Two Lines

two lines sept 14

Two Lines

*an Emery&Chris story*

by avenger-nerd-mom

Thanks to sisterly advice, Emery discovers a secret while Chris is gone for reshoots!

Warnings: Language, fluff, discussion of miscarriage

Word Count 1660

Get to know Emery and Chris in their novella Georgia on My Mind and their follow up collection of short stories

September 2018

Emery signals a left turn into the drive thru diner, asking her sister if she wants a snack. “I don’t know if it’s the heat, or what,” she says, making the turn, “but I’ve felt awful for two weeks and the only thing that sounds any good to me right now are root beer floats. I’ve probably gained five pounds while Chris has been away.”

Her sister Mackinzie looks up from her phone. “Did you say root beer floats?”

Emery nods, reaching into the side door pocket for some cash. “Yeah, why?”

Mackinzie waits while Emery places her order at the staticy old box, also ordering fried mozzarella sticks and a sweet iced tea. “Emery?” She asks with a restrained calm, “Are you pregnant?”

“What? No… I can’t-”

The redhead’s jaw snaps shut and she starts counting off on her fingers. Her eyes pop, her hands shaking. “Oh my God,” she whispers. A smile grows on her face, reaching her bright blue eyes. “I might be. We got stressed, keeping track of my cycles, so we stopped paying attention. I can’t remember my last period.”

Her sister nods, bouncing in her seat as Emery pulls the truck forward through the line. “You were sick and missed church a time or two and you said you’ve felt bloated from summer foods. You haven’t been exercising because you didn’t wanna put strain on your foot. I know you had at least one root beer float at the family reunion, and you’ve mentioned them a few times. You didn’t know that’s a common pregnancy craving?”

The women quiet as they pull forward to the window. Emery makes her payment, taking the food, too distracted to talk to one of her former students. Mackinzie says, “Sis, I’m pretty sure you’re pregnant.” She points across the street. “Pull over there. Go to the Piggly Wiggly and let’s get a pregnancy test.”

In a daze, Emery follows her sister’s command, crossing over carefully in the traffic, pulling a mozzarella stick from the bag. “Mackinzie, I can’t go in there, to buy that. It’s tourist season. If anyone saw me, it would be all over the internet before we’d even get home.”

“Yeah, that’s true. Didn’t think about that… What if I go in and get it for you? I’ll even pay for it if you let me stay with you while you wait for the results?” She taps her sister’s leg while she nibbles the cheese stick and pulls the truck into park. “I mean, I’m sure you’d rather Chris was here, but-”

“I can’t do it alone,” Emery says, squeezing her sister’s fingers tightly. “I mean, you can’t come in the bathroom, and I better drink all this tea fast, but no, I want you there-”

“-I’m your sis, I’m always there-”

“And no matter what, positive or not, you can’t tell anyone, not even Dan, and definitely not Mom or Chris.” Mackinzie is visibly shocked by the determination on Emery’s face. “I won’t hurt him like that again. I know everyone thought I took it hard, but you have no idea how the miscarriage killed him. He’s working and I don’t want to get his hopes up. If I’m not pregnant, he doesn’t even have to know. And if I am, I’ll wait till the right time to tell him.”

“Ok, Em. Whatever you need. You’re stronger than any superhero I know.” She reaches for her purse in the back seat. She chuckles, “Drink your tea. I’ll be back in a few minutes.”

Emery watches her sister climb down out of the truck. Finishing the fried cheese, she rests her head against the seat, inhaling deeply, gently placing her hand over her belly. She begins poking and pushing against her flesh, searching for any signs of change. Calculating in her mind, she quickly reaches for her phone, estimating she’s about six weeks along. “Siri, how big is a six week old fetus?”

“Here’s what I find when I search the question ‘how big is a six week old fetus?’” Siri replies in her computerized voice.

Emery clicks on the first link provided, smiling to think the baby, if she’s pregnant, is the size of a sweet pea. She continues reading, whispering aloud, “‘Your baby’s nose, mouth, and ears are beginning to take shape at 6 weeks pregnant. You may be having morning sickness and spotting.’ Spotting. That’s why I hadn’t figured it out.” She closes her eyes and says a silent prayer the spotting she’s experienced isn’t sign of a miscarriage. She continues reading, mumbling, “Sore boobs, exhaustion, mood swings. Fuck. How did we not figure out I was pregnant?!” She chuckles. “This is like textbook, and I’ve been such a bitch lately.”

Lost in her thoughts, she didn’t see Mackinzie approach the car. “What did you say, Sis?” Her older sister asks, climbing up into the truck.

Emery swallows her sip of tea, before holding up the cup to look at it. “Shit. That’s a lot of sugar and caffeine. Can I even drink sweet tea now, if I’m pregnant?”

Mackinzie chuckles, resting the bag at her feet. “Depends on which doctor you see. If you can get in with Puckett, like I did, she’ll let you, in moderation. But you get a Yankee doctor, if you decide to buy that house in Boston, and they’ll tell you to cut back.” She fastens her seatbelt and turns to her sister. “What were you saying as I got in the truck?”

Emery rests her cup back in the console. “I was thinking out loud. It’s a wonder we hadn’t figured it out ourselves. I was a real bitch right before Chris left. It was like everything was happening at once. Grandad had his stroke, they sent me for another scan on my foot, the Leno viewing party, then the dash to Boston for the state primary. Plus all the tech troubles I was having with the new computer systems I’ve gotta be working with this year. I was just awful to Chris.” She shakes her head thinking about it now. She backs the car out of the parking space. “Really, I think our last words to one another was a fight about laundry, and he couldn’t find things he needed to take into the city, like his razor and beard kit. I’m pretty sure ‘I’m not your damn maid’ was screeched at the top of my lungs.” She hangs her head, sighing deeply.

Mackinzie sucks in her breath. “Why does Captain America need his razor? Is he not gonna be shaggy and bearded in the next one?”

Tapping her horn at the car in front of them, Emery quickly pulls to the left, deciding not to follow that driver out of the lot. Exiting from another side of the shopping center, Emery says, “You haven’t seen the leaked photos? Holy fuck, I need to bang my husband. Like now. Is that a side effect of pregnancy this early?”

Quickly scrolling her phone, Mackinzie holds up the image of one of the leaked photos. Chris, walking across a parking lot in a faded blue shirt, hand fisted at his side. “Hell no, not this early. That’s just a side effect of being married to this sexy bastard. Come on, Em, you’re married to Captain fuckin’ America. And he’s in Steve mode now? I don’t even care he’s my brother in law, I wanna lick my phone screen.”

Emery hits her older sister in the shoulder, maneuvering the big truck into another lane. “So when is the horny phase? God, he better be around for that. But he’s working non stop till-” At the red light, Emery slams on the brakes. “Fuck. Fuckin’ hell. Shit, shit, shit. I can’t be pregnant now. If I’m pregnant now, that means I’m due in the middle of the A4 press tour.” The panic is clearly written on her face.

Mackinzie reaches over to pat her sister’s arm. “Relax. Even if he goes on the tour, and you said he still hasn’t decided about that, Downey could have him on a plane and home in five hours.”

“He’s working round the clock for the next several months.” Emery breaths hard, beads of sweat forming on her forehead as she turns into the proper lane, heading out of town towards her house. Their house. “What if the baby arrives and he’s not there?”

“Get a grip, Sis. A first pregnancy won’t deliver in less than five hours. Do you remember how long I was in labor with Dawson? Hella long. That’s how long. Like we could have a whole Marvel marathon in the birthing room before your baby arrives… But let’s not panic till you pee on that strip, and see what it says, okay?”

***

An hour later, the sisters stare at the four pregnancy tests lined up on the edge of the bathtub. Emery sucks in her breath. “I still don’t believe it. I need to hear it from a doctor.”

“Fine. Make the call. I’ll be right there with you.”

***

Near closing time, the nurse taps on the door of the office. Emery drops the paperclip she’d been fidgeting with onto he desktop as Dr. Jamie Puckett enters the room. “Em, it’s official. You’re gonna be a momma. You get to tell Chris the good news. He’s gonna be a daddy.”

The doctor walks to her desk, patting her patient’s shoulder as she passes by, before resting against the ledge of the dark stained wood. “Your math was off, Emery.” She reopens the file. “You’re actually about eight weeks along. If you want, we can do an ultrasound? A few of the nurses that know you, and know what you’ve both been through, said they’d be happy to stay late to assist with the procedure… How about it, Momma. Wanna meet Baby Evans?”

With tears in her eyes, tightly gripping her sister’s hand, the beautifully pregnant red-head nods. “Yes.”

click here for the next Emery &Chris story, Killing Time

Read more about Emery and Chris in their novella, Georgia on My Mind, and their story collections

Copyright © 2018  avenger-nerd-mom. All rights reserved. Intellectual property of avenger-nerd-mom

 

Goals

prologue goals july 8

Goals

Collaboration by devikafernando and avenger-nerd-mom

AU Fiction

Professor Tom Hiddleston and Thalia Bareo place a wager on the FIFA World Cup 2018 outcome

Warnings: language, fluff, teasing

Word Count: 1725

This little drabble doesn’t offer any answers to “What’s Thalia been up to?” or “Who is Thalia dating?” This is just a summer Saturday, a little peek into her life…

If you don’t know the story of Thalia and Professor Tom, or how Professor Evans fits into all this, start at the beginning. Read Educating Thalia on WordPress.

Prologue 2018

“Bloody hell, that was clearly offside!”

With an indignant half-yell, Tom sets his chips bag down on the table with somewhat too much force. To his right, Thalia shouts her support.

“At least by a foot! Is the side referee blind or what?”

God, she truly is the perfect football companion, Tom thinks to himself with a grin. He’s infinitely glad that he can share the experience with her. Still giddy that England has made it to the quarter finals of the FIFA World Cup 2018, he’s practically bouncing in his seat with energy. He’s already dashed off to the loo twice, feeling like a little boy again, and eating as well as drinking too much—but so is the excited, gorgeous woman on the couch next to him.

They are watching the match at her place, and though she still didn’t have a TV when she moved into this apartment, Tom quickly rectified the situation. Just so they could follow England’s journey to victory, he’s bought a huge flat-screen. Thalia, on the other hand, has invested in face paint, little flags, and football—correction, soccer—jerseys of the teams that have her support.

cookies goals

Tom smirks to himself and shakes his head a little, hiding his expression behind another cookie. Thalia’s Latina side has been showing itself repeatedly the past few weeks. She’s been vocally supportive of every single Central- and South-American team, especially Mexico and Brazil, often growing animated while watching the matches. He’s been ribbed endlessly—and enjoyed the hell out of it; not least because their excitement during the match inevitably leads to after-match romps in the sheets.

Now that there are only European teams left, Thalia has switched sides and gifted her loyalty to the English team alongside him, and it never fails to make him smile how enthusiastically she cheers—and curses—for them as well.

“What are you smiling about so smugly?” Her raspy voice interrupts his thoughts.

Tom leans over to press a rather chaste, smacking kiss onto her luscious lips, startling her into a squeak. “Nothing in particular. And everything at once.” He steals one of her marshmallows, gobbles it up and holds his finger out to let her lick the sweet powder from the digit—which she does with blazing temptation in her eyes. He winks at her and says, “Hold that thought,” and he hurriedly refocuses on the second half of the match. “I’m just so happy to be sharing all this with you.” Tom gestures broadly, loving it that she returns his smile now.

She opens her mouth to reply but then both of them freeze for a second, eyes glued to the screen.

“Goal!”

They shout it simultaneously, exchanging a disbelieving-overjoyed glance before taking in the replays of the header that puts England firmly in the lead. With a score of 2:0, they’re as good as through to the semifinals now.

“Oh my god, oh my god, fucking yes!” Tom jumps up from the couch, nearly upending his popcorn bowl while he pumps his fist into the air.

jersey goals

Thalia is clapping and whooping, and his eyes are drawn to her outfit. While he has opted for comfy, holey sweatpants and a faded England jersey he’s saved all the way from his twenties, Thalia is wearing black yoga pants and a very new team jersey that’s so tight it stretches over her ample curves like a second skin. Dammit, she’s delicious like this, eyes glowing, hair wild, cheeks flushed, and bosom heaving.

Ball not boobs, Hiddleston, he reminds himself and tears his gaze away from her generous breasts with great effort.

They settle down after some more cheering, their hands reaching for the popcorn at the same time.

“What’s the goal scorer’s name again?” Thalia asks. “He’s kinda cute.”

Scandalized, Tom snaps his head around. “Woman! He’s 22! He’s just a boy!”

She shrugs and lifts a saucy brow at him. “So? You’re hardly in a position to get your underwear in a twist about age differences, Professor.”

For a moment, he can only splutter and gape at her, then he narrows his eyes at her smirk. Oh, he’ll punish her for all that sass, after the game is over…

Refocusing on the quarter final just as Sweden is unable to turn a really good shot at the goal into an actual point for them, Tom rests his hand on Thalia’s thick thigh, fingers digging in possessively.

He feels her shudder once and snuggle closer, though she keeps her attention on the TV. All right, all right, he knows he shouldn’t feel a slight stab of jealousy over a football player she might find ‘cute’, but it does bring out his possessive side. Tom lets his fingers glide a little higher on her thigh. He’s been trying all this time not to glance at a certain corner of the room and to keep his jealousy at bay. A corner with a shelf that holds three framed photographs he can’t stand to look at for long.

Thalia with a now older child, Avery, both of them making silly faces at the camera. Avery in a colorful butterfly costume from probably some school play or other. And the third photo, which he avoids looking at the most…of Thalia, Avery and her father, Professor Evans. Tom knows that Thalia has been keeping in touch with both of them and spends quite some time with them when her work schedule allows. And he shouldn’t begrudge her that. He’s knows better now, doesn’t he? He rubs over the small scar on the back of his knuckle. He fucking knows that he can’t go all Neanderthal and throw her over his shoulder to haul her away to a cave and keep her away from the rest of the world. But still, it stings.

This isn’t the time for pondering and moping, dammit. It is her apartment, although his touches also fill the space. Rare tomes and artifacts from their travels together. And the bed they share. He cocks his head. Let the other man have a photo. He has the real thing..

Downing the last of his beer with his free hand and setting the can down a bit forcefully, Tom straightens his shoulders and puffs up his chest. Just when he pays attention to the match again, a Swedish player crumbles to the ground, clutching his ankle and grimacing in pain.

“Oh, sod off, you bleeding actor you!” He grouses and thumps his fist against his thigh before throwing his hand up in disgust, displaying his long fingers. “That was barely a touch, there’s no need to pretend you’re dying.”

Thalia snort-snickers and nudges him with her elbow. “Takes a performer to know one, huh?”

He relaxes a bit to snicker too, watching as the referee gives a free kick to Sweden. “I’m just glad we’ve seen fewer fouls this time than in 2014,” he says, calming down somewhat and hoping fervently that the free kick won’t provide the opposing team with a goal chance. “The VAR introduction seems to help.”

Once the situation is diffused, he and Thalia discuss the Video Assistant Referee system, Tom weighing in with some previous experiences from club team matches which Thalia doesn’t usually watch.

“But I bet a lot of fans and even players are blaming the VAR for their team going out of the tournament,” she adds and devours another of the mini-sandwiches that Tom has prepared as a snack.

“Mhm, probably.” Tom leans over to lick a smudge of mayonnaise off the corner of her mouth, then lets his tongue glide leisurely over her lips. When they part, he delves in quickly, laps at her tongue and draws back to savor the taste with a quiet hum.

Focus, he orders himself, seeing Thalia pull herself together and redirect her gaze to the television too.

“Speaking of bets,” he says, “it looks like I’ll soon be enjoying a day to do with you whatever I please.”

Thalia baited him into betting at the beginning of the World Cup. She swore France with all its young, dynamic players would win this time, but of course Tom insisted it would be England. So they’ve bet that whoever wins gets the opportunity to do with the other one whatever they want for a whole day. The wicked possibilities have him rubbing his hands together, but Thalia just scoffs and rolls her eyes at him.

“Not so fast. England hasn’t even reached the semis yet.”

The next moment, Tom whoops in glee as the referee’s whistle indicates that the match is over.

“Yes, we have. Yes, we fucking have, darling!”

He turns to her for a high five, which Thalia gives him with a shake of her head but also a wide, happy grin.

Tom hauls her closer with one arm and pulls her onto his lap, not even caring that the players’ celebrations on screen are blocked from view.

“Now, why don’t I show you how a real man celebrates a victory, and give you a taste of what’s to come when I’ll have you at my beck and call for a whole day?” he purrs, letting his voice go lower and deeper, and feeling her shiver in his arms.

“Yes, please…Sir.”

She adds the last word softly, after a brief hesitation. Now that they’ve mostly moved away from the ‘Professor and student’ thing and that Thalia has grown more mature, they don’t often return to their slight dom-sub tendencies from the beginnings. But whenever they do, both of them delight in the additional thrill.

Grasping the globes of her lush ass, Tom shifts her even closer and nuzzles her neck. He inhales her orchid scent, one that’s been haunting him for ages. When she makes a soft, contented sound, he turns the nuzzling into kisses, then gives in to the urge and opens his mouth over her pulse point to suck a mark. Biting down slightly until she squirms, he lets one hand wander into her unruly curls to pull her head back for even better access, continuing to lavish her neck with licks and sucks.

The raucous cheering on TV fades into the background as the fingers of his other hand slide beneath the waist of her yoga pants. She leans forward, burrowing his face in her cleavage, and removes his glasses, tossing them to the side table.

To find out the outcome, click to read “The Bet.”

If you don’t know the story of Thalia and Professor Tom, or how Professor Evans fits into all this, start at the beginning. Read Educating Thalia on WordPress.

Copyright © 2018  avenger-nerd-mom and devikafernando.  All rights reserved. Intellectual property of avenger-nerd-mom

 

Wet Sand

 

GIFMaker.org_F2TTN8.gif

Wet Sand

a Tom Hiddleston drabble

by avenger-nerd-mom

Word Count 676

Warnings: Language, Fluff, Nudity

Tom and his new secret love enjoy an evening walk on the beach…

April 2017

Walking along the shore, Tom and his lovely fair-haired companion gaze out over the horizon, watching the birds dip and swoop for their evening meal.  Tom carries his shoes and wonders if she left hers on the terrace after dinner. Her long flowing dress trails in the water and the blue and purple swirls of fabric at her tiny feet remind him of a mermaid.  “Isn’t that the dress you bought in Milan a few weeks ago? It’s quite lovely,” he compliments.

She side-eyes him, bumping her elbow into his arm.  “Are you afraid I’m ruining it in the water?”

He chuckles quietly.  “Well… far be it from me to tell you what to do; it’s your vacation home- but yes, won’t the water cause damage?  It was rather expensive, as I recall.”

Stepping ahead, she turns on her heels to face him.  Gathering the fabric up to her hips, she kicks and splashes him playfully.   With his long legs, he kicks back and water and sand spot across the front of her dress.  “So sorry! I was only-” Tom begins his famous apologies before she cuts him off.

“Ruined now.  It’s ruined.” Reaching up, she feels the globs of sand on top of her head.  “And sand in my hair?” She tsk-tsks, looking down at her chest, the wet sand clinging to the tanned globes peeking out from the deep v-neck cut of the summer gown.  “Well, that’s that, I guess.” Her eyes locked on his, she pulls the dress over her head, revealing herself to be totally nude under the flimsy gauzy fabric. She tosses the dress to him and backs slowly into the water.  “You’ve made me dirty, Tom.  That wasn’t very nice.”

Dropping his eyes, he looks away, embarrassed not by her natural display but by the instant need it creates in him.  Hearing a splash as she twists and dives away, he turns with a smile to watch her swim from the shore.

“Aren’t you worried the ships on the horizon have paparazzi with telephoto lens?” He asks, thinking back to another time he once played on the beach with a woman and how it did not end well.

“It wouldn’t be the first time my breasts have graced the tabloids, dear,” she mocks before diving under again, her sweet little ass rising above the water’s surface before disappearing.  Springing up, she pushes the wet hair back from her face. “Are you too afraid to have your cock on display? It’s very beautiful… You should strip down and join me. The water’s perfect.”

“And have the press finally catch us together, as a couple?”  He asks, wondering if this might truly be her plan.

She giggles, swirling in dizzying circles, creating her own current around her.  It reminds him of their life together, always spinning in circles, waiting for one wave to crash into the other.

“I’m your fashion designer, Tom.  They already caught me with my hands down your pants a few weeks ago. Purely of a business nature, of course.”   She winks. “What’s the point of keeping it secret any longer?”

“Darling, I’m more than happy to step out in the press with you, if that’s what you want; if you think we’re ready, but…” he shields his eyes from the setting sun, again eyeing the ships with wary. “Dropping my trousers in daylight to skinny dip with you isn’t what I had in mind.”

“Oh, really.  Then tell me, Mr. Hiddleston.  What do you have in mind?” She asks, her voice throaty and full of lust and desire.

Clutching the designer dress tighter in his hands, he begins to slowly back away.  “I think I’d rather steal your clothes and watch you run along the path, naked, back up to the cottage.”

“TOM!  You wouldn’t!” Thrashing through the water, she tries to reach him, but she’s too late, as she watches him sprint down the shore to the path leading to her secluded beach home.  “That British fucker,” she complains, taking off after him, water dripping down her shapely body.

Copyright © 2018  avenger-nerd-mom. All rights reserved. Intellectual property of avenger-nerd-mom

Night In

et ch 30 night in june 14 2017.jpg

Night In

Educating Thalia

Collaboration by @devikafernando & @avenger-nerd-mom

AU FICTION

Chapter 30

A collaboration involving Professor Hiddleston and Professor Evans- The two are rivals at a posh New England university and have no idea they both have taken interest in the lovely Thalia Bareo. She’s a grad student with interests in language and history; a sassy full-figured Puerto Rican girl from Chicago.  Story updates are posted on Wednesdays and Sundays.

Word count: 5279

Warnings:  Language, Adult Situations, Fluff, food porn, serious discussions

Summary: Thalia isn’t still isn’t feel well, so Tom comes to take care of his girl.

Click here for intro to Educating Thalia

The doorbell buzzes, and Thalia nearly jumps off the sofa.

Oh God, he’s here. Is she really up for this?  He can be so intense…

The feeling from earlier stayed with her all day. She did have a slight fever earlier in the afternoon.  It’s not really the flu, but maybe a severe cold?   She never could tell the difference; she always had Stacey around when she was sick, to figure it out.  Thinking of Stacey and her dad only only makes it worse. She feels…odd. Off balance and uncertain, and she hates both with a vengeance. And to top it all off, she has no idea how to act around Tom this evening. At least if she’s quiet, she can blame her attitude on being ill.

With a sigh, she pads to the door. She’s dressed in her favorite canary yellow pajama pants, a baggy gray sweatshirt and fluffy, warm socks, with a shawl wrapped around her.

When she opens it, the first thing she sees are two enormous paper bags, one single pink orchid wrapped in transparent gift paper poking out on top. Then the bags lower, and Tom’s tired yet smiling face appears.

“Hey there,” she says, feeling her lips stretch into her smile almost against her volition.  “You look tired.”  She reaches for one of the bags, but he twists from her grasp.

“Hey there yourself.” Tom steps in, somehow managing with his freakishly long arms and big hands to maneuver the bags so he can lean in and kiss her cheek.  “Don’t worry about me; just tired.  My right hand was too sick to come in to work today,” he chuckles.  “How are you feeling, darling?”

She ponders the answer a moment, her gaze drawn to the concern in his deep blue eyes. “Not too bad now. Staying at home was a good idea. And I took some medicine to get the fever down. But I’m kind of tired.”

“Well, I’m armed with chicken noodle soup and movies, just as the lady instructed.” His smile turning goofy, Tom jerks his chin at the full bags. “And I brought a flower because a wise woman told me not so long ago that proper dates need flowers.”

Thalia’s mind does a little dance at the mention of their first ‘date’ when he treated her to a lavish dinner. How fitting that he draws her mind to this particular memory, because he pampered her amazingly well before a long night of loving. And pampering is just what she needs today.

“You’re too good to be true,” she murmurs, and Tom wiggles his brows at her.

“Need me to pinch you? I’m definitely true and real.”

With an eye roll, Thalia steps out of his way so he can walk over to the counter, where he sets the bags down. With a comical flourish, he takes out bags, boxes and cans until he’s emptied half a supermarket on her counter.  He shrugs out of his coat and lays it over the back of the chair, turning to point out the selection with pride.

“Jesus, Tom, I said I’m sick not looking for a food orgy.”

His signature “ehehehe” turns her to mush for a moment, and she licks her lips as he removes his tie. “I saw that, luv,” he chuckles.  “Don’t give me ideas we can’t follow through with.  You need your rest.”  Looking down at the food, he grins.  “I know you don’t need all this, but what’s a movie night without some snacks?”

Before she can protest, he waves a can of soup in the air.  “But first, your soul food.” He roots around in her drawers for cooking utensils, and she points to the cabinet for the pot. Still dressed from a long day on campus, she watches him heat up the soup and add some fresh chopped carrots and celery as well. Her mind transports her into a possible future. She imagines really being sick and having Tom fuss over her and make her soup, reading her a bedtime story from Shakespeare’s works and reminding her to take her medicine.

“Darling?” Tom’s voice and his hands on her shoulders pull her out of her thoughts. “Are you quite alright?”  One large hand feels her forehead, checking for a fever.

“Yeah. Yeah, I’m fine, don’t worry. Just entranced by that mouth-watering smell after I barely ate anything at all today.”

It’s not a lie. Her mind’s been so off that she hasn’t had more than the reluctant bite she had in the morning, as if she’s really sick.

Another smile lifts her lips, and the noose she’s felt so tightly around her neck all day loosens a fraction.

“I also bought mashed potatoes, as you requested” he adds. “But let’s leave those for a proper dinner after your stomach has been mollified.”

Together, they get the soup into a bowl, and then Tom hands her a few DVDs he’s picked from another bag and pushes her over to the couch with a gentle hand on the small of her back.

“Go and get settled, darling. I’m going to go change out of these clothes and put on something comfy, then I’ll make us a tray with snacks and I’ll be with you in a jiffy.”

Obediently, Thalia walks over to the couch, not sure how she feels about Tom puttering about in her kitchen. It’s all so…strange. It never feels this way with Chris, and…

No. She won’t think of Chris today. Not now.

God what a mess. Maybe this wasn’t a good idea.

Determined to make this a good night, she gets the TV screen from the closet and hooks up her computer, getting ready for their movie night before taking her seat.

A few minutes later, Tom walks into the living space, giving the room only a cursory glance before settling his eyes on her.  He smiles when she sucks in her breath at the sight of him in his cozy plaid shirt, with a peek of a tshirt underneath for added warmth in her cold apartment, and well worn jeans.  He sets the laden tray down carefully before plonking himself down on the sofa next to her. It takes him a bit of adjusting because his legs are so damn long, but once he’s finally sitting comfortably, he shoots her an eager smile. Hidden behind his glasses, his eyes are sparkling with expectation and excitement, and there’s that boyish quality to him again that surprises her so much. Combined with his decidedly manly looks—highlighted by the shadow of stubble along his strong jaw and by his slightly disheveled hair—it makes him so attractive she wants to curse the unfairness of it all. Instead, she wiggles closer readily when he lifts an arm so she can lean into his side.

“Right, let’s have a look at your beloved superheroes,” he says with that infectious enthusiasm of his, and Thalia hits play on the DVD.

The movie hasn’t even properly begun and Tom’s hands are already wandering. But there’s nothing sexual to his touch. The hand of the arm he’s draped across the backrest of the sofa winds into her hair, and he tugs the hairband off to run his fingers gently through her tresses. Off and on, he stops gliding through her curls to massage her scalp ever so lightly or to trail his fingers over her neck in a soothing, rhythmic motion that relaxes her blissfully. If she wasn’t so focused on the movie, she’d feel drowsy by now.

With his other hand, he digs into the snacks—pretzels, individually wrapped chocolates, popcorn, toffees, peanuts, his long arms giving him easy access without having to shift. Off and on, he feeds her a bite in between spoonfuls of her soup.

Half-way into the movie, Tom disentangles himself from their embrace, and she can barely hold back a protesting sound because she hasn’t felt so relaxed in days.

He takes the empty soup bowl out of her hands to set it on the coffee table. Thalia’s eyes watch his long fingers deftly open a couple of buttons of the rumpled flannel shirt. Her mind is transported back to Chicago, where he wore the shirt for the first time. Something stirs inside her. Is it melancholy? Wistfulness?

She stomps down on the flicker of feeling. “Feeling nostalgic?” she asks, popping some popcorn into her mouth to hide whatever expression might be on her face.

Tom smiles a little crookedly. “As a matter of fact, I do.” His face grows thoughtful, and she can feel him zone out for a bit. When his gaze settles on her eyes again, he looks serious. “I may sound like a sappy old fool, but the time I spent with you in Chicago ranks way up high there with the happiest days of my life.”

God, why does he have to tug at her heart strings like that? “Way too sappy, mister,” she jokes, trying to lighten the mood. Tom’s expression clouds over instantly, and she feels as guilty as if she’d just kicked a puppy.

His beaming smile returns when she shares, “Mine too, Tom.  It ranks really high for me too.”

They turn back to the movie, and even though he pulls her snugly into his side again, something about him feels off.

With a small sigh, Thalia places a hand on his thigh and rubs up and down softly.

“I’ll always treasure our time in Chicago,” she admits, and some of the tension melts out of Tom’s body. She can feel him press a kiss on top of her head before he moves his arm to place his hand on her waist. It stays there, as if it belongs there for the rest of her life.

Soon, both of them become too engrossed in the movie to make normal conversation. Shocked that Tom hasn’t seen any of the Marvel movies, Thalia keeps throwing in extra information, filling him in on relevant tidbits that happened in previous movies. The first intermission has her pause the DVD and half-turn towards him.

“How come you haven’t watched any of these? They’re modern classics, damn it. It’s like never having listened to Shakira or something equally blasphemous.”

Tom chuckles, downing a few gulps of soda before answering. “In my defense, I did read some of the comics in my childhood. And they were fabulous. I just never got around to really caring enough to watch the movies.”

Thalia shakes her head, her curls brushing his face. “Shame on you. So, how do you like it so far?”

“It’s amazing. I’m positively surprised by how much backstory between the lines there is, how much emotional depth beside all the action.”

That is such a Tom thing to say that it makes her smile. But she gives him a mock-stern glare. “Well, I hope you’ll remedy your grave mistake and watch all the others too.”

“Yes, ma’am.” He salutes smartly, giving her a goofy grin. It turns into a smile when he leans in and pecks her on the cheek, a chaste brush of his lips that lingers a while and warms her from the inside out. “Thank you for introducing me to them, Thalia.  We can watch them together?”

The nagging voice in the back of her head won’t stop.  “That means you’d have to find time for me outside of office hours.”

The pained expression returns to his face.  “I know, darling.  Spring semester is always so busy for me, my evenings just seem too full.  I’ve been lackadaisical when it comes to making time for us away from my office, and you’re always on the go, my love.”  He squeezes her hand.  “I hope visits to the storage closet make up for some of the missed times?” he inquires, referencing their meeting earlier in the week.

She smiles, “For now,” winking at him playfully, though she wonders if it’s really enough.  But then again if both men were competing for the same hours, she wouldn’t know what to do with herself, so she lets it go.

She unpauses the movie and snuggles back into his comforting embrace. After a while, Tom pushes the tray to the side and props his socked feet up on the coffee table. Not even the action sequence on the screen can keep her from catching an eyeful of his long feet. It’s disconcerting to see him without shoes, in a weird way. His feet look even bigger without shoes on, and a giggle bursts free when her naughty mind wanders to what they say about men with big feet. Well, she knew all too well that there was some truth to that…

“What’s so funny, darling?” Tom shoots her a confused glance, his lips automatically lifting to mirror her gleeful grin.

“Nothing.” She chokes back her laughter and bites her lip, concentrating on the movie. From the corner of her eye, she can see Tom still looking at her. He crosses his legs at the ankles and rests his free arm behind his neck, sinking a little lower in his seat. Thalia mimics his actions, feeling mighty comfortable as she pulls the blanket over them.

She picks up her commentary, and somehow that sends her off on a rant about Loki and how Marvel doesn’t give him the attention he deserves. She talks about his development throughout the Thor and Avengers movies, and about how the actor playing Loki had managed to make the villain outshine the hero.

“So, you’ve got a thing for the bad guy, hm?” Tom asks, shifting his attention from the screen to her again.

Thalia gives it some thought. “I wouldn’t say that. Firstly, Loki isn’t a stereotypical villain. He’s kind of misunderstood, and he’s got this mischievous side to his character that always gets him into trouble but isn’t really meanness or evilness.”

Tom nods. “That’s kind of how the real Norse mythology portrays him, if my memory serves me correctly.”

It’s her turn to nod. “And secondly,” she shoots him a grin, “I’m pretty infatuated with Captain America too, and he’s definitely the good guy.”

Shifting to catch her attention, Tom says with a twinkle in his eyes, “Personally, I think a man should be a bit of both in real life, it will get him far.” He wags his brows at her comically. “A good boy in certain situations, a bad boy in others.”

With a guffaw, Thalia elbows him in the ribs. She’d been feeling so guilty just a few hours ago, and now look at her, laughing and thoroughly enjoying Tom’s company.

Being with him like this, with sex and secrecy out of the equation, is a totally new experience—if you disregarded Chicago, which was different in a way—and she’d thought at the beginning that it might be awkward. But it isn’t, and that gives her pause.

Pushing thoughtfulness away, she asks with a raised brow, “And what about women? Are we supposed to be a mix of good girl and bad girl too?”

Tom’s grin fades, and there’s an intensity in his gaze that she’s seen often. It always leaps into his eyes so suddenly, and it’s one thing she appreciates so much about him, how he’s genuine and all-in, whatever he’s tackling.

“Well, you’re the perfect mix of both, and look how wonderfully irresistible that makes you,” he says, his tone almost a low, growly purr before bestowing a quick kiss to her neck.

God, if she wasn’t feeling so out of it today, she’d be all over him by now. Even in her confused state, she feels a flutter in her belly.  The warmth bubbles out of her and she tells him just that.

“Good; then we’ll have another movie night soon, when you’re feeling better.”

The sound of an explosion pulls their attention back to the screen, and they watch the rest of the movie in amicable silence, punctuated by the occasional gasp or whoop at a great scene.

“Well, that was lovely, darling.” Tom says when the end credits are rolling. He makes a soft, satisfied grunt and shifts his position. She feels him nuzzle her throat softly, his stubble barely scraping across her skin, the clean, unobtrusive shampoo smell of his hair mixing with the scent of his skin. One of his big hands caresses her stomach, so lightly she senses the heat of his palm more than actual pressure. It draws lazy circles over the soft gray fabric, lulling her into a state of boneless bliss.

But she doesn’t want to doze off. Damn it, she has Tom over at her place for really the first time. She wants to treasure this.

“What’s a movie you’ve watched so many times you’ve lost count?” she asks, trying desperately to stay awake. She holds his hand steady on her stomach with her own, their fingers entwining.

“Mmm…” He leans his head back against the sofa, his face scrunched up in thought. “I think it’s a close tie between ‘Heat’ and Disney’s ‘The Jungle Book’.”

“What?” Thalia sits up straighter and lets go of his hand, checking his face to make sure he isn’t kidding. Those two movies are like night and day, and… “But that’s a children’s movie!”

He lets his head roll to the side, quirking his brows at her. “Yeah. And your point is?”

Now it’s her turn to frown thoughtfully. “Seriously? You’re not pulling my leg?”

Tom places a hand over his heart, assuming a comically solemn face. “Dead serious. Scout’s honor.”

That makes her giggle again. “I doubt you were ever a scout.”

He grins back at her. “Got me there, darling. But I was honest about ‘The Jungle Book’. I mean, how can you not love that movie? It teaches us so much, about friendship and family, about nature, about never giving up. Even after all these times of watching it, it makes me cry and laugh and sing along.”

As if to prove a point, Tom starts humming the tune to ‘Bare Necessities’, which sends her into another fit of laughter. She can’t remember a time when she’d felt so shitty but ended up laughing so much.

“Laugh all you want,” Tom said, crossing his arms over his chest and looking like a kid again. “It’s one of my all-time favorites, and I see no reason to be ashamed of it.”

Thalia shifts, half-turning on the sofa so she can face him. “I’m not saying it’s something to be ashamed of. You just surprised me, is all.” They exchange a smile. “It’ll be a great movie to show to your kids one day,” she adds automatically, then bites her lip.

Something shifts in his expression, almost imperceptibly. Curiosity has her shift closer and reach for his thigh, tracing circles on the bluish-purple, well-worn denim.  Her breath catches before she speaks, her heart racing.   “Do you want to have children some day, Tom?”

He stares into the distance before seeking out her eyes, his shoulders lifting in a shrug. “I think so, yes. I’m not so sure of when.” One finger lifts to his lips, rubbing pensively. “I know I’m not getting any younger, but for now, settling down and playing house isn’t how I envision my life.  Even if I found the right partner, I feel like there’s more I want to do first.”

The pounding in her chest echoes in her ears and she feels like it fills the room, wondering if he thinks he’s found the right one in her.

His hand captures hers against his leg, stilling it. With his thumb, he’s the one now tracing circles on her wrist. “But if I do get married and become a father one day, I’d probably love to have first a girl and then a boy because I know how wonderful it is to have a sister.”

Thalia allows her mind to wander for a moment, picturing a slightly elder version of Tom with glasses, a bit of grey at his temples and in his ginger scruff. She imagines him strolling to the park somewhere in London, holding the hand of a merrily skipping little girl with pigtails while a smaller boy is riding on his shoulders.

What does it say about her that her mind draws a blank on the woman who should be walking alongside him, holding his other hand?

Before she can dwell on the fantasy, Tom gives her hand a squeeze. “And you, dear Thalia?  Are children in your future?”

She chews on her lip, momentarily thrown by the question because being with Chris has made her oddly aware that having her own family isn’t so much in her distant future anymore but a real possibility if she chooses to take that path.

“I think I’ll go with your answer,” she says slowly. “Not now. I’m not ready for settling down yet, and it’s kind of scary to think of dedicating myself solely to a little person I’m responsible for when I’ve worked so hard to get to where I am.”  She sighs, searching his blue eyes, so intently focused on hers.  “Does it sound selfish to say I feel like I need to finish making myself before I make someone else?”

Tom shakes his head, squeezing more firmly. “Not at all… I don’t think anyone could ever accuse you of being selfish.”  He watches her thoughtfully.  “But when you do have them one day? What shall it be? A little girl with your riotous curls and your sass? Or a small, intelligent boy who loves burying himself in books?”

They exchange a look and a grin before blurting out at the same time, “Both. Both is good.”

Once their chuckles have subsided, Tom sits up and stretches with a drawn-out sigh, his plaid shirt rising to show a glimpse of his pale, nicely defined abs and sparse happy trail.

Somehow managing to look graceful while unfolding his long limbs and getting to his feet, he bends to pick up the tray with the half-eaten snacks and soda cans.

“Would you like anything else now, darling? Tea maybe? Your mashed potatoes?”

She shakes her head. “What I want right now is another movie, and some cuddles.”

He smiles, his eyes crinkling. “Your wish is my command. Give me a minute.”  Moving to the kitchen, he pauses.  “Is that a yoga mat in the corner?  I didn’t know you practiced yoga.”

His turn of phrase pierces a bit; just another example of how little they really know about one another.  She’s sure in passing on work days she’s mentioned going to the gym, possibly even yoga class.  It just proves how when Tom is in work mode, the real world often slips away.  Blushing a bit, she admits, “Yea, I was a little sore and achy this morning.  Some stretching helped, but then I was too zapped to put the mat away.” She shrugs.  “Perk of living alone; at least it’s my mess.”

He chuckles.  “Funny how we get set in our ways, then we begin to wonder if we could give up our freedoms to live with anyone else.”

She thinks on his words, but by the time he’s returned, she’s half asleep. Even more reluctant to lose her time with him, she stirs when the couch shifts from his weight. True to his word, he arranges himself for some cuddling. Sitting sideways on the sofa, his long legs hanging a little over the other end, he places a cushion on his lap and urges her to half-lie on him. It takes them some wiggling again, but then it feels so comfy she never wants to get up.

Between his steady heart-beat close to her ear and his soothing caresses all over her arms and back, she ends up missing half of the movie because she dozes off in between. Tom is quiet the whole time, only whispering an endearment here and there, holding her close without caging her in.

But then her stomach rumbles, and Tom grows alert from one moment to the next. He sits up straight, gently shifting her too. “Does my Warrior Princess need some magical health-restoring sustenance?”

She grins and nods, rubbing her sleepy eyes. “I’d kill for a steak right now, but I guess I should settle for those mashed potatoes.”

A mischievous glint enters Tom’s eyes. “Your stomach seems well enough, don’t you think? Can you handle some proper food?”

Thalia nods, wondering where this is headed to.  “What time is it?”

“It’s barely half past eight.”  Tom basically jumps off the sofa, not forgetting to resettle her tenderly. “I’ve got just the right thing in mind. Stay right here and let me treat you to one of the few things I’m truly good at.”

And off he is, with a bounce to his step, making Thalia wonder what on earth he’s talking about. What he’s good at? Shakespeare and stuff?  Amazing sex?  What’s that got to do with being hungry?

In a state of bliss and relaxation, Thalia tries not to think anything at all and simply wait.  She jumps when the phrase “bite that tattoo on your shoulder” rings from her phone.  She thought it was on mute, and rushes to cover the speaker with her hand.  Looking over her shoulder, Tom is focused on cooking, and not paying attention.  So like him actually, to be lost in his thoughts.  She sighs and shakes her head, still feeling a little off.  And guilty.  Terribly guilty.

Opening the screen to the picture Chris sent of him and Avery playing Legos at his kitchen table draws a smile to her face.  Their adoration for one another is touching.  However, her discussion with Tom reminded her of what she wants, but that doesn’t mean she has to make any decisions right away. Chris is still holding Avery at arm’s length from her.  He’s not pushing her into a mother role, and she can live with that.  He doesn’t seem to want an instant family, and Tom seems nowhere near ready to settle down.  Sending a quick reply, she snuggles down into the couch and laughs at the deleted scenes on the DVD.  Tantalizing smells waft from the kitchen after a while, making her practically salivate although she hasn’t had an appetite all day.

Looking over the back of the couch, she hides her laughter at the pile of bowls and broken eggshells on the counter.  She never would have guessed Tom was a messy cook.

“Hurry up, I’m starving now,” she whines.

“Patience my darling; good things come to those who wait.”

“I know, I know.  Delayed gratification,” she giggles.

What feels half an eternity later, Tom walks over the imaginary divide into the living space, his tray even more laden than before.

Her jaw hits the ground when she sees plates heaped full with mashed potatoes, fried eggs sunny side up and cut into pieces, sausages in bite-sized cubes, toast, two glasses of juice, grilled tomatoes, and bacon strips.

“What the… Thomas William Hiddleston, is that what I think it is?” She looks wide-eyed from the tray to his face with its smug grin and back.

“If you think what I think you think,” he jokes, “then you’re right.”

Thalia shakes her head, curls bouncing. “That’s a full English breakfast, right?”

He nods enthusiastically. “One hundred points, A+, Ms. Bareo. It sure is.”

“But, but…” she splutters. “Just in case you hadn’t noticed, it’s eight in the evening, Tom, not in the morning.”

He shrugs, barely managing to keep the tray balanced. Walking over, he sets it down and kneels in front of her, making a big ceremony of shaking out a cloth napkin he’s somehow found in her tiny, under-stocked kitchen. He drapes it over her knees, the funniest, kind of proud and precious grin still lighting up his features.

“If I may say so myself, I’m really gifted when it comes to putting a full English breakfast all hot on the plate at the same time.” Thalia muffles her incredulous laughter behind a hand as he goes on. “The tricky thing is the timing, you know. The toast should be hot enough for the butter to melt.” He points to the plate, his grin widening even more. “The bacon should be sizzling, the sausages and the eggs fresh.” He tilts his head, giving her one of those boyish, infuriatingly adorable expressions. “It isn’t an easy thing, but I do love a good challenge.”

“Dork.” She playfully hits his chest, and he captures her hand and peppers it with tiny kisses.

“But a dork who can cook. Want to see for yourself?”

He takes his place next to her again, and they tuck in, banter going back and forth between appreciative moans at the food.

Damn it all to hell, the man really can cook. Thalia represses the voice at the back of her mind that says it would be lovely to have him prepare breakfast for her on a regular basis.  She tries to stop the back and forth pendulum in her brain between Chris and Tom, instead focusing on the delicious food and wallowing in his attention.

After the late dinner, Tom drowns out all protests and does the dishes by himself while they have a shouted conversation over the running water, because he insisted she stay cuddled on the couch.  She could get used to letting him care for her in this way.  He  tells her more about English breakfast traditions she remembers vaguely from her time in Stratford-upon-Avon.

They put on another movie, this time a chick flick because she wants to wind down, but Thalia falls asleep midway. The next thing she notices is that she’s being carried. Groggily, she opens her eyes and squints at Tom’s face in the dim light.

“What…what’re you doin’?”

“Sh, darling, don’t fret. I’m just taking you to bed. You need a good night’s rest and then you’ll be back to your usual sassy self again in the morning.”

Shushing her half-hearted protests, he sets her gently down on the bed and tucks her in. He reaches out and brushes her hair from her face, checking her forehead for a fever again with gut-wrenching concern.  “I tucked you in here once before when you weren’t feeling so well.”

Thalia grabs his hand before he can withdraw it, leaning her cheek into his touch.

“You did.  I remember it well.  It seems like a lifetime ago.  Who would’ve ever thought we’d be here now, like this?”

“It was only my wildest dream, and I still can’t believe it came true, darling,” he whispers, placing a kiss to the back of her hand.

“I’m sorry, Tom. I wish the night didn’t have to end like this,” she says, fighting the drowsiness because it’s important to her to get these words out. “I can’t even give you a proper good night kiss, and I…and you…ugh.”

“Hey, hey, hey, don’t worry.” Tom leans in and brushes his lips over her forehead, wrinkled in distress. “I may turn into a starving sex maniac around you at times, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t keep it in my pants and just enjoy some time with you.” He smooths the blanket over her with a little smile.

“Sleep, my Warrior Princess. I’ll be on the couch. If you need anything, just call out.”

She wants to say more, her heart in her throat, but Tom places a finger over her lips and shakes his head. He waits until she closes her eyes, his hand brushing over her arm rhythmically—and before she knows it, she’s asleep.

Click here to read Chapter 31 Cabin Fever

Copyright © 2017  avenger-nerd-mom.  All rights reserved. Intellectual property of avenger-nerd-mom and devikafernando

 

 

Changes

ET ch 18 may 3 2017.jpg

Educating Thalia

Chapter 18

Collaboration by @avenger-nerd-mom & @devikafernando

AU FICTION

A collaboration involving Professor Hiddleston and Professor Evans- The two are rivals at a posh New England university and have no idea they both have taken interest in the lovely Thalia Bareo. She’s a grad student with interests in language and history; a sassy full-figured Puerto Rican girl from Chicago.  Story updates are posted on Wednesdays and Sundays.

Word count: 2173

Warnings:  Language, Adult Situations, fluffy, angst, parenting, aftermath of divorce

Summary: Chris deals with the demons from his past and puts his foot down. It’s time to make some changes and move forward.

Click here to the introduction of Educating Thalia

Sitting in the driveway, he waits to see if she’ll answer the text.  He meant it when he typed if she didn’t answer by three pm, he’d knock on the front door.  She still has about twelve minutes to respond.

Leaning his head back, he admires the small craftsman cottage in the peaceful neighborhood. The dream house.  Thinking over bittersweet memories, he remembers painstakingly putting in the rose bushes and placing the pavers just so to create the winding walkway.  Looking at his lightly calloused hands he realizes he’s forgotten how much he enjoyed ‘doing things’ with his hands.  Creating something to last.

The door opens and she walks out in a tight jeans and a sweater shawl wrap.  Rolling the window down, he simply says.  “You look good.”

She freezes, obviously stunned by his compliment, before approaching the car tentatively.  Chris reaches over and turns down the radio, noticing the monitor in her hands.  “Wanna sit in here with me where it’s warm?” he offers.

“Chris, you can’t just come by unannounced,” she responds pulling the shawl tighter and looking around to see if anyone is watching.

“Maura, you didn’t answer my phone calls and texts.  She’s my daughter.  I get to see her.”  He grips the steering wheel keeping his temper under control.

“You smell like a bar,” she replies.  “Stale cigarette smoke,” she sniffs.

“Yea. Because I was pissed as hell you didn’t let me get Avery last night.  I’ll admit, I got a little drunk. Stayed with a friend.  Totally sober now… What was the excuse this time?” he asks bitterly.

His ex-wife kicks at the tire of the car.  “Avery had a birthday party at Susie’s house; they were swimming and it would have been bed time after so-”

“So?  I could have taken her there and brought her back to my house.  We’ve been to Mark and Patty’s house a million times.  And a birthday party, Maura?  You’d have had that on the calendar for weeks. You couldn’t give me a heads up, and we could have changed dates?”  He turns off the ignition and gets out of the car.

“What are you doing?” she asks, stepping back.

“Don’t act that way, like I’d hurt you, in case the neighbors are watching.  I’m not playing games.  I’m going inside to see my daughter.”  Chris pushes past her and follows the winding path up the snow covered steps.  He waits for her at the door.  “May I enter my house?”

She runs her hand through her short blonde hair and sighs.  “Of course.”  She tilts her head.  “Do you want to take her tonight?  Can you get her to preschool before eleven tomorrow?”

His heart beats wildly.  Not expecting a sudden show of kindness, he simply nods his head and blinks back his tears.

“Don’t try to trick me with your beautiful lashes there, Professor,” she says as she steps into his space and pushes up his glasses to wipe away a tear clinging to the long black hairs.  He holds her wrist and gently pushes it away.

“You don’t get to console me anymore, Maura.  I’ll find someone else for that…”  The image of just the right person for that flits across his mind, tanned skin and curves, challenging brain and sweetest laugh…  Crossing over the threshold the smell of fresh paint assaults his nose and he cringes.  “You never liked the beige color, did you?” he scoffs.

Shaking her head, she laughs quietly.  “No, I didn’t; the dining room is now the buttercup yellow I always wanted.” Hanging her sweater up, Maura points to the stairs.  “She’s in her room, probably just waking up from her nap.  Just throw some clothes in her back pack; whatever you’ll need for your place.”

She tries to push her body to him again but he ignores her advance and takes the stairs two at a time to reach his little Avery faster.  Quietly entering her room, he watches her sitting in her big girl bed whispering to her dolls and their dog, Tramp.  Her jumbled words don’t make sense to him and again the tears fill his eyes and he sniffs.  Turning around at the sound, she bounces gleefully and claps her hands.  “Oh, Poppa!  Is ‘at really you, or am I dreamin’?”

Chris rushes to her bedside and drops to his knees, wrapping his big strong arms around his favorite little package.  “No, Bug, it’s real.  Poppa’s here.  Momma says you can come stay with me tonight.  Would you like that?”

“Oh yes! Yes, please!” she covers his face with tiny kisses and his face stings from the salty tears of happiness.  “Don’t cry, Poppa, you’ll get my fav’rite shirt wet.”

Maura’s voice sounds from the door.  “She wears it all the time.  Refuses to take it off, Poppa.  You’re gonna have to buy more just so she has one to wear when I have to wash the other.”

Chris looks over his shoulder and smiles to his ex, while she starts gathering a few things to put in an overnight bag.  Pulling back from his little one, he looks at her shirt and laughs as he reads, ‘Daddy’s Favorite Girl” on the front with a kitten wearing a crown.  “I can do that, no problem, Bug.”  She jumps off the bed and lands in his outstretched arms and the dog hops down too, barking and wagging his tail.  “Poppa, Tramp misses you too. Can he come?”

The battle over keeping Tramp had been almost as tiring as deciding the best residency for Avery.  And neither are still fully worked out.  Tramp was their first child, the stray they adopted shortly after they bought the house, long before they even thought of having children.  Chris looks to the pretty blonde hopefully, but the words choke in his throat.

“Fine, you can take the dog too.  He actually goes to the groomer tomorrow.  Can you get him there by noon?”  she smiles.

“I’ll just be your taxi service tomorrow, getting everyone where they need to be,” Chris replies, standing up with Avery still in his arms.  Balancing her on his hip, he reaches down for her favorite doll and blanket, making sure those are along for the evening as well.  Eyeing a sparkly dress in her closet he tells Maura to pack that also.  “I’m taking my girl out for dinner.  We’re gonna dress up fancy.  What do you say to that, Bug?”

“Oh, Poppa!  You’ll be so handsome; I wike it!”  The little girl giggles and blows a raspberry against her father’s cheek, giggling louder when his beard tickles her lips.

Maura leads the way out to the hall, the overnight bag in one hand, and another bag in the other.  “Here’s some more clothes and things I’d already packed for you to keep at your place.  She needs to feel comfortable there too, Chris.”

Chris rolls his eyes.  “She does Maura; she’d even feel more that way if you’d let her stay over on a regular basis, like the court papers say.”

She purses her lips together.  “We go back to the mediator early next month.  Maybe we can get it all figured out by then.  It’s just I worry that-”

Setting her down to the ground, Chris leans down to tell Avery, “Hey, run on downstairs and get some cans of food for Tramp, his leash and put your boots on.  I need to talk to Momma for a few minutes.”

The little girl looks expectantly at her mother, who shakes her head in agreement and the little girl and dog slowly take off down the stairs, grasping the rail tightly in her tiny hands.  As soon as she’s out of earshot, Chris hisses to his ex, “You worry what? I’ll have a string of women in my condo?  Maura, you know that’s not true.  I know why you didn’t want me going to the party for Susie’s birthday yesterday.  You didn’t want me to fuckin’ kill Mark or spill your little secret to Patty- “ The angered man ignores the shock on her face.  “Yeah, I know about that affair too, not just the trainer at the gym… And you forget I work with your friend Brianna, and I know you’ve had three other ‘boyfriends’ since the divorce was final.  You fucked up our marriage.  And instead of respecting me enough to ask out, you decided to screw it into the ground.  One date, Maura.  I’ve had one date in nearly eighteen months as I watched my marriage fall apart and I try to rebuild my life.”

“Chris, I-”

Moving down the stairs, he looks over her shoulder at her stricken face.  “No.  I’m not playing games anymore.  I pay the child support, I pay what you need, but I’m not gonna sit back and let you keep me from Avery.  Or the dog, for that matter.”

“I still love you.”  Her pink lips form a pout he once found beguiling but now it just turns his stomach.

“Well you had a fucked up way of showing it, then didn’t you?” he spits out.  His face red with anger, his hands ball into fists at his sides as she descends the stairs and reaches out to him.  He steps back.  “Stay away, Maura.  Your cute little body can’t fix this.  Share it with someone else.”

The little blonde curls bounce around the corner with three cans of food for Tramp in her hands and he hides away his anger as quickly as it grew.  Opening the coat closet, he pulls down Avery’s puffy purple and blue coat and her warm fuzzy hat while she plops on the floor at his feet to pull on her boots.  Spying an empty store bag, he takes shoes for school the next day and her silver sequined shoes to go with her dress for dinner.  “Avery!  Did you steal these from Cinderella?”

She giggles. “No, silly Poppa!  They went with my dress for Christmas.  Momma got them for me.  It’s not nice to take things that aren’t yours.”

“Hear that Maura.  Even the five year old gets it…”  He zips up the toddler’s coat, seeing the blush of embarrassment rush over his adulterous ex-wife’s face.

Standing back up, he tugs his coat back into place.  “Are my boxes still out in the garage?” he asks.  She nods.  “I’ll get a moving truck later this week.  Be back to get them.  Sorry it’s taken so long.  But I think this little show, and something a friend recently said to me, makes me realize it’s time to move on, but keep doing the right thing.  Can I go out there? There’s one or two things I want now.”

“Sure.  You know the code.  I haven’t changed it.  Just come get the stuff whenever.”  She sighs, wrapping the sweater shawl around her shoulders again.  “Maybe when you come get Avery Wednesday night, like every week?  I’ll move her to a different dance class.”

“Yes, you do that.  Wednesdays are mine until we meet with the mediator,” he nods.  He knows he’ll get more time then, and things will be better balanced.

“I’ll get her in her car seat while you’re in the garage.”  She takes the little girl by the hand and the faithful dog follows them out into the cold.

Chris quickly finds the boxes he wants and takes them to the car.  Making sure Avery and Tramp are settled in, he walks back around to Maura.  “I want us to be friends.  For her sake.  And because I’ve loved you longer than I’ve hated you.  That hate doesn’t do me any good.  It just makes me old and bitter before my time.  You destroyed me once.  If you ever really loved me, stop all this.  Focus on her first.  But I’m a good dad, and you know it.”

He hugs her lightly and gets in the warm car, backing out of the drive and away from his old life, finally ready to make some changes.

#

A few hours later, as the sun begins to set, he’s on his way to dinner with Avery.  He’s promised to take her to their favorite Italian restaurant, dressed to the nines, but he can’t help himself.  Driving several miles out of the way, he drives down Thalia’s street, absently smiling to himself.   Avery is singing along to the CD he plays and he watches Tina shuffle down the street, a bag in her hand.  He slows when the door to her building opens and by pure coincidence, the latina beauty steps out in her signature skirt and cowboy boots, her hair a wild mess of curls, a pink scarf wrapped around her neck.  She walks to a little junker car and bounces on her heels as she unlocks the door.  Turning his head so she can’t see him, it kinda tugs at him that he’s elated to see she’s not all dressed up for what he’s pretty sure is a date with the other man.

Click to Chapter 19 Night at the Movies

Copyright © 2017  avenger-nerd-mom.  All rights reserved. Intellectual property of avenger-nerd-mom and devikafernando

Three

1493177639697

Educating Thalia

Chapter 16

Collaboration by @avenger-nerd-mom & @devikafernando

AU FICTION

A collaboration involving Professor Hiddleston and Professor Evans- The two are rivals at a posh New England university and have no idea they both have taken interest in the lovely Thalia Bareo. She’s a grad student with interests in language and history; a sassy full-figured Puerto Rican girl from Chicago.  Story updates are posted on Wednesdays and Sundays.

Word count: 3040

Warnings:  Language, Adult Situations, NSFW, cunnilingus, fingering, nipple play, intercourse, multiple orgasms

Summary: Chris takes his time to really get to know Thalia’s body, fulfilling a tantalizing promise while losing himself in her.

Click here to the intro for Educating Thalia

He advances on her quickly, flipping her back to the bed and tugging on her shorts and pulling them down her shapely full figured legs, leaving her in nothing but a piece of skimpy blue lace.  Sliding off the end of the bed, he grabs her ankle and draws her down to him, spreading her legs to rest between them.  “I’ve been wanting to bite right here,” he circles his thumb on her inner thigh, “since you sat on the couch with your foot on the table.  Niña, I don’t even think you knew what you were doing, but you had my attention.”  She whimpers and begins to writhe before he even moves between her legs, tickling her with the top of his buzzed hair.  Noticing the wet spot already on her panties, he continues his little game, biting at her thigh and marking her there also.

With his hair so short, she tugs on his ear and pulls his head back to look at him and whines for him to stop teasing. Her eyes are dark with lust and reaching down to him, she removes his glasses and tosses them gently towards her dresser.  “Just do it.  Lick me, finger fuck me, whatever, but put me out of my misery.”

God, how he wants to hear her sultry voice cry out.  “Thalia, I wanna hear you beg for me.  You have to want it.”

Lifting her ass of the bed, she pushes against him.  “I do Chris; I want it.” She huffs when he pulls back.  “I need you to make me come.”

Licking across the lace, he pushes it between her folds and she cries out, “Fuck,” seemingly shocked at her own volume as she covers her mouth with her fist.  The glorious sound echoes in his ears and he longs to hear it again as he swipes his tongue again, sucking back and gathering the wet lace between his lips.  Stretching it away from her pussy, he glides one hand up her thigh, bringing his thumb to her entrance and massaging with the rest of his hand against her pelvic bone.  She pushes towards him and he holds her still with his other hand.  “Not that easy, Thalia.  You have to want it, you have to tell me you want it.”

“Dammit, I need you to fuck me, please.”

With the lace pushed to the side, he looks at her pretty pink sex and sees the throbbing of her walls, begging for him.  Leaning in, he pushes with his thumb as his tongue teases around her tight bundle of nerves and she cries out again, thrashing against the sheets, straining to rise up as he holds her down.  “More,” she whines.

“You taste absolutely sinful,” he praises.  Her hole is tight and he adds another digit to his caresses, fingering her and pulling in and out, simulating the sex act he plans for her later.  Her walls squeeze on him and he knows she won’t last much longer, teasing her with another lash of his tongue across her clit and her whimpers sound pained. He smiles as he licks when she raises her foot to his shoulder, opening herself up more for him as he continues to dive between her legs.

Choking out the words, she says what he longs to hear.  “Chris, I’m yours, make me come, please.”

“Thatta girl, that’s what I want; go for it.”  Pushing another finger in he curls against her g-spot, letting go of his hold on her stomach so she can rise up to grind against him as she comes over his hand, soaking his beard as he laps her clean.  “Shit, shit, shit,” she cries and it reminds him of his own string of expletives at her hands, his undoing.  The little bit he can’t catch runs between her legs and soaks the comforter as he sweeps her up in his arms and cradles her in his lap, wiping his beard on the already stained tank top.  “Niña, honey, that was just One.  Still two more to go.”

Her head drops to his shoulder, her arms tight around his neck.  She whispers against his skin.  “Fuck, I’ll be dead by morning,” she giggles.  “Cause of death: Amazing hot sex.”

“Don’t die yet; I’m not done with you,” he promises.

Her body quakes in his arms and he feels she’s still on the edge.  Lowering his head,  his lips caress the tender spot against her collarbone.

“Chris?  You just picked me up?  Like it was nothing?”  She giggles, still breathy and faint, the rush of air from her lips warm against his neck.  “That might be the fucking sexiest thing a man has ever done for me,” she shares with him.

He nuzzles closer to her body.  Her round, full womanly body appeals to him in a way no other woman has in ages.  He likes her weight, her power.  It’s a fuckin’ turn on.  His free hand glides up her thigh and her legs fall apart, giving him better access.  He massages over her shaved mound. “I’ll remember that,” he chuckles, tilting his head back to look at her.  She’s lovely with her eyes blown wide from her orgasm, tendrils of curls loose from her braid, damp with the sweat of their lovemaking.  “You like me just for my strength.  Fair enough.  I like you for your thick thighs and peach-shaped ass.”

She blushes and shakes her head back in a gasp as his hand reaches his goal, her wet center. Dipping his fingers in her juices, her walls tremble and clench around him, pulling his digits in deeper.  Curling his fingers, his smooth, rhythmic penetrations reach her g-spot and her breaths catch, her body arching into him.

“I hope that’s not the only reason,” she whispers against the top of his head.

Her nipples push against his solid chest and harden as his mouth drops down, kissing the tops of her exposed globes.  Her hand slides down his chest and joins his, flicking over her aching clit.  “Come for me again, Thalia.  Don’t hold back this time,” he quietly tells her.  “When you’re ready, just let go.”

Looking down to their drenched fingers her wet glistens in the low lamp light and he longs to taste her.  He thinks what the hell…  Sliding his fingers out, she whines from the emptiness but continues to rub herself.  His arm around her back reaches further around her side to lift her ravishing breast to him, as he circles her slick fragrant sluice around the dark nipple with his other hand.  Her flesh rises in goosebumps and he takes the chocolate peak into his waiting mouth, sucking her in and clasping his lips around her raised bud. Pulling back and tugging lightly with his teeth her moan delights his ears and he whispers, “Good enough to eat,” as his hand slides back over her ample stomach to find her hole waiting for him.

Sitting in his lap, her ass rocks against his cock and he stiffens under her, waiting for his turn to truly have her.  Not much longer now.

His fingers meet hers and their punishing touches continue to pulsate within her and he feels her body tense.  Turning his hand he pushes his palm against her hand, eliciting a whine from her as her pleasure takes on a painful need to let loose.  His other hand continues to pull at her nipple, pinching and squeezing as her noises rise and she lifts off him to push against their hands.  “Oh, fuck, fuck, I’m coming again,” she pants as her hand pushes harder in circles around her clit and his fingers reach as far as he can to hit against the most sensitive spot  Her come spills over their hands and Chris continues to caress, pulling the orgasm from her as she bucks against him.

“Look at me,” he coaxes reveling in the frantic darkness found in her gleaming eyes. Hers search over his face, as though she wants to know his features and hold them close.  Her mouth falls open as she cries out and he captures her bottom lip, sucking and pulling at the supple flesh, marking her with beard burn, as her whimpers die down.  Stroking his fingers across her gently, she accepts his mouth, placing a full kiss on his lips as her orgasm wanes.

“Two,” he announces pulling his hand from her sopping cunt and picking her up effortlessly as he rises into a standing position.  His needy hands grab and claw at her ass.  Instinctively she wraps her legs around him and he bounces her up high against his chest, returning her back down on his solid cock.

Her quick intake of air shows her surprise and he holds her still, allowing her time to stretch to accommodate his hard pulsing thickness. Taking a few short steps across the room, he sits her atop the dresser and pushes into her again.  Her lips crash against his in a fevered need and she purrs, “Yes, yes, fuck me like this. Please.”

Their bodies align perfectly and the dresser is just the right height.  Pummeling into her he sets a rapid pace, tired of waiting.  He pulls at her ass and teases along the crease, her moans louder and echoing in his ears. He wonders if this beauty might like a little ass play?   She rolls with him and bounces on the wooden surface.  Her teeth sink into the tattoo on his collarbone and he hisses, heightening his senses as her manicured nails dig into his shoulder.  Moving one hand away from her sweet peachy ass, he glides roughly over her dark skin, tugging and pulling.   Lifting the weight of her exposed tit, he pulls in and out of her. Right on the edge, he knows he needs to stop, get a condom, but she feels so damn hot, so tight, he literally can’t pull himself away.

Thalia opens herself more to him by lifting her leg and resting her foot on the edge of the dark furniture piece. “Damn, that’s hot, Niña.”   Extracting himself momentarily, he watches her walls convulse, the prettiest shade of pink and purple he’s ever seen.  Chris can’t take his eyes off her slippery pulsing cunt.  “So pretty,” he whispers and from the corner of his eyes, he sees her smile grow.

Sassy.  Pleased.

Grabbing the chain around his neck, her husky voice fills his head, words that will echo in his wildest dreams for ages, “You gonna stare at it, or finish filling it?”

With her foot wrapped around his trim waist, she taps his ass with it and she pulls him close guiding him in.  With a strength she’s hidden till now, she requests commands, “Fuck me now, Chris.  I need you to finish me.”

The earthy quality to her voice, her moment of dominance brings him back to the moment.  Rocking against her again he sheaths himself deep inside, scooping her up under her ass and carrying her to the bed.  “Do that all day,” she whines.  “Super fuckin’ sexy.”

Placing her on the bed, she keeps her leg up and he pins it to his side as he pounds into her again and again, unapologetically.  His sounds of pleasure mirror hers as they rise to their peak.  Her body clenches around his cock and her volume rises, a series of expletives falling from her sweet lips.  “Three,” he grunts as he pulls out and pumps himself to finish against her writhing hip as she still undulates beneath his weight.

“Three,” she giggles breathlessly holding him in place on top of her.  “Don’t move.  I like your weight.”

Lazily her fingers drape across his back and her body slowly relaxes.  His come rolls over her hip and onto the comforter and he breathes into her neck, whispering his appreciations.

Hours later, he’s not exactly sure when they fell asleep, so soundly, wrapped up around one another.  She must have been awake at some point.  The lamp is off and he can see around the room in the hazy morning light.  The soiled comforter is hanging off the end of the bed and his glasses are on the bedside table next to her phone.  He slides out of the cozy bed and is instantly hit with a wave of cold air.  Running quickly to the bathroom first, he later tiptoes to the living room to adjust the radiator.  It makes a rumbling sound, but it isn’t too promising.  He wraps the blanket from the back of the couch around him and riffles through the kitchen cabinets, settling on a protein bar and a glass of milk.  His feet are freezing on the cold floors as he pads back into the bedroom.

He tries to slip back into the bed without waking her but she stirs, a happy crooked smile on her face.  “Morning, handsome,” she slurs, her voice full of sleep.

Add it to the list of sexiest sounds.  Thalia’s morning voice.

“This place is fuckin’ cold.  You need a heater,” he declares rolling her on top of him for warmth.

She shrieks when he places his cold feet on the back of her calves, eyes flying wide open.

“You are not nice in the morning,” she tells him, snuggling her full boobs against his rock solid chest and settling between his legs.  Her mouth blows out tiny wisps of air against his neck and he warms under her.

Comfortable and relaxed, they lay in silence for awhile.  Chris plays with her curls while she rubs her hands through the light fuzz across his chest.  Eventually she rolls to his side, snuggling next to him.  A perfect fit.

“‘Niña,’ huh?” she teases, the Spanish endearment rolling off her tongue.

He chuckles quietly, tenderly kissing the top of her head.  “It popped in my mind.  For some reason, I remembered that from my language classes. I guess I thought if I actually called you ‘baby girl’ you might hit me.”

Her body rocks with laughter and jostles the bed.  “You’re probably right.”  She laughs some more and the musical sound fills him with joy.

Cuddled in her arms, he quietly tells her, “I’d like to see you again some time, Thalia.  Maybe we could get dinner later this week?   I’m a professor, and you’re a student; we’d have to keep things quiet…”

Her cheeks flush pink and he can see her hesitation, and a moment of… What? Fear? Disbelief? – pass across her face. She chews at her bottom lip, swollen and bruised from hours of use.  It’s like she’s warring with herself…  yet he sees the instant she makes her decision.

“I’ve just had some of the best sex of my life and I would like to see you again,” she admits, her face a deep shade of red at her confession.  “But,”  Thalia sighs, “I’m seeing someone else… We have a bit of an open relationship, and for reasons, we also like to keep things quiet.  If you’re okay with knowing that I’m not always available because of school, work and well,” she sighs, “him, then yes, I’d really like to see you again sometime.”

Chris’s stomach drops, and he says the first thing that comes to his mind, believing honesty is probably the best for her, especially since she was just now truthful with him.  “To be honest, Thalia, I wasn’t expecting that you were seeing someone else.  I’m gonna have to think on it…”

“It’s fine; I understand,” she rolls over to the edge of the bed and sits up, looking around the mess of the room in a daze.

He doesn’t want her to go; doesn’t want his time with her to end.  “You said you had a lot of studying today?  I really didn’t mean to take all your morning time away-”

“Chris. Stop.  You didn’t take anything away from me.  I’m glad you’re still here.” She sighs frustratedly as she pulls the sheet around her, seemingly embarrassed in the morning light.  Standing beside the bed, her wild hair creates a halo in the gray sunshine creeping in the blinds.  She smiles down at him, reaching to caress his beard.  “I would have really hated you; hated myself if you’d left.”  She repeats quietly, “I’m glad you’re still here.”

Picking up his glasses, she hands them to him.  Rubbing the sleep from his eyes, he puts them on, laughing.  “You’re beautiful.  You look well fucked over.”  He delights in knowing he caused her undoing.

Looking in the mirror, she tucks the sheet around her, pushing her wayward curls back.  She hides a small smile behind her hand as she thoughtfully runs her lips over the knuckles on her hand.  As if she’s searching for what he sees and she can’t find it, she shakes her head and turns away.  Chris jumps up and is next to her side before she can move.  Fully naked, he stands behind her, caressing her hair over her shoulder and pulling out what remains of the braid.  “Thalia,  I want to taste more of you.  You’re a curvy, delicious woman.  Any man would be a fool not to see that.”  Bringing his hands to her waist, he digs into her fleshy sides, brushing his cock against her ass.  “Right here?  This is perfect for grabbing you tight.  I picture myself holding you here, and sliding you on and off my cock from behind and-”

“Behind?” she giggles, turning to look at him over her exposed shoulder.  “No, sir.  You stay away from there.”

Chuckling, he pushes against her more firmly.  “Oh, really? Sweetheart, you don’t know what you’re missing.  You realize now you’ve challenged me to-”

Reaching over her shoulder, she places her hand against his scruff.  “You realize now you’re talking like a man who wants to stay; wants to see me again?”

His stomach tightens.  She’s right.  She’s too perfect, too beautiful, too damn smart to walk away from…  Whoever his competition is, he’ll make sure he wins.

Turning his face to kiss her palm, he sighs in defeat.  “Yes, you’re right…  I can’t walk away from you.  I need to know you, Thalia, all of you.”

Click here to Chapter 17 Morning After

Copyright © 2017  avenger-nerd-mom.  All rights reserved. Intellectual property of avenger-nerd-mom and devikafernando