Author's Note: This story is for Lauren2381 who said she wanted a Clay/Emma evening in type of story. Her comment gave me this idea, and I hope it fits what she was looking for. This story takes place on the same vacation as "A Day at the Beach." Also, I realize I took some liberties with how Mario Kart works. I needed it for the story, please just go with it.


Rivulets of water snaked down the window, blurring the view into the rain-soaked gardens alongside the house. Emma sighed as she continued to rinse the dishes from their late breakfast and load them into the dishwasher. She peered out the window over the sink as she worked, trying to see if there was any possibility of the weather clearing.

Clay made them pancakes and bacon for breakfast today, and Emma offered to clean up after they ate. Their meal was more brunch than breakfast though, as they had spent a lazy morning in bed.

During the night, thunderstorms had moved into the area, and Clay and Emma had watched the light show from the floor-to-ceiling windows of the master suite. They had left the multiple glass doors out to the deck open, and Clay rushed to shut them when the rain started.

This morning they had awoken early to gray skies and more rain showers, which put their plans to spend the day at the beach on hold. Instead, they cuddled up in bed and made love.

Emma enjoyed having an amorous morning in bed with Clay. They spent too much time apart, and even when they were in the same state, their crazy schedules meant they had little time to indulge themselves. But they only had a week at this beach house on the Maryland shore, and she wanted to enjoy every moment out in the sun, whether it was at the beach, in the house's pool, or using the outdoor grill and cooking area.

As she set the dishwasher running, Clay came up behind her and wrapped his arms around her waist. "What do you think we should do today?" He began nibbling on her neck and toying with the threads hanging from the bottom of her cut-offs as he waited for her answer.

"Mmm, Clay, I think if we keep doing this, pretty soon I won't be able to walk."

At her response, he chuckled into her neck. "I could carry you everywhere you need to go."

Emma snorted and turned to face Clay, wrapping her arms around his neck. "That would go down well at the next team barbecue. I'd let you tell my Dad why you're carrying me."

They both burst into laughter at the thought of Jason's response to hearing that explanation.

"No, I like all my parts. I want to keep them attached to my body," Clay said.

"I like all your parts too." Smiling, she leaned in for a kiss.

They stood kissing each other affectionately, happy to be together with no outside distractions. As disappointed as she was about today's weather, Emma couldn't deny how good spending this time with Clay with no possible spin ups, schoolwork, training missions, or hotels shifts truly was.

Clay ended their kiss and pulled her in closer for a hug. Emma nuzzled into his neck and rested her head against his chest. There was no one else she wanted to be with.

"I checked the weather online," he told her. "This is supposed to clear up late this afternoon. We could go into town then and walk around, and maybe grab some dinner at one of the crab houses."

"Hmm, I'd like that," Emma said.

"Okay, how about right now we go in the media room and watch a movie or something on that huge TV?" Clay asked.

She laughed. "You just like saying the media room."

"I kind of do," he said, smiling down at her. "I'll even let you pick the movie."

"How can I refuse an offer like that?"

Debating potential movie picks, they headed back through the main living area to the media room. On one side of the room was a large leather couch and several comfortable looking recliners. On the wall opposite was an eighty-five-inch TV with a state-of-the-art sound system feeding into speakers set-up throughout for surround sound.

Emma shut the blinds on the windows running down one side of the room, while Clay opened the cabinet under the TV to find the remote for operating everything.

"Hey, there's a Nintendo system here!" Clay sounded as if he had found a gold mine.

Turning from the windows, Emma raised an eyebrow at him. "Do you want to play a game instead?"

"If you want to." He gave her a charming smile to convince her.

She chewed her lip as she thought about it. "Only if it's not one of those war fighting games."

Clay turned back to the cabinet and began looking through the games. "There's Overcooked, Super Smash Brothers, Mario Tennis Aces, Mario Kart…"

"Mario Kart. I like that." Joining him at the cabinet, she checked out the games with him. "Yeah, let's play Mario Kart. After we can try one of the others."

He inserted the game card into the slot on the console and pulled the controllers off the sides. Handing one to Emma, Clay powered up the TV and sound system. "Might as well have the full surround sound experience."

She rolled her eyes as she went to sit on the couch. He could be a little nerdy sometimes when it came to tech stuff, but it was cute.

Clay settled in next to her, and they began going through the game set-up. Emma chose Pink Gold Peach as her character, and Clay picked Metal Mario. They bickered over the customization of their karts, but eventually agreed they'd both go standard. Finally, the countdown started, indicating the beginning of their race.

Focusing solely on the game, Emma had every intention of winning. She played Mario Kart in the past with Mikey and with some friends at college, and she wasn't bad. She didn't plan on letting Clay win. As the race went on, she suspected that he had been going easy on her, but now he was playing catch up. Clay's kart followed close behind hers, but he couldn't quite close the distance. He let her get too far ahead at the start of the race. They crossed the finish line with Emma a kart length in the lead.

"I win!" She said with a triumphant smile.

"Best two out of three."

Emma laughed. "Okay, but only because I think you weren't trying your best at the beginning of this one." Clay gave her an apologetic look and cued up the next race.

This time they took off together from the start. The lead changed multiple times as they collected coins and boosters. She was determined to win this match up as well and wouldn't concede an inch to him. Clay's kart was pulling into the lead as they neared the finish line, but Emma wouldn't let him win. She knocked his kart off the track and swept under the finish line in first place.

"Hah! I win again!" Pleased with her victory, she gave him a big grin.


Clay was impressed with Emma's skill at Mario Kart. He had, in fact, been going easy on her at the beginning of the first race, but he had learned the error of his ways and quickly started playing to the best of his ability.

"Okay, okay," he said. "Best three out of five."

"Best three out of five, huh?" Tilting her head, she gave it some thought. "I think you need to make it worth my while, sailor."

"What would that take?" He quirked a questioning eyebrow at her.

A thoughtful expression moved across Emma's face. "The loser must give the winner a massage. A real massage, at least fifteen minutes, not one where you start a massage and then a minute so in, we're really having sex."

Clay grinned; he could live with that. "Deal. Although, just so you know, I'm okay with the kind of massage where you start and a minute or so in, we're really having sex."

Emma shook her head. "You are such a guy."

"You love me anyway," he said with another grin.

She pursed her lips for a moment. "I don't know why."

"My charm and boyish good looks."

"Yeah, that must be it." After pausing for a moment, she turned back to him. "Also, when I win, you have to say that I am Emma, Queen of Mario Kart and you are my humble servant."

He released a deep belly laugh. "As long as you understand that when I win, you'll have to say it to me."

"It's a deal, but since you won't be winning, I'm not too worried." Smirking she turned back to the TV ready for another match up.

They started their third contest. About half-way through, Clay was able to knock Emma's kart out of the air, and she was never able to quite catch up. If the distance had been a bit longer, she might have caught him, but instead he drove across the finish with her kart just behind his.

"I'm making a comeback now, better watch out." He was confident he had her on the ropes.

"You keep telling yourself that." Emma gave him a serene smile, and he had to admit she didn't appear very concerned.

Their fourth race was cut-throat, with the lead changing between them frequently. They traded trash talk as they raced with Clay impressed by this competitive aspect of Emma he didn't see too often. As they approached the last turn, their karts were side by side, racing for the finish line. Emma let her kart go wide on the turn, pushing Clay's off the course. This gave her the edge she needed to win, and her kart made the finish in first place.

Emma jumped to her feet in jubilation. "I win! I win!" Thrilled with her triumph, she danced around.

Clay was surprised by his loss but thought watching Emma's enjoyment of her well-deserved conquest was worth it, particularly the way she was wiggling her hips as part of her victory dance.

Grinning, she launched herself at him, pushing him down to lie on the couch lengthwise while she was stretched out on his chest. "I win. I think you owe me something, Mr. Spenser."

"Ready for that massage already?"

"Oh, we're saving that for later. Right now, I think there's something you need to say to me." She gave him an expectant look as she waited.

He groaned. He had completely forgotten about that.

"Come on. You're not trying to welsh on a bet, are you? Where's that SEAL honor?" Emma teased as he hesitated on speaking the promised words.

"You are Emma, Queen of Mario Kart, and I…" His voice degraded into a mumble as he finished the sentence.

"What was that? I didn't quite hear the end." She was laughing almost too hard to speak.

Taking a deep breath, he prepared himself to repeat the end of the sentence. He couldn't back out on a bet. "And I am your humble servant."

Emma giggled and gave him a kiss. "I know that was hard for you."

"I never realized my girlfriend had such a competitive streak."

"I like to keep you guessing." She sat up and pulled him up to sit beside her again. "How about we try Super Smash Brothers?'

He shook his head. "Oh no, let's play Overcooked. We'll play together instead of against each other."

She gave him a pleased smile. "Afraid of the competition now, huh?"

"No, I always want you on my team instead of playing for the other side," he said seriously

Emma's expression softened, and she leaned over and gave him a kiss on the cheek. "That's sweet."

He turned to look her in the eye. "It's true. You're the one I always want with me."

"Oh, you're going to make me cry, Clay."

Smiling tenderly at her, he pushed a strand of hair behind her ear. "Don't do that." He kissed her gently before she could say anything else.

Once Clay broke off the kiss, they sat smiling at each other for a moment, but then a teasing glint came into Emma's eye. "I'd so beat you though."

Clay burst out laughing and stood to change the game cards in the console. "You keep thinking that." He searched around the cabinet for the other game, finally finding it in the back. "You know, I think Derek and Trish have a Nintendo system."

A crafty smile came across Emma's face. "We could totally take them."