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Overnight Therapy - Chapter Eighteen

Title: Overnight Therapy

Author: LSM71059
Fandom: Spooks
Characters: Lucas
Rating: M for Mature
Spoilers: Season Seven
Summary: Lucas North has someone to confide in and take care of him when the nightmares and bad flashbacks happen.
Disclaimer: All Spooks Characters are the intellectual property of the BBC.
The Inspiration for this story was taken from the song "South City Midnight Lady" by the Doobie Brothers
(Time Line for chapter: Between Episodes 7.03 & 7.04)

 

Chapter Eighteen

As Lucas carried her up the flight of stairs, Lori fought hard to maintain her composure. 

His arm was rubbing on the only two spots on her body that she couldn’t control with her mind, the back of her knees. He had no clue he was tickling her. All of her life as hard as she tried, Lori could not apply mind over matter to those two areas. There had been only a few people over the years who knew, and all but Eric were no longer among the living. Lori thought, “I really don’t want Lucas knowing about my ticklish spots. It always was a never ending source of amusement for Eric that he had found them. To Eric for “The Invincible Snoopy” to actually have a vulnerable spot that could not be controlled was pure gold.”

Lucas looked down at her wondering if he had crossed a line with her. She wasn’t saying anything. But to his relief and then pleasure, He saw she was trying to suppress a smile and perhaps from laughing out loud. Reaching her front door, he said setting Lori on her feet, “We’ve arrived My Lady.”

“So we have,” Lori said relieved she was no longer being tickled. Playing along with Lucas as she inserted the key in to the lock, opened the door and entered the flat holding it for him, she continued, “Won’t you please come in Sir Lucas for some refreshment?”

Lucas gave a half smile at her reference to his being “Her Knight” and answered as he entered sliding off his coat and putting it on the back of a chair, “I’d be honored. You are too kind.”

Lori said as she took off her coat throwing it over a chair. “Now about that dessert, what will it be? Coconut Cake or Snickerdoodles or both?”

“Shouldn’t we have supper before dessert?” Lucas asked as he crossed his arms over his chest looking every bit like a parent talking to his child.

“We can have it later. My Uncle always said you should eat your dessert first because you never know if there will be time for it after the meal. I think it is one of his great philosophies and I have subscribed to it for years,” Lori said as she headed in to the kitchen.

Lucas was right behind her. He stopped at his usual spot to lean against the door jam. He said, “Correct me if I am wrong, but I could have sworn there was a plan already in place. It involved you resting while I went for take away then after we would be having dessert.”

“Plan to change the plan. You have to overcome and adapt. And that’s what I’ve done with your plan, Lori said as she pulled the Coconut Cake out of the refrigerator. She started to reach for a knife to cut it when Lucas’ hand covered hers.

He held it and said firmly starting out of the kitchen and down the hall with Lori in tow, “I said you were going to rest, and I meant it. Come with me.”

Lori considered balking for a moment but decided if she did he’d only scoop her up and carry her. Lucas turned in to her bedroom stopping just long enough to flip on the light. He led her over to the bed and sat her down. He took a knee placing her foot in his hands to remove one shoe then repeated with the other. When he finished he put his hands on her thighs and looked in to her eyes. He finally spoke, “Perhaps you’d like to change in to something more comfortable. Shall I pull something out of the wardrobe for you?”

Lori watched him closely as he removed her shoes. She tried to focus on what he was saying but it was a little disconcerting to have his hands on her thighs and him looking straight in to her eyes at such a close range. She reached out and put her hand on his cheek replying softly, “Lucas, I’m fine. It’s not your fault I fainted, it’s mine. You don’t have to wait on me.”

He leaned in to her touch and said in his low silky voice, “Humor me. Let me take care of you tonight. If you want dessert, I’ll get it for you but you will eat supper too. So what will it be, are you changing or no?”

Lori thought, “It seems to mean a lot to him to take care of me tonight so it is best I let him.” She lowered her hand from his cheek and sighed, “When you put it that way, how can I refuse? If you will allow it, I’ll go take a quick shower then change.”

Lucas patted her thighs before standing up. He said extending his hand to help her to feet, “I will allow it. That’s an excellent idea. While you do that I will get the quilt from the window seat and dessert for us. 

Lori took his hand to stand. She moved over to the wardrobe.  Lucas stood watching her choose her clothes with his hands in the back of pockets of his jeans.  He was amused at the loungewear she pulled out. It consisted of a pair of black sweats that had “Red Wings” stenciled up the side of one leg in red, “Detroit” down the other and their logo on the hip, a yellow tee with blue lettering that said “Swedish Mafia, Silent but Deadly”, and a Red Wings Sweater with an “A” on the front and the number 40 and the name Zetterberg embroidered on to the back. She added a pair of socks with the team’s logo and tossed a cap that matched the rest on to the top of the pile. Everything looked to be one or two sizes too big for her. He thought, “She’s loyal to her hockey team. I’ll give her that. And the whimsy in her mode of dress continues. It’s a constant I can count on.” 

She looked over at Lucas, seeing his amusement and said in way of explanation, “There’s a game on tonight at Midnight. You are welcome to stay and watch it with me. I even have an extra sweater if you want to wear it during the game.”

He noted the flat screen on the wall above the wardrobe.  “Thank you for the invite, I will be happy to watch the game with you as long as you can do it from your bed,” Lucas said not addressing the offer of the sweater “Now go get in the shower.”

“Aye, Aye Captain,” Lori said giving him a mock salute before scooping up her clothes. She went in to the bath and he to the front room. Lucas retrieved the quilt and pillows taking them in to the bedroom. He could hear the shower the running.   He couldn’t be sure but thought Lori was singing in the shower. This brought a smile to his lips. He spread the quilt and arranged the pillows on the bed.

Next stop the kitchen to cut the cake and put the cookies out on a dish, He removed the cover from the cake plate, took up the knife Lori was going to use earlier, sliced two small pieces and put them on plates. He found the tray Lori used all the time and placed the cake, cookies, forks and napkins on the tray. Covering the cake back up and putting it back in the refrigerator, He took out a can of Coke and set it on the tray. He poured a glass of Vodka for himself, took a healthy swig, refilled the glass and added it to the rest. Satisfied with his fare, He took the laden tray to the bedroom placing it on the bedside table nearest the door.

Just as Lucas took a seat on the edge of the bed, Lori came in fresh from her shower. He thought she smelled like lilacs and it was intoxicating. She’d put her wet hair through the back of the cap, braided it and finished it off with a hair elastic. He was right about the clothes. They were baggy on her, but she looked to be comfortable, which was the important part. She noted the tray on the nightstand right off and said, “Looks like you have been busy while I was in the shower.”

“I promised you dessert,” Lucas said.

Lucas turned back the quilt beside him and patted the spot next to him. Lori padded over and sat down leaning against the pillows. He covered her legs with the quilt before handing her the Coke and placing a napkin on her lap. Lori took a sip before setting it down on the opposite night stand. Lucas put the plate of cookies in between them then picked up a fork and one of the plates of cake. He forked up a bite and held it up for Lori. She smiled as she took the bite, and then took the fork and plate from him. He picked up the other plate and forked up a bite for himself. He savored the taste as it rolled around his tongue. The look on his face told Lori that he liked it. He said, “I’ve not had cake this tasty for ages.”

Lori smiled, “Try a cookie; they are one of my favorite kind.”

He picked up a cookie and took a bite. He said, “Excellent, you are quite the talented baker.”

“I get by,” Lori said shrugging.

Lucas wasn’t going to let her get by once again with sliding off his compliment. He felt it was time to address the situation. He said, “Have you always had trouble taking a compliment?”

A blush stained her cheeks before she could stop it. Lori bit her lip and blew out a breath. She stared down at her lap as she answered quietly, “Yes.”

Lucas knew he’d managed to hit a sensitive spot with her and it had caused Lori to withdraw inside herself. He reached over to take her hand and give it an encouraging squeeze and said gently, “It’s alright. I was curious to know. You needn’t give me an explanation as to why.”

Lori wasn’t hungry anymore. Unbeknownst to him, Lucas had dredged up a lifetime of hurt and hiding behind her persona of bravado with his simple question. She set the barely eaten cake on the bedside table and unconsciously burrowed down under her Grandma’s quilt. She thought, “Snap out of it, get a grip, come on, you are here to help this man beside you. Put aside your hurt and shyness. If you share with him, he’ll trust you more and share with you.”   She took a mental deep breath, squeezed Lucas’ hand and said, “If you really want to know why I have a hard time taking a compliment, I’ll tell you.”

Lucas could feel the tension in her hand. He thought, “For all her outward bravado, Lori really is so shy and vulnerable underneath that tough exterior. She hides it well from the rest of the world.  Though I’d dearly love to know more of what she is made up of, it’s more important she eat something. So, I best give serious thought to getting the take away and it will give her a little time to regroup.” He set the plate down he'd been holding on the bedside table, then dropped her hand and rose from his sitting position.  He said, “Why don’t you tell me later. Right now, I am going to go for the take away.”

Lori said, “Here let me get you a key for the door so you can let yourself in when you get back.”  She got up from the bed and walked passed him, in to the kitchen pulling out a drawer and extracted a Detroit Red Wings key chain with two keys on it. She held it out to Lucas, “It’s my extra set for the front door to the building and the key to the flat.”

His fingers grazed hers as he took the keys. It sent a shiver up both their spines. He said, “Thank you, I will be back within the hour. I expect to find you in your bed resting and have your dessert eaten when I return.”

“My, you are domineering this evening Sir,” Lori said with a smile.

Lucas playfully swatted her on her backside before retrieving his jacket from the back of the chair. Lori opened the front door for him and returned the swat with a grin. He shook his finger at her saying, “You my girl are quite the handful. Now off to bed with you and I’ll be back before you know it.”

Lori put a hand on his shoulder, got up on tiptoes and gave him a light peck on the cheek. She said, “Hurry back.”

He gave her a quick smile before departing and dashing down the stairs. Lori closed the door and banged her head lightly against it. She thought, “Jesus, you have got to get a grip. What is it about Lucas that gets to me so fast? I need to figure that out and better sooner than later.” She dug her Blackberry out of the messenger bag and dialed.

At the other end of the line, the Peanuts Theme, “Linus & Lucy” sounded. Eric was on top of a rather attractive and shapely brunette and in mid thrust. He groaned rolling off the top of her reaching for his Blackberry. The brunette said putting an arm around Eric to try to detain him, “Let it ring, Love. Finish this first.”

Eric batted her away getting off the bed and walking over to the window to take the call. There was only one individual in the world that he would allow to interrupt copulation and she was the one that had programmed the ringtone for him. He answered on the third ring, “Snoopy, what’s up?”

“Hey, got a minute?” Lori asked.

“For you, I have two,” Eric said. The tone of her voice was one he did not hear often. It told him Lori was in some way hurting and needed to talk. He would listen and perhaps offer a suggestion or two. He made his way over to the pile of clothes on the floor and picked up the pair of jeans to slide on before walking out of the bedroom leaving the brunette gaping at him for leaving her and went down the stairs to the kitchen.

Lori started pacing back and forth in the living room. She spoke after a moment of silence, “Well, first off I’m ok.”

“Good to know, and why would I think otherwise?” Eric asked.

Lori said morosely, “Because I was stupid, forgot to eat and fainted in front of Lucas earlier this evening in my office at Thames House.”

Eric knew how much Lori hated to show any sign of weakness. And fainting to her was the ultimate. He thought, “She must have been totally mortified. I won’t belabor the point of her needing to take care of herself. It would just be wasted air. But that’s not the real reason she needs to talk, I know her too well. This is just the preamble.”  He said, “Thanks for letting me know.  You will have to tell me all about it when we have lunch on Tuesday down to the last detail.  Have you told Joe and Donovan yet?”

“No, I haven’t told them. Wasn’t in the mood just yet to get a lecture from either of them,” Lori said.

“Want me to call them?” Eric offered.

“No, I’m a big girl. I’ll do it myself. But thanks just the same,” Lori said.

“You bet. What else is happening?” Eric asked.

“You have to promise me you won’t laugh when I tell you the next thing,” Lori said.

Eric got a big grin on his face. When she started out like that, He knew she was going to tell something that would amuse him for ages. He said as solemnly as He could muster while grinning, “I promise.”

“And you can quit grinning anytime,” Lori shot back. “To give you a little background it all started with me teasing Lucas about being this Knight in Shining Armor who rescued Damsels in distress.”

“Uh huh,” Eric said already starting to chuckle. He pictured in his mind Lori dressed as a damsel. And the image of her in a flowing gown about had him in stitches.

“Damn it Eric, stop it,” Lori admonished. “You already are picturing me in one of those maiden dresses aren’t you?”

“Uh huh,” was all Eric could manage to say.

“When we got back tonight, I smarted off to him about not being chivalrous in private. So He scooped me up in his arms and carried me up the flight of stairs,” Lori said.

A light bulb went off in Eric’s head as he pictured the scene in his mind. He could see Lucas’ arm under her knees. His grin widened on his face. He asked, “And did Lucas discover The Invincible Snoopy’s vulnerable ticklish spots?”

“Why do I call you my best friend? You are the most infuriating man. But to answer your question, no, He did not but it was a damn close call I can tell you. It took everything I had not to dissolve in to giggles,” Lori answered.

Eric didn’t even try to hide the laughter in voice. He shot back the same response He’d used ever since they’d known each other, “You call me your best friend because who else puts up with your bullheaded thinking, pain in the ass ways, and exasperating smart mouth as well as I do. And crisis averted since He didn’t find out right?”

Lori sighed, “That’s why I call you. So you can bestow your winsome charm and wisdom on me. Thanks.”

“Thanks for the good chuckle but you still haven’t told me the reason you really called,” Eric said getting to the point. The brunette had slipped on his shirt, came downstairs and was in the process of draping herself all over him and kissing his chest as he leaned against the sink. Her hands and mouth were going south in a hurry. Something rather large was starting to come to attention and strain against his already tight blue jeans. His concentration level was being put to the test.

Lori said softly, “Eric, he asked me if I’d always had trouble taking a compliment. I told him if he really wanted to know I’d tell him. I’m almost positive he realized how much the question got to me because he said I could tell him later. Then he left to go get us some food. That’s where he is now.”

Eric stopped the brunette from fondling him. He straightened up and walked away from her. He thought, “Of all the questions in the world, why did he have to ask her that one?” Of course he had no way of knowing what kind of hurt it would cause her. Good to know he was sensitive enough not to pursue her answer.” Aloud he asked, “So you going to tell him? If you are, do you want me to be there when you do? I can come over right now if you like.”

“Not necessary, but thanks, I appreciate the offer. Well, I’ll let you go, just needed an ear for a moment. I probably should try to call Joe and Donovan before Lucas returns. See you on Tuesday then?” Lori said essentially signaling she had told him what her dilemma was and didn’t wish to discuss it further. 

Eric hated when she shut down like that but knew it was one of her defensive mechanisms that had helped her survive through all her trials and tribulations. He said, “You bet Snoopy. And I’ll have my Blackberry on unless I’m in the air on Monday so call me anytime. I’ve got your six.”

“And I yours, see me,” Lori said as she always did before disconnecting.

Eric looked over at the brunette pouting at the sink. He had no desire to continue what they had been doing prior to Lori’s call. She was nothing more than a poor substitute for the real thing he wanted most. No, that person was across London hurting and she wouldn’t allow him to go to her. Eric mused that Lori would more than likely be shocked at his true feelings for her. He knew she thought of him as her best friend and that's how she loved him, nothing more. He'd continue to be there for her. He would wait as he had for years.  He said to the brunette, “I’m afraid we will have to cut the evening short. Let’s go get dressed and I’ll drive you home.”

Meanwhile back at the flat, figuring both would lecture her, Lori debated which one to call first Donovan or Joe. She looked at the time and decided on Joe. He would be getting ready to leave the office for the weekend and might not be inclined to talk very long. Oh who was she kidding; Joe was always available to talk to her for however long needed. She dialed his cell phone number and waited.

Joe answered on the second ring, “Hello My Dear, and how was your tour of Thames House?”

“Good Evening Joe, it was good. I met the people from MI-5 and ended up walking the project twice. Once with their appointed representative, Lucas North and the second time with the Head Honcho of Section D himself, Harry Pearce.”

“How convenient for you to have Lucas as their representative. It will certainly facilitate your endeavor. And was Harry Pearce properly impressed?”

“I think he was, but you can’t really tell with him, can you?” Lori said.

“Yes, Harry does tend to play things very close to his vest. And you got along with Lucas?” Joe said.

“We got on famously. In fact, he’s even got to experience what happens when your favorite project liaison forgets about keeping her sugar level where it should be,” Lori said trying to gloss over the situation. She could picture Joe in her head closing his eyes then rubbing the left one, bowing his head slightly and shaking it ever so imperceptibly. It was what he did every time Lori had to report to him something stupid she had done.

He was concerned for her health and safety but Joe knew there was no need to lecture her on the subject. He knew her well enough to know she was feeling foolish enough not to let it happen again for awhile. Instead, he would see to it that her office snack drawer would be stocked by the time she reached work on Monday and lay in a supply of Coca Cola for the refrigerator. He said, “I trust you did not frighten him too badly. And where are you now?”

Lori was relieved Joe wasn’t going to lecture her. She said, “I think he survived the fright alright. Actually he was very gallant about the whole episode. You would be proud of him. And I am at the apartment where I plan to stay and rest for the rest of the weekend per your orders.”

“Good to know you are in capable hands. Thank you for remembering my orders without having to be reminded. Have you told Donovan yet?” Joe said.

“Not yet, he’s the next phone call. I don’t suppose I could talk you in to making that call for me?” Lori asked teasing him.

“What would be the point? He’d only turn round and call you to confirm for himself you were alright,” Joe responded.

“True, true, well I’ll let you get on with your weekend. I’ll touch base with you on Monday then,” Lori said.

“Very well, My Dear, I look forward to your call. Good Evening,” Joe said before disconnecting.

“That went well,” Lori said out loud to the room. She looked at the clock on her phone. Lucas had been gone for close to a half hour. She knew he wouldn’t be pleased if he found her out in the living room pacing about. She took time to get a glass of ice and fresh Coke from the fridge then retrieved the laptop from the office and set it up for the hockey game before sitting down on the side of the bed. She poured the rest of the warm Coke over the ice, picked up her piece of cake from the bedside table, and devoured it in eight bites. She placed Lucas' glass of Vodka and the rest of the cookies next to his piece of cake on the opposite bedside table before returning the tray with her dirty dishes to the kitchen. She brought the bottle of Vodka back with her and placed it beside his glass.

Satisfied everything was in good order, Lori crawled back in to bed and covered up with the quilt before dialing Donovan. She figured it was close to the time Lucas should be back so if Donovan got on a roll lecturing her, she would have a great excuse to cut him off and hang up. She lucked out and got his voice mail. Lori said, “Hey Donovan, I’ve already talked to Eric and Joe so if you need more details before we talk tomorrow give them a call. Anyhow, thought you should know I let my blood sugar get a little too low and fainted in front of Lucas. Everything is fine so no need to worry. Gotta run, things to do, Lucas will be over anytime. Have a great evening.”

She smiled as she hung up, turned the ringer to vibrate and plugged in the Blackberry to charge. She knew Donovan would be on the phone to Joe or Eric or both within moments of getting the voice mail. She thought, “Oh well, better them getting grilled than me tonight.”

She reached over for a cookie just as she heard the front door lock click open. Lucas was back. The smell of food came wafting down the hall and in to the bedroom.

 

Comments

( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
bunkie77
Mar. 29th, 2009 10:51 pm (UTC)
I love this story and can't wait to see what Lori's deep dark secret is...and at long last there's going to be a scene in the bedroom...YAY!
lsm71059
Mar. 29th, 2009 11:18 pm (UTC)
I'm happy to know you are loving the story. And gee, I can't tell where your mind is...LOL.
leslieg
Mar. 30th, 2009 12:13 am (UTC)
He's getting rather cosy with her, innit he?!!!!

Poor Eric!!!!

lsm71059
Mar. 30th, 2009 12:57 am (UTC)
That's a good thing, right?

And yes, poor Eric.
oraetlabora2008
Mar. 30th, 2009 12:56 am (UTC)
I'm with bunkie77 and leslieg,

and wondering how cozy and will be be getting a bedroom scene? PG13 is better than nothing! (my mind is on the same wavelength as b77--insert devil face icon here.)

And Eric. He's been carrying a torch for our Lori for some time. I wonder if we should be frightened by this...could this become an obsession and get out of control? (insert nervous icon here)
lsm71059
Mar. 30th, 2009 12:59 am (UTC)
You two, what I am going to do with you? Oh, that's right I need to come up with what is going to happen in the bedroom in the next chapter.

No worries with Eric. He is very a patient man who will always have Lori's back when she needs him. It's his way of loving her in secret.
betty_eyes
Mar. 30th, 2009 01:43 am (UTC)
So apparently he's in control and bossy mode tonite. Thank God didn't discover the tickling point cause it will be quite the night with that little big secret of hers. So impatient to know.

And as for secrets, I suspected Eric's feelings but never dared to venture that deep and true. I thought it was more spirit of the moment.... But when he left the brunette halfway to heaven just for a two minutes talk with Lori. Something's not what it seems, my boy.

Hope you dont make him a physco or something like that. I really like Eric, it's like Lori's Malcom or Ben.

I know what it's going to happen in that bedroom and we do not need a new rating for that: watch a match, share some secrets, have some talk and tasty dinner and off we go.

Sorry i was kind of chatty today. Too loooooooong comment.

Thank you.
lsm71059
Mar. 30th, 2009 01:51 am (UTC)
I didn't take so much as being bossy as him being firm in the fact he wanted to take care of her and make her rest.

Nope, Eric is not a psycho. He really is her Malcolm. What an excellent way to put it. He's been in love with her for years. She is the one person he would drop anything for to help. That's just Eric. He's not going to run the risk of ruining their friendship by doing something stupid. It's all good where he concerned.

You know me to well. Guess I don't need to write Chapter Nineteen now.

Thanks for your comments, they really weren't that long. I enjoyed reading it.
mrs_tubbs
Mar. 30th, 2009 09:03 pm (UTC)
Oh yes you do! Need to write Chapter 19 that is! ;) Another cracking installment!
lsm71059
Mar. 31st, 2009 12:12 am (UTC)
Twist my arm, ok, ok, I give....I'm writing Chapter Nineteen this week.

Thanks, glad you liked it.
lynbryt
Apr. 1st, 2009 05:42 am (UTC)
Well I'm all caught up. Great chapters and of course you have to write Chapter 18.

I love how Lucas and Lori's relationship is developing. You can do a lot with PG13. All the URST is a great thing. Just think of a certain brooding mill owner. Need I say more.

Whatever you do I know it will be great.

I think maybe Lucas is rattling Lori a little bit.

Thought Eric was in love with Lori and what he did proved it even before he said it.

Will be checking for 19.

Thank you
lynbryt
Apr. 1st, 2009 05:43 am (UTC)
OOPS meant 19, 18 is just great, you don't need to write it again.
lsm71059
Apr. 1st, 2009 10:30 am (UTC)
Ok, I'll write 19 instead of 18 if you insist, Wink, Wink
lsm71059
Apr. 1st, 2009 10:29 am (UTC)
Hey lynbryt -

I wondered where you been. Glad to know you are caught up.

Thanks for the affirmation of the decelopment of their relationship. Honestly, it's so much harder to write the PG-13 and urst and exactly, that Mill Owner broods so well.

You think? Wouldn't you be rattled to be in so close contact?

Yep, that's what I'd hope you'd think about Eric.

You are welcome. And thank you for commenting.
lynbryt
Apr. 1st, 2009 01:49 pm (UTC)
Rattled would not even began to describe the condition I would be in.
lsm71059
Apr. 1st, 2009 04:10 pm (UTC)
I totally can relate to that.
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )