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A cheeky lunch date

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Hannah’s new editor’s office is situated conveniently close to the police station where Hardy works now. Perfect to meet for lunch. She’s waiting for him under the awning, and he slows the car to admire her. This morning, he’d been skeptical about her choice of a pink tulle skirt for an important meeting (but hadn’t voiced his opinion, of course). He shouldn’t have doubted her sense of style, she makes it elegant paired with a black turtleneck and trench coat. Hardy himself is wearing one of his nicer suits. It looks just like the other ones, but Hannah can tell when the cut is right and the fabric high quality; she’ll run her hands over the smooth material with a dreamy sigh or he’ll catch her staring at his bum.

Not a day goes by he doesn’t feel lucky they’re finally together. He would do anything for her. Case in point, what he’s about to do this afternoon. He double-checks the glove box is well closed and opens the door.


The sedan stops in front of Hannah, and she dashes under the rain, holding her trench coat above her head. In the car, she brushes droplets off her skirt. Her outfit is more cheerful than the weather, she so longs for sunny days. But a lunch date with Hardy more than makes up for it.

She leans over to greet him with a kiss.

“How’s work today?” she asks as the car moves through traffic.

“I wish someone would get murdered,” he replies.

For the last week or so, he’s been catching up on paperwork. She’s suggested the lunch date to spice up his week, but now the takeout bags on the backseat puzzle her.

“Not exactly picnic weather,” she observes.

“We’ll eat in my office. Got that veggie wrap you like from the deli.”

“I thought you’d have wanted to get out of the office.”

“Do you have anything this afternoon?”

“Nothing important.”


He puts his hand on her leg, but it’s not just resting there, casually, as it sometimes does. No, his fingers curl around her inner thigh, and his thumb strokes her rain-cooled skin.

The swish of the windshield wipers fills the silence.

“You’re planning something,” she says. “Oh! Are we finally going to shag in your office?”

She laughs. It’s a running gag between them. She knows and understands all the professional and ethical reasons why they can’t do that, but she loves his slightly flustered response when she asks. Which is why her jaw drops when he answers, “Sort of. Look in the glove box.”

With a fluttery stomach, she opens the glove box and the plastic bag inside it. It holds her remote-controlled vibrator. Arousal zings through her.

One tipsy night during the holidays, she’d gathered the courage to show him her box of sex toys. He’d taken it all in strides, and they use them every once in a while. When he’d first seen the remote-controlled one, he’d joke, “I won’t shag you in my office, but now I can do it from my office.” They’d talked about it, things whispered in his ear while she gave him a handjob, but she doubted it would really happen. He must really be bored at work.

“I’ve never used it before,” she says. “Well, I tried it on myself, but I never gave the control to anyone.”

“Do you want to give it to me?”

She nods emphatically, squeezing her thighs over his hand.

Hardy stops the car in the farthest corner of the police station parking lot. Heavy rain blurs the outside world.

He puts on his glasses to manipulate the smooth piece of blue silicon and insert the batteries, all the while explaining how he intends to use it. But Hannah is too excited and keeps interrupting him with jokes and kisses. He grabs her chin lightly.

“Hannah. Listen to me. This is important.”

The natural authority in his voice makes her breath hitch in her throat. She swears she can feel her pupils dilate.

“Here’s what’s going to happen. If there’s anything you don’t want, you tell me. Alright?”

She doesn’t say a word, only nods.

“Good. You’re going to give me your knickers. And I’m going to caress you until you’re wet enough to take the toy. I’m going to put it on the lowest setting, and we’re going to walk to the station, through the reception, and take the lift to my office. We might meet people, we might stop to talk to them. ”

Hannah raises her hand to speak, as if in class.


“Do I get my knickers back?”

“No. I want you… accessible.”

Hannah inhales sharply and bites her lower lip.

“I will tease you with more than the remote, if I feel like it. We’ll eat lunch in my office then I’ll get to work, and the toy will vibrate the whole time. If someone comes in, I’ll turn it off. Or not.”

Hannah shivers visibly, in a good way.

She’d met more than one man, client or otherwise, who liked to be dominant in bed. She would indulge them, but it never really did anything for her. Either they lacked the necessary charisma or it was layered with misogyny.

To really relinquish control, trust was fundamental. And whom did she trust more than Hardy? He didn’t need to dominate her to get off or prove something. He took that role when the occasion arose or when she asked for it. Always, he was generous and altruistic in his control.

“If at any point you want to stop, just say ‘anchovies’,” he instructed.


“You don’t like them.”

“Okay, makes sense.”

“If you stay ‘stop’ I’ll assume you need me to stop or decrease the vibrations, but don’t want to stop playing. Alright?”

“Yeah.” She kissed him.

“Now, give me your knickers.”

A small excited sound escapes her throat as she raises her hips from the carseat. She toes off her high heels to slip off the piece of lace completely.

“I don’t think you’ll need my fingers at all. You’re ready for the toy,” he says, looking at a damp patch on her underwear.

“No! I do. I need your fingers. Please, Alec.”

She loves getting fingered as much, if not more, than oral sex. He has beautiful hands and long, nimble fingers, and they can slip between her legs whenever, wherever, and she’s taken advantage of that more than once.

“I’ve not put the toy in you yet, and you’re already begging.” He chuckles. “Alright, let me see.”

She gathers her skirt in her arms, flattening it over her stomach and spreads her legs as best as she can on the car seat.

“Wider,” he says, moving her left leg over the gear shift.

She feels so exposed like this, in the police station parking lot. What if one of his coworkers walks by? He wouldn’t leave her like that.

His thumb grazes her folds, and her concerns dissipate. He rubs her clit slowly as she chews her bottom lip. There’s something mesmerizing about the way she swells and slicks under his touch.

“See? I needed it,” Hannah says.

“Don’t come,” he warns her before pushing his middle finger in, a second one soon follows.

“I don’t think the toy will feel as good as this,” she says, throwing her head back and bucking her hips to meet his thrusts.

“Let’s see.”

He parts her lips and inserts the bulbous end that will stimulate her G-spot, then positions the flat end over her clitoris.

He wipes his hand on a tissue.

“How is it? Comfortable?” he asks.

Hannah adjusts the toy slightly and nods. He pushes a button on the small remote.

“And now?”

“Mmm, brilliant.” She smiles wide, and he kisses her deeply.

He drives her to the door of the precinct so she won’t get soaked— by the rain, that is. He parks in his designated spot, and they walk inside together.

The vibrations aren’t too intense, just a pleasant, titillating sensation. A reminder of their naughty game.

With a hand on the small of her back, he guides her towards the lift, nodding curtly at other officers they pass by.

As the lift doors close, his hand descends over her bum, he gives it a squeeze for good measure.

“Detective!” she says with a tone of mock-outrage.

There’s a camera, but she trusts he knows its blind spot.

Soon he’s gathering up her skirt and slipping his hand between her legs. Both of them fight to keep straight faces.

Too soon, the doors open; his office is only on the third floor.

He stops to chat with a constable, first about a team-building exercise then weekend plans, and the conversation drags on. Color rises to her cheeks. Can they hear the toy?

“You totally did that on purpose,” she says, nudging his ribs as they walk away.

“What?” You don’t think I make small talk with the constables every day?”

“Oh, yeah? What’s his name, then?”

“It’s PC… something— you’re far too coherent.” He retaliates by increasing the speed.

She stops dead in her tracks and grabs his sleeve.

“Alright, miss?” another constable asks.

“She’s fine. Menstrual cramps.”

She glares at him. “Menstrual cramps?”

He shrugs.

“That was sneaky— hmm. Fuck,” she says under her breath. “Feels good, though.”

His office is a small, depressingly bland space, the only color being a seascape painting she gave him. For once she’s glad there are only two small windows, one with a view of a brick wall and another looking out on the patrol squad room. Since Monday, he’s been keeping the blinds half-closed, closing them completely would only attract more attention whereas this inconspicuously obscures the view into his office. It’s cute how proud he is of his stratagem.

Like a gentleman, he helps her take off her coat. Her turtleneck has short puffed sleeves, and there’s something very deliberate about the way he trails his fingers down her bare arms along with the coat. Or perhaps she’s already that over-sensitive.

Hannah drops in the chair, first with a sigh of relief quickly followed by a squeal as sitting pushes the toy more firmly against her sensitive parts. She can’t help but rock against it, until Hardy’s hand on her shoulder reminds her to calm down.

Standing behind her, he gently runs his fingers through her hair. It soothes her immediately.

“Still alright?”


He swipes her hair from one side of her neck to the other, combing it over her right shoulder, and then following to the tip of her hair in a way that brushes over her nipple. With their backs to the window, no one will notice. He does it again and again, slowly. It’s hypnotizing. Her skin tingles with delight.

She tilts her head back to see him and offers her lips for a kiss. But today is a day for delayed gratification. His palm slides up her neck to cup her chin. His burning gaze never leaves her, and she’s reminded of all those years they couldn’t kiss, and he’d give her that look across the room, of want and pain, that fucked her up for days. She squeezes her hand over his. His thumb strokes her jaw tenderly.

“Shh, it’s okay.”

She believes him. She yields.

Just as his lips meet hers, he increases the speed of the toy. She moans into the kiss. Pleasure surges in her. Her whole belly fills with heavy warmth. He pinches her nipple. Her legs strain. She’s about to burst. He stops the toy and breaks the kiss. She slumps in the chair with a lamenting sigh.

Hardy holds back a smug smile.

He sits on the other chair in front of his desk and hands Hannah her lunch.

“Eat up. You’ll need your strength.”


As they eat, they talk about her appointment. This new editor is a much better match than Duncan. She’s excited about writing again, fiction this time, with an all-women team to support her.

“Oh, did I tell you, we figured out what happens in chapter 4! Alice hooks up with someone, and then that bloke turns out to be Williams’s ex. William is bi.”

“Of course.”

“I wasn’t sure, but my editor says there’s a demand for bisexual men in erotica. Anyway, after having sex, he and Alice talk about William, and that’s how she learns more about William’s parents.”

“How does Alice meet this lad?”

She knows what he’s really asking; more than once, he reaped the benefits of her own writing turning her on.

“Yoga class. Alice is attending and the ex— let’s call him Alex— he’s the instructor. Beautiful man, not massive like a bodybuilder, urgh, he’s lean and strong. Built for endurance, not for showing off. His sweatpants are on the tight side, and it’s promising.” She glances at Hardy’s crotch. “So Alex keeps finding excuses to touch Alice, correcting her posture and all that. I’ll find a way to make it not creepy. Alice doesn’t know if he’s flirting or not, but then he gives her that look, and it’s on. He teases her during the class. She’s at the back of the room, so no one sees how far up her leg Alex’s hand is or when it strays to her bum.”

Hardy’s hand slips in his pocket, and she braces herself for stronger vibrations, just when she was getting used to it.

“Mmmm. This is good research actually, I should take notes,” she says, squirming on her seat.

“Happy to help. Tell me how it feels.”

“I feel like I want you to bend me over your desk and fuck me hard.”

“And the Pulitzer prize for literature goes to…” he deadpans.

“Shut up, I’m horny. I can’t think.” Hannah licks her lips and looks up, trying to find the words. “Like there’s a tension in me that won’t let go. I’m feeling it in my whole body.” She runs her hands over her arms. “Like a guitar string, you pluck one end but all of it ripples and echoes.”

There’s chatter, just outside his office, but if anyone were to pay attention to them they would just see two people, sitting away from each other, chatting casually.

Hardy has taken the remote control out, a small, slender device, made of the same silicon with minimalist controls. Hannah stares, mesmerized, as he rubs his thumb over the nubs in a way that cannot be accidental. Her cunt throbs harder, and it’s not because of the toy.

“Not fair.”

A stronger pulse begins, still slow but more intense. She breathes in deeply, willing her muscles to relax. On the exhale, a knot in her stomach uncoils and bliss is diluted throughout her body.

“What happens next, after the yoga class?”

She hasn’t really figured out that part yet, but inspiration hits her.

“Well, Alex isn’t just a yoga instructor, he’s the director of the gym. It’s closing time, but Alice finds an excuse to linger and goes to his office.”

“His office? Some might call that a recurring theme in your body of work.”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” She tucks her chin in her shoulder and grins. That earns her faster vibrations. She loses her grin as a ragged exhale passes her lips. Her eyes close.

“Hannah. What next?”

She takes a long sip of Italian soda to compose herself.

“There’s some banter, which I can’t think of right now. And two limber people, well, they’ve got to do it on the floor... A sixty-nine first.”

Hannah squeezes her thighs together as she imagines her characters giving and receiving oral sex, still half in their gym clothes, really going at it with gusto. His thick cock filling her mouth, his tongue darting over her clit.

Hardy stops her hand which has wandered over her mound. He offers her the soda can and decreases the speed for a reprieve.

He tucks a strand of hair behind her ear. “How are you doing?”


“Good. I have another surprise for you.” He gives her a paper bag.

“What’s in it? A butt plug?”

It’s the one toy he’s been too embarrassed to ask about so far.

“Erm, no, it’s dessert.”

A single, pink cupcake with marbled frosting and glazed cherries. Almost too pretty to eat. Almost. On the first bite, the toy kicks up a notch, and she moans into the cake.

“It’s a really good cupcake. Taste it.”

She applies some frosting to her lips. He braces himself on the arms of her chair and carefully runs his tongue over the frosting. She captures his mouth for a cherry-sweet kiss. When she reaches for his belt, he grabs her wrists and pins them to the chair. A thrill shoots up her core. His demanding mouth never falters. She basks in his caring strength. Gentle one moment, forceful the next, always loving.

“Take me, please. Do whatever you want,” she murmurs against his lips.

“Not yet.”

He pulls away, but his eyes remain on her, glazed over as he takes in her, no doubt, disheveled form.

She tugs at her turtleneck and blows her fringe off her forehead.


She takes her top off entirely, revealing a cream satin camisole underneath. She stands up, takes a moment to steady herself and walks to a corner of his office away from the widow. With practiced ease, she removes her bra without taking off her camisole.

“I believe you said something about accessibility.”

She throws the bra at him.

He changes the setting to quick jolts, and watches her caress her own breasts until her nipples peak under the satin.

In a flash, he’s on her. He squeezes her tits up and together, covering them with kisses and licks. His beard scratches her tender skin.

He stops as abruptly as he started. Hannah’s panting, hips bucking against nothing. Tension gathered low in her stomach. She’s close again.


“You brought this on yourself.” He pecks her lips, she chases after his mouth, but he denies her and decreases the vibrations to a minimum. “Cuppa?”


“Aye. Love you too.”

“Says the man torturing me,” she declares dramatically.


Hardy goes to the bathroom, rather than to the kitchenette, to recuperate. He’s teasing himself as much as he’s teasing her. He washes his hands and splashes cold water on his face. Then he changes the toy’s setting to a wave-like pulse and takes his time making tea. Studying the toy beforehand is really paying off.

Hannah’s back in the chair, doing her best to look normal. He puts a cup down in front of her and sits behind his computer.

“Are you really going to work?” she asks.


Technically, his lunch break isn’t over, but the sooner he finishes this report, the sooner they can head home and shag.

He makes a valiant effort to write what needs to be written, but it’s a parody of work. He’s pretending. There’s no way he can focus with Hannah literally glowing with lust three feet away from him.

Their little game, it’s so selfish and gluttonous. He would never have allowed himself such fun before, but she makes him bold. Sure, her previous career comes with a lot of baggage, but he can’t deny it has its perks too. She’s straightforward about her desires, and he’s learning to be too.

He increases the speed. Her pink nails claw at the upholstery now, her chest heaves temptingly. A rivulet of sweat slithers down her throat and along her collarbone, he imagines his tongue following the same path.

“How’s that report coming?” she asks, knowing exactly what's happening. She manages to look smug though she’s the one out of breath.

“Almost done,” he lies.

“Can I come closer?” she asks. “You’re so far from me.”


Her legs wobble, the high heels aren’t helping. He decreases the speed, and she pouts. But she recovers quickly, and when she walks to him, swaying her hips seductively with that smoldering gaze on him, he knows he’s in trouble. He turns down the framed photo of Daisy on his desk.

Her skin heats up her floral perfume and it mingles with a hint of musk that wafts to his nose like an aphrodisiac in a cartoon. It’s dizzying.

Now on the other side of his desk, she can see the beginning of a bulge in his trousers.

“I want it,” she says in that husky whisper she uses to torture him. The one she used on certain phone calls, late at night, that shouldn’t have happened back then.

Hardy swallows thickly. “Later.”

“Just because I can’t come, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t.” She takes his hand in hers, caressing it. “You deserve it. You’re so good to me. Indulging me.” She looks straight into his eyes as she closes her lips around his index finger.

And sucks. Hard.

It goes straight to his groin. His brain doesn’t help, supplying images of Hannah on her knees, on the bland office carpeting, doing that thing with her tongue that makes him swear every time. And with the toy still in her, coming undone while sucking his dick. To feel her moans around him.

“I want to choke on your cock and swallow your cum.”

Hardy’s jaw drops. And it’s only thanks to years of keeping his cool with criminals that he withdraws his hand from hers and says, “I know what you’re doing. It won’t work.”

“You’re too clever for me, Detective.”

He isn’t. For a moment there, he almost gave in, and he’s very hard now, and she knows it.

She sits in his lap, wrists crossed behind his neck, fluttering her eyelashes so innocently while she undulates in a subtle lap dance. He can’t take his eyes off her. She twists her hips back. He doesn’t understand what she’s doing until— Oh. He can feel the vibrations too, over his groin. Gripping her hips, he bucks up against her, seeking more friction.


“You brought this on yourself.”

Much to her dismay, he stops the toy completely.

“You can’t help trying to get the upper hand, can you?”

“No, no. I’m sorry.”

“Sit there.” He indicates the desk with his chin.

He returns to his computer and adds the officers’ names to his report. He stays on the lookout for anyone walking by his office. But he doesn’t look at her. Doesn’t touch her. He expects her to squirm and pout, and maybe rub her foot up his leg, but she stays put.

“Are you very cross with me?” Hannah asks, her eyes wide and sad.

“Oh, love, no.” He caresses her cheek. “Do you trust me?”

“Yes. Absolutely.”

“Then let me do what I planned. You won’t regret it.”

He gives her knee a little squeeze. She’s so keyed up, it makes her shiver.

While reviewing CCTV footage he doesn’t care about, he inches his hand up her leg and under her skirt. He traces swirls with his fingertips over her skin. His eyes are trained on the computer screen, but his breaths are shallow and fast. Her thighs are damp. Alluringly so.

He glances at the windows, then at her.

“Open your legs for me.”

She complies with a little keening sound coming from the back of her throat.

The silicon is dripping. He touches her around the toy, one finger stroking up and down each lip. Lightly, slowly. She’s clutching the desk’s edge so hard her knuckles turn white. He pushes on the toy lightly, fucking her with it. It creates wonderfully lewd noises.


He removes his hand swiftly.

“What’s wrong?”

“That was a close one.”

Every muscle of her body is drawn tight.

“You’re doing so well.” He peels her clenched hand from his desk and kisses her knuckles. “Show me.”

She spreads her legs wider, and he lifts her skirt just so. Light filters through the pink tulle. A bloody work of art. The toy is moving, she’s clenching around it, but still holding back. Saliva fills his mouth. He’d throw the vibrator over his shoulder and bury his head between her legs and make her come undone on his desk. Let the whole precinct know how much pleasure he can give her.

They have to go back home. Now.

Someone knocks at the door.

Hannah startles and jumps off the desk. The toy nearly slips out, and she clamps her legs together.

The chief superintendent comes in. “Hardy, possible homicide on Blackfriars street. Go. DS Martin in waiting.”

“Be careful what you wish for,” Hannah says with a short laugh too high-pitched.

“Fuck, fuck, fuck. I have to.”

“I know.”

He kisses her quickly but passionately. “This isn’t over.”

He gives her the car keys. On his way out, he holds his jacket in front of his crotch.


Hannah returns to their house. She paces the living room, still so bloody aroused. She can’t think about anything but the way he touched her, kissed her, watched her.

It could be hours, but she keeps the toy for now, only removing it to pee. She’ll buy a newer model, one that comes with an app so he can control it even when he’s this far away. And that thought makes her hot all over again. She presses her palm over the toy, grinds it against her clit.

She decides to take a bath. She’ll shave and exfoliate and make herself irresistible. The toy is waterproof. Sinking in the bubbles melts the tension in her body. She closes her eyes. Even the shower gel feels amazing on her skin.

Suddenly, the toy starts vibrating again. Its throbbing escalates fast. Is Hardy close? He’s only been gone half an hour.

Downstairs, the door opens.

“I’m in the bath,” she yells.

He runs up the stairs and comes in just as she’s wrapping a towel around her torso.

He makes a beeline for her, grabs her face and kisses her.

“What happened?” she asks as his lips descend on her neck.

“Not a murder, an accident— not my responsibility,” he replies without taking his mouth off her.

He’s ravenous, yanking the towel away, hands roaming her body possessively. He grabs her bum, pulling her against him. Her wet skin soaks through his jacket. He’s lost his erection, of course, but recovering quickly.

“Still had your knickers in my pocket. Couldn’t stop thinking.”

He slips a hand between her legs, from behind, and freezes.

“You kept it. I started it again, but I didn’t think you’d still be wearing it.”

“I couldn’t take it off.”

“Why not?”

“I— I don’t know. You didn’t tell me to. It didn’t feel right.”

“Is it uncomfortable?”

“No. I liked being reminded of you. Of everything you were going to do to me.”

“Fuck, Han.”

She sinks to her knees on the white bath mat and makes quick work of his trousers. She engulfs him in her mouth. He groans and fists her wet hair. She’s not showing off, it's hunger. It’s sloppy and wet and noisy, and he slams his hand against the wall with a string of curses.

“Can I come back home to this every night?”

She releases him with a wet pop and winks.

He remembers the toy, increases it to the highest speed. Her eyes roll back with pleasure.

“Open your mouth.”

She lets him take over as she can’t focus on anything but the amazing vibrations in her. He’s kept that setting from her until now, and she’s dripping to the floor. Her vision blurs. She’s getting fucked at both ends, controlled by Hardy. It’s a bloody transcending experience.

“Do you want to come with the toy or my cock.”

She can’t decide, her mind’s fogged with lust.


“Oh, god. You! Now!”

He wastes no time bending her over the vanity. He takes off the toy gently but urgently, and replaces it with his member, slamming to the hilt. No more teasing. Her hips hit the counter, her forehead drops to her arms with a wail of pleasure. She’s naked, and he’s still dressed. His belt jingles with every swing of his pelvis. Sounds of skin slapping skin echo in the bathroom.

She raises her head and meets his gaze in the mirror. He’s so beautiful like this, flushed with desire, bright brown eyes wild. Only for her. Her arousal skyrockets.

“Can I come, please?” Her voice is strangled, raw.


After toeing the edge all day, she’ll finally cross it. Pressure builds in her. Almost. He leans over her, grazes her shoulder with his teeth, eyes still locked with hers.

She seizes under him. Bliss erupts in her. Freed at last, she’s soaring.

But she’s not sated.

Thankfully, Hardy has other plans. He pulls out, and pushes his fingers in instead. She yelps, but he’s got the right spot.

“Can you give me another one?”

“Fuck yeah.”

Her back arches, her lips part. She holds on to the faucets to meet each thrust of his fingers.

“Here?” he asks, curling his fingers.

She can only nod. She’s practically sobbing. Her legs tremble again, and she makes an effort to look at him. He loves to see her like this, and she knows it. That little crease between her brows when it’s coming. One good twist of his wrist, and she falls over the edge again.

He’s close to bursting now.

He hikes her up on the vanity. She’s pliant with bliss and satisfaction, and she holds him close as he pounds between her legs.

She raises her knees higher, and he fills her deeper.

“I’m close again,” she says.

Her nails scratch his shirt, seeking his skin underneath, she buries her face in his neck. Her knees dig in his waist.

“Wait for me,” he says.


He feels that tell-tale tingling at the base of his spine. His toes curl. He seeks her mouth and kisses her, hands grasping her hair. He drives in fast. Loses himself in her. In her warmth, in her lust, in her love.


They look into each other’s eyes.


And they break together.

He groans and quivers in her arms. Her orgasm intensifies his own. Sucking him, draining him. He shoots a second time, and a third, with grunts she repeats.

She doesn’t release him, still wrapped around him, trembling with aftershocks, as he softens in her. They laugh. It sounds looney, but it’s happiness bubbling up their throats.

When she slumps against the mirror, he begins kissing down her body. He pulls her legs over his shoulders. He doesn’t care about anything but bringing her to new heights of delight.

“Oh, god, I love you,” she says as she clutches his hair and arches to meet his mouth. Her heels dig in his shoulder blades.

He licks and sucks and rubs until he’s pulled a fourth, though weaker, orgasm from her.

“Okay,” she says, out of breath. “I think I’m all out. For now.”

Wiping his mouth on his sleeve, he looks up at her rather smugly. She cups his cheeks and kisses him soundly.

“Do you want to finish your bath?” he asks.

“I do, yeah. Join me?”

They add hot water and bubble bath. A sweet, mellow perfume of apple blossoms fills the humid air, chasing away the scent of sex. She sits between his legs, her back to his chest, and they idly caress each other. It’s perfect. She feels like she’s floating but won’t drift away with Hardy to anchor her.

“I feel so boneless. I’m going to be sore tomorrow.”

“Was it... alright?”

“Alright?” She laughs. “Alright doesn’t even begin to cover it. I’m even thinking of cooking for you, to thank you.”

“That’s not a reward.”

“How dare you?”

He enfolds her in a hug and smooches her lips and neck until she can’t stop laughing.

They order pizza.