A/N: Final chapter! Hope I have redeemed myself for all the horrible feels in chapter one. Thanks again to hopedreamlovepray and befitandchase for all their help.
Stay tuned for something special from hopedreamlovepray that involves this story. I think everyone will love it!
Enjoy, and let me know what you think!
The training room was blessedly empty and by the time she'd crossed the space she felt more confident.
Oliver and Digg were having a silent stare down as they stood across from each other drinking coffee. Nerves flared in her stomach as she approached. The one thing she hadn't thought of was how this affected their team dynamic.
Oliver couldn't contain the slow smile that spread across his face when he saw her and she found herself blushing under his gaze.
Digg didn't say a word as he handed her a travel cup of her own. "Thanks," she said quietly and took a sip.
He gave her an appraising look, "You know, I realized the one thing you forgot about when you redid the lair." she froze at his words. He sounded completely calm, but something told her to be worried.
"What's that?" she asked as unaffected as possible, forcing herself to take another sip, as if she didn't think anything had happened.
"You didn't think to soundproof the bathroom."
She choked spectacularly on her drink. As she coughed and wheezed she saw Oliver give Digg a glare before he crossed to see if she was okay.
Still sputtering she turned her red face to Digg, "I'm sorry, it won't happen again." she said immediately, and slapped a hand across Oliver's now shirt clad chest when he bristled. An unbidden image of what he'd said about the salmon ladder crossed her mind and she clamped her eyes shut hard to push it away. "It won't. It's just I don't have a home any more, and he's still technically dead, and we didn't mean for it to happen, it just did. I think it was one of those things, you know. Imminent death and all that, and-" she would have continued but Oliver's hand fell over her mouth, cutting off her ramble.
Her eyebrows lifted into her hair as Digg looked at her in part horror at what she'd just been spewing to him, his hands frozen in front of him as if he could have physically stopped her words from reaching him.
"Stop. I don't want to know. I just want to make sure that you know what you're doing." he directed at Felicity, "and that you know if you hurt her I will kill you." his tone had dropped to its most menacing as he looked at Oliver.
They both gave him a nod.
"Then I'll say it's about damn time. I've been expecting this to happen since you tried to drag his heavy ass down the stairs by yourself." he said with half a smirk.
Oliver's hand fell from her mouth and he shot Digg a look. Felicity gave the big man a sheepish smile and mouthed 'thanks' before she crossed to her desk.
She cleared her throat and took a sip of her lukewarm coffee as she sat in her chair and swiveled it so she could see them.
"Now, tell me exactly how you were going to pull this last part off."
Digg sat back and crossed his arms with a smug smile while Oliver rubbed a hand over the back of his neck and looked at her out the corner of his eye.
"Oh my god! You didn't have a plan, did you?" she exclaimed,
"Digg knows a security guard at a private hospital. I was going to sneak in, pretend like I'd been in a coma...'wake up' and claim mistaken identity." as he spoke his voice had trailed off like he was just then realizing how ridiculous it was.
She just gaped at him open mouthed and looked between the two of them in disbelief. She pinched the bridge of her nose under her glasses and let out a long sigh.
"How did you manage to fake it in the first place? The medical examiner's office was not going to misidentify you of all people." the words came out tight as she spoke, not even wanting to ask if there had been a body in that casket.
Oliver once again pointed to Digg, "Knows a guy who switched some records, no questions asked. I slipped out a side door and a John Doe was given my spot."
"And that actually worked?" she asked incredulously. "No one checked things afterwards? There isn't an active police investigation into the 'murder' of the city's most prominent citizens?" she wasn't going to say aloud that she'd avoided the news at all cost after what had happened. She truly had no idea what was happening.
"Green Arrow made sure there was a deposit made at the police station of a man who fit the description of the perpetrator two nights after the incident." Digg said with clipped military precision.
"Of course he did." she practically growled, "You two have certainly covered all of your bases, there was no room for error in this plan at all." the sarcasm was joined by a look over the top of her glasses before she spun the chair back to her computers.
She got the information on the private hospital from Digg and then demanded they give her some time to work.
It took her no time to access the hospital's internal database. Record keeping wasn't exactly their strong suit. She was able to find several patients whose files had taken more than twenty four hours to be entered, some as long as thirty six hours. With a disgruntled sigh she realized this half-assed plan of theirs might work.
A few more hours and she knew when shift change was, the quietest area of the hospital, and the nurses that would be the most susceptible to causing a mix up like the one she was planning on creating. It wasn't Felicity's fault people didn't lock down their Facebook profiles, and the nurse who had been on the night shift all week appeared to be going through a very bad, very public breakup.
She created a false file for Oliver, entering all the data that would be necessary to make it appear that he had been at the hospital for days listed under the wrong name. All she would have to do is log on later and make the file active.
Mid-afternoon she pushed back from the desk yawning wide and realized she was alone. She could hear the faint sounds of grunts and the crack of wood on wood and headed for the training room.
She leaned against the door frame and watched them spar. Her eyes kept dropping to the area of the mat where she and Oliver had sex earlier and her chest flushed at the memory.
Digg finally looked up to see her and motioned to Oliver.
After they'd cleaned up they followed her back into the main room. She leaned against the table as they waited for her to begin.
"So, I've got it all worked out." she started, suddenly nervous and a bit scared. Bringing Oliver back was the first step in things returning to normal, except she didn't know what their new normal actually was.
"Shift change is at ten. Your files are already in their system. You've been in a light coma, but no need for anything other than basic monitoring. Digg will...he'll need to give you an injection right before you get in there. It'll knock you out, but make your blood tests reflect the chemical levels of someone whose been in the state we're trying to say you've been in." she took a deep breath and tried to stop twisting her fingers together. Oliver gave her a tight lipped supportive smile, as if he was also thinking the same thing she was.
"You'll wake up in the morning and be 'discovered' by, what appears to be, the most incompetent nursing staff in all of Starling City." she felt a flare of guilt at setting up the staff at the hospital. "I expect by noon you'll have half of SCPD with you. You can play the litigation card to get out early or keep from being transferred to another hospital. No one is going to fight Oliver Queen after such an epic mistake. Then it's back to the mansion and...well...I'm sure you'll need some time to see Thea..."she trailed off, because she was just realizing her plan, as air tight as it could be with something so risky, meant she'd be separated from him for at least two days. The old knot in her stomach grew as she tried not to show how upset she was at the thought.
Digg asked her a few questions about the layout of the hospital and specifics about the drug. She was happy for the distraction as she pulled up the blueprints. Oliver was silent until Digg left to track down the drug they needed.
"And what about you?" he asked, coming up behind her and turning her chair so she was facing him.
"What about me?" she asked with false brightness,
"Felicity," he said warningly and she couldn't help how her shoulders slumped forward.
"Where does this leave you? You don't have any where to go. This is going to take...some time to resolve." he crouched in front of her and looked at her beseechingly, "You've been through too much already."
She gave him a sad smile and cupped the side of his jaw. "Except this time I know how the story ends. I'll be fine. I'm sure I'll have to deal with my apartment, insurance and all of that." she said with a shrug,
"You shouldn't have to do that alone." his eyes narrowed with guilt,
"Thank you, but I can handle it." she assured him.
"Where are you going to stay?" he seemed determined to poke a hole in her plan and she found it endearing.
"Here, I guess. Or a hotel if you don't want me to..." she hadn't even given a thought to what she would do or where she would go. There wouldn't be any need to monitor him after he 'woke up'. But she knew she'd stay. She wouldn't leave when there was a chance he might need her.
He rose to his knees and slipped his hands around her hips, pulling her forward until she was sitting on the edge of the chair, her legs opened wide around him. "What I want is to take you home with me, throw you in my bed, and never let you leave." he said huskily and her breath caught as she watched his pupils get bigger.
She stroked a hand down the side of his face as she looked down on him, "That sounds amazing, but I don't think your sister would approve."
His eyes shuttered, the desire falling away in an instant as he considered how hard this had been on Thea as well. He shook his head slowly, "I don't know how she forgives me."
"She'll just be grateful you're back." she said soothingly,
He turned his head away for a second, clearly not wanting to dwell on what he was going to have to go through with Thea. "And what about after? What are you going to do then?" there was a leading edge to his tone that made her narrow her eyes at him. He couldn't actually be suggesting she move in with him, could he?
They hadn't exactly done things by the book. They'd never been on a date, but they'd already had sex twice.
Her stomach flipped at the memory and she shook her head slightly to rid herself of it. "I'll figure it out later. Let's just get you back first, okay?" she hoped he wouldn't push. Talking about something that huge did not seem like the best idea at the time.
He studied her for a moment and then nodded. "Okay, but anything I can do for you I will do."
She gave him a soft smile and leaned forward to brush her lips against his.
Time seemed to slip away from her after that. Soon enough, Digg was back with the drug, and a set of scrubs the hospital used, and a wrist band matching Oliver's fake name and file number. He also brought along a bag of donated clothes from Carly and a new phone and tablet for Felicity. She hadn't been able to suppress the hug she gave him, much to his surprise.
Digg shot Oliver a side glance and then slid a cream colored envelope towards Felicity. She furrowed her brow in confusion.
"It was on my windshield when I left Carly's." he said by way of explanation.
She felt Oliver come to stand next to her as she picked it up. It was high quality stationary, thick and heavy under her fingers. Her initials were scrawled on the front, the ink lines made with swift broad strokes.
When she turned it over there was a faint monogram embossed on the flap but she didn't wait, she had a good idea who it was from.
A folded piece of paper was inside and she couldn't hide the gasp of surprise as she read it.
A string of access code was followed by the words, "An apology for inconveniencing you-BW".
Bruce had given her his satellite.
She waved the paper in front of Oliver excitedly until he had to grab her wrist to keep it still enough to read.
The deep vee between his eyes appeared almost immediately followed by a glower directed at the note. He snatched it from her hand and tore it in half before she could blink.
"Hey! Why would you do that?" she protested in shock.
"You're not taking a satellite from another man." he growled as he wrapped an arm about her waist and pulled her in close. "I'll buy you a satellite. I'll buy you ten satellites." he was deadly serious and there was something almost feral to his tone.
Warmth filled her belly and she gave him a grin, "I do believe you're jealous, Mr. Queen."
"Of that flying rodent?" he scoffed, but his hand was spread possessively over her back, while the other was firmly latched to her hip, not allowing any space between them.
She laughed lightly and pressed her lips to the underside of his jaw. There was a slight rumble in his throat from her response, which only made her laugh again.
"I think it's sweet." she whispered in his ear before she stepped away.
It was nine when Oliver stood before her, dressed in the scrubs, band on his wrist. Digg had on an orderly outfit and said he'd be waiting in the car, his comm link already activated.
She'd told herself she'd make this easy on him. She wasn't going to get upset. It was two days, she could make it two days without seeing him. She'd made it three thinking he was dead.
That had been the wrong path to go down. She shut her eyes so tight she saw stars as memories and feelings of the last time they'd separated in the lair rushed over her.
Oliver hadn't said a word, he just stepped close and wrapped his arms around her, one had cupping the back of her head, the other resting against her lower back.
"Sorry," she whispered into his chest,
She felt him shake his head no and press a kiss into her hair. "I'm sorry."
His lungs expanded like he was about to speak but he didn't, he just pulled back and looked down at her with concern.
"I'll be fine." she told him with false confidence,
When his mouth fell on hers, his kiss left her breathless and panting. "I'm going to do that again the next time I see you." he declared, sending a shiver down her spine.
"I'll hold you to that." she tried to force some levity in her voice, but the tears in her eyes prevented it.
With a sigh he hugged her again, holding her tight as she tried to get a handle on her emotions.
Finally she lifted on her toes and brushed one more kiss across his lips. "I'll see you soon." she said softly.
He didn't say anything, but his eyes held hers for the longest time.
"Go on." she had to tell him before he stepped back from her and left.
Felicity took a long shaky breath and walked slowly to her chair. It took several tries at clearing her throat before she slipped the ear piece in and turned it on to let Digg know she was there.
While they drove to the hospital she logged back onto the system and activated Oliver's file. She sat back with a sigh and gnawed her bottom lip; her part was done now.
Her heart was in her throat as she listened to them arrive, although everything went off as planned.
"See you tomorrow, man." Digg said lightly as he administered the drug and she heard Oliver grunt in response.
Ten minutes later there was a solid slam of a car door, "I'm out." Digg told her, "Want me to head back?"
She wrapped her arms around herself and looked around the empty lair, "No, you should go home. It's been too long since you've had a night off." she told him even though she didn't want to be alone.
He sighed heavily, "Felicity..." he began,
"I'll be fine." she said, forcing herself to sound more certain.
"Okay," he capitulated, "But you know you can call me. Anytime."
She couldn't help the smile that crept across her face, "I know. Thanks."
There was a faint click and then silence. With a slightly shaking hand she took out the earpiece and leaned back.
Where time had inexplicably sped up earlier, now it slowed to a crawl. There were computer related tasks to keep her occupied for a few hours. When she caught herself falling asleep in front of the monitors she reluctantly dragged herself to the couch.
The cushions still smelled like Oliver, and as she wrapped the blanket around her she let her mind go blank as exhaustion took over.
Her rest was short lived. She woke up tangled in the blanket, sweating and gasping although the dream slipped away before she could remember what it was, which she was grateful for.
Knowing she wasn't going to get back to sleep she wandered over to check the computers. The police scanner hadn't gone crazy yet, so she knew Oliver was still knocked out.
For the next several hours she paced, fiddled, organized, and generally attempted to keep herself busy. She spent at least an hour on the phone with her insurance agent when the office opened, getting that process started. When he asked if she was planning on moving into another apartment in the building she'd paused and told him she wasn't sure.
The nurse she'd set up had apparently been even more incompetent than she could have guessed. It was almost eleven before the scanner went haywire. She sat on the edge of her chair and waited a long thirty minutes before she got the call from Digg that he'd been contacted.
By noon it was breaking news. Cameras and news vans were swarming the hospital. Digg sent her regular texts to let her know everything was going according to plan.
The media was having a field day. Every 'nine lives' joke was used ad nauseum. The less reputable channels were speculating if it had been a set up so Oliver could go to rehab unnoticed.
The footage of Thea being ushered into the building by her security detail was heartbreaking.
By four Oliver was being released. Digg had told her he'd only had to threaten a lawsuit once before he was allowed to leave. Lance had been suspicious and pulled his hospital records, but they were in order and the nurse who had been in charge of his care was practically hysterical.
She finally got a glimpse of him as he walked out the front door, fake smile plastered on his face and Thea under his arm. He waved once for the crowd and then Digg was escorting them to the car. Some of the anxiety she'd been holding on to began to dissipate.
The next thirty-six hours were the longest of her life. She couldn't include the days she'd spent thinking Oliver was dead because time had ceased to exist then, but being aware of what was happening and having to sit and watch the clock tick down, hour by hour until she was able to see him again was wearing on her.
That night she fell into a fitful sleep. Her dreams were the worst yet. She dreamt that Oliver faking his death hadn't been true, that everything she'd just lived the past couple of days was a dream itself. Her last image was kneeling before his grave.
She woke up screaming his name and not knowing what was real. In the empty lair, without any physical evidence that he was alive it took far too long to convince herself it had all been a horrible nightmare.
It took her going to the bathroom to splash cold water on her face and seeing a fading bruise he'd left on her collarbone for her to finally accept she'd been dreaming.
She tried to go back to sleep, but failed. Digg was supposed to call her later and let her know when they were on their way, but she suddenly couldn't wait. She changed clothes quickly and grabbed the keys to one of the cars Digg always left on site.
Before she knew what she was doing she was meeting the sunrise as she headed towards the Queen mansion.
To keep her mind focused she went over what she was going to say when she got there. She was going to apologize for coming so early, but she just wanted to see Oliver quick and say how glad she was that he was back. That was it. Short. Simple. She just needed to see him for a minute and she'd be fine.
Digg must have given her name to the guard at the gate because she was waved through without any incident.
The house loomed above her as she got out of the car. Nerves struck her hard as she walked up the steps, her need to see Oliver growing ever greater until she felt like she was practically vibrating with it.
Her knock was louder than she intended and she winced, hoping she wouldn't wake everyone.
It took two more knocks and then suddenly the door was opened. Walter stood before her, looking impeccable as always.
"Felicity!" he exclaimed, "You've heard the good news. I'm sorry, I should have made sure you were informed." he apologized.
"No! It's okay, I understand...I just..." she trailed off, every word she'd planned on saying escaping her now that she was there.
Walter motioned her in and she stood in the grand marble foyer unable to even look around because all she could focus on was her need to see Oliver.
"Oliver's still asleep I'm afraid. But you're welcome to join me for breakfast." Walter offered.
Her face fell before she could get control over it and she blushed when she knew he'd seen. She needed Oliver. She needed to touch him, and taste him, and feel his heart beating under her hand. Her dream and their separation coupled with her lack of sleep and still throbbing head was making her control paper thin.
With her lips pressed into a thin line and not trusting her voice she gave Walter a small nod. He smiled and extended a hand for her to follow him further into the house.
She'd only made it a few feet before there was a voice behind her.
"Hey," she heard Oliver say, and she whirled on the spot.
He stood at the bottom of the stairs, wearing only pajama pants and a sleepy smile, the white bandage on his side stood out starkly against his tanned skin.
All pretense and thought of hiding her true feelings from Walter flew out the window. She let out a gasping 'Oh!' and found herself almost running across the foyer towards him.
He caught her easily as she launched herself at him. Her arms wrapped around his neck, and she buried her face into him, tears slipping down her cheeks. He held her tight, her toes just barely brushing the floor.
"I missed you." she whispered raggedly, shutting her eyes tight and breathing him in, the warm flesh under her hands everything she could have wished for.
"I missed you too." he replied his hold tightening.
She pulled back and studied him for half a second before she kissed him, completely forgetting they weren't the only ones in the room.
He opened beneath her, tongue stroking hers and she couldn't contain the low moan that made its way out of her. He released her with a gasp and with one small hitch had his hands under her ass and her legs around his waist. She dropped her head back to her neck and sighed happily.
He was halfway up the stairs before she knew they were moving. When she looked at him his eyes were dark and her heart flipped at the desire she saw there. "I told you I was going to do that again the next time I saw you." he growled and that low heat she loved so much began to gather in her belly.
She bit her lip and gave him a lascivious grin, "You also told me you wanted to put me in your bed and never let me go." his hands flexed and the grin slid off her face with a gasp.
A flash of movement caught her eye and she realized, with horror, that Walter had witnessed everything. He saw her looking and gave her a smile before he made his way out of the foyer.
Felicity dropped her head to Oliver's shoulder as he reached the top of the stairs, "Oh my god, Walter just saw all of that."
His chest rose up and down as he laughed, "I really could care less, besides, Walter likes you."
The hallway they were going down seemed to stretch forever, until finally Oliver entered one of the doors and kicked it shut behind him.
She barely got a chance to look around before his mouth was on hers, one hand already trying to rid her of her shirt.
"I can't believe it actually worked." she gasped out as he pulled back long enough to tug the shirt over her head, balancing her with one hand, and then growling appreciatively at her lack of anything underneath.
He kissed her again before he replied, "It was the detailed hospital record that made it happen. As usual, you saved my ass." He was following the line of her jaw and working his way to her ear. When his tongue and lips traced the shell and sucked gently on the lobe she went slack in his arms, barely capable of breathing.
His knee hit the mattress and she felt him tipping her backwards until she landed on the softest sheets she'd ever felt. They were still warm from where he had so recently vacated the spot. "A bed?" she said with a lifted eyebrow.
"Thought I'd try something new." he said with a wink as he worked her pants off her hips, throwing them over his shoulder when they were free of her feet.
"If I had known your bed was so comfortable I would have made my move ages ago." she joked, biting her lip playfully and noticing how his eyes darkened just a bit at the action.
"Is that right?" he countered, "So you're just using me for my thread count."
"Among other things." she grinned evilly and hooked her toes in the sides of his pants, pushing them off his hips as far as she could. He gave her an appreciative look at her talent and shrugged out of them before sliding over her making her breath catch.
He brushed forgotten tears off her cheek and smiled down at her. A moment stretched between them, and for the first time she let herself relax and realize it was all over. "We can do this, right?" he asked slowly, fingers tracing over her skin, leaving little spritzes of electricity wherever he touched.
"Yeah, we can do this." she assured him, skimming a hand over his bicep and across his shoulders until she couldn't reach any further.
"Good," he whispered into her neck and she let her head fall to the side, granting him better access.
He started off slow, his lips barely grazing her skin, making her writhe beneath him as he took his time. However, when he hit a particularly sensitive spot her hips jerked upwards of their own accord, putting her in direct contact with what she wanted the most.
She cried out, head thrown back and she heard the strangled groan he emitted.
"I need you," she said heatedly, knowing she wouldn't be able to last. It felt like it had been forever since they'd been together, and it was a visceral thing that grew within her, demanding the wait be over.
Her words seemed to flip a switch. With a low rumble from his chest he was suddenly everywhere.
Calloused fingers ran over her skin, making her jump and twitch erratically, unable to catch her breath because he never gave her a moment of reprieve.
He didn't need to discover her this time, he already knew exactly which spots were the ones that make her moan. He'd been a quick study.
The scrape of his nails over her hip bone was almost her undoing. Her back bowed and her hand fisted in the sheets she'd so admired. She'd almost relaxed back down to the mattress when his mouth found her nipple and she was arching again.
She wasn't expecting it when his hand was suddenly between her legs. Her knees fell open wide automatically and when two fingers filled her without warning she was almost gone.
His thumb stroked her clit in small maddening circles, matching the rhythm of his fingers going in and out. Teeth pulled gently on her nipple, sending shots of fire straight to where his attention was centered.
She could feel the slow developing heat in her belly begin to grow and all she could do was gasp and make small noises in the back of her throat as he continued his assault.
His tongue laved over her breast, only making everything else that much more heightened. Her nails dug into the muscles of his shoulders, unable to do anything else just then.
Heat began to rise within her and she knew she was close, but she wanted him inside her. The angle of his hand changed and she felt her orgasm build, almost rendering her incapable of speech.
With a desperate flail she managed to grab his wrist and halt his movement. His head rose from her chest and looked at her in confusion.
"Need you." she gasped out, and let out a whimper as his hand slowly slipped from her. He kissed his way up, across her collarbone, leaving little nips in his wake. When he reached her mouth she could feel him between them, just brushing her center. She couldn't keep her hips from jerking up, making both of them shut their eyes at the contact.
Ever so slowly he reached down and positioned himself at her entrance. Her hips were a quivering, trembling mess as she waited. He locked his eyes on her and pushed in. Her head flew back immediately, as his forehead dropped to her shoulder. He didn't move for a long moment and then she felt his lips on her neck and he was thrusting.
His hands fell to her hips and pulled her closer, tilting her and he was hitting all the right spots.
Her eyes fluttered shut as waves of sensation washed over her. She grasped at him desperately, trying to find some sort of purchase, but he'd started moving harder.
When his hands grabbed her hips and flipped them she was surprised. She braced her palms on his chest and widened her hips, pressing down until she had exactly the right amount of pressure.
His eyes were half hooded, and the pupils blown so wide they were almost entirely black. Her fingers kneaded the flesh under her as she began to rock. She started off slow, just barely rolling her hips. He groaned heavily, his hands digging into her thighs as he tried to hold on to his control.
Watching him lose control sent a surge of power and desire through her. Her pace quickened and she couldn't suppress her own moan. The build up between her legs was growing and would be upon her soon. As her slick folds slid over him her clit ground down on his pelvic bone perfectly.
Her legs were beginning to feel numb, and all she could concentrate on was the coil of heat she now couldn't stop. Her hands slipped to his shoulders as she leaned forward slowly. The change in position was all she needed. Her thrust increased and the build up grew and then she was gone.
She came with a shout, nails digging crescent shapes into his skin. His hips jerked twice more and a low drawn out grunt let her know he'd joined her. Her arms gave out and she collapsed on top of him, his arms wrapping around her back, stroking up and down her spine and over her hair.
With a long sigh she raised up slightly until he slipped out of her with a groan and rolled to her side, heart thrumming out of her chest.
He brushed loose hair from her face as she lay slumped next to him, trying to catch her breath. They were quiet for so long her eyes were starting to slide shut. She tried to keep them open, it was morning now, and even though the curtains were drawn the space was light enough to feel like she should be getting up.
Oliver tugged her closer until she rolled towards him and draped an arm across his chest, finger lightly running across the rigid planes of his stomach.
"You haven't slept, have you?" he asked quietly,
"Not much," she admitted, and tried to stifle the yawn that cracked her jaw wide.
"Well, Oliver Queen is taking the day off, and so is Green Arrow, so I say it's okay for you to do it too."
"Hmmm..." she drew out, pretending to ponder what he'd said, "If the boss is playing hooky I guess I can too."
He reached down with one arm and grabbed the duvet from where it had been shoved, covering them in one smooth pull.
"It's okay if I stay?" nerves had made themselves known out of nowhere.
His arms tightened and he pressed a kiss into her hair, "It's very okay."
Her smile was wide, "Good. I like it here, with you, in this bed, never leaving. A girl could get used to this."
"It's yours if you want it." his voice was suddenly serious and time seemed to freeze.
She lifted her head slowly so she could see him. There was a burning surety in his eyes that made her gasp. "Oh my god, you're serious." she blurted out,
"Oliver, do you know what you're suggesting?" she asked in disbelief,
His hand came up to cup her jaw and his gaze never wavered, "I know exactly what I'm suggesting. This week has showed me why I'm no good without you. And, unfortunately it took something horrible to show me that, but if it's the only good thing that came out of all of this I will be grateful. We're together at work all day, and all night, all this does is ensure you have very good linens."
She gulped, heart once again pounding as she studied him, she appreciated his attempt to lighten the topic, and in fact it went quite a ways to letting her know how certain he was. "I don't know...that's huge. It's huge and...but I don't have anywhere else to go..." she trailed off and covered her eyes with her hand as she realized what that sounded like. "I'm sorry. I don't want you to think I'd only say yes because I had no other options. But maybe we could try it and see. I am very partial to these sheets." she bit her lower lip and waited for him to respond, hoping she hadn't hurt his feelings.
He laughed. A real, deep laugh and rolled over her enough that he could press a hard kiss to her lips.
"The sheets are yours then, anytime you want them." he spoke with such tenderness she had to swallow past the sudden lump that had appeared in her throat.
He settled them back where they had been, pushing her head down to rest on his chest. "Sleep," he ordered and she took a deep stuttered breath to center herself.
"I do love your sheets." she said quietly. For some reason, even though she'd told him she'd loved him before, she couldn't say it then. She didn't want him to feel pressured, like she expected him to say it back.
His hands skimmed over her hair, and down her back, "I love you on them." he said throatily and everything froze.
She resisted the urge to sit up again and instead pressed a kiss to the skin under her and settled in closer.
As she drifted off she had a feeling she wouldn't be taking another unit in that apartment building.