- Steele on Our Own Part 4/6
Date: Wed, 5 Jan 2000
From: "Linda" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Disclaimer: If the idea of Laura and Tony in the same (bed)room
together makes you ill, repulses you, gives you violent urges
toward the writer, or otherwise causes you to lose perspective
on life, stop reading now. Delete this from your inbox. Erase
this from your hard drive. But please do come back for part 5.
You've been warned!
For anyone who minds that kind of thing there's a bit of bad
language and some sexual scenarios.
Laura woke as the sun streaming through the windows alighted
on her face. She felt better than she had in months. Last night
was perfect. Tony held her in his arms all night, as best as
she could remember, and it was a very comforting place to be.
Speak of the devil. Tony walked back in the bedroom at that moment,
carrying two steaming cups of coffee. "I'm a lousy cook,
but I make a mean cuppa coffee." He climbed back onto the
bed and handed Laura her cup.
They sat in silence for a few moments, drinking the coffee and
inhaling its earthy aroma. Then Tony placed his cup deliberately
on the nightstand and turned to face Laura.
"Laura, I need to know if you want anything more from me
than I gave you last night."
She caught her breath. Now things were going to get sticky.
"I mean, if you're really ready to leave Steele, whatever
your reasons, I'm here, ready and waiting." The look on
Laura's face told him the answer to that question.
"And if all you want is sex while you figure out the answers,
believe me, I'm here for that too. You ever heard of friendship
sex?" Tony added hopefully.
Laura laughed out loud. It felt so good. She draped her arms
around his neck, kissed him on the cheek, and laughed again for
good measure. "What would I have done without you?"
"Well, what ARE you going to do?" Tony asked.
"I think I need some time to sort that out," Laura
"I hope you know you can stay here as long as you like."
"I do know that."
Later, Laura showered, dressed, and cooked herself and Tony a
respectable breakfast. After they ate and cleaned up afterward,
Tony proposed a tour of the city and its sights.
"That's very sweet of you, but right now I think I need
some time to myself. Just give me a map and an umbrella and point
me in the direction of Big Ben," Laura joked.
"Well, okay, but let's have dinner together tonight."
"It's a deal."
Five minutes after Laura left, there was a ring at the door.
"Did'ja forget something? How about----"
As Tony opened the door, fist squarely met jaw, sending Tony
crashing to the floor.
Walking aimlessly through the streets, Laura didn't visit any
of the typical tourist attractions. Somehow it didn't seem right
to be doing that without the man she loved. The man she loved.
The thought stopped Laura dead in her tracks. She could abandon
him back in LA, but she couldn't take in London Bridge without
him? In the words of a great philosopher, bullshit. Tony was
right to make her face the truth, and the truth was she ran away
to protect herself, to keep from being abandoned herself. For
someone who prided herself on levelheadedness that sounded like
a very stupid thing to do.
And as she stood there in Regent's Park, it came to her. Laura
knew what the right thing to do was. She would go back to LA,
and she would face the man she loved. She would tell him that
he already had possession of her heart and soul, but that as
much as she wanted to, she couldn't give him a child as well.
And she would hold her breath after she asked if that was enough
Laura raced back to Tony's flat to make flight arrangements.
Even after ice was applied, Tony's jaw still throbbed. Worse
yet, Pretty-Boy himself stood there glaring at him.
"You mean to tell me that my wife spent the night here"
Harry glanced involuntarily through the open door of Tony's bedroom
at the rumpled sheets on the bed "and nothing happened."
"Well, something happened, but not the something you think
"Say it again, Mate, and make some sense this time, because
I have lost what little patience I had."
"You want to know whether Laura and I made love. The short
answer: no. The longer answer: not yet, but keep it up, Buddy,
and it'll happen sooner or later."
"Hey, if I was you I'd be trying to figure out how to make
things right with Laura instead of shooting my mouth off. What
kind of an idiot are you, anyway? So what if Laura can't have
kids? Only an asshole would think about leaving his wife because
she couldn't have kids." Harry's face froze, but Tony didn't
notice. He just continued his rant. "Ya know, I was right
about you after all. You really are a prick. You---"
"What did you say?"
"I said you really are a prick. And another thing----"
"No, not THAT. The part about leaving her. I have no intention
of leaving Laura, ever," Harry insisted.
"Well, you coulda fooled her. If this is marriage, I'm steering
clear. Do you and Laura EVER talk?" With that, Tony grabbed
his jacket and headed for the door. "I'm outa here. Laura
said she'd be back by dinner time." Slam.
Harry collapsed on the sofa. Could Laura have really thought
that he would leave her? All because they couldn't have children?
It didn't make any sense. What rational human being would reach
that conclusion based on the known facts? Could she really be
that obtuse? But after all, this was Laura. He HAD once called
her the most ridiculous woman he had ever met. But this was beyond
the pale, even for Laura.
Then again, maybe it wasn't. Harry hadn't really taken into account
how afraid Laura was of desertion. No matter how many years had
passed since her father had walked out on his family, Laura still
clung to the fear that it would happen again. Harry had been
certain that after their marriage, after he proved that he was
there to stay, the fear of rejection would have been erased from
Laura's psyche. But no. The emotional hell they had both been
in for the last year at least must have brought all those feelings
to a head for Laura.
Again Harry felt guilt, this time to think that Laura would presume
that offspring were more important to him than she was. Nothing
could be further from the truth. Now to prove it to her. Where
the hell was she?
The doorbell rang, and Harry was surprised to find how nervous
he was about facing Laura again, after all that had happened
in just the last few days. He made his way to the door and threw
it open to meet his wife head-on.
End of part 4
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