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Over Her Head

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Villanelle stands in the bathroom of an empty bodega washing blood off her hands and getting the previously dried blood out from under her nails. She likes them to be clean, of course. The bodega was janky and Villanelle has already stayed longer than she intended. Even though it was only 8 AM, she has already had a busy morning. However, she anticipated the rest of her day would be more leisurely.

Walking out of the vacant bodega, the sun has just really reached its rise. Villanelle enjoys the sunrise; it feels fresh. She walks to a smoothie shop about fifteen minutes away from the bodega and gets a berry drink. Smoothies have been a favorite of hers ever since she discovered them. As she had already finished most her day’s work, she decides to head over to MI6 and visit her newfound colleague. She had only been to the office once before, as she hated to be stuck inside all day, but she remembered where it was. And, if she didn’t, she could always just text Eve.

Walking up to the building, she tosses her empty smoothie cup into a nearby trashcan. Score. Villanelle notices as she walks through the front door that there’s a droplet of blood on the thigh of her khakis. She doesn’t think too much of it though, she knows Eve certainly won’t mind. Besides, she had other outfits, other accessories.

As Villanelle enters the foyer of the office building, she notices the front office secretary had spilled some coffee on her blouse. “Oh love, let me help you with that,” Villanelle says in her most charming English accent while dabbing a cloth she swiped from the desk on the woman’s chest. “Thank you so much, you’re such a dear,” the older woman replies. Villanelle slowly removes her hand from the woman’s chest and winks as she walks away. A nice lady, she thinks.

The first place Villanelle thinks to look for Eve is her office, of course, but to her dismay, she’s not there. She steps out of the office doorway and looks in all directions. Suddenly, she hears a coffeepot go off down the hall and follows its moan. Reaching the doorway of the break room, she peeks in. There she stands. Shorter than her, but with a silent power Villanelle secretly fears. Eve stands there stirring her coffee, allowing a bit of time to elapse before putting it up to her lips and tasting it. Villanelle saunters into the room silently, against her usual impulse to make a scene. Coming up behind Eve, she puts her hands around her hips and over her lower stomach. Eve stops stirring.

“May I have a taste?” Villanelle jokes, but not really. Turning around, Eve, far more seriously, raises the mug to Villanelle’s lips and says strictly: “Swallow.” Villanelle complies, not breaking eye contact with Eve. As Eve lowers the mug from Villanelle’s face, her gaze softens.

Eve carefully places her mug back onto the counter, making sure not to break Villanelle’s gaze. After she’s placed her mug beside her, she lowers a hand to Villanelle’s thigh, tracing it down from her stomach, and says “What happened here?” Eve says this while applying slight pressure to Villanelle’s upper thigh where the blood droplet had landed earlier that day. Villanelle’s breathing picks up and she’s shocked because Eve hadn’t even looked down at her thigh this whole time, how could she know it was there? Villanelle tries to stay composed, puts her hands in her pant pockets, and takes a step even closer to Eve. Towering about two inches above her, Villanelle lets the tension between them rise. It’s all a waiting game now.

Eve makes a move to put her lips under her chin, and just as it almost happens, Villanelle glides her focus past Eve and swipes the mug of coffee. Villanelle quickly turns around with the mug and takes a long drag of it. Eve lets a smile stretch across her face. “So, Commander, any jobs that need doing today?” Villanelle teases while making her way across the room. She’s now sitting at the end of a long table in the break room; shoulders back, legs spread, and the mug playfully resting on her lips. “None that I can think of,” Eve teases back. Villanelle can feel Eve’s magnetism, but she knows she has to keep her space. It’s the wanting that drives their relationship. Without that, Villanelle worries, what would be left? If consummated, would she still be important?

“Well, I’ve got a few errands to run today, you know, but I may be stopping around for a house call later, as I have a few line items of my contract I’d like to discuss with you,” Villanelle concludes. Before Eve can muster a response, Villanelle swiftly rises from the table, tosses the now empty mug into the sink and, as though it was a performance, exits the room.

Eve goes up to the sink and retrieves the mug. She doesn’t wash it, but instead raises it to her lips then puts it down. She goes back to her office without getting more coffee.

When Eve gets home at the end of the day, she instinctively calls out for Niko. She remembers that he’s gone, but doesn’t lament over this fact. Instead, she wanders into the kitchen and rummages through the refrigerator for any alcohol she may have stashed away earlier in the week. She comes across a bottle of shitty white wine. It’ll have to do. She pours a healthy glass and heads upstairs. She doesn’t bother locking the doors.

As she’s turning the corner into her bedroom she starts removing articles of clothing. By the time she reaches the mirror in her room, she’s wearing just her undergarments. She sets the glass of wine down on the coffee table nearest her bed and returns to the mirror. Looking closely now, she sees how much she’s aged. It feels like just yesterday she was finishing college, and the day before that, high school. It is at this moment in time that she realizes she’s never felt both this sexy and this insecure than she does now. Clearly, she is a woman being pursued, and vice versa, but she doesn’t feel as old as she looks. At least in her mind, however, Villanelle would disagree. Always one to complement Eve’s beautiful and mature figure, Villanelle would be upset hearing Eve talk about herself like this.

Eve retires from the mirror and heads across the hall towards the bathroom, noticing that the light is on. Had she left the light on this morning before she left for work? She recognizes this as a real possibility, but somewhere deep in her psyche, she knows she didn’t. Entering the bathroom she sees Villanelle, wearing a translucent pink button-up and a bra that holds her breasts nicely underneath while stirring a steaming bath of hot water with her right hand. Eve stands in the doorway, not entirely surprised. “I thought I’d have this ready for you, since I know how long a day at the office can be,” Villanelle says. “Oh, do you?” Eve replies. “Well, maybe you’ll just have to help me imagine,” Villanelle concedes as she slowly removes her hand from the scalding water and rises up to meet Eve’s stance. “Please,” Villanelle says while motioning inwards toward the bath. Eve sets her wine glass down on the bathroom counter and makes her way to the side of the tub. Villanelle stands behind her and gives her a substantial amount of time to remove her clothes herself. Eve isn’t as bashful as she once was, Villanelle thinks.

Clothes now removed, Eve steps leisurely into the tub, not minding the fact that the water is boiling. Villanelle turns around and faces the counter just opposite the tub; she doesn’t want to see Eve yet, and she doesn’t want Eve to see her seeing her yet. She knows that, within an instant, she could potentially give all of herself away, every shred of mystery she held so dear gone in a single moment. Instead, Villanelle focuses on Eve’s wine glass and takes a quick swig. “What is this?” Villanelle says snootily. “Just some shitty white wine I must’ve left in the fridge a while back,” Eve answers honestly. “There’s no need for this, wait a moment,” Villanelle assures Eve as she exits the bathroom, still keeping her eyes away from the woman now lounging in the tub.

Villanelle slowly makes her way down Eve’s steps and into the kitchen where they had officially met for the first time. It was so much different now, Villanelle thinks. She moves over towards the refrigerator and sensually wraps her long fingers around the handle, pulling the door open slowly. After a few moments of being in what felt like a trance, Villanelle crouches down and opens the bottom drawer, pulling out a bottle of the finest champagne she could find on short notice. This champagne, however, would still be the finest thing in Eve’s house. Besides herself, of course, Villanelle thinks.

Returning back up to the bathroom, Villanelle pops the champagne open as she enters the room, not making as casual of an entrance as she had earlier that day. Eve jerks her head over and tries to meet Villanelle’s eye line. She notices Villanelle simply staring at the counter and the sink and anything at the other side of the room, waiting. Eve has an inkling, so she formulates a test. “I’m thirsty,” she says boldly. At this point, Villanelle has made her way over to the sink and is now staring at herself in the mirror, trying not to seem skittish or reserved, not that she really could anyway. Villanelle looks herself in the eyes and mulls over Eve’s request as if she had asked her to marry her. Her eyes are tearful, but she’s not sad, just vulnerable for what feels like the first time in forever.

Villanelle wipes a tear from the corner of her eye and tries not to draw attention to her movement. She lowers her eyes and goes to sit on the toilet next to the tub where Eve was still bathing. With Villanelle’s eyes still at her feet, she motions the champagne bottle in her hand towards Eve. Eve remains silent and continues analyzing Villanelle’s eye line; nothing. Villanelle knows what Eve is doing, but she’s not entirely mad about it. She smirks a little and lets out a slight sigh before looking up into Eve’s eyes. She meets Eve’s eyes and nothing else. For a moment they just sit in static, taking each other in. Finally, Villanelle rises from the toilet and walks closer to Eve, still making eye contact, and sits down next to her on the floor tile.

“Open your lips,” Villanelle commands softly. Eve complies and a slight part begins to manifest between her lips. Villanelle slides the tip of the champagne bottle into the part between Eve’s lips and slowly raises it. She holds it for a second and then gradually releases. Eve swallows the champagne as Villanelle lowers the bottle and a few droplets land on Eve’s chest. Eve notices them and says to Villanelle, “Would you be so kind as to get those?” Villanelle, still in deep eye contact with Eve, begins to tear again. Never had she been this emotional, she thinks. After a long moment, Villanelle sets the champagne bottle down on the tile next to her, raises her right hand, and dips it into the boiling water Eve lay in. Villanelle grasps a modest handful of water and pours it down Eve’s chest, still not breaking her gaze. As the last droplets of water fall to Eve’s chest, Villanelle begins to let tears flow from her eyes.

Villanelle isn’t angry or sad, yet tears remain steadily releasing themselves from her face. Eve thinks about saying something but then doesn’t. She knows now. Eve stands up from the bath and exits, putting on a silk robe Villanelle had laid out next to the bath earlier. Villanelle remains on the floor, tears flowing, while Eve composes herself. Once endowed with the robe, Eve moves over towards Villanelle and stands behind her. Eve strokes a hand through Villanelle’s long, flowing honey hair. This only makes the tears come faster. Eve, feeling the gravity of what she’s done, moves over next to Villanelle and extends her hand. Out of the corner of her still crying eyes, Villanelle notices and takes Eve’s hand. Eve leads Villanelle across the hall and into her bedroom. Villanelle has never been in here with Eve before.

Eve moves Villanelle towards her bed and slowly tucks her into it. Turning off the light, because she knows how hard it is for Villanelle to let her see her cry, she moves back towards the bed and walks around to the other side. Coming up behind Villanelle, Eve facets her body around hers and lets Villanelle’s sweet hair flow into her face. The comforter rests over Villanelle’s body while Eve holds her from behind. Hoping it won’t be so, Eve puts her hand to Villanelle’s cheek to see if she’s still crying. Although her cheek is still wet, the tears had stopped coming. Eve removes her hand from Villanelle’s cheek and brushes a piece of hair out of the way of her ear, leans over, and whispers, “So, what’s your favorite movie?”