So…It’s been over a year since I started this story. Never in the history of my writing has it taken me so long to update a story so short. I can’t apologize enough. It started out as minor writers block. Then life cropped up and the next thing I knew I had totally forgotten about this story until someone commented and basically asked me what the hell my problem is.

I was going to have this end at chapter 10, but I’m making it a little longer as a thank you to anyone who still gives a damn. There may be a smut-tastic epilogue too, but don’t hold me to that. Let’s see how these last two go.

Read, enjoy, comment!

Rating: PG

Chapter Ten

I tapped Frost’s almost endless database of fine dinning and cultural events and came up empty.

For all I thought I knew about him, I had no idea he was so well versed in the finer side of the Boston Metro area.

I’m left again with my own imagination and the assistance of my mother. In the end I have to resort to the most exclusive place I know of, my mother turning over the keys with a promise to stay away until further notice. She seemed happy to oblige, relieved to see a ghost of a smile on my face gain, even if it is hidden behind a shroud of uncertainty.

This is my trial by fire, a penance to no one but myself. I let fear and stubbornness keep me away from the woman I love. Now I’m going to prove that I’m worthy of Maura’s devotion.

I’ve had to tap the most uncharacteristic sources to produce a night that I hope Maura will never forget. I had no clue what Pinterest was, but I’ll be eternally grateful to Gretchen for suggesting it. I’m also relieved that Boston is such a cosmopolitan region. I was able to hire out most of the services I needed and only had to leave work a few hours early to get a jump start on my preparations. It’s going to be tight, but I think I can pull it off. My mother has been such a big help on such short notice that I’ll definitely owe her a present when this is all said and done. That is, of course, if I don’t drain my entire life savings. Needless to say, trying to impress Maura is no easy feat, but its certainly one I’ll take head-on any day.

It’s absolutely no surprise when Maura joins me in the courtyard of her home at 8 o’clock sharp carrying the invitation card I’d left in her bedroom.

“Oh…Jane,” she gasps as she steps out onto the patio.

There are tiny, white lights strung around the entire court yard mimicking star light and adding ambiance to the battery powered candles that dot any flat surface I could find. I took a gamble setting up right in Maura’s backyard, and I prayed to any deity listening that she wouldn’t take notice to the fact that her bedroom shades had been drawn. The look on her face says she’s truly surprised. I’m over the moon.

“How did you…”

She seems incapable of forming full and coherent sentences and I’m swelling with so much pride, in addition to the love I already feel, that I’m afraid I may go vasovagal. Maura would be so proud to know she’s elevated the vocabulary of even my thought pattern.

“I left a little early,” I manage to get out as my eyes track her movement.

She looks at every detail closely and with a speculative eye, I’m sure. Gretchen helped me find a last minute caterer, and they took a lot of the work off my plate–pun very much intended–by including a crisp white tablecloth and beautiful silver serving dishes.

Ma helped me construct and hang paper lanterns across the courtyard while Frankie helped me hang the lights. Frost and Korsak were kind enough to offer to take any calls that came in tonight, even offering to call Dr. Pike in instead of Maura if the need arose. I’ll owe them for a while if they actually catch a case. And Tommy, ever the surprise of the family, took Ma to his place for the night so that we could have complete privacy.

“It’s absolutely stunning,” Maura beams, pulling me from my mental check list.

Her eyes catch mine from across the courtyard and it isn’t until now that I take stock of Maura’s attire. How it’s taken me this long is a question that will weigh heavily on my mind for years to come. Maura is absolutely breathtaking in a floor length, champagne colored gown. The slit up her right leg rises just short of impropriety and the neckline, while revealing, is still tasteful. Her hair falls in loose curls around her beautiful face and the color of the dress makes it, along with her eyes, appear to be glowing. Her perfume greets me on the gentle spring breeze and my head swims for a moment as I realize that all the effort she’s put forth on her appearance is for me and no one else.

“Maura, you look beautiful.”

“You’re not the only one that left early,” she teases. “And you look breathtaking too, Jane.”

I fight off an embarrassed blush. Maura has never been shy about telling me how much she likes me in black. Something about my eyes and hair. In my haste to get everything done I happened to remember that I had a formal gown from an event that Maura and I were supposed to go to but had to cancel on the count of getting called in. If I say so myself I do look pretty hot. Lydia straightened my hair while I called all over town for the caterer, specialty desert, and imported wine. No corners could be cut for this event. The first date sets the pace for a relationship and is the story everyone will want to hear years later. I plan on making a life with Maura, and I want her to have one hell of a story to tell our kids one day.

“I can’t believe you went to all this trouble for me.”

Again, taking stock of my appearance caused to me miss Maura coming to stand right in front of me.

“I’d do anything for you, Maur.”

“I suppose that goes without saying.”

Our height ratio remains the same as I opted to endure the torture of high heal shoes. Something about towering over Maura, even just a few inches, adds a heady eroticism to our dynamic. The way that she’s staring up at me tells me she fells it too.

We sway closer and closer, but at the last minute I bypass her lips asking, “Shall we?”

He eyes sparkle with mirth and something that looks very akin to lust as I pull her chair out. Once we’re seated I set about pouring the wine. Hopefully it’s calming affects will keep me from jumping Maura right here at the table. Because the way she’s looking at me, I’m positive she wouldn’t dare stop my advances.

Maura patiently waits for me to finish pouring before inspecting the bottle more closely. “Wow! A 1997 Château Margaux? Jane, you shouldn’t have. All of this its just…”

“Too much?”

“That is certainly not the adjective I was searching for. Thoughtful, well planned, insightful would be more accurate.”

Please, don’t blush. Please, don’t blush.

“It’s just,” she hesitates for a moment before saying, “I know for a fact this is a three hundred dollar bottle of wine, and the catering is probably comparable.”

“Maur, I wanted–”

“Please, let me finish.” She continues when I fall silent. “This is hands down one of the most spectacular nights anyone has facilitated for me. But I need you to know that you don’t need to spend a lot of money and wear heels–which I know you hate–to impress me.” We share a laugh. “Some of the best nights I’ve ever had involved one of our couches, a movie and, believe it or not, some of that artery clogging pizza you insist on ordering.”

“I really wanted tonight to be special.”

“That’s what I’m saying. Every night with you is special. You make me feel special each and every day without even trying.” Her voice catches as she says, “Just having your love is the most special thing that could have ever happened to me.”

Her eyes glisten and I hurry around the table before a single tear can fall. I’m concerned about how she feels, sure. But more importantly I know that if she starts with the tears I will too, and where would that leave us? Just two women with streaked make-up and cold food.

“Please, don’t cry.”

“I’m sorry. I’ve just wanted you for so long and this is all so,” her eyes scan the patio before landing on me once again, “surreal.”

“Good surreal, or bad surreal?” I hate that my insecurities are getting the better of me right at this moment, but I suddenly feel an urgency to know exactly what’s running through Maura’s pretty little mind. I wouldn’t survive her not being sure about us.

She allays my fears and warms my heart when she whispers, “The best surreal,” before kissing me so softly that I could simply drift away on the evening breeze.

“I know what you mean,” I assure once we part.

Maura pulls me back in for another kiss and this one is nowhere near as chaste at the first. There is a passion and urgency in this kiss that has been missing from all the others. Desire simmers between us and it threatens to scorch everything we touch.

“Maura,” I pant when I’m able to tear myself away.

“I’m sorry.”

“No, please, don’t be. We’d better eat, though, before it gets cold.”

Maura looks dazed for a moment before nodding. “Okay. Then back to other stuff?”

Her face bears an innocence that makes my heart melt.

“Definitely back to the other stuff.”

Don’t forget to rate my posts at the top of the page!