Passing Through (Love/Hate Part Three)

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Part Seventeen

A/N Glad to see that you're all enjoying, and I'm loving writing this. These are a difficult couple with little smooth running. I hope that you keep on enjoying and does make me smile! MZxxx

Chapter Seventeen

Natasha was twirling her fingers, her teeth snagging her bottom lip, and her eyes darting nervously around the room. He only hoped that his explanation, opening himself up was enough. They were sat, thighs touching, the air, after his confession, and her reaction, was thick and heavy between them, and Bo knew he had to act, Natasha wanted him too. He also knew she wouldn't be the one to make that first move.

"I want to kiss you," he leaned close and whispered at her ear. He didn't miss her thighs squeeze together, her breath halt, her fingers grip into a fist. She wanted that too, he knew he wasn't pushing her, forcing this. He could read her.

"You do?" she finally managed, her voice hoarse.

He nodded, still at her ear, his stubble scratching at her cheek. "I do, so very much."

She gasped, and whilst he couldn't see her face fully, he could imagine what he would see, flushed cheeks, wide eyes, pursed lips.

Pulling at her near shoulder gently, he eased her around to face him, her eyes were dropped, but he used his fingers to lift her chin, smiling at her.

"Are you OK?" When she nodded, he added, "are you OK with this? Tell me."

He had to hear her say yes, he wouldn't accept a nod. In this day and age he needed her to tell him it was what she wanted, especially as they had such a volatile time to date.

"Yes." She breathed, and then his lips were on hers. And it was everything he remembered, they kissed ravenously, consuming each other, nails scraping, teeth clashing. Anger, passion, it was all there.

"I am so sorry," he breathed against her cheek when his mouth finally left hers. "I will make it all up to you."

She moaned as he dragged his teeth over her earlobe, then nodded, "I know."

Long moments passed where they kissed, grabbing each other, pulling each other as close as they could. And Natasha was breathless when she pulled back, meeting his eyes.

"Wow," he sighed as he ran a thumb over her bottom lip, fingers caressing her jaw. "That was pretty amazing."

Leaning her face back against his fingers, forcing him to support her head, she preened like a contented cat, and it made him smile.

"It was," she finally replied, "but I have to go."

His heart stopped, physical pain lancing through him at the thought of her stepping away from him, leaving him. "I'll be good."

She shook her head, "there's too much temptation. And it's too soon."

Of course she was right, sex now, so soon after their argument and his confession, it would muddy the water. That didn't mean he didn't want to throw her on his bed and finally get under her clothes. Blue balls, he was destined to have another night with only his fantasies for company.

"You can't call off your tennis tomorrow?"

She shook her head, "I can't. It's a weekly thing, we'll lose league points."

"But I leave Friday."

Natasha turned, tucking a leg underneath her, "you do. And I'll be watching you on TV."

He grunted in frustration, which only made her smile.

"Don't think of it as time apart, think of it as an extended build-up," she bit her lip suggestively, "...foreplay, if you will."

That made his eyes widen like saucers, "shit, you aren't making this any easier." Taking her hand, he placed it over his groin. "This is what you do to me, this is what I have to deal with every time I'm with you."

It was her turn to stare, straight into his eyes, but where he thought she'd snatch her hand away when he released his pressure, she didn't. Instead she cupped him through his shorts, running her palm over him and suddenly his protest was backfiring. Sweet torture.

"Natasha..." he managed to force out her name. But she didn't stop, merely raising an eyebrow. "If you don't stop..."

She grinned, "I'll stop, of course I'll stop, but this is maybe my bargaining tool. Let me go tonight, and this could be on the cards when I next see you."

It was so brazen, so direct, so unlike her, that he was struggling to breathe in response.

"It is so long until I'm back home..."

As she kept up her pace, running her hand over him, she nodded, "and this is something to remind you of then."

He rolled his head back on his shoulders, looking up to the ceiling, unable to believe that she was doing this.

He'd driven her home. Like a true gentleman, even though he could hardly squeeze into his tiny car for his erection. Any hope that she would deal with it had disappeared with her coy grin. It would be funny if it wasn't so painful, for both of them. Natasha wondered all day what the female equivalent of blue balls was. Because despite their arguments, the way they seemed to infuriate each other, physically, as soon as he touched her, however innocuously, she was a goner, she wanted him with a desire she hadn't felt in a long time. Dangerously desperate, her conscience told her, and she was starting to ignore that voice, and that had never boded well.

Despite that, she won her tennis match, Steph was exuberant, and they celebrated in the tennis club bar with their fellow players.

As she got home, threw her kit into the washing machine, her phone bleeped. She'd heard from Bo several times since he'd dropped her home with a toe curling kiss, and her face lit up to see his name on the screen.


One word, but it made her smile so much. As a reply, she sent him a picture of her legs in her tennis shoes, and just the edge of her tennis shorts, over the top of the picture she wrote the score, and the word victory.

She was sipping on a cup of tea, catching up with the latest episodes of her favourite US cop show when he replied.

Fuck. If I get lessons...

She laughed snatching at her phone.

There is no way on earth that I'd play you at ANY sport. Mr Super-competitive.

In her mind she could see him smiling at that, and it was no surprise when her phone started to ring.

"I'd love to play you in those white shorts." He didn't wait to hear her voice, he immediately launched into the innuendo, his voice filled with humour, and she was sure lust. "I'd lose every game I'd be so distracted."

"And I'd rather deal with you in full hockey padding."

That made him laugh out loud, "you think I need protection?"

"Oh, Mr Holding, to the contrary. You should come with a government health warning."

He scoffed at that, "you have such a filthy mouth!"

Tutting herself, she couldn't help but laugh too, "you are the one with a smutty mind. There is more than one meaning for the word come."

"But they all sound the same on your lips."

Humour led to more innuendo, which led to him lowering the tone to somewhere dirty and lust filled.

"Bo..." she tried to protest, but it was half-hearted at best.

But he interrupted, "sorry, Natasha. I just like teasing you. You know how I feel."

"I know that things are whirling out of control..." She found it hard to deal with him when he was full on like this.

He sighed, "sorry. I make me feel like life is worth living again."

"Life is always worth living." Hating having that much pressure on her shoulders, but knowing exactly what he meant, because she felt the same. Her love of life was back with a bullet, and the tension that grew between them every day, only enhanced that.

"It wasn't always, some days have been full of bullshit."

Taking a deep breath, she cut him off, "I know what you mean."

With a grunt of victory, he changed the subject. "That's all I needed to hear, now, tell me about this tennis match."

Twenty minutes later they ended the call. He had an early rise for his travel, but never as early as her start in the cafe.

Freya beamed as she opened the front door. Natasha handed her a bouquet of flowers, and a bag containing a home made dessert and a couple of bottles of wine. She was so grateful for the invite to her home to watch the match.

"Oh my god, girlfriend. You can come again." She ushered Natasha into the lounge, once she'd hugged her. Her sister-in-law Isabel was sat on the sofa breast feeding her newborn son, and glanced up.

"Hi, Natasha." As she replied with a wave, Freya rolled her eyes.

"Proper guests arrive with flowers, wine and..." she peaked into the box in the bag, then her eyes jumped to Natasha's. "Is that..."

"Chocolate fudge cake, best served warm...and there's cream too."

Isabel grinned, "my absolute favourite. You can definitely come again...and I brought dinner, by the way."

Natasha loved the banter between the two women, and she laughed as she replied, "the wine, is the thing I'm most looking forward to. Oops. Can you...?"

Isabel shook her head, "no, I can't partake, but I am running up credits, once Seth here is out of this draining-me-physically stage, then I will definitely be forcing Oscar to drive me everywhere and watch me consume vast quantities of alcohol for months."

"You go girl," Freya responded as she wrestled with a bottle of wine. "I buy her this grape pressé type stuff, and then let her sniff my wine every now and again. The fumes are enough to make her feel drunk."

Natasha laughed hard, then took the offered seat on a sofa opposite Isabel.

Conversation was light and easy as she fed the baby, then the procession of Cooper/Wicker children came in from the playroom, changed in to pyjamas, cleaned teeth, and Freya saw them up to bed.

"I should help her," Isabel offered, trying to get out of the chair, the sleeping Seth over her shoulder.

"Do you want me to hold him whilst you do?" She offered, though it had been a long time since she'd held a baby.

Izzy's eyes lit up, "would you? He has to be upright for a while because of his reflux, can you drape him over your shoulder?"

Nodding she took the baby, then relaxed him onto her chest, and as the mother disappeared, she turned to smile at the baby, kissing his head gently, then inhaling his baby smell. His little whimpering breaths and snuffling of his head made her heart warm. She's oppressed her maternal instinct over the years, and she had no idea that holding a baby would have such an effect on her.

Her phone beeped and one handed she managed to retrieve it from her pocket, to see a message from Bo.

Just having a final team talk, FO in 5. Hope you enjoy the game.

Glad she knew hockey and that FO meant face-off, she snapped a selfie of herself from the other side of Seth, a cute pic of mainly him and a bit of her, and added the comment 'I have my uses'.

He sent her back a smile emoji, then the three dots that meant he was typing disappeared. Obviously it was game time.

They streamed the game through Freya's huge TV, and whilst there were only about three camera angles at the rink, the size of the TV meant they had a good chance at following the game. It was the end of the first period before she reluctantly gave up Seth to his crib in the room next door. The kids upstairs were asleep, and the women were about to eat the lasagne that Isabel had provided.

The Hornets were winning three nil at the end of the period, Freya's husband Coop had a lot of dominant ice time, and was instrumental in assisting two of the goals, both scored by a certain Bo Holding.

"So," Freya was sat on an armchair, cross legged, the plate of lasagne in her hands, half full glass of wine on a table to her side. "Tell us all about this boy, Holding."

Isabel nodded, "because he is mighty fine!"

Natasha had been expecting it all night, and was really amazed they'd got to the first break before the questions started.

"Not a great deal to tell..."

"He took you out for a meal?" Freya asked.

She nodded, "but he keeps running away."


Natasha nodded, "he seems to chase me, set up a date, or a meet up...then either switches off, or leaves early. I cannot make out the boy."

Freya sighed, "he does seem troubled."

Isabel agreed, "but then Oscar said he had a really bad injury."

"Yep," Freya added, "it must be hard for him."

Natasha rolled her eyes, "he is playing a sport he loves and getting paid to do it, crowds watch him, men adore him, women want to shag him...sounds like hell." She hated that she sounded so resentful, but she couldn't keep making excuses for him. So he had lost a lot of so called friends. That didn't mean he couldn't make new ones. "His glass is half empty, I suppose."

Freya sighed, "that's men for you. They're all the same."

"Coop?" Natasha scoffed, "he's the most well rounded normal man I've met in a long, long time."

The two women laughed, and it was Isabel who finally spoke, "he wasn't like that until he met Frey, was he?"

Freya sighed, "he dropped out of the NHL, like Bo, but his was by choice...he didn't think he deserved it. He didn't think he deserved anything, he was a cantankerous man whore when I met him, but slowly, the Coop that was always underneath came out, and that version is amazing. Give Bo a chance, let his ego get over the change."

"He keeps telling me that he's here for a season, temporary, that this is a stop gap...I'm not in a rush to get involved. Not on that basis."

The two women sympathised, and Isabel smiled, "we've both literally been there. If you need a chat..."

"...or his coach to pound a little sense into him," Freya added.

Isabel rolled her eyes, "you call us?"

Natasha was past embarrassed, she just wish she had more to tell them in all honesty. "I wasn't looking for anything..."

They both leaned towards her simultaneously, and nodded, "ditto!"

The team were coming back onto the ice, but Freya wasn't to be perturbed, "I had NO intention of getting into a relationship with Mitchell." When Natasha raised an eyebrow in question, she laughed, "my husband, Mitchell Cooper. I refuse to call him by his abbreviated surname! Anyway, I actually asked him to help me catch the attention of another man. He refused...and we hated each other, for a while. Bloody man snuck up on me, didn't help that he got me pregnant."

Natasha gasped, then giggled, "that sounds like an over dinner story."

Isabel nodded, "it took me a few years to get to the bottom of the story, and similarly, I met Oscar because he shagged my sister. Ha ha."

Both women started to laugh, and as the game started, she explained how her sister had died, leaving her as guardian of her nephew, and Oscar was the father.

It sounded romantic, falling in love like they both had, fairly unsuspectingly at first. It gave her a little hope. She'd had a rough teenage time, had thought that she'd never love or be loved, and whist she had slept with several men over the years, she didn't think that Bo would ever hang around and ever love her. And that was what she craved...she'd done casual, and despite the way she argued with Bo, the way they sparked, she wanted more than that. Much more than that. She could only imagine that she was on a one way trip to more heartache, and she'd already had her fair share of that.

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