A terse message on his comm this morning tells him he's been promoted.
Few details are provided, only a perfunctory line of congratulations and the lock code to his new quarters. The first officer's suite is larger than his old quarters, a model of Peacekeeper efficiency, much like its previous occupant. No personal touches intrude on these rooms, though her scent still clings to the neatly tucked sheets.
It was a training accident, according to the official word from the Captain. Under the circumstances, Braca isn't about to question him.
Almost a monen now, and they're still deep in the Uncharted Territories, the entire carrier on continuous high alert. All for one ship; three escaped prisoners, a deserter, and an unclassified alien. The crew are exhausted, on edge and jumpy, and Crais has made no sign he is even thinking of abandoning the pursuit.
Sensations stand out like the afterimage from an explosion, so that even now, in the silence of her empty rooms, he shivers at the memory of her hands sliding under his shirt, her touch electric against the skin of his back. She'd come to him two nights ago, surprising him three arns into the fourth watch when they should both have been sleeping. She hadn't bothered to ask what he was doing, if he was busy; she'd just grabbed the front of his jacket with both hands and pulled him roughly against her.
He'd been hoping to see her, though he hadn't expected this, her lips colliding with his, frantic hands tearing at the clasps on his shirt. He'd had more than recreation on his mind, staring at unfamiliar star charts, too tired to think straight but far too tense to sleep.
In the three cycles they'd served together, she'd shared his bed maybe half a dozen times. He respected her as a competent officer and a shrewd tactician, a hardened warrior and a consummate professional. She no longer intimidated him quite the way she once did, when he was new to the carrier and her cool gaze never seemed to light on him except to find fault. Still he'd hesitated to approach her, knowing she'd served with Crais for cycles, recognizing the loyalty between long-time comrades in arms.
Such concerns had dissolved under the insistent pressure of her mouth, reason and responsibility giving way to pure biological drive as he turned her around, backing her against the wall as she kicked off her boots. She said nothing when she finally broke the kiss, only hissed in impatience while he fumbled with the fastenings of her pants. Deft fingers pushed stiff leather off his hips, one hand circling his rapidly hardening cock, and he'd gasped as she stroked him.
He'd shoved the back of her shirt up and she arched toward him, smooth skin, puckered scars and hard muscle warming under his hands. Her arm went around his shoulders, bracing them both against the wall as he finally tugged her pants off, both of them clumsy with anticipation and raw mutual need brought on by weekens of frustration and uncertainty. Her cheeks were flushed, blue eyes hooded as she locked her legs around him, shifting her hips forward and pulling him in.
A low growl deep in her throat sent his heart racing in a feverish, fluttery rhythm. There was a kind of desperation in the way she clutched at him, fingers digging vise-like into his shoulders as he buried himself in her, smothering a hoarse groan against her shirt.. No room to think, no room to feel anything beyond slick heat and the friction of skin against skin, vague awareness of pain as her teeth sank into his neck, her legs against the backs of his thighs as he drove into her again.
He remembers in flashes, her lips on his hard enough to bruise, tasting his blood on her tongue. Remembers thrusting into her, feeling her shivering, rocking against him, their movements frenetic and out of synch, an almost-rhythm that couldn't last long. Remembers how she flung back her head, hitting the wall with a soft thump; four microts and he came shuddering after her.
Moments blurred together, awareness returning slowly, background noises of his console and the air-recyclers once again audible over the pounding of blood in his ears. She sagged against him when he pushed away from the wall, catching him off guard, and he caught her by pure reflex. He'd been surprised to feel her shaking still, even more so when she didn't push him away. Her eyes were closed, and the set, strained look on her face instantly dispelled the warm haze fogging his mind.
A cold feeling settles in his stomach at the memory, as he stows his few possessions in the closet where her spare uniforms still hang. He'd never seen her afraid before; the taste of fear lingers in his mouth where the memory of her touch has faded.
"What are we going to do?" He'd murmured the words into her hair.
"Do?" She hadn't moved, though the old edge was in her voice, even muffled as it was against his jacket. "We have our standing orders. I'm due on the bridge in a quarter arn. You're going to stay here and analyze the data the Marauders sent in, and call me if you find anything."
"Is in his quarters, sleeping." Her hands had flattened against his chest and she'd shoved him away, hard. "And will not be disturbed."
"Regulations clearly state--" He had trailed off at the look in her eyes, concentrated on straightening his uniform. She dressed quickly, movements quick and sharp, every line of her body radiating tension.
"If an officer demonstrates he is no longer fit for command, it is the duty of those immediately subordinate to remove him. I am aware of the regulations, Lieutenant."
Her fear had been for the Captain, not for herself. Not for him, not for the fifty thousand on board the carrier, all hurtling into the unknown at the whim of a madman.
"And you don't think Captain Crais--"
"I do not need you to tell me what I think, Lieutenant. That decision is mine to make. And until I do, you will speak of your commanding officer with the respect due his rank." She'd stood in the doorway, slim and hard and deadly as a knife blade, fury stirring in her eyes.
He should have pushed her. He knows this now; some part of him had known it then. But the ice in her tone had frozen him. She was a Peacekeeper, born to the service, bred and trained for war, sworn to uphold regulations. She knew her duty.
She'd known her duty and she'd chosen to abandon it, to abandon honor for sentimental weakness. She was a fool.
This is what he tells himself now, because it's easier to be angry. Once he'd admired her, coveted her rank, her position; now his new, spacious quarters seem to close around him like a trap.
Drawing a deep breath, straightening his jacket, he tries to assume a properly impassive expression. He will be patient. He will watch, and he will wait, until it is time to act. He's expected on the bridge in less than a quarter arn, and it won't do to keep the Captain waiting.
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Title: Lost Chances
Author: Flora [email] [website]
Details: Standalone | NC-17 | het | 6k | 04/28/04
Characters: Braca, Teeg
Summary: Braca's just been promoted. He's not entirely happy about it.
Disclaimer/Other: This is my first attempt at writing anything like smut, and my first attempt writing Braca's POV, so any comments, suggestions or criticism are very much appreciated. Thanks so much to StarsGoBlue for betaing this!
I don't own any of these characters. I'm not making any money off of this, please don't sue.
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