Progress Report

by Jane Davitt

She looked at the chart for Ellison, James, skimming over notations that were no longer cryptic, as they had been when she'd first started her nurse's training. God, Blair was going to just love this one…

She picked up the phone and called him, her breath quickening, partly from the rules she was breaking -- not that it mattered; this was important -- mostly because she wanted to hear Blair's voice, husky and happy, every word lit up by his excitement. She'd never met anyone quite like him. He looked cute, years younger than he actually was, and when he'd seen her naked for the first time, he'd touched her with hands that were shaking, his eyes wide. He'd come so fast, too. God, she'd been ready to write him off right then. But he'd apologized, all charm, laughing at himself, and his hand had slid down her body and it hadn't been shaking then…

She heard the sound of his phone ringing, but over it was the memory of her moans as his fingers had teased a climax out of her, skimming wet, slicked flesh until she'd felt dizzy, gasping for air, her body strung-out and desperate. He'd kissed her and finger fucked her, his tongue mimicking the thrust and swirl of his fingers and she'd come -- oh, Christ had she!

She bit back a groan and kept her voice cool and professional as Blair answered with an insouciant, lilting "Hello."

And she waited at home that night, hugging the knowledge that she'd done good to herself, and waiting for him to call, come around, praise her, please her, adore her, those blue eyes wide with gratitude.

She waited.

The next time she saw him was months later, on a rainy night, as she hurried along to where her car was parked. She tilted her umbrella back and saw him half a block away. She froze, a numb expectancy settling over her, the rain pattering down busily, and all she could think was that he was walking and she could offer him a ride, go back to his place -- God, yes, even with the rats she'd sleep there, if it meant being with him again --

Blair, closer now, and she could see -- oh, God, no, he was talking, he wasn't alone, his face animated, adoring -- oh, yes, she knew that look. Blair stopped dead, turned, and her gaze moved with his to his companion, hating her already with a fierce, resentful possessiveness. When she saw he was with a man, there was a moment of relief so pure that it hurt, a physical, actual pain. Then Blair raised his hands, patted wide shoulders, emphasizing what he was saying -- and forgot to take his hands away. Just left them there as if it was where they belonged.

The man he was touching, the man accepting that touch, smiled back at him, affectionate, irritated, arguing with him without heat. His face was one she'd seen before without being at all familiar. Even in her misery, her mind ticked over, tracking down the fugitive memory.

Then she got it; a cascading series of snapshots of a man, frowning, scribbling on the forms she'd given him, walking away to the examination room with careful steps, as if his head was aching.

Ellison, James. The freak she'd found for Blair. And the regrets poured down like cool rain, like warm tears, as she turned away from what she'd done.

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