There are certain people to blame for this fic… they know who they are. They are incorrigible and clearly want me to be a full-time procrastinator who does no work at all :P

Disclaimer: As much as I'd like to lay claim to these two… I can't.

Vanilla

Gillian Foster unscrewed the tub she held in her wet hands, the smell instantly hitting the air. She inhaled deeply, taking in the heady vanilla scent. Heavenly. She'd decided to treat herself to a few new pampering products on her way home from work, and couldn't resist the allure of a tub of vanilla sugar body scrub, which not only promised a delicious scent that would linger on the skin for hours, but would also leave her body "soft, smooth and supple." She stuck her fingers into the tub, scooping up some of the grainy substance and rubbing it between her fingers. She began stroking it over her arms, the aroma causing her to close her eyes as she rubbed the scrub gently into her shoulders and across her chest. She then returned her fingers to the tub, taking another handful and spreading it down her legs, rubbing it in before allowing her legs to sink back under the cloudy water. She rested her head back, letting her arms drop slightly, and enjoyed the moment of sheer, blissful calm.

"Foster! Oi, Foster! Open up!" Her head jolted up at the sound of Cal's voice and the incessant banging on her front door. "It's an emergency!"

There was an urgency in his voice which startled her from her reverie, and she stood up quickly, grabbing her towel and wrapping it loosely around herself, then slipped on her bath robe. She was still tying the sash as she hurried down the stairs.

"Cal?" She opened the door, both their faces registering surprise at the same time. His eyes drank in the sight of her in her robe, barefoot and dripping wet, while her eyes zoomed in on the boxes of take-out food he was holding. "It's an emergency, so you brought food?"

"Oh. Yeah." He pushed past her, calling over his shoulder, "the boxes were really hot, burning my bloody hands, so I needed you to open the door quickly."

"That's your emergency?" she asked incredulously, shutting the door and following him inside. "I leapt out of the best bath I've had in months so you didn't burn your hands on a carton of take-out that you could have just put down on the ground?"

"Well, I could have… but I was afraid I'd drop it. A bath, you say?"

"Yes, Cal, a bath," she said, irritated. "What, you think I always walk around the house in a towel and robe, dripping water all over the place?"

"I can imagine it. If I try hard enough." He grinned at her, and she felt some of her resolve crumbling. "Food?" He gestured to the boxes that he'd placed on the kitchen table. "I ordered for myself and Em, but she got a better offer last minute and ditched me, so…"

She rolled her eyes. "Get some plates, then. You know where they are."

He did as she asked, and Gillian attempted to subtly dry herself off a little with the towel underneath her robe. They walked to the sofa and sat down, and Gillian was just taking a bite of her food when Cal said, "Er, Foster… what's that?"

"What?" She swallowed, her eyes following his gaze to her leg, which still bore traces of her body scrub. "Oh. That. Well, before you so rudely interrupted me, I was in the middle of trying out my new vanilla sugar body scrub."

"Vanilla sugar body scrub," he repeated slowly, testing the words on his tongue, and she nodded. "Sounds… interesting."

"It's to keep your skin nice and soft," she explained.

"Trust you to have a body scrub with sugar in it," he laughed, and she couldn't help succumbing to a little smile.

Suddenly he leant towards her, and she jumped back a little in surprise. He sniffed. "I can smell it."

"Congratulations, Dr Lightman, your sense of smell is intact," she said dryly.

"You know… I've always liked the smell of vanilla."

"Have you?" She didn't even look at him as she spoke, instead choosing to take another bite of food, her focus directed to her plate. She didn't see his darkened eyes, or the fact that since he'd noticed the remnants of body scrub on her leg, he couldn't seem to stop staring at it.

"Yeah," he said quietly. "And I like sugar."

She laughed. "No you don't."

"I like some types of sugar," he said defensively, and she looked up at him. "I like vanilla sugar body scrub," he added, and she raised an eyebrow at him.

"Tried it, have you?"

"No. But I wouldn't mind."

She laughed, shaking her head lightly. "I'm sure our clients would love to meet you when you smell of vanilla."

He joined in her laughter, but there was an added intensity to his gaze, and Gillian quickly swallowed her mouthful and leant forward to put her plate on the table. "Speaking of vanilla sugar body scrub, I'd better go and wash the rest of it off."

"That'll… wash off the smell, will it?"

"What?" She couldn't help giggling. "What kind of a question is that?"

"A scientific one. Sort of."

"No it's not." She giggled again. "Why do you ask?"

"I like the smell of vanilla, okay?" He shrugged. "It happens to be my favourite scent. It's sweet, but sexy. Bit like you, really."

She averted her eyes with a shy smile. "Well… according to the product description, the smell lingers for hours, so…"

"So even if you do go and wash it off, I'll still be able to smell you all night?"

She lifted her eyes at his words, and he grinned. "Generally speaking, I mean. Not specifically."

She forced a quick smile and stood up. "I'll be right back."

He nodded, then watched as she scurried out the room, the smile returning to his lips as he took in her flushed cheeks and fluttering hand.

###

Gillian swirled her hand in the now-cold water, sighing as she pulled the plug and watched her evening's planned relaxation swirl down the plughole. But there was something else, mingling with her disappointment, almost overriding it. She thought about it as she turned on the shower, as she tested the water, as she de-robed, tossed her towel on the floor and stepped into the cubicle. She thought about it as she rinsed the vanilla sugar body scrub off her body, as she turned the shower off and stepped out, as she ran her towel over her body, noticing how much softer her skin felt. She thought about Cal's arrival, his comments that he wanted to try the body scrub, that he liked vanilla, that it was sweet and sexy. Like you. It was only when she'd finished drying herself off and was heading towards her bedroom to change that she identified the feeling. It was excitement.

###

The television was on when Gillian came downstairs almost fifteen minutes later. She hadn't planned to be so long, but – and she couldn't believe this was true of herself, but it was – she couldn't decide what to wear. Should she put on comfy pyjamas, as she'd intended after her bath? Or should she wear something a little… sexier? The inner conversation between those two parts of her brain had driven her crazy. Pyjamas, of course! Cal's your friend; nothing is going to happen. Sexy lingerie, of course! He was flirting with you! He won't keep that up if you go down there in your Snoopy PJs! But wearing sexy nightwear would just encourage him, and you don't want that… Yes you do. You do.

Eventually, she'd opted for something that she hoped fell somewhere in the middle; a nightdress that showed off her legs, but wasn't exactly classed as 'sexy lingerie', and her robe over the top. Still, it was miles away from her Snoopy pyjamas, which had been returned, neatly folded, to her chest of drawers. She saw his head swivel towards her as she approached, and tried to adopt a casual air as she flopped on the sofa next to him. "What are you watching?"

"Some documentary about monkeys on Animal Planet." She nodded, opening her mouth to ask him a question about it when the TV was abruptly switched off. "But I'd rather talk to you."

"Oh." She tried to hide her surprise. "Okay. What do you want to talk about?"

"Well… I reckon you owe me a detailed product review of that vanilla stuff. If I am going to try some myself, I need to know what I'm letting myself in for, don't I?"

She shifted to the side a little, feeling her cheeks growing hot. "What would you like to know?"

"Well… the smell, I know about. Still smells bloody gorgeous, by the way," he added. "But it leaves your skin feeling smooth and soft, you say?"

"Yes." She felt her blush intensifying, and fought to control it.

"Care to elaborate? I mean, just how soft are we talking?"

A few seconds passed, and then she lifted her leg and placed it over his lap, pulling back her robe to expose the bare flesh. "See for yourself. Or should I say, feel for yourself." She had no idea where this was coming from, why she was suddenly more daring and brazen than she'd ever been in her life, but it felt right, somehow. It felt like it was about time.

His touch was feather light at first; she felt herself start to tremble as his fingertips lightly brushed over the skin of her calf. "Very soft indeed," he murmured. His eyes found hers, seeking permission, and he must have seen it in her eyes because he slid his hand up further, over her thigh, grasping her a little more firmly as he stroked her with his thumb.

"Cal…" she breathed, the question implied in the very way she spoke his name. What are we doing?

He continued moving his hand across her delicate skin, then reached up with his other hand to lightly stroke her cheek. "Tell me to stop, and I will."

Her heart seemed to be thumping in her chest, she was still quivering at his touch, and the warm touch on her cheek felt so right. "I don't want you to stop," she said, knowing the moment her words hit the air how true they were.

"Once we start this… there's no rewind button," he warned, and she nodded. He looked at her, his dark eyes penetrating hers, and she couldn't take it anymore. She reached out for his neck, tugged him towards her and crashed her lips against his.

She felt him opening his mouth to her, his tongue beginning a desperate exploration of her mouth as she did the same. The passion was pouring out of her, she couldn't stop it – when was the last time she'd felt passion like this? She'd been married for ten years, and hadn't been with anyone since, and it was a long time since she'd felt such desperate need for a man. Everything about him, about this very moment, was intoxicating – after a few minutes of passionate kissing, she knew she needed more. She grappled with the buttons on his shirt, ripping it open and pushing it off his shoulders.

He pulled back to look at her. "You sure about this, love?" he murmured, his voice so full of concern, it only made her want him even more.

"Yes," she whispered, directing his mouth back to hers, and placing her hand on his. She guided him further up her leg, moaning when he took the hint and traced his finger over her through her underwear. She fumbled with her robe, pulling it off quickly and tossing it to the side, and he used his free hand to help her slide her nightdress over her head.

"You are bloody gorgeous, you know that?" he mumbled in appreciation, his teeth grazing over her throat, nipping at her neck and kissing his way over her collar bone. "Really, really bloody gorgeous."

"You're not too bad yourself," she smiled as he nuzzled her neck, and reached impatiently for his belt, desperate to rid him of the rest of his clothing. Seconds later his pants were on the floor, and she smiled at the sight of him. "You were telling the truth."

"What's that, love?"

"Briefs, not boxers," she explained with a smile. "You said that once."

"And you made a mental note of it, did you? Little minx," he teased, his hand sliding into her underwear and eliciting a moan that made him even harder. "Mmm. You really are soft, aren't you?" He dragged a finger up her length and back down, and she pushed herself into his hand, begging him for more. "This what you want, darling?" His voice was low and husky, and it ratcheted her arousal up even more.

"Yes… god…" She moaned even more loudly as he slid a finger into her, stroking her clit with his thumb. He kissed her fiercely, their chests pressed together, his other hand on her back, holding her close to him. She ran her hands down his spine, delighting in the shiver she elicited from him. Allowing her hands to travel lower she tugged at his briefs, and he shifted his position to allow her to push them over his hips. She dragged her lips from his, the disappointment at halting their kiss replaced with the thrill of seeing him fully naked in front of her. She looped her fingers through her own underwear and pushed them down. He took the hint and helped her drag the black lacy number from her, dropping them to the floor. She expected him to return his lips to hers, and gasped in pleasured surprise when instead she felt his tongue replace the work his hands had been doing. He lapped at her, savouring the taste of her as he slid his hands under her thighs to support her. "Cal…" She couldn't hold back another moan as he swirled his tongue over her clit before he began gently sucking on it. She felt her orgasm rushing towards her, but as much as she wanted it, there was something she wanted more. "Cal," she said, more insistently, and tugged at his hair, pulling him away from her.

"Yes?" He looked at her in surprise.

"Not that that's not… amazing…" She shot him a dazzling smile that damn near melted his heart, "but I want the first orgasm you give me to be when you're inside me. I want to bring you with me."

He smiled. "I understand, love." Settling himself over her, he guided himself into her while using his other hand to gently squeeze her breast, and she felt her breath catch again.

"God, Cal. You feel… incredible."

"So do you, love," he said as he continued moving inside her. "And you smell so damn good… I wasn't lying when I said I loved vanilla."

She laughed, but her laughter quickly became another breathy moan when he flicked out his tongue to lick her arm, swirling it lower, sucking her elbow then travelling further down her bare skin. He kissed her wrist before taking one of her fingers into his mouth. Every part of her felt like it was on fire, every sensation she was experiencing was so incredible; when was the last time she'd felt this connected to a lover? The last few times with Alec had been monotonous, almost laboured. It had been a long time since she'd felt such raw passion and need. Come to think of it, she'd never felt such raw passion and need as she did right now, with Cal inside her.

He didn't want to rush; this was too good a moment to hurry, he wanted to savour every moment of it, and he tried to slow the pace a little, determined not to come too soon. But the sight of her, this gorgeous woman he'd wanted for so long, thrusting her hips up in time with his movements, clutching at his arms, trailing her fingers over his tattoos, biting her lip… it was too much. He reached between them to rub her clit, and she bucked her hips, a cry erupting from her throat at the added pleasure. "Cal… I'm…"

He knew she was close, and his thrusts became more erratic as he struggled to hold on. As he watched her glowing face awash with pleasure he let himself go, the ecstasy overtaking every nerve in his body as he rode out his climax, a throaty cry escaping her as her orgasm peaked. Not wanting to crush her he leant back, pulling her towards him so they lay the other way on the sofa, arms and legs tangled together. They were both breathing heavily, and for a moment neither spoke. When they did, it was simultaneous, and both halted mid-sentence when they realised, before laughing.

"That was…"

"You are…"

He grinned at her. "After you, love."

She smiled, rubbing her hands lightly across his chest. "That was… amazing," she finished, and he planted a quick kiss on her lips, his fingers threaded through her hair.

"Yeah, it was," he murmured. "You are… incredible. I mean, I've always known you were incredible in a lot of ways, but until tonight I never knew you were that incredible."

She laughed, looking slightly embarrassed. "Well, you too. I mean, I always had a feeling you'd be… but, well. You know."

He looked at her with amused intrigue. "You always knew I'd be… what?"

She blushed. "Good in bed," she said at last, and he cocked an eyebrow at her.

"Oh yeah? How'd you know that?"

"Just a hunch, I guess." She laughed.

"Well, glad I could prove your theory correct." He gave her a cheeky grin, and she responded by kissing him again, collapsing onto him as he wrapped his arms around her.

"Mmm," he said when they eventually broke apart. "You still smell of vanilla."

She smiled. "Would you have seduced me tonight if I'd had a lavender bath instead?"

"Me? Excuse me Foster, but I think you'll find you were the one who seduced me."

"Oh really? Exhibit A – you came round this evening with food for us to share, conveniently having been abandoned by your daughter…"

"Which is something friends do," he countered. "Exhibit B – you answered the door soaking wet wearing a towel and a bath robe and still half covered in vanilla sugar body scrub."

"Because you were banging on the door and yelling that it was an emergency!" She shook her head. "Exhibit C – you told me you liked the smell of vanilla, and that it was sweet and sexy, like me."

"Which is the truth. What, I'm not allowed to speak the truth now without it being seen as an attempt at seduction?"

She smirked. "Admit it. You were the one who made the first move. Exhibit D – you were stroking my leg."

"Exhibit E – you put your leg on my lap and told me to feel for myself". He stuck his tongue out at her. "If that's not a come on, I don't know what is."

"Exhibit F – you said you wanted to know how soft that vanilla sugar body scrub had left my skin. If that's not a come on, then I don't know what is." She copied him in poking her tongue out, and he flicked his out to taste her before capturing her lips in another searing kiss.

"Care to come to an agreement?" he mumbled against her lips. "We both wanted it. We both got what we wanted."

"I can agree to that," she said with a smile. "But there are a few other things I want…"

"Oh yeah?" he asked, his eyebrows raised in question. "And what might those be?"

"Well, for one thing, I'd like to be able to apply my vanilla sugar body scrub properly, taking my time, and making sure I get every inch of my body."

His eyes lit up at her words. "I'm sure I can help you with that, love. Anything else?"

"Well, since you're so keen to try it out yourself, I wouldn't mind seeing how soft I can make you."

He grinned. "Well, you can make me hard love, we might as well have a shot at seeing if you can make me soft too."

She giggled. "Okay. I'll do my best."

"Since we're talking demands…"

"Those weren't demands! More… requests," she pointed out, and he grinned.

"Right, yeah, requests. Well, I have a request…"

"Yes?" She kissed him quickly before releasing his lips, waiting for his answer.

"I was rather enjoying the taste of you before we switched things." He slid his hand between them as he spoke, coating his fingers in her wetness as she rubbed herself against his hand. "And I'm glad we did as you suggested, don't get me wrong… but now I have given you our first orgasm together, perhaps we can move on?" He continued stroking her, feeling her writhe against him as he stoked her desire higher.

"Yes," she panted, and he sat up, moving her carefully so she was lying back on the sofa. When she felt his tongue make contact again, Gillian thought she might come right there and then. Determined to hold out for as long as possible to enjoy the exquisite pleasure his tongue and hands in unison were providing, she gripped the sofa cushion, curled her toes, fought to control her breathing. Alec had never really been one for oral sex, and although they'd done it a few times, it wasn't that good. But lying there, basking in the glorious delights of Cal's tongue, Gillian was almost glad her ex-husband hadn't been a knockout between the sheets – it made her encounters with Cal even more amazing.

She held out for as long as she could, but ultimately could take no more; her entire body was shaking and she squeezed his hand desperately, her other hand gripping the cushion, her eyes fluttering closed as her orgasm crashed over her.

He continued licking her, enjoying every moment of being able to bring this beautiful woman to climax. Eventually he withdrew, scooting up her body to softly kiss her lips.

"Incredible," she said, scratching her nails over his shoulder blades as she kissed him again.

"So are you." He ran his thumb over her bottom lip, his eyes so full of desire and love, it made her ache for him even more. And, she realised with a jolt, she wasn't just talking sexually. She wanted him; in her arms, in her bed, in her heart.

"Cal..." She was scared to say the words, scared she'd misread the signs and it wasn't love at all, not that kind of love anyway, or that he'd be scared, and not want to develop this into anything more than a physical relationship. Half an hour ago, she'd wanted nothing more than a passionate sexual affair, but suddenly that wasn't enough. One evening together, and already she was frighteningly addicted to the new dynamic between them; she was craving him just as much as his touch.

"I love you too," he said, the warmth in his eyes and smile causing her heart to flutter uncontrollably.

"You love me too?" She tried to give him her best confused expression. "I wasn't aware that I'd said I love you."

"Yeah you did." He gestured to her face. "Right there."

She smiled. "So I don't need to actually say the words?"

"Darling… I'd love it if you actually said the words."

She caught his face in her hands, tracing gently along his jaw. "I love you," she breathed, and tasted his reply in the kiss he answered her with.

"I love you," he said, kissing her neck, "and you know what else I love?"

"No, Cal, what else do you love?"

He pulled back to look in her eyes, and she saw the familiar gleam he always had when he had a plan. He grinned as he gave her his answer. "Vanilla."