Title: The Water Vapor Vexation
Pairing: Sheldon/Penny
Summary: It should have been easy. Sheldon ruins Penny's date, Penny ruins Sheldon's shower. Yes, it should have been very easy indeed.
Rating: M
Author's note: Based on a prompt I found while browsing the Paradox community. Prompt is posted at the end of the story.

Penny's foot kicked rhythmically against the foot of her couch, the heel of her black stiletto heel making a sharp click with each kick. A quick glance at the clock on her wall confirmed that her date was now officially thirty minutes late. Fifteen minutes past an acceptable grace period and fifteen minutes away from Penny creating a Facebook page warning all of the women in Pasadena to not date this apparent loser.

Penny could handle a lot of things; however, being stood up was not one of them.

"Come on," she muttered to herself, stealing another glance at the clock that was now mocking her as the seconds ticked by. It wasn't that she was particularly excited about this date, because really, she so wasn't. Sure, Steve was hot, and funny, and they had had an adorable meet-cute at the Krispy Kreme on the corner after one of her morning runs but she wasn't fooling herself. There was only one real reason she had given him her number and it had everything to do with the way his eyes had traveled up and down her body as he held the hand she had offered to him and nothing to do with any bullshit romantic feelings.

It had been three months and a handful of days since she had broken up with Leonard and she was stuck in the worst dry spell of her life. So yeah, when she met a guy that gave her that look and he asked for her phone number, she wasn't going to say no.

Of course, it hadn't helped that the day before she had met Steve she had spent an entire afternoon watching a Beverly Hills, 90210 marathon on SoapNet. Never mind Dylan and Brandon, she'd always had a thing for Steve Sanders, and well, after an entire afternoon of fantasizing about him, meeting someone named Steve seemed to be a sign.

So she'd said yes when he asked her out; knowing full well there wasn't anything more to this date then purely getting some.

Because Penny? She needed to get her some.

And now, as the minutes ticked by and still there was no knock on her door, Penny began to get pissed.

She hadn't put on her best fuck-me outfit for nothing.

She wasn't going down like this, oh hell no. She grabbed her phone off of the table and punched in Steve's number. He wasn't getting away with this.

"Where the hell are you?" Okay, not her greatest opening, but seriously, three month dry spell.

"I... Penny? Is that you?"

"Yes!" Her voice was exasperated. "How many other girls are you standing up tonight?"

"Whoa whoa, wait a minute." Steve sounded even more confused. "I didn't stand you up tonight, you had other plans."

"Other plans? What other plans?"

"Your date," Steve spit out, sounding bitter. "The guy who answered your phone."

"My date? The guy who answered my ph—sonofabitch!" Penny closed her eyes and pressed her fingers to the side of her head. "Steve, honey, that wasn't my date, that was my goddamn whackadoodle neighbor."

"He sounded like your date," Steve said defensively. "He definitely said it was Anything Can Happen Thursday and that you always spend Thursdays with him. Sounded like a date to me."

"He's not my date," Penny ground out again. She took a deep breath. "He's not. So, I'm really sorry for the confusion, but I'm all ready so if you want to meet up someplace I can-"

"I'm sorry Penny, I already made other plans."

Penny threw her phone across the room and swore as the back of it came off, skidding across the floor. She knew better than to do that, she really did.

She knew better than to leave Sheldon unattended in her living room while she finished getting ready for her date, but she still had done exactly that.

And now she was dateless. Her head swung to the left as she heard the door across the hallway open and close. She sprang to her feet in an instant.

She definitely wasn't going down without a fight.

"Where is he?" Penny's door slammed shut behind her as she sized up the three men standing before her. Of course he wasn't with them.

"Penny." Howard stepped forward, leering at her appreciatively. "You're looking particularly-"

"Save it." She held up her hand, but it was the glare on her face that silenced him effectively. "Where. Is. Sheldon?"

"He's inside," Leonard said quickly. "Anything Can Happen Thursday," he reminded her before she fixed her glare on him. "We're going to a bar and you know how Sheldon... He's inside," he said again. "We'll see you later!" They escaped down the stairwell, Raj turning and giving a slight wave before they disappeared altogether.

Penny didn't bother to knock. She flung the door open so hard that it nearly bounced back to hit her in the face. It only infuriated her more. "Sheldon, just what in the fresh hell did you think you were doing?" Her voice trailed off as she took in the empty apartment before her. Her eyes landed on his closed bedroom door and she smirked.

"No one can be in my room, Penny," she mocked in a high-pitched voice as she advanced on the room. Her hand was on the knob when she heard the sound of running water coming from the bathroom. Sheldon was in the shower.

"Even better," she muttered, slowly opening the bathroom door instead. A slow grin spread across her face as she contemplated her next move. So many options. She could flush the toilet, effectively causing his water to run scalding hot. She could steal his clothing and towels and force him to come out into the living room completely naked. She smirked. She could simply throw back the shower curtain and scare the living crap out of him. Her brow furrowed as she realized he hadn't heard her come in. Didn't he always claim to have superhero hearing or something like that? Surely he would have heard her screaming a few minutes ago wouldn't he – oh.

Oh. Penny's eyes widened as she heard an unmistakeable groan come from behind the shower curtain. She knew what that groan meant. She may not have heard it in awhile, but she damn well knew what it meant. Her eyes drifted back to the shower curtain but as the room was filling with steam, she wasn't able to see much of anything at all.

She should leave. She had to leave. Her brain was screaming at her to turn around and walk out that door but she could not make her feet move. Instead, she stood frozen in her spot listening to one of the most intimate moment possible.

She was supposed to be angry. Furious. Pissed off that he had ruined her date, but she was having a hard enough time just remembering that she was supposed to be on a date at the moment. All she knew was what was right in front of her.

And it was really, really hard to stay mad with that going on.

Leave. She had every intention of leaving this time but she heard his breath hitch in his throat and she gripped the doorknob tighter, leaning her head against the edge of the door as her eyes fell shut of their own accord. If she could overlooked the fact that it was Sheldon behind that curtain and focused only on what was actually happening, well, Penny could almost let herself be turned on by the situation. Her tongue darted out to moisten her lips and she swallowed hard. Almost.

Seriously, had it really been that long that the idea of Sheldon naked in a shower was turning her on? She heard another unmistakeable sound coming from behind the curtain and suddenly her heart was pounding in her ears. She tried to peer through the curtain but to no avail. Instead, she bit down on her lip again, hard, and found herself imagining how the man looked naked and wet. And hard.

Instantly, her cheeks reddened and her eyes snapped open. She shook her head, trying to clear it of the completely inappropriate thoughts that were flooding her mind. This was Sheldon, for crying out loud. Sheldon Cooper. The only thing he was jacking off to was bad Star Trek fanfiction written by a 15 year old. With another shake of her head, she turned to leave, this time for real.


Say what now? Penny's head swung right back around and she strained to see through periodic table of elements. Had she really just heard her own name? Her hand fell from the door and she took a tentative step forward.

"Oh, Penny."

Yeah, that was definitely her name. Interesting. Penny took yet another step forward. Sheldon still had no idea she was in the bathroom with him. She worried her lower lip between her teeth. What was going to be her next step? What was she going to do?

Clearly, she had two options. The most obvious one was to flee the guys' apartment, return to her own and take care of business, promising herself to never, never think of it again. Or...

Maybe it was the steam that drove her to move even closer. The sauna-like atmosphere was clouding her judgment, but she knew she couldn't blame that for the heat flooding through her body, pooling at her very core. There was nothing hotter than knowing a man wanted you and there was no doubt in Penny's mind that at this very second, Sheldon wanted her.

A man doesn't just moan your name for the hell of it. Least of all when he's standing naked in the shower.

Penny knelt down stealthily to unbuckle her shoes before stepping out of them. The tile felt cool against her bare feet as she crept to the very edge of the shower stall. She took a deep breath, knowing damn well she had one chance at this and that if she screwed it up, well, banishment from the apartment was going to be the least of her worries.

With a lick of her lips she simply acted, throwing open the shower curtain and stepping inside, still fully clothed. Sheldon spun around, sputtering in protest and shock at the sight of her as she stepped forward, holding two fingers to his lips.

"Shh," she whispered. His eyes were large and as they flickered toward the shower curtain she knew he was planning his escape. "Sheldon," she murmured, running her other hand over his chest as she pressed her body flush against his. She dropped her hand from his mouth, only to replace it with her own before he could say anything.

Her kiss did nothing to relax his stance but oh, she felt him rise against her. She backed him under the hot spray of the shower, soaking herself in the process. His back hit the tiled wall with a wet smack and she ran her tongue across the thin line of his lips until they parted under the pressure. She braced one of her hands against the wall next to them while the other ran down his side and over his hip before sliding back up over his ribcage, finally dipping down to where he still held himself in his own hand.

Penny's fingers laced with his and for a few impossibly long seconds she worked her hand with his. "What do I do?" she asked, her tongue darting out to trace the outline of his ear. "When you think about me, what am I doing?" She closed her eyes as Sheldon's fingers wrapped around hers, guiding her more insistently.

All too quickly, Sheldon came to his senses and dropped her hand, half-halfheartedly pushing her away. "We can't," he gasped. "You can't be in here, you shouldn't be in here, I -"

"Sweetie, don't think," she urged. "Just close you eyes." Her fingertips fluttered over his eyelids until he obliged. "And let go." She kissed him again, and was rewarded this time when his hand came up to the back of her head and pressed her toward him. "Tell me," she pleaded as she took him in her hand again. "What do I do?" Still, he refused to answer her and she again forced her tongue into his mouth, kissing him with everything she had until he finally began to respond. Then she pulled away to trace her lips over a rivulet of water running over his shoulder and halfway down his chest. She felt, rather than heard, his sharp intake of breath and moved to trace another stream of water, this time from the tips of his fingers to his shoulder. She nipped at the base of his neck, her hand never slowing. "Show me."

With a strangled grunt, Sheldon finally moved. His hands hovered for a moment over her shoulders before closing around them. His fingers dug into her and he pushed her down.

Penny blinked back the shock of tears that sprang to her eyes as her bare knees hit the ceramic hard but she quickly forgot the pain as she realized Sheldon was no different than any other red-blooded American male. This, she could do. This she could do well indeed.

Sheldon seemed to realize in the same moment the result of his actions and he tried to pull her back to her feet as he apologized. "I'm sorry," he gasped. "I didn't mean for-" His apology was forgotten as she ran her fingers from his feet up his calves to rest on his thighs. She bent forward, taking just the tip of him into her mouth. She flicked her tongue against the head and looked up at him innocently. "Is that what I do?" she asked sweetly. She bent forward again, taking a little more of him into her mouth. Again, she paused and raised her eyes to him. She was relentless in her teasing, repeating these same two actions over and over until finally, she had taken him completely in.

Sheldon let out a breath he didn't realize he was holding. He tried to tell himself that this wasn't happening. There had to be another explanation for this, possibly heatstroke induced hallucinations. There was no way that Penny was here, in his shower, doing things to him with her extraordinary mouth that he had only dreamed of. Still, he looked down at her through lidded eyes, taking in the sight before him. Penny, her red dress plastered to her body was on her knees for him. The image was more intoxicating than anything he had ever fantasized about.

Still, he needed more. His hand fell to the top of her head, tangling in the wet strands and pulling gently. She looked up at him again with wide eyes and in that moment he didn't care if this was real or fantasy. He helped her back up to her feet and swiftly turned them so she was now against the wall. He reached behind her, fumbling for the zipper of her dress until she giggled and moved his hands to her side. One flick of his wrist and one shimmy of her waist and the dress pooled at their feet. The matching bra and panty set quickly followed. Sheldon reached up and diverted the spray of the water from their faces before leaning in and claiming her mouth once more.

This time it was Penny who moaned first. She had spent a lot of time staring at Sheldon's mouth as he lectured her on things she didn't really care about, but never had she anticipated just how exemplary his oral skills really were. Sheldon kissed her exactly as a man should, exactly how she wished a man would, and how so few actually did. He was possessive and greedy and, as the buckling of her knees told her, he worshiped her mouth. Naturally, she wondered just how well those oral skills could serve her in other areas, but now wasn't the time to find out. No, this was Sheldon's fantasy, not hers.

She gasped when she felt him pushing, hard and hot, at her entrance. So this was really happening. At this point she wasn't sure who needed it to happen more, but she'd be damned if anything happened to stop it. She raised her left leg to curve around his thigh and was pleased when he dropped his hands to her legs, picking her up effortlessly and pressing her back deeper into the wall.

At this angle, it was impossible to not slide down onto him and so that's exactly what she did. They both moaned at the contact this time. His hands gripped at her hips and she linked her ankles behind his back, pulling him in even deeper.

It was a little awkward as they tried to find a pace that was pleasing enough for the both of them; but if Penny noticed, she never brought it to his attention. She met his thrusts eagerly with her own, silently guiding him into an easy rhythm. Not so silently, she voiced her pleasure to him, urging him on.

If Sheldon heard her, he didn't let on. He was too busy trying in vain to lap up every drop of water that danced across her body. From her neck to her shoulders and down the swell of her breasts, he claimed every inch of bare skin with his mouth that he could.

The combined assault of his mouth on her and him inside of her was having its desired affect on Penny, and all too soon she felt herself tightening around him. "Sheldon, I...I'm... oh." She tripped over her words, finally realizing that this was still Sheldonthat was making her head spin.

This time, he did acknowledge her. He buried his face in her neck as he increased the pace of his thrusts, pistoning in and out of her hard and fast, the way he imagined she liked it. The sound of wet skin against wet skin coupled with the intensity of her muscles clenching around him was almost too much for him and soon his groans mingled with her cries in the confined space, echoing around them.

The water, which had long run cool brought Penny back to her senses first. It took every bit of energy she had to open her eyes as she slid down his body to stand on her own feet again. Without a word, she reached over and turned the shower off altogether, snapping Sheldon back into reality at the same time. For a long moment they stood there and stared at each other, neither saying a word, both unsure of what either of them could even say at this point. Finally, Penny shivered and Sheldon reacted, reaching past the shower curtain to retrieve a towel, which he wrapped firmly around her before stepping out of the shower completely and grabbing one for himself.

"Thanks," Penny mumbled as she took the hand he offered her to climb out of the shower. All of a sudden she couldn't look at him. She drew the towel tighter around her body before bending down to gather up her clothing.

Sheldon stopped her before they left the bathroom. "Why?" he asked simply, an eyebrow quirked.

She opened and shut her mouth a few times, unable to come up with an answer. Finally she shrugged and gave him a small smile. "Don't ever ruin one of my dates ever again," she said, her voice not quite making it the threat she had intended it to be when she first stepped foot in the apartment. Penny stared at him for another long moment before becoming uncomfortable under the intensity of his own stare. She offered him another smile and nodded her head before she slipped out of his apartment and fled to her own.

Sheldon smirked at the closing door before turning to head back into the bathroom. As he finished drying off and redressing, he noticed that Penny had left her shoes lying on the floor. He made a mental note to return them to her later that evening, perhaps after she'd had some time to reflect on things.

He couldn't help but smile as he himself gave serious thought to what had just transpired. He couldn't have planned it any better than if he had actually tried.

Earlier that afternoon...

"But Penny," he whined, ignoring the fact that she clearly had other plans lined up for the evening. "Leonard and Howard are insistent on this insipid bar night and you know I don't care for that."

"Not my problem, Sheldon," she snapped, disappearing into the bathroom to turn on the shower. She was already running late as it was. "I told you, I have a date tonight, and I'm sorry, but I'm not going to cancel it to hang out with you and watch crappy some crappy sci-fi marathon."

"But you never complained about it before," he insisted stubbornly. He averted his eyes as she began to undress in front of him, seemingly oblivious to the fact that he was standing right there. Her tank top and shorts fell to the side before she wrapped the skimpy robe around herself, tying it loosely at the waist.

"Well consider this me complaining," she said as she stepped back into the living room. She sighed and walked over to him, placing a hand on his shoulder. "I"m sorry Sweetie, but like I said, I have a date tonight. You're going to have to just spend the night on your own. You like that, remember?" She raised her hands to twist her hair into a knot on the top of her head and this time he didn't bother to turn his gaze away as the robe gaped dangerously close to her chest.

She smiled sympathetically, not noticing the look on his face or that she was exposed to him. "I'm really sorry," she said again. "I need to get ready for my date." She nodded toward the running shower. She kissed him quickly on the cheek before he could argue and turned toward her bathroom again. "Try and have a good night, Sheldon." She stepped into the steamy room and gave him a quick wave before shutting the door with a click. He swallowed as he heard the shower curtain being pulled back and the unmistakeable sound of water hitting her body. Maybe a night alone wouldn't be so bad at all, he thought to himself as he felt the beginnings of arousal stir.

He was about to leave the apartment when her cell phone rang and he answered it. Some guy named Steve, who didn't sound particularly happy with the fact that another guy had answered Penny's phone.

"It's Anything Can Happen Thursday," Sheldon said accusingly before he could stop himself. "Penny always spends Thursdays with me." This Steve had hung up before he could explain how the night had effectively been ruined so Sheldon just shrugged and set the phone down on the table before letting himself out, sparing one last longing look at the bathroom door.

Sheldon smirked again as he crossed the hallway later that evening, Penny's shoes in hand. He had to admit, he was sufficiently pleased with the ramifications of his seemingly innocent mistake regarding the phone call. Granted, he wasn't sure how his blonde neighbor was handling these recent events but he couldn't keep the smile off of his face as he raised his hand to knock on her door.

Anything Can Happen Thursday indeed.

original prompt: From Arabian: Okay, this one's a bit detailed: Post L/P break-up by a few months at least. Penny is getting ready for a date, Sheldon comes by, and winds up answering her phone for her because she's getting ready in her bedroom. Sheldon says something that unintentionally makes the guy think Penny isn't available, and so doesn't show up. When Penny calls him, she finds out that Sheldon scared him off. She heads over to Sheldon's, furious with him, just as the other boys are leaving (Anything-can-happen Thursday). They see how mad she is and take off. Penny marches into the apartment, calling for Sheldon. He doesn't hear her because he's taking a shower; she marches right in and stops cold ... because he's masturbating, she's shocked, slightly curious, and then turns to leave. As she does, she hears him say her name