by Mathieu Roy and Mike Schiedel

Raven relaxed under the spray of water. Her vacation had been entirely too short-lived—though she certainly had a rather nice tan!—and she and Shion had returned to Neo York quickly. Her trip to see Lydia had been interesting, to say the least, but certainly not relaxing.

But showers, Raven decided, were one of man's most relaxing inventions. It was something she didn't know how she'd done without. So easy to stand under the water, let the drops drip all over you, and forget your worries for a minute...

The doorbell buzzed; Raven started, slipped, and caught herself in extremis to the faucet. Whew, close call. Then she frowned. Why is everyone so intent on startling me these days?

"Intercom," she called out. The machine obligingly beeped. "Yes?" said Raven. Or grumbled.

"Konnbonwa, miss Clark." It was Sanato's mellow, even voice. "I would like to talk to you."

"This is a bad time," Raven mumbled.

"I fear I cannot wait," the executive replied. "With the Expo coming up I am rather busy."

Raven sighed. "I'll be right there. Intercom off." She stepped out of the shower, toweled herself up quickly, and took her robe from a nearby hook. She put it on as she went to the door. With any luck she could have Sanato on his way quickly.

Raven thumbed the lock. The door slid open, revealing Sanato and... and a six-foot-tall man with a Greek athlete's frame, golden-blond hair, expressive blue eyes, and even more good looks than James had, something she had not believed possible. Oh, my... Raven said, licking suddenly dry lips. "Um, good day," she said. Then she remembered to step back and bow in the Oriental fashion to her visitors.

Sanato bowed in return, before stepping inside the room. "Miss Clark, I would you to meet Adam."

Adam also bowed, a studied movement of grace and respect. His face showed a hint of pleasant surprise as he entered behind Sanato.

"I'm pleased to meet you, Adam," Raven said. And she sounded like she really meant it.

"I am glad, Ms Clark," he replied. His voice actually managed to surpass the rest of him, vibrant and warm, it almost seemed to caress. "Your pleasure is my foremost concern."

"Adam is to be your full time valet and escort," Sanato continued smoothly. "We would like him to remain with you at all times."

Raven smiled, then her eyes narrowed and she looked meaningfully at Sanato.

"Yes Miss Clark?"

"He's a synthetic, isn't he?"

"Of course, Miss Clark. Escort synthetics are well suited for the duties that will be required of Adam."

Raven blushed a bit. "I'll bet."

Sanato turned to the synthetic. "Adam?"

Adam looked attentive. "Yes, Mister Sanato?"

"Please see to Miss Clark's needs from here on out. She will instruct you on her requirements."

Adam nodded. "It would be my pleasure, Mister Sanato," he said, his wonderful voice somehow making even that simple statement faintly erotic.

"Now, Miss Clark, if you will excuse me, I will withdraw and allow you and Adam to get to know one another."

Raven, a little flabbergasted, nodded. Behind Sanato's back Adam rolled his eyes and winked at Raven. "Ja ne, mister Sanato," she said.

As the door closed behind Sanato Adam chuckled. "Gotta hate those awkward moments, hmm?" His gaze was friendly, but distinctly direct.

Raven giggled."Yes, they're rather... awkward? Have a seat."

Adam glanced about the room. "Please, you first."

Raven sat in her easy chair, her eyes never leaving Adam.

Adam pursed his lips slightly. "Or perhaps you would be more comfortable if you put on some clothes, first?"

"Huh?" Raven blushed furiously. "Uh, good idea. I'll be right back." She dashed towards her room.

Adam nodded and watched her leave with what looked like amusement. Once she'd left the room, however, he nervously paced back and forth a few times before sinking down onto a couch, wearing an anxious expression. Soon, Raven returned, wearing jeans and socks and still adjusting her sweater. As she approached the anxious look faded and he relaxed back into the couch, looking comfortably at ease as she entered the room.

"Is something wrong?" Raven asked solicitously.

Adam looked away, intently studying the pattern on the couch. "No, not really. I was just afraid I embarrassed you a moment ago, and I'm not supposed to do that."

Raven smiled. "I'm okay. I get embarrassed a lot lately." She sat facing him

Adam looked back at her. "Yes, but I'm not supposed to do that. I'm supposed to make you comfortable and happy, make your life easier." He turned his face away again. "Not make it worse."

"I'm okay, I'm telling you." She shrugged. "Don't sweat it."

Adam took a breath and smiled. "All right then, if you're certain." He straightened on the couch, and looked attentively at her. "Is there anything I can do for you, Ms Clark?" he asked in that wonderful voice of his.

Raven blushed a bit, again. "Uh, I don't know..." She took a deep breath. "What can you do, anyway?" She was stalling for time, but then the obvious answer came to mind, and she blushed redder.

Adam glanced at the wall, apparently not noticing her blush. "I am a capable valet, a certified masseur, I can cook, clean, take dictation, field your calls, make appointments, do your laundry and chauffeur your car. I can teach you to dance, engage you in polite conversation in six languages, or get you out of a parking ticket." He paused for a moment. "I am also...thoroughly...trained in activities of a more physical nature."

"I see..." Wow. Something occurred to Raven. "You can teach me to dance?"

Adam looked back at her. "Of course. I am trained in many forms of dance, from ballroom to ballet to contemporary to improvisational. Is there something in particular you'd like to learn?"

"I'd like to learn to do any of this without tripping."

Adam's face split in what appeared to be a genuine smile. "This I can do, Ms. Clark." His smile faltered for a moment. "I didn't mean to say that I can't do what I've claimed. That didn't come out exactly right."

Raven giggled. "I got it the right way, Adam."

Adam hesitated a moment then stood, an economical motion that spoke of grace and power. "Then let us begin," he said as he reached out a hand to her.

Raven took his hand and stood next to him. "Music," she said. "We'll need music."

Adam looked abashed. "I uh, hope you don't expect me to sing," he said apprehensively. "Dancing I can do, but I'm afraid my voice wasn't suitable for vocal training."\

She laughed. "Don't worry. We'll just buy some off the 'Net if what I have isn't suitable." She led him to the conapt's videoterm and brought up the list of tunes she kept on hand—a rather eclectic list to say the least. "What kind of music do we need?"

Adam glanced at Raven for a moment, then back to the titles. "This should do," he said, selecting a compilation of popular contemporary dance tunes. The music began playing as he lead her to a clear space in the floor, dichotic notes spiraling almost perfunctorily about a solid four beat.

"We'll start with something simple," Adam said loudly enough to be heard over the music. "A two-step to develop rhythm." He demonstrated, his feet lightly hitting the floor and his hips swaying as he shifted from side to side.

After four measures he stopped and looked expectantly at Raven. "Now you try, Ms. Clark," he said with an encouraging smile. "Just remember to follow the beat and don't try to pick both feet up at the same time."

Raven nodded and started emulating Adam. She was proceeding carefully, so as to stay on her feet and make the correct steps, her hesitant motions holding the promise of extraordinary grace muddled by gangly clumsiness. All in all, however, it wasn't too bad, if you disregarded that she proceeded way too slowly, totally outside the beat.

Adam's face split with a wide smile. "Very well done, Ms. Clark. If you'll excuse me saying so, I was briefed on your current physical condition, and you seem to be adapting smoothly. If you're interested, I can also prescribe a series of exercises to help become more attuned to your body." There's nothing specifically so about what the wording, but it still managed to sound sensual.

"You should try that again," he continued blithely, "and don't worry about speed, that will come with practice. Try it at half speed; two beats for each movement instead of one." He looked at her expectantly, his gorgeous blue eyes fixed on hers.

Raven all but preened under his gaze. "Thank you. I would like that, yes."

"You should try that again," he continued blithely, "and don't worry about speed, that will come with practice. Try it at half speed; two beats for each movement instead of one." He looked at her expectantly, his gorgeous blue eyes fixed on hers.

Raven smiled and resumed the steps within the slowed beat he'd given her. It was rather easy, really; it was just a matter of pacing. She was getting the hang of this pretty well. Her smile broadened and she looked straight into his eyes. "How am I doing?" she asked.

That's when she tripped.

A look of startlement and dismay on his face, Adam surged forward to catch Raven just in the nick of time. The pair of them teetered precariously for a moment before Adam managed to stabilize them both. Raven found herself partially enwrapped in a well-muscled embrace.

Her breasts pressed against his chest, her hands clinging to his shoulders, her big brown eyes looking straight into his, Raven looked bewildered for a second... then she blushed. "Thank you," she mouthed.

Adam held her steady for a moment more then gently disentangled her from him. "Perhaps that is enough for the moment," he says, his voice causing delightful shivers. "It wouldn't be good to overtax yourself right away, and you seem to be picking up the basics quickly." He stood back, making sure she had her balance back.

Raven stood as easily as could be expected. She nodded and drifted to the terminal. Her hand went to shut the music—then she decided to leave it on, simply reducing the volume. She stood there for a moment, trying to collect her thoughts in the face of his attentiveness, his sheer presence, and the reactions they were causing in her.

Then she turned to him. "It's almost dinnertime. You hungry?"

Adam's face split with a cheerful grin. "You know, I could go for something right about now. Do you have anything specific in mind?"

"No, not really. Any ideas?"

Adam pursed his lips briefly. "Well, that all depends on what you've got available, Ms. Clark." With that he headed into the kitchen and began checking for supplies.

Raven, surprised, said, "I was thinking of going... oh, nevermind."

Adam bustled around in the kitchen for a while, looking completely content to play chef.

He was gorgeous, and adorable, and attentive, and handy... and he was hers. That troubled her, on more than one level. On the one hand, having this stunningly handsome man waiting on her hand and foot was exciting and fun and pleasant, a romantic fantasy come true. But it bothered her that she was also acting as if Adam was some sort of new toy. Which he was, in a way, and he probably thought so himself, too. And maybe even liked it.

Was he someone or something? If he thought he was a thing, then was he one? Yet things were not unsure of themselves, insecure in their duties, as Adam had been. But if he was someone, then he was a slave—her slave. Or maybe not. If given a choice, Adam might just decide to do exactly what he was doing now; that's how he'd been programmed. Could someone whose attitudes were entirely determined by others be said to have free will?

Raven sighed and shook her head. Of course, Adam instantly looked up from his cooking to see what was troubling her, and if he could help. She smiled reassuringly at him. Perhaps he was a mixture of both someone and something; Auntie had told her once that there rarely were any absolutes, and left her to dwell on that. At any rate, she was stuck with him. Sanato wouldn't have given him to her, with an admonition for him to stay with her at all times, without a good reason. Most likely he was to keep tabs on her; maybe he also had a tracking device that they could not implant in her, for fear of cyber-rejection.

She was stuck with him, but she did not feel saddled at all. He was adorable, after all. She liked having a dream creature like him cater to her whims; who wouldn't? And besides, he looked so happy just to be cooking for her she wondered whether trying to send him away wouldn't be more cruel.

At any rate, she would not solve this enigma tonight. Well, she'd feel like he was less a slave and more a friend if she helped. And since he didn't want her to help cook... Raven stood, walked straight to the cupboards, and started pulling dishes out. To her slight surprise, he did not protest—perhaps he realized that she really wanted to do this herself, and trying to keep her now would sadden her. He pretended not to notice while she set up the table for two, but it was an obvious thing, like the mother pretending not to see her young child while playing hide-and-seek, and the child knowing she was pretending.

She finished just as he was done; he had prepared a simple meal involving delicately grilled meats, steamed vegetables on rice, and a crisp salad with a light vinaigrette dressing. Raven sat smiling, and took in the scent of the food. "That smells delicious. I didn't know I had anything like that in my cupboards."

"Oh, this isn't anything special," he said earnestly. "But there are a number of tasty dishes that are rather simple to make." He took her napkin, fluffed it, and laid it across her lap before taking the seat across from her. "With your permission, Ms. Clark, I'd like to expand on your larder for future meals." He hesitated. "I'm afraid I couldn't find a wine to go with dinner," he apologized. Indicating for her to begin, he sat with a faint air of expectation.

"I do have beer," Raven said, "but I don't know if it is appropriate with this kind of food." She picked up her fork, skewered some of the meat, picked up a bit of rice, and put it all into her mouth. Cooked and seasoned to perfection. She wasn't really expecting anything else, but she was still delighted. "It's delicious." She sat back and pointed at him with her fork. "Of course you can pick out a grocery list, you know this stuff much better than I do." She then poked down for another bite. "Wow, this really is great."

"A beer can go with just about anything," Adam replied. "Would you like one? Or I could get you something else," he added as he rose from his chair.

"Beer is fine. Just don't get me one of those German imports. They're for Sanato, I can't stomach them."

"Coming right up, madam," he replies with a thick, phony French accent. Crossing to the fridge he extracted a pair of bottles, deftly removing their caps before returning to the table. Placing one bottle in front of Raven he set the other down at his place as he seated himself once again. "I'm glad you like it," he said simply before taking a bite of dinner himself.

Raven ate quickly, with great delight. She really could get used to this kind of food, and if he could prepare that from her limited selection...She looked up at Adam and smiled. "You're a veritable wizard."

His mouth full, Adam waved off the suggestion with his fork. "Not at all," he said finally. "I just know a few simple techniques. It's part of basic, after all. Anyone like me could have done the same thing."

"Part of basic?" Anyone like him... Other synthetics. All cut of the same mold. Raven thought it was rather creepy. Still... she looked at him. It was a pretty nice mold.

"Basic training," Adam elaborated, oblivious to her scrutiny. "We're all taught basic things like cooking, housekeeping, fashion, languages, typing, massage," he shrugged. "You know. Trade stuff." He hesitated, suddenly losing some of his competent air. "You do like it, don't you?" He seemed almost anxious.

"Like what? Your cooking? It's great." Raven watched him, eating another bite, certain that it was not what he'd meant.

"Good," he said happily and returned to his meal. He was oddly innocent, especially for a synthetic of his...speciality.

Raven ate quietly, her eyes hardly leaving Adam. "Hmm, this might sound like a stupid question, but what are you going to do all day?" She sipped at her beer. "I mean, obviously you can keep house and cook, but that's hardly going to take all of your time. And even if Sanato doesn't want you to leave me, I don't see you being very qualified for TK training." She grinned. "And I'm sure just hanging around doing nothing will get boring after a while."

Adam grinned unabashedly. "You're right, it would. I'm fully capable of performing other tasks for you, Ms. Clark. I can arrange your social calendar, instruct you in social etiquette, or even carry your parcels for you." He warmed to his subject. "A pleasure synthetic is designed to make your life easier and better in all ways. If there's something you don't like doing, then have me do it for you. I'm here to serve you, Ms. Clark. Physically and emotionally, as well as sexually."

"Adam, these last few weeks the company's been trying to turn me into an esper weapon." She paused, not totally comfortable with that notion yet. "I've mostly been doing esper training; I'm not really enjoying it, but I don't think you can help me there, can you?"

Adam set down his fork and focused his complete attention on her. "I don't know," he said seriously. "What does your training involve?"

She stifled a laugh. "Let's see. The last thing involved stacking wrecked cars. I was supposed to catch cars Shion was tossing at me, then add them to my stack. I was also supposed to keep the stack fifty feet off the ground. And hover at about that height, too." She smirked. "Think you can help with any of that?"

He frowned. "No, I'm afraid I can't. The most I could handle would be motorcycles, I think." He looked up at her. "Would that help?"

She blinked, stared, then she laughed.

Adam blinked himself, looking hurt. "What?" he asked defensively.

She stopped abruptly, looked at him wide-eyed. "You're serious? I was sure you were kidding."

Adam grinned, a bit self-consciously. "No, Ms. Clark, I'm not kidding. Shiroko-Tsuhi takes your safety very seriously, hence I'm not precisely a typical specimen of my type."

Raven seemed to fumble for words. "You're... you're esper?"

For a moment, Adam did an astounding imitation of a beached fish. "Ah, no, Ms. Clark!" he said hurriedly. "Not at all. I'm sorry, I didn't mean to mislead you." He sounded genuinely upset. "All I meant to say is I have physical enhancements that go beyond the norm for a Pleasure synthetic." He was flushed, truly embarrassed at the misunderstanding.

"Oh." Raven laughed nervously, then with amusement. "I'm sorry. For a second I thought... But it's impossible." She looked at him, sipped her beer, gathered her wits. "So you're supposed to be my bodyguard, as well?"

"It is impossible, as far as I know," Adam replied. "Which is good for you, I'd imagine, or you'd be out of a job." He grabbed his own bottle and took a long, shaky drink from it. "Bodyguard? I suppose that would be the right term for it. All I know is I'm supposed to do whatever necessary to keep you happy and safe, Ms. Clark." His face almost shone with earnestness.

Raven would have asked him how he thought he could help keep her safe, she who could stop autocannon rounds dead in their tracks, but his earnest look dissuaded her. Arguing would only hurt him, and probably wouldn't convince him that protecting her wasn't his real purpose. Although it might be. After all, she thought with a wince, if an ordinary mugger with an ordinary pistol...

She shoved the thought away. "Good. I'm already enjoying having you around, so I think you're on the right track." She smiled at him and lifted her beer at him in a toast.

Adam solemnly raised his in return and drank to her toast. "Can I get you another, Ms. Clark?" he asked, rising from his seat.

She looked at her empty bottle, considering, then shrugged and put it down. "Sure. And you can call me Raven." She smiled at him. "Clark isn't really my last name. I like it, but really, I never had one. Just like you, I guess."

He paused halfway to the refrigerator. "All right...Raven," he says before continuing to retrieve another bottle. Somehow, his use of her familiar name seems incredibly intimate all of a sudden, and just who--and what--he is is forcibly brought to mind.

She was glad his back was turned and he did not she her shiver. She composed herself before he returned, and accepted the bottle with a smile and a nod of thanks. She opened it and downed a good gulp. "I think I'm done," she said, waving at her plate.

Halfway to sitting, Adam jumped back up and whisked away her unfinished meal.

Raven seemed to feel guilty about that. "Hmm, are you?"

"Of course, don't worry about it," he replied. "Can I get you something for dessert?" he asked as he cleared away the place settings.

She smiled. "Why not? I'm curious to see what you can come up with."

"Ahh," he said slyly. "I have something very special in mind. It's an old, old recipe," he said, opening her freezer with a furtive look, "passed down to me by my father, from his father before him." With a great deal of ceremony he plunked down a plastic tub of Neapolitan ice cream in the center of the table. "Spoon?" he asked brightly.

Raven laughed delightedly. "Yes, I think so." She looked at her beer dubiously, then took another long draught. "I've never had beer and ice cream together. Do they fit?"

Adam shook his head. "My poor, sheltered child," he said with mock sorrow. "Didn't you know that ice cream goes with absolutely everything?" With a chuckle he turned and located a pair of bowls and spoons, then pried the top off the tub. "D'you want yours scooped with or across the stripes," he asked.

She giggled. "Across, I think. Thanks." She dug in the ice cream with her spoon and tasted. Then she took a sip of beer, and grimaced. "Ugh. I don't think they're meant for each other." She put down the beer aside and started wolfing down the ice cream.

Adam shrugged and served himself some as well. "Okay, so ice cream doesn't go with everything, but it DOES supplant just about everything, so that works just as well," he said with a lopsided grin. "Across the stripes, hmm?" he said, raising an eyebrow. "Interesting."

"What's so interesting about that?" said Raven, barely slowing down.

"A lot can be learned from how someone eats their Neapolitan," Adam said with mock seriousness. "A person who likes theirs scooped with the strips tends to be an orderly individual, who likes to keep things organized and in their place. Now, someone who goes across the stripes, they like to mix it up a little, are more daring in what they try in order to experience the mix of flavors." He swirled his spoon through his ice cream before licking off the back of it. "Both ways have merit; one's safer, the other's exciting." He smiled across the table at her. "I'll leave it up to you to figure out which one is more desirable, though."

Raven giggled. "Mixing strawberry, vanilla and chocolate ice cream! How daring!" She licked her spoon, then went on, "Although I do like a little excitement in my life, now that I have a chance to have it. It's just..." She sighed. "There's been entirely too much excitement lately, and not all of it good." She stared at her bowl, then resolutely stuck her spoon in it and took another huge bite. "I won't be gloomy in front of ice cream," she decided resolutely.

"Oh?" Adam asked curiously.

She shrugged. "New things keep piling up onto me. Walking, good food, money, looking like this" she waved at her body with her hand, and couldn't help but watch for a reaction, "Shion, beaches, suborbitals, and you." She smiled at the last. "Even showers still jar me a bit. I figure I'll be used to it in a while."

Adam couldn't help but examine the body she called attention to. "I don't know if it's possible to get used to a body like that, Raven," he said finally. "I'm not sure I will—you're nearly attractive enough to be in my line of work." His eyes continued to rove over her with friendly interest.

Raven seemed to bask and blush at the same time. She took another long gulp from her beer, looked at him, smiled, and the basking seemed to grow while the blush shrank. "I'm... glad you like it. I do too, even if I'm not sure how to deal with all the reactions." She didn't seem too sure how to deal with his, for one, but she certainly seemed to enjoy his admiration.

Adam remained seated for a moment, still looking at her. "Well, I suppose that depends on who's reacting and what the reaction is," he said, rising from his chair and walking around to her side. "If it's crude comments from some jackass, it'd be best to ignore him, he's not worth your time," he said, unknowingly paraphrasing Shion. "If, on the other hand," he said, moving closer and tilting up her chin with one finger, "it's a genuine, politely delivered compliment from someone who respects you, then," he smiled softly, "then that's a different story, isn't it."

She looked straight into his eyes and smiled. "Why, yes, it is. An entirely different story." She felt heady, some of it from the drink but more for the sheer nearness of him. At that moment they seemed intimately close than she'd ever been with anyone, save her Auntie. And it was not the same thing, not at all.

Adam's face drew closer until it was only inches away, and the tip of his tongue gently moistened his lips. "You are a very attractive woman, Miss Raven," he said in low, nerve-tingling voice.

Raven stared at him for a moment, heart pounding, breathing shallow—then she leaned in the rest of the distance and kissed him. Softly at first, as if she was startled at what she was doing and was still uncertain, then more insistently.

Adam let her control the kiss, responding in kind but letting her set the pace, forcing her to be the aggressor. His lips were soft, like silk, and they played a skillful duet with hers.

She did not disappoint. Eyes closed, lips together, she embraced him, her breasts pressing into his chest, her hands roaming up and down his back as her kiss grew passionate. She kept him close long before pulling away, reluctantly. When she opened her eyes, they were shining.

Adam released his own grip with equal reluctance. He looked into her eyes and a shudder ran through his muscled frame. He reached out with one hand to caress the line of her jaw, his eyes not leaving hers. Without a word he gently pulled her to her feet and into his embrace again. Looking down at the slight frame encircled in his arms, he smiled. And this time he kissed her.

Raven moaned softly as their lips met and she returned his kiss in full, her hands in his hair, letting herself be led as she had led before. She trembled against him but their lips did not part.

Adam's lips tightened against hers in what she recognized as a smile, and the tip of his tongue came out to gently separate her lips and insinuate itself into her mouth.

She gave a slight start, but the moment passed quickly and she responded further, pressing herself close against him. Her face was flushed, her heart pounded so hard she was sure he could hear every beat.

He held her deliciously close against him, his arms showing an odd combination of strength and gentleness. One hand cupped the back of her head, the other stroked her back with feather-light fingertips. At this close proximity, the evidence of her affect on was abundantly clear.

Raven's hands were slowly running in his fingers, but otherwise making no move, savoring the moment, not daring to do anything that could break it.

Despite this, Adam did break it. He pulled slightly away, resting his forehead against hers and breathing heavily. Suddenly he disengaged, trailing his fingers up her arm to clasp her hand. Not taking his eyes from hers, he slowly walked backwards, leading her into the bedroom. Raven swallowed, but let herself be led, eyes gleaming into his, with a smile that was only slightly unsure.

Left unattended, the tub of ice cream melted slowly on the kitchen table.

Adam looked down at Raven's sleeping face, studying her features in the dim light thrown by her clock display. She looked so peaceful, so innocent, her head pillowed on his arm, her hair that must be her namesake spread across the pillow. She was such a sweet girl.

He carefully slipped his arm from under her head, watching as she murmured in her sleep and snuggled a little deeper under the covers. When he was certain she wasn't going to awaken he slid out of bed, crossing the room naked and gently closing the bedroom door behind him.

Picking up the phone, he dialed an extended string of numbers.

<Yes?> the voice said when the connection was established.

"Things are proceeding well," Adam responded quietly. "She seems to trust me, and I've done what I can to ensure she is at least fond of me. It appears to be working, as we expected."

<She doesn't suspect anything?>

He glanced towards the closed door, thinking of the fragile young girl within.

"Nothing," he said decisively. "I'll report in again once we've achieved the next stage."

<You're doing very well Adam. Don't disappoint us.> The connection was cut from the other side.

Adam stood holding the receiver for a moment, then hung up as well. With a shiver he glanced about the empty apartment, then returned to the bedroom.

Raven was waiting for him, sitting with her back to the bedpost, hands on her lap, covers reaching only to her waist. She looked at him with a bit of wonder on her face. "Is something wrong?" she asked softly, gently.

He smiled as he slid under the covers. "Just melted ice cream," he said teasingly, "but we can worry about that later." With that he rolled himself on top of her and kissed her again, caressing her hip with one hand.

Raven's lips smiled against his as they kissed. "Hmm, you're right, it can wait..." she said as they broke away. She leaned towards him and began kissing at his neck.

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