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Crash on Your Shore

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The Resistance base is too loud. The planet is too green. The food is too rich. The corridors are too narrow, the beds are too --

 Rey ducks into a ‘fresher stall and tries to center herself the way Master Luke had taught her. It will be okay, she tells herself. The ‘fresher is clearly a private place. Nobody will bother here, and she can breathe until she’s ready to face the world again.

 A hand appears underneath the partition. Rey shrieks.

 “Oh for kriff’s sake, I just need some paper,” a disembodied voice says.

 Rey shoves a whole roll into the outstretched hand and leaves as fast as she can.



Someone is having sex is the maintenance shaft under the laser cannon. Actually, no, three people are having sex in the maintenance shaft under the laser cannon. Possibly four, or one of them is from a species with an unusual number of limbs.

The landing safety officer yells at her when she tries to sit in a parked X-wing, and yells at her again when she tries to climb the deflector dish.
Commander Dameron strolls over, and Rey tenses. She likes him -- he’s kind and steady, and wields authority with a fair hand -- but he talks. And talks and talks some more.

“There are a problem here?” he asks, and the angry safety officer slips away.

Rey closes her eyes. “I just want to be alone,” she says through clenched teeth. “And there is no place to be alone.”

She pictures herself through Dameron’s eyes. Closed eyes and clenched jaw, the weird Jedi girl from Jakku...But when she looks at him, he smiles knowingly.

“Deflector dish is a good bet. ‘Course, you’ll fry if you’re up there when it comes on. You hear the siren, you get down fast. You hear me?”

“Yes,” she says, then forces herself to add, “Sir.”

“None of that now,” he says mildly. “I’ll distract the safety officer. You go up the back.”


Climbing the back of the dish is disappointing easily; unlike the front, it has a ladder. She wonders if she can’t trust her life here because everything seems so easy. She keeps looking for the lie, the catch, the hidden motive in everyone who wants to be her friend. At least she feels more like herself up here. Halfway up the ladder, the noise of the base recedes into distant static. The heat bouncing off the tarmac feels like desert air on her skin, and a breeze ruffles her hair.

The ladder leads to a small maintenance platform, and when Rey peeks over the top, she sees somebody else up there. Her orange flight suit is bright against the blue sky, and the sun glints off her thick black hair. Her eyes are closed and her face is turned up toward the sky, like someone who is very much enjoying being alone. Reluctantly, Rey starts backing down the ladder.

The girl’s eyes open. “Oh no, don’t go,” she says. She scoots over and pats the metal decking beside her. “There’s room for two.”

Rey hesitates. Up here, with the sun on her skin and the wind in her hair, she feels more at home than she has since she came back with

Master Luke two weeks ago. But if this girl is like everyone else, if she wants to talk…

“It gets crazy down there, doesn’t it?” she says. There’s a soft smile on her full lips, and Rey’s eyes linger on it, even though she doesn’t understand why.

Rey’s still hesitating -- and staring, maybe -- and the girl says, “Don’t worry. I don’t talk much.”

“Are you a Jedi?” Rey blurts. The way she’d plucked the thought out of her head…

The girl laughs. “No, I’m just a pilot.”

Just a pilot?” Rey asks, incredulous. “You fly a starfighter?”

“Absolutely,” the girl says, her smile widening. “I’m Jess, by the way.”

Rey hoists herself over the ledge, her misgivings vanishing. “I’m Rey. How did you know I didn’t want to talk?”

“No other reason to climb up here. Introverts of the galaxy unite, right? Preferably in silence.” She pulls a plastic-wrapped package out of her pocket and passes it to Rey. “Jerky?”

Rey takes it hesitantly and pops a bite into her mouth. It’s chewy but flavorful, the kind of thing she might’ve gotten to eat on Jakku if she’d had a good haul. In return, she passes Jess a couple of the dewberries she’d been carrying in her pack. The juice drips down Jess’s chin, and

Rey watches with a strange thrill as she licks it off her fingers.

They pass the rest of the afternoon in silence, their knees occasionally bumping together when one of them moves. The last time it happens,

Jess doesn’t move away, and her leg is a warm weight against Rey’s thigh.

At last, when the sun is fading from the sky, Jess stands up and peers over the platform. “Shift change,” she says. “It’s the easiest time to get down without getting caught.”

“Right,” Rey says, standing up and brushing the dirt off her tunic. She feels strangely cold now that Jess is so far away.
Jess turns back toward her before she vanishes down the ladder. “Same time tomorrow?” she asks.

“I’d like that,” Rey says, and feels at home here for the first time.



The chatter in the mess hall doesn’t overwhelm her tonight, and Finn keeps asking why she’s smiling.

“I’m not smiling that much,” Rey says, stacking her fork and knife on her already-clean plate. She still hasn’t learned to eat slowly yet. She looks up at Finn, who’s eying her incredulously. “Am I really smiling that much?”

Finn follows her gaze across the mess hall. Jess is sitting on the other side. She’d waved when Rey came in.

“She’s hot,” Finn says.

“Is she?” Rey asks. She hadn’t really thought about her that way.

Poe Dameron waves a hand in front of her face, and she bats it away.

“What was that for?” she asks.

“Checking if you’re blind. How many fingers am I holding up?”

Rey doesn’t dignify that with a response, and he says, “Hey, if you don’t think Jess is hot, you probably need to get your eyes checked is all I’m saying.”

Rey had gotten her eyes checked when she got here. And her teeth. And a lot of other parts of her body. It had made her feel like a very rich woman indeed. No one on Jakku got to go to the doctor.

After dinner, she says to Finn, “It’s not because she’s pretty.” Thinking about Jess makes her face flush, and she says, “Well, okay, it’s not only because she’s pretty.”

“Then what is it?” Finn asks, more serious now that he hasn’t got a mess hall to perform for.

“I know what she wants,” Rey says.

Finn frowns. “And what is that?”

Rey beams. “Silence.”



Commander Dameron distracts the safety officer so she can climb the dish the next afternoon. She supposes she ought to think of him as Poe; surely if he’s helping her break rules, he’s a friend.

Up at the top of the dish, Jess hands her an orange. They’re sitting on the edge of the platform, swinging their feet out into empty space. Rey takes half an hour to suck all the juice out of the flesh, one wedge at a time. Then she starts chewing on the peel.

Jess looks at her strangely. “You’re not supposed to eat that part, you know.”

Rey ducks her head, feeling her cheeks burning. She stares down at the orange peel in her hand. She can’t throw it away, not just to look like she fits in. Things like this happen almost every day. She forgets that food can be expendable. The day before they arrived here, Master Luke had told her not to lick her plate clean.

The silence between them is getting uncomfortable when Jess says, “You know, I’ve never tried an orange peel before. Here, give me a piece.” Her face screws up while she chews, and she swallows it with a determined expression. “Not bad,” she says, and Rey laughs.

“Nobody’s done that for me before,” she says.

Jess’ brow furrows. “Done what?”

Rey pauses, searching for the words to explain. She’s not used to people being interested in what she thinks. “Do something my way. Everything’s different here, so I always have to change. ”

“What’s it like where you’re from?” Jess asks. She’s sitting cross-legged on the platform now, and her knees are bumping against Rey’s thighs.

Rey thinks about sand and hunger, how she never knew what the word enough meant till she came here. But that’s not the most important thing. “On Jakku, if somebody looked at you, they were trying to decide if they wanted to take your things. Everything’s a trade. You can’t get anything for free, and if someone tries to give you something, you have to ask yourself why.” She looks off into the horizon. “If you didn’t understand that, you died.”

Jess licks her lips and looks down into her lap. “Just so you know, I don’t want anything from you.” She looks up at Rey hesitantly. “Except your company.”

Rey beams. “Same time tomorrow?”



The next day, Rey brings dewberries; she likes to think that she and Jess have a system, trading little offerings with each other.
Jess brings a holoprojector. Rey expects schematics and star charts, but instead Jess brought loads of hair tutorials from the InfoNet. She blushes a little when the first hologram pops out.

“I know it’s silly,” she says, “but sometimes it’s fun to forget about the war and just be a girl.”

She looks so wistful when she says it, so Rey tries to understand. The truth is, she doesn’t really know what being a girl is supposed to mean; on Jakku, it mostly made life more dangerous. Jess’ holoprojector, on the other hand...that’s something she understands. When she waves her hand around, the image follows, turning this way and that so she can inspect it from the back and sides.

“I’ve never seen one like this!” she exclaims, unable to conceal her excitement. “The one in the rec room has all those wibbly spots, and everything goes all fuzzy around the edges.”

Jess grins. “Do you like it? I made it myself.”

“Tell me everything,” Rey says. Then she frowns. “I mean, if you want to. If it’s not a secret.”

On Jakku, you wouldn’t want to tell something like that; the other scavengers would go and strip all the best parts, and then you wouldn’t be able to make another to sell at the market.

But she shouldn’t have worried; Jess’ eyes light up and she pops the control panel on the back so Rey can get a better view. Peering over the projector brings their bodies closer than ever before. The heat of Jess against her sends a strange electricity through her body, nothing like the simple comfort of leaning against Finn.

At last, Jess snaps the control panel shut. Rey’s weighing whether she has to move when Jess says, “I could do yours if you like.”

“What?” Rey blinks.  She hadn't been listening carefully. 

Jess gestures at the hologram. It’s a girl with two elaborate braids woven into a bun at the base of her skull. “Your hair. I could do it like that.” She pauses, licks her lips. “I mean, if you wanted me to.”

“Yes,” Rey says before she can really think.

Jess slides a comb out of her pocket, and Rey wonders suddenly if she had planned this, if Jess had climbed to the top of the tower because she wanted to do her hair. Her fingers are slow and careful as they unwind Rey’s three knots, and suddenly Rey tenses. What if her hair is awful to touch? What if it doesn’t smell nice the way Jess had expected?

Jess’ fingers stop moving. “Are you alright?” she asks.

Rey can feel the awful blush creeping across her face again. She’d gone tense; now she has to explain. “It’s just…” She swallows. “Well, no one’s ever done this before.”

“Ever?” Jess asks quietly. “Not even your mom?”

“Maybe. But I can’t remember. There was an old woman once, on Jakku. When I was nine, maybe? But she was quick about it. Not like you.” Rey swallows and stares down at the metal decking, not sure what Jess will say next.

Jess’ fingers start moving again, even more slowly than before. “Was it lonely there?” she asks.

“Yes,” Rey says, tears blurring her eyes.

Jess doesn’t say anything, but she puts the comb down. Her fingers start at Rey’s temple and glide over the back of her head and through the bottom of her hair, over and over again, until Rey collapses backward against her. Her eyes flutter shut, and Jess wraps her other arm around her waist. Her hand is a steady, reassuring weight against Rey’s ribs.

A part of Rey wants to cry. Once, while she was training with Master Luke, she’d fallen into the water. After he’d pulled her out, her hands were so numb she could barely feel them. Warming them over the fire had hurt, like a needle scraping up and down her nerve endings. Lying here in Jess’ arms is like that. Now that she’s finally with someone, she can feel how terribly alone she’d been before.

But underneath the memory of all that sadness, something else is blooming, a warmth she’s never felt before. It starts with a flutter in her stomach and travels lower, a heat pooling between her thighs. Her breasts are tingling, straining against the heavy fabric of her sports bra. She can’t stop imagining: what it would feel like if Jess’ hand slid down lower, if Jess would kiss her if she only tilted up her head. But she can’t move, because what if she’s wrong? What if Jess doesn’t want the things she’s imagining?

So she stays, leaning against Jess and dreaming, until the sun fades from the sky.



Master Luke tells her she’s distracted, which is true. Her whole day is condensed to one point of longing. When can she climb the deflector dish again?

But Jess isn’t there. Rey sits on the platform by herself, counting the hours. Finn finally comes for her, swearing the whole way. He wraps his hands around the railing as tight as he can and looks down over the edge.

“You do this every day?” he asks. “You must really like her.”

Rey sighs. “It doesn’t matter. She didn’t come.”

“You know Red Squadron has a mission, right?” Finn asks. “Check the flight board before you come up here next time.” He looks over the edge again. “Is there any way you can use the Force to get me down?”



Rey’s’ comm chimes when she’s getting ready for bed. She almost ignores it. Finn’s the only one who messages her, and he mostly sends jokes she doesn’t understand. She opens the message anyway, just in case; Finn gets awfully hurt she doesn’t write back immediately. But it’s Jess.

Climb up the dish with me? the message says. I’ll light a sack of nexu poo on fire to distract the safety officer.

Rey meets her at the doors to the hangar bay. “How did you get a bag of nexu crap?” she asks.

Jess shakes her head. “Trust me, you don’t want to know.”

“How are we going to get it out there without getting caught?” Rey asks. The mission is more complex than she thought it would be.

“Easy.” Jess taps a few commands into a control panel, and a mouse droid appears, chirping eagerly. She deposits an innocuous looking brown bag on top of it, sets it aflame, and whispers, “Run like the wind, little buddy!”

When they can see the flames halfway across the landing strip, they take off for the deflector dish, giggling the whole way up. Something about the darkness makes Rey feel more wild and free. When Jess turns toward her, still grinning, Rey doesn’t think twice about running her fingers through the strands of glossy black hair blowing around her face. Jess goes still and catches her breath. Rey swallows. Something is making her knees feel shaky and weak. She lays a hand on Jess’ cheek, and Jess takes a step forward, closing the distance between them.

Is she going to --


Rey tilts her head, and their lips brush together. It only lasts for a second, but warmth flares through her whole body. She’s grinning, but she can’t help it. She kissed a girl. A beautiful girl. A girl who flies a starfighter and builds projectors and...who has probably kissed a lot of girls. Rey hasn’t kissed anyone. Ever. She doesn’t know where her nose is supposed to go, or when to open her mouth, or what she’s supposed to do with her tongue --

But Jess is kissing her again, open mouthed, with one arm wrapped around Rey’s waist and a hand fisting in her hair. Rey sighs into her open mouth, letting her body go limp against Jess’. She wants. She can’t even say what exactly, but her whole body is burning now, and without quite meaning to, she brings her teeth down on Jess’ lip. Jess gasps and tightens her grip on Rey’s waist.

And then a siren goes off. At first, it seems distant, and Rey tries to push it to the back of her mind. Then sound gets louder till it’s echoing around in her head and a bright blue light is shining through her eyelids.

They both break away from the kiss at the same time.

“Is that the deflector siren?” Rey asks, her eyes flying open.

Jess nods frantically. Blue lights are flashing across the maintenance platform.

“Down,” she says. “Now.”

Halfway down the ladder, Rey starts to wonder why the landing strip is so quiet, why there are no TIE fighters screaming through the sky. Jess hits the ground running, snapping all the buttons and toggles on her flight suit as fast as she can. But she doesn’t get far.

Poe Dameron is waiting for them next to the control panel. He strolls toward them slowly, looking more like a commander than Rey has ever seen him. Jess pulls herself up to attention, and Rey tries to imitate, even though she’s never had the training.

Eyebrows raised, he says, “Help me out here, Pava, because I’m wondering something. Do flaming bags of shit belong on the landing strip?”

“No, sir,” Jess murmurs, looking at the ground.

Poe turns toward Rey, and she forces herself to look him in the eye.

“I know you’re not technically in the military, but what do you think? Does flaming anything belong on the landing strip?”

Rey shakes her head. Master Luke is going to be so disappointed with her in the morning.

“It was my idea, sir,” Jess says quickly. “I didn’t know you were on duty tonight. We didn’t mean to cause any trouble.”

“I’m just going to clarify this one more time. If something is on fire, it doesn’t belong on the landing strip. Because it’s a fire hazard. Creating a fire hazard is the definition of causing trouble,” he says. “But I know you didn’t mean it, and I know you want to make it up to me, right?”

Rey nods eagerly. Jess even manages a “yes sir!”

Poe smiles. “Glad to hear it.” He passes each of them a toothbrush. “The latrine needs cleaning. You can go to bed when you’re done.”

The truth is, Rey doesn’t mind. It means she gets to spend the whole night alone with Jess.



She awakens at first light with a cramp in her wrist and an ache between her legs. She doesn’t mind the exhaustion; she’d done without sleep often enough on Jakku. It’s fear that gnaws away at her, all through morning training -- fear that somehow, when she crawled down from the deflector dish to scrub the latrine, she lost a chance she’ll never get back.

She’s a mess in training, and Master Luke tells her to spend the morning meditating. If it’s supposed to be punishment, it doesn’t work.

She’s been learning to sense people in the Force. When she concentrates, she can push her consciousness out over the base, feel the vast bright hub of minds working together for the same cause. Usually, she retreats quickly, afraid she’ll drown in a sea of thoughts and feelings. Today she pushes harder. She wants to find Jess.

The pilots feel different from everyone else. They’re focused in a way that other people aren’t. Dameron jumps out at her first. His mind is loud, just like he is. His thoughts shoot off in a dozen different directions, just like she thought they would, but there’s a steadiness underneath them, like a strong current moving through the ocean.

Finding Jess is harder than Rey thought it would be. There’s so much noise and confusion in the hangar bay, so many loud, bright pilots to carry her mind away. Then she remembers to look for the silence, and she finds Jess right away.
After that, she looks for Jess again and again, and finds her every time.



They haven’t climbed the deflector dish in days. Commander Dameron will only help you break the rules if you don’t abuse the privilege, and they had not lived up to his expectation. Finn thinks it’s an overreaction. Who did you hurt anyway? he asks, indignant over their lunch of protein cubes and mystery sauce.

Jess shakes her head and reminds him that’s not the problem. The problem is that fire on the landing strip looks like an emergency, maybe even an attack. You can’t let people believe it’s nothing. If the guard sees a fire and thinks it’s just those two girls staging a distraction to climb the deflector dish, maybe they miss the warning and everyone dies.

Together, they recite the unofficial mantra of the Resistance: the day you forget your job is dangerous is the day you die.



Commander Dameron catches up to her in the corridor. His sudden appearances used to make her jump; now that she knows his presence in the Force, it’s less of a surprise.

“The thing about the deflector dish is, it’s not a great place to have sex,” he says, falling in step beside her.

Rey feels heat crawling across her cheekbones and down her neck. The last time she’d seen Poe, he’d been angry with her. Now he’s talking about sex.

“Not that I’ve ever tried to hook up on that maintenance platform, of course,” he continues, oblivious to her discomfort. “But if I had, I’d probably realize that the floor is really scratchy, it’s way too small, and every noise you make echoes across the whole base.”

Rey turns to him, her eyes wide. “Thank you for telling me,” she says with as much decorum as she can muster. “Not that Jess and I were, ah…” She trails off uncertainly. The truth is, she doesn’t know what she and Jess would’ve done if they’d had longer, only that the ache between her legs hasn’t gone away since that night.

“Sure you weren’t,” Poe says, laughing. “All I’m saying is, there are better ways to hook up. Like, say, you could sign up to go on a food foraging mission for the kitchen.”

“You can do that?” she asks. She hadn’t known they were allowed off base.

“Sure, if you get to the sign-up form before everybody else,” Poe says shrugging. “Which you can, because someone with a small quantity of authority is bringing it to you early.” He hands her a datapad with a flourish.

Afterward, she finds Jess in the hangar bay, rewiring the firing control on her X-wing. Rey’s throat goes dry when she tries to talk. What if Jess hasn’t been thinking about the same things she has?

Finally, she says, “Would you like to go on the food foraging mission with me tomorrow?”

What stupid words to struggle over, she thinks. But watching the slow smile spread across Jess’ face is worth it.



In the morning, with a basket draped over her arm and Jess trailing behind her through the woods, Rey panics. That night on the dish, under the cover of darkness, kissing Jess had been easy. Now she does not know what to do. So much time has passed since they were alone together. Things are quiet between them, but she doesn’t know if it’s the good kind of quiet or the awkward kind of quiet, and she wishes she could ask Finn, but --

“What are you thinking about?” Jess asks, puncturing through her thoughts.

Rey turns around to face her and tries not to look as terrified as she feels. “Nothing,” she says, trying to look nonchalant.

Jess frowns. “It doesn’t look like nothing.” She looks pleading. “You can tell me, you know.”

Rey shakes her head. “No. Really. It’s nothing,” she says, and the light in Jess’ eyes goes a little dimmer. The silence between them is definitely not the good kind, but there’s nothing to do but press on ahead.

What is Rey even supposed to say? I think I want to have sex with you, but I don’t know, because I’ve never done that before, and I’ve got no idea how to go about it? That wouldn’t make things any easier between them.

They stop after a few minutes to compare some plants to their field guide. Rey’s fingers brush against Jess’ hand when they both reach for the same leaf, and Jess pulls back quickly.

Rey thinks, I am ruining everything.

She says, “The trees are beautiful. I’ve never seen anything like them before.”

Jess’ presence in the Force had been dull, like someone had thrown a heavy blanket over her. Now Rey feels a pinprick of light.
“No trees on Jakku?” she asks.

Rey shakes her head. “Only sand.” She raises her eyes toward the canopy of green leaves. There’s something magical in the way the wind rustles through them, like an ocean except better because she can’t drown in it. When she looks back, Jess is smiling, and something shifts back into place between them.

At lunch time, they stop and Jess spreads a blanket beneath the trees. It’s patched and worn, like most things in the Resistance, but still nicer than anything Rey had had on Jakku. When she sits down, something catches in her throat. A wide open space, far away from anyone else…This is what Poe had intended, when he sent them out here.

“I missed seeing you,” she blurts and feels her face turn red. She’s busy laying out their lunch, so she can’t see Jess’ face, but she can feel the relief rushing out of her.

“I missed you too,” Jess says. She shifts closer on the blanket, not quite touching Rey, but closer than a friend would sit. Rey shifts over on the pretense of leaning against a tree. Their bodies are pressed together now, hip to knee, and suddenly it’s like nothing had changed between them.

Jess hands her a packet of nuts, and on impulse, Rey takes her hand. Jess’ breath catches, and before Rey can wonder if she’s done something wrong, Jess is kissing her. One hand is still gripping hers, the other is cradling the back of her head, and her lips are warm against Rey’s. When

Jess pulls back, Rey hears herself sigh.

“Was that alright?” Jess murmurs, her forehead resting against Rey’s.

Rey can’t get words out. She manages to nod.

When she tilts her head, their lips meet again, and this time she opens her mouth. Jess’ mouth is hungry on hers, insistent. Rey wraps her arms around her waist, and then she’s falling backward, Jess on top of her. She can feel Jess’ breasts pressing against hers, and she arches her back, pushing them closer together. Jess’ knees are planted on either side of her hips, and then suddenly the two of them are rolling over. She winds up on top of Jess and she freezes, the familiar panic rushing back in. She can’t be in charge of this. She doesn’t know what to do.

Jess’ eyes snap open. Her hand is light on Rey’s wrist. “Are you alright?” she asks.

Rey sits up slowly, still straddling Jess’ waist. Her laugh is too high-pitched. “It’s just --” she says, and the words get stuck. She swallows, tries again. “It’s just I’ve never done this before.”

Jess sits up slowly and leans her forehead against Rey’s. “I’m sorry. I should’ve guessed.” She takes Rey’s hand, twines their fingers together. “We’ll go slowly.”

“No,” Rey says, startled by her own vehemence.

Jess looks wounded but covers it quickly. She’s disentangling herself from Rey’s embrace. “Of course. I mean, whatever you want. I don’t want to push you for anything you’re not ready for.”

Rey catches Jess’ wrist, finds her voice. “I mean, no, I don’t want to go slow.”

Her whole body is alive with longing, her nipples straining against her bra, heat pooling between her thighs. She pulls Jess back to her, breathes against her open mouth. So many lonely nights on Jakku. No warm hands on her body. No eyes looking down on her with fire and kindness all at once.

“I’ve waited so long,” she murmurs against Jess’ lips.

Then Jess is on top of her again, pushing her back down on the blanket. Rey opens her legs, marveling at how automatic it all is, how her body knows what it wants to do. Jess leans in close, her hair tickling Rey’s cheekbones.

“Tell me what you want,” she whispers.

Rey laughs, giddy. “I don’t know. All of it. Everything.” She pauses and thinks. “Your hands on my skin.”

Jess nods eagerly. Then she stares at Rey’s tunic and frowns. “I’d like that. I really would. It’s just...I don’t know how to operate your clothing,” she says, running her hands along the edges of the fabric. “Are there buttons somewhere? A zipper maybe?”

Rey shakes her head. Her tunic is an old style from Jakku, really just strips of cloth wound around her body to make it look like she has real clothes.

“You have to unwind it,” she says, offering an edge of the fabric to Jess.

But Jess shakes her head. “I want to watch you do it,” she says.

Rey can hardly breathe as she unwinds the cloth. She can feel the whole improbable length of it pooling behind her on the forest floor. The air on her skin makes her feel excited and exposed all at once. She’s been naked in front of people before, but never like this. When she’s done, she reaches behind her and unclasps her bra while she listens to Jess’ ragged breathing.

Jess’ touch on her torso is light. She feels each fingertip hit her skin one after the other, like drops of rain. Slowly those fingertips glide over her ribs, trace the crease underneath her breast. Please please please, she thinks, and then Jess’ hand is cupping her breast, the pads of her thumb stroking her nipple.

“You’re beautiful,” Jess murmurs into her hair.

Rey laughs against her ear. “You’re still wearing a lot of clothes.”

Jess pulls back, and Rey moans at the loss of her warmth. Not that she can think about it for long. Jess is kneeling in front of her, pulling her shirt over her head and then her bra. Then she’s kissing Rey again, laying her back down on the blanket, cupping her head with one hand and stroking her breast with the other.

Rey arches up into the touch, moaning in the back of her throat. Jess’ knee is planted between her thighs, and she can’t help it; she rubs up against it, trying to soothe the ache between her legs.

“What do you want?” Jess breathes.

Rey shakes her head. “You know.”

Jess nods. “I do know. But maybe I like hearing you say it.” Her finger is tracing patterns across Rey’s nipple in a way that makes her shiver.

Rey grunts her frustration. She wraps her fingers around Jess’ wrist and slides it down lower, to the waistband of her pants. Her face is burning and her heart is pounding; she hadn’t been raised to ask for what she wants, much less demand it.

Jess’ fingers are quick on the buttons and the zipper. Her fingers glide lower, skimming over her underwear, worrying at its edges. Rey’s breath is jagged. She’s waited so long. Now even another second feels like forever.

Please,” she moans, not caring how desperate she sounds.

Jess is kissing down her neck, lingering over her collarbones, sucking at the hollow at the base of her throat. Suddenly her fingers are beneath her underwear, parting her lips, pressing against her opening. Rey pushes against them, and Jess presses inside at the same moment Rey leans up to slide her lips around her nipple.

The sensations are almost too much. She can feel Jess’ skin pebbling against her tongue, and her breath hot on her neck. When she glances down, she can see Jess’ hand vanishing beneath the waistband of her panties. Her fingers are firm inside Rey, moving in steady rhythmic strokes, curling upward to reach just the right spot.

“More?” she asks, her breath ragged against Rey’s ear.

Rey’s mouth is still wrapped around her nipple, so she nods as best she can. Jess reaches up to cup the back of her head with her free hand, tugging Rey’s mouth closer to her breast.

“Teeth,” she commands, and Rey complies.

Jess gasps as she pushes another finger inside, and then another still. Her strokes are faster now, harder, and for the first time in her life, Rey knows what it means to feel full. The sky above her is blue, but as the waves of pleasure crash over her, she sees the stars.