by rebecca

The sunlight was just beginning to seep through the curtains when they stumbled into the room, laughing and almost giddy with the hyperactive energy only the truly overtired can achieve. Chloe flopped down on the bed, her legs dangling off the side, and burst into giggles for no reason.

"Next time we do this, we need more caffeine," she decided, staring up at the ceiling.

"Next time? Are you trying to kill me?"

"Oh, come on. It was fun." She squirmed into a more comfortable position--losing her shoes and her jacket in the process--and curled up so she could look at him. "I've always wanted to see the sun rise from that hill."

"Sunrise is one thing. Staying up all night to see it is another entirely." Lex sat down on the bed; she wriggled her head into his lap, closing her eyes. "Especially on top of a society function."

"I know," Chloe said mock-mournfully. "My dress will never be the same." She opened her eyes and looked down at the short length of silver silk, showing definite signs of wear and tear.

"Neither will my tux." The bowtie had disappeared long ago, as had the cummerbund. He stripped off the jacket and tossed it in the corner, unfastening the cufflinks with an absent efficiency Chloe admired. She doubted she had the physical dexterity to take off her stockings at the moment.

"Yes, but you look so gorgeous when you're disheveled like that." Chloe pushed herself up into a seated position and watched him undress.

He snorted and tossed the shirt after the jacket. "I knew it. You're only dating me for my physical attraction."

She pretended to consider that for a moment, then shook her head. "Nah. It's the sex."

"So glad to know I'm worth so much in your estimation."

"Anytime," she said sweetly. "Lex, would you unzip me? I can't reach the fastenings on this by myself."

She stood up and turned, holding her hair away from her neck. "Did you know that in some cultures, the sight of a woman's exposed neck was illegal?" he murmured, unfastening the tiny hooks. "It was considered to be too arousing." He kissed the nape of her neck as he spoke.

"Is it?" she asked. The dress slid down her shoulders and off her body as if it had been made from liquid silver. She stepped out of the puddle of fabric and turned to face him, clad only in her stockings and panties.

"Turn around again and I'll tell you."

"I have a better idea." Chloe took his hands and pulled, sending them both tumbling down onto the bed. He landed on top of her, squeezing the breath out of both of them. She couldn't help it--she started giggling as soon as she had air.

"You find this amusing?" Lex asked, propping himself up to look down at her.

She wiped tears out of her eyes and tried to stop. "No," she managed finally. "But I'm tired and wired--and hey,that rhymes!--and I'll laugh at just about anything right now."

"Anything?" He gave her the half-smirk.

"Oh no. No, Lex--no, don't--" Chloe shrieked with laughter as he started tickling her ribs. She squirmed and twisted under him, trying to get away from his hands. "Stop--oh, God, I can't breathe--stop it!" She was laughing so hard tears were pouring down her face and she gave up all hope of escaping in favor of fighting for oxygen.

"I didn't realize you were so ticklish," he remarked finally, letting go of her.

She nodded, still gasping for air. "And now, thanks to you, I probably look like a tomato." She wiped the tears off her cheeks, taking deep breaths to try and slow her heart.

"I think you're kind of cute when you're all flushed, actually."

"You do not."

"I do." He kissed her briefly and rolled off her, propping himself up on an elbow. "I'm only allowed to want you when you're perfectly coiffed and made up?"

"No, but--" Chloe shrugged. "Don't look at me, it's too early in the morning for me to be coherent."

"What about incoherent?" He brushed her hair off her face and kissed her again.

"I may giggle," she warned him.

"I'll live."

She did giggle, as it turned out--he kissed her stomach and she dissolved into laughter. But then, that was only fair--she bit his neck and he started laughing as well. "What'd I do?" she demanded, trying not to crack up.

"Nothing--I had a vampire moment," he said deadpan.

After that, being serious was out of the question. They were rolling all over the bed, laughing and kissing and fumbling around like virginal teenagers. "This is ridiculous," Chloe said at one point, sprawled on top of him. "We used to be better at this."

"We also used to have had some sleep first." He rolled her over and kissed her.

"Is this a sign we're getting old?"

"You said it, not me."

"Oh, shut up and kiss me." To her surprise, he obliged.

Later, with her arms holding him close and his body thrusting into hers, she thought hazily that funny sex was pretty damn good. And then his hand was between her legs and she was coming and she didn't have the brain cells to think.

They lay in a tangled mass on the bed for a bit before gathering up the dregs of their energy to crawl under the covers. Chloe snuggled up next to Lex, idly tracing patterns on his chest with her hand. The sun was warm, she was curled up next to a guy who made a really nice pillow (the lack of hair meant she didn't get beard-burn in inconvenient places), and her body was limp and purring from great sex.

And yet she couldn't quite sleep.

She drifted a bit, her mind floating around all sorts of topics, but mostly thinking about Lex. About the way he'd looked when he'd kissed her that first time, almost startled. The way he felt against her, smooth and warm and silky skin over surprisingly firm muscles--she guessed fencing kept him in better shape than was apparent. The way his face looked, eyes closed and mouth half-open, as he thrust into her. And the way he looked at her when they were making love, warm and tender.

"Penny for your thoughts," he murmured, stroking her hair.

"Can't sleep either?"

He shrugged a little. "I could tell you were awake."

He never slept first. Never. "I'm sorry--I can--" She started to apologize, but he brushed his fingers over her lips.

"It's all right. What's on your mind?"

"You." She stretched against him and smiled a little, snuggling in closer.

"Uh oh." He sounded amused; with her face tucked in against his chest she couldn't see his expression. "What did I do now?"

She giggled sleepily. "All good things."

"Must be thinking about someone else, then." He kissed the top of her head.

"Oh, stop that." His brand of humor tended to be self-deprecating, to say the least; the problem was she didn't think he was entirely joking.

"You know," he mused, "I never would have figured you for a cuddler."

"Why not?"

"You have too much energy. Cuddling is a rather passive activity--you just lie there."

She shrugged against him. "I'm a girl at heart. What about you? Why do you like it?"

"Who says I'm not just humoring you?" he teased.

"You wouldn't do that." She knew he wouldn't--he liked her and they had fun together, but she had no illusions that he'd do something just for her.

He kissed the top of her head again. "Maybe I would, maybe I wouldn't."

And that was all the answer she was going to get from him on the subject. She sighed and decided to just enjoy it.

"Bedtime for intrepid reporters," he said, stroking her hair and her back. "Go to sleep, Chloe. I'll be here when you wake up."

"Promise?" she said around a yawn.


"Kay." She closed her eyes and hoped sleep wouldn't be too long in coming. She was warm, a