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Author's Note: Written for The Pike/Number One Bingo prompts "documentation" and "good-natured bickering & other banter". Thanks to my betas!

Two Hours and Fourty-Six Minutes Later
by LJC

Captain Christopher Pike was about to comm the Enterprise and have Mr Scott run a planet-wide scan for his missing XO, when the front door of the ranch opened and Number One dropped her duffel in the entryway with a laboured sigh.

"What took you so long? I was getting worried." He shouldered her duffel, and she followed him to the master bedroom where he set it on the braided rug in front of the chest of drawers.

When he turned around, Number One had flung herself face-down atop the patterned quilt covering the King-sized bed. He tugged off her boots, which were hanging off the side, and she rolled over onto her back. Propped up against the pillows, she still radiated anger.

"It took me three hours to get here. And that was using transporter credits to get from the Presidio to Bakersfield. The last 2.76 hours was actually spent arguing with the gentleman from whom I rented a flitter to release said vehicle to me."

He toed off his own boots and sat down next to her, and she scooted over to make room so he could stretch out. "Why?"

"They had my name wrong in their system. I presented my Starfleet credentials, but the proprietor refused to acknowledge that the mistake had been his, and that I had in fact reserved a flitter under my own name for the duration of our stay on Earth."

"Well—it is how many syllables again?" he teased, but her mood remained black.

She poked him in the bicep. "Thirty-two. Not including the surname."

Pike's lips twitched as he tried to hold back a grin. "How badly did he mangle it?"

"Let's just say my name is most definitely not 'Maureen' and leave it at that," she said, tossing her hair and crossing her arms.

"Why didn't you comm me?"

"I suspect that, had I relayed a message through the Enterprise, it would completely defeat the purpose of obscuring our plans to spend our leave together. Petty Officer Garrison is a more than competent communications officer. I'm sure he would have noticed. Especially as, according to Cait, he has a sizeable sum invested in a certain betting pool being run not particularly covertly by Lt Tyler."

Pike's eyebrows rose toward his hairline. "Are you serious?"

Now it was her turn to raise a brow. "Are you telling me you are unaware of Tyler's pool?"

"Of course I know about Tyler's pool," he said with a chuckle, and snuggled up next to her. Slipping an arm around her shoulders, he rolled her so she lay stretched out on top of him, one leg between his. "I mean someone actually argued with you for over two hours before they finally gave in and let you have the aircar? Usually I can manage only about thirty minutes before I give in completely to your feminine charms."

As he spoke, he slid his fingers up under her tunic, pressing one hand flat against the curve of her lower back while his other hand trace her spine. Like one of the barn cats, she began to relax beneath his touch as he stroked her pale skin, some of the tension leaving her shoulders.

"No, Christopher. I made up this elaborate story to cover my tempestuous affair with another man." Her tone was still poisonous, but it was belied by the way she melted into his embrace.

"Anyone I know?" he asked as he pressed a kiss to her jaw.

"No. He's much younger, better looking, and with a shorter refractory period." She wriggled her hips suggestively against his, and he moaned against her skin.

Pike flipped them over so she was on her back, hair slipping across the pillows. "Ah, but does he have complete and absolute power over your Starfleet career and chances for advancement?"

"Curses. You've discovered my entire rationale for sleeping with you for the last four years."

She arched her back, running one stocking-clad foot up the back of his calf. Her laugh morphed into a gasp as he tilted his pelvis into hers.

"Any way I can make it up to you?" he asked, as serious as he could be when at that particular moment all he wanted in the world was to rip off her clothes and not leave the bed until it was time to beam back up to the ship.

"A backrub and a chocolate soufflé ought to even us up."

Pike grinned. "You're so easy."

"Except when I'm being difficult." She leaned up to kiss him, nipping playfully at his bottom lip. While they kissed, he ran his hands up her sides, gathering her command tunic and grey undershirt as he went. He pulled back from her mouth only long enough to tug the clothes over her head. He tossed them to the floor and she sat up so she could reach behind her back to unhook her bra.

"Anything else, my lady?" he asked as the bra joined the growing pile of garments on the floor next to the bed.

"Yes," she said as she began working on the buttons of his plaid flannel shirt. "You get to return the flitter."


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