She’d been more than a little nervous about this during the past week and hated, really hated, the sinking feeling low in her stomach that told her this was a huge mistake. Surely they needed to be meeting on neutral territory. Yes, the past year or so had been incredibly peaceful between the two of them (she clings to the memories of some of the phone calls they’ve had recently) and maybe she was just waiting for the other shoe to drop but…


And suddenly Stella’s arms were tight around her waist and she was being smothered in a thousand words about school and horse-riding and tennis and some new music video that’s just ‘SO AMAZING!’ and god knows what else. Lindsey’s oldest daughter wasn’t far behind with a sweet greeting and hug, and Stevie swore she’d grown an extra few inches since she last saw her. Will was nowhere to be seen but she wasn’t surprised at that judging by Lindsey’s recent complaints that he spent ALL his time with his friends now and not his family. She could hear her bandmate’s pout through the phone that particular evening and had made a concerted effort not to laugh loudly at the whine in his voice.

Speaking of…

He was waiting for her, standing on the top step, leaning against the doorframe. Taking a deep breath, she removed Leelee’s arms from her body after a final hug and trudged (no, pranced spryly? floated like a butterfly? dragged her feet along the ground like weights were attached to them?) towards the girls’ father. With a hesitant but genuine smile for him, she walked straight into his open arms, closing her eyes and burying her head in his soft T-shirt as she felt his hands low on her back. It was like being home again.

“Stevie,” he said softly, pressing a kiss to the top of her head (and had he already gotten a tangle in her hair with those nimble, searching fingers of his?). “I’m so glad you’re here. I’ve missed seeing you.”

And the sincerity in his voice almost made her cry.




She wasn’t not happy. At all. Her shift had gone as well as it usually did - no particular complaints from customers, a bit of bristling at the shouting in the kitchen, a sore back after several hours had past, but no major issues.

Until Marie had opened her big mouth and decided to say in that pathetically contemptuous, whiny voice of hers how‘terrible’ she felt for‘poor’ Stephanie, living in sin with her lazy boyfriend. She’d bitten down on her tongue to stop herself from responding how she wanted to but, as she walked to the front door of the house she shared with Lindsey, she still felt that burning anger residing in her chest. God, what a hypocritical, self-righteous asshole. God needed to smite her with lighting or force the ground to swallow her whole or create a plague of locusts or something. She deserved it, the bitch. She shook her head, trying to rid herself of those thoughts, digging through her bag for her keys and then letting herself in.

“Oof!” she said as she ran straight into the solid body of her boyfriend. “What the hell?”

Laughing, Lindsey tapped the tip of her nose and waited until she looked up at him. “Good to see you too, Stevie.”

“Hmph,” she replied sniffily, trying to move past him into the living room. She just wanted to go and hide in their bedroom for a little while, calm down. His hands were firm on her shoulders, though, and she stopped in her tracks again as he searched her face, concerned.

“Are you okay?”

“Yeah,” she sighed. “Fine. Just a shit day at work.”

“I’m glad you’re home,” he murmured into her ear, wrapping her up in a warm cuddle. “I’ve missed you.”

Laughing, she tugged his ear affectionately and pulled him down for a long, deep kiss. “Missed you too, you idiot.”




They should have been working. She clearly saw Karen rolling her eyes from across the room but she couldn’t bring herself to care. Their own cassettes were sitting on the floor in a haphazard pile and whatever this music was that Lindsey was playing for her right now, she liked it. A lot. Her legs laid over Lindsey’s lap and she wondered whether he was finding her constant tapping of the beat annoying. Certainly, every time she opened her eyes and snuck a look at him, he was smiling, so she thought not.

His hand reached out, tangling in her hair, and she smiled softly up at him, watching as his mouth curved into a sly little grin. The idiot knew how much she loved that. His fingers were long and nimble and she felt like a cat being petted, wanted to just nuzzle into his touch. Instead, she closed her eyes again, pretending that all her attention was focused on listening to the lyrics of this young indie band. It wasn’t.

“This is my favorite,” he eventually said, breaking their comfortable silence as a new song started. Stevie listened attentively because this meant something and she wanted to know the reason. She shouldn’t care why he felt the need to tell her but she did.


He was quiet for a long time at her hesitant question and she wondered whether he heard her ask it at all. Eventually, his hands came to rest on her legs, fingers splayed possessively on them. “Reminded me of you,” he finally said (admitted), not meeting her eyes.

She put a hand on top of his, held it there for a moment before entwining their fingers.

A perfect fit.




He’d liked her last song. She’d seen the way his eyes had lit up and his hands had reached immediately for his guitar, craving the opportunity to add to the bare bones of voice and keyboard. Stevie laughed at his eagerness and pressed stop on the cassette.

“Enough, okay?”

“What?” Lindsey asked in a singularly unattractive whine.

“We’ve been at this for hours,” she explained patiently, firmly. She wasn’t exactly tired but a break would do them good; fresh ears and a fresh approach would help them in the long run. They needed to get this exactly right.

“We’re musicians. It’s what we do, Stevie,” he said, brows furrowed and that annoying patronizing tone in his voice. Rolling her eyes, she leaned over and took the guitar from his hands, placing it carefully on the floor beside her. He followed as if she had ripped his arm from its socket. “Steviiiie.”

“Yes, dear?” she asked, smirking, watching with satisfaction as he ran a hand through his dark unruly curls. Her hands itched to do the same… Putting the guitar behind her, she moved to sit directly in front of her boyfriend, one hand playing with the hem of his shirt and the other caressing his face. His jawline was so perfect, Stevie thought to herself. He watched her warily and she smiled, patting his cheek. “Relax. I’m not going to hurt you.” Pushing him firmly down onto the piles of blankets they kept on the floor, she straddled him, running a hand down his chest to his belt buckle.

“Promise to be gentle?” Lindsey asked, grinning, his hand coming to rest on her waist.

“No promises,” she replied, a glint in her eyes.

“Do your worst.”




He moved confidently in the kitchen, in a way she’d never observed before. It was strangely fascinating, really, watching him getting various ingredients out of the fridge, wiping a bench clear of the dishes his children had left there, the way he casually swung a dishtowel over his shoulder.

It shouldn’t be so mesmerizing to her but it was. He’d been hopeless in the kitchen when they’d lived together and now this domesticity clung to him like a well-worn tee. As he bent over to get some plates out of a low cupboard, Stevie found herself paying far too much attention to how well his jeans accentuated his bum, and wasn’t that just perfect?

“Do you need help?” she called out, restless and cursing her wandering mind.

Smirking, he turned to her, leaning back against the fridge. “You think I’m going to screw something up?”

“Well, are you?” Stevie replied, raising an eyebrow questioningly.

He threw the dish towel in her face, leaving her scrunching up her nose in disgust. “You’re so gross, Lindsey. Your skills in the kitchen might’ve improved but that certainly hasn’t changed…”

“Yeah, because the germs I’ve put on that will REALLY do some damage. I’d hate for you to have to touch something that’s touched me.”

“Boy cooties,” Stevie laughed, discarding the towel on the other side of the table, watching as he came closer to her. Why did he have to move so gracefully, like he was hunting her down?

“You used to like my cooties…” he said, and his voice was far too dangerous, far too tempting.

The ache she felt was more than a sliver of regret over what might have been. She ached for what she still desired. “Who says I don’t like them now?”

Lindsey eyes darted immediately to her lips.




It was always a surprise when their house was quiet and Stevie paused for a moment, making sure their dinner wasn’t going to burn before going to check on her boyfriend. She’d come home from work an hour ago to find him virtually unreachable, buried in working out some ridiculously beautiful guitar solo. It was unusual for him to stop playing until she dragged him virtually kicking and screaming out of wherever he sat cross-legged with his baby and so she found herself with a niggling worry for him. Which was stupid. Because Lindsey was absolutely fine.

She wasn’t absolutely fine, however, when she discovered him leaning over her with a concerned expression on his face and her nose hurting like a motherfucker. Groaning, she raised a hand up to her face, gingerly feeling around for bruises and lumps. “What the hell was that?”

“You may have accidentally run into the door I was just opening,” he said sheepishly, a hand rubbing her arm in what she thought was an effort to be comforting but was currently just pissing her off.

“Dinner,” she said, that one word leaving her mouth in a way which apparently left her boyfriend confused as to her mental state.

“Dinner?” he repeated, frowning.

“Dinner,” she stated slowly this time, pointing to the kitchen. “Check on it. Please.”


“You want a burned dinner?” Stevie asked, trying to stop herself from laughing at the distressed look on Lindsey’s face.


“You can’t wreck it, honey. Honestly.”

He seemed to take some kind of strength from her convincing sounding encouragement and she hoped the actual doubts she had as to whether he could manage to finish cooking dinner without it coming to complete ruin weren’t visible on her increasingly sore face. “I might just lay here for a bit longer.”

“In the hallway?”

“You feel like moving me?”

Within five minutes, she was resting comfortably on the couch, a bag of ice held delicately to her cheekbone and nose, listening to Lindseycursing up a storm in the kitchen.

They ended up eating take-out.




There were moments when she really was glad she’d never had children of her own and this was undoubtedly one of them. She could understand how toddlers and small children could make so much mess but teenagers? Wincing, she removed the DVD that was currently poking into her back and placed it on the precariously stacked pile on the carpeted floor. The house was completely silent and, after two days of enjoying the constant chatter and noise when she came up to the main house, she found it unnerving. Kristen was picking the kids up from school and Lindsey had told her he’d just be a minute, that he needed to check on something in the studio. That minute had turned into ten and she was getting increasingly twitchy sitting here doing nothing besides waiting for her partner. Her eyes kept being drawn to the family portraits on the wall and she didn’t like that her brain protested at their very existence.

Squinting at the daylight pouring into the room, Stevie sighed and sat down on the floor instead, stacking the DVDs into three smaller piles. She may as well do something useful while she waited. Besides, it was more than a little amusing to imagine Lindsey’s daughters forcing him to watch some of these films… Occasionally glancing at the door (when would Lindsey remember she was still here waiting, for god’s sake?!), she kept cleaning up the living room, bit by bit, item by item. The housekeeper was due in a few days according to Lindsey but it wouldn’t hurt to just make things a little more organized for when the other Buckinghams got home. Besides, she liked feeling useful. Out of the realm of music, she rarely was, and though it caused her life to be much more relaxed and stress-free than it could otherwise be, it also made her feel purposeless at times.

When they’d lived together, cleaning was a regular thing, partly due to the fact that Lindsey and his friends apparently didn’t know how to pick up after themselves at all. Their bedroom had always been the worst, however, with her boyfriend simply dropping things to the floor when they’d outlasted their usefulness of the moment. She found herself wondering whether that had changed at all and quickly walked to the home’s master bedroom, listening out with nervous anticipation for the sound of Lindsey or Kristen and the children returning home. The door was open and Stevie slipped inside, drinking in the sight of the bedroom, trying not to let herself be affected by the sight of Kristen’s things in this comfortable shared room.

A pair of jeans and an old, ratty T-shirt lay on the unmade bed, tangled up with a purple blouse and a lacy bra and Stevie found herself swallowing down her immediate reaction of how *wrong* that was. Smiling at the acoustic guitar propped up against the bed and a cassette desk sitting on the floor, she ran a hand along the comforter, soft shades of blue and white calming her. Photos of the children sat on the dresser along with a large collection of jewellery and an enviable amount of nail polish. Kristen had expensive taste, apparently.

A photograph of Lindsey with his arms wrapped around a beaming Kristen demanded her attention - right next to his bed - and she found herself drawn to it, trying to explain it to her protesting brain. It didn’t need explaining though. It was a picture of a husband and a wife, a happily married couple. And that was that.

She left their space, closing the door softly behind her.




Stevie sometimes wondered whether Lindsey had even been given chores to do at home. Certainly, his complete lack of skills (well, so he claimed) seemed to suggest the answer to that question was a very resounding no. She didn’t exactly mind cleaning for the both of them, but it wouldn’t hurt if he’d occasionally put his dirty clothes in the hamper like she’d asked him to…

“Lindsey!” she shouted, attempting to be heard over the sounds of the loud laughter and dueling guitars from the living room.

Trying again, she was pleased when her boyfriend’s curly locks and gorgeous face poked around the bedroom door.

“I was just picking up your clothes off the floor and -“

“Oh,” he interrupted, the grin sliding off his face and replaced with trepidation almost immediately. “Is there something wrong?”

“Not exactly, no,” she replied, amusing herself as the tension left his body and he entered the room, flopping down onto the bed, thus wrecking the nicely folded sheets and comforter. Oh well.


“Is there any chance I can convince you to USE the clothes hamper I bought for us? Maybe you can put your dirty clothes in there instead of on the floor?”

“They get washed either way.”

“Yes,” she agreed through gritted teeth. “By me. So…”

Tugging the pair of jeans out of Stevie’s hand and tossing them back to the floor, he smiled charmingly at her. “Okay.”


He patted the bed and held out his other hand in invitation. “Okay. Come join me.”

“Is that another way of saying ‘join me and I’ll make you come’ because if so…” Stevie closed the bedroom door firmly as he nodded in response. “You’re very distracting, Lindsey.”

His tongue moments later was thoroughly distracting. And talented. And for Christ’s sake, she thought, as he laid a palm on her stomach to keep her still, she was going to be far too exhausted to keep cleaning if he kept this up.

She’d probably cope…




It was stupidly warm and she reached for the bottle of water Karen had brought outside for her half an hour ago, noting it was already almost empty. Lindsey had suggested they take a lunch break in the open air for a change (the bunker was ‘confining’ he’d said, not even sounding like he believed his own words), and so they had, sitting side by side on the back porch. He’d passed her a sandwich, and she’d shared her drink.

Stevie couldn’t help wondering if her bandmate and his wife regularly took meals out here, to take a break from the kids, to enjoy the beautiful garden, to spend time with each other. She could reach and out and take Lindsey’s hand in her own right now, if she so desired.

Which of course she didn’t. Not much.

“Bit hot, isn’t it?” he said inanely.

“Yep,” she agreed. Also inanely. “Nice, though.”

“As long as you don’t get burned,” he said, smirking at her in that infuriating manner he’d always had.

“You’ll be nursing me back to health and my poor pale skin will appreciate the effort, thank you, Mr Buckingham.”

“I’ll be looking forward to it. You stretched out on the bed, at my mercy…” He sighed happily, winking at her and the man had no business still being attractive to her like that. She felt warm and it wasn’t just the sun. Which was not a good thing.

“Shut up.”

He did. And took her hand in his, his thumb rubbing along her soft skin and making her want more. A confining bunker right now might notbe a good idea. Or rather, it would.

She could see Kristen through the large glass panels separating them from the interior of Lindsey’s home. Yeah, NOT a good idea, she admitted to herself. He brought her hand up to his lips and kissed the back of it. Damn him.




Why did it have to be raining? She pulled the blankets more closely around her, wriggling into Lindsey’s body heat and smiling as he emitted a soft “oomph” as she accidentally jabbed him in the stomach with a knee as she curled up.

“Sorry,” she murmured into his bare chest. The idiot didn’t seem to feel the cold at all, never had. Frankly, it drove her mad. The curtains were drawn, their bedroom almost pitch-black as they cuddled together on their mattress. She’d ventured outside earlier in the day, and had been shivering and drenched within seconds. Lindsey had wrapped a huge, fluffy towel around her and they’d taken a hot shower to help her. Such a sacrifice…

“I like the rain,” he said, running a large hand down her arms, rubbing her to warm her up more.

“You’re mad.”

Laughing, he kissed the top of her head, and wrapped his arms fully around her, pulling her against him. Wedging a leg between his, she nuzzled into the blankets, one eye poking out so she could still see her boyfriend. His hair was so long now and if her hands hadn’t been so cold she wouldn’t reached out to play with it. He always closed his eyes when she did that, his back arching slightly like a cat as he reacted to her touch.

“Lindsey, do you think the rain’ll stop soon?”

“Unlikely,” he whispered. “I don’t mind though. Gives me an excuse to stay in bed with you.”

“Like you need an excuse for that,” Stevie laughed, nudging him affectionately, and tilting her head up to kiss his soft lips. He really was beautiful. His eyes promised her the world, and she pressed her cold hands against his chest. “I guess we should try and keep warm somehow,” she continued, trailing her fingers down to the waistband of his jeans.




She’d sent Karen home several hours ago, offering Lindsey up as a sacrificial goat to drive her home when they finally finished up recording Miss Fantasy. He’d rolled her eyes, but obliged with a seemingly enthusiastic ‘Definitely, I’d be happy to do so’, and she’d given him a peck on the lips for his effort. He’d appreciated it, grinning at her and patting her backside in a way that she was fairly sure wasn’t as platonic as it should be. Not that she minded that much, if she was being totally honest with herself…

“One more try, Stevie?” he called out, fiddling with the console.

Sighing she nodded and adjusted the mic again. She loved the song, truly, but her voice was not going tolast the full four days at this rate. Surely one of the takes had been good enough after working on it all day. She was pretty resolutely NOT going to let herself get annoyed with Lindsey on this visit, however, and so far she’d had no reason to.

“Just one more,” he said softly, smiling at her. “Then we’ll go to bed, yeah?”

“I beg your pardon?”

He pointed to the large clock on the wall. “Honestly, it wouldn’t be safe if I tried to drive you home. I’m not used to staying up this late.”

“Old man.”

“Exactly. No shame,” he laughed. “Look, we have plenty of spare rooms or you can even just crashhere if you want. There’s a small bedroom out the back next to the bathroom.”

And so she found herself wearing an old T-shirt of Lindsey’s with her black leggings, pulling back the covers on a small, comfortable bed in Lindsey’s studio. He stood in the doorway watching her and she felt like she should be uneasy with his presence than she was. It felt oddly normal and routine considering how many years it had been since they’d last shared a bed.

“Sleep well, then, okay?” he said as she climbed into the bed, curling up on her side, and pulling the comforter over her. It felt odd being here, the smell of Lindsey’s shirt on her, his blankets surrounding her.

“Do you sleep in here sometimes?” she asked curiously, as his hand went to the light-switch, ready to plunge the room into darkness.

“Yeah. Occasionally. You know, if I’ve been recording in here late and don’t want to make the huge trek back to the house,” he laughed. “Or if I’ve had an argument with Kit. Damn sight more comfortable than a couch,” he added with a grin. “I’ll see you in the morning, okay?”

He turned out the light and left the bedroom, left her.

She dreamed that he’d stayed.




She woke up to a light tapping on the front door. Hoping her parents or Chris would go and deal with whoever the idiot was at the door at stupid o’clock in the morning, she buried her face in her pillow, groaning when the knocking got slightly louder. Trudging downstairs, she was shocked when she was met with Lindsey’s abashed face, his curls wet and plastered down on his face, hunched over in his black jacket.

“I lost my key and no-one answered the door at home,” was his only explanation as she wrapped an arm around his waist and led him inside. They stood in the kitchen, Lindsey still dripping a few drops of water on the floor as Stevie held a large towel around him, handing him a cup of hot coffee. Rubbing his goose-bump covered arms, she rested a head against the back of the fridge. She was so damn tired…

“Did you, I, did you want to stay here tonight?” she eventually asked, as he placed the mug in the kitchen sink and pulled the towel more tightly around his body, still shivering slightly. “You could maybe sleep on the couch?”

“Won’t your Mom be upset if she finds me here in the morning?”

“Oh. Yeah. Um, you could sleep on the floor in my room. We can sneak you out before Dad leaves for work?”

“I thought you said you hate getting up early.”

She grinned, tweaking his ear. “I’ll make an exception just this once.”

“Because I’m special.”

Rolling her eyes she took his hand in hers (it fit just right and she felt a strange flip flop in her stomach as he rubbed his thumb along her index finger) and led him up the stairs to her room, shutting the door firmly behind them.

He slept on a pile of blankets on the floor, using one of her pillows. His shirt and jeans had been shucked off as soon while she climbed into her own bed, and Stevie couldn’t help peering over at her new bandmate and friend, watching the way his bare chest rose and fell as he slept (he didn’t snore, thank god), dark hairs dusting his well-built body. A swimmer, she thought she remembered him telling her at band practice the other day. He really was very attractive. Sinfully so.

She dreamed that he’d slept in her bed instead of on the floor, his strong arms around her and her body cradled in his.




“Oh my god, have you SEEN this video?!” Stella called out to her sister. “It’s so cool.”

Leelee took a quick look at the clip playing on the laptop, gave what seemed to be quite a non—committal agreement, and immediately left the table, opting to sit curled up in a small cushion-covered armchair. Within seconds, her eyes were closed and her head was back, her iPod playing god knows what. Stevie watched, amused, as Will entered the room, almost bumping into the wall as he texted quickly. It always amazed her, the speed at which someone’s fingers could hit those keys correctly… Putting her glass of water on the small table next to the couch, she looked to her bandmate who sat at her side, eating an apple greedily.

“I’m feeling quite old, Mr Buckingham,” she whispered to him, a hand on his bicep to get his attention.


She gestured to his three children. “How does Will even spell a single word properly at that speed?”

“I’m not sure that he does,” Lindsey laughed. “Look at this message he sent me the other day.” Shifting over and eliminating the gap between them, Stevie watched as her bandmate tugged his iPhone out of his pocket. “See if you can figure out what he’s actually saying?”

She attempted to read it, her forehead wrinkling in confusion. “Haven’t got a clue.” He put the phone away and put an arm around her shoulder, her head dropping to rest on his chest. “If you texted me something like that, I’d think you’d had a stroke or something!”

“If I texted you at all, you’d probably die of shock.”

“True. I told you I’d answer, you know.”

“You mean, you’d get Karen to answer?”

“Maybe,” she agreed sheepishly, lifting her head and looking up at him. He was smiling down at her and she stroked the side of his face. “I’d try.”




She was holding back her impulse to just rip the present’s wrapping paper herself for her younger cousin and thus was very proud. Lindsey’s firm possessive hand on her thigh helped, of course. Stevie wondered if she even knew he was doing that. Certainly, for the past half hour, his attention had solely been on the small child currently standing between his legs, playing with the chain around her boyfriend’s neck. She found it endearing, really, how absorbed he’d become in keeping Lydia happy.

“C’mon, Jeremy, just tear it!” she encouraged, a hand on the boy’s back to keep him upright. He’d been walking for a few weeks now, his parents had said, but he still seemed pretty unsteady on his feet from the amount of times she’d seen him crash-landing on his ass today. Thankfully, he did as requested and soon was sitting at her feet, playing with some colored bricks, attempting to build a tower. She turned to her boyfriend to check he was coping - this was the first big family bash he’d attended, after all,  and she’d been a bit concerned that he’d feel uncomfortable or awkward. He’d barely had to make conversation, though. Apparently, his ability to keep a small toddler happily chortling away at him had endeared him to the entire family. And her too, if she were being honest.

Stevie had never exactly been one of those young girls who thought up a million names for the babies she planned on having but, certainly, watching Lindsey play with the cute blue-eyed, blonde-haired little girl made her stomach clench and her fingers itch to touch him.

“Linds, you alright?”

“Never better,” he grinned, trying to stop Lydia from pulling out his dark curls. “Apparently, the little one likes my hair almost as much as you do.”

“Impossible,” she said, laughing as he winced. “She’s stronger than you’d think.”

Lindsey chuckled and lifted the little girl into his arms, cuddling her tight, her hands in his so they weren’t grabbing at him. “I’m stronger,” he said firmly. And so he was. And even more adorable than she’d previously thought. She wondered if, if *they* ever had a baby, whether it would get Lindsey’s beautiful blue eyes.

She hoped so.




They’d been laying next to each other on the carpeted floor of the studio, listening to the replay of Lindsey’s songs, complete with harmonies, for what seemed like hours. She could feel his presence beside her even with her eyes closed and couldn’t resist resting a hand in the small gap between them. It was a game they used to play, to see how close she could bring her fingertips towards him without touching him, and without him noticing her. It had usually ended with Lindsey atop her, his fingers playing with her tightened nipples, his lips soft and hungry on hers.

Not this time though. Obviously. Still.

She emitted a tiny squeak (god, how old was she?!) as she felt his hand enclosing hers in its familiar, firm grip.

“Cheeky,” he said softly, his breath warm on her cheek as he half-leaned over her. She opened her eyes and saw him looking back at her, amused. “Not letting go now, you know. You’ll be stuck with me clinging onto your hand permanently.”

“I’m sure Kristen will be thrilled,” Stevie laughed, poking his chest.

Raising an eyebrow, he bent down to press a brief kiss to her cheek then sat up, wrenching up her as well. Putting both hands on her shoulders, Lindsey indicated for her to sit between his open legs and she did so, curious. His fingertips pressed into her shoulders, then her upper back and she tensed up.

“What are you doing?”

“Relax,” he said, brushing his lips against the back of her neck. “Just giving you a massage. You looked like you were in pain earlier when we took a break from recording Without You vocals”

“Back’s been acting up again,” she admitted, groaning deeply as Lindsey’s fingers dug in hard. “Oh god. Don’t stop.”

“Ah, now THOSE words I do love to hear from your lips, Ms Nicks,” he said, laughing as she tried to reach behind her back to hit him. “And, never fear, I won’t stop.”




They’d been laying on the couch for what seemed like hours. Gary had left after lunch, apparently running back home in fear of his very moody, very pregnant girlfriend, and they’d stayed where they’d been, snuggled up together. Some days were perfect, Stevie thought, and this was shaping up to be one of them. Lindsey’s hand reached under her shirt, rubbing her back affectionately, and she smiled, curling into him.

“Can we just stay here forever?” she asked, closing her eyes and nuzzling into her boyfriend’s embrace. “So good.”

“Can we have bathroom breaks?”

Laughing, she acceded that that would be necessary. “And showers.”

“We can do THAT together, though,” he said, grinning and kissing her lightly on the side of her neck.

“True. How shall we cope?”

“It’ll be difficult,” he said, pouting as he fiddled with the clasp of her bra. “Damn thing.”

“Keep trying, loverboy. And yep, it’ll be damn hard.” Her hand snuck down to his jeans, giving him a quick stroke there and relishing the way his eyes widened in surprise. “It better be, anyway…” she added.

“God, I love you,” he gasped as she rubbed up against him. Reaching under his shirt, her hand found his stomach tense and she laughed lightly.

“I bet you do,” she whispered, before kissing him. Mmm. He reallywas a sublime kisser. And enthusiastic.

“Always, Stevie. Always.”

And her heart almost stopped at the tenderness in his voice.




She frowned at the lyric, her pen tapping against her leg as she tried to think of a better word. Fuck. Music played softly in the background and she could hear Lindsey fiddling around in the studio, playing around with the length of his proposed guitar solo.

“A better word for wanted, Mr Thesaurus?” she called, grinning as his spun around immediately at the sound of her voice.

“Coveted? Craved? Desired?”

“Can you say it again but without that smug, superior, sexual tone in your voice, please?”

He laughed and strode over to where she sat, cross-legged on the couch. “Just leave it for awhile. To marinate. Like a stew.”

Patting his cheek affectionately, Stevie corrected him gently. “Thank you chef, but you don’t marinate stew. You can marinate the meat that goes into a stew so…”

“So, close enough, I think,” he laughed, tucking a strand of her hair behind her ear as he sat down next to her, an arm stretching out on the back of the couch, an inch from her body. She felt self-conscious. She hated it. She pulled the cap off the pen and started writing in the margin of her journal, hoping Lindsey had enough sense not to peek over her shoulder. Facing away from him as much as possible, she tried to concentrate on getting the phrasing right. It was certainly an odd experience (though definitely not a new one, she thought) to write about the person sitting within touching distance.

And then he did touch her, his fingers running gently through her hair, separating strands of it and… Oh god. “Are you… braiding my hair?” she asked hesitantly, the words almost getting stuck in her throat. He couldn’t. It was too much and not enough and way too intimate and so familiar.

They didn’t do things like this anymore.

“Lindsey?” she said, her fingers closing on his wrist. “Please.”

“I love your hair,” he said softly. “Just let me do this, okay? It’s just a braid.”

And so she let him. The words on the page blurred as her eyes started closing and she leaned back, letting his hands work their magic.




The words flowed fast and she could barely scribble them down as they came into her mind. She could hear Lindsey chuckling as he walked over to her from their kitchen. “Thought you might want a drink,” he said, offering her a glass of water and sitting behind her on the floor.

“Mmm,” she acknowledged, taking it and putting it beside her. He needed to not be distracting her, that’s what she wanted. Which is why she almost jumped out of her skin when, minutes later, she felt his fingers creeping up her back, along her spine, across her neck, before tangling in her hair. She’d colored it again yesterday, blonder than last time, and Lindsey seemed to adore it, hadn’t stopped playing with it since. She’d always found it kind of adorable but right now…

“Don’t tense up, Stevie,” he said, one hand trying to soothe her with a gentle back rub.

“I wasn’t tense. I was writing,” she said through gritted teeth. “Until *someone* came over and distracted me.”

He laughed and kissed the nape of her neck, moving the hair there aside so he could nip at her bare skin. “I like distracting you,” he breathed warmly against her.

“Hmm, I know,” she said, trying to stop herself from reacting as he wanted her to.

It was no use.

“Christ,” she exclaimed as his hand came around her front, splaying possessively across her breast. “You are a devil, Lindsey Buckingham.”

“And you’re an angel,” he growled, pulling her back against him so she could feel her hard against her bottom. “C’mon, let me inspire you…”




“This is the last time,” she insisted, caressing his cheek and kissing him softly. “Really.”

“I don’t believe you,” Lindsey said, reaching behind her to unclasp her bra, his fingers nimble and quick. Eager.

She didn’t believe herself either.

He fell back onto the couch, and Stevie straddled him as hands coming to rest on her bare hips. Leaning forward, she pressed a possessive kiss to his inviting mouth. Beautiful.

No, it would never be the last time for them.




His body was warm and sweaty, his breathing heavy. Grinning, Stevie flicked her tongue around his sensitive nipple, tasting. He might be exhausted right now but she would soon remedy that. He moaned as she reached down and stroked him, his blue eyes darkening again as she licked her lips.

“Really, Lindsey, a first time is great. But I think a second would be even better,” she said huskily, caressing his thigh with eager hands. He was so fucking gorgeous. “Prove me right,” she challenged, loving the way his eyes watched her, taking in everything, worshiping everything.

“You’re perfect,” he said, nudging her legs apart and settling between them.

“Kiss me.”

Their third time, early the next morning, as the sun rose and her bedroom glowed in its hazy light, surpassed even her highest expectations. And her dirtiest dreams.

MNicole BarkerMComment