Disclaimer: SMK and all related characters are the property of Warner Brothers and Shoot the Moon Productions. No infringement is intended.
Timeline: After "Utopia Now" - SPOILER WARNING
Author's Notes: Just a quickie to get me though the day! This has not been betaed so I apologize in advance! :)
Amanda King smiled in spite of herself as she walked away from Lee Stetson and pressed the button to call the elevator. As the doors were closing behind her, she cast a quick glance down the hallway where he was still standing, staring in her direction. The look on his face spoke for itself. By Amanda's calculations, it bordered somewhere between complete and utter shock and blissful hope. All it had taken was two words, spoken with a cheerful lilt. All she had said was "not exactly".
As the elevator ascended, Amanda reviewed the past twenty-four hours. They had been trying to say the least. She and Lee had been hunted like animals in the Virginia backwoods by Sacker and his men and had to spend the night chained together in a swamp. It was slightly chilly and they had huddled together for warmth. The situation itself had caused Amanda to open up to Lee a little more than she had intended. She was scared, that much she freely admitted. He had held her to comfort her and in that fraction of a moment, they almost kissed.
Amanda had been replaying that moment over and over in her mind. The look in Lee's eyes was unmistakable. Amanda had been kissed before, several times in fact. She knew what a man looked like when he was planning on kissing her and that was exactly what Lee "Scarecrow" Stetson had been planning on doing. Then, just a few minutes ago in the hallway outside the bullpen, he tried to write it off as "two people trying to keep warm." Amanda knew otherwise and before she could stop herself she had blurted out those two little words. "Not exactly."
Amanda handed her badge to Mrs. Marston and practically skipped out the door. Now that it had been said, let him try to figure out what she had meant.
The alarm clock jolted Amanda from a most comfortable sleep. She rolled over and slapped the snooze button and checked the time. '6:30,' she thought. 'Gotta get the boys up for school.' She climbed out from under the covers, pulled on her robe and headed downstairs to start breakfast.
To her surprise the kitchen was already a bustle of activity. The boys were awake, fully dressed and quietly eating breakfast. Dotty was making coffee and fixing the boys' lunches.
"Good morning, darling." Dotty sang out.
"Morning, mom." Phillip said, between bites.
Jamie nodded his head, swallowed and said, "Yeah, morning, mom."
Amanda looked on in stunned silence. There was no bickering or hitting. The boys were all ready to walk out the door and there had been no name calling involved.
"I must be dreaming." Amanda walked across the tile floor and hugged the boys. "Thank you for behaving this morning."
Dotty handed Amanda her cup of coffee. "We know you were really tired last night when you got in so I asked the boys to act civilized this morning."
Amanda took a sip of the piping hot liquid. "Thank you, guys. That was really very nice of you. Now, can we talk about this happening all the time?"
That said, the boys jumped off the barstools, grabbed their bags and hurried to the door.
"Bye mom! We'll stay on the sidewalk!" Phillip called out over his shoulder. With a slam of the door, they were gone.
Amanda shook her head and looked at her mother who shrugged.
Amanda arrived at the office earlier than usual, thanks to the boys' behavior at breakfast. She got her badge from Mrs. Marston and headed upstairs to see if Lee was in the Q-Bureau. When she reached the top of the stairs and rounded the corner she was surprised to see the office door wide open. Frowning, she peeked her head inside.
Lee was sitting at his desk; a large bouquet of flowers in a vase was partially blocking his view. Amanda cleared her throat. Lee jumped to his feet and in two steps was standing in front of her. He reached behind her and shut the office door. He must have noticed her confused expression because he quickly took her hands in his and smiled.
"Amanda, I spent all night thinking about what you said yesterday." He paused for a moment, looking deep into her eyes. Amanda just nodded, unable to speak. "Amanda King, I love you."
"What?" Amanda had found her voice and was surprised at how loud it sounded as it echoed off the office walls.
"I love you. You were absolutely right. That was not two people trying to keep warm. I wanted nothing more than to pull you into my arms and kiss you like you've never been kissed before." Lee's eyes were boring into her as he spoke, his voice steady and deep. "I want you to be mine, Amanda. I can't stand the thought of anyone else dating you. Hell, let's just get married."
Amanda's knees buckled as the words registered. "Married?" she croaked out. "Lee, are you feeling okay? This is a joke, right? You want to play married for a case."
"No joke, no playing. Amanda, this is as real as my feelings for you." Lee pulled her close and wrapped his arms around her.
"Lee, I don't know." She whispered as his lips neared hers. She could feel his breath on her face and her bones turned to jelly.
"Amanda, tell me you love me too." he whispered, his lips hovering over hers.
'I must be dreaming.' she thought 'Oh, if this is a dream, please don't wake me!'
"Lee, I do love you." her lips quivered as his drew closer.
A buzzing sound from out in the hallway startled Amanda. Lee seemed to be oblivious and was surprised when Amanda pulled back.
"Amanda?" he asked.
"What's that noise?" Amanda was looking around, trying to determine the source of the buzzing.
The buzzing of the alarm clock woke Amanda from a deep sleep. As she reached over to slap the snooze button she could hear the familiar sound of Jamie and Phillip fighting over the bathroom. She sat up and looked around the room, sighing. Throwing the covers off she pulled on her robe and headed downstairs to fix breakfast.