Solitude. The sound of her voice her only company.
Days passed. Simply. Easily. Quietly.
Sometimes she was very busy, the drawers full. Sometimes it was quiet enough for her to get her work done, and the paperwork filed.
She’d been able to add what she could to her notes to help the officers at Scotland Yard. A flash revealing the cause of death, or gender of the perpetrator, and she would search the body for the evidence to point the police in the right direction. A long blonde hair from a jealous wife. The scratches from an angry lover. Sometimes the entire scenario would play in her head, and she would invite the detective who caught the case into the morgue to “run something by him”. She was very good at making the officers think they’d worked out the evidence.
Except for one.
Detective Sergeant James Fraser.
He watched her like a hawk. Which made her nervous. Part of her nerves came from the fact that his eyes lingered a little too long on her.
She couldn’t remember the last time a man looked at her like that. Not even her husband.
He made her feel. And after Frank’s death she didn’t want feelings. Feelings hurt. Feelings like betrayal, and disdain. She’d had enough of those feelings to last a lifetime.
The detective aroused different feelings, though. Feelings long buried in Claire. Longing. Lust. He was too damn good looking, that was the problem. The way his hair curled at his nape. The small scar at the base of his throat just begging for her lips. The scruff after a long day. And the way he breathed the word ‘Aye’ when he was thinking something over.
Aside from the obvious attraction, he was extremely clever. And he seemed to enjoy bantering ideas back and forth with her. Claire always was attracted to a keen mind.
“Do ye think it could be connected?” They both stared down at yet another victim in a drawer.
Claire pursed her lips. Oh, it was connected. But she hadn’t found the tangible evidence yet.
“Could be,” she said, noncommittally.
“Och, come on, Claire,” he said, tucking his note pad away. His head hurt from over analyzing. It had been a long day. “I’m starving. Let’s get some dinner.”
She looked up at him. “No, thank you. I’ve got some tidying up to do here yet.”
James looked around the morgue. There wasn’t a thing out of place. Not a paper on her desk. “Oh, aye. I can see that. Swamped, you are.” He raised an eyebrow. She was avoiding him.
Claire laughed. “Okay. You caught me. It’s just, I don’t do dinner with people I work with.”
He threw her a look. “It’s work, Claire. No’ a date.” He took two steps toward the door and stopped. Turned back around to face her, cat eyes narrowed. “Although, I wouldna mind one of those, as well.”
The vision slammed into her brain. Heavy breaths. Moans. Sweat. Skin. Legs gripping his hips. Big hand cradling her breast. His mouth hot on hers. And the feel of him pulsing inside her.
And just like that, it was gone.
Claire blushed. God, she hated this. Because her visions were never wrong. She was headed down this path like a freight train on its track. It would take all her strength to thwart it.
She took a deep breath. “I suppose it will do us good to talk about the case.” She avoided his eyes. “Just let me grab my coat and purse, okay, Jamie?”
He watched her walk towards her desk, pulling open a narrow closet to retrieve her things. Jamie. No one called him Jamie, save his family.
He never let anyone at Scotland Yard give him a nickname. Ever.
Yet, she had just called him by the name he’d had as a wee lad.
He watched her tuck into her fourth slice of pizza. He liked a woman with an appetite. Reaching for the wine bottle, he topped up her glass.
It may have started out hesitantly, but they’d had a good night. Claire loosened up after a couple of glasses of Merlot, and some good, generic conversation. She was born in Oxfordshire, only child, parents died in a car crash when she was five. Raised by an Uncle, who’d also passed.
He shared his family tidbits, the deaths of his parents and brother, the sister he did have and her family. You had to give in order to get from Claire. Once she got some food and wine in her, the conversation became easier. They spoke of work and why she became an M.E. She liked to work alone, she said. She got tired of losing patients, and since she was damn good at diagnostics it seemed like a good next step.
“And why no partner for you, Jamie?”
“Interesting nickname ye’ve given me,” he said, grabbing another slice for himself.
Shit. Shitshitshit. “You mentioned it,” Claire mustered her bravado. Looked him straight in the eye. No blinking.
“I did not,” Jamie said, returning her stare. Just a hint of panic in those amber eyes.
“You did,” she said. “You said your nephew was Wee Jamie, named after you.”
Jamie hesitated. So he had. Two hours after she first used the nickname, but he’d let that go.
He inclined his head in defeat. “So, why do ye think my latest victim is tied to the last one?”
An abrupt change in topic was in order. He didn’t want to lose her. He was having a good time. Claire was good company. She was gorgeous. Sexy. Now he found himself being attracted to her sharp mind and quick humour.
“They both died of some sort of poisoning. I haven’t determined what, yet. I’m waiting for toxicology to come back for the latest victim, but what I haven’t told you is that their stomach contents seemed similar. That should give you more information.”
Jamie set his slice down on his plate. “Interesting. So I know where I’m starting tomorrow. On the street retracing their steps.”
They finished dinner sharing stories, some gory, some embarrassing, some hilarious. Claire couldn’t remember the last time she’d had this much fun in a man’s company. Being married to Frank was not easy. He was fastidious. Predictable. Controlling. He never liked it if she laughed too loud, or talked to much.
In the beginning they’d gone out to dinner like this, and then with other academic couples. Those were never fun. She’d see the grimace cross his face when she said something he didn’t find intelligent enough, or he’d give her the “For God’s Sake Claire Quiet Down” tap on her leg under the table.
The worst outing was when she spontaneously went along on the dinner where he was “treating his research assistant” as a thank you. She knew immediately that they were sleeping together. Sparked quite the argument when they got home. The first of many.
None of that absolved her from her sin, though.
Jamie seemed to like her laugh. She could tell. He’d watch her mouth then grin from ear to ear. His eyes would get even more cat-like as he enjoyed her mirth.
He paid the bill, amid protests. He helped her on with her coat. He escorted her to his car, not letting her walk home at this hour.
He pulled up smoothly in front of her townhouse. He was out of the car and around the vehicle just as she climbed out.
“Thanks for dinner, James.” She stuck out her hand.
Jamie looked at her hand as if she had the plague. “James, is it now?”
He reached out and took her hand. The way a man takes a woman’s hand. A woman he’s been on a date with.
Hands. Stroking. Wound in her hair. Tugging. Heat filled her chest. Panting. Passion.
She found it hard to breathe. She could feel the arousal, the heat blossom between her legs.
She twisted her hand out of his and fell back against the car.
Jamie turned, concern mingled with shock on his face. He knew immediately what had happened.
He waited until she caught her balance. And her breath.
“Ye’ve seen us. Haven’t ye?” He bent his 6′ 4″ frame down so he could look Claire in the eyes.
Claire was terrified. How to answer? God, dare she tell him? She didn’t need to, apparently. Bastard already knew. She could see it in his eyes.
“We’re good together, aren’t we?” he whispered, eyes dark like a hurricane.
So last night at like 1AM, instead of sleeping I was crying because “Who’s gonna adopt Allura when the war is over??” and I was sad for about five seconds before the solution became clear: the paladins will have joint custody of Allura. As in, when the paladins go home for some R&R before flying back into space to deal with the problems left behind by the defeat of the Galra Empire, Allura will spend x amount of time with one paladin and their family, then she and Coran will move on to the next paladin and their family.
And then I lost control of the idea and I’ve been weeping ever since. So! Here is a list of ridiculous feelings and headcanons about Allura on Earth. Warning: It’s long.