Relena woke up to a hand across her mouth and her wrists pressed strongly in her pillow over her head. She would have kicked, but the blanket covering her legs was heavy. Abduction, her brain recognized, lagging a second behind her instincts. Not assassination; she wouldn't have awakened at all. She struggled briefly; to not avail. The intruder -- she couldn't see who it was in the darkness of her room-- had superior strength and all the leverage. The hand holding her wrists was callused from gun use; she couldn't hope that her assailant wasn't armed. She froze, submitting for now.
She hadn't been hit, she noted; just overpowered. The kidnapper's orders were probably to deliver her as intact as possible. It gave her some room to maneuver. She tried to calm her pounding heart, waiting for the first opportunity.
It was dark in her bedroom. She could only see a lithe shape, with short, messy hair, leaning over her. The hand on her mouth lifted for a second --now!! She took in air to scream, just as she was kicking the blanket away and trying to buck off her assailant, but found herself with her mouth full of cloth, a hand around her neck and the intruder straddling her thighs, keeping her down. The hand tightened just barely, threatening to cut off her air supply. Her wrists were freed for a second, the time for the intruder's fist to meet her head.
"You're knocked out," a voice whispered. Sighing, Relena rolled her eyes and made herself go limp obediently, not without catching a glimpse of clear eyes in the shadows cast on the assailant's face by spiky bangs. The intruder rolled off her, and she was lifted and thrown over a shoulder like a sack of potatoes. It had seemed a lot more romantic in the romance novels of her teenager years, she noted with a touch of dry humor. Being carted off across a bony shoulder made all the blood go to her head, and her stomach hurt from bearing her whole weight.
She could see why romantics would like the idea, though; there was no way for the abductor to hold her up by any other way than putting a hand on the back of her thighs. She squirmed a little, uncomfortably aware of the shape and weight of that hand, fingers splayed open just under her bottom. The hold tightened a little, keeping her still. A fold of her nightdress was caught under the warm palm, pulling the back of her garment up; she could feel the cool air of the night on the back of her knees.
The hall was dark, but not as much as her room had been. As her abductor jogged down the corridor, she caught a glimpse of one of her guards crumpled in a corner. He had visibly been pulled out of sight and properly hogtied. He was glaring angrily at them, but wasn't in a position to do anything about it.
The door opening on the big staircase was shouldered out of the way, narrowly missing Relena's head on its way to closing behind them. She gamely pretended not to notice, still limp and heavy on the intruder's shoulder. It was hard to see what was going on since everything was upside-down, but finally she noticed that the security cameras were still scanning the room calmly, even when her butt ended up the center of the shot. So either the images were being switched before they arrived to the security room and the cameras were actually inactive --please god make it so-- or the men keeping an eye on them had been taken out, maybe even replaced by another intruder -- and if they were leering at her nightdress-clad behind, she would die of shame.
If the cameras were compromised, then her chances of getting rescued before she was taken out of the house were dropping. The men usually guarding her didn't have a schedule per se, so they could always end up meeting a patrol, but she knew she couldn't count on that.
She tried to remember the layout of the house, tugging out every little detail that could be of use. Her abductor slipped in the kitchen, almost hugging the wall to stay out of the lamppost light coming through the windows, and when they slowed down just before opening the outer door, she suddenly planted both hands quite firmly on the small of her kidnapper's camo-clad butt, bent her knees and leaned forward as much as she could, reaching for the little red box on the wall. Unbalanced by her sudden movement, the intruder lost a few precious seconds grabbing at the edge of the table to stay up, and her knuckles met the little glass covering the fire alarm with a resounding crack.
The howl of the alarm was deafening after the almost total silence that had pervaded the house since her awakening, and in the time it took for her abductor to grip her properly again and kick the back door open, her nightdress had been utterly drenched by the sprinklers. The cold night air made her shiver, and she kicked a few times, but the only thing she gained was a slap on her butt and the tightening of the hold around her thighs, pressing her legs closer against her kidnapper's chest.
The kidnapper started to run, making Relena feel sick. She tried not to look down at the moving ground, wincing when her hair briefly got snared in a plant growing against the house.
"Scythe? --yeah, I KNOW, don't you fucking dare laugh. I need a diversion, NOW."
Relena barely heard the whisper over the sound of the guard dogs barking and a stampede of guards running toward the house. She still told herself she should note the code name, just in case it proved relevant later. That was at least proof that her kidnapper had an accomplice, maybe even several, and her head of security had drilled the importance of such little details in her head quite firmly.
There was a loud BOOM on the other side of the house, and Relena desperately tried to twist around to see what was going on. They couldn't have used a real bomb! It had to be a trick -- but it had sounded so real, and she was worried for her staff.
A second later she was dumped over a decorative fence and landed butt-first behind a flowery bush. The intruder leaped silently over the fence after her, even as she crawled back hurriedly to get away. She was tackled to the grass, her madly kicking legs immobilized skillfully, a forearm across her throat to stifle the smallest sound she could make. Two guards trampled past as she lay behind the bush, a slender, wiry body keeping hers down, a warm breath ghosting against her neck and her wet hair. Now this was closer to what her romance novels had led her to expect when spirited away.
The fire alarm was quiet now, but the other alarm, the "perimeter breached" one, was still howling in the night, drowning out the crickets and scaring the nightingales into silence. She shivered, wincing a little when searchlights were turned on, but while most of the lawn was now crisscrossed with rays of electric day, that corner behind the bushes stayed weirdly dark and secret, as if the chaos in the rest of the house didn't concern it.
A drop of water rolled against her cheek and she looked up at her abductor. A flash of light let her see dark hair tangled in short, wet spikes and deep blue eyes, staring down at her. After a warning frown, the forearm across her throat was withdrawn-- not that anyone could have heard her over the racket her security was making-- and a gun pulled out. Relena's eyes widened slightly. It seemed very real. Cold. Dangerous. Especially so when the muzzle of the gun ended up just brushing against her neck. A button had popped off sometime during the whole capture and now her collarbone was exposed.
She shivered again, but she didn't know if it was from the chill of the wet nightdress clinging to her back and legs or from the apparent danger. Her kidnapper's eyes were shining in the darkness with amusement.
"Mmmph..." she mumbled through the gag.
The kidnapper arched an eyebrow, then smirked, just barely.
"In these occasions, it's scream for help and I'll shoot."
Relena nodded in agreement, the gun still cold against her throat. The gag was pulled out, and she licked her bruised lips.
"I think this is about the time you're supposed to rip off my bodice," she whispered with dry sarcasm.
Hilde swallowed back a snort.
"You don't have a bodice," she replied, trailing the muzzle of her gun down Relena's throat teasingly.
For a second, the shadows on her face made the young Preventers agent a stranger, and Relena shivered again, her head tilting back almost automatically. She was suddenly overwhelmed with the awareness of the cool grass, of the pull of her wet, thin nightdress, of the icy metal brushing against her skin, of the weight and warmth of that body covering hers.
For someone so slim, agent Hilde Schbeiker was surprisingly heavy, surprisingly solid. Her built was similar to that of Heero Yuy; apparently all graceful limbs, but rippling with sinewy muscles. Relena had always had a weakness for that body type, dating from way before her schoolgirl crush on the man who had protected her so many times and was now her head of security.
Except that he was not, would never be, the rakish, smirking rogue she had dreamed would come and take her away from her obligations, and suddenly she regretted not having a bodice to rip.
Maybe all that cold water was giving her a fever.
Agent Schbeiker was as far from a hero of romance novels as it was feasible. For one thing, she may be athletic and daring, but she was clearly female, no mistake possible. Relena could feel her small, hard breasts pressing against hers. Hers were bigger, she noticed, but it didn't give her the feeling of superiority she had gotten when Dorothy and her had measured their chests back at school and she had won. No, the feeling was quite clearly of another kind.
Agent Schbeiker wasn't manly. She was boyish at the most, though only, Relena remembered, when she was wearing her uniform, or, like now, camo pants and a tanktop. The rest of the time she was casually tomboyish, with small details like her beret to give a feminine touch. She was not a tall, virile hunk --thank god, because that would have made her a female Rashid and as superficial as it was, the mental picture was quite horrifying; Relena liked slim and wiry better than large and beefy anyway.
She had believed for so long that she liked slim, wiry MEN, and Hilde was a girl, so of course when they had met again, when Hilde had been assigned to her security a few months ago, and had started to flirt, she had flirted back, but only in jest.
It was surprisingly easy to flirt with Hilde Schbeiker, jesting or not. It was easy to do everything with her, really; laugh and talk about politics and ideals. She was a lot more down to earth than Relena was, and sometimes the politician needed that, needed to be reminded that not everyone saw freedom of the individual and social responsibility as concepts to be debated about, but as real, sometimes urgent matters with applications in the real world. But Hilde cared about who was in charge and how the laws were changed, too.
It was easy to start talking with her, start asking for her opinion, start letting her pull her away from her office for lunch when she had planned on grabbing a sandwich and working through lunch hour. It was easy to tease and be teased, to share laughter and confidences.
It was like having a best friend. Except that none of her girl friends treated her with that mix of respect and ...equality, and that fierce protectiveness. Except that none of her girl friends looked at her with these eyes, as if yes, she was flirting jokingly, but no, it wasn't a joke at all.
Well, there had been Dorothy, she reflected. But Dorothy took as much pleasure in talking with her as in honestly frustrating her. When they argued, often it was as if Catalonia couldn't decide between pulling her close and doing various sort of wicked things to her, and patting her on the head like a small yappy poodle bringing back a stick and then dismissing her entirely. Dorothy was a friend, albeit a weird kind of friend, but if Relena relaxed ten minutes in her presence, she would be eaten alive, and not in the fun way.
Dorothy had been raised to be suave and womanly, and Relena had felt quite often that she only needed an occasion to offer to... experiment. But she had never been interested, because they had both been raised to be ladylike, and Relena didn't want another lady. She wanted a knight, a pirate. Someone who would steal her away, protect her, tease her, make her world spin out of control. Maybe it was outdated, and stupidly romantic, but it was what she had been dreaming of forever.
And she wouldn't find that with Heero Yuy. Heero was... well... boring. Too serious. Even sort of stuck up sometimes. And a worse workaholic than she was. Sure, when she had been meeting him during the war, hurried minutes of condensed feelings between two explosions, he had looked like he fit the list of things she was looking for, but that was only from afar. And squinting. Now that she saw him every day, well, she still had lots of fondness for him, but he had lost all his mystery and gained lots of anal retentiveness.
That and she had done everything short of turning up naked in his bed, and he hadn't even NOTICED.
She was noticing Hilde's small, firm breasts against hers quite well. She wondered if the Preventer was noticing her heartbeat going crazy.
The bottom line was that Relena liked Hilde. A lot. But up until now, she hadn't been sure if Hilde liked her back. They flirted all the time, and Relena was pretty sure that it was real, but she wasn't a hundred percent certain. And the wondering and doubting was pretty exciting in its own right, so she had never actively tried to figure it out.
But that stunt with the gun trailing down her throat... Well, that was pretty suggestive. Freudian, even.
"Rel? Earth to Rel, come on Rel..."
She gasped, then turned bright red. How long had the other woman been trying to get her attention? She was peering at her quizzically, waving a hand in front of her face.
"Sorry," Relena whispered back. "Drool-- uhm, woolgathering." Oh god, why was the earth under her happy with turning to mud and seeping into her flimsy clothing when it could have swallowed her whole? No ambition at all.
Hilde muffled an unladylike snort against her shoulder, and Relena felt her heart jump again and warmth uncoil in her belly. She could feel the agent's warm breath through her damp nightdress, and fancied that she could even guess at the shape of her lips. She could have sworn Hilde was smiling... But then she always was.
"And what it is that's making you drool, princess?" Hilde whispered in her ear, laughter evident in her voice. Relena tensed her muscles, hoping that it would be enough to hold back the shiver she felt rising.
Apparently, it wasn't.
"... What is it, my Lady? Are you still thinking of that knight who was supposed to protect you from the rogues who would ruthlessly try to spirit you away? He couldn't even keep me away from you."
Once again, then gun was resting against the hollow of her throat. Hilde's voice had changed, shifted from pure laughter to... something else. Something a little darker. She bit her lip, not knowing what she was trying to keep from escaping. Her nervous laughter, or a moan of surprise and desire?
A few guards trampled past their hiding place, reminding her of the outside world. On the other side of the house, Heero was snapping out orders, visibly frustrated. The reminder should have broken the spell; it didn't. If any, it pulled the fantasy just a tiny step closer to reality.
"My knight will find you, and he'll have you hanged," she managed to reply with a sufficient dose of noble haughtiness. She hadn't intended to let nervousness slip out with it. It lent the whole strange scene yet another dose of reality.
"So then maybe I should ravish you right away, my fair Lady, and not wait for your fearsome white knight to interrupt us."
The tone, Relena reflected, was truly spot-on. Amusement, a pinch of mockery, underlined by perfect self-confidence.
"Maybe you should," she agreed in a wavering voice, breaking her role.
She didn't remember when she had closed her eyes, but she couldn't open them yet. She counted the seconds of silence, of stillness over her, and with every one of them, her fear that she had read Hilde wrong grew.
It didn't grow for long before she felt lips brushing against hers. The knot in her guts untied in a rush of relief, the tension and fear flowing out of her to be replaced by a different kind of nervousness.
"As my lady desires," Hilde whispered before kissing her again.
Suddenly she didn't want to play, couldn't take pretending not to want it. Her arms ended up around the brunette's neck, pulling her closer -- not that there had been lots of space left between them anyway. Her upper lip ended up mashed under Hilde's front teeth, their noses getting in the way. The short-haired woman made a muffled yelp of surprise, and Relena felt her eyelashes flutter wide open against her cheek. She feared having gone too far, too fast, but then there was a tongue exploring her mouth and was the other woman laughing? Relena would have glared, but, well, their faces were a little too close to get the full effect. That and it really didn't matter anyway, not when she was so warm and strong over her and yet so soft, so light, so gently yielding...
It had never been like that with the few boys Relena had vaguely dated back in high school. It had been awkward, embarrassing even, and the wetness of their kisses a little disgusting. She'd only gone to second base once, and he'd gone directly for her crotch in typical male fashion. Hilde knew better. She knew to trail her fingers lightly all over her skin, to seek out sensitive places, to tease her skin into life.
Relena was so immersed into the feeling the hand caressing the inside of her leg gave her, so busy kneading Hilde's breasts, so lost in the soft panting breaths in her ear, that she didn't even notice they had an audience until the torchlight flashed in her eyes. She yelped, startled by the intrusion of the sudden harsh light, and hid her face against Hilde's neck. The brunette tensed, growling, lifting a hand to protect her eyes and glare at the intruder.
"Hey, can you be kind enough to NOT SHINE THE FUCKING THING IN OUR EYES? Thank you."
The heavy torchlight fell in the bush, softening the light enough to see the shape of the man who'd been holding it. Relena realized that her inner thighs were exposed almost to her crotch, and there was a camo-pant-clad leg between hers in a way that left nothing to guess about the way they'd been rubbing. She struggled under Hilde to push her nightdress down again, her cheeks burning in a way that had nothing to do with passion anymore. Oh god, if the newspapers got hold of this... She hoped it was one of her staff, she trusted them well enough--
She couldn't help but whimper, mortified, when she recognized the shocked voice as her head of security.
"Oh, it's you, Heero. Took you long enough to find us, but you really could have been a bit longer," Hilde muttered as she sat up in the grass, blocking most of the man's view of Relena. Grateful, she hurried to straighten up her nightdress. The collar stayed open since there was no button anymore. She had dried grass blades and branches in her hair, and still felt flushed and out of breath. She could have died right there if it meant never having to see his face. Things couldn't possibly get worse.
"Relena, what-- who-- Hilde? But--"
"Find 'em yet, buddy?"
Murphy, I hate you, Relena whimpered in her mind. Great, first Heero, now Duo. Their men wouldn't be long to follow. She could see the headlines already. 'Vice-Minister Darlian caught carrying lesbian affair in public!!' She sat up, knees against her chest, and pulled her nightdress as low as it could go.
Duo arrived, took a look at them, gaped for all of a whole second, and burst out laughing. "If that's the way you fight off your kidnappers, 'Lena, I think we're gonna see a lot more attempts on you in the future," he managed to hiccup between two snickers.
Hilde threw her shoe at his head. "Shut up, idiot! And Heero, tell your men to go back to their positions! D'you want a scandal or what?"
The Japanese man was still staring at them both, eyes wide and stunned. Apparently feeling helpful, Duo nudged him. "Call your men, buddy, cancel the search."
"Wha-- uh, right," the Japanese man replied, and stepped away to snap a few terse orders in his walkie-talkie.
"You cold, Princess?" the man with the braid asked her, still with a wide grin on his face. She couldn't help but glare a little, but seeing as it was cold and she was already bordering on indecency, there was no way she could refuse to take the black jacket he was giving her.
It was heavy, she noticed-- leather. She'd never worn leather before. Her hands were shaking with cold and the aftershocks of being caught. When Hilde reached out to help her put the jacket on, she didn't protest. They shared a small, shy smile. She couldn't express how relieved she felt that Hilde wasn't pretending nothing had happened.
"Aren't they cute?" Duo gushed as he gave Hilde's boot back. The brunette tried to brain him with it a second time, and he dodged nimbly, still laughing his ass off. Call finished, Heero started staring at them again, back and shoulders stiff. Relena was starting to wonder if she'd given him brain damage. Was it really that much of a shock to him to discover that she had a sex drive?
"Since when are you a lesbian?" he finally asked, his usually low voice strangely squeaky. "I-I thought..."
"I'm not a lesbian," she replied, crossing her arms and lifting her chin proudly. "There is such a thing as bisexuality, you know." Sometimes being a politician was good. If she could redirect the discussion to sexual orientation -- and assumptions thereof -- in general, maybe he would never get around to asking when she'd stopped fancying him and started fancying Hilde.
Heero blinked owlishly. Duo was laughing so hard it was a wonder he managed to stay on his feet.
"What's your problem?" she growled at the braided man, aggravated.
"I think --Heero didn't know you knew what sex was," Duo managed to reply between two snickers.
Hilde gave her a hand up, and she accepted it gratefully, glad to have an excuse not to look at her head of security.
"I'm not talking about sex, I'm -- I mean...How long have you..."
It was so weird to see Heero at a loss for words. He didn't talk a lot, yes, but when he did, he usually knew precisely what he wanted to say. She felt her embarrassment diminish. Despite everything, he was a friend, a good friend, and he deserved to know.
"We've been dating for weeks," she said softly as she remembered all the lunches her and Hilde had together, all the times the other woman made her put away her folders and dragged her to the mall or the park. They had been dating for a while; she just hadn't noticed before. But she couldn't pretend that it was a surprise, or a mistake. She honestly liked Hilde, she honestly wanted to see how far their tentative relationship would go, and that was information Heero was entitled to.
"...oh. I better see what my men are doing," he replied, and then left before anyone could say anything.
Relena bit her lip, worried. He hadn't seemed angry or disgusted -- the day Heero displayed any signs of bigotry she would hand in her notice -- but his expression had been so unsure and bewildered that she felt her heart squeeze. Rare were the people who could provoke an emotional response in him, and as one of them, she felt responsible, protective even. She wasn't in love with him any longer, but the fierce tenderness he inspired in her was still there, and she didn't like knowing she'd caused him any trouble.
Duo touched her shoulder and gave her a sympathetic look. "He just needs some time to adjust to the fact that you're in a relationship. You've been married to your job for so long, we were all starting to think you'd die an old maid."
She bit her lip again. "You don't think he's going to realize he loves me after all, or something like that?" If that was the case, she wouldn't know what she would do. She was pretty sure she'd let go of that particular hope, but -- well. She squeezed Hilde's hand. It was too late for Heero.
Duo took on a rare contemplative expression. "No... He'll feel jealous, for sure, and out of balance -- but I'm pretty sure he doesn't love you that way. I'm not sure he's even figured why people bother to have a relationship yet. He liked knowing that you loved him, though; it made him feel like he was worth something for someone, even if he didn't love you back the same way. It's human."
She nodded. It was always reassuring to know that you were loved. "I still love him, just... not like that anymore. I couldn't wait unloved all my life," she added, and wondered why it sounded like she was trying to justify herself. "Now... he's more of a brother. More than Milliardo ever was, for sure," she added with a touch of bitterness. She saw her elder brother maybe twice a year, at official functions. Sometimes she received postcards. It always felt like Noin had chosen them.
"That's gonna make Heero happy," Duo commented with a laugh. "They're always competing about everything."
"Enough chitchat," Hilde interrupted them, and nudged her forward, guiding her back to the kitchen door. "You're cold and sleepy. It's not the right time for a heart to heart."
"Oh, maybe not, but it would be just fine for a bosom-to-bosom," Duo commented, leering at the two of them.
Relena was relieved not to be the only one to blush.
"Hey, I'm a red-blooded male. You want me not to perv at two pretty girls making out?"
His lecherous expression was so exaggerated that the girls started to laugh.
They stepped inside the house. Relena started shivering in earnest as her bare feet slipped in the water pooling on the marble floor, and had to cling to Hilde's arm not to slip. Duo's leering worsened.
"If I were you, Hildie-baby, I'd get her to take a hot shower. The poor thing looks so cold..."
Hilde gave him a suspicious glare. "Yeah, and I'm supposed to give her a hand washing the dirt out, too?"
"You read my mind."
"When your mind is in your pants, it's not very difficult," the brunette shot back, and kicked him. She was blushing. It was, Relena decided, the most adorable thing ever.
Seized by an impish impulse -- probably Duo was contagious -- Relena waited until Hilde was looking at her again, and then, taking her most innocent air, she replied. "I wouldn't mind a hand."
Hilde made a weird sound that was halfway between a cough and a whimper.
"Or at least a few fingers."
Duo slipped on the first step and narrowly missed knocking himself out with the banister.
"... Relena!!" Hilde protested, sputtering.
"Yes?" she replied demurely. It was hard not to let herself blush, but so rewarding.
Duo sprawled on the steps, arms around his stomach as he howled with laughter. "You -- you -- oh my god, I can't believe you said that!"
Stopping a few steps above them, Relena put her hands on her hips as elegantly as possible and looked down her nose at them both. "And if you're finished staring, I would like to take that hot shower quickly. I need to be warmed up."
Hilde gave her a desolate look and glanced at Duo. "She's going to be a handful, isn't she?"
Duo nodded, commiserating. "Afraid so."
"Ah well. At least I'll have fun."
The brunette joined her quickly, taking her hand, and pulled her up the stairs. "Come on, my Lady, let's get you naked and wet."
Duo's goofy grin indicated that he was quite happy staying sprawled on the stairs daydreaming, so she didn't comment. She would give the jacket back tomorrow.
With each step toward her bedroom, the warmth she'd thought killed uncoiled in her belly. Her heart slowly started beating faster. She had never thought she could recapture that peculiar anticipation after the whole being caught by Heero thing, but holding Hilde's small, calloused hand as they stepped toward her bedroom was apparently enough to awaken her desire anew. Maybe they could recapture the mood. There was a strength of emotions in first times that she didn't want to let slip past her.
Hilde paused at the door, but Relena pulled her inside, gently, stubbornly.
"You were in the middle of ravishing me, I believe?" she asked, half-seriously retaking her noblewoman tone.
Hilde closed the door behind her. "You're kinkier than I thought you'd be, my Lady."
"And that is a problem?" she replied, hiding a blush.
"Not at all," Hilde smirked wolfishly back. It was more cute than it was sexy, but as it still made Relena want to kiss her, she supposed it met its goal just fine. "So long as you share."
It would be hard to get past her usual shyness about sexual matters. She had never been raised to talk of them plainly, frankly, like Hilde was. But it sounded like fun.
Relena hesitated, then leaned toward her girlfriend and whispered quickly in her ear, "I hope I don't offend you, but... uhm... Do you happen to still have your OZ uniform?"
Hilde stared at her for a minute, then started to laugh.