I'm baaaaaaaack! (just so we're clear: in a triumphant, happy tone-not a The Shining kind of tone)
I dedicate this chapter to Divinia for being such an awesome fanfic friend! Sorry about the long wait. This last chapter is for Jisbon fans so if you're not into that, please leave it at chapter 6. For the rest of you, Jisbon away! :D It's rather long—don't know how it got so out of hand, but I hope you enjoy it anyway. Just wrote it and posted so if there are mistakes let me know!
Also, I'm thinking of doing an off-shoot from this fic about Rigsby's blue hair...Secondly, I don't care what Simon Baker says. In my fics, he will have blue eyes. Because I swear he does. So there.
Chapter Seven: Bare Feet and Fetishes
Life had pretty much gone back to normal after Jane's head healed.
Well, if you could count random fantasies about little boys bounding around the office with Lisbon's green eyes as normal.
And for some reason whenever Jane happened to get some shut eye, he was inundated with dreams of a heavily pregnant Lisbon lounging around a house, eating ice cream at a kitchen table, smiling softly at him.
He had never thought of himself as a foot man. Actually, they usually kind of weirded him out. But after these dreams he found himself gazing at Lisbon's petite feet, imagining them bare. It was driving him crazy.
But he hadn't had a nightmare in a long time. Actually, maybe since his run in with that damn mini-fridge.
He took a moment to curse said mini-fridge in his mind.
He shook his head, letting his thoughts of the devious contraption leave his mind. He looked up into the face of his boss. "Yes, Lisbon?"
"Doing okay? You looked pretty intense there for a moment." Her eyes were caring and for a moment he flashed back to the loving face from his dreams.
Intense? She had no idea.
"I'm perfectly fine, Lisbon." He smiled at her, all charm. One look to her face and he wondered why it was that the one woman whose opinion meant the world to him was also the one woman he couldn't quite fool. Oh, she let him slip by with a lot and he did pull the hood over her eyes rather often during cases, but emotionally she always knew when something was up.
She just wasn't quite astute enough to realize it concerned her.
Not that he would ever tell her she wasn't astute. Not to her face.
He valued each and every one of his limbs...
...and he had never quite forgotten the rumors about George from filing. The one who had pissed Lisbon off years ago. The one who was now in a wheelchair for life. Jane knew it was silly. Of course Lisbon never would have maimed him. But still...the little voice inside that just loved to be snarky and contrary just to spite his rational side parried back with the fact that just because she hadn't caused George irreparable damage didn't mean she wasn't still very capable of such an act.
As he was reminiscing about George, Lisbon sighed. Clearly she was letting him off the hook. Jane wasn't sure if he was relieved or slightly disappointed. "Okay. Try to get home early tonight. I think you need the rest."
She turned and left. Jane gazed after her, his eyes focused on her small feet and the clicking rhythm that accompanied them.
Click. Click. Click. Click. Click.
He couldn't help it. Really, he couldn't.
His brain was already seeing her barefoot. He mentally chastised himself.
At this rate, he'd never get that fantasy out of his head and it would turn into a fetish. And Patrick Jane was too sophisticated and worldly to have a foot fetish. Admittedly, it would be an exclusive foot fetish. Specifically, a Teresa Lisbon foot fetish. But a fetish nonetheless. And that meant a vulnerability.
And that wasn't right. Jane was ever guarded. Nothing got by him. Suddenly, he remembered the week he falsely thought she was pregnant and amended his mental proclamation. Almost nothing. He paused. Nah. He figured as that was just one time, he would not count it. Nothing got by him.
He was the Duke of Defense. A Golden Goalie. Uh-huh. Yup. Nothing was getting in—no practical joke. No secrets. Nothing. He was the Prince of Perimeters, the—
A deafening blow-horn went off in the bullpen and Jane jumped violently, unceremoniously falling from couch to floor in a surprisingly ungraceful heap. His head popped up and he heard a snicker from Rigsby's desk followed by the grouchy grumbling of units nearby who had also been startled.
Van Pelt, having not stirred from her typing, rolled her eyes. Jane liked to think that Rigsby had warned her (thus her lack of reaction to such an uncharacteristic—and uncharacteristically loud—sound), but he rather suspected that Van Pelt was simply used to the antics of her fellow teammates.
Cho looked to Rigsby. He spoke with absolutely no inflection. "Good one."
Jane turned toward Lisbon's office, expecting to see her scowling face ready to scold both he and Rigsby for disturbing the peace in the workplace, not to mention the time that this ongoing practical joke feud took from their work. Well, Rigsby's work.
Instead, he was confronted with a smirking Lisbon snapping photos with a hand-held digital camera. Probably one snagged from the forensics unit—they liked to keep the small ones around. Just in case. Jane had always wondered what that meant. Just in case of what?
Now he had his answer. Apparently just in case he was ever sprawled on the floor in the most unappealing way with a startled deer in headlights look. Yes, indeed. It was reassuring to know that CBI agents believed in being prepared for any occurrence.
He sighed. It was going to take a lot of manipulation and sweet talking to get that camera. Or his lock-picking set.
Normally he wouldn't mind a stray photo of him, but this was serious business.
He hadn't been wearing his vest with his suit. It was laying across the chair at his dusty desk.
How could he have a picture circulating with him in a three-piece suit that was missing one of its three pieces? It was unseemly.
Sighing and climbing back onto the couch, he resigned himself to an hour of planning followed by some strategic maneuvering. Damn. It would waste precious napping time...
And with his dreams these days, that time was certainly worth every second.
Jane swiped his hands across his trousers after knocking. It wasn't a nervous gesture. No. Not at all. It had been an...itch. Yes. An itch. On his hand. Thus the trouser wiping. He let his contrary inner voice glare at his rationalizing inner voice for its wimpy argument, wishing his thoughts would sound a bit more stable and less like a jackrabbit on speed. Or a four year old.
Actually, he thought it would probably be better if he dropped the whole 'different inner selves' thing all together. It could only end in tears...
The door in front of him opened and he cleared his throat, getting ready to make his announcement.
He promptly choked on nothing.
As he was coughing so hard that he thought he might lose a lung (he wondered how long it would take to receive a lung from a donor and how much time it took to recover from a transplant), Lisbon ushered him in, looking alarmed.
"Shit. Jane, are you okay?"
So much for the masculine approach.
He nodded and Lisbon pushed him towards her living room area. As the coughing was dying down, Lisbon shoved him down on the couch. "I'm going to go get some water. Be right back."
She turned to leave and Jane felt some of his courage draining away. Any sort of tickle in his throat disappeared as he reached out to grab her wrist and pull her gently to the couch next to him.
Well, at least that was what was supposed to happen. That's how it worked in the movies. And TV. And novels.
Damn fictional accounts. So much for smooth, romantic and debonair.
Funny how he felt so clumsy lately around Lisbon.
His 'gentle' tug on her wrist startled Lisbon and she lost her balance, falling towards him. In a vain attempt to stop from tumbling backwards onto Jane's lap, she twisted her body in an effort to regain her balance. The effort was futile. Now she was falling face first into Jane, knocking him over on her own couch.
It was rather a whirlwind of action and as she hit Jane's chest, she squeezed her eyes shut and felt the air whoosh out of her lungs. The air stilled and Jane could tell that Lisbon sensed the worst was over. Shaking her head and taking a gasp of air, she opened her eyes to survey her position. Jane watched her expressive green eyes as she locked on to his blue. He swallowed audibly.
All he could think of was how much better this felt than waking up from holding her. She felt so small against his body. One of his hands landed on her small waist and the other reached up to her hair. "You okay?"
She froze under his touch before nodding frantically and starting to scramble up. For a moment, he didn't move the hand that was cementing her to him. She glanced at him quizzically and he forced his arm to move.
He also sat up and scooted on the couch as she rearranged herself in a seated position next to him. He saw her shift to stand again and reached out, grasping her hand. "Don't."
"Um, Jane?" Lisbon looked to his hand, clasped around hers, before looking up to him. She seemed confused. Jane wasn't sure that was a good sign.
Someone needed to write manuals for these situations. An easy to find manual. Something with a title like What to expect when asking one to expect or So you wanna knock up your soon-to-be (hopefully) girlfriend or even You've decided to man up and confess to your boss, but don't know how to broach the topic and segue from that to her having your baby. Yes, that last one sounded specific enough. Books were too vague now. That's how they made money. You had to buy tons of them and piece together the information you needed.
Money grubbing bastards. Jane wondered if perhaps he should publish such a book...
Well, he supposed it depended on tonight's outcome. Hmm. He could always go with 10 steps to cope with having your heart ripped out...again. He shook that unpleasant thought away. No. It would go well. It had to. Lisbon had infiltrated his dreams so much that he wasn't sure he could handle it if she wasn't similarly ensconced in his life.
She cleared her throat (a pointed, graceful sound unlike his near-death experience from earlier) and he focused on her once more. She was sitting patiently, looking to him. Oh, right. He had captured her hand, preventing her from leaving. Now he just had to say what he came here to say.
"You should get pregnant."
Her eyes widened and Jane mentally groaned. Nice. Suave. He wondered why he seemed to have lost his ability to smooth talk in the last couple of months. Well, to be fair, the ability only seemed to desert him around Lisbon. He had never been that disconcerted around his wife. Strangely, that thought didn't upset him like it would have even three months earlier.
"Jane, is that your way of saying that you don't think I'll be finding someone to do it the old-fashioned way?" Lisbon's voice seemed steady, but Jane knew her well enough to know that there was an almost imperceptible tremble of hurt beneath her words. Shit! That's not what he meant at all. Exactly the opposite, actually. He went to respond, but she beat him to it. "You think I should do artificial insemination?"
"No way!" he burst out, eyes wide. This was not going according to plan. Maybe it was better if he didn't write a guidebook...
Now she looked confused. She tried to tug her hand from his, but he stubbornly refused to let go. "I don't know why this would surprise you, but I don't understand what you're getting at."
Now he rolled his eyes, suddenly feeling as if she should know by now. Really, she couldn't be that clueless. He studied her face.
Yup, that was pure confusion. She really had no idea where he was going. He sighed.
"I think you'd look marvelous pregnant, my dear," he paused, wondering if he should push his luck.
Her forehead wrinkled, waiting for him to continue.
"And barefoot," he added. Seeing a scowl on the horizon, he hurried forward. "But artificial insemination is not the way to go. And I definitely think you can find a life partner to achieve your goal. Actually, I think you already have."
He paused significantly, waiting for the light to dawn.
When the silence stretched to ninety seconds, he figured the bulb was burnt out and he would have to help the dawning light along.
"Me, Lisbon. I'm talking about me." He squeezed her hand gently and watched as she opened her mouth and then shut it again, searching for the right words.
He only hoped these words were some form of acceptance rather rejection.
"Did I hear you right, Jane? Did you just say, in a roundabout way, that you want to father my child?"
He frowned. It wasn't roundabout. He had been very direct. "Yes, although I would argue about the roundabout clause. I was very clear."
She snorted and he wondered how even such an unladylike action could be so attractive on her. "Yeah, right."
Jane bristled, annoyed that they weren't dealing with the matter at hand. "Forget about that. What say you?"
She smiled a bit—he assumed because of the expression he had used. So few people used such wonderful phrases anymore. Pity, really. He had always liked them and they sounded so appropriate coming from a person wearing three piece suits.
She was interrupted by her cell phone ringing. He growled internally. Did karma have something against him? Really?
Not that he believed in karma or anything. But if he did, he would be sure that there was some sort of karmic retribution breathing down his neck. Maybe dying Rigsby's blue hair had been a bit over the top.
He thought about it for a moment.
Lisbon shot him an apologetic look as she reached for her phone, pulling her hand firmly out of Jane's. Jane caught a glance of the caller id as she flipped it open. Cho.
Listening for a second, he discerned that the call was not about a case. Not too important at all. Cho had left a file on his desk that Lisbon needed and he wasn't going to be in the next day. Something like that. Yadda, yadda, yadda.
Jane rolled his eyes and decided that his patience was gone.
He snatched the phone from Lisbon's hand. "She's busy. She'll find the file tomorrow. Good night, Cho."
He hung up without waiting for an answer. Incredulously, Lisbon gaped at him.
"What the hell, Jane?" Her brows drew together prettily. "First, don't ever interfere with my phone calls. Second, that sounded way too incriminating. Third—eek!"
Jane smirked. She was cute when she squeaked. Which wasn't often. In fact, that had been the only time he had heard it. He had cut her off by pulling her onto his lap and wrapping his arms around her. "Lisbon. You were about to answer my question."
She fell still at his prompting. "Jane, I can understand that you miss being a father. But there's adoption. Foster care. I don't think it'd be good for our professional relationship to have a baby together simply because we want to parents."
If Jane were a balloon, he'd be deflating. She still didn't get it. "Lisbon...Teresa, I loved being a father. But you don't understand. I don't just want to be a father. I specifically want to be a father to your child."
"It's sweet that you want to be there for me. I know you meant your promise. You're a great friend," she paused for a short breath in between bunched together sentences.
"Teresa, this isn't about that promise. This is about me. I know I'm selfish. Can't seem to help it no matter how much I try, but I want you. Not as a friend. Not as a boss or even a colleague." He pulled back and looked into her eyes, trying to convey his sincerity. He had practiced that look so often as a fraud, but he hoped that what came through now was sincere sincerity rather than an act. He wondered if she would even be able to tell the difference. He wondered if he could. "I want us to be a family. And then I want us to add onto our family."
She looked shock. He beamed. Maybe she was finally beginning to understand. He looked more closely at her. Was she breathing?
"Um, Teresa? Lisbon?"
He shook her slightly. She blinked up at him. "Did you just propose?"
He paused, testing his feelings carefully—just one more time. Just to be sure.
Yup. No panic. Just anticipation.
"Yes. I think I did."
"Um, I'm pretty sure you're supposed to say something else, Lisbon."
"That's what I'm talking about. Your response needs to expand to include something besides 'oh.'"
"Just say yes. Okay?"
"Okay you'll marry me? Or okay you'll say yes?"
"Aren't they the same thing?"
Jane paused. Huh. "Guess they are, aren't they?"
She suddenly giggled. He grinned. He did have to admit that the whole situation was a little surreal. He laughed. But she was marrying him.
Little Landon was back in the game plan! Boo-yah!
He spent the next five minutes trying to explain why he had just pumped a fist into the air triumphantly. Best to keep the Landon Mission on the downlow for now. He would do this one play at a time.
He wondered if there were a book he could buy...Life: the football game of love.
He wondered if he could write such a thing. Eh, he didn't play much football. It'd probably flop. Maybe...
His thoughts scattered as he felt Lisbon's warm breath against his mouth, followed by a soft, sensuous pressure.
He found that within five minutes all he could think of was Lisbon's bare feet. And maybe a little baring of other body parts...
He was pretty sure he had a Lisbon fetish.
He hoped there wasn't a cure.