Author's note: Apologies for the delay. This somehow ended up much more smutty and lengthy than I originally intended. Also somewhat serious in parts, but it's hard for me to see Matt in character within a completely light piece at this time (before resolving his major mission in life).

Warning: Brief smut…nothing too explicit?

Anomalies always opened at the most inconvenient times...

Inevitably, he'd get the call while in the shower, or sitting down to the first solid meal he'd had in a week, or -his favourite- just as his head hit the pillow. But it was a necessary, immutable fact of Matt Anderson's life working for the ARC, and he had grown to accept it.

It did not, however, follow that he must like it.

And today, he near-hated it.

Matt awoke in quite a good mood. Of course, a lengthy cuddle with an attractive woman could do that to one. The only prospect more wonderful than it occurring again was to never have to let go of her in the first place. Except they had shifted apart in their sleep. He found Emily lying on her side, her back to him. Cozying up to the placid form, Matt wrapped his arms around her, spooning her close and burying his face in the brown curls falling loosely about her head and shoulders. After a moment enjoying the scent of her hair, he brushed the curls aside to place kisses along the alluring curve of her neck. She murmured, an incoherent but pleased sound.

His hand slid from her waist, down the front of her hip and further, past the hem of his shirt she wore, until it met the silken skin of her naked thigh. The contact sent a tingling rush through him, reawakening a long-repressed hunger. Emily gasped, she too apparently feeling the electricity of their skin meeting. He placed his other hand firmly against her chest, just below the warm swell of her breasts. Holding her firm, he unabashedly pressed his entire body into the length of hers, his arousal pressing into her back. There was a hiss of air as she inhaled sharply, followed by moans she struggled to confine to the back of her throat.

He ground his hips against her, groaning over the pleasurable sensation incurred by her proximity and warmth. Her skin was so soft, so sweet that he couldn't resist nibbling at her neck and shoulder. He found a mark he had left there the previous night and admired his handiwork briefly before placing a kiss upon it.

"Matt." She said his name in a shuddering, breathy voice. He growled, a deep and guttural response that bespoke the primal urges that had commandeered his body and he pressed further into her.

"Matt," she said more forcefully. It sounded like a protest and instantly snapped him out of his amorous attentions.

When had his hand worked the shirt up past her hip? He tugged the hem back down to cover her thigh, and loosened his hold on her, but didn't release her entirely from his embrace.

"I thought you said it was too early in our acquaintance to engage in this..." She made an appreciative murmur as he stroked the skin along her collarbone and kissed the sensitive spot behind her ear.

"...activity..." she concluded in a sigh, tilting her head and granting him access to her throat.

"I said that we hardly knew each other and probably shouldn't move too fast," he corrected between kisses, drawing out the conversation in an attempt to prolong his spooning of the woman.

"Is that not what I said?" she defended, her hand catching his as it roamed down her stomach, staying its journey just prior to its discovering someplace scandalously interesting.

"More or less," he conceded, releasing her a little more from his embrace.


"And... that was last night," he countered, quickly maneuvering her to lie supine beneath him. Kissing her full on the mouth, he could feel her hesitation melt as she responded by sucking on his bottom lip, her hands gripping his shoulders, her body arching up into him.

And then his mobile went off...

"Did you get that, Matt?" Jess asked.

"Not a word. Sorry," he apologized, realizing thoughts of Emily had entirely pulled his attention away from the task at hand.

The young woman began her spiel again, and he tried to concentrate on her words. Really, he did. Only, Emily was standing a few metres away, looking every bit the damsel in distress he knew she wasn't. Creatures she could handle. Feeling useless he knew annoyed her. And the chaos of this century sometimes seemed to throw her for a loop.

He frowned.

But Abby was approaching the lost woman. Hopefully, she'd sort Emily out until Matt could rejoin her.

Thinking Emily in safe hands, he turned back to Jess only to receive a severe 'headmistress' look from the girl. At this point, he'd definitely earned detention, if not a rap on the knuckles with a ruler. He gave her an apologetic look and with a hefty sigh, Jess began the task of trying to brief him yet again.

Only by pure force of will was Matt able to follow Jess' situation summation. He risked a brief glance in Emily's direction only to find that she had been cornered by Abby, Connor and, oddly, Becker. She was blushing and appeared moderately distressed by the presence of his team.

What had they...? The three miscreants fled.

"Thanks, Jess." Matt cut her off mid-sentence before he made his way in as nonchalant a manner as possible towards where Emily was stood looking bewildered.

"Coming?" he asked, unable to keep the smile completely from his lips. Her cheeks were still pink. Her eyes bright and fierce. A noticeable discoloration marred her otherwise untainted complexion at the base of her neck that she rubbed at self-consciously. So, that was the issue...

She glared at him. God, he loved her passion, even when it was fueled by anger and directed at his person.

Perhaps, he shouldn't have given her the love bite. He could say it had been an impulsive act, that he'd been carried away by the moment. However, that just wasn't the truth. He knew that he shouldn't let anyone at the ARC know about his involvement with Emily. He knew he shouldn't be getting involved with Emily at all. But he had been obedient for so long, for all his life. And there was a part of him desperate to rebel. His almost adolescent attraction to the woman didn't help suppress that desire any, either.

She played with the collar of his shirt she adorned, trying to hide the mark. A futile act, since she was not aware of its precise location. He felt a little guilty for embarrassing her.

Emily meant more to him than an adolescent infatuation, didn't she? He'd found women attractive before, lusted for a few. But he'd never felt this sort of connection, a connection that went beyond the physical. Or maybe he'd just never permitted himself feel it...

He studied Emily as she appeared to struggle through her own thoughts. There was no question in his mind how much he liked her. The question was how she felt about him. She had issues with being controlled, and he had acted possessive about her before, much to her chagrin. Did she realize that his intentions had not been to claim her when he'd left the mark on her skin?

Her resolve weakened. He could see it in her eyes as they softened and she subconsciously ran her tongue over her bottom lip. He smiled, knowing she had enjoyed receiving the love bite as much as he had savored bestowing it.

With a wink, he invited her to accompany him out of the ARC.

Her sigh indicated that he wasn't entirely in the clear. But he couldn't be in that much trouble. Emily didn't step out of his reach or swat his hand away when he rested it upon the small of her back. Then again, it might just be out of necessity that she permitted him to guide her. The woman was smart, but even she wouldn't know the ARC well enough yet to navigate the near labyrinthine corridors.

He slowly moved closer to her as they walked, his side brushing against her curves, just to test the waters. She didn't comment or pull away. Surreptitiously, he leaned into her a little more, nuzzling the brown curls of her hair briefly and taking in a deep breath.

Her scent was... heavenly.

"What are you playing at?" She asked, slowing and turning slightly to look at him with amused admonishment in her round eyes.

"I don't know what you're talking about," Matt replied, giving her an arch look before going mute and urging her to continue walking like he hadn't just had a puppy-love moment.

With every step, it became more and more difficult to resist the urge to shove Emily into one of the labs or offices -hell, even a cupboard would do- push her against the wall, and press his body into hers so hard as to render her incapable of breathing but for the shortest of gasps. He wanted to run his hands over her curves. Feel her hot skin slide against his. He wanted to put his name on her lips and kiss it away.

Matt cleared his throat, trying to focus on anything else.

"What are we doing?" Emily asked after a few more silent moments passed.

"Well, if we hurry along, we'll catch up the others and go contain an anomaly," Matt replied, bemused by the odd weight of the inquiry.

She stopped in her tracks, causing him to do likewise and turn to face her.

"No. That's not what I meant," she said, looking intensely up into his face.

"What-?" He began to ask, although he had a decent idea where this was headed. Gently taking her arm, he pulled her to the side of the corridor to allow a young woman in a lab coat to pass. Emily seemed too preoccupied to notice, however, and continued to press her point.

"Why do you make love to me only to push me away again?" she asked desperately. Matt nearly choked at the impropriety of her question, which was definitely not uttered in a whisper that would've been so very preferable. He heard the formally rhythmic footsteps of the female scientist falter. Glancing past Emily, he could see she had slowed. He sighed. No doubt she had heard what Emily said, for the woman was blatantly attempting to eavesdrop further.

Matt really did shove Emily into the nearest lab, only for different reasons than he would've liked. With a quick glance round, he confirmed the room was currently unoccupied. Well, for the most part. Rex chirped and cocked his head at Matt from where he was perched on top of a cabinet. Briefly distracted, Matt made a mental note to have a talk with Abby about letting creatures have the run of the...well, the entire building.

He turned his attention back to Emily, his primary distraction in life, to protest against her assertions.

"We never..." Oh, right. Different era, different connotations.

"You always need to be in control of every situation," Emily accused, not ready to be swayed from her confrontation with him. Apparently, she had something on her mind. Something she wanted to get off her chest.

"You say that like it's a bad thing," Matt countered. Control was everything. The only thing. The idea that one could control the fate of the world was what kept him along his insane path. If he lost control, then it was all over.

"Can't you see that it is?" Emily gave him a pained expression. "You accused me of possessing 'trust issues.' But you're the one incapable of trusting others."

Matt tried not to shut down. He didn't want to close himself off to Emily. Instinctively, he buried his feelings and hardened his facade when confronted with such distracting emotions. He fought not to do so now, managing to nod, if not meet Emily's eyes.

"You trust your team with your life, but not with your secret," she continued. "You trusted me enough to tell me that you have a secret but not the specifics of it. You make love to me-"

"The term is 'flirt', Emily," he corrected, adding silently to himself, And some.

She tensed. He met her eyes and realized he had just proved her point for her. Interrupting her with the correction, he had drawn attention to a triviality, thrown her slightly off kilter, and tried to reclaim some control over the conversation. Because he just couldn't let completely go, could he?

"You. make. love. to. me." She repeated, giving a sharp edge to every word. "But you won't trust your heart to me."

All the doubts, all the uncertainties he'd had since meeting Emily... What she had stirred in him had clashed with all his training, his upbringing, all the preparations he had made, all the organization in his life. Yet there had been one thing he'd been certain of throughout the struggle with himself; he never wanted to hurt Emily.

But here she was stood before him with pain in her eyes. And he would do anything, absolutely anything to take the hurt away.

"I didn't mean to... I don't know how I can prove to you that I trust you," he confessed quietly. "What can I do?"

A wicked grin slowly spread across her face.

You can relinquish control, if only momentarily.

Perhaps, appeasing Emily hadn't been the best of choices.

Matt gave orders as if everything were completely normal, ignoring the smirk on the captain's face and the barely suppressed laughter of the young blonde woman.

After he had finished, he expected them to 'snap to' and carry out his orders. However, they stood there for a moment longer, perhaps hoping he'd offer explanation. He looked at Becker, who cleared his throat and stalked off to complete his assigned task. Abby remained, obviously distracted by something -someone- behind him. She was giving the person an admonishing look and he saw her mouth the words: Connor. Stop.

Matt turned round to catch the young man mid-gesticulation (of what precisely, he couldn't begin to guess, but had a few ideas to what had inspired), who dropped his hands and donned an extremely guilty look.

"Look," Matt began. "We can mill about here all day, or we can go round up the remaining creatures, lock down this anomaly and call it a day."

"No problem, Matt," Abby responded, moving to grab Connor by the arm. "C'mon, Mr. Mime. Let's go."

Matt sighed. He'd never live this down. Of course, he probably deserved it. Had he not done, whether intentional or not, precisely the same to Emily? Of course, no one could say exactly when or how she'd gotten the 'love bite' on her neck. Whereas, it didn't take a master detective in a smoking jacket to figure out the origins of his. He rubbed at his neck, completely blind to how severely she had marked him. Well, physically, anyway. He was quite aware of the mark she had made on his life in general.

"You find this amusing?" he asked, as he turned to face the blatantly self-satisfied woman. Her smile broadened. Putting a hand on his cheek, she leaned up and placed a chaste kiss on his lips before patting his arm lightly.

"Oh, Matt, you haven't the slightest notion," she confirmed, before walking off to join the others in their task.

It might have been an innocuous enough gesture, but it conjured certain ideas. He caught her up, whispering in her ear as he switched on his EMD and futilely attempted to put himself in 'creature containment' mode.

When he spoke, his voice was still rendered husky by considerations that had no association with anomalies.

"Just wait until I get you home tonight."

A/N: Hope you enjoyed… I certainly did.