A/N: It's a new year, time for a new start.

DISCLAIMER: SVU and characters? Dick Wolf. This story? TStabler

It's the first time since he's known her that he's nervous around her. He feels his palms sweating and can almost hear his own heartbeat. He takes a deep breath and walks toward her, hoping he doesn't drop the two champagne glasses he's carrying along the way. He makes it to the railing and slinks up behind her, wrapping his arm around her shoulders to hand her the bubbly drink.

She smirks as she takes the glass from him, knowing that is his attempt at being smooth. She turns to him and holds her glass up. "To us," she says, and she waits.

He clinks his glass against hers and says, "To new beginnings." They sip together, looking into each other's eyes. Their arms drop at the same time and he speaks. "Beautiful night," he says as he lets his gaze wander from her to the night sky. "Just the two of us, the water, the..."

"El," she interrupts. "You know you don't have to do this, right?"

He looks at her, one eyebrow raised, and he sips his champagne. "Do what?" he breathes after he swallows.

"You're pale, you're shaking," she says, dropping her glass to the small table beside her. "This is me. Us."

"Yeah," he says, exhaling. "That's why I'm so nervous." He looks back at her as the boat jerks, rocking in it's port. "Do you have any idea how long I've waited for this?" He puts his half-gone drink down beside hers. "For what we're doing, here? I don't wanna fuck this up."

She laughs and links her fingers with his, pulling his hand from her shoulder. "I seriously doubt there's anything you can do to fuck this up," she says. "We've survived explosions, car accidents, stabbings, shootings...I think we can weather a few cheesy moments on a boat."

"We weren't...together...for all of that," he tells her. He sees her quirk an eyebrow at him. "Not like this," he corrects, tugging her into him and wrapping his other arm around her. "We're...different than most couples. We've been through Hell together, we've known each other for years...I've been in love with you almost as long as I've known you." He bites his lip. "I don't know what's too fast for us, or what's too slow. We've crossed lines that were never drawn, we've blurred ones that were never even there. We are more now than we have ever been, yet nothing's really changed. It...you make me nervous."

"We've never really had limits, El," she says, her tone flat. "Labels and rules? That was never us. Why do we need to label it now?"

"Because we can." He blinks once and licks his lips, aching to kiss her. "It's different, now, don't you get it?" he scoffs. "What we had before, that was friends with a ton of incredible fucking benefits, with secrets that we shouldn't have had to keep..." he stops. "Now, it's real, and it's final. Official. It's the only thing that has ever made sense to me, and I don't wanna lose this because I'm impatient, but...Liv, fuck, I can't keep my hands...or my lips off of you. I never could."

She is the one with the sweaty palms now. Her heart hammers in her chest as her lips part to let the shivering breath loose into the cold evening air, and she searches his eyes for any sign that he's lying. Seeing none, she tells him, "Then don't."

That's all the encouragement he needs. His hands fly to the nape of her neck, he pulls her hard toward him, and their lips meet with such a fierce crash that he's sure someone has a chipped tooth. He eases up, only just, and runs his tongue along her teeth, along her lips, teasing her, testing her. "You want this," he whispers.

She nods fast, her own hands clutching the wool of his sweater. "So do you," she pants, feeling his hands brush down the length of her body. She moans when he cups her ass and squeezes, forcing her tighter into him.

He thrusts into her, letting her know just how much he does, in fact, want her. "You know why it had to be tonight, don't you? Why I brought you out here to do this, tonight?"

"Because you suffered an early mid-life crisis and bought a boat," she jokes. She moans when he rubs against her again, his hardness pressing against her thigh and part of her stomach. She can feel how thick he is, how long, and it both frightens and excites her. "It's New Year's Eve," she says softly, his lips a breath away from hers.

He smiles, there is wickedness in his grin, and he nods. "Yeah. You and me. Tonight. Ending the year that almost tore us apart, and starting the next one more together than we have ever been." He moves, ushering her backward. He presses her into the wall of the boat's cabin, and he kisses her hard.

She lets out a strangled whimper, her emotions spiraling out of control as much as her body. Her nails rake up his back, under the thick sweater, and she silently wishes he'd take it off so she could feel more of him, see more of him.

He grunts at the feeling of her hands on him, he rolls into her again, and he breathes into her ear as he nips at her lobe. "Where?" he asks, as if it matters. Location is never an issue; they always act on impulse.

She turns her head and looks into his eyes. "Right here," she answers. She's firm, and she's sure, and she's ready. She gasps as the frigid fingers of his left hand slip up her dress, and she closes her eyes when she feels him sliding down her satin panties. He's slower than usual, and she knows it's because he's trying to discern tonight from their previous encounters.

Blowing off steam, they had called it. Comfort. A need that only a true partner could fulfill. Never talked about before or after, only acknowledged during their trysts. They could never admit it, but it was always so much more, to both of them, and tonight is about finally facing it all.

He takes the smallest step backward as he grabs the hem of her dress and pulls it up. His breath catches in his throat as her body comes into full view, and he tosses the black fabric to the floor.

The frost against her skin doesn't register, she's hotter than Hell right now, and she watches as he peels away the layers of clothing from his form. She bites her lip a bit harder when he drops his pants, kicks them off, and stands before her in nothing but the moonlight.

He moves first, one hand smoothing over the side of her face. He can see the bursts of breath in the air as he pants, inching toward her, but he's not cold at all. He brushes his lips over hers and that's when the goose bumps appear. He chuckles at his awkwardness, then he looks into her eyes. He sees the same warmth that has always been there, the same love that he's seen for years, and he relaxes. He relents. "Kiss me," he demands softly.

Her head bends and her lips latch onto his. Her arms wind around his neck; she moans when his strong palms hike her legs up around his waist, and she whispers his name when he nudges at her ready entrance.

He groans, and he rolls his neck for a moment. He feels her wetness begin to coat his tip as he pushes forward, and from conversations they've had he knows that she's only ever been this eager with him. He has to laugh, because it's the same on his end. No one has ever made him harder, more throbbing than her.

"Elliot," her soft voice cries, her body welcoming him with just a pinch of pan from the stretch. It's been a long time since she's been with him like this, since they decided it was all or nothing. She arches her back when he thrusts hard, bottoming out in one move.

He chuckles, proud, and he sweeps his hand through her hair as he watches her eyes roll back. He moves slowly, then, long and deep strokes in and out of her. When her head straightens, he grows bolder. He stays inside of her as he pulls back.

She moans louder as he twists her body away from the wall and she gasps when he drops her legs. "Oh, God," she cries, her eyes fluttering closed again.

He doesn't halt his thrusts, but works her harder, faster as he turns her around and leans her over the rail of the boat. He bends his head and kisses the back of her neck, moving her hair out of the way. "Do you remember," he asks, "The last time we did it like this? The balcony of that motel...we only had an hour..."

She reaches up and back, looping her arm around his neck. "God, yes," she says. Her head drops back against his chest when he palms both breasts, toying with her nipples. "Why are you..."

"Wait," he grunts, his body now slamming into hers, his hands keeping her as tightly pressed to him as possible. "Watch," he huffs, his tongue swirling in her ear as he pinches her nipples. His eyes dart from her to the city skyline.

The first firework makes her jump, it forces him deeper into her. "Fuck," she spits, her fingers gripping at the short hair at the back of his head. Her eyes are glued to the colored sparks, but her mind is trained on the feeling of him inside of her. Her focus, tonight, is on losing herself in him completely, and giving every last bit of herself to him, as he has vowed to do to her.

He's thrusting slower, but harder. Hitting into her each time with a grunt, he watches as her body glows with the colors reflecting from the fireworks blasting above them. He rolls her nipples between his fingers, his lips and teeth leave light marks on her neck. He chuckles as his right hand trickles down her trembling body, over her stomach, and searches out her clit.

"Oh, God," she moans. "Yes, Elliot," her voice breaks. She shivers as his fingers slip into her folds, she knows the tips of them are brushing against his shaft as it pumps in and out of her. She stiffens when she feels him swipe over the nub.

"How do you want it?" he asks, his words sending more shivers down her arching back. "Come on, baby, tell me how you want it!"

Her mind races. He's never asked before, it's always been his decision. Does she cum fast and hard, slow and intense, or roll in several easy waves? It's always been his call. She knows, now, how serious he is about making what they have solid. She presses her lips together and shakes her head, whining as his fingers work faster over her clit.

"Tell me," he barks, their flesh slapping together with each pounding movement of his hips.

The thunder of the fireworks, the lights blazing in the sky, and the overwhelming sensations taking over her body all blur in her mind, and she nearly blacks out. "Harder, baby," she finally says, her hand dropping from behind his head. She links her fingers with his, flicking at her clit with him, driving him to work faster, press harder.

He feels her clamp down and freeze, he hears her curse, and his hand is coated in as much slickness as his still-slamming length. "Fuck," he pants, and he knows that when she starts shuddering and pulsing around him, he will be lost to her.

"Elliot," she growls, collapsing backward into his strength, "God damn!"

There she goes, he thinks. Her quivering makes him throb, makes him burn, and with one more hard burst into her, he cums as hard as he made her. "Mother of God," he mumbles, his face buried in the valley between her neck and shoulder.

Resting there, now, they catch their breath in silence. The fireworks crash overhead, bathing them in soft blues and greens as they try to process the depth of what just happened. The sheen of sweat that covers them both evaporates quickly in the cold, and when he slips out of her she turns to look at him. There's another long silence as they stare intently at each other, obviously waiting for the other to say something. Anything.

"Happy New Year," he says, a smile on his face.

She laughs and says, "Yeah. It's gonna be."

A/N: Next; A ball-drop to remember...for six very special people.