Lust or Love?

I do not own GI Joe.

Conrad slammed his office door shut and leaned against it for a minute. "I am so screwed!" he walked to his chair and slumped down, putting his feet up. He'd been staring again and this time it had been Hawk who had caught him. He ran his hands over his face in frustration. "Why me? Why her? Why now?"

Out of all of the women he'd ever worked with why did he have to have the hots for Scarlett? And boy, did he ever have the hots for her! He let his thoughts wander in that direction. Deep blue eyes, fiery red hair, and a tempter to match….

Just then the object of his obsession walked, or rather, stalked into his office. Scarlett slammed the door behind her hard enough it bounced before catching. She twisted the lock and stalked to his desk, bright blue eyes sparkled with rage as she slammed her palms down on the desk top.

"This. Has. Got. To. Stop."

"I know!"

"Hawk caught you staring!"

"I know!"

"We're going to get in trouble! Hell Conrad, if we can't concentrate in the middle of a meeting how the hell are we going to concentrate in the middle of battle!"

"I know! It's stupid, it's dangerous! I'm not the only freaking one with this problem!"

"I know! We need to do something about it!"

"Oh, like what screw each other senseless and hope we get it out of our systems?"

"That's exactly what we need to do to!"

"Are you out of your mind?"

"Yes-and so are you! We've tried ignoring each other, we've tried working at separate bases, nothing else has helped! We'll just fuck our brains out and afterward this itch we have for each other will have been scratched and we can go back to being just friends and teammates."

He was silent for a moment, "And if it doesn't work…" he asked softly

She paled, "It has to work. The only alternative is for one of us to resign"

"Never." He bit out "The team needs you every bit as much as they need me."

"Fine, so we're agreed. We try this."

"Agreed."

"We better do it at my place, less people around."

"We're not doing it here!"

"Well where then?"

He ran his hands over his face, not quite believing he'd agreed to go along with this insane idea, defiantly not believing he was actually going to suggest out loud what he'd been secretly wanting to do for more than a month. "I have leave scheduled starting tomorrow. I have a small, what you might call 'rustic' cabin in the mountains."

He looked up and caught her gaze, "Come with me."

She studied him for a moment before nodding, "Okay. I'll get Hawk to grant me leave. How long?"

"Four days."

They went over travel arrangements and other necessary details before she left. She went straight to Hawk's office.

"Enter." Hawk called at the knock on his door.

"Sir, I'd like to request a few days of personal leave."

Hawk sat back in his chair, "Oh? When?"

"Tomorrow."

He studied the women in front of him. "Duke's leaving tomorrow."

"Yes, sir, I'm aware of that fact."

He considered her, considered asking what she needed personal leave for, but decided against it. He was better off not knowing. What he didn't know couldn't get him in trouble. He hoped. He didn't like the fact that they were probably going to go off together to screw each other senseless but they'd tried everything else he could think of and maybe it just was an itch. She was a beautiful woman and it was bound to happen with someone eventually. He'd weighed the advantages of having her join the team against the problems that would inevitably occur when you mixed genders in a combat situation. He'd just hoped that someone wouldn't have turned out to be Duke.

"All right, Scarlett. Leave granted."

She nodded, "Thank you, sir."

The next day Shauna stepped out of the jeep and stretched, taking a good look at the cabin in front of her. Conrad hadn't been kidding when he'd described it as 'rustic'. He caught her speculative gaze and smiled wryly, "Don't worry, it has running water. Sometimes the water's even hot."

She let out a short bark of laughter and shook her head. "I hope so Hauser, I didn't sign up a camping trip!"

She grabbed her bag and a box of supplies and followed Conrad in. The tiny kitchen and only slightly larger living room were all part of one open space. The kitchen was to her left as she walked in, the fireplace straight ahead. It was the only thing she'd seen so far that possibly qualified as large. She put the box of supplies down on the counter and stepped into the living room to get better look. There was a worn sofa in front of the fireplace, a large, soft looking rug between the couch and fireplace and a rocking chair off to the right. Cozy was a good word to describe the place. She instantly felt comfortable even though she figured she could stretch her arms out and touch both walls at the same time.

She turned and smiled at Conrad, amused at this worried expression. "I like it. It's homey. It suits you."

"Thanks. The bedroom and bathroom are through that door. I, uh, assume it won't be a problem sharing the bed? If it is I can sleep on the coach."

She arched an eyebrow and flashed him an amused smile, "One bed won't be a problem. That is, after all, why we're here." She stepped past him into the kitchen, "Tell me what goes where and I'll put supplies up while you start dinner."

They worked quietly for a few minutes until the supplies were put away and ravioli was started. "I've got things under control if you want to relax for a few minutes." He told her

She nodded, "I wouldn't mind a few minutes to freshen up."

She grabbed her duffle bag and walked to the bedroom. She put her clothes away in the old wooden dresser and eyed herself in the dresser mirror. Not bad she decided, especially since she'd been traveling half the day. There was no closet, nothing in the room besides the dresser and the bed. The quilt looked handmade and she wondered if some long ago ancestor had made it. She'd ask him later. The sink, toilet, and shower were so closely compacted the bathroom reminded her of the head on a sub. She tested the water and found it tepid at best. He had mentioned the hot water would take a while to warm up. She'd bet there wasn't a whole lot of it either.

She stepped back out into the living room and took in the delicious scent of dinner cooking. It was especially nice that he seemed to be able to cook without burning the food, a task she hadn't managed to accomplish yet. "Tell me where the glasses are and I'll pour the wine."

"Cabinet to the right." He gestured toward the cabinets above the counter and she moved past him. A second later he was behind her, his warm, solid body trapping her against the counter. His hand traveled up her outstretched arm to close around her fingers, resting against the left side of the cabinet, he laced his fingers with hers and moved them to the right.

Her breath hitched and her pulse raced as his mouth came to rest against her ear, "Cabinet to the right, right side door." Shivers raced down her spine as he slowly brushed his body against hers, returning to the stove to finish dinner. Eventually her breathing returned to normal and she was able to pour the wine without the fear of missing the glass entirely.

They ate quietly in front of the fire, more interested in watching each other than paying attention to their meal. He took their finished plates to the kitchen and came back with a box of chocolates. She laughed, putting her glass down on the stone hearth. "Where did you have these hidden?"

"I stashed them before you starting putting supplies up. I remembered you have a thing for chocolate."

She smiled warmly, "Trying to butter me up?"

He grinned, "Doesn't hurt." He sat down close beside her and offered her a chocolate. She opened her mouth, closing gently around the chocolate and his fingers. He slid his fingers out and picked out another chocolate. They worked their way through a good part of the box, taking turns feeding each other.

She set her empty glass down and stopped him from refilling it, "I don't want any of my senses dulled tonight, not even in the slightest way."

The mood shifted, no longer quite as lazy as it had been though dinner. He reached for her ponytail and slid the band out of her hair, slowly running his fingers though the silky strands. "I've been waiting all damn day to get your hair loose." His voice was soft and husky and he ran the silky strands through his fingers, "The light from the fire hits it and it turns into liquid flame."

She traced his jaw with her fingers, bringing his head down to hers. The kiss started off gently but they'd both wanted this too long for it to stay that way long. The kiss deepened and she leaned closer, wrapping her arms around his neck. His hands ran heavily over her back, little moans of desire escaped her mouth, adding fuel to the fire blazing between them. He broke the kiss only when the lack of oxygen got in the way and moved his mouth along her jaw, over her neck to settle for a moment when she called out his name.

Her hands roamed over his chest and she jerked the zipper down on his fleece jacket, desperate to get through the layers between them to run her hands over his bare skin. He captured her mouth again in a frenzy of heat, pulling her into his lap. Her hands had slipped under his jacket and shirt and were busy exploring the hard, muscular planes of his chest. His own hands slid under her sweater and began to caress the bare skin of her back. His hands moved around her side, following the lace band of her bra to the front .

He paused a moment, burying his face against her shoulder, "Are you wearing lingerie?"

"Uh huh." He could hear the smile in her voice as she said, "Lace" and what self control he had flew out the window. He jerked her sweater up over her head and stared in wonder at the red lace lovingly hugging her breasts. He couldn't say covered because the lacey bra really didn't, it teased, offering glimpses of smooth ivory skin.

" I don't usually wear this sort of thing but I figured it might be nice if I did this weekend. I thought you might like it…" she whispered

"Honey, I love it…" he said, his voice gone horse, "I don't suppose you have on matching panties…?"

"Uh, yeah actually…"

He stood her up and yanked her jeans down as fast as he could. She stepped out; soft peels of twinkling laughter making it through the haze of lust to reach his ears. He stood her in front of the fire and his gaze raked her from head to toe and back again, as if he couldn't decide where to look or touch first. "..."

She sank back down on his lap and pulled off his jacket and shirt in one fluid motion. She took his mouth again in a wild kiss, running her hands over the bare skin of his chest and back, the strong muscles she felt flexing under her fingers just sent her that much further out of control. She slid her hands to his waist but he caught her, wrapping her arms around his neck as he laid her back against a stack of soft pillows he'd piled on the rug. He rained kisses down her neck, collar bone, nipping a path to one luscious breast, massaging gently through the lace as he traced the scalloped edge with his tongue. He took her nipple in his mouth through the lace and her back arched up off the rug as she wrapped her legs around his hip. He discovered much to his delight that her breasts, her nipples in particular were extremely sensitive.

They rolled around on the rug, wrestling for control of the kiss, the moment. She pulled a ninja move and rolled him over on his back, straddling him. She captured his mouth again, letting the kiss run as wild and out of control as she felt. She broke the kiss eventually, having to come up for air and trailed kisses over his neck, biting his ear lobe gently then taking it into her mouth to suckle. She was rewarded with a low moan of satisfaction, his hips arching up into hers. She traveled across his chest, spending a few delicious moments tormenting his nipples, taking one into her mouth to lick, suckle, while her fingers played with the other.

His hands tangled for a moment in her hair before trailing his fingers through the long glorious strands, with the flickering flames from the fire it looked, and felt like he had his hands trailing through flame. He ran his hands over her back and down to her ass, taking hold of her globes and caressing, squeezing, pulling her close to grind his hips against hers. She called out and sat up, her hands coming to rest over his where they held her hips, encouraging her to rock back and forth, the friction from the denim, of her cool, slick, wet panties making a heady contrast. His hands moved back up to her breasts, unhooking her bra and pulling it off, his hands coming back to caress her full ivory breasts.

After a moment she jerked away, breathless, "much more of that Hauser and this party is going to be over..."

She moved down and unbuttoned his jeans, "They come off and the last bit of my control goes with it." He ground out

She grinned wickedly, "You promise?" she taunted as she slid off and grabbed his jeans and briefs, he arched his hips and she yanked them down, leaving them just below his knees.

She licked her lips, admiring the new territory she'd just uncovered. Her hand went gently to caress his balls, following his cock to where a tiny bead of excitement was hovering. She spread it around, looking him in the eye, "You've got another minute of control left, don't you Conrad?"

"No, I don't." He kicked his jeans off and grabbed her, pulling her under him, he ripped the side of her panties before biting out a curse, "Fuck."

" I thought that's what we were about to do.."

"..condom…" he muttered, reaching for his jeans, his hands shaking…

"…got it covered, Hauser." she laughed…" not literally, but you know what I mean, we're safe and we're both clean, right?"

He nodded and she continued, " …so…unless you really want ..."

"YOU'RE sure? He growled…"

"I'm safe, Conrad. Best birth control meds the world has to offer…"

He closed his eyes for a moment. If she didn't kill him with this take charge attitude before he got inside her he'd probably have the best damn sex of his life.

She reached down between them and guided him towards her entrance. He opened his eyes, "…I think I can take it from here, just lie back and relax for a minute…let me do the work …"

She did as he asked, her head floating back to the pillows as he slowly pushed inside. He moved so slowly he'd thought he'd die but he wanted this to be good, he wanted to do it right, and right meant taking his sweet time. He rested inside for a minute, kissing her, suddenly wanting that raunchy attitude back so he'd know she was ok.

"Conrad!"…she broke the kiss, "…for crying out loud I am not a china doll…I'm not going to break…I gave you back the lead but if you're not going to do anything…oh…"

"Like this?" He said as he started to move.

"…oh yeah…" She called out, her eyes drifting closed. "…just…exactly…like that…"

His steady thrusts going deep and hitting just where she wanted him, "…oh…my…Conrad…" She arched up, wrapping her legs around his hips, urging him faster and suddenly they were caught up in the storm, her legs and arms squeezing him tight as she fell over the edge, his own release sending him after her seconds later.

Sometime later he came back to his senses, maybe the cold air hitting his slick back, he sat up slowly, sliding out and taking a second to take stock, yes, apparently he was still alive; the sex hadn't killed him, although she'd sure taken him to heaven with her. She looked like she was asleep, eyes closed, breath steady and even. Now she looked like an angel, she was so beautiful. He studied her, wanting to touch her but not wanting to wake her. He felt stupid, but he ran his hand over her face, hovering just above touching her porcelain skin. He sighed, shaking his head, feeling foolish but happy. He closed up the fire for the night and moved back to her, wondering if he should have got the fire going again and just covered them up with a blanket.

No, getting kinks in your back from sleeping on the floor after the best damn sex of your life was not acceptable. A nice soft bed, a warm woman next to you, that was the way to go. He turned down the bed and went back to pick her up, her arms wrapping around his neck as he carried her to bed. He tucked her into his side and wrapped his arms around her, slipping into sleep with her.