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Chapter 18 – Climax

There were moments in both of their lives that neither of them could ever forget. Moments which had occurred prior to their partnership, during their partnership, and in absentia of their partnership. Now, they both were relishing in every single small moment that they spent together, committing them to memory, trying to fill all the spaces where 10 years’ worth of moments were missing. They were trying to reconnect the threads that had been tying them together that had frayed. Even though they hadn’t spoken during that time, their strings had remained connected. The connection they shared was not a simple one, - it was transcendental. It was complicated.

They had tried to ignore the pull toward one another for years, but even as binary stars that dance around one another for eons do, eventually they pull together and collide. There was no denying the pull any longer.

They were partners. They’d always been partners; from the moment they’d been assigned to one another. They balanced each other out in every possible, - he was fiery passion, anger at injustices served upon the children and women and victims of heinous crimes. She was flowing compassion and empathy, understanding that life wasn’t always fair and the best anyone could ever do was overcome the tragedies and keep on surviving. Keep on breathing, keep fighting.

He was an ocean with a storm raging and waves that would crash into one another on their way to shore.  She was the shoreline, resolute and constant. When the water would crash against the shore it would pull pieces of the ground out in the retreating waves, floating and falling to the bottom to build up the floor. For every pull the ocean provided, the land would pull another piece to it. For every push they gave one another, there was a pull. When the situation was reversed, she was rage and he was calm. It was always a give and take, a push and pull – but they had never had an outright collision. There were always borders, boundaries, walls, constraints, invisible lines.

A metal band around a finger, a piece of paper with two signatures, a set of morals, and respect for beliefs. A badge, a gun, a trust.

Despite all of that, gravity had always pulled them with such a quiet ferocity that like a river that flowed through the same rock for years, it eventually wore through. The universe deemed their bond too strong, their gravity to heavy, their lifetimes too passing to deny their collision any longer. The doomsday clock had run out, and a new epoch was about to be born. A very new beginning that like their bond would persist and resist any and all interference.

As her hand fit into his, she could feel the clamminess in his palm as his fingers twitched between her own. There had been too many missed opportunities between the two of them, too many almost moments, too much history to ignore and too much chemistry to deny. The layers she’d built to keep others out had dissipated almost instantly with him. He had the soluble material needed to melt through every single layer.

When they had kissed for the first time, it had felt like her soul had let out a huge sigh of relief, it had whispered to her that you’re finally home. You’re finally on your way to being whole…at last.

After crossing the threshold into her room, she dropped his hand and twitchy fingers, turning her back to him as she pinched the lock on her door and turned it. Allowing her hand to linger on the handle for a moment she traced the line on the lock mechanism with her thumbnail. She could hear his steady breathing behind her, and she would be lying if she didn’t admit that she was suddenly feeling nervous as hell.

Spinning around, she came face-to-face with this marvelous man, with this additional history and trauma between them. But at their very cores, they knew one another intrinsically. They’d always felt one another in their blood. Their eyes would lock and suddenly they were the only two people in the universe that mattered at that moment in time. It left them both wanting more. They were every single bit the same person. They were home to one another.

Even when they weren’t around one another for those ten years, they’d felt each other, like their souls had left an imprint on one another during the time they had spent together that persisted in the absence of their physical presence. Their instincts and words whispered into the other’s brain and heart when they had needed it the most. They’d needed one another in a desperate, human way.

She wanted to build a home with him. She was positive that because of the work he’d been doing in therapy lately that his foundation would be sturdy enough to build on top of. She was positive that their bones they’d initially erected were good enough to drywall, they were good enough to put new windows into, that they had run the necessary wiring and plumbing through. The foundation and bones were good for their home.

They’d quite literally placed their lives in one another’s hands and neither had disappointed the other in that respect. The ten years he’d been gone aside, she would still trust him with her life. She had trusted him with her life, and he had shielded her from the barrage of gunfire. When her hand had reached up and touched his warm cheek that day in the car, she was relieved that there was no blood, that they had both survived.

That’s when she decided that she would trust him regardless of the fact he had left. That’s when she decided to tell herself that it was okay for her to pursue her feelings towards her old partner. He’d always be her safe place, he’d always been her home, she just hadn’t had the opportunity to move in until now.

Her eyes lit up while she was thinking these things, the silence between the two of them was not uncomfortable for those few moments, if anything, it was almost as though they’d had the entire conversation amongst themselves. Deciding that this was okay. That they were ready for this next step. His eyes just studied her face, taking her in and a small sense of pride and relief crossed his features as she brought her hand up and rubbed her shoulder.

“Baciami.” She whispered, she could feel her heart pounding against her sternum as she spoke.

His eyes that had been watching, observing her all night lit up at her request. She’d integrated herself so seamlessly with his kids throughout the years, that seeing her interact with them always brought an immeasurable sense of contentment to his heart. She’d always had the ability to fit within his life in some aspect throughout the years. She’d always been his signal fire when it felt as though he was being attacked in the middle of the night. She was the lighthouse on the shore as the waves tossed him listlessly in the midst of a severe gale.

Her voice had the ability to bring him back to the land of the living even when he was mere seconds away from succumbing to fatal injuries. She’d been the face and voice he’d seen multiple times that he’d been shot and stabbed while on the job years prior. She would come from nowhere, cradling him and holding him near to her, her scent permeating his senses, begging and pleading for him to stay with her. She was an angel who had grabbed hold of her fiery sword of justice and wielded it for three-quarters of her life. He loved her intelligence, the sharp looks she would carry in her eyes when she knew something without a doubt. And here she was now, standing in front of him in her gray capri leggings and blue NYPD t-shirt, her hair in loose natural waves, not a smidgen of make-up on her freckled cheeks, asking him to kiss her.

His fingers were itching to reach out and touch her, to ask her to run away with him to absolutely anywhere. He didn’t care, as long as they were together, he knew he would be alright. He wanted her skin to burn his fingertips and make an even deeper impression on his heart. The threads that had tied them together for eons, he wanted them to knot a million times more, he wanted to repair the frayed edges that had been stretched during his absence.

He wanted their souls to finally find peace and solitude within one another. It felt like every lifetime he might’ve lived before had collapsed and this moment was everything that it had been speeding toward. It was always supposed to lead here. The minute she locked the door with her fingers, trapping them inside the room, into her personal space, - he knew his life and her life would never be the same ever. It was the beginning of something marvelous.

Her face was turned up looking at him as she took a step closer, and he smiled as she repeated her previous demand, “Sei un coglione! Baciami. Toccami.”

Fuck. Olivia Benson speaking Italian, whether or not she was calling him an asshole or not and telling him to kiss and touch her, he’d take that a million times over and over again. She didn’t have to repeat herself a third time.

He might’ve been an idiot, but hearing her speak Italian would never not be sexy as fucking hell.

He reached his hand down and threaded his fingers through her natural waves, his palm resting on her neck as she closed her eyes pressing her chin into his wrist. When their lips met, he backed her into the door and a soft moan escaped her lips as her lower back was pressed into the wood. The vibration of the moan reverberated into Elliot’s soul and the reaction was almost immediate. His tongue slipped into her mouth as she pulled him even closer to her with her arm wrapped around his neck. Their tongues slid against each other in a desperate, needy, yet soft and sensual way.

Their chests were pressed against one another, and as the contact became so much that nothing could have fit between the two of them, she felt her nipples harden in her bra as his chest made contact with hers through the material.

His hands began to travel from holding her head to wrap his arms around her waist, encircling her as he spun them around, backing her toward the bed. While they walked, her teeth found his bottom lip and she nipped at it as a growl escaped from deep within his throat.

Her fingertips brushed underneath the hem of that fucking shirt that was stretched so deliciously thin over his muscles, as she fisted the material in her hands she yanked it up and they broke apart so she could peel it off of his body and lift it over his head, she balled it up and tossed it on the ground. Freeing the man’s muscles and skin to the temperature of the room. Running her hands along his arms, she marveled at just how much muscle he was made of. While she was running her fingertips over his skin, she brushed her thumb over his Marine tattoo and situated her leg between his as she changed positions and shoved him back onto her bed.

Semper Fi.

He landed with a thud onto the mattress, his elbows propping him up as his knees were hanging off the edge of the bed. His six-pack was visible to her in this position and she also noticed that there was a deeply cut V disappearing just below the waistband of his jeans. Olivia’s eyes had darkened to a dark chocolate shade and held an intensity within them that made Elliot believe that he was now on the menu at some restaurant.

Holy fucking hell, he was beautiful. He was magnificent. He was quite the specimen of a man. She was damn lucky.

His own eyes had changed from the icy hue to one that resembled sapphires, as he looked at her. For the umpteenth time since he’d returned, since Gitano, he looked at her and didn’t see Olivia the cop, didn’t see Olivia the Captain, didn’t even see Olivia his friend. No, he saw Olivia, the woman.

She took a step closer to the bed, her knees between his as she maintained eye contact with him, her fingers playing with the hem of her own t-shirt. Debating whether or not she was ready to remove the article of clothing. He knew what he was getting into, she had told him. She felt safe with him. She felt like it was a no-brainer.

Understanding what a momentous decision and step this was to her, he spoke very quietly, “I won’t look down until you tell me to, Olivia.” she pulled that damn bottom lip into her mouth at this point, while tilting her head to study him for a moment as he traced the features of her face with his eyes. She was perfection, even her bone structure was sexy as hell.

He felt his body tremble with anticipation as she closed the distance further between the two of them, and climbed onto the bed, straddling his thighs, hovering over his legs. Her knees dug into the mattress on either side of him. It was his turn to study this magnificent woman before him. Her muscular thighs were clenching around his from where she was hovering, and he looked back up into her dark eyes. Her hands left the hem of her shirt as she trailed them up his body, her fingertips softly leaving ghosts of her touch behind. She dug her nails down his side as she brought them back toward her and used his shoulder to pull herself up further on him.

A quiet growl escaped his mouth as she brought her head down and kissed his scarred shoulder, right over where the small scars were from the gunshot wound that Bushido’s attack had left on his skin. As she bit down on his shoulder, he was surprised that she felt confident enough. He was having a hard time coming to terms that this magnificent sexy woman above him was his Olivia. He felt every single bit like the Parochial Schoolboy that had had been. He suddenly felt very inadequate experience wise compared to this minx.

“Stop thinking so loud, Elliot. Just toccami.” She licked his collarbone. Holy shit.

“You’re so fucking beautiful, Olivia.” he fell back flat on his back as he reached up and pulled her face closer to his to kiss her once more. After he had assaulted her mouth with his tongue again, he traced her jaw with kisses and down her neck, where he suckled on the scar left behind by Gitano. Once he had nipped at that special pulse-point on her neck, his kisses trailed down to her collarbone where he returned the favor of running his tongue along the hard plane of her freckled skin.

The sound that escaped her body was enough to drive him absolutely nuts.

Holy shit. Was all that he could keep thinking. His hands found themselves traveling underneath her shirt as they made contact with her warm skin around her waist. Years. He’d been thinking about touching her here for years, as his hand splayed out, running up her back his hands felt the solid continuous material of her bra.

That was curious. No snaps? Hm.

Years that they had been partners had resulted in many times he had thought about running his hands over her skin in these places. She would be leaning over or sitting a certain way and her skin would be exposed to everyone around but he had fantasized about touching her there, planting soft kisses along the sensitive skin just above her pants line.

They’d touched, but it was always small touches, hands, a shoulder, a hand over the shirt on the back. All he wanted to do was touch her, show her how loved she really was. Show her how a lover should treat her. Pay attention to her needs before his own. Yes, for the most part, he was pretty inexperienced, however, it didn’t mean that he didn’t have fantasies about his partner. Especially when he realized that he had fallen in love with her. Especially when he and Kathy had stopped having sex. This goddess above him deserved to be worshipped. Reverently.

She sat up, her body lowering on his. Her core, though clothed was directly above his pelvis. As she lowered herself down, she could feel the hardened length of him straining against his blue jeans. A moan escaped from her lips as she shifted herself, almost sliding in her pants. She was probably getting as uncomfortable in her pants as he was in his. This was intense, it was what they’d both been waiting for since they’d met.

Deciding it was now or never, she grabbed the bottom of her shirt in her hands and yanked it up, her hair falling out of the neckline as she tossed the material on top of his shirt that had been thrown down unceremoniously moments before.

Elliot’s jaw dropped at the sight before him. She was wearing a very simple yet sexy navy blue bra that had a strap just above the cup line and fastened in front. She filled it out nicely, the soft swell of her breasts now completely visible to him. She had freckles adorning her chest and shoulders. This was beyond anything he could ever have imagined. As though it were in slow motion, she reached up and unclipped the silver clasp, releasing the tension in the bra, but the material hadn’t fallen away just yet.

His fingers trailed up her sides, over her ribs, feeling the scars she had spoken about earlier that morning as he brought his hands underneath her breasts along her ribs. His thumbs grazing along the loosened material, brushing the area underneath the material with his fingertips. He moved his hands from her ribs to her shoulders in this instant, not touching the cups of the bra itself. Reaching his fingertips underneath the straps, he allowed his thumbs to stroke the skin beneath as he made eye contact with her.

She was just looking at him, marveling at her, curious. Her eyes were on fire, burning into his.

As he pushed the straps down, he let out an audible gasp. She almost recoiled but he grabbed her biceps and flipped them over, her hair splayed out on the bed behind her head as he looked down into her eyes, she pulled her hands out of the straps and left the bra’s cups to fall next to her as she lay there, naked from the waist up.

“You’re so fucking perfect, Olivia.” He looked down at her, almost rendered speechless. As his head bent down toward her, she hooked her leg around the back of his thigh, her foot locking him into place by resting in between his legs.

She wanted to bring her hands up to run from his neck down his muscular arms, but as soon as she brought her arms up, she decided to rest them across the muscles of his shoulders, pulling his head closer to her, biting down on her lip as his mouth made contact with her neck. Her fingers ached to press into the hard muscles all over his body. 

As his kisses trailed across her collarbone at an agonizingly slow pace, her eyes rolled back in her head. He was being so attentive to every single bit of skin that was exposed to him, not that she wasn’t relishing in it, especially when one of his hands had cupped her left breast and her hard nipples pressed against the palm of his hand. Gone was the clamminess that she had felt only minutes beforehand. His after squeezing and cupping the breast, his hand traveled between the two of them and as his mouth found that one sensitive spot on the side of her breast just above a scar, his hand slipped into the waistline of her leggings.

She moved her hand to rest on his forearm as his index finger found her clit and she squirmed underneath him.

His eyes met hers in surprise. “Fuck, Olivia.” He whispered, removing his hand from her pants as he moved from between her legs. She wanted to scream at the absence of his warmth and hard body against hers but before she could protest, he had placed either of his hands on the side of her hips and was looking her in the eyes. “Are you okay?” He asked, and she nodded, as he pulled her leggings off, discarding them with their shirts, standing and looking down at her from the side of the bed.

“Here, I feel like you’re overdressed.” She sits up on the bed now, with him standing between her legs, looking down at her with her bare chest and long legs exposed to him. She reached forward and unfasted the belt that had been pressing into her moments beforehand. Yanking it out of his loops, she unbuttons his pants and unzips them, pressing them down with her hands, her eyes traveling up his muscular legs and to the V that is all too prominent now.

He’s going to be the death of me. She thinks to herself, her eyes full of lust. Maybe we can both just die here. That’d be okay.

His boxer-briefs were straining to contain his erection, and she can see there’s a spot of wetness. She wants to savor every single moment she can with him tonight, when she sees that small spot on his underwear, she decides what does she have to lose at this point. Hooking her fingers in the waist of the briefs, she slowly pulls them down, freeing him from the material.

A smirk breaks out on her face as he looks down at her, surprised at her boldness, but at the same time, completely taken aback by the initiative she was exhibiting. This was Captain Benson. His former partner, and as his eyes and hers locked in to one another he felt the warmth of her hand wrap around him as she moved closer, as her name falls from his lips in a whisper, “Olivia.” Still smirking, she traces the tip of him with her fingertip spreading the precum from the top to just underneath his head. He jumps at the feeling of her ministrations on his sensitive tip and before he could register what was happening, he feels her tongue move over the length of him. She hums against him as his hand reaches down and brushes her hair out from in front of her face, over her shoulder. He’s looking down at her and she’s magnificent.

Her mouth closed over him as she closed her eyes, taking in this moment and allows her other hand to rest against his stomach, tracing his muscles as she licks and sucks. He feels even harder in her mouth and she doesn’t care how the rest of the night goes, she just knows without a doubt that she needs to feel him. She needs this connection; she needs to combust with him. She needs the collision. Releasing him with a slight pop, she pulls back and looks up at him as he reaches down and pulls her up to her feet, his mouth seeking hers more frantically as he kisses his way from her mouth, down her breasts, her stomach, and he picks her up and tosses her onto the bed.

This action elicits a laugh from the woman as he climbs over her, pulling her underwear over her long legs, spreading them with his knees as he lays over the top of her, drawing her breasts one at a time into his mouth, sucking and teasing her nipples as she moans and runs her hands over his head, her fingernails digging into his shoulders, her legs wrapping around his. She’s close to an orgasm when he releases one of her nipples from between his teeth as he looks down at her.

She reaches up and pulls his mouth to hers, widening her legs and scooting so that he’s pressed against the inside of her thigh, her wetness evident to him by the fact she’s slick and warm.

“El, I need you.” She moans, “I need you in my blood.”

 She wants everything from him. She wants to give him everything.  He wants to take it all. He wants to give it all to her. The world? It’s hers. His heart? She’s had it for years. His soul? It was never his to hang onto anyways.

When he situates himself at her entrance and slides in slowly, she adjusts to him and he knows. He knows. She knows. They are home. It was coming home for both of them. They were meant to be connected like this, they were never meant to ever not be like this.

Fuck. Move.” She bites his ear as his head is near hers and he brings himself down as he starts to move. His hands tracing small patterns up and down her side as he thrusts in and out of her, she bites down on his shoulder when the first orgasm hits her, with no assistance needed from either of their fingers.

This man who is inside her has always been inside of her in a different way. But now, she’s given herself to him completely and she knows that there’s no coming back from this. There’s no one else she’d rather be beneath like this, coming completely unglued. She is coming undone but he’s putting so much of her back together in this moment. As her legs wrap around she manages to roll them on their sides and as they’re facing one another, he’s got her leg hooked over his elbow.

They’re facing one another as she places her hand on his cheek, looking into his eyes as he’s languidly fucking her.

“God El. Just…come with me.” She whispers, her eyes and his locking into one another and as he reaches his climax, she pulls their heads together, her tongue invading his mouth at the same time that her walls clamp down on his shaft, which in turn pulsates as he releases.

Their bodies covered in sweat, their mouths locked, their eyes closed, and her arms wrapped around him, with him still inside of her she is free. He’s grounded.

This is really where they’ve always known it would end. They’re part of each other. As the kiss is broken she smiles at him, her freckles visible in the light as he traces the scars on her ribs. No matter what had been taken from them, they knew that there were no secrets between the two of them.

Her eyes travel to his arm where his tattoo is as she thinks about the note she had received years before.

Semper Fi.

She’d be his always faithful.

She thinks to what started this whole ordeal with Richard Wheatley at that moment and realizes that whatever Mastaba they want to build, they can put every single ounce of themselves in it together, because that’s where it always was. They were always together.

He looks into her sleepy eyes as he remembers the last letter he had written her, the one Richard had recited to them.

Dear Olivia Margaret Benson,

I know I had said that I had written out my thoughts to read that night at the Banquet for what I would say about you, about your career, about your drive for justice, - but that’s a lie. That’s not what THIS letter is. This letter, it’s different. I want to begin though, by thanking you for a few things. I know what you’re probably thinking, I was your partner, ‘it’s what partners do’…Olivia, thank you. Thank you for that day in November when you drove Kathy to the doctor and then you guys had the accident. Thank you for helping bring my son into the world that day. I’d like to think you gave him some of your compassion, fearlessness, and survival instincts that day. Thank you for devoting your life to getting justice for those who cannot fight for themselves.

I’m so confused about everything, Olivia. I knew when I left, it wasn’t under the best circumstances and for that, I am terribly sorry. I know sorry will never quite cover the hurt I caused and I’m going to do my best to make it up to you for the rest of our lives. I spent years getting to know you, Olivia. Not my partner, no, but you as a person. You guarded yourself from everyone but somehow, by some form of grace, some form of luck – you allowed me in. You told me things that you never told anyone before me, you told me things no one knew about you.

I knew after Gitano that I was in love with you, Olivia. That’s why I said I needed to not screw it up. But you left me.

Fighting for justice by your side, it was something that sustained me. When no one else could break through my barriers, you knew single-handedly how to dismantle every single one of them. I couldn’t imagine not spending a day without you by my side, but because we kept choosing one another over the public, over the job, I felt that if I would have stayed, something was going to give. Something was going to break or one of us would have to make the ultimate sacrifice and I couldn’t picture a world that you weren’t walking next to me or at least walking on and breathing, fighting, surviving.

I lived for the past ten years in the memories of the slightest touches you and I would share. The moments you’d be looking up something on the computer and your hand would stroke the back of my hand. Walking down the streets of New York side-by-side and bumping into one another. Sharing sandwiches, sharing drinks. I knew your soul and you knew mine. You were a burning flame in my heart that would consume all of me when you’d look over at me just-so.

The moments when one of us would get injured, it would break me. It’d break you, I saw it.

The moment Gitano cut you, I thought I was going to lose you. I didn’t want that. I didn’t want to lose any part of you.

After Jenna’s shooting in the precinct that day, I couldn’t help but think – what if it had been you shot and not Sister Peg? I would’ve died, Olivia.

I loved you so fucking much that I had started to debate whether or not staying in my marriage all those times when I could’ve walked away to you was the smart idea. I started to suck as a father, the only reason I was ever any good at it was because you reminded me that I had kids and I was a good father. You looked out for my family, Olivia. You became my family.

But when it came down to it, I had to make a decision. It was two against six. Six won. The odds were never in our favor back then. My marriage wasn’t one of love anymore toward the end, it was an obligation. Conversation took work, not like when we would sit in a car all night and talk about everything.

I have missed you in a desperate, simple human way, Olivia. The day I left I ripped out my heart and left it in New York. I’ve tried to forget you but the truth of the matter is I cannot forget you. I thought I was prepared to miss you a great deal, but I was unprepared for the agony that I actually experienced. Love persists despite absence. It persists regardless of sacrifice, even when you never requested anything of me in return. You couldn’t. We were both bound by different beliefs. You in the sacredness of a partnership, and me in sacred sacrament of marriage in my religion. Love grows in the darkest places. You knew all my darkness, and I knew all of yours. Despite all of that, I think we both fell in love with one another. Despite all the sadness, the strife, the struggle – we loved one another wholly. When I was in your presence, you were the light that could always pull me from the darkness. .

You were the lighthouse on the shore in the middle of the Perfect Storm. You were my truest treasure, and I couldn’t ever tell you this before now. I wish I could explain this to you better, but I cannot. I think I was stupid, Olivia, because I missed what was right in front of me during the time Kathy and I had been separated. I think I missed looking at my best friend and seeing her potential in my life even greater than just a partner, greater than a best friend. I miss you as a woman, I missed seeing your eyes speaking to mine in silent understanding that we loved one another deeper than anyone could possibly fathom.

I’m sorry I didn’t say goodbye. If I heard your voice, I wouldn’t have gone. I would’ve stayed with you. I couldn’t do that to my kids. I hoped you would understand, I hoped that you knew me well enough to know I would never willingly leave you unless I had a reason.

I love you, Olivia. You are the one true love of my life. You made me believe in soulmates. I sent you my medallion and mini-badge because I knew you’d get it. I knew you’d understand that I would always come back for you, eventually.

You made me understand that sometimes hope isn’t good enough, but sometimes it’s all we have.

I hope you’ll forgive me.

I hope to be the man you trusted.

I hope you’ll let me back in.

I hope we can try this time around.

Faithfully yours,