Now a very original name, I know, but I just couldn't think of how to sum up this fic. A one shot I wrote in an hour, and didn't bother to re-read. Review it please, and I'll be your friend.
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Filing cabinets, Honesty and Stew
There was one thing that always made me go back to him; it wasn't love (or at least, I told myself, nothing close to what I associated love with). It wasn't even his company, yet I enjoyed it nonetheless. It wasn't the fact that he was well-off, and that we enjoyed many casual dinners in restaurants I could only previously drool over, nor was it because he could cook almost as well as any chef, whose food I had eaten.
It was the way he made me feel. The happiness, the contentment aside, I'm talking about that primitive urge, almost like a magnetic pull in the pit of my stomach, the way he could single handedly (quite literally) make every cell of my body feel vibrant, and alive.
If I'm not careful, I can spend all day thinking about it, looking forward to our next meeting.
I'm talking about sex.
Crude? Go ahead- think what you want. After a life like mine, simple things like a nice home cooked meal, a 9-5 routine and good, hard sex at the end of a date are treasures.
Cloud had remarked on the difference in my demeanour more than once, though the last time, I'd subjected him to a blistering stare, and that had sealed his lips in front of his unwanted probing questions for good. What I had, it was mine, and I didn't want to tarnish it by sharing it, even just verbally, with anyone else. I wasn't ashamed, nor was I shy. In fact, I was quite the opposite. I just wanted something that was mine, and something that I was totally in control of.
And boy, when I took control, he liked it fair enough.
I'm talking about Reeve. Surprised? I suppose if I could time travel and tell my past-self who I'd end up sleeping with, I would have been surprised, too. The straight-laced Reeve? Oh yes, the very same one who controlled Cait Sith, whose face I'd seen for the first time, only once the shadow of Meteor was gone. The quiet guy, who chewed his lip when he didn't know what to say, and who liked to know what he was having for breakfast several days in advance. The Reeve who barely existed out of his uniform, except for the times I would persuade him out of it (not a hard task, I soon noted).
My mother, in one of her more lucid moments, had warned me about the quiet types, with a warm, mischievous glance up at my Dad. It wasn't until my first night with Reeve that I knew exactly what it was she was warning me against.
When we had stumbled in through his front door that night, all clattering of keys and flurries of fabric as we tried to wrestle out of our coats, I had expected him to be… considerably tamer that the Reeve that I found, waiting to be unleashed. I had expected lingering, gentle caresses, had anticipated a more cautious approach, considering it was out first night. Not that I wouldn't have been satisfied with that, but still… Quite, literally, we ravaged each other.
There was a moment when I thought I might have bitten down a little too hard on his shoulder, yet fingertips gripping my hips hard enough to leave bruises told me otherwise. After that first week, I wasn't able to sit for days; not without a wince at least. I had bruises all over, purple and blue stippling along the outside of my thighs, dotted across my back and shoulders.
It died off, the savagery I mean, yet still I found my appetite just couldn't be kept at bay for long. I even went to his office once, wearing a long coat, and not much else besides, and he'd coughed a little, shutting the blind at his office door, and locking it before taking me against the filing cabinets. The damn handles left reddened impressions in my back, framed squarely by the perfect imprint of screws. It made me laugh when I spotted it in the mirror later that day.
So the quiet guy had something to prove. I guess his pent up aggression and frustration had to be released in one way or another. I wasn't going to be the one to complain, though.
I'm sat in his kitchen, though he isn't at home right now. We've been dating only a couple of months, yet he gave me a copy of his apartment key over a week ago. I suppose he wondered just how often I would use it, to beat him home. Behind me, the oven is humming away, cooking the stew I had bunged in there hours before. If he came home on time, the meat would be tender, and perhaps that wax candle won't have melted too much. Maybe I should have held off lighting it for a little while…
But then I hear his key in the lock, followed the familiar clang of his keys landing into that glass bowl he kept by the door for that purpose. I realise I am smiling like an idiot, almost nervous for once. Who am I kidding? Nothing I could do would surprise him, no doubt. Not after everything we've been getting up to.
"Ah, I wondered if you'd be here, there could only be one person who smelled that good." He looks exhausted, yet happy to see me, kicking off his shoes en-route across the living room. He stops when he reaches me, sliding his hands around my waist and kissing my forehead.
"That would be the stew, dear," I giggle into his shirt, pressing my face against the soft cotton, saturated with his scent.
"Ah. Of course. I did think it was a little beefier than usual." His laughter is a vibration against me, our bodies flush.
"Than usual?" I prod him in the chest, feigning disapproval. He doesn't take me on though, releasing me partially to lean around me for the wine stood innocently on the countertop.
"Is there some occasion I am unaware of?" He narrows his rich brown eyes. "Haven't we been dating for three months or something?"
"I thought you'd forgotten!" I roll my eyes at him, detaching myself to get plates out of the cupboard. He watches me bustle around in his kitchen, leaning heavily against the fridge, a soft smile playing on his lips.
"So you thought you would cook, for a change. How nice of you."
"I wanted to let you know I appreciate you," I admit, as nonchalantly as I can manage, manoeuvring him out of the way so I can access condiments in the refrigerator. To be honest, I was feeling a little guilty; just something Reno said, about me becoming a kept woman. I didn't want him to think I was just dating him for his money, or for the fact that his apartment was about a hundred times flashier than mine. I wanted him to see I cared, though I was perhaps avoiding letting on too much.
I was trying to keep the relationship carefree, and if I was honest, attachment-free. I'd told myself I wouldn't let myself get too involved; that way, I wouldn't get hurt. Things were so easy with Reeve, though. He made me laugh, he knew how to make me smile, how to forget my daily worries- not to mention he knew how to make me… do other things.
"Has Reno been talking, again? I tell him not to- he only makes himself look stupid." we both laugh, though I think he knows right away that mine is partially manufactured. Taking the plates from my hands so I have nothing to busy myself with, he tilts my face up, so I can no longer avoid his gaze. I almost melt immediately, though my heart rate quickens. "He's been yanking my leg all day, trying to worm information out of me about… certain aspects of our relationship," the corners of his mouth quirk at this, though the fondness in his eyes remains, turning my knees to jelly. "But that's not important to anyone else, right?"
"I didn't-" I start to tell him. I want to explain everything; how much of an idiot I have been, how I don't want to hurt him because of my own stupid reasons, but he cuts me off with a kiss before I can continue, silencing me feeble attempts at spilling my secrets. I chastise myself for my weakness- I should pull away, press my palms firmly against, his chest and just push, look him in the eyes and tell him: But I can't.
The way he is kissing me pushes all thoughts from my mind; the gentle nipping and tugging at my bottom lip, the way he is tenderly tracing shapes across the exposed portion of my lower back turns me into putty in his hands.
"Reeve…" I find strength from somewhere, taking the opportunity when he breaks the kiss to move to my jaw line to speak. Something in my voice must have sounded off to him, and he stops immediately, a gentle frown creasing his forehead. I want to reach up and smooth out the lines, but I can't move my hands. "We… I shouldn't… Reno is right. I'm just using you."
"What makes you think that?" He sounds a little hurt, if I dare to listen carefully enough. I stare at his shirt buttons, innocently white and gleaming.
"You deserve more than just… sex." I manage to stammer, amazed at my capacity to blush at such a time. His barking laugh deepens the red in my cheeks.
"Is that what this is about? Tifa…" He draws me close again, though he somehow manages to create a respectful gap between us. "I don't mean this to sound so abrupt, but It's alright if you aren't looking for anything serious. I have my business, you have yours, and… I realise that you have been hurt before. It's ok to want something just because… You want something. If you are guilty, then I am guilty also, for wanting the same."
I laugh a little, suddenly flooded with affection for the man stood before me. How could he know all of that? "But what if… One of us changes our mind, has a change of heart? Someone might get hurt."
He considers me, dissecting all of the tiny flaws in the expression I had hurriedly assembled ,with those deep brown eyes that threatened to undo the stitches. "Isn't that the risk you take, when you start dating someone?" He says finally, brushing back my hair with gentle hands. They rest on my shoulders.
"I didn't think of it that way," I admit, giving a breathy laugh that sounded somewhat relieved. "I guess I just… despite everything I told myself at the beginning, about what I wanted for myself… It's…"
"It's changed." He considers me, running a hand through his hair slowly.
"Yes," I pick at my nails, hiding behind my hair. My world in my vision is all shade and random shapes of light, breaking through the gaps in the curtain of my tresses, and I am grateful that he leaves me alone within it for a moment. The silence is punctuated by his breathing, and I almost start when me moved again, taking my face firmly in his hands and kissing me with gentle urgency until my lips, previously pulled into a thin line, become pliant once more beneath his, melted like butter near a flame.
This is the moment I had expected, or should I say, the Reeve I had expected on that first night. Perhaps my brain, plugged with imprints of movies and scenes cuts from romance novels, was expecting the first time to be like it was in the media world. I realised that only now that something had changed, now that I had somehow crossed a barrier between us, was Reeve like the man I had expected him to be.
Before I know it, we are in the bedroom, my back against the door as he closes it. The wood is cool against my spine as my shirt is lifted away, tentative hands skirting my body. HIs tongue is sliding deliciously over mine, and my head feels totally empty, coming to rest with a thud against the sturdy door at my back, as his lips move to my exposed throat.
We make love, and though that thrill, that excitement of all out previous encounters is absent, it is replaced instead with something wholly different; It is warm, and it spread through me, like vines of ivy, the tendrils spreading from my chest and enveloping my form in a buzzing electrical warmth. When I orgasm, the waves are slower, more sustained, and I ride them blissfully, his name a sigh on my breath. We lie in the dark, his body weight pinning me to the mattress beneath, just breathing, neither one of us daring to break the thick, heavy, wonderful quiet than envelops us.
Though as sentience returns to me, I curse.
"What?" He props himself up on his elbow to stare down at me, giving my some relief at least from the extra burden.
"The stew is going to be ruined." I note that we have been making love for an hour. Definitely overcooked.
"Hm. There'll be other stews." He buries his face in my neck, and I laugh as the air escaping his nose tickles me.
"But I was so intent on proving to you that I can cook," I pout, resting my cheek against his hair.
"Well, you've certainly proved something," He shifts onto his back, taking me into his arms and against the warmth his chest. "You've been honest. That's something, right?"
"I guess so," I am still angry with myself, for ruining a perfectly good meal.
"There's always Luigi's. It shouldn't be too busy if we get ready to go now," He picks up his watch from the bedside, reading the dial in the gloom.
"Why don't you just marry Luigi, if you like his fucking cooking so much," I scramble out of the tangle of sheets and try to find my clothes, scattered amidst unfamiliar garments, across the dark of his bedroom floor.
"But Luigi won't have sex with me. Not that I want him to; Have you ever seen the guy? Enormous!"
So we dress, and exit his apartment, my arm through his as we traverse the streets of Edge, a normal couple amidst the ebb and flow of faces. We laugh together over a bowl of pasta and a good bottle of wine, and we spend the rest of the evening watching movies in my apartment, and the night in-between the sheets of my own bed.
What kept me coming back to him, I thought, as I watched him sleeping, the moonlight filtering in through my barely adequate curtains illuminating his features, was the way he made me feel.
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Reviews are a near extinct phenomenon- I'm thinking that perhaps I might stop posting new stuff. It gets pointless after a while, I guess.