Chapter 6

Victoria was grateful that she did not have to work the weekend. She spent a lazy Saturday in front of the television and flipped through the multitude of channels on the satellite dish. Not one program managed to retain her attention for more that a few minutes.

She thought back upon the previous night with Devon at the Tavern. Her eyes closed and envisioned the few moments that she'd held her within her arms. She smelled her perfume and how perfectly their bodies melded. She heard the matching drums as dual hearts thundered for one another. Every fiber in her being told her that being with Devon was right, a sort of destiny just out of reach. I want to have a chance to let develop what is opened between us. It's Devon who is denying us. Why? She checked her watch, fifteen minutes since she last checked.

Is she afraid of me? Did I do something? Naw I haven't had a chance to screw it up yet. Maybe she is hiding something? What? She threw the remote onto the empty cushion and stretched her long frame. Her mind raced through what little she knew about Devon and realized it was indeed very little. How can I know anything if she won't spend time with me? Greg isn't any help. She wants me too, I can see it. So why? Eyes upon the television but not seeing, she held the vacant gaze for several moments.

"Women!" Victoria yelled and threw her hands in the air exasperated.

A few miles away Devon sat in her office and watched happy mommies and daddies play with their children in the waning sun. Doing the inventory normally took her less than two hours to complete, for some reason today it was taking just about the entire day. Her mind was far away from the business. It was on a certain Victoria Newsome and the desire that she could not squash.

She knew of nothing significant about Victoria, yet she wanted to. She wanted to know her favorite color and flavor of ice cream. She looked again onto the park and saw the couple sitting together near the waters edge. The loneliness crept to the surface and she spun about in her chair to face the incomplete inventories.

Not one thing significant about Victoria Newsome except that the yearning to be with her taunted Devon unbearably. She rested her elbows upon the desk and put her head in her hands. When she was near, it took all Devon's will power not to step across those two boundaries that kept her out of emotional harms way. For one, Victoria was her employee; a well developed one at that. Victoria was a complete package.

And two, I am not. It cannot be changed or undone, Devon closed her eyes against the ache that threatened to erupt within. God, I want this.

Devon closed her eyes. Not since the week before her surgery had anyone truly touched her. The encounters were always one way. No one had seen her completely naked. No one knew about the scars across her chest and mind. She had spent the last two years ignoring that part of her body when having sex with the nameless women. It was the barrier that she desperately wanted to cross with Victoria. After so many years of neglect, and the newfound desire for a woman to truly be with, her nipple hardened instantly at the thought of being held by Victoria, caressed and loved by those hands of her.

The kiss at the Tavern that night had almost been her undoing. It was fear that caused her to react as she had. If they had continued, gone too far, Victoria would have seen, would have been faced with the obligation to continue even though the sight of the marks and one breast may have disgusted her. There would not have been a way for Devon to tell what was real and what was pity.

So tell her, the little voice said. Tell her and give her the opportunity. You've seen the way she looks at you. You've felt the kiss. Tell her and see.

"I can't."

You're a coward.

"Yeah, so what else is new? Now go away." Defeated and drained from the intensity of the civil unrest within her skull, she stood, grabbed her keys, and left the office.


Devon returned to the South side store shortly before the crew could lock the doors for the night. She felt slightly refresh from her drive along the countryside seeking the calm that could bring peace to her self-induced torment.

"Hey Greg, how did things go tonight?" Devon asked walking to the service counter.

"Quiet tonight."

"That's not a good thing."

"Yeah. I put the order sheets on your desk. Looks like there are some awesome titles being released in the next few weeks."

"Okay thanks."

"I also think we should run sales on pre-viewed movies to clear out some of the old stock."

"Sounds good. Let's talk tomorrow."

"Sure." Greg watched his boss walk away with a look of such melancholy that his cheerful mood was immediately soured. What the hell is going on with you two anyway? Victoria was the same way at the house for lunch today.

"Hey Greg," Gothic Girl called to him from across the store. We're ready to go."

Greg stepped down from the platform and made his way to the shift crew waiting by the rear door. He unlocked the bolts and opened it far enough for everyone to slip through and into the back parking lot. He then re-attached the bolts and returned to the front of the store. He heard a light tapping upon the glass doors. As he neared, he recognized his cousin standing on the other side.

He waved and let her into the store locking the doors behind him again. "You're lucky that I had not set the alarm yet." As an afterthought, he walked to the wall and punched in the codes. "What are you doing here?"

"I ahh… Is Devon here?"

"What is going on with you two? She came in here looking as though she lost her best friend and you look the same way?"

"So she is here?"

"Yeah," he shook his head and pointed towards the office. "Where else would she be?"

"Thanks. I'll ahh…. Are you going to be a while?"

"A little. Why?"

"Just let me know and I'll go out with ya."

"Vic, are you involved with Devon?"

She looked deeply into his eyes and then back towards the distant office door. "I don't know. Well, I do know. At least my heart is, but she won't let me anywhere near her Greg."

"Does she play for the same team?"

"Hell yes, you know that." I still feel the kiss upon my lips.

"Just checking, maybe she switched."

"Thanks for the vote of confidence bud."

"Sorry I'm new to this side of things, Vic."


Victoria walked the path to Devon's office. She stood outside the door for several moments gathering her thoughts and steeling a part of herself for another possible and final rejection. If it happens, I'll walk away and never bother her again. I swear.

"Come in."

Victoria opened the door and did not stop walking until she was directly in front of Devon. Devon glanced from her papers and then returned her eyes to the confusing numbers. Her pulse raced at the sight of Victoria and though to keep her eye averted to minimize the hyperventilation she felt come over her.


"Devon." She waited for her to say something more than her name. Victoria took in the way in which Devon responded to her. For the life of her she could not understand how Devon could be so warm and responsive one minute and cold the next. She wanted answers and wanted them at this moment. Her heart melted at the sight of the woman behind the desk. The reddish blonde hair tossed a telling sign of frustration but she looked adorable. The green t-shirt with WVM's logo blazed in yellow across the front and back was a very good color on her.

"Something I can do for you Victoria?"

"Yes, you can tell me what's going on with you."

"I don't understand what it is you are talking about?"

"Yes you do," the anger rose before Victoria could censor it and stalked to the other side of the desk. She turned the chair and forced Devon to face her. As quickly as it rose, the anger dissipated as Victoria's eyes held the soft lips parted slightly only inches away.

Victoria grasped Devon by the shoulders, and gently helped her to her feet. She turned and leaned her bottom upon the edge of Devon's desk eyes never leaving the lips she was about to savor. The grip upon Devon's shoulders eased slightly and Victoria guided a willing Devon to stand between her open legs.

The sound of one experiencing heaven escaped into the room as both women succumbed to the excitement the other caused. Their lips melded into one another and they seemed to understand an unspoken language of how wonderful kissing could be. Victoria pulled Devon closer still as the kiss deepened and felt small fingers as crept along her back and spine coming to at the nape of her neck.

Neither wanted to come up for air, just yet but had to. So a quick released and then the kiss resumed more frantic initially, then slowed to a sensual dance, lightly moving across the soft skin of the other. Devon's tongue finally touched the lips of Victoria's and found an immediate welcome to come home. Unfortunately the need for another breath was overwhelming and they had to part. Their chests rose and fell taking in the oxygen that they had deprived one another. Victoria finally opened her eyes and Devon saw the deep blue and knew she had caused the sensual change. Through heavy lids, Victoria witness the transformation of green to deep emerald in the face held between her palms.

"Wow!" she whispered through a nervous chuckle. Her thumb caressed the smooth cheek.

"Yeah, wow."

"Will you?" Her thought interrupted by the quick rap upon the door. Devon jumped and quickly moved out of Victoria's grasp and stood facing the window. You're children will be fatherless and your wife a widow Greg because I'm going to kill you! Victoria cursed.

The door open wide, "Hey, things are all set." He paused as the intensity within the room surrounded him immediately. Oh man. What did I walk in on?

"I'll let you out Greg," Victoria replied flatly. Don't pull away from me now Devon. "I'll let him out and come right back." When she did not get a reply, Victoria closed the door behind her.

Devon closed her eyes and stared into the darkness of the park across the way. Why did I let her do that? She is a good kisser though, but that is beside the point. What am I going to do now? More importantly, what is it that I feel? She touched her lips and closed her eyes. Her body instantly tingled in remembrance of moments before. I want this. I want her. She makes me want to be touched. What if she can't…stand to look at me? I don't think I could stand that. Maybe I should stop things right here? No…Yes.

Damn, which is it?

"You timing is impeccable cousin. You could have waited a few more minutes."

"Sorry Vic, but I'm late already." They walked through the dimly lit store towards the rear exit door. "How is it going anyway?"

"Don't know. She's afraid of something. Me maybe. Something though."

"Look," he stopped at the door. "I like Devon. I really do. I have watched her change over the past five years, Victoria. You're right, she is frightened about something, or something happened to change her. I'm not sure." He looked Victoria deeply in the eyes. "Just don't hurt her Vic. Treat her gently. She deserves it."

Victoria looked at her cousin with newfound respect. She gave him a half smile. "You bet I will." She slapped him on the back and unlocked the bolts. She opened the door wide enough for him to step through, "Now go on home. I'll take care of Devon. Promise."

Greg stepped through the door and turned back to her. Before he could utter another sound, his eyes closed from the sudden strike to the back of his head. At the same time, the door was jerked out of Victoria's hand and a gun placed directly between her eyes. Her hands instantly went up in surrender.

"Not one word bitch," the hooded man hissed. Victoria kept her body from moving and her eyes from crossing towards the gun. "Get him up and in there. Hurry up!" He hissed and out of the darkness came two other dark clothed hooded men. "Back up bitch!" Keeping the gun pressed tightly to her forehead, Victoria backed slowly away from the door.

They picked up Greg's lifeless body between them and dragged him back inside of the store. They dumped him unceremoniously onto the floor and kicked him for good measure. One of the men turned and reattached the door locks.

Victoria clenched her jaw. If it was one thing she detested most in this world was being called a bitch. When the time is right I will rip your fucking heart out you bastard. Watch me! She vented silently. Then she remembered Devon. She has no idea what was happening. Now she started to panic. All right Vic, even though you're shaking worse than a leaf, calm down. Wait for the time, Vic; just wait. Don't give them anything to be trigger happy about. Maybe they'll take the till and go quietly.

"He's out," the other one said.

"Okay, let's go find the money bitch!"

"There's about a hundred in the till. That's all."

"You lie!" the man with the gun screamed then doubled his fist and slammed it into Victoria's abdomen.

She expelled a loud gush of air and tumbled onto her knees coughing, trying to get her breath to return. She glanced towards Greg and saw his eyes lids flutter and the brief grimace crept across his face before it faded. She knew he was awake and playing possum like they had when they were children. Good boy, wait 'til we are gone then run like hell.

The man reached down twisted his hands in her dark hair and pulled her to her feet. "Get moving." He shoved her forward.

"One man, be cool. You don't have to do her like that. Come on."

"Shut up Two. This is my gig and we do things the way I say. So shut up and come on."

The two lackeys looked at one another's dark eyes through the slits in the mask. They checked Greg once more to make sure he was still out and then followed behind their leader.

Victoria walked as slowly as she dared to give herself time to think. Greg was knocked out cold. She hoped that was all that it was. Her main concern was getting all of them out of this alive and without further injury. Of the three men dressed in dark tactical clothes, it was the leader, One, he was called; she had most to worry about. Despite her situation, she chuckled at least they were inventive with their names. The leader was nothing to kid about her proved that to her already.

Standing at least two inches taller and definitely more body mass, she was certain that she would get seriously hurt trying to overpower the guy. No, her best bet was to get to the two lackeys. They seemed just as afraid of One but at least Two showed a trail of compassion for a criminal.

The button, Devon has the button under her desk. Once we enter the office she should be able to push it to get the police here. Beautiful! Still she paced her steps until she felt the shove in her back.

As they neared, One grabbed her hair again and pressed the gun to her temple. "Not one sound or we will shoot as soon as the door opens." Victoria gasped from the force of her neck being pulled back and choked from the stale garlic and onion breath expelled into her face. The cold steel at her temple was not as bad as smelling his breath.

Two and Three moved into position near the door. Two grabbed the knob, turned and threw the door wide shocking Devon by the window. Three immediately ran into the room, gun high and pointed at her head.

"Don't move," Three said. Devon frozen in place and did as she was told. Her heart pounded and fear invaded her instantly.

Two ran into the room. His movement caused Devon to involuntarily jump and took a step towards her desk. He ran around the desk and immediately pulled the string to draw the blinds closed. One forced Victoria into the room and made her get upon her knees.

Devon's eyes were sealed upon Victoria. Each was pleading with the other silently. Victoria deepened her gaze and willed Devon to remember the button under her desk. She watched Two check the blinds to make sure they could not be seen from the outside. Devon turned slightly to watch Two as well and leaned upon her desk. Her eyes darted between One and Two as her fingers depressed the small button.

"Three, come here!" One bellowed and caused Devon to jump again. He grinned sadistically smelling the store owner's fear as it wafted into the room. The wait for his command to be obeyed was very brief. He loosened his grip in Victoria's hair and shook the strands that had come loose from his gloved fingers. "Put your hands on her head." Victoria hesitated too long for the sharp blow to the side of her head toppled her onto the floor. Her hand shot to her face as she moaned and tried to blink the dancing stars away.

"Victoria!" Devon shouted and took a step before Two and his gun halted her. Hand clenched on the end of the desk, Devon looked on in horror as Victoria barely moved upon the floor. Her anger seized her logic. "What the fuck do you want?"

"Ooohh. Temper, temper, little beauty." One cooed. He reached down and roughly yanked Victoria to her knees once again. "Hands on your head, bitch!" Slowly, Victoria complied and wobbled on her knees.

"Cover her." He said to Three. He stalked around the left side of the desk closest to Devon coveting her body head to toe. Devon felt trapped, one gunman on each side. Two said not to move yet she did not want One anywhere near her. "Two, go check our boy on the floor and grab the till." He looked lusciously at Devon and smirked. "We'll take care of these lovely ladies in here."

Two hesitated and understood what was on his friends mind. He had seen him do it before. He glanced at Three asking for direction on what he should do. Through the haze, Victoria read Two's communication to the gun trained on the back of her head. Her eyes narrowed from the hatred pleading to be unleashed and the pounding of her head.

"What are you waiting for? I said go! And you better hurry, or there might not be anything left for you."

Two backed away from the desk and his eyes told Three he was not pleased about the situation. He left the room to do what he was told. No matter what he may have thought about his brother's actions, he was not stupid enough to turn against him. The last time he tried to not obey his orders, his brother broke his arm in three places. It was healthier to do what he was told when he was told to do it. This is the last one. I am not doing this anymore. I will take my cut and leave the state. Maybe Arizona, someplace warm….

"Now, what was you name again?" One cooed in his sultry garlic voice.

"What do you want?" Devon asked softly as she slowly backed away with each of his advancing steps.

"Well, we did want money. Now that I see that this store has a lot more to offer, I believe I have changed my mind."

"Don't you touch her!" Victoria spat incensed.

One's head jerked toward Victoria. She did not receive the cool smile that Devon had received. Hers was a nasty sneer that she swore she saw the froth in the corner of his mouth.

"Don't make me put a bullet between your eyes."

Devon gasped and turned towards Victoria and shook her head. Victoria understood and felt her biceps clenched when her fingers tightened around one another on her head.

"Now, come over here and tell me your name."

"Just take the money and leave us alone," Devon said more bravely than she felt.

"Oh, we'll take the money," One guffawed. His hand snapped out so quickly that Devon did not have time to react. His fingers were twisted in her shirt and he held her close to him. "And anything else that we want." With the one hand he lifted Devon off the floor and slammed her back first onto her desk.

Devon cried out from the pain searing in her back and the realization of what was about to occur. One held her down upon the desk with seemingly little effort of his single arm. Devon struggled under the pressure unable to dislodge his grip or move about on the desk.

"Don't do this. I beg of you. Please."

"Oh sweetmeat, you will be begging me to continue in a minute."

"I'll kill you! Let her go!" Victoria went to move and she was yanked back in place by the hand wrapped in her hair and the gun pressed once again to her temple.

One turned to Victoria and his grip loosened enough for Devon to kick him and roll toward the window. As she did so, her t-shirt ripped down the front. One was left with a portion of the shirt in his grasp, and Devon was on the floor.

"Cunt!" One screamed enraged and lunged toward Devon catching her by the hair. When he yanked the small woman to her feet, her left breast prosthetic dislodged and landed upon the floor beside her. "What the fuck!"

"Please," Devon cried, "Don't do this." She gathered the fragments of her shirt together quickly.

"What the fuck is wrong with you? You got fake tits?" he laughed and Devon closed her eyes against humiliation. "Hey Three check this out man," he said pulling Devon around the desk. Devon's hands held the shirt tightly until One hit them with the butt of his gun to make her release it and then yanked her bra down her torso.

Victoria's eyes grew wide in astonishment then filled with tears and that flowed down her cheeks. Oh Devon. She now understood the hesitation and the turmoil Devon was in. She understood why she was shunned and the visits to the Tavern. She looked upon the pained mortified face of Devon and her anger unleashed itself in a loud cry.

"You son of a bitch!" She nearly got to her feet when the blow came across the back of her neck and darkness closed around her.

"One!" Two ran back into the room out of breath. "The guy is gone and the cops are coming. We gotta leave like right now, man." He looked down upon the unconscious body of Victoria and the half naked blonde across the room. He tilted his head as Devon stood there shamed and demoralized in her jeans and bra. Two recognized the elongated scars across the left breastbone. He had seen it on that cable channel where they do surgeries. "Man, why did you do that?"

"Shut up you wuss."

"Come on, let's go." He turned to leave followed by Three.

One looked upon Devon and sneered. "You diseased Bitch. To think I almost stuck it in you." He slapped her across the face. Devon spun about and landed next to Victoria. He turned and ran from the room to join his brothers.


Chapter 7

Devon lay there upon the floor anxiously awaiting the footsteps to faded further and further away. When she was certain they had gone, she sat up slowly with her hand covering her face. Tears streamed down her face as she looked upon the quiet face of an unconscious Victoria. She could see the steady pulse beat in the vein along Victoria's neck and knew she was alive. This was not the way I wanted you to find out.

Devon caressed Victoria's face gently. Her eyes turned too the flicker of round white lights flashing through the darkened store and knew the police had arrived. She quickly gathered what remained of the t-shirt about her and unsteadily got to her feet. She barely managed to find her breast form and shove it in the desk drawer before Greg and a uniformed officer barged through the open door.

"Vic!" he screamed and went to his cousin. . His shout made the jackhammer in his skull pound harder. He checked and sighed relief at the pulse he felt upon her neck.

"Are you hurt Miss?" the officer said to Devon.

"No, no not really. Greg are you hurt?" she sniffed wiping her eyes.

"No, just a bump on the head and a headache. What happened? Where are they?"

"Gone." She tightened her grasp around the remnants of her shirt. Devon wanted to cry out at the debasement she endured because of what One had done to her. Her fury simmered in the cauldron of her stomach. It was near boiling. She knew it would not get any better and she sought to keep it directed where it was supposed to be, but One was not here. It was going to be a very long night.

Two more officers entered the office followed by an EMT carrying his Emergency kit. He immediately knelt beside Victoria who had started to come around with a heavy moan upon the floor.

"Vic, you're safe now. The police are here," Greg told her.

She closed her eyes for a partial second before they sprang wide open in horror. "Devon? Where's Devon?" She bolted upright instantly regretting the move.

"She's okay Vic."

Victoria glanced around the room until her eyes came to a pale-faced Devon behind her desk. Devon refused to meet the saddened blue eyes that landed upon her. She could not see what Victoria tried to communicate to her with her eyes. Victoria started to stand.

"Miss, you should lie down and remain still."

Ignoring the pleas of Greg and the EMT, Victoria managed to get to her feet and wobbly brace herself against the side of the desk. She turned around and sat on the edge holding her head.

"I'm alright, just a little lightheaded." Victoria took three long blinks to clear the stars that waltzed before her.

"You should let me check you out, Miss. You could have a concussion." The EMT stepped up to Victoria and flashed the small pin light into her eyes. "Which is what I think you have. We should get you to the rig outside and to the hospital."

"Give me a few minutes."

"Victoria, listen to him," Greg stated firmly.

"I said give me a few minutes, Greg. Take those guys outside and wait for us ok?" She asked but the look upon her face left no room for arguments. "Can you bring me a blanket please?" Greg nodded imperceptibly and shooed the officers out of the door and closed it behind him.

Devon had not moved from her spot behind the desk. He head hung low as she inhaled deeply and let it out slowly. The silence of the room unsettled her further.

"Well, that was sure a different twist to the evening," Devon said glibly. She turned and went to the window to gaze out. It was her favorite thing to do to. It helped her to think. She then realized the gunman had closed it.

A soft knock upon the door and it opened to let Greg in with the requested blanket. "Are you ready to go to the ambulance now?"

"No, not yet. Thank you." She pointed towards the blanket. "A few more minutes and then we'll be out."

He touched her cheek gently by the bruise that was quickly coloring her face fantastically. "Not too long. Devon, you too."

Devon turned and gave him a weak smile. She caught the painful cerulean ones of Victoria when she had not wanted to. She quickly turned her back to the both of them. Several seconds passed after Greg left before Devon heard the rustling of movement from Victoria. She saw the shadow move behind her and draped the blanket around her body. As the heavy wool wrapped around her shoulders, so did the strong arms of Victoria.

She pulled Devon back into her and hugged her tightly. She kissed the top of the golden head and felt the shaking of Devon's shoulder's as she began to weep. Her own tears fell and she tried to absorb the pain that coursed through Devon. No words were needed at the moment. Victoria held her tightly providing as much comfort as she could, her own heart wrenched apart.

"I was so afraid Devon. I thought he…"

"He would have." She shuddered against the thought of what might have been. Suddenly, the tears burst free and for a brief moment, she leaned into the embrace, the shelter Victoria provided.

"Sshh," Victoria cooed and gently rocked her. "I've got you now." She kissed the blonde's temple quietly whispering in her ear.

"God Victoria…"

"I know sweetheart. I know. I wanted to kill him for touching you," Victoria hissed and tightened her hold. "I could have lost you Devon. I was so afraid and I couldn't do anything." Victoria swallowed hard forcing her own tears back into the depths where they came from. She wanted to be stronger for Devon especially now.

"I know." I was afraid of losing you too. I wish I could say it to you, but that would mean…

"You are not hurt. That's the most important thing."

"I am." Scarred physically and now mentally because of that asshole. Devon basked in the warm emanating from the strong protective arms around her. She placed her hand over the larger ones and squeezed in understanding. Don't get used to this feeling. She has seen everything. It's only a matter of time before she runs from you. "You should be out in the ambulance, Victoria." She replied flatly and wanted to put some distance between them but was unable to leave the Victoria's grasp.

"I am where I should be." Victoria stopped Devon from pulling away once again. "You are very beautiful Devon," Victoria whispered.

"I am not!" she yelled and shrugged the arms from around her. She cocooned the blanket tightly around her successful this time and stepped away from Victoria.

"But you are to me. Don't you know that by now?"

"I don't want your pity."

"Now wait a damn minute!" Victoria couldn't stop her frustration from spilling out.

"Why? Why would you want something like this?" She waved her hand across her body. "You've seen how I am. I am not the woman you thought I was last night."

"Yes you are. I don't care! Do you hear me? I am not that asshole that was in here earlier. I have feelings for all of you Devon, not just your breasts."

"I find that hard to believe that you still feel something after what you've seen."

"Believe it."

"Nothing can happen between us Victoria." She turned her back to her as the tears began to flow once again. "It can't."

"Why?" Victoria surprised herself when she marched over to and forced Devon to face her. "Why?"

"Because I cannot give you what you want."

"And how the hell do you know what I want if you've never asked me? You have not given us a chance to get to know one another so you can't possibly know what I want."

"Like he said," she stepped out of the firm grasp, "I am diseased." Devon shuddered as One's voice reverberated in her mind like an evil mantra.

Victoria pursed her lips and counted to ten, and then she counted backwards from ten to hold her temper. I know what she is doing. She knows what she is doing and it is not going to work. She exhaled slowly, "I don't believe that and neither do you," she said softly.

"You should."

"I DON'T!" Her ire rose. I should have counted to one hundred. "Devon, I get what you are trying to do. I get it, but it's not working with me. If you truly want me to leave you alone, if you can honestly look at me and tell me that you don't feel anything for me, then I will walk out this door and never return. Can you do that?" Please don't prove me wrong. I don't want to make good on that statement. It was a lie!

Sounds of the soft sobs filled the quietness of the office. Devon could not turn around and do what her mind was telling her to do. The old habit of wanting to run and hide was waning greatly. She missed the comfort of the strong arms around her, the soft lips upon her own. She yearned for the complete human touch she was sure that Victoria could provide. My scars really don't bother her? Can I believe her that being single breasted is all right with her? Do I dare to believe?

Devon turned around to face Victoria. Her eyes remained lowered as she could not as yet raise the reddened greens to meet sympathetic blues. Her chest heaved in fear of the possibility that Victoria could actually be willing to love her as-is like some damn used car. What would she do with the unresolved self-loathing she has existed for all those years?

"Devon, look at me please." Devon refused and shook her head. "Please," came her plea. Devon timidly raised her head and then her eyes followed. Once her eyes met those sensual blue ones, she felt any remaining resistance shed upon the floor. Her shoulders slumped again and began to shake as sobs filled the silence of the room.

"Oh honey," Victoria felt the tears drip from her own eyes. She walked the short distance to Devon and enfolded her arms so tenderly and loving around her that she released a sigh.

Devon fell easily into the embrace once again. She felt like she was meant to be in that space at that time engulfed by the woman who held her. It felt like home. Neither said a word, it was unnecessary. What needed to be said was conveyed through the melding of two bodies. Each hand held a side of the blanket as her arms cautiously went around Victoria and pulled her closer. They held one another for so long, that they began to weave slightly in place. A soft knock came at the door. And each wanted to forget they had heard the intrusion.

The door opened and the woman held the door open taking in the sight before her. The corner of her lips turned almost imperceptibly upward and she cleared her throat. "Excuse me, I'm Detective Mary Beth Williamson." The women did not respond but kept their eyes closed, lost in one another's touch. "I ah, need to speak to you about the robbery."

Languidly, Devon opened her eyes and focused on the Detective. She was tall as Victoria, dark hair too. Uncanny, Devon thought. She could almost be Victoria's twin if it were not for the black eyes. A cleft in the chin that on Victoria would be killer.

"Yes Detective?"

"Are you Miss Walsh?"

"I am."

Victoria reluctantly pulled inches away from Devon, she turned Devon's back upon the detective wrapped the blanket securely around Devon. Devon gazed into the seductive blue and a lone tear fell. Victoria bent and kissed each of her eyes and smiled.

"And you are Miss Newsome."

"I am."

"You are wanted by the EMTs."

"Let them want. I am not leaving Devon."


It was nearly four in the morning by the time the police took their statements and the crime scene was processed. Victoria refused to be treated at the emergency room and promised the persistent EMT that she would follow up with her doctor if she had any problems.

Greg refused a trip to the ER as well not to be outdone by his younger cousin. He had telephoned Brenda shortly after he discovered Devon and Victoria were all right. Greg repeatedly reassured his hysterical wife that he was okay except for the bump on the back of his head. As a penalty for refusing treatment, he was driven home in a squad car protesting the other officer driving his car behind them.

Victoria never left Devon's side during the interrogation of what occurred that night in her own office. She held her firmly in her arms infusing strength into the shivering body in her grasp. It had all seemed too surreal. The dark masks and clothing, guns, coming so close to bodily injury or worse. For this reason, she held onto Devon to keep her own self-grounded and from falling apart.

And what about Devon?

My god, so that is why she had been pushing me away so much. The mastectomy…. The scars…Victoria closed her eyes against the anguish rising to fruition within her soul. Inwardly she wept for the suffering that Devon must have gone through, for the loneliness that she has dealt with since that time. But what about the Tavern? She asked. If she did not want me getting close to her how could she let other women?

Devon relived the horrific event of the evening for the detective as clearly as she could recall. Things seemed to blur after her shirt was ripped from her body. She wanted to block that out - the denigration that she felt in being exposed so violently, her loss of control. Diseased reverberated in her mind like an evil incantation. She knew it was not true. The Cancer was eradicated two years ago. She was a survivor. At least until that night she was.

Victoria, she smiled inwardly. The look upon Victoria's face was not horror or disgust. She was shocked most of all, but something else, an acquiescence maybe. An emotional connection she had not witness for some time, but recognized it. At the moment, Victoria did not seem so scary anymore. Her heart leapt at that moment despite the indignity she had endured.

"Can I drop you two somewhere?" Detective Williamson broke her reverie.

Devon glanced at Victoria for an indication of her thoughts. She could not read the vacant stare. An overwhelming sense of vulnerability spread through Devon and she did not want to be alone this night. "Victoria, will you stay with me?" Victoria's response was an impassioned hug. "You can take us to my home please, detective," once she could breathe again from Victoria's squeeze.


Alone in Devon's living room, Victoria sat upon the sofa and waited for Devon to return from her shower. She rubbed her hands along her jeans for the fifth time in as many minutes. She was nervous. She had not been this frightened since she had her first date. That was in college. She closed her eyes and counted to one hundred trying to calm her nerves. I was calmer when I stood before the Board of Directors for Christ's sake.

She glanced around the large open space and saw Devon everywhere. Her decorative tastes varied. She did not have any one style. Little trinkets were placed on shelves along the wall and ranged from ceramic sculptures to several statues of Hoi Ti, The Laughing Buddha. There was an Indian winged woman who knelt upon a black rock placed between two stacks of books. Along the wall by itself stood the statue of a woman coming out of a rock, hands atop of her head and naked body stretched to the heavens. Giant hands at the base of the statue reached up and encircled the woman's body. A shoulder bust of Nefertiti guarded the telephone and answering machine on the small table in the corner.

Devon walked into the room wearing an oversized t-shirt and a pair of lounge pants. She seemed so small and meek like a wounded child. Devon was wounded, her spirit and self esteem first by the cancer and then again last night. But this morning, I will hold you and prevent anything else from harming you. Thank you for letting me.

"I left you some hot water," she half smiled

"Thanks," Victoria said as she stumbled to her feet. Knock it off, will you.

"I hope these will fit." Devon handed her the bundle with a towel and sweatpants. She shrugged her shoulders as she watched Victoria size her up and then glance down at her larger frame.

"Me too," she chuckled and Devon joined her. They stared at one another for some time not knowing what to say. "Devon, the couch is fine with me."

"No. I… I want you in bed…with me…"

"Are you sure you want to do this?" Victoria searched the disheartened soul for the true answer. She found a hesitant willingness.


"Promise, no fooling around?"

That brought a smirk to Devon's lips as she crossed her heart with the new toothbrush in her hand. "Promise?"


Devon watched her walk towards the bathroom. Victoria stopped and turned back to her. Now who is afraid of whom? Devon amused.

Devon had her back against the headboard and waited for Victoria to enter her bedroom for the first time. She wanted an imprint in her memory of this moment. She had to replace the horrors of last evening with a memory that would always bring a smile to her face and spread warmth throughout her soul. It would be a nightmare saving vision to chase away those that attempted to creep currently.

The door moved and Devon waited to see the beautiful and sensual Victoria. As the door completely open, what she saw was her beautiful Victoria poured into sweatpants that ended at her knees and a t-shirt stretched to define all her ample upper body curves and erected points. Devon's hands went to her mouth to stop the laughter from escaping. She looked at Victoria and all she could see was the scene from Shrek. It was the one where the handsome Shrek had squeezed himself into too small clothing. Victoria held almost the same dumbfounded expression upon her face as he did.

"Are you laughing at me?" Victoria put her hands on her hips trying not to laugh herself. She had glanced in the mirror behind the bathroom door and knew how comical she truly looked. Hey if it makes her laugh and not worry about last night, why not? I might not have good circulation but what the hell.

"No, Victoria. Absolutely not."

"I know that you are Devon." She walked to the opposite side of the bed and stood tugging on the waistband and the t-shirt. She caught the glint in Devon's eyes as she stared at the outline of her breasts. Oh no you don't. She warned Devon and herself. Now is not the time so stop that.

"No really." She couldn't hold out any longer and burst into gales of laughter. Victoria nodded and let her have her way. She slid into her side of the bed. "I am truly sorry. I just don't have anything that would fit you appropriately."

"Don't worry about it. It's not like you had time to plan my arrival or anything."

Her laughter died and she studied her bed companion for several moments. "I want to thank you for doing this. I uhm…I just didn't want to be alone tonight."

"Neither did I."

The kiss was soft and chaste. Both too afraid to move too soon and tonight definitely was not the night for exploration. There was still too much they had to talk about. Tonight was about security. Tonight was about a comfort they both sought and desperately needed.

"Show me how to hold you Devon?" Victoria whispered.

Devon reached out and turned off the lamp on the nightstand and Victoria did the same. She slid further down into the bed upon her back and waited for Devon to position her as she desired. Devon whispered for Victoria to turn upon her left side. Once done, Devon spooned tightly against Victoria's back and wrapped her arm around her waist. Devon placed a soft kiss between Victoria's shoulder blades and sighed dreamily.


Chapter 8

Devon was the first to awaken. She lay absolutely still under the heavy arm across her mid-section. For a brief moment she was confused as to what to do. She turned her head slowly and gazed upon the mass of raven hair. Victoria had her face turned the opposite direction and Devon could not witness her slumber.

Devon reached out to stroke the black raven head and paused before her fingers could touch the silken strands. She sucked on her lower lip and carefully removed the heavy limb from around her waist. When Victoria did not stir, she moved her body off the soft mattress and stood beside the bed looking at the still slumbering outline beneath the comforter.

You frighten me, Victoria. I think I am ready to accept that fear. Just be patient with me. Will you help me? Devon eased the bedroom door closed behind her as she went into the bathroom to take care of her morning ritual. Face washed and teeth cleaned, she made it to the kitchen just as the coffee brew cycle came to a gurgling end.

Devon loved the first cup of coffee in the morning. She removed her favorite large cup from the shelf, poured the dark liquid and swirled it with her spoon. She was so easily entertained and loved to watch the Hazelnut creamer she poured in highlight the tornado spin in the cup. Yes first cup of coffee in the morning was best.

She padded into the living room and tucked her feet under her on the couch. Devon reached for the cordless telephone on the end table and dialed Greg's number. Surprisingly, he was up and preparing to go into the store. After assured that he was alright, Devon instructed him to telephone the shift employees and give them the day off. He was to spare the details as to why but tell them that they are to report as usual tomorrow. She did not tell Greg that she was not ready to go back to the store or step foot inside the office.

Next she telephoned her store managers of WVM West and provided a brief update so that when the rumors started to churn, they would know the actual truth.

The news announcer on "Fox News" reported about the war, the border, and the latest in the missing college student that they suspected the boyfriend of foul play. Devon pressed the button to mute the violence and destruction the human race inflicted upon one another. She herself knew first hand of such debasement and cruelty.

Both hands wrapped around the cup not to warm them but to strangle the savage who called himself One. She felt his life slowly ebb through her fingertips as she squeezed tighter and tighter. She relished the fact that he began to soil himself as she delivered his slow asphyxiation. Her green eyes danced in the vision of One upon his knees crying and begging for forgiveness in the presence of Two and Three. Then her eyes sprang open in the horror of her thoughts.

A hand released the mug and came to rest upon her lips. She was astounded at her desire to exact revenge and return the barbarity she had received. Just as quickly Devon pulled her shoulders back and focused on the television screen. I own it. I claim it to remain healthy. Devon recalled the affirmation from her numerous counseling sessions. It is alright that I think about doing disgusting things to that bastard. Just don't be obsessed with it and we'll be fine.

She lost focus as she stared once again at the Fox announcer and a different scene played before her - a replay of the night before, with a much stronger and different outcome. Possessing the strength of ten men, Devon watched herself pummel the demon named One. She tossed the accomplices to and fro. She damaged them just enough to prevent them from wanting to take what she had ever again. Better yet, they would think twice about taking something from someone else. In her minds fantasy, the three men lay beaten and unconscious as the police entered her office. In her minds eye, her mark of survival was never exposed.


Devon started as the soft voice rang from behind her. She blinked and sharply turned to the woman in the seriously too small clothing. Her hair was tossed and when she rubbed her eye to clear away the sleep with the back of her hand, Devon could not help the smile at all six feet of an adorable Victoria.

"Hey. How did you sleep?"

"Decent. You?"

"Same. Want some coffee?"

"Yeah. I'll be there in a minute." Victoria left Devon to complete her morning business. She returns to the living room just as Devon sat two cups of the dark liquid on the coffee table.

"I did not know how you like your coffee. Do you need cream or sugar? I have Hazelnut and Pumpkin Pie."

"Black, thank you. I'm not hungry just yet." Victoria gingerly sipped her coffee and watched the twinkling green eyes grinning at her.

"Pumpkin Pie flavored coffee creamer."

"Oh, I see. Still black thanks."

Victoria couldn't tear her eyes away from Devon at the moment. She didn't seem to show any wear from the night before. She did not look haggard or jumpy. She appeared calm sitting there in her lounge pants and t-shirt. Should I bring it up? Victoria wondered and turned her attention to the muted newscaster. Reading the caption she knew someone had been assassinated somewhere in the world. What should I say? Hell, I used to be quite good at talking but that was to get what I wanted. This is not the same. Okay, let's start with the basics and see.

"How are you doing Devon?"

Devon studied the beige liquid inside the blue cup and then glanced at Victoria. In the depths of those sapphires, she saw an openness and concern that she had not known for some time. Victoria truly wanted to know what she was going through, no underlying innuendo or hidden agenda that she could tell when she looked at her.

"I'm doing, Victoria. I'm doing."

"If you want to talk, ever, I'm here for you. Okay?"

Devon fell deeper into the lethal blue eyes that held her gently. She placed her cup upon the coffee table and slide closer to Victoria upon the couch. For fear that her trembling hands would spill the coffee Victoria placed it too next to Devon's upon the table. Devon cupped her cheek and drew a lone finger across Victoria's lips before she replaced it with her own.

Softness meshed with incredible softness as they tenderly caressed and fed one another. Victoria could feel the need and the longing flow through Devon's skin and mingled with her own, but she held back. She could not, not yet. Lord knew she wanted to, but not yet. Victoria was well aware that Devon knew this. Victoria kept her nails buried into the fabric of the couch to prevent her hands from frolicking over Devon's luscious curves. In the meantime, she would accept what Devon gave to her and wait.

Devon started the kiss and she ended it with a flick of her tongue against Victoria's swollen ones. "I would love to talk, but not right now. Is that alright?"

"That's fine," Victoria labored for oxygen and her nails cut deeper into the fabric.

"Will you hold me?"

"You bet."

Victoria shifted her body so that she laid the length of the couch. Devon entwined her arms and legs around Victoria and magically against Victoria's body. Head upon the ample chest, Devon grabbed the remote and handed it to Victoria to surf. She did not feel particular at the moment. She just wanted to lulled by the serenading heart beneath her ear and siphon Victoria's warmth and strength. She reached behind her and pulled the fleece throw over them.

Victoria sighed and draped an arm around Devon's shoulder, kissed the top of the reddish gold head and flicked to her favorite cartoon channel in time for Kim Possible. She felt the shoulder move up and down.

"Is there something wrong with the entertainment I have selected?"

"Ahh, it is a cartoon."

"It is an animation. When you are our age, they are called animations."

"Uh huh. Cartoon." Devon found herself tapping lightly against Victoria's side to the theme song of the show. She could feel the smirk on the face above her.

"Like that did you?"

"Not really," Devon replied with a hidden grin.

As the show began, Devon clucked her teeth and groaned. "Now tell me really, who has a waist like that?"

"She does," Victoria chuckled.

"It is just another ploy to get young girls to be anorexic."

"A way to teach young girls to be believe in themselves and that they can do whatever they want."

"What the hell is a naked mole rat?"

"It's Rufus."

"Victoria come on."

"Now Devon, this is very educational. Shush, this is one I have not seen."

Coffee was forgotten as neither wanted to move from their comfortable position. For the next hour and a half, Victoria refused to relinquish the remote that was handed to her and Devon was doomed to watch three more episodes of the animation. By the time the marathon ended, Devon, to her surprise, had started to like the little naked mole rat and thought he was quite cute. Rufus had an attitude she liked.

Victoria gave Devon's shoulder another long squeeze and kissed the top of her head.

"As much as I hate to say this, I have to get going," Victoria's soft voice broke their comfort.

"Why?" Devon whined and tightened her grip around her pillow.

"I have to work tonight."

"No you don't. You were injured and you should rest for a few days."

"I have to call Greg at least to see how he is doing and to find a replacement for me."

"I have already called him and told him to close the video side for the day. Everyone has the day off."

"Oh. Are you sure you want to do that?"

"Yes. I just couldn't bring myself to go back there just yet." She grew silent and played with a string in the couch fabric. "Besides, I was hoping we could spend the day together. That is, if you don't have any other plans."

"I didn't until now. I'd love to spend the day with you, Devon. If you're going to feed me that is."

Both laughing easily as the initial skittishness and feeling inept gradually turned into relaxation in one another's company. "Sure, I know just the little restaurant that has great breakfasts."

"I'm there. But first, I have to stop at my place and change. I don't think wearing my new outfit is appropriate for public viewing."


Devon drove them to Victoria's apartment to change her clothing and then to the little diner that she knew of on the East side. Arriving mid-morning they were relegated to the Standing Room Only section of the tiny diner to await the opening of one of the twenty tables or two seats at the ten seats at the counter.

Their wait was relatively short as they were squeezed into the small table near the kitchen door. Although feeling a bit claustrophobic in the small restaurant, Victoria liked the atmosphere with its real family photos upon the walls. She guessed that the school awards, and certificates of achievement proudly displayed belonged to the owner's children. She Victoria also assumed that the older woman who took care of the counter and who moved slowly must be the grandmother of someone.

The smells wafted through the entire restaurant and caused both women to salivate with anticipation. Their young waitress took their order, Devon and Victoria returned to their easy conversation about everything they could imagine. Most familiar and safe was the topic of the latest movies. Devon discovered that animations were not the only thing that Victoria was interested in. Like herself, she loved action and period films. Devon drew the line at the monster and sci-fi flicks. Throughout breakfast, Devon and Victoria playfully bantered on their opinion of which actresses were most likely lesbians or closeted lesbians, more to the point, which actresses they desired to be lesbians and stranded on a deserted island with them.

Following breakfast, Devon and Victoria drove to the park to walk off some of the calories they had ingested. They had gone a short distance when Devon found her nerve to ask Victoria about herself.

"Greg told me that you were in business before coming back to Michigan."

"Yes. I worked for an international company for about fourteen years."

"International travel must have been exciting."

"It had its moments. Mostly a pain in the arse, to get there."

"But to experience the different cultures must have been amazing."

"Never got a chance to sight-see much. Most of my time was spent in board rooms and meetings."

"Can I ask why you left?"

"Grew weary of it mostly." Victoria steered her towards the bench near the stained river. She bent to pick up a few small pebbles and absently juggled them in her palm.

"That all?"

Victoria glanced over the muddy waters and tossed a pebble breaking the smooth surface. She grew pensive, her voice distant when she spoke again. "I decided not to be one of the rats in the race anymore." She hurled the small stone and watched as it made a single plop near the center of the river. "I was a high level executive, you might say. Getting to the top was a struggle. So many people I had stepped on to get there." She paused and tossed another into the water then brushed the grained dirt from her hands. "It didn't feel so good when the tables were turned and I was the one to get trampled by others seeking even higher promotions and perks."

"That sounds awful."

Victoria turned to Devon with a blanched expression. "I was coping until Thomas Baker."

"Thomas Baker?"

"Thomas Baker and I held similar positions. He and I had always battled for the biggest accounts and an even bigger 'Bottom Line'. Know what I mean?" Devon nodded and followed Victoria as they continued to amble along the tarred path. Victoria fell silent and wondered just how truthful she wanted to be with Devon and how much to tell her.

"To be at the top you had to have a certain amount of ruthlessness. Me, I had more than most and got very close rather quickly." She shoved her hands deep into her pockets. "To make a long story short, I did what I had to do to best Thomas this one time, the last time. I stole his client and shamed him pretty good in doing so. I won Thomas' client, Stapleton, over in only two encounters." She tried to keep the smirk off her face but only partly succeeded. The remembrance of what followed soured her expression with guilt and remorse.

Devon sensed that the remainder of Victoria's tale was not a happy ending. She could see Victoria's broad shoulders tense and the wrinkle across her brow. "You don't have to say anymore. I can see how much it pains you."

"Thomas' suicide is still fresh after only a year."


"One week after I signed Stapleton, they found Thomas in his apartment."

"Oh, Victoria. How awful."

"It was my fault," she whispered to the river.

"How can you say something like that?"

"Simple. Thomas counted on landing Stapleton. It was rumored that he owed money. I threw a huge curve into his plans. When the acquisition fell through, I guess he couldn't face things."

"There you said it yourself. He was the cause of his own demise, not you."

"I helped." Victoria teleported to the last week she spent at her office in Denver. She heard the rumors that had traveled through all forty floors of the office building. She knew of the nickname her so-called colleagues called her behind her back, The Widow Maker. She knew about it, she stomached their snickers and whispers as she passed. She tolerated the questioning looks from the security at the front desk.

"No you did not," Devon snapped. "You were doing your job."

"Yeah." She turned and continued down the path. "So after awhile, I decided that I did not want to do that anymore."

"And you came to Michigan."

"It's where I grew up. I wanted to do something different."

"So you hired into a video store," Devon smiled broadly.

"Yeah. I am now afternoon shift at Walsh's Video Mart. Nearly the best job I have ever had."


"Sorry, it takes second to summer camp counselor."

Laughing, Devon nodded her head. "Ah yes, the infamous camp counselors." Devon looked away dreamily.

"You say that like you have a secret?" Victoria waited.


"Come on tell."

"My, my, now those are some memories let me tell you. Alas, nope, you're too young." She laughed and ran down the path.

"Hey! Get back here." She shouted and ran after her.


Chapter 9

"Hey, what are you doing here?" Greg chided his cousin as she walked into WVM South.

"Nonnie," she smirked and stared at him behind the dark sunglasses.

"You look great. Where are you going?" Greg marveled at his cousin in the white tailored chinos and jacket. He hair glistened and her soft perfume wafted to his senses.


"What's nonnie?"

"None of your business," she grinned broadly. "You always fall for that. You'd think after all these years you'd learn."

"Bite me Vic."

"Naw too tough."

"Come on, what gives? I haven't had a chance to talk to you for a week. Where are you going?"

"Nonnie," she grinned. "Actually, I'm taking Devon out to dinner. She said she had a few things to finish and to pick her up here."

"You have taken her out everyday for the past week, Vic. You're going to go broke."

"Keeping track? You're worse than an old woman but she is worth it Greg. She's funny, smart, and compassionate. Adventurous…." Her eyes widened and she pulled off the sunglasses. "For the first time in my life, Greg, she took me inner tubing. I have never had so much fun."

"Even though I have not seen you, I have seen the happiness in Devon over the past week. You've made a difference with her Vic."

"She has with me as well. I really like her Greg. I could easily fall in love with her."

Victoria thought of the past week that they had spent together. Everyday, they would have lunch and talk about everything and nothing. When Victoria was not working, they walked along the path in the park, went out for dinner and even into the small carnival in a shopping plaza they happened to drive by. Late at night, Victoria found it difficult to sleep for her mind was filled with snippets of her time with Devon. Not once, had the subject of Devon's cancer survival came up. It remained a topic that Victoria wanted Devon to approach when she ready.

"I'm glad that you brought that up," he cleared his throat and tugged on the waistband of his slacks. "Just what are your intentions towards my boss?" he asked and leaned closer.

"My intentions? You are only the Video manager, Greg, not her father."

"Same difference. You response is...?"

She tapped her finger against her lips and sent her eyes skyward in thought. Suddenly she snapped her fingers and poked him in the chest. "Nonnie."

"I love you, but you can be an asshole sometimes."

"Yep. See ya you're making me late." She waved back to him nearly skipping the way to Devon's office.

Victoria stood outside of the familiar office door and exhaled deeply. She felt more anxious about tonight than any other date she had with Devon. Each time they were together, she could feel the pull getting stronger and more difficult to control than the last. She had dated many women since first discovering her preference for women. None had touched her heart and peaked her desire like Devon. No woman had ever made her want to know them completely first, made her want to be old-fashioned sort to speak. She never took the time to want to know her dates intimately. Why would she? They were only bed partners after all and nothing more.

"Come in," Devon invited from the other side of the door.

Victoria opened the door and stepped inside closing it behind her. She gasped at the clinging black strapless dress that Devon had poured herself into. The smooth material cleaved to every curve that Devon possessed and then some. The small hips were outlined sensually in proportion to the remainder of her body. The miniscule waist accentuated by the firm breasts jutting in equal proportions beneath the rim of the dress. Oh my god, she is gorgeous. I don't think I am going to be able to behave tonight.

Petrified in place, Victoria helplessly watched as Devon stepped around the desk and smoothly walked towards her. Her eyes were the only moveable part of her being and they hungrily drank in the luscious high calves that flexed upon the high heels.

"You look fantastic," Victoria breathed. "I think I am a bit under dressed."

"No you are not." Devon snaked a hand up Victoria's chest until she cupped the back of her neck. "You look just fine," she whispered upon Victoria's waiting lips.

Devon closed her eyes and willed the disquiet to belay itself deep within her gullet. She did not want to let her fears rule her this evening. She had a plan in mind that Victoria figured prominently in. All week long, she debated as to whether to lower her walls for once and let someone, Victoria specifically into her closed reality. She wanted the woman in the most desperate of ways. Will you still look at me like that when we are without clothing? You have no idea how terrified I really am. She felt the Victoria's hands encircle her waist and draw her closer.

Devon broke their embrace and delved deeper into the smoldering sapphire eyes upon her. "You are a very good kisser." She touched Victoria's cheek with the back of her hand and felt the larger woman tremble against her.

"I couldn't do it without you."

"Is that right?"

"Oh absolutely." You little seductress. I am your willing prey. Victoria whispered and forced herself to step away from Devon. She inhaled deeply and tried to regain her composure. "Are you ready?"

"Lead the way."


Devon sipped her glass of wine and listened to Victoria describe living in France for a year, or in Germany for six months. She had traveled so much in the last fourteen years that she now avoided it. Victoria sighed contentedly when she imparted she had not flown or taken a train anywhere in the past year.

"Right now, if it does not fit in a duffle bag, count me out."

"Sound ominous don't you think?"

"Maybe. I just want to keep my feet planted on familiar soil for a little while longer."

"I guess I can't blame you really. Of course, I have hardly left the state myself."


"Well, not for the past two years anyway." Although she had eaten half of her seafood platter, the remainder of her appetite had left her quickly. She glanced at Victoria and knew this would be the time to talk about what she knew had been on Victoria's mind for the past week or so.

"Vacation to somewhere exotic?" Victoria wiggled her brows and sipped her wine.

"No to the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville." Devon kept her eyes glued upon Victoria's. I will know by your eyes. They are so expressive.

Victoria felt her heart lurch and block the flow of the wine from it course downward. The salad and baked fished suddenly gained more weight in her stomach. "Please tell me that everything is alright?"

"Everything is fine." She watched the lips curl upward on Victoria's lips. "You have been very kind not to ask me about…"

"Honestly, I have wanted to. It was more important for you to select the time to bring it up. Not me."

"Thank you." She felt her eyes signal that there may be tears soon.

"Only if you are comfortable talking about it Devon. I can wait, if you'd like."

Devon searched the cerulean eyes that revealed a pure honesty and something else. She did not want to name that emotion as that would mean that it was too real, too many new sensations for her to process in a short time. She could not help but be drawn into their depths as she succumbed easily to the comfort she knew Victoria was sincerely offering.

"Four years ago I was in a car accident. I survived the accident with a few injuries, nothing serious. But…" she hesitated, "while I was hospitalized the doctors discovered that I had breast cancer: the two most feared words any woman could ever hear. Needless to say, I was devastated. I was alone at the time so that was a relief in and of itself. It was hard coming to terms with being a lesbian with breast cancer. Let alone be in a relationship."

"You should not have had to go through that alone."

"I had people then in my life that offered to assist me but I…" her thoughts turned to Marie. "I pushed them all away. I was angry then and did not want from anyone," she sipped her wine, "from one in particular."

"Your lover?"

Devon locked eyes with Victoria. Now was the time for her to tell all the secrets. "Her name was Marie. We had been dating for about a month when the accident happened and I found out about…"

"Had been?"

"Yeah. After I found out, I told her it was over."

"Why? Didn't you love her?" Victoria nearly aspirated on the words and was thankful they left her throat.

"Probably could have."

Devon sipped her glass of water as her mouth had gone dry. It helped to lubricate her palette for the memories that coursed through her. Marie was devastated; she cried and pleaded with a cold and emotionless Devon. In her living room, Marie's laments filled the hollows of Devon's heart as she told her that she did not want to see her again. Devon spitefully told Marie that they were not good for one another and that there was not meaningful connection. It was time for them to move on. She turned and left the bemoaning woman to her own devices for comfort as Devon sought the solstice of alcohol and the company of various women.

"After I broke things off with her and before the surgery, I went on a binge you might say."

"That's understandable, Devon."

God Devon, I would have done the same thing if I were in your shoes. She must have held this in for so long, just listen to the way she relates her history like a narrative. Victoria scanned the distant green eyes and the mechanical movements of her dinner companion. It may be best for me to let her speak and not interrupt. I want her to be okay with us. Oh please, say that you will be, Devon. I need to have you in my life, no matter what.

"I went to the clinic in Florida because I felt it was the only way that I would be away from the stores and would recuperate faster in a warmer climate. I had the surgery; stayed for another two months, and returned home."

"You had no one there to help you Devon."

"I had nurses and doctors. I was in a place where it was not good to be around me Victoria. I was angry. Still am a little, but I was mean. It took me sometime to get to the point where I am now believe it or not. I don't like that I had breast cancer and that I had to have…" She trailed off and inhaled deeply. She wiped the tear away from her eye and chastised herself for letting it get that far.

Victoria reached across and held Devon's hand within her larger ones. Their warmth conveyed what words did not have to. Victoria at that moment knew what her heart had hinted since the moment they met in the store that day. She'd found the one she wanted to spend her life with, Devon Walsh.

"You are very beautiful Devon Walsh. If you do not know how crazy I am about you by now, then I will have to try harder."

The tear slipped down her cheek and she was grateful that she never wore makeup. If she had, she was sure her face would be colored streaked from the foundation and such. "How can you say that Victoria?"

"Very easily. You are beautiful Devon in spirit and yes physically as well. All of you."

Devon closed her eyes and felt herself swoon in the desire that blazed in Victoria. She flushed and her skin colored but quickly faded as she had one more bit of information she felt compelled to discuss before they went further.

"About the Tavern…" she hedged.

"I don't care about the Tavern. That was before me. Right now is what's important, Devon. That's all."

"How can you be so certain?"

"How can you not?" She gave her a loving smile then sighed heavily. "Besides, if we are ever in Paris or certain parts of Germany, I'm sure the reverse would be true."

"I see." She sipped her wine. I can't believe this. She knows about the Tavern and is not bothered by it. "Tell me, Victoria, are you real?" she half joked but was serious and needed to know.

Victoria smirked mischievously and leaned her elbows on the table, her blue eyes never wavered from the green ones. "Would you like to pinch me and find out?" She wiggled her brows and then burst into laughter as Devon face heated and spread to her ears.

Devon recovered herself and shook her head at the teasing from Victoria. Just as she was about to speak a shadow crossed the table and they turned to see an attractive woman waiting for Devon to recognize her presence.

"Hello Debra," the woman said. "How have you been?"

Devon's eyes widened comically in shock as she realized that it was one of the women she had bedded. Oh shit! What timing is this? Damn what was her name? Oh shit this is not good. This is not good at all. She panicked.

"Uhm, hi," Devon stammered. "How are you…?"

"Barb." Her smile faded.

"Yes, Barb. How are things going with you?"

"Not as good as I had hoped. We were supposed to get together and you never called."

Devon cleared her throat and took a chance to glance at Victoria. What she saw she could not read for Victoria's eyes were lowered upon her wine glass and she appeared completely passive and disinterested. Devon felt the simmering irritation waft across the table.

"Yes, well" she cleared her throat once more. "I have been busy and…"

"You can always call me later tonight. We did have such a wonderful time…"

"I believe she will be busy then as well," Victoria spoke and sat her flute upon the table with a gently firmness. She had enough listening to the conversation and Devon's sputtering. She had enough of being purposefully ignored by Barb.

Devon looked pleadingly at Victoria to not cause any more of a scene than she herself created. Barb turned towards Victoria and shot her with a non-plussed looked easily dismissing her.

"In fact, I believe that her social calendar has just been completely filled."

"Yeah, right." She turned back to Devon and did not understand the smirk upon her face.

"I am afraid she is right, Barb. I am booked far into the future. I'm sorry."

"Suit yourself. Your loss," Barb huffed.

"She'll survive; I'm sure." Victoria quipped.

Barb flung one last evil glance at the woman in the booth before she turned and stormed away. Devon visibly exhaled and closed her eyes against the reality television drama that just unfolded. She never wanted to be a participant ever again in that kind of scene.

"Devon?" Victoria called to her concerned for she had been silent with her eyes closed for so long.

Devon slowly revealed the painful green eyes to Victoria. The remorse clearly mirrored in them as she was at a loss for something viable to say. What could be said other that what the scene had truly depicted. If we were in Paris or Germany, would this happen to us? Devon thought

"Are you okay?"

"Do not know what to say other than I am truly sorry and that does not seem to cover it."

"I know, but I see that you are so that pays the entire bill." She gave Devon a small smile and ducked her head as she waited Devon to return one.


"New topic. What shall we talk about now?" Smiling at her, Victoria reached for the wine bottle and refilled their glasses. She raised her flute and gently tapped it to Devon's "Salute." She winked and sipped.

An hour later, the couple was still seated in their booth laughing and talking about every subject imaginable. Throughout the meal, there had been the long questioning looks and the responses were unmistakable to either one. They were feeling the stronger than usual attraction to one another. Despite the little interruption by one of Devon's indiscretions, they were comfortable with one another. The empty bottle of wine also helped to loosen the uncertainty.

The conversation list had been exhausted and the smoldering looks over the rim of the flutes were lasting longer and longer. Victoria sat her empty glass down and leaned her elbow upon the table.

"Would you like some dessert now?"

"Hmm," Devon groaned and watched the blush quickly cover Victoria's face. Sounds good but they don't have anything on the menu that leaps out at me."

"Oh, uhm. We could to somewhere else if you'd like. What are you in the mood for?"

Feeling the effects of the wine, Devon gave her a half smile. She glanced at Victoria with newfound confidence. The fear of rejection still lingered but it was not as controlling and inhibiting.

"Oh a little of this, a little of that."

"And where pray tell do we find a little of this, a little of that?" She signaled the circling waiter.

Victoria read Devon's facial expression as something less than honorable. She watched as the emerald eyes began to darken and her lids lowered in a seductive manner. Victoria felt the lower half of her body begin to twitch. Although it had been six months since she had taken a woman to her bed, her body told her that her stint at celibacy should end. Now was the perfect time.

Devon's smile broadened seductively, her voice husky she said, "I know just the place."

Victoria arched one brow and became mesmerized by the Devon's eyes drinking her in. Oh, there is no mistaking that look at all. She smirked inwardly and understood all too clearly the meaning of Devon's statement. Her brow drew even with the other one as she searched Devon for any hesitancy in what she was offering her. Damn, I should be thrilled. Then why am I so bloody nervous all of a sudden?

Victoria waited for the waiter to return her Visa card. Their eyes never left one another in the silence that surrounded the table. Bother lost in their thoughts. When he returned, Victoria peeled off a twenty from the small stack of bills she pulled from her pocket and placed it on the little black tray when she removed her receipt. Victoria stood, adjusted her jacket and stretched her arm to the side in invitation.

"Lead the way." She followed a pace behind Devon and was able to watch, no ogle, the shapely buttocks as it sashayed down the aisle of the restaurant. If this is what I think it is, I hope that I have the stamina for it. Good Lord, she exhaled as they stepped onto the street. That should be illegal. Oh that's just great Vic! She screamed at herself. Get a grip why don't you. Not only are you as a nervous as a sixteen year old on a first date, now you're thinking like one too. How old did you say you were?

Devon stepped to the passenger side of the royal blue Monte Carlo. Victoria gently took her by the hand, turned her palm upwards and placed the keys to her car in them.

"You drive. You know where we are going. It would easier."

"Vic, are you sure about this?"

Victoria smiled at the lilt in Devon's voice when she used her nickname for the first time. Victoria held back the shivers from goose-pebbled flesh. "Yeah, I'm sure."

Victoria walked Devon to the driver side of the car, took the keys back long enough to open her door. Devon sat in the low seat and then pulled her shapely legs into the car. Victoria gave her back the keys and ran around the car to get in the passenger seat. They buckled their belts and the silence inside the auto was deafening. Victoria looked straight ahead but could see Devon through her peripheral vision peering at her intently.

Devon barely turned the key and the engine purred to life with smooth tenderness. Devon checked all of her mirrors before pulling out into traffic. Fifteen minutes later they were pulling in front of her apartment building.


Chapter 10

Victoria sat upon the couch and watched the soft movement of Devon's hips as she returned to the living room with their glasses of wine. As she handed Victoria hers, their fingers touched and lingers briefly against one another. Devon was the first to pull back her hand at the fire the contact had produced. She cleared her throat, reached for one of the four remotes on the coffee table and pushed the button. Soft music filtered throughout the room. Victoria smiled a she recognized the sultry voice of Luther Vandross once again and knew that Devon must have a penchant for the singer.

Devon turned so that her back rested against the arm of the couch and she faced Victoria. The singer belting out his love for the woman that he had wronged swallowed their silence.

Do I really want to do this? Devon asked herself. What if I freeze and can't go through with it? Would I be able to take all of my clothes off and let someone see my scars? She has already, but that was different. Devon sipped her wine feeling her apprehension return full force. In the restaurant she had all the nerve and bravado. Now she realized it was a false sense of confidence. But I do want her so. She did say that it did not matter to her. Talk is one thing action is another.

Seeming to read Devon's hesitancy, Victoria prepared herself for the night to end as any other date: a hug, a kiss, and a goodnight at the door. But her heart thundered for Devon and she so desperately wanted to touch her, to caress every inch of the taut body and feel Devon beneath her.

Devon placed her glass upon the table and stood up. She stretched out her hand inviting Victoria to join her. In the glow of the single living room lamp, Victoria took Devon into her arms and began to sway to the music upon the private dance floor.

Just like the brief moments at the Tavern, Devon dissolved into Victoria's form and became one. Victoria placed her right arm around Devon's waist, took her left hand grasped Devon's and placed it over her heart. She pulled Devon closer and moved sensually to the sweet melody. Victoria became the horns playing and made her soul rise leap in joy as she held Devon so near. She closed her eyes and warmed by their color change from ice to tempest blue with unhindered desire.

Devon sighed as she placed her head upon Victoria shoulder and let her body be moved like a puppet to the masters will. Her nipple rose and hardened as her mind began to wonder how the muscles she traced atop Victoria's clothing would feel beneath her fingertips. Her hips gyrated involuntarily in an arousing manner. Victoria mirrored Devon's movement and the friction caused the desire to soar.

It was Devon who broke their bond when she pulled back and gazed into the heavy lids that matched her own. Devon's lips parted slightly. She tilted her head and pressed her lips against the ones she had wanted to kiss all night. Almost a wisp of a kiss the pressure was so light at first contact. Then their hunger began to claim their senses and the pressure increased with moans from both in harmony became the chorus for whichever song was currently playing.

The beat of the music was forgotten as the two composed an aria of their own. Victoria dropped Devon's hand to cup her cheek as they continued to lustful kiss in the middle of the living room. They had to break for air and did just long enough to take a breath and returned their lips to one another.

Victoria swallowed in the vibration from Devon's deep groan in want. A small hand cupped her backside, squeezed each cheek and pulled her even closer. Just as quickly Devon stepped back from Victoria's grasp. Her skin was colored as well as Victoria's who was also puzzled as to why Devon has stopped. She watched in awe as Devon walked towards the hall. Spastic, Victoria's body jerked, shaking from the drumming of her heart and the slickness between her legs that Devon had created. Mechanically she turned around to face Devon. Her legs carried her across the room in robotic fashion until she took the offered hand and walked with Devon to her bedroom.

Through her haze, Victoria spotted the queen sized bed and brightly colored comforter that had already been turned down. Devon stepped to Victoria and removed her jacket. Their eyes never wavered from one another. Devon laid the article across the settee near the dresser behind Victoria. Their lips came together once again, tenderly, lazily savored each inch of ones another lips.

Devon parted as she continued to work the buttons on Victoria's button down oxford. She pulled the tail end out of the chinos and spread the shirt open. Her lips met the sweet skin of Victoria's shoulder and lingered there while her tongue felt every contour up to the hollow of Victoria's neck. Victoria groaned and grabbed Devon's hips for stability.

Devon changed direction with her tongue and trailed a path from Victoria's neck down her cleavage. Victoria inhaled sharply and closed her eyes at the warm sensations that caressed her body. Devon took her hands and cupped each breast behind the lacey black bra and gently kneaded them. Her tongue continued to bathe the crown of Victoria's breasts and the hollow of the other side of her neck. Victoria's knees jerk and the woman's hips pressed harder into her own.

"Devon," she hissed.

Devon bent down and with her lips she pressed one hard nipple between them. Victoria groaned a whine wanting more, impatient for the barrier to be removed so that she could feel those hot lips upon her needy flesh. Devon continued to massage the other one as she dragged her lips across the nipple.

When she stood upright she shivered at the desire streaked across Victoria's face. It stirred her own nearly beyond her control. She clenched her center and shuddered from the surge of wetness that dripped from her swollen lips. She helped Victoria out of the shirt and laid it with the jacket. Devon kissed the tops of Victoria's breasts once again. She found a spot that she particularly liked and began to suck heavily. She knew it would leave a mark, Victoria knew as well but she did not care. The pleasurable pain insanely too good to tell Devon to stop.

Devon reached around and unfastened the bra not letting go of her suckling. She reluctantly had to release her spot with a kiss. The reddened area shown brightly at her and Devon smiled proudly. Victoria did not see her gloat as her eyes remained closed.

Devon threw the bra on top of the clothing pile and brushed Victoria's cheek with the back of her hand. Victoria reached around Devon and found her zipper. Eyes locked together she began to lower it slowly. Victoria yearned to see Devon, to touch her and make love with her - only if Devon was ready.

She felt the sharp intake from Devon and paused. "We don't have to do this if you are not ready."

Tears welled within her eyes and nodded. "I want you to be the first," Devon whispered.

Victoria pulled her closer and kissed her with such amorousness and longing that Devon in her ecstasy did not notice that her zipper had been completely undone. When they parted, Devon's hand flew instantly to her chest, pressed tightly to keep the dress upon her body and not the floor. Her brows knitted as fear exploded within her and destroyed the arousal that Victoria created.

Victoria cupped her face in her large hands. "You are very beautiful to me Devon. You may think otherwise, but you are breathtaking."

Devon's tears splashed upon the thumb against her check. Gradually, the hand that held the dress loosened and allowed it to be lowered. Victoria dropped her hands to her side but never let her eyes move from Devon's.

"Would you like the lights to be out Devon or maybe get beneath the covers first?"

"You would do that for me?"

"I would." Victoria moved to the other side of the bed. She lowered her pants and folded them neatly upon the floor. She then slid beneath the chocolate brown sheets. She turned on her side to face Devon where she still stood and threw back the covers for her. "We don't have to do anything if you are not ready Devon. I would be in heaven just to hold you close for the night."

Devon wiped the tears and walked to the empty side of the bed. She marveled that Victoria had remembered that the right side of the bed was hers. The loving expression upon Victoria's face spoke volumes of the confidence that she herself lacked for the past several years. At that moment, Devon wished that she could be stronger.

Devon turned her back and lowered her dress to the floor. She then removed her slip and pantyhose. Victoria drank in Devon's smooth back and firm behind. As chivalrous as she had been this night, she could not help the salaciousness that crept in occasionally. She also recognized that Devon hesitated to continue to remove her clothing. Just as she was about to speak again, Devon unhooked her bra and prosthetic and placed it upon the floor in one fell swoop. Devon turned out the bedside lamp and quickly swung her legs into bed. The street lamp across the way cast a thin hazy yellow beam into the room. It was just enough to see the shadowy outline of objects and the bodies beneath the linens.

God, why is this so hard for me to do? I am acting like a damn child about this whole thing. Devon chastised. She is so thoughtful and considerate. I can do this. It's like riding a bike, right? I can do this.

Victoria immediately caught Devon into her arms when she rolled over. She covered her and drew her closer into her body. Victoria closed her eyes and delighted in the touch and feel of Devon's skin upon her own. Devon was a little chilled, especially the small nipple ring she wore, but Victoria had heat enough for the both of them. If this is all that Devon is able to give me tonight, I am contented.

Devon forced herself to relax and nuzzled deeper into Victoria. She recognized the erotic prickling within as a signal that her arousal was on the return from its brief hiatus. She kissed the bare skin of Victoria and heard her grasp. Victoria stroked her hair and drew small circles across Devon's back. She waited and would follow where Devon led.

Devon's hips moved in a nudging rhythm against Victoria's thighs. Victoria in return allowed her hips to dance in tempo with Devon's. She closed her eyes in sensation of flesh upon flesh. She recognized how close Devon was able to lie next to her. Victoria was conscious of the absence of Devon's left breast as she felt the right nipple press into her.

Victoria dipped her head and as Devon tilted hers upward. Their lips met in a delicate, languid kiss. There was not any rush; no urgency in their joining as there seemed to have been before in the living room. Victoria caressed Devon's back with so much compassion and understanding. Devon sought more of the exquisite lips and skin. She murmured something nondescript against the silky lips of Victoria. The fire within was increasing from the trails left by Victoria's fingertips.

The apprehension and self-doubt left Devon for a craving to be satisfied only by the beautiful woman beneath her. Devon pushed Victoria upon her back and lay half upon her. Their lips had to soon part for they had long run since out of air. Victoria closed her eyes as edematous lips kissed her chin and along the side of her neck. A sensual, burning accelerant blazed a trail from her chin down her parched throat through the centerline of her body to pool within the flesh between her legs. Her right leg jumped at the thought of those lips tasting and igniting her completely.

Victoria's solicitous groan of tortured pleasure rent the air as Devon the arsonist continued to set smoldering fires upon every inch of Victoria she came in contact with. Devon took her right breast between those same lips. She absorbed the rapture she caused in Victoria. She was so erotically responsive Devon struggled to hold her own tempest from exploding. Devon became Victoria's first and only aphrodisiac to which she had become mercilessly addicted.

"Devon, god that feels so good," came the hoarse whisper from Victoria.

Devon nipped the marbled nipple and held on to ride the buck from the rigorous arch Victoria's back bowed in suddenly. The shiver coursed through Devon's spine from another sensually tormented groan Victoria released into the room.

Devon expertly shifted her weight and feasted upon the equally sumptuous left breast. Her body covered Victoria's as her hand made certain that the right was not forgotten. Eyes clenched, Victoria's remaining will succumbed completely to Devon. Because of Devon, the pounding between her legs was deafening in her ears. Devon seemed to swallow Victoria's nipple whole only to released and pinch it between her lips. Victoria nearly came from the electrified jolts it sent directly to her clit.

On the side of Victoria's left breast, Devon suckled relentlessly. As hoped for, Victoria's hips rose in matched rhythm with her suckling. Victoria's head lolled from side to side and her hand grasped the back of Devon's head.

Devon eventually released her hold on the piece of Victoria but did not pause. Her lips sought out the cleavage and her tongue trailed across every inch of the valley. She continued down Victoria's body as she sat back upon her hunches. Devon momentarily paused and her lips still in place as she became aware of her position. Her eyes shot to Victoria's and witnessed the enchantment she created displayed upon her face. Raven hair sprawled across her pillows and Victoria tightly clenched her eyes. Devon looked down her own body. Victoria would be able to see her entire chest if she opened her eyes at that moment. To keep that from happening, Devon continued her sweet tortuous trail of kisses along Victoria's side.

Devon's hands followed in the wake of her kisses but always returned to the hardened nipples to keep them alive and taut. Devon made her way across the flat stomach and dipped her tongue inside the recessed belly button and received an appreciative groan and slick caress across her thighs from Victoria's dripping center. Devon added her own vocals to the room and her desire crossed over to frenzy.

Devon hurried to position herself between Victoria's legs. Arms wrapped around her lover, she placed her lips upon Victoria and took her hard.

"Devon!" Victoria belted and launched nearly up right from the sudden attack. She could not breathe for the indescribable surfaced of the moon that Devon had her on. Her skin pulsed a suffocating heat. She did not want Devon to stop. She pleaded for more and the undulation of her hips told Devon so blatantly.

Devon followed holding on completely. Her tongue traveled across the swollen pebble and mirrored Victoria up and down, side to side. Victoria was like nothing she ever tasted. She fabricated sweet ambrosia that coated Devon's chin. She pressed her own hips into the bed and moaned from the contact.

Devon was about to release Victoria when she felt the tremors quake through Victoria's body and increase intensity. Her eyes shot to Victoria's and watched the orgasmic distortion.

"Make me come, Devon. Do me baby."

Devon lightened her hold on Victoria just a little as her tongue teased. Victoria whimpered shamelessly for Devon to return. She was so close, her leg uncontrollably spasmed. Her toes curled and uncurled. The loss of that pressure was killing her.

"Gimme," Victoria pouted breathlessly.

As if savoring an ice cream cone, Devon lowered her head lower, flattened her tongue and dragged it upward through the drenched lips to the swollen center. Victoria spread her thighs and stretched the tendons to their limit to open completely for Devon.

Devon released her hold on Victoria's legs and used her fingers to sensually stroke her. Victoria craved what would be next. Her hips moved frantically and told Devon to hurry; she was in need.

Victoria inhaled sharply as Devon gave her what she had wanted. Two fingers slid deep inside of Victoria and froze the rolling hips. The cry started as an unintelligible whisper but as Devon increased her speed and her depth inside of Victoria the wild gyrations returned. Victoria came loudly in the quiet room. One hand entangled in the blonde hair and the other brutally crushing the sheets. Devon continued her ministration until Victoria hips rocked once more and fell upon the bed. Feet turned outwards and toes pulled back to stretch and prevent cramps from the bone breaking curl.

Devon stroked Victoria once more and pulled out of her. She cleaned her fingers with her tongue and sighed at the sweetness. Devon crawled up Victoria's body on all fours and looked down upon her exhausted lover. A smirk spread across Devon's face. I can do this.

Self-conscious, Devon shifted her body to lie to the side of Victoria's. Her eyes remained clenched as her breathing slowly returned to a more comfortable level. Devon snuggled closely and threw her leg across Victoria's.

Devon found herself on her back and looking into the sultriest eyes she had ever seen. Victoria's body covered her own. She stroked Devon's hair and then kissed her with sincere passion. Devon wrapped her arms around Victoria and pulled her closer. Victoria broke the kiss and let her lips make the same trail as Devon's had upon her body. She started at the chin, then to burn upon the neck and in the hollow of her shoulder. Victoria wanted more but hesitated and pulled back to gaze upon Devon. She saw a glint of fear cross the eyes she knew to be emerald and kissed her briefly upon the lips once again.

"May I?" Victoria searched the face in the glowing yellow haze from the street lamp outside Devon's bedroom window. Devon swallowed hard and nodded slowly. Victoria's breath quickened. She kissed her lips once more with a need to convey every emotion that had come to life as she lay within the arms of her love.

Victoria kissed her way down Devon's neck once again on the right side and came to the firm breast beneath her chin. Her lips brushed the outer side and then across the top. Devon's sharp intake of breath pleased Victoria, but was immediately lost as Devon's body stiffened. Victoria stopped her progress and returned to Devon. She kissed her forehead, then her eyes, and to take the swollen lips upon her own. She kissed Devon until she felt her body relax and press against the mattress.

"You are so beautiful Devon," Victoria whispered against her skin. She told Devon how she felt beneath her, the smoothness of her skin. How excited she made her with a single touch.

Victoria started her trail mindful of stopping should Devon become tense again. She looked upon Devon and the luscious rise and fall of her breast. Devon had her eyes pinched shut and Victoria took the opportunity to see Devon completely. Her heart broke for the pain she imagined Devon went through but quickly blossomed knowing that Devon chose her to be loved by. With that Victoria closed her eyes and concentrated on pleasing her new lover.

"So good, Devon," Victoria whispered against her side.

Devon gasped as the lips moved across the top of her breast. Victoria lingered on the top with kisses and long languid licks. Placing her weight upon one elbow, Victoria took the hardened nipple within her lips and suckled gently, Devon groaned deeply and her hips pressed upward into Victoria's.

Victoria shifted and placed a firm thigh between Devon's legs, Devon immediately began to rock against her. Victoria lowered her weight a little more and as she matched Devon's hips pressing and rolling them in small tight circles. Her own moans escaped her lips as she drew more of Devon's firm breast within her mouth. Devon's hand clasped Victoria buttock cheek and dug her nails into the firm flesh.

Victoria released Devon's breast and threw her head back between her shoulder blades and cried "Ooh yeah," turned into a hiss followed by deep grinding into Devon's sopping center. "I feel you baby. So wet."

Victoria shifted her so that she was lying half off of Devon. Her hand lightly pressed against Devon's thigh insinuating that she wanted them open further. Devon obeyed willingly and groaned as long fingers began to wiggle against her.

"What do you want Devon? Tell me." Her fingers paused just outside of Devon's opening.

"Tori," she breathed.

"Hmm?" Victoria slipped her arm around Devon's shoulders. Tori huh? I like that.

When no other response came, Victoria placed the swollen nipple between the edges of her lips and pushed her two fingers inside of Devon at the same time. Victoria held them there and felt Devon's muscles grasp tightly around them. Devon's mouth formed a large open "O". The groan between them came from Victoria as she shuddered in the warm of being inside of Devon.

Surprisingly, deep gurgling sounds came from within Devon as she continued to grind upon Victoria. Her fingers entwined in the thick dark locks of Victoria and she felt the heat ravage her body. She parted her legs wider to encourage Victoria entered her freely over and over again.

Her head rolled from side to side and she allowed her body to enjoy the sensations she had denied it for four long years. She was experiencing a complete loving from Victoria and was exuberant that she put her poor self esteem to rest to be ravished so thoroughly.

"Tori," she summoned herself to speak. "God, Tori, I'm… Oohh…"

Victoria groaned as she felt Devon's muscles expand and release their grip. She was able to move deeply. Victoria stilled briefly when she reached the barrier within Devon before pulling nearly completely only to thrust once more. She heard Devon's appreciation and held onto her shoulders. In one smooth motion, Victoria laid upon her back while pulling Devon on top of her.

Devon was back in control and increased her rhythm. She was also back to being fully exposed. God, this is more important. She groused to herself as she moved up and down upon Victoria's hand. With her free hand Victoria reached out to touch her cheek. Eyes never leaving the beautiful face as brows knitted into an upside down "V". Lips parted slightly, Devon slowed her bounce to a grinding circle. Her thighs shook fiercely and her body jerked.

Devon's head dropped to her chest briefly making the short strands fall forward. Then her neck snapped backward and her throat bobbed as her scream rocketed into the air and hit a pitch Victoria had never heard before. Victoria fought hard not to add her own movement to keep the tortuous havoc going that Devon's orgasm was doing to her body. Devon frequently changed her rhythm until she could no long hold her body upright.

Victoria carefully released her and Devon lay flattened upon Victoria. Her body continued to tremble and shudder against her large pillow and soon found the pillow was trembling as well. Devon shifted her body weakly and placed her thigh between Victoria's legs. Victoria's groan infused a surge of energy inside of Devon and she began to rock against Victoria. It was not long before they sang out in unison.

Devon collapsed finally upon the bed willing air into her lungs. Victoria's fingers found Devon's and intertwined. She rolled over and placed her head under Devon's chin and drew her close.

"That was amazing," Victoria breathed and planted a soft kiss on the skin beneath her lips. She smiled, as Devon did not flinch when her lips pressed against the scars.

"It was," she hummed and closed her arms around her lover.

They fell silent thoughtfully stroking pieces of skin their fingers could reach. Suddenly, Victoria released a small chuckle.

"Okay, what is so funny?"

"I uhm…" Victoria hesitated. "Was wondering if the police are going to show up for the noise you made?"

"Me?" She tapped Victoria on the back of the head.


"It was not only I Missy! If I go, I'm taking you with me."

"I wouldn't do well in jail," Victoria said.

"You should have thought of that before you decided to disturb the peace."

"Before you disturbed the peace," Victoria poked Devon's side and received a squirm and giggle. "Oh ho, a ticklish spot."

"Don't do it Victoria," she warned and yelped when Victoria poked the same spot. "Victoria Newsome!"

That caused Victoria to start a bonafide tickle fest on Devon. Devon cackled and kicked her legs as she tried to push Victoria's hands away from her. They began to wrestle upon the bed trying to best the other and gain control. Without much effort they toppled to the floor in a heap. Laughing, Devon landed on top with a triumphant smirk upon her face. She had Victoria's hands pinned above her head.

"I see that I underestimated your strength."

"Ahh," Devon giggled. "Size isn't everything," she smiled.

"It can be astounding," Victoria replied seriously.

Green eyes clung to the darkened blue ones and both realized where their bodies were connected. Devon's smirk widened and she began to move against Victoria. She bent her upper body forward until her breast touched Victoria's. Their lips met in a graceful and timeless kiss. There was not any rush. They had all night, if they had the energy.


Chapter 11

Devon stirred early in the morning. She opened her eyes and spied the heavy arm blanketed across her stomach and the hand cupped beneath her right side and smiled to herself. She recalled a time not long ago when she had awakened in this same position. Then she had been so afraid to let anyone touch her. They wouldn't want her if they knew she had missing parts.

Victoria knew. Victoria didn't care. Victoria had loved her repeatedly through the night.

She looked at the dark head turned from her and gently stroked the tangled locks. The shiver of desire trembled through her quickly and wanted satisfaction. Devon silently snorted, Oh yeah right. First let's see if I can walk after our acrobatics last night.

She slowly crept out of bed as to not disturb Victoria sleeping soundly upon her stomach. She picked Victoria's shirt to put on and slipped out of the room. As she completed her morning bathroom duties, Devon thought about Victoria and what last night meant to them. I'm not sure what she expects. Maybe we should have talked about it before we had hot monkey sex. She chuckled. Does she want more than just last night or maybe occasional nights together? She finished brushing her teeth and stared hard at her reflection in the mirror.

"What do I want?"

Devon padded into the kitchen and to make coffee. Her body hummed from Victoria's touch and the thought of having more hot monkey sex. She chuckled and began to hum a tune aloud and way off key.

Some time later, Victoria stirred from her dreams. Her hand patted the cold sheet beside her and she raised her head to look at the empty space. She whimpered surprising herself dropped her head back upon the mattress. She wanted to awaken beside Devon and watch her sleep. Damn, she curse and slowly turned over with a slight groan. Her muscles were stiff and other parts were sore from their enthusiastic rounds of lovemaking. Victoria maneuvered out of the bed onto two feet and groaned from the night's effects. Jesus Devon what did you do to my body? Like a child wanting it's blanky, Victoria dragged the one off the disheveled bed and wrapped it around her naked torso.

Victoria stumbled to the bathroom and completed her own morning routine. As she bent to splash water on her face, she inhaled Devon's scent of upon her hands and face. She blushed furiously her desire kindled instantly. Finishing, Victoria wrapped the blanket around her once again and stepped out of the bathroom. She heard the awkward sound that came from the direction of the kitchen. She smiled and wrinkled her face as she heard Devon singing.

Victoria stood inside the door watching Devon. She wore her shirt and was so large on Devon that it could pass for a mini dress. Victoria's arousal exploded with the urge to take Devon faster than the pancakes rising on the griddle. She grinned devilishly, I could get used to this.


Devon turned a broad smile covered her face. She wiped her hands upon the towel and slowly approached Victoria. Devon wrapped her arms around Victoria's neck and planted a scorching kiss upon her lips. Devon's tongue demanded entry and soon a battle for supremacy ensued. Victoria opened the blanket and engulfed Devon inside.

After a time, Devon unlocked her lips from Victoria's. "Hi," she breathed.

"Well that answers that question."

"Which was?" Devon kissed her again, then planted soft kisses along her cleavage and breasts.

"How you were feeling."

"With my lips," she kissed her quickly and then her hands cupped Victoria's buttocks roughly, "And with my hands at the moment."

"I see this." She grinned. Lucky me.

"Any other questions?"

"None whatsoever," Victoria conceded.

"Good. Are you hungry?"

"I am now." She grabbed the hand and tugged Devon to leave the room.

"Wait, what about breakfast?"

"I am about to have it. Come on," Victoria urged.

Devon giggled "Wait," she pulled back to shut off the griddle and remove the pan from the heated eye of the stove. "Shouldn't we talk or something?" Devon teased.

"We will later. Right now I want to be with you."

"I want to be with you too."

Victoria gathered the blanket around her and hurried to the bedroom. Devon squealed when she found herself off the floor in Victoria's arms. Victoria kissed her tenderly then tossed her upon the bed. Victoria opened the blanket like a cape and laid her body across a laughing Devon. Victoria's lips found their mark of Devon's neck and bestowed searing hot kisses along the tasty skin.

"Are you going to be insatiable again?" Devon breathed and closed her fingers around Victoria's firm butt.

"Uh huh," Victoria mumbled.

"Does that mean we are not going to leave the apartment all day?"

"Uh huh." Victoria stopped and pulled back to gaze into the green eyes. "Do you have a problem with that?"

"No problem at all," Devon grinned.

The END....


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