Platypus 12: Facing the Dark

“Hey, Gil,” Catherine offered him a smile as she jumped in the seat next to him. “What’s up?”

He smiled back at her. “Well, I didn’t want to call you but...”

She cut him off. “It was my day to be home, but available. Lindsay’s taken care of, and it was no problem. I wasn’t doing anything but cleaning anyway.”


She nodded. “Yes. When my house is a mess, it reflects badly on me as a mother. I don’t like Lindsay thinking it’s alright to let her room get messy, and actually, I don’t like the mess, either.” She wagged a finger at him. “Someone’s been distracting me lately.”

Catherine saw him blush. “I didn’t mean to keep you from your daily tasks.”

“You’re not,” she leaned to him and kissed his cheek. “Believe me, spending time with you is always great, and I never regret it. Do you?”

He shook his head. “No. Of course not. How could you—”

She lifted her hand to play with the tiny tendrils of hair at the base of his head. “Just wondering. You know how I like to ask questions.” She paused, and then asked: “Where are you taking me?”

“Well,” he said, swinging into another suburban area. “We have to get Nick first, and then we’re heading to a small pottery shop. Robbery and homicide.”

“Oooh, fun,” she sighed, keeping her hand on him, but sliding back into her seat.

“Would you buckle up?”

“Oh,” she responded. “I forgot. Sorry about that.”

“No problem,” he returned. “I trust my driving, but I’d feel better knowing you were in the safest conditions possible.”

She looked over at him. “Thanks.”

“How’s your daughter?”

Catherine was always touched when he asked her about Lindsay. It was difficult to find a man that was interested in a single mother, and her children. “She’s doing great. She wondered why you spent the night, though.”

Gil blushed, as he turned onto Nick’s street. “Yeah, I can imagine that would raise some questions. What did you tell her?”

“That we’re very good friends and sometimes like to stay up late and talk after work.”

“Good answer.”

“Of course,” Catherine continued, knowing that what she would say next would surprise him, as it was meant to. “Once I told her that, she crossed her arms, stomped her foot, and told me that I should’ve remembered the ‘no boys’ rule, even if he was a very attractive scientist that makes my big toe quiver.”

Nick was already waiting in the driveway, so Gil never had a chance to find out if Lindsay had actually said what Catherine claimed she said.

“Hey Guys,” Nick greeted them as he climbed into the back seat. He buckled up, and set his case down on the chair next to him. “What are we processing today?”

Catherine answered, since Gil still looked puzzled. “Robbery and Homicide.”

“Oooh, fun,” he sat forward a little. “How many bodies?”

“One,” she replied. “Nothing too exciting.”

“It’ll still be fun.”

Gil finally managed to utter something: “Glad to see you’re in the right mood.”

“And what’s got you so....” Nick struggled to find the right word, but Catherine knew it would be difficult. So few words described their supervisor. “Quiet.”

She smiled as he tried to prove to Nick that everything was fine. “I’m always quiet, Nick. I like to listen.”

“But, I was asking questions. Usually...”

“Usually?” He chuckled. Then, surprising Catherine, he asked: “Did she really say that?”

Catherine laughed. “What do you think?”

Nick asked what was going on, but neither of them bothered to explain it. Gil looked at Catherine; his eyes were dark, and his lips twisted into a wry smile. She felt her stomach tighten. His affect on her never lessened; it was always powerful and she could never predict when it was going to take hold of her.

“That you’re just playing with me.”

She winked. “One of my favorite past times.”

They had arrived at the strip mall by then, and Gil and Catherine jumped out of the vehicle, followed by a very confused Nick.


Catherine got into her Tahoe, closed the door, and sighed, falling against the headrest of her seat. “Those poor parents...” she murmured, wiping her face with her hands. “Not a clue.”

She reached for her cellphone and opened her eyes to dial a familiar number. When Gil answered the phone, she spoke: “Hey, you.”

“Hey, Cath. How did it go?”

“Brass arrested them. They don’t seem to care that their daughter used them; they just let him cuff them and take them out. Just like that.”

Gil was sympathetic, but she knew he wanted to tell her ‘I told you so.’ Instead, he asked: “How are you holding up?”

“We let a psychopath get away. How do you think I’m doing?”

“Not so great, I can imagine,” he replied. “Where are you now?”

“In my car, outside their home, trying to muster up the strength to drive. Where are you now?”

“On my home from the office. I clocked you out, by the way.”

She smiled. The last place she wanted to go was the office, only to check herself out, and go out again. “Thanks. I owe you.”

“What are you going to do now?”

She replied honestly: “Not a clue. Lindsay should be at dance class right now. I have to pick her up in a couple hours.”

“How about you meet me somewhere for a quick bite to eat?” He suggested, his words appealing to her empty stomach. “You sound exhausted. Maybe it would help.”

Catherine found herself smiling. “Yeah, I think it would. Where do you want to go?”


Gil watched Lindsay practice in front of her mother, excited because she had earned a lead role in their concert. He smiled, affected by the excitement in the room.

“Wow, Baby,” Catherine clapped, as did Gil. “That was great.”

“I know,” she grinned up at her mother. She turned to Gil. “Did you like it?”

Gil nodded exuberantly; he wondered why other children made him uncomfortable, but Lindsay was the one child he could relate to. “It was amazing. I’m proud of you, kiddo,” she grinned again, and rushed to him, only to crawl into his lap. “When’s this concert?”

“In a month. Are you going to come?”

His eyes met Catherine’s. She nodded silently. He returned to Lindsay. “Wouldn’t miss it for the world.” Lindsay wrapped her arms around his neck. Awkward at first, Gil didn’t know what to do; after a few minutes, he eased his arms around her. She yawned into his neck. “Sleepy, Linds?”

“Want to tuck me in, Gil?”

He stood up, carrying her still in his arms. Catherine smiled up at him, eyes shining proudly. He thought he saw tears, but he wasn’t sure. He walked down the hall to the young girl’s bedroom, bending when he made it to her bed, so he could pull the covers back. He was unsure, but Lindsay slid out of his grip, and spread out onto the mattress, like she had done this a few times.

When he pulled the covers up over her, he asked: “That good?”

She shook her head. “Gotta wrap the blankets under me.”

“Snug as a bug in a rug,” Gil joked, using his hands to pin some of the quilt underneath her. “How’s that?”

“Perfect,” she huffed. “Thanks, Gil.”

He bent down again and kissed her forehead. “Sleep tight, Lindsay.”

“You, too,” her voice was drifting away as she drifted into sleep. His heart ached as he watched her. He didn’t know how he could try to convince himself that Catherine was a friend, who he sometimes slept with. He loved this girl like he would love a child of his own. He didn’t think he could just walk away from the intense feelings inside him, if Catherine decided she had met someone she could build a life with.

Catherine had waited in the living room. She finished wiping her tears away, but Gil could still see the stains on her cheeks. “What’s this?” He asked, sliding into the cushion next to her. One arm rested on the back of the sofa, the other sought hers.

“You are so good with her.”

He smiled. “Kids usually make me nervous.”

She smiled back up at him. “I thought that was people in general.”

“Yeah,” he chuckled. “You and Lindsay have made it easier.”

“You’re welcome,” she spoke softly, while leaning forward on his shoulder.

He kissed her cheek. “I didn’t say thank you.”

“You were going to, though,” he could hear her smile; it sparkled in her voice. “I could feel it.” She raised her head and looked at him. He couldn’t turn his eyes away; the depths of the blue orbs penetrated his own, pinning him in place. “Your eyes...”

His hand reached up to tuck a stray hair behind her head. “What about them?”

“Look,” she said, demonstrating what she wanted to by kissing him. He kept his eyes in hers, a lucid connection. When she pulled back, she smiled. “Most people get freaked out by that. I used to watch Eddie... he hated it.”

Gil shrugged. “Everyone’s different. Certain partners bring out certain desires.”

“I guess,” she nodded. “We’re not normal, though, are we?”

His lips twisted into a smile. “No, definitely not. I’m a scientist... a very private, insecure scientist who can’t relate with the public very well, and you’re...” He trailed off, unable to find the right words. She raised an eyebrow and looked at him, implying many words he could almost hear. “Sexy and poised and so sure of yourself.”

“Opposites attract, Gil.”

He nodded, conceding that her point had merit. However, he was uncomfortable with how the conversation was going; he didn’t want to scare her away. He smiled. “I have an idea,” he stood up and offered a hand. She eyed it warily; he could see the uncertainty wash over her face. “C’mon. It’ll be an experiment.”

Once inside her room, he grabbed two of the silk scarves hanging on a hook by her wardrobe. He explained. “One for you, one for me.”

She chuckled, letting him tie one onto her head like a blindfold. “Okay, Mr. Scientist. It’s dark. I hope you’re putting the other one on you.”

“I intend to.”

“Good,” she responded, reaching for him blindly. “The door’s shut, right?”

The click answered her question. When he returned to her, he put the scarf over his eyes. He couldn’t see anything. “Okay. It’s dark.”

“No cheating?”

“No cheating,” he answered, finding it easily to find what he wanted: the hem of her shirt. “Let’s try this out.” Clumsily, he managed to take her shirt off; she returned the favour, giggling as she struggled to find the buttons on his shirt.

She commented between kisses to his shoulder: “This is weird.”

“I know,” he replied, reaching with his hands for the zipper on her pants. “Maybe you can get your—”

“Yep, as long as you—” She stopped talking when he reached for his belt. He heard fabric dropping to the ground. “Although,” he heard her laugh. “I’m going to let you argue with my bra strap for a while.”

“Caaaaath,” he complained softly, his voice twitching with laughter. “You know how I hate those things.”

“Hey, you’re the one who made me put this blindfold on. Let me have my fun, too.”

Somehow, they made it to her bed. He fumbled for her, and was pleased when she was attainable, sighing and moaning into his mouth when he kissed her. He saw sparks even with his eyes covered. He hoped it was still good for her, too.

She managed to roll them onto his back, so she could straddle him. She loved being on top, and he was foolishly crazy about her. It didn’t matter to him—as long as he was still the one she chose.

He grunted, lifting his hips up to meet her as she ground against him. He felt her nails in his chest, her breath danced over the scratches she made; his skin felt like it was on fire, while cast in ice. He squirmed under her, his arms sliding up until he reached her breasts.

“Gil...” She shivered while he rolled his thumbs over each nipple, rocking against him, briefly falling forward.


“Yeah,” she said, regaining strength while she kissed his chest; it didn’t take long for her to sit back up again. He felt her muscles tighten around him, and when there were several contractions, he knew she had found release. “God,” her voice trembled, as she kept riding him, her nails dragging down his torso.

In the dark, he couldn’t see her face, but he could hear her laugh as she pushed him over the edge. It was more dangerous a spiral with pleasure, when he couldn’t see where he was going. He gripped her with one hand and the sheets with another, and let the sensations hit him.

As he struggled to catch his breath, he felt her fingers tug at the fabric over his eyes. Blue met blue. She smiled. “Hey.”


“That was different,” she commented, kissing him. “But, nice.” She sighed and when he lifted his arm, she fell against him and rested her head on his shoulder. “I like it better when we do it our way.”

“Me, too,” he admitted. His free arm sought her body, the fingers on his hand expanding over her hip. “Did your big toe quiver?”

“Uh huh.”


The End!

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