Fandom: Dresden Files (books)
Rating: PG-13 for a gun fight being in it
Word Count: 1905
Summary: Murphy and Kincaid take a working vacation, and Harry gives her a little gift to help her rest easier.
Prompt: bondage - "taming the untameable" for springkink
Disclaimer: I don't own any bit of the Dresden Files and make no money off it. It's all fictional, really.
Murphy relaxed into her beach chair. The blonde had her bikini, sunscreen, and her hat on, and right by her good elbow was a pina colada and a luscious shaved ice. She hadn't been sure about sweetened condensed milk, lilikoi syrup, shaved ice, and, of all things, beans? But the sweetened red beans had made the combination of textures, temperatures, and tastes divine. While she'd seen shaved ice stands in Chicago, the texture of the ice was grittier, harder, coarser back in Chi-town, and never with these exotic ingredients.
Hawaiian ices felt smoother, the temperatures milder, and the waters warmer and bluer: even the air here was gentler than in Chicago. Summertime Chicago was aggressively hot and humid. Here the humidity lay across the skin as quietly as a caress.
A light touch landed on her uninjured shoulder and slid lightly along her upper arm. Kincaid knelt beside her. "You okay?" he asked, gray-blue eyes clear and quiet. The Hawaiian shirt he wore didn't show the crease of a shoulder holster. He felt safe here. Murphy relaxed just a little more.
She smiled. "Yeah."
Murphy rolled her sore shoulder; the machine gun bullet had missed the bone, thank goodness, and Kincaid's medical contract for his work had been good.
A working vacation, he'd said, and at first she hadn't believed him. Murphy liked paying her own way, and had insisted on taking care of her own travel expenses when they'd first decided to go to Hawaii together. Kincaid had just shrugged, acquiesced, and then, on the plane, provided her a copy of a contract together with a pen. She had read it through.
The details were precise, explicit, and complete: a bodyguard-escort duty to protect one mortal Lohiau, in the company of one Hi'iaka, to the top of Mt. Kiluea. All in order to fulfill one contract with one Pele. No female was to touch said Lohiau, and the delivery had to be made by noon the following day. The pickup point was a small bay in the north part of the island.
She'd read it all, and then paled at the amount of payment due to one mortal, Karrin Murphy, if the client made it to the volcano site healthy and alive. Something about the job and its description appealed to her after the weird horror of going after those kids in the den of the Black Court vampires. Maybe this was also going to be weird, too, but at least it was in order to protect someone, not destroy a nest of vampires and the people they'd turned into puppets for their use.
She signed the contract.
Kincaid had subsequently handed her a little booklet titled, "Tactics for Neutralizing Varieties of Hawaiia Mo'o". It was very useful, and explained why there were big, grenade-like green fruit among their supplies when they reached the airport.
It had gone well. There were three ambushes along the road through the jungle at the National Volcanoes Park. Between Hi'iaka's forest sorcery, Kincaid's awesome reflexes and impressive armament, and Murphy remembering to stab a bridge with a combat knife just in case it was a magic tongue; they'd made it up the slopes of the volcano.
It was just in the last 100 yards that she'd glimpsed the flash of light off a gun barrel to their right. She'd screamed, "Get him down!" at Kincaid. He was the only one that could safely put their client on the ground.
Then it was just the terrifying rattle of the machine gun fire, and the small phut phut phut sounds of bullets hitting the blacktop behind her. She'd shot the legs out from under one machine gun wielder, and then the other opened up. She dove for cover and something flipped her into a tumble. That must have been when she was hit, but she didn't feel a thing. Then a palm tree and hands of ferns reached out to grab the second gunner, and there was screaming.
The job was easier than meeting their hirer. Pele flowed from her volcano, beautiful and remote, as hot as the noonday sun on Irish skin. Murphy had shuddered, and been glad she was behind everyone else. The vomited splash of molten gold was carefully gathered up to be taken to a broker that dealt in precious metals.
Kincaid had hired a guest house on the North Shore of the Big Island, away from the other tourists and right where the really big waves hit the black sand beaches of Waipio Bay. It had taken a Jeep to get down the steep road, but that meant there were even fewer tourists at the bottom of the ride.
So they had a beautiful beach of black sand soft as silk, entirely to themselves.
Kincaid sat down on the beach chair next to hers. He had brought a beer with him. When he took a swallow, Murphy admired the play of his throat and the deep dark gold of his long hair from behind her sunglasses.
"Hey, when I was unpacking your stuff..." Kincaid's voice slowed.
"Hm... was it the lacy underwear I brought?" Murphy laughed. "Or the sundress? You not used to thinking of me in anything but jeans?"
Kincaid snorted and obviously took a good, long, lazy look of her pale, bikini'ed self "As if."
He pulled an object out of his pocket. He was handling it oddly, and Murphy realized that he was holding it as firmly as she'd seen him hold a grenade or a package of C4. Expert and confident, but making sure it was under his control. He waited until she reached out for the slender bracelet of leather, then gently set it in her palm.
"Oh," Murphy said, recognizing it. "It's that bracelet Harry gave me before I left. He never really explained it, just said it might give me a good night's sleep, but it is just way too big for me."
"Did he know you were meeting me here?" Kincaid asked, looking out at the big curling waves as he took another sip from his beer. Nothing showed on his face, but then nothing ever really did.
"Yes, I think he did," Murphy said. "He'd warned me against this whole thing, but... couldn't give me any solid reasons as to why not. So..." She spread her hand and shrugged, and then winced a little. ".. I'm here. He said just to take it along, and I didn't see the harm of it."
"He must care a lot for you," Kincaid said. He peeled his sunglasses off his face and turned to look at Murphy. His blue-grey eyes were as calm as the sky. "Those are pretty expensive and time-consuming to make."
"What... what is it?" Murphy asked, disturbed by Kincaid's attention to the bracelet.
Kincaid's nostrils flared as he drew a deep breath. Instead of answering, he asked, "Have you been having bad dreams?"
Murphy frowned. "Why do you ask?"
"You... when you sleep, you often toss and turn and make sounds," Kincaid said softly. "Last night, even when you were drugged to the gills after surgery, you cried out. I didn't wake you, but I wondered."
Murphy sighed, and then got up off her beach chair. She frowned at the bracelet in her hand, held it with her pinkie as she snagged her drink, and took a pull. Then she went over to Kincaid. When he made room, she sat down between his legs, and leaned back against his lean, hard length. He hugged her gently, on her injured side. He stayed well away from the bracelet hanging from her pinkie.
Murphy set her drink on the armrest of their chair, and caught the bracelet again with the rest of her hand. She eyed it. "Are you saying if I wear this then I won't have bad dreams?"
"No," he said softly. She felt his chin on her hair. "You might have fewer bad dreams if I wore it."
Startled, she turned her head to look up at him. He returned her gaze and shrugged. She frowned. "Why would that work?"
He chuckled. "Maybe that's the wrong question, Murphy. You probably don't need to know, really. It's the knowing that's causing you conflict. You're a shining knight. I'm... I think your... soul feels what I am. This will hold that in check. Maybe that's enough."
She blinked quietly. What he was? He was a mercenary. Why would that bother her? Her fingers twitched just a little as her mind's eye replayed how quickly he'd twisted to shoot the one Mo'o, how inhumanly fast his reflexes were. Slowly, she said, "Why would you... why would you wear it? You obviously don't like it."
Kincaid laughed. "That hits closer to home. I'd never wear that for all the money in the world, Murphy. Just so you know."
"But... why have you... I think you just.... did you just offer to wear it for me?" Bewildered, Murphy searched his eyes.
He stroked her hair gently. "You saved my life out there."
Now it was Murphy's turn to snort. "It's not like you couldn't have dodged them, or taken a hit or two."
"No, not the bullets," Kincaid said dismissively. "You made sure I was the only one that touched the client. You held hard to the terms of the contract. If the contract had been broken..." He shrugged. "That's why I always work alone."
She frowned. "But you sub-contracted to me this time. You don't usually do that?"
"Never before, so long as I had the choice." And the way Kincaid said it made Murphy shiver hard. It made her wonder about when it was that he didn't have a choice, and how long never really was.
She gazed into those gray-blue eyes. "Why me?"
Those eyes reflected nearly nothing at all. "You're good."
Murphy shook her head at that praise of her abilities. "I'm just human. I do what's in front of me. I fail. Sometimes terribly..."
Kincaid hugged her with that one arm, and she pulled it even closer to her. He sighed, and gently closed his hand around the hand that she held the bracelet in. "Besides, here of all places, it's safe enough for me to... to wear it. You will have to put it on me, for it to be effective."
She oriented the circlet of leather so that she could slide it over his proffered left hand. Murphy felt his finely muscled body tense beneath her as the band neared, and then touched and slid over his calloused hand. When it reached Kincaid's wrist, it suddenly and smoothly shrank to fit exactly over the muscles, bone, and skin.
She felt a small puff of breath against her hair.
Curious to see if something had changed, Murphy looked up to see Kincaid grinning his usual grin at her. "There," he said. "Sorry it's so unspectacular after all that." But there was real humour in his eyes, and something that burned deeper.
Murphy frowned and turned in his lap, so she could lightly stroke his strong jaw, lightly touch that scar by the cleft in his chin. She reached up and kissed him, slow and sure, and his breath caught. "Hey," she said softly against his lips. "Maybe we should go into the house and explore that lacy underwear."
"Mmmm," Kincaid said, kissing her again, slow and sweet. "Certainly, m'lady. I'm yours to command."