Free Pass – Lara / Min / Bree (POV) – NSFW

by asynca

A commission for @desperate_rantings for being a major contributor to the funding of Under My Skin.

Set several months after The Dreaming.


I love drinking games. Not because it’s fun to get wasted and say stupid shit – even though it so is – but it’s fun to watch other people get wasted and say stupid shit. It’s so totally hilarious, you watch this whole room full of mature, high-paid adults with proper jobs and, like, self-managed Superannuation funds sink into giggling, mumbling, stumbling idiots. I love it. Everyone always has so much fun, it’s kind of a shame to drink, even. If I do drink, I can’t enjoy them all letting themselves be silly and having heaps of fun because I’m being silly and having heaps of fun. Such a dilemma.

Anyway, I gave Sarah this drinking game for her birthday because she had a serious lack of proper drinking games in her party arsenal. It was lovely coloured cards with these sparkles on them that came in all these categories like sexuality and morality, and I won’t go into all the details but basically you end up asking people really personal questions. They can refuse to answer, but they have to take a shot. You can lie, too, but if someone guesses you have to take a shot. It’s actually really smart, because people who are normally pretty uninhibited stay that way and everyone else gets wasted and becomes uninhibited.

Anyway, it was perfect for Sarah because now she had a completely legit excuse to ask people personal questions.

When everyone sat around the living room to play, Min insisted on playing with me as a team, probably because she thought I’d answer everything and she’d be off the hook. I was going to let her get away with that because she’s really super private and I didn’t want her to feel pressured to answer anything, but Sarah guessed what Min was doing in like five seconds flat and said that we both had to answer the questions or we both had to drink.

Min wasn’t happy about that because she kept saying that I’d end up with alcohol poisoning because I’m the cheapest drunk ever, but Sarah made her drink two shots before we’d even started because, “It’s my birthday and I say so.”

By the time we were up to the sexuality category and it was our turn, Min had refused to answer so many questions that we were both pretty wasted.

Sarah leant forward on the table towards us as she read the card she’d drawn, and I saw her eyes light up. “Ooh, kids, here’s a good one: Who is your Free Pass, or, if you haven’t agreed on a Free Pass, who would you like them to be?”

Rob looked blank. “What the fuck is a Free Pass?” he asked, genuinely not understanding. He was stone cold sober because he didn’t seem to care what people knew about him. He’d even gone to get himself a beer halfway through because he was annoyed everyone was drunker than he was.

Sarah had a swig of his beer. She was answering a lot of them, too. “A Free Pass is a celebrity your partner would let you have sex with if the opportunity arose,” she told him. “By the way, mine’s Hugh Jackman. Sorry, babe, but if Hugh wanted to give it to me…”

Rob looked unfazed. “No worries, who’s that chick on the detective show? Not the surly Charlie’s Angels one, the evil blond one. She’s mine.”

As everyone began to volunteer who their own Free Passes would be and totally judge each other for theirs, Min listened with this expression that was a cross between peaceful drunkenness and amusement. “Gee, I wonder who Bree wants to give it to…” She winked at me and I…

I…? Oh, right! Me. It was our turn wasn’t it? Whoa. It was a good thing I didn’t need to actually think about the question at all, because I was fucked.

So like, I know that video of Lara masturbating for Sam was a fake, but, according to Sam the Doppelganger was identical, so… Yeah, and no disrespect to Lara but phwoar. Plus, on top of the amazing body, she was really, really nice and just basically a really lovely person. So, yeah, a superhuman gladiator-fighting-like-warrior woman who was really nice and had a hot body?? Hell, yeah, I’d hit that! Who wouldn’t?

“Duh, obviously I’d fuck Lara Croft!” I said easily, but as soon as it tumbled out of my mouth I realised I was at the saying-stupid-shit level of drunk and that Lara would be so completely weirded out if she could hear me right now. I hoped no one would tell her. Or like, tell Channel 7. “Do you think it affects your Free Pass if you know the person, like, personally, though?”

I could hear the smirk in Min’s voice. “I think it makes the morning after a bit more awkward.”

Sarah was squinting at Min. “I love how chill you are about the fact your girlfriend wants to bone a mutual friend.”

Rob nudged Sarah with the nose of his beer bottle. “I’d let you sleep with your friend if your friend was Lara Croft,” he told her and she groaned at him.

Min was giving me a sideways look. I thought she was going to joke around like she always does when stuff like this happens, but she didn’t. “You bet I am,” she finally decided, but she had this ghost of a smile on her lips. “Because I’d get to watch, wouldn’t I?”

I pushed her. “Watching isn’t part of the deal!” At least, I thought it wasn’t. I turned back to Sarah. “Wait, can your partner put conditions on it?”

Sarah threw her hands up. “Hey, I’m not getting involved in your hypothetical infidelity!”

I thought Min was about to joke about Sarah getting involved in her real infidelity, but she obviously changed her mind because that was kind of mean to Henry, even if he wasn’t here tonight. “Technically it’s not infidelity if I let her,” Min said, and then held our cards up and tried to gloss over the fact she hadn’t answered. “Anyway, does that mean we’re next?”

“Nuh-uh,” Sarah said, jabbing a finger at Min. “You’re not getting off so easily. You didn’t tell us who your Free Pass is!”

My heart jumped. I’m a total hypocrite, you see. Because even though I’d been talking about how much I want to fuck Lara, for like the tiniest second I worried about who Min was going to say her Free Pass was. I know it’s stupid, but Min is really smart and I’m not. She says she’s happy with me, but of course she says that, you know? I bet she told Henry that, too. And if she’d answered that her Free Pass was someone super smart, or someone who had, like, an amazing career or was just generally awesome, it really says something, doesn’t it? It says that secretly she wants someone who is better than me.

Min glanced towards me as she chuckled at Sarah. “Well, you’re not famous yet, Sarah, so I don’t need a Free Pass.”

Sarah rolled her eyes, and I breathed a sigh of relief. Sarah has this special brand of tired eye-rolls that she reserves especially for Min when Min flirts with her, because both of them know Min isn’t serious.  “Ugh. Don’t you get any ideas about those new wheelchair guns you’re packing making you my type. You’ve got to put on at least a hundred kilos before you’re a match for Rob in the beef stakes.”

Min flexed a bicep and winked at Rob. “Watch out, it’s only a matter of time.” He laughed with her.

Sarah just scoffed. “Nice try. Drink up, kids,” she said, pouring Min and me another drink for not giving a real answer.

We both got so drunk that it would have taken way too long to wait for Min to sober up to drive us home, so we got a taxi back out to the hills and Sarah said Rob and her would drop Min’s new car back tomorrow as penance for getting her so wasted.

I hadn’t really noticed how drunk Min was because it’s not like she can stagger around, you know? But she’s normally got at least enough strength in her legs to prop herself up between the wheelchair and the bed, but not tonight. The second she put any weight on them, they immediately folded underneath her. She reached wildly for the grab bar above the bed but she spectacularly missed and fell straight on her back on the floor. It was such an epic fail it looked like something out of a daytime infomercial. Instead of being really embarrassed and frustrated about that, though, she was so drunk she just lay there on the carpet laughing.

She’s way too heavy for me, too, so when I tried to help her up I ended up falling on top of her. She was busy laughing hysterically over that, too, and I… was on top of my partner, and really drunk, and, uh, yeah. She looked pretty great in that shirt. The combination of bigger shoulders from using the wheelchair and a harder waist from the abdominal exercises her physiotherapist always made her do… like, yeah. She was looking pretty good to me right then.

I straddled her. “I like that shirt on you…” I told her, smoothing it across her torso. My fingers got to the buttons at the base of the top and toyed with them.

She did that thing with her eyebrow. “That must be why you’re so eager to get it off me.”

I giggled. “Well, you can leave it on if you want…” I tugged her belt a little.

She had a lazy grin as she watched me. I liked that grin, and I liked what it meant. She pushed herself to sit up-right and I kissed her; she tasted like that gross vodka Sarah had been force-feeding us, but I didn’t care. I was looking forward to having her arms around me and just being together with her.

Sex with Min’s always been pretty great; I mean, yeah, physically too, but that’s not why. Min doesn’t share herself with people. I’m the only one that gets to see this part of her, and, actually, it’s even better since her injury.

Something about that whole terrifying adventure with the spirits had changed Min; and every time we make love it’s like… I don’t know. We connect. She really pays attention to me. I really feel that she loves me and it’s not just words. The rest of the time she makes fun of me a lot, and she always acts like she’s really frustrated with me, and, yeah, I know it’s affectionate and it’s not like I hate it… but sometimes I just kind of wonder if it’s semi-serious and because she’s getting sick of me.

Like tonight. It’s kind of hard being around Min’s friends because they’re all super-rich or super-good-looking or super-something awesome, and I’m just Schoolgirl. Everyone teases me. They make blonde jokes. They call Min a cradle-snatcher. Everyone always says ‘we’ and then ‘Rob and Bree’, like we’re the dumb +1s that don’t belong. And I think it’s all affectionate just like what Min does – because otherwise Min would get really upset with them– but after the whole night it kind of wears thin. And they’re just having fun, you know? They don’t mean to be hurtful. I didn’t want to ruin tonight just because I’m dumb and insecure.

Anyway, after all that I was feeling stupidly fragile about the fact I wasn’t super-smart or super-anything and I was really looking forward to being with Min and having her show me how much I meant to her.

I had been unbuttoning my own dress because I thought the reason she wasn’t doing it herself was because she was using her arms to prop herself upright… but then I realised she wasn’t kissing me as enthusiastically as she usually did. When I pulled back, she made a face.

“What?” Maybe her back was hurting again?

It took a few seconds of her making pained noises before she said, “Sorry, Bree, I think the combination of pizza and alcohol…” She didn’t finish that sentence. She didn’t need to.

Oh. My heart sank. She didn’t want to have sex with me, after all. “It’s okay,” I said as I crawled off her. It left a hole in my stomach, which was dumb. It felt like she’d just left me hanging after a marriage proposal. I forced a laugh anyway, despite the hole. “Haha! I probably ate way too much as well, now that you mention it. Whoops! I’m hopeless around food!”

I tried to be all smiles as I helped her up and into bed, and as she was tucking herself in and I was changing into my PJs, I tried really, really hard to joke about some of the stuff that had happened at the party. Maybe Min would have noticed I was full of shit if she’d been sober – she usually knew straight away when I was hiding something – but she was totally not sober and so she didn’t guess at all.

It was stupid, anyway. It’s just that I kept thinking that if she was really attracted to me and really in love with me, she wouldn’t have cared that her stomach was full, and being drunk would have made her want me more. And I kept thinking about that Free Pass question she’d avoided. I couldn’t get away from the thought. Who had she been going to say that she thought might hurt my feelings? Was it someone smarter? Someone who had, like, their whole lives together already? Or maybe someone really mature who wasn’t just another screwed up teenager? Was that why she wasn’t attracted to me right now?

Fuck, I didn’t feel good at all. I felt gross, and really stupid, and ugly. And it wasn’t Min’s fault that she had a stupid, irrational and fucked up girlfriend, so I didn’t want to make it her problem. She was allowed to turn down sex with me, and I didn’t want to tell her how I felt because then she’d feel pressured into having sex with me when she didn’t want to.

After I was lying next to her in bed, though, I could feel her eyes on me. “I’m sorry,” she said quietly. “I just drank a bit too much, that’s all.”

I forced the knot out of my stomach and managed to beam at her. “Well,” I said, tickling her hand under the covers like everything was normal. “If you’d answered some of those questions, maybe neither of us would be so drunk!”

She laughed once. “Yeah, because I’ve always been delighted to tell people all about my sex life, who I vote for, and whether or not I’ve ever cheated on an exam.” She paused. “I haven’t, by the way.”

Pfft. How long did she think we’d been together? “Duh.”

“Anyway, there’s only one person in the world who I’d tell any of that to.” She turned her head to smile at me, and I felt her take my hand under the covers and squeeze it. She smiled even harder when she saw me smile, and even though I’d been with her for a million years, that smile still gave me butterflies. It made me feel like she loved me even though I was a stupid head-case. Like I wasn’t just another comfort-zone the way Henry had been.

“So,” I began, trying to forget about the giant hole in my stomach, “that means you’ll answer any of the questions if I ask them, yeah?”

She looked a bit suspicious, but she said, “Sure,” anyway.

I already knew exactly what I wanted to ask, even if I was terrified of the answer and what it would mean about how Min felt towards me. “Who was the Free Pass you didn’t want to say?”

She chuckled. “Fucking hell, I knew that was the question you were going to ask.”

God, was it that bad that she worried about, too? I poked her. “That’s so not an answer.”

She turned her head towards me with a wry smile. “Guess.”

There was something seriously cheeky about that smile, which kind of suggested she thought I’d find her choice funny. It also kind of meant that she thought I’d know who it was. The only celebrity Min had ever really said much about was…

Oh my god. I shoved her. “It’s Lara!” I accused her and she laughed, which was proof.Oh my god, it is!”

She was still laughing. “You happy now?”

“Oh my god!” I just kept pushing her. “You bastard! You totally never told me you found her hot!”

She snorted. “Yeah, sounds like something I’d say to my depressed girlfriend. ‘Hey, you know that hot, famous mutual friend of ours? I’d do her’.”

“Yeah, okay, but you knew that I was totally into her, too! Min! I could have spent all this time imagining totally hot threesomes if you’d told me!” Actually… I looked at her. “Would you have a threesome with me, do you think? I mean, if it came up?”

She stopped laughing suddenly. Her expression was the firmest NO I’d ever seen. “I’ve got my hands full with just you,” she told me. “Figuratively and literally.”

I giggled. “Well, maybe I’d just watch so your hands were free…?”

She gave me that look again. “Uh, remember there’s a fourth person involved here?” she asked. “Sam would kill me, and then she’d kill you, and then Lara would torture herself to death over the whole thing. What a train wreck. Besides, Lara would never agree to it in the first place, she’s worse than I am about privacy.”

I groaned. Min could be such a spoilsport, I wasn’t even meaning for real. “I’m talking theoretically! And we’d all be really drunk, of course so it wouldn’t matter what people would usually do!” I told her, getting completely carried away. “Besides, Lara feels so bad about what happened to your back so that’s how she’d probably convince herself to let it start…”

Min looked disgusted. “I don’t want someone to have sex with me out of pity, Bree. That’s the last fucking thing in the world I want.”

She’d misunderstood me, though. “No, no…. like, I mean, she’d tell herself it was about her guilt and she’d probably believe it, but secretly, or, like subconsciously or whatever she’d do it because she thinks you’re a total stud and she wants to take it from you.” Something occurred to me. “Oh, and Sam told me once that they have a strap-on, and that Lara likes it. So, you know, you could wear the hard packer…”

Min’s expression had reached a critical mass of FUCK NO and she just stared at me for a sec before sighing. “Don’t you dare breathe a word about this conversation to Lara or Sam,” she told me, relaxing back into her pillow and ending the conversation. “Jesus… If they heard you…”

…they’d probably find the whole threesome-foursome idea weird and a bit hilarious because no one ever takes me seriously, anyway. I don’t even know if I was taking myself seriously on this one. It was just kind of a fun idea to play around with, you know? Better than lying in bed wondering if the fact Min didn’t want to have sex with me was a sign she was getting sick of me and about to dump me. Way better than that. Anyway, we didn’t really need to actually have Lara, did we? We could do other stuff, like…

“Maybe I could dress up as, like, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider for you one time? I mean, it’s Halloween soon, so…”

Min made the weirdest noise, gave me the weirdest look, and then said pointedly, “Goodnight, Bree,” but she had snuck her arm under my head and pulled me against her, anyway.

That noise made me giggle, so I snuggled up against her and imagined how a threesome or a foursome or whatever would go. I must have been drunker than I thought, because you know that kind of drunken, dreamy haze where you’re not sure if you’re awake and imagining stuff, or if you’re passed out and hallucinating? Yeah. Well, I was just lying there thinking I was fantasising about doing naughty stuff with Lara, but, I don’t know, maybe I was actually asleep by then?

Anyway, the main point was that the Lara-Free-Pass stuff didn’t end there. It kept going.

I always really like nightclub fantasies because there’s something totally sexy about grinding up against someone in the dark and being surrounded by other people who are all looking to get laid. It’s like a big, socially acceptable pre-orgy. There’s always this really happy atmosphere, too, because everyone’s there to have fun. Sometimes I just like to sit on the edge of the floor and watch people enjoying themselves.

Min doesn’t like nightclubs much, though. I would say it’s because she’s too old, but I kind of think she was never into lots of people in one place anyway. She doesn’t hate them or anything – she’ll come to humour me and it’s not like she has a terrible time – but it’s not her scene so I don’t really like to take her out very often even though I love them. That’s why meeting Sam was totally awesome because she loves nightclubs too and she promised me we’d do the circuit of all the best ones in England when we visit one day…

So, anyway: my fantasy-slash-drunken-hallucination.

Okay, so it didn’t really matter what I was wearing except that it was small and colourful and made my boobs look huge and my thighs not look as big as they are. I decided that in my fantasy, we’d arranged to meet Lara and Sam at the nightclub. I felt weird about that, though, because the whole point was that we were going to end up having sex with each other,  and when I really thought about it, I kind of realised I didn’t want to fuck Sam. Like, we have heaps of fun together and she’s totally hot, but I kind of think it’s more whoops-pash-and-grope-when-you’re-drunk hot than yes-do-it-fuck-me-all-night hot. You know what I mean?

So, at the last minute, I decided that Lara would be there by herself, standing at the top of the entrance stairs, looking for us.

Lara’s pretty fucked up over everything that happens to her, yeah? In reality she’d probably be hard up against the wall and not just standing in the middle of a stairway. Actually, she probably wouldn’t have come in here at all without Sam dragging her in. Well, I decided that tonight she was going to be miraculously okay and not freaked out by crowds or nearly snapping the neck of anyone who surprised her. Let her be relaxed for once, I thought indulgently, even if it’s only in my fantasy.

“Bree!” she called out to me, waving when she saw me and let me give her a quick hug when I got over to her. “There you are. Is Min here, too?”

“Yup!” I pointed over towards where Min was: in her chair over near the bar with a beer. It was the only level with a lift. She saw us and saluted – I love it when she does that – and Lara smiled and saluted her back. It was actually a really cute exchange.

“Where’s Sam?” I asked Lara, even though it was my fantasy and I’d already decided she wasn’t here.

Lara made a face. “The details aren’t important. What’s important is that I’m here by myself with you guys and I look really hot.” Okay. So maybe she wouldn’t have said it exactly like that…

I giggled and linked arms with her. I opted to just skip over the usual survivor’s guilt session Lara insisted on delivering to us each time we met up and got straight to the point: “Come and get totally wasted and do stupid shit with us!”

Not apologising about Min’s back at all, Lara laughed. “Now I remember why you and Sam get along,” she told me as I dragged her over to where Min was parked. “I could actually do with a drink or two, now that you mention it.”

Or eight, I thought, looking directly at her cleavage and salivating at the thought of eventually getting to the part of the fantasy where those boobs were in my mouth.

Min nodded a greeting at Lara as we went over to her; they hugged briefly and a bit awkwardly and then Lara sat on a chair opposite Min. I stole a chair from another table and sat backwards on it.

Because it was my fantasy and I could have things however I wanted, I decided Min was wearing a singlet. She never wears those in public except under enormous hoodies even with her binder on because she just feels really weird about showing too much skin. She’d rather bake to death inside enormous, thick clothes than let anyone see her shoulders. But, seriously, what’s the point of having all these hot new muscles if she doesn’t show them off, am I right?

Lara noticed them. “You got a licence for those, then?” she nodded at Min’s biceps.

Min chuckled, flexing. “Why? You worried I don’t know how to use them?” She winked at Lara.

Sarah would have shot Min down right then and Gemma would have fake-cried and begged Min to stop, but Lara didn’t do either of those things. In fact, she encouraged Min. “I know you don’t know how to use them,” she said, looking a bit cheeky. It sounded even cheekier in a British accent. “I’ve seen you try to fight, remember?”

Min was grinning. “You haven’t seen anything yet, Lara.”

Oh my god, where the fuck was my popcorn? I fucking love it when Min goes to town on girls. She only does it to mess with them, but it’s so hot. Min was doing that deep flirty voice and that was usually all it took to get me out of my dress. That voice, plus her new guns and that charming smile she was giving Lara… oh my god. Like, I was about to jump into her lap. If she kept going I would, I didn’t care who was watching!

Lara had more stamina than me, obviously, because she didn’t tear off her clothes and throw herself at Min. Instead, she sat back and watched Min for a couple of seconds. “Oh? Name one thing you could beat me at, Min.”

Min still had that charming smile. “Well, Lara, why don’t you tell me what you’re really good at, and we’ll take it from there?”

I didn’t know where this was going, but I was totally going to help it along a bit and make it way more interesting. “I’ll tell you what Min owns everyone at,” I said, and they both looked at me. Oh my god, they both still had those predatory smiles and it was like… say something Bree don’t just stare at the hot people. “I mean, apart from First Person Shooters. No one can beat Min at drinking competitions.”

Lara’s jaw tightened a bit, and Min noticed. She raised her eyebrows in challenge at Lara, as if to say, ‘You chicken?’

Lara looked her right in the eye. “Min, I used to be a bartender and I live with Sam. You don’t think I know my way around alcohol?”

Min didn’t miss a beat. “I think I’ll be rolling you into the recovery position in about forty minutes. That is,” she leant forward, “unless you’d like me to carry you home instead.”

I wasn’t leaving a margin for error, here. I wanted them both sloshed and all over me and each other as soon as possible. “I’ll get you guys a whole heap of shots!” I announced, and then rushed off to the bar. The bartender was really cool, and when I explained what they were doing he put, like, dozens of beer shots on a tray and then helped me carry it out.

Lara saw the shots and immediately said, “Oh, right, Power Hour. Quaint.” I think she was pretending that she was way too hardcore for such a lightweight game.

Min smirked. “Don’t worry,” she said. “We’ll call an ambulance if it gets too much for you.”

I nodded sagely at Lara. “Yeah. And I know CPR.” Neither of them looked like they’d trust me to do it, though.

Anyway, the beginning was pretty boring because neither of them were drunk and they were busy just pretending to one-up the other. It started getting fun at about the twenty-minute mark because Lara was one of those happy drunks who was all smiles and easy laughs when she was wasted.

At one point she knocked a shot off the table with her elbow and yelled, “Shit!” and then clamped her hands over her mouth like she’d said something terrible.

Min laughed at her. “Now you’re speaking the local dialect!”

Lara was laughing with us. “God,” she said eventually as she stood up. She looked like she might be about to fall over, and I’d been catching Min for the past few months so it was just reflex to throw my arms out to support her. She let me, saying, “Look, would you two excuse me for a moment? I’ll keep playing, but I’m just going to see if I can find a ladies to splash a bit of water on my face and—” As she was saying that, though, some drunk guy took a step back and collided with her.

She fell forwards against the table, flipping the top of it towards us. I had her by the armpits and was leaning heavily the other way like I needed to do with Min when she was going to topple over. The problem was, Lara was much lighter than Min and as a result I used way too much force. I stumbled backwards with her and ended up in Min’s lap, and Lara ended up across my lap, and all of us ended up covered in beer.

There was a silence for a second while Lara and I just stared at each other, face to face.

Min had her mouth on my shoulder, and I could feel her smiling. “I was going to ask what I get for beating the great Lara Croft: Bartender at Power Hour,” she said. “But I think I have my answer.” For all that bravado, I could feel how quickly Min was breathing. She was so ready for this.

Oh yeah, here comes the good stuff, I thought.

Lara looked a bit embarrassed. “I think I might be a bit drunk,” she said bashfully, making what was definitely understatement of the year. Her t-shirt was so wet through that it clung to her skin, and I could see the shape of her chest and the fall of her hips underneath the material. She was, like, the embodiment of a wet dream. She would make anyone gay, I swear to god. I reckon even Sarah would go gay for her.  How do people like that even exist?

“I’m going to kiss you,” I told her, because it was my fantasy and I could do whatever I wanted.

“Shit,” she said, but didn’t stop me. She didn’t do it by halves, either. Her arms went around my neck and her hard body pressed against my softer one, and, whoa, she opened her mouth to me. “You taste like beer,” she paused for a second to comment, and then made a face. “God. I’m so sorry, that was a lot of beer to waste…”

This was like the exact opposite of wasting it. I pulled her back in for another pash, but she wouldn’t let me. Instead, she made a frustrated noise and just completely whipped her soaking t-shirt off and dropped it beside one of the wheels. I mean, she had a pretty tame sports bra on underneath so it wasn’t like she was totally flashing anyone, but hello.

Yeah. Lara is like… you kind of have to see her. She has this weapon body that’s all hard and toned, but she’s still rocking that whole boobs and hips hourglass, you know what I mean? Behind me, I could feel more than I could hear Min groan at how good Lara looked. I completely agreed.

Min leant up to my ear. “We can share a free pass, right…?”

Could we fucking ever. I let Min help me take off my own wet top, and then Lara and I started going for it on Min’s lap, both our torsos slick with beer. Around us, there was cheering, and people were pouring more beer over us.

The real Lara probably would have been absolutely mortified to have people see her so far out of the closet. Actually, let’s be serious: the real Lara would never have showed up without Sam in the first place and definitely would not have been pashing me on Min’s lap. But who cares about realism, right? I had Lara Croft’s boobs, like, right under my chin and I was soaking wet with beer.

There was only one problem with this picture, and I reached around Lara’s back to unhook it. Goodbye, ugly sportsbra, I thought as I helped her shrug it off and drop it on the floor and then helped those boobs into my mouth.

“God…” Lara breathed, totally not stopping because she was fucked up over the whole Doppelganger-video scandal and didn’t have any sort of problem at all with a hundred people watching us.

Her boobs were big; not as big as mine, but way bigger than Min’s were on the odd occasion Min didn’t wear her binder when we were messing around. Lara didn’t let me kiss them for long, though. She exhaled and shoved me back against Min’s torso, wrenching my own bra up around my collarbones and taking handfuls of my boobs.

I’d always thought Lara might secretly be more of a top than she let on, and right then I had all these elaborate fantasies about two total tops both mishandling the fuck out of me at the same time – oh my god, can you imagine how hot it would be to have Lara Croft just using you for her own pleasure?? Except that that didn’t happen because Lara and Min were making eyes at each other over my shoulder. Before I’d gotten the opportunity to be used for someone’s pleasure, Lara was pressed flat against me so she could reach Min to kiss her.

Their hands were across me, and boy did they want to touch each other. Min’s hands went straight for Lara’s hips and ass, cupping them and pulling them more firmly against us. Lara wanted to touch Min’s face; her cheekbones, her chin, her lips. In my peripheral vision I saw both their jaws dip as they opened their mouths to each other and…whoa, it was hot.

I was squished there between them as they writhed, Lara’s boobs slipping against mine and two sets of hips pressed into me. Under my thighs as I sat heavily on Min’s, I could feel she was wearing the hard packer. Oh, yeah, I thought, and got all sort of sexy ideas about all the ways we could play with it.

I had been so totally into imagining that when I noticed Min’s hands were impatiently trying to get around me to Lara’s breasts. She couldn’t reach with me there. Likewise, Lara wanted at more of Min, but I was in the way.

Oh, well, I thought. We were supposed to be sharing, weren’t we? It was probably a bit selfish of me to think I should be the centre of everything, so I pushed Lara down and hopped off Min. I could just get on behind Lara afterwards.

“Be my guest!” I told Lara, gesturing to Min’s lap once I was off it.

Lara just stood there and they stared at each other. Min came to her senses first. “You afraid I’ll be better at this, too?” she asked innocently. “Because you can forfeit if you want…”

“We’ll see who forfeits,” Lara told her darkly, and then in one clean, athletic movement Lara was straddling her across the wheelchair, right up against her and they were pashing with some serious fucking force.

People all around us cheered and were still showering them with beer, and it was running down Lara’s bare back, over her shoulders, between her breasts and sloshing all over Min. Min stopped kissing Lara for a second and shook it all out of her hair and off her face, getting it all over everyone around her. Then she grinned at Lara and pulled Lara’s lips against hers again.

They were tearing at each other. Lara was taking handfuls of Min’s clothes and pulling at them, Min’s hands were everywhere on Lara and no matter how hard they tried they couldn’t press hard enough against each other. They were also groaning. It was so hot. It was so hot that watching it was almost better than actually being in it.

Min doesn’t often let herself go like that around people, so that must have meant she was really enjoying herself. That was so good to know. It was so nice to see her just cutting free and focusing on doing what made her feel good without worrying. It made me so happy thinking about how good she must be feeling.

Lara interrupted it all by making a noise suddenly and pulling back, looking down between Min’s legs, alarmed. “Wait… I thought…?” She’d obviously felt the packer.

Min chuckled. “It’s silicone,” she promised Lara.

I seriously thought they were about to fuck, and I was so ready to watch them go for it, but they didn’t. Lara just put her arms around Min’s neck and they kissed. It wasn’t like before, though. There was something intimate about that kiss, it was less urgent.

“Do you always wear it?” Lara asked Min thoughtfully. “I’ve not noticed anything down there before…”

Min shook her head. “Sometimes. When I’m not feeling great,” she took a breath. “Which means I don’t need it right now…”

Lara laughed. It was a gentle sound. “Well, I’m glad you’ve got it anyway.”

I stood beside them, listening. It should have been totally sexy, right? I mean, nothing really had changed. Lara Croft was still half-naked and probably about to ride my also-extremely-sexy partner and they were both soaked and dripping, but I felt… I don’t know. I couldn’t put my finger on it.

Lara had been glancing down at Min’s body again. “Can I ask you something?”

Min grinned. “Well, you can ask.”

Lara smiled slightly, but it faded. “Back outside Cairns in that house, when I was enslaved and…” She made a face. “I mean, you couldn’t feel anything when I touched you. I know you can move your legs a bit now…”

Min smiled. “I can feel them,” she told Lara. “But it’s different.”

Lara made an ‘oh’ shape with her lips and then thought about that. “So can you…” She didn’t know how to ask. “If I… will you…” I think she was trying to ask Min if she could still come.

Min found it charming, and laughed. “Yeah, I can,” she said. “Just have to be there, you know?” She tapped her head. “What I’m thinking is way more important now.” She put that hand behind Lara’s neck and pulled her down it a firm kiss for a sec, and then said, “And I am so there right now, Lara. Fuck,” she inhaled, looking hungrily up and down Lara’s half-naked body, “I am so into you…”

That’s what Min had said to me at first.

I was already starting to not feel great, actually. But since this was my fantasy and I could fix it, I went to hop onto Min’s lap behind Lara so I could join in. There wasn’t any room, though, and neither of them seemed to notice I was there. That was weird; why couldn’t I join them?

“’What you think is more important?’” Lara quoted her, wanting her to elaborate.

“Yeah,” Min told her as she slowly kissed down Lara’s neck. “If I close my eyes I can hardly feel anything. But if I look down at what’s happening down there… it doesn’t matter if I shouldn’t be able to feel it. I can. Even if it’s… not strictly possible because what you’re touching isn’t real.”

“Show me,” Lara asked Min simply as they kissed again.

I didn’t want Min to show her. I didn’t want Min to tell her, either, I wanted Min to stop telling Lara all of her secrets, I wanted it all to stop. These things were for me and Min, they were deeply fucking personal things that I knew about her. They weren’t for anyone else, they were for us! I couldn’t make Min stop, though, the music was too loud. Too loud for them to hear me, even I could hear every single breath and whisper between them.

“You’re fucking amazing,” Min was murmuring as she kissed Lara’s earlobe. “You’re so fit, and so gorgeous, and you do incredible things…” I wish I hadn’t heard the last part. I really, really, really wish I hadn’t heard the last part: “And you are so, so smart. It’s sexy; I miss that in a partner. Fuck, I’ve never been so turned on…”

I stood there, feeling the knife twist in my chest.

“Sam’s going to kill me,” was Lara’s response. “Aren’t you worried about Bree?”

Min didn’t even pause. “No,” she said. “Bree knows I need more than she can give me.” With that, they started passionately and intimately kissing again.

And that’s when I realised how stupid I probably looked. I was standing in a crowded club topless with my bra up around my collarbones and my partner and my idol basically confessing their love for each other and ignoring me.

Everyone around them was looking at me and elbowing each other. They all knew I was fooling myself before. Why didn’t I?

I should have known that was going to happen, though. People like me don’t end up with people like Min. Min is so fucking smart, and sharp, and witty and funny, and on top of that she’s so handsome and so sexy… and I’m dumb and cute. Seriously, that’s all I am. Sure, I’ve got big boobs and even though I could be thinner I guess I’ve got a nice body, too… but if there’s nothing in my fucking brain, what’s the point? Min is going to be this amazing, world famous artist. People are going to idolise her, I just know it. She deserves someone better than a talentless +1. She deserves someone like Lara, another idol. They would be the most amazing power couple.

And I’d go back to the fucking gutter where I belonged.

God, I felt… I felt bad. I wanted togo home, but I didn’t want to stop Min and Lara because they were so into each other and really enjoying themselves. So even though I had no money and no idea where my top was, I pulled my bra down and just headed for the door. Neither of them noticed me leave. No one noticed me leave. The only people who paid any sort of attention to me as I ran through Sydney were drunk old men who thought I’d make for a nice bed decoration. Story of my fucking life.

I walked and walked and eventually I got to the bridge over Darling Harbour and leant over the edge, crying.

Min wanted Lara. Min wanted an intelligent, sexy woman, not some dumb kid. I should just quietly take my stuff and be gone by the time she got home, shouldn’t I? I should leave without a fuss, like Henry did.

It’s just that I kept thinking about how it felt when Min wrapped her big, warm arms around me, and how it felt knowing we had a beautiful house together. I loved making it pretty for her; it was everything I’d always wanted. I didn’t want to move out of our lovely house to make space for Lara. I wanted to keep making Min her favourite dinners, and keep going and picking out lovely annuals for the garden, and keep watching bad anime and B-grade movies with Min on weeknights. I wanted to keep celebrating our birthdays there, and ever since we moved in I’d been buying Christmas and Halloween decorations so we could do the whole house up and host big parties in our open plan living room. Min had let me design it especially.

And our future family. I wanted to think about our beautiful family. The family I wanted so much to have with her, filling up our arms, and all our empty bedrooms, and the space under the Christmas tree. Min would make such a wonderful father. I wanted to see her crying joyous tears and cradling our first tiny baby in a hospital room like she couldn’t believe it was real. We’d never have that, would we?

She didn’t want me.

Fuck, it hurt. Min was all I wanted. Min was my future. I wanted to be her ditzy, dumb +1 and I wanted her to forgive me for all the stupid mistakes I always fucking made because I’m an idiot.

“I know I’m stupid,” I whispered, as if the fucking water could hear me. “I know what I’m like, but I love you, Min, I love you, please, please, please don’t leave me…” I repeated it over and over again, feeling tears pouring down my cheeks as I sobbed and sobbed and I could hardly breathe, and everything hurt, and—

“—Bree.” That was Min’s voice, and it was gentle. “Bree, it’s okay.”

I turned towards it, really confused for like half a second before I realised I wasn’t leaning over the edge of the footbridge at Darling Harbour, I was lying on my back in our bed. I was crying, though, and a lot. I could feel the tears on my cheeks.

She was gently smoothing them away with her thumb, lying on her side. I looked into her lovely, and smart, and big brown eyes and the only thing I could think was: Min doesn’t really want me.

I started to cry again.

“Whoa, whoa, whoa…” Min said, and scooped me up into her arms, holding me against her. I couldn’t do anything. I just thought about how nice it felt to be cuddled by her and how much she’d prefer to be doing it to someone better like Lara, and cried. Min sounded really worried. “Bree, what’s going on? You’re not having nightmares like mine, are you?”

Min had flashbacks to the stuff that happened on Natla’s ship. I shook my head. “No. It’s nothing.” I couldn’t stop fucking sobbing though, so it was obvious I was full of shit.

“It doesn’t sound like nothing.” She was rubbing my back. “Come on, Bree. Tell me? You’ll feel better.”

I shook my head.

She was quiet for a few seconds. Eventually, she said hesitantly, “Can I ask something?” I shrugged, but it took a little while for her to work up to actually saying it. “Is this to do with my injury? I mean, on top of my gender issues, is the fact I can’t do a whole heap of stuff with you just not what you signed up for after all?”

I stopped crying because I was so surprised. “What?”

Her eyes were glazed. “Like, I know sex isn’t the same anymore, and after last night, I was thinking that maybe you–”

“No!” What was she on? Her injury was so totally the last thing in the world that had any impact on our relationship, except that it had got her stacks of money and now we weren’t struggling and we had a nice house. And I didn’t know what she was talking about with this ‘whole heap of stuff’ she couldn’t do, either. She couldn’t get up and down a flight of stairs in under twenty minutes, and that was seriously it. “No, it has nothing to do with that!”

She didn’t look like she believed me, though. “Okay…”

She was watching me, and I kept remembering that image of her pashing the fuck out of Lara. “I was just thinking about the whole Free Pass thing and, yeah…”

Something passed over Min’s face, but she didn’t elaborate. “Yeah?”

I felt like I was going to cry again. “And I’m stupid.”

“You’re not.” I still couldn’t read her.

“I am. I do stupid things and I’m always getting into trouble.”

“Mostly you’re just absent-minded and stuck in Bree-land,” Min corrected me, kissing my forehead. “And your IQ is over a hundred which actually proves you’re not stupid.”

“Compared to you I am,” I said, and then felt teary. “You’re, like, really super smart and I’m just stupid.”

She gave up trying to get me to agree with her. “What does this have to do with the Free Pass, anyway?”

I was almost too afraid to say it in case I saw on her face that it was true. “Lara is smarter than me.”

Min just stared at me for a sec, and then when she realised what I was on about, she looked surprised. “That’s what you were upset about?” I nodded. “That I’d prefer someone like Lara?” She made a face and then laughed.

That hurt a bit. “Why are you laughing?” I asked her quietly, blinking through tears.

She hugged me fiercely for a moment and then gave my cheek a really firm kiss. “I love you,” she said easily, which didn’t happen very often. “This is just so ironic, that’s all. Do you know the fact that you’re so completely obsessed with Lara Croft: Tomb Raider use to really stress me out?” I shook my head; she’d never told me that. “I know you call yourself a lesbian, and I don’t really mind that word either, but… I’m not actually a girl, am I? I used to worry that you wished you were with a real girl, instead. Someone like Lara.”

I smiled, despite myself. That was ridiculous. “Really?”

She nodded. “So the fact you think I’d prefer Lara because apparently she’s so much smarter than you are…” She shook her head, a wry grin briefly on her face. “Yeah, no. I’m happy where I am. I’ll take the space cadet who keeps accidentally putting my whites in with my reds any day.”

I scrunched up my nose. “I don’t keep doing that,” I complained. “I did it a couple of times because I forgot what I’d put at the bottom of the machine! I check now.” At least, when I remembered, I checked…

I cuddled up against her, relaxing. It was so weird to think of Min being insecure about me not wanting her. I’d always wanted her. Like, before I’d even met her, I wanted her. When she was just text and disembodied art that I printed out to cheer myself up, I wanted her. Knowing she worried about losing me just as much I worried about losing her made me feel way better. She made me feel way better, and there wasn’t anyone else in the world I wanted even close to the amount that I wanted her. Not even Lara Croft.

“I don’t actually want a Free Pass,” I decided, settling against Min and starting to feel a bit sleepy again. “You can have it back.”

She gently tussled my curls. “You can have mine back, too,” she said without hesitation, and then kissed me.

As the dawn broke and pale light started to glow through our beautiful new windows in our beautiful new house, we fell asleep like we both should have done in the first place: feeling loved, safe and wrapped in each other’s arms.