Chapter Seventeen

It had been a month and against her better judgement, Joey was on cloud nine. She and Charlie were out and proud, not to mention happy together. As each day passed, Joey was torn between surrendering herself to the joy and passion of their relationship and fear that it was all going to collapse. She felt stronger for Charlie than she had ever even felt for the woman she'd loved so much, she had allowed herself to be bullied.

But despite a rather harsh approach to life, Joey had seen Charlie mellow and she certainly could never see her of being capable of the same kinds of things as her ex. She was desperately in love with her.

"Hey, sweetheart, what time shall we book the table for tonight?" Joey asked, poking her head around Charlie's office door.

The Detective looked up sharply, stress evident on her face. Joey moved into the room and shut the door, perching on the edge of the desk that they'd had sex on only a month or so before. That had been a particularly entertaining afternoon. And for Joey, it had been completely out of character. But Charlie brought out a side to her that she had never even known she had. And she liked it.

"Are you okay?" she asked worriedly.

She took Charlie's hand but found it rather stiff, like she didn't want to be touched.

"Charlie?" she nudged.

"What?" the Detective asked, sounding lost.

"Is everything okay?" Joey repeated, genuinely concerned.

"Yeah, fine," Charlie lied. "What table?"

"Um… we were going to go for dinner tonight," Joey reminded her. "For our anniversary?"

"Oh, yeah, sure," Charlie said

"So… what time?"

"Whenever," Charlie told her.

Joey was disappointed to find her tone lacking in any sort of enthusiasm.

"We don't have to…"

"I said it's fine, Joey," Charlie snapped.

Joey's hurt showed on her face and Charlie felt instantly guilty. Her current predicament wasn't Joey's fault, after all… well, not exactly anyway.

"I'm sorry," she said. "I just have some stuff on my mind."

"Anything you'd like to share?" Joey asked.

The one thing that Charlie wasn't that good at was communication. She was smart, funny, passionate and entertaining but she had a tendency to live in her own head and Joey had to admit it was a little tiring to have to work out what she was thinking all the time. But then, she figured that was a small price to pay – especially when the one thing she was surer of than anything else was that Charlie loved her.

"Not yet," Charlie said. "But later. I've got some stuff to get on with now but um… I finish at seven so maybe book the table for eight?"

"Sounds good," Joey enthused.

She leant over and kissed her, pleased when Charlie responded. Any anxiety or awkwardness dissipated as their lips melted together. Charlie stood, pressing her body against Joey's, never wanting to let her go. She ran had hands up and down Joey's spine, making her shiver and wrap her arms tightly around her neck.

"You know, it is our anniversary…" Joey murmured hopefully.

She caught Charlie's wicked grin, excited over what was likely to happen next. Charlie swept a handful of papers off her desk and lay Joey back on it. She leant over her body, kissing her neck and cupping her breasts.

"Have I mentioned how much I love you in this uniform?" Charlie grinned.

Joey giggled.

"I think the clues have been the times you wouldn't let me take it off," she smirked.

Charlie undid the buttons to Joey's shirt, kissing every bit of flesh she exposed. She grinned when she saw the lacy, blue bra she wore beneath. It was one of her favourites.

With the shirt undone and un-tucked from Joey's trousers, Charlie traced her fingertips up and down Joey's lean torso. She kissed her tummy and then back up to her breasts.

She toyed with Joey's erect nipples through the thin lace, stroking them with her fingers and then her tongue. She released one and then the other, keeping her movements delicate, having lost all sense of time and location.

Joey lay back on the wooden desk, gazing up at the ceiling and feeling her head spin with pleasure. She felt hot and like there was some sort of flood between her legs as she relished Charlie's every touch. She groaned as Charlie took one nipple between her teeth, sucking it hard.

"Charlie…" she moaned.

The Detective slipped her hand quickly inside Joey's work trousers, glad that she wore them ever so slightly loose. She grinned when she discovered she was wearing just a thong and judging by the material, it matched the bra. Charlie closed her eyes, stroking her thighs and kissing her breasts and she pictured the underwear in all its glory. She looked forward to seeing it properly that night after dinner. She giggled to herself as she pondered whether it was wrong to have a dessert both before and after.

"What are you…?" Joey was about to ask.

She was cut off by her own gasp as Charlie slid her underwear aside and thrust two fingers inside her. She cried out in growing ecstasy as Charlie expertly penetrated her. They knew each other's bodies so well now and yet everything was always still so exciting. She felt Joey shift, her legs unable to find safe landing as she tried to control herself.

Leaning over her again, Charlie kissed her neck, sucking on her pulse point. She leant on one hand as she worked to build her to climax, loving the way that Joey was always so excited to be with her.

"Charlie…" Joey gasped.

She wrapped her legs around Charlie's hips and closed her eyes as the crescendo built. She shuddered and clung tightly to Charlie as orgasm took over. Then she collapsed back onto the desk, her breathing laboured and stars dancing behind her eyelids.

When she opened up again, she found Charlie gazing lovingly at her. She lost herself in her eyes, wanting the moment to last forever.

That evening, Charlie's distracted mood had returned, although she was trying to keep a smile on her face over dinner. She knew how important it was to Joey and it was important to her too. She had certainly never celebrated an anniversary with anyone before. It was the longest relationship she had ever had.

"Joey, there's something I need to tell you," Charlie blurted out somewhere between their starter and main course.
"I wish you would," Joey replied.

Charlie looked confused.

"You've obviously had something on your mind all day," Joey told her. "But if you talk to me then we can deal with it together."

Charlie swallowed. She really wasn't used to sharing her feelings.

"Okay," she said, taking a deep breath. "I've been offered a huge promotion but it means relocating back to the city."

Joey stared at her, she felt like her heart was breaking at the mere thought. Charlie had come to Summer Bay in order to help them tackle the River Boys and she had succeeded. Most of them were in jail where they belonged now, including their leader, Brax. And thanks to his incarceration, the ones that hadn't been charged with anything had calmed down and stopped causing trouble. She should have known Charlie would get credit for it.

"Wow," she said, unhappily, sitting back in her seat. "That's… great."

She tried to smile but it looked more like a grimace.

"No, it's not," Charlie told her. "This is what I've always wanted. My career is all I've lived for my whole life and…"

She trailed off, looking miserable. Joey studied her face.


"And now I don't want it," Charlie told her.

Joey looked utterly confused.

"You don't want it?" she asked.

"I found something else to live for," Charlie told her.

Their eyes met and they smiled curiously at each other.

"You'd pass up a promotion to hang around here?" Joey asked sceptically.

She knew exactly how important Charlie's career was to her.

"Yeah, because I love the town so much!" Charlie remarked. "No, Joey, I'd pass up a promotion in order to stay here with you."

Joey just stared at her, not quite able to believe it.

"Unless you don't want me to?" Charlie asked worriedly.

Joey hurried to kneel by her side, holding her hands.

"I want you to," she said sincerely. "I'm just worried that you'll resent me for it later."

"I won't," Charlie said, losing herself in her eyes. "I've never loved anyone or anything like I love you, Joey. Not even my job. I want… I want to make this work with you."

"Are you sure?" Joey asked.

"Very sure," Charlie said.

"You just… don't seem that happy about the decision," Joey ventured.

Charlie held both her hands, kissing them both one after the other.

"I think I'm in shock," she explained. "Never in all my life did I think that I'd ever make a decision like this."

"But you are happy?" Joey checked.

"I'm happier than I ever thought I could be," Charlie confirmed.

They kissed, both looking forward to the rest of their lives together.

Thank you to everyone who has read and reviewed this story. I hope you've enjoyed it. I've three more in the pipeline and I'm sure they'll appear at some point in the nearish future. This one was especially for Jensy25, as she was pretty eager to see Cop Joey. I hope it met your expectations! Love, IJKS xxx