A/N: Not mine! And seriously, how great was that second season premiere? I miss my New England coastline...and, thankfully, Nova Scotia looks incredibly similar. Rugged men in flannel shirts is pretty great, too. ;-)
P.S. A small error in the details was brought to my attention and the slightly anal retentive writer side of me needed to fix it. Thanks, Johesaphana the Magnificellent - the editing assist is greatly appreciated!
Nathan's mouth is hot against her collar bone, his lips soft, his breath whispering words of encouragement as he works his way lower. The buttons on her shirt are no match for his skilled fingers and they disappear one by one, each exposing more and more skin to the warm heat of his tongue.
Her head goes blank as he reaches the top of her jeans, cool fingertips leaving icy tingles all along the bare skin below her belly button. He looks up at her from where he's settled between her thighs.
His expression is a challenge.
She raises her hips a fraction of an inch, accepts, and his fingers undo the button before him…
BUZZ BUZZ BUZZ
Audrey's eyes fly open at the intrusion, her cheeks flushed in the cool air of her apartment. She sits up, rakes a hand through her messy hair, and turns to look out the window beside her. The world beyond The Gull is blanketed in white. She watches the snow fall, her eyes adjusting to the brightness, and takes it all in, tries to focus on anything but the remnant of the dream.
The phone buzzes again, captures her full attention. She grabs it, sees it's Nathan calling her, and has to take a deep breath to steady the butterflies in her stomach that immediately arrive before she flips it open to take the call.
"It's snowing," she says by way of greeting.
"Your powers of observation never cease to amaze me, Parker," her partner says, and she can practically see the smirk on his stony features. "Can you be ready in fifteen minutes?"
She looks down at her sweatpants and thinks – fleetingly – of her dream. "Can you give me twenty?"
"Sure. I'll pick up coffee on the way over."
She stands, stretches. "What's up?"
"Body out at the pier. Dress warm – I've been told it's cold outside."
He disconnects and she stares at the phone.
"One day," she mumbles on her way to find warmer clothing. "One day, I'll actually get to finish that dream."
There's a thin layer of snow over the blue tarp covering the body on the pier. Julia meets stands when they approach, her face almost completely obscured by the hood of her jacket.
"Definitely dead," she says and Audrey clamps down on a laugh. "I'm not sure what killed him, but I can tell you he's been that way for at least a day, maybe more."
"Drowning, you think?" Nathan asks as the three of them stare at the figure.
Julia shrugs. "Maybe. I know they pulled him out of the water, but I've got a feeling he was gone before he ended up in it." She motions for the EMTs to bring the stretcher down. "I've got an empty morgue at the minute, so I should have something to you in a few hours."
They turn and watch the EMTs struggle with the – obviously – frozen body. Julia frowns. "Amend that," she says. "I'll have something for you the minute he thaws out."
She follows the stretcher up the pier and Nathan turns to look at Audrey. He points to her feet.
"Boots look good," he says.
She grins. "Yup. Warm, too." She looks up at him from under the hood of her jacket, snow catching on her eyelashes. "Where's your hat, Wurnous?" she asks.
"Real men don't wear hats," he says.
"How do real men feel about hypothermia?"
He smirks. "We're all for it, so long as there's eventually a way to get warm."
The whisper of her earlier dream drifts across the backs of her eyes and she flushes, has to look away. She sticks her hands in her pockets, motions up the pier with an elbow.
"Let's head in to the office, get the paperwork started."
"You're looking a little pink, Parker."
"My face is freezing."
The smirk on his face never wavers. "I was thinking a little flushed, actually."
"I'm going to go wait in the truck," she says, walking away. "Feel free to join me when you're less busy analyzing my face."
She hears his laugh even through the hood of her parka and it makes the flush on her cheeks worse.