DAMAGED PEOPLE (finale)
WARNING; Contains Sexual situations
In the weeks that followed Luka and Alice regained some sort of equilibrium. Luka forced himself to accept that Alice needed to return to work and get on with her life. His only proviso being that she take his car to work it was no trouble for him to take the El to the hospital and he could relax a bit knowing that she was not walking the streets.
Alice tried hard not to rail against his almost paternal anxiety. She always phoned him at work when she got home from her day and she tried not to comment on how often he phoned her, especially when he was on nights. She was always glad to talk to him to share with him details of her day, plan what she was going to cook with him for dinner but underneath it all she knew he was checking up on her. And that still meant to her that he was treating her like a little sister with no hope of him ever loving her the way she loved him.
The time they spent together was more relaxed. They still went out a lot mostly to the movies as they shared a passion for the cinema. But more often they would enjoy cooking a meal together at home, sharing a bottle of wine and channel surfing for old movies on TV. On these occasions they would share the big couch, jostling for position as they both liked to stretch out their long legs. This would more often than not result in Alice lying back against Lukas chest her head tucked into his shoulder and his arms gently wrapped around her.
Strangely, Luka found that he could cope with this physical closeness. In fact he lived for it. If he could not have Alices love then he could at least enjoy her affection. There were times when the feel of her skin against his drove him wild and he would have to concentrate hard on anything but her to prevent himself becoming aroused. The worst time was at night, wishing her goodnight and then lying alone trying to get to sleep knowing she was just in the next room.
Towards the end of August Luka was working a late shift. He was due to finish at 11pm but the hours were dragging by. He had started to get a headache around 4pm but had, typically for him, not taken anything for it. He didnt like to take drugs of any kind, which might seam a bit illogical in a man who was endlessly writing prescriptions for other people. But he has taken more than his share of painkillers in the past.
By 7pm, Luka was pretty wasted. The bright lights in the ER were beginning to make him feel nauseous and he retreated to the suture room where he turned off all the lights bar a small angle-poise lamp. It was here that Kerry found him when she came on duty for the night, slumped over a pile of charts - his head in his hands.
Luka? Kerry approached him cautiously Are you OK? He rubbed his temples in circular movements with his long fingers. No, actually I have an appalling headache. I cant seam to shake it off His voice sounded very weary. Kerry took pity on him; after all he had never taken a day off sick since shed known him.
Why dont you run the board with me and then get off home? She smiled at herself. If Malucci or any of the others could hear her now they would realise that she wasnt such a bitter old shrew after all! Luka thanked her and forced himself to get up and follow her out of the room.
Half an hour later Luka was riding the El towards home. He wished that he had phoned Alice and asked her to come and pick him up as he screwed up his eyes against the bright fluorescent lighting on the train. Still the two-block walk in the cooling evening air did him some good and he was feeling a little better as he approached his apartment building.
Strange, Alice hadnt parked in the usual place. Perhaps the car was round the back. Luka thought nothing of it until he got to the door. He knocked and waited for Alice to open the door. There was no answer; perhaps she was in the shower. Luka began to realise he was looking for answers without acknowledging the question that was gnawing at the edges of his consciousness.
He unlocked the door calling out for Alice as he walked through the apartment. It didnt take long to establish that there was no one home. Immediately he picked up the phone and dialled Alices cell phone. He heard a muffled ringing from inside Alices room. Leaving the handset on the counter he ran into her room quickly finding her phone forgotten amongst a pile of bedding on the floor.
Next, Luka tried ringing The South Side Centre but only got their answering service as they were closed for the night. He hung up. There had to be a logical explanation. He racked his brain trying to think if she had said anything to him this morning. Nothing sprang to mind. She could have gone for a drink after work with colleagues only she never had before. She could have had a breakdown, an accident. All the worst scenarios ran through his mind.
There had to be a simple explanation he must not let his imagination run away with him. It wasnt really very late it wasnt even dark yet. Luka decided to take a shower, letting the water pummel his neck and shoulders to ease the tension. Then changing into jeans and an old black T-shirt he finally took some Tylenol. In about half an hour the headache began to recede. But the knot in Lukas stomach was growing.
He opened the fridge to see what there was to eat but decided that he couldnt eat anything anyway. He paced the apartment, unable to settle. It seamed so empty and Luka realised that he hadnt spent an evening alone there since Alice had moved in. She never went out without him and that made this all the more worrying.
The minutes dragged by. By 10 oclock Luka had phoned every emergency room in the city, finally talking to Kerry at County.
Luka, theres probably a reasonable explanation. You werent due to finish here until 11 so she wasnt expecting you to be at home. Maybe shes gone out with friends you know a spur of the moment thing. She almost convinced Luka and he promised her that he wouldnt do anything rash. At least wait until after midnight before calling the ER again.
Just as he hung up the phone from Kerry Luka heard Alices key in the door.
Alice was just removing her key from the lock when Luka grabbed hold of her and dragged her bodily into the apartment. She could see at once that he was really angry from the set of his mouth and his eyes, which were almost black and glowering at her. He held her tightly by her upper arms, almost lifting her off the floor.
Where the hell have you been! He shouted, his voice thick with rage.
Alice was really frightened she had never seen Luka act like this before. He was never more than mildly irritated and then only with inanimate objects like cell phones and the VCR.
But I didnt think youd be home yet! As Alice blurted this out she realised that shed said the wrong thing.
Why didnt you call me Ive been sick with worry! His voice was even louder.
Alice flinched, expecting the inevitable. Seeing her cowering, Luka suddenly realised what he was doing. He had never before even raised his voice to a woman let alone hit one. But here he was shouting at Alice his beloved Alice whod been beaten black and blue and raped by her last man-friend.
He suddenly let go of her. Alice staggered back, still cringing as if Luka were about to strike. For a moment Luka watched her, trying to get his anger under control, his breaths coming in short ragged bursts.
Realising that he was not going to hit her after all, Alice rallied to her own defence. Im sorry I didnt call I forgot my phone this morning. I didnt think youd be worried anyway because you wouldnt be here. For Christs sake Luka, youre not my Father!
No Im not! Lukas voice was still raised. No doubt the neighbours were getting plenty of entertainment from this.
Youre not even my boyfriend! Alice was getting angry and louder herself now.
That fact is painfully obvious to me! Lukas voice dropped several decibels to a hoarse whisper, the hurt he felt clearly showing.
Alice hesitated, staring at Lukas face. He anger had gone and something else flashed in his eyes. Before she could figure it out he turned away and strode into the lounge.
Alices temper was still in full flight and she ran after him, grabbing his arm to make him turn and face her.
Dont turn your back on me! Her face was flushed pink and her eyes shining. What do you mean by Its painfully obvious? Alice stared up into Lukas eyes trying to read his expression.
For a moment, Luka gazed down at her and then he seized hold her chin and held it tightly in his hand. Tilting her head back roughly he teased her lower lip down with his thumb. Abruptly he bent and claimed her mouth with his own. His kiss was hot and insistent. His tongue relentlessly probing her mouth, penetrating every part of her. Then as suddenly as he had begun, he pulled away.
Im sorry. He mumbled hoarsely before pushing past her and out of the apartment.
Alice was left leaning against the couch for support as her legs threatened to give way under her. Her head was a tumult of emotions. She was scared. This was a different Luka, a passionate Luka had this fire been burning under the surface all the time? She was excited and aroused. She could still feel the pressure of his lips on her own, taste him in her mouth. This was what she had wanted wasnt it? For him to desire her as a woman, to love her as she loved him? But he was so intense, so angry she was frightened what he might do now, not to her but to himself.
Alice rushed out of the apartment and was relieved to find that Luka had not gone far. He was sat at the top of the stairs, his long legs bent up and his arms resting on his knees. His head hung down and Alice could see that his shoulders were shaking.
Luka? She spoke softy. Walking over to him she put her hand on his shoulder. Please come back inside She implored. He didnt answer just shook his head. Alice crouched down beside him and wrapped her arms around him. Please, Luka. Come back in. Im sorry. Please Luka, please Gradually Luka stopped his silent sobbing. He lifted his head and turned to look at her. Alice could see that his face was streaked with tears.
Neither spoke, but Luka at last got to his feet and allowed Alice to lead him back into the apartment. Once inside he slumped down on the couch and again buried his head in his hands. Alice sat down next to him, unsure what to do next. She snuggled up as close as she could and rested her head against his shoulder. Presently she began to speak her voice soft but clear. Im really sorry that I caused you so much distress. It was a genuine mistake I would never have made you worry on purpose. I know that you worry about me and I do understand why after everything thats happened. Thats why I forgive you for ..for shouting at me. She paused after her little speech. But Luka showed no sign of having even heard her.
Please Luka dont shut me out. Talk to me. Forgive me! Alices voice cracked with emotion. At last Luka responded, lifting his arm and pulling her into his embrace. For a moment her just held her tight against him.
Of course I forgive you, Alice. I just cant forgive myself. Lukas voice held so much pain it broke Alices heart. I dont know . He sighed, unable to continue. After a while he relaxed his grasp on Alice and turned to look at her. Her eyes seamed even larger than ever - like windows to her soul. God, how he loved her!
He gently pushed back the hair from Alices face, then held it gently in both his hands. He studied her every feature as if committing it to memory. I love you, Alice. The words seamed to hang in the air, taking on a life of their own. Alice opened her mouth to speak but Luka silenced her by gently putting his fingers over her lips. Wait. He smiled and continued
I think I fell in love with you the day you first spoke to me. When you smiled it was like you lit a fire in my soul. I began to live again and every moment I spent in your company was precious. And then I nearly lost you. I dont think you realise how close you came to dying just a few more hours and He could not bear to spell out the process by which her body would have shut down from too much loss of blood. I knew then that I couldnt live without you. Even if you didnt love me I had to be near you, to be part of your life.
Lukas expression then clouded and he broke away his gaze from Alice. He looked down at his hands and bit his lower lip What I did tonight was unforgivable. I just hope you can understand that I was out of my mind with worry. I..
It was Alices turn to silence him. She slipped her hand in his, forcing him to look at her again. Did you not see that I loved you too? She could see the realisation dawn on his face. The light shone in his eyes again. He shook his head. No, I ..I never thought you could love a broken down old wreck like me! A half smile played on his lips.
Oh yes, I do love you Luka Kovac! And I will only forgive you on one condition
Whats that? Luka asked with trepidation, but knowing that he would do anything she asked.
Kiss me again!
Luka grinned, It will be my pleasure.
This time he was going to take his time. He pulled Alice over onto his lap making sure she was comfortable with her legs stretched out along the couch, her back supported by his right arm. He began to stroke her hair, running his fingers through the honey blonde tresses, which felt like silk between them.
Entwining his fingers in her hair he gently pulled her head back, exposing the whole length of her slender neck. He started to kiss her softly at the base of her neck. Leisurely he explored every contour of her collarbones, neck, jawline and ears with his lips and tongue.
Each touch of his mouth sent shivers down Alices spine. Her heart racing before he had even reached her mouth.
Are you sure you want me to kiss you? Luka asked her playfully, seeing the desire in Alices face.
Oh God, yes! Alice turned her face towards him, offering him her slightly parted lips. For another long moment Luka teased her further, tracing the outline of her mouth with his fingers, slipping one finger inside her lower lip and stroking the sensitive inside.
At last he closed his mouth over hers the first touch so delicate that Alice was not sure if she was imagining it. The pressure of his lips increased as his tongue sought to penetrate her mouth. Alice willingly opened her mouth savouring the taste of him and responded eagerly. They explored every inch of each other: tenderly, searchingly, passionately, and hungrily.
At last they broke apart to catch their breath. Luka noticed that Alices pupils were widely dilated and her face flushed pink. He wondered how far the blush extended.
Do you forgive me now? Luka asked, his voice almost serious.
Yes, yes, but dont stop!
Unbutton your blouse then! He tried to sound masterful but his rising desire was playing tricks with his voice. Alice rearranged her self to straddle his lap. Luka felt his erection trying to burst through the thick material of his jeans. He had waited so long for this!
Alice slowly unbuttoned her blouse, feeling a little self conscious at showing herself to her lover. Smoothly it slithered off her shoulders. Luka was staring at her intently, his eyes almost black. He noticed that her blush extended down her neck and across her chest. He licked his lips and slightly nodded his head. Alice then slipped the straps of her bra down her arms, coyly glancing at Lukas face from under her long lashes. Then she took it off altogether, letting it fall to the floor.
Luka drew in a sharp unsteady breath. Her breasts were beautiful. Each perfectly fitted his hands. Full and firm with nipples like pink rosebuds set against her soft white skin.
He ran his hands all over her naked torso, caressing her arms, her back and her shoulders. He cupped her breasts in his hands revelling in the smoothness of her skin. Leaning forward, he took first one nipple and then the other in his mouth, sucking and gently nibbling them until they hardened. His tongue lapped at each one eliciting low moans from Alice.
The erotic sensations were making Alices head swoon. Luka had to slip his arm around her waist to steady her. She bent her head, her hair brushing against his upturned face. She kissed his forehead, his eyelids, and his nose and then found his mouth in another long and languorous kiss.
As she sat, straddling Lukas lap, Alices skirt had ridden high up her thighs. Luka slipped his hand up inside, stroking the inside of her leg. Then a little further his fingers met her panties, wet from her arousal. Pushing them aside he probed deeper, parting her moist and warm lips.
Luka felt a slight tensing of Alices body and she almost imperceptibly pulled away from his touch. Sensitive to her every need, Luka withdrew his hand. He wondered if she were apprehensive. He needed to take his time and be responsive to her signals. He continued to return her kiss until they both were gasping for breath.
As they broke apart, Luka deftly tipped Alice off his lap onto the couch and then slid to his knees on the floor. Fumbling a little with the zipper he undid her skirt and then pulled both it and her panties down her legs, tossing them behind him on the floor. Pausing only to admire the sight of her completely naked body, he pulled his T-shirt off over his head and then gathered her into his arms and hugged her tight. Please tell me to stop if there is anything you dont want me to do He whispered in her ear. Mmmmmm was all Alice could reply wrapping her legs around his waist, enjoying the sensation of her breasts crushed tight against his hard chest.
Relaxing his embrace, Luka let Alice sink back against the couch. Kneeling between her parted legs he bent over and teased her nipples again with his tongue. Then he traced a path ever lower, kissing and licking in turn her breasts, her belly button, and the soft-top of her thighs. Finally, he parted her legs still wider and delved between her lips quickly finding her clitoris with his tongue.
Slowly and deliberately he licked and sucked until Alices head was swimming. Faster and faster his tongue worked its magic. She felt the heat building and then sensations like electricity running up and down the insides of her calves and thighs. Just as her vision was beginning to blur Luka slowed the pace; his strokes unhurried and even lighter sending Alice into spasms of delight.
Luka steadied her hips as Alice writhed in ecstasy. Aaaaaaahh, Oh Luka! Aaaaah, Aaaaah She screamed grasping his hair as her orgasm swept over her in wave after wave. Finally her body relaxed, tears flowing freely down her face. Luka pulled her into his arms seeing from the breadth of her smile that her tears were of joy and not sorrow.
Oh, my darling. I love you so much. He murmured into her hair. Alice hugged him so tight. I love you too. At last she released her grip and finding Lukas mouth began to kiss him passionately, her hands roaming over his bare chest and back. She struggled to undo his jeans fumbling with the button until Luka took over and slipped out of the last of his clothes.
Alice pushed Luka back onto the couch and climbed astride his lap. Feeling the hardness beneath her she deftly lowered herself over his groin until she felt him slip inside her. Pushing down she gasped as he filled her and then she began to slowly ride him, swinging her hips back and forth with increasing urgency.
Luka knew he could not last much longer. Alice, Oh Alice! He held her hips and thrust upward deeper into her again and again. And then he was gone, his climax crashing over him like a tidal wave. She fell down on top of him, showering his face with kisses and then lay in his arms listening to his heart as it gradually slowed back to its usual steady pace.
Sometime later, Luka carried Alice to the bedroom. Slipping under the covers they lay together entwined in each others arms and legs until they fell asleep.
- - - - - - - - - - - - -
In the morning Alice woke a few moments before Luka. Feeling his arms around her, his body pressed close against hers she hardly dared to move for fear of waking him. His breath was warm on the back of her neck, the hair on his legs slightly tickling her buttocks. He stirred in his sleep, holding her tighter with one hand clasped over her breast.
It was a wonderful awakening for Luka. A beautiful woman in his arms - her body soft and yielding. He drank in the feminine scent of her marvelling at the way their bodies fitted together and the realisation that she loved him. He kissed the nape of her neck.
I love you, Alice.
I love you too. Alice turned to lie facing him. I never thanked you last night
What for? Lukas voice was still thick with sleep.
For making me feel beautiful, for loving me. Well, everything really. Alice kissed him tenderly on the lips.
Luka kissed her back. The pleasure was all mine. He smiled into her eyes. His smile broadening as Alice ducked under the covers planting a trail of hasty kisses down his chest and stomach, making a beeline for his groin. He inhaled abruptly as Alice took him between her parted lips and began to tease him with her tongue. Be gentle with me! He pleaded with a chuckle.
Later still, they lay in the tub together, Luka gently soaping Alices back. I never did tell you where I was last night She ventured, feeling very relaxed beneath Lukas touch.
It doesnt matter. Luka murmured.
I went to see my therapist. Alice told him anyway It was my last session and afterwards we went out for a drink I wanted to thank her for all her help. Luka cringed inwardly remembering how he had shouted at Alice. I told her about you and how I felt about you, but I was frightened that you would not want me. Alice swivelled round to observe Lukas face. She said that from the way I had described you she couldnt imagine that you would turn me away.
Luka smiled She was right and Im never going to let you go.
Well youre going to have to let me get out of the bath soon else youre going to shrivel up! She laughed rubbing a handful of foam on his nose.
Luka trapped her in his arms. Only if you make me a promise!
Alice pretended to struggle. Im at your mercy
Alice, my darling will you promise to make me the happiest man in the world? Lukas voice was husky now, a little anxiety betrayed by his face. And consent to be my wife ..?
Oh, Luka. Yes! She threw her arms around him, soaking the bathroom floor. Oh, yes please!
Back to table of contents
Back to new fic