Title: Sunday (1/1)
Pairing: Jane and Maura.
Disclaimer: Not mine. Just for fun.
Summary: Sunday dinner at Ma's new house usually has a few constants: family, food, and football. Frankie and Tommy wonder where Maura's Patriots Pride is, Angela knows oh so much about Portia and Ellen. And Jane finally acts on all those coulda, shoulda, woulda moments.
A/N: Jane's pov. Just something fluffy and fun. Hope you enjoy!
The pretty, expensive trench coat that Maura wears makes her look like Carmen San Diego. The wind's whipping up all that perfect hair that Ma says looks like warm honey. I sometimes wonder if my mom loves Maura so much because she's the perfect daughter, the one she never had. Keeps a damn nice house, cooks like Julia fucking Childs, knows all the right times to mind her P's and Q's.
And has perfect hair that looks like warm honey.
But right now I'm not thinking about my mother. Instead I'm watching Maura twirl in circles, unintentionally dancing around in the windy Sunday afternoon as she wrestles with the collar to her jacket. That jacket probably costs more than my entire wardrobe—a joke I've overused with her, but this time I know it's true. It's gorgeous. Three buttons, high collar, it kinda poofs out a little at the hip and fits snugly along her body.
I envy that damn jacket.
"You comin', Mary Poppins?" I ask her, realizing immediately I sound harsh. Anyone else would have winced but she doesn't. She gives me the eyes, that 'hmph', and continues the wrestling.
"I don't understand what is wrong with this jacket. It must be faulty fabric," Maura sighs as she stops, dead. She flips the collar up and once again I'm thinking all she needs is a Fedora to be the elusive leading lady of my childhood.
Except she's gorgeous. And not a freaking cartoon.
"Here," I offer, shoving the car keys into my pocket. I stand in front of her, smirking at the way she looks away from me like a kid. Her eyes refuse to meet mine, fixed up and to the left. Her mouth's pulled all tight and smug and my lips tingle and itch. I just want to kiss her. I've gotten used to this, though. Our routine. Maura and Jane, crime fighters extraordinaire.
My fingers are working at the collar. She had to have been sleeping on this jacket or stuffed it into a drawer or something. I gather her hair in one swoop and immediately think of the other day in her office when caught her looking at me over the rims of the glasses she doesn't wear unless she's buried in paper work. I was playing with the Mimbazoo something or other goddess of fertility statue while she finished up. I just wanted lunch. Clam chowder at the bay. It's been a cold September so far. Wet and rainy, leaves everywhere like fucking banana peels just waiting for one false step.
She got up from her desk, taking off the glasses and bent forward, stilling my hands. "Do you know that in the Baltic (I guess Mimbazoo was a little far off) culture, manhandling Laima means bad luck romantically? And if you drop it, you might be barren for the rest of your life, as lore dictates."
I'm smirking at the memory, remembering her palm on my shoulder while the other wrestled the little figurine out of my hands. Her hair smelled fancy like after a trip to the salon as it tickled my nose. I didn't think people actually smelled like that on a regular, boring weekday but that's Maura.
I'm pretty sure she would have kissed me if I didn't make some wisecrack about never needing to reproduce. Something about how I couldn't stand the amount of egomaniacal asshole that could possibly come from another Rizzoli.
She called my bluff.
Pulling me back to the present, Maura tips her chin up as I roll the stiff fabric down and smooth it out. Her shoulders are deceptively strong, and I'm positive I'm staring at her. I hear a whoop from a group of teenagers bouncing a basketball across the street. We must look like a movie scene: wind whipping all around, staring at each other like a couple of leading ladies. It's enough to freak me out and I pull back.
"Is it fixed?" she sighs, annoyed.
"It is," I say, stuffing my hands into my boring grey zip-up's pockets. "It looks nice on you."
"Thank you," Maura smiles as she ties the belt to the coat.
I'm jealous of fabric again.
"C'mon, Ma's gonna wonder where we are," I gesture toward the car.
"Yes, yes, of course," Maura nods as she clips those heels against the street and struts toward the passenger door.
My mother's standing on the porch of her new house when we pull up, looking for us, shaking her head at me and making some dramatic gesture to the watch she doesn't wear. Her hair's back and the tea towel is slung over her shoulder, red sauce drying on the worn fabric. Regardless of the new place, it still looks like Sunday to me.
"Oh, Jane, is she upset?" Maura asks, placing a hand on the crook of my arm.
"She's fine. The pot's probably not even on yet," I smirk as I park and unlock our doors.
Maura gets out first. "Hello, Angela!" She shouts across the street. "Sorry we're late, I had a bit of a wardrobe malfunction."
I crack a grin at her joke.
"What does that even mean? Do I wanna know?" Ma says in return. "Hurry up. I made Manicotti and you know how it gets if you don't eat it right away."
Same as Fettuccine, Osso Bucco, Vodka Sauce, Marinara...
"Of course," Maura plays right into my mother's hand as she quickly climbs the porch steps and presses a kiss against my mother's cheek.
This softens Ma and she wraps the doctor in a hug, making sure to keep her dirty dishtowel off of Maura's coat.
I kiss my ma next and she pinches my hip. "Janie, are you eating? You look thinner than usual. Maura, is she eating?"
"Yes," Maura replies earnestly. "I watched her devour an entire plate of eggs, bacon and toast this morning."
"Fun weekend?" My mom says with a lilt in her voice, ushering us into the house.
At first I thought she encouraged this behavior because I never really had female friends. Like she wanted Maura there to soften me or something, but I think it's different now. The way she watches us, the way she hugs Maura, shows her baby pictures. She talks to Maura like she talked to Tommy's girlfriends, to Frankie's. She drops hints about grand kids, wonders why we don't save money and move in together and all of a sudden knows oh so much about Portia and Ellen.
"Yeah, the weekend was nice," I supply. "Murder-suicide in Dorchester."
"Janie, what have I told you about that?" Ma complains, plugging her ears.
"What? Ma, it's my job. And Maura's, too!" I counter, heading toward the couch where my brothers are sitting on opposite ends. Tommy is in his Brady jersey, Frankie in Welker. I unzip my hoodie, proudly exposing my Mayo jersey before I flop over the couch and sit in between them, stealing a sip of beer from Frankie's obviously new Coors Light. The bottle's real blue.
"Aw, fuck, how the hell are we losing? To Tampa?" I croak.
"Forced fumble on Gronkowski," Tommy offers. "Horse shit call—he was down. Belichick's about to bust a fuckin' vein in his neck."
I laugh and settle in. Maura comes in a few minutes later with a beer for me and a glass of wine for herself. "Oh, I thought we would be winning!"
"Maur, do you hate your Christmas present or somethin'?" Frankie asks. "I thought that BenJarvus jersey was gonna make it to Sunday dinner sometime."
Maura blushes then squeezes in beside me. I scoot over some. "It's too large on me, Frankie."
I rapidly drink beer, thinking about Maura in a BenJarvus Green-Ellis jersey. And nothing else. Fuck.
"It's supposed to be like that!" Frankie smirks. "Chicks!"
"Jane's is rather form fitting," Maura says as she slides a hand along my side. I shiver despite the fire roaring and the body heat from the four of us huddled together like bumps on a log on ma's sofa.
"That's 'cause Janie's cheap and shops for kids' jerseys," Tommy ribs.
"Hey, I have a real one for when we go to games. And don't be jealous."
Frankie goes to say something, but instead erupts into a cheer as Mayo strips Freeman and runs it into the end zone. I nearly spill my beer as we all clap and whistle, anxiously awaiting the official signal and scanning the field for flags. Maura cheers as well and I hug her, too tightly. Forgetting myself for a second.
"Are you four chimpanzees gonna come eat? I slaved away all day makin' this... and the meatballs—"
"Yes, Ma!" We shout in unison while Maura just laughs, the first one up as always.
I hear her ask my mom if she can do anything and then I hear my mom smack another kiss against her cheek. "You are perfect, Maura. Just perfect."
Damn straight, Ma.
We all file in, Tommy making sure to turn up the volume on the TV before we leave. We can hear Cris Collinsworth's nasally voice describe how we're America's team, the kind football was made for.
I smile, letting my mom heap two huge manicotti onto my plate. Maura smooths her napkin over her lap. Frankie and Tommy fight for the heel of the Italian bread, doing the rock-paper-scissors ritual that they've done since childhood. It makes me miss my dad a little. He'd get frustrated and go up and cut the other end off the Sancholi's bread.
Ma leads us in grace as we all link hands. Thanking God for keeping Maura and I safe another week, for Frankie's safety as well, for Tommy's new job potentials. She thanks Him for friends and good food and we all say Amen because that's the best thing about Ma's prayers. They're never high falutin' or inflated, they're just cover the basics, and I don't know God, but I'm sure he appreciates the brevity.
Maura moans softly as she takes a bite of the stuffed pasta, waiting until she swallows to tell my mom how good it is. Ma blushes and bows her head a little. She takes pride in Sunday dinners. And judging by the meatballs, roasted chicken, salad, broccoli and bread... well, she's spent a good part of today working on this.
We eat with varied sounds of "mm" and "fuckin' awesome" which warrants Tommy a slap on the wrist. Frankie and I laugh like we're kids again and my mom launches into some long, loud discussion on what she heard on Dr. Oz today. At that, Maura starts wondering about the doctor's credentials and advises my mother not to take everything he says so seriously. It's okay to drink milk for calcium, and it's also okay to jazzercise with proper hydration and preliminary stretching.
I lean back, completely stuffed. I think we've scored again because I can hear cheering on the television. Either that or maybe Belichick did bust a vein in his neck. That'd be a sight to see.
By the time I'm back to reality, Frankie and Tommy (and Ma) have their fingertips on their noses. "Aw, Christ. Fiiine."
Maura even has her fingertip on her nose when I look at her for sympathy. "You always lose, Jane. It's astonishing."
"She secretly likes dishes," Ma grins.
"Oh yeah the scalding water and pruny hands are the best part of Sundays, for sure," I groan and push away from the table.
The clearing of the food is a joint effort. Scraping plates into the trash, putting leftovers into Tupperware and recycled Ricotta containers. Tommy gets the most leftovers, but Maura gives him a run for it, joking with him about how those long, medical examiner hours make her so hungry and fatigued and if she makes one false diagnosis she could possibly lose her credentials and eventually her job.
Tommy gives her one more Manicotti. I didn't know Maura was cunning like that. It's sexy.
Ma and my brothers filter out of the room as Maura crumples one more napkin and throws it into the garbage can. "Would you like company?"
I smile at her, filling the sink with suds to begin this tedious process. "Nah, go watch the game. Will you keep me updated?"
"Of course," Maura hesitates, then puts a hand on my shoulder. "Thank you for inviting me."
And then she kisses my cheek.
At that, I forget to gauge the temperature of the water and curse loudly when it scalds me, listening to Maura chuckle as she walks away. She knows. She has to know.
Secretly I do like dishes. There's something soothing, I guess, about washing plates and glasses. Seeing results. I'm not a neat freak by any stretch of the imagination, but I do like this process. Rinsing, washing, stacking on the dish rack. The sound of the water, everything. I don't like the pruny hands, but I take a long time anyway. Make sure I get them all clean. I leave the pots for last like a challenge and enjoy scrubbing them out with a Brillo pad.
Maura comes in about twenty minutes later, refilling her wine glass. We smile at each other. I want her to kiss my cheek again, want to do something that makes her feel like I deserve it. I don't remember ever wanting this from another person more than I do from her.
"We scored. Brady threw an eight yard slant to Welker who ran it in for a touchdown."
"Perfect," I moan, fist pumping and effectively getting sudsy water all over the place.
Maura laughs, lingering for a few seconds. "How are your hands? Are you okay?"
"I'm good," I smirk. "Almost done. Just these two pots, then I'll be in."
"I'll wait," Maura smiles.
And I feel like a schmuck. Every time she smiles I get this twisted feeling in my stomach. Same one I got with Vanessa Mancianella in college but this is far more intense. Maura looks at me like she's got me all figured out. It terrifies me and turns me on in one blow.
"You sure? Ma said something about cheesecake. I'm sure you guys can get a jump on that before Tommy and Frankie eat it all with their bare hands."
"Oh that would be something to see," Maura laughs. "They're great."
"You say that every time, Maur."
"I mean it, Jane. I didn't have siblings growing up. It's amazing to watch them. They make me feel so welcome. I feel bad I didn't wear that jersey."
"How 'bout this? We take the jersey back and exchange it for a smaller one, and then next week you can wear it. I'm sure it'd mean a lot to Frankie."
"Okay," Maura smiles as she sips from her wine glass. "I do quite like the idea of a last name so long he's referred to as the law firm. A law firm!"
Maura laughs, like the goof she secretly is, and it makes me laugh too as I dry off the last pot and drain the sink, washing my hands in the interim. I grab a Coors from the fridge and clink it against her wine glass.
"Thanks for being good luck."
"You too," Maura replies as she sips from her glass, raising a brow and turning to study something on the other side of the room.
Again. I should have kissed her.
I have moments like that all the time. Thinking I should have kissed her. Not just a kiss out of excitement. Fuck, I'd kiss Korsak square on the mouth for some of the fantastic work he's done on the force. But this is different. It's the normal moments, the every day, that make me want to kiss her. Like, when she's doing an autopsy. The precise way she holds the instruments, the way she rattles off the full names of bones, of muscles I know tense every time I'm looking at her. I like the way she sips tea from a cup without a handle on it. She said it's from Japan. Or the way she looks when she's sitting next to me at Ma's table, the way she fits.
And then of course, there's the clothes. The tight dresses, the skirts. Everything tasteful, everything sexy. The heels. The trench coat. And of course there's a tiny part of me that wants to see her slum it in a pair of loose blue jeans and a Patriots jersey.
She's just it.
I wonder if she thinks of me the same way. Looks at my mouth and feels her own twitch. Thinks about what my skin tastes like. I love thinking like that. Wondering how she'd feel under my hands.
My mom's hand on my shoulder breaks me out of the intense stare I have in Maura's direction. Ma looks between us like she wrote the book on love and we just got to the final chapter or something.
"You two aren't going to skip out before cheesecake, are you?"
"Absolutely not," Maura smiles confidently. "Need me to grab the dessert plates?"
And then they're talking about fall fashion or what looks good on my -gag- mom's shapely torso and I head back to the living room in hopes of catching the fourth quarter.
Tommy has his fist balled and near his mouth, biting on his first knuckle and Frankie's kneeling, practically ready to leap into the TV to help his beloved team.
"Pats need this field goal to win," Tommy whispers like we're in church. I take a seat on the arm of the closest chair and watch. Graham sets. Paces. Almost sneers at Tampa who has no more time outs left, and kicks. It sails into the air and hangs left. I can look at dead bodies, mutilated appendages and blood-splattered crime scenes. But this nail biter shit is for the birds.
In the last possible second the ball curves back toward the post and Graham has just nailed a 51 yarder. Damn.
We're cheering, whooping and hugging each other. I love when we win because Tommy sings the Patriots fight song and Frankie accompanies him on the mouth trumpet. Ah, what can I say, we Rizzolis have talent.
Ma's hollering at us again and we file into the dining room for cheesecake. Maura's already cut me a piece and I take a seat, all smiles. A Sunday with no calls is even more of a win than the closer-than-it-shoulda-been Pats game.
I must look like an idiot, grinning like I am while I eat my cheesecake and cherries, sipping on the decaf my ma insists we drink even though it tastes like crap.
We all eat, chirping about what we think is going to make the highlight reels. Maura even schools us a little on the jumping range of an average wide receiver versus Deion Branch and how he's a scientific anomaly. How she thinks watching him is almost poetic.
Another one of those moments.
My brothers hang on every word she's saying. Frankie will repeat this to the boys tomorrow and Tommy too, wherever he's going to be working for his next couple bucks. My mom's beaming and catches my eye, giving me a knowing look and a nod. I shrug at her, furrowing my brows. I'm not sure what she wants me to say right now.
Instead I complain. "I'm not doing these dishes too," I gripe, holding up my pruny hands. I realize everyone can see my scars and drop them back into my lap quickly.
Maura reaches under the table and squeezes my left hand. She gets it.
"No, don't worry. I'm sure you girls have to get going. You need sleep for your early morning tomorrow."
Frankie and Tommy imitate her silently while she does this and I have to bite my tongue to keep from laughing.
Maura nods a little. I'm expecting a factoid, but instead she just grins at my mother and finishes her coffee. She's subdued a bit here. It's like she's comfortable, got nothin' to prove.
I stand and Maura goes out in search of her coat. Tommy stands and claps me on my shoulders.
"Take care of her, sis, alright? Maura's a good girl."
My brows knit, but my mom and Frankie look at me with the same serious look. The Rizzoli stare down. "Um. Okay?"
Maura's back with her coat and then there's the whole procession of leaving. We don't actually get out the door without two huge containers of leftovers that my mother makes me take to the car before we can leave. When I come back, she's hugging Maura and telling her to call her this week about their spa date. It's kind of cute. My mom hugs me last and Frankie and Tommy leap in for a huge group hug before wandering off to watch whoever plays the night game.
And then we're back out on the porch and Maura's fumbling with that stupid coat again. And I'm wondering how something so expensive is so unreliable. I sigh and grab her by the collar again and this time she looks at me curiously. Her eyes do this thing where they kind of lid and her mouth tilts up in a smile. I know this look.
My fingers carefully roll the material down, but I don't move away when I'm done. I look at her, and I sigh and then I scoot the scuffed toes of my chucks even closer. She smiles softly and hooks her fingers into the pockets of my zip-up, tugging me even closer. I go to speak and she shakes her head. She knows I'll blow it. My big mouth, my sarcastic comments.
I don't even think I'm conscious when her lips are finally against mine and I can feel weeks, months, worth of tension roll off my shoulders. I don't know what to do with my hands so I put them against her neck and then slide them up to pass through the hair that is as soft as I've always imagined it would be. She makes a noise that sounds like a sigh and a moan and my knees threaten to give out like the time Maur and I went shot for shot playing darts at the Robber. (And she won).
I try to pull back but she reels me back in. Soft and perfect. There's no tongue. No teeth. But it's great. It's beautiful. I don't think I actually possess the words in my vocabulary to describe this. The only thing I know for sure is Maura. And she's right here, keeping me close. Keeping me together. I thought I'd be freaking out, but I'm not. That's almost a little scarier than kissing my best friend on ma's porch. Almost.
When the porch light goes off, I think I hear my mother laugh—not spiteful, but happy and relieved— I pull back to look at Maura. Her cheeks are red and her mouth is parted a little and I reach down for her hand.
She takes mine. Something tells me she always will.