Status: Updated unfrequently, but trying for frequent.

Slow Spinning Redemption

Chapter 6: Jussi and Isolde have Pillow Talk

Sunday October 31, 2010
Helsinki, Finland
Hotel Torni, Room 1205

Isolde woke with a soft groan, feeling sore in places she had not felt sore in a while. Dear God, do I even have muscles in that part of my leg? she thought as she sat up carefully in the bed, cringing softly when she heard the soft intake of breath that did not belong to her.

Looking over on the other side of the bed, she smiled softly at Jussi, who was buried into his pillow; his black hair sticking up in odd places as a result of her fingers tugging at it, rather than the gel and hairspray he usually used. He was nude -oh so very nude, she thought chewing on her bottom lip, tugging the sheet up to cover the bottom half of his body before she gave into temptation and did something she would definitely regret. Like biting something she probably shouldn’t be biting, at least when he was asleep, she was pretty sure that was considered rude.

Looking around the mess of the room, she saw her tights by the door where Jussi had stripped them off, along with his jeans and shoes. She smirked at the sight of their clothes scattered, her shirt on top of the table, half on her laptop, half hanging off the table. His shirt was somewhere over by the couch; she couldn’t have really been bothered as to where she had tossed it. Really, she’d been eager to touch him in the way she hadn’t been able to on the couch in the studio.

Even looking at the bed, she could see the sheets starting to come off the corners, the pillows having been pushed off by eager hands that were being pinned. And dear lord, the thrusting, she thought with a shake of her head. His hips were hard and muscled, and had felt oh so amazing moving against hers.

Shaking her head clear of her thoughts, she got out of bed carefully and rushed to the bathroom, taking care of business, only to wince when she flushed the toilet, hoping that Jussi was a heavy sleeper. She washed her hands and face before leaving the bathroom, relieved to find Jussi still asleep. Rummaging through her suitcase, cursing Ben for rearranging it, she found her slip and slid it on before taking a look back on the bed that held the sleeping man on it.

At this point, she would either leave the hotel room if her lover had been the one to get it, or kick the guy out so she could get some sleep. Politely kick him out, of course. But looking at Jussi, she sighed and rolled her eyes at herself, as apparently she had a fondness for the Finn. She moved to the couch and sat down, tiredly rubbing her hands over her face and through her hair.

“Fuck,” she muttered to herself, not quite believing she was breaking her self-imposed rule. So she wasn’t sleeping in the bed with him, but she was letting him stay, and she hadn’t done that before. Shaking her head again, not wanting to think about the significance of allowing him to stay, she grabbed the remote and turned on the TV, wincing when the sound came on loudly.

“Shit,” she sighed, turning the volume down, looking behind her when she heard the rustle of sheets, but seeing Jussi stay in the bed. Thank god he’s a heavy sleeper, she thought, as she grabbed the pillow from where it was laying on top of the comforter on the other side of the couch and placed it near her, curling up and laying her head down.

Using her feet, she unfolded the comforter and covered her body to her shoulder, peeking the top of the remote out enough so she could change the channels until she found old reruns of I Love Lucy, smiling lightly as she curled into herself beneath the comforter, finding sleep not even ten minutes later.


Jussi awoke slowly, rubbing his face, before frowning down at the white pillowcase he was laying on that very much differed from the black of his bed. Then it all came rushing back; being slammed into the hotel door, the lithe female form that had peeled off his jeans just as easily as he’d pulled off her leggings.

He could still feel her fingers as they undid his shirt, tracing the muscles on his abdomen. And Christ, the way her nails had sunk into his arms when he’d finally managed to calm his fingers enough to put on the damn condom and thrust into her against the door. He couldn’t help but chuckle at that, as he’d only managed to peel away her leggings; her shirt had still been on, and was only peeled away when they’d moved away from the door and to the bed.

Rubbing his face tiredly, he looked around the room with a frown, wondering what had woken him up. Isolde’s side of the bed was empty and cold to the touch. He looked over towards the TV that was glowing and figured that it was most likely the TV that had woken him.

Pushing the sheet away, he got up off the bed, figuring Isolde was most likely in the bathroom and walked over to turn off the TV, scratching at his lower stomach. He looked at the coffee table, searching for the remote, only to find it on the floor, nearly under the couch. Reaching for it, he nearly hit Isolde’s head with his own, pulling back quickly to look at her curled up on the couch, the comforter wrapped tightly around her body.

“Isolde,” he whispered, pulling the comforter lower to uncover the rest of her face. “Isolde.”

Her eyes opened slowly, only for her eyebrows to furrow in confusion. “What are you doing up?” she croaked, still half asleep.

“I came to turn off the TV and found you sleeping here. Did you ditch me again for one of your shows?” he teased.

“Mmm.” She rubbed her eyes and pushed the comforter away as she stretched her back, hearing it pop, only to turn and look at him. “You are unbelievably naked,” she teased.

“And you are very much dressed.”

“Easy to take off and very easy access,” she teased, pushing the comforter off of her legs as her fingers played with the hem of her slip. Jussi climbed onto the couch, letting himself get comfortable in the cradle of her thighs. Replacing her fingers with his, he pushed the slip up and over her head, letting her toss it over her shoulder as she pulled him down on top of her, her fingers raking over his back and ending up tangled in his hair, causing him to smirk.

“Why do you like my hair so much?” he asked, leaning down to kiss the side of her neck, having noted how her fingers would tangle in his black locks, tugging and playing with the fine baby hairs at the base of his neck.

“Why do you like my neck so much?” she teased.

“It’s so soft,” he said, looking up at her, resting his forehead against hers.

Isolde snorted, causing him to grin. “That’s why I like your hair; for treating it so often, it’s so soft.”

His voice deepened in the way he knew would send shivers down her spine as he whispered into her ear, as if preparing to say the naughtiest thing. “I use amazing shampoo.”

Isolde burst out laughing, causing his gut to tighten as the sound reverberated through his system, smiling lightly he rested his forehead against hers.

“Funny,” she teased, lifting her lips up. He tipped forward to accept her kiss, feeling her arms tighten around his neck. She enjoyed kissing, Jussi had noted. She pulled him away from where his mouth was to pull him up so their lips would lock. Their teeth would click together, and tongues would duel for dominance, which Jussi would give Isolde, as she tended to fight dirty.

He moved his mouth away from hers, relishing in the quiet whine that escaped her lips. He enjoyed hearing that sound; he’d figured that one out quickly. Isolde didn’t seem to be the type to whine at all. She seemed to be the type of woman that got what she wanted without even saying a word. So the whine of discontent that she gave when he stopped doing something she obviously enjoyed, made him inwardly grin.

His lips made a slow decent, nipping at the side of the long column on her neck -his favorite part of her body so far. He lavished attention on the pebbled nipples of her breasts, breasts that seemed to fit in his hands perfectly. He went lower still, kissing his way down her stomach, feeling the shallow breaths she was taking as he dipped his tongue into her belly button. His teeth tugged lightly on the barbell piercing, causing her hips to inch off the couch and a small gasp to leave her lips.

His hands wandered down as well. Down from her waist, his thumbs skimmed the sides of her breasts, down to her hips and lower to her thighs. His fingers itched to trace the crimson ankh that lay on the inside of her thigh. Instead, his fingers moved up, slowly hearing that whine again. She was most likely she was unhappy with the speed, Jussi thought absently. Finally, his fingers found purchase, finding her oh so wet and ready for him. He parted her folds with his fingers, the musky sent of arousal filling their little bubble and making him throb.

First though, he thought with a quick lick of his lips, preparing to move forward, only for her fingers to tangle in his hair and pull him up and away from her.

“Hey!” he protested.

“I’m not your dinner or dessert,” she teased, her voice just a bit huskier.

“Are you sure?” he asked with a smirk.

“Oh, I’m positive.”

Jussi frowned, pulling away slightly. “I’m surprised you don’t like oral.”

“Oh, Vuori.” She chuckled. “I very much enjoy oral. Just not now.”

“Why not now?”

“Because,” she said, her fingers tiptoeing down his back, around his hip to wrap around his erection. “This is what I want.”

Jussi gave a bark of laughter that quickly turned into a groan as she started to stroke him. “I would love to give that to you, even wrap it in a pretty package for you. But no more condoms; used the last one earlier.”

Isolde moaned quietly as she thought about earlier, his fingers slowly starting to stroke her in time with her hand. “Earlier was really good.”

Good?” Jussi chuckled with a raised eyebrow.

“Eh, could have been better,” Isolde laughed. “Bet you could do better.”

“Even if there was anything to improve -which there isn’t, we don’t have condoms.”

“There’s always room for improvement, Vuori. And who do you think you’re fucking?” she teased, before pulling away slightly as she looked around the ground, finding the strap of her bag. She motioned Jussi to grab it, as she couldn’t quite reach. He leaned towards it, wrapping his hand around the strap, dragging it forward.

“Thank you,” Isolde said, opening the clasp and digging around before pulling out her camera and handing it to Jussi. She was about to tell him to put it on the table for her as she continued to dig around her bag, when the flash went off. She blinked and looked at a grinning Jussi. “Did you just take a picture of me?”

“You have amazing tits.”

“No nudes!” Isolde laughed.

“Does this thing get video?” Jussi asked, wiggling his eyebrows at her as he fiddled with the camera.

“You take video of us fucking, and I will leak it, Vuori.” she warned, her fingers finally finding the foil packets she’d been looking for.

“Well if you didn’t want pictures or videos of us, why’d you give this to me?”

“To put it on the table!” Isolde laughed. “With you on top of me, I can’t reach! And as that camera is to me what your drums are to you, I didn’t want to drop it.”

Jussi chuckled as he turned the camera off and leaned away from her to set it carefully on the table. “Fine, killjoy.” She shook her head and produced a handful of condoms, causing Jussi to snort. “Do you have an entire box in there or something?”

“I happened to think ahead. And when I met you, I knew this would eventually happen.”

“Did you?” Jussi chuckled, taking the packets from her hand and taking one while throwing the rest on the coffee table. “I happen to like a girl with foresight.”

Isolde rolled her eyes as he tore the packet open. “Well, what type of man only carries two?”

“You’re lucky I had two; most men only carry one,” Jussi pointed out, letting her take the condom out of his fingers, throwing the empty packet onto the floor as her fingers expertly rolled the latex on.

“And you consider yourself ‘most men’?” she asked with a raised eyebrow.

“Not at all,” Jussi said, groaning when Isolde led him into her tight wet heat. He cursed into her ear as he started to thrust into her. She was so tight, Jussi thought. It didn’t help his stamina any way that her inner muscles continually pulsed against him, making it much more difficult for him to want to move out of her at all.

His speed start to quicken as he heard Isolde’s breathy moans in his ear, only for her legs to come up and wrap around his waist, holding him in place.

“Slower, Vuori,” she teased, nipping at his lobe and setting the speed as she lifted and lowered her hips at a much more agonizing pace. “You’ve got me all sore from our last two outs.”

Jussi chuckled and kept at the pace she set. Slow in, slow out.

“Did you know,” she whispered, her hands running down his chest, her fingers tracing the V of his hips, lower still to the spot between his thighs and groin. “There are muscles right here that just kill when over-exerted.”

“No shit,” he croaked.

“Mmhmm,” she groaned, her back arching and her eyes closing.

Jussi leaned forward, claiming her lips in a kiss as his thrusts became just a bit faster, knowing that she was close to her orgasm. His fingers moved down and stroked her swollen nub in time with his thrusts. It wasn’t the way her back arched high off the couch that let him know she’d reached her peak. Nor was it the way her inner muscles clamped down on him, or the way her nails dug into his lower back.

And it most definitely wasn’t the way her back arched high off the couch that sent him hurtling over his own peak. Nor was it the way her inner muscles clenched around him, or the way her nails dug in his lower back.

No, it was the bare whisper that undid them both, so soft that he would have missed it had he not been so close to her lips. His name. Not ‘Vuori,’ as she was so fond of calling him, but ‘Jussi’.

Christ, it undid him; the sound of his name coming from her lips sent his orgasm hurtling through him. Her own name came out of his mouth in a soft groan, before letting his body drop on top of hers. He felt her blow out a breath and he rested his head on her chest.

“Well that was better,” she teased.

“You’re a hard one to please, Isolde. But by God, I’ll keep trying,” he groaned, kissing the center of her chest as she laughed quietly.

“And I am very willing to critique- hey! Hey! Where are you going? You’re warm!” she protested as he started to move off of her.

“I’m going to throw this away,” Jussi said as he took the condom off and tied off the end. “Then I was going to move to the bed.” He got up off the couch and found a trash can next to it under the end table.

“But the couch is comfortable.”

“Fuck the couch,” Jussi laughed. “I spend 90% of my year sleeping on a small tour bus bed or on fucking couches. When I’m given a bed, I fucking use it.” He grabbed her hands and pulled her up.

Isolde groaned as he made her sit up and glared at him. “I don’t sleep on beds.”

“Well no wonder your back is so fucked up,” Jussi teased, having heard it crack when she stretched.

“I make sure to get it aligned every few months!” she protested.

“Which you wouldn’t need to do if you slept in a bed,” he shrugged, hauling her up so she was standing on the couch. Then, grabbing her waist, he folded her over his shoulder.

Isolde sighed and allowed Jussi to manhandle her, amused when he bent down to grab a couple of the condoms that were on the table before walking over to the bed. The way she figured it, she could go back to the couch once Jussi was asleep. With that thought, she let him throw her onto the bed, laughing when he crawled up her body.

“Don’t worry, I’m not much of a cuddler,” Jussi teased as he leaned forward to kiss her softly.

“Oh thank God for that,” Isolde teased back, moving so that Jussi was on his back, so she could straddle him. “Because I hate cuddling.”

Jussi laughed. By far, the most interesting woman he’d ever met.

6:30 am

She woke with a start, blinking at the pillow under her head and what her body was resting on, only for her eyes to widen. “A mattress,” she whispered, shooting up on the bed, causing the man behind her to curse as she nearly head-butted him in the nose with the back of her head.

“What the hell am I doing on the bed?!”

“You fell asleep,” Jussi shrugged. “Now lie back down. I wasn’t done.”

“What?” she asked, confused, wondering what the hell he was talking about, and still reeling from the fact that she’d slept on the bed.

“I was admiring your back, and you interrupted.”


“Back,” Jussi finished.

Her wings, she thought absently, lying back down on her stomach as Jussi resumed his position, straddling her legs. His fingers wandered down her spine. That’s what had woken her up, she thought. Not the weight on her legs, but his fingers tracing the feathers of her wings.

She rubbed her face against the pillow as she tried to fight the panic she felt. She had slept in a bed. For the first time in five fucking years, she’d slept on a bed. Fuck that, she chastised herself; she’d shared a bed.

“They’re beautiful,” Jussi said, his fingers tracing the stylized feathers on her back.

“Thanks,” she whispered, thinking of the wings that spanned her back. The wings filled her entire upper back and sides, the tops of the wings curved along her shoulder blades and spanned her back, finally ending just a bit past her lower back. The only part of her back free from the wings was her spine, and that was covered in cursive wording that sprouted from the wings themselves.

“My Czech is a bit rusty,” he teased. “What does it mean?” he asked, his fingers following the trail of her spine.

“Nikdy litovat,” she said with a weary smile. “It means, ‘never regret.’”

Jussi nodded as he lay down next to her, sharing her pillow. “You really don’t sleep on beds, do you?” he teased.

Isolde hid her face in the pillow and groaned. “No, I don’t.”

“And if you don’t sleep in beds, then I’m assuming you don’t share them either,” Jussi teased, having put the pieces together by the way she’d nearly shot up in panic.

“No, I don’t,” she repeated.

Jussi smirked. “And I doubt you actually spend the night with your lovers.”

Isolde glared at him. “You can stop gloating at my fuck up.”

“I feel special,” he teased.

“Jackass,” Isolde sighed. “Won’t happen again.”

“I really don’t blame you for falling asleep. I tired you out, I understand.”

Isolde snorted. “Yes, that was it. I was just so tired from doing all the work.”

“All the work?!” Jussi protested.

“I mean if you’re just going to lie there, at least let me get top.”

Jussi chuckled. “Noted for next time.” He circled her wrist that rested on the pillow and turned it around, his finger tracing the Eye of Horus tattoo that rested there.

“When did you get this one?” Jussi asked, tracing the black outline of the eye, then circling his finger into the crimson of its iris.

“Horus was my…well technically, my third. I got him, the ankh and the wings all around the same time,” Isolde admitted. “I was 25, I think. It’s a symbol of protection and good health, which I believed I needed at the time.” She smiled lightly. “I still do at times.”

“Protection from what?” Jussi asked, curious about her.

She knew he wasn’t asking about what the Eye of Horus protected a person from, but personally what she needed protection from.

“My own mind I guess,” Isolde shrugged. “I enjoy history; it was really the only subject in school I really found interesting. Egyptian mythology really caught my attention and I liked the Eye of Horus symbol, I don’t know.”

“You do, or you wouldn’t have gotten it permanently on your skin,” he pointed out. “But it’s fine if you don’t-”

“I hit a rather rough patch in my life in my mid-twenties.” Isolde sighed, before shaking her head. “Everything just kind of fell apart around me, and I lived in my own head a lot. So, protection from myself, mostly.”

Jussi nodded, his fingers still tracing the tattoo. “Sometimes we’re our own worst enemy.”

“We are,” Isolde agreed.

“I’d like to hear that story one day,” Jussi said, his fingers moving up her arm and across her back.

“It’s not all the interesting,” Isolde admitted. “You can find 90% of the story online just by searching my name.”

“Did you look me up?” Jussi asked.

“No,” Isolde said slowly.

“Why not?” he asked. “My life is online as well; very easily, you could type my name and know things about me.”

“Sure, but there’s a lack of respect that comes with doing that.”

“Exactly. I thought of looking you up, especially after the whole blog thing, but there is a moment when it becomes an invasion of privacy.”

“Do you want to know?” she asked with a raised eyebrow.

“Yes, but only if you want to tell me,” Jussi said with a slight lift of his shoulder.

“All right then. There was a boy-”

“There always is,” Jussi teased.

Isolde rolled her eyes. “There was this boy that I went to school with. He was two years older than I was, but we still had a couple of those stupid extra-curricular classes together. He was on the sports team, and I only ever talked to him outside of school because our fathers worked together. And sometimes we’d see each other at the hospital.”


“My dad is a doctor. Well, he’s the Chief of Medicine, really,” Isolde grinned, causing Jussi to laugh. “Anyway, Richard’s father is Residency Director at the hospital. When they had meetings, Richard and I would run into each other and talk about school and shit.”

“Can we just take a moment and relish in the fact that you dated a man named Richard?”

“There’s nothing wrong with the name Richard,” Isolde laughed.

“It’s so normal compared to you!” Jussi admitted. “Isolde and Richard…” he teased.

“Any way.” Isolde laughed rolling her eyes. “Somewhere along the way, we started getting pushed together more and more. Study groups with the same tutors after school, family functions where our families would coincidently meet up,” Isolde rolled her eyes. “Stupid that I really didn’t see it earlier; how our families were trying to push us together, but push us together they did, and the more time we spent together, obviously the more I fell for him.”

“Of course,” Jussi nodded, propping his head up on his elbow. “That’s usually the way it works.”

“Anyway, when I was sixteen I started doing some local print ads on the weekends. Richard, being two years older, had gradated and was attending Oxford. So imagine how flattering it was for me at sixteen to see this gorgeous eighteen year-old waiting outside of school for me, having come home specifically to ask me out on a date for that weekend.”

Isolde sighed and waved her hand. “As cute as he was, and Richard was very cute,” She grinned, looking up at Jussi as she propped herself up as well. “And as much as I liked him, I really didn’t want to date him just because our parents were pushing us together. But that man was persistent! He knew how to win me over, too. Lots of presents, lots of outings when he was in town; he took me to my end of year dances, and then showed up at my graduation two years later. So after I graduated I accepted his proposal that we make it official.”

“Six years?” Jussi asked.

“Six years,” Isolde nodded, she smiled lightly. “We were engaged you know?”

Jussi blinked. “You were engaged?”

“For about a year,” Isolde nodded. “He proposed at some benefit in front of our parent’s colleagues, and I just…accepted.” She frowned at how stupid she’d been when she’d been with Richard, how naïve and blindsided she’d been.

She’d been shocked when Richard had proposed. She’d told him at least a month earlier that she was happy with where their relationship was, and really wasn’t prepared to get married, especially with her modeling careering launching and her interest in photography growing. She had just started renting out her flat, and her landlady had even agreed to lend her the basement so she could reveal her pictures.

Marriage had never been in her cards, though Richard had made her think about it; far, far in the future. But there he had been, on his knee with a diamond ring sitting in a black velvet box and looking so perfect in his tuxedo. She could feel both their parent’s eyes just staring at her expectantly, and the word ‘yes’ had just slipped out of her mouth.

“Well obviously you didn’t get a happily ever after, or else you wouldn’t be in a hotel room in Helsinki. Naked…with me.” Jussi said, interrupting her thoughts.

She laughed lightly. “Or I could just be married and didn’t tell you.”

“Are you?” Jussi asked amused.

“No.” Isolde laughed. “And no. No happily ever after for me.”

“What happened?”

“I’m not sure,” Isolde frowned. “And I really am telling the truth. I’m not sure what really changed. One minute we were on the same page about a long engagement, the next he’s telling me he wants a short one; less than a year. So we settled on a year after a long, drawn-out argument. I wanted to work and travel; he wanted me to stay home and raise kids.”

“I can’t imagine you a stay-at-home mom,” Jussi chuckled. “Though it’s a nice image, you in an apron… Just an apron. Wait, no…take off the apron. Yeah. Yeah, I like that much better.”

Isolde snorted. “You’re easy to please, Vuori.”

“Very,” Jussi agreed. “So I’m assuming you weren’t too happy about that?”

Isolde shrugged. “Not really, but he made a convincing argument, and I found myself agreeing to retire from modeling a few months after the wedding, and keeping my photography as a hobby.”

“Really?” asked Jussi. He was surprised that Isolde would cave in to something as big as giving up her career, especially something she was passionate about. The fact that she carried her camera everywhere she went proved so much to him -that she loved her job as much as he loved his.

It was what pulled him to her, he thought, the fact that Isolde was just as passionate about her camera as he was about the drums. The thought that she’d be willing to give up that passion for someone was ludicrous to him.

“Trust me, I put up quite the screaming match about it,” Isolde smirked. “But finally, I gave in and just said, fuck it. At the time it just didn’t seem worth fighting about. I figured I’d give it a couple of months and bring up the idea of working again. And it wasn’t like he was asking me to quit my job right that minute, but after the wedding; so I agreed.”

Isolde sighed. “Then I got a job here in Helsinki and Richard really didn’t want me to go. It was about a month before the wedding. We’d been fighting a lot, and I really hated it,” Isolde admitted with a frown. “We were suddenly one of those couples that would be happy around our parents and fight when we were in private. It was starting to stress me out, and that was bad for…” Isolde shook her head and ran her fingers through her hair, smiling at Jussi lightly. “Well me, really. I mean, a stressed Isolde, is not a happy Isolde.”

“I can imagine,” Jussi chuckled.

“So I thought I’d take the job out here, de-stress before the wedding and go back to Prague ready and willing to be the blushing bride everyone expected me to be.”

“And that didn’t happen?”

Isolde shook her head. “No, it didn’t. We were leaving this hospital party that my father had been hosting. Richard was driving me back to my flat, and we had started arguing. He kept saying how my modeling wasn’t appropriate for the type of wife I was supposed to be, how my wanderlust had to get under control, and how my personality needed a change, as my random comments didn’t make good impressions on anyone, especially the businessmen he was trying to impress and work with.

“We went back and forth nearly the entire way back to my flat. I was screaming at him. Really, he was being such an asshole, and I honestly had no idea when he had started to change. He missed a stop sign and we got t-boned.”

Jussi raised an eyebrow. “Seriously?”

“Mmm.” Isolde flipped onto her back and traced the line just under the right side of her neck down to the side of her left breast.

“I examined every part of your neck last night. How did I not see this?” Jussi asked, looking down and placing a kiss on the middle of the scar.

“It’s not raised, and it’s faint.” Isolde shrugged. “I barely remember it’s there unless I’m sunbathing nude.” She laughed. “Then I see this line of pale flesh in the corner of my eye. The seat belt dug in when we got hit, nothing major. Richard’s side was what got hit; I got out lucky. A concussion, a few scrapes, couple bruises and my scar.” Of course she’d also come out of the accident emotionally damaged, but that was another story that Jussi had not asked for.

“And Richard?”

“Well I’m here, aren’t I?” Isolde asked with a raised eyebrow.

“So the wings…?”

Isolde shrugged. “It was five years ago. I lost someone in the accident, the wings seemed fitting. Like I said; rough patch in my life. We all have them, Vuori.”

“Sure, but nothing like losing a fiancé in a car accident.”

“Well, technically, I lost him at the hospital,” Isolde said with a shrug.

“How can you be so….blasé about it?”

“It was five years ago,” Isolde said slowly. “I spent a good year lying on my couch underneath my comforter trying to get over it.”

“And you are?”

Isolde shrugged. “I don’t regret things. If I did, I’d spend most of my days wondering, ‘what if I had done this,’ or, ‘what if I hadn’t done that;’ which is why the first thing I did when I got off the couch, was to get my tattoos. The Eye of Horus, for my protection; to remind myself that, like you said, I’m my own worst enemy, and to not analyze things to death. And the Ankh…well, the ankh symbolizes-”

“Eternal life,” Jussi finished.

“Gold stars for the Helsinki Vampire,” Isolde teased, resisting the urge to pinch his cheek. “I thought at the time it would serve as enough reminder; but then a friend asked if I’d ever thought of getting my back done, and so we started the wings. I actually just got them finished earlier this year. I had to put them on hold because of my traveling, so it’s been a process.”

She could see the confusion in Jussi’s eyes and couldn’t help but laugh as she leaned forward and kissed him. “I had my dark days, Vuori. I don’t like living my life in the past. I tend to deal with it, put it in a box and shove it to the dark corners of my mind, and never really revisit it again. What’s done is done, and I refuse to spend my life regretting something that is not my fault.”

Isolde smiled slightly. “I enjoy what I’ve made my life to be. I’ve made mistakes, learned from them, and when the time is right, I move on.”

Jussi nodded slowly. “I understand that.”

Isolde snorted. “Would it make you feel better if I shed a tear over my failed relationship?”

“I wouldn’t call it failed,” Jussi muttered.

Isolde shook her head. “No, but it was doomed. Richard and I we weren’t right for each other. He wanted a trophy wife, like my mother or his mother. Someone that would be happy putting on a fancy dress, going to benefits, and putting on a smile while having an okay sex life. Can you see me settling for an okay sex life?”

Jussi laughed. “No, I can’t.”

“He didn’t approve of half the kinks that I’m sure you would approve of, anyway,” Isolde teased. “I liked the idea of being loved, Vuori. I was young and in my first relationship, and had no idea what I wanted for me. I’m grateful for the experience and the mistakes. Now can we get off this serious subject, please?”

Jussi nodded. With a small laugh. “Sure.”

“Thank you. Now, I’m going to go shower since I reek of sex.”

“It’s a good smell,” Jussi teased.

“Why don’t you gather our clothes while I shower?”

“Or I could join you?” Jussi pointed out, only to frown when a vibrating sound starting echoed around the room.

“That’s not my phone,” Isolde said. “Mine makes the whoosh, whoosh, whoosh sound of the TARDIS. That is your phone, which means you need to answer that while I get in the shower.”

Jussi watched as she rolled out of bed and made her way to the bathroom, sending a wink at him before closing the door behind her.

Rolling out of bed, he picked up his pants from the floor by the door and grabbed his vibrating phone out of it, answering it as he shook out his pants to put them on.


“Hey! Where did you want to meet?”

Jussi blinked as he tugged on his pants. “Bam?”

“Who else would it be?”

“Shit, what time is it?”

“Nearing eight.” Bam laughed. “So where did you want to meet?”

Jussi rubbed his face tiredly as he thought. “I don’t know, I’m at Torni right now.”

“So you got to see the inside of Isolde’s room, huh?” Bam teased.

Jussi rolled his eyes. “We can either have breakfast here, or there’s a coffee shop about two blocks down from here that we can meet at.”

“Coffee shops fine.” Bam said, and Jussi could see the shrug in Bam’s shoulders.

“Perfect, I should be out of here in the next twenty minutes, so meet you in half an hour.”

“That’s fine with me.” Bam said. “Half an hour.”

Jussi nodded to himself, saying a quick good-bye before hanging up his phone and stuffing it back in his pocket. He zipped up his pants and started searching the room for his shirt. He gathered Isolde’s leggings from the floor, along with her top and threw them on the bed. He found his fedora smushed by the chair of the table and picked it up from the floor, placing it on the table before walking over to the couch, where he found his shirt.

Deciding not to question how it got over there, he pulled it on, doing up the buttons just as Isolde came out of the bathroom wrapped in a towel. She walked over to her suitcase and opened the top with her foot.

“Band shit?” Isolde asked, using her toes to search the clothing in her suitcase.

“No, Bam. I forgot I had to meet him for breakfast this morning.”

Isolde nodded, kicking up a pair of light orange jeans into her hands. “Well then, have fun at breakfast,” she said with a grin as she pulled her jeans on over her towel.

Jussi raised an eyebrow as he leaned against the back of the couch. “I get that this is casual, really I do, but do you really expect me not to treat you to breakfast?”

Isolde laughed. “I was just going to order room service and finish up some things for Alisha and Ben before they take off this afternoon.”

“Take your laptop with you, then,” Jussi said, grabbing his jacket, watching as Isolde pulled an ivory lace bra from her suitcase with her toes and threw it up into her hand and put it on as she dropped her towel. “Bam and I are going to be talking about some things we’re planning for Christmas at the bar. You can work while we talk; then when Bam leaves, we can have breakfast.”

“Aww, like a real couple,” Isolde teased, winking at Jussi as she pulled a white short sleeved shirt out of her suitcase.

“You like The Libertines?” Jussi asked.

Isolde looked down at the shirt as saw the picture or Pete Doherty and Carl Barât. “I do. I actually know Carl a bit; he’s contracted me to take pictures of his newborn when his girlfriend gives birth.”

“That’s awesome!” Jussi said with a nod, causing Isolde to grin.

“Mmhmm,” Isolde nodded, pulling on the shirt. “So if I go to breakfast with you, what’s in it for me?”

“The pleasure of my company.”

“Well I’ve already had that,” Isolde laughed. “Can’t I unlatch you yet?”

Jussi snorted. “Not quite yet.”

Isolde sighed and motioned for him to grab her bag. “Fine, I’ll go to breakfast with you.”

“Don’t act like it’s some type of hardship, it’s not like I’m asking you to pay.”

Isolde chuckled as she went to the table and pulled her laptop from the charger and stuffed it into her bag. She set it on the bed, sitting at the edge of it. She bent down to pull her shoe suitcase from underneath and flipped it open, deciding on a pair of blue suede pumps and slipping her feet inside.

“Hand me my camera, and we’ll get going,” Isolde said as she grabbed the wrap-around sweater she had been wearing the night before and pulled it on. She smirked at Jussi’s fedora, before putting it on her head.

“Looks good,” Jussi smirked, handing her the camera as she shouldered it and put her camera inside.

“Admit it; it looks so much better on me than it does on you.”

“It would look better on you naked,” Jussi chuckled, finding his jacket underneath the table and pulling it on.

Isolde laughed as she grabbed the keycard from the table and followed Jussi out of the hotel room. “Of course it would, Vuori. Of course it would.”

They made their way out of the hotel in record time and started the couple blocks to the coffee shop. Jussi resisted the urge to grab her hand. As if she sensed his urge, she stuffed her hands in her coat pockets and smiled at him.

“So what’s your plan for the rest of the day?”

Jussi shrugged. “Not sure. Most likely go home, get a shower, since you refused to share yours, and get some sleep.”

“I so wore you out,” Isolde gloated.

“Yes, you did, and I’m very much looking forward to getting some sleep,” Jussi nodded. “What about you?”

“Well, Ben and Alisha leave today, so I have to go meet them for lunch before they do; see if they need me to go to London anytime soon. Probably check in with my mum, just so that she can hear my voice. It’ll most likely make her day.”

“Think highly of yourself?” Jussi asked with a tilt of his lips.

“I wish. Like I said, my mum and I are close. She likes to hear from me every couple of days, just to know that I’m still alive. Then I’ll most likely check in with my manager, as I hung up on him a couple of days ago and I’m sure I’ve given him enough time to cool off.”

“Busy day,” Jussi pointed out.

“If you ask nicely, I may just be able to squeeze you in tonight,” Isolde snorted and bumped his arm with her shoulder. “Get it? Squeeze you in…no? Not funny?” she laughed as he stared at her.

“You’re a bit of a dork, you know that right?”

“I have been told that before. You should see me when I’m wearing my reading glasses,” Isolde teased as they reached the coffee shop. Jussi opened the door for her, causing her to raise an eyebrow. “Well, what a gentlemen.”

“I think letting you come first last night proved just how much of a gentleman I can be,” Jussi pointed out.

Isolde burst out laughing as she walked up to the counter. “Every single time, Vuori. You’re good like that.”

Jussi shook his head as they gave their orders to the barista behind the counter. Jussi made good on his promise to pay and pointed to the table they’d be at before leading Isolde over.

“So, where’s your friend?” Isolde asked, taking a seat next to the window as Jussi sat across from her.

“Most likely running late. But he’ll be on his way.”

Isolde nodded as she pulled out her laptop, turning it on and setting it so that the back faced the window, so that her screen wouldn’t be blocking Jussi, who sat in front of her. “So what’s this thing you and Bam are planning?”

“Christmas party.”

Jussi and Isolde looked up at a grinning Bam as he sat at the end of the table. “Morning,” Isolde said, tipping the fedora back in greeting.

“Already wearing each other’s personal items; you two work fast.”

“Oh please, there is nothing fast about Vuori,” Isolde teased. “He’s all about taking his time.”

“I like you,” Bam stated, with a smirk.

Isolde nodded. “Most people get a kick out me.” She waved her hand. “Talk about your party thing, I’m going to work.”

Ignoring the boys as they talked, Isolde looked up and smiled kindly at the waitress that had brought her and Jussi their food. She looked back at her computer and stared at the article she’d been working on for the last week.

She tapped her fingers against the keyboard in indecision as to what to write, before mentally saying fuck it, and closing the document. She leaned down and grabbed her camera from her bag, taking out the memory card and slipping it into her computer, wanting to review that pictures that she’d taken on the boat with Alisha and Ben.

For the most part she scanned her pictures, deleting those she knew she couldn’t use, opening some with her editing program to see if she could clear them up, and ignored the talk that Jussi and Bam were having.

It wasn’t until Jussi tapped her hand that she heard the very familiar whooshing that was coming from her phone. Digging it out of bag, she looked at the caller ID with a smile and answered, before she could even say anything a male voice filled her ear.

“Hello beautiful.”

Isolde snorted. “Is this where I’m supposed to say ‘hello handsome’?”

“It would have been appreciated.”

“Ah, you know me better than that,” Isolde teased. “So, Alex, how can I help you today?”

Alex chuckled deeply in her ear, which caused her to grin. “I was wondering where you are this week.”

“Why, do you finally have time for me?”

“As a matter of fact, I do,” Alex told her. “I’m working mornings for the next couple of weeks. I was wondering if you’d like to have dinner? Do it up right.”

Isolde laughed. “I hate doing it up right, Alex. And I’m not in town, I’m in Helsinki at the moment. And as Ivan and I aren’t talking, I have no idea when I’ll be back.”

“What did Ivan do to piss you off this time? No wait, don’t tell me…did you do something naughty?”

Isolde snorted. “He didn’t appreciate my post about Alicia A. Parker.”

“Ah, I read that one. She’s a bitch, anyway. I don’t know why you bother with her. She’s uppity and prissy, and you knew she’d react that way when you said you had lovers scattered all over Europe. You said it for the shock value.”

“I did not say if for the shock value!” Isolde protested. “I said it as a joke, and she obviously didn’t have a sense of humor.”

“Alicia never had a sense of humor.”

Isolde rolled her eyes. “Yes, well, Ivan didn’t like the wording on some of the post, and I may have ignored the lecture he gave me.”

“And he hasn’t called you, even after you wrote that piece about the couch?” Alex gave a low whistle of amusement. “That man needs to sort out his priorities. The couch piece from the other day was a lot more scandalous then the statistics in masturbating.”

“I’m sure the vein popped out of his forehead when he read it,” Isolde laughed. “Which means, mission accomplished, thankyouverymuch”

Alex laughed. “Old bastard is probably still purple.”

“Worth it,” Isolde shrugged, playing with the mouse on her computer, not noticing Bam and Jussi had stopped talking and were watching her.

“So who is this man that has so much power in his voice?” Alex asked, amused. “I’m impressed.”

“You should be, and he’s my new lover.” Isolde shrugged.

“Well thank God you’ve got someone new, Isolde. I was starting to feel like we were in a relationship, with me being your only one.”

“Oh please, we would never work out, Alex. You’re much too sweet for me, though the sex-”

“I’m obviously not as good as your new lover,” Alex said good-naturedly.

“No, that you are not. Vuori has staying power. Unfortunately, you do not.”

“Something I’ll work on.” Alex laughed. “So with you at odds with Ivan, no idea when you’re getting back?”

Isolde shrugged then remembered Alex couldn’t see her. “I have to talk to him today anyway; the clients I worked for here left today, and I finished what I originally came here to do.” She clicked her calendar on her laptop and checked for November. “I do have a shoot in town in a couple of weeks, so I’ll either be there day of or sooner. I’ll let you know.”

“Perfect! I’ll count the days.”

“Go hit on your nurse,” Isolde said with a roll of her eyes.

“Ah! Which reminds me! You’ll never guess who I saw the other day in Pediatrics.”

Isolde blinked. “Well, as it was Pediatrics, I’m guessing you saw kids.”

Alex laughed. “Well yeah, I saw kid. But you’ll never guess whose kid.”

“I fucking hate guessing games, Alex. Tell me who you saw and get on with it.”

“The mistress.”

Isolde blinked and nodded slowly, feeling herself tense before rolling her shoulders back to get rid of the unwanted tension. Not that it helped; even if she got rid of the tension, the headache that was slowly starting to form wouldn’t go away for a while yet. “You’re a bit of an asshole, you know that?”

“Oh come on. Isolde.”

“Why would I give a fuck if you saw her and her bastard kid?”

“I thought you’d find it funny.”

“I don’t,” Isolde said blandly.

“Last time you were here and we ran into her-”

“I don’t give a shit, Alex.”

“Fine. Sorry I brought it up,” Alex muttered. “Just thought you’d want to know that I finally got my hands on his file.”

Isolde chewed on her lip and shook her head. “I really don’t care.”

“All right then, I won’t talk about it again.”

“Thank you. Now I have to go.”

“All right. Give me a call whenever you’re back in town, I guess. Or whenever you stop being pissed at me.”

“I will,” Isolde said with a frown, pulling the phone away from her ear and hanging up, wondering where Alex got his stupidity from.


Isolde blinked and looked up at Jussi, then back at her phone only to curse. “Shit, I’m sorry! That was rude.”

“No, Isolde it’s-”

“I don’t usually don’t talk to Alex in front of my lovers, just because Alex is more a friend then someone I sleep with occasionally, and guys tend to take it the wrong way. But you’re so new and-”

“Isolde.” Jussi said patiently. “It’s fine.”

“No, it’s not. It’s rude and disrespectful,” Isolde said, looking at him. “Look, I need to go.” She closed her laptop and stuffed it in her bag. “I’ll let you guys finish your meeting.”

She stuffed her camera into her bag and grabbed her phone off the table and got up, starting out of the coffee shop. She’d just let the door close behind her, only for the door to open and a hand to grab her arm.

“Hey,” Jussi smirked. “You okay?”

“Yeah, I’m fine.”

“Are you sure?”

Isolde smiled and leaned up to kiss him softly. “Positive. I just need to go, get some work done before I meet up with Alisha and Ben, and figure some stuff out for work.”

“All right,” Jussi nodded. “Well, I was thinking of going out tonight, Halloween and all. It seems wrong for me not to do anything.”

Isolde laughed. “It kind of is, isn’t it?”

“Why don’t you join me? I’ll most likely end up at Bäkkäri, if you’d like to join me.”

Isolde nodded. “Yeah. Call me when you head out, and I’ll meet you down there.”

“Perfect,” Jussi said, leaning down and brushing his lips against hers. “Thank you for last night.”

“No,” she said, patting his chest. “No, thank you.”

Jussi laughed. “Go, get work done. I’ll call you later.”

Isolde nodded, watching as he went back into the coffee shop and back to the table with Bam. Chewing on her bottom lip, she turned and started towards the direction of her hotel, blowing out a slow breath.

“Good way to ruin a day, Alex,” she muttered quietly, putting the less than ideal parts of her conversation with Alex into a mental box and shoving it into the far recesses of her brain. She’d toy with the idea of opening it all day, analyzing it and breaking it apart, calling Alex and finding out just what the mistress, as she’d taken to calling the woman, was doing at the hospital with her son. But she wouldn’t. That was all a part of her past, and her past was something not to be dealt with.

So instead of thinking of the box that was nearly rattling with temptation, she went to her room, shut the door, turned on the TV to a high volume, and worked on her article and pictures, losing herself in her work. She wouldn’t deal with her past. It wasn’t part of her life anymore. What happened, had happened, and there was no changing it. She had to focus on the present, and…

Fuck it, she thought, grabbing her phone and dialing the number.

“I knew you wouldn’t be able to resist,” Alex teased.

“You’re a bastard, you know that?”

“And you still want to know.”

“What was in the file, Alex?” Isolde sighed, knowing she’d regret the question once she got the answer. Sure enough, when he answered, she felt her stomach drop and regret fill her; it looked like she needed a bigger mental box.
♠ ♠ ♠
Isolde's Outfit and Tattoos
Isolde's Ringtone

Posting early, mostly because I've had a rough day and I just want to go sleep, but before i go i do have a question for you guys, the average numbers of readers per chapter are about 40, so i'm wondering what i can do to get the rest of you guys to comment?

Comments help me understand what you guys are enjoying in the story and not enjoying, and I want to write something that you guys will enjoy. Let it be little scenes of explanation you guys want to read or just a general comment about the story itself. It helps me know if i'm doing something right or wrong. I love comments and I swear I don't bite!!

I was also wondering if Wednesdays were working for you guys posting wise? Because I've been contemplating changing to Saturdays. So let me know your thoughts on that :)

Thank you to those who do comment! They very much mean the world to me and i look forward to your guys thoughts each week!!

Hope you guys enjoyed, and always preview for next chapter with a comment :)