whedonist: (Ritual)
[personal profile] whedonist
Title: Near Life Experience
Disclaimer: Not my characters – except for one or two. The rest of the ladies and gentleman contained herein belong to entities with a higher pay grade. Thanks for allowing li’l ole me to play; I promise to return them as I found them…just like the tools I borrowed from dad when I was a kid. Also, this is unbeta’d so…mistakes are really all me. Sorry about that.
Fandom: Nikki & Nora
Pairing: Nikki/Nora
Rating: R for this chapter.

Summary: Nikki's not really "Nikki" and Nora's sings a different tune.

A/N: I've been absent. Between moving, a new job and a 6 hour commute for a month, it's been a bit crazy. Life's starting to right itself so I thought I'd get this up and running to motivate me more.

Aside from above, this story is an A.U.-like really A.U. The two aren't a working two and don't each other, yet. Dan's still Nora's partner and Nikki, well, you'll see. Read, enjoy. Church has started so I'll be there.



Ch. 6 – Our Burden to Bear


I remember when I first started working, going to a place like I’m getting ready to walk into tonight, I’d be shaking like a leaf. On those nights, realizing that the party going on in the house two driveways up on my left felt like such a perversion to the Americana that I grew up with, I was nearly ill a few times…

Of course that was before.

This is now and now, gatherings like this are little more than networking and sales. One thing I spend more time on than others in my position is the self-reflection. It’s amazed me how much I’ve adapted to in the time that I have.

I guess it’s adaptation…assimilation…nature, perhaps, it’s the fundamental need to survive and preserve as much of myself as possible that’s took over. Regardless of how much, or how little is left of who I once was.

“Nik,” Darius whispers next to me. Why he’s whispering is anyone’s guess. We’re the only two in the car and from the looks of it; the last to arrive to tonight’s little party.

“Darius,” I return at a normal volume, the tone is just this side of mocking.

“You ready?” he asks with his head slightly tilted to the side to take me in.

I shrug. He’s the last person I need to be having that conversation with. Instead, I plaster on a smile and focus on something far more enjoyable than the brooding I was doing, “Feeling good about tonight?”

His lips purse and he shakes his head. “Yeah. I’m ready. Don’t know if you are though.”

It’s my turn to tilt my head and furrow my brow.

He licks his lips before saying, “Just you know if tonight goes like I think it will, our score will be big. Enough for us not to worry sooner rather than later. I know we’ve been going at this for a long time, Nikki. Longer than I thought you and I would stay friends.” He closes the open folder on his lap, slips it on the dashboard and goes to staring out the windshield of the car. “I keep tabs, to make sure you’re okay. There’s a girl. Some woman that you met at the club. What’s going on with that and why haven’t you told me?”

“That’s…really, Darius?” I snip, even though I’m well aware of my shadows when Darius isn’t around. “She’s just someone I’m seeing…”

“Someone that you don’t need to be getting involved with right now,” he chides. “It’s not the right time for this, Nikki. We’ve put in a lot of work, making the right connections, attending the right parties,” he motions to the house we’ll be going to tonight, “and add to the fact of who we are and what we do…”

“Why do you make it sound like I’m putting all the work we’ve done in jeopardy? Have I ever wavered?” I grip the steering wheel a little tighter, the muscles in my jaw flexing to work out the notion to rip him a new one. “We’ve only seen each other a handful of times…”

He sighs and slouches further in his seat. “I didn’t mean…” I cast a glance his way and see the knotted muscle under his dark skin. “We’re…Don’t think I don’t know, Nikki. Entanglements this late in the game…”

“Dar,” I soften a little and pat his knee, “sugga, I know what I’m doing. I’ve rode in this rodeo before. We lock up what we need to tonight and over the next week or two and we can sail away.” I close my eyes, imagining the plans we’ve come up with together over the years, actually becoming reality. “Like I said, it’s fun right now. She’s sweet and funny, even got a little bark to her, but I know who we are…what we are—I wouldn’t do that to you.” I swallow down the acid burbling up.

It’s a half-truth for his sake. Truthfully, I like Nora more than just a little. More than I should for the position I’m in.

I don’t think it’ll stop what happens with her. I don’t think she’ll let it either.

“So, my great protector, why don’t you can the ‘daddy on prom night’ routine and tell me about our marks?” I pat his leg again and reach for the folder he put on my dash. The top pages are eight-by-tens, surveillance photos. Three are of middle aged men and the fourth is of a woman, my guess puts her in her late forty’s. The rest of the pages have the same photos only smaller in the upper left hand corner and then basic info.

“The first guy is Howard Evocovich. Loaded, old Ukranian gangsta. He’s our mover. Second’s…”

“Patsy Cassella, Mafioso,” I cut in.

“At least you read some,” he huffs and continues, “Patsy works with the lady, Paula Connolly, on distribution.”

“The third guy?” I ask not recognizing him from any of the information Darius has passed my way.

“Scott Serway, the organizer,” Darius fills in.

“How?” I ask needing to know the web of relationships I’m going to be stepping into.

“Rusty. He called asked if I could provide the sweets for tonight. That put us in touch with Scotty-boy. From what I got from him, if we deliver tonight, it’ll be one major order after, y’know?”

I nod. I know exactly.

“Any other connections?” I wonder as I close the file and place it on the dash.

“Just what we know, boo,” my man says with a wiggle of his eyebrows.

“All right, then sugga. Before we go in, two things, Nora, that’s the girl I’m seeing, she’s giving me a piece of happiness and I already know what it can and can’t be, Dar. Let me ride this out without you coming down on me?” I plead. He stares at me for a few moments and then dips his chin. “Two, Geno wants a fifth. We leave him out of this at the end. He’s as clean as they come in this business.”

“I can do that,” he readily agrees and we exit the car.

I take a moment to pull myself together on the sidewalk, adjusting the cocktail dress I’m wearing, making sure my girls are plumped and ready to do most of the work tonight. The low whistle from Darius and his verbal appreciation are confirmation enough, “You look any finer and I’ma have to surround you with security.”

I wink. “You clean up just as well.” I take in the slacks and button down he has on. Not baggy, but fitting and clean. His hair is pulled back into a high ponytail and the rings that are usually in his face are out. “You almost,” I give a sparse gap between my thumb and index, “look respectable.”

“Phsaw, shorty, you go and look up ‘respectable’ in the dictionary and you’ll see my pearly whites right there.” He puffs out his chest, pops the collar on his button-down adds a bit more swagger to his step.

Rolling my eyes, I slip my arm through his and we head towards the party. I mentally prepare myself for the evening ahead. It’s a work night.

As we reach the front door, Darius quickly fixes his collar then hits the bell. Immediately, it swings open. Scott’s smile is wide, welcoming, as he ushers us inside, “Darius, great for you to join us.” They shake hands and then Scott sets his eyes on me. “You,” he shakes his index finger at me, “Nikki, right?”

Letting myself fall into the role, I manage a half-smile and offer my hand in greeting. “Guilty as charged. Scott, correct?”

“Indeed.” Gently, he takes hold of my fingers and raises his hand to his lips. They’re warm and dry as he presses them against my skin. “Now,” he says as he lets my hand go to usher us towards the living room where the party is in full swing, “Rusty and Darius have said wondrous things about you. It’s a pleasure to finally meet.”

“Likewise,” I say quietly as I take in the site before me.

“Now, there’s a bartender in the kitchen, shall I get you anything?” Scott looks between the two of us.

“A Rum and Coke for both of us, please,” Darius informs him.

Scott offers a quick bow before attending to the drink orders. I’m still studying the crowd, noting who’s here that I know and making a point to introduce myself or get introduced to the faces I don’t know.

Darius leads me to two open seats on one of the couches. I take the middle seat and sit between him and another woman. She’s on the younger side with hazel eyes and soft blonde hair. The white halter style dress fits her body well and exposes smooth, strong shoulders and arms. On her left arm she has a half sleeve of tattoos, intricate ivy and floral patterns mark her skin and stop just above the crook of her elbow.

Directing her gaze my way, she bats her lashes and asks, “Amazing party isn’t it?”

“Rosie.” I offer a beaming smile as I feel a small plastic baggie push into my hand.

“Excuse me,” she says as she stands, “I think I see my old friend, Ginny.”

I watch her saunter off and tuck the baggie into the small side pocket of my purse just as Scott returns with our drinks.




The night is still, quiet, and perfect. I bite my lower lip and look at Nora’s living room window. I can’t see inside, the curtains are closed, but there is a light on. She’s up, maybe, or maybe she just forgot to turn out a light before she fell asleep.

I do that sometimes, you lay on the couch and you drift, next thing you know, you wake up at some ridiculous hour with all the lights in the house on and stiff neck.

Maybe this is a bad idea.

I run my tongue along my front gums and suck.

Okay, so the bad idea was probably the line I did right after dropping Darius off. That was dumb, but I was coming down and I wasn’t ready for that just yet. I rarely used recreationally before I started dancing. Some nights I realized that it made it better, some worse, but most of the time, it gives me a perspective I don’t think I’d see if I wasn’t high. Everything’s filtered, softer, and more manageable.

Shifting my weight from foot to foot, I pause on the walkway.

Ah, hell, if I’m in, I may as well go all in. No sense in letting one bad decision deter me from another.

Let’s just hope Nora doesn’t pick up on it.

Squaring my shoulders, I stride to her door and hit the bell next to the peephole. Cocking my head to the side I listen for signs of life. It’s immediate, the scrambling and a soft, ‘who’s there?’

“Nora, it’s me,” I say before I realize that ‘it’s me’ isn’t really all that descriptive. “It’s Nikki.”

I hear a chain scrape and lock disengage before light spills out of the doorway.

“Is everything okay?” she asks in greeting. Her eyes are wide and worried. She’s got the cutest little crease between them and I can’t decide what I want to put my lips on first, that or her chin—that I think I want to nibble on.

I can’t help but chuckle at her delivery, so full of concern and earnest. “You really are…” I trail off and step into her space. Lacing my arms around her waist, I lean forward and nuzzle her neck. Her smell is…vanilla, a little spice and something that’s her…it overpowers me. All I really want to do is curl up and fall into her with disregard for everything else.

Turning my lips to the tender, silken flesh, I press one open mouth kiss after another before I hear a rumble of pleasure sound from the woman before me. I feel her finally respond as the door shuts and I’m pulled into the apartment.

I remember the layout of her place and take liberties by pushing her back towards her bedroom. Relying on her to make sure the door’s open, I refuse to leave my front line attack on her neck. I trace my tongue along the stretch of skin that chords over taught muscle and nibble my way up to her ear.

Her heat, her smell, her sounds are more electric and soothing than any drug I’ve ever done. We pass through her bedroom door and I finally push away, causing her to land on the bed. She looks slightly stunned, but she’s just as turned on as I am.

I toe off my pumps and approach her, pressing an index finger into her right shoulder to signal her to lay down.

“Nikki,” she stops moving, takes hold of my finger and steadies me with a hand on my left hip. “Is everything okay?”

I nod. “I…” swallow, not sure how exactly to…Darius with his meddling and then tonight at the party, most of it was awful, but necessary. “I’m a little worked up, Nora,” I explain quietly, “Rusty set up this party that I had to go entertain at and I was—am feeling…”

“Horny,” she fills in, smiling up at me, a half-formed smirk gracing those pretty lips.

“Yes, and I didn’t want…I wanted you,” I continue. “So please?”

Nora pushes me back and stands to spin us around. Her hands grab my hips as we switch places. With my back to the bed, she leans in and kisses my neck and right shoulder. Her lips trail down over my clavicle to the other side of my body where she mirrors her early actions. The fabric of my dress bunches at my hips as she gathers it and begins to lift it up and off me.

I breathe a sigh of relief as she exposes me. The cool air of the apartment soothing some of the jagged pieces needing attention. “Nora,” I plead a little.

“Shh,” she mumbles against the top of my left breast. Her hands quickly work the clasp of the bra in the middle of my back. The strapless bra falls between us and Nora shifts to let the garment tumble the rest of the way to the floor. Her lips slip over one nipple and then south as she falls to her knees.

I run my hands through her hair, gathering the golden locks in my fist as she kisses above and then below my belly button. Her hands tug on my panties and she guides them over my hips to let them join the bra she expertly took care of.

Her mouth works its way around my body, learning it, mapping it and if I wasn’t turned on before I came here, I feel like I’m going to melt if I don’t get some type of release soon. I can feel the arousal pooling between my legs and Nora really needs to take care of it.

I give a slight tug on her hair to get her to stand and pull us backwards, falling on to the bed. She crawls up me as I scoot up to the top of the mattress. She kneels, with more clothes on that I’d like, between my spread legs. Exposed to her, she stops and her eyes swoop over me before gathering the faded, old Nirvana t-shirt she’s wearing and pulls it off to land somewhere on the side of the bed. I lick my lips at her exposed chest.

No bra. Bonus for me.

“I should have done this before getting you into bed,” she smirks and slides back to stand and take her pants off. She leaves her panties on as she crawls back up the bed. She slides against me and my hips buck trying to find contact to relieve some of the ache.

Her kiss is quick and firm before she starts back down my body again, settling between my thighs. I pull a few pillows to put behind me, elevating me enough so that I don’t have to hold my head up and watch her work. I reach down and pull her hair out of the way. More because watching has always done more for me than I’d care to admit than out of courtesy.

“Fuck, Nikki,” she mumbles against my center.

I whimper at the first swipe of her tongue that splits me open. “Jesus,” I mumble.

The tremble in my thighs goes to a shake as she begins in earnest, her head bobs rhythmically in exploration. My head falls back against the pillows, my back arcs and I press my hips up, needing her deeper in me. Planting my feet on the mattress, I bend my knees and give her more leverage.

She focuses on my clit and I clamp my eyes shut. “Shit,” I mumble unable to keep my orgasm at bay. I grunt and groan as my body shakes, locks up and Nora brings me back down as gently as she can. My name falling from her lips between soft feather light kisses across my hips and up my tummy.

Spent, my knees fall to the side and my feet hook around her waist as she settles between my legs, her chin resting on my stomach. It seems like forever, but I finally manage to look down at her. Those green eyes of hers are bright and shiny as she looks up at me.

“Give me a few more minutes, sug and I’ll take care of you,” I barely manage to get out.

She shakes her head and leans down to kiss my stomach. “You won’t,” she states as she rests her cheek on me, her hair falling off to the side, inviting me to play with the thick strands. “I’d rather bask and then get some sleep. It’s late.”

“Nora, it’s only proper…”

She stops with me with a pinch on my hip. “Hush. I’m quite content right where I’m at. Let me bask.”

I shrug and snuggle back down into the pillows. My eyes drift close as I feel her pulse beat against my body. The silence is welcome and easy.

“Are you sure everything is okay?” she asks, breaking the slight doze I had been slipping into.

“It is now,” I mumble.

“Nik, seriously, I’m not complaining, but if something happened or if someone did something or tried to hurt you,” she persists.

“Honor bright,” I say finally looking down into concerned features. “Things are great, now. I just needed…” I wave my hand between the two of us, “and I didn’t want to get it anywhere else, but with you.” I wink at her. “I didn’t mean to attack you first off, but you were here, awake and you answered the door.”

“Enthusiastic,” she jokes and pokes at me, her fingers dancing over my ribs to end with her palm flat against my breast, kneading it gently.

“Hmm,” I hum agreeing with her statement and her actions.

“Well, thank you,” she says as she works her way up my body to snake an arm under my shoulders to pull me into her.

“I think I’m the one that should be saying that to you.” I curl into her, shifting so that I can draw a sheet around us to hip level.

“How about we skip the thanks and get some sleep. If you stick around, I’ll get us some breakfast in the morning?” she offers and I nod.

Sleep sounds good. “I’d like that.” Really, I would, but morning sex sounds better than breakfast. I don’t think I’ll have a hard time convincing her either.

Next>>>

Date: 2012-11-16 06:53 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wkgreen.livejournal.com
Hehe.. I don't think you will either Nikki!

Waiting for more :)

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