"Scarecrow & Mrs. King" is the property of Warner Brothers and
Shoot the Moon. Use of these characters is strictly for entertainment purposes.
I can only dream about one day getting paid to do this. Do not redistribute this
story in whole or part without express permission from the author.
Summary: Lee and Amanda
share a secret rendezvous.
Time: Between ATWAS and
and eman's archive.
Notes: See what happens
when business is slow and the boss is away at meetings? Here's something short
and sweet to purge my twisted soul. I’d also like to point out, in passing,
that I will be posting a somewhat large and generally serious story within the
next week. When I do, I just ask that you all remember *this* story and how I
*can* write nice, sweet fluff, too, not just the heart-wrenching, angst-ridden
tales I’ve been apt to write as of late.
thanks to all the eyes who read this over and offered priceless comments and
suggestions. You are forever in my debt. J
With the final dish dried and
put away, Amanda was wiping down the counter-tops when he arrived. She turned to
see him standing, a crooked smile on his face, just watching her.
When he realized she'd looked
around and was returning his gaze, he nodded his head ever so slightly and
motioned for her to come out into the backyard.
Somehow, lately, it seemed that
Lee would go out of his way to find a reason to stop by and see how things were
going at the King household. She wondered if he would ever stop sneaking around
to the back and just knock on the front door. But she had to admit, the secrecy
was nice. On some level, she reasoned that she didn't have to share him with
anyone if no one knew they were dating.
Shouting a flimsy excuse to her
mother, Amanda quickly joined him on the veranda. He was sitting on the bench,
fidgeting with his tie, when she slid in next to him. Without a thought it
seemed, he leaned back and put his arm around her shoulder, pulling her to his
side. She relaxed against him and they sat, neither saying a word, watching the
It occurred to her, in those
tranquil moments, that they could sit like this for hours and she would be
content. It was enough for her to hear the quiet rhythm of his breathing and
feel the light evening breeze play across her face. Moments like this were few
and far between and, now that there was *something* between the two of them,
they were much treasured.
She had considered the
ramifications of a relationship with Lee Stetson and had finally reached the
conclusion that whatever he was willing to give, she would readily take and ask
for no more. But she had yet to figure out just what it was that he was willing
On a deeper level, Amanda knew
Lee was a scarred man. He had endured so many emotional battles throughout his
life that she was amazed he'd opened himself up to her at all, admitting to her
that he wanted to get to know her better. She knew he already considered her a
friend, and he had been willing to take the next step, but what about the one
after that? She wasn't going to hold her breath.
Oh, yes, he'd changed since
she'd first met him. A smile crept to her lips at the thought of how his
boorishness used to infuriate her. But, as she grew to know the man behind the
façade, she had realized that most of that was a poor act designed to push
people away - no involvement equals no pain.
Now, as they sat together, his
hand lightly rubbing the bare flesh of her arm, she realized she was delighted
about how far they’d come together and started to wonder, with a rush of
anticipation, if . . . no, *when* he’d be ready to move things forward once
"Amanda." Lee's husky
whisper drew her back to reality. "You're awfully quiet. What's on your
She sighed, fighting off the
urge to tell him *exactly* what she was thinking. Instead, she murmured,
"Nothing?" he queried.
"You were a million miles away. It had to be *something* to draw your
attention like that."
She tipped her head back and
looked at her partner. "I suppose I was just thinking how nice and peaceful
it is this evening." A half-truth was better than no truth at all. She'd
learned that from years of experience, and it was reinforced within weeks of
joining the Agency. "Why? What were you thinking?"
He looked down at her, a slow
smile forming on his lips. "I was thinking how much I wanted to do
this," he whispered, and in an instant, captured her lips with his.
When he drew back, Amanda
continued to gaze up at him, still feeling the tingles of electricity running
from her lips straight down to her toes. "I don't think I'll ever tire of
that," she whispered.
Lee smiled. "I hope
not." Then kissed her again, this time more intensely than the first.
Amanda's heart raced. `This is
madness,' she thought. `I shouldn't let myself get so involved, but how can I
help it? He's amazing! No wonder he's such a ladies man. What can I offer him
that those other women can't? Stability? Friendship? Maybe he's ready for
something more . . . real. That's it. Real. But this is still insane. What am I
getting myself into?'
All these thoughts cascaded
through her mind as Lee kissed her. Jumbled thoughts, mixed up with the intense
physical emotions that his lips on hers and his arms around her seemed to evoke.
Again, he pulled back; she took a breath, willing her heart to slow lest it
reveal to him just how affected by his touch she really was.
She lowered her head and nestled
into him. He tightened his hold around her and she could hear his heart
pounding. At least she was drawing the same response from him as he was from
her. She hoped, for his sake, that he wasn't as confused as she was, although it
would mean she wasn’t alone.
"Amanda?" Again, his
voice drew her back to earth.
"Yeah?" she replied,
closing her eyes and listening to the beating of his heart, which hadn't seemed
to slow at all.
"I want to tell you . . .
something," he said.
His voice was strained, and
Amanda started to sit up, but then his heart seemed to beat even faster. She
stayed in his arms, wondering what could possibly be on his mind that would
cause his heart to race.
"Go ahead," she said.
"I . . . I." He
paused, swallowed and cleared his throat. "I . . . um . . .lo . . . "
Again he paused, and Amanda's heart stopped.
`Oh my gosh!' she thought. `He's
going to say it.’ Her mind froze for an instant as she tried to take control
of the flutters she felt in her chest. ‘I can't believe he's going to say it!
It's too soon! It's too sudden! We hardly know each other!' She stopped and
corrected herself, `Okay, we know each other, but . . . oh my gosh!'
She sat up and turned to face
him. He quickly averted his eyes from her and looked everywhere *but* where she
was expectantly sitting, waiting for his next few words.
"I . . . um . . . love . .
. what you've . . . uh . . . done with these vines," he croaked out.
They both sighed as the moment
passed. Whether with relief or disappointment, for herself or Lee, Amanda
couldn't be sure.
"Tha . . ." She
coughed once and started again. "Thanks."
"You're welcome," he
said, turning his attention back to her, trying to ease the awkwardness. They
stared at each other for a second, Amanda trying to read what was in Lee's eyes
but having no success. He had quickly covered whatever emotion he might have
been feeling with practiced ease, yet again. Finally, she settled back and
"I suppose I should be
getting back inside before Mother sends out a search party for me," she
explained as she sat up, smoothing out the non-existent wrinkles in her jeans.
"I suppose," Lee
half-heartedly agreed. "What did you tell her this time?"
Amanda laughed as she stood.
"I told her that the night-blooming jasmine was particularly fragrant
tonight, and I wanted to be alone."
Lee stood beside her and pulled
her into his embrace. "She believed you?" he asked as they swayed in
time with a melody that only two in love can hear.
Amanda smiled ruefully.
"I'm pretty sure she didn't, since jasmine is out of season."
Lee laughed and then lightly
kissed her forehead. "I'll see you tomorrow," he promised as he
slipped away from her, leaving her for the night.
As she turned away from the yard
and faced the back door, she thought of what he had been about to say. She was
sure it had nothing to do with the vines. It didn't matter, she reasoned. They
*both* knew what he really wanted to say. Someday, he'd be able to admit his
feelings and then they'd take that next step together.