THE COST OF DESTINY

 
 

By Carol Sandford

 
 

Chapter 03

 
 

When Will returned from a meeting in the consulate a couple of days after his very frank, and very unwanted admission, he walked through the door to the complex to find the object of his displeasure striding towards his office from the opposite direction, clipboard in hand.

Determined to keep her not only out from under his feet, but amused with a job that he expected to take her at least two days, Will had given her the task of sorting and counting the stores, with instructions to order supplies if necessary.

She had balked when she'd stepped into the huge storeroom, with its towering layers of racking and some thirty feet of area. It was stacked from floor to ceiling with almost every kind of supplies imaginable. It was a relatively easy job; she had a list and she just had to cross-reference with what was on the list to what was on the shelf. Simple.

He swore she gave him a look of pure venom before demurely telling him that it was, 'no problem'. In hind sight, he should have wondered about her strange answer. In hind sight, he should have at least checked up on her occasionally to see if she was coping okay. In hindsight, he should have known she had something up her sleeve.

She did.

~*~~*~

"Good morning, Lieutenant Riker."

Will beamed at the sight for sore eyes before him. She couldn't have smiled any wider. And, she couldn't have looked more gorgeous if she'd tried. "Good morning, Miss. Troi, how's the inventory going?" He gave himself a mental pat on the back; Good thinking, Riker, keep it on neutral ground, you can do this.

If it was at all possible, her smile turned even more saccharin sweet, "Oh, I've nearly finished. Just got to check the medical supplies and then I'm all done. I've ordered the diminished supplies like you instructed. Some have already arrived, and the others should be here by the end of the week."

He had to hand it to her, Will thought, she was putting up a really good front. If he didn't know better, he'd think she was actually enjoying herself. Which of course, she wasn't.

"Oh, good, good, that's great," he marvelled, "that'll save us a lot of time. You've done a remarkable job for us so far, I'm glad we played that game now." Will gamely grinned at her, convinced that she would understand the humour behind the remark. When she didn't comment, Will wished he could backtrack; remove the joke, but knew he was too late. He turned to his office door, effectively halting the unwanted and uneasy moment. "Well, I'll be in my office if you need me. See you later."

As he put his hand on the handle. Will didn't wonder why she stopped several feet away from his office door, and he just assumed that she was waiting for him to shut the door on her. But he soon found out the reason why, when he turned the door's handle and stepped into the room.

"What the...!?"

A mountain of toilet rolls rained down on him like an avalanche of snow. Hundreds of the pearly white packs of tissue toppled over him, some stacked as high as the ceiling. As he rose frantic arms to ward of the worse of the free-fall, he only succeeded in making the other still standing piles collide against the one beside it, creating a domino effect.

Like lava flowing, Will tried frantically to side-step the rolling mass, but only ended up landing flat on his back, buried beneath the still tumbling packs. When at last they all came to a halt, Will lay there, stunned and feeling decidedly foolish as he slowly pushed away the remaining rolls from his torso.

He narrowed his eyes and gritted his teeth. Somebody was going to die.

When that somebody leaned over him and he stared up at her, his command of speech got totally obliterated.

"I guess I forgot to mention that I made a slight error with the order. Isn't it funny what the difference is between one thousand individual toilet rolls and one thousand packs?" she blinked, apparently stunned by the information, "Amazing." She said, and then her eyebrows rose in mock concern, "Sorry."

Deanna squeaked when Will's hand snaked out and grabbed her down and on top of him. In one swift, fluid move, he rolled and pinned her underneath him. Eyes wide, mouth still agape with surprise, she looked up at him and saw the murderous glint in his eyes.

She couldn't help it. She started to laugh. She watched, fascinated, as a muscle jumped in Will's jaw as he stared down at her. Revenge glistened in his bright blue eyes, and a slow, sinister smile touched his mouth.

She was in trouble.

Deanna struggled to move away from him, but Will was not having any of it. Straddling her, Will tried to grasp her hands, but she fought like a demon. Eventually he captured her arms and pinned them to her sides. She tried to break free but his grip only tightened. He was much too strong for her to throw him off, and she would only embarrass herself if she tried.

She tried to reason with his nicer side, even threw a gentle, teasing smile his way, "I did say I was sorry, Will."

Will shook his head bemused, the action forcing the shock of hair to fall over his forehead, "You want to tell me how you managed this little trick by yourself?" he demanded quietly.

"Tang helped." she admitted smugly, "We had the driver back up to your office window and he very kindly passed them through to us - Well, threw actually," she emended. "There was such a lot." she added innocently.

He couldn't believe what he was hearing, "You did this on purpose? You actually spent the entire years budget, just to get back at me!?" His eyes turned darker. Stormier. Hurt.

Guilt suddenly racked through her. She hadn't thought of that, or how he would feel."I claim full responsibility for my actions," she said emphatically. "I insist that all consequences be directed at me."

As he watched the guilt fill her eyes, it triggered a momentary moment of compassion within him, allowing the joke that it was to filter through. "You insist, do you?" His voice suddenly turned husky. "All consequences?" his voice dropped another octave, "Are you sure about that, Deanna?"

The sudden change startled Deanna and her struggles slowly stilled as insecurity filled her mind, chasing out the foolishness that had taken over, creating a dangerous situation. What was she doing? What wasn't she doing? She wasn't fighting him anymore. She wasn't even thinking anymore. She'd never been more aware of a man in her entire life. Will's body was long and hard and muscular. The angles of his face were sharp now, his jaw clenched, his eyes narrowed and dancing with the devil. His strong mouth was pressed into a smirk, his hair was tousled and itching to be touched.

But it was the pulse at the base of his throat that had captured her attention. She couldn't take her eyes of it. The air shimmered around them. Grew taut. Deanna didn't want this. Didn't want to cross any lines that she'd regret, and she had enough regrets in her life at the moment, and she really didn't want to add William Riker to that list.

The pulsing in her body screamed at her to shut up and offer herself to Will without question or protest. But her head sensibly over-ruled her rapidly heating body and she thanked the stars that she still had a thread of good judgement left to cling onto.

"So," she said lightly, desperately wanting to pull the mood back to playful, or even apologetic instead of the dark, sensual tone that had suddenly closed in around them. "Am I forgiven?"

He stared at her for a long moment, then his gaze dropped to her mouth. "No, you're not. I need to think of a suitable punishment." he said, his voice strained.

With her body still pinned beneath his, Will lifted her arms over her head, then lowered his mouth to hers. At the first light touch of his lips on hers, she held very still, determined not to respond. And then that last thread of good judgement she'd been so proud of, snapped like a twig in a tornado.

His mouth was firm and strong, but the kiss was gentle. Her heart slammed in her chest as he nibbled on the corner of her lips. Liquid heat rushed through her body, and her skin became tight and tingly.

"Will," she whispered as her traitorous lips moved against his, "I don't think..."

"Me, either."

Then he completely destroyed her.

He crushed his mouth to hers. Her senses spun at the fierce demand of his lips, the press of his strong, long body over hers, the faint masculine scent that was his, and only his. He was power, and she was powerless. The silly myths she'd heard over the years about fairy tale romances and being swept off her feet? They were all true.

She had no defences against him. His kiss stripped away every argument, every last remnant of reason and logic. Her mind was no longer in control. Right then, she could only feel. And it felt wonderful. It felt better than wonderful.

He deepened the kiss and a low, unguarded moan rose from deep in her throat. She squirmed beneath him, frustrated that he still held her arms, yet excited at the same time. Intense pleasure sparked in her blood, then burst into flames. When his hands finally released her wrists, only to slide down her arms, she trembled in anticipation.

Needing him closer, she wound her arms tightly around his neck. His mouth moved down her throat, his tongue, hot and wet, tasted and nipped. He murmured something against her ear and his warm breath sent ripples of delight through her. Skilfully he moved hands down her sides, then lower still, gathering her skirt upward, exposing her calves, then her thighs. His hands felt rough on her sensitive skin and she shivered at his touch. An ache settled between her legs, and she moved restlessly against him, wanting more.

Then his hands moved upward and slid under her blouse. She gasped when he cupped her breasts, arching upwards, inviting more, receiving it when his thumbs caressed her hardened nipples. She almost fell apart there and then, but knew there was more to come. He nipped at the base of her throat, murmured her name, then moved lower...

"Hello! anyone here?"

Both she and Will jumped at the deep, booming voice that echoed through the empty corridor, barely a few feet away from where they lay on the floor amongst the carpet of toilet rolls where they were practically on the point of making love.

Muttering an oath, Will moved off of her, then stood, reached out a hand to help her up. Shaking, she rose on jellied knees and quickly smoothed down her clothing with hands that trembled violently, not only from what had happened to her body, but from almost being caught making out. She wasn't sure at that point which was worse.

The man that eventually stuck his head through the door, stared in bewilderment and amusement, first at the toilet rolls that the couple now stood in up to their knees, and then at the, 'don't you dare say a word' expression upon both their faces.

By the time Will had dealt with the delivery man, Deanna had gone. Escaped.

Damn.

 
     
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