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Thread: [ic] tko

  1. #11
    Count / Countess Tigers is offline Tigers's Avatar
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    Sergei Baikov

    The tap on the door frame brought Sergei’s attention toward the sound and directly into the gaze of Sylvia. The teasing smile on her face and the wet clothes in her hand, made Sergei return the smile. And was that the hoodie he had been wearing the night that he had met Sylvia in the grocery store? His smile widened as he nodded his head and answered her.

    “Yes, just down the hall and to your left.”
    Okay, he had just survived his initial encounter with Sylvia after almost seeing her totally naked in his bedroom. He could do this; they both evidentially could do this. So as Sylvia took her clothes to the dryer, Sergei happily returned to fixing their supper. He cut the pizza and set it out on the table along with glasses, plates and silverware. The awkwardness seemed to have passed, but during dinner, Sergei himself couldn’t help but steal looks at Sylvia as she helped Marianna eat her dinner. This evening, hell the whole day was better than he could have asked for.

    By the time the meal was over, Sergei gave Sylvia a reassuring smile as Marianna dragged her to the other room to watch her show. He cleared the table and loaded the dishwasher, catching a glance out in the other room of the two sleeping beauties. It made him pause for a moment, he couldn’t quite describe the scene of his daughter and Sylvia nestled in on the couch together fast asleep. He knew he liked it; he liked it very much and would love to see it be more permanent.

    He made no effort to rush finishing the kitchen and when he was done, he gently went into the room and scooped Marianna off of Sylvia. He fought the urge to bend down and kiss the sleeping woman, but too many unknown variables made it dangerous to do so with his daughter in his arms. Besides, Sylvia had begun to stir and she might not like the idea of being kissed like that. He smiled at her sheepish grin and walked down the hall toward Marianna’s room. How he had managed not to look completely and utterly guilty about the thoughts he had just had was a miracle.

    Sergei had dressed Marianna in her pajamas, kissed her forehead and tucked her into her bed. She would sleep well through the night. Marianna had had a good day; and he couldn’t help but feel it had been made better by Sylvia’s presence. Perhaps it was because that’s the way he himself had felt. And in truth, he didn’t want it to end. The selfish part of him wanted to walk out there and take Sylvia back to his bedroom for the night, but there was something about it that made him resist the urge. He had too much respect for Sylvia and this…whatever you call it between them to cheapen Sylvia just so he could have her in his bed. Sure, she may not mind herself, but Sergei almost felt as if he would be degrading Sylvia, taking away from her self respect by playing on her own emotions.

    When Sergei walked back into the room, Sylvia was crashed against the arm of the couch in a seated position. He couldn’t help but smile and from the looks of her she wasn’t getting up for anything. He had immediately thought to pick her up and let her have his bed while he slept on the couch, but there was the fact that explaining to Sylvia why he was carrying her to his bedroom, or why she was in his bed that made that idea go right out of his thoughts. He didn’t really feel like trying to explain it, although his main reason was to let her have the bed, he couldn’t dismiss the fact that the idea of having her in his bed was very appealing.

    Sergei headed for the closet and pulled out a blanket for Sylvia and a spare pillow. He wouldn’t just allow her to sleep like that all night, for one it would be uncomfortable and second, she was pregnant and that would be pretty callous of him. Quietly he tried to shifted Sylvia on the couch, pulling her legs up so that she would be more comfortable and laying her head on the pillow. She stirred slightly, but did not wake up. This made him glad that he decided to not attempt to carry her to the room. After a moment of letting her settle in, and smiling at the cute way she scrunched up her nose he covered her with the blanket. This surprisingly brought a smile to her face and increased the one on Sergei’s.

    God she was so beautiful. A strong woman with a stubborn streak the size of Russia, and a spit fire personality, Sergei couldn’t help but reach out and caress the side of her face. She stirred again, but what made Sergei pause was the mumbled name “Pierce,” that came from her lips. Her nose scrunched as if she were thinking about what she had just said but she settled back down as if she had never mumbled anything in her sleep at all.

    Who the hell was Pierce? Reasonable deduction would be her baby’s father at least that was what came to Sergei’s mind. Sylvia had never mentioned anyone and he didn’t take her for a woman who would sneak out and pick up a man if she was already involved in a relationship. At least, he hoped not. Heaven forbid he was letting his heart out to another woman like Anastasia, it would kill him. Try as he might, as Sergei left the room and went to his bedroom, he couldn’t get the name out of his head. Pierce’s name was the last thing on his mind as he fell asleep.
    Peace is a lie
    There is only passion
    Through passion I gain strength
    Through strength I gain power
    Through power I gain victory
    Through victory my chains are broken
    The Force shall set me free
    ...to the topTop



  2. #12
    Paladin Quaxo9 is offline Quaxo9's Avatar
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    Re: [IC] TKO

    Re: [IC] TKO

    It was the night after the full moon. Despite the lack of physical change, Sylvia was still plagued with dreams of another’s life – that of the man who turned her. She could see him. Now, in a field of clover, then just as suddenly, in bed beside her. The dreams were always strange and surging, but tonight she was allowing them to take her wherever they went. She was exhausted – not up for fighting against the current – and she was also completely at ease. Vaguely, Sylvia was aware that her body was being repositioned into a prone one, and something soft and warm enveloped her. It felt so nice to be warm that she smiled both inside and out.

    The dreams still held her mind captive. It was Pierce pulling up the covers and caressing her face. Sylvia whispered his name, but as soon as she did, she knew something was wrong. There was something she needed to remember. She pushed at the dreams, trying to find her footing and as her mind struck upon the answer, the dreams faded away. Pierce wasn’t here. He was dead. He was dead.

    The dreams left her alone for the rest of the night, and Sylvia’s mind seemed glad for it. She slept hard and deep, evidenced by her sore muscles when she awoke the next morning. Sylvia hadn’t even moved from…when did she get a pillow and blanket? And since when did she have a couch? A momentary panic swept over her, her eyes anxiously probing the darkened room for answers. Sergei’s house. She was still in Sergei’s house. Sylvia let out the breath she had been holding and relaxed until she realized that she was still in Sergei’s house.

    Sylvia all but jumped off the couch, checking her watch and rubbing her eyes as simultaneously as those activities would allow. 5:30 am. Oh good, she hadn’t slept in, but boy had she slept. She was wavering on her feet a bit, but she still stooped down to fold the blanket and leave it neatly at one end of the couch with the pillow perched on top. Light clinking from the kitchen warned her that she wasn’t the only one up and about. Great. Sergei was up too. Oh well, it wasn’t like she could just leave without locking the door behind her.

    Maybe she was just feeling grouchy for being awakened from such a good sleep, but Sylvia was also seriously concerned about what this looked like. Her leaving her boss’ apartment in the wee hours of the morning, that is. This was not a great situation. Why had he let her sleep instead of sending her home? Still, it was nice not to have to walk home in the rain…but nothing! What was she thinking? She should have left the second she saw him at the zoo! Sylvia was starting to work herself up into a panic. She could have kicked herself for yesterday, despite how wonderful it was. How great his daughter was… Sylvia swore at herself in her head. Obviously her brains were not functioning at all yesterday.

    So what was she going to say? She had to say something to Sergei. He was right there…and he had basically just let her sleep over at his house free of charge. Part of her knew that it was her fault she was even in this situation and the other part fully recognized that he had some blame to share in this too. Quietly, she approached the kitchen, taking a moment to watch him working before speaking up in a low voice.

    “Hey. Thanks for letting me crash.” Sylvia wanted to leave it there, but her pragmatic side just wouldn’t let things slide. “But you really should have got me up.” The meaning of the last bit was open to interpretation – whether she was talking about last night or this morning was uncertain – and her face showed the same polarity as the statement. She wasn’t sure what to think or do. However, she was pretty sure that somewhere in yesterday, a line was crossed – maybe two or three – and that made her very uncomfortable.
    Winner of the dubious Vaarsuvius Award for Verbousness!

    I support altruism.
    ...to the topTop



  3. #13
    Count / Countess Tigers is offline Tigers's Avatar
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    Re: [IC] TKO

    Re: [IC] TKO


    Sergei Baikov

    Sergei drew his pillow up over his face, as if wanting to slowly suffocate himself with his pillow. After a few moments, he reached over and shut off the alarm before it went off and woke his sleeping guest, the current subject on his mind and apparently in his dreams. He pulled the pillow back over his face again to stifle the audible groan escaping from his lips.

    Like Marianna’s fairy tale movies, the magic of yesterday seemed to have waned as the truth of reality hit Sergei straight in the face. Despite his better judgment, he skipped the cold shower and settled for a warm blast of spray from the shower head. No sooner had he begun to wash himself than his mind wondered to the fact that Sylvia had just been using his shower last night.

    “DAMNIT!”Sergei exclaimed.

    Apparently his thoughts weren’t even safe in the shower. His mind bounced back and forth between the reality of their situation and the dream of Sylvia in his bed. It wasn’t entirely what one might think, because Sylvia was still pregnant. It was odd in the fact that it was more a dream that seemed to surround a couple, maybe a husband and wife. It wasn’t that he wasn’t physically attracted to her. He had on more than one occasion had to do something to get her off his mind before it became visually evident what his mind was on.

    The last thing he needed was to have everyone think he was some teenage boy or sexual pervert who couldn’t control himself. The truth was that what he was feeling for Sylvia was more than just sexual, but he was a man and she did awaken things in him he thought were content to take a break from women. He was by no means a dog, and it was quite disconcerting the affect that she had had on him.

    He finished his shower, conflicted by the day ahead of him and the ever growing feelings he had for Sylvia. This was not to be a pleasant day, he would at some point need to pull her from duty and have her get a physical from the doctor to confirm the medic’s predictions that she shouldn’t be working the beat. Sergei dressed in silence, pausing briefly to gaze at the still sleeping Sylvia.

    Taking a deep breath to steel his resolve, he moved into the kitchen and started a pot of coffee. If his suspicions were right, Sylvia would not be a sleep much longer. He began setting out Marianna’s meal for the day, despite the constant rebuttal from Rose that he didn’t need to bring food for her, and then he turned to making eggs, sausage and pancakes for breakfast. He was lost in his thoughts when Sylvia spoke to him. He turned to look at her, and noticed the uncertain look on her face and in her words. The magic of yesterday was definitely gone, back to boring and unfulfilling reality.

    “Good morning.”

    “You’re welcome. You were pretty tired and I didn’t want to disturb you, besides it was still raining outside and it wasn’t right to make you walk home in the rain.”
    Try as he might, he could not hide the fact that his mind was heavy with thought. He poured a cup of coffee for Sylvia and handed it to her, and encouraged her to take a seat for some breakfast as he turned to flip the pancakes in the pan. Despite his better judgment, he had to know, so he asked.

    “Sylvia, who is Pierce?”

    He turned back to look at her, trying to read her. He wasn’t expecting what was going to escalate from such a simple question.
    ...to the topTop



  4. #14
    Paladin Quaxo9 is offline Quaxo9's Avatar
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    It was strange, but when Sergei turned around and saw her, Sylvia got the distinct impression that he was disappointed. By what? By her? Because she stayed? No, that wasn’t it. Sylvia searched Sergei’s face and found nothing concrete. He was distracted and busy. She took the coffee he offered her, even though she had no intention of drinking it. Caffeine was something the book had said to cut out and Sylvia had been faithful in her cold-turkey rejection of the stuff. She took the seat that was offered and clutched the coffee close to her heart as though she were cold.

    If she felt chilled before, Sergei’s question froze her in place. Her eyes were immediately drawn to his by the seriousness with which he said her name and she found that she couldn’t remove them when he finished his sentence. Instead she blinked at him, dumbfounded. How did he find out? Obviously, he hadn’t really ‘found out’ because he was asking who Pierce was, but still – how did he know to ask? Had Rocco tipped him off? If so, he would have told Sergei the whole story in order to make her look bad. Was he trying to set her up, to see if she’d lie to him? What was he after?

    Sylvia’s eyes had been flickering over Sergei’s face, trying to discern the motive behind his question. Finally, she tore them away to stare directly ahead of her, fingers tapping on her steaming mug of coffee as she tried to think up a suitable answer. It had occurred to her that yesterday was pleasant instead of awkward mostly because she hadn’t had to talk about herself at all with Marianna to look after. That was fine with her as there wasn’t supposed to be anything between her and Sergei with the whole ‘boss-subordinate’ thing. Obviously hanging out at the zoo and sleeping over at his house wasn’t enough for him, despite him being the one to give her the lecture on the ‘appropriate behaviour’ garbage.

    It struck her then that she didn’t owe him an answer. The question was obviously a personal one and they weren’t supposed to get personal. There. That was that. Still, part of her felt bad for leaving him in the dark. He had asked nicely enough and seemed genuinely...what was it, concerned? It would be so easy to just tell him that Pierce was the baby’s father and that he was dead. It was a simple, truthful answer. But nothing. Sylvia squelched her feelings and steeled her defences. He couldn’t get involved and that was that. If she pushed him away now, maybe her secrets would stay safe and he could go on living his normal life with his wonderful little girl. It would be better this way.
    Sylvia’s features settled into a scowl before she looked at Sergei once more. Her eyes challenged him to push for more than she was about to give him, but if he looked deeper, he would see that they were also pleading with him to just let it go.

    “That’s none of your business...sir.”

    The spoken words were low and flat, with emphasis given to the words ‘none’ and ‘sir’. The ‘sir’ bit was an afterthought addition, intended to remind him of why she shouldn’t be answering those sorts of questions, or even be sitting at his table for breakfast. That was the next thing. Plunking her mug back on the table, Sylvia rose and started to walk around the table toward the entrance where her jacket hung on the wall.

    “I should go.”
    ...to the topTop



  5. #15
    Count / Countess Tigers is offline Tigers's Avatar
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    Re: [IC] TKO

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    Sergei Baikov


    Sergei studied Sylvia’s face after he asked the question, for the moment, it was unreadable. But that soon changed as her features became something he wasn’t sure he liked. He had caught the brief pleading look deep within her eyes, but Sylvia’s mouth caused that to vanish in an instant.

    Her words stung, not just because of how she said it and the emphasis in which she did so, but because he knew in his heart that she was doing what he should have had the strength himself to do. He had to resist the urge to reach up and touch his face as if he’d physically been slapped by her. His growing feelings for her were conflicting greatly with his need to do what Sylvia obviously had the strength to do.

    But why did it hurt so damn much, why was he taking this so personally and why did it anger him so much with the way in which she responded to him. What was worse was, instead of handling the situation with a cool head like he normally would, he reacted at being hurt by her words and to his surprise his own remarks were not that kind.

    “Fine Wagner, it was just a damn question, but if that’s the way you want to play it out.”

    He had set a plate of food in front of her, despite the fact she said she needed to go. He found his eyes momentarily trapped by hers and he had to turn back toward the stove to keep from reaching out and cupping her face in his hands and kissing her. The fact that her words stung so much only irritated him more that he still held this burning desire for her. And at the moment, it stung even more that Sylvia seemed to be okay with it this way and that she obviously wasn’t interested in more.

    You know how to pick them don’t you Baikov, Sergei chastised himself while he had his back to her. He had screwed up, Sylvia was only interested in a fling and now that he had set the rules of the boss employee relationship, she was perfectly fine with it. What little she had let him see of her had been walled up within that stubborn personality. At this point in time, he might as well go crawling back to his ex; at least the torment could be handled.

    Suddenly, he wished yesterday had never happened. He was such a fool; he obviously had no business being in any relationship with a woman, when this seemed to be the inevitable outcome. He would tell her how he felt right this moment, if he didn’t think Sylvia would laugh in his face. When had he become so weak and so pathetic when it came to women? And why did he care so damn much about whether she did? She’d drawn the obvious line in the sand, it was time to stay on his side and let things be.
    ...to the topTop



  6. #16
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    She had hurt him, answering him like that. The look on his face made that abundantly clear. For a second, she wanted to take it back and explain everything to him. Tell him about Pierce and why she was afraid to talk about him. Tell him why she kept herself so guarded. Sylvia ached for the kind of security Marianna had in Sergei and couldn’t help but wonder if she’d feel safe in his arms too. But it was only a moment, because he fired back. She deserved it, definitely. Was she prepared? Not quite. It was the response she wanted, wasn’t it? So why was she so surprised when he threw it back in her face? But then there was that look in his eye…

    Sylvia caught her breath and pressed onward toward the exit. She was certain this was the right thing to do. He was her boss, for one. He was too good for her, for another. On the day they’d met, Sylvia had offered him sex…and he hadn’t even taken advantage of her being in his house – and she had been naked! Obviously, he had higher principles. Sure it had been fun playing ‘mom’ with Marianna, but Sylvia wasn’t fool enough to think she could pull it off full time. She knew that was what Sergei was looking for – a wife and mother. Sylvia also knew without a shadow of a doubt that she wasn’t that girl, but oh how she wished she was.

    Lost in her thoughts and the efforts to keep her feelings under wraps, Sylvia put her coat on – forgetting that she was wearing Sergei’s clothes. This was it. Leaving now would put the final nail in and maybe then she could believe herself when she said it was ‘for the best’. She bit her lip, wishing she could hold onto the stern look she had given him earlier. Not trusting herself, she didn't look back, but mumbled “I would have puked it up anyway.” on her way out the door. It was a lame parting shot, but right now, Sylvia needed to have the last word.
    ...to the topTop



  7. #17
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    Sergei Baikov& Sylvia Wagner


    Sergei had spent the morning pouring over the personnel files to get his mind off of the "quiet" yelling match he and Sylvia had gotten into over his question about Pierce. He had been in a foul mood the whole morning, his door partially closed as the assumption for the reason was that it had to do with the horrible records in the personnel files.

    Although he couldn't admit it at the time, his anger was due in large part for his feelings for Sylvia and the attempt to hide those feelings by allowing such a silly thing to irritate him so. Part of it was also his guilt over the fact that he had even allowed it to escalate like it had. But now, looking at her file, his anger with her this morning was ignited once more as he opened his door and yelled at someone to find Sylvia and tell her to get her butt up in his office.

    The feeling was that he had just found out that Sylvia hadn't had a psych evaluation after the whole fire incident, but in truth he was more disappointed in her than he was angry. He sat in his chair, calming his nerves because he knew he also would be telling her she was off the beat unless a doctor gave her clearance to still be on the street. Sergei took a calming breath as he waited for Sylvia, realizing he hadn't given the best message to be relayed to Sylvia. Way to go Baikov, she'll likely want your throat for that comment.

    ~~~~~~~~

    Sylvia had actually had a fairly good morning, when she took the time to reflect on it. Well, good despite how her day had actually begun, that is. She was still trying to forget her harsh words and the hurt look on Sergei’s face. ‘It’s not important.’ she told herself, ‘He needed to know where the line between personal and professional was and I showed him. End of story.’ So why did she feel like such a jerk- Perhaps more importantly, why did she feel so sad- It’s not like they had anything…or ever would.

    She had been on patrol with her new partner all morning, which basically meant she had spent the last four hours in the passenger seat of a squad car. Officer Graner had even bought her a green tea – citing that his wife swore by the stuff while she was pregnant with their third. Sylvia had accepted the token with some surprise, but had smiled and thanked her fellow officer nonetheless. It was nice to know that maybe they did actually care that she was there. It made her feel like she belonged. Maybe there was something to this whole ‘team’ thing.

    They had stopped by HQ to do up some paperwork, when the Captain’s message came across her desk. It had been…embellished, to say the least. Sylvia was not impressed. In fact, she was furious. In her anger, she didn’t even consider that the message perhaps wasn’t exactly as given by her superior. Her ears burning, she made her way up the stairs and into Sergei’s office. Without pausing, she locked the door behind her, pulled the shade, then proceeded to pull the other window shades. Once she was satisfied that their conversation would be slightly private, she walked up to his desk and planted a fist on it.

    “Where the hell did you get the idea that it would be fine to call me up here for a booty call- Have you no absolutely no tact-”

    ~~~~~~~~

    The moment she stepped into the door, Sergei had a sinking feeling that they were going to repeat this morning's events. It was evident on her face that she was furious, as wordlessly she locked the door and began pulling the blinds. So, this was how it was going to be.

    "Wagner, unlock that door and open those blinds!" Sergei exclaimed without even attempting to lower his voice.

    His demand had gone unheeded as Sylvia drew the last blind and then planted her fist on his desk. He could feel the anger roll off her like the steam of an overheated engine. For the second time today, he was slapped in the face by some unexpected remark. He was momentarily stunned by the comment, but this time, he wasn't going to lie down and let Sylvia walk all over him.

    "What the hell are you talking about-! I called you up here to discuss your file and find out why the hell you haven't been to your psyche evaluation after that fire! For god’s sakes Wagner, you're a better cop than that, I'm disappointed!"

    It was Sylvia’s turn to be shocked. She shook her head, slack-jawed for a moment, trying to re-align her thinking. Pushing past her thoughts of vengeance on whoever gave her the message, she focused on the new game being called. Her Captain telling her that he was disappointed in her stung – and it stung a lot more coming from Sergei than any reprimand from Captain Asil had. That realization only served to stoke her temper, burning through the fear that knotted in her stomach at the thoughts of a psych evaluation. Sylvia remained standing at his desk, looking for the upper hand in the conversation. If he was going to yell, then so was she.

    “It’s not my damn fault your predecessor couldn’t keep up with me and it’s not my job to book those stupid appointments! I was checked out by the paramedics, I was fine. He probably didn’t think I even needed an evaluation – and he was right. And I don’t need one now!”

    Sergei didn't skip a beat. If Sylvia wanted to play hardball, she was in for a treat. He had not spent years in the military service to be frightened by a woman getting in his face, even if this particular one was an attractive woman he couldn't admit his feeling for. Sergei leaned forward on his desk, closing the gap between himself and Sylvia as his knuckles planted onto the smooth wooden surface.

    "In case you haven't been paying attention Wagner, Captain Asil is not longer here and this is no longer his precinct. You will follow the rules to the letter, or you'll be playing desk jockey for the rest of the year. DO I MAKE MYSELF CLEAR WAGNER!"

    When Sergei met her challenge, Sylvia’s blood rushed even hotter. She loved the conflict, the chase, the heat of the moment. His words, however, had her shaking with anger. Did he think she was stupid- That she didn’t get it that there was a new boss in town- Worse still, did he really think she was a bad cop, one that constantly broke the rules- Sylvia was very conveniently forgetting her numerous ‘excessive force’ citations that definitely constituted ‘breaking the rules’. Leaning forward a bit to meet Sergei head-to-head, Sylvia indicated that she was prepared to go a few more rounds.

    “Thanks for the heads up, Sir . I hadn’t caught that. Maybe I would have if you started acting like a Captain and less like a truant officer. That’s all you hauled me up for, seriously- To warn me to colour inside the lines- Please. Oh, and for the record- The only time I’m going to be a desk jockey is when I hit mat leave.”

    She just didn't know when to back down, but Sergei wasn't about to do so either. Something changed however, the moment Sylvia came closer to him, their heads practically touching as they faced each other down. The emotions within him came to a crossroads, and only one choice he could make. He could take his anger and rush headlong into a full out argument that would likely end bad, or he could go with the even stronger emotion that had hit him like a freight train the moment she moved closer.

    Before he knew it, Sergei had cut Sylvia off from her last words as he reached up and cupped her face with his hands and kissed her fiercely. It wasn't a possessive kiss, but one full of fiery passion and yearning. A part of him unleashed the desire for her that he had kept in check. But what had started out as a fierce kiss soon dissolved into something much more meaningful.

    It was a kiss that you gave someone that you longed for, that you needed, wanted and desired. Not a quick but a long and enduring one, one that you wanted to last and never end. The passion was still there, but not as aggressive as before, and lacking none of the signs that desire held. It was a kiss that displayed feelings, more than just the cheap kiss or one that strictly spoke as purely sexual. It held meaning and emotions only displayed through the manner in which he delivered it.

    His mind wasn't on how Sylvia would react, only that in this moment he had needed...no wanted to kiss her. Wanted to physically show her how much he desired her, and how much he held in check because she was important to him. It wasn't some tawdry fling, some fly by the night romance, in this one kiss, it held a myriad of emotions that not even Sergei had recognized.

    The kiss had caught her completely off-guard. Sylvia had moved forward in an attempt to get Sergei to step back, but instead he had taken hold of her with both hands and kissed her. At first, she had simply blinked and instinctively made a move to draw her head back but she found herself arrested in place. She had never been kissed like this before. Even the fierce passion, untempered by alcohol, was so far beyond anything she had experienced. Maybe it was because she really wanted it to be true- Or maybe it was because she felt the same way...

    Sylvia’s eyes fluttered closed as a shiver shot down her spine. He was drawing out the woman in her. Every woman wanted to feel needed – like she was important - something to be cherished, not used and tossed aside. She felt everything fall away, leaving her alone with Sergei and everything he was telling her through his lips. For just a moment, it could be real and Sylvia latched onto that hope. Only when she was let go of her duty, her insecurity, and her practicality - did she return his kiss. Every ounce of yearning and passion was returned to him in full.

    She wasn’t entirely certain how long they had stood like that – locked in their fairy-tale world over his desk – but the return to reality hit Sylvia hard. The first thing she heard was the phone ringing, then someone banging on the door. Finding herself capable of movement, she pulled her face out of Sergei’s hands, looking at the phone instead of him. Sylvia was having a hard time catching her breath and she could feel the blood rushing to her cheeks. What the hell did she just do- Her eyes flickered up to meet his – they were radiating something that looked a lot like fear.

    Backing up suddenly, Sylvia ran into the chair she was supposed to be sitting in, knocking it flying into the wall. She didn’t bother to pick it up, but turned and attempted to make a hasty retreat. She had to get out of his office before she did something even more stupid – like stay. Cursing at the stubborn doorknob, Sylvia finally got the lock open and whipped open the door. A few officers were gathered around the entrance, looking a little sheepish at being caught eavesdropping. She felt her face turn a new shade of crimson as she pushed her way through. Unsure of whether she was about blow up or cry, Sylvia figured the safest bet was the washroom. There was no way she could go to her desk looking – and feeling – like this.

    She stayed in the locker room until her shift was over and left without a word to anyone. One of the guys tried to stop her on the way out, but she had physically moved him aside on her way to the door. Once in the safety of her apartment, Sylvia allowed herself to sort through everything she was feeling. Why did she have to find him now- He was her superior officer. He had a beautiful daughter. He was well-adjusted and took care of himself. She was a knocked-up bottom feeder – oh, and a werewolf. Why did he fall for her- And why was she falling for this guy when she knew it could never be- Crying in frustration, Sylvia banged her head against the wall a few times, as though it would help get some sense into her, before resigning herself to the floor.

    Sylvia was feeling too emotionally drained to do anything or see anybody – she wasn’t going to the school tonight that was for sure and certain. Throwing a frozen pizza in the oven, her mind reflected that it wouldn’t be as good as the one she had at Sergei’s... which nearly made her start crying again. Why did yesterday have to be so wonderful- Why did he -

    ~~~~~~~~

    The moment their lips had touched, there was no going back for Sergei; he was lost in this moment until Sylvia had pulled back. But for a brief moment they had both allowed their hearts and souls to lay bare before the other. To have her return his kiss with equal passion, equal desire had completely taken him away from his surroundings. Not even the phone or the pounding on the door had stirred him until he Sylvia broke their kiss and pulled back from the touch of his hands.

    Seeing the fear in Sylvia’s eyes suddenly brought him back into the present. He found himself at a loss for words as she scrambled out the door. He was left there with the phone ringing, his employees spying in the doorway, and another officer with his hand hanging in the air ready to knock on the door that Sylvia had just thrown open. A moment of bliss had suddenly turned into a nightmare as a giant vacuum was left in the room where Sylvia had just been.

    He wanted to go after her, but the looks on the faces of the other officers told him otherwise. For the most, they believed the two of them to have been fighting and the silence had drawn them to the door so that they could listen in on the “blowup” they were sure would happen. Sylvia’s accidental contact with the chair and the noise that it had made, followed by her swift departure had only added to their alibi that it wasn’t anything more than an argument between the two. The end result was Sylvia letting Sergei know how she felt about having to go get a psych eval.

    Suddenly buried by people, Sergei was unable to do as he had wanted, to go after Sylvia. By the time he had a free moment and bolted to the locker room, she had already clocked out and left. By now, Sergei was feeling like a royal ass, and wasn’t sure how he was going to fix this mess he’d created. He still had work to finish; he couldn’t leave, so he walked back to his office and slammed the door, and remained there until it was time to leave.

    For the rest of the day, he agonized over the whole ordeal, trying to figure out what he was going to say to Sylvia. Sorry just wasn’t going to cut it. By the time Sergei climbed into his car, he almost feeling physically ill. He pulled up outside of Sylvia’s apartment and leaned his head against the steering wheel. How was he going to fix this- He still had no clue, but he couldn’t ignore what happened. He walked up the stairs, a heavy burden weighing upon his heart, reflected in his steps toward Sylvia’s door. Softly he knocked on her door, hoping she was there and would answer.

    “Sylvia, please let me in. We need talk.”
    ~~~~~~~~

    When the knock and corresponding voice sounded at the door, Sylvia looked up in surprise. What was he doing here- For a moment, she remained at her kitchen counter, unsure of what she should do. She should leave the door closed and wait for him to give up. That would be the smart thing to do. However, he was right. They definitely needed to have a talk. Making up her mind, she marched over to the door, threw the bolt and opened it...only to shut the door in his face. The door quickly swung open again a second later, this time remaining at a reasonable angle so that Sergei could enter.

    “Yeah, come in.”

    Once Sergei was inside, Sylvia shut the door firmly in an attempt to give the cat lady across the hall the distinct impression that some privacy was requested on her part. It hadn’t escaped her that the woman’s door was slightly ajar. She really didn’t need anyone listening in on this conversation and repeating it. That is, if it was going to be about what she thought it was going to be about. The miserable look on Sergei’s face told her that it was. Walking away from the door, Sylvia took a seat on the arm of her single chair and folded her arms over her chest.

    Her face stonily reflected little of her thoughts, though her eyes told the truth – that she was upset and a little scared. She was angry with him. She was angry with herself. She was afraid of what she felt for him and what she thought he felt for her. She was worried that they were both going to get slapped with fraternizing, ultimately ending her career. All in all, Sylvia’s emotions weren’t a good mix for empathic conversation. Looking at Sergei, she shrugged her shoulders and stated flatly:

    “So, now what- You want to finish where we left off-”

    That question wasn’t fair of her – after all, she had returned his kiss – but it was so much easier to be angry than unsure. It was easier to attack than play defense. At least she knew how to respond to anger.

    ~~~~~~~~

    Sergei was not a hundred percent sure Sylvia would respond, when she did, she slammed the door in his face, before opening it up again and letting him in. He didn't blame her, he wasn't really even angry, he had deserved it. Cautiously he walked in, not sure if there would be more to the slamming of the door. He watched her move across the room from the door as she took a seat on the arm of the chair. Even with her arms crossed and her demeanor set in a manner to convey anger, he could see the fear and see how upset she was. It only caused him to feel even lower than before.

    He had not intended for this, he hadn't intended for any of it. The question stung, and it brought a little bit of anger out of Sergei. Why did she have to be so stubborn and argumentative-!

    "STOP IT! Damnit!" Sergei let out an exasperated breath.

    "Just stop! Why does every thing have to be an argument or some kind of competition with you-! I came here to apologize; I came here to try to sort through this with you. And I didn't come here to get a piece, if that's what you're asking. I want something more...you deserve something more. I can't help the way I'm feeling Sylvia. The truth is....I don't want to. I...I like how I feel about you. "
    Sergei let out another pent up breath.

    "But I don't want to hurt you...at least not anymore than I already have."

    Sergei wasn't sure what to do to fix this. He knew and surely Sylvia as well, the kiss...that incredible kiss his mind added, was only a warning as to what was to come. Sergei paced the room, running his hands through his hair.

    "I don't know...maybe I can find another job. Maybe..."

    Could he really afford to lose this job when it was just he and Marianna- Could he take the risks, not having any support or anyone to fall back on- It never crossed his mind that the Santiago's would be there for him and Marianna. But this was Sergei's doing, and he had hurt Sylvia, it was his responsibility to be the man and step up. The point was, he was looking for a solution to their dilemma without it meaning an end to what had started between them.

    ~~~~~~~~

    Sylvia had thought she could deal with anger, but Sergei’s outburst wasn’t what she had been expecting. He was...upset with her for how she was behaving. She annoyed him, and yet he still said that he was interested in pursuing a relationship with her. It didn’t make any sense. The fact that Sergei was looking for a way to be able to keep seeing each other didn’t escape her notice either. How could he not see that this wasn’t going to work- She wasn’t worth his time. Sylvia finally resigned herself to plan B - if he couldn’t figure that out for himself, she was just going to have to tell him how wrong she was for him outright. As much as her heart screamed for her not to go this route, her mind was made up. If he couldn’t save himself from making a stupid mistake, she would have to do it for him. Unfolding her arms and pointing at him, Sylvia started her lecture.

    “You know what- No. You just stop. Look at yourself – are you completely blind- You don’t even know me and you want to give up your job so we can ‘be together’- This isn’t even an option. You have a kid to support. You have a job to do. It’s as simple as that.”

    Sylvia paused and took a breath. This next bit was going to be tougher. Time to drive it home. He had to know – or rather, if he knew, it would make breaking this thing off a lot easier.

    “This – this thing between you and me – isn’t going to work out. Ultimately, you need someone who can support you and raise your kid. I’m just not that girl. I’m not a nice person. I’m not a good role model for your daughter. Yeah, yesterday was fun, but it wasn’t me. At least, not all of me. Most of who I am you don’t even like, so why bother when we both know we’re not right for each other-”

    ~~~~~~~~

    After the kiss, rational thinking seemed to have completely left Sergei, at least he would think so much later after he had time to clear his head and think. At least ways he wouldn’t have fallen for Sylvia’s, “This isn’t really going to work between us”, act one bit. But her demeanor changed and the little bit of fear in Sergei bought on to the act as he drew quiet to listen to what she was saying.

    “I see.” He replied.

    “So, the night at the grocery store, that’s all you really wanted, a one night stand, a quickie with a complete stranger- And yesterday, it meant nothing to you, and you aren’t interested in pursuing anything more-”

    Sylvia’s silence was deafening, and at the same time heartbreaking for Sergei. The pain and shock was evident on his face.

    “I’m such a fool, when am I going to learn.”He replied more to himself.

    “I’m sorry for intruding, I should leave.”

    Sergei couldn’t say goodbye, he couldn’t say anything at all. The truth is, he didn’t want to leave, or leave things like this and it showed in every part of him. But he thought he was honoring Sylvia’s wishes, and he couldn’t bring himself to cause her anymore heartache or trouble. So without saying another word, Sergei walked out Sylvia’s door. It was the last time he’d see her for months, as the very next day, he would be shocked by her actions yet again.

    For the next few months, Sergei felt like a royal ass and had attempted many times to talk to Sylvia. Every card, bouquet of flowers or message that he sent would be unanswered or never received. .

    ~~~~~~~~

    It just about killed her to let him leave. It was hard enough to give him the impression that she wasn’t interested – to lie to him and give herself a bad reputation to boot – but the crushing weight of loneliness did her in. Sylvia slid sideways onto the chair cushion, staring at the door. A choking sob seeped out around the sides of her hands that were clapped firmly over her mouth. She curled up in the chair as though the piece of furniture could simulate a human hug. It just wouldn’t do. Tears streamed down her face, and try as she might, she couldn’t stop the sobs from racking her body.

    After a few minutes, she took a few deep breaths – of smoke. Sylvia swore and jumped up to tend to the charred pizza pouring out smoke from the oven. Throwing it in the sink and turning on the cold water to douse the embers, she bent over the countertop and wiped her tears on her sleeve. It was for the best. She couldn’t even cook a damn frozen pizza without burning it. How could she provide for a family – how would she- Her hand slid off the counter to hover just shy of touching her swelling abdomen before moving back up to become a chin rest.

    She still couldn’t do it. How was she going to be a mother if she couldn’t even bring herself to touch the kid- Maybe it was because she knew she would be a rotten one so there was no point in getting attached. Sylvia knew she couldn’t kill the child, at least she was a decent enough person to know that, but what kind of life could she give it- It would probably be better off with some other family – adoption- If the kid ended up with a family like Lukas and Millie’s, she’d never have to worry about it again.

    It bothered her to call the baby ‘it’. It bothered her that she didn’t want to know if it was a ‘he’ or ‘she’. And then there was Sergei...and Marianna. Her heart swelled when she thought of the sweet blue-eyed girl who had fallen asleep in her lap – and she felt so guilty. It wasn’t going to work. None of it was. Her eyes drifted toward the door again. She knew that somehow she had caught Sergei’s eye and that he was a driven guy. He’d be back. He wasn’t going to give up, even though it was in his best interest.

    Before she could out-think herself, Sylvia picked up her phone and dialed a number from out of her wallet. While she was waiting for the person on the other end to pick up, she walked to the window and fired up her ancient computer. The whirring almost drowned out Helen’s voice, causing Sylvia to return to the kitchen.

    “Hey Helen- Yeah, Sylvia. Um, would there...I mean, is there...room for me to...stay over...at the school- Naw, just anything. Hell, a crate. Yeah. Okay. Thanks. Bye.” Sylvia heaved a deep breath. That was a huge step she really wasn’t wanting to take, but Sergei had definitely forced her hand. Oh well, at least she’d be around for Tim to harp on about those stupid vitamins. Now for the hard part. Sitting down at the computer, she took a deep breath and started writing a request for a transfer. She cited proximity to pre-natal classes and single mother support groups as her main reasons. It was the right thing to do. Remove temptation and life would be sweet again.

    The next two months proved that theory dead wrong. If she had known that Sergei had been sending notes and flowers, maybe she would have figured it out quicker, but as it was Sylvia was still oblivious to one of the major reasons she was utterly miserable. Her heart ached to love – and her head told it that it would be better off not getting hurt again.

    Her heart whispered that it was too late for that.
    ...to the topTop



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