Pairings/Characters (this chapter): Steve/Diana
Genres: Romance, Drama, A Touch Of Mystery
Rating (this chapter): Mild ‘R’ (for nudity, I suppose) ;)
General Summary: When Queen Hippolyta sends a precious Amazon artifact to America with an Amazon guard, both cause Diana and Steve no end of trouble.
Chapter Summary: Steve needs some TLC, and Diana is more than happy to give it.
Date Of Completion: April 13, 2008
Date Of Posting: June 29, 2008
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, DC does, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 1337
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
Author’s Notes: Dedicated to our hardy band of Steve/Diana fans! :)
Special thanks to jen_in_japan , whose enthusiasm for this project kept me going with a smile on my face. :)
All chapters can be found here.
To the Gods
For the joy
“Jewels Of Great Price”
Steve sat carefully on the bed, wincing as he tried to ease the stiffness in his lower back. Gouged-out skin was bad enough, but his muscles were badly bruised and stiff.
He had declined to take a chair in the meeting at the shelter, afraid he would have needed help to get up. He bit his lip as he tried to get up from the bed. Sighing, he decided to stay where he was for the moment.
He had not told Diana about Medea’s threats.
First, Medea was a friend of Diana’s and an ex-lover, if he read between the lines correctly, and he was sure his Angel would not appreciate him speaking badly of an ex, anymore then he would if the situation was reversed.
Secondly, he had no intention of hurting Diana so had no fear of his heart being cut out and fed to the falcons.
Thirdly, perhaps it was male pride or just pride in general that made him averse to running like a little boy to Wonder Woman and telling her about the threat.
He was also angry about being a constant scapegoat. He understood Amazon hostility, but damnit, he hadn’t been one of the men who had hurt them so long ago.
He sighed. He was so tired…period.
Instantly he felt better. “Hey, Angel.”
Diana came into the bedroom, concern on her lovely face. “How are you?”
“A little stiff.” He grimaced as she sat beside him, jiggling the bed slightly. “Actually, I might need help getting up.”
“Oh, my darling.” Diana slid her hand up and down his back, very careful of his lower back. “You need a soothing bath.”
“Oh?” Steve smiled. “Will you be joining me?”
“As stiff as you are?”
“All the better.”
Diana smirked. “Let me prepare the bath for you, my love.”
“I’m not going anywhere,” he said ruefully.
Diana disappeared into the bathroom, water starting to run into the tub.
A hot bath sounded good. Steve stretched, grimacing at the pain.
Some soldier you are, Trevor. Can’t take a little wear-and-tear.
He disliked the image of fragility. Bad enough people suggested that Superman or one of the other meta-humans would be a better match for Wonder Woman than a mere mortal.
Sighing, he managed to get his shoes off without bending, then started unbuttoning his shirt. He eased it off his shoulders, looking up as Diana emerged from the bathroom, wearing a filmy chiton with gold clasps at the shoulders. Steve grinned his appreciation.
“The water is almost ready, my love.” Diana bent to remove Steve’s socks.
“Angel, you don’t have to…” Steve said as he looked down at her bent head, his stomach tightening. “You really shouldn’t. I don’t think your sister Amazons would approve.”
Diana looked up. “Would you do the same for me?”
“Of course, Angel, but it’s different…”
“No, it’s not.” Diana stood and deposited socks and shirt in the hamper. “Let me get these pants off you.”
“Stop teasing me.”
Diana chuckled and slid the jeans down Steve’s legs. She gently pushed him down onto the bed.
“You’re still teasing me.”
Diana grinned and slipped her finger under the waistband of Steve’s briefs. “Off with these, Blondie.”
“You’re too good to me, Princess.”
Diana got the briefs off, helped Steve sit up, then stand.
“Steve, what are these?”
Steve looked down at the fingernail marks on his side. “Oh, Medea had to grab me hard, Angel. Nothing to worry about.”
Diana said nothing but touched his ribcage.
The bathroom was warm, the blinds drawn and yellow candles lit on the side of the tub close to the water. Diana helped Steve got in, lowering him carefully to sit, and he let out an “Aahh!!” of satisfaction as the warm water enveloped him.
Candlelight shimmered on the water, gilding his skin with a golden sheen. Diana took a small crystal vial from a bag and uncorked the round yellow stopper, pouring sparkling gold into the water.
“Mmm, smells like lemon,” Steve said, resting his head on the edge of the tub.
“It is. It is lemon-scented and part of the process.”
The gold joined the candlelight in a shimmering dance, Steve feeling himself relax even more.
“Now, the Waters of Rosetta.”
A new scented oil was poured in, a rose-pink hue.
“A fitting libation to the Gods,” Diana murmured.
Steve laughed. “Am I the offering, Angel?”
“Oh, yes.” Diana’s fingers carded through his hair, her eyes shining. “The Gods would be grateful for such a gift as you.”
Their eyes met, and Diana leaned forward, the kiss gentle and loving.
When they parted, Diana scooped up water and poured it onto Steve’s chest, rubbing it into his skin. Her hands caressed and massaged his body, Steve’s eyes closing as he completely relaxed, pain in his back dulling to an ache.
& & & & & &
Diana was happy, using all the arts of her people to help Steve. She next poured a lavender-scented oil, fresh from the hillsides of Paradise Island.
As the candlelight played on her Beloved’s skin, she feasted her eyes on Gods-given beauty. She had been blessed indeed.
She frowned slightly as she saw the fingernail marks again. They disturbed her. Medea’s hostility to Steve was no secret. Taking the opportunity while saving him to cause deliberate harm was petty.
Well, her friend would be leaving for home soon. Despite the theft of the Chalice, her mother had confidence in museum security after speaking with Diana and Jamie. Everything would be highly scrutinized now, and Jamie and his staff would work harder than ever to protect the Chalice. Diana had suggested recalling Medea, nervous about a future faux pas that could not be easily fixed.
As her fingers massaged Steve’s arm, she also admitted to herself that she wanted Medea away from him. It pained her to see the hostile glances thrown his way and the verbal barbs viciously hurled.
Her sister Amazons had to understand: not all men were worthy of contempt.
Diana concentrated on making Steve feel better, glad to see him relaxed. Her heart swelled with love and she kissed him.
Eyes still closed, he smiled. “Mmm,” he purred.
Diana did more massaging, then said, “One more thing, Beloved.”
Steve opened his eyes as he felt silk whisper on skin. “Mmm, very romantic.”
Diana smiled as she sprinkled yellow rose petals into the water.
Steve snatched one before it hit the water. “Join me?”
“This is to heal you, my darling, not stimulate you.”
Steve looked at her lovingly, the candlelight reflecting in his eyes. Smiling, he touched her hair, then closed his eyes. She continued her ministrations.
When she finished, she helped him up from the tub, Amazon strength easily handling his weight. She took white, fluffy towels and dried him off as he held onto the tower rack, bringing her hands up to cup his face. Her lips brushed against his and he smiled.
Diana helped Steve to bed, her voice soft as she said, “On your side.”
Steve complied, Diana removing her chiton and sliding into bed, pulling the covers up over their bodies. Diana brushed yellow silk back from Steve’s brow.
“You take good care of me, Angel.”
“And did you not take care of me when I was ill with that scourge?”*
“You mean your cold?” He chuckled as he began to slide into sleep.
“Yes,” she said as she continued sliding her fingers through his hair.
“Love you, Angel.”
“As I love you, my darling.”
As Steve drifted off to sleep, Diana thought of her good fortune, and thanked the Gods, thinking of the precious treasure in the Boston Museum Of Fine Arts.
An even more precious treasure was here in this bed with her.
She kissed Steve’s chest and curled up close to him, her arm going around him protectively.
[Bad username: jen_in_japan.livejournal.com/233039.html]</lj> *<a href="http://jen_in_japan.livejournal.com/233039.html">Bedside Manner</a> by Jen.