbon, this weather is not miserable, instead it's soothing.
She's always liked the rain.
Growing up back East, this type of climate was inevitable, and while other children huddled in their parents' bed under piles of blankets during storms, Lisbon sat next to her window, marveling at the bright cracks of lightening penetrating the dark, opaque sky.
Now as she hears thunder and the subsequent howl of the wind as it toys with the rain's trajectory, she can't help inhaling the fresh air as it whips around her, throwing her half dried curls in disarray across her face.
She's so consumed by the natural phenomenon around her that she doesn't realize she's being watched.
Jane senses this as he leans against the glass door.
She looks completely at ease.
No tension squaring her shoulders, no need to exude authority or remain guarded.
It's just her without pretense, enjoying this secret pleasure of hers, and the sight, in all its simplicity, is breathtaking.
He wants to stay locked in this moment forever, commit this image to memory permanently, but Jane realizes quickly that he can't possibly catalogue every freeze frame of Lisbon that he finds striking.
His mind only has so much room.
So instead of lingering in the shadows, he slips outside, a bit unprepared for the cold that rushes through him, seeping through the cracks of the expensive thread he wears, but also reawakening all his senses as he realizes he's caught her attention.
Lisbon gives him a questioning stare, eyes falling on the blanket, but she doesn't say anything, simply turns around and looks back out.
The CBI parking lot is illuminated by several lamps, and one of them is positioned close to the entrance.
It emphasizes her features; green eyes accentuated in the otherwise dark surroundings, her pale skin is almost translucent and he aches to reach out, run his hand through her unruly waves.
He's always wondered what they would feel like sifting through his fingers.
Jane imagines it would be something as soft as silk, thick like wool, and equally comforting to the touch.
"Thought you'd gone home by now. Afraid of the storm?" he approaches her, standing almost shoulder to shoulder but she doesn't look at him, eyes trained on the parking lot.
"No, just enjoying the view." She replies succinctly.
He expects her to put that wall back up again as soon as he speaks to her, but is surprised to find that she's just as relaxed as before, an air of calm about her that's rarely ever exposed.
"You must think I'm crazy." Lisbon adds, interrupting his train of thought.
"Why would I?"
His tone is softer than he anticipated, but the urge to pull her closer, bury his nose in her hair, and confirm that she smells just like the blanket she left for him, is so overpowering, Jane can't really control his voice.
A part of him hopes Lisbon doesn't notice, but another one secretly wishes that she would.
She's undoubtedly the stronger of them two and if she would just know how he feels (though he's not entirely sure himself), maybe she'd push them forward, be the one to take the step towards something more.
He knows it's deeply unfair and selfish of him to yearn for these things, but he can't stop the desire that engulfs him every time he's near her, not anymore than he can offset the apprehension that follows.
"Because I don't find the rain off putting like most people do." Lisbon answers, breaking through his reverie yet again.
"So what?" Jane replies, unlikely courage seeping in along with the warmth radiating from Lisbon's body as she stands so close to him.
She still hasn't looked at him and he's determined to change that.
"I think it takes a special type of person, one with the kindest heart, to appreciate the beauty in the unlikeliest, most unattractive things."
His voice is barely audible, but the words resonate deep within her. Jane can sense the second they strike a chord, because she looks over at him with an intensity even he's not prepared for.
Lisbon stares at him for a few moments, big emerald eyes trying to figure him out, search out the meaning behind his words, or perhaps confirm what she already knows.
She doesn't even realize she's turned her entire body to face him, until she feels the heat of his breath on her cheek, can make out the dark contrast of his buttons against the blue vest he wears.
"Rain isn't exactly unlikely, Jane."
She almost smiles, trying to lighten the mood, divert the topic elsewhere, but Jane refuses to back down, eyes challenging her as he fixes her with a pointed stare.
He takes a step forward and though she flinches, it's only slight and he sees the fear in her eyes. But he also sees the spark of attraction, possible exhilaration, and it's enough for him to make the final move, hand reaching up slowly to bury itself in her hair, shuddering as the chocolate strands slip through his fingers.
It's just like he imagined.
Lisbon can't move, even if she wants to. Her body feels like it's simultaneously burning and numb. She can't feel anything except the warmth spreading from Jane's hold on her.
"I wasn't talking about the rain," he whispers, but Lisbon feels his words against her lips instead of just hearing them, and when she realizes he knows exactly how she feels and identifies reciprocation in his sea colored gaze, all she can do is slide her hands up his vest and let him kiss her.
Its cold all around, the gust of wind is powerful, but that's not why Lisbon trembles.
She doesn't shudder from the chill around her, but instead from the verve she feels as Jane explores her mouth.
She's stunned by the softness of his lips, the tenderness of his hold on her; she can barely move, but it's only temporary, because as soon as she feels his tongue trace her lower lip, her senses are awakened.
The spark goes off and Lisbon finds herself reciprocating hungrily, arms finding themselves around Jane's shoulders, marveling at the smooth fabric of his suit, as he walks them back against a pillar. She can't suppress a moan as the hard length of his body presses against her, shielding her from the violent wind and whipping cold around them.
Jane doesn't know how long they stand there, mouths fused together as he embraces Lisbon tightly.
He wants so desperately to explore her body, trace the curve of her hip through her shirt, and run his lips across her cheeks and neck, because he can't get enough of her, enough of her scent, of her taste, of her warmth heating him from the inside.
It's been so long since he's been close to another woman, especially this close, but he knows deep down inside that even if it weren't for the time spent celibate, kissing Lisbon would still be just as explosive.
The wind howls around them, threatening to chill her to the bone, but Lisbon doesn't feel an inch of cold. In fact her entire body is on fire, reverberating with energy, spindles of pleasure coursing through her veins, igniting sensations that she hasn't experienced in too long.
She's not sure how much time passes; it feels like hours, but she still misses his lips as soon as they part.
Their heavy breaths subside and Lisbon suddenly overwhelmed with uncertainty. She knows Jane feels it too as the question hangs over them both, each silently contemplating what to do next.
The strike of lightening breaks the tension between them but they don't look away from each other.
Startled green fixed on dazed blue as they try to get their frantic hearts under control.
Finally, her impatient nature prompts Lisbon to speak.
"Where were you going in this weather?" She asks and the motherly intonation in her voice makes Jane smile.
"Out for a drive," He replies, and is internally pleased when the expected reaction of a frown and an incredulous stare grace Lisbon's features.
It's good to know that some things never change.
"You're nuts," She declares, but there's a playful smile on her face, her dimple making its second appearance of the day, and Jane feels oddly elated that he has the freedom to reach over and trace it with his thumb.
If Lisbon is surprised by his action, she hides it well, or maybe in this pleasurable haze, Jane doesn't notice it. He's too transfixed by the beauty in front of him to care for anything else.
"C'mon," she pulls him by the sleeve of his suit, "you're officially invited over for a really late dinner; I'm starved."
For a moment, Jane wonders if this is just too easy.
If there's some punch line that he missed, because he's learned the hard way that most good things that happen in life come with a price.
But the lamp light illuminates Lisbon's face in just that certain way that makes her eyes sparkle, her lips glisten, and her skin glow. So, instead of dwelling on what might happen, whatever consequences may come from this, he grabs her hand and pulls her into the rain.
Despite her fondness for it, Lisbon shrieks and calls his name as he unexpectedly exposes them to the sharp pelts of water cascading from the dark sky, but after a few moments her disapproving sounds turn into laughter and before Jane knows it, he's laughing too.
They stop somewhere halfway between the car and the shelter of the veranda, rain soaking through layers of clothing, traveling down their faces, but neither seems to care.
At some point, Lisbon reaches up and places a chaste kiss on his lips, and as she shivers against him, Jane wraps the blanket around them both.
And suddenly, he's surrounded by the smell of cinnamon and rain.
And he too, finds himself appreciating the beauty in the unlikeliest of things…