scurvyknavery: (potc: king of the)
[personal profile] scurvyknavery
See Part One for headers.

Skye wakes up to the sound of her alarm, chirping at her from the middle of the floor. Jemma is still on top of her, groaning drowsily at the noise. She feels like she's only slept a couple of hours, and it takes her a moment before she remembers - last night, Jemma, and everything that came after. But she didn't think to turn off her alarm, and now it's going off for quarter to five like it always does, tucked into her jeans pocket on the floor.

Jemma mumbles, something along the lines of whatisit slurred through her half-awake mouth.

"Hey," Skye says, nudging her shoulder. "I need to get to my phone. It's my alarm."

Jemma nods, rolls over. She pushes herself into a half-sit, rubbing her eyes. "What time is it?"

"Quarter to five," Skye says, crawling overtop of Jemma to get to her jeans. She makes it to them with an awkward half-hop over Jemma's legs, and fishes around until she finds the alarm shutoff button. "I usually meet up with May around now to work on combat training."

"Oh," Jemma says, still blinking away sleep. She looks about as exhausted as Skye feels. "Alright, then."

She starts to sit up more, like she's going to get out of bed, herself. "You can stay here," Skye says. "If you want to keep sleeping."

That earns her a half-tired smile. "Yeah?"

"Of course. I'll be back in a couple hours."

Jemma nods, already rolling over and cocooning herself in the covers. Skye gets her things. She's running late - her usual alarm gives her just enough time to change and stumble down to the gym. But before she leaves, she lets herself take one last look at Jemma. She's already asleep, cuddled into the very centre of the bed, and the sight of her makes Skye's heart do a flip.


*


Skye spends her day the way she always does - training, then back at her laptop, working next to Jemma's desk. It's the same, but it's also completely different. She just - it's been a while since she had a chance to feel like this, all wrapped up in someone new. Even though Jemma isn't new, they've been living on the same airplane for almost a year, the newness of whatever's happening between them is pretty amazing. Skye feels totally normal one second, and then she'll look over and catch a glimpse of Jemma's hand and her brain is right back to last night, thinking of the way those fingertips felt against her skin.

It's distracting, and she's pretty sure Jemma is there too, from the way she'll sometimes look over at Skye and flush bright pink.

They make it through most of the day like things are normal, like Skye didn't have the best sex she's ever had with a girl the night before, like she doesn't want to just be touching her, all the time. (Although maybe Skye pulls Jemma into the corner by the lab supply closet, the one that the cameras can't quite see, and they make out just a little bit. But that hardly counts.)

She swings by the lab later that night, and Jemma's there waiting for her. She's smiling, and it's Skye's favourite kind. The one that says, I'd really like you to take me home with you.

Skye offers Jemma her arm, ready to oblige.


Their path takes them past the rec room, and that's where things start to go off course. Skye can hear music, Cary Grant's voice drifting through the open doorway. She figures it's just Coulson and Trip. They've been bonding over their shared 1940s fetish since the assault on Cybertek, but since they discovered the old movies up on the base's Netflix, they've taken it to the next level. Trip is the one who spots them as they walk by. "Hey, ladies," he says, smiling mostly at Simmons. "Care to join us?"

He and Coulson are sitting together on the couch closest to the wall, matching expectant looks on their faces. Coulson leans forward to pause the movie, waiting for an answer.

It's not like Skye can say they have plans (although they do, and they involve Skye's bed, and she wants to keep them), and she hasn't had a lot of time with A.C. since he got back. She does miss him. She looks at Jemma, who glances at Skye's eyes, then her mouth, before sighing. She answers for the both of them, a little too brightly, "Of course."

Skye sits on the empty couch, on the end closest to Coulson. Jemma joins her, but not before circling around to the shelf next to the television to get a blanket. It's one of the thin ones, not quite standard-issue for sleeping, but when Jemma drapes it over her own knees and Skye's, together, it feels cozy enough. Besides. If she doesn't get to touch Jemma the way she wants to, at least this way, she'll get to be close to her.

Skye stares at the screen, letting the movie dialogue wash over her. It's all black-and-white, and she has to really listen to follow the pace of it, but it's not bad.

Mostly, the best part is all the little looks she steals in Jemma's direction, watching her watch the movie. It makes her think of the last time they watched TV together in here - everything similar but so, so different. For starters, she's seen Jemma naked, so whenever Jemma bites her lip at the tense parts, Skye's thoughts go right to the place they were in last night.

But it's also more comfortable, and Skye feels like she knows what to do a little more. Like, when Jemma curls against the arm of the couch and lets her toes rest against Skye's thigh, she knows that it's okay to flex her leg a little bit, bumping against her toes.

About an hour in, Jemma's arm moves under the blanket, so that her hand is resting casually on her thigh, in the space between them. Skye notices. Right at the part where Cary Grant's ex falls in love with him all over again, she reaches over and laces her fingers through Jemma's. Their hands are hidden under the blanket, but it still feels like a big deal, like everyone else will know that Skye's turning into the kind of person who wants to hold Jemma's hand. But then Jemma squeezes her hand tight, and it feels like that's not a bad thing at all.

By the time the movie is over, it's way late, and Skye's pretty sleepy. She and Jemma say their goodnights to Coulson and Trip slowly, and Skye doesn't miss Jemma's little yawns as she folds up the blanket, makes sure all of the couch cushions are where they're supposed to be. It takes a fair bit of dragging their heels before Coulson and Trip go to bed without them, leaving Skye alone with Jemma.

"So I'm pretty well -"

"-exhausted," Jemma says. "Me too."

"Can I walk you to your bunk?"

Jemma smiles wide, clearly pleased at the prospect. "Alright," she says, voice curling around the word like she thinks Skye is really, really cool.

When Jemma looks at her like that, Skye feels like she is.


They walk to Jemma's bunk hand in hand, slowly. Skye's eyes are getting pretty heavy, and from the way Jemma keeps trying to hide her yawning, it looks like Jemma's in pretty much the same state. They stop outside the door to Jemma's room, suddenly uncertain again.

"Here we are," Skye says.

"We are." Jemma's voice is a little nervous. "You know, I've never actually slept here."

"Yeah?"

She shrugs, looks away. "The lab always seemed easier."

"If you want, I can help you break it in? To sleep." Jemma raises an eyebrow, and Skye laughs. "I'm being serious. Stop."

Jemma's expression softens. She reaches for Skye's hand. "I'd really like that, actually. If it's not too much trouble."

Skye shakes her head. "It's not."

The inside of Jemma's room is - well, basically exactly the same as the inside of Skye's, but totally pristine and SHIELD issue. There's no personal anything, really - no papers on the night table, no charging cables by the dresser, nothing. If it weren't for Jemma's clothes in the closet, Skye would think this was one of the empty bunks.

Jemma starts to get changed into her pyjamas, some sort of silky shorts and a matching tank top. She would be the type to stay colour coordinated, even asleep. She's clearly tired enough to be working on autopilot, because she suddenly catches herself right in the middle of changing and stops. She looks at Skye, shorts half-on, and realizes what she's doing. She sighs at herself, exasperated. "Oh, Skye. I'm sorry. Did you want something to -?"

Skye shakes her head. "I'll be fine with underwear," she says.

By the time she's done stripping down to her bra and panties, Simmons is changed and ready for bed. But instead of getting in, she stands at the edge of the bed, looking hesitant.

Skye is the one who climbs in first, settling under the sheets on her side, back to the wall. Once she's there, Jemma hits the lights and settles in beside her. She turns so that they're nose to nose, eyes wide in the dark. Gently, she reaches up to run her hand through Skye's hair, smoothing it and tucking it behind her ear. She presses a kiss to Skye's mouth, soft and chaste. "Good night, Skye," she says, before settling down on the pillow.

Skye presses a kiss to the top of Jemma's head in return. She breathes deep, taking in the smell of her hair, letting herself enjoy the way Jemma feels when Skye is wrapped around her like this. "Good night," she murmurs against Jemma's head.


*


The next morning, Skye gets up to her alarm to train with May. She's started setting it a few minutes earlier. It gives her just enough extra time to stroke Jemma's hair, remind her that she can keep sleeping. It also gives her enough time to spend an extra minute in bed, enjoying the feel of Jemma in her arms. She forgot how nice it was, waking up with someone else in the morning.

As she slips out of Jemma's room, there's a flicker of movement from down the hallway, just at the edge of her vision. Her stomach sinks. There's only one other person awake at this time of day, and May isn't exactly the forgiving, indulgent type.

She pads back to her own room to change, trying to breathe and steel herself for what she's sure is going to be the lecture of a lifetime.

But to her total surprise, May is her usual self during their morning workout. She's always quiet, and she's no more or less quiet than usual. They run the track together in silence, and when it comes time to do combat drills, May uses the same patient, even tone with Skye that she always does. By the time they've finished, Skye's almost got herself convinced that she was just imagining things. That nobody was in the hallway to see her leaving Jemma's room, and definitely not May.

"So," May says, just as they're wrapping up. She's still finishing her workout, kicking the bag at exactly the same height as Ward's diaphragm, hard enough to knock the wind out of him over and over again. "You and Simmons have been spending a lot of time together."

Skye shrugs, unwrapping her hands. "Yeah, well, someone has to give her a hand with all the science stuff while Fitz is -" she hesitates for a moment, trying to find the right word. "Getting better."

May pauses for a moment, stepping forward to still the bag. "It's been good for her," she says. Her tone is absent-minded in that way that always makes Skye apprehensive.

"Thanks," she says, trying to keep her voice steady.

Then May turns, making a point of looking Skye right in the eyes. "Just be careful."

Skye suddenly feels sick. Of course May knows. She knows everything. The glib retort Skye would have made months ago, defensively (thanks, Mom) is right on the edge of her tongue. She bites it back.

May continues. "I can't tell you it's against regulations anymore, so I won't. But you've both been through a lot. Make sure you're making decisions that are good for both of you."

Skye nods. She's been thinking about that - she's always been thinking about that, about making sure that no matter what happens, Jemma is okay. "I know," she says. She's surprised at how serious her own voice sounds. But then, she is. Serious about Jemma, and about SHIELD, and about whatever they all are now, and she's terrified, constantly, of how much she doesn't want this to fall apart. "Thank you."

She is still sort of waiting for the other shoe to drop - that was almost an entire supportive conversation, no work, no here's what else you need to get done, figure it out. It's weird, but she'll take it.

"Anyway, I'm gonna - go clean up," she says, hoping the discussion will end there.

May nods. She gets about four steps away before May calls her back. "Oh, and Skye?" she says. "If you two are going to keep seeing each other, I'd tell Coulson sooner, rather than later. I'm not doing it for you."

Skye's stomach sinks. She knows May's not wrong - that's what the old protocol manuals said: When appropriate, romantic relationships between agents must be disclosed to the assigned supervising officer in a timely fashion. But it's also lots of other steps that Skye's not sure she knows how to do. Like talking to Jemma to figure out if they count as a romantic relationship. And looking Coulson in the eye and explaining to him that she and his best scientist are sleeping together. She doesn't say anything back to May.

Instead, she heads for the showers and does her best not to think about it.


*

Coulson finds them in the lab, a couple of days later. He doesn't find them, find them - which is good, because Skye definitely hasn't gotten around to figuring out how she's going to tell him about them. When he walks in, Jemma is running a bunch of tests on Garrett's samples using something called electrophoresis, and Skye is watching her from the next desk over, memorizing the curve of her backside as she bends over to load her samples into the apparatus. Coulson walks in to join them, no knock. It's something he always does, but today it feels a little like he's interrupted something private.

She flicks her gaze back to her laptop, and tries to remember what she was working on before Jemma leaned over the lab bench.

"Afternoon, ladies. What are you all up to?"

"Still working on indexing all the old personnel files. I'm getting there, but it's going to be a little while."

Coulson nods, pleased. The job he gave her was huge - going through every SHIELD employee file and cross-referencing with known Hydra agents - and even though she's a little distracted, the work is getting done pretty quickly. Because she's awesome.

"Simmons, how about you?"

Jemma's still bent over the lab bench, working with her samples. She's running thirty different samples in order on a huge gel plate, and she's clearly halfway through. She frowns, not wanting to disappoint Coulson but clearly not wanting to stop and risk losing track. "Mmm," she says. "Skye can tell you."

Coulson turns back to Skye, hands in his pockets. His smile is a little bemused, and Skye can't tell if that's at her or at Jemma. "Skye?"

Skye swallows. She feels confident enough about following Jemma's train of thought when she talks about this stuff, but she's never had to actually explain it before. "Well, we're - Simmons is working on those autopsy samples from the dead Centipede guys and Garrett. She's trying to figure out why some of them reacted differently to all the different things in the Centipede serum, because it might be related to the guys themselves, not the serum. So she's running some tests using -" she frowns, trying to remember the word. "Electrophoretic -"

"- genetic markers," Jemma finishes, standing up from her table. "It works very well in modelling done on fish."

Coulson's eyes flick from Skye, to Jemma, to Skye again. Skye gets a sinking feeling, like maybe what's happening between them isn't as secret as she thought. "I see. Skye, I wanted to grab you for an errand I'm running up in New York."

Errand sounds an awful lot like mission, the way he says it. Skye perks up. "Yeah? What's up?"

"Have you ever heard of a SHIELD agent named Sharon Carter?"

Skye shakes her head. "I think I saw her name in some of my personnel searches. Should I know her?"

"Maybe not, but you will. She was a big part of the ground-level Hydra resistance during the incident at the Triskelion."

"You mean the 'incident' where Captain America blew up three helicarriers?"

"That would be the one," Coulson says, smiling just a little. "Officially, she's joined the CIA. Unofficially, she's also been working to clean up Hydra under the alias Agent 13. She's agreed to discuss the possibility of regrouping with SHIELD."

"Okay."

"Agent Triplett and I will conduct the meet, but I need you to come with us to run back end."

Skye's mostly focusing on Coulson, thinking ahead to what back end means and all of the variables she's going to be in charge of by herself, with no Fitz and no team. But she doesn't miss the way that Jemma's jaw tenses at the words come with us, the way she suddenly gets very interested in cleaning out the test tubes she's brought over to the sink.

"Sure." Skye says. It'll be a good trial run for the new secure comms network, and her first time running the back end with networking that she's built herself, no SHIELD backup if things go wrong. It's a bit nerve-wracking, but it's not like they've never run ops like this before.

Coulson nods, and like that, things move forward. "The meet is in New York. We'll take the jump jet, get the lay of the land, then make a plan to engage."

"When do we leave?"

"Three hours. Agent 13 wants to do this tonight."

Skye follows him out, grilling Coulson about tactical issues, what kind of backup they're going to need, what kind of setup she should expect. There's a lot to do, and three hours is hardly any time at all.


She heads to the supply area first, to gear up. She needs her laptop, cables, something to boost wifi in case she ends up working out of a coffee shop. She packs a weapon, too - an ICER, small enough to fit in her jacket pocket but big enough to carry the Centipede-downing rounds - just in case things don't go to plan.

It's a lot of responsibility, fast, and she half-forgets about Jemma until Jemma finds her in her bunk, a half hour before takeoff.

She's running through a final mental inventory, making sure everything she needs is packed and easy to access, when there's a knock on her door. Skye opens it expecting Trip, telling her she needs to get going. But instead it's Jemma, clearly stressed but trying to stay calm, fidgeting with her hands. She comes in before Skye can invite her to and takes a seat on the bed, tucked against the wall. Out of Skye's way, but still close.

"How's the preparation coming along?" she asks.

"Not bad," Skye says, double-checking the spare cables she wants to bring along. "I just want to go over things one last time. I haven't used the new networks in the field before."

"Oh," Jemma says, and her tone would sound casual if it weren't for the fact that her voice jumps a full octave. It takes Skye a minute, but then it hits her. Jemma's nervous because of her. She's never had someone to worry about her like that, before.

Skye turns to face her. "You okay?"

"Of course," Jemma says, too brightly. Then, "You will be careful, won't you."

Oh. Skye feels like an idiot for not realizing sooner. Obviously, Jemma would be worried; the last time any of them were in the field, Fitz and Jemma nearly died. She moves to the bed and sits in the space next to Jemma, close enough that they're knee to knee. "Hey," she says, reaching for Jemma's hand. "Absolutely. I'll be the carefullest field agent ever."

Jemma rolls her eyes, manages a smile. "The English language is cringing right now."

Skye just pulls her close for a kiss. She means for it to be tender and comforting, and it starts off that way. But then Jemma's mouth tastes so good, and her fingers tangle in Skye's hair and drag along her scalp just so, and she gets a little carried away. They pull apart minutes later, gasping.

"I mean it," Jemma whispers, bright-eyed as she pulls back to meet Skye's gaze. "No more bullet holes." Skye smiles. She tries to lean forward for another kiss, but Jemma keeps going. "Or getting poisoned. Or knocked unconscious. And watch out for raccoons, they're the leading vector for rabies in the northeastern United States."

Skye presses her forehead to Jemma's. She brings one hand up to the back of her neck, cradling the back of her head. "I'll come back in one piece," she whispers. "Trip and Coulson have my back, okay?"

Jemma nods, looking somewhat mollified. "Okay."

They're interrupted by the thud of Trip banging on the wall outside her bunk, "Skye, you almost ready? Wheels go up in ten, we need you with us."

Skye sighs. She is ready, at least in the sense of having everything she needs to back up the team. But she wants five of those ten minutes to say goodbye to Jemma, knows she only has one. "Be right out," she calls through the door. Then, more softly, "I have to -"

"- go. I know."

"Hey," Skye says. She wants to be reassuring, wants to show Jemma that she's going to come back safely, she is. Without thinking, she pulls Jemma into another kiss. "I'll see you soon."

Jemma nods. Skye takes thirty more seconds to memorize the look on her face, the way she looks, down to the little polka-dot buttons on her shirt. Then she's getting her bags, out the door. She's got somewhere to be.


*


The meet is rocky, but they get it done. Running back end turns out to be Skye with a bulletproof vest under her clothes, setting up command with her laptop at a Starbucks. They're set to meet Agent 13 in a deli across the street; Skye's job is to tap into the security camera feeds and keep eyes on their positions. It goes alright.

Well.

It goes well, in that they meet with Agent 13 and she doesn't turn out to be a Hydra agent, and agrees to stay in touch. It goes less well because she's being followed, by two guys with guns and excellent face-kicking technique. She and Trip handle it, and Skye backs them up through comms. Maybe there's a tense moment, after a stray shot hits the front window of the Starbucks and she has to take cover under a table, but nobody gets hit, and they all get to go home.

Piece of cake.

They head back in the jet, after. It's not a long flight - they've been gone for twelve hours, maybe - but by the time they land, all Skye wants to do is see Jemma. Right off the plane, straight to the lab, just to be around her again. It's not that she's been gone that long, but she was briefly in a bit of danger, and she hasn't been away since they started - whatever this is. She doesn't know when Jemma became a person that Skye misses, but she is.

She walks down the ramp with Coulson and Trip together, and to Skye's surprise, Jemma and May and Billy are all waiting for them. May looks expectant, clearly for news. Jemma's looking right at Skye, like she's the most important thing in the world. Something in Skye's chest flutters.

"How was the mission?" Jemma asks.

She's not asking Trip or Coulson, but it's Coulson who answers first. "Not bad. A little more eventful than I would have liked, but we got what we came for."

Jemmas eyebrows lift at the word eventful. Skye shrugs, tries to be reassuring. "We ran into a couple of guests, probably Hydra. We think they were following Agent 13. She and Trip got the best of them, though."

She feels twitchy, restless. Jemma is three feet away from her, but it's not close enough at all. Skye wants to pull her into a hug, to breathe in the smell of shampoo and skin at the nape of her neck and hold on tight. But everyone else is there, and she's not sure if she can hug Jemma without being obvious, anymore. About them.

"And Agent 13?" May says. She's giving Skye a look as she speaks, the one Skye's pretty sure says something like knock it off, people know you're dating in space (or maybe it's closer to you really should tell Coulson).

"Safe. And on board with collaborating with our team. She'll be awaiting further contact in D.C."

"Good."

"Do you need a hand with that, Skye?" Jemma says, motioning to her backpack. She doesn't, but she does need help disassembling the mobile tech setup she has back in the jet. Even if she didn't, though, she needs Jemma to be alone with her so that she can touch her.

"Um, there's some stuff I still need to take apart back in the jet, if you want to -"

She doesn't need to finish her sentence. Jemma nods, and follows.

Skye knows they don't have a ton of time alone - all of Trip's things are still stashed in the cockpit, and Coulson will want to debrief with the whole team, soon. But she thinks about getting a chance to give Jemma that hug, and how that might be good enough for now.

It's Jemma who starts things. The moment she's sure they're out of sight, she's got her arm around Skye's waist and she's pressing her against a wall panel. Her mouth is sure, insistent, and she kisses Skye until her heart is racing and she's breathless.

It's a long moment before Jemma pulls away, eyes dark. "I told you I'd be fine," Skye says. She's trying to make a joke, but her voice comes out throaty and rough, betraying her.

"I'm glad you are," she says, but it comes out sounding like a lot more than that.

They separate, just barely. Skye thinks about pulling her close again, kissing her more thoroughly, but then Trip is clomping up the ramp to help unpack. They take care of everything that needs to get done onboard, while Coulson and May discuss things, presumably their next move.

They go through the mission as a team, the six of them. Billy cooks, they sit around the table. She points out how Trip's combat skills are amazing; he points out the way she totally kept things under control when the coffee shop got caught in the crossfire. It's kind of nice. It almost reminds her of the way things were, before everything went to hell.

(Except for the Fitz-shaped hole at the table, the way the room feels too quiet without him going back-and-forth with Jemma over their latest experiment. Everything's normal except for that.)


After a while, everyone starts to drift away. Billy insists on doing the dishes, everyone else moves on to the rec room or their own work, until it's just Jemma and Skye. Skye gets up, leans against the table next to where Jemma's sitting. Jemma smiles. She smiles back, wide and too earnest. Somehow, she doesn't care. "So what did you get up to while I was away? Anything exciting?"

Jemma shakes her head, pulls Skye by the arm and sort of into her lap, so that she's sitting on top of Jemma and just being kissed, her arms around Skye's back. It makes her heart race, her skin heat, and oh man as if they were going to do anything else tonight, anyway. There's Jemma's nails dragging along her nape, and then the warm slide of Jemma's tongue against her own, making her ache for this, for her.

When Jemma tears her mouth away, gasping for air, all Skye can think to say is, "Wow."

"Bed?" Jemma half-asks, half-orders, breathless.

"Bed."

Jemma's bunk is closest, and they just barely make it there. Jemma fumbles with her lanyard just outside the door, trying to swipe it against the access pad, but Skye is kissing the back of her neck and she keeps fumbling, hands shaky. She tries, once, twice, and on the third the latch clicks open, letting them through.

The moment the door closes, Jemma presses her up against it, her mouth hot against Skye's neck. She trails tiny kisses all the way down from her ear to her collarbone, nipping occasionally, and Skye feels every touch right between her legs. She's so hot for this already, from Jemma's mouth and how much she needs her, and god she can hardly stand it. She wants to be in bed, wants to straddle Jemma's hips and grind down on top of her. She tries to turn the tables a little, moving to press Jemma against the opposite wall. But as she moves, Jemma makes this noise low in her throat - this growl, way hotter than it should be - and shakes her head, no.

Skye doesn't know what she thought Jemma would be like in bed, but somehow she hadn't expected this.

She nods, leaning back as Jemma runs her hands up Skye's waist, under her shirt and along her ribs. Her thumbs hook into the hem of Skye's t-shirt, lifting it up and off. She unhooks Skye's bra and slides the straps off of her shoulders, letting it fall as well. Skye's expecting Jemma to keep touching her, but instead she steps back and just stares.

She's got this dreamy, appreciative look on her face, pupils blown wide. "Your breasts really are gorgeous, " she murmurs. "I meant to tell you that earlier."

Then Jemma moves close and Skye is pinned again. Jemma's hands feel like they're everywhere, touching her arms, then her ribs, her breasts. She traces the shape of Skye's spine, then drags her nails along the muscles of Skye's back. It's all Skye can do to stay upright and sigh. She can feel every touch right between her legs, throbbing warm and wet. Jemma unbuttons Skye's jeans, hands insistent, eager. She tugs at her fly, hard, pulling the zipper down with hands that know what they want. Skye can't believe how hot she is for this, that she's already arching up and practically begging for Jemma to touch her.

Jemma's hand finds the waistband of her underwear and she slides her hand inside, cupping her sex. Her touch is so close, almost exactly where Skye wants it. She grinds down, trying for more contact. One of Jemma's fingers slowly curls, angling towards Skye's clit and pressing down, feather-light. She moans, louder than she meant to.

Jemma uses her free hand to press Skye's head against her shoulder, like a hint. She gets it.

She slides two fingers along the length of Skye's slit, making Skye shudder into her hand. It's so much, so close, and then she slips those fingers inside and Skye cries out again, trying her best to bury the sound in the crook of Jemma's neck. She slides out again, thrusts, starting to set a rhythm. Skye brings one leg up to Jemma's waist, giving her better access. It's electric, amazing, every touch bringing her closer to the edge. Jemma's fingers move deeper, until they're pressing just right inside her, until it's all Skye can do to press her mouth against the curve of Jemma's collarbone and hold on.

She's trying to be quiet, she is, but she's so far gone and everything feels so good and before she can really get a handle on things she's tumbling over the edge, crying out.

Things are blank, just for a moment. Then she's back, coming down, setting both feet on the floor. She's still rocking against Jemma's hand, every so often shuddering with aftershocks, but she's able to press a kiss to Jemma's collarbone, her shoulder, her throat.

Jemma bends her head, trying to kiss Skye, but the angle doesn't quite work and they both look up, face to face. Jemma's short enough that like this, her nose is level with Skye's mouth. She presses a messy kiss against it, not thinking.

Jemma giggles, swipes at her nose with the hand that isn't in Skye's pants. "You're alright," she whispers, like she finally believes it. "You are."

"I am," Skye whispers. She ducks her head to look at Jemma properly, trying to show her how much she means it. "I'm safe."

Jemma wraps both of her hands around Skye's back, holds her tight. "Okay."

Skye hugs back, holding Jemma as close as she can. They stay like that for a long moment, quiet and still. Then Jemma looks up, pulls away just far enough to kiss Skye again. She's tender at first, mouth slow and gentle against Skye's, making her melt. Then, slowly, her kisses start to change. Her mouth gets harder, the contact longer. She starts to sigh as she pulls away, panting just a bit. It makes Skye want her all over again. Makes her want to show Jemma how important she is, right this minute.

She pushes back, and this time Jemma lets her stand up, lets her walk them both towards the bed. Jemma hits it first, the backs of her calves against the mattress, and they end up half-tumbling down, Skye on top. She strokes Jemma's forehead, brushing mussed hair back and away from her face. "You alright?"

Jemma smiles. It reaches her eyes, she means it. "Yes."

Skye starts to undress her, as slowly as she can manage. She eases her sweater up, exposing the skin of her abdomen, her ribs. She splays her hand across her belly, letting herself feel the way that Jemma's muscles tense, relax, as Jemma sighs into her mouth. She walks her fingers higher, across her sternum, slowly enough that she raises goosebumps. When she reaches the edge of Jemma's bra, she shivers, whispers, please.

She hikes her shirt higher, exposing her bra, the tops of her breasts. Her bra is surprisingly lacy, pink paisley and mesh that Skye could stare at forever. She hums appreciation, tracing the shape of the lace pattern across her breasts, as something occurs to her. "Is this for me?" she whispers.

Jemma nods, hisses, "Yes."

Skye flicks the catch, loosening things so that she can slide her hand inside and cup Jemma's breast. "It's really pretty."

She brings her head down, presses her mouth to fabric, then skin. She takes one nipple into her mouth and sucks, flicks with her tongue until Jemma arches forward, paws gently at Skye's head. She switches sides, dragging her mouth across every inch of skin. She moves lower, tracing a path toward the waistband of Jemma's jeans. Jemma is more than eager, whimpering at every touch. Skye doesn't think she's ever going to be sick of hearing that sound.

She undoes the button of Jemma's jeans, tugs the zipper down to reveal matching panties. She never really thought of herself as the lingerie type, but on Jemma, it's really hot. "So pretty," she whispers, pulling to tug Jemma's pants down her hips. Jemma lifts her hips, helping to kick them off. Her underwear go soon after that, and then she's half-naked, rumpled, all but begging for Skye to touch her. It's pretty amazing.

She leans down and kisses her hip, then maps a path down to her groin. She kisses her cunt, just once, but the contact is enough to make Jemma arch off the bed, sighing. Skye licks into her, running the flat of her tongue along the length of her cunt. Jemma squirms against it, one hand finding Skye's hair and the other fisting in the sheets. She works her tongue harder, tracing shapes across Jemma's clit until she's moaning, wanton. She's grinding against Skye's face, little half-movements of her hips like she's trying to keep still but can't quite. Skye flicks her tongue, over and over, until Jemma goes tense, gasps, shudders against her mouth.

She kisses a path back up Jemma's body, until she can stroke Jemma's hair, hug her close.

Jemma cuddles into her, drowsy and afterglowy.

"You know I'll always come back, right? Every time I go into the field." She wants to mean it, even as she knows that one day, that won't be true.

Jemma looks up, nodding like she knows that too. "Thank you," she says, draping one arm across Skye's middle.

She's already half-asleep, enough that she seems content to doze against Skye as she is, shirt half-off, mostly naked. It's not long before Skye joins her.


*


Skye wakes up in a strange room with a start. There's an alarm going off.

It's a moment before the night before comes back to her - coming home, Jemma, bed. She's in Jemma's bunk, and they fell asleep, and the alarm sounds like it's Jemma's ringtone. Skye's exhausted, it feels like she barely slept at all. She rolls over to where Jemma is sitting up, gently muttering British curses under her breath as she looks for her phone. She checks her watch - 2:17. No wonder she's so tired.

"Hullo?" Jemma answers, voice hoarse with sleep. "Yes, sir."

It sounds like Coulson's voice on the other end of the phone, but Skye can't quite make out what he's saying. He doesn't make phone calls at two in the morning for nothing, though, so Skye sits up herself. She rests her head against Jemma's back, trying to be comforting. Her ear rests against Jemma's chest. As Jemma listens, Skye can hear her heart start to beat faster. "Of course, sir," she says, voice quavering for a moment before she gets it under control. Then, after a while, "I understand, sir."

She hangs up the phone and stares at it. Even in the darkness, Skye can see her go pale. "Fitz is awake," she says.

The news hits Skye like a punch in the chest. She forgot, for a moment, to worry about Fitz. About what he'll be like when he wakes up, about the fact that he's in love with Jemma and she might be, too. She takes a deep breath. "You should go see him," she says. "It's going to be okay."

Jemma takes her hand, lacing their fingers together, and Skye feels like it will be.
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