Chapter 6: First Official Date

Dimitri opened the passenger side door to his car and helped me in, then he walked around and got into the driver's seat. He started the car, then turned to me and I got lost in his eyes. He leaned forward and my body leaned in without me thinking about it. Once he got close to my lips, his hands went into my hair and it caused tingles throughout my body. Dimitri stopped moving when he was almost on my lips and he said "Roza, I missed you so much."

I wanted to tell him that I missed him as well, but he didn't give me a choice as he crashed his lips on to mine. He swiped my lower lip with his tongue and I immediately opened my mouth to him. After a few minutes of fighting for dominance, I moaned into his mouth and I heard a tiny growl from him.

Dimitri pulled back and kissed my forehead. I looked at him and I wanted him to take me right now, right here. But then I remembered we were still in Lissa's driveway.

"God Roza, you have no idea what you do to me." Dimitri groaned.

I giggled at him as he pulled back and put his seatbelt on. He pulled out of the driveway and I asked him "What happened that you were done with work early?"

Dimitri grabbed my hand and kissed it and then placed our intertwined hands between us. "The meeting that my boss called was about the incident on Saturday. He wanted to know why both teams of negotiators were on scene. So, I told him the truth about meeting you prior, the first encounter with Nathan and the bear incident."

"How did he react to the bear incident?" I asked laughing as I remembered what had happened.

Dimitri groaned "He laughed at me and said he seen it online." I couldn't help myself from giggling at him as he rolled his eyes.

"Anyway, I told him the truth about what happened. I said that we had met prior to the first Nathan incident and that we were planning on going out on a date and that we had run into each other in the park. I also explained that Ivan and I were both on edge following dropping you off at your office. And how we went back to my apartment which was closest, I took a shower and by that time, Ivan and I had decided to check in on you when an alert went to our phones."

I was looking at Dimitri in awe, I was so intrigued by what Dimitri's thoughts about the situation as well as Ivan's. "So, what did your boss say?"

Dimitri took a big breath and then blew it out, then squeezed my hand. "He basically said we broke protocol, so Ivan is on desk duty for a week and I am suspended with pay for a week."

I gasped, covering my mouth with my hands and then said "I'm so sorry."

Before I could say more, Dimitri cut me off and said "Roza, don't worry about it, Ivan said if he had to do it again, he would of break protocol and do it again."

"Really?"

"Really, and my boss said he would have done the same thing if he was in my place. And that my suspension is just a formality. As I was leaving his office, he told me to go home and take care of you."

Dimitri took one of my hands from in front of my face, squeezed it then brought it to his lips again and kissed it. I couldn't help myself and smile at his loving gesture.

"So, since you are off work and I am off work, I planned some dates if you are interested." Dimitri said and I thought I detected a little hesitancy in his voice and saw the tiniest bit of blush on his neck.

"I would love too. What were you thinking you wanted to do?"

"I have some surprises in mind, but I thought the first thing we should do is go grocery shopping for you."

Dimitri turned on the radio to an 80s station and I raised both eyebrows at him. The country station I get, the western books and his duster, but 80s music. He looked at me and winked which sent shivers down my spine.

Dimitri pulled into the same grocery store where we met, the scene of the crime so to speak.

"Are you armed?" I asked Dimitri with a smirk.

"Yes, why" Dimitri asked looking at me with a confused look on his face.

"I ran into or should I say a crazy woman literally ran into me here. It might be a slightly dangerous operation."

"Ah, I see, well I will defend you with my life." Dimitri said with his hand over his heart.

Once he had parked the car and turned the engine off, I leaned up and whispered in his ear "I still haven't thanked you for the last time you saved my life."

Dimitri growled and cupped my face kissing me passionately. I completely forgot where I was lost in the feel and smell that was uniquely Dimitri, but unfortunately the need to breath forced us to stop. Dimitri got out of the car, came over and helped me out. Once inside the store, I asked "So, what's the plan?"

"Well, I was thinking we could go back to your place and I can make you some dishes that we can freeze and you can use them next week when I am working."

"Really, you would do that for me?" I asked in amazement.

"Of course." Dimitri said as he pulled me to his chest "there probably is not much that I wouldn't do for you."

I went up on my tippy toes and gave him a tender kiss and silently thanking whom ever brought him into my life.

When we were done shopping, we had a huge cart full of food. Dimitri picked most of the food since he knew what meals he wanted to make. I just contributed by putting in salty and sweet treats.

Once back at my apartment, Dimitri went straight to work. I was trying to help him, but I was limited in my cooking skills and was probably hindering his effort. I eventually sat on the countertop talking with him keeping him company. He looked so natural in the kitchen and he seemed so relaxed.

Anytime he was waiting for something to finish, he would come over and kiss me. The sexual tension between us was growing exponentially and I needed these stupid ribs to heal. I knew the only reason why Dimitri and I hadn't been intimate with each other is because he didn't want to hurt me.

After a particularly fiery make out session, I needed a break, otherwise I was going to combust, so I asked him "What ideas do you have for this week?"

"Well, do you have anything planned for this week?" Dimitri asked.

"I have counseling Tuesday and Thursday morning at 9 am and then I have a follow up appointment to check on my ribs at 10 am on Friday morning."

"I have a few secret ideas but there is a food festival tonight that I thought you might enjoy, if you are up for it."

"I am up for anything that revolves around food." I said laughing.

Dimitri pulled the last of the food from the oven and said "We have time while the food cools down, do you need to do laundry? I brought your duffle bag with me."

"I can do my laundry later." I didn't want to take advantage of Dimitri's kindness plus my mood plummeted when he said he brought my duffle bag. I had been hoping to stay with him at least a few more nights.

Dimitri noticed and walked over to me putting a hand on either side of my body and coming so close that his scent washed over me. "I brought your bag thinking we could do your laundry and then repack your bag if you wanted to stay with me." Oh thank god, I thought and blew out the breath I was holding. I nodded my head enthusiastically and could stop the smile that spread on my face.

Dimitri grabbed me around my waist gently helping me off the counter being careful of my ribs. He followed me to my bedroom and I showed him where my laundry basket was since it would be too painful for me to carry it. I emptied my clothes into the basket then started to strip my bed and Dimitri was quick to help me. He grabbed the basket and everything I needed as we headed for the basement.

Once we got to the basement, I said "It's a little creepy down here, which is why I hate doing laundry" as a nervous laugh escaped my lips. Dimitri looked around and nodded, then joined in with my laughter.

We stayed in the basement taking advantage of all the machines at the same time since most people were at work. We were talking about everything and anything and I loved how our conversation just flowed like I had known him forever.

We were walking down the hallway back to my apartment with my freshly cleaned and folded laundry, thanks to Dimitri. I had been secretly happy and trying not to laugh anytime Dimitri saw or folded my bras and panties. Hell, I just figured it was a preview of what was to come.

We turned the corner in the hallway and I came to an abrupt stop when I saw Jesse sitting on the floor outside my door.

Dimitri stopped with me and asked "Is that Jesse?"

"Yes" I breathed out and at that moment Jesse looked up from his phone and saw me.

"Rose, thank god, I have been so worried about you." Jesse said as he stood up and marched down the hall towards me. I took a step back and Dimitri shifted the laundry basket and took a half a step in front of me.

"Jesse, what are you doing here? How did you know where I lived?" I asked slightly panic as I stepped closer to Dimitri.

"I heard you were injured and I wanted to make sure you were okay. I followed you home after our first date and thank god I did. Why haven't you answered any of my calls or texts? I have been so worried about you that I have been waiting outside your apartment every night since I heard what happened. Where have you been because I know you weren't in the hospital."

"Jesse, as I told numerous times after our first date that I was not interested in pursuing any type of relationship with you and asked you to respect my decision and my privacy and to not contact me further." I said in as calm and stern voice as I could to get my point across to him.

"Rose, you don't mean that you know that we were meant for each other. If you just gave me a second chance, you could see how good we would be together." Jesse said as he attempted to take a step around Dimitri to get closer to me with his arms out to grab me. But Dimitri moved so fast and placed his body between Jesse and me.

Dimitri maneuvered us around so that my back was against the wall. "I think it's best if you leave, Rose does not seem interested in speaking with you." Dimitri said. He was slowly moving us, so that I was getting closer to my apartment door and Jesse remained in the middle of the hallway.

I started unlocking the door and Jesse said "Rose, who is this guy? Please just let me talk to you alone for a minute."

"Why don't we let Rose go inside and then you and I can talk out here." Dimitri said and I could detect his negotiator skills coming out.

I opened the door and walked in and Dimitri took a step into my apartment, put the laundry basket on the floor then he quietly said "Lock the door behind me."

I looked at him pleading for him to come in, but he looked back at me silently telling me to follow his directions. I closed the door and locked it but immediately had my ear to the door.

"Who the fuck are you?" I heard Jesse aggressively say.

"I'm Dimitri Belikov, a colleague of Rose." Dimitri said in a tone that was calm but forceful, something that I could not carry off at the present moment.

"How, I know about everyone who works with Rose." Jesse stated.

What the hell I thought, how does Jesse know who I work with. He talked so much during the dinner that I barely said a word and whatever I did say was vague so that he wouldn't know too much.

"You're right, I don't work in her office." Dimitri stated "but I'm in a similar line of work. I'm an FBI hostage negotiator and I've worked alongside her on some cases."

"Fine, but what are you doing here now?" Jesse asked slightly calmer than before but it was an eerie calm and was not comforting at all.

"I'm here because she asked me to be here and I know that you went on one date with her, but as she has stated, she is not interested. I think the best idea would be for you to leave." Dimitri said firmly.

There was the longest pause ever and I was straining but I couldn't hear anything.

"Fine" Jesse whispered and I let out the breath I was holding.

I had my hand on the lock when there was a knock "Roza, it's okay, you can unlock the door." I opened the door and let Dimitri in immediately closing and locking the door behind him.

I turned to face him and before my conscience mind realized what I was doing, I launched myself into his arms and thankfully caught me by my waist. Dimitri held me close to his body and whispered into my hair repeatedly "You're safe Roza."

Dimitri adjusted his grip on my waist and lifted me higher as my legs went around his waist. He sat me down on the countertop and took a step back to look at my face and cupped my face with both hands and asked "You okay?"

"Yes, thank you so much for getting rid of him. I don't know what I would have done if you weren't here. I knew he was a little off, but he definelty has stalker tendencies."

"Yeah, something is definitely off with this guy. Let's get you packed, I will feel so much more comfortable when you are at my place." Dimitri said and as I nodded at him, I had this overwhelming feeling in my chest that made me feel loved and cherished.

Dimitri grabbed the laundry and brought it into my bedroom. He went to my closet and grabbed my suitcase and when I raised both eyebrows at him, he said "Pack enough clothes for a week at least until Ivan investigates Jesse."

"Okay, thanks" I smiled at Dimitri and he gave me a smile but I could tell he was holding back. I grabbed his hand and pulled him towards me and lightly pushed him to sit on the bed and I sat on his lap. He put his hands around my waist and I put my arms around his neck and I asked "Are you okay?".

He sighed "Yes, but I don't like him, he gives me a bad feeling."

"I know, I'm sorry." I said dropping my head down.

Dimitri put his hand under my chin and pulled it up to look at him "Rose, you have nothing to apologize for. You are not interested in him and you have clearly stated that you are not interested in him. He needs to understand that and go away."

I nodded at Dimitri, the intellectual part of my brain understood but the emotional part of my brain was thinking, what did I do wrong.

"Can I ask you a question?" Dimitri quietly asked me and I nodded my head. "How did you two meet?"

"Lissa, the other girls from work and I were at a bar one night. I haven't dated in a while and Jesse and his friend Ralf approached our table. Jesse seemed normal enough and he asked me out, so I said sure, why not. But I did what I always do, I met him at a restaurant about 45 minutes from where I live and we both drove independently. Halfway thru dinner, I knew it was a bad idea, so I made an excuse to leave and threw money on the table and high tailed it out of there. It didn't even occur to me that he followed me home."

Dimitri was rubbing my back the whole time as I was telling him my story. "Since Ivan is on desk duty, he is going to see what information he can find on Jesse and you are going to be protected by the finest FBI agent ever." Dimitri said grabbing me tighter and smirking at the end.

"Thanks, Dimitri, I really owe you one."

"Well, a little kiss right here on my cheek might be gratitude enough." Dimitri smirked and pointed to the cheek closest to me.

"Oh really?" I asked and then I planted a quick kiss on his cheek but then I placed my hand under his chin and pulled his mouth to me. I softly placed my lips on his and he responded quickly, gently at first but then the heat and passion began to take over. My hands cupped his face and his arms pulled me to his chest. Once we both realized we needed to breath, he pulled back but rested his head on my forehead.

I sighed happily, and Dimitri spoke "Come on, let's get you packed and ready and then we can see if Ivan found anything. Then, you can stuff yourself silly at the festival."

"You wait and see, I can probably out eat you." I said laughing and standing up.

Dimitri raised his right eyebrow and said "Is that a challenge? I accept!" and he slapped my butt playfully.

Dimitri helped me pack. He told me to pack nice clothes plus casual clothes. I put my comfy clothes from the weekend that we had just cleaned in, then I added some jeans, nice long-sleeved shirts and three dresses. I got makeup and supplies to do my hair. Dimitri zipped up my carry-on and took It to the living room. We covered all the meals Dimitri had made with directions on reheating and put them into the freezer.

Then he suggested we take the groceries that were perishable back to his apartment. Soon enough we were heading out to his car, both of us looked around to see if Jesse was around. But since I met Jesse at a restaurant, I didn't know what kind of car he drove. The car ride back to Dimitri's place felt a little tense. Dimitri was constantly checked his mirrors to make sure no one was following us.

Once we were inside his apartment, Dimitri was so cute emptying a drawer for me to put my clothes in despite my objections. He also hung the three dresses I brought in his closet probably because he is a neat freak but it was still cute.

Once everything was put away including the food we brought from my apartment, he grabbed my hand and led me into the living room. He sat down in the recliner and pulled me to sit sideways on his lap and I thought that I never wanted to move.

"Are you up to calling Ivan?" he asked.

"Sure, if you don't mind."

Dimitri shifted slightly with me on his lap but kept one arm tightly held onto me. He pulled out his phone and pulled up Ivan's contact information and called him and placed the call on speaker for my benefit.

"Hey Dimitri!" Ivan started, but before he could say another word Dimitri cut him off.

"Before you embarrass yourself, you are on speaker phone with me and Rose."

"Shacking up already" Ivan said.

I started laughing as I watched Dimitri roll his eyes at what Ivan said.

"I was calling to see if you found anything on Jesse. He showed up on Rose's doorstep earlier today and he said that he had been waiting there every night since he found out she was hurt. He knows where she lives, works and who all her coworkers are despite her not volunteering that information."

"Okay" Ivan said and you could hear him writing down some information. "Well, I didn't get too much on him. The information that I got from the DMV is that he drives a 2019 Black BMW X5 M SUV, he works as a computer analyst in his father's company. His parents have a lot of money and he has a sizable trust fund. And he has a few brushes with the law while growing up, just stupid kid stiff. But the most interesting thing, I think is that as soon as I started looking into him, Dimitri Belikov, you my friend started getting pinged for your information. Mikhail said that there were multiple attempts to breach our system to get info on you, but he was able to block him."

"Wow, okay, thanks Ivan, keep digging and let me know".

"Don't worry, we will keep at it and Rose, don't worry, no one is going to get you, not on our watch." Ivan said.

"Thanks Ivan" Dimitri said.

"Thanks Ivan" I repeated.

Dimitri hung up his cell, placed it on the table next to him and he leaned back, pulling me with him. He didn't say anything, he just guided my head to his shoulder and I rested my head on it. He had one hand rubbing my back, the other was rubbing my hip and then occasionally my arm. Sometimes he would mindlessness stroked my hair, but I wasn't even sure he realized what he was doing.

"How are you doing?" Dimitri asked after about twenty minutes.

"Better" I said as I leaned back to look at him and I put my arms around his neck. "Thank you for what you did back at my apartment, hopefully that will be the last of Jesse."

"Hopefully, but Ivan will continue to dig and get more information, he's like a dog with a bone, he won't stop digging. Anyways, on a much more pleasant note, we have about an hour before the food festival, is there anything you want to do until then?"

"Hmm" I said jokingly, acting like I was thinking. "How about we do this." I cupped his face and gave him the sweetest kiss. I felt his arms pull tighter around my waist as he deepened the kiss. We spent about thirty minutes in a nice romantic and some times heated make-out session before we stopped to get ready.

We arrived at the food festival and it smelled wonderful. My stomach let out an embarrassing roar causing Dimitri to laugh. We got our tickets and quickly decided we would get a whole bunch of different foods and split them.

Once we had a huge selection, we sat down at a small table. It was nice and intimate as we ended up feeding each other. As usual, our conversation flowed easily, so I asked "where did you learn to cook?"

"My mama taught me, as a teenager, I was eating a huge amount of food, so I learned so I could try and help her out."

"That was very kind of you."

"Well, once I started, I found that I enjoyed it and now with work, it calms me down and shuts my brain off for a little while." Dimitri said. "Plus, Ivan's family traveled a lot but he chose to stay home, so he was over quite a bit."

"When did you come to the US?"

"We came when I was fourteen years old. My father used to beat up my mama and when I was thirteen, I beat him up. So, when Ivan and his family moved here, they helped us to move here to escape my father."

"I'm sorry about your father, how is your mother?"

"She is doing really well now. It took her a while to process, but I think moving halfway around the world helped her a lot."

"Do you have any brothers or sisters?" I asked.

"Three sisters, two older and one younger. My two older sisters, Karolina and Sonya are both married. Karolina or Karo and her husband have two kids, Paul who is ten and Zoya who is one. Sonya and her husband are expecting their first child and my younger sister Viktoria or Vika is a senior in college studying criminal justice and psychology. She wants to join the FBI when she graduates, but I'm not sure how I feel about that. Lastly, my babushka, which is the Russian word for grandma, came over with us and still lives with my mama. What about you?"

"Well, I am sure you have heard what happened to my parents. I have no siblings or really any immediate family. Lissa's been my "sister" since kindergarten."

Dimitri held my hand and was rubbing his thumb lovingly over the back of my hand lending me some strength as I explained my life story. "I'm sorry about your parents, Ivan and I were at the FBI Academy when they were killed."

"Thanks, Lissa was with me at the time. Her parents and brother were killed in a car accident that her I and somehow survived. My parents took her in and then when my parents died, we lived with Alberta in a group home, which is where we met Christian because his "Aunt Tasha" wanted nothing to do with him and he had no other family either."

"Only one more reason not to like her" Dimitri said under his breath while shaking his head. "On a lighter note, every other Sunday, my team including Ivan and their families go to my mama's house for a very casual Sunday dinner. Are you interested in going?" Dimitri asked and I could hear a bit of nervousness in his voice.

"I don't want to intrude" I said.

"You aren't, everyone is welcome. You could invite Lissa, Christian and their kids too. Mama always says the more the merrier. She has a big house with a great backyard where there is an outdoor kitchen to grill on and there is a pool that is great in the summer."

"Okay" I said "I'll ask her."

We finished our food and decided to get some dessert samples. The sun was starting to set and Dimitri suggested we walk thru the park. I kept moaning every time I took a bite of dessert and Dimitri kept clearing is throat. I was trying to keep myself from giggling because maybe I was over-dramatizing my moans.

We reached the boardwalk and decided to walk alongside the river. I hadn't been down here in ages and was looking at all the bars and restaurants. Dimitri said "I haven't been down here in a while." echoing my thoughts. "Do you want to go into one of the bars and have a drink."

"Sure" I responded.

We walked for a little more and then we found a random bar and found a cozy table where we each ordered a beer. We continued our easy flow of conversation, I told him more about my parents and how they were killed. Dimitri explained more about his father which made me understand how he became a hostage negotiator.

He talked about Ivan and his family helping the Belikov's come to America. He also went to more detail about what his family was currently doing.

After another beer, we were surprised that it was 1am because the time flew by. We called it quits and went back to his apartment since I had a 9 am meeting with Diedre. It didn't take too long to get back to his apartment.

Dimitri unlocked his apartment door, holding the door open, he placed his hand on the small of my back and guided me thru the door. As soon as he closed the door, he grabbed my hand pulling me towards him. As soon as I was within his reach, he cupped my face and kissed me. I reached my hands around his back, pulling myself closer to him and deepened the kiss. Eventually, we broke apart to breathe and he said "I should get you to bed."

"Okay" I said biting my lower lip trying not to laugh at the double meaning.

"I uh, I meant" Dimitri stumbled on his words and his face started to turn red at the same time. "I didn't mean that I just meant since you have an early meeting."

"I know what you meant" I laughed and I quickly changed and hopped into Dimitri's bed. He was grabbing a pillow and blanket for the couch, but before he left, he asked "Do you need anything?"

"Yes" I said as I patted the empty spot on the bed next to me.

"Are you sure Roza?"

"Yes, I'm too tired to take advantage of you. I just want to cuddle." I giggled.

Dimitri laughed "Okay, I'll be right back."

He probably went to make sure the door was locked and the lights off. I was on my way to dreamland when I barely registered him getting into bed, pulling me close to him, kissing my hair and saying "Goodnight my sweet Roza." I could only hum in response before I was sound asleep.