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Slow Hands

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Christen isn’t sure what made her do this today.

Maybe it was the way she had been awake before the sun was up. Lying on her side and looking through the crack in her bedroom curtains, just as the morning light was slowly making its first appearance of the day. The sky just barely illuminated with that dull, gray glow; the way it is before the sun actually appears on the horizon.

Her dog, Morena, had been panting softly on the other side of the bed.

Christen hadn’t totally adjusted to her new surroundings yet and maybe that’s why she was conscious at this hour to begin with.

She had just moved into her brand new apartment that was now fully furnished after two weeks of slowly moving in and getting it situated just how she wanted it. One full day of movers, bringing the big stuff and box after box of her California life, into her bigger and newer Chicago apartment; followed by several days afterward of store runs for blinds and paint and pictures to hang on the walls and other minor odds and ends. She felt more relaxed now that the place finally felt complete.

Maybe it was the way her teammates couldn’t stop raving about the best coffee shop in the city that just happened to now be five blocks down from her new place. They’d continue to give her a hard time about not trying it until she did. Plus, she had vowed to learn her new neighborhood better, so maybe the freedom of a day off made up her mind for her.

Or maybe it was the way Morena was following an unsuspecting scent trail, pulling on her leash wildly like she hadn’t been trained not to. It was unlike the usually well-behaved dog to be so eager. Instead of fighting it and pulling her the other way towards her usual route, maybe Christen just gave in and decided to let her pup lead for once.

Whatever it was that made her head east towards the lake instead of south towards the river, Christen would end up wishing she hadn’t. At least for a little while.

“Morena, don’t pull so hard,” Christen warned lightly, giving the leash a little harder of a tug than normal.

The pup seemed to get the gist of the scolding, if only momentarily.  

They had stopped at a red light, waiting for the crossing signal to change as taxis and cars zoomed through the busy intersection even at this early hour.

One of the perks of living in this part of the city now was how much there was to do. One of the downsides was how busy it was at all hours of the day.

The signal changed and the dog was back on her scent trail, hurrying Christen along through the city blocks until they made it over Lakeshore Drive and successfully onto the Lakefront Trail. Eventually, whatever smell Morena was picking up had seemingly disappeared and she was now back to her obedient ways, walking along Christen’s right-hand side dutifully.

Lake Michigan was shimmering in the early morning light. The water was almost too still for how big and brutal the Great Lake could be, but it was calm and peaceful this morning. Like it had decided to play nice for once.

Christen marveled at it for a moment, pausing and unhooking Morena’s leash so the dog could have some freedom in the sand while they walked. The sun had just started to peak over the lake in the distance as they made their way North along the paved running path.

Christen was already chastising herself for not taking this route sooner. Sure, the river walk she had become accustomed to was pretty and full of beautiful buildings and grand architecture, but Christen had forgotten how the lakefront and beach had a strikingly familiar feeling to it. She was still in that readjustment period of a new season beginning and the lake now made her miss California just a little less, if even for a few moments.

She didn’t hate it here. Chicago was actually really fun in the spring and summer months, and as long as she could escape before the Midwestern winter hit, she didn’t mind it one bit. But still, this city wasn’t home.

This year though, she vowed she’d make the most of it and completely enjoy her surroundings. She had nothing or nobody tying her down. It was almost summer and she was still young and that wouldn’t last forever. It was something she had to keep reminding herself of.

Christen found a small spot in the sand just off the pathway and took a seat. Forgetting her craving for coffee for the time being so she could enjoy the sunrise properly.

It didn’t take long before she was lost in her thoughts as the giant orange ball of light lifted into the sky. Slowly getting smaller as it ascended towards the clouds. By the time her mind snapped back into the present and out of her thoughts again, a yawn had escaped her lips, reminding her of the lack of caffeine flowing through her system this early in the morning.

Christen glanced up and spotted her dog at the edge of the lake, running in and out of the soft waves that were landing on the shore, making the sand stick to her paws in a way that Christen knew she’d need a bath later.

“Mo, come here girl!” Christen called out gently, tapping her hand to her thigh.

It took a few tries before Morena was galloping back towards her, her tongue flopping out of her mouth happily.

The dog made it until she was a few feet from Christen before another scent caught her attention. Before Christen could even realize what was happening, Morena was making a hard right, sprinting up the sand at nothing in particular. Her head down and nose to the ground once again.

Christen stood up and wiped the sand off her backside before quickly setting out after her dog, who was now several yards away and approaching a young woman with quite a bit of speed.

“Morena!” Christen yelled after her again with a little more urgency in her tone this time. “Here, girl! Come!”

Christen watched with a slight amount of panic setting into her as her dog approached the woman who had her back to the dog and was facing the water. There was a camera balancing on a tripod in the sand in front of her.

The stranger clearly wasn’t paying attention to anything other than what the camera was capturing on across the lake. She was bent over and peering through the tiny lens hole with one eye shut.

Morena made a break for her, running and leaping up, her two front paws landing on the middle of this stranger's back unsuspectingly.

Oh, my god, Christen thought, watching the scene in front of her unfold.

The force of Morena’s jump caused the stranger to take a couple steps forward in the uneven sand until she was knocking into the tripod with her body and sending the whole thing toppling over. The woman was lucky enough to catch herself from falling but she wasn’t fast enough to catch the tripod and attached camera.

Christen was almost positive from a distance that the camera lens landed face down in the sand.

“Shit.” She whispered to herself, breaking into a slow jog towards where the stranger and her dog were now.

By the time Christen reached them, the stranger had steadied herself and was bending down to pick the camera and tripod up off the sand. Morena just sat there wagging her tail excitedly. Looking at the person in front of her like they were an old companion.

What the hell? Where’d you come from? ” Christen faintly heard the stranger say out loud to the dog as she was standing the tripod back up. She leaned back over and patted the dog’s head softly before turning her attention back to the camera.

“I am so, so sorry! ” Christen almost yelled as she approached. “Morena, that was so naughty!”

The stranger unscrewed the camera from the tripod and was blowing at the end of the lens, trying to get the sand out of it. She hadn’t even glanced up at where the voice was coming from yet.

“Wild one you’ve got there.” The stranger hummed softly, her attention still on the camera in her hands. She was now removing the lens to give it a closer inspection.

“She’s usually not like this.” Christen tried again, now just behind her. Her voice still holding a hint of panic. “I’m really sorry.”

“It’s..” The stranger started, turning her head finally to look at whoever owned the dog. “That’s okay..” She said a little softer after locking eyes with Christen.

Christen was met with big, honey brown eyes. The woman’s mouth slowly turning up at the corners into a soft smile, like she was trying to ease the tension of the situation.

“No, it’s not.” Christen insisted, bending down and hooking the leash to Morena’s collar once again. “Did she break it?” She asked intently, letting her eyes fall from the woman’s in front of her and down to the camera lens in her hand.

“I..” The woman started again, before pausing. “I’m not totally sure. It looks like there might be a little bit of sand stuck in there.” She motioned for the end of the lens where the glass was.

Christen knelt down to be face to face with her dog, admonishing her again. “Mo, that was a bad girl.” She said too softly to be even remotely threatening. “Say you’re sorry.”

The woman started to laugh quietly, probably at the fact that the dog owner in front of her could barely be harsh enough to scold her dog for practically taking out a stranger on the beach.

Instead of letting Christen continue to feel bad, the woman knelt down too, patting Morena’s head again. “I can tell she’s sorry. Look at that look..” She smiled, letting her eyes linger on the dog for a moment while she petted her before her eyes connected with Christen’s again as they both stood back up.

“I feel really stupid,” Christen said. “I promise, she usually does listen.”

“I oddly believe you.” The woman smiled again.

This time the smile reached her eyes, the edges of them crinkling in a way that let Christen know she was serious. Her white teeth fully on display.

Christen smiled back involuntarily because of it.

Christen took a moment then to check out the woman in front of her. She had to have been close to her same age, her light brown hair down and wavy, like it had been air-dried but in a good way. She had a gray cotton hoodie and shorts on with no shoes; her bare feet sticking into the sand.

Christen let her eyes linger on the woman’s legs for a moment, her tan skin on display past her short denim shorts. Christen shook her head, snapping herself out of her momentary trance and looking back up to the woman’s eyes.

They both smiled for a second before Christen felt herself blush, knowing she had been caught.

“Can you check and see if it’s broken?” Christen wondered, breaking the silence before it got awkward. “If it is, I promise I’ll buy you a new one.”

The woman started to laugh again. “Sure…” She took a breath but stopped herself before saying anything else.

There was another moment of quietness between them as the woman put the lens back on the camera before lifting it to her eye and pointing it directly at Christen.

Christen heard the lens shutter a few times, realizing the woman was taking a few pictures with the camera still directed right at her. She tried not to let herself feel flattered by that.

The woman dropped the camera from her eye again, flipping the screen so she could look at the images she had just captured. “Hmmm..” She pondered as she looked at it.

“It’s broken isn’t it?” Christen asked anxiously.

“It’s not a big deal...” The woman said quickly, looking at her almost apologetically like it was somehow her own fault.

“Of course it is.” Christen started. “If my dog would have been on a leash she wouldn’t have gotten away, and then she wouldn’t have jumped on you and your camera wouldn’t be broken right now.”

The woman laughed, knowing Christen had a point even if she did feel bad saying so. “There’s just a scratch on the lens. It’s not too bad.”

“Well, you can’t take nice pictures when the lens is scratched.” Christen insisted.

The woman didn’t say anything, almost shrugging her shoulders in agreement.

“See, you know I’m right.” Christen continued. She let her eyes go from the woman back down to her dog. “How much is it?”

There was a sigh before she spoke again. “I’m not even totally sure.” She explained. “It’s not actually mine, it’s my boss’s.”

“Seriously!” Christen groaned. “Oh my god, we broke a camera that isn’t even yours?”

The woman bit her lip to keep herself from laughing for the tenth time already. “Well, don’t stress about it. It’s too early in the morning for that. We’ll figure it out.”

Christen was struck by how calm the woman in front of her was about all of this. She knew she would be the exact opposite of calm if the roles had been reversed.

“I know, I haven’t even had my coffee yet.” Christen agreed, running a hand through her hair to tame the flyaways that were blowing in the breeze. “That’s the whole reason we even came out this morning. But instead, I’m now on the verge of a mental breakdown because of my dog.”

She was mostly joking, her tone conveying that, but still, Christen felt more rattled than she was used to.

The woman knelt down next to Morena again, grabbing her head with both hands behind her ears and ruffling them softly before she looked at Christen again.

“Okay, well how about we get a cup of coffee and figure it out then? I was about to go to grab one anyway and I can’t have you breaking down on me already, we just met.” She teased lightly. Her tone was soft and easy like she was joking with an old friend.  

“Of course.” Christen barely hesitated before nodding, “but only if you let me buy. It’s the least I can do, for the time being.”

The woman stood back up and grinned, locking eyes with Christen again before laughing lightly.

“I’m Tobin.” She said casually, finally introducing herself.

“I’m Christen.” Christen pointed to herself. “And that naughty girl is Morena. And Morena is very sorry for all the trouble.”

*

Christen waited in line to get their coffees, an Americano for Tobin and a Cappuccino for herself, while Tobin and Morena sat at one of the small tables outside on the sidewalk. It was midweek, so the foot traffic was pretty light on the quiet side street where the cafe was located. Everyone seemingly gone to work or school for the day.

Christen laughed when Tobin had suggested the place since it was the same one her teammates had been raving about. She figured having a new acquaintance was as good of a way as any to find a potential new favorite coffee spot.

Tobin had agreed that she’d look for a replacement lens on her phone while Christen was in line, but by the time she made it back to the table, Tobin had discarded her phone into her camera bag and was petting Morena again. Totally unconcerned about the damaged property.

“So, what were you taking pictures of?” Christen questioned as they sipped their drinks, holding eye contact with Tobin. She quickly found herself noticing how much she enjoyed looking into Tobin’s eyes, the light brown hue of them soft and inviting.

“The sunrise.” Tobin smiled like it should have been obvious. “I’ve been wanting to get it from that spot for a while now. You can see all the way to Michigan from here on super clear days like this.”

“That’s awesome.” Christen smiled back at Tobin’s enthusiasm. “Is that just a hobby of yours?”

“Oh, it’s my job actually,” Tobin explained. “I work at a photography studio downtown.”

“Ahh, boss’s camera, that right.” Christen shook her head and looked down at her lap for a moment.

“Yeah, I guess we’ll have to get a new lens pretty quickly, otherwise..” Tobin trailed off.

“Oh my god, that was the only one?!” Christen’s head snapped back up to look across the table again, panic having returned to her voice.

Tobin busted out laughing, getting the exact reaction she was looking for from her new friend.

“I’m kidding, Christen.” Tobin smiled, trying to ease her fears just as quickly as she’d brought them on. “Please stop stressing about it, there are plenty of cameras and lenses to go around.”

“That was kinda mean.” Christen laughed, looking at Tobin again.

Tobin just winked and held eye contact until Christen finally relented, forcing her eyes away from Tobin’s and back to her coffee.

There was another moment of silence between them, but if it should have been awkward, neither of them noticed.

Finally, Tobin broke the quietness again.

“Well, what do you think of the coffee?” She wondered. “As good as advertised?”

“Yeah.” Christen nodded with a smile. “Although I weirdly trusted your word on it over my friends. They like to mess with me sometimes.”

Tobin grinned, realizing she had just done the same thing to the green-eyed woman across from her. “I’d never joke about this place. It’s been my absolute favorite since I moved here two years ago.”

“Where’d you move from?” Christen asked the obvious question.

“Brooklyn.” Tobin smiled again. “I grew up in Jersey and then lived in Brooklyn until I got the job here.”

“New York City is a trip.” Christen returned. “It’s one of my favorite places.”

“Yeah, I miss it.” Tobin nodded, “but Chicago is fun too.”

“Especially in the summer.” Christen agreed with a hint of something in her eyes.

Tobin noticed it for just a second, wondering what it may be. Feeling like suddenly she wanted to know, but she decided not to press it.

“What about you though?” Tobin questioned then.

“What do you wanna know?” Christen returned.

“I mean like what do you do here? You’ve never been to this coffee shop, so I’m guessing you’re not from Chicago.” She continued.

“Nope, LA born and raised,” Christen stated with a bit pride in her tone. “I play soccer, so I only live here during the season.”

“Soccer?” Tobin’s eyebrows raised in surprise. “You.. play soccer for a living?”

“Yep.” Christen nodded, letting the last letter pop in almost annoyance. “That’s a thing, you know... Women’s professional sports.”

“No, I know that..” Tobin waved, quickly defending herself. “I just.. I wasn’t expecting that.”

Christen just narrowed her eyes a bit at Tobin, tempted to make her explain her thought process but giving up and smiling instead.

“So, you’re obviously a big deal then..” Tobin mused when she realized she was off the hook, knowing that hadn't really come out the way she intended.

She raised her eyebrows again playfully at Christen across the table.

Christen just rolled her eyes jokingly at Tobin’s recovery.  “Obviously…”

They both shook their heads in a pleasant surprise for what seemed like the hundredth time that morning.

Eventually, Tobin forced herself to be the one to end their little coffee rendezvous, explaining that she had to get to the studio. She had a photo shoot scheduled with a client for late morning and needed to do some prep work beforehand.

“Can I get your card?” Christen wondered as Tobin returned to the sidewalk after discarding their empty coffee cups inside. She still needed to make sure the camera lens got paid for after they knew how much the damage and repairs were.

“Sure.” Tobin smiled, pulling out her wallet and holding up a small stack of them in the palm of her hand so Christen could take one. She was trying to seem nonchalant about Christen asking for her number.

Christen grabbed two business cards before fishing a pen out of her purse. She jotted her cell phone number down on the backside of one of them and handed it back to Tobin.

“Promise you’ll call me?” Christen asked for clarification. “About the lens I mean...” She corrected a little too late. “Don’t make me track you down because I will..”

Tobin laughed again and held eye contact for a second longer before agreeing. “I’ll call you.”

Christen slowly backed up and turned to head down the block, giving Tobin one final smile before she and Morena rounded the corner and headed for home.

*

It was three days later when they talked again.

But not because Tobin called.

Christen had found herself on Michigan Avenue that afternoon, shopping by herself before meeting a few friends for dinner. She had just walked out of a handbag boutique when she spotted the familiar studio lettering, positioned above the glass storefront across the street.

She’d easily recognize that name now, having studied Tobin’s business card several times over the last three days.

Tobin hadn’t called yet, and Christen didn’t really know what to make of it. She was admittedly pretty used to people calling.

She let a smile play at her lips for a moment now at how convenient this was. She had an excuse to be in the area and she hadn’t purposely ended up in front of the studio, so she didn’t even feel weird about it. Maybe it was a sign.

Checking the time on her phone, Christen quickly made up her mind and darted across the street before the crosswalk signal expired.

She pushed the door of the studio open, stepping in from the warm spring air while letting her eyes adjust to the dimmer lights of the gallery. When she could finally see clearly, she glanced around the room, finding it empty; someone’s belongings sitting by the computer along the back wall.

Christen marveled at the photographs hanging on the walls, while she waited to see who would emerge from the back room. Taking a chance that it just might be Tobin.

One photograph, in particular, caught her attention quickly.

It was a black and white print stretched across a glass canvas. The image was of the City, looking over the lakeshore from the north. All the famous Chicago skyscrapers on display in the background. There was a drift of snow in the foreground with the sun reflecting on the whole city in the corner of the photograph.

It made Christen shiver just looking at it. Like she could feel the harsh winter wind that must have been blowing off the lake that day when it was taken.

There was a small title plate attached to the wall under the print that simply read: Challenge Your Surroundings.

“That was the very first photo I ever took in Chicago.” Explained a semi-familiar voice from behind Christen. Her tone was soft like she didn’t want to startle the woman in front of her.

“It was the middle of winter and I had just landed the night before and all of my stuff was still on a moving truck somewhere back east. I had nothing to do and nobody to hang out with, so the next morning, I just wrapped my scarf up tight and went for a walk with my camera. I ended up at the lakefront and I guess it was just the perfect moment.”

Tobin laughed lightly, clearly thinking back on that day now.

“When I got home that night I called my mom and told her I was coming back to New York. That it was too cold for me here and that I hated it.”

Christen smiled quietly to herself, thinking on Tobin’s words without turning around. She was still looking deeply at the picture. “What made you stay?” She wondered after a moment.

“My mom laughed at me and then said ‘Tobin, challenge your surroundings. Nothing easy is ever worth much.’ and then she hung up the phone.” Tobin laughed a little harder now.

“Smart woman.” Christen laughed back, her shoulders bouncing lightly.

They were quiet for a minute, as Christen let her eyes move to the next picture on the wall before Tobin spoke up again.

“So you found me...” She said a little more confidently now. Like she had been expecting this.

Christen continued her path down the wall, taking a few steps. “It appears I did..” She shot back.

“I had a feeling you might,” Tobin replied, biting her bottom lip as soon as the words were out.

Christen paused her movements and finally turned around to look at Tobin, narrowing her eyes at her for a second.

Tobin laughed when they made eye contact, letting a goofy grin spread across her face, which caused Christen to soften immediately. It already seemed to be a theme with them.

“Well, you didn’t call,” Christen explained with a wicked grin of her own, walking past Tobin to the other side of the gallery to look at those photographs.

Tobin watched her move from picture to picture slowly, just observing her. Letting her eyes flit slowly down Christen’s body once before continuing the conversation.

“And you wanted me to?” Tobin wondered, almost surprising herself by asking that out loud.

She had been driving herself crazy over that one single thought for the past three days but she’d never admit it.

Christen shrugged her shoulders then like she couldn’t have cared less. “I just wanted to make sure I get that broken lens taken care of.”

“Ahh, the lens.” Tobin nodded, coming to stand next to Christen. Their shoulders almost brushing together as they looked at a picture of two small children laughing in the rain.

“Why else would you call?” Christen raised her eyebrows to Tobin, feigning naiveté, almost as a challenge.

Tobin just looked over at her for a moment, letting herself really drink Christen’s features in. Her eyes roaming over her face, from her lips up to her piercing green eyes.

“No reason.” She shrugged then, turning slowly and heading for the computer at the back of the studio.

Christen paused, smiling just to herself while Tobin wasn’t looking before she spun on her heel and slowly followed her.

“So..?” Christen asked a few steps behind the brown-haired woman.

“So, it’s been taken care of.” Tobin responded, continuing with her lazy explanation of the whole situation.

Christen knew it wasn’t that simple. You can’t just shrug off things like broken property, especially when it isn’t yours. She needed more details to keep herself from going crazy over it.

“Taken care of how Tobin?” She quizzed her, trying to keep her tone light. “Why won’t you just let me pay for it?”

Tobin sighed as she sat down on the stool in front of the computer, typing something into the desktop quickly.

“Look, Christen..” She started, smiling at the mocking way she repeated her name as Christen had just done.

“It’s an expensive piece of equipment. You can’t just pay for things like that out of pocket. We have insurance on all of our stuff for a reason. So I filed a claim. I said the wind blew the tripod over while I wasn’t looking, and seriously, nobody is going to know the difference.” Tobin finally got around to filling Christen in.

“How expensive was it?” Christen wanted to know. She wasn’t even sure why she was pressing it so much since Tobin had given her an out.

“Like five grand.” Tobin pointed to the screen, showing her a picture of the lens from a photography supply website.

“My dog ruined a five thousand dollar camera lens!” Christen’s eyes went wide.

She clapped her hand against her forehead and let it run slowly down her face to cover her eyes. She felt stupid again. “Wow, I’m the worst.”

Tobin tried not to laugh at her dramatics, biting her lip again for a moment.

“Like I said, it’s okay, I promise.” She reached up and grabbed Christen’s hand, removing it from over her eyes and hanging on for a split second before dropping it again.

Christen let her eyes linger on Tobin’s, trying to believe her. “Can I at least do something to make it up to you? I feel really bad that you covered for me and my dog.”

Tobin smirked now, intrigued. “What did you have in mind?”

“I don’t know.” Christen let her eyes drop. “Like dinner or tickets to a game or something?”

Tobin grinned wider and stood up. “Okay.” She answered slowly, trying to play it cool.

“Okay, which one?” Christen wondered, checking the time on her phone. She had to get going to meet her friends soon and it was a few blocks away.

“How about both?” Tobin challenged hopefully.

Christen looked back up from her phone to Tobin, finally smiling again. “Fine, both. Milk it why don’t you.”

Tobin laughed, glad that Christen seemed to have calmed down again. And happy that they were actually making plans hang out.

“I have to go,” Christen said, waving her phone lightly in the air as to signal that she was being summoned. “We have our first home game on Sunday afternoon, does that work for tickets?”

“That works.” She confirmed. “And when do I get dinner?”

Tobin was taking the opportunity to be a little bit of a shit, loving the way it seemed to frazzle Christen in just the slightest way before she would recover and mask her emotions again.

“You’re just dying to have dinner with me aren’t you?” Christen teased back, recovering perfectly.

“It was your idea...” Tobin laughed, not totally denying it.

“Text me. You’ve got my number.” She said after another pause.

“Okay.” Christen nodded. “Seriously though, thank you.”

“You’re welcome.” Tobin smiled, softly now like she really meant it and wasn’t just teasing.  

“Bye, Tobin.” Christen shot over her shoulder as she made her way towards the door.

Tobin watched her go for just a moment, shaking her head at the whole situation. “Later, Christen.”

*

Tobin took it upon herself to text Christen her requested time and location of their agreed upon dinner.

It was the following day, and Christen was busy at Friday morning practice when the text came in.

Spiaggia - 8:00 Saturday night

That was all it said.

Christen furrowed her eyebrows when she read it, having already saved Tobin’s number in her phone, just in case she was struck with a momentary urge to text the mysteriously appealing brown-haired woman.

Christen quickly googled the restaurant and then proceeded to laugh out loud while she sat at her locker, reading the description.

She was sure she had heard of it before, and now she knew why. The first article that popped up told Christen all she needed to know.

A really fine setting, and one that will set you back more dollars than you usually spend. But there’s a reason it’s been highly acclaimed for a long time, they keep cranking out the goods. Expect a few weeks of your name on a wait list to get into this authentic Italian joint, but trust us, it’s worth the wait.

Christen felt like she shouldn’t have to explain how fancy and exclusive this restaurant was to Tobin if she was the one who picked it. But she did anyway because there was no way they’d have a shot at a reservation for the following night.

She sat at her locker a little longer, until Tobin’s response came in.  

We’ll have a table, see you then

Christen rolled her eyes as she read the text, giving up and just deciding to go with it.

*

Tobin was leaning coolly against the oak-lined wall, in the entryway of the restaurant, when Christen walked in. Her eyes crinkling from her smile as soon as they saw each other.

Christen flashed her a smile right back, letting her eyes wander over Tobin as she approached.

Tobin was wearing a flowy light blue blouse with a long, tan open sweater over it, tight black jeans and black heeled boots. She looked dressy with a light amount of makeup on, but in a comfortable way that Christen was sure she could never pull off.

“Hey, you.” Christen hummed when they got close enough to hear each other.

“Hi.” Tobin grinned again, pushing herself up off the wall and stepping into Christen slightly, before she could second guess herself.

The first thing she noticed was how great Christen smelled and she tried not to let herself get dizzy from it.

They gave each other a small embrace, Tobin casually sliding her arm around Christen’s waist, for just a moment, before pulling back again to look Christen over.

Christen was in a green dress that perfectly complimented her eyes and black open-toe bootie heels. Her hair was down and curled loosely. She had a light jacket on over the dress since the spring air was a little colder tonight than it had been recently.

Tobin didn’t let her eyes linger for too long, instead leaning into Christen’s ear a little more, so she could be heard in the loud entryway full of people.

“You look great,” Tobin commented casually.

“Thanks.” Christen smiled happily, angling her head just a bit at Tobin. “You do too.”

Tobin smiled right back. “Ready?” She wondered.

“Yep. I’m following you.” Christen nodded with another smile.

Tobin stepped up to the hostess desk and signaled to herself and Christen, watching as the hostess crossed something off a clipboard and then turned to lead them back to their table, no questions asked.

Christen’s head was spinning already.

It got worse as soon as she opened the menu. There was a lot to pick from.

Tobin seemed to be pretty sure about how she wanted this dinner, her dinner, to go, though.

“What’s the best wine on your menu?” Tobin asked when the waiter approached the first time.

“My first choice would be the Castello delle Regine , it’s a Merlot.” The waiter said after pondering for a moment.

“Perfect, we’ll each have a glass of that.” Tobin ordered, before glancing over at Christen to confirm.

Christen nodded softly, just going with it.

The waiter nodded and walked off as Christen scanned the wine list and found what Tobin had just ordered. $130 a glass.

“Have you been here before?” Christen wondered as she watched Tobin navigate the menu.

Tobin looked up and smiled, “No I haven’t”, before she set the menu down, giving her attention to Christen, really for the first time since they’d been seated. “Sorry, I guess I’m just excited.”

“I can tell.” Christen laughed lightly. “I’m glad, though.”

Tobin smiled a little wider, just as the waiter returned with their wine.

After a basket of bread and some sort of cheese plate, Tobin insisted that they each order the three-course meal.

They’re small portions, it even says so!” Tobin promised.

She insisted that they had to do it because it was the most popular thing to order at this restaurant; and even though she was basically already full, who was Christen to argue? This was for Tobin after all.

Christen was surprised every time the waiter returned to the table, feeling like time was flying by. She found herself genuinely enjoying Tobin’s company once again. They talked comfortably like they’d know each other for years, only really pausing the conversation to chew their food or take a sip of wine.

Tobin ordered her second glass of wine after the first course was delivered, glancing at Christen to see if she wanted one as well. Christen just shook her head no, game day tomorrow, before the waiter left again. Christen realized right then that Tobin had intended to take full advantage of her free meal.

Watching the way Tobin’s eyes lit up at every new item that was delivered, Christen couldn’t even be bothered to mind.

“Dessert?” The waiter wondered after the last course was cleared from their small table, along the back wall of the restaurant. Christen had only taken one bit of that plate, there wasn’t any room left in her belly.

“No thanks.” Christen almost groaned. She was already teetering on the wrong side of uncomfortable.

“What!” Tobin seemed almost playfully offended at Christen’s refusal. “We’ll try the Torta Opera.” She smiled to the waiter, closing the dessert menu again.

He just nodded happily and walked off again.

“You’re impressive, you know that?” Christen teased in amazement. “How can you still be hungry?”

Tobin laughed again. “I’m not really, but we’ve gotta try it, right?.. And to be fair, I didn’t eat all day in preparation for this.”

Tobin forced Christen to try a little of the dessert, holding her spoon up for Christen to take a bite, and she had to admit, it was really good.

Tobin wasn’t able to finish it either and they both sat back in their chairs for a moment, just gazing at each other as they took a deep breath, trying to settle their stomachs.

The waiter came back one last time to refill their water glasses.

“So, everything was good?” He asked.

“It was fantastic.” Tobin beamed and Christen agreed. “It was all very good, thank you so much.”

“That’s great to hear, thanks for joining us tonight.” The waiter said again.

“I’ll take the check whenever you get a chance.” Christen mentioned before he walked away.

“The check has already been taken care of.” He smiled politely at her request. “Have a wonderful night.”

Without another word, he turned and walked away before Christen could ask any questions.

“What does that mean?” Christen looked at Tobin, confused.

Tobin laughed and scooted her chair back a little to stand up. “Well, I think it means we don’t have to pay..” she said a little obviously.

Christen just sat there looking up at Tobin, not willing to move yet.

“Why not?” She asked after a beat, completely serious.

Tobin walked around the table to Christen’s chair, lifting her coat off the back of it and motioning for Christen to stand.

“Let’s just call it a favor.” Tobin hummed, waiting patiently for Christen get up.

“But this was supposed to be my favor..” Christen reasoned as she stood. “..Tobin, seriously?”

Tobin held Christen’s coat out for her, letting her arms slide through the openings before she let go. “Christen..” Tobin laughed, shaking her head.

“What?” Christen asked intently.

“That was like a $700 meal we just ate,” Tobin muttered. “I mean I’m slightly impressed that you didn’t try and limit me once, but do you really think I’m that big of an asshole?”

Christen shrugged, confidently. “I don’t know your lifestyle. I figured maybe this was normal for you..”

Tobin laughed again. “You’re...” She stopped herself, biting her lip instead.

“I’m what?” Christen challenged, a playful smile forming as she held eye contact with Tobin, standing right in front of her.

Tobin just shook her head and spun around without answering, reaching for Christen’s hand for a moment, pulling her along for a few feet as they weaved through the tables towards the exit.

“Seriously, though, please explain?” Christen requested once they had made it to the door.

There were fewer people milling about in the entryway now that it was later in the evening.

Tobin finally stopped walking, turning to look at Christen again, smiling at the woman for just a second before giving in.

“I’m friends with the owner of this place. I did a photo shoot for his whole family last year. I’m talking like, extended family and cousins and pets, the whole deal. As a payment, he promised me a night of dining on the house, whatever I wanted. I guess I had been saving it for something special.”

“And tonight was special enough? Somehow that seems impossible.” Christen argued.

“A fancy dinner with the most beautiful girl in town? Seems special enough to me.” Tobin mused, bumping shoulders with Christen as they stepped out into the night.

Christen turned her head to look at Tobin, holding a smile. “Well, then I better at least get to walk you home.”

*

Christen wiped the sweat from her forehead as she stepped in front of the camera to do a post-game interview. Her team had just won their home opener 2-1, and the afternoon sun felt more draining than usual on this late spring day.

When the interview was over and the camera cut out, Christen smiled at the sideline reporter, before turning around to walk towards the stands. Towards all the people yelling her name from the first few rows of seats.

She unfastened her Captain’s armband and looked up to spot a young girl holding a Press for President sign, tossing the armband up to her as she walked to that section to sign autographs.

After signing for every person in her line of vision, Christen relented, walking back towards the tunnel. Towards a certain someone who was patiently waiting in the stands, even though the game had been over for twenty minutes now.

Christen finally let herself glance up at the one person she’d been actively avoiding since stepping out onto the pitch for warmups almost three hours prior.

“You’re even the Captain?” Tobin admired fondly from the first row of seats when Christen had finally stopped in front of her. “Why didn’t you tell me you were so important?”

Christen let a laugh escape her lips, locking eyes with Tobin for the first time that day. “I wouldn’t want to reveal all my secrets right away, come on now.” She winked.

“Great game.” Tobin smiled, reaching over the wall for a high-five.

Christen beamed up at her, softly high-fiving Tobin’s hand, letting her fingers linger for just a split second.

“And since you scored both goals, I’d say we’re officially even.” Tobin continued proudly.

“Yeah?” Christen wondered, playing along. “What a relief! That guilt was really weighing on me.”

They both laughed again, before pausing their conversation for a moment, as a few other little girls came up behind Tobin, asking Christen for a picture.

When the little girls ran back up the bleachers, Tobin leaned down onto the railing, her forearms resting casually on it.

“So, what now?” She pondered.

Christen shrugged. “I don’t know, what do you mean?”

“I mean, do you wanna hang out or something?” Tobin proposed confidently.

It was barely even early evening and Tobin had nothing planned the rest of the night. She’d been hoping all day that Christen would wanna do something after the game.

“I can’t tonight.” Christen informed her.

Tobin bit her lip, trying to seem unaffected by her answer. “Why not?”

Christen smiled at Tobin’s curiosity.

“Because, it’s a Sunday night, Tobin.” She acknowledged vaguely.

“Okay..” Tobin smiled, not getting what Christen meant. “So what? We don’t have to be out late.”

“Sunday night is Game of Thrones night,” Christen explained. “That means I’ve got a hot date with my couch and a big glass of wine.”

Tobin laughed until she realized Christen wasn’t joking.

“You’re not serious are you?” She teased.

Christen took a sip of the water bottle she was holding before answering. “I’m dead serious.”

Tobin shook her head, perplexed. “You won’t do anything so you can watch a tv show? You know they make DVR’s these days, right?”

“Yea, but if you don’t watch the episode live, it loses all of its magic.” Christen shrugged. “I don’t make the rules.”

“Okay, well I guess I can watch it with you..” Tobin thought she was compromising.

“I don’t think so.” Christen laughed again. “Game of Thrones is a me only thing. People always want to talk through the episodes and I can’t concentrate. I’ve learned the hard way many times.”

Tobin just looked at her, a big smile forming on her face.

“I can’t tell if you’re joking..” Tobin mused.

“I’m not.” Christen promised.

They looked at each other goofily for a moment.

“This is..” Tobin trailed off, almost dumbfounded. It was becoming more of a challenge to her than anything. She wasn’t really used to being told no.  “This is ridiculous... I’m coming over.”

Christen couldn’t help but laugh harder at that. “Nope.”

“Yes!” Tobin laughed, reaching over the bar and stealing the water bottle out of Christen’s hands like it was some sort of hostage. “You’re being ridiculous, please tell me you know that.”

Christen’s teasing laughter peaked, before she looked directly into Tobin’s eyes, holding eye contact assertively.

Tobin didn’t back down, peering right back and licking her bottom lip unknowingly.

“Plus, don’t you think Morena wants to see me again?” Tobin questioned then, trying another angle.

“Maybe, I’m not sure..” Christen hummed.

“Well, has she like, asked about me or anything?” Tobin wondered playfully.

“Sadly no, but I wouldn’t read too much into that.”

Tobin shook her head again, ending this standoff.

“Go shower.” She instructed. “I’ll be waiting in the parking lot.”

Christen rolled her eyes, grabbing the water bottle back from Tobin, before turning and heading for the locker room, without another word.

She pretended to be surprised when Tobin was leaning against her car in the deserted parking lot a half hour later.

*

“So this is your place, huh?” Tobin asked when they stepped through the door of Christen’s apartment forty-five minutes later.

Christen considered making a sarcastic comment about who else's would it be, but she was quickly distracted as Morena came trotting up to them in the entryway.

“This is my place.” Christen confirmed as she stood back up from petting her dog.

Tobin let her eyes travel through the open apartment. There were high ceilings and dark hardwood floors, leading from the entryway to the living room on the left, the dining room on the right with the kitchen a little farther back. One long hallway in between, leading to where Tobin assumed Christen’s bedroom was.

“Wow, this is really nice.” Tobin murmured as she scanned the place.

Her eyes scanned the living room again, which had floor to ceiling glass windows that looked out over the expansive views of the city, and the other tall buildings that surrounded them. The lake visible through the highrises, just a few blocks down.

“Thanks.” Christen smiled. “I really like it so far.”

Tobin kicked her shoes off and followed Christen a little farther into the place.

“It must be brand new?” Tobin wondered as she made her way into the living room to really look out the giant windows for a moment.

“Yea it is.” Christen nodded as she picked a blanket up off the couch, folding it and tossing it over the back of the cushions, attempting to straighten up just a touch, even though her apartment was already more than clean.

Christen came to stand next to Tobin’s shoulder after a moment, as they looked out the windows at the city together.

“So, be honest..” Tobin looked over at Christen and gave her a wicked grin. “How many people have you made out with against this?” She wondered, tapping the glass window lightly.

Christen started to laugh softly, looking back at Tobin in return. “Yea, sure... Made out..” She teased, licking her lips like she knew what she was doing.

“Or.. other stuff..” Tobin insinuated with another smile.

“Well, since I’ve only lived here for two weeks, nobody.. yet. ” Christen laughed again, turning around and leaving Tobin there alone, to head towards the kitchen.

“I’ve definitely thought about all the possibilities though.” She called over her shoulder flirtatiously.

Tobin just focused back on the city in front of her, silently forcing herself to stop thinking of all the things she'd love to do with Christen pinned up against that window.

“I’m gonna change quickly,” Christen informed her. “Make yourself at home.”

After a few minutes, Christen came back out to the living room in a tan Nike hoodie and black yoga pants. Her hair had mostly dried now from her earlier shower and it was naturally curly in a way that Tobin found herself loving.

Christen poured them both a glass of wine and sat down in the middle of the couch, next to Tobin who was on the right side. Christen’s knee rested against Tobin’s thigh as she crossed her legs underneath her, reaching for the remote on the coffee table.

Morena jumped up on the other side of Christen, taking up more than half the couch as she sprawled out for an evening nap.

“I’m serious about this,” Christen spoke as she turned on HBO. It was just a few minutes before eight now and the show would be starting at any moment. “There is no talking during this. I will kick you out so fast.”

Tobin laughed and put her hands up in defense. “Okay, I promise I’ll be good.”

Christen grinned at her and settled a little farther into the couch, kicking her legs out again so they were resting on the coffee table. Tobin did the same until they were both lying next to each other, just inches apart.

Tobin lasted all of fifteen minutes into the show before she started to get antsy. She had never seen an episode of Game of Thrones in her life, and there were a million characters to try and follow along with. She didn’t dare ask Christen any questions.

Instead, she just fidgeted slightly. First sliding down the back of the couch a little more and scooting her butt more towards the center of the couch, so her and Christen’s legs were completely pressed together next to each other.

Then ten minutes after that, she turned on her side towards Christen, slowly reaching her hand over Christen’s lap, to pet Morena softly, who was sleeping on Christen’s left side.

Christen’s eyes didn’t break from the tv once and Tobin was now interested in seeing what it would take for her to look away.

Tobin slowly let her hand slide off of Morena’s fur after a few minutes, as she drug it back towards herself. Not bothering to lift it, instead letting her hand run up Christen’s hip and over her stomach as she sat in between them. Tobin did it as slowly as she could.

Christen had a great poker face, and it really entertained Tobin, so she just kept her hand lightly laid across Christen’s stomach instead of pulling it all the way back.

Christen really was intently paying attention to the show. She’d gasp or softly say oh my god when something major would happen, and Tobin found herself smiling at how cute it was every time.

Tobin tried her best to keep her eyes on the tv most of the time.

It was almost intoxicating for her, to be this close to Christen, her hand resting on her stomach casually. Tobin wanted more, so she kept trying to see what it would take for Christen to break.

Tobin shifted again slightly, lifting herself up on her elbow and slowly leaning her head in towards Christen’s. There was maybe a couple inches in between them until Tobin dipped her head into the soft skin of Christen’s neck.

Tobin could feel Christen swallow thickly as she traced the tip of her nose up Christen’s neck, her lips brushing Christen’s soft skin there, just barely. Tobin inhaled Christen’s scent again, the same one she smelled when they hugged at the restaurant the night before. It was all-consuming her now.

Christen felt like she was on fire as Tobin was nuzzled into her neck. She finally lifted the remote and paused the show. Not daring to move an inch.

When Tobin heard the voices mute on the tv, she smiled widely into Christen’s neck, pulling back just a bit.

“I have a question and a comment,” Tobin whispered into Christen’s ear, barely lifting her head away from the dark-haired beauty.

Christen sighed, trying to pretend she was annoyed.

“You can say one of them.” She compromised.

This was completely against her no talking rule, plus the show was actually paused, which meant she was no longer watching it live.

Tobin contemplated then on which to say, before grinning and leaning back into Christen’s neck with her face.

“You smell really good.” Tobin mumbled into her skin, choosing to go with the statement.

Christen smiled to herself and then bit her lip before Tobin could lift her head to see it.

It was quiet for a moment, until Christen just pressed play on the tv remote again, completely ignoring the comment.

Tobin just looked up at Christen and started to laugh before she leaned back into the couch, happy to have at least broken her concentration for a moment.

Christen only thought about it for a moment, before she figured two could play at this game.

Without hesitating, she casually reached her right hand out, running her fingertips slowly up the soft skin on Tobin’s inner thigh. Tobin held her breath until Christen’s hand came to a rest; right at the spot where Tobin’s short denim shorts ended.

Tobin was so thrilled by the contact that she tried to behave for the rest of the episode.

*

After that night, they didn’t get a chance to see each other again for eight days.

Christen had a couple of friends from LA in town all week and Tobin was busy with scheduled photoshoots that weekend. Between that and Christen’s game, there just wasn’t any time.

They texted sporadically throughout the week, but probably not as much as either of them would have really liked to.

The following Monday, after Christen was finished with a morning yoga class at her favorite studio, she decided to be the one to make the next move.

She stopped by the coffee shop that she was now internally referring to as their coffee shop, since it reminded her of Tobin, and got a drink for both of them.

She made the short four block walk to Tobin’s studio without a warning that she was coming.

She knew Tobin had an early morning shoot based on a string of texts the night before, and she guessed she probably could use some caffeine to sustain her the rest of the day.

Christen entered the gallery just as Tobin was finishing with a customer.

Tobin glanced up to greet whoever was entering and a big smile formed at her lips as soon as she saw who it was. She handed the customer in front of her some paperwork to sign, sending a wink to Christen before the customer looked up again.

Christen smiled happily at Tobin’s acknowledgment and busied herself looking at the photographs on the walls until the customer left.

“Two coffees, huh? Tobin teased as she approached Christen, now that they were alone. “Rough Monday?”

Christen rolled her eyes playfully at Tobin. “Don’t act like you're not hoping ones for you.”

Tobin was feeling bold and a little overjoyed that Christen was in front of her again unexpectedly. She softly grabbed Christen’s hips with both hands, as soon as she got close enough.

“Okay, I’m kinda hoping it is.” Tobin smiled, pulling Christen a little closer.

“You’re in luck then.” Christen relented, handing Tobin’s cup to her so she could wrap her arm around Tobin’s neck. “I figured you could use a pick me up.”

Tobin giggled. “Oh yeah, what’d you have in mind? I mean there’s a darkroom in the back…”

“You wish..” Christen challenged, pinching Tobin’s shoulder with her free hand that was around her neck, earning another laugh.

“Kidding..” Tobin smiled, keeping her right hand on Christen’s hip as they pulled back from their hug. “Good morning.”

“Morning.” Christen smiled.

The way Tobin was looking at her was already making her buzz. She hadn’t realized she’d missed those warm brown eyes so much until just now.

Tobin took a sip of her still-hot Americano and smiled again. “It’s delicious. Thank you.” she beamed, finally taking her hand off of Christen slowly.

“How was your shoot this morning?” Christen wondered as they walked up to the desk at the back of the room.

“It went really well.” Tobin nodded. “Perfect morning for it. The sun was just right.”

Christen was letting her eyes roam down Tobin’s body while she was talking, not realizing she’d been caught until Tobin called her on it.

Tobin was wearing a pair of tight jeans with holes in both knees, a tight denim short-sleeved, button up shirt, that was rolled at the sleeves, showing off her strong, tan arms. Her hair was down and pushed back behind her ears casually.

“What?” Tobin almost laughed when Christen’s eyes finally made it back to her face.

Christen probably should have felt embarrassed but for some reason, she didn’t.

“Nothing..” Christen started, about to lie until she stopped herself. “You just look..”

She paused and Tobin raised one eyebrow. “What?” she asked again.

Christen swallowed and shrugged. “You look really sexy this morning.”

Christen’s never really had much shame in flirting with people she found attractive, but she was being pretty bold. Her and Tobin alone in this studio. The tension already higher than it probably should be between them.

Tobin just smirked, almost in a cocky way, before she cleared her throat and her face softened into a smile. “Well you look really sexy all the time.” she flirted back.

There was a thick silence between them again as Christen took a breath. Tobin didn’t press it any farther though.

“So what’s up for the rest of the day” She questioned, changing the subject as she took another sip of her coffee.

“Practice this afternoon,” Christen mentioned. “Then team dinner tonight at one of the girl’s apartments.”

“Oh, nice.” Tobin hummed, pausing for just a moment before she got around to asking the thing she’d been wanting to ask for days now. “Speaking of.. would you wanna get dinner with me this week?”

Christen smiled at Tobin’s attempt at asking her out. Was that what it was?

“I’d love to, but I’m not sure I can make it work.” Christen almost frowned. “We leave tomorrow afternoon for our game in Kansas City on Wednesday, and we’re not back till late Thursday night.”

“Ahh, away games.” Tobin smiled. “I forgot about those. Another time then..”

Christen hated the disappointed look on Tobin’s face when she said it.

“For sure.” She tried to ease her mind right away. “I still owe you..”

Tobin laughed then, standing up taller and walking around the desk to be in front of Christen again.

“Christen, I’m trying to ask you on a date.” She mused. “Not make you feel like you still owe me something.”

“Okay..” Christen trailed off, looking down at the ground for a moment.

Instead of saying anything else, she just lifted her head and stepped closer to Tobin, wrapping both arms around Tobin’s neck and pulling her in for a warm hug.

Tobin let her hands find Christen’s hips again, pulling her waist in so their hips were flush together, before sliding her arms around to the small of Christen’s back.

They stood there holding each other for a minute, just smiling at the way it felt to be that close.

Finally, Christen sighed. “I have to get going, I’ve gotta be at the stadium in an hour.”

Tobin nodded, not letting go of her yet. She dipped her head into Christen’s neck again, the same way she did on the couch the other night, smiling at Christen’s scent that was almost becoming familiar.

“Thanks for the coffee.” Tobin hummed when she pulled back.

“Of course.” Christen nodded, taking a step back.

“Wait..” Tobin spoke up again quickly. “What do you do with Morena when you travel?”

Christen laughed at the randomness of the question, seemingly out of nowhere.

“I board her,” Christen explained. “I hate it, but she goes to a nice place so it’s not so bad.”

“I can watch her.” Tobin interjected quickly.

“Tobin, no way, I’d never ask you to do that.”

“I know, I’m offering,” Tobin assured. “I had meant to ask you that already. But seriously, I’d love to.”

Christen thought about it for a moment. “Really? It’s more work than you think..”

Tobin just shrugged. “I’ll come get her tomorrow before you go. Cancel the boarding appointment.”

Christen nodded then. “Okay.. but if you change your mind and wanna back out, just let me know.”

She looked at her watch quickly, her eyes going a little wide at how fast time had moved. She really needed to go or she’d be late for practice.

Tobin could tell her mind went into panic mode suddenly. “Go, I’ll call you later.”

Christen smiled again and waved, turning for the door. “Enjoy the coffee.”

*

Christen stood on the steps of a fancy Lincoln Park townhome late Thursday night, looking at the address in her phone again, to make sure she was at the right place before she knocked.

It was a row of homes that all looked the same, connected together as one building, but each place had their own set of stairs leading to the front door. There was a fence lining the sidewalk out front, giving each home it’s own little front yard.

When Christen was sure she had the correct address, she knocked lightly and took a step back.

After a minute, Tobin was swinging the door open, a big smile on her face as she looked into her favorite pair of green eyes.

“Welcome back.” She hummed, stepping back from the door, motioning Christen to step inside.

Morena came running to the door just then, jumping up on Christen when she realized who it was.

“Hey, baby girl.” Christen knelt down to hug her dog, giving her a couple of kisses on her head. “I missed you.” She whispered before she stood up again.

“Hi, you.” She smiled at Tobin, reaching out for her.

Tobin grinned and stepped in to hug Christen. “Hey yourself.”

“How was my girl?” Christen cooed, using her baby voice again to Tobin when asking about her dog.

Tobin laughed at it before Christen realized she did it, blushing slightly.

“Shut up, I missed her.” Christen laughed along with her.

“No, no... It’s cute.” Tobin said through another chuckle. “She missed you too.”

Tobin turned around and walked into her house, motioning for Christen to follow.

“You live here by yourself?” Christen questioned as they walked from the foyer into the kitchen of Tobin’s townhouse.

“Just me.” Tobin nodded, with a look of something in her eyes that Christen couldn’t place.

“It’s big.” She said, looking around.

Tobin just shrugged. “Yea I suppose so. I like it, I guess.”

Christen looked around again as they moved through the kitchen, watching as Tobin took a seat at the island, where her laptop was sitting. Seemingly where she’d just come from when Christen knocked. She clicked a few buttons before shutting the screen and sliding it out of the way.

“Was she good for you?” Christen asked, looking down at her dog who had made herself comfortable on the kitchen floor again. Like she’d been coming to Tobin’s house for years now.

“She was great.” Tobin beamed. “She’s a really good running buddy.”

“I know, I love running with her. She listens really well.” Christen nodded, “except for that one time…”

They both laughed, thinking back to how they met a few weeks ago.

“Can I get you a drink or something?” Tobin wondered then, smiling hopefully at Christen.

Christen bit her lip for a moment before answering. “We should probably go.. It’s late.”

Tobin didn’t want Christen to go yet. They’d barely seen each other the past two weeks and she just wanted them to have a long conversation. She was dying to know as much as she could about the dark-haired beauty.

Or you could just stay for one..” Tobin suggested like it was the obvious choice.

She got up from her spot at the island and made her way to the fridge, opening it before turning back to look at Christen. “What kind of beer do you like?”

Christen gave in, shrugging her shoulders. “Whatever you have.”

Staying for one beer turned into them talking till almost 2:00 am. They made their way to the living room with their beverages and sat down on the couch across from each other. Their knees bumping together as they both sat cross-legged facing each other. Not even bothering to turn on the tv.

Christen hadn’t laughed that hard in a long time, feeling like Tobin had a funny story about every topic they covered. How easy it was for them to just get lost in learning each other.

They only realized how late it had gotten when Christen finally yawned in exhaustion, her eyes watering a little from it, the way they do when you’re sleepy.

Morena had been asleep on the loveseat for a couple hours already.

“You tired?” Tobin asked softly as she watched Christen recover from the yawn.

Christen just smiled tiredly, nodding a little. She regretted how her body was shutting down on her now, but it had been a long day.

Tobin moved in a little, reaching to brush Christen’s hair out of her eyes slowly. Christen leaned into Tobin’s hand, resting her face against her palm for just a moment. They both looked at each other with a small smile.

“How do you feel about sailing?” Tobin asked quietly after a moment.

“I feel fine about it.” Christen smiled a little more at her answer and how unhelpful it was.

“You have the weekend off, right?” Tobin continued.

Christen nodded again. The good thing about a midweek game this week was a free weekend for the team.

“Well..” Tobin spoke again. “A friend of mine offered up their sailboat to me this weekend, and I thought it would maybe be fun to take you out on it.”

“Sounds fancy.” Christen chuckled. “Which seems to be a theme for you.”

Tobin laughed and put her hand up. “Okay, you should talk. I’ve seen your car and your place. Both very fancy.”

Christen shrugged, she did like nice things.

“So.. how about a sailing date on Saturday?” Tobin tried again. “There is a Captain and everything, all we have to do is just enjoy ourselves. Plus it’s supposed to be warm out.”

Christen thought about teasing Tobin again and acting like she had plans, but with the way Tobin was biting her lip in anticipation, Christen just smiled and agreed. “That sounds perfect.”

After another minute, Tobin walked Christen and Morena to the door, both of them delaying their goodbye as long as possible. Eventually, Christen looked down at her dog and gave in. “We should go, baby girl.”

“Thank you for watching her.” Christen purred softly to Tobin in the dimly lit entryway. “You keep doing amazing things for me and I can’t make them up to you.”

“You don’t need to.” Tobin smiled easily like it was no big deal. “I’m happy to do them.”

Christen just nodded, hoping her eyes conveyed a silent thank you again.

“Text me when you get home.” Tobin requested.

“I will,” Christen confirmed, smiling again and turning around towards the door.

Tobin watched her for a second before she reached out for Christen’s hand, stopping her before she opened the front door.

Christen smiled when she felt Tobin’s hand, turning around one last time.

Tobin slowly leaned in while she held Christen’s hand, kissing her cheek softly, letting her lips linger there for a long moment. “I’m glad you’re back.” Tobin whispered, her lips still brushing against Christen’s cheek.

“Me too.” Christen smiled, not moving until Tobin pulled back.

“Night, Christen.”

“Night, Tobin.”

*

“Okay, which one of you wants to steer and which one of you wants to show your muscles and help me pull the lines?”

The captain, Rick, who was one of Tobin’s parents' old friends, had been motoring them around the pier on the Lake for about twenty minutes. He was finally ready to lift the sails and drift farther from the shore, out across the choppy waters of Lake Michigan.

Tobin looked over at Christen, where they both were leaning against the railing, watching the captain do his thing.

He had been navigating them through the hoards of sailboats that were in the water on this gorgeous Saturday evening.

“You wanna steer?” Tobin offered to Christen with a smile, like that was the job for her.

Christen just started to laugh. “Ah, no way..”

She yelled up to Rick then. “You probably want the professional athlete of the bunch to help you pull the lines, right?”

Rick just chuckled and nodded. “Yep, we need the muscles for sure.”

Christen elbowed Tobin playfully and pushed herself up off the railing, walking to where Rick directed her to go.

“Tobs, come here.” He instructed, “We will give you the easy job. You’ve just gotta make sure the wheel doesn’t turn while we do all the work.” He looked over at Christen and winked.

Christen laughed again as Tobin rolled her eyes and walked to the captain's chair, taking the wheel from Rick before he moved out of the way.

He took a few minutes to show Christen what to do, and before she knew it, they were lining up on each side of the mast to get to work.

“Okay, Christen, on three, pull as hard as you can!” He shouted from the other side of the boat.

Tobin started to laugh to herself as she held the wheel firmly. She couldn’t wait to see this.

“One! Two! Three!” He yelled out.

Christen stuck her tongue out of her mouth, concentrating hard as they pulled the lines over and over again. The giant sail ascending up the mast slowly, starting to blow in the breeze.

“Pull, pull, pull!” Rick continued to yell as it got more difficult, catching in the wind.

Christen started laughing, her arms fatiguing quickly, just as the sail reached the top of the pole.

“Yes! Great job!” He yelled out again as they finished. He quickly tied off his side of the ropes, before moving around to where Christen was still holding hers, taking it from her to tie it off, so the sail would remain upright.

“Tobin, you’ve got a keeper here.” He complimented. “I’ve never seen you pull a line like that in all the years I’ve known you.”

He was teasing but Christen sure got a good laugh out of it, letting a huge smile form on her lips, directed right a Tobin.

“Yea, yea.” Tobin laughed, scrunching up her face at Christen.

Rick came and took over the wheel from Tobin again, telling them to go enjoy themselves up front, and promising Tobin he’d leave them alone.

They had made it about a quarter mile from the shore, and they were now circling back towards land. The whole city on display directly in front of them, just off in the distance.

It was mid-evening and the sun was starting to go down, reflecting off the buildings in a certain way that made everything look a little more profound.

Tobin had a bottle of wine and a blanket laid out for them to sit on at the front of the boat.

She poured some of the wine into a dixie cup for each of them and they laid back against the boat and just took in the views ahead of them, enjoying each others company while they cruised along.

They sat in silence for a while until Christen looked over at Tobin and smiled, scooting a little closer. “This is really wonderful, Tobin.” She hummed, craning her neck a little so her lips were right by Tobin’s ear.

“You’re having fun?” Tobin questioned happily, letting her eyes linger on Christen’s.

Christen just nodded with another smile, slowly reaching down and sliding her fingers into Tobin’s, linking their hands together casually.

Tobin smiled at the gesture, wiggling their hands a little.

“You looked really good pulling that sail up, by the way.” Tobin mused.

“And to think, you didn’t believe I could do it..” Christen teased back, knocking their linked hands into Tobin’s leg playfully.

“You just keep surprising me.” Tobin remarked, squeezing Christen’s hand a little tighter and letting their hands fall on her lap. Both of them smiling quietly again.

*

Rick dropped them off at the dock just early enough for them to make their late evening dinner reservation, at a seafood restaurant right off of Navy Pier. They ended up just sharing a couple of small plates and another bottle of wine.

When they were done eating, Tobin paid the bill, before standing up and grabbing Christen’s hand casually, as they strolled out of the restaurant and onto the boardwalk again.

They walked slowly through the crowd of people, holding onto each other until they found a good spot to stop and enjoy the warm night.

Tobin ended up standing behind Christen, with her arms wrapped around her waist, as they looked over the edge of the pier for a moment.

“Fireworks too?” Christen feigned surprise when the nightly fireworks display started. “Tobin, you didn’t have to do that..” She joked.

They both knew Navy Pier had fireworks every Friday and Saturday night throughout the spring and summer, but they didn’t need to acknowledge that now.

“Well, anything for you..” Tobin played along with a wink. “I wanted to make sure our first date was memorable.”

Christen slowly turned around to face Tobin. “I think you did a great job of that already.” She smiled genuinely.

“Really, you didn’t hate it?” Tobin asked for confirmation.

Christen grinned a little wider, slowly raising her hands until they were sliding around Tobin’s shoulders. She linked her fingers together at the base of Tobin’s neck, letting the pads of her thumbs gently rub circles on the soft skin of Tobin’s neck. Her slow movements driving Tobin wild.

“It was pretty great,” Christen confirmed, holding eye contact with another soft smile.

Tobin had a crooked smile on her face at Christen’s words, which didn’t disappear until she noticed Christen was leaning in. She recovered just in time before Christen was pressing her lips softly to Tobin’s, like kissing her was the most casual thing in the world.

Tobin sighed when she felt how soft Christen’s lips were on her own, even from the chaste kiss they were sharing.

Another grin spread across both of their faces when they pulled apart, laughing with each other at the almost familiarity of it, for just a moment until Christen closed the space between them again.

*

“So how do you feel about Fashion Shows?” Christen questioned into her Bluetooth speaker as she was driving home from practice a few days later.

She heard some rustling on the other end of the phone before Tobin’s voice sounded through again.

“Sorry, I accidentally dropped the phone.” She laughed.

Christen rolled her eyes and put her blinker on to switch lanes. “You’re such a dork.”

“I feel fine about them.” Tobin finally answered, talking in that slow way she does when she’s tired or bored. “I’m actually shooting one this week.”

“Oh weird..” Christen paused for a second as she stopped at a red light.

“Well, a few of my teammates and I were invited to this charity runway show that Dwayne Wade and a bunch of Chicago athletes are putting on, and I was wondering if you wanted to be my plus one? It’s Wednesday night.”

Tobin just started to laugh. “That’s the one I’m shooting.” She explained, realizing they were talking about the same thing without knowing it.

“Really?” Christen laughed back. “Well, I guess I’ll see you there then.”

Tobin just grinned into the phone and agreed, excited that she’d get to see her favorite pair green eyes sooner than she thought.

*

“Okay, I have to be honest,” Tobin whispered into Christen’s ear after she approached her from behind. “I think you should be the one up on that runway.”

Christen smiled when she realized who was talking.

They’d held eye contact several times throughout the night and given each other teasing smiles from across the room, but they hadn’t actually had a chance to talk to each other yet. Tobin had been busy photographing the event, and Christen was sitting front row for the show with a bunch of other people.

They were now at the bar in the corner of the room, during a break in the action, before the final runway show started.

“Do you use that line on all the girls?” Christen whispered back, turning around to face Tobin, giving her a sly look.

“Nope, just the hottest ones.” Tobin mused, letting her eyes roam over Christen again, now that they were right in front of each other.

Christen had a tight black dress on, with sleeves down to her forearms. The neckline cut low enough that her collarbones were visible and Tobin couldn’t help letting her mind wonder every time she looked at them.

Wondering how it’d feel to run her tongue along that part of Christen’s body.

Christen let her check her out for another minute, before running her fingers along Tobin’s bicep playfully, drawing her back out of her thoughts. Tobin shivered from the teasing contact of Christen’s hand.

She decided right then that she’d had enough pictures for the night.

“Can you sneak away for a few minutes?” Tobin asked quietly. “I wanna show you something..”

Christen smiled at the devilish look Tobin was giving her.

“I’m sure I can.” she nodded. “But why do we have to sneak?”

Tobin laughed easily at that. “We don’t really, it’s just more fun that way.” She winked.

Christen laughed and took the last sip of her drink, before putting the glass down on a table next to the bar and hopping out of line. 

“After you.” Christen motioned, turning on her heel and following Tobin casually out of the back of the room, without a word to her teammates.

They rode a small freight elevator up to the very top of the high rise they were at for the event, past the floors that actually had numbers on them, until it stopped at a mezzanine, not able to go any higher.

The rolling doors of the elevator opened and Tobin stepped out, reaching for Christen’s hand to guide her along.

The large room was dark like it was only used as some sort of storage space, but lining the far wall of the building were glass windows, looking out over the city.

Tobin pulled Christen along with their fingers loosely intertwined until they made it to the windows, stopping to take in the view.

“Wow.” Christen hummed looking around at the city below them.

She could see the Hancock building just to her left, the second tallest skyscraper in the city. It was a little higher than they were, but not by much.

The red line of car brake lights were rushing along the busy city street down below, but for a moment, Christen couldn’t get over how romantic the city looked. All the buildings lit up below them.

“How’d you know about this?” She asked Tobin then, turning to face her a little.

“I’ve done a few shoots here before,” Tobin explained. “When you get behind the scenes access, you stumble upon cool things like this sometimes.”

“This is cool..” Christen nodded.

Tobin leaned in a little closer, dropping her tone an octave. “I always thought it’d be fun to have a makeout session up here..” She trailed off, looking away from Christen with a smile like she didn’t just say that.

“Well, you know what they say.. dream big..” Christen shrugged, pretending she didn’t get what Tobin was insinuating. “Maybe someday you’ll find a taker..”

Tobin cleared her throat and turned back to Christen. They looked at each other in a silent standoff, neither of them breaking for several seconds.   

Tobin broke out laughing when she couldn’t hold her poker face any longer, grabbing Christen’s hips and backing her up against the window slowly.

She took her time leaning in and Christen took her time letting her.

*

Christen had two away games in a row after that before her team finally returned home for a Saturday night matchup with Houston at the end of the month.

Tobin mentioned to Christen in the week leading up to the game that she was going to buy a ticket so she could come watch, and Christen just smiled, letting Tobin know she’d have a ticket at the box office under her name for free.

She called it the perks of knowing the talent.

Chicago won easily 3-0 and the team was ready for a night out to celebrate.

A bunch of Christen’s teammates decided to head out for drinks and dancing at the House of Blues downtown, running home to get fancied up before they all met up an hour later.

Christen convinced Tobin to tag along with them, not that it was hard.

Two drinks in and Christen was roped into dancing with a few of the girls, letting them pull her into the center of the dance floor, as she pretended to fight it, knowing all along she’d end up there.

Tobin just sat back and enjoyed the show for a while.

Watching the way Christen’s ass looked in the tight skinny jeans she was wearing.

Watching the way she was twisting and tearing up the dance floor like she had never met a song she didn’t like.

Her dark curls swaying back and forth as she found the beat easily, in a way that was so sexy to Tobin.

She’d look up at Tobin every time she spun around, holding eye contact in a way she hadn’t done before. With more meaning conveyed in her eyes.

When the song changed into a new funk-pop song that Tobin hadn’t heard before, she decided she’d had enough of the teasing.

She downed the last bit of her first drink and slowly bopped down to the dance floor, sliding up behind Christen and starting to sway with the beauty in front of her.

Christen leaned back a little, letting her ass sway into Tobin, before laughing and spinning away for a moment, only to be pulled back in a moment later.

They fell into a rhythm easily together, until they were holding onto each other face to face, matching the beat perfectly.

Tobin was in awe of how desirable Christen looked. She couldn’t get enough.

“We should take this back to my place.” Tobin husked into Christen’s ear as the song played, letting her hands roam a little slower over Christen’s back, just down to the top of her ass.

Christen looked up with a look in her eyes, leaning in closer to Tobin. “If we're taking it anywhere, it’s gonna be my place.” She smiled. “I’ve got a puppy, remember.”

Tobin bit her lip with a smile, watching as Christen spun away again. Oh, yea...

She swayed to the beat until Christen pulled her back in, spinning around easily and letting Tobin’s hands run over her hips again. Feeling Christen’s ass grind into her playfully another time.

Tobin was getting anxious. The contact was overwhelming.

“Wanna get out of here?” She tried again, this time not letting Christen go.

Tobin spun her around and cupped her jaw a little firmly, placing a kiss to her lips this time.

That seemed to do the trick, as Christen broke into a smile and nodded sensually. “I want you.” She purred into Tobin’s ear.

Tobin swallowed roughly and grabbed Christen’s hand, quickly pulling her towards the door, ordering a Lyft for them as they snuck through the crowd. Not a single word to uttered to anyone around them.

They were both done waiting. Done pretending that they didn’t care either way if something happened between them or not. They could both feel the undeniable chemistry that was palpable between them and they were both ready to give into it.

It was the longest seven block car ride of their lives.

*

Christen only took her lips away from Tobin’s long enough for them to step out of the elevator and walk to her door. She fished her keys out of her purse just as Tobin let her lips find the back of Christen’s neck.

Christen struggled with the lock for a second, before finally winning, pulling Tobin inside as soon as the door opened.

She dropped her purse in the entryway and bent down to take her heels off before Tobin was back to her previous assault of lips and tongue and teeth.

Tobin’s hands found Christen’s waist as she walked them through the dark apartment, past a sleeping Morena on the couch.

Tobin had one destination in mind.

Christen giggled into Tobin’s mouth as her back hit the glass window in the living room, their faces gently lit by the city lights outside, from the tall buildings that surrounded them.

The way Christen’s face was glowing in the soft light made Tobin dizzy but she kept her focus, just enough.

Without hesitating any longer, Tobin dropped to her knees slowly, keeping her hands on Christen’s hips firmly, until she was steady on the ground.

She peered up at Christen through her long eyelashes and moved her hands slowly to the button of Christen’s jeans, unfastening it in one motion, before reaching for the zipper.

They held eye contact as Tobin pulled the zipper down, before reaching back up to the waistband. Christen was already panting as Tobin hooked her fingers inside her jeans and started to pull them down.

Christen let another small laugh escape her lips as she helped Tobin wiggle the tight jeans down around her butt before they loosened and were easier for Tobin to pull off the rest of the way.

She balanced her hands on Tobin’s shoulders as she stepped out of them.

Tobin wasted no time chucking them to the side of the living room as soon as they were off.

Tobin licked her lips and started a trail of slow, opened mouth kisses up the inside of Christen’s right thigh, pausing to skip over her most sensitive area, before letting her trail continue back down Christen’s left thigh.

Christen could feel the cool sensation of the window on her butt cheeks, her lower body only guarded by her black lacy thong now.

Her chest was already heaving, as she tried to take a deep breath.

Tobin reached up and found the edges of Christen’s thong then, not waiting any longer before she slid it down around Christen’s ankles, tossing it over her shoulder when it was off.

Christen felt like she was on fire in anticipation.

“Tobin…” She husked out. “As hot as this is, I’m gonna need us to take this to the bedroom before my legs give out.”

Tobin placed her strong hands firmly on Christen’s thighs and spread her feet apart a little before she looked up at Christen again.

“Chris, I’ve got you..” She paused for a breath, before continuing.

“I’ve been fantasizing about fucking you against this window since the first time I came over.” Tobin rasped out thickly. “I”m taking you once right here.”

And with that, Tobin licked her lips and pushed herself forward, until her tongue was darting out and running a slow path through Christen’s wetness.

Fuck..” Christen moaned as soon as she felt Tobin’s tongue on her. Her head fell back against the glass windowpane as she let her eyes shut.

Tobin stroked her tongue through Christen again, her mouth watering at the taste of the woman before her, before grabbing Christen’s left leg and lifting it up over her shoulder, so she could have more access.

Christen’s hand was tangling roughly in Tobin’s hair, pulling her closer at that.

Tobin’s tongue found Christen’s entrance at this new angle, and she wasted no time licking inside of her. Christen bucked her hips as she felt Tobin’s tongue against her center, wanting as much friction as possible.

Oh fuck.” She whined again, before letting a string of undetectable words fall from her mouth, mostly turning into just loud moans.

It only took a minute of Tobin’s tongue stroking in and out of Christen before she was breaking, her wetness seeping out more into Tobin’s mouth.

Tobin pulled her head back, instead using two fingers inside of Christen, as she held her up, letting her fully ride out her orgasm.

It took another minute of Tobin thrusting her fingers in and out of Christen before she was completely finished.

When Tobin was sure she was done, she steadied herself on her knees again, kissing another path down her thigh, licking up the remaining moisture that had collected between Christen’s legs.

Christen let her leg drop from Tobin’s shoulder after a moment, trying to stand on her own as much as possible.

Tobin moved her hands back to Christen’s hips, holding her firmly against the window again as she slowly stood up, so they were finally face to face again.

There was a light sheen of sweat on Christen’s forehead, shimmering in the dim city lights in the background. Her face holding a look of complete satisfaction.

Tobin smiled to herself, waiting for Christen to open her eyes before she spoke.

“You okay?” Tobin wondered as they made eye contact.

Christen just started laughing, wrapping her arms around Tobin’s shoulders and leaning in for a kiss. She could taste herself on Tobin’s tongue as it moved into her mouth gently.

“I’m wonderful..” Christen whispered when they pulled back. She let her head fall against the glass again in complete bliss. “That was amazing.”

“Bedroom?” Tobin suggested then.

Christen lifted her head again and nodded easily. “Bedroom.”

Tobin grabbed Christen’s thighs and lifted her up, wrapping Christen’s legs around her hips. Christen let out a quiet yelp at the motion of Tobin’s strong arms lifting her before she giggled again.

She grabbed Tobin’s face with her right hand, kissing her deeply as Tobin walked them back through the apartment.

“It’s the door at the end of the hall,” Christen instructed between kisses, realizing Tobin had never seen her bedroom before.

They made it to the foot of Christen’s bed before Tobin gently put her down.

Christen sat up and pulled her tank top over her head, tossing it to the side of the bed, before unhooking her bra and taking that off as well.

Tobin took a deep breath as she looked Christen over, her body completely naked now.

“You’re so fucking hot,” Tobin whined.

Christen smiled sensually and reached for Tobin’s hips, moving her closer so she could get to work on undressing her.

Tobin helped Christen take her jeans off, before lifting her shirt over her head as well.

Christen slid back on the bed and reached for Tobin’s hands, pulling her on top of her.

Tobin crawled up Christen’s body before she leaned down and kissed her again, a little more passionately this time. Taking every opportunity to lick into Christen’s mouth, exactly the way she wanted to.

Finally, Christen pulled back and reached up around Tobin’s back, unhooking her bra and letting it fall from her chest, throwing it to where her own clothes had ended up a minute earlier.

She marveled at Tobin’s perfect chest and torso for a moment underneath her, before she was pushing her shoulders to the side, silently signaling for Tobin to lay down.

When Tobin hit the mattress, Christen sat up, swinging her leg over Tobin to straddle her. She bit her lip and let her eyes roam over Tobin again, before reaching both hands up and softly palming her breasts.

Tobin let out a shaky breath as soon as Christen’s soft hands touched her.

“You’re so sexy.” Christen breathed, holding eye contact with Tobin as she massaged both of her breasts.

Tobin lifted her right hand, moving it behind Christen’s neck and pulling her down for another kiss. They stayed kissing like that for a minute until Christen pulled back again.

She started to move her body down the bed, still on top of Tobin. When she was finally kneeling before her at the foot of the bed, Christen reached up and pulled Tobin’s underwear down.

Tobin lifted her hips off the bed to give Christen’s easier access, helping her shimmy her underwear down, until Christen was pulling them off her ankles.

Christen moved up the bed a little farther, until she was in between Tobin’s legs now, her eyes roaming over every inch of tanned skin in front of her.

She bit her lip and gently grabbed Tobin’s thighs, letting her hands roam so slowly up them, watching as Tobin started to pant with desire.

Those hands and how slow and deliberate and meaningfully they moved. Every time she touched Tobin, there was a purpose to it.

Christen’s hands would surely be the death of Tobin at some point, but she was gladly willing to stick around and find out how it’d end.

Finally, when she reached her hips, Christen trailed the fingertips on her right hand outwards, running a path from Tobin’s hip, down around her butt and into her inner thigh, like they were putting on a show.

Tobin let her eyes close for a moment, trying to feel every single touch and every single nerve ending that Christen was hitting.

She hadn’t even been touched where she most wanted her yet and already Tobin was enjoying this more than any other experience she’d ever had.

Christen didn’t tease for too long though, ending her trail right at Tobin’s center, letting two fingers run up through Tobin’s folds for the first time.

Fuck..” They both breathed out at the contact.

“You’re so wet,” Christen whispered, running her fingers back down through Tobin again, finding her entrance and holding her fingertips there.

Tobin nodded thickly. “I want you so bad.” She husked, opening her eyes to find Christen’s green pools staring at her deeply.

Christen smiled sweetly and flexed her two fingers, pushing them slowly into Tobin for the first time.

Tobin moaned at the sensation, finally getting a little relief where she needed it most.

Christen continued to pump her fingers in and out of Tobin, picking up the pace with every thrust, until Tobin was rocking her lips in perfect rhythm with Christen.

Christen could feel Tobin’s walls tightening after only a couple of minutes. She twisted her wrist before making another pass, letting her palm press into Tobin’s center, making contact with her clit.

Oh god.” Tobin moaned, her breathing getting heavier and deeper with each motion. “Please don’t stop..” she begged.

Christen licked her lips then, watching Tobin’s face, full of pleasure. She wanted so badly to know what Tobin tasted like then. She had to know.

Without removing her fingers, Christen moved down the bed a little more again, gathering her hair over her shoulder with her left hand, before she leaned in.

Just before she stuck her tongue out, Christen pulled her fingers out from inside of Tobin, quickly letting her tongue fill the void.

Fuck..” Tobin cried again as Christen’s tongue moved into her. “Fuck, Chris.. yes.”

Christen pulled her tongue out of Tobin’s entrance and kissed her way up Tobin’s center, until she was sucking her clit into her mouth, using her lips to massage the bundle of nerves.

That was all Tobin could stand, coming undone at all once. Her wetness running down her inner thighs as she orgasmed fully.

Christen didn’t pull back just yet, letting her fingertips find Tobin’s slit again and pushing into her, as her mouth worked on Tobin’s clit. She started to slow her movements gradually until Tobin was just lying under her panting wildly.

When Christen lifted her head and saw that Tobin was spent, she pulled her fingers out from inside of her gently, placing one last kiss to Tobin’s center and kneeling before her again.

Christen smiled and wiped her mouth with the back of her hand, ridding Tobin’s wetness from it.

She then leaned back down and kissed a trail up Tobin’s stomach, between her breasts and to her neck, before moving the baby hairs off of Tobin’s forehead, waiting for Tobin to open her eyes again.

It took a couple minutes before Tobin regained her senses enough, opening her eyes to Christen’s satisfied look, her chin resting on the pillow right next to Tobin’s face.

“You gonna make it?” Christen mused as she smiled proudly.

Tobin laughed and shut her eyes again for a second. “To be determined.” She whispered, her voice almost gone.

Christen leaned in and kissed Tobin’s cheek sweetly, letting her take her time to fully recover.

Finally, Tobin rolled over so their bodies were pressed together, opening her eyes to stare into Christen’s again. She leaned in and placed a soft kiss to her lips, letting her hand find Christen’s hip and rubbing soft patterns there.

“Give me another minute and then I wanna go again.” Tobin hummed, kissing Christen’s shoulder once.

Christen just nodded with another small laugh, willing to give Tobin all the time in the world.

“No rush.” She whispered. “We’ve got all night.”

*

Once they had finally fallen asleep, Christen didn’t stir again until she felt Tobin slide out from underneath her the following morning.

She laid there for a while, letting her eyes stay shut as she heard the toilet flush and the sink in the bathroom running.

After a few minutes, Christen lifted her head off the pillow, greeted by the sun shining brightly into her bedroom, the effects of them forgetting to shut the curtains the night before.

She sat up slowly and ran a hand through her hair, trying to tame her wild curls, even slightly. She noticed then that her bedroom door was cracked open and she could hear Tobin milling about in the kitchen down the hall.

Christen got up and peed quickly, before brushing her teeth. She laughed when she looked in the mirror and saw the red marks on her collarbones, left over from Tobin’s mouth a few hours ago. With one last glance in the mirror, she shut the bathroom light off, slowly making her way to the kitchen, not bothering to put any clothes on.

Christen rounded the corner and found Tobin standing in front of the coffee maker, waiting quietly while it brewed a fresh pot. She was seemingly lost in her thoughts as she stared at the countertop.

She also wasn’t wearing any clothes, which caused Christen’s insides to buzz a little, yet again.

Christen glanced at the clock on the stove as she padded into the room, noticing it was still early, barely past 7 am. Morena was eating breakfast out of her food bowl in the corner of the kitchen.

Christen slid up behind Tobin, gently wrapping her hands around Tobin’s waist from behind, and nuzzling into her neck. Tobin seemed to soften quickly at the contact, turning her head just a little to offer Christen a smile as she linked their hands together on her stomach.

Christen placed a couple of kisses to the crook of Tobin’s neck, resting her lips on Tobin’s skin and inhaling her scent for a moment before she started to laugh softly.

“Hmm?” Tobin hummed when she noticed Christen’s giggle.

Christen placed another kiss to Tobin’s neck and shrugged her shoulders as if to say nothing...

“This is nice..” Christen murmured into Tobin’s ear after a moment of silence, squeezing her arms around Tobin, to hug her a little tighter.

“Yeah.” Tobin nodded with a smile. “It is nice.”

They both quietly thought about how much they enjoyed waking up together for a moment before Tobin loosened Christen’s grip on her; so she could turn around.

When she did, she pulled Christen back in, so their naked bodies were flush against each other again, sharing another hug.

Christen yawned and dropped her face into Tobin’s neck for a moment.

“You still sleepy?” Tobin wondered softly.

Christen nodded in response.

Tobin chuckled again and kissed Christen’s forehead, angling her lips down just enough.

“I was going to bring the coffee to bed, you didn’t have to get up.” She explained. “Go lay back down,” she whispered against Christen’s hair.

Christen lifted her head back up so they were face to face again. She smiled and bit her lip, looking into Tobin’s honey brown eyes.

Tobin laughed again, raising her eyebrow in a silent question.

“What?” She wondered when Christen didn’t respond.

Christen shrugged. “I kinda like you.. ” She murmured casually.

Tobin grinned, kissing Christen’s lips firmly. “Yeah?” she questioned.

Christen just nodded cutely.

“I kinda like you too.” She returned.

Christen shook her head in amusement.

“Go back to bed,” Tobin said again.

“Okay..” Christen nodded, before pausing. “Will you come back in there though?”

“Of course.” Tobin smiled quickly. “As soon as the coffee is done, I’ll be right there.”

Christen beamed at her again. “Okay good. Because full disclosure, I’m a cuddler after sex.. I feel like I should be upfront about that now.”

Tobin laughed a little harder, leaning in to kiss Christen again because she just couldn’t help it.

“That’s probably the hottest thing you’ve said yet.” She teased. “I live for a good cuddle.”

Christen rolled her eyes playfully. “Good to know, Heath.” she winked.

Tobin spun her around and slapped her ass softly, earning a swat from Christen, before she walked back towards her bedroom.

Christen climbed back into bed and pulled the covers up around her. She buried her face in the pillow again, still able to faintly smell the aroma of Tobin’s shampoo on it.

She let her eyes shut and another smile find her lips as she laid there in thought.

Yeah, this was going to be a fun summer.