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Strange Bedfellows

Chapter 8

General Hammond listened to the report. The data crystals were now in Ares' possession. That Doctor Jackson had inserted one of them into the computer was as close to a guarantee that the Goa'uld would read the information therein as they could get. It hadn't been easy to keep a straight face during the description of Doctor Jackson's rescue. No one had to tell him that the fact that Ares was naked was indicative of the fact that the prisoner had been as well. Over the years he'd heard the rumors that had circulated about the young archaeologist. He'd heard Jack O'Neill say on several occasions that anyone who thought Daniel Jackson was gay didn't know the man. The general heartily agreed. He also suspected that those rumors had left deep scars on the man's very soul. "I don't see any need to go into detail about Doctor Jackson's capture, or rescue. It was all over in less than a half an hour. Let's just leave it at that."

Daniel stared at his hands. Leaving out the details meant that no one but his teammates would ever know for certain what had happened. To hear Jack and Casey tell the story, he'd been captured and taken to a bathing Ares, who'd then tried to kill him. Sam and Teal'c were backing up that version all the way. He knew that not one person in the SGC would doubt the story...would ever question the details of the mission.

If his Wife and friends hadn't arrived when they had...he shuddered mentally. He still battled memories of Hathor, which returned to haunt his dreams now and again. At least she'd been a woman. What he wanted...what he needed...was a night in the arms of his Angel. Every fear, every hurt, every worry was pushed away...unable to bother him, when he was in her arms. With her, he felt invincible. He never had to prove himself to her when they made love.

When the general dismissed them, telling them to take the next day off, he followed his teammates to the elevator and toward the locker rooms. Casey managed to pinch his ass before she disappeared into the women's locker room, bringing an automatic smile to his face. Daniel pushed the door of the men's locker room open and walked in, Jack and Teal'c on his heels. 

"...I'm telling you, the guy had a woman on every planet! Now, what I'd like to know, is how the hell he managed it," a voice was saying from the shower room.

"Easy," a second voice replied. "Listen to the women around here. They all think he's the greatest thing since sliced bread. He knows all that stuff about other cultures, so he's smooth. Able to fit right in."

"He's got that shy thing going on," a third voice said. "Women can't resist a man who's shy."

"So, if he has a woman on every planet, does he ever go back and visit them?" the first voice asked.

"I dunno."

"I'll tell you one thing, with the wife he has, Doc doesn't need to look around," the third voice said.

"I hear that!" voice number two agreed. "I overheard her talking to a couple of SF's one day. She said his kisses were...how did she put that...oh yeah, 'the breath of life' for her."

Jack looked over at Daniel. Saw the color creep into the tanned cheeks.

"Must be nice to have a woman that crazy in love with you," the first man said wistfully.

The whisper of the water against the tiles ended. Jack hurried back to the door, grabbing Teal'c and Daniel on the way. He slammed the door, making it appear as if the three had just arrived. "Gentlemen," Jack said, trying not to grin.

"Colonel, sir," the first man said. He glanced nervously at Daniel. The second man elbowed him in the ribs. The young man frowned, pushed back, then turned back to the archaeologist. "Doctor Jackson, we have a question for you. Feel free not to answer."

"Okay," Daniel said slowly.

"Is it true that you had a woman on every planet SG-1 ever visited?"

Jack grinned, pushed past Daniel, flopped onto the bench in front of the lockers. "Yep, that's our Space Monkey. Regular babe magnet. Had eight of them on one planet."

"Jack!" Daniel protested.

"Okay, maybe 'had' is the wrong word. But those ladies wanted our fair-haired archaeologist in the worst way," Jack said. And Daniel'd still been looking for Sha're, and refused to accept what would've amounted to nothing more than a bit of relief for what had to be an incredible ache in his balls. "However, being a married man at the time, and the gentleman that he is, Daniel refrained. Which is his secret, you know. Being a gentleman."

The three young Marines nodded, understanding lighting their eyes.

"Yep, being a gentleman is the trick."

"You should try it sometime, Jack," Daniel said drolly, opening his locker. His heart was pounding. And he felt as if he were going to start grinning and never stop. Since Casey's arrival, there'd been no rumors of him being gay. Now, he thought, the rumors had endowed him with some magical prowess with women. The only woman he wanted to impress, he didn't need to. She loved him as he was, shortcomings and all. That, he thought, was the most amazing thing of all.

"Ha ha. I'll have you know I'm always a gentleman!"

"I disagree, O'Neill. There have been instances in which your behavior was most ungentlemanly," Teal'c said quietly.

Daniel laughed out loud.

"Teal'c, you're killing me, here," Jack complained.

By now the Jaffa was accustomed to the complaint. He merely smirked, and began to pull off his uniform.

"So, O'Malley's?" Jack asked, in an attempt to focus attention away from himself and his manners, or lack thereof.

"Not tonight," Daniel said quietly. "Case said we need to stop at the grocery store on the way home."

Jack bit back the retort that had been on the tip of his tongue, one about being pussy-whipped. "I hate grocery shopping," he said instead.

"I used to," Daniel admitted.

"Used to?"

"Yeah. Used to."

"And now you don't?" Jack asked, one eyebrow raised.


"Okay, I'll bite. Why not?"

Daniel grinned, turned around and faced his friend as he buttoned his shirt. "I get to watch Casey bend over and get stuff off the bottom shelves."

One of the young Marines groaned out loud.

His grin widened. "If you gentlemen will excuse me, my Wife will be waiting for me."

Jack and Teal'c exchanged knowing smiles as the archaeologist left the locker room whistling.

"I'd pay money to see Mrs. J bend over," one of the young men sighed.

"You should see her work out," Jack said.

"I have," the second young man replied.

"Good?" the Marine asked.

"So good it hurts," he told his friend.

"Oh, man," the young man groaned.


A  A  A  A  A  A


He hadn't been lying about the trip to the grocery store. Nor had he been lying about enjoying the view as his Wife bent over. In fact, he was standing behind the cart, next to the pickles, watching her select a jar of olives. She wasn't bent over. Instead, she was on the tips of her toes, trying to see onto the highest shelf. Her body was arched like a dancer's, her breasts thrust forward slightly, her ass pushed back. He was fighting an erection as he studied her.

"You could stop staring at me and see if there's another jar of these," she deadpanned.

"Not as much fun as staring at you," he replied.

She smiled. "You make me feel like the sexiest woman alive," she said softly.

"That's because you are," he replied. The look of love in her eyes damned near knocked him to his knees.

"Only in your eyes," she demurred.

He stepped behind her, reached back and pulled out the last jar of almond stuffed olives.

"Thank you."

"You're welcome."

"You know what I'd like to do when we get home?"

He knew what he'd like to do, he thought, trying to rein in thoughts of her...naked and writhing beneath him. "What?"

She turned to look at him. Held his gaze with her own. "Take a bath. With you."


"Mmmhmm. Wash you and get you all nice and clean. Then take you to bed and get you all nice and dirty."

Well that had the anaconda's full attention! He watched her check her list, and then she bent over for a can of something...he was too busy watching that amazing ass to notice, or care, what it was that she was getting. "Bath...sounds nice," he said, his voice slightly strained.

Casey was well aware that he liked watching her. She still didn't fully understand why, but she was happy enough with the fact that he did that she found no need to examine the reasons. "Candles, wine, bath oil..."

He shivered at the sensual...erotic...scene she was creating.

"Just you and me, nothing between us but a bit of water..."

"Almost finished?" he asked. He was seriously doubting his ability to get out of Piggly-Wiggly without grabbing her and taking her, on the spot.

She giggled. "Almost."


A  A  A  A  A  A


The water was warm. Her skin was warm...and soft...and slick. He sighed happily as she settled back against him. They'd finished off the wine, both of them relaxed and content. His hands went to her breasts, cupping the soft curves gently. There's nothing in creation more beautiful than a woman's body, he thought. Certainly none as beautiful as the one pressed up against him.

"Daniel, didn't the ancient Greeks have names for men and their young male lovers?"

"Yes, they did. 'Eromenos' was an adolescent boy in a love relationship with a man. 'Erastes' was the adult male in that relationship. Although different areas did have different names...which actually had slightly different meanings. In Athens, the 'eromenos' was also known as the 'paidika'; in Sparta they used 'aites', which means hearer, recognition of the fact that the younger man was a student as well as a lover. In Crete the boys were known as 'kleinos', which means 'glorious'. If they'd fought in battle with their lover, they were known as 'parastathenes'. That translates as 'one who stands beside'."

"How on earth do you remember all of that?" she asked.

"I don't know," he admitted. "I just do."

"You're brilliant, Doctor Jackson," she sighed, making the compliment sound as if she were remarking on the color of his eyes or the muscles of his chest.

"So you keep telling me."

"It's true! Total package deal," she said firmly. "Brains and brawn."

He couldn't help but laugh.

"I guess the ancients viewed pedophilia differently than we do," she said, returning the conversation to its beginning.

"The ancient Greeks didn't actually have sex with the boys...at least, not penetration sex," Daniel informed her. "Usually it was just fondling and intercrural sex."

"Intercrural...um...okay I give up. What is it?"

He chuckled. "One partner puts his penis between the thighs of the other, and rubs back and forth."


When she was silent for a few moments, he frowned. "Case?"

"Sorry, just thinking about it. Couldn't do it. When I want that anaconda, I want it. Inside me, all the way."

He grinned against her hair. "Glad to hear it."

"So, did Ares pass on this interest in having sex with other men?"

Daniel jerked slightly. "What do you mean?"

"Well, Ares was in Sparta. He and the Olympians founded Greece in the same way Ra and his cronies founded Egypt. It's logical to assume that his...appetites...were well known by the locals. If it was okay for a god, it was good enough for the rest of the people, right? Especially the priests. Have you ever noticed," she asked, turning around to look at him, "that the priests are the most annoying, egotistical pains-in-the-ass? They're as bad as the Goa'uld! Must come from being near the snakes all the time. All that rotten just rubs off on them. I suppose the old farts take a turn in the sarcophagus. Explains why the doddering old fools are still around...and we know that overuse of those things scrambles the brain cells. Not that they could be too smart to begin with. I mean really, playing second fiddle to a Goa'uld? Not me! I'd kill the snake and run things myself. Of course, that would preclude me being inclined to run the world...and what are you laughing about?"

He'd tried to be quiet as she chattered on, but his entire body was shaking with laughter. "I love you," he gasped, once he could catch his breath.

"I love you, too. What's so funny?"

"Just imagining you as a doddering old priest."

She giggled. "I'll have you know I'd be ravishing in those priestly robes!"

"Without a doubt," he murmured, nuzzling her neck.

"I couldn't let him kill you," she said softly.

He pulled away, frowned at her. "Kill me?"

"I heard what he was saying to you. Trying to turn you on. Look, I'll be the first to admit that he has good taste in men. Well, at least you. But he's dumber than a box of rocks if he thought for one minute you'd just let him...do that...to you. You'd have fought him, and he'd have killed you. I couldn't let that happen," she said softly.

Daniel couldn't help but smile. She knew him better than he knew himself, it seemed. And he had been ready to fight, in spite of the ribbon device. In spite of the fact that his death would have no doubt been the result.

"Anyone who said such hateful things about you was jealous. They had to try to make you seem less than a man, in order to feel like men themselves. You're brilliant. You're handsome. You're strong, and brave, and generous...you're more man than those jerks could deal with. So, they made up hurtful lies, and kept telling those lies to one another, in order to make themselves feel like men. You threatened them, Daniel, just by being the incredible man that you are."

His heart was thumping against his ribs, his eyes filled with tears as he listened to her. She could make him feel as if he really were all of those things. "What you do to me, woman," he whispered, wrapping his arms around her, pulling her close, holding her tightly and nuzzling her neck once more.

Casey shifted until she was facing him, straddled his hips, wrapped her arms around his neck. "You know, I almost made a different choice beside that pool."

Both eyebrows went up in surprise, and then back down into a frown. "Really?"

"Mmmhmm. You were naked, and the pool was there, and well...it would have been fun to show Ares just what a Stud Muffin you really are...and of course, let him know that he was never going to have you, in any way, shape or form."

He was grinning again. "What stopped you?"

"The thought of what Jack would say. I could just hear him...'Can't you two get within three feet of each other without doing the groping thing?' I figured I really didn't have the time or energy to deal with Ares and Jack."

He barked with laughter, her impression of his best friend spot on. "I suppose that would've been a drawback," he admitted.

Her eyes grew serious. "Daniel?"


"Does it bother you when I...well, when I...when I'm giving you head and I...well..."

He understood what she was trying to ask him. "No, Angel, it doesn't bother me. Drives me out of my freaking mind. Takes me to a hair's breadth of having a heart attack. But it doesn't bother me."

"I only want to make you feel good," she whispered.

"I know," he whispered in reply.


He grinned. "Hmm?"

"Let's go to bed. I have an itch that needs to be scratched."

"You do, huh?"

"Yep. I've had it since this afternoon. Seeing you naked always gives me an itch."

"Well, if it's my fault you have that itch-"

"Oh, it is," she interjected.

"Then the least I can do is scratch it for you."

"I'd be so grateful if you did."

"How grateful?"

"Very grateful."

"Very, very grateful?"


He put his hand behind her head, pulled her close for a kiss. Did a mental happy dance when her hand went into his hair, holding him as closely as he held her, the other moving over his shoulder, setting fire to his skin with her soft fingertips. His tongue moved over her sweet lips, working the combination that would allow him entrance. When she gasped, he pushed forward gently, wanting to take his time tasting her...touching her.

Dear goddess there wasn't a man in existence who could kiss like Daniel! Her body hummed with desire as he took what he wanted from her, and gave back so much more. His hands had moved to her breasts...cupping them, rubbing his thumbs over her nipples, the gentle stimulation sending messages of need to her brain.

"Let's get washed," he whispered, pulling away from her far enough to speak.

"Good idea," she whispered in return.

The simple act of washing one another became just another expression of their love, the tender touches arousing as much as cleansing, preparing each other for the delights yet to come. When they were finished, had dried one another just as gently as they'd bathed, Daniel took the clip from her hair. He loved watching it tumble down over her shoulders, watching her pink nipples playing peek-a-boo between locks of blonde silk. He offered no resistance when she took his hand, led him to the bedroom.

This, she thought, is heaven. My little piece of heaven on Earth. One room. One bed. One man. The only man who existed in her world. This little piece of heaven. She sat down on the edge of the bed, her hands stopping him when he would have sat down beside her. He was aroused, his manhood stood proudly away from his body. With devotion in every caress, she ran her fingers up and down the hard shaft, over the sensitive glans, back down to his balls, which she cupped gently, rolled against her palm. The shiver his body gave pleased her. She looked up at him, her eyes locked with his as she began to lick him, from top to bottom, around and around, flicking her tongue on the ridge that always made his hips jerk.

His hands were in her hair, holding on as she made love to him. There was no doubt in his mind that she was worshipping him...the look of love in her green eyes as she watched him told him so. Her hands worked in concert with her mouth, giving him pleasure that was unbelievable. "You're incredible," he whispered. "I love how you do that!"

She pulled away from him. "Lay down, Stud Muffin. Let me love you," she said softly.

Her words were as arousing as the touch of her hands, her mouth. He did as she requested, stretched out, slid to the center of the bed. Spread his legs so that she could kneel between them. "Do it," he whispered...he commanded...he begged.

Taking him back into the warmth of her mouth, her eyes smiled at him when he threaded his fingers through her hair. It always excited her...turned her on even more when she had him close to the edge, and his hands held her steady as he thrust, trying to shove more of his magnificent cock down her throat. He never hurt her...never. She always took as much as she could, always wished she could take more.

The most talented tongue in the galaxy...in the universe, was in his Wife's mouth. He couldn't help but moan softly when he felt her using that talented tongue to paint designs over his throbbing, aching flesh. The sensations were nothing short of amazing. Until he'd met her...had made love with her the first time, he'd never known this particular pleasure. Another moan as she moved down on him, taking as much as she could, and then shaking her head.

She loved to make him throb and moan and shift his entire body as she moved him ever closer to his climax. She knew what he liked. Knew exactly how to please him. She began to suck on the head, her hands moving downward, one hand always in contact with his cock. When he was breathing hard, throbbing fast, she stopped, began to bob up and down on him, taking as much of him as she could, then moving up, swirling her tongue around and over the tip, then back down.

Sweet Jesus, he was going to lose his mind! When she moved down and began to suck and lick his balls, he was certain he was going to blow. Her hands never stopped moving, never stopped caressing him. When she started licking the perineum, he couldn't help but twitch. She moved back to his balls, then once again took his aching cock into her sweet, warm mouth.

Her fingers were as wet with her saliva as he was , and as she took him as deeply as she could, she slid her finger inside him. Felt him jerk, then press back against her hand. Her other hand continued to move up and down his shaft. He was throbbing hard and fast. He was gasping for breath, his belly beginning to roll. It was time to send him over the edge. She bobbed up and down. Shook her head back and forth. Took him in for the final time, relaxing her throat and taking as much of him as possible. When she began to swallow, her finger moved rhythmically.

"Oh, god," he moaned. His eyes rolled back in his head, his hips came up off of the bed, and he began to tremble, just before he exploded. "Oh god, oh god...Casey!"

Her heart was pounding with excitement as he cried out her name and began to come, precious white love pouring down her willing throat. She licked him clean, kissed her way up to his chest, where she spent time greeting his hard, flat nipples. "Better?"

"Damned near dead," he replied. He couldn't help but grin as she continued to place warm kisses over his chest and shoulders.

"They do call it the 'little death', you know," she drawled.

"You're a smartass," he chuckled. He rolled to his side, putting her on her back. "Your turn to fly, Angel."

And fly she would. As soon as he drove her completely out of her mind. He kissed her, then pulled away to look into her eyes. The gleam in those blue depths told her that he was already enjoying himself. That he was going to torment her until he sent her into the heavens on a wave of pleasure that would come close to rendering her unconscious.

Her skin was like ambrosia as he began the journey of exploration...of love. Fragrant, soft, and sweet; he could feel each tremor that moved through her as he nibbled and licked and kissed his way over the sexy column of her throat. Down to the slender shoulders, where he left his mark, the soft sigh and shiver as he did so urging him on.

As soon as he began making love to 'his beauties', as he referred to her breasts, her back began to arch off of the bed, although she wasn't cognizant of that fact. Her fingers locked in his hair, the other hand caressed his shoulder and neck. Tendrils of pleasure reached from aching nipples to her backbone, raced up and down before coming to settle in that secret place between her thighs. Her need was becoming a delicious ache.

He rolled a hard, pink nipple with the tip of his tongue. Back and forth, up and down, noting with satisfaction the marked increase in her breathing. He gave ample attention to both of those beautiful breasts, licking the curves, nibbling the soft skin, suckling on nipples that felt like round pearls against his tongue.

She was burning out of control...an inferno of desire and need roared through her, taking her breath away, leaving her body trembling in his hands. Only Daniel could quench that fire...could put it out and leave her weak with relief and pleasure. When he began to kiss his way to her belly, tugged on the tiny platinum ring in her belly button, she gasped, then moaned softly.

He put his hands around her waist, gently pushed her body back onto the bed, grinning inside. To know that his attention, his touch brought such a reaction pleased him...urged him on. Made the need to please her burn even hotter. He nuzzled the dark blonde curls of her mons. Breathed deeply of that heavenly aroma...sweet and hot. His hands wrapped around her thighs, held her steady as he took his first taste, her soft moan adding to the rush that her sweet pheromones always produced.

It was all she could do to try to remain still. He was licking her, kissing her, touching her everywhere but in the place that ached for his attention. She tried to push her hips down, forcing that little nub where she wanted it...but he wasn't playing. His eyes grinned up at her, and he thrust his tongue into her. The first waves of pleasure rolled over her, brought a soft moan.

She was doing everything she could, short of grabbing his head, holding him still, and forcing him to give her the relief she needed. Her body was writhing, her breasts rising and falling as her breath continued to speed up. He used the tip of his tongue to write his name in cuneiform along the swollen nether lips of that sweet little twat.  Drew the hieroglyph for beautiful on her clit, her gasp making his heart pound harder, faster.

"Nngg! Yes!"

Oh, yeah! Talk to me, babe! he thought delightedly. He flicked his tongue over her again, felt the response in the jerk of her hips. Licked her from front to back, using the flat of his tongue. Listened to her moan softly again. She was trembling, and so close that it wouldn't take much to send her over the edge. He slid two fingers inside her, took that swollen nub into his mouth, sucked gently on it.

"Yes! Oh, god!"

When he held her tender flesh gently between his teeth, teased her with the flickering of his tongue, he sped up the movement of his fingers, pushing deep, hard, and fast. He listened with satisfaction as that beautiful whimper filled her throat. Her thighs began to quiver against his shoulders as that whimper turned into an aria of love.

Lights flashed, colors twirled in never-ending spirals as she launched into orbit, dancing among the stars as she rode wave after wave of intense, pure pleasure. She cried out when he slid up, buried himself deep within her, his presence prolonging those incredible feelings. She locked her arms and legs around him and pulled him close.

Nothing could compare to being inside her...nothing could ever please him as much, bring him as much pleasure as being in her arms. He examined the sensations that washed over him...and the feelings that accompanied them. Love...pure and sweet filled his heart, his very soul, as they performed the intimate dance of love. Pleasure so intense it took his breath away raced from the top of his head to the tips of his toes, and centered in his throbbing flesh as he moved in and out of that sweet, welcoming well.

She pressed kisses against his shoulder, nibbled at his collarbone, her hips meeting his thrust for thrust. Ran her hands up and down his arms when he rose up and began to pound into her. Her eyes fluttered closed as she climbed the second pinnacle, clung to him as she prepared to leap, knowing that he'd be flying beside her.

"Give it to me, Angel, let go," he panted, so close to his release that he didn't know if he could hold back much longer.

He was grinding his hips against hers each time he pushed into her, the stimulation exactly what she craved...what she needed. There it was...almost there...she could reach out and almost touch that glittering climax...She began to whimper, locked her legs around his waist, her hips moving up and down against him.

When she began to sing that sweet song of love to him, he gave in - let go, moaned loudly as he filled her - his cock throbbing against the convulsing walls of her well. Completely spent, he dropped down onto her, let her hold him for the time it took to catch his breath.

"Love you," she said softly.

"Love you too," he replied. With a groan he rolled over, keeping her body pressed against his.

They caressed one another gently in the soft, warm afterglow of their lovemaking. An errant thought crossed her mind, made her giggle.


"I was just thinking."

"About what?"


Daniel stiffened slightly. "What about him?"

"Well, I was sort of feeling sorry for him," Casey admitted.

"Why, because you shot him?"

"No! He had it coming! I was just thinking that he'll never know what an incredible lover you are. Never experience the anaconda pounding into him, taking him to places he couldn't even imagine existed."

He shuddered slightly. "I'm not sure that Ares is a 'bottom'."

"A what?"

"The guy on the bottom."

"Oh." She frowned. "Oh, please! He'd have to be!"

As much as he really didn't want to talk about Ares and the Goa'uld's sexual preferences, curiosity got the better of him. "Why would he have to be the bottom?"

"With that little thing he has? Not even butt plug size!"

The response was so unexpected that for a moment he was totally shocked. Laughter bubbled up and out, shaking him as it washed over him. "And I suppose you've seen butt plugs?"

"Same place as I ordered the vibrators from," she admitted, her cheeks going pink.

"I see." He was still chuckling. "Ares is convinced he's quite a stud, if his stories of conquest are anything to go by."

She gave a snort. "Please! Only in his mind! I'll bet that the women he was with never felt a thing. Just laid there and waited for him to go away and quit bothering them."

He couldn't help it, he thought, grinning madly. "What about the men?"

"Just used him to get their rocks off. Of course, if he ever tried to do them, they probably got the snot knocked out of them."

Dare he ask? He chuckled. "How do you figure that happened?"

"They'd look over their shoulder and tell him they were ready, stick it in, and he'd already be there, humping away," she explained.

The mental image had him howling with laughter. He hugged her tightly. "You're a wicked woman, Casey Jackson."

She giggled. "It could be true. I've seen him naked. I bit my tongue to keep from telling him to throw it back and wait for it to grow up."

He wiped tears of laughter out of his eyes. "You're mean!"

"Just telling it like it is," she retorted playfully.

"So, any plans for tomorrow?" he asked. Just to make certain she didn't have.

"No, why?"

"I thought a picnic on Pike's Peak sounded nice."

"That does sound nice," she agreed. She snuggled closer to him, yawned widely.

Daniel kissed her forehead. "Sleep, Angel," he said softly.

With a sigh, she closed her eyes. Safe in Daniel's embrace, there was nothing that she need fear. Within seconds she was sleeping peacefully.

The feelings of anger...of frustration...brought up by the events of the afternoon, feelings that he'd pushed aside, lay powerless against him. He wasn't gay. Never had been. He hadn't even been bi-curious, not even when several of his college roommates 'experimented' with same-sex love. He'd earned a reputation as being 'sexless' simply because he'd buried himself in his studies...his work. The people who'd called him that, or insisted that he was gay, never noticed the way he watched women. The appreciation he had for them, both intellectually, and physically. Because he wasn't vocal about that appreciation, it was overlooked. He tightened his arms around the slender body on top of him. None of it, not one damned bit of it, made any difference. Not to her. She saw him in a way no one else did. She saw the man behind the intellect. Behind the quiet reserve. Behind the peace lover. She brought out the wild man in him, and tamed him just as quickly. He kissed her forehead again, smiled when she sighed softly. She had shined the light of her love on him, and for the first time, those around him could see him as he was. How incredible was that?

A sigh of contentment slipped past his lips. He closed his eyes. Smiled when she snuggled closer again. When sleep overtook him, his dreams were filled with green eyes, a warm smile, and a supple body that took his breath away.


A  A  A  A  A  A


The man stared out the window at the city. The need for a translation was dire. The weapon must be studied, they must learn how to use it. Or they would never take their place in the world as the supreme leaders that they were meant to be. Determination etched on his face, he turned back to his desk. Reached for the phone. "I agree," he said quietly, when his call was answered. "Make the arrangements."

His gaze returned to the window. If he and his companions were discovered, an international incident of major proportions would ensue. If they were able to operate in secret long enough to guarantee success, that threat would be lessened, perhaps even eliminated. It was a gamble he was willing to take. Having his name go down in history as one of the seven men who had the courage to lift China to the heights of dominance was worth the risk. A grim smile tugged at his thin lips. The future awaited, and he was ready.


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