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Seeing Bond back at MI6 is like seeing a ghost.

Eve had just been getting back on her feet from the past three months of psych evals, desk duty, and general guilt, and then the arsehole walks right back into Six like he owns the damned place. That’s not to say that she’s not relieved to have him back--because, really, the pointed stares and whispers and overall general shitty feeling of having killed The James Bond was starting to get to her--but still, he didn’t have to be so smug about it.

“I’d shoot him again if I could,” she tells Q.

Q, who hadn’t been “Q” more than the time Bond had been gone--who hadn’t been Q before they’d gotten together one night after having too many drinks after work with some mutual Intentions acquaintances, who she now had to refer to as “Q” because of Reasons of National Security (which she thought was unfair, but he said he liked the name/title/letter and who is she to argue on preference?)--had never worked with him, and tried for a reasonable response to her agony.

“I’m sure he’s not that bad,” Q says and she rolls her eyes.

“Just wait until you meet him.”

It’s the next night, over Chinese, when Q looks her dead in the eye and says:

“You were right. He’s an arse. As Quartermaster, you have my permission to shoot him.”

“Oh?”

“You know, just a bit,” Q says, as he steals a crab rangoon off her plate, “nothing vital.”

“I’ll show you somewhere vital if you don’t give that back,” she says.

He takes a bite and then holds the remaining half out to her.

“That was mine,” she says, but leans forward to eat the offered morsel anyway.

Q shrugs.

“Aren’t relationships about compromise?” he asks.

It’s later, when they’re in bed together and Q is drawing patterns on her skin that she says:

“Relationship.”

He hums.

“I’m not good at those,” Eve says.

“Neither am I,” Q admits.

“Well, at least we’re both going to be rubbish at it together.”

Q laughs and buries his nose in her hair, breathing her in deeply like a drowning man breathing in air. It makes Eve feel wanted in a way she never has before.

She thinks she likes it.


 

It’s not even a day later that Eve gets word that she’s being shipped out.

It’s the first time since Istanbul that they’ve authorised her to leave the country. Eve wonders at it, because there are plenty of agents not on probation that could be sent, but they’d chosen her. It’s only when she gets the paperwork that Eve realises it had been at Q’s request.

He shows up in the doorway of her office a little before rush hour, and she tries to be angry with him, but she can’t find it in her.

“Already so tired of me that you’re sending me away?”

Q frowns a bit.

“I thought you missed the field.”

Eve crosses her arms over her chest. She did miss the field. She does.

But.

“If you’re having second thoughts, I can send someone else,” Q says, and looks guilty, “I just thought you might…”

It’s unspoken between them, those months of Eve’s life she spent trying to piece herself back together after killing a co-worker. To perform a mission--this mission--with Bond would be the chance of finishing what had been started months ago in Istanbul. It would be a chance at redemption. The fact that Q had thought of it--of her--like that makes her feel inexplicably happy.

“I do,” Eve says, as she packs up her things.

“Good,” Q replies, and looks relieved, “because I really hate to fly.”

Eve laughs and comes round to the other side of the desk. They’re close enough to kiss--and she’d like to--but Q looks round, through the glass that seems to be everywhere, at all the people that seem to be watching them. It’s paranoia, Eve knows, but she doesn’t act on her impulse. The last thing they need is to be written up for insubordination.

“So, Macau,” Q says conversationally, but he’s looking at his tablet now, in full business mode as he pokes at a few things here and there. “All of your paperwork is ready: passport, plane tickets for tomorrow morning. And your preferred weaponry is arranged for you as well. The only thing you need is something to wear.”

“I think I can scrounge up something from my wardrobe.”

 

Q gives her a look that she’s never seen before. It’s a little sultry, even though she doesn’t know why, and it kindles some heat in her belly.

“Nonsense. I’m taking you shopping. Only caveat is that I get to choose. After all, I have to measure to make sure you’ll be able to carry your kit with you...”

Ah, that’s it, then. They’d joked about this once or twice, about Eve taking Q shopping to dress him how she wanted--something with nice crisp lines to accentuate the figure he always seemed to want to hide--but they’d never had the time to make it happen. And now, it seemed, the tables were turned. Q having complete control? Eve found it incredibly sexy.

Well, let it never be said that their “relationship” was boring.

“Oh, are you buying, Quartermaster?” she teases.

“Well, I do have the budget for it,,” Q says, “and I do like to see my agents dressed appropriately, especially those traveling in my stead.”

He holds out his arm, and she takes it.

“Lead the way.”


 

They stopped by several shops in Mayfair, but didn’t buy anything at the first two places. Eve had honestly thought she’d won Q over with a little red number, but Q had shook his head and moved them on to the next boutique. They ended up window shopping for another half hour before settling on a boutique that Eve never would have stepped foot in, but there, in the front display, was the most beautiful dress she’d ever seen.

“Do you like it?” Q had asked. 

“Oh, but it's so expensive…”

“You’re going to Macau,” Q had said casually, as if the thousand-plus quid price tags didn't phase him in the slightest. “If you show up in something less expensive, you’ll stand out. So, the question still remains: Do you like it?"

“Oh, it’s lovely, but--”

“Then you ought to try it on.”

And that had been that.

Now Eve is standing in the fitting room, staring at herself in the full length mirror. The gold silk ripples over her frame, hugging her in all the right places, moulding to her curves and dips and valleys as if it had been made for her. She isn’t one to have anything so superfluous--so extravagant--but it really is something. She feels beautiful, powerful in a way that she doesn’t at work in her pencil skirts and modest blouses.

In this dress, she feels like a force of nature, a goddess.

Outside of the door, she hears light footsteps, the sound of someone taking a seat on the small settee, an exhale of breath that’s not impatient or bored, but...preoccupied. Eve frowns at her reflection. Q had been under a lot of pressure lately, what with taking the new title and all...and she's sure there were lots of other things on his mind aside from choosing a dress with her.

But still.

He’d come with her. He isn’t rushing. He’s just waiting. Quiet, patient as always.

Her frown turns into a grin as she slides her finger up along the slit of her dress, exposing her thigh. She wonders if she can be a suitable enough distraction. After all, Q deserves to take a break every now and then, and with her leaving the country...

Well, she ought to take care of him before she leaves, right?

“Alright, I’m coming out,” Eve announces, as she puts her hand on the door and exits the booth.

Q is looking down at his phone, but his attention immediately fixates on her when she appears. Just as she intended, he puts his mobile away, never taking his eyes off her.

“You look. Wow,” is all that comes out of his mouth, which Eve considers a triumph in and of itself.

To render a genius speechless is quite an accomplishment.

“Is it...too much?” Eve asks, trying for modesty as she smooths her hands down her front.

His eyes follow the motion, but he’s proper and immediately returns his attention to her face. She loves that about him, because she’s not just a body, but a person, and he looks at her like he’s really looking at her in her entirety.

“Not at all...” Q says, and then clears his throat. “I wonder how anyone is going to be doing any sort of crime when they’re too busy looking at you. Maybe I shouldn’t let you go at all.”

Eve turns round, giving the dress a little twirl so that he looks at it instead of her face, because the compliment had made her blush, but the possessiveness in his voice had made her burn. She’d never heard Q speak like that before and.

It’s sexy as hell.

“Maybe I’ll inspire world peace.”

“You are inspiring,” Q says.

“Oh hush,” she says.

He grins.

“There’s only one thing missing,” Q says, holding up a box.

He gives it a little shake.

“Go ahead and open it up.”

Eve lifts the lid. Inside, there are a pair of golden pumps in her size, open-toed and studded and with a heel so sharp that she could take someone’s eye out. She traces her finger over the three-and-a-half inches of stiletto, and Q watches her hands like they’re performing a sexual act.

“I could put retractable blades in them for you,” Q whispers, voice low, aroused.

“Or poison,” Eve supplies.

“Or both? Both is always a lovely option.”

“I do like the way you think,” Eve says.

“Let’s see them on?” he asks, and when he looks at her, his eyes are dark.

She takes a seat on the settee, and he moves to kneel at her feet. Q takes her foot in his hand, letting her heel rest on his thigh, his thumb moving lazy circles at her ankle. She shivers, then looks back out through the curtain into the store. Anyone could walk in right now and see the way they’re looking at one another, at the way Q slips on her heels and straps them on her feet so reverently.

“What do you think?” Eve asks, as he runs his fingers over the criss-crossing patterns over her skin.

It’s something that they’ve been doing this dance long enough that Q doesn’t have to answer her in words, because the way he looks at her tells her everything she wants to know. He’d let her walk on him with this heels if she wanted, and he’d like it, too, if the ridge in his trousers is anything to go by.

“Can you walk in them?” Q asks, and there’s a challenge there as he rises, helps her to her feet.

She stands nearly three inches taller than him and walks circles around him, dragging her nails along his arm, his shoulder as she does so. Eve feels him tremble under her touch, and she digs in a little harder, watching the colour rise in Q’s throat. They both had agreed at the start of all of this: a little pain went a long way towards explosive pleasure.

But just as Eve is thinking this, the curtain rustles, and the shop clerk pops her head in.

“Oh! You look lovely dear~! Is there anything else I can get for you?” she asks.

“No, thank you,” Eve answers brightly. “We just need another few minutes.”

“Of course, take all the time you need!”

And then the girl is gone, leaving them alone.

Eve drags her nails down Q’s arm, and when Q turns his eyes on her, they’re burning.

“I think you still have some measuring to do,” she says, not asks, and leads him into the booth.

Q comes in behind her, locking the door. It’s cramped with the two of them in there, and they’re close enough that Eve can feel Q’s heat, smell his lingering aftershave. It makes Eve wonder what he looks like with a bit of stubble, because she’s never seen him anything but clean-shaven, even after all this time. It makes her wonder what it would feel like on her skin…

The touch of heated fingers above her hip makes her come back to herself, and there’s Q, gracefully going to his knees right there. But he’s still being courteous with her--playing this erotic game to the very end--even as he fiddles with the dress, following the hemline up to the slit at her thigh, his long fingers warm through the cool silk.

“I’m not sure we’ll be able to hide your beretta here,” Q says.

Now it feels like his fingers are burning her, so close, yet so far from where she wants them.

“What about those heels?” she asks, gasps as she feels Q’s thumb brush the inside of her thigh.

The pad of his thumb is rough, the scrape of his nail a fiery line on her flesh.

“If I stay up all night, I’m sure I could get them ready for you by tomorrow,” Q says.

He treks his hand from her thigh all the way down to her ankle in a sweeping motion that makes her shiver.

“No matter what, you’re going to have at least six ways to kill a man while you’re in this dress,” Q tells her, “or I’m not Quartermaster.”

Eve grips at his hair, and he lets out a stuttered breath that ends in a quiet moan at her rough treatment.

“Only six?” she asks.

She’s wet, desperate in a way she knows that even Q’s talented tongue won’t be able to satiate.

“From my lab, anyway,” Q says, fingers disappearing under Eve’s dress, “I’m sure there are at least fifteen ways for you to kill a man using your natural attributes.”

Her knees shake as he speaks, as he drags her underwear down her thighs, the sharp sting of his thumbnail following that same path.

“Of course,” Q continues, parting the dress along the slit, like he’s unwrapping a gift, his fingers pale and deft and--she intimately knows--so very, very talented, “I’m always happy to help my agents reach their full potential. Is there anything else you can think of that will make you more efficient in the field, Miss Moneypenny?”

His formal tone makes it sexier, dirtier, because Eve realises they are here for business, not pleasure. They’re on the clock, on the government’s dime, and she can think of no better use of taxpayer funds than to have Q shag her senseless.

“You’re going to fuck me,” Eve says.

Their eyes meet. Q’s pupils are blown, just a faint ring of green hugging them.

“Happy to oblige.”

He stands quickly, their mouths crashing together. It’s dangerous doing this here, in such a public place, when anyone can walk in on them, but that’s the thrill of it. Q bites at her lip, and Eve swallows back the sound she wishes she could make. They’ve got to be quiet, or else they’ll alert the entire shop just what they’re getting up to back here.

Still, Eve can’t help the breathy moan that escapes her as Q turns her and presses her up against the mirror. He’s not rough--he never is with her unless she wants him to be--but assertive, and has the dress rucked up over her hips with a quick flick of his wrist.

He doesn’t fuck about, either, immediately pushing into her, filling her. Eve gasps, gripping at the edge of the mirror, watching Q’s reflection as he pulls all the way out and then slams back into her. Her vision darkens round the edges with pleasure as Q frigs her clit at the same time, keeping time with his thrusts, the delicious slide of him in and out of her. He knows he’s got her on the edge after all that foreplay, but he doesn’t let her go over, easing back every time she’s at the precipice.

From beyond the curtain outside their door, Eve can hear the shop girl moving about, the murmuring voices of other customers, and oh, if that’s not the best thing in the world: being fucked not even three feet from people who have absolutely no idea. That makes her even more desperate to come, to have Q finish inside her, to have his come dripping down her legs as they pay at the till.

Most of the time, they use a condom, but on some occasions--like this one--they indulge. Q looks to her, as if seeking permission. She can tell by his expression, by the dig of his fingernails into her hips, that he’s close too.

She holds his gaze in the mirror for a moment before nodding, and Q’s smile is heated as he leans forward to press one word into her skin:

Mine.”

That single word sets her off, and Eve comes so hard that her vision goes white. She’s dimly aware when Q comes moments after her, that the heat inside of her is all of him and her mixed together. She’s shaking when the lights recede, Q’s steady hands the only thing keeping her upright.

Panting, she looks at Q in the mirror. He’s flushed, eyes dark, cheek a little damp. And she feels a flush climb up from her chest as he takes his fingers--those same ones that had been so expertly stimulating her--and licks them. Eve groans quietly at that, and then again as he slides out of her. She tries to hold him inside, for just a little longer, but her muscles quiver and flutter with pleasure, then clench around the emptiness left behind, leaving her weak-kneed and out of breath by the time he’s buttoned up his trousers and straightened her dress.

“Do you feel sufficiently prepared for your mission?” Q asks.

Eve laughs shakily, dragging her hand through his hair.

“If you’re going to send all your agents off that way, I might have to apply for field duty more often.”

“Not all of my agents,” Q says, “just you.”

Then he winks, all of his stressed-tiredness seemingly gone, replaced with that playfulness that she’d fallen for all those months ago.

“For now.”

She playfully shoves at his shoulder.

“Well, MI6 policy is that everyone gets one free pass at a Double-Oh,” Eve says, and then turns round, “now help me out of this dress, will you?”

“My pleasure.”


It’s later, when Q is lying on her bed watching her pack her bags that he asks:

“Did you sleep with him?”

“With who?”

“Bond.”

She stops debating between two pairs of underwear--throwing both in her suitcase because one can never have too many undergarments--and gives Q her full attention.

“Would it bother you if I did?”

“No, not at all. He’s a fine specimen. I would, if given the chance.”

“Would you?” Eve asks, raising a teasing brow. “I thought you didn’t like him?”

“You don’t have to like someone to want to shag them, darling.”

“True,” she concedes, making some room on the bed to lay beside him.

He slides his hand along her back. His touch is soft. She likes it. Likes that they can be sexual with one another, but also so, so tender. And so honest.

“I didn’t sleep with him,” Eve says.

“Pity,” Q replies, “why not?”

She shrugs.

“Wasn’t any time for all of that.”

Q hums thoughtfully.

“Well, if there is time for it in Macau, you can. If you want.”

Eve turns to look at him.

“Why?”

“As you said, everyone gets a free pass at a Double-Oh. And so you can tell me if the stories are as good as I hear.”

She laughs, and he does too. But when the silence falls between them, she lays her head on his chest.

“I don’t think I will.”

It’s almost like admitting a secret, Eve thinks, because she thinks she wants this to be something more. It might be nice to have something more, to have someone waiting for her when she came home, to not flit between lovers just to avoid staying in one place too long. They could be good together. 

Q could be home.

“Well,” Q says, “whatever happens, I’ll be here when you get back.”

“Really?”

Q kisses her, and it’s like a promise.

“Really.”