Warning: Pretty tame adult scene.

Chapter Two:

What's the harm?

The words echoed in her head to the point when Skye couldn't figure out what she was doing standing there, alone in her lodge room and blinking in the bright light.

What was the harm? She had a healthy buzz – not sober but not drunk – a perfectly willing partner who knew the score and claimed to be waiting for her, a suitably unattached status and empty romantic life – so what was the harm?

She'd go see Ben. She would have a good time, or hopefully she would if his boasts and the rumours circulating about his prowess were anything to go by, and tomorrow she would be relaxed and satisfied.

Having made up her mind, Skye spun to tug open the door only to pause. With her hand still gripping the door handle she glanced down at her dress. It was gorgeous and it did look great on her, or at least Ben had thought so and his opinion was the only one that counted – at least for now. But, and it was a big but, while pretty 'wrapping paper' it was difficult to get out of and no one appreciated a gift, no matter how magnificent, if it took an eternity to get into. She knew that from the many years of opening her Uncle Luke's presents at Christmas, even though he bought her the snakeskin journal she had wanted, and the perfect alternative to the model carousel she'd set her heart on and had been distraught to find that they had stopped making it, by the time she'd dug through all the paper and sell-o-tape she'd lost most of her enthusiasm.

Walking back to her bed, Skye wrestled her way out of the dress, the healthy buzz causing her to stumble once or twice, and rummaged for her mid-thigh length burgundy camisole, something Ben should appreciate just as much.

She paused again then, just as she was about to slip it on over her head. Unfortunately when she had dressed that morning she'd opted for comfort over sex appeal. After Ben's comments earlier in the evening, she suspected he'd be very disappointed by the underwear she was wearing. Large and seamless so that they hadn't been visible through her dress, the beige knickers, and matching bra hardly screamed sexy.

Right then, time for a quick swap, she thought. She scrambled through her drawers before choosing her favourite black and blue lace La Senza set. She loved how striking it made her look, even if she did say so herself, and it covered a fair portion of her body – enough to ease her self-consciousness – without being dowdy and modest. It was see through for crying out loud.

Skye dressed quickly, making a last minute dive through her overnight bag for protection. She always kept some in there somewhere, even if it had been awhile since she had last dipped into her stash. Come on, where was it? She was sure he'd have some anyway, he was Ben after all, but better to be safe and bring her own than to turn up and have to leave dissatisfied. And as everyone was saying these days, it's not only the guys' responsibility anymore.

Ah ha. She tucked the foil into her bra, the tight band pinning it to her side. She grabbed the fluffy white dressing gown off the hook on the back of her door and wrapped it around her and, after one last peer into the full length mirror, snuck out into the corridor.

The lodge was lit by dimmed spotlights at this time of the night. It was soft and romantic, reminiscent of a cosy fire-light. A pang echoed through her leaving her feeling like what she was about to do was cheap and dirty, a thought she quickly shook off. She didn't need romance, didn't need the empty words and actions in her life right now. It was messy and disruptive, and just not meant for Skye. That's all there was to it.

Skye tip-toed up the landing, keeping close to the wall just in case someone was still up and standing down in the living room. She didn't want anyone catching a glimpse of her through the dark wood of the banisters. She didn't technically need to tip-toe, not with the soft red threads of the carpet muffling her footsteps, but it made her feel better even if it did disrupt her already skewed sense of balance.

True to his word, she found Ben's door unlocked when she arrived, although that appeared as though it was at least partly due to the fact that the lock was broken. She nudged it open.

The room was dark beyond. He hadn't left a light on; he didn't even appear to still be awake.

She hesitated in the small arc of light from the landing, standing just inside his door. Was she supposed to be here? Had he been serious about her coming to knock on his door? Oh God, what was she doing?

There was a soft clang of someone moving something out in the hallway and Skye, acting on impulse, closed the door behind her. She was immediately enveloped in total and complete darkness. She waited several moments for her vision to adjust, after a while she could just about make out the outline of furniture and the layout of the room.

Squinting through the dark, she took several steps towards the bed and the shadowed mound that could only be Ben.

He would make life hard. Why couldn't he have been awake and waiting? Now she had to be the one to make the first move, and while no stranger to physical intimacy, she couldn't claim to ever having made the first move.

"Hey, you awake?" She whispered across the slowly diminishing gap between them. "Ben?"

The mound rolled over and then lay still.

Letting out a huff, she dropped the robe to the floor and moved forward to shake him awake, bumping her shin on the edge of the mattress and tumbling ungainly into the bed in the process. She froze. She needn't have worried, he didn't stir. Typical.

"Hey?" She whispered again, sliding under the covers and up against his side.

The heat of his body reminded her why this was such a great idea and she eased down, leaning her weight on one elbow and gazing down at the silhouette of his head. Her fingers slid through his hair and she marvelled at how soft it felt, if a bit damp in places, it hadn't looked like it would have been earlier. He leant into her touch, just a small movement of his head but enough to let her know he was stirring.

Slipping yet closer to him, she placed her shaking free hand on his uncovered chest, hard and smooth and unexpectedly bare of hair. His skin was hot to the touch, the heat searing away her nervousness and bolstering her courage.

Skye slipped her hand lower beneath the covers and over his taut stomach, wondering if the image she was envisioning in her head was as good as the real thing and contemplating turning on the side lamp to sate that curiosity. She decided against it quickly enough, with it on he'd have a perfectly good view of her; the dark suited her just fine.

Fingers splayed, she continued down. Her pulse jumped as her finger tips came into contact with bare hip-bone and thigh. So he had been expecting her, she'd just taken too long getting here what with leaving the wedding reception at least half hour after the guys and then dallying in her room. Well, she'd give him an awakening to make up for her tardiness.

Emboldened by this new revelation, she relinquished her grip on his hair and moved her body lower, lips grazing across the skin of his chest, his stomach, his thigh as she breathed in the natural scent of him mixed with the smell of soap. The bright green Lynx, if she wasn't mistaken. Unfortunately it was a smell that she associated with her most recent ex-boyfriend, not someone or something she wanted to be thinking about just then, that would be enough to kill her libido.

She pushed the memories away, returning her head to the task at hand. She pressed a kiss to the inside of his thigh.

Above her head she heard a murmur of approval. His thigh flexed and then a hand was weakly tangling into her hair as he stirred. She touched him, silky soft like a rose petal and hard as steel. He pulsed in her hand.

Heart racing, she pressed her lips to him, delighting in his husky gasp and allowing her lips to curve into a smile.

She focused on him, drinking in his heat and smell, vaguely hearing his murmurs of approval. When she felt him respond more readily, and his grip in her hair tightened, she sat up. Swinging her knee over his thighs, she straddled him, enjoying the rush of air leaving him and the feel of his fingers trailing up her thighs from her knees.

"You with me now, yeah?" She whispered, her voice husky and seductive, sounding foreign to her own ears. "I didn't expect you to be asleep when I got here. I hope I've made up for it."

His wordless mutter of approval was lost into a soft groan as she grazed her fingernails down his chest.

Skye stripped off the camisole and dropped it over the side of his bed before squeezing her fingers beneath the band of her bra and withdrawing the foil square. Getting the slippery rubber to roll down right was harder in the pitch darkness. Going by touch alone, she fumbled clumsily for a minute or two before she'd eased it down fully.

His hands curved about her bottom, caressing and feeling out the shape – of her or her knickers, she wasn't sure which.

Skye leant forward, placing her weight onto her hands on either side of his torso and kneeling up. His hands slipped from her bum to the backs of her thighs where they gripped her smooth, soft skin. She pressed a kiss to his neck and his hips flexed beneath her.

He surged up then, pushing her into a sitting position, his hands sliding the length of her body to the back of her bra. She felt as much as she heard him breathe in deep through his nose as his lips landed on her collarbone and then the swell of her breast. One of his large hands once again tangled in the hair at the back of her head, the other slid round to squeeze at one lacy cup of her bra.

He tugged gently on her hair, pulling her head back. His nose nuzzled against the underside of her chin and then he was kissing the side of her neck, his thumb brushing over the thin lace of her bra.

He released his hold on her hair and, with a deft hand, unhooked the back of her bra. His fingers stroked the sides of her neck before slipping down onto her shoulders and slowly pushing the straps down her arms. She felt the bra land in her lap and threw it off to the side, welcoming the feel of his warm lips on the recently uncovered skin.

Skye shifted closer, rocking against him.

He cursed on an exhale and pulled her closer still. Chest to chest, with his mouth below her ear, he whispered her name. It sounded more like a question, but she was no longer in the right frame of mind to answer. Need clawed at her, burned deep within her until she couldn't think of anything clearly except answering it's call.

She moved against him and then his hand was gripping her hip hard and his mouth was back on her breast, the short stubble rasping her delicate skin as he kissed her passionately. Her fingers scratched at his scalp, holding his mouth in place. His free hand moved between them, teasing until her own breath came in pants and she was struggling to hold back a moan.

Skye pushed him back, following his body down. She swiped aside her underwear and gripped the hard length of him. She slid down, taking him in.

"Skye," he breathed, his voice shaky with need.

She pressed her palms to his shoulders for balance and rocked into a steady rhythm, gradually taking him deeper and deeper.

His hands caressed her breasts, thumbs stroking over the taut tips and beneath the swell in dizzying circles. His hips bucked up to meet her, powerful and strong, and as her movements became erratic and jerky his palms swept down her stomach to grip her hips and guide her, bringing them together harder and harder, faster and faster until Skye felt she'd be permanently bruised come morning. Not that she minded, right now it was exactly what she needed.

"Oh, God," she murmured, barely a whisper to her ears, as the pressure mounted and what she sought came ever closer. Tantalisingly close. "So close."

His hand moved between them, slipping across the slick flesh and she came with a crash. Overwhelmed with sensation and rendered stupid with sensual overload, she barely heard his grunt as he followed close behind. She slumped against him, wincing at the feeling of her stubble-burned and overly sensitized breasts brushing across his chest. Their rapid, harsh breathing filled the silence.

Skye tried to fight the lethargy overcoming her, tried to pull her sweaty, sticky body off of his and find the will to grab her clothes. It was time to leave, to go back to her room. But, with her head pillowed on his chest, she lay still and unresponsive.

His arm came about her and she opened her mouth to protest at the intimacy before she realised he was rolling her onto the unoccupied side of the bed, dislodging her from her position on top of him.

He lay on his side, propped up on one elbow and looking over her as she had him earlier. One large hand stroked down her side before pushing back her hair, damp with sweat.

She hoped he wasn't hoping for another go at it, she was done. Even then she felt the darkness of sleep dragging her down, pulling her under.

Just as the dark overwhelmed her, swallowed her like a pebble sucked into a lake, she heard him speak. His voice, no longer husky with arousal and need, was full of wonder, "Skye."

She frowned.