Author's Note: And here's chapter 3. Nothing but pure fluff and no plot...sigh.


Day fell into night, and Maura found herself the center of attention of her very first birthday party. When Jane mentioned cake earlier that the morning, Maura assumed she meant birthday cake would merely be the centerpiece of dessert.

But when the dining room lights were cut and a birthday cake with candles was plopped down in front of Maura as the Rizzoli family sang an off-key rendition of 'Happy Birthday', she realized that, for the first time in 36 years, she'd actually have the opportunity to make a wish over a birthday cake.

Her birthday cake.

I don't deserve this. This is too much.

Maura grabbed her wine glass and slipped out the back door while Angela cut the cake and the Rizzoli children fought over the biggest piece, needing a moment of solitude.

She settled down on the porch step, staring out into Jane's childhood backyard, unable to stop the tears from falling.

"I thought I'd find you out here." Maura jumped as Jane voice called out to her from the door, a giant piece of plated cake in the lanky brunette's hand.

Maura turned, looking caught. Jane's grin quickly turned to a frown as she noticed the tears falling from the medical examiner's eyes for the second time that day. Immediately at Maura's side, Jane set down the cake and reached for the stricken woman's hand, calloused fingers stroking over contrastingly smooth skin. "Sweetie, what's wrong?"

Maura whimpered. "I had such a wonderful day today."

Jane's brow furrowed adorably in confusion. "Isn't that a good thing?"

Maura sighed, her hair billowing in the breeze. "It's a very good thing. No one's ever taken such care to ensure I had a memorable birthday. It…it means more to me than you could ever know." Maura smiled softly as Jane brushed a tear from her cheek.

"So the tears are…?"

"Tears of happiness. I'm not used to feeling so…special. I don't deserve any of it." Maura's breath hitched, and she bowed her head down as fresh waves of sobs overtook her.

Jane gently lifted Maura's chin, chocolate eyes transfixed on Maura's hazel in a way that was both unnerving and entirely welcomed by the smaller woman. Jane's husky voice drifted through the air between them. "I shouldn't do this today because I'm about to say something that could ruin your day and probably our friendship but…" She took a steadying breath, her next words coming out in a rush. "ah….I'm attracted to you Maur. Though even if I didn't care about you stupid amounts, I'd still have spent the day with you like I did because you deserve it."

The detective groaned self-deprecatingly, rubbing her thumb along her friend's knuckles. "You're so perfect, Maur." Jane looked up at the sky for a moment, as if trying to pull out her next words from divine intervention. "My God you're perfect, and you deserve so much better than what you've been given. That includes being doted on for your birthday."

I love her.

Maura's lips were on Jane's immediately, stunning the detective. A fleeting awkward moment passed, until they fell into a rhythm, a level of comfort more akin to an established relationship rather than a duo's first kiss.

Reluctantly, Jane pulled back for breath, placing a final chaste kiss on Maura's swollen lips. "That can happen more right, 'cause I gotta say…holy fuckin' shit you can kiss."

Maura let out a choked sob as she kissed Jane again, physically unable to get enough. She rested her head against Jane's shoulder. "We should probably talk about how we'll approach this new facet of our relationship with our families and colleagues. But for tonight, can we simply…be? No expectations, no discussions of the future? I'm oddly emotional today, and would like nothing more than to lay with you in bed. I just…really want you tonight."

"You know you can just ask for birthday sex, right? I won't judge."

Maura mouth literally hung open in shock as Jane burst out laughing. "I take it back, I'd rather spend the rest of my night alone".

She didn't mean it, and she knew Jane knew that, but Maura's heart melted all the same when Jane pressed a kiss to her temple and whispered in her ear. "Maybe you can spend your nights without me, but I've never liked spending mine without you."

"Well, I suppose there is something to be said about waking up to homemade pancakes." Maura conceded good-naturedly as she reached over to feed a bite of cake to Jane, kissing the detective's lips to get a taste herself. "Whoa. This is delicious."

"I told you!"

And that night, as Maura lay burrowed into Jane's neck and hand splayed over the detective's steadily beating heart, Maura realized she'd never have to blow out another candle, never wish upon another star.

I'll never need another birthday wish, so long as I have her.