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Red Handed

Title: Red Handed
Rating: PG
Challenge: who ate my doughnut?
Notes: Happy birthday, annaiese!


“That’s it. Who did it?”

Rikku looked up in time to see an irritated Gippal come down the stone path towards her. He stopped in front of her, his hands on his hips.

“Did what?” she asked innocently, crossing her legs as she sat on the top of the bridge linking the temple to the road.

“Ate my doughnut. Who did it?”

She rolled her eyes. “Relax, Gippster. It’s just a doughnut.”

“Just a doughnut? Just a doughnut? I’ll have you know that I just spent the last four hours going over supply inventories and that doughnut was going to be my reward for slogging through some of the most boring reading material I’ve had to look at for some time. It was my patch of sunlight, my finish line, the light at the end of the tunnel. It was way more than just a doughnut.”

Rikku played with the end of her scarf. “You’ve seriously got to get a grip. If you want, I can drive down to Luca and get you a whole box of the things if it’ll make you happy.”

He eyed her suspiciously. Over the years, he knew that she only really fidgeted when she had a guilty conscience. Or when she knew she was about to get caught red-handed. “Just where were you this afternoon?” he asked her.

She looked away from him and towards the temple. “Here and there. Helping out with a couple of projects. My, doesn’t it look like rain?”

“It always looks like rain here. What sort of projects?”

She abandoned her scarf and fiddled with the bows on her sleeve. “You know, the ones that you assigned.”

“I’ve assigned a lot of them.” He leaned forward, planting his palms on the bridge on either side of her. “Why does your breath smell like chocolate?”

She gave a tiny squeak. While she always felt that she was a touchy-feely person by nature, she was suddenly aware that Gippal was clearly in her little bubble of personal space. After she had come back to his doorstep asking for work several months ago, they had spent the majority of the time teasing and horsing around with the other, but hadn’t ever taken things past the causal flirting stage. She tried to keep the crush she had on him out of their working relationship, but there were times that it couldn’t be helped, like now. He hadn’t shaved that morning, the dark blond stubble catching the early evening sunlight. She took a shaky breath and immediately wished that she hadn’t. He smelled far too good for her well being, all leather and oil and something so undeniably male that it made her mouth water.

He tilted his head as if he was weighing some decision in his mind. “I wonder…” She blinked and had enough time to register Gippal distributing most of his weight on the palms of his hands in order to lean into her right before he kissed her. At first she didn’t move, just took in the soft feel of his lips against hers and the way that he pulled back slightly before dipping his head again. She sighed against his mouth, her hands moving up his chest to rest at the tops of his shoulders, the fabric of his shirt bunching up in her fingers. The groan he gave her was enough to make her tremble and the way that his tongue swept into her mouth made her dizzy.

Gippal moved away only far enough that he could look her in the eye. “Caught,” he said quietly, a smirk on his face.

She gaped at him, still trying to catch her breath. “Was that all that was about?” she sputtered, her cheeks reddening.

“No, I’ve been wanting to do that for some time. The doughnut just gave me an excuse. I knew you wouldn’t be able to stay away from it for long.”

She huffed, caught between indignation that he had tricked her and giddiness that he had wanted to kiss her as long as she had been wanting to kiss him. “You…”

“Meanie?” he supplied, leaning down again and kissing the corner of her mouth. “It also made me realize something.”

“What?”

He nudged her nose with his. “Kissing you is way better than some dumb doughnut.”

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