You have been invited to celebrate a birthday with Lee Crane, your best friend Alana, and a certain tall, handsome blond. So sit back, relax, and indulge! SCDs to you all…

Teela J. & Donna S.




You and I are co-workers at the Nelson Institute of Marine Research; we have become close friends in the four months we’ve worked together. Although I am in PR and you are in Computer Systems, we have a lot in common. Our zest for life, our sense of humor, our admiration of the fine men employed by the Institute…

I am the first to admit I have more than a passing interest in Lee Crane, and have dated him whenever possible for the last several months. With our schedules and the Seaview’s never-ending missions, it is difficult to nurture a relationship. I, however, am undaunted in my quest!

Your sights have been on Chip Morton for quite a while now. He’s never noticed you, and you’ve never really had the opportunity to meet the tall blond… until this special weekend. If all goes as hoped, you will know the enigmatic Chip quite well by Monday!

We are participating in a mini surprise party suggested by Lee, funded by the Admiral, and orchestrated by the two of us. Chip is completely unaware of the plans.


We finish preparing things in the luxurious penthouse suite of the most exclusive hotel in town, ready for a fun night of who-knows-what and dinner. We wait patiently as the appointed hour approaches. We are dressed elegantly: I am wearing a dress of dark emerald lace, while you are wearing a sumptuous sapphire blue gown alight with tiny sequins. The room is lit with a soft, warm glow from the three dozen candles set about the room; the crystal and china sparkle in readiness.

Lee and Chip arrive at the hotel, dressed in their whites and looking sharper than two men have a right to. The Exec looks disgruntled as Lee practically pulls him along. Chip thinks that this will be a long, boring official affair with some stuffy government people and Lee has hinted at nothing.

A knock at the door...

"Who is it?" I say, noting they are right on time. Can’t beat that military precision!

"Captain Lee Crane and Lieutenant Commander Morton," he calls out through the door.

I open the door and the two come in. Chip takes three steps into the room before seeing the elaborate set-up: the candles, the cake on the table, the tasteful banner that says "Happy Birthday Chip" on it hung over the fireplace.

Then he sees you and me standing there smiling. Looking at Lee with complete blank puzzlement he says, "What the heck-?"

"Surprise!" we yell, all three of us at once. "Happy Birthday!"

Lee looks positively smug that he has pulled it off and Chip tries hard to regain his composure.

"But... my birthday was last week!" he protests as the grin begins to form on his face. He is eyeing off that sexy blue dress with a gleam in his eye...

"I know, buddy, but we had that mission we couldn’t skip out on. This is a special private party. Now, you've heard me speak of Alana here-"

He shakes my hand and nods. "Lee has told me about you, you work for the PR department... entertainment and functions, right?"

"Right," I say as I shake his hand. "And this is Carol, a technical specialist on board at the Institute. She’s the authority on the information database at NIMR."

Chip turns his appreciative gaze on you, giving you the once-over and grinning broadly. He takes your hand and holds it just a bit longer than necessary.

"Haven’t I read some papers you wrote concerning the newer computer protocols on the main database? Took over for what was his name, Meyers?"

You nod, giving him that cute smile you have and he is captivated by the glint in your eyes.

"It’s a pleasure, Commander," you say, knowing it will be! He does not know your wickedness yet… but I know. He is in for a wild ride.

"This place looks fantastic!" Lee says as he moves to the table. "Wow, Chip, look at the cake! Just like the Seaview!"

Chip is impressed and a slight bit embarrassed.

"All this for me?"

"You deserve the best, Chip. Without you Seaview would never make it to port half the time. We have a whole weekend to play and relax... Captain’s orders!"

"Hmm, put that way, aye, sir!" He gives a mock salute to Lee and a large, slightly hungry grin to the rest of the scenery. Especially to the sapphire blue parts...

"Dinner will be brought up anytime you want," I say to the pair. "Are you hungry yet?"

Chip says in that smooth voice of his, "Getting that way, yes…" His gaze rests on you.

You, of course, have the decency to blush. He notes that and looks even more pleased!

I call for dinner and we retire to the couch to await the feast: you, Chip, me, then Lee. We speak mostly of Institute related news, getting to know one another better by degrees. After a few minutes there is a lull in the conversation until Chip speaks with a smile.

"You ladies look lovely tonight," Chip says in a genuine voice. "Already this birthday is one of the best I’ve had!"

"You haven’t seen anything yet, Commander," I say as I feel Lee’s hand creep behind my shoulder. "We have a mission to make this a birthday weekend to remember."

"So what do you have planned?" Lee asks.

"How about a tour of the suite first?" I ask back.

"Sounds good." We all get up off of the couch, Chip gallantly helping you to your feet.

"This is the main room, and there is a small kitchenette. By the way, there’s a gallon of premium French vanilla ice cream in the freezer and all the toppings you can imagine." Chip's blue eyes spark a bit but he makes no comment.

"Now, this is the Master bedroom," I say as we all go in the center door. "You can see that there is a wonderful ocean view from here. Just past that door is the Jacuzzi . . ."

"Let’s see that," Lee prompts. We walk over and you see Chip eyeing off the spacious tub with a calculating look.

"Hmm, big enough for four!" he declares under his breath. Lee only clears his throat and sends a slightly uncomfortable glance to me. Chip gives you a smile of speculation but you throw him a look of innocence. (Quite the actress, you are!) We parade out of the sumptuous bedroom.

"And there is the second room," I begin. "Not as large as the Master, but with all the amenities save the jacuzzi."

Chip stops and frowns slightly. "Wait a moment... there are four of us and only three..."

"You always were good with math, Mister Morton," Crane says as he blushes just a bit. "I… think it will all work out."

"The other room is identical to this one," I continue, unfazed. "As far as the main suite, there is a fully stocked wet bar behind this panel, and a state-of-the-art stereo system, here."

"Do the fireplaces function?" Chip asks with a speculative frown.

"Yes, they do. It’s natural-gas fueled so no need for wood and ashes."

"Hmm, very efficient," he smiles as new possibilities enter his mind. He glances at you, then at the rug in front of the fireplace, and licks his lips slightly. You are the only one to notice this...

Just now a knock comes on the door... room service. A parade of hotel staff come and goes as they deliver the feast. By the time they exit, we are all drooling.

"Wow, this looks incredible! Ribs? And look at that pile of shrimp!!" The Exec sounds like he has found Heaven's Table. Chip advances on the array. "All my very favorites! And what is this stuff? Some kind of soup? It smells wonderful!"

"Best Cajun gumbo this side of N'Orleans," I say proudly. "I had it made specially for our celebration. Try these lobster puffs..."

Soon we are all eating greedily. The ribs stop everyone, though. What about the finery we are all wearing? And those dress whites? Surely a dangerous combination.

"No problem," you say, having planned ahead. From the kitchen you fetch four bibs, sturdy white linen with the hotel logo imprinted on them. "Courtesy of the hotel."

Chip helps you with yours, taking a moment to inhale the subtle fragrance of your silky hair. You don’t see this, but I do! Lee looks even smugger than before and I have to elbow him pointedly.

So, we commence with dinner. As usual, the men are charming and witty in their conversation and the food is incredible. We all get kind of silly when the barbecue sauce gets on certain noses and cheeks...

Chip reaches over and playfully swipes a dot of the red sauce from your cheek then sucks it off his finger. "Can’t let this stuff go to waste," he teases. "Gotta get the last drop!"

"Must be thorough," you counter, making him blush a bit with your sultry expression.

Lee snickers, realizing by now that Chip has met his match. Funny, but Chip does not look displeased in the least!

We have been eating for a while... the shrimp comes to mind after the ribs have all but disappeared. While Lee and I get into a serious shrimp-eating contest, Chip begins feeding you pieces of shrimp, one at a succulent time... He is fascinated at the way your lips seem to enclose each tiny morsel... and, much to his chagrin, finds himself warming up significantly.

You are sensing his interest and are returning the vibes to him. He feeds you a shrimp and holds it a little too near the are staring at those sparkling blue eyes and not paying attention... and when you take the morsel in your mouth, you find your lips caressing his fingertip.

He does not pull away in shock or embarrassment; he is watching you with an avid interest and a hopeful look.

With a quick, playful kiss you pull back from his hand and he gives you an incandescent smile that dazzles your vision.

That Morton smile… Lee rolls his eyes and knows that you are in trouble. When Chip turns on that charm, no woman stands a chance!!

Of course, you and I exchange a similar look... we know it’s Chip that has no chance!

Finally satiated, we leave the table and you suggest a walk in the hotel conservatory. The large, enclosed park-like structure is fairly deserted tonight and perfect for strolling through. When Lee offers his arm to me, Chip takes your hand and we proceed.

There are many secluded areas with tiny benches along the path; the air smells of jasmine and tropical flowers. You two go to the right as I drag Lee over to the left.

He wants to see the Brazilian display or some such nonsense but I intend on catching his interest another way. The two of you walk slowly down the path…


Walking in the conservatory you two talk about work, about how impressed Chip is with your ideas and theories on computer databases. He confesses he’s wanted to meet you professionally. But he never dreamed you were such a stunning woman!

You find a quiet bench and sit a while, holding hands. After a bit he inches closer... gazing in to your bright, sparkling eyes… and asks if you would mind giving him a kiss, in honor of his birthday.

You hesitate, knowing this is the first step... the first, and the most important. Chip looks hopeful and devastatingly hungry for your acquiescence, and you know you cannot resist.

When you move forward, just a little, he does not wait but moves in for the kiss. He places his broad hand behind your head and cradles it there, capturing your mouth with his. Your eyes shut in sheer pleasure, so you miss the same look mirrored on his own face! The kiss gains intensity quickly, both of you taken aback at the response you have. Finally, reluctantly, you move apart and Chip shakes his head, just a little.

"Wow," he says with a grin, "some birthday present!"

"You haven’t seen anything yet," you reply slyly, enjoying the sudden look of surprise that crosses his face.

Taken aback, he stammers, "Y-you mean desert, right? The ice cream and cake later..."

You wrinkle up your nose cutely and do not answer. Chip studies you for a bit, then blushes slightly. He averts his blue-blue eyes because he does not want you to see the naked desire that is glittering in them now.

The moment passes and he turns to you again, his voice rich and velvety as he says, "Carol, I want to thank you for making this evening special for me. You gave me a kiss... may I give you one in return?"

You say yes and he moves forward greedily, full of desire and growing interest.

Swiftly he deepens the kiss, exploring your mouth and drawing an unprecedented response from deep within.

He is a world-class kisser, and the sensations seem to last forever!

Only the need for oxygen pulls you apart and you both sit, gasping, for half a minute. He reaches up and pushes back a strand of loose hair, looking deeply into your eyes, wondering at the magic he is feeling at the moment. You reach up as well, your fingers combing through his blond hair, playing with the ends as he gives you a small grin.

Leaning close, he whispers in your ear. "What did you have in mind for desert?"

"Oh, something decadent and sweet," you answer with an almost innocent look.

Chip is not fooled now, not after that last kiss! He speaks in that low, sexy voice, "Perhaps, if you’re interested, we can continue this at our own private party later? I think I’d love to try out that Jacuzzi... Then we can discuss this desert idea."

You readily agree and he takes the liberty of a third, even more passionate kiss that leaves you swooning with sheer desire and a taste of things to come.

"I wonder where Alana and Lee are?" you ask as you try to get your heart rate under control.

"Oh, I’m sure they are doing something fascinating, like looking at the botanical exhibits at the south end."

"You really think so?" you ask with a raised eyebrow. "I thought they knew each other, you know, really well."

He snorts and says, "Still. Lee just doesn’t think that way. He’s all business and never seems to be able to, er, relax. I don’t know how he does it. I’d burst if I didn’t get a fair share of... sharing."

"Hmm," you say with a grin of your own, "you don’t know Alana at all, do you? Trust me, she can get him to relax."

"I’ll take your word for it," he says with a good measure of doubt. "He sure needs some down time."

You suppress a giggle at his choice of words and he guides you to your feet. Together you wander back down the path and enjoy the sensation of holding hands. Such strong hands, you think as you study your companion. It brings a wider grin to your already beaming face.

As you approach the starting point you hear my voice close by. "I think you should take it easy for a moment, Lee! I can already see a bruise forming!"

"I’m fine. A bit embarrassed…" you hear the Captain say.

Chip rolls his eyes as you come upon the two of us. "What happened?" he asked with patient sigh.

"We were just walking and I just… kinda… tripped over a hidden sprinkler," Lee answers a bit defensively.

"Look at your uniform!" the blond exclaims with a scowl. There is a large ugly grass stain on one shoulder and a smudge of dirt on his sleeve. "And I suppose that emerging bruise on your cheek goes along with all of this."

"I didn’t do it on purpose!" he protests.

"You never do," Chip says with another sigh.

"We can just have the uniform cleaned by the hotel service," I suggest. "I bet you are itching to get out of those starchy things anyway."

"Sounds good," he replies with a rueful smile.

We head back to the room, men in tow, and exchange another set of grins. Such a shame, to see them out of uniform!

"Wait a minute," Chip exclaims, "I didn’t even bring anything to change into…"

"Not a problem," Lee interrupts with a bit of superiority in his voice. "I stopped by your place this afternoon and packed a few things for this weekend for you."

"Right," you add. "We have both of your bags already in the closet of one of the rooms."

"Hmm," the tall Exec says. "Pretty impressive. How long have you been orchestrating this little weekend?"

"For about a month," I answer. "Lee contacted me well in advance and gave us plenty of time to get it together."

"This gets better and better," he states as we enter the room.

"Come on, Captain," I say as I take his hand. "Let’s get you out of that uniform and into something more… comfortable."

You grin behind his back but Chip sees your look and gives a smile of his own. When I have dragged Lee into the first bedroom he turns to you and says, "Now, if a gorgeous woman gave me a line like that, you can count on me taking advantage of opportunity. I wonder if Lee even caught what she was hinting at."

"Oh," you say with a knowing look, "Alana has a way of putting things quite clearly. And as far as Lee is concerned, he doesn’t have a chance of missing her message."

Just then the door opens and out flies Chip’s bag; without a word the door is shut again and you laugh out loud, joined by the Lieutenant Commander two seconds later.

"Come on," you say, "you can change in the Master suite." At that he pauses, eyeing you with a measuring glance. His lips curve into a delicious grin and he takes your hand.

"Only if you come with me."

"Why, Mister Morton," you tease, "it’d be my pleasure to supervise the proceedings." He gives you a glowing smile, which you return.

You shut the door behind you and sit on the chaise lounge in the corner of the room. He puts his bag on the bed and digs through it with curiosity. "What are we planning on doing? These clothes seem to be pretty casual… I see he packed my swim trunks."

At the very image that pops in your mind, you give a shudder of delight. Chip, wearing those form-fitting trunks, his hair golden in the sun…

"We had thought going sailing would be fun," you say as you fight to control those images. "Although neither of us can sail, Lee insisted you could teach us. Hope that’s okay," you add.

He gives you a completely predatory look and says in his low, velvety voice, "I love to teach beautiful women all kinds of things."

"And are you equally good at learning a few new things yourself?" you flirt back, amused at his startled but pleased reaction.

Without further comment he begins unbuttoning his tunic, his movements efficient and deliberate. You settle back and watch the show with eagerness. His body is well-muscled but not overdone; the taut body speaks of power and grace and you lick your lips unconsciously as he moves. White tee shirt and shoes removed, he reaches for his belt and you turn away, slightly embarrassed at your lascivious thoughts. You turn your back as he finishes removing his pants but can’t help but notice the mirror directly in your line of sight. Framed within it is the clear image of Chip as he begins dressing in faded jeans and a simple blue T-shirt. You give a silent prayer of thanks to the mirror-makers of the world and finally turn to face him when he clears his throat.

Perfection in blue, you think. He looked good in his dress whites, but he was even sexier now!

"Are you going to change as well?" he asks in a velvet voice, raking his gaze up and down your form.

"Good idea. I think I will," you answer coolly. You imagine his hands slowly lowering the zipper that runs down your back…and as if in answer to your fondest wish, he speaks.

"I’m always ready to lend a hand, if you need one," he offers gallantly, like the proper gentleman. There is no mistaking the decadent look in his eyes, though. Pure desire!

"Yes, please," you manage to say and he walks behind you. With a gentle hand he lifts up your hair... you can feel his warm breath on the back of your neck. He moves close, very close, daring to brush your earlobe with his lips. He regains control and steps back a little, finding the zipper pull of your dress.

Slowly, deliberately, he slides the tab down inch by agonizing inch... He hesitates as he reaches where your bra clasp is... he bites his lip as he realizes your bra is the same sapphire blue as your dress. Slowly the hand trails down your back.... You shiver at the sensation as his fingers accidentally brush your skin. By the time he reaches his destination of your lower back you are feeling quite overwhelmed.

"Need more help?" he breathes into your ear, his hand coming around your waist.

"Mmm... I think I can handle things from here," you manage to whisper, hating your sense of propriety.

"Maybe later," he says, his interest not diminished in the least.

"Okay," you promise. He turns and gives you a bit of privacy. You select a pair of royal blue leggings topped by a watercolor silk blouse... very soft and touchable material.


There is light jazz playing on the stereo as we all gather in the lounging area. Everyone seems more relaxed out of their formal clothes and it is easy to get comfortable. We all spend about half an hour conversing, getting to know one another further. There is a lot of laughter and joking as each story they tell is more outrageous than the last... You and I are certain they are making this stuff up. Honestly, a walking Mummy? A trip to Venus? Puppets that live? We declare storytime ended if only to stop our sides from hurting.

"Anyone up for desert?" Lee asks hopefully as he eyes the cake.

"Sounds perfect," you agree and we gather around the table. "Would you like us to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ for you?" you ask Chip.

"Uh, please, don’t bother. I am sure you ladies have fine voices but Lee can’t carry a tune in a bucket."

"Hey!" Crane says as he swats Chip on the arm. "Is that any way to talk about a superior officer?"

"Truth is truth, Lee, even though it hurts," Morton counters with a devilish grin.

You think it is wonderful to see these two so relaxed and having fun.

"Why don’t we just cut the cake and get on with it," Chip says.

"No!" I say quickly. "There have to be candles so you can wish on them!" I fetch the tiny candles and light them. The room is darkened and Chip takes a deep breath, holding it while he chooses his wish. With a long, lingering look at you he exhales, making short work of the miniature flames. We clap and cheer and wish him a happy birthday; Lee shakes his hand, clasping him on the shoulder, while I stand on tiptoe to give him a kiss. He is tall enough to make it awkward and I hit his chin instead.

Grinning, he bends down and kisses me properly, full on the lips but not too involved. In that instant I envy you… the man is a supreme kisser. He has shown none of the slight shyness that seems to possess Lee at times and I know you are headed for an uninhibited night of celebration.

While Lee and I move to get the ice cream and dishes, Chip pulls you close.

"Happy Birthday," you whisper, bedazzled by the spark in his blue eyes. He bends down and brushes your lips with his own, taking the kiss deeper with each passing second. The sensations he is generating are unlike any you have known and soon you are lost in the sheer power of his exploration. Your hand, as if by it’s own volition, skims the muscles of his broad back, feeling the planes and lines of definition. Vaguely you notice his hands are straying as well, seeming to hungrily caress the silky texture of your blouse…

He does not break the kiss when you dare to run your hand along his hip; indeed, it only intensifies his efforts and you feel a gentle caress over your derriere. His touch is sure and experienced and you revel in his attentions.

Taken aback at how far you have let things go in front of others, you both pull apart after half a minute more. Chip’s face is as flushed as yours and you try to compose yourself. Lee and I have dished up ice cream and set out various toppings and such; Chip cuts the cake and we begin building sundaes and goopy creations.

"Geez, Chip, gonna have any ice cream with that chocolate sauce?" Lee asks as his best friend pours a good half a cup on his already towering desert.

"I love this stuff; there’s no such thing as too much." He eyes the remaining sauce in the jar and gives it a thoughtful glance. His glance shifts to you and the smile that appears is almost one of a starving man looking at a buffet. You hide your thrill of delight at his unspoken invitation but lick your lips at the very idea.

Chip Morton looks like the happiest birthday boy ever born.


"My god, I am so stuffed I don’t think I will be able to move for an hour," I declare as I settle back onto the couch.

"Really? I’m ready to take a stroll along the beach for a while. The night is beautiful and the beach looked deserted. Anyone else interested?" Chip asks.

"Well, that sounds like a good--"

"Lee and I will stay here," I say as I cut the Captain off abruptly with a nudge. "Why don’t you enjoy a walk with Carol? Say, an hour’s worth?"

"Perfect," Chip declares as he gives me a thankful look.

"But what’s wrong with wanting t-" Lee begins. I lean over and whisper in his ear, effectively cutting off his protest. You hide a snicker, as does Chip, at the astonished expression that appears on Lee’s face as he hears my words. As you fetch a sweater Chip gives me a secret thumbs-up sign and shakes his head in amusement. He knows Lee is a lost man now.


The beach is awash with moonlight and everything is bathed in a pearlescent glow. The night is warm, and the pure white sand gleams as you traverse the deserted stretch of shoreline. You walk a ways as you talk about various subjects, simply enjoying the night and the company. Without preamble Chip stops you and gazes into your moonlit face. After several seconds of study he draws you into another embrace, this one even more passionate than before. Your mind is still whirling when he whispers. "You feel it too. This connection between the two of us… like we’ve known each other for years."

"Yes," you agree.

"I am really attracted to you, Carol. Both mentally… and physically."

"And I, you," you reply as you look up into those beautiful blue eyes. You hold your breath as he bends down once again…

Time stops as the kiss sweeps all sense from your mind. When you emerge from happy oblivion you find an unmistakable expression of desire on his face. He nuzzles your neck, just below your ear, and whispers softly.

"Let me make love to you," he says as he kisses your earlobe gently. "I want to see you receive pleasure, see that look of ecstasy on your face. Please."

You do not hesitate.

"Yes," is all you need to say. It’s all you can say.

Another kiss and he says, "Let’s go on back to the room."

With a glance around you say, "The beach is deserted…"

He smiles and replies, "Have you ever made love in the sand? Trust me, it’s not the most pleasant of experiences. Those grains get everywhere! Still, that is an idea… too bad we don’t have a blanket or two."

You sigh… you don’t really care where, just as long as it happens, and soon!

The trip back takes mere minutes and you both hesitate at the door, listening for any noises within the room.

"Lee would die if we walked in on anything," Chip says. "He has enough of a hard time relaxing as it is."

"I trust Alana. She knows what’s going on; I’m sure they’re behind closed doors by now."

"Alana must really like Lee. He takes a lot of finesse to handle."

You grin as you unlock the door. "She can handle him just fine. They’ve been involved for, what, several months now?"

Chip rolls his eyes. "Four months, two weeks, and three days. He’s seen no one else in all that time. I know the count because he never stops talking about her when we’re off duty."

"Really? Then why does he seem so hesitant? She isn’t the most shy or subtle woman ever born," you wonder aloud.

"Truthfully?" Chip answers unexpectedly. "I think he doesn’t believe he deserves her dedication or her attention. He’s afraid she’ll lose interest and dump him, like a lot of other women he’s known. He lives too much on the edge; a blow like that really knocks him back. It’s hard to see him go through it again and again."

"Alana is different," you assure him. "She doesn’t have any intention on giving up on him. I am in the same position as you… she talks about him all the time when we go out somewhere. Lee this, Lee that, his eyes, his hair, his lean form, his strong hands… sheesh."


You two enter the room to find the coast clear. You see that my door is shut and share a triumphant grin.

Chip sits back on the couch and motions you over to join him. Before you hit the cushion he has pulled you over to sit on his lap. Before half a dozen heartbeats pass you are entwined and deeply serious about getting to know one another…

You don’t know when your sweater disappears, or when you blouse becomes unbuttoned… all you are aware of is his magical, heated touch that seems to be everywhere at once. It is Chip’s ragged moan that shifts your focus back to the room.

"My God, what you do to me," he exclaims as he plants a series of delicate kisses from your lips to the hollow of your collarbone. Stopping to breathe, he looks at you with eyes of liquid fire and says, "Maybe we should continue this elsewhere."

You stand and he scoops you up to carry you into the awaiting Master suite.

"I’ve wanted to do this all evening," he confesses as he removes your blouse and touches the lace of your bra. Your senses go into overtime, as they are flooded with one delicious thing after another. He is an expert, no mistaking it. His thoroughness is awe-inspiring and soon you are in sheer heaven...


"That was… fantastic," he says in a breathless voice.

"Agreed," you say as the stars stop spinning behind your eyes. Never have you felt such raw passion and satisfaction! His own cry of accomplishment had left no doubt as to his own enjoyment in your first intimate encounter.

"You’ve only made me hungry for more," he says as he traces circles on the pillow near your head.

"But we just-"

"That was just for starters," he whispers in your ear, sending a thrill of electricity through your already tingling body. "I am getting a craving for chocolate sauce…"


Forty-five minutes later you know you will never think of chocolate sauce the same old way again.

You rest for a bit, letting your body calm down. Amazingly enough, Chip rolls over and holds you in another passionate embrace.

"Well, I tried to get all that off of you, but I’m bound to have missed a few spots. Would you care to take a shower? Maybe the tub or the Jacuzzi?"

You begin to wonder where on earth this man is getting his energy.

"A shower sounds good. I’m not sure I could get out of a tub once I got in," you say with a little tiredness.

"Hmm, it does sound good. I wonder if this hotel ever runs out of hot water…"


Thoroughly exhausted the two of you crawl under the covers and snuggle up, falling asleep almost at once. The last thing you hear is Chip’s voice, thanking you.


You rise to the smell of coffee. The sun is just up and you take a moment to enjoy the sight of Chip as a sunbeam stripes across his back. You flush a little as you recall last night’s activities and stretch carefully, not wanting to wake him. After you find your panties and nightgown, you tie on a robe and exit quietly. The coffee smells wonderful and you join me at the table, where I am doing the crossword puzzle in the paper.

"You’re a disgustingly early riser," you say in a low voice, suppressing a yawn.

"I’m surprised to see you up at all," I answer just as quietly. "I don’t imagine you got a whole lot of sleep last night, judging by some of the sounds I heard."

"Oh… uh, sorry about that," you say, a bit embarrassed.

"I just heard a little bit… we were in the closet at the time."

Your eyebrows shoot up.

"The closet?"

I shrug but do not explain, save for the grin on my face. "So, how… was it?"

"Unbelievable," you say honestly.

"So says the rumor mill at work. Mister Morton has quite the reputation. From the look on your face I’d say he lives up to the legend."

"And then some." We click our coffee mugs in a toast.

"How was your evening with Lee?"

I sip a bit of the hot liquid and say, "the boy has potential. Once I get him past the uncertainty and into the passion of the moment, he is spectacular. I don’t know why he is so hard to get to relax!"

"Chip had some insight last night about that. He thinks Lee is… gun shy with you. It seems that he’s been hurt, badly, by other women and he’s afraid you’ll leave him too."

"That would make sense. At one point last night I went to the bathroom and he woke up when I was gone. I heard him call my name sort of anxiously… the look of relief when I came back to bed was intense." I sigh. "Well, I always love a challenge. And trust me, this one is worth it. I don’t know where he learned to use his-"

I am cut off by the appearance of Chip as he belts his robe tight.

"Good morning, ladies!" he greets us cheerily, looking like he has all the energy in the world. Coming over to you he leans over and gives you a kiss that’s surprisingly intense for so early in the morning.

"Hello, gorgeous. Thanks for letting me sleep a little extra."

"You looked so peaceful there I hated disturbing you," you explain, his grateful smile warming your heart.

"It looks like you two were in the middle of a serious discussion. Sorry for the interruption."

"We were discussing Lee, actually," I inform him.

"Where is he, by the way?"

"Still sleeping. I think he pushed past a few of his limits last night." I try to keep the triumphant grin from my face but the two of you laugh anyway. I turn serious and say, "Chip, is Lee always so reluctant to make the first moves with a woman? I mean, I know he is interested but it takes a bit of convincing to get his barriers down."

"He never was in the past, but when one woman after another began leaving the relationship he kind of had to develop a thick skin."

"Hmm. I was beginning to think it was just me he didn’t really like."

Chip took a long drink of coffee, shaking his head. "Trust me, he likes you. Maybe a bit much… maybe he’s uncomfortable with the strength of his feelings for you. That’d be a typical Lee reaction."

"You know," you say thoughtfully, "it’s too bad we can’t get him to open up some. To make the first move, to be a bit bolder."

"It would have to be something dramatic to get him to react so," Chip says as he considers it.

Suddenly, in a flash of inspiration, I am hit with an idea. Before I can voice it the door to my room opens and out comes a disheveled but undoubtedly handsome Lee.

"G'mornin’," he mumbles as he comes to the table. Automatically Chip hands him a cup of coffee and you and I exchange grins. Those two have worked together for so many years that such things were an unconscious habit even off the boat.

"Lee," Chip nods as the Captain plunks down in his chair.

Glancing at the clock on the wall I say, "Room service will be bringing breakfast in about twenty minutes. I took the liberty of ordering this morning."

"Great!" Chip exclaims. "I’m starving… for some reason." He casts a sideways teasing grin to you and you echo it.

"Well," I say as I drain the remainder of my coffee, "I am going to take a shower." I get up and walk towards the room. "Lee? Care to join me?"

Lee freezes, turning beet-red. You don’t know which is more amusing, his look of shock at my suggestion or the mortification plastered on his face. Lee shoots a quick glance at you, then Chip. Chip, as usual, has an impassive expression and reveals no reaction whatsoever. That famous Morton calm is awesome to see.

"We’ll wait until you two are finished," he says matter-of-factly. "By then breakfast should be here." Without so much as a blink he takes another sip of coffee. You pretend interest in the paper lying on the table and essentially ignore Lee as he tries to collect himself. Finally, when I hold out my hand, Lee moves towards me with an embarrassed cough. You watch as Chip remains impassive. As my door shuts you cannot silence a giggle. Chip grins widely and simply shakes his head.


"What are the plans today?" he asks after a bit. "You said something about sailing?"

"We thought it would be nice to take the sailboat out to one of the secluded islands around here and have a picnic on the beach. We have plenty of leftover food from last night and the day looks perfect for being out on the water."

"Hmm… a chance to try that beach thing we mentioned last night," he said with great interest. "We have to bring some blankets, then."

"Easily done. Um, wouldn’t you feel sort of funny being… intimate… when there are others around?" you ask, reluctantly admitting that the tension of the scenario has it’s appeal.

"A word to Alana will be all it takes, I’m sure. Besides, the chance of discovery adds a certain… excitement to things."

He is speaking with all the authority of an expert and you shake your head in wonder. Your other encounters in the past have never been that daring! You find yourself wishing you were on the way to the isolated isle now.


While Lee does seem more relaxed after our shower (as well he should be!), he does not make much eye contact with either of you. When his apprehension is ignored he finally begins to smile naturally. We enjoy an immense breakfast and Lee and I decide to take a morning beach stroll, leaving you two to your showers. Apparently forty minutes are not quite enough…

Lee and I end up playing a couple of games of double solitaire as we wait for you to finally finish up. When you finally emerge your face is fairly glowing and Chip has an incredible look of satisfaction about him. No questions are asked.


Silver Dream is a small boat, beautiful but spare, easily accommodating eight people at a time. The tiny galley is stocked, the gear stowed, and they begin preparations to get underway. Instead of being disappointed at our lack of sailing knowledge, both men seem delighted to take on the tasks of instruction and supervision. The last reserve of tension vanishes from Lee as he and Chip take us out of the marina with expert skill. They are a pure pleasure to watch, both moving in a synchronicity that is as graceful as a dance. With no more than a handful of words between them, we are soon heading out of the harbor and into the sparkling blue ocean.

Chip laughs when Lee declares him ‘Captain for a Day’. Promptly they begin to joke with each other, their humor contagious. Morton has a ball ordering Lee around for a while, then sets to the task of teaching you to sail. I am Lee’s charge and the lessons begin in earnest.


The sun is heating up the day rapidly; as the temperature rises the layers of clothes come off. Before too long the guys are in their shorts and we are wearing bathing suits covered by tee shirts. It looks like we all are enjoying the views.

Chip teaches you about the basics, taking care to use a hands-on approach. He is showing you how to tack into the wind, encircling you with his arms as he stands behind you. You can feel his muscular form pressing close to you . . .with the sun on your face and Chip’s firm embrace holding you, you feel like you’re in heaven. He takes time to nuzzle your earlobe as he explains various aspects of steering and setting the sails. You wonder how you will ever learn anything with such a delicious distraction!

As we venture into more open waters the waves become slightly rougher, but that only adds to the excitement. We can just make out the islands in the distance, now only tiny specks on the horizon. The wind is fairly strong and we are sailing across the sunlit waters at an exhilarating pace.

Lee is showing me the lay of the lines and what the different parts of the boat are called; while he is certainly attentive, there is none of the passionate closeness you and Chip seem to have. Am I jealous? Well, maybe a teeny bit. Still, Lee is worth the effort and I think of my plan to move him away from his hesitations. I will suggest that once we get to the island we all go swimming; suddenly I will get a terrible leg cramp that will require a bit of help and rescuing… a perfect chance for me to be grateful and clingy, and him to be in control and confident. As I stand by the aft sail I am thinking of the plan with smugness.

The wind gusts suddenly, and the line Lee is holding wrenches from his grip. The boom swings wide before he can recapture it and hits me, hard, right on my upper arm. Over the edge I fall.

Everything happens so fast I don’t realize what’s going on. I hit the water with enough force to knock the wind out of me and take in a mouthful of saltwater when I try to breathe. Things go topsy-turvy as I tumble in the waves, choking on the water and trying to re-orient myself. One second I am spitting and coughing. . . and suddenly I feel someone grab me.

"Easy there!" he exclaims. It’s Lee that’s gripping my waist firmly. "Just relax, breathe in and out…"

I have a major coughing fit and cannot help the panic that sets in. Lee knows what he is doing and does not release me. Before I can think, another pair of hands are pulling me up out of the water: Chip. He steadies me as I sit down. Lee climbs back on board while you keep the boat headed in the right direction. (You are a very fast learner!)

After half a minute of coughing up water, Chip pats me on the shoulder and returns to your side to take over. Lee crouches near me, a look of anxiety on his handsome face.

"Alana, are you okay?" he asks worriedly. "The line snapped right out of my hand and…"

"I'll be fine," I manage to say.

"When that boom hit you… how is your arm?"

I look at it, seeing a bruise darkening already. The pain is minimal and I shrug it off.

"Let me get some towels," he says, needing to do something.

You come over and whisper, "Was this the big plan?"

Despite the drama of the last few minutes I have to laugh.

"God, no. That was for real. Of all the stupid things… I should have been paying attention!"

"You seem to be okay now," you say.

"I’m fine… but Lee doesn’t have to know that! I think I shall be a bit traumatized over the whole thing."

"Ah. Needing a little comfort, right?"

We exchange grins. "Exactly. Tell Chip I’m really okay. You know, this was much better than my original plan!"

Lee returns and you go to Chip to tell him all about it. I hear a snort from the Exec as you repeat our conversation.

"I’m so sorry," Lee says with a stricken look. He sits down next to me and wraps a towel around my shoulders. I wince a bit when the material touches my bruise, though it doesn’t really hurt. Lee examines the spot and looks even more contrite. "I hope this hasn’t ruined the trip for you," he says quietly. "I should have-"

"Can you j-just hold me for a minute?" I say as I shiver, just a bit. A well-timed cough is put there for emphasis and he instantly gathers me in his arms. I ignore the grin I see on your face and concentrate on playing the situation for all it’s worth. I snuggle against him, reveling in the strength of his hug. I am lucky that all the adrenaline in my system is making me tremble for real; it only adds to the scene.


"She’s really okay?" Chip asks as he watches us.

"Perfectly," you assure him. "Nothing like a bit of drama to heat things up."

"Lee looked absolutely horrified," he said.

"He’ll just have to comfort her later," you say with a gleam in your eye.


The islet is beautiful and pristine; probably a mile across, there are plenty of shade trees and open white beach. We weigh anchor and Chip jumps off to tie the boat to a tree on shore. He returns and carries you across the water, despite your laughing protests. While still in his arms he kisses you deeply, passionately, making your eyes close in pleasure. He sets you down on the white sand and whispers in your ear, "Let’s work up a little appetite before lunch." It’s a good thing he is still holding you because your knees get slightly weak at his lascivious grin and his… accidental… brush of his hand on your hip.

Lee carries a decidedly hesitant me to shore as well… for some reason I seem to be afraid to get into the water… and we watch as both men fetch the lunch basket and supplies.

"Why don’t we go swimming for a while before lunch?" you suggest lightly.

"Sounds great," Chip replies with an enthusiastic smile. Lee looks interested until I cough.

"Um, I don’t think I… really want to get back into the water just yet-" I say, letting my eyes get ever so slightly wider. "You three can go, I’ll be fine."

Lee steps in and says, "No, I’ll stay with you, Alana. Maybe it would be best if we stuck to land for a bit. Do you feel like a nice, slow hike?"

"A hike? Well, I guess that’d be okay. If you’re sure you want to give up swimming."

"Positive," he declares. "Well, how about we meet here in about an hour then?" he asks the two of you. Chip nods his approval and runs a hidden hand down your lower back. You only nod your acquiescence. Chip’s hand is lingering over certain curves and you don’t trust your voice to be steady at this point!

"Better take a blanket in case you need to rest a bit along the way," Chip says off-handedly. He hides a grin as I give him a thumbs-up sign from behind Lee’s back.

"Good idea," Lee replies seriously. "Well, see you here in an hour or so. Have fun."

"Trust me," Chip says in that wonderful liquid voice, "we will."

As we walk into the trees, you realize you are stuck with this incredibly gorgeous blond, alone, in this snippet of paradise. He removes your tee shirt and takes a moment to just look at your body. "That is one mighty fine bikini there, ma’am," he says in a slow, teasing drawl. "Mmm, mmm." He turns you around and toys with the string of your top. When he does not release the tie, you turn back to him with a curious expression. The hunger that appears in his blue eyes is almost frightening, but the wicked smile that comes across his lips pitches you to a high level of anticipation. He removes his own shirt and strips to his swim trunks as you enjoy the show. He is meant to be seen in the sun, you think. The way the light glistens on his muscular, taut form… the way his blond hair seems to catch fire… the blue of his eyes reflecting the summer skies above...

You sigh in pure delight as he embraces you once again. His touch is electric and his hands seem so eager to stroke every inch of your skin…

You are returning the favor and before too long he stops himself. In a ragged voice he says, "Unless you want me to ravish you right here we’d better get into the water."

You ponder that particular statement for several heartbeats but he gives you no choice. In a smooth movement he scoops you up again and carries you out to the waist-deep water. When he unceremoniously dumps you into the waves, you surface with a vengeful gleam in you eye. The battle has officially begun!

You spend the next fifteen minutes playing around, diving underwater and trying to pull each other down. You are both laughing hard when Chip makes a sudden grab and catches your arm. He covers your mouth in a passionate kiss, rough and intense, that banishes all logical thought from your mind. Your response makes him groan a bit as the tension between you builds rapidly.

"Have you ever made love in the waves, standing up like this as the rhythm of the water hits your body?" he asks breathlessly.

"No," you say, a thrill surging through you.

"It’s about time you did. C’mere," he demands as he pulls you even closer.


You sit down on the generous-sized blanket to dry off; feeling both energized and relaxed at once. The sun evaporates the water from your bodies and soon you are quite warm. Reaching into one of the bags nearby you find the small bottle of tanning oil and wiggle it in Chip’s general direction. The happy look on his face speaks volumes and you tell him to lie down on his stomach.

Slowly, you pour some of the fragrant oil on his broad back, allowing the sun to warm it before you begin. With eager hands you begin massaging it into the planes of his back, from the hardness of his shoulders to the narrow, taut waist just above his trunks. His skin is almost hypnotizing, smooth and firm beneath your hands. As you work in circular patterns he gives a small moan of delight… Using more oil you move to his muscular thighs and his long legs, enthralled by the very feel of him. It is hard to tell who is enjoying it more, you or him.

Finally you tell him to roll over and he does so, his eyes soft with pleasure. You continue your ministrations until it becomes obvious that he is interested in more than a simple massage. When he pulls you down on top of him, you offer a slight protest.

"Chip! We just-"

"What can I say? You have this effect on me and I can’t help it!"

"What if Lee and Alana come back?"

With a devilish grin he undoes the bikini top’s tie and says, "We’ll just have to risk it."


We do not arrive back at the rendezvous for another half an hour. As we come through the trees, Lee is still picking grass from the ends of my hair and greets the both of you with an easy grin.

"Enjoy the swim?" he asks nonchalantly.

"Absolutely. Enjoy the walk?" Chip volleys back just as casually.

"It was very… enlightening. There were lots of things to study." I hide a smirk and give you a wink. Study, indeed!

"How about lunch now? There’s lots of driftwood on the beach and we can spread the blankets over there, near the shade," Chip says as he changes the subject. Neither one of you can help but notice the change in Lee. He is more confident, more assured. When he volunteers to get the wood, he spins me around and kisses me without reservation, being daring enough to taste my tongue as his hand caresses my lower back. For once, Chip remains silent, impressed at the very public display. Lee moves off and the three of us get busy setting up for lunch.

The meal is wonderful and we are soon done. You suggest a game of beach volleyball and we draw a line on the sand for a net. When I propose it be us versus them, the two men laugh, saying we wouldn’t even have a chance. You agree with me at my insistent look and vote the game be men against women. While Chip fetches the ball and Lee clears the area of debris, you pull me aside.

"Are you crazy? Look at those two! We are gonna get slammed!" you say in exasperation.

"Take off your tee shirt," I say as I remove my own. "Trust me, they won’t be able to concentrate on anything but us." You laugh.

"Alana, you know how to play dirty," you say with an approving smile.

"Absolutely. And after this weekend it all over and done with, we have got to compare notes."

Sure enough, Chip’s eyes seemed glued to your skimpy bikini, not able to look at much but the tiny scraps of green fabric. Lee has the same reaction to my one-piece, mostly lace ensemble. I have to snicker because it wasn’t too long ago that he saw me totally out of it… but to see his face it was like he didn’t notice it before.

We work hard at the game, winning in the end not because of our efforts but because of the lack of concentration on the other side of the line.

As the victors of the contest we order the two about, having them clean up from the meal and pack up some of the supplies. We are not too hard on them, and soon everything is done. The heat and exertion has made us all sweat and a swim is suggested. Lee looks at me with a tentative glance.

"Gee, I don’t know," I hedge, biting my lip.

"It’ll be okay," Lee says in an encouraging voice. "I’ll be right there the whole time."

You roll your eyes, knowing fully well I am not afraid of the water and can swim like a fish. Lee whispers in my ear and gives me a serious look. Finally I nod, allowing him to take my hand and walk me into the water. Chip has to choke back a laugh as I once again send him the thumbs-up signal behind my back. With a joyful cry he scoops you up and rushes out into the waves. This time you don’t let go when he tries to dump you and the both of you go tumbling down.

Lee is very solicitous of me, not wanting to make me more nervous about the water. Eventually I relax and we begin to enjoy ourselves too. Finally, when I ‘overcome my fears’, we begin to romp and play like you two. The look of pride and triumph on the Captain’s face is priceless.


We linger on the islet for another hour or so, reluctant to leave the mini-paradise. As the afternoon goes by we finally set sail, full of wonderful memories. About halfway back, Lee comes up to me, picks me up off of my feet, and whirls me around. Before I can say a word he bends me backwards and gives me one of the most intense kisses I’ve ever received! Chip is shocked and stands there with a blank look on his face. A minute later, when Lee goes forward to tend to the sails, we can hear Chip say, "That… was some kiss!"

Lee nods. "Nothing wrong with it."

"No, that’s not what I meant. I mean, geez, pal, since when do you do that kind of thing in front of someone? You?" His stage whisper is perfectly audible to our curious ears.

"Since I had some perspective scared into me," he admits, venturing a glance at us. We, of course, are pretending interest at some knot in a line. "You know, instead of expecting the worse from life we should be enjoying what we have, for as long as we can."

Chip answers with a heartfelt "Amen."


The trip back is beautiful and by the time we dock we’ve decided on a quiet evening, just the four of us. Things are going great until we check at the desk about Lee’s dress whites.

"Commander Crane, I have several urgent messages for you, sir," said the woman at the counter.

With a sigh Lee takes the notes, scans them, and frowns as he hands them to Chip.

"What?" I say.

"We have a mission that leaves early tomorrow. Some emergency thing." He shrugs. Duty.

"If it’s tomorrow, can’t you still spend the night here? The Institute is only twenty minutes away," you ask, hating the thought of the weekend ending so quickly.

"I have tons of things to do, including summoning the crew and going over the endless checklists and pre-launch procedures," Chip says with obvious regret.

"No, you don’t," Lee says with a smile. "I can handle all that for a change. This might be a good chance for O’Brien to stretch his duties a bit, too. We can handle things on the Seaview… it’s your birthday weekend and you should enjoy it up until the last second. I’ll send a car for you."

"Lee, I have a job to do and just because-"

"No arguing, Mister Morton. You are remaining off duty until launch, is that clear?"

With a small grin, Chip says, "You’re the Captain, sir."

"About time you remembered that!" he kidded. "I better get my things together."

"You can give me a ride," I say as we move towards the elevator. "We can share a light dinner at the cafeteria before I go on home."

"Alana, you don’t have to go just because Lee-"

"Please. The last thing you two need is a third wheel! The room is all yours, everything is pre-paid and you have unlimited credit for room service and dinner here at the hotel."

"Wow… how did you get that past the Admiral?" Chip wonders aloud. I laugh.

"Lee had the idea and brought it up to Nelson. He funded the whole thing himself, said it was a long time coming." At that, Chip looks a bit embarrassed.

"The Admiral is right," Lee says sincerely, "you deserve a lot more than this, Chip. I’m sorry if I don’t tell you how much you’re appreciated on board." With an awkward smile he claps the Exec on the shoulder and we enter the room.

Packing is accomplished in a matter of minutes and we bid our good-byes.

"This seems to have worked out well," you say. "Maybe we can plan some get-togethers in the future. We all work at the same place, after all!"

"There’s a lot coming up in the next few months," I say, chewing my lower lip. "The summer picnic in July, the fishing party in late June, the barbecue on the beach, the volleyball tournament… plenty of chances to see each other. And then, of course, we could have some private times together." Chip’s enthusiastic nod warms you and you smile in anticipation.

We leave after a few more moments and you shut the door, not believing you have both Chip and the fabulous room all to yourself! Chip has a delighted, predatory gaze fixed on you as he moves forward…

Once again you wonder how the man finds the energy.

He kisses you thoroughly, causing your thoughts to dissolve in a sea of sensation, then moves over to the fireplace. Crouching down, he adjusts the controls and an instant fire leaps to life. He stands, watches the flames for a few moments, then speaks softly in that rich baritone voice you love so well.

"I need to see your body glowing in the firelight, see how it caresses your curves…"

You think that is a spectacular idea and pause a moment to imagine how he would look near the flickering golden light. A thrill races through your body at the images that emerge. You come over to stand in front of him and give him a long, lingering kiss of your own. With the slightest of moans he holds you tight and pulls you to the floor.

Not too long afterwards, you find your mental images are terribly inadequate. Chip Morton is undoubtedly the most deliciously handsome man you have ever seen. You take the opportunity to study him very, very thoroughly… seen in this subdued, dancing light, his body is at it’s best. The way the light rushes over the angles and planes of muscle, the luminescence of his smooth skin…

His blue-eyed gaze travels over your body mere moments before his hand follows the path. His touch is light and slow, leaving a trail of another kind of fire in its wake. You find yourself echoing his touch and before too long the concept of coherent thought disappears once again.


Dinner in the hotel restaurant is quiet and intimate and you spend the time speaking of your families and childhoods. You can easily imagine a sweet blond-haired, blue-eyed boy running around with his puppy in the large backyard of his Illinois home…

He asks you about your training and the conversation turns into an in-depth discussion of the Institute’s computer and data systems. He is as intelligent as he is handsome and you realize no one has ever affected you like the man seated across the table. From his luminous smile you suspect he is echoing those feelings.


After quite a while you leave the restaurant, returning to the room and settling on the couch... your pale blue silk dress offers no protection from his caresses and soon it joins his clothes on the floor…

"I’ve been eyeing this couch since I first got here," he confesses. "It’s large enough for a little fun…"

"The couch? Lord, I’d feel just like a teenager!" you nearly giggle at the thought.

"What’s wrong with that?" he counters. "I feel like a teenager myself. I don’t know what you do that inspires me to get so… interested… but I can’t seem to get enough of you."

You grin happily; the feeling is mutual, and the night is still young!


The Jacuzzi offers a little bit of heaven as it sends sensuous waves of warm water around your body. There are candles all around, and Chip pours two glasses of champagne as you settle back. His eyes are fairly glowing as he offers you a toast.

"To you, Carol. To one of the most sexy, beautiful, smart, fun women I’ve ever met. You have made this the best birthday I have ever had."

You raise your glass and click rims.

"To future fun," you say with a gleam. "In every context of the word."

"Hear, hear!" he grins, taking another sip.

The bubbles tickle your nose and before long you are feeling incredibly relaxed. You are beginning to drift off when you feel a hand caress your leg. Pure blue eyes meet yours as he moves closer, manipulating you onto his lap with a sly grin.

"Why Mister Morton," you tease playfully, "whatever are you doing?"

"Mmm… if I have to answer that, I haven’t done my job this weekend!" He nibbles on your ear, moving to your neck as you sigh in pleasure. "Remember earlier in the waves?" he continues in a low voice. "My god, that was incredible…"

"I never knew it could be so… intense," you breathe as he continues his efforts.

"Jacuzzis have a lot to offer as well…" he says in a near whisper. Amazingly, he is just as passionate as before and you wonder, not for the first time, how he actually does it! Then, you don’t care as you embrace him, returning a few caresses of your own. As his expert hands travel over every inch of skin you spare a thought, wondering if a jacuzzi of your own would be a worthy investment.

An unknowable time later you decide that yes, it definitely would be.


The morning comes all too soon, but not before you two enjoy a sumptuous breakfast and a last, utterly satisfying encounter on the satin-sheeted king sized bed. Clothes are packed and the two of you wait for the car to take both of you back to the Institute...and reality. It seems like just a few moments until the car arrives; the ride back is spent in contented silence. At the Institute grounds Chip gathers his bag and you walk towards the bustling dock. Lee sees the two of you and waves, turning back to direct the crewmen loading a large crate.

"Guess this is goodbye," you say with a good dose of regret.

He lifts your chin with a delicate touch and looks deeply into your eyes.

"Just until I get back. I want to see more of you, if you want the same."

"I do."

"Good. Very good." He bends down and gives you a long, lingering kiss. When he finally pulls away you are mortified to hear all kinds of whistles and hoots from the crew working nearby.

"Did someone say something?" Chip demanded in a loud, stern voice. The men recognize the tone and every last one of them gets very interested in what they were doing. You suppress a giggle and he gives you a wink.

"Duty calls, I’m afraid. If we’re going to get underway before noon I better start cracking the whip here. Oh, they’ll bend over backwards for the Captain, but it’s the Exec that strikes terror in their souls!"

At that you laugh out loud.


You stay until he gives you a final smile and a wave before going below. With a smile of your own, you head back to the waiting car. You know this is the start of something simply wonderful. Sighing happily, you head home, trying to picture where you could install a Jacuzzi of your own…