She was getting old.
In actuality, Helen had been getting old for almost a century now, but this was the first time she had really felt it, really felt it in her bones. With the beating she had taken she shouldn't really be surprised she felt so awful, and for the first time since Ashley's death, she just wanted to crawl into bed and cry.
If she could get to her bed without collapsing first.
She was at least hoping she could get there without anyone seeing her. She didn't want to worry her staff, didn't want their concern, or any fuss.
When she made it into her room, she shut the door and fell to the floor.
She didn't know how long she sat there, legs straight, head down, chin on her chest, eyes closed. She ached, every muscle, her skin burned under her dirty torn clothes. When she heard the door handle rattling she wanted to move, to either get up or pull out her weapon but had the chance to do neither when Nikola Tesla came into her room and squatted down beside her.
"My God Helen," he said, reaching out to take her pulse when she opened her eyes to look at him. "I'll get some help."
She found enough energy to whip out her hand and grab his arm, stopping him from standing.
"Helen, you're bleeding," he said, an edge of panic in the man's voice that she couldn't recall hearing before.
"Please, leave me be."
"I can't," he said.
They stared at each other for a moment and she felt a tear fall down her dirty face.
"Then what?" he tried. "I won't leave you Helen, not like this."
"Close the door," she whispered.
He nodded, standing and closing her bedroom door. He then paused, looking down at her, as if he were trying to decide what to do and Helen dipped her head back down to close her eyes again.
"You can't stay down there all night Helen," he said, and when she looked up he was holding his hands out for her to take. He pulled her up to her feet, and she fell against him, making him smile.
"I knew you wanted my body Helen."
She didn't reply, couldn't, and he wasn't deterred by that. He pulled her over to her bed and let her drop onto it.
"Don't move," he ordered, as if she were able and he disappeared into her adjoining bathroom.
He came back out with her first aid kit, and a wet cloth. She sat docile as he wiped the dirt and blood from her face with gentle swipes. She wanted to cry again, she didn't want to be taken care of, she just wanted to be left alone to sleep. However, she could feel blood seeping through her jacket and trickling down her left calf, so maybe she needed patching up at least.
She ached so much.
"What happened?" he asked. "I can't believe you lost a fight Helen."
"It was a draw," she mumbled and he chuckled, moving to pull off her coat. He dropped it to the floor, and went straight to the buttons of her blouse.
Normally she would've warned him off, slapped his fingers away, but she remained still as he stripped her of her shirt. He took a step back hen, to admire her body and her wound.
"I've dreamt of this moment," he said, "but never of that."
With the wet cloth he washed away the dried blood, then cleaned the wound with some anti-septic and bandaged it. He put his palm on the wound, his fingers caressing her skin and she sighed, warming to Nikola's care and attention a little.
"Any more injuries?" he asked, letting go.
His hands went straight for the fastenings at her waist, and she lay back on the bed to make it easier for him. The grin on his face made her want to slap him but she was far too tired, and he was actually making her feel better. Slowly.
He pulled her trousers down and off and stepped back.
She felt a slight smile, and a blush, on her face, and he dropped to his knees beside her, cleaning and dressing the wound quickly and efficiently. It made her feel better to know she wasn't bleeding all over her bedroom any longer. Everything else ached though, and when she heard Nikola shift at her feet she hoped he was going to get her some painkillers.
Instead she felt him settle between her legs, pushing them apart, sliding his hands up her aching thighs.
"Nikola," she muttered, moving to sit up.
He placed a hand on her abdomen, pushing her down but not with any real pressure, and she relaxed back down again into her thick duvet.
"Just let me do this Helen, and I promise you will feel better."
"I better," she threatened, without any of the usual bite and he grinned, pulling her backside a little closer the edge of the bed. She sighed, then yawned. She still wanted to cry, but it had lessened a little, and as Nikola caressed her skin, she could feel what energy she had left pushing her hips up when he slipped his fingers into the silk of her underwear and pulled them off.
She heard a sigh, expected another comment, but he was unusually silent before she felt his mouth on her. She had enough energy to moan as his tongue caressed her, and grip the duvet in her fists when he sucked on her clit gently. He didn't tease, like she expected, and she had expected Nikola to tease. She had thought about this, more than once, but she had been in much better health and a much more active participant in her imagination. She wasn't even going to last long, Nikola was good, his lips and tongue felt perfect. She didn't really have the energy to last long, or for it to feel explosive, but then Nikola reached up with one hand, pulled down the silk cup of her black bra to scrape his still sharp nails over her nipple. She gasped, back arching again, and he pinched her nipple, sucking hard on her clit at the same time. It hurt to move her hips, but the need was growing, every move Nikola made was pushing her closer to something she suddenly needed badly.
She whimpered and from between her legs, Nikola lifted his head to speak.
"It's okay Helen," he told her, his voice softer than she had ever heard it, and she wanted to cry again. She felt two fingers pressing into her, fumbling for a moment, then finding that spot inside her that made her want to scream.
Except she didn't have the energy to scream.
When the pleasure collided and crashed within her she immediately burst into tears, sobbing and shaking and Nikola moved quickly onto the bed beside her.
"Wow, I am good," he said in a murmur, as if he couldn't quite help the comment but didn't completely want to say anything.
With more force than she felt she could really take, he pulled her legs up onto the bed, shifting her into the middle of the mattress. She as still crying, still shaking, every shiver hurting her sore muscles. She was barely aware of him lying next to her.
Much later, Helen woke up cold and curled up next Nikola Tesla.
She felt much better, no where near as sore as when she'd arrived home. The ache had lessened greatly, her head wasn't screaming, and she didn't want to cry any more. The blanket Nikola had thrown over them, thin and inadequate, was now just covering her feet.
She was a little confused. Partly because she wasn't appalled with herself, and, now Nikola was moral, he was quite warm and she was comfortable.
This was Nikola Tesla though, he was trouble and mistrust, not comfort and care.
He was lying on his back, still fully clothed, bar his tie which was draped over the bedside cabinet, and his feet were clad only in black cotton socks. In his sleep, he looked just as dangerous somehow, and she smiled at him, pulling the blanket up over them both, slipping her bra off and dropping it to the floor beside her.
She curled up closer to Nikola, wrapping an arm around him, closing her eyes and missing the grin on his face.