(Remember I don't actually *know* Jake, from any canon reading, so this might be filled with a million and one small and biggish mistakes.)

Sascha's fault.

Post-Coital Bliss
By River

My appartment still looks like it did when I went to sleep five hours ago. It look just like it did the seven times I got up, and it looks just the same as it did yesterday when Iíve followed this very same routine. The break between missions is pure luck, because I donít think I could survive the days after nights like this without allowing myself to sleep in, but that doesnít help me right now and I almost wish the phone would ring, just to break up that sameness.

I think Remy knows somethingís going on.

I used to know why this man stayed there, kept on working for Ellen, just to get into my pants. He didnít have anything better to do. This was as good a gig as any and he got laid regularly, andÖ oh, shit. I did look in his eyes, every once in a while. I know the way he looked at me. This bodyÖ it has power I never had, never will have, donít want, as me.

Liar. Of course I want it, just a little. PowerÖ nothing wrong with power. This one just costs a bit too much.

But thatís bullshit, thatís not enough. He didnít have anywhere better to go. I know that look, somewhere behind the pleasure of having someone elseís mouth on his dick.

*My* mouth on his dick. Shit. I feel like I need to hide my eyes, as though someoneís staring at me accusingly outside my own head.

But I knew that look, okay? That look of something bleeding deep inside, somehing you had to look away from and not touh again ever lest it start burning again. Lest it eat whole parts of you in one swallow. I know the need to fill all the space around it with activity, with thought, with new obsessions, packed tight so you couldnít poke that open wound even if you wanted, so it wouldnít come into your mind to do it.

I know the times when the thoughts fail, where the new addictions are not enough. I wonder what haunts Pete Wisdom when he tries to fall asleep at night?

I know Remy knows somethingís wrong.

Now exactly what, I donít thinkÖ but, hey, itís Remy, heís gonna find out.

I almost think, Ďgoodí. God help me. Somehow I want someone to find out, desperately, like just being able to talk about thisÖ I donít know. Like itís gonna save my soul or something. But I know itís not the truth. I couldnít stand anyone knowing.

The changeÖ the change came six months after I first heard his name from Ellen. A week more, a week less; somehow the affect of those machines justÖ wore off. I donít know. The power of positive thinking. God knows I wanted this bad enough.

Iím me again. I can retain my face easier than an eyeblink, easier than anyone elseís. Jackie is now the one that comes with thought, the one that canít last me through the day. I can get any assignment I want again Ė any that I could get before, at least. I donít need to be a whore to stay in the game anymore.

I wish I could put this on her. After all, when I change into a woman, my insides change as well, right? Iíve never been able to really understand this, but I know they do. Ovaries, hormones, just slightly different brain. IÖ how implausible would that be, huh? Jackie is a woman. Women fall in love, or Ė no, I canít really call that love. Women fall in whatever, lust or obsession or a deep dark desperate *want* and they fall in it with men, see, where men fall into it with *women* -- except for - *some* -- except forÖ how implausible is it to say that she fell, fell hard and deep into somewhere that has no rock bottom to stop it, and now that Iím me again, my body remembers?

How hard it is to believe that when my insides hurt itís *her* pain? That itís her need speaking here. Itís all much too damned poetic for me to buy it, thatís the problem.

I donít know what I was doing that first time. I donít know how or why I did it. It was a week after I got myself back again and I have no excuse for doing any of it, no excuse at all that Iíd believe.

When I changed myself and left the house I told myself all sorts of things. I told myself I needed to let the neighbors see Jackie around a bit until I could move away or make the impression that she did. I told myself Iíd go and make a nuisance of myself to Remy, because letís face in, when Iím in the body of a beautiful woman I get far less shit for it from him and Iím not really all that much above using it. I told myself Iíd go to Ellen and throw the file in her face and tell her to keep her hustler money to herself, cold blooded bitch that she was.

Bullshit, that last one. Cold blooded bitch she may be, and she may have had her reasons for giving me a chance, but she did hire me when no one else would. And thisÖ this is nothing big. Field agents do worse, regularly.

So I didnít do that. But I still have no idea how Jackie wound up on top of that pale body again, warm mouth on her neck and shoulder, hands working magic to hear another moan.

How I did. No more hiding. thereís no way I can hide now.

Itís been eight months since I first heard the name Pete Wisdom, or, to be on the safe side, the first time I remember hearing it. I think Remy knows somethingís up, and Jesus, eight months isnít exactly a short time for him to clue in.

But there was no reason for him to clue in, right? This is just work. Iíd kick his ass if he tried to peek in on my work. Being friends Ė and when did that term come up, anyway, between saving the world and saving our skins Ė with the Thieves Guild leader isnít a place you want to allow any breaching of the boundaries in.

Just work. It would be perfectly plausible to say this is Jackieís reaction, this is Jackieís problem, and hey, maybe we need to find her someplace nice to work through the withdrawal pains. Except that there is no withdrawal, and Jackie doesnít live here no more, and now that Iím left to face up her leftovers I have to admit that itís been me all along.

I knew that. Havnít I known that? He is the one place where I look for excuses. Shit.

No more excuses.

I donít think Ė I know he doesnít know where to find me. I told Ellen the deal was off and sheís too much of a professioal to let anything slip even if sheís pissed at the lack of advance notice. And too smart. Nobody particularly wants to get on the bad list of Jacob Gavin Senior.

He doesnít know about Jacob Gavin, senior or junior or space alien level three. He knows about a woman who looks a damn sight better than I do, a woman with no more than one name that heís been forbidden to ever say. I donít want to exmine my reasons and I donít want to wonder whose name I imagined he would say if he could.

Which name. This is me. This is me whole. No more hiding.

Oh, fuck.

Going down on another man has never been something I even imagined becoming a professional in. Getting off on knowing another manís body so well I could make it shiver just when I wanted to just isnít Ė itís not something thatís ever been in my interest list, I never thought to maybe take a course next summer Ė

I never even realized what I was doing until I looked up and saw the shock on his face. I may never had realized if he kept his eyes closed. I wonder if he ever keeps his eyes closed for any longer than he has to Ė

I donít wonder anything. I donít care. I never had. Just a job, right?

I wish I could still believe my own lies. I liked that.

He wasnít even touching me. I know womenís bodies are funny in ways, but he wasnít even *touching* me. His taste was in my mouth and he was moaning, just a little, groaning in a way that vibrated right through his cock and into my tongue, and I was looking at him, peering up through my eyelashes, and I just Ė he wasnít even touhing me. How could I forget myself like that?

How unprofessional, Jakey boy. Dad would disapprove.

Oh, shit.

So now he knows what my face looks like. He knows how my shock looks and how my most intense pleasure does, and I know just the same about him. He knows how my back looks like and how I look like running out the door, clothes piled in hand. If he wants to kill me, if he wants to shoot me from a rooftop or just strangle me with his own bare hands, then he has those leads to go on. Heís very good. Maybe he can manage.

Until he does, I guess Iím just gonna drive myself insane a little more.

I think sometimes I hate Jackie more than Iíve hated anyone, ever. I think sometimes I hate that sheís broken something inside me and now she isnít around to handle the consequences.

Iím the only one in here now.

I think I miss that hotel room and that much too messy bed, and the scent of him, and the taste of his skin. I think I miss sneaking out without waking him and never stopping long enough to think. I think I miss hiding most of all.

I want my lies back. Please, I want my lies back, but it looks like she took them with her when she went away.

[Post-Coital Bliss]
[Blow Job]

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