Jane double-parked in front of the fancy restaurant. She texted Maura and flashed her detective badge to the valet attendant when he came to the window to offer his services. He backed off with an uneasy smile. After only a few seconds, Maura came out through the double-doors and scanned the street with her eyes. Jane gave her a brief honk.
Holding her coat closed with her fist, Maura walked as fast as possible in her 3 inch heels and plopped down in the passenger's seat. Jane merged into Friday night Boston's traffic.
"Wow, it was that bad, huh?" Jane chuckled.
"My goodness, if you hadn't come I think I would have triggered the fire alarm in the bathroom." Maura reached over and gave Jane's knee a tight squeeze. "Thank you for rescuing me from the worst date in history."
"You're lucky I was still at work. Had I been home in my jammies, you'd have been on your own."
They giggled in unison. Maura had texted Jane from the bathroom, to call her in 2 mn and pretend to be dispatch, so she'd have an excuse to leave her boring, pompous date. Back at their table, she took the call in front of him, and while Jane was spewing the funniest things on the other side, Maura had struggled to keep a serious face and answered as if there was a crime scene to be investigated.
"Wanna join me for a drink before going home?" Jane offered. She had been looking forward to relaxing after a long week at work, and had been planning on going out, regardless of Maura's date. The unexpected change in plans was definitely a bonus.
Maura practically bounced in her seat.
"I'd love to! I didn't even finish my glass of wine."
Jane picked a bar she had heard of, but never had been to. "Wagon Wheel" was busy, but not too crowded. Nice but not pretentious. They got a table after 5 mn at the bar, and hung out for 2 and a half hours before they realized it was way past midnight. As they made their way out with a few other patrons, Jane realized it was mostly lesbian couples and smiled to herself. She wondered if Maura had noticed.
Once outside, Jane stopped and helped Maura with her coat. The car was a couple of blocks away, and as Jane started walking, Maura wrapped her hand around Jane's arm. She looked up at the brunette and smiled. Jane smiled back at her and they made their way to the car.
Jane drove to Maura's house as the doctor educated Jane about the deadliest poisonous creatures, and which ones remained lethal for lack of anti-venom. Even tough Jane would always respond with sarcasm to Maura's long exposes, she secretly made mental notes of the fascinating facts she had learned since they'd known each other.
The motion lights went on in Maura's driveway when they pulled up. Jane turned off the ignition and they continued their conversation, even after the lights timed out. They had moved on to what menu items Jane's mom should introduce at the Cafe, even though Stanley wouldn't let her.
It was now past 2 AM. After Maura yawned for the second time, Jane stepped out of the car, walked around, and opened the passenger door.
"Here, let me walk you to your door, Sleeping Beauty."
Maura unlocked her front door and turned around to face Jane.
"Would you like to spend the night?"
Jane laughed. " I usually wait for the second date, thank you." She shook her head to dismiss her joke. "I have to go walk poor Jo. Hopefully she didn't pee all over my apartment."
Maura nodded and stepped forward, taking Jane's hand in her own.
"Thank you. I had a wonderful evening."
Jane smiled and nodded slowly. "Me too."
Maura looked up at Jane. She brought her hand up to cup her face, gently smoothing her thumb against the brunette's cheek. She leaned forward, and pressed her lips to Jane's for a quick kiss. Jane spontaneously kissed her back, but it was over before she could think about it. She felt her stomach flip, and looked into Maura's eyes. She couldn't tell what Maura's intentions were. Maybe it was just a kiss between friends. She fought the urge to kiss her again.
Before she could make up her mind, Maura had pulled back. "Goodnight Jane." Her voice was almost a whisper.
"Goodnight." The detective rasped back. She could feel her heart racing in her chest.
Jane turned around and walked to her car, wondering what had just happened, and whatever it was, it felt wonderful. She was smiling all the way back to her apartment.