Part III


Lara drifted into consciousness with a delicious feeling curling through her body. She partially opened one eye only to realise it was still dark outside. The soft caresses that had awakened her continued unabated, though now lips on the back of her neck were added to the symphony. Lara groaned aloud as Dana ran her tongue down and began to nibble on her shoulder muscles.

"God! How quickly did this woman learn my spots?" she thought in wonder.

Scully began a slow exploration of Lara's naked form, all the while continuing her assault on the woman's exposed shoulder and throat. Lara quickly lost herself in this divine sensation.

"Oh, Dana. I could get used to waking up like this," she said softly, before turning in her arms.

Dana simply smiled and drew her in for a heated kiss. Lara's mind drifted with the delicious sensations Dana elicited. While carnal pleasures where no stranger to her, the feelings roused by Dana's skilled touch were. As her mind began to reason why, pleasure bought her back to sharp focus. As if sensing her lover's distraction Dana had bitten down on a hard nipple while the gentle caress of lightly callused hands continued down her body.

Over the years, Lara's incredibly sharp mind had honed a particularly useful skill. If her conscious mind were busy with outside stimulus, her subconscious would take over a problem working through it until a conclusion was reached. Just as Dana's nimble fingers encountered her desire, Lara's subconscious delivered up the answer to her earlier distraction. She gasped and her eyes flew open. Dana, who had been watching the reactions on her face, gave her a questioning look.

"Lara, are you okay? Are you in pain?" Dana asked with genuine concern. Not realising she was giving the panicking woman a way out.

"I'm sorry Dana. The bruised muscles in my back just screamed at me," she said, after taking a calming breath. "I think I may have been just a little overeager." Dana's face melted into an apologetic smile.

"No I'm sorry. I'm the doctor here and I should have known better than to… encourage you to overdo it. Come on, roll over and let me hold you."

Lara groaned again when she felt the heat of Dana's body against her naked back.

"I think I'm going to have to get up, Dana. My muscles are getting stiff, I'm going to move them around a bit, okay?" she truly hated lying, but the divine heat from Scully's body and scent of her arousal was clouding Lara's mind. She had to get out; she had to be able to think clearly. She slid gently from the bed, not looking at Dana until she was again fully clothed.

"I'm sorry, Dana," she said simply, before delivering a gentle kiss and leaving the room.




When the old house was built, the owner had an extensive network of cellars excavated below the foundations. When Jayce first bought the property she had enlarged and reinforced them, adding a soundproof pistol range and a small gym. This was where Lara escaped. It was also where Jayce found her several hours later stripped down to a tight black gym shorts and a form fitting black tank top, sweating heavily.

Lara had gone straight to her rooms when she left Dana and after pacing around them for what seemed like an eternity she had changed into her workout gear and headed for the cellar. She had planned on utilising meditation techniques to find some peace amongst her spinning thoughts. This was an aspect of her life of which many people were unaware, her spiritual centre was the grounding she had used for many years to take control of her life and keep it. It helped her to focus her thoughts, resolve problems and to hold at bay the all-consuming grief that still held sway over the loss of her father many years before.

Problem was, this time it didn't do a damn thing.

"Hey girl. What's up?" Jayce said quietly.

Lara, who was sitting on the floor leaning against the far wall of the room, raised her head to look at her friend. Jayce frowned when she saw the uncertainty in the young woman's eyes. Lara was supremely confident in everything she did and to see that confidence shaken was unsettling in the least. Walking over to her, Jayce joined her on the floor.

"Thought you would have had enough exercise by now?" The attempted levity seemed completely lost on her, and after a few moments silence she continued. "Where is she?"

"I… ah left her in bed."

"What happened?" Jayce asked gently. "No don’t tell me. You panicked huh?"

Lara whipped around giving Jayce a baleful look. Before she could say anything Jayce continued.

"Yeah thought so. She must be something then," she mused.

"What the bloody hell are you raving about, McCormack?"

"Well the way I see it Lara, she would have to be something if she can unsettle you this much."

"Well you're wrong. She isn't anything," Lara said with an attempt at finality. "Besides. I've known the woman, what, four days? She's no different than the others."

"Yeah girl, keep telling yourself that," Jayce said with a chuckle before changing the subject. "So, been working out huh?"

"I came down here for some peace," she said pointedly looking at Jayce. "When I couldn't find it I decided to just wear myself out instead."

"Let me guess," Jayce said looking at Lara's grazed knuckles. "You took it out on the heavy bag?"

Lara suddenly pushed up off the floor and stalked across the room. Opening an equipment locker, she drew out two pairs of sparing gloves. She turned and threw one pair to Jayce before pulling on the other.

"Come on old girl. Lets find out how soft married life has made you, shall we?"

The feral light radiating from Lara's intense blue-green eyes belied her bantering tone. Jayce studied her intently for a moment before accepting her challenge. Something was truly bothering the young woman and a little controlled violence might help take the edge off her distress. She then allowed herself an inward smile at the fact that Lara was unaware she had continued her combat training into retirement.

"This should be entertaining," she chuckled silently.

Lara fought with a mix of styles, the result being a highly refined and effective form of street fighting. Jayce on the other hand was military trained in hand-to-hand combat and had held a kickboxing title. They were not evenly matched, Lara never having beaten the older woman, but at this moment, the pent up frustration and anger helped to give her an edge.

Jayce had decided to take it easy on Lara out of respect for her recent injuries so was unprepared for the flurry of kicks and punches directed at her from the first instant. It was all she could do to defend against the furious attack, backing off suddenly to give herself breathing space.

"Well I see the bike accident has left you without any lasting injuries," she chuckled quietly.

"Are we sparring or talking, McCormack?" Lara replied, real irritation lacing her words.

Before Jayce could even draw breath to answer, Lara renewed her attack with a singular ferocity that again had her on the back foot. Unlike most opponents she had faced, the anger did not cause Lara to lose control; it served to bring her into sharp focus. Then when the first blow landed to Jayce's body she realised the younger woman was no longer simply working out. Lara had never before delivered a blow with such power during a sparring match, forcing Jayce to defend with renewed vigor or face injury.

"Okay, if that's how she going to play it," Jayce thought, before launching an attack that drove Lara into a defensive position for the first time.

Neither woman was aware of the amount of time that had passed, completely focused as they were on their contest and rapidly tiring bodies. Jayce suddenly mistimed a block and Lara's fist rocketed through her defense landing squarely. If the mistake had happened earlier, the punch might well have broken her jaw. Now, however, it laid her out and gave her a wonderful light show behind her eyelids.

"Oh Jesus." The still form of her friend bought Lara sharply out of her red haze. "Bloody hell, what have I done? Jayce are you okay?" she said as she tore off her gloves and knelt beside the prone woman.

"You've been practicing," Jayce said slowly, still not opening her eyes.

"I'm so sorry. I never meant for that to happen."

"I sincerely hope not Croft," she said finally opening her eyes. "Cos if that’s the best you can do I'm going to worry about you every time you go into a potentially dangerous situation." She tried to grin and grimaced at the pain in her jaw. She looked up at Lara and saw the self-recrimination in the young woman's face.

"Don’t worry about it Croft. You always did give me a face ache anyway." A half grin and a backhanded slap to Lara's thigh accompanied the statement.

"So. Are you feeling any better?" Jayce asked after sitting up gingerly. "I hope so. You certainly worked out some angst on me," she said as she rubbed her aching jaw.

Lara sighed and sat down heavily.

"I don’t know what to do Jayce. Dana has… She slipped through my defenses I guess."

"Why is that a bad thing? She is gorgeous, incredibly intelligent and tough as nails. In my opinion she's everything you need in a mate."

"But what if I let her in and something happens to her or she leaves? What then?"

"My friend she's already in. I saw it the moment your eyes met that first morning. As for the 'what ifs'…" Jayce's voice trailed off and she shrugged. "You already know my philosophy on life. Every single decision you will make in your life, when stripped to its simplest form comes down to one question; 'Is it worth it?'. That's what you have to base your decision on, not a whole lot of intangibles that will probably never happen." Having said this Jayce sat silently, watching Lara wrestle her demons. The younger woman would have to work the rest out on her own.

"Besides," Jayce said after a moment, a salacious grin plastered over her face. "I'll just bet she handles herself real well."

A mirror image of her grin was Lara's only reply.

And this one actually reached her eyes.




"What the devil have you pair been doing?" Lee said with alarm when she spotted her partner's rapidly swelling face. Rounding on Lara, she continued. "What the hell did you do to her?" She poked the taller woman in the chest for emphasis as she glared up at her. Lara turned to Jayce and pleaded silently for her help, the answers to which were a smug grin and a small shake of her head. She opened her mouth to explain as a voice rang out from the kitchen door.

"Jesus. What happened to your face?" Lara didn’t turn around immediately; she was trying to control the sudden flair of arousal Dana's husky voice had caused.

"Lara and I were…ah… working out."

"Really," she replied not attempting to hide her sarcasm and causing Jayce to flinch as she ran skilled fingers over the injury. "Well it appears you were fortunate, no broken bones. You will, however, be lucky to escape without a black eye."

"And you?" Dana asked Lara, arching an elegant brow. "Are your muscles still stiff after your 'work out'?"

Lara heard the tiniest of catches in her lover's voice and suppressed a gulp of dismay. After speaking with Jayce her mind felt a little clearer on the subject of the lovely Dana and now she fully regretted lying to her earlier. This woman was nobody's fool. With a flash, her subconscious delivered up the answer to a question she had not been aware it was working on.

Yes, this woman was definitely worth it.

"Dana," she began hesitantly. "The conversation we were going to have? It would seem that now is a good time for a few explanations. Can we go out for breakfast?"

"I think you may be right," Scully replied with just the slightest tinge of ice in her tone. "You're buying." With that she turned and strode out of the house not waiting to see if Lara was following. Jayce shot her a look of encouragement before turning back to Lee. She was unable to suppress her own gulp of dismay at the look her spouse gave her.




Finding a parking space near the marina, they had walked in silence the block or so along the waterfront, Dana had not said a word since leaving the kitchen. However, to Lara's surprise, the silence wasn't entirely uncomfortable. The crisp morning was making promises of a truly glorious spring day, with the occasional ocean bird making its way across the clear blue sky and a few sailboats plying along the deep cobalt water. Lara, unable to resist the urge, reached for Dana's hand. She was almost startled when her effort wasn't rejected and looked down at her companion. Warmth flooded her soul as she fell into the depths of blue eyes that matched this beautiful morning.

The café Lara had chosen was virtually empty, unusual for a Sunday but not this early in the season. It was one of the few open at this time of the morning and had a beautiful view over the harbor. They busied themselves with the mechanics of settling in and ordering breakfast. After the waiter left with their order, silence descended between them. This time it wasn't quite so comfortable.

Lara knew she had to be the one to start the long overdue 'conversation' but now that the opportunity had presented itself, she was not at all sure where to begin. Looking out past Dana's shoulder, over the calm waters of the harbor, she drew a deep cleansing breath before turning her eyes back to her companion. The breath left her in a sudden rush when she was nailed to her seat by a set of piercing blue eyes. A person of less courage than Lara may even have cut and run at the intractable look. Realising there was absolutely nothing to gain by delaying any further she collected her thoughts and opened her mouth to speak.

"Lara? That is you! I thought so. How are you?" said a distinctly seductive feminine voice from over Lara's shoulder. One look at Dana's face and she knew she was going to have to add yet another topic to their conversation.

"This is becoming bloody ridiculous!" she thought with no small amount of annoyance. She manufactured a smile and turned to greet the newcomer.

"Sandy. It has been a long time. May I introduce my companion Doctor Dana Scully? Dana this is Sandy." Sandy proceeded to give Scully the once over before presenting her hand for a limp handshake.

"Anyone would think she expected me to kiss the damn thing," Scully thought with distaste.

After the initial lukewarm greeting, Sandy all but turned her back to Dana and proceeded with a rather obvious attempt to monopolise Lara's attention.

"Where have you been?" she began in a beguiling tone. "It's been so long since we last… saw each other. We should get together while you're here to… catch up." Dana assumed the emphasis was purely for her benefit; the woman was a predator but she was also hopelessly out of her league.

"We've only just arrived in town," Lara flashed a quick 'cover me' look at Dana as she said this. "I'm not sure how long we will be staying. Dana has to return to work."

"Oh Lady Croft I do hope you're Catholic," Dana thought suppressing a smirk. "Otherwise all these unconfessed lies will send you straight to hell!"

"So where do you teach, Dr. Scully?"

"Excuse me?"

"Teach. You have to get back to work; I assumed you were a professor or something." Sandy continued. Dana had to give the woman credit, she managed to try and completely demean her without ever losing her bright smile.

"I'm not a Ph.D. I'm a medical Doctor." Scully replied in a flat voice.

"Really?!" Sandy's eyes widened and she bustled round their table, seating herself uninvited beside her new best friend. "What do you specialise in? You see I've had this recurring…" Scully held up her hand to halt the torrent of verbal clutter flowing from the frothy blond head. Unfortunately she was used to this reaction from people and had developed a foolproof way of fending them off.

"I'm actually a forensic pathologist." Receiving a blank look, she explained further. "I perform autopsies on people."

"You mean, when they're dead?" Sandy said with a horrified expression.

"Generally we prefer to wait until then, yes. It's quite interesting really. Cutting open the body cavity and inspecting the… Are you all right Sandy? You've gone very pale, you best see a doctor." Turning away from the distinctly sickened woman, Scully leaned back in her chair and folded her arms. Raising an eyebrow, she gave Lara a tiny smirk of satisfaction.

"Like I said, Way outta her league!"

Sandy stammered her apologies and fled leaving them alone again. Lara breathed a sigh of relief and offered her thanks to Scully's timely rescue. Dana just gave Lara an incredulous look and burst out, "You slept with her?!"

"Only once, quite a while ago," Lara said, with a sheepish look. "She seems to have formed an attachment to me; tracks me down every time I'm staying here. She can be very persistent."

"Well at least that's something I can understand." Dana said with an enigmatic smile.

"Excuse me?" Now Lara was truly puzzled. Scully leaned forward giving Lara an arch look.

"It only took the one time with you and I became unreasonably attached to you as well. And you have not even seen persistent yet." Dana sat back suddenly as her cell phone began to ring leaving Lara somewhat off balance. Digging out the offending piece of technology, she punched the button.

"Scully." she said with an official tone. Lara watched Dana carefully as her body language changed abruptly, shoulders straightening and a mask dropping down over her eyes.

"Yes sir… No sir nothing has changed… I appreciate that sir but I don't think… No I haven't been in contact with him… I don’t believe I will be sir… Yes sir I will… Thank you sir." Ending the call, Dana looked out across the water, tension coiled through her body like an overwound spring. Taking a breath in an attempt to calm herself, she turned back to Lara.

"That was the Assistant Director, my boss… well ex boss really, at the Bureau." When she didn’t continue, Lara leaned across taking her hand.

"Tell me?"





By the time she reached the fundamental reason for leaving the Bureau, Scully felt chilled beyond the day's ability to warm her. She had told Lara about her family history, her decision to join the FBI straight out of Med. school and her assignment to the X-files. Though she had glossed over it, Lara could see the twisted relationship she shared with her partner Fox Mulder and she was surprised that Dana had managed to get out before it had completely consumed her. Then there was the other issue, the one that brought some of her earlier fears home to visit.

What if the cancer came back? What if she lost her?

After burying this thought under a thick layer of good old-fashioned denial, Lara turned her attention back to Dana. Having completely lost her appetite, Scully was listlessly pushing her food around the plate.

"Dana? You said that you're not really with the Bureau anymore. What did you mean? I was under the impression you had resigned?"

"That’s part of the reason Skinner called me," she said after a moment. "When I handed in my resignation, he refused to accept it. The longer I'm away the more I realise I have made the right decision, I cannot go back to that life, I'll suffocate. Skinner for whatever reason believes otherwise, when he wouldn’t let me go he made an alternate offer. When I was… ill I didn’t actually take the medical leave I was entitled to, I never really have taken it for any of the times I was entitled to it. That as well as almost seven years worth of vacation time add up to quite a bit of paid leave. He also arranged six months leave of absence," a distinctly humorless smile slid across Dana's face. "I'm now a little over a month away from the end of my paid leave and I expect he thought the threat of moving into unpaid leave would coerce me into returning."

"Will you be okay Dana? I mean it's none of my business of course… but you will be all right?" Dana's smile warmed at the gentle concern in Lara's voice.

"Yes, I'm alright," she said, leaning across to gently cradle Lara's face in her palm. After a moment she sat back and continued. "I haven't even touched the money I received from the sale of my apartment. Don’t worry. I'll be fine, I can always fall back on my medical training I still have my license to practice."

"You could always come back with me," The sudden thought was voiced before she could even consider the ramifications. Lara drew a breath, closing her eyes suddenly afraid of everything she was feeling for this beautiful woman before her.

"Good god, woman!" she chastised herself silently. "Now watch her run!"

She turned her head away, not looking at Dana, looking out over the gentle ocean trying to find a minute sliver of peace, her calming exercises failing her yet again.

"Lara?" came the soft husky voice she loved to hear from the woman sitting opposite her. 'Loved'? Where the hell did that come from? Wake up, Croft! It's only been four days! Four…Days!

"Hey, Lara. You in there?" Lara drew another cleansing breath and turned back, bracing herself for what she might find mirrored in Scully's eyes.

To say Scully was taken aback by the sudden offer was just mildly understating the fact. The emotions that poured through her made her heart pound and she looked keenly at Lara's face watching the play of emotions before it closed up like a solid steel door.

"Look I'm sorry, I don't know what brought that on. I'm…" she started.

"Hold up a second. I'll admit I'm a bit…well…surprised," Dana interrupted softly. "However, at the moment I'm more interested in why you're about to withdraw the offer."

Dana raised an eyebrow at the raw look in Lara's eyes before her face closed up again.

"Okay. How about I give you a few of my observations?" Scully said when Lara didn’t immediately continue. "Now admittedly I only have a limited sample of behavior from which to draw conclusions. But then, that never seems to stop certain FBI profilers from doing the same."

"You have been described to me as a… predator I believe was the description used. In addition, in the short time I've known you I've met several of your… companions. I get the impression they aren't the only ones and you don’t even live here. Now, at the risk of sounding like a tabloid column shrink, I think you're attempting to avoid intimacy with anyone," Dana stopped, appraising Lara with a keen eye. "Now, given that what I have surmised is correct, I only have one question. Why, if at all, am I different from the others?"

Lara sat in silence wondering how this conversation had been so neatly taken out of comfortable areas. She had just learned an important lesson about this woman sitting across from her. Never underestimate the sharp mind and determination of Dana Scully. She fought down the instinctual urge to run and cursed silently. She was exceedingly uncomfortable with her personal life being put under a microscope even if she was fully cognizant of the answers to Dana's questions. Lara readily acknowledged the fact that she avoided permanent relationships and she knew why. However, that knowledge made no difference in the long run, everything she had ever cared about had been taken from her and all the rationalisation in the universe would not change that one fact.

There were many that looked at Lara as just the quintessential spoiled rich girl, wandering through life taking anything she wanted except responsibility. On the face of things, that's precisely how she appeared, but to those that knew her well, an entirely different woman was in evidence.


Realising she had been lost in thought and had waited too long to answer Dana, Lara cursed silently again.

"I'm sorry. I feel like I'm on display here. There's a place I'd like to take you, it's quiet and secluded and I don’t feel comfortable laying out my life for general display," Lara said. A sudden smile graced her features as she continued. "I do, after all, have a certain reputation to uphold."

The slow wink she gave Dana after this statement eased the tension growing between them. After paying the bill, Lara guided Dana in the direction of the Aston Martin and they headed further up the coast.





The promise of the early morning was being fully realised as the two women whipped up the coastal road to their destination. The sky an impossible blue and the sun sparkling off the water.

After about half an hour, Lara slowed the Aston and pulled into an almost hidden laneway; the kind of road you could only find with a guide or very specific instructions. Lara slowed the car to a crawl to avoid leaving most of the undercarriage behind on the rutted surface giving Dana the opportunity to take in the scenery. The relatively low growing trees had an ancient knarled appearance that could only be attributed to the salt laden winds that lashed the coast during winter storms. On a day like today those storms were a distant memory as birds and insects flashed through the foliage; the scent of salt air and new growth strong on the breeze. The road ended just behind the dunes and Lara stopped to one side of the rough parking area. Silence reigned for a moment after the muted purr of the car's engine, before both women got out Lara pausing long enough to retrieve a blanket from the car.

"There's a place I'd like to show you, like I said earlier, it’s quiet and I need a little solitude at the moment," Lara paused for a moment, looking down at her boots, "I want to explain everything to you but I didn’t want an audience." Dana simply nodded, taking Lara's hand and indicating she should lead the way.

A stiff breeze whipped Scully's hair into her eyes as they crested the dunes. Lara stopped for a moment to allow her to fully take in the wild beauty of her surroundings. The coastline dropped off sharply here resulting in the breakers being quite close to the shoreline at low tide. Fingers of black rock thrust up out of the sand here and there and to the north in the distance the waves crashed against the tumbled boulders at the base of a low cliff. **

"Come on, it's just down here on the lee side of those rocks," Lara said as she let go of Dana's hand and pulled her in close.

They settled down on the blanket, Lara with her back to the rock and Dana leaning against her chest. To Dana's surprise, she had a sudden feeling of complete safety, something she hadn't felt in a very long time.

After a moment, Lara began to speak. She told Dana about her work and her life, leaving nothing out including those aspects of which she was less than proud. She told Dana about her parents, in particular her relationship with her adored father confirming the 'tabloid column shrink' theory. Her voice broke slightly as she reached the end of this particular piece of history. Dana leaned back against her shoulder and reached up to Lara's face offering silent comfort. Lara stopped speaking and buried her face against Dana's warm neck.

Scully's heartbeat picked up a notch when she felt Lara's lips against her throat. She tried to turn but Lara's firm grip kept her in place. Her head fell forward as warm lips blazed a trail around to the nape of her neck where they stopped to nibble and suck at sensitive skin. Lara's hands began to roam, Dana suddenly having neither the strength nor the will to stop them, pulling free the hem of Dana's shirt and sliding up over bare skin to cup her breasts. Leaving one hand to slip beneath her bra, the other found its way to the waistband of her jeans, deftly unbuttoning the fly. Muscles in Dana's abdomen flexed as warm fingers, encountering no further barrier, stroked through damp red curls. She cried out softly as Lara covered her, pulling her in closer and biting down gently on the back of her neck, then crying out louder as long fingers slipped between already wet folds, caressing her length before focusing on her swollen clit. Arching into Lara's hand, Dana came fast and hard, a wordless cry on her lips, before subsiding, breathing heavily against her lover's warm body.

"Oh lord, what you do to me," she said softly, "If you give me a minute…"

"No Dana, that was for you. I needed to give that to you, I needed to…" Lara stopped for a moment to collect her scattered thoughts. "Earlier… When I asked you to come back with me… I want you to realise that no one I have ever been with has seen my home. I've not invited anyone else to share that part of myself. It's my escape, a safe haven if you will, and I've never felt… the need… to show anyone else…until now." She paused again. "Dana I know we met only a few days ago but I believe I'm in…" Dana turned and placed her fingers over her lover's full lips, silencing her before gently replacing them with her own. "I know." was all she said.

They remained tangled in the embrace for some time, talking of small things and wrapped in a warm blanket of intimacy, until a sudden gust of wind whipped sand up around them. Deciding their time would be better spent indoors; they got up to leave. Making their way out of the shelter of the rocks, the pair were startled by the appearance of two rough looking young men.

"Well, look what we have here," the first said with an evil smirk. "It's two of the dykes, out here all by themselves, no one around for miles. What do you suppose they was doing?" he asked the second.

"I don’t know but it sure sounded like fun. Hey I got an idea, what say we show ‘em some fun!" A large hunting knife appeared in his hand as he turned to look at the women. "You'd like that wouldn’t you? Being fucked by a real man?"

Having recovered from their surprise, the women turned to look at each other, Scully raising a questioning eyebrow. At Lara's brief nod they turned back to their would-be attackers and drew their weapons.

"Oh, I don’t know boys. Your offer sounds enticing. However, there's just one small problem," Lara said, pausing to glance at Scully. "I don’t see anything resembling a real man around here."

The fool with the knife tensed and took a step towards Lara. "Ah ah ah, that would be most ill advised," she said as she cocked the H&K. "Now, if you would be so kind as to place the weapon on the ground, we can conclude our conversation."

"Dr. Scully. Do you have your cell phone handy?" she continued.

The second man bent down to place the knife on the ground and as Scully reached into her jacket, he launched forward, out of a crouch, at Lara's midsection. With lightening reflexes, Lara managed to avoid most of the impact, though her gun was jarred from her hand flying out of reach.

The first man being smaller and less agile decided this was his chance to subdue the small redhead. He swung an arm around Scully attempting to gain control of her gun. He realised his error as he felt the cold press of the Sig against his genitalia.

"I'm only going to ask you once," Scully said into his face, "Get on the ground, on your face, Now!" Helping him to the ground with a knee in the back, she pulled his hands behind him and secured them with a cable tie from her inside jacket pocket.

Lara was having slightly more trouble with her opponent, as was apparent by the large bruise on her face. However her attacker was not fairing much better, with a smashed nose and an eye beginning to swell shut. Scully deemed now to be an appropriate time to intercede on her lover's behalf. Walking up behind him, she pushed the muzzle of the Sig into the base of his skull pulling down hard on the collar of his leather jacket, neatly confining his arms.

"On the ground, Now!" she roared into his ear.

Again using her knee to good advantage, Lara's attacker followed his companion to the ground and was quickly secured. She looked up after completing her task to find an odd expression on her lover's face. "What?"

"Old habits die hard I suppose." Was all Lara said, though a smirk appeared on her full lips. Scully raised an eyebrow in response.

"The ties. You keep trying to tell me you're a civilian now, so why on earth are you carrying restraints?" the smirk changing to a full grin.

"Well, my Lady," Scully said as she stood and closed the distance between them, "Handcuffs are rather bulky and you never know when someone may need to be… restrained." Lara's eyes closed involuntarily at the image conjured by Dana's words, then almost groaned as she felt soft fingers trail down the curve of her jaw.

"I think," Lara croaked, "That this is something we should discuss at a more appropriate moment don’t you?"

"As you wish. Just remind me to tell you how my body reacts to the aftermath of situations such as this." This time Lara did groan.

"At this point I think it would be a marvelous idea to bring the sheriff into this, don’t you?" Scully nodded and handed over her cell phone.

"Would you do me a small favour, my love?" Lara asked in a distracted tone as she began dialing the sheriff's number. "Would you have a look for my gun, I misplaced it during the scuffle." Scully smiled at her choice of words before turning to look for the weapon.

"Hello? It's Lara. We have a small problem. I believe it may be related to the incidents at the house recently… No just Doctor Scully and myself…. No not at the house this time, we are at the rocks," Scully noticed Lara's face suddenly harden. "Yes those rocks, and I believe this to be professional matter not a personal one… Yes I am very serious; we were attacked by a couple of hooligans. They have been subdued but I do not intend to transport them back to town in the Aston Martin… Thank you. We will await your arrival." Ending the conversation, she grimaced at the phone before handing it back to Dana.

"I think that’s one aspect that may need clearing up before the sheriff arrives. It's likely to become rather tense, and you deserve to know why," Lara said, as she guided Dana out of earshot of the two thugs. "The sheriff and I have had an ongoing fling for some time. It’s only just become apparent that she held more stock in the relationship than I did. I never set out to cause her pain; I thought she was aware of the boundaries. It would seem I was incorrect."

"This isn't completely news to me," Scully held up her hand to stop Lara replying, "You asked me to speak to her about the bike, remember. During the conversation, it became apparent to both of us, and yes, things became a little tense. You have a past, Lara. If I am to accept one part of you, I have to accept all of you. Just as you do with me."

"Oh my dear doctor Scully," Lara began, slipping into Dana's space. "You have a past? Oh please share." she finished huskily into Dana's ear.

"It's not as… extensive as yours, but yes, I do have a past. If you're a very good girl I may even talk you through it… in detail." Lara groaned and gave Scully's earlobe one last nibble before stepping back.

"At the risk of changing the subject, did you happen to find my gun?" Scully nodded and handed it back to Lara.

"Oh that’s just bloody wonderful. I'm going to have to strip this completely to remove all the sand. Thanks a lot!" she said as she nudged one of their prisoners hard in the ribs with a steel capped boot.




After the sheriff transported the two men back to the station, Scully found herself separated from Lara and on the wrong side of yet another interview. Though technically she was only supposed to be giving a statement, the belligerent attitude of the sheriff turned it into an interrogation. After the third demand for exact details of what her and Lara were doing out there, Scully lost her temper.

"Fine! You want details? I'll give you details. Lara invited me out there to find some peace and quiet so we could talk," she was interrupted by a snort of disbelief, "She was telling me the details of her life and the reason behind her offer for me to live with her in England." Scully looked for and was rewarded by a flash of emotion from the other woman.

"Then she made love to me and I came so hard I saw stars. We lay there for a while before deciding to go home and continue where we left off, in the comfort of our bed. That’s when the two fools in your holding cells approached us. Now is that enough detail for you? Are you satisfied?" Scully hadn't meant to let it get to this point and she was mortified to discover tears in the other woman's eyes.

"Oh God," she groaned as she covered her eyes. "Look I'm sorry for that. I know about your history with her and normally I wouldn’t set out to hurt someone like that. I cannot say I'm sorry for what has happened between Lara and me but I do know how you must be feeling…" The sheriff stood abruptly and walked to the door, stopping just inside the room.

Without turning around she said, "I have all the information I require, Doctor Scully. You may go." With that, she left the room, not looking back.

Scully remained seated for a few moments, collecting her scattered emotions before going in search of her lover. They had left the café at about 10 that morning and now, six hours later, she was emotionally drained, physically exhausted and ravenously hungry.

There was also the small matter of the dull throb of sexual arousal that threaded through her every waking moment since she first laid eyes on one extraordinarily sexy woman in leather.



"Well at least now Jayce and Lee will have some peace," Dana said as they walked out to the car.

"Only until the next batch of idiot rednecks move in to take their place," Lara replied with disgust. Dana nodded in agreement. Being on the receiving end of both overt and covert bigotry overt the years, she had no illusions that it would end with these two.

"I believe you owe me dinner." Dana said, changing the subject.

"On the contrary fair lady, I bought breakfast to make up for our lack of dinner. I believe it's your turn to pay," Lara replied with chuckle. Dana appeared to consider this carefully before replying.

"Well I'll be… I do think you might be correct. What do you feel like?" Lara stopped walking and swung Dana into her arms. After kissing her soundly she replied, "A large helping of you, on toast." She then released Dana and grinned.

"But failing that, pasta sounds wonderful."

The light mood and constant innuendo continued throughout dinner. At one point Lara reached across the table to capture a stray fleck of sauce from the corner of her companion's mouth. She locked eyes with Dana and removed the evidence with a slow flick of her tongue. The slow throb had steadily built all evening and that one seemingly simple gesture caused a wave of need to crash through her body. Without ever taking her eyes off Lara she folded her napkin, placed it on her unfinished plate and signaled for the waiter. The charge flowing between the two women was so obvious the man didn’t even bother to ask if there was a problem with their meal; he simply produced the bill and left without a word.

Lara drove back to the house at a reckless pace, the tension building between them reaching explosive proportions. The Aston Martin slid sideways to halt with a great spray of gravel in front of Dana's rooms. Barely having time to find the keyhole, Lara pounced on her and the first piece of Scully's clothing hit the floor before the door was fully closed. Unnoticed, a note from Jayce fluttered to the floor and was buried beneath a pile of hastily discarded clothing.

They made it as far as the staircase before raw need engulfed them and Dana decided to finish what had been started earlier in the day. Pushing Lara back against the stairs, she latched on to a hard nipple with lips and teeth pulling a ragged cry from her throat. Deeply tanned legs locked around Dana's hips and their bodies surged against each other. Lara was so aroused she barely felt the two fingers Dana thrust deep inside her before crying out for another and then another. Later, much later, Lara would not be able to recall how she had managed to slide a hand down between their sweat slick bodies to thrust deep into Dana's throbbing sex. With their mouths and bodies locked together, their sweat and essences mingled liberally, they thundered into orgasm within seconds of each other.

As the aftershocks subsided and the sweat began to cool, they became aware of their location… and precisely how bloody uncomfortable it was. At least for Lara, who was suddenly aware of the two steps boring into her spine.

"Dana?" she began gently, "Love, do you have any feeling back in your body yet?" Scully raised her head to look at Lara and caught a fleeting grimace as she did so.

"Yes. Why?"

"Well, as you know, I like to cuddle afterwards as much as the next person. However, right now, these steps are slowly cutting off the flow of blood to my lower extremities. Would you mind if we adjourned these proceedings to the great big soft bed further up the stairs?" With a soft chuckle, Scully moved and helped Lara stand, capturing her lips in a gentle kiss she led Lara the rest of the way up the stairs.

With the edge taken off their appetites, the two where able to concentrate completely on each other and what had been a firestorm became a slow gentle burn. The acknowledgment of the feelings growing between them bought a depth to their lovemaking as the slow fire began to build. Dana's intake of breath as Lara's mouth closed over a hard nipple. Lara's low groan as Dana's nails ran welts up her back. Smooth skin, both olive and fair, bodies entwined and contrasting with tangled white sheets. Their union remained all but silent beyond quiet urging and ragged breath. The taste and feel of hot wet flesh stoked the fire between them into an inferno; the flashpoint coming both too soon and not soon enough.

They lay holding each other afterward, sharing the same pillow, their bodies locked together. Dana opened her mouth to speak, to express her feelings for the woman next to her but Lara placed a gentle finger over her lips. No words were needed; the depth of feeling shone clearly in each other's eyes.


Lee and Jayce sat together in contented silence reading. It had been an odd couple of days for them both. Dana's arrival, the brick incident, Lara's accident, and finally, the odd behavior of their friend. Jayce's mind drifted away from her book. "I've never seen Lara fall into someone like this. It was fast and way overdue," she mused. Lee had always described her as a predator out on the hunt. She honestly wasn't very far from the truth either. Lara's appetites were…well…vast, it seemed. She had always been the love 'em and leave 'em type, and apart from the ongoing casual thing with the Sheriff, she rarely spent more than one night with anyone. Then along came Dana and from one moment to the next she changed. "I actually watched it happen," she thought. "Right there in the kitchen. I saw the look in her eyes change the instant Dana turned around."

"Where did you go, Hon?" Lee said, with a chuckle.

"Sorry love," Jayce leaned over and kissed her partner's forehead. "My mind just wandered off to everything that's happened the last few days."

"Have you heard Lara and Dana arrive back from dinner yet?"

"Yeah they arrived in a spray of gravel while you where in the shower," Jayce said with a laugh. "I hope they got my note, Hilary's call sounded a little urgent."

"Of course they did, Jayce. Go do your grounds check and I'll see you upstairs."

"Okay, love," she said picking up her flashlight and keys, listening to Lee's footsteps on the timber staircase. "Won't be long."

"Make sure of it," Lee said in a throaty voice. "You don't want me to start without you."

"I'll be back in fifteen minutes," Jayce said in a rush.




Hall stood in the deep shadow at the corner of the building. The position offered good cover without blocking the view of the door. Jayce had a routine for her evening grounds check that hadn't changed in a while. Hall couldn't believe how damn civilian the woman had become. She never altered her routine, or at least she hadn't since the surveillance had started weeks ago. It just wasn't like her, she had been a truly gifted operative, quite possibly the best there was.

"Now look at her." Hall thought. "How complacent she has become! Retirement and a gorgeous wife have ruined her."

A small chirp from her earpiece bought Hall out of her musings. She reached up and engaged her throat mic.

"Yes" she said in a low, quiet voice.

"All set, Chief. Ready to go at your order."

"Okay that."

Hall watched Jayce and began a count silently when the woman disappeared from view. So much depended on her not changing her routine at this point. At the ten-minute mark, another chirp in her ear alerted her to Jayce's whereabouts on the property. "Right on schedule," she thought. Footsteps crunching on gravel signaled Jayce's final approach. Pushing further into the shadows Hall watched as Jayce walked by, heading for the house. She stepped out behind her, and in one flowing movement, flicked out the telescopic baton and bought it down on Jayce's head. The woman never even saw it coming. Catching her Hall quickly felt for her pulse and, satisfied all was in order, she continued on to the house.

The two other operatives were waiting for her by the door and she signaled them to continue as planned. Switching off the lights, the first man casually walked up the stairs while the other crept behind silently.

"Come on Baby. I waited for you," Lee called out in a sexy voice.

Hall swallowed a small snort of disgust. "Regular pussy definitely made you soft," she thought. A sudden flurry of movement and a muffled cry told Hall that the wife had been taken and she made her way upstairs to supervise the search.

"Do we neutralise the subject, Chief?"

"That was left to my discretion. I believe we may require a shield so to speak, bind her and bring her along. It won't matter once the goal is achieved."

"I have found the objective, Chief" called the second operative.

"Good. Let's move."


Part IV coming soon



** Authors Note: This location is an amalgamation of three or four locations that I love on the East Coast of Australia between Sydney and Cairns. I apologise for any inaccuracies with America's East Coast, as I've never actually been there. But I figured this whole story is an exercise in poetic license so what the hell J


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