A/N: Hello! I discovered Leverage some time ago and I absolutely adore it. My favourite pairing is Nate and Sophie, and this is a little story I started writing after watching The San Lorenzo Job. The title of this fic is a line from the song Paris by The Chainsmokers. Please listen to this song if you haven't already. I feel like it was written for Nate and Sophie and I cried the first time I heard it.
If any of my Mentalist readers happen to find their way here, I'm sorry for my long absence. I still love The Mentalist and its fanfiction community, you have all been so incredibly supportive, but between life happening and finding new shows I just haven't had any noteworthy story ideas. I promise that if I do have some, you'll be the first to know.
In the meantime, why not give Leverage a shot? It's quite possibly in "best show I have ever watched" category, so you won't regret it.
Disclaimer: I do not own Leverage or its characters and I make no profit from this work of fanfiction.
"Do you remember San Lorenzo?"
It is late on a Sunday morning when Sophie asks this over the rim of a mug filled with tea, her growing smile hidden by the edge as she lifts it to take a sip.
"How could I forget?" Nate replies, his voice rough as he stretches away the last of his sleep and rolls over to face her.
She's sitting cross-legged on their bed, wearing nothing but her wedding ring, and it sparkles in the sunlight coming through the window as she wraps her hands tighter around the warm mug.
Nate takes a moment to drink in the image of her like this - his wife - and then gives her a sly smile.
"At least this morning you don't have to hide under the blankets because Eliot broke down the door," he says.
"Mm, that did not do good things for my hair."
"Well, our previous activities had already somewhat... messed it up," he replies, laughing as she shoves him with her foot in retaliation.
"Those," he amends with feeling, "were very good activities, however."
"That's better," Sophie smiles, placing her now half-finished tea on the bedside table and flopping down beside Nate. They're silent for a while, and her fingers trace soft patterns over his shoulder as they walk together down memory lane.
Even though he knows it's fake and part of the con, Nate can't stop his heart from skipping a beat when he hears Sophie being shot. She is the best grifter he's ever known, and he knows that she will play death as well as she plays life, and that will make it seem just a little too real. So to keep the con running smoothly, he keeps his reaction to the gunshots off of his face, his back to the television, and makes sure that he doesn't see it.
Because what man could watch the woman he loves most in the world be killed, even if it's not real, and not react at all?
A friendly drink turns into several friendly drinks, but Sophie places her hand over Nate's before he can motion for the bartender to refill the glass she knows will send him over the edge.
"We're just celebrating," she says, her voice low and sultry. "Not trying to forget."
For once, Nate listens. Not that he has much of a choice, as she is just about sitting in his lap at this point, and suddenly before either of them really knows what's happening they are quickly walking back to his hotel room.
There's a second before her back hits the bed where she stops and looks, really looks, at Nate.
"You sure about this? I thought we were having a drink as friends," she asks, smiling a little as she throws his words back at him.
"We are," he replies, his eyes darkening. "Alcohol doesn't make you do things you never would. It just… removes the brakes, so to speak. I want you, Sophie. I've always wanted you."
He speaks her name in a growl near her ear and that's all it takes. She nods, and then all at once his hands are in her hair, his lips are on her neck and really, any further conversation is out of the question.
After, they pretend it didn't happen. They're both just a little too scared to confront what this means to them, too scared to admit that this means everything. And anyway, they're thieves. A lie is easier than the truth.
Sophie downs the remainder of her tea in a giant gulp. Nate glances at her, wondering what prompted this unusual behaviour. He soon receives an answer.
"C'mon, I'm hungry," she moans playfully as she gets up and pulls him by the hand towards the kitchen, grabbing her robe on the way. He's disappointed at the loss of skin, but the knowing smile she throws over her shoulder towards him remedies that immediately.
Sophie sits on the counter as Nate works around her to prepare breakfast. She leans forward and steals kisses every time he passes. At one point their scrambled eggs nearly turn into an omelette, but he doesn't mind.
Later, after Sophie has gotten dressed and is busy applying her makeup, Nate sidles up behind her and wraps his arms around her, dropping feather-light kisses down her neck. She shivers and their eyes meet in the mirror.
"I want to ask you something," Nate says, his voice low. "About San Lorenzo."
Sophie nods and waits.
"Did you regret it that we slept together that night?"
"Not for a second." Sophie's answer is swift and almost violent in its certainty. She turns in his arms and then says, softer, "What makes you ask that?"
"I was just wondering, thinking maybe that was why you wanted to pretend it never happened afterwards."
Sophie shakes her head and leans forward to touch her lips to his. "No, that was just because I was scared. We had such a good thing going with each other and the team, I didn't want to jeopardize it by becoming involved with you in that way. I was scared about what would happen if our jobs were compromised because of our relationship, or if we broke up."
She pauses for a moment, her hand coming up to cup Nate's cheek, and then she continues. "I don't know if I would have survived losing you at that point, and the thought of losing you and the team was too much."
"That makes sense," he replies. "That was much of why I was scared too, but I also didn't regret it, not for a moment. And thankfully, our fears didn't stop us for all that long," he says, smiling widely at her.
"Yes, we soon resumed our, uh, illicit internal activities," she says, grinning back. "What can I say, I'm just that hot."
At this Nate outright laughs and they dissolve into momentary giggles as hands find skin and lips explore each other again.
"I love you so much, Soph," he says quietly.
"I love you too."