The board has been kinda quiet so Jen and I thought we'd liven things up a bit. Enjoy

Right Woman, Wrong Time
By Sissy and Jennifer

Merilee had been gone almost a month but Trivette could still see that things were not right between Walker and Alex. And it was very painful to watch. He had watched his partner and best friend make a total ass of himself over a barroom singer and let Alex slip to the wayside. Walker had quickly come to his senses but Alex was still unforgiving.

***

Alex walks into C.D.’s and sits down on a barstool, never looking right or left to see who is there and who isn’t. But her senses tell her he is there somewhere. She orders a coffee, and a light salad, makes small talk with C.D. standing behind the bar, finishes her lunch and leaves.

When she first enters the bar, Trivette, sitting in a booth with Walker, opens his mouth to call to her but Walker stops him with a hand on his arm. “Don’t Trivette, she’s still mad at me.”

Trivette gives him a sarcastic ‘no kidding’ look but refrains from saying anything else, until Alex finishes her lunch and leaves. “Come on, Walker, aren’t you even going to try?”

“Yes … when I feel the ice starting to melt. But right now she’s too hurt to even listen. I’ve got to give her time.”

“Boy, Walker, how could…”

“Trivette … shut up.” He doesn’t say it harshly but his partner knows not to say anymore. Soon afterward they leave too.

C.D. watches his former partner and Jimmy leave and shakes his head. He knows that Walker is hurting but he also knows that Alex is hurting far worse. He had wanted to explain to Alex about Walker’s dalliance but couldn’t rightly say anything because he, himself, had been smitten by her as well. Maybe not like Walker but just having a beautiful woman that was a well-known singer in his establishment, had put him in the clouds right along with Walker, but for different reasons.

Alex knows there is no way to completely avoid Walker, but she makes sure he knows exactly how she feels. Granted there hadn’t been a commitment between them but although she knew she was in love with Walker, she had been letting him feel his way at his own speed. And although they hadn’t made love yet, she had thought it was just a matter of time. But then that … that … woman … had come to town and Walker had gone panting after her like some dog after a bitch in heat. It had hurt her immensely having to watch him moon over that … that woman. How could he so callously just cast her aside?

***

Walker was feeling every one of her slights as she went about her daily work. She made her own cup of coffee instead of drinking from his cup, and he missed that, missed the intimacy of it, but the worst was having her ignore his very presence. When she came into Ranger Headquarters she spoke to Trivette only, and if she needed help with something she made it a point to ask one of the other Rangers. She never looked at him unless she absolutely had to, and then her eyes were distant and icy blue. He could feel her coldness clear across a room. God, wasn’t she ever going to relent, and let him make his peace with her. The day after Merilee left Dallas he had known that his feelings for her were nothing more than star-struck infatuation. She was a beautiful woman and he had been struck dumb by her flashing smile and the flattering attention from a beautiful celebrity, feeding his macho male ego like nothing else could. Being thrown together by the urge to protect her didn’t help either, and having her at the ranch was definitely the biggest mistake he had ever made. They had kissed and Walker had known that she wanted him to make love to her, but he felt nothing during that kiss, so he let that moment pass. It had felt strange to be kissing her, and when she had placed his hand on her breast, he felt no desire to caress her. He had attributed his lack of desire to the strangeness of their situation. She was in hiding from her ex-husband’s threats.

Walker has decided a month is long enough to suffer and with a possible kidnapping in mind, he barges into Alex’s office to make her listen to him. Only Alex isn’t there. “Where is she, Amy?”

“Oh, you mean Ms. Cahill?” She knows the circumstances of their relationship and is coldly responsive to his question.

Fed up with the looks and the insinuations, he retorts with, “Of course I mean Ms Cahill, this is her office isn’t it?”

And Amy, not used to Walker speaking to her like that, begins to recant from her previous manner, “Ah … yes, sir, it is. She … ah … took the week off. She won’t be back until next Monday.”

His anger recedes when he sees Amy begin to shake, “Oh … ah … I’m sorry, Amy, I didn’t mean to snap at you.”

He leaves the courthouse and drives to her apartment only to find that she isn’t there either. Seeing the manager of the building, Walker asks if he has seen Alex?

“Yes, sir, she left here early this morning, wanted me to keep an eye out on her place. Didn’t say where she was going, but she had a bedroll and saddlebags so I figure she was going camping somewhere.”

Walker thanks him and drives out to the stable where Alex keeps her horse, again, finding her and her horse already gone. Rousting out the stable boy, he finds out that Alex had indeed left early, taking the trail, so the boy says, that leads to the Indian dwellings that she likes to explore.

Since the stable isn’t too far from his ranch, he goes home, rounds up his bedroll, stuffs his saddle bags with one change of clothes, grabs his rifle and knife, saddles Amigo, loads him into the horse trailer and drives as far as he can into the back country. Leaving the truck and trailer, he’s soon on his way and by noon has come across Alex’s trail. He smiles, knowing this is almost as good as a kidnapping.

***

Although Alex had taken this trip to get her mind off of Walker, he’s all she can think about. Even being so angry that she’d like to throttle him, she still turns to mush inside whenever he looks at her. She misses his touches and his kisses but then the image of Walker with Merilee in his arms flashes in her mind and tears fill her eyes. She tries to blink the tears away when, rounding a bend in the trail, a horse and rider suddenly appears in front of her.

***

When he hears the sound of hooves striking stone, he pulls up Amigo and waits. If Alex had been paying attention to her horse, she would have known he, or something, was just around the bend. But the sight of another horse startles her and she yanks her horse to a quick stop. Then at seeing that the rider is Walker, her heart begins to thump louder, but she draws a frown across her face.

“Walker! What are you doing here?”

“Looking for you.”

“How did you know where to find me? I didn’t tell anyone.”

“You forget that I’m a Texas Ranger and half Cherokee. The Ranger found out that you had left, the Cherokee followed your trail.”

“Well, now that you found me, you can leave. I don’t want to see you, let alone talk to you. So just … go away.”

“Not till I’ve had my say.”

“No matter what you say, it isn’t going to change anything.” She drops her eyes and turns her horse, hearing an “I don’t believe that” as she takes the trail that leads up to the cliffs

Walker looks after her, and knowing damn well he isn’t leaving until he can talk some sense into her, he turns Amigo and follows her, but keeping a discreet distance behind her.

Alex knows he is behind her, and even though she’s secretly glad, she tries her best to ignore him, but without much luck. She feels his nearness, and her body is responding to it. An hour later, she has not said one word in answer to Walker’s attempts at a conversation and is really starting to feel the heat. Having been in the saddle since early morning she stands in the stirrups to stretch her legs, then moves her bottom back and forth in the saddle until she finds a comfortable spot to settle.

Looping her reins over the saddle horn, she reaches up and unbuttons the top two buttons on her shirt, then leans over and shakes the cotton cloth to cool herself off. Her Stetson comes off next, settling it over the saddle horn, while she lifts her hair off her neck with both hands, so that what little breeze there is can reach the sweat on her nape. Thirsty, she lifts the canteen to her lips and swallows deeply, and then as an afterthought, pours some of the water down inside the front of her shirt and sighs deeply at the cooling touch.

Walker is mesmerized by what he sees Alex doing. Her movements as she shifts in the saddle, the unbuttoning of her shirt has him hard as a rock. But the water gently sloshing down inside her shirt, plastering it to her breasts is his undoing. He can tell without a doubt that she is NOT wearing a bra

“What the hell are you doing?”

Alex nearly falls out of the saddle with Walker’s sudden outburst. She jerks upright, knocking her hat off the horn and onto the ground. Her horse sees the shadow when it falls, and figures it to be a dangerous, horse-eating jackrabbit, and shies violently into Amigo.

Amigo takes exception to being bumped and kicks out with both hooves, striking Alex’s horse in the rump, which makes him buck. She grabs for the reins, but they have fallen loose from the horn, and she is helpless to control her horse when he begins to run helter-skelter down the canyon, sun fishing and crow hopping.

Alex is thrown up onto her horse’s neck, where she hangs on for dear life. She hears Walker coming up behind her and knows it is only a matter of time before he catches up with her. Out of the corner of her eye she sees Amigo’s nose edging up along side of her. At the same time she sees a jackrabbit dart across in front of her horse making him swerve quickly to the right. Alex goes left, landing on her right hip and left hand.

Amigo, the fine horse that he is, veers to the left when Alex loses her seat in the saddle, missing her completely. Walker brings his horse to a sliding stop, kicks loose of the stirrup and quickly runs to Alex’s side.

“Are you all right? Are you hurt?”

Stunned with her sudden meeting of the ground, Alex lies still, her pride is hurt, but the rest of her is in serious pain. She groans as she rolls over on her bottom, “It hurts,” then realizes she is crying and starting to shiver. “I’m … I think … I’m in shock.”

“Well, I guess. That was quite a fall.” He begins running his hands over her, checking for injuries in a way that did nothing to ease the beat of her racing pulse. Alex wanted to tell him she was fine, that nothing was broken, but her heart was in her throat. He was so close … touching her…

Walker is sliding his hands under her knees and behind her shoulders before she realizes that he intends to pick her up. “I can walk,” she protests.

“I know, but we’re going to ride. The Indian ruins are close, and we need to get you out of the sun. Maybe we can set up camp there, too.”

“My horse…”

“I’ll get him after I check you out.” With that statement he easily steps into the saddle with her in his arms. Amigo carries his riders to the ruins, which were closer than even Walker had anticipated. Leaving Amigo, he carries her to the closest one that looks like it would give them shelter from the sun, and rain, if need be. He settles her down on the floor and immediately goes back outside, returning in a few minutes with his bedroll, saddlebags, and water.

He spreads out his sleeping bag and after she moves over to sit on it, he kneels down next to her, taking her chin in his hand he gently tips her face up so he can look into her eyes.

“You have really beautiful eyes,” he murmurs. “They change to a dark blue when you get mad … or excited.”

Her face turns a light shade of pink and she lowers her eyes.

“Your pupils look okay to me.”

“I didn’t hit my head, I fell on my hip and my hand.” She holds out her left hand and realizes that her sleeve is torn away all the way to her elbow. “Oh, God, I didn’t know I’d skinned my arm, too. My hand is what hurts.” Looking at it she sees that it is raw, and she’s thankful she hadn’t fallen on her face.

She reaches down and touches her hip, finding her jeans ripped, although they had held up better than her shirt. “I … hurt my … hip, too.”

“Let me see.”

“You don’t need to see my hip, it’s just fine,” she mutters, attempting to move away from his touch. Then groans at the slight movement.

“If the skin is broken, it will need cleaning, too,” he says as he unbuckles her belt, just when she had gotten her heart slowed down, now it begins to race again.

“Stop that,” trying to push his hand away.

“Just think of me as your doctor,” he says as he unsnaps then unzips her jeans.

“My doctor doesn’t usually undress me,” she snaps, trying to cover the shaking his touch is causing.

A deep chuckle, “Lift your hips up,” he orders when she hesitates.

She puts her good hand on his shoulder to brace herself and then lifts her hips as he pulls her torn jeans down. To her surprise, her bikini panties were shredded, and the skin underneath is bloody.

She is examining her hip when she feels him pulling off her boots. She starts to protest and seeing the stern look in his eye, shuts her mouth. He pulls her jeans off, leaving her legs bare above her white boot socks. Giving him her frostiest glare, “Was that really necessary?”

“You’re decent,” he says as he straightens the tails of her western shirt over her shredded panties. “I can … put your boots back on if you like.”

Alex shakes her head, giggling as the picture of her with just her boots on fills her mind. “Just get the first aid kit and let me take care of myself.”

“I didn’t bring a first aid-kit, did you?”

She groans, “It’s in my saddlebags … along with a change of clothes … and my bedroll … if you…”

“Wait just one minute there. It’s almost dark and I’m not going to go hunting for your horse in the dark, God only knows what I could stumble into out there.”

“Where am I supposed to sleep then?”

“You should have thought of that before you started that little striptease of yours.”

“You’re the one who shouted and scared me half to death. I was only trying to cool off.”

“And heating me up in the process!”

“I can’t help it if you have a vivid imagination.”

“It didn’t take much imagination to see your breasts,” he shot back. “You opened your blouse right up and bent over and flapped your shirt like you were waving a red flag at a bull!”

“I was getting some air!”

“You slid your butt around in that saddle like you were sitting right on my lap.”

“That’s ridiculous!”

“Then you lifted your arms to hold your hair up and … then you poured the water down inside the front of your shirt …”

“That’s enough,” she interrupts him. “You’re crazy if you think…”

“You mean you weren’t trying to tease me into…”

“I most certainly was not!” Alex shouts indignantly, her face turning red.

“Look at the front of your shirt and tell me that!”

She glances down and sees her shirt plastered to her skin, showing whoever is looking that she has no bra on, her nipples hard and straining against the fabric. She hadn’t really felt the need for one, going off by herself. Blushing profusely, she pulls the shirt loose from her skin and turns away from him.

He stares at her back for several minutes, and then stands.

“I’ve got to get camp set up before dark, you stay right there and don’t get into any more trouble,” he says gruffly.

“ I can help,” she says, starting to get up, then cries out as she feels a sharp pain in her injured hip.

“I said stay put. As soon as I get camp set up, I’ll clean you up. Bandages will have to wait until I can find your horse … tomorrow.”

“I can take care of myself,” glaring at him as he stomps his way outside. After taking care of his horse he rejoins Alex in the ruins. He wets down his handkerchief with the water, heated by the sun, from his canteen, “Give me your hand.”

She holds out her hand, and he lays the handkerchief across her palm. “Ahh … that stings.”

“Good.”

She sends him an icy glare.

With out asking permission, he lifts the tail of her shirt and gently pulls down what is left of her panties, exposing her bare hip. He doesn't realize it, but he's holding his breath. His fingers are oh so close to the mound of hair clearly visible through the white silk of her panties. He clears his throat “I don’t like hurting you,” he says as he lays a dampened strip of cotton he’d torn from his t-shirt on her torn flesh. “But this has to be done.”

She hisses in a breath as the wet cloth hits her raw flesh. “Oh, God.”

He takes the cloth from her hand, “I need to wet this down again.” He repeats the process over and over for the next half hour, letting the wet cloths soak the wounds. The warm cloths seem to ease the pain, as well as remove the grit and sand.

Finally Walker says, “I think that does it.”

“Thank you,” Alex murmurs, knowing that if she hadn’t been in so much pain, his touch would have had her quivering with passion. However, it was different for Walker. He didn't have pain to help him forget the fact that his fingers were perilously close to the nest of curls between her thighs. He had to concentrate heavily on the task at hand, breathing deeply and evenly to control his emotions, to control himself from stripping those very panties from her body and making love to her.

His voice husky, quivering, “How do you feel?” he asks.

No one has ever made her feel more special, more pampered, more cherished. But all she can say is, “Better.” Her stomach growls and she laughs. “Now I’m hungry.”

“Well, now, let me go out and see what I can find. You stay right here, I’ll be right back.” He stands and starts toward the door of their shelter.

“Could you get me my jeans and boots first?”

“You don’t really need them,” and turns to leave.

“Are you planning to share this bedroll with me tonight?”

“Hadn’t figured on sleeping on the ground.”

“You will unless I get my jeans and boots.”

“Yes, ma’am,” he says with a large grin. He picks up her jeans and boots and hands them to her.

She has a hard time getting her jeans on because her knee is also skinned, and it hurt to bend her hip.

“Need any help?”

“I ought to make you put them on, since you took them off,” she grumbles.

Before she can move, Walker is on his knees in front of her and has her jeans in his hands. He holds them as she puts her legs inside, and then slides them up until they reach her hips.

“Lift,” he says.

She lifts her hips as he pulls her jeans up around her waist, but as he reaches for her zipper, she puts her hand over his. “I can get that.”

They are nose to nose with one another, and she feels heat stirring in her belly. She lays her hand on his cheek, then leans forward to press her lips lightly to his. “Thank you for taking care of me.”

He presses his lips lightly to hers. “Your welcome.” His eyes stay locked to hers, until he hears her stomach growling again. “I better … go get us something … to eat,” he stands and backs away.

Thirty minutes later, Alex hears a pop and figures that Walker has gotten their dinner, crossing her fingers, hoping it’s not rattlesnake. In ten minutes he brings dinner and enough wood to cook it into their ‘desert room’.

In a very short time, Walker is handing her a choice tidbit of rabbit, joining her on the bedroll.

“Were you planning to stay out here for the full week?” He asks quietly.

“Yes … I’ve stayed out her alone before. It’s quiet, and … I can get my thoughts together.”

“I … think we’d better get some sleep, I want to get an early start looking for your horse.”

It’s a bit unnerving for Alex to crawl into the bag with Walker, but the desert gets very cold after the sun goes down. They end up in the spoon position inside the sleeping bag.

Alex tries not to notice the warmth of Walker’s body. Tries not to notice the muscles in his chest and thighs as they press against her. Or how much she likes the musky smell of him.

“This is cozy.”

“This is all your fault.” If not for him, she would be safe in her own sleeping bag. Alone. Instead of lying here loving how it feels to be snuggled up next to Walker.

“I’ve got no complaints.”

Alex lifts Walker’s hand off her hip and shoves it back onto his own.

There is no room to shift without bumping against hard male flesh. No room to turn without encountering the smell of a man who has spent the day in the sun … a scent she finds strangely alluring. No room to escape the brush of his soft hair against her temple.

“God, Alex, you’re more restless than two bobcats in a potato sack,”

He wraps a strong arm around her waist and pulls her back against him. Snug enough that she feels the male response that all her moving around had produced. She should have felt angry but she only feels safe, protected. She falls into a deep sleep, the first since that … woman … had entered their lives.

Walker looks down at Alex lying so beautiful in sleep. He had managed to keep his hands off of her all night but hadn’t gotten much sleep. He finally gives up, slips silently out of the sleeping bag and stands looking out the door.

As the sky starts to turn pink in the east he moves over and taps her on the shoulder. “Wake-up sleepyhead.

She bounces right up, and her head catches him on the chin, knocking his teeth together and catching his lip between them.

“Ouch!”

“Oh, Walker, I’m sorry. Let me see … Oh, God, you’re bleeding. Hold still. She takes a corner of the wrap around her hand and begins dabbing at his lip. Then plumps his lip where his teeth has left a tiny cut. “It’s small, you’ll be fine.”

“Not if you keep doing that,” he murmurs, looking into her eyes.

Startled, she turns and looks back at him. Their eyes catch and hold. “Just stay away from me, Walker,” she murmurs.

“I can’t,” he said, as he lowered his mouth to hers. “I … can’t.”

Her lips are incredibly soft, a little damp, and very generous. He pushes his mouth against hers, his heart thrumming as he feels her cautious response. He wants to taste her and captures her nape to hold her steady as he slides his tongue along the seam of her lips. She opens wide.

A moment later he is inside, his tongue lapping at the honeyed taste of her. She is equally ravenous, to his delight. Her hands move restlessly around his chest, until she finally clasps them around his neck. He wraps his hand around a hank of her hair and angles her head back so he can thrust this tongue deep into her mouth.

And she forgets all about forgiving and forgetting…

They are a tangle of arms and legs as he lowers her to the sleeping bag, both grabbing at buttons and snaps and belts and boots. Trying to get naked, anxious to put flesh next to flesh. Anxious to touch, to caress.

“Hurry, hurry,” she says breathlessly. “I can’t wait.”

He’s afraid he won’t last long enough to get inside her. She’s on fire in his arms, and he’s on a very short fuse. “Don’t wait on me,” he says, as he plunges himself deep inside her.

Oh, God! She is so hot and tight and wet. She wraps her legs around him, and he can feel her nails piercing his back as she cries out and surges upward, driving him to the hilt.

His mouth finds hers and his tongue mimics the hard thrust of his body. He is out of control, his strong thrusts are forcing her against the hard ground, blood’s pounding in his ears, his lungs are crying out for air.

He can’t take it all in fast enough. The smell of her heated flesh, the taste of her mouth, the touch of her silken hair. He needs her, has to have her, can not survive another moment without the completion she promises.

“Can’t … wait,” he groans.

“No need … to wait,” she gasps back as her body begins to convulse around him.

He throws his head back in a grimace of excruciating pleasure as he spills his seed within her.

He pulls her close as he collapses beside her, his chest heaving in concert with hers, their bodies slick with sweat, as they suck in air to ease their starving lungs.

She pulls away from him, stands and begins to hurriedly dress. She senses him getting up and says, “NO! …Walker … please, I want to be alone.” She shoves on her boots and walks away as she buttons her shirt. He stares after her as she stalks out the door, and starts after her then stops, deciding it would be better to leave her be.

Alex moves off to another small cliff house that only has two walls and no roof, and after aimlessly pacing, finally sits down with her back to a wall where she can watch to see if Walker follows her.

Her emotions are so jumbled she’s shaking trying to understand what she is feeling. She mad at herself for succumbing to Walker’s touch, his kiss, but can’t deny how she enjoyed being in his arms, having him inside her. But she’s scared too, thinking about him and … that woman. How could she have forgotten that? Can she forgive him? forget what he had done? But God, forgive her, she wants him. Everything within her quivers for him, like a strung bow, taut and ready to fly. That’s why she had to get away and think. Where he had touched her, she felt alive, where he hadn’t touched her, she wanted to be touched. She wants to see his shoulders bared to her touch, wants to explore his chest, and muscular legs. She wants…

All of him. It’s like an insistent pounding in her, frantic.

An hour later she returns and sits down on the sleeping bag, crossing her arms over drawn up knees and lays her head down on them, her back to him.

“We need to talk.”

“Kinda late for that isn’t it?”

“It’s not too late if we don’t want it to be.”

She lifts her head and looks up into his face, and he sees the hurt in her eyes. “Alex, if I could turn the time back I would, but I can’t. I don’t rightly have an explanation for what happened between me and Merilee.” As he says the name he sees tears rush to fill Alex’s eyes, “Alex, I’m sorry, I don’t mean to hurt you all over again, by talking about her … but this is here and now. I know there’s something between us.” He pauses, staring intently into her eyes. “What about what happened this morning?”

She turns hurt eyes away from him and lays her head back down on her crossed arms and softly murmurs, “Did you go to bed with her?”

“I … no … I didn’t.” He lets out his breath, thankful that he could say those words to her.

When she hears his confession, her heart feels lighter and a small smile curves her lips. She still can’t totally put it behind her, “I think we should just forget what happened this morning. It was just the circumstances … that’s all it was.”

“The hell it was.”

He yanks her onto her feet and has his mouth open over hers in two seconds flat. He shoves her legs apart, unzips her jeans and thrust two fingers deep inside her! She moans and bucks and shakes her head in denial, but it’s too late.

He already knows she’s wet and ready.

Walker looks into her eyes and says, “Those sweet lips of yours can deny how you feel all day long, but you’re body doesn’t lie. You want me as much as I want you.”

He lets his thumb caress her, and she writhes in his arms.

“Please, I don’t … want this.” She stares at him with heavy-lidded eyes, eyes dazed with passion.

“Liar!” His voice is soft with desire.

He abruptly releases her and to her dazed astonishment, she whimpers when his fingers leave her body. Trembling at her now obvious response to his nearness, she rebuttons her jeans and zips them before sinking back onto the ground. She brings her knees up against her chest and wraps her arms around them, as if trying to hold herself together. There are tears in her eyes as she says haltingly, “I … I don’t think … I could stand to get … hurt, again.”

He drops down to his knees in front of her, and touches her cheek softly. “I … can’t guarantee the future, Alex, but I will do my best never to hurt you again.”

It’s then he notices the blood oozing through the make-shift bandage and takes her hand in his, “I’ve got to go find your horse, get that first aid kit and get your wounds taken care of. Stay in here, out of the sun, and rest, I’ll be back as soon as I can.” He leans over and places a kiss on the top of her head then turns and walks out the door.

Several minutes later she raises her head, knowing he’s gone. She’s almost afraid to let herself feel again, but after what happened this morning there’s no way she can deny that she cares for him. She can remember his kiss, his touch on her breast, and she can remember the absolute feel of fire, and the sensations of desire that had ripped through her. She has wanted him gone since she ran into him on the trail … now she has a wanting for him unlike anything she has ever known. Yawning she lies down on the sleeping bag and drifts off into dreamless sleep.

When she wakes, she realizes that several hours have past and she painfully gets to her feet and makes her way over to look out the door. No sign of him for as far as she can see. She sits down in the doorway to watch for him, and realizes that she misses him. Then a bewildering thought creeps over her, ‘I’ve never felt his presence as much as I feel his absence.’

She draws her knees up, crosses her arms over them and then rests her head on them. When she wakes this second time it’s almost dark and she feels a shaft of fear coiling in her gut. She stands and looks out over the land and faintly sees movement coming toward her through the cacti and rocks.

The apparition draws close enough that she can make out that it’s Walker and he has her horse, but they’re moving very slow. When he gets closer she sees that her horse is limping. But she also notices that Walker is swaying in the saddle.

“Oh, God!” A tormented cry leaves her lips as she starts hobbling out to meet him. Grabbing the reins, she looks up into his half closed eyes, “Walker, what is it, what’s wrong?”

“Well, I found him, finally. But he’s got a bruised tendon, so it’ll be a while before he can carry you.”

“I can see that, what’s wrong with you?”

He looks down in to her face, and sees the concern for him in her eyes. He smiles at her and brings his leg over and slides down to the ground. “Me? Nothing that a good nights sleep won’t fix.”

“I’ve got some canned rations in my saddle bags, let me fix you something to eat.” While she gets her saddlebags and bedroll he hobbles both of the horses, and follows her into the small room.

When she turns to give him the opened canned rations, he is sitting on the sleeping bag, slumped over, his head bowed.

Alex kneels down in front of him, “Walker … are you all right?” she says softly.

He raises his head, grins and says, “Just a little stiff … and tired.”

“Well, while you eat, let me get rid of those knots in your neck and shoulders.” She raises her eyes to his and begins to unbutton his shirt, and as he pulls it from his jeans she moves around behind him, pulls the shirt down and off his arms and begins to knead and roll the tight muscles of his shoulders.

Walker begins to eat but with Alex’s hands and fingers working his shoulder muscles, he forgets all about being hungry. When her fingers had brushed against his chest as she was unbuttoning his shirt, she’d started a fire in him that is steadily gaining in intensity, and threatening to get out of control.

As Alex works on the knots her mind, and her body, are remembering the … touch … of his fingers … just a few short hours ago. A touch that had set desire racing through her, desire that had not been appeased. He had never touched her like that before, not even during their frantic lovemaking earlier in the morning … and she can't get it out of her mind.

Her voice soft, husky, “I … think that should do it.”

He reaches around and takes her hand from his shoulder and pulls her around until she is lying across his lap. “Not quite,” he murmurs, as he lowers his head to hers in a soft sweet kiss. He moves his hand up her side to cup her breast, caressing the soft flesh gently through the fabric of her shirt.

Their previous encounter had been heated and rushed; he wanted this time to be slower, tender. He wanted to savor every minute and every second of being sheathed within her, and wanted to remember every inch of her body. Cupping the back of her head in his hand, he shifts until he is lying down and then rolls her underneath his body as he brushes her lips lightly, reaching out with his tongue to trace the outline of her lips, memorizing their feel. Raising his head slightly, he looks into her eyes, smiles, and then lowers his lips back to hers, applying more pressure this time. When he hears her whimper, he instinctively knows she wants more, and probes her lips with his tongue, gaining entrance to the warm sweet cavern. Her soft moans are all that can be heard as he deepens the kiss.

Alex moans as his tongue brushes hers, and arching her back she gives herself over to the growing passion she feels, but has been denying out of spite. Her hands move to tangle in his hair, and she moans again as she sucks on his tongue, then his lower lip, her hands moving to frantically caress his back, her hips beginning to grind against his. She is almost frantic with the need to be with him, to feel his skin against hers, to feel him inside her.

Walker's heart is beating faster as she begins to grind her hips against his erection and he stills her hands when she reaches for the button on his jeans. "Easy baby, let me take care of that."

“No, Walker...I need...”

Her words are cut off by his kiss. “Shhh, I know what you need,” he murmurs.

Looking into his eyes, she has no doubt he knows what she needs. For she sees the same intense desire reflected in his eyes that she's sure are in her own.

“Oh God,” she gasps when his mouth begins a searing trail down her neck to the hollow of her throat. He nibbles and then sucks on the skin in the hollow, surely leaving a mark, and then moves lower, unbuttoning the top button of her shirt with his teeth. His fingers reach out to make quick work of the remaining buttons, and as he moves aside the material his breathing stops, his mouth drops open slightly. She had been fully naked during their first lovemaking, but his rush to be inside her blinded him to her beautiful body, her breasts. His gaze rises slowly to her face and meets hers. Her breathing accelerates and she feels an immediate gush of wetness in her panties at the look on his face, in his eyes. He looks back down at her breasts and breathes, “You are so beautiful.” Slowly, reverently, he lowers his lips and kisses the tip of one rounded globe, his tongue reaching out to taste the soft flesh.

She cries out softly at his wet touch and her back arches up off the ground again as he sucks her breast deep into his mouth as his hand gently kneads the other. Her cries turn to whimpers when his teeth gently close around her hard pebbled nipple. “Walker... please!” she pleads with him. “I...need...I want you.”

“Soon baby, soon,” he whispers as he leaves one breast and moves to the other, kissing the tip as he had the other, before reaching out with his tongue to taste the entire surface of the soft white globe of beautiful flesh, memorizing their firm shape, their taste. When his lips leave her breasts they slowly blaze a hot trail down her abdomen as his hands explore the hills and valleys of her body, dipping into her navel, then continue their blazing down to the nest of dark blonde hair between her thighs.
Alex cries out when his lips touch her in the most intimate fashion and her hands fly to his head, holding him there as her slim hips begin to undulate. “Oh God!” she moans, her head moving from side to side, “Oh...Walker...”

Her soft moans of ecstasy fill the cooler night air as his lips and tongue make love to the sweetness that is her very essence, the moans becoming higher pitched as he enters her with his tongue, bringing her quickly to a wild and mind-numbing orgasm. She screams when the orgasm hits her and when he pulls her in closer, harder against his mouth, to drink his fill of her free flowing juices, she thinks she's surely died and gone to heaven.

As her climax wanes, Walker rises above her, bracing himself with a hand on either side of her head. He dips his head to kiss her deeply, eliciting a soft moan from Alex, as she tastes herself on his lips, an erotic experience the likes of which she's never had before. Ending the kiss, he murmurs, “Open your eyes,” and then holding her gaze, enters her, sinking slowly inside until he's buried to the hilt. For several moments he's still, savoring and memorizing the feel of being sheathed inside the tight warmth of her beautiful body, then when she feels as if she'll die if he doesn't start to move soon, he begins a slow and lazy thrusting, pulling almost completely out before slowly thrusting back home again.

She picks up the pace when the need for completion overpowers her. Wanting to draw out the deliciousness of their lovemaking, he unerringly finds the nub that he knows will bring her over the edge. She cries out his name, over and over, her head thrashing, side-to-side as he caresses the nub while he continues to thrust at the quicker pace, and within seconds she climaxes for the second time.

Again, Walker slows his thrusts, waiting for Alex to recover and wanting to draw out their lovemaking. When the sexual haze she's in begins to clear, he takes her hands in his, links their fingers, and then brings their hands to lie above her head as he continues to move in and out of her luscious body, her hips rising to meet his, thrust for thrust. Her eyes widen when she feels him harden and lengthen more within her body. Seeing the look on her face, Walker murmurs, "See...see what you do to me." With that, he quickens his thrusts, seeking the ultimate of the pleasures of love.

When Alex feels the heat of passion begin to lick at her senses again, she begins to moan and cry out, unable to believe that making love could be like this. She had climaxed twice already and he wasn't even done yet, the heat and passion he evoked in her was beyond all she had ever experienced before. She loved Walker with every fiber of her being, and knew that he loved her too; by the way he was making love to her. It was all too much. "Oh Walker!" she cries, her voice deep and husky, "...I can't...I can't..."

"Yes...yes you can!" he cries out himself, feeling the tightening in his loins, knowing he's nearing the end. "Watch, Alex... open...your eyes!"

With all the energy she can muster, she opens her eyes and looks into his. Together they look down the length of their bodies to where they are joined so intimately. Watching his engorged manhood disappear in to her body is more than they can both manage, and together they reach the ultimate high. Walker cries out, "I'm coming, Alex...I'm coming!" ending with a shout like she's never heard before as the contractions of her third orgasm clutch and pull at his shaft.

Breathing heavily, he collapses onto Alex's spent body, her arms immediately enveloping him. When he regains some strength, he sighs deeply, contentedly, and moves to her side. He rolls over onto his back, cries out and immediately sits up, his cry bringing Alex quickly up beside him.

“What … what is it?”

“Lechuguilla, I fell into…” he stops speaking and winces as a jab of pain radiates through his back, his hand reaching behind him.

She pushes him over on his stomach, her hands gliding lightly over his bare back, feels two spines imbedded in the muscles on his right lower side. “I need more light. Stay here. I’ve got a flashlight in my saddlebag.”

She’s back before he even knows she’s gone. Seeing the beam of light, “How many of them are there?”

“Two … I think I can pull them out with the tweezers from the first aid kit.” She begins to probe at one of the spines.

“When did you do this?”

“Ahh …” he groans, feeling her probing at his back. “About noon, I think. Rattlesnake spooked Amigo, threw me.”

“Why didn’t you turnaround and come back? You had to have been in misery sitting in that saddle that long.” Plucking the second spiny needle from his back, she hears his cry softly muffled by the sleeping bag.

“Your horse. I had to get your horse.” He starts to roll over, “Is that it?”

“I think so, lie still until I put some of this antibiotic cream on them.”

“Save it, your wounds need it more than mine.” He tries to rise.

“No, there’s enough for both. Now lie still, so I can bandage them.”

After she applies gauze and tape to each Walker’s puncture wounds, he sits up and takes the makeshift bandage off of Alex’s hand and after cleaning it with water again, liberally spreads the antibiotic over the seeping rawness. Being as gentle as he can, Alex is still in tears by the time he finishes.

“I’m sorry,” he murmurs, and brushes the tears from her eyes, kisses her lips softly, lightly, “Now, lie down so I can see to your left hip.”

“I think it’s all right.” She hesitantly smiles at him, “Besides, you’ve … seen … to my hip already.”

His eyes change to a soft seductive gaze and he murmurs, “And probably will again. But right now let me see your hip.” Then gently pushes her down on the sleeping bag, on her right side with her back to him.

He sees the scabbed over scrapes marring the perfection of her beautifully rounded hip, and slides his hand over it. It’s cool and dry to his touch, showing no fever and no infection. It will heal just fine without any further treatment.

But he can’t take his eyes away from her body, and continues to let his hand softly caress the smooth skin. Feeling an awakening of his manhood, he lies down along the length of her, cradling his growing erection against the soft roundness of her bottom.

A soft “Walker?”

Hearing his name whispered from her lips, he knows what’s coming. He dreads what must be spoken but in a way he welcomes it. This one thing between them that is marring their relationship has to be brought out into the open before they can move forward.

She hears his breathing catch and knows what she is wanting. “Before we go any farther, we need to talk about what happened between you and Mer … that woman.”

“I know.” He tightens his arm slightly, takes a deep breath and then begins. “I don’t know what you want to hear, Alex, but it was just a big … dumb … mistake on my part. I have no excuses, not really, but I swear to you … I never made love to her.” He takes another deep breath, “I … I couldn’t. I knew Merilee wanted me to take her to bed, but when we kissed there was … nothing. I felt no … desire … for her, and I knew if I had taken her to bed I … I wouldn’t have been able to perform.” He turns her around until they are lying side by side, facing her with his declaration. “I didn’t want her that way, Alex! I didn’t love her!” Then he sees the tears flowing down her cheeks and realizes just how much he had hurt her.

He takes his thumb and brushes the tears from her eyes, and she takes his hand in hers, holding it to her breast. “I know,” she takes a deep breath and continues, “I know that we didn’t have a commitment, but … I thought there was something between us.”

“There was, Alex, and like an idiot, I almost threw it away.” He raises her chin to look into her eyes, “Did I … throw it away, Alex? Did I completely destroy what was between us?” He touches his lips gently to hers. His voice husky, shaky, “I … I hope not, because … I like to think … that we have a future together.”

“Oh, Walker,” she cries, lying her head against his chest, and he holds her tenderly until she quiets in his arms.

Walker tilts her head up and covers her tears with kisses, and Alex accepts his mute apology silently, her heart squeezing, bursting.

As her body relaxes in the security of his arms she feels the warmth and pressure of his quickly enlarging manhood, and a flush of heat courses through her. All thoughts of his transgression have fled her mind. All she can think about is the desire that is raging through her.

She comes up on her knees beside him, brushing his hands away, as he attempts to pull her down on top of him. Her hands cradle his head and she bathes his face with soft whispers of her lips, gliding smoothly from his mouth, to his eyes, his cheeks, to his ears and then down his neck, where she begins to nibble her way down to his chest. Her tongue searching for the nipples she knows to be hidden there. Finding one she begins to nibble gently with her teeth, then she licks at it before sucking it into her mouth, while her hand locates the other hidden bud. She moves back and forth between them until Walker is frantic beneath her, then she continues on her quest, following the arrow of fur down his belly to the thick mass surrounding his engorged manhood.

There she pauses, letting her fingers touch, caress, explore and tease as she moves herself down between his thighs. She brushes her thumb across the blunt tip of him, feeling the pearl drops that have oozed out of him; she rubs it through her fingers then touches them to her mouth. She licks her lips and lowers her head, letting her tongue caress the length of him, while she cups the sac of twin globes nestled below.

When she finally takes him in her mouth, she glances up and sees that he is watching her. His hands clenched at his side.

As she explores him with her mouth and her tongue, discovering his slick, swollen contours, she feels his hands on her, as they comb through her hair, gathering it up, compelling her to take him ever more deeply.

His hands are rigid on her head, gripping her fiercely as he probes the limits of her mouth and throat, and the shocking pleasure of it leaves her weak. She has never taken to this kind of sex before, never wanted to taste a man in such a fashion and drink from his body. But she does now...with him.

His breathing changes, becomes faster, tighter. He tugs on her hair pulling her away from him, and as she releases him, she realizes that he is still hard. He cups her hips with his hands and brings her up to his body until he is staring into her eyes. His hardness now tucked between her thighs. She moans a soft, wild sound as he covers her lips. His kisses are like fire. They’re quick, hot flares of desire. Passion flares inside her, sharp and irresistible. She moves against him instinctively, arching from the small of her back and enticing him with the buttery softness of her breasts. She yields, letting him roll her beneath him. She cries out wildly as he lifts and plunges into her. Her body shakes helplessly with the deep thrusts. Clinging to him with her arms, her mouth on his, she wraps her legs around his hips and hangs on tightly, possessively, as buries himself inside her, driving again and again.

Alex buckles with a deep wailing cry, her head curls forward and her knees jerk up as she feels her release coming.

“No, Alex, not yet!” Walker grips her face in the shock of his own undoing, too soon, not yet … not yet.

She begins to sob as he comes inside her. His fluids erupted hotly, like a spurt of fire. A searing wetness floods her senses. It was semen and tears and something even more precious … joy. They were all mingling in the place where he is joined to her, flowing through her like life. She feels as if a flash of fire from a heaven above had pierced her.

When it was over, they both lay slumped on the sleeping bag, shaking.

***

Monday morning, Trivette is sitting at the bar, drinking coffee, and waiting on Walker to make his entrance. This meeting is one of their beginning of the week rituals that has somehow evolved over time, nothing was prearranged, it … just happened. And until Walker fell under the spell of Merilee, Alex had joined them in this ritual.

He had found out from his captain that Walker had taken the past week off, the reason being unclear to him, but hoping it will put his partner in a better frame of mind than what it has been.

He’s sitting with his back to the door, but when he hears the light whisper of footsteps, he knows it’s his half-Cherokee partner making his way across the room. He has become very familiar to Walker’s step. When he feels a hand on his shoulder he turns and looks up into the steel-gray eyes of his partner.

“Good morning, Trivette. How was your weekend?”

Trivette stares open mouthed at his partner. This man, who had been miserable the past few weeks, is smiling like he was sitting on top of the world. “Wa … Walker … good morning.”

Completely puzzled by the man’s actions, he’s unsure of what to say. Then hearing the click-clack of high heels he turns to see Alex walking toward them with the same look of utopia written all over her face, too.

Walker smiles at the look on his partner’s face, slaps him on the back, leans over and says, “Trivette, you told me I should try.” He looks at Alex coming his way, “I decided to take your advice, Trivette. I’ve been trying.”

Trivette’s mouth is still gaping open as he watches Walker slides his arm around Alex’s waist and guides her toward a booth.

A smile slowly spreads across Trivette’s face as he watches them move across the room and slide into a booth, sitting close together. And knowing that his two best friends have finally made peace with each other, and from the looks of things ... a little more than just peace.

Trivette pumps his fisted hand once, crying out softly, “YES!”

The End