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Hale Kaiāulu

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It’s one of those nights. It’s been one of those days. One of those weeks, really. The new job is good—challenging, invigorating, even exhilarating sometimes—but this week has been a lot. Her first hand-to-hand takedown of a suspect (she got walloped and Jesse had to tackle the guy), her first car chase (he got away and she scratched the shit out of the side of her NCIS vehicle), her first time getting yelled at by DIA (which she did not deserve), her first stern conversation with Tennant about her progress (which she did).

Tennant is amazing. The best boss Lucy’s ever had, hands down. She knows that Tennant has her back, that Tennant knows she’s learning as quickly as she can, but this week has been backslide city.

It’s Friday night, and Lucy is ready to stop thinking about the Navy altogether. Maybe even chuck the whole ocean out along with it for a few days. Let herself breathe without the churning rhythm of the waves beating onto the island, the smell of a salty, watery death clinging to her clothes and hair at night.

She loves living in Hawaii, and she loves her new job, but tonight is definitely a night be someone else. Lucy Tara, financial consultant. Or maybe Lucy Tara, general manager of a trendy beachwear boutique downtown. Anyone other than Lucy Tara, NCIS Junior Agent, or Lucy Tara, Oil Heiress, really.

On nights like this, Lucy always like to go Hale Kaiāulu. It’s nothing special, just her local dive, but she’s never seen anyone from the naval base there. She only goes there on these nights, the anonymous ones when she wants to be one of the people. No gun, no badge, no family baggage. Just herself and a beer and the idle chatter of whatever local is perched next to her up at the bar.

She thinks of it as her “normal place,” and fuck if she couldn’t use some normal tonight.

She’s changed out of her work clothes and into skinny black jeans and a green muscle tee that shows off her deltoids nicely. She’s not necessarily looking to pick someone up—it’s not like Hale Kaiāulu is a magnet for queer women or anything, but she likes the feeling she gets when she looks nice. When she feels nice.

It’s so normal, to dress up a little, to let her curls be free, to flirt outrageously with the old Hawaiian dudes at the bar, and maybe a little with any cute women with short fingernails. No expectations other than companionship, a few hours where she doesn’t feel so isolated and strange. Just human shit, really. A normal place for a normal person.

Lucy makes her way into the bar and plops down at an open stool. The bartender ignores her, as usual. He’s busy chatting with a patron Lucy recognizes as a regular, and he’ll make his way over to her eventually. Aloha time, and all. It had been an adjustment when she’d first gotten here, but she’s come to love it, the way nothing is more important to Hawaiians than personal connections. And if that means it takes an extra five minutes to get her beer, well that’s something Lucy’s more than happy to live with.

She can’t wait until she’s the reason someone else is late to get their drink. She knows she’ll never be a true local, but she wants to build those roots, those relationships. She wants to belong somewhere, and she hopes maybe it’ll be here.

Especially if that whole “ocean drying up” thing were to happen. That would be a serious win.

The bartender finally comes over, and Lucy orders whatever local beer they have on tap tonight. The bartender nods in approval at her choice, and Lucy can’t help but preen a little. Progress! He even chats with her for a few minutes after delivering it, and it’s exactly what she needs to snap a little bit out of her shitty week.

He turns to talk to one of his actual friends, and Lucy starts looking around, trying to pick out a suitable conversation partner. She didn’t come here to stare at her phone and drink in silence—she has a perfectly good fridge stocked with perfectly good beer at home for any and all solitary drinking. She came to get some of her extrovert energy out, to talk to someone without having to watch every word, without having to prove herself to her boss and coworkers. To just chat about nothing with someone who has literally no agenda.

She’s eyeing an older guy who looks like he’s trying to talk to another dude who possibly did actually come here to stare at his phone and drink silently, when the door opens and Lucy quite possibly has a stroke.

That’s the only explanation for how a literal goddess—tall, blonde, somehow both awkward and swaggy—walks into Hale Kaiāulu instead of onto some magazine photoshoot.

Lucy forgets to stop tipping her glass into her mouth and chokes on an overly large mouthful of beer. Luckily the angel/model doesn’t seem to notice. She pauses a few steps inside for a second, clearly letting her eyes adjust to the dim lighting, but as soon as she’s gathered herself she’s striding up to the bar like she owns the space, sliding into an empty seat like she belongs there.

Lucy abandons all thoughts of engaging the older dude in conversation. She’s no longer on a mission to mindlessly chat with some random guy, to make some lonely old man feel seen and valued by a cute young woman with plenty of social energy and an empty apartment back home. No, she’s on a new mission now.

A mission to figure out if the dykey way this woman walked in, with her hands in the fucking front pockets of her suit pants, is saying what Lucy hopes its saying.

The woman has taken a seat down the bar, but Lucy still can see her clearly. She’s squinting up at the menu board, which is written in chalk so faded that Lucy’s not sure what all of it says after nearly a dozen visits.

Lucy’s clearly not the only person who’s noticed her. The entire fucking bar has noticed her. Make sense; they all have eyes, and she’s got to be, what, nearly six feet of long legs and blonde hair. She’s noticeable. She sticks out like the hottest sore thumb Lucy’s ever seen.

But Lucy doesn’t pounce on her. A couple guys do, swarming up in that juvenile way twenty year old guys like to do, almost like it’s a dare. Lucy can’t quite hear them, but she can easily tell they’re offering to buy her a drink, trying to chat her up.

The woman isn’t smiling—not glaring or anything, but she’s not giving them a single indication of interest. She must be turning down their drinks too, because most slink away after a few minutes.

Interesting.

Lucy notices that the finger she’s aimlessly tapping on the bar, not to get anyone’s attention but more like a bored tic, has a very short nail.

Lucy makes eye contact with the bartender and asks for another beer.

This part is like stalking a suspect, or hunting, which of course Lucy would never say because it makes her sound like a sociopathic serial killer. But it is the same—waiting for the right opportunity, for the environment to give her an opening, and sliding into the perfect window with confidence, clarity, and a concise vision of what should happen next.

The bartender finally makes his way over to the blonde. Lucy’s impressed that she hadn’t done any of the annoying tourist things to get his attention, like waving or knocking on the bar. She clearly has respect for aloha time, and that’s points in Lucy’s book. Not that she needs more points, of course, what with being a literal goddess, but nothing’s a bigger turn off for Lucy than being rude to service staff. She’s seen enough absurdly rich people act like entitled assholes and shortchange waiters on their hard-earned tips to make that an automatic no in her book.

The woman—certainly not entitled and likely not mega rich, not in this dive—gestures up at the menu as she leans forward across the bar to talk to the bartender, and they seem to be having a quick discussion. Lucy studies her outfit, trying to guess what she’s doing here. She’s clearly dressed for business—slacks, a black blazer, a white shirt of some kind underneath, sensible but extremely sexy heels. But the sleeves of her blazer are rolled up on her forearms in a devastatingly gay way, and her hair is pulled back into a severe ponytail that makes Lucy’s scalp ache in sympathy. She even has that straight girl hair tie cover that matches her actual hair perfectly.

She’s a study in contradiction, and maybe it’s cliché but fuck if Lucy doesn’t love a mystery.

The bartender drops a napkin and some rolled up silverware in front of the blonde, and Lucy decides to make her move. The stool to the blonde’s right is empty, and Lucy stands up, taking her fresh beer with her as she leaves her seat, walking up to the blonde with the faked confidence that she perfected as a teenager.

“This seat taken?” she asks, careful to flash her most disarming smile. She’s not going to come in like those idiot boys, all bluster and small dick energy. She’ll be herself—fun and relaxed, so easy to talk to that you forget she’s a stranger, and then maybe, oops, it’s closing and you should start making out.

The blonde gives her a considering look, and Lucy’s smile almost falters under the intensity of her gaze. Her eyes are a light brown, warm and rich and surprisingly deep. Her features are delicate, but offset by a jaw that looks like it was chiseled from marble by an extremely talented lesbian sculptor.

“Go ahead,” the blonde finally says, blinking to break the tension. Her voice is lower than Lucy expected, something nearly gravely in it, and Lucy adds it to the growing list of things about her that are not survivable, from a lesbian perspective.

Lucy grins, setting her beer on the bar before hoisting herself up onto the stool.

“Thought you were going to need a boost.” The blonde says, positively smirking now, and oh, fuck. Lucy is in big trouble. Big, big trouble. Like, caught with booze at prom trouble.

Hot women should not be funny, or charming, or honestly have any good personality traits at all. It’s not fair to poor lesbians like Lucy, just trying to make it through their nights in peace.

Lucy settles for rolling her eyes, and the woman huffs out what might be a little laugh.

“I already ordered a drink,” the woman says, eyeing the beer Lucy’s set between them. Okay, then. Not a total breach of her walls already. That’s fine. Lucy loves a challenge.

“Well that’s good, because this is mine,” Lucy says, picking it up and sipping from it.

The woman might say “oh,” it’s quiet enough that Lucy’s not totally sure, but she hopes she did. Lucy’s entirely destabilized by how stupid hot this person is, it’s only fair for the goddess to get a little unbalanced as well.

“I’m Lucy,” she says, resisting the urge to hold her hand out like an idiot.

“Kate.”

Kate. It’s such a normal name, but also still so hot??

“So, Kate. What brings you to Hawaii? You’re not exactly dressed for the beach.”

Kate looks down at herself for a second, which Lucy finds so cute that 10% of her brain matter immediately poofs out of existence.

“Who says this isn’t my go-to beach outfit?”

Oh, okay. She wants to flirt? Well Lucy can fucking flirt. Lucy can fucking flirt like no one’s business. Well, usually. This is a bit of a high pressure situation, what with Kate’s long, perfect fingers, big eyes, square jaw, and sexy giraffe legs.

“I mean, respect. The amount of money you’d save on sunscreen would probably pay for the whole trip.”

Kate laughs—a real laugh this time, and, oh no. Now Lucy’s looking at her throat, which is long and perfect like the rest of her.

“How do you know I’m not a local?” Kate asks, her eyes twinkling.

“Oh, that’s easy.” Lucy brushes her hair back behind her shoulder, and is gratified to see that Kate’s eyes seem stuck on the way her fingers move the thick black curls. Lucy may not have swishy-white-girl-shampoo-commercial hair, but she knows how to work what she’s got, and luckily Kate doesn’t seem immune to her Arab girl moves. “You ordered food.”

Kate narrows her eyes a little bit. “And that’s a tell?”

Lucy nods, taking a sip of her beer. “No local would be caught dead eating here.”

Kate looks around for a second, a pinch of anxiety in her forehead. “Because it’s weirdly expensive, or because it’s gross?”

Lucy doesn’t have to remind herself to grin this time. “Well, you already ordered, so let’s go with weirdly expensive.”

Kate laughs again, shaking her head. “Great,” she deadpans. “Absolutely super.”

There’s a bit of a pause. Lucy’s curious if Kate will fill it or if she’ll wait for Lucy to do it. She wonders what Kate’s like as a person. She wonders why she’s in town. She wonders how long she’s staying.

She wonders what Kate looks like under those clothes.

“I’m here for a meeting,” Kate says, solving several mysteries at once. “Taking the red-eye back to DC on Sunday night.”

“Ooh, DC,” Lucy says, spinning a bit on her stool to face Kate a bit more. “Fancy.”

Kate shrugs one shoulder, looking uncomfortable for the first time, and Lucy’s practiced enough at evading questions to recognize it when she sees it.

She doesn’t push. Kate isn’t a suspect, and Lucy Tara, Real Estate Agent would probably let it go.

“What’s on your tourist bucket list while you’re here?”

Whatever cloud dropped over Kate’s face lifts as she realizes that Lucy’s moving right past it. “Well, eating at all the grossest local establishments, obviously.”

Lucy wonders if her cheeks are going to hurt at the end of the night because of how much she’s smiling. She hopes she doesn’t look like an idiot, or like she’s trying too hard. It’s not her fault. The hot girl should not be funny.

She nods, feigning as serious of a look as she can muster under the circumstances. “Obviously.”

“I’ll be in meetings most of the day tomorrow, but hoping to get out in time to see a sunset or something,” Kate says, shrugging a little. “Maybe a surf lesson on Sunday, if I can swing it. I don’t really know.”

Lucy shudders at the idea of surfing, and Kate clocks it. “What? Are surf lessons gross too?”

“No,” Lucy says quickly. “No, no, I’m just not into the ocean. Like, at all.”

Most people have pretty visceral, negative reactions to that, but Kate just considers her for a long moment. Fuck, she’s so pretty. “Well, that answers my question of if you’re a local.” She’s smiling again, something wry and private, like they have an inside joke, and her voice is dropped even lower than usual, and it’s all doing things to Lucy.

“No, I hail from good ole landlocked Dallas, Texas, ma’am,” Lucy says, loading up on the twang her parents always forced her to stay away from.

“Ma’am?” Kate repeats, incredulous. “Okay, I mentioned the ocean which I get you don’t like, but I don’t know what I did to deserve being ma’am’ed.” She says it with such disgust that Lucy can’t help but laugh.

“It’s a sign of respect!”

Kate rolls her eyes. “Not here, I hope.”

“Not here,” Lucy agrees. “I mean, flip flops count as formal wear here, so…”

Lucy trails off, a bit distracted by the way Kate’s forearm is flexing as she reaches for her glass of wine, at the way the rolled cuff of her blazer does nothing but orient Lucy’s focus back to Kate’s hands again and again. Lucy lets herself enjoy a 1.5 second vibrant fantasy of Kate pining her down on her bed, one strong hand on her chest and the other between her legs.

“How long have you been in Hawaii?”

“Only a couple months,” Lucy says, tearing her eyes away from Kate’s fingers. “Came for work.”

Normally this is where someone would ask what line of work she’s in, and she would have to decide to lie, dodge, or ruin everything by telling the truth.

But Kate, rather pointedly, doesn’t ask.

Her food comes then, a pitiful excuse for a salad that’s so weighed down by ranch dressing that she might as well be eating a bacon cheeseburger. Lucy can see the light dimming in Kate’s eyes, but she politely thanks the bartender anyway, and Lucy manages to keep in her snicker until he’s out of earshot.

“I told you,” she says, and Kate looks over her, all faux fury but her lips are twitching up like she’s unable to stop herself from smiling.

Women who find absurd things like this amusing, rather than frustrating—Lucy always says she doesn’t have a type, but that’s it.

And of course, it doesn’t hurt if they look exactly like Kate NoLastName.

“You told me after I ordered it,” Kate corrects, holding up a finger in what she probably doesn’t realize is a very distracting way. “That completely disallows the use of ‘told you so.’”

Lucy should say something flirty back, but all she can do is hum in agreement. Her brain matter has to be down to 50% capacity at best. Being this close to Kate is like staring into a giant laser or something—she can’t look away, but it’s absolutely ravaging her.

Kate picks at the salad, clearly trying not to look like an asshole. After a few minutes, she dangles the fork in front of Lucy’s face. “Please,” she says, “Help me look like I ate this.”

“No way.”

Lucy’s a strong person. She got walloped by a suspect this week and didn’t cry, she’s been disappointing her parents since she was fifteen, she moved to a tiny island in the middle of the ocean all by herself, she’s paying her own way in life now. But she knows that her ability to resist this woman has maybe thirty seconds left on the clock. If that.

“Please?” Kate is leaning in now, clearly aware of her impact on Lucy’s poor gay brain.

Lucy tries to object, but they both know it’s a losing battle. “Do you know how much ranch dressing I was subjected to as a child in Texas?”

“Exactly!” There’s a light in Kate’s eyes now that Lucy’s taste buds don’t like but her libido absolutely does. “That means you’ve been training your entire life for this moment, Lucy. Your whole life, you were waiting for a tourist damsel in distress, who desperately needs you to eat an ungodly amount of ranch dressing to avoid looking like a jerk.”

Lucy can’t help it. She snorts, and Kate drops the fork into her willing fingers, grinning. She brushes Lucy’s fingertips with her own, and that’s distracting enough that Lucy’s inner monologue tumbles out of her mouth.

“You’re lucky you’re hot.”

She doesn’t realize she’s actually said it until Kate lets out a loud bark of laughter, so unladylike that she claps a hand over her mouth.

“Shut up,” Lucy mumbles, her ears red and her mouth full of ranch with a side of iceberg lettuce.

It’s quite possibly the least attractive she’s ever been, but Kate does seem to be enjoying Lucy’s sacrifice for the greater good, because she takes a sip from her wine and then her right hand somehow floats down and lands on Lucy’s thigh.

Oh.

Oh.

Okay.

Game on.

Lucy pushes the plate back to Kate, who wrinkles up her nose (honestly, can she stop being cute for like one fucking second so Lucy doesn’t go into cardiac arrest??) but doesn’t move her hand.

Lucy clears her throat, nodding at Kate’s now empty glass. “Do you want another drink?”

Kate leans into her, reaching out with her left hand. She gently grasps Lucy’s left wrist, lifting and tilting it so she can read the time on Lucy’s watch.

There’s a clock above the bar.

“It’s still pretty early,” Kate says, and Lucy can tell she’s measuring her words. “But I think I’ve done all the damage I can do in here.”

Well. Talk about an opening.

“There’s a decent place a few blocks away,” Lucy offers, Kate’s hand still hot on her thigh. “Not a full on club, but a bit more lively than here.” She looks down at the congealing salad on the counter. “Less ranch.”

“Well,” Kate says, echoing Lucy’s thoughts. “That sounds good. But,” she inclines one (fucking sexy) eyebrow at the salad, “after this catastrophe, I think a I need a local guide.”

“Hmm,” Lucy says, pretending to look around the room. “Let me see. How about Old Man Dipper?” She subtly points out the oldest guy in the bar, a man who must be 80 and smells strongly of wet seaweed. “Apparently they call him that because he likes to go into the ocean naked and dip his—”

Kate’s hand is suddenly across Lucy’s mouth, and Kate is laughing as she says, “Do NOT finish that sentence!”

Now she’s almost pining Lucy into her seat—one hand on her thigh, the other on her mouth, and Lucy wonders how Kate would feel about being kissed right here, pressed carefully against the bar and sucked on until the ranch is long forgotten. The air between them has been thick all night but now it’s positively electric. Lucy can feel her skin spitting off sparks, can smell Kate’s perfume, a hint of the crisp white wine on her breath, can feel the softness of Kate’s fingers against her lips. Kate’s thumb is moving, barely perceptible, tracking minute motions up and down her cheek.

They stay like that for a long moment, the blood rushing in Lucy’s ears.

She’s in so far over her head here, but for once she’s not worried about drowning.

Kate finally blinks, visibly coming back into herself. She slips her hand off Lucy’s mouth, her fingertips lingering until the last possible instant. “We should pay,” she says, her voice lower and huskier and infinitely sexier than before.

“Yes,” Lucy manages to say with the 8% of her brain matter that’s still online. “Right. Paying. We should. Paying. With money. For the drinks. And the salad. Although that was mostly dressing, so maybe it counts as a drink?”

“Ew,” Kate says, but she’s laughing, and her right hand is still on Lucy’s thigh.

They manage to pay without ripping each other’s clothes off, which Lucy is honestly proud of. She has a sneaking suspicion Kate’s blouse is sleeveless, and she would really appreciate the opportunity to see Kate’s bare arms.

Not to mention the rest of her.

Lucy hops off her stool and Kate gracefully slides off her own, not needing the small jump between chair and floor.

“Jesus,” Lucy says, looking up at her. Lucy’s in flat boots and Kate’s heels must be three inches, plus the fact that her legs must be some kind of record. “You’re fucking tall.”

Kate looks down at her (far down), trying and failing yet again not to smile. “Maybe it’s that you’re fucking miniscule.”

Miniscule!” Lucy doesn’t have to pretend to be affronted. “I mean, I’m used to small, but miniscule?”

Kate nods, starting to stride out of the bar. She looks behind to make sure Lucy is following her, which is hilarious because even shot, stabbed, and literally buried, Lucy would be following her.

“Miniscule,” Kate says again, but she has her hands back in the front pockets of her pants, and it’s just so fucking gay that Lucy can’t breathe. “I feel like I could just pick you up and throw you around.”

Well if that isn’t right out of Lucy’s mental fantasy notebook, nothing is.

“I’m stronger than I look,” she insists, walking around Kate to open the door for her. Kate nods her thanks and walks through, taking the opportunity to look Lucy up and down. Lucy can feel Kate’s eyes lingering on her legs, her chest, her hair.

“I believe that,” Kate murmurs, and for the first time, Lucy wonders if Kate is affected by her as she is by Kate. She’s sounding positively thirsty right now, and so as they hit the sidewalk, Lucy does what Lucy does best. She makes a fucking impulsive decision that has the potential to mess everything up.

“So, the bar is down that way,” she says, pointing to her right. “And, um…” she points the other direction. “That way is my apartment.”

“Huh,” Kate says, following Lucy’s finger with her eyes. “Those are opposite directions.”

“They are.” They’re standing close together, and it’s a hot night but Lucy still can feel the heat of Kate’s body creeping in through her clothes.

“So,” Kate says, taking a little step even closer. “If we go to the bar, we’ll probably get a drink,” she reasons. “Maybe I’ll have another wine, or switch to tequila.”

Lucy’s barely paying attention to what Kate’s saying, so lost in the magnetism of her eyes, the breadth of her shoulders, what can only be described as the daddy energy rolling off her.

“Maybe we’ll dance a little.” Kate keeps going, still so fucking close, never taking her eyes off Lucy’s face. “What do you think will happen if we go to your apartment?”

Lucy swallows, hard.

Kate is nearly looming over her now, tall and so devastatingly sexy that Lucy can’t think.

“I have tequila,” she manages.

Kate hums, something approving and deep in her throat.

It breaks Lucy’s brain.

“And a bed.”

Kate grins then, a feral, predatory grin. Something that says she’s got you right where she wants you, that she just tricked you into going all in with a losing hand. It’s dangerous and gritty and, god, Lucy didn’t expect it from this ethereal blonde goddess.

“Well then,” Kate says, looking at Lucy like she’s trying to decide which part to devour first. “Lead the way.”

Lucy starts to turn to walk to her apartment, unsure how she’s going to make it the full three blocks, but then something in her chest stops her.

Kate is not the only one with predatory instincts, not the only one who wants to do ungodly things. Not the only one who has a hot woman right where she wants her.

Lucy stops on a dime, reaching out for Kate and pushing her—gently but firmly—into the side of the building.

“What—” Kate starts, but Lucy’s kissing her before she can say any more.

Lucy’s up on her tip toes, but Kate is bending down to her in an instant, melting down to Lucy’s level in a way that’s totally at odds with this unyielding toppy persona she’s got going on.

Lucy desperately tries to keep it together, tries not to pass out at the feeling of Kate’s soft lips against her own, at the way Kate’s jaw feels under her hands.

Kate lets Lucy push her back into the wall, one of her hands coming up to Lucy’s waist and the other sliding under her hair to tangle in the thick curls at the base of her skull. Kate makes a little noise into Lucy’s mouth, something keening and hungry, and she pulls, just the right amount, making all the nerve endings on Lucy’s scalp shiver with pleasure.

They’re in public, on the street, only a five minute walk from the privacy of Lucy’s apartment and the softness of her bed, but Lucy presses Kate more firmly into the wall as she licks inside her mouth. The warm, velvet heat of Kate floods directly into her veins, and Lucy feels herself losing more and control as Kate’s tongue slips past hers, as Kate’s hand clenches down on her hip, as Kate pushes herself into Lucy’s body, as Lucy sucks on Kate’s lower lip and Kate makes a little sound—just too breathy to be a moan—that Lucy needs to hear a thousand more times.

Kate strode in and out of that bar like she was in charge of the entire island, but she’s letting Lucy positively devour her alive here on the sidewalk, melting and moaning under her mouth like she needs it just as bad as Lucy does.

Like maybe Kate won’t be the only one throwing someone around tonight.

Lucy doesn’t know how long it is before Kate pulls away, cracking the seal of their kiss to let a centimeter of air come between them. Lucy’s lips are wet and buzzing, and she slides her hands back, digging into the base of Kate’s skull. Kate’s eyes almost roll back in her head, and Lucy is leaning in for another round when Kate presses a hand firmly against her chest.

Lucy thinks that someone, at some point, should let Kate know that’s not, in fact, any sort of deterrent.

“Rumor has it, there’s a perfectly good bed a few blocks away,” Kate says, her breathing gratifyingly heavy, her chest rising and falling sharply under her white blouse.

Kate is looking more disheveled than Lucy would have expected, like being pressed up against the side of a dive bar has cracked all of her veneers. It fizzes like champagne through Lucy’s veins, her ability to make this insanely sexy woman fall apart from a mere kiss.

Drunk on her own power, Lucy leans her hips forward, neatly pinning Kate back against the wall, and slides her hands down to come around the dip of Kate’s waist.

Kate takes a sharp breath in, and Lucy feels it pool in her stomach, liquid gold.

She rocks back up on her toes to better whisper into Kate’s ear. “Do you think you can handle it, Kate?”

Kate actually, physically shudders in her arms. “I’m stronger than I look,” she says back, and her voice is almost a growl now, her hand pressing on Lucy’s lower back, pulling Lucy into her body. “Do your worst.”

Lucy pulls back then, her shit eating grin firmly in place. “Well then,” she says, sliding her hand into Kate’s and interlacing their fingers. “Tourism is very important here, so let’s get you into that proper aloha spirit, hmm?”

 

 

 

It’s hours later, when Kate thinks they’re done but Lucy knows they’re far from it, that Lucy slides her fingers back inside.

“Oh,” Kate says, tensing and then immediately going slack. “Oh.”

“Aloha,” Lucy says, flashing her cheekiest grin down at Kate, who rolls her eyes and shifts until Lucy is neatly trapped between her frankly ridiculous legs.

Kate flips them, landing Lucy firmly on her back with what seems like absolutely no effort.

She kisses her way down Lucy’s body, and it’s only when she gets where she wants to be that she says it back. “Aloha, Luce.”