Title: Manifest Destiny

Author: Harper

Email: Xfjnky2@yahoo.com

Fandom/Pairing: Queer as Folk, Melanie/Lindsay

Archiving: I'll be at http://www.realmoftheshadow/harper.htm. Anyone else please ask, unless you've asked in the past in which case this one is yours too.

Disclaimers: These characters don't belong to me. I don't make any money, don't intend any infringement, and consider myself to be what is called judgment proof should you not agree.

A/N: This is un-beta'd and in the first person, Lindsay's POV. If you'd like to send feedback, that'd really be pretty groovy. I'll be at Xfjnky2@yahoo.com.

Dark chocolate eyes and silky soft curly raven hair and a body made up of smooth muscles and even smoother skin, and after six years she still makes me hot. Makes me fall completely in lust with her every time I look at her, every time I see the slow, lazy smirk that initially drove me crazy. When she hovers over me, body pressing into mine, utterly feminine curves teasing all the right places, I remember the passion we shared the first time we were together and I wonder how we could have lost something so important, so vital.

Passion lost, but now rediscovered. Passion I'm never letting go of again.

I told Brian to keep Gus, and to actually stay at home this time instead of handing the baby off to someone else so that he could go and stick his dick into anything that would stay still long enough. Not like last time, when he left Gus with Justin to go to the Leather Ball, when Melanie was in Florida visiting her Grandmother and she and I weren't talking.

I wasn't talking.

Kind of like I don't want to talk now. All I want to do is feel her, to reconnect with her, to bury every single hurt, slight, and insecurity in her so that its gone, so that its not able to bother me any more. After she came home that morning, having spent the night in the arms of someone else, I was sure that I'd never be able to touch her again. I could smell the other woman on her, could see in every taut line of her face what she'd done, and it was just too much. If she could do something like that, then she obviously didn't love me, did she?

But she did love me, never stopped loving me. I never stopped loving her either, was miserable without her in fact. Maybe I thought I could somehow fill the void she left by putting Gui in her place, by entering into a sham of a marriage. I'd always wanted to get married anyway, to walk down the aisle in a beautiful white dress, a long train trailing along behind me and flowers threaded through my hair. So, why not? I didn't have Melanie anymore, so nothing really mattered. Well, nothing but Gus, and keeping him safe and warm and well provided for. Gui was convenient, and part of me reveled in the holier-than-thou martyrdom that came from my seemingly self-sacrificing act. He'd get his green card and I'd get someone to help out with the bills. Most of all, though, I'd get his appreciation. No one had looked at me with appreciation in their eyes for a long, long time, and the addiction to seeing it returned full force.

If I couldn't imagine never touching her again then, I can't imagine ever stopping now. I'd forgotten how much I liked seeing us together, liked seeing the dark tan of her skin against the pale cream of mine. She was lithe and sinewy strong where I was soft and curvingly feminine. Not that she wasn't feminine, with the full curve of her breasts and the teasing flair of her hips… but still, there was something inexplicably distinct about us. In all ways we seemed different, complimentary foils, the perfect set of opposites.

She dealt in logic, I dealt in passion. Law and the arts, commingling together in our meeting, similar in their propensity to inflame the senses, the mind, yet disparate enough to make us interesting and slightly foreign to one another.

But, it wasn't her mind that held me in thrall at the moment.

I'd wanted to make this special, wanted our first time together as a reunited couple to be as memorable as sex between us had been when we were new to one another. This time I wasn't going to fall into the trap of letting life steal this away from me. So, I changed the sheets, using our very best so that the soft fabric would massage us like invisible hands. I filled every available space with candles, the kind that reminded you of water and the ocean even though they smelled nothing like either, because I knew she hated the sticky sweet scents of vanilla or spice or any of those other overly-cloying aromatics that seem to somehow be associated with sex.

As for myself, well, I went shopping. It was hard to decide what to buy. For some reason, the thought of heralding in our reconnection in a fire engine red vamp-ish teddy and fishnets didn't seem appealing, but then again, I wanted to take myself as far away as possible from the shabby old robe and flannel nightgown recent past that I'd been inhabiting. That left me with something sheer, ice blue because I wasn't virginal and didn't want to trap myself in a cliché of pure white. It all added to the image though, which I was well aware of and wasn't afraid to play up. For once, my firmly entrenched WASP roots would serve their purpose, and the years of breeding that had left me with porcelain skin and natural platinum blonde hair all wrapped up in the barely there packaging of nearly non-existent fabric would be far more effective than glaring red satin could ever hope to be. She'd always loved that look in the past, aloof and elusive, and I certainly wasn't above taking advantage of that.

The last prong, and probably the most important, was that I'd managed to keep my carefully planned seduction a surprise. She'd moved back in and immediately commandeered her rightful side of the bed, but other than the comforting presence of familiar skin on skin as I drifted off to sleep, we hadn't moved further. I think she was afraid that she wasn't yet welcome back, that despite our protestations of love I was still angry and disappointed over her betrayal. Some part of me still was, but the prospect of driving her out of my life again pushed those little voices to the very back of my mind where they eventually died a slow and lonely death, leaving me with only the corpses of upset feelings.

Initially I had been surprised that she didn't try to reinitiate our love-life. She'd never been one to shrink from confrontation before, and I couldn't really remember a time when she hadn't spoken her mind. Since the absence of physicality between us had been, in large part, responsible for her infidelity, I imagined that it would be something that she'd want to restore as soon as possible. The more I thought about it though, the more I understood it. She was afraid, and as irrational as that fear seemed to me, I was more than aware of the fact that she wasn't quite capable of reading my mind. Which was why, I suppose, I was planning on showing her, unequivocally, just exactly how I felt.

It was important that we reconnect, that we fully flesh out our roles as lovers once more. Part of me was deeply hurt at her fear. Not by her, necessarily, but by the sheer fact that it existed in the first place. She shouldn't be afraid to touch me, shouldn't feel the need to walk around on eggshells lest she find herself out of home and family again. I'd done that to her, had taken the self-confident vital woman that she had been and inserted a bit of hesitancy, a smidgen of uncertainty. It embarrassed me, while a small part of me reveled in the selfish joy that the knowledge of my power over her gave me.

Now all I needed was her, because the stage had been set and one half of the principle players was in place. All of the candles had been lit, shedding their soft glow over the room, and I had assumed my place of honor. There hadn't been a phone call from the office letting me know that she was working over, which meant that any time now she'd be walking through the door, dropping her briefcase to the floor with a thud that would sound almost as exhausted as I imagined she'd be.

"Linds?" So caught up in fantasy that I'd missed reality, it suddenly hit me that I hadn't been imagining the sound of the door creaking open, of the left-over remains of a day's work that had been carted home hitting the floor. A little flutter of panic shot through my belly, but I tamped it down. This was Melanie, the woman I'd loved for six years, the woman who had set up permanent occupancy on the right side of my bed, and there was no need for me to be nervous. No need, that is, except for the realization that this night would soon find itself in the pantheon of nights that had been instrumental to our lives together.

"In here." Finally I managed to squeeze the words out past an uncooperative throat. Resisting the urge to again smooth down the fabric pretending to cover my abdomen, well aware that I'd carefully arranged my position long minutes ago, I waited. The sharp clip of her heels against hardwood resulted in a severe escalation of my pulse-rate, and I struggled to keep my breathing even. Just Melanie, I repeated, hoping that the litany would keep me calm.

I saw her shadow before I saw her, and when she rounded the door, still wearing the battle armor of her workday, I caught my breath. She was always beautiful, but somehow, right now, she was even more so. The dark chocolate color of her suit emphasized her darkness, the tailored cut teasing against a flat belly and slim hips to taunt me with her femininity, and it was all I could do to stay where I was. My legs wanted me to roll over, to cross over to her and fall down on my knees and bury my face against her, but I refused. I wanted her to come to me tonight.

"Linds?" I could hear the question in her voice, see the mix of hope and confusion battling for dominance in her eyes, and the small twinge of hurt that always sprang to life when I realized that I'd created this reticence caused my heart to skip a beat.

"I've been without you for far too long." Without my permission, but with my gratitude, my voice had gone scratchy-soft and full of seductiveness. I could see when it all hit her, when it finally permeated her apparently thick skull and she realized just what kind of statement I was trying to make. Delicate nostrils flared, already dark eyes deepened further and a fine tremor moved through her body before she moved, suddenly, decisively, across the room. Nimble fingers were on the buttons on her jacket, sliding them easily through buttonholes until the confining fabric disappeared, landing in a heap on the floor. She was working on the zipper of her skirt when I stopped her, holding out a hand.

"Let me." My fingers were itching to touch her, to glide over the bounty of skin they'd uncover. One quick move and I was off the bed, my knees sinking into the bedroom carpet, and my arms were wrapped around her waist. As if it knew that it had better behave, the normally elusive tab of her zipper fell easily between my fingers, and with an exaggerated slowness that was as much for her as to prove to myself that I could defeat the racing hormones that told me to forget about divesting her of her clothing altogether and simply slide my hand up under the tight confines of her skirt, I pulled the tab down.

A tug on the loose fabric had it around her ankles, and she stepped out of the garment, letting me throw it to the side. Her shoes were next, and one by one I slipped them off her feet, briefly massaging aching flesh through the rasp of hose before I reached up and pulled the nylon and silk underneath down. A slim, angry red line bisected her torso, and I traced my fingers over it as if to soothe the irritated skin, though the familiarity of it all was probably more for my benefit than for hers.

My hands went up her back, fumbling with the clasp to her bra as I leaned forward, resting my cheek against soft, curly hair. One of her hands came down to twine in my own blonde locks, and I leaned into the caress. It had always been one of my favorite things, and I hadn't realized until just that moment how much I'd missed it. The scent of her, so familiar, so comforting, teased me, and without giving it further thought, I flicked my tongue through her swollen lower lips. Smiling, closing my eyes at the taste, I moved back up, leaving a trail of kisses across her abdomen. It seemed like it had been forever since I'd allowed myself to do this, to take my free reign over her body and run with it.

"Lindsay…" Her voice was rough, and I looked up to see dark eyes gazing down at me, full of love and arousal and desire and pure, sheer, unadulterated want.

"Help me up," I whispered in return, letting her pull me gracefully to my feet. It didn't take long to remove the rest of her clothes until finally she stood before me naked. Not even trying to hide the need in my eyes, I traced them over her body, over the delicate web of her collar bone and the beautifully delineated muscles in her shoulders, down to her flat belly and the cradle of her thighs. Suppressing a moan, strangely embarrassed by just how aroused I was at the mere sight of her, I returned my dark eyes to hers.

"I love you." The words were clear and strong and followed by the trace of a pink tongue over her lower lip. Wanting that tongue for myself, I leaned forward, capturing her mouth with mine.

I'd always adored the way she kissed me, with such a single-minded intensity that there was no way I could even imagine that she was thinking of anything but me. Her eyes fluttered closed and her body relaxed into mine as her lips explored me. She'd take her time, conveying without words just how much she luxuriated in the simple press of flesh on flesh. Her refusal to be hurried, her tendency to run her palms over my cheeks before burying her fingers in my hair combined to make me nearly melt in a puddle at her feet, and I pulled us back to the bed before my fine motor control started to falter.

She laughed as we tumbled backwards, nipping at my lips and smiling down at me. It nearly brought tears to my eyes as I realized how much I had missed this, how much I had risked and almost lost, but I blinked them away because now wasn't the time for them. The brief flicker of an undefinable emotion flashing through her eyes let me know that she understood though, and I grinned shyly.

"As much as I love this," there was a slim finger tracing the vee of my neckline, teasing the skin beneath, "it's got to go. I want to feel you against me, no barriers."

I was more than happy to comply, and though it might not have been the most graceful disrobing that I'd ever performed, it was possibly the quickest. When the sheer nightie was gone and I felt her align herself over top of me, slowly lowering her body until it was covering mine completely, I didn't bother to hold back the moan. There was nothing in this world that could compare to the gentle friction of her skin against mine, to the pressure of her thigh between my legs and the tease of hard nipples against my breasts.

It wasn't long before I had to taste her, had to refill my memory banks with the salty deliciousness of her skin and the natural spice of her essence. No matter how long I dined on her, no matter how thoroughly I feasted on her flesh, it didn't seem like I could get enough.

Her fingers and her lips were busy as well, and I gave myself over to teasing touches and the hot, wet cavern of her mouth until incoherent cries and declarations of love fought their way free of my throat in a stream of garbled mumblings before my voice finally stopped working altogether and my lungs forgot how to take in air and my eyes forgot how to see.

When we finally calmed down from our mutual frenzy, skin glued together by a combination of sweat and juices and a desire to never part again, I realized that I could breathe again, really breathe, like I hadn't been able to do for longer than I could remember. I didn't have to be afraid of life anymore, didn't have to be afraid of waking up to see the right side of my bed with unmussed, cold sheets, didn't have to be afraid of laying in the dark and missing the sound of my lover's breath rasping in the slow, soothing cadence of sleep. No longer did I feel like I was incomplete, like something vitally important was missing.

I wasn't one-half of anything anymore. I was finally, irrevocably whole.

I turned to tell Melanie what I'd discovered, to share my unbridled joy with her, but for some reason the look in her dark eyes stopped me short. They were full of reverence and appreciation and outright happiness, and I realized that absolutely no words were needed. We had the silk of each other's skin, the commingling of breath, and, most importantly, the shared knowledge that we weren't two anymore. No, now we were one, and I didn't intend to ever divide myself again. Nor, I imagine, did she.

And, that was enough.


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