Disclaimer: Despite my constant urge to write stories about these characters, I still don't own any of them.
Spoilers: None. Unless you haven't seen 6B, but then, WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR LIFE?
A/N: While rewatching the entire show back in January (prior to the finale D:), I got sucked back into what I call "ALL THE 6B FEELS!" after watching that episode, which led to me rereading all the post-6B fanfics ever written, and then I started writing this. Then, of course, Fringe ended and I got distracted, but my muse eventually came around again and I finally finished it.
It is mostly fluff, and also M rated, because you know, 6B feels. Also it's huge, but hey, who's shocked? :D
It's only half-betaed because I'm impatient, but biggest thanks to Ferris for her help! Enjoy guys :)
THIS YEARS LOVE
Turning circles and time again
It cuts like a knife oh now
If you love me got to know for sure
Cause it takes something more this time
Than sweet sweet lies oh now
Before I open up my arms and fall
The sound of her cellphone wakes them up.
More precisely, the sound of her cellphone wakes her up; he is brutally awoken a second later, when she instinctively responds to the noise and nothing short of springs awake, her elbow colliding forcefully with the underside of his jaw.
"Oh god, Peter, I'm sorry," she apologizes in a loud whisper as he groans in pain, still too groggy to understand what's happening despite the sudden pain and agitation.
True to herself, Olivia is already fully alert, sitting up on the edge of his –way too tiny- bed, hunching over to grab her phone from her discarded pants. Now definitely awake as well, the throbbing in his jaw making sure of that, he stares at her bare back, her pale skin looking almost luminescent in the transitional, bluish light of a fast approaching dawn; he watches as she brings the phone to her ear, her other hand already up in her hair.
"Dunham," she greets in her familiar, professional tone, though her voice is slightly breathless, lower than usual, as if coming from a deeper place in her throat. He cannot help but smile a little, the twitchy fingers in her hair causing it to move in waves upon her shoulders.
Despite the lack of light, he sees the small shivers already traveling under her skin; she's cold, having lost the warmth of the covers, and his. As she nods, oblivious to the fact that her interlocutor cannot see her, his hand finds her spine, using his thumb to swiftly trace the bumpy curve, from the hollow at lowest part of her back, all the way up to the base of her neck, his fingers disappearing in her hair.
The touch is light, almost featherlike, but her reaction is immediate. Her back tenses and arches impulsively, and new kinds of shivers break beneath the smooth skin. Just as instinctively, she attempts to scoot away from his distracting hand, but she seems to have already forgotten where she is and how tiny his bed really is; trying to move from her precarious sitting position only causes her to stumble off the bed altogether, not ungracefully, swiftly finding her balance again as she straightens up.
For a blissful second, she stands stark naked in front of his eyes. Then, she's on the move, sharing words with whomever dared call her so early –he's too distracted by the delightful sight to pay attention; bending down, she grabs a piece of clothing he recognizes as the sweater he wore the previous day. She successfully manages to slip it on with impressive dexterity, never once getting the phone away from her ear, until she hangs it up and turns to face him again.
The sweater is too big on her, though it's barely long enough to cover her body below the hips. Simply watching her like that causes his breathing to hitch slightly, his warm blood already deserting his brain for another location.
She comes back closer to the bed, bending over him now, her lips pursed in regret. "How bad does it hurt?" she asks softly, and only when her fingers find his on his jaw does he realize he had kept a hand up to his face, where her elbow had met his flesh and bones, not so gently.
"Don't worry about it," he tells her, his voice low and hoarse from sleep –and a bit of something else. His fingers have already sneaked up her side, slipping under the hem of the sweater to splay over her lower back, applying pressure to bring her closer, until she's half-kneeling over him.
He feels the sudden urge to move the fabric up her skin, wanting to take his time in revealing the different places where he's quite sure he left his mark a few hours ago, with his enthusiastic mouth and prickly stubble.
He doesn't have to say a word for her to catch his train of thought, and she smiles softly, her lips hovering only inches away from his, though her expression remains mostly apologetic. He understands why when she speaks again.
"It was Broyles. He needs me in the office."
His fingers leave her lower back, warm palm traveling upward, his fingertips finding her spine again, and she bites her lip. "Oh, really," he says, and it's definitely not a question.
"He's got people breathing down his neck about what happened yesterday at the Rosencrantz Building, and I kinda postponed finishing that report last night."
Using his hand on her to bring her down, he also pushes himself upward, until he's the one breathing down her neck, in a way that is excessively slow. He has every intention of keeping her here for a few more hours, and judging by the way she exhales loudly at the feel of his warm breath, her fingers having already moved from his face to his hair, her grip deliciously firm, he's likely to succeed.
"Why don't you postpone it for a little while longer…" he suggests, his voice muffled against her skin, before sucking it between his lips, and her hold on his hair tightens accordingly; his second hand is on the move, now, choosing to focus on her front, moving deliberately slowly over the thin wool, moving downward, with only one destination in mind.
He's about to pass that threshold when the semi-silence of the room is once again broken by the ringing of a phone. All of their movements stop, both frozen in space for a moment, until it becomes clear the sound is coming from his phone this time. He lets out a frustrated growl against her neck, just before she completely moves off the bed –and him.
Disgruntled, he moves around, finding the vibrating device on his nightstand, his scowl worsening when he reads Walter's name on the screen.
Olivia, who has already picked up all of her clothes from the ground in an obvious attempt to flee the room as fast as she can before he tries distracting her again, nods her head towards the door. "I'm gonna shower and head off."
He accepts the oncoming call, raising a finger up in a halting gesture as he brings the phone to his ear. "Walter," he greets his father in a singing voice, then covering the receiver to muffle his next words. "You might need some help turning the shower on."
Her face breaks into a small, half-crooked smile, and he swears she has never looked more scrumptious, standing there half- naked in his sweater, so obviously disheveled with yesterday's clothes bundled in her arms. "I'm pretty sure I can figure it out on my own, but nice try, Bishop." And she's gone.
It takes him a second to realize Walter is already stammering at the other end of the line, and even when he focuses solely on his words, he's not making any sense.
"Slow down, Walter," he tries to calm him down, falling back upon his pillow, rubbing his eyes with a tired hand.
After a few tries, the causes of his distress become clearer. The anguish his father had been in the previous day at the thought of their universe starting to disintegrate like the Other Side has only worsened after a sleepless night spent reading alarming data, all the while injecting himself with more than one brand of drugs.
"I need you here, son," Walter keeps repeating. He sounds so lost and helpless that Peter's irritation quickly morphs into sympathy "I-I can't make sense of things, and I always think more clearly when you're with me."
Peter realizes how selfish he is being, wanting to ignore the outside world in favor of the endorphins flooding his blood; everything else just seems so insignificant in comparison to the thought of spending the rest of the day, week, month, with his skin fused to Olivia's. Such desire is not irrational, considering the hurdles they've been through these past few months alone. Unfortunately for them, said outside world is very much intent on not letting either of them forget what is happening out there, and he can't say he's surprised.
Disappointed, most definitely. A bit apprehensive as well. He cannot help but feel like it might all slip through his fingers yet again.
But he reopens his eyes, then, the back of his neck prickling in a unique sensation, and his gaze meets Olivia's. She has come back, now leaning against the doorframe, quietly watching him. As she stares at him with an intensity that is nothing short of nerve-wracking, his disquieting thoughts swiftly recede.
"Alright, Walter," he finally gives in, trying to sound as soothing as possible. "I'll take the train and be there in a couple of hours. Please, try and stay away from the LSD in the meantime."
When he hangs up, with an over-dramatic, defeated sigh, she offers him a soft smile. "No day off for you either, I'm guessing."
"No rest for the wicked," he says half-jokingly, half-tiredly, before frowning at her. "I thought you were showering."
She purses her lips, tilting her head sharply. "I tried, but apparently, you need a degree from M.I.T. to get the water working. Or a fake one, at least."
Phone still in hand, he leaves his bed, slipping his boxers on before following her back to the bathroom, not without offering her a smart, cheeky smile as he does so. The look she gives him in return confirms that it is never wise to brag in any way about her having been proved wrong.
The house is old, and so are the pipes. He explains how Walter had gotten in his mind to 'fix the shower pipes' a few months ago, while obviously tripping his brains out. As a result, his creation is very twisted, following a sequence of geometrical variables. Having used the shower hundreds of times himself, Peter could turn it on in his sleep, but he does it deliberately slowly today, as he gives her a detailed explanation and demonstration. He has always been aware of her particular fondness for his 'smart-talks'.
Plus, she has pinned herself to him to observe his movements more closely, her shoulder pressing into his own shoulder-blade. He keeps his voice casual, almost professional, as if he wasn't affected in the least by this proximity.
"It's a pain to turn on, but the water pressure is literally perfect," he concludes as the water finally begins to flow down. "He proved that one back in 1973, too, probably right after proving breakfast was the most important meal of the day."
He shakes his wet arm, turning back to face her. His stomach instantly drops when he meets her eyes, his smart-talk having had an effect on her alright. She's not smiling anymore; her gaze has become dark and intense again.
He lets the silence stretch between them, the only sound in the room being the falling water and its perfect pressure.
"Maybe I should shower with you," he says, keeping his voice casual, even though he has no doubt his gaze is now as dark as hers.
He's still trying to distract her, and they both know it, which is why she remains silent.
"For purely hygienic reasons," he clarifies. His wet hand has come around her waist, now playing with the hem of his sweater. "I'm afraid our late night activities have made me reek quite a bit."
She still doesn't say a single word, but she does move, then. One of her hands comes up to cup his nape, and he feels the prickle of her nails digging slightly into his skin, feels the boiling heat stirring low in his abdomen. The heat becomes fire when she uses her grip to pull him down, ignoring his lips altogether to press her face to his neck. She inhales slowly, loudly, as if in mock imitation of what he had done to her neck only minutes ago.
But he knows there is no mockery in this gesture, breathing in his strong scent as if he was the most intoxicating thing she had ever smelled. He responds in kind, his whole arm having slipped under the sweater again, encircling her firmly and pressing her body to him, burying his nose in her hair. He drowns himself in this silky river, as entrancing to him as he is to her. Now more than ever, he is acutely aware of how naked she truly is, if not for that one piece of clothing she's wearing; she is warm and enticing against him.
Beyond this carnal, throbbing craving of her he feels so deep in his gut, it is this obvious display of mutual affection that makes him feel almost lightheaded; they cannot express these emotions in words, not yet, but at that instant, the way they hold onto one another a little too tightly is worth a thousand words. It is a lovers' embrace, the kind only two people having experienced what it is like to become one can share. They are now condemned to constantly yearn for that closeness, for that complete and perfect connection, one that goes beyond the physical aspect of the act itself.
The physical aspect of the act cannot be denied either, though, and Olivia is clearly giving in. The hand that isn't lost in his hair has found his backside, sneaking into his boxers and squeezing the firm muscles to pin him more firmly to her. He now has every intention to free her from that damn sweater within seconds and to make love to her right here on the spot, but his plans are cut short by his phone, which he had unceremoniously dropped on her pile of clothes.
It's ringing again.
"You gotta be kidding me," he mumbles into her hair, now officially annoyed.
She, on the other hand, seems to find this pretty funny, chuckling softly against his pulsing neck, and she uses this new opportunity to quickly and skillfully slip away from his embrace.
She's out of his sweater even faster, offering him another brief and wondrous sight, before she disappears into the shower stall.
It is Walter, of course, insuring he's on his way.
"I was about to step into the shower, Walter," he says, which isn't far from the truth, the background noise confirming his story. He does his best not to let it sound just how distracted and exasperated he is, for his father's sake, but his eyes remain fixed on the shower's door. "I will call you as soon as my train leaves, alright?"
But he's not listening to Walter's reply. Though the glass door is already covered with steam, he can decipher each shape of her body with ridiculous ease, each of her movements; he has no trouble picturing himself joining her under the spray, pinning her against the cold tiles that cover the shower walls, and finding his way back into the warmest of places.
Not having received an official invitation to do so despite his best efforts, he forces himself out of the bathroom instead, focusing on his father's babbling, attempting to calm himself down. He hangs up after promising again that he will call. He puts on the discarded sweater he had grabbed on his way out; even though she only wore it for a few minutes, her scent seems to be permeating every fiber of it, just like she has invaded every inch of his flesh.
When he ends up alone in his kitchen, though, the humming coffee machine being his sole companion, he cannot keep his thoughts from deviating once more, the kind of thoughts that take their roots in the darkest corners of the mind. Though he can still smell her all over him, not to mention that exquisite soreness in some of his muscles, part of him remains completely baffled, wondering if last night wasn't a dream.
He is a scarred man, one who only days ago had been resigned, accepting the fact that he had lost absolutely everything, her most of all, as a well-deserved punishment for his foolishness.
Standing by himself in this room, it is almost too easy to believe that it hasn't happened, that it was all an hallucination, the result of one of his father's drugs he might have accidentally ingurgitated. Surely if it had really happened, he would still be upstairs, sharing his twin bed with her. They would let the day go by, focused solely on one another, rewriting history, their history, with each rippling wave of their bodies.
She wouldn't be leaving in the small hours of the day, without barely a word or a look back. That was something the Other Olivia had done, time and time again, pretexting having been called away while he was sleeping.
After their first night together, he had found himself lying alone in her bed, staring at her ceiling, pondering on how the actual act could have been so different from what he had spent many months fantasizing about.
The sound of Olivia coming down abruptly puts an end to his austere musing; her steps upon the creaky stairs are energetic and purposeful, undeniable proof that she has already switched back to 'Agent Mode'. For a short, anxious second, he almost expects the front door to open and close on her, while he stands helpless, watching her leave his life without a look in his direction.
But when she reaches the bottom of the stairs, there is no hesitation. She makes a U turn and walks towards the kitchen, towards him.
Her hair, still wet, is up in a ponytail again, bouncing on her shoulders in cadence, and he can see the damp spots it has already left on the collar of her shirt. As soon as her eyes stop on him, waiting for her at the counter, he raises what he has prepared while she showered, and she offers him a small, appreciative smile.
She comes closer to him, scarf and winter coat hanging from her arm, accepting the travelling mug he has filled up with warm and fresh coffee. He wasn't foolish enough to get any food out.
"You know, someday, you're really gonna have to try those pancakes," he tells her teasingly, but there is a note of anticipation in his voice.
What he's really saying is, 'Please tell me we'll get to eat breakfast together at some point'.
Again, he's haunted with the memory of her Alternate, who had been so hesitant in letting any kind of domesticity develop between them. He had always been the one initiating each of these rare moments. And even though she would usually humor him, whenever he decided to bring her breakfast in bed for example, when she smiled, it rarely reached her eyes.
Of course, these were details he had been all too keen to ignore when he thought he was loving the right woman. Now, every single one of them seems like the most obvious give away.
He tries his best to chase these thoughts from his mind, but he simply cannot help being troubled by this similarity, the two of them 'going back to business' so quickly.
Something must have shown on his face, or maybe his body language gave him away, because Olivia lowers the mug she had brought to her lips, then, and smiles. It is a soft smile, almost tender, and it definitely reaches her eyes. As she leans over the counter, slowly bringing her face to his, he gives himself a few mental slaps for being such an idiot.
She stops only an inch away from his lips. "If I really have to eat, I actually like eggs more than pancakes in the morning," she admits, not without adding: "I'm willing to give yours a try, though."
When she kisses him, in a soft, lingering kiss that makes his every cell vibrate, she tastes of coffee and endless possibilities.
Fourteen hours, too many train rides and a Walter Crisis later, the taste of her lips has completely faded away. The strain of the day has also succeeded in tarnishing the memory of their night together. It's not that he can't remember it, quite the opposite. He remembers it all, Olivia showing up at his house, willing to give them another chance, and then taking him upstairs to demonstrate how much she meant it.
Remembering is the easy part. Believing it is another story.
It had all seemed so simple and evident, in the wondrous, floating minutes that had followed their love making, when they had lain untangled and breathless in his bed, imagining how perfectly everything would unfold for them. They were meant to be, after all, and if they had been able to get over the Switch, nothing could possibly come between them again and mess things up.
She had been so warm and boneless against him, almost purring in contentment, a promise in the flesh. It had indeed been easy to believe everything would go smoothly from then on.
As it turns out, probably not. Things are never as simple as you want them to be.
So far, they have spent most of their first official day as what he dares call 'a couple' away from each other. Even the feeble attempt he had made at reaching her by calling her when he got on a train back from New York had fallen short, his call forwarded to voicemail.
Swallowing back his uneasiness, always the same damn fears, he had left her a short message, probably sounding overly cheerful, telling her he was on his way back, and that he would be home all night –a not so subtle invitation. Half-an-hour (of brooding) later, his phone had beeped, announcing a new text message.
'Sorry, was in a meeting. Dinner at my place tonight?'
To say he was surprised by this invitation would be an understatement. He hadn't been near her apartment since that night he had spent mostly paralyzed in one of her armchairs. It hadn't been the most glorious hours of his life, though retrospectively, it had been quite a fitting development, having just learned that he had been used for weeks by her doppelganger. What better punishment than to be forced to think about it while your body was immobilized?
The thought of going back there had made him uneasy alright, and he suspected it would make her uneasy as well. But declining her offer had been out of the question, not when he was already longing and aching for the sight of her, for the confirmation that this was truly happening, for more opportunities to redeem himself. After all, the invitation in itself proved that she was trying, and trying hard, which is why he had texted her back, letting her know he would be there in a couple of hours.
Now that he's standing in front of her door, having just knocked, he feels ridiculously nervous. The instant she opens the door and offers him the biggest fake smile he has ever seen on her face, he knows he had been right; she's nervous, too.
"Hi," she says, a bit breathlessly, a hand already sneaking into her hair. She has let it down again, and as a result of having dried while tied up, it is now oddly wavy where the ponytail holder used to be.
She's still in her work outfit, minus her jacket and her shoes. He wouldn't be surprised if she'd downed one or two shots of whiskey while waiting for him. He could use one of those himself.
"Hi," he answers with a reassuring smile. His gaze is soft, understanding, quietly letting her know that he's not fooled one second by her act.
He feels better when the forced grin disappears from her lips, but it doesn't last long, as she speaks again:
"I lied to you," she says, and his stomach instantly sinks at this brutal déjà-vu, his own smile fading.
Swallowing hard, his pulse already beating alarmingly fast against his temples, he gives her a look he hopes is more inquisitive than panicked.
"I don't…actually have anything here that would make a substantial dinner," she admits.
He is so relieved by those words that he cannot help but chuckle, smiling much more sincerely this time. "That's alright," he says as she finally moves aside to let him in. "We can eat out, make it our official first date or something."
Then, maybe he can convince her to take a cab back to his place.
As she closes her door, now mostly avoiding his gaze, he notices the slight blush on her cheeks, not to mention the way her whole body remains incredibly tense. It is quite contagious.
She brings her eyes back to his, and with a sharp tilt of her head, she says: "Actually, I was hoping we would stay in tonight."
The warm colors of her face darken; so do her eyes, as she holds his stare. The message is unambiguous, her blush having absolutely nothing to do with embarrassment. His stomach, which had seemed to drop to the ground a minute ago at this unexpected déjà-vu, is now doing somersaults. The tension between them is quickly shifting from uncomfortable awkwardness to something else.
It is his turn to tilt his head, offering her a very different kind of smile. "Takeout?"
In all honesty, he's not that hungry at all, not for food in any case, but he's willing to play by her rules, whatever helps her relax.
She nods, excessively, almost restlessly, suddenly turning around and making a beeline for her kitchen. "I've got cold beers in the fridge," she tells him as she opens a drawer and starts taking out an impressive stash of menus, her back to him. As he predicted, he spots an empty glass on the counter, next to a bottle of Jack Daniels that has known fuller days.
He takes a few steps closer, his eyes briefly taking in the rest of her place. He quickly and quietly notes all the little ways in which she has changed things, moved furniture around, or bought new ones altogether, claiming her ownership back.
The changes she has made make him feel ill at ease in a place that used to feel familiar to him. It is a sensation he both welcomes and dislikes, aware that he should never have gotten used to being in her home in the first place, not when in the meantime she was being held captive in another universe, tortured and brainwashed by his biological father.
Like he had feared, being here is terribly odd and disquieting, but her blatant discomfort is worse than anything else.
"Olivia." He says her name softly, standing quite awkwardly a few feet away from her as she keeps herself busy, spreading takeout menus all over the counter.
"What do you feel like eating?" she asks as if she hadn't heard him, such a typical response from her that he would have smiled, if he had felt like smiling, "Indian? Chinese? Have you ever tried Ethiopian? It's actually really good."
"Olivia," he repeats, a bit more firmly this time, and she stops playing with the menus, stops moving altogether.
After a short pause that seems to last an hour, she takes a deep breath probably meant to build up her courage, before finally turning around to face him. She's still trying to look perfectly composed, but he knows her too well. Everything in her face and in the way she holds herself is a dead giveaway.
He shakes his head slowly, his eyes soft, sympathetic. "Look…I appreciate you letting me in, I really do. But…we don't have to come here if it makes you uncomfortable, not yet anyway."
Somehow, his kind demeanor only seems to spark her irritation, another reaction he should have expected from her. Her posture stiffens even more, as her face darkens ominously and she crosses her arms. "I want you here," she declares, and her voice is annoyed, almost challenging.
"Okay," he says, but this simple word sounds more like a question than an affirmation, unsure of what kind of behavior she's expecting from him.
Some of her angry energy seems to dissolve, then, and her shoulders slump. The look she's now giving him is more defeated than aggravated. "What you said the other morning, about imagining what it would be like to be with me…I liked it," she admits, somewhat reluctantly. "Because I can imagine it, too, you know, and it seems…nice, to just have a 'normal' relationship."
As always, whenever she allows herself to be more openly vulnerable and honest about these very human things, she seems almost embarrassed to be admitting it, as if she wasn't allowed to dream of a normal life.
Again, he doesn't say anything, simply holds her gaze with a soft yet unrelenting intensity, waiting for her to continue, because there will definitely be a 'but' this time.
"But we have to be realistic, Peter," she indeed says a few seconds later, uncrossing her arms to swoop the air, and she sounds both resigned and disappointed. "Between a job that takes ninety-nine percent of our time, and your father who fills the remaining one percent with eccentricities like that shower of yours, the only place where we have a shot at having some kind of normalcy is here. So I won't let-" She stops herself, her agitated hands stopping too as she briefly brings them to her face. She straightens up, then, staring at him with vibrant resolve. "This is my place, my life. I want you here."
He hears the hidden meaning in her words; he remembers with painful clarity what she had told him a couple of months ago in Barrett's garden, heartbroken in the aftermath of her Alternate's intimate thievery and his unintentional betrayal, just as intimate in nature.
I don't want to wear my clothes anymore, I don't want to live in my apartment, and I don't want to be with you.
She had meant those words then, just like she means the ones she has just told him; it is clear in the way she holds his gaze resolutely, refusing to blink. The fierceness in her voice eases most of his doubts away, enough to shut down his urge to run from this place, replaced by the need to reach out for her instead.
The truth is, she wants him, and she has him.
She does turn around again, though, focusing back on her menus, now feebly attempting to shield herself.
"So, what do you want?" She asks him, almost casually, but her true state of mind is betrayed by how low her voice sounds. "I haven't had sushi in a while."
He walks to her within seconds, done with staying away from her, his entire being aching to touch her, now.
He pins himself to her back, wrapping his arms around her waist; his nose disappears in her hair, and he lets his breath burn the side of her neck, holding her tightly to him. Her reaction is immediate, her head tilting, granting him access to the most tender part of her neck. He has no other choice but to oblige, alternating the use of his stubbly cheek and much softer lips as he traces a path on her smooth skin.
She sinks into his embrace, and he almost feels the tension melting off her body as shivers break beneath the skin.
Bringing his lips close to her ear, he finally answers her: "I want what you want."
Pinned together as they are, he feels the way her breath catches when she hears the echo of her own words. He isn't the only one who has spent the whole day worrying things over. They both have doubts, resulting from those scorching scars that run too deep for them to realistically think they will ever have an effortless relationship. No relationship is ever effortless, of course, but it is a fact that the obstacles thrown their way are always 'a little weird'.
She's right, though. Their daily lives are too insane for them to hope to have 'domestic' mornings every day, with them drinking coffee and reading the paper in bed, or spending their evenings simply eating in while watching a movie. But here, in this place, away from Fringe events and Walter's well-meant but often smothering interferences, they can at least pretend for a little while, pretend they are more normal than they will ever be.
Here is where they can shut down the world.
When Olivia turns in his arms, she swiftly brings a hand up, threading her fingers through his hair. Somehow, she looks simultaneously ferocious and fragile, a contrast that is typically hers. She uses her grip on him to pull his face down to hers, until her nose is pressed against his. When he cups her warm cheek in his hand, she closes her eyes, both in relief and defeat.
For the first time in hours, he feels almost calm, if not for the way her excruciating proximity seems to agitate his every cell. There is something comforting in knowing she's just as overwhelmed as he is. And when she pushes herself upward, she kisses him with an enthusiasm and resolve that soon matches the one there had been in her words.
Everything, from the way she begins to move against him and into him, to how she grasps his hair and claims his lips, is unequivocal in its meaning.
He is all hers, indeed, has been from the moment she has dragged his ass from Iraq. And what her shuddering body is telling him right now is that it is absolutely reciprocal.
It is also telling him that she is getting noticeably impatient, another trait of hers he loves to dislike at times, especially whenever it puts her in various deadly situations, without her ever wavering. Right now though, he loves that streak of impatience in every scarce and loud intake of breath she takes, in the increasingly pronounced motions of her hips against his, in her firm hold and the thirst of their kiss. He loves being responsible for such energy and longing, matching his own fever.
They have gone back to a wordless form of communication, the one they are most comfortable with; they've already said too much tonight. They let their bodies find their rhythm, synching within moments, as their distinct frequencies meet to create one perfect harmonic note. This kind of silent communication has always been there, a prominent part of their relationship, but as the previous night turned them into lovers, they had discovered just how deeply it runs between them; they had brought each other to the brim of breaking with incredible ease.
It is exactly the kind of thing that had been so bluntly missing when he was with the other her, the wrong her, the kind of thing that should have sounded the alarms but hadn't, because he had been a fool.
Olivia shifts against him, as if sensing the dark turn his thoughts have taken again, and he uses his grip on her to push her up on the counter with excessive zeal, eager to get rid of these sickening qualms. Menus fall at their feet, and none of them cares.
She gets him out of his coat swiftly enough, but before she can get working on the rest of his clothes, he distracts her, travelling the length of her neck again with his lips and tongue, nipping and soothing the tender flesh. All she can do is cling to him, and when he manages to extract her shirt from her pants and slip a hand inside, splaying it once more over her back, her nails dig into his scalp. He quickly finds the claps of her bra, though he soon discovers that the presence of her shirt makes it impossible for him to undo it yet.
To make up for it, he simply tightens his hold on her, his entire arm trapped between her skin and shirt now, and she's so warm and quivering under his palm, against his chest; her other hand roams his back, her short nails raking the fabric as her thighs squeeze him, pressing him more firmly to her, his face buried into her neck. There is no subtlety left in the way their hips move, now, somewhat oblivious to the fact that they are still fully dressed.
"Peter…" she sighs his name when he moves, managing to change the angle at which their bodies meet, thus increasing the pressure between her legs, and she rewards him by biting into his shoulder.
Then, in another swift movement, she tugs at his hair to pull his face back up. Her skin has turned into an even darker shade of pink, her pupils so dilated it has swallowed most of her green irises. She's absolutely beautiful, and that simple realization causes his stomach to lurch again.
"Bedroom," she says, or rather commands, and she needn't say more.
Temporarily freed from her grip, he moves to let her jump off the counter. Once again, she takes his hand to lead him, her other hand already working on unbuttoning the top buttons of her shirt, while he miraculously manages kick off his shoes without tripping. When they have walked the short distance to her room, though, she lets him go to use both her hands, pulling up her shirt, and he mirrors her.
He finds himself instantly entranced by the sight of her bare skin, having no other choice but to briefly halt their undressing. He reaches for her, both his hands disappearing in her hair as he almost hurriedly pulls her back in his arms. She responds to his fervor in kind, grabbing and tugging, their kisses so fierce they might appear to have been separated for weeks instead of hours.
In truth, they have months of wasted time to make up for, and given the dire situation their universe is in, their time together will probably never be enough.
Her hands make their way between them, never once interrupting their kissing as she skillfully undoes his belt, pops the button of his jeans open, and pulls the zipper down, causing his pants to drop to the ground –another reminder of the weight he has lost in the past couple of months. The noticeable swell she finds there expands when her fingers do much more than simply linger over the tense fabric of his boxer, and he groans into her mouth, feeling her smile in response.
He pushes forwards, making them advance toward her bed, his hands having left her face and hair to focus on her bra. By the time her legs bump into the mattress, he has stepped out of his pants while she discarded of her bra, socks now scattered on the floor as well. Within moments, they're falling onto the bed, and she locks her thighs and knees around him, pulling him down to her, almost immobilizing him.
There is no stopping the sway of their bodies, though, and despite the tight clasp of her legs, he effectively manages to move farther down. He truly enjoys the friction it creates, as much as he enjoys feeling her respond to it. He loves how she shudders almost violently when he has moved downward enough for his mouth to find her breast, his tongue teasing her nipple until it becomes as hard as a pebble. And when he sucks it between his lips, he loves the way she arches, loves the feel of her fingers clenching his hair, the sound of her next sigh, loud and humming.
Almost as if in retribution, her hands leave his hair then, reaching down and splaying over his lower back, as her legs tighten even more around him; she pushes him down and forward, bringing his hips back to her level, while she rolls hers upward. Forced to let go of the delicate pink flesh, he soon finds himself hissing against her collarbone.
"Take them off," she breathes out, her fingers now able to reach his backside again, pulling at the fabric of his boxer.
He complies swiftly, moving off her to discard of his last item of clothing while she quickly gets rid of her own pants and underwear. When he rolls back to hover over her, there is nothing but shivering skin and heated, naked flesh, only separated by an inch of sizzling air; though he leans his forehead against hers, his nose bumping hers affectionately, he remains cautious to keep that inch between them, at least for now. In their current state, things would definitely escalate too fast.
Their speech has unsurprisingly been reduced to one-word exchanges; they don't need to say much anyway.
He moves again, not completely off her though, holding himself up on one arm as he reaches out to open the drawer. But before he can extract from it what he needs, it is her turn to move. She brings her legs back up, encircling him firmly, and using his unstable position to her advantage, she makes him tumble sideways; he doesn't try to resist, helping the movement along instead, until their momentum puts him flat on his back.
That is how he finds himself with a stark naked FBI agent straddling his lap, staring down at him with a look that is beyond dangerous.
He can't say he's surprised by the move; if the last few years have taught him anything, it is that Olivia enjoys being on top of things, in any given situation. Last night, though their love making had been sparked with urgent longing, it had also been a slow and languid affair, constantly shuffling around to try and make it last longer –also trying to make the best of a bed that really was way too small. He had definitely been atop her at some point, but mostly, he had been the one on his back.
He hadn't thought much of it at the time, every inch in his body too focused on the feel of her to be remotely able to think about anything, but right now, it abruptly dawns on him that he had barely noticed it because his body was also used to it.
The thought is like icy water thrown upon him, and the feeling immediately worsens when he finally lets himself focus on their surroundings. He is only now fully realizing that he is back in a bed he had used more than his own during the few weeks he had spent with her Alternate.
The bedding is different, the reddish design having been replaced by a plain, beige colored set of sheets, but everything else, from the feel of the mattress under him, to the shapes of the furniture he registers from the corner of his eyes, is sickeningly familiar.
Above all, it is the feel of the woman on top of him that is too familiar, more than it should, after only one night spent together.
It all happens in the span of a few seconds, but his sudden realization and ensuing panic must have shown on his face, because Olivia's expression changes, too. He tries to say something, only to discover that his throat isn't working anymore, only managing to swallow compulsively. To his meager relief, he is still able to move.
He rolls them over again, finally mumbling a pitiable "I'm sorry…" as they switch position.
He might have moved off the bed altogether, but she doesn't give him that choice, keeping her legs firmly wrapped around him, her face grave, now. He doesn't dare look at her for too long, closing his eyes and turning his head away, keeping himself up on trembling forearms.
God he doesn't want her to know what he's thinking about, doesn't want her to understand what is upsetting him so much. But it's a bit too late for that; it was already too late the first time he had fallen into this very bed with a woman who wasn't her, because he should have known in the Opera House, he should have known and hadn't.
He feels nauseated and nauseating all over again, shaken with renewed self-loathing, unworthy of having ever been allowed to touch her, undeserving of her forgiveness. He attempts to move off her again, but she refuses to loosen her grip.
He feels her hand on his face instead, the other one sinking in his hair. Her nails lightly graze his stubbly cheek, her palm then pushing on his jaw, gently forcing him to turn his head towards her. When he does, offering little resistance, he reopens his eyes, almost dreading what he will see.
Beneath him, Olivia looks almost serene.
There is pain in her eyes; there always is. But somehow, feeling the soft and soothing caress of her fingers in his hair, he understands that this pain is for him more than it is for her. He doesn't need to explain himself; he has already done so too many times.
She pulls his head down to hers until their noses touch again, and she moves her hand, her thumb fleetingly running over the deep crease between his eyes, as if trying to smooth his worries away.
"You think too much…" she whispers against his lips.
His shame keeps him tongue-tied, part of him still battling with the knowledge that she did forgive him. The problem is that he has yet to forgive himself.
Unable to do much more, Peter lowers his head, hiding his face into the crook of her neck, and he fits there, as seamlessly as the rest of their bodies fits together.
She holds him to her as he progressively calms down, though his pulse never quite goes back to his resting state, too affected by their closeness. But his muscles progressively relax, her nails raking his back slowly; her breath is deep and comforting against his ear, her legs now loose around his own.
Eventually, the way her hands travel over his back changes, her caresses more sensual than they are soothing, massaging away the tension that has lingered in his muscles. When she brings her legs up again, decisively pinning him down to her, he instantly reacts, hardening against her thigh, and she sighs appreciatively.
"Roll over," she says in his ear; though it definitely is another command, her voice remains soft.
His heartbeat quickening again, he obeys, wrapping her tightly in his arms as they shift upon the mattress, keeping their bodies firmly pressed together. She doesn't give him the opportunity to overthink this time. Her lips graze his, softly nibbling the swollen flesh, initiating a kiss that starts off tender, but rapidly evolves into something more ardent. His hand sinks into her hair, cupping the back of her head in a futile attempt to bring her even closer, once again entranced by the sheer feel of her, overtaken by the flow of sensations she ignites in him.
They remain like this for a long time, kissing with mounting lust, letting the heat accumulate between them again, their embrace somehow more intense than it was minutes ago. Soon, she's swaying over him, slowly at first, almost imperceptibly but the impetus with which their hips meet progressively increases, spreading warmth throughout his body in perfect, blinding cadence, until there is nothing slow in the way she's rolling into him.
He has become dizzy with need, throbbing with desire, both his hands pressed into her back, feeling her breasts against his chest, her warmth moving over him, slick and inviting; in their state, kissing has become secondary to the constant teasing game their lower halves are playing, unable to do much more than breath the same scorching air.
"Olivia…" he eventually croaks against her parted lips, almost in supplication.
This word of consent apparently is all she was waiting for; a mere second after hearing her name, without a single word and with impressive speed, she straightens up, reaching into the open drawer of her nightstand, before taking a hold of him. Moments later, all ten of his fingers are digging into her thighs, as she slowly drives him wild and insane with pleasure that is almost painful in its intensity.
There are no dark thoughts left in his head, now, nothing exists but the feel of her, his genius mind overwritten by a primitive need, accentuated by his deep and sincere affection for her.
When she leans down again, bringing her face closer to his, his hands move from her thighs to her hips, his grasp possessive and driven; all it takes are a few coordinated movements, and he's buried deep within her. She leans into him, then, her forearms resting upon his chest, pressing her face to his again as she begins to move. His blood turns into pulsing magma, his mind into an infinite landscape of light, his eyes tightly shut.
"Look at me," she rasps, her breath so warm upon his lips; everything about her is warm, so excruciatingly warm and tight, and the way she sways upon him is bound to break him in half.
He does as she says, and she locks her blazing gaze with his, her eyes entrapping him, like her entire body has entrapped all of him. It is another thing he has to get used to, something that hadn't been much of a concern the previous night either, as his room had been dark, unlike hers tonight. The other her had always made sure they kept eye contact to a strict minimum, favoring carnal sensations over any kind of real connection.
But Olivia wants him to look. She wants him to see, wants him to know the effect he has on her. She wants him to witness the slow yet striving buildup of her own pleasure, wants him to recognize and learn every detail, from the way her face contracts, to the thin layer of perspiration that soon glisten upon her flushed skin, mingling with his own, her eyes dark and blurred. He looks, and looks, and looks as they move, consumed from the inside out, driven by instincts and love.
It is definitely instincts that urge him to roll them over once more, and she doesn't protest as he does so, doesn't try to stop him. She actually lets him know how much she approves of his initiative when he thrusts deeply into her, eliciting a low moan that seems to be coming from the base of her throat. He wants nothing more than to keep on looking, because she is magnificent in her undoing, but he is overtaken by the renewed desire to taste her.
Once again, she seems to read his thoughts, as his next thrust causes her to shut her eyes tightly, her nails digging into his back, pulling him down. He brings his face to her neck, sucking at her pulsing point, intoxicated by her scent, her sweat delighting his taste buds. And so he moves, guided by her sighs, electrified by the fingers roaming through his damp hair, her other hand still clenching his back as she moves with him.
And again, there is a synchronicity to their movements that is almost perfect, a flawless match of skin and flesh and bones, following a pulse that is intuitive and mutual. It thumps and it flows, with increasing speed, with unstoppable craze and gusto, until they come undone, with a timing that is, yet again, almost impeccable.
Somehow, he manages to untangle himself from her limbs, rolling onto his back, and they end up staring at her ceiling, not really seeing it; their breathings, loud and labored, remain synchronized, a realization that brings a groggy smile to his face, feeling deliciously spent.
For good measure, he extends a hand and cups one of her breasts. Her heaving chest jumps in a silent chuckle, amused by this gesture. She brings a hand up as well, though she chooses to weave her fingers through his hair.
"Italian," she says, then.
"Mm?" He turns his head towards her, wondering if she has any idea how gorgeous she looks, her entire being glowing, her usually pale skin still colored with a healthy, full-body flush, glistening with perspiration. Her hair is spread all around her head, when it's not sticking to her shoulders and neck.
Above all, her eyes are bright and alive. She's happy.
"Italian," she repeats. "I'm starving."
At the thought of food, his stomach actually growls; apparently, he's hungry, too. He does raise an inquisitive eyebrow, though.
"I don't think I've ever heard you express a need for food before," he says, half-teasingly, though it is the truth. Olivia is well-known for her tendency to skip meals, if she's given the choice –which is, all the time.
She offers him a cheeky smile, rolling slightly onto her side to press her body to his. "I'm actually almost always hungry after sex. I just hadn't gotten laid in so long, I had forgotten it has that effect on me."
He laughs. "Well in that case, I know how to make you eat more often," he says, harmlessly pinching her nipple between his fingers.
"Easy, Tiger," she chuckles, finally moving his hand away. "This is off limit until I get some food into me."
This, however, will turn out not to be true.
After eventually getting up and finding the menu for Damiano's amongst the pile of scattered papers on her kitchen's floor, they will discover to Olivia's dismay that they have missed the last delivery hour by thirty minutes. Aiming to please, Peter will offer to drive there and bring their dinner back –which will lead them to get a bit more familiar with her counter, but not too familiar, before he can make it through the door.
Upon entering her place again later on, he will barely have time to put the bags full of steaming dishes down, before being grabbed, shoved onto the couch, and straddled by a very resolute -and freshly showered- woman.
When he will ask her with an equal amount of humor, thrill and awe what he has done to change her mind about eating first, Olivia will simply say:
"You came back."
A/N: Because he belongs with her *endless sobs* And thus began the honeymoon phase, with all the sex and pizza!eating and Olivia smiling so much it freaked Peter out.
The title and lyrics at the beginning are from the beautiful song 'This Years Love' by David Gray, which I obviously recommend. This was quite exhausting to write, but I needed my P/O fix, and who knows how many more fics I'll write for the show now :(
Reviews would be absolutely lovely :)