by Jennifer George
Sully followed Michaela up the steps and into the train, thinking of how happy he was to be going home, home to Colorado Springs. As he reached the top step, he ran smack into Michaela, knocking the hat off her head. They both laughed as Sully bent to pick the hat up for her. They looked each other in the eye as he handed the hat back to her. Smiling, Michaela said "Oh Sully, I can't wait to get home!".
Sully smiled back and kissed her on the forehead. "Let's get going then!"
As he and Michaela made their way to where the children had found seats, they were met by a porter coming from the opposite direction.
"Dr Quinn, Mr Sully!"
Sully looked at him quizzically, "Yes, can we help you?". He thought someone may need Michaela's services.
"The first lady arranged for you to have your own private car."
Michaela and Sully just stared at him, their mouths slightly open.
"I'm sorry, I'm to give you this", the porter said as he handed Michaela a note. She opened the note and read:
and Mr Sully,
I cannot thank you enough for saving the President's life. As a token of my appreciation, I have arranged for a private car to take you back to Colorado Springs. God bless all of you!
Colleen, Brian, and Matthew erupted into shouts of joy and excitement. Michaela looked at Sully, and with barely restrained excitement, said "Let's go!"
The porter led them through the train to the private car. It had three separate bedrooms and a sumptuous parlor. The parlor was festooned with dark red velvet curtains with golden cords holding them back, the sunlight streaming through the windows. There were four plush wingback chairs and two chaise lounges. Sully spied their bags, placed in a corner of the parlor, and suggested that they all retire to their rooms to freshen up and rest a bit before the evening meal. Brian and Matthew took one room, Sully one by himself, and Michaela and Colleen the third room.
Brian's excitement was getting to him, as he was going to his room he took the sword Sully had let him hold out of its holder and started to swing it around. Sully laughed at him, then grabbed the sword as it swung around. He told Brian to wait until they got home, where there was more open space. He thought to himself how much he'd be glad to get back to the open space, after being in the crowded, crammed with people, busy city of Washington DC. He longed to take a walk through the woods with Michaela, to be alone with her for a while, to touch and feel her, to hold her as he longed to hold her since their desparate declarations of love in the jail. Sully hadn't realized he sighed until Michaela spoke.
"Sully, what were you thinking about?"
He was startled out of his reverie, and looked up to see Michaela standing next to him, her hand at his waist, smiling up at him. He smiled back and answered "Just thinking about home...and how much I want to be alone with you." He gave her a gentle kiss, and she responded as she usually did, and then some. He was surprised by her abandon, especially since they were not alone.
When the kiss broke off, Michaela's face was flushed. She had just realized that they weren't alone, she forgets about everyone and everything when she's in Sully's arms, sharing his kisses.
Colleen had made it over to her's and Michaela's room with their bags. "Ma, come see this. It's so nice!"
Michaela called back, "Coming, Colleen" before exchanging a quick kiss with Sully and breaking away from him to join her. As she pulled away, their hands lingered together momentarily, just as they had when she first came to town and Sully had rescued her from the drunk cowboy's in the saloon - as she had gotten back into the wagon, their hands met and lingered for a moment until the wagon pulled away.
Brian and Matthew were in their room, Matthew laying down on one bed, his hat over his head, trying to get a little rest. Brian was too excited about the trip in this special train car. His mouth was going a mile a minute, trying to engage Matthew in conversation. Finally he quit trying and sat by the window to watch the city and its people as the train left the station. He was too excited to sleep!
Colleen herself was excited. She sat on her bed in the room she was sharing with Michaela, furiously writing in a book.
"What are you writing?" Michaela asked as she took off her dress.
"I bought this diary yesterday. I want to record everything about this trip, write a book about it. Someday when I'm older, I want to be able to take out this book and show it to my children and my grandchildren, to tell them about the ball at the White House, spending the night with Nellie Grant, about how you and Sully helped the Indians, and about Sully's trial."
By now, Michaela stood at the washstand, washing her face, neck, and arms. She looked at Colleen with admiration. "That's wonderful Colleen, and when you're done, I hope you'll let me read it."
"Of course, you can. You'll be the first!"
Michaela put on a less fancier dress, she was ready to relax. As she dressed she hummed a tune, a tune that was playing while she and Sully danced at the ball. Her mind drifted back to that dance, and the thought of being in Sully's arms. Her heart started to race and the heat within her rose. Oh what he does to her! She had never felt like this about anyone, not even David. She felt the need to be with Sully, to be near him, to touch and feel him. She told Colleen she was going to speak to Sully and would be back before supper.
She no sooner closed the door to the room when she was grabbed around the waist and spun around. Her arms immediately wrapped themselves around Sully's neck. His mouth closed over hers and they shared the sweetest kiss. Sully was still holding her in his arms, her feet not quite touching the floor, and as they kissed, he walked her over toward the parlor.
Sully sat down on one of the chaise lounges, never once letting go of her, settling down with her in his lap. For once, Michaela didn't concern herself with propriety, or rather the impropriety of sitting in a man's lap when she wasn't even married to him. She only stared deeply into Sully's eyes, into his soul. He did the same. They sat like that for a while, just drinking each other in. Finally the silence was broken by the sound of Michaela's soft voice.
was never so scared as when the sargeant sentenced you to death. I thought I
was going to lose you forever." As
she said this last sentence, her voice broke and a tear slid down her face. Sully wiped it from her face with his thumb, his thumb then lingering on her cheek, tracing her jawline.
"I'm sorry I put you through all this Michaela. I had forgotten all about what happened when I was in the army. I forgot all about even bein in the army." He settled Michaela against his chest as he continued.
"After losin Abagail, there was nothin left for me in Colorado Springs, I thought I'd be lonely for the rest of my life. So..I left..wandered for a while until I enlisted in the army. I figured bein in the war would take my mind off of everthin that happened to me, everthin that I lost. It didn't. After what happened, I just left again .. wandered around some more."
"Then after finding my way with the Cheyenne, I came back. But, I still hadn't forgotten 'bout Abagail. Bein back in Colorado Springs brought it all back. Then you came. You stirred feelins in me that I'd long since buried, and feelins I never felt before, not even with Abagail. Sure, I tried ignorin' them, but they never went away. The more I was around you, the more I wanted to be near you, thought 'bout you all the time, dreamed 'bout you...You see, after a while, I forgot about all the hurt over losing Abagail. Loving you made me forget all the bad stuff.
at him in awe. She had no idea she had that much of an effect on him. She leaned
close to him and kissed
"Oh, Sully, I had no idea. Sometimes I wondered how deeply you felt. If you had the same feelings for me that I have for you. I never felt for David the feelings I have for you. You stir something in me..something that I never felt before. When you look at me, I feel as if you're looking into my very soul. When I'm away from you, I can't stop thinking about you, wondering what you're doing... if you're thinking of me too."
Sully smiled and said, "Trust me, I was thinkin 'bout you too."
Michaela went on, "After I was told David had died in the war, I thought that was it for me. He was the only man that ever showed an interest in me, the only man I had any kind of feelings for. So, I involved myself deeply in my work...eating, sleeping, and breathing being a doctor. When my father died, the practice dried up and I found myself consumed with thoughts of David again. I didn't have enough to keep me busy. Then came the ad for a doctor in the Colorado Territory."
"When I first saw you, in the general store, I didn't quite know what to think. I had never seen anyone quite like you. But, at the same time, as Charlotte and I were walking to the livery, I couldn't stop thinking about you. Loving you is so much different than loving David. He never stirred in me the feelings *you* stir in me. When David and I were apart from each other, he didn't consume my thoughts as you do when we are apart. Sully, when we are together, and even when we are apart, I can *feel* you, as if you are a part of me. You see, after wrestling with my feelings for you .. and .. the .. uh .. uneasiness I felt "being" with you...and then to come so close to losing you this week...", her words trailed off.
Michaela looked up at Sully to see such profound love for her in his eyes. As if they were one mind, they both leaned in for a kiss, a kiss that topped all other kisses, a kiss that sent electric sparks through both of them, setting them on fire. The kiss deepened until they were gasping for breath.
After a moment to catch their breaths, they went back to kissing. It was as if they couldn't get enough of each other. As they kissed, Michaela's hands caressed his back, his hands buried themselves in the long chestnut hair he loved so much. Michaela's hans found their way to the front of his shirt, and she started unbuttoning it. Sully shivered at the feel of her fingers touching his chest, this was a feeling so new to him.
After freeing the last button, Michaela pulled his shirt out of his buckskins and ran her hands over his chest, revelling in the feel of his chest hair. Her lips left his and went to place small kisses where her hands had been. Sully sucked in his breath when she did this, he couldn't believe how far she was letting herself go. He thought about stopping her, didn't want her to regret her actions, but as he thought this, his own hands went to the buttons on the front of her dress, unbuttoning enough so that he could kiss the hollow between her collarbones. As he did this, she arched her neck and said softly, "Oh, Sully!"
This was his complete undoing. He brought her head to his and kissed her with more passion than he ever had before, she returned it in kind. Her hands found their way to his backside and pulled him closer to her, so close that she could feel his desire for her. Sully sensed where things were going and stopped kissing her, breaking away from her ever so slightly. He reached out with his thumb and traced her warm swollen lips. He saw so much desire in her eyes that it scared him. He wanted to continue loving Michaela like this, but again, he didn't want her to regret her actions. However, she reached out and pulled his head back to hers, her mouth closing over his, her tongue seeking and finding his. All reservations he just had were gone. His hands wandered to the hem of her dress, and were working their way up her legs, loving the feel of the stockings she wore.
Michaela continued to kiss him with abandon. She had never felt this before, the fire burning in her stomach, the fluttering of her heart, and she only wanted more. All thoughts of propriety were gone, all she could think about was being Sully, her soulmate, her forever love. She wanted Sully to make love to her .. now. Her hands went lower, to the button on his buckskins, and started to work it free.
Sully immediately sensed what was happening, knowing that she was getting carried away, and though he wanted to make love to Michaela more than anything else in the world, he also knew that if they did, she would regret it, and possibly end up hating him for not stopping her. How he wouldn't be able to live with himself if that happened.
With a great amount of restraint and self control, his hand flew to hers and grabbed it within his own, breaking off the kiss as he did. Their faces were still close together, their breath coming in short gasps. Michaela's face was flushed. She looked at him with an utter look of surprise, surprise at her own actions, how much she had let herself go. She jumped off his lap, stammering an apology.
"Sully..I..I..I'm so sorry..I can't believe..oh, I'm sorry..you must be so disappointed in me!"
Sully flew off the chaise lounge and took her into his arms. "Oh, Michaela, honey..don't be sorry! I love you more than anythin. Just now you showed me how much you loved me and that you wanted me as much as I wanted you. Never be sorry for showin me that side of yourself, never keep yourself from showin' me, never be afraid to. The feelins you were feelin' are natural for two people so in love like us." His voice had faded to a whisper at the last part of that sentence. His hands cupped her face and he kissed her lightly on the lips.
"Sully, thank you for not letting us..you know..go..any further. I'm not sure right now how I would've felt if we had, but I love you for stopping me and for thinking about my feelings, even if I wasn't. I love you."
They kissed again, this time with some restraint, being careful not to let it go too far. Which was a good thing, because just then, Brian came bounding out of his room. "Ma, Sully..I'm hungry..when's dinner?"