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And so the World Faded Away

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The news of the summer of 2019 was a relatively boring affair. Nothing much of import happened in the world, well, a ton of things happened in the world, but depending on who was reading it, none of that mattered. What did matter was that the beloved fantasy drama Duel of Knights was back for its third season, and production had just been announced to have started, sending fan theorists into a frenzy, and online polls started up in droves to guess just what would happen this next season. 

They wondered whether the dark or light side would win, whether the kingdom of Alderaan would fall or work together with that of Mustafar, whether the relationship between Storm and Flyboy was just queer baiting or an actual romance that was blossoming to life. 

Above all, though, they wondered whether the slow burn between Kylo Ren and Kira, the black and white knights respectively, would finally hookup after a season’s long slow burn. After a tiny kiss at the end of the second season before they were cruelly wrenched away by their opposing sides, many suspected the two would be starting a forbidden romance rather soon. 

As of the first meeting for season three episode three, those people were right. 

The actors portraying Kylo and Kira were at a top secret meeting which no one would be allowed to attend but them, two writers, the series creator, and the episode’s director. Not even any of the other cast was allowed to attend, and Ben Solo and Rey Johnson were only allowed on the signature of an intensive NDA. 

The two presently sat on the opposite side of a desk of Poe Dameron, who was the heart and soul of the series as its creator—who also starred as the notorious Flyboy—and giving them a grin that suggested something wicked was afoot. “So, I assume you both suspect why I called you here today.”

“Our characters are starting a forbidden relationship,” Rey replied, her voice almost deadpan as she recited the news she’d already imagined hearing a thousand and one times. 

Beside her, Ben snickered quietly, but said nothing, opting instead to cross his arms over his chest and wait for the news like a good little soldier. She was going to kill him. She loved him, he was her best friend, but he was going to meet the business end of her unfortunately fake sword if he kept this up. 

“Yeah, but we’ve all known that’s coming for a while, and yes, it starts in this episode, but what I want to discuss with you is a bit further on in the season,” Poe said, then he folded his hands over each other on the desk. “You both know what this show has featured. You’ve seen the content warnings. You know what happens.”

“Of course,” they both answered at the same time, then more gentle laughter ensued. 

“What I want to talk to you about is the mid-season finale in two episodes.” Their coworker and boss scratched the back of his head. “As far as we’ve seen, Ben’s character is the only one who’s had a love scene and that was in—“

“Can we just call it what it is? A sex scene. We both know that what happened with Kylo and Phas was just a hookup,” Ben interrupted, and more laughter escaped them both as they remembered how he and their other costar, Gwen had nearly laughed their asses off during every take. It had taken at least fifty before the sex scene looked remotely convincing. 

No one had ever said anything, but it was practically confirmed that was the reason why Ben had scarcely had a sex scene since then. 

“Fine, a sex scene,” Poe grumbled, then he shuddered slightly. “Anyway, that’s why I’m here to talk to you today. We’re still a few episodes ahead, so um… your story is coming to a head. You’re reaching the height of your tale, and it’s come time for your romance to become something more.” When Rey blinked at him, he sighed. “Your characters are going to have sex in the old knights’ temple.”

Rey froze at this. She’d known for a while that characters hooked up on this show all the time and that they sometimes really appeared to be fucking, but she’d never thought—somehow it had never clicked— “Me and Ben?”

“Kira and Kylo, but yeah. You two will need to rehearse with a choreographer starting sometime next week. This scene is big. It’s three years in the making, and we’ve made the fans wait long enough.” Their boss grinned almost impishly. “So this needs to be epic. I need you both to bring your A game, but most importantly, I need to assess with you both just how much skin you’ll be comfortable showing—I know it’s in your contract, but I want to reassess and reassess to make sure everyone’s comfortable.”

“I’m good with whatever won’t get us flagged,” Ben said nonchalantly, then he looked at Rey. “What about you?”

She froze, thinking through everything she’d ever done in her time on the show. Since the latest season had started, she and Ben had kissed quite a lot, and she supposed it made sense that things were heading this way, but still. Her breath caught in her throat and her entire body went numb. She’d thought she’d have more time before she was confronted with a situation like this. 

Mostly because she’d never been in a situation like this. Not in real life. Not yet, and for the longest time she’d thought it was because there was something wrong with her, but in the end, she knew it was just because she’d never found the right person, and now—

“Rey?”

Ben’s eyes were so full of concern, and they’d grown so close over the last few years of filming that they’d started to know what the other person was thinking without it having to be said. He could probably sense every fiber of her nervousness right now, and while she’d never told him she was a virgin—it hadn’t come up—she wondered if he could sense it coming off of her in waves. 

Before he could say anything, though, Rey finally found her voice. “Yes! I’ll do it. Whatever Ben’s comfortable with, I’m comfortable with,” she said, because maybe it wasn’t a lie. By the time they had to film the scene, maybe she’d be perfectly comfortable with the idea of having sex with Ben on screen. After all, who else would she rather have pretend to writhe on top of her for the first time? 

Maybe she didn’t want to actually have sex with him—or did she?— but if Kira did, she wasn’t going to stop the white knight from claiming her prize. She’d been fighting far too bloody a war to be robbed of her endgame now. 

“Fantastic!” Poe cried, clapping his hands together as he stood. “Both of you make sure you’re in top fighting shape for this, it’s going to be awesome.”

*

Several hours later after they were done filming for the day, Rey was leaning against her car waiting for Ben to meet her in the lot. That day, they’d gotten him dressed in full battle regalia, so of course it would take him a second longer to dress in comparison to her, but still, given what had transpired that morning in the meeting room, she was growing restless. 

How was she supposed to do this scene when the only person she’d ever had sex with was herself?

Her breathing grew quick again, and she ran her hand through her hair as her head thunked against the black paint of her car, and all kinds of panicked thoughts began to wash over her. How was Ben going to react to this? Would he not want to do the scene anymore if he found out? She had to tell him, didn’t she?

“Rey!” 

Of course, the moment she started thinking about him, he showed up. She shouldn’t have been surprised. Since they lived so close together they took turns driving one another to work, and he walked up to her like this—or she walked up to him—every night. But that evening she was so on edge that she jumped when she heard her name, yelling quietly as she clutched at her chest in surprise. “Christ, Ben.”

“You okay?” he asked as he got closer, not bothering to walk over to the passenger side first.

She managed an awkward laugh, then nodded as he approached, and rested a cautious hand on her arm, as if he were afraid that she’d jump again at any second. “Yeah, you just-you scared me.”

Ben frowned, then his hand fell from her arm, and he shook his head. “No, I mean… obviously just now you were jumpy, but—“ He sighed. “You’ve seemed a little bit off all day. Is something going on?”

Oh god, yes . Something was definitely going on, but in this moment where she was being prompted to tell him what it was, she found the courage to do so leaving her faster than she ever could’ve predicted, and she froze up for a few seconds. “I-I-“ Shit , how did she get it out?

Luckily, her costar knew her fairly well by that point, and he gave her one of those stupidly charming and sweet Solo grins as he stepped back. “It’s about what Poe told us earlier, isn’t it?” he asked, leaning a hand against the roof of her car. 

She nodded. “Yeah. I’ve been thinking about it all day, and I shouldn’t let it get to me, but—“

“You don’t want to do it?” Ben answered for her, and for once in his life, he hadn’t read her mind. 

“I do.” Her voice was surprisingly sturdy given how nervous she was, then with a trembling hand, she reached forward to grab his, holding it casually as had become habit between takes. “But can we talk about this on the road? It’s getting late.”

Suspicion still present in his eyes, he gave her a quick once over, then the corners of his mouth twitched, and he bobbed his head. “Yeah, let’s get home.”

And Rey would swear she’d never felt more relieved. 

The two parted ways and walked to their respective sides of the car—well, Ben walked over to his, all Rey had to do was open her door—before they slid inside, and she started the engine, bringing them out onto the road as she ran on autopilot. She was too busy thinking of what she’d say to him to do anything else. 

Once they were out on the road, though, Ben didn’t hesitate to start asking questions. “So what’s going on with you?”

She scoffed in disbelief. “You could barely contain yourself, could you?”

A shameful flush colored his cheeks in the dim city lights, enhanced by the first stoplight they came upon as it turned the color red. “Sorry, that was rude of me, what I meant was; is this something that’s going to be invasive of your personal space or is it something I need to know?”

That was better. God , Ben was socially awkward, but he always did try his best to rectify his mistakes. At heart, she realized, he was a really, really good guy. “It’s—it’s something you need to know.”

“And it relates to the sex scene we’re supposed to film soon?”

She bit her lower lip. “Uh huh.”

“But it’s not that you don’t want to do it.”

“I do.”

“So, can I ask what’s bothering you about the scene?” he asked quietly, then she felt his hand pressing against the side of her seat as she turned onto the next road. “Cause whatever it is, I can see the conflict it’s creating within you written plain as day on your face. You’re a great actress, Rey, but you can’t hide this from me. What’s going on?”

This was the moment. This was the time to tell him, and she couldn’t allow herself time to breathe or distract from the subject; she had to do this right then and there. With one last intake of air, she slowed the car to a stop at the next sign, gripped the steering wheel tightly, and closed her eyes. “I’ve never filmed a sex scene,” she whispered, then she glanced at him, observing he still exuded an air of casual nonchalance. 

“Oh, that’s fine, I’ll help you through it.” That smile again. “It’s kind of awkward, but that’s what they have the intimacy choreographers for. We’ll get through it. Don’t worry.”

Her breath hissed as it passed through her newly clenched teeth, then she shook her head. “No, Ben, it’s not just that. I…” Deep breath. “I’ve never had sex for real, either. I’m-I’m a virgin.”

There was the shock she’d been looking for. His eyes went wide, his lips parting softly as he processed what she’d just told him, and suddenly a whole lot of tumblers began to turn in his head. She’d never told him that. It simply hadn’t ever come up, and she knew that he was thinking over every experience he’d ever had with her, trying desperately to think through all the signs that something like this could be true, and certainly finding several. “Oh my god.”

Rey put the car back in motion, though her entire body felt like it was on fire, her hands were trembling, and she felt as if she was going to be sick. “That’s why I’ve been at war with myself all day. I’ve never filmed a sex scene or been taught how to do one, and I’ve never had sex, and no matter how good of an actress you think I am, I’m just-I’m nervous about how this’ll play out.”

Ben paused for a moment, then his hand rested gently on her shoulder. “We’ll figure something out.” 

She scoffed as she finally pulled up to his place, rolling into the parking lot of his building as casually as possible. “Like what? I have no experience with this. At least with things involving grief of any sort I can have something to pull from, but…” Gripping the steering wheel a little more tightly, she turned into a parking space, debating with herself whether or not she really wanted to tell him this as she looked at him. “Ben the only sexual experience I have is kissing you on screen. And one shitty makeout session in high school.”

He stared at her like she’d grown a third leg for a second before he shook his head, then gestured to the ignition. “Turn that off and come inside.”

The look on her face became one of confusion. “Why?” 

“Cause you look scared as hell and we need more time to talk,” he said, then she watched as he got out of the car, shut the door, and looked at her expectantly. 

Groaning quietly, Rey put the car in park, and joined him, slamming the door a bit more dramatically than was necessary as he led her through the parking lot to his apartment. “Can’t I just go home to sulk in peace?”

“Not unless you want to tell Poe you don’t want to do the scene,” he replied, holding open a door for her that led to the main part of the building. “Which I’m fine with, but if you do want to do it, then we need to talk. So tell me, and be honest… do you want to film this scene?”

She thought about it for a moment as they walked down the hall toward the lifts, wondering whether she really had the courage to do something like this. Plenty of inexperienced actors filmed sex scenes, she was positive, and she was a professional, wasn’t she? She could do this. They could do this. If it was anyone but Ben maybe she wouldn’t want to, but she knew him and trusted him almost as well as she knew herself. As he pressed the up button on the elevator, his costar gave him a firm nod. “Yeah, I’m sure, I just need to get… more comfortable with this before we proceed.”

“How?” 

The elevator dinged a second later, and they both walked on in unison, Rey leaning back against the wall as he pressed the button for his floor. “I don’t know, maybe I’ll just watch a lot of porn or something.”

Beside her, he choked on his breath, then began to laugh stupidly hard. “Watching porn?”

“Do you have any better ideas, genius?”

“No, but—” Ben scratched his nose, taking in a deep breath to calm his laughter before speaking again. “Rey, I don’t know how much porn you’ve seen, but it’s all unrealistic, poorly-acted bullshit.”

Fuck , there went that plan. She crossed her arms over her chest and groaned as the elevator dinged again to announce they’d arrived at his floor. They walked out before either of them ever said another word. “I just figured it’d be an easy way to get some experience without having a partner.”

Ben’s keys jingled in his hand as he pulled them out from his jacket pocket, the rippling leather catching Rey’s eye as he moved. “You don’t need to have a partner to have sex—well, not a romantic one.” He had a tiny smirk on his face as they approached his apartment, then he put the keys in the lock. “You just need to find someone you trust.”

An idea sparked in her brain at that, but she waited until they were inside his apartment to voice it. “Someone I trust?” 

“Yeah, like a friend, someone who wouldn’t judge you no matter what kind of stupid shit you did,” he replied as he shut the door behind them. 

Swallowing her nerves, Rey walked into his living room ahead of him, watching Ben’s massive frame fill the short hallway she’d just walked through as he leaned against a nearby wall. His gaze grew curious as she sat down on a massive black couch, and clasped her hands together before leaning them against her knees. “Someone like you?” she asked quietly, then her friend stumbled forward from shock, disbelief written clearly across his face. “Ben?”

“I-I-I guess,” he sputtered, then he ran a hand through his hair, dark waves spilling over his face as he processed what she just said. “A-Rey-I—“

She stood up quickly, crossing the room to take his hands in hers as she pleaded with him to listen to her. “You don’t have to, but I just—I trust you more than anything and my other close friends are in London, so… can you help me?”

His breath hitched from a fresh wave of shock. “Help you with—with what?” 

“Sex. The whole thing. All of it. Or just whatever will make this believable.” She closed her eyes as she spoke, finding she didn’t quite have the courage to look into his. “If you’re up for it, that is.”

When she finally blinked her eyes open again, and looked at him, his expression was unreadable, but she could tell he was thinking about it. A hand had come up to scratch his head, and his eyebrows were pinched together in the way they always did when he was contemplating something. After what felt like an eternity, he slowly nodded. “Yeah, okay, sure whatever you need.”

“Awesome.”

“But we need to take it slow. Okay? We’ve got a week until the intimacy choreographer comes in, and we’ve got even more time after that to get a scene together,” he told her, then the hand she was still holding shifted so it was grasping her a little more firmly. “And I don’t want to rush you into anything.”

“Okay.”

He still looked nervous, but perhaps a bit more comfortable now. “You’re in charge, always and completely.” His entire chest shuddered on his next breath, and she began to wonder if he might’ve been more nervous than she was. “Rey, it’s all up to you. What we do, how we do it, when we start…” A pause. “When do you want to start?”

The answer came to her almost immediately. “Can we start tonight?” she asked, then before the surprise written on his face could turn itself into any sort of protest or question if she was sure, she held a finger over his lips. “I’m already here, we start rehearsing with a choreographer very soon, and if we’re starting small, then… let’s just jump right in.”

“Are you—?”

“I’m sure.” And she was. There wasn’t even a small part of her that didn’t want to do this. Ben had promised to take it slow, which meant she wasn’t exactly going to be losing her virginity so quickly if she started things with him tonight, and if she was being honest… those things he’d said about finding the right person had struck a chord with her. She wasn’t in love with him, or at least, she wasn’t aware of it if she was, but she knew she trusted him enough for this. 

She didn’t want to wait for anyone else. 

In front of her, Ben looked like he’d finally calmed down from his heart attack, and he gestured to the couch behind her. “We should um, we should sit down then, and I’ll uh… I’ll grab us some drinks—if I have anything that isn’t alcohol.”

“Why would it matter if we have alcohol?”

“I mean, if we have a little it’s probably fine, but it lowers your inhibitions and thus your ability to consent,” he said, then he shrugged. “I’m not exactly a sex expert, but I feel like that part’s pretty important.”

“Not a sex expert?” She walked over to the couch, sitting down as he walked into his kitchen, and opened up his fridge, pulling out two cans of coke before he shut it, and made his way back over to her. 

As he sat down beside her, he offered her a can, waiting for her to accept it before he got comfortable, and rested an arm lazily around her shoulders. Suddenly the whole situation felt a lot more real. “I just mean, yeah, I’ve done it a few times with a few different people, but I’m not the most experienced guy in Hollywood you could be doing this with.”

“I don’t think you need to be an expert,” she replied, then she took a sip of her coke. “I believe you said something about how I just need to trust you. And you clearly know more than me.”

A small laugh escaped him as he sipped his own drink. “That’s fair,” he replied, then he set the coke down, and his hand came up to caress one of her cheeks, nearly causing her to drop her can in the process. “But I trust you understand the basic mechanics. You’re not clueless yourself.”

“Yeah, but… what are you doing?” Aside from increasing her heart rate far too fast for it to be normal. A tiny shred of lingering dignity told her to set her coke down, and she did, then she let her hand fidget in her lap in time with her racing pulse. 

“If we’re going to do this, we’re going to do it right,” he told her, then he leaned forward until he was in her space, his eyes staring into hers as he moved close enough that she could lean forward and kiss her if he wanted to. Heat rushed through her veins as he moved, her breathing drifting over her lips in a quiver as she leaned into the touch, but still didn’t kiss him, not yet. The time would come soon but it was not quite upon them. “So I’m going to kiss you, if you’re all right with that. I’m going to kiss you as Ben Solo, and not Kylo Ren, and I want you to kiss me as Rey, not Kira.”

Chills ran up and down her spine as she processed his words. She’d kissed him dozens of times now in character; she knew how Kylo Ren kissed, what he liked, how to drive him mad with her tongue, but she knew nothing about Ben Solo. 

Suddenly, she was nervous again. 

“It’ll be okay, just trust me,” he whispered, then he was close enough that she closed her eyes as he said those last two words, knowing she trusted him more than anything. This was her best friend, the guy she drove to work with every day and told jokes with to the catering people, the guy who knew her deepest secrets and once held her hair back while she threw up in a toilet at an after party. He was fiercely loyal, willing to do anything to help her, and clearly loved her platonically at the very least. She could trust him. 

Rey nodded as his hand snaked its way to the base of her skull, fingers burying themselves in her hair as he pulled her in those last few inches. Her heart was thudding hard enough in her chest for her to feel it when she finally felt his lips brush over hers, and the wave finally crested, falling into calm water again as he kissed her, and the world was sent into a tailspin. 

Kissing Kylo Ren when she was Kira was a raw, intense, lust-induced needy thing that felt like a war for dominance as much as a desire to just be held by the person she loved. When it came to Ben Solo on the other hand, he was impossibly soft and tender, speaking love in a language that transcended speech as his lips caressed hers with the gentlest of touches. He took great care in every move he made, only holding control of the kiss until Rey’s confidence kicked in, then she returned exactly what she got. 

Something about it felt inexplicably wonderful in a way no other kiss had ever felt. Even as Ben wrapped an arm around her waist and began to lower her down onto the couch cushions, she still felt like she was floating. When she’d kissed other people or even him as Kylo and her other partners had done the same thing, something about it had always felt off, but that night when she had his weight pressing cautiously into her, she found she didn’t mind. It felt like she had found a blanket to keep her warm through a cold winter night, or like she’d managed to find cold water on a hot summer’s day. 

Kissing Ben felt like every sweet feeling of comfort wrapped into one, and she knew instantly she’d chosen the right person to embark on this adventure with. 

He broke the kiss briefly as he brought his legs onto the couch, gesturing for her to do the same so she was properly lying beneath him. “Can you, um, spread your legs? We’ll uh… fit better.”

The blush on her face must’ve covered her entire body, but she obeyed his request, parting her legs to allow him to fit better on top of her as they adjusted to this new position. The more he settled down onto her, the more she could feel his erection pressing against the apex of her thighs, and she shuddered at the feeling. He was already hard, and they’d only just started. To be fair to him though, it had been one hell of a kiss. It was, at the very least, nice to know he felt the same about it.

“Is this okay?” Ben asked her, his eyes full of caution. “Cause if you want to go back to what we were doing before—?”

“This is good,” she promised him, giving a hurried nod as she reburied her hands in his hair. “I promise, Ben, this is perfect.”

Still looking a bit worried, Ben leaned forward, and pressed his lips against hers in a short but sweet kiss. “Okay. Let me know if even a tiny part of you wants to stop.”

“I will.”

“Good, then follow my lead, and I promise, this’ll be way easier than you think,” he said softly, then he was kissing her again, and the entire world was spinning at the speed of light as she returned it. 

Not a second later, she gasped against his lips as she felt his hips shift, his erection grinding against her clit to send waves of pleasure through her that she’d only been able to accomplish with her hand. Regaining focus, she deepened the kiss again, and repeated the motion against him, suddenly understanding what he meant when he asked her to follow his lead as they began to grind against one another in earnest. She wasn’t sure precisely what it was they were doing, but she knew it felt good. It made her feel like all the synapses were firing in her brain and a thousand little lights were flickering in her vision as they found their rhythm. 

Soft moans escaped her into the kiss as his hands began to wander, pressing against her hips, her waist, grabbing at her hair, and gently grazing the edges of her chest as if asking permission. She gave it to him when she reached down and grabbed one of his hands, guiding it gently up to rest on the swell of one of her breasts as he continued his ministrations at the apex of her thighs. 

She could feel his smirk as he kissed her, then his lips disappeared from her mouth, leaving a trail down onto her neck as his thumb grazed over her nipple through the layers of her clothing. The feeling that brought her was surreal, unlike anything she’d ever felt, and she thought this must’ve been a dream. There had never been anything else in her twenty six years on this earth that had made her feel this good, and so she could only conclude that this wasn’t real. It couldn’t be. 

But it was. 

She was brought back to reality as Ben’s lips closed around her neck by her pulse point, and they began to suck a mark into her skin she was going to have a bitch of a time explaining to the makeup team in the morning, but she didn’t care. All the things that he was doing to her were making her feel as if she was flying. Each and every brush of his lips against her skin, his fingers over her breasts, or the sweet friction he was creating with their jeans made her feel things she’d never felt before, and already yearned to feel again.  

As if compelled to do so, one of her legs hooked around one of his, pulling him even closer as her orgasm started building. She wasn’t aware of exactly how close she was, but she knew it wouldn’t be long before she came apart. Between each kiss that Ben pressed to her skin, each mark he left, she could hear them both becoming short of breath, and she wondered how close he was as well. Was he on the edge like her? Was he slowly losing his grip on his control? 

Ben, ” she whispered as she felt his teeth tug gently at her ear lobe, then another mark was sucked just a little ways down as he moaned against her skin. 

His movements were becoming a little messier, too. Ben was close, maybe even as close as she was, and she started to think that maybe, just maybe, they’d fall over the precipice together. The thought of it seemed frighteningly intimate, but wasn’t the very thing they were doing exactly that? Wasn’t this whole arrangement frighteningly intimate even if they didn’t have romantic feelings for each other? 

“Ben, I’m gonna— fuck, I’m gonna come,” she breathed, and in response his lips found hers again in a searing kiss that had her seeing stars in her vision. It felt like when she stood up too fast and felt dizzy but in a good way, like when she fell on one of those drop towers at an amusement park but without the nausea. 

It pushed her over the edge, and she came with a muffled cry against his mouth as he continued grinding against her, causing her orgasm to rush through her in waves that had her pulling back from the kiss to gasp for air. His face buried itself in her neck as he worked her through it, every thrust of his hips getting more erratic as he brought himself closer to finishing, then as hers began to ebb and fade, she heard him whisper her name against her skin as he came too. She bucked her hips against his to give him that extra friction through his orgasm, her sensitive clit sending more waves of almost agonizing pleasure through her body until she knew he was completely spent. 

Only then did either of them stop moving, both lying still save for the heaving of their chests as they fought to fill their lungs with oxygen. A bead of sweat dripped down from her forehead as they laid there like that, and she initially reached up to wipe it away, but instead wound up stroking Ben’s hair as she felt him shudder on top of her. Perhaps that was a touch too intimate for two friends who were just hooking up, but she didn’t care. He’s just become the person with whom she shared her first sexual encounter, the first person to make her come besides herself, and she figured it was the least she could do for him. 

A minute later, Ben pulled away, propping himself on his elbows as he looked at her through hooded eyes and hair that was thoroughly sex tangled. The expression on his face was unreadable, but it wasn’t judgemental at the very least. Eventually, it gave way to satisfaction as he stared down at her, the hand on her breast sliding over to rest over her beating heart before ascending to her neck, his fingers sweeping over his pulse point before they wrapped around the juncture of her neck and spine, and he pulled her in for a lazy, slow kiss that seemed to make time itself stand still. 

Rey’s eyes drifted shut as she kissed him back, the hand in his hair bringing him in close again as she felt his weight settle over her. Maybe that should’ve felt overbearing, maybe it should’ve made her feel like she couldn’t breathe or that she couldn’t escape, but it felt fucking nice. It felt amazing in ways she couldn’t even describe, and if this was how their first encounter where she had absolutely no experience had gone, she wondered what it would be like by the time they filmed their sex scene. 

“When we get on camera,” Ben started, interrupting her thoughts as he pulled away, and gazed at her through half-lidded eyes once more. “When we’re filming, I want you to think of that, I want you to do that, except our bodies won’t actually be touching there. But I want you to remember how this feels, because that’s what you and I both need to channel.”

She nodded. “Of course,” she said breathlessly. “Yeah, I can do that.”

“I know you can.” Then he backed away entirely, seeming to snap out of the post-coital haze that had developed between them. “Cause shit, Rey, you’re a natural.”

She rolled her eyes as they both sat up again, stretching out their newly sore muscles as time passed. “You’re just being nice to me.”

“No.” He shook his head as he rested a hand on her shoulder. “I mean it. You… I haven’t come that hard in ages. Are you sure you’ve never done this before?”

A small giggle escaped her as she shoved him playfully. “Shut up.” She was blushing. She could feel that she was blushing, but she couldn’t be bothered to care as Ben gave her that dopey, sweet grin he was known for, and gently rubbed her shoulder. “You meant it then?”

“Every word.”

“Good,” she replied, then she leaned back against the couch cushions with a sigh. “Cause this is only the beginning.”

Chapter Text

The next morning, Rey woke up in an unfamiliar place with sounds and smells she didn’t recognize, and for a split second, she felt panicky. The bed she was in definitely wasn’t hers, but upon further inspection—also known as actually waking up—she realized she’d fallen asleep in Ben’s apartment the night before. 

Her head fell back against the pillow with a sigh as the memories of yesterday filled her brain. Everything from being told she and Ben were going to have to film a sex scene to actually dry humping him on his couch flooded the forefront of her mind, and while she didn’t exactly mind that last bit, it certainly threw her for a loop to remember. It still didn’t feel real, it still didn’t feel like something that had actually happened to her. 

But it had. It was real, and she undoubtedly had the hickeys to prove it. 

Realizing this, her eyes snapped open again as she realized that she and Ben had both left marks on one another last night. They’d both marked each other and she was—yep—wearing the same clothes as yesterday. That wasn’t going to look suspicious when they strolled into work later. Not at all. There definitely wouldn’t be set gossip about the two of them hooking up—absolutely not. 

Her hand came up to rest on her forehead as she sighed, and thought through the last few crucial details of the plan they’d come up with right before he’d made her come harder than her own hand ever had. They hadn’t exactly talked about how public they were willing to be with this yet, and she didn’t exactly want to be hounded by reporters with questions about whether or not she was dating her costar. Technically she wasn’t, but some people didn’t realize dating and fucking were two different things. 

They needed to talk about that and they needed to talk about it very, very soon. 

The smell of bacon drifted in from the kitchen, distracting her from her thoughts as she sat up in bed, and rubbed her eyes. It seemed that Ben—who had elected to sleep on the couch the night before and cited keeping her comfortable as his top priority—had woken up before she had, which was a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, she no longer had to awkwardly sneak past him to make breakfast but on the other hand, she wasn’t quite sure she was ready to face him yet. 

All the memories rushing through her head still had her blushing, but she figured the heat in her cheeks wouldn’t die down before they had to be on set—she glanced at the clock on his bedside table—within the hour. Not completely, not enough for him not to know what she was thinking about. And thus she was forced to put on a brave face, toss aside the sheets, and get out of bed to confront Ben. 

There was one last moment of hesitation as her fingers wrapped around the door knob, then she pushed it open, letting the smell of bacon envelop her completely as she walked into Ben’s living room. The man himself had his back turned to her and both hands were occupied as he cooked breakfast—presumably for the both of them if the amount of bacon on the pan was anything to go by—with a concentrated sort of tension in the muscles of his shoulders. She only knew this because she could see every muscle as it rippled beneath his skin, his lack of a shirt providing her a clear view of what she’d only ever seen done up by makeup artists. She’d never seen his chest or back when it wasn’t oiled up and covered in scar makeup, and for some reason seeing it now made her breath hitch. 

Of course, that sound alerted him to the fact that she was there, and she fought the urge to wince at herself as he tossed her a glance over his shoulder, and gave her a smile that had charmed the hearts of millions. Shit , right now it was charming her. “How’d you sleep?”

“Decently enough,” she replied, grateful she didn’t stutter as she walked up to his kitchen counter and leaned against it, her eyes drifting over the clothed half of Ben as he returned to cooking. Luckily, his lower half was covered by thick pajama pants with Mickey Mouse print that covered every inch of his legs. The sight of it caught her off guard, and she laughed out loud as her eyes drifted back up. “Nice trousers.”

“They’re Gwen’s,” he explained, then he reached forward to shut off the stove as the bacon finished cooking. “Stole them from her place after one too many tequila shots at the season two wrap party.”

Another chuckle. “Ah, I see. Does she know you have them?”

“No, and I want to keep it that way.” He pointed a spatula in her direction, a sternness in his eyes as he looked at her, but she could see a tiny smile threatening to part his lips. “You spill a word of this to Gwen, I’ll kill you.”

Her eyes rolled back in her head, but she nodded. “Okay, I know nothing,” she promised him. “Not a word.”

Ben straightened up, and turned his attention back on the bacon, distributing it to two plates with fried eggs already patiently waiting on them before he laid the spatula and pan on the stove, and handed her one of them. “Good, then we need to eat quickly. We’ve gotta be on set—“

“Within the hour,” she finished for him, then she bowed her head. “I know.” As Ben smiled at her and put his plate down on the counter, she cleared her throat, remembering the thing she still needed to talk to him about. “Ben? What are we going to do about the set?”

“What do you mean?” His mouth was already full of bacon, and his mumbled speech was rather endearing, but she couldn’t let herself get distracted. They needed to talk about this now and they didn’t have a whole lot of time to do it. 

“I mean, it’s going to look suspicious when we show up today covered in hickeys and I’m wearing yesterday’s clothes.” She inhaled slowly, then she grabbed hold of the fork he’d given her, twirling it casually in the air. “So what do you want to do?”

Realization dawned on his face, then he thought for a moment as he took another bite of his bacon, and held up a finger. “Let’s… try to tell as few people as possible, and if anyone asks, let’s just say we were bored. Unless you’re comfortable with everyone knowing why we’re really doing this.”

She shook her head. “No, it was weird enough telling you.”

“Oh.”

Noticing how that sounded, she quickly corrected herself, “I just mean, you saw how much I struggled to get it out yesterday, so… let’s keep things… quiet? But, just so you know, I don’t regret last night.”

“No?”

“Not at all,” she admitted, then she ran a hand through her hair as the blush threatened to bloom on her cheeks again. “I had a lot of fun, actually.”

A tiny smile tugged at the corners of his mouth, then he laughed as he took another bite of bacon. “Well, that’s good, if you’re not having fun, you shouldn’t be doing it.”  He wiped a bit of grease from his chin, then his expression turned serious. “And, Rey?”

“Hmm?” 

“If there’s ever a moment during any of this when you feel uncomfortable, just tell me and we’ll stop.” 

“I know,” she replied, then she glanced at the time on the clock over his stove. “But we don’t really have time for another lecture right now, so let’s eat and run.”

Ben looked back at the clock, then he shuddered, not even bothering to nod in agreement before they both dove into the plates of food he’d set out for them. She was fairly positive that neither of them really tasted their breakfasts as they scarfed down their food, he changed his clothes, then they hurriedly grabbed their things as they rushed out the door, and made their way to his elevators. 

“Whose car are we taking?” she asked, remembering hers was still there since she’d never gone home the night before. 

“You mind driving? That way tonight you can actually drop me off and… go home to change.”

Rey rolled her eyes as he pressed the down button, then she leaned against the wall as she glared at him. “I’m going to costuming first fucking thing. I’m not letting everyone see that I’m wearing the same clothes.”

“Maybe take off the jacket, it’ll be less noticeable.”

A scoff was thrown his way as the doors opened, and the two of them walked on. She watched him as he pressed the button for the ground floor, finding herself slightly bitter from the smirk that has blossomed on his face. “Next time we do this, it’ll be at my place so you can do the walk of shame.”

Ben snorted as the doors closed, and the elevator moved down, taking them back down to the parking lot. They fell quiet after that, but she still felt perfectly at peace if a little bit flushed standing at his side. Every time she remembered how his lips felt on her neck, her shoulder, her mouth, she felt a fresh wave of heat light up her cheeks, and she was forced to look away from him, even when they walked out to her car together. 

She couldn’t put her finger on just why she couldn’t stop thinking about it, but she wanted to chalk it up to her own inexperience. That had been the first time she’d ever been with anyone like that, and sure, she and Ben hadn’t had sex, but the encounter still carried some sort of emotional weight to it she wasn’t sure she understood yet. Whatever it was, she was certain it was stealing her thoughts. Figuring it out, though, was something she knew she wasn’t ready for. 

As they drove to work that morning, he definitely wasn’t helping her to avoid being distracted. At every traffic light they stopped at, she could feel him staring at her, but not her face. No, his gaze had fallen down to her neck, and by the third light, she knew what he was looking at. “They’re that obvious, huh?”

“Yeah, sorry about that,” he mumbled, and when she spared him a glance, he was the one blushing. “I’ll try to be better at the placement next time, but you might have to take off more clothes.”

If they’d been moving, she would’ve crashed the car. “Jesus Christ, Ben.”

“Sorry.”

“But um… I should tell you I don’t mind the hickeys either. They, uh, they felt good.” They felt more than good, they’d had her sighing against him, whispering his name like it was a prayer—definitely more than good. “So yes, be more careful next time, but… I don’t mind them.”

He shifted in his seat, then he nodded. “That’s fair,” he replied, and she couldn’t help the giggle that escaped her as the light turned green again, and she drove them the rest of the way to work. 

*

Walking through the production studio that morning had Rey’s heart rate at a ridiculously unsafe number, but somehow she made it to the makeup trailer in one piece. In fact, she was only the second person there, the other was Gwen, who regarded her with a small grunt as their makeup artist, Paige Tico powdered her nose with a brush a touch too big for the job. Resisting the urge to laugh again, she set down her things as she sat down in a nearby chair, being greeted warmly by Paige’s sister, Rose as she did. “How’s it going?”

The shorter of the Tico sisters shrugged. “Still breathing, you know?”

She coughed out a small laugh as the makeup artist began to prep her things. “Yeah, I’ve been there.”

“Looks like you’re not there now, though,” Rose said, the smirk on her face lacing her voice without Rey having to look at her. “Who gave you those?”

An exasperated sigh left her lips. She’d known this was coming, had anticipated being asked questions, but she still wasn’t quite ready for them when they finally came. This wasn’t exactly a situation she’d ever had to deal with before. Suddenly feeling thoroughly sixteen again, she hid her face as best she could as Rose began to apply primer with a little foundation brush. “Someone.”

“Yeah, but who ?” Cool, wet cream product began to coat her face as her friend spoke, sounding more excited than Rey had been nervous the night before. “You never go out, I’m just kind of surprised.”

She wasn’t wrong. “Yeah, I know, I was just… um… fooling around.”

From where she sat with Paige, Gwen snorted. “Just fooling around? Is that what we’re calling it these days?”

“I don’t know, as Rose so kindly pointed out—“

“You’re welcome.”

“—it’s not something I do every day. I wouldn’t know what we’re calling it these days.”

Another chuckle left Gwen as she closed her eyes, allowing Paige to line them with a brown pencil. “Was it nice, at least?”

Nice didn’t even begin to describe it. What had happened on Ben’s couch the night before was transcendent, it made her feel like she was floating, like she was the atoms that drifted about in the air. It had made her forget that the rest of the world even existed, and she never wanted to stop feeling like that ever again. “It was great,” she said casually, but she could feel her poker face failing her as Rose began to apply foundation. “Really great.”

“Oh that isn’t the face of someone who thinks it was ‘just great,’” she protested, dabbing a little more pigment onto Rey’s skin. “There’s more, you’re just not saying it.”

“To be fair, she isn’t obligated to,” Gwen pointed out, though not unkindly. “What Rey does in her spare time isn’t our business… even though I’ll admit I am dying to know the identity of whoever’s got her tongue tied.”

Rose pointed to Gwen as she broke away from Rey’s face. “That’s fair, but maybe she’ll give us a hint.” She then turned back to the woman in front of her. “Do we know the person you hooked up with?”

That much she could tell them. There were hundreds of people involved in the set and more that everyone knew from outside the set. If she said something, then that would surely be harmless, right? “Yeah, you know him.”

“Him, huh?” Rose asked curiously, then she reached for her powder. “Is he someone in the cast or crew?”

“She said only one hint, Rose,” Paige replied, tossing Rey a small nod the moment she saw the other woman starting to become uncomfortable. “If it’s someone on set we’ll figure it out cause he’ll have hickeys too, right?”

She froze, feeling like a deer in headlights as she remembered the marks she’d left on Ben’s neck. They were definitely visible, and anyone looking at his skin—like a makeup artist— would be able to tell what they were. Shit. She shouldn’t have even given them one hint. “Yeah, I guess he would.” 

Rose snickered quietly. “What is he on a scale of one to ten?” 

“Not telling.”

Before either of them could protest, Gwen caught Rey’s eyes, and in a brief half second of understanding, she read the panic in them loud and clear. “Shit, I think some mascara just got on my eyelid,” she muttered, then she tapped Paige gently on the arm. “Can you have a look?”

Relief surged through her as Paige became occupied with the mascara problem, then Rose seemed to snap into focus as a result, beginning work on Rey’s eyes just a few seconds later with a whispered apology. 

*

It wasn’t until Rey got out of the makeup trailer that she finally felt like she could breathe. Hell, it wasn’t until she was suited up in her armor, drinking a powerade that she’d obtained from a vending machine as she walked onto the set—the temple set, where Poe had told her she and Ben’s characters would be making love in just a matter of weeks—sitting down on one of the ledges surrounding the medieval looking center. For the first time in what felt like forever, she was alone, and she liked it that way. She needed a minute to breathe, to prepare for any future questions that she might receive on set. 

Luckily, her armor hid most of her hickeys rather well, and if it didn’t, Rose’s foundation job rendered them invisible to the eye. It made her feel almost proud, like she had some kind of a secret hidden in plain sight. Technically, it was a secret, but only in the sense that no one knew who’d given her the hickeys in the first place. 

Said secret walked into the temple dressed in his own armor a few minutes later, his hair mussed just a little more than usual to give it the volume that was desired for television’s favorite dark knight. His black chest plate gleamed in the lights that had been turned on in advance of filming, and it only shone more as the crew began to light the lanterns posted all around the circular rim of the building. After all, in the world their characters lived in, electricity wasn’t exactly an option. 

Ben watched them for a minute under her gaze, his eyes staring at them almost in wonder as they turned the normal world into something out of a fantasy with the lights. The look in his eyes almost made him look like Kylo Ren, almost made him look like a forbidden lover meeting someone for a midnight rendezvous, and he was eagerly anticipating her arrival.

Then he looked over and those eyes were on her, but they didn’t hold the affection of a lover, they held the warmth of a friend. His face lit up when he saw her, and he immediately walked over, strolling up casually until he was able to rest a palm on an enormous, circular column that rose from floor to ceiling, and lean against it. “How’s it going?” he asked, and his voice was sincere, he wasn’t just asking to make small talk. 

Still it stunned her to hear it, to hear him be so casual after what they’d done—after he’d made her come so hard she’d seen stars, and hadn’t she done the same for him? “I-I’m fine.” 

“Sorry I couldn’t join you in makeup this morning, Poe wanted me to run through some stunts for later,” he told her, then he crossed his arms, leaning his entire right side against the column. “I talked to Gwen, though, a few minutes ago.”

“Oh?”

“I heard about Rose and Paige asking you about the…” He gestured to his neck. “I got the impression you were prodded a bit more than you would’ve liked.”

“It’s fine, I can handle it, I just… it was the first time I’ve ever had that problem.” A blush crept up her cheeks, and she turned her face to the shadows in the hopes that he didn’t see it. “I’m not used to it yet, is all.”

He managed a soft chuckle. “Fair enough. Maybe we can work through practicing your reactions tonight,” he said, then he ran a hand awkwardly through his hair. “Especially because we’re about to spend half the day kissing. Figure we can take a break from…”

“That depends on how we’re feeling. If you’re up for it and I’m up for it, maybe we could—I don’t know—repeat last night?” She gave him a cautious glance, unsure how he’d react to her propositioning him again, but he was grinning when she saw his face. Not just grinning, but nodding. “Awesome, it’s a…” She didn’t want to say date. It wasn’t a date. It definitely wasn’t a date, but that was the phrase, wasn’t it?

“It’s a plan,” Ben finished for her, relieving her of the pressure of finishing that sentence. Before he could say anything else, more crew members began to make their presence known, and Poe walked into the room with the episode’s director, a stocky, bald man who simply went by his last name of Ackbar, and they knew that the time to begin filming had come. 

“Catch you later?” Rey asked, feeling her heartbeat pick up again as he tossed her a wink before walking away. 

He was going to be the death of her, and so was this scene they were supposed to film. Combined, the two things were going to kill her, of that much she was certain as she stood up, and followed him into the center of the temple to begin filming the scene. 

*

At the end of the day when they were done filming, out of costumes, and ready to go home, Rey’s lips still felt thoroughly kiss swollen in spite of it having been at least two hours since they’d stopped kissing. The scene they’d filmed was one of the most romantically intense they’d filmed so far. Hearing Ben--Kylo--confess his love for her before asking her to stay with him and kissing her senseless over and over had a dizzying effect. 

But the effect wasn’t a bad one. Not by a long shot. No, she loved how she felt in the aftermath of his kisses, even though she’d been so thoroughly in character, she knew the aftermath really belonged to someone else. It belonged to Kira, but she got to experience the benefits of it, got to reap the joy of someone else’s high. 

Sometimes, she really loved her job. 

After she got the last piece of her armor off, Rey made her way over to Ben’s trailer, tapping her knuckles on it three times before her slightly sweaty best friend revealed himself to her with a grin on his face. “Hey.” His deep voice sounded sleepy, drawing out the word a bit as he opened the door, and stepped out into the cool autumn air.

“Did you take a nap in your trailer again?” she asked him, biting her lip as she fought the urge to laugh. 

A rush of hot air from his heated trailer—the idiot always kept his air conditioning running above seventy-eight the second temperatures started to plummet—accompanied him as he continued to depart his trailer, just remembering to close his door behind him as he scratched the back of his head. “I might have.” There was a sheepish look on his face, which she found oddly endearing as he walked down onto the ground with her. “Couch is comfy.”

Rey just rolled her eyes, then she twirled her car keys around on her finger. “So, I’m thinking as a matter of convenience, we head to your place, hang out there for a while, then I’ll head out when it starts getting late.” She then looked at him, curious about the frown that appeared on his face. “What?”

“You’re more than welcome to stay the night, Rey,” he told her, talking with his hands as well as they made their way toward the parking lot. “You know that.”

She shook her head, laughing as she tried to think up a response. “I can’t keep pulling overnighters at your place. People will…” She gesticulated wildly, attempting to mimic people speaking as best she could. “They’ll talk.”

“They already do just because we drive each other to work all the time,” he pointed out, but then he bowed his head, acknowledging her request in silence. “But sure. Just drive home safe.”

“I live only a few blocks away, Ben.”

“Right.” He ran a hand through his hair again, the way he always did when he was feeling a bit awkward, then they walked to her car in silence. 

*

“So how do you think it’ll happen?” Ben asked her midway through the drive, interrupting a conversation about whether or not Ed Sheeran’s music was actually any good. 

Rey scoffed from shock. “Well, that was sudden.”

A small chuckle fell from his lips. “I didn’t even say what it was.”

That was a fair point, but ever since they’d found out about the scene in the first place, it had hung over them like a dark—but not unpleasant—cloud that was thick and heavy with rain, threatening to pour at any minute. It lingered in the space between them, filling the air like atoms, and surrounding them with an all-encompassing sense of anticipation. “Then you must assume I’m a fool.”

“On the contrary, you’re one of the smartest people I’ve ever met,” he protested, then he leaned his head back against the seat. “But how do you think it’ll happen? I know they said it’ll be in the temple, but what do you think we’ll be doing in there that leads to…”

The corners of her mouth twitched into a smile. “I think we’ll be in parlay again. Meeting in secret. Since it’s the mid-season finale, we’ll probably be on the verge of some great battle, one where we think we won’t see each other again after that night, and thinking we have no other chance to be with one another like that again, we’ll rush into each other’s arms.”

There was a pause, then Ben hummed his assent. “Yeah, that’s probably right. Or we could both show up with the intent to pray and then— boom!— we commit sacrilege.”

“I must admit, there’s something kind of epic about them doing this in a place of worship. We’re probably going to be crucified by certain conservative religious groups.” 

Ben sputtered out a laugh. “As if we aren’t already.”

She grinned as she pulled onto his street. “Fair enough. Remember when they decided to protest and only two nutjobs with signs stormed the studio?”

At this, he gasped mockingly, clutching his chest casually with both hands as his eyes rolled back into his head. “The horror.”

They both fell into another fit of laughter, then the conversation faded off into a comfortable silence as they pulled into the parking lot, and Rey began to search for a spot. 

*

Ten minutes later they were in his living room again sitting side by side on the couch. At least, they were after Ben handed her a freshly brewed cup of coffee, which definitely wouldn’t help her jangled nerves, but given the exhausting day they’d had, she needed energy if she was going to drive home after this, and she was determined to drive home after this. 

“Thanks,” she said, then she took a sip of her coffee. 

“You’ve driven me to work two days in a row.” He gave a shrug, then he leaned back into the couch, sighing as his whole body relaxed. “Least I could do.”

“Just drive me to work two days in a row, and we’ll call it even.”

“Fair enough.”

Ben shifted onto his side then, staring at her for a moment before he swallowed, the action drawing her attention to his throat, where she could see a few of the marks she’d left on him peppered across his skin. “So what—“ A nervous laugh escaped him. “What did you want to um… do tonight?”

Hearing this nearly made her spit out her coffee. “ What?

“I just mean, the reason we started all this. We don’t have to do anything if you don’t want to, but… you’re here, and—“

“I am,” she interrupted, then she began to rack her brain for ideas. “Just give me a minute.” Shit. What the hell did people do? She’d absolutely loved what they’d done last night, and if she were being honest, she’d be perfectly content to repeat it until the day she died, but she also wanted to learn and there was only so much time before that scene they had to film. Could she technically go without this? Film the scene without ever having sex with Ben? Sure, but just the one hookup they’d had so far had felt absolutely fantastic. It was the sort of thing she wanted to repeat again and again. 

Suddenly, an idea came to her mind, and she could see the minute he recognized it forming on her face. “What?”

She could only manage another awkward sound that resembled the vaguest hints of a laugh as she looked down to the ground. “Last night was fun, really fun,” she told him, her eyes avoiding his the entire time. “But the one thing that I regret, the one thing I probably wasn’t ready for to be quite honest, was… you never touched me.” Her breathing came a little faster at the thought of what she wanted him to do to her. “Your hands… your skin, it never…”

“What are you saying?” His eyes were dark when she finally glanced up to meet them, his lips parted ever so slightly as if he were preparing to say something, to give her an answer before he even heard her whole proposition. 

“Can you—“ She lost her ability to speak for a second, a nervous giggle falling from her lips as she shook her head. “Can you do that to me again—what you did last night—but um, use your fingers? I’ve heard… I’ve heard it’s, um, nice.”

He blinked a few times, then he caught on. “You want me to fuck you with my fingers?” His voice shook on every word, and there was a sort of awe in his eyes, as if she’d just offered him something utterly divine. “Rey…”

“Only if you want to,” she reminded him. “But I don’t know, I feel like—I feel like that’d be a good next step in…” She gestured between them. “Gaining more experience.” 

A shiver passed through him, and something about that pleased her, something about having that sort of effect on him made her feel powerful. Several seconds went by before he seemed capable of a response, and even then, his lower lip quivered before he gave her a nod. “Okay.” He was barely whispering, his voice was so quiet she barely heard him, but she had heard him. 

“Okay?” she asked, daring to move a little closer to him, shifting along the couch until her thighs were brushing up against his. 

One of his hands came up to caress her cheek, stopping her in her movements but not pushing her away. Much to her surprise, he used that to his advantage, answering her question, providing his final yes by slowly leaning in, and bringing his lips to hers. 

It was the second time she’d kissed him as herself and not Kira, the second time he’d kissed her as Ben Solo and not Kylo,  and the second time they’d kissed without layers of armor or thick, medieval clothing between them. Part of her was shaken to the core at that realization, but the rest was leaning into the kiss, reveling in it, bathing in the warmth of the sunlight they’d let in. She was dizzy and drunk on it within seconds, fingers coming up to weave in his hair, tangling themselves in the raven waves as his other arm wrapped around her waist, pulling her onto his lap. 

The new position was… different. It wasn’t unpleasant, it was actually rather enjoyable, but it was different. Something about being above him, on top of him, filled her with an adrenaline surge that made her feel powerful, like she was every bit as intense and awe inducing as the character she played on television. The feeling only grew more as the arm around her waist lifted her further as he leaned back, and she parted her legs, letting them rest on either side of his— straddling him. 

Now she could feel his warmth at the apex of her thighs. It reminded her a bit of last night, they’d been kissing just like this, electricity coursing through her veins as his lips caressed hers as if he was already making love to her, as if just kissing her was an act more intimate than sex. Only this time she was on top of him instead of him being on top of her. 

Did he like that? Having her on top of him? Having her grip his hair tight while her hips rolled against his? While she rocked against the erection she could feel pressing against her clothed entrance?

If the moan he let out a few seconds later was anything to go by, he definitely did. He was enjoying this just as much as she was, if not more, and that delighted her. 

That thrilled her. 

One of Ben’s hands reached down, leaving her cheen to brush over the swell of her breasts, fingertips ghosting over her t-shirt as he made his way toward her jeans. More shivers ran down her spine as he took the button of them between his index finger and his thumb, and pushed it through the little slit in the fabric. His kisses abandoned her lips then, moving down to her neck--but not lingering to leave marks--as he then reached for the fly, the tiny golden zipper coming undone in one fell swoop before his hands both reached for the waistband of her jeans, and began to pull them down a little. 

Just as nerves started to overtake her at the thought of her lower half being completely exposed in front of him, he paused, and pulled away from her neck to look at her with kindness in his eyes. An undercurrent of desire still lingered, but they were largely full of sincerity and wonder. “Do you want me to stop?”

“What?” she asked, feeling dazed from the lack of oxygen caused by kissing him. “N-no! Don’t-Don’t stop.” She leaned forward, pulling him into a searing, but brief kiss before she backed away, looking into his eyes with every bit of courage she could muster. “Don’t you stop until I tell you to.”

Nodding, he leaned back, watching as she backed away, nearly pulling off of him completely as she yanked off her shoes and socks, then she reached for the waistband of her jeans. Closing her eyes, she pulled them down, opting to leave her underwear on—he could just move it aside, couldn’t he?—since she wasn’t quite ready to completely expose everything yet. 

Luckily, Ben was quite possibly the most understanding partner in the history of the world, and he gave her a tiny hint of a smile as she kicked the denim aside, and resumed straddling his hips. He wrapped his arms around her, pulling her into what almost felt like an embrace as he held her close. “Is this okay?”

She nodded, barely resisting the urge to stroke his hair as she leaned in closer. “It’s perfect,” she whispered, then she was kissing him again, then her fingers became more tangled in his dark, wavy locks, and her hips rocked against his anew.  

The hands at her back shifted back down to her hips, and he seemed to be taking his sweet time as they glided over the newly bared skin of her upper thighs, not wanting to rush her into this too quickly even though at this point, she desperately, desperately wished he would. Kissing him, grinding against him felt nice, but she wanted more. 

He’d already gotten her addicted to his touch, and this was just the second time they’d hooked up. 

She gasped into the kiss as his fingers began to skim along the inside of her thigh, her entire body just barely holding back a quiver as she thought about what he was going to do to her. 

Her sudden, sharp intake of oxygen caused Ben to grin against her lips before he moved his kisses down, pressing feather-light touches to the column of her throat. Eyes rolling back in her head, Rey forced herself to take in air, to breathe normally as his fingers got closer and closer to where she wanted them most--to where they both wanted them most. 

Just before they reached the apex of her thighs, his fingers lingered, hovering just out of reach. They were so agonizingly close that she could feel their heat, could almost feel their touch, and if she shifted just a millimeter forward, she would finally get what she wanted, he would finally be touching her. “Ben.” 

His name was an order, a demand to move forward, and with a twitch of the corner of his mouth that she could feel against her pulse point, she finally felt his fingers brush up against her clit through her underwear, and she sighed delightedly as he began to create sweet, sweet friction. 

Fuck, he was good at this. Well, she hadn’t had any experience before him aside from her own hand, but somehow, in spite of starting with a slow, steady pace, Ben had her feeling better than her trusted left index and middle fingers ever had. 

And he’d only just started to rub her fucking clit. She was probably going to die, he was going to kill her, and she was going to thank him for it. 

After about a minute, his fingers moved on from simply stroking her clit, shifting smoothly down to her entrance, nearly making her choke on her own breath as he felt her through the fabric. “ Christ, you’re wet, Rey,” he breathed, and she started to think that maybe this would kill him, too. Mutually assured destruction. “So fucking wet.”

She could feel what he was talking about, could feel the dampness of the fabric against the skin between her thighs, could feel the arousal rushing through her whole body. He’d done that to her, he’d made her like this, and he was about to make it worse—or since she was enjoying it, was it better?

He pulled away from her neck to look at her, and she watched him studying her face carefully as his fingers reached for the edge of the fabric. It felt like she could see into his mind, could see his every intent as he brushed the cotton aside, and she felt his fingers pressing against her entrance. It was no surprise when his first finger slipped inside of her, but she still closed her eyes against the feeling, her lower lip trembling, but she made no sound. It was no surprise when that finger sank a little further inside of her, feeling foreign and wonderful all the same. 

Breathing in deeply, Rey held onto him a little more tightly, grounding herself as that finger pressed further and further inside of her. He pushed it in all the way to the knuckle, holding it there for a split second as if to evaluate how she was feeling, to give her time to adjust to it even though it was just one finger. Sure, it was almost as thick as two of her fingers combined, but she felt confident enough to take another or at least ask him to start moving.

Apparently Ben was much more intuitive than she’d ever thought, because the second she opened her eyes again, he began to move that finger, pumping it slowly in and out of her as his thumb came up to rub her clit, and her head began to spin. 

It was easily the best she’d ever felt, and he’d only just started. He’d started a fire in her that she never wanted to put out, and as she rode his finger, she found herself delighted to be swept up in its smoke. 

Soft moans escaped her lips, but those were quickly silenced by her inability to vocalize anything once his lips found hers again, and the searing intensity of his next kiss sent her brain into a frenzy. 

Everything felt like too much to process, and she wasn’t really sure how it could get any better as his finger fucked her a little faster, a little harder, reaching further inside her than she ever had. She was quickly proven wrong. 

Ben’s kiss grew deeper as he pressed another finger inside of her, and this time, he was the one who moaned even though she was the one being pleasured, even though he was teasing her. She swore against his lips at the sound, committing it to memory, listening to it echo in her head as she resumed kissing him, reveling in the combined feeling of his lips on hers and his fingers shifting inside of her, curling in a way that made her want to scream. 

What they’d done the night before had exposed her to what felt like another world, but they’d only barely touched, and there had been no skin to skin contact. There was nothing quite like his skin against hers, quite like the feeling of his fingers slipping in and out of her, and a shiver rushed down her spine as she wondered what it would feel like with his cock in place of his hand. Would she survive such a thing? Would he survive it?

She heard him whisper her name, breaking the kiss briefly to utter the singular syllable before he dove back in, almost making her wonder why he’d done it as she started to lose control of her thoughts. 

As the time passed, she could feel herself growing close, her orgasm building steadily like a slow moving wave. Any minute now she was going to come, she was sure of it, and as tiny little moans, soft little whimpers left her mouth, he pulled away from her again, his eyes hooded but still attentive. Confusion barely passed over her mind before she realized he wanted to see it, he wanted to watch as she came undone. He wanted to bear witness to this, to see her face in a way he hadn’t been able to the night before. 

“Do it,” he whispered, as if they were playing a game of truth or dare. Maybe they were, and she just hadn’t realized it. “ Do it.”

His voice was lower the second time he said it, and that sent another rush of arousal through her— that sent her over the edge, and she came on his fingers with a shaky gasp, and a whisper that sounded vaguely like his name. Her eyes shut involuntarily, her head leaning back as he continued his ministrations through it all, whispering things to her that she thought might’ve been encouragements, but couldn’t quite tell, couldn’t quite process as waves of sheer pleasure rushed through her whole body. 

“Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck…” She couldn’t think of any word but one. She couldn’t understand any words either. Her mind was soup, and soup didn’t have coherent thoughts. 

Nothing comprehensible formed in her brain for what felt like an eternity. Hell, all her senses felt off. Dots were prominent in her vision, the colorful kind that appeared when she stood up too fast and there wasn’t enough blood in her brain. 

Several seconds went by where both of them were just panting, breathing impossibly hard as she came down from her high, and her eyes finally blinked open, like she’d been asleep for too long. Another shudder passed through her at the look in his eyes, the mischief, the satisfaction, and the desire in them almost overwhelming to process as she finally regained control of her thoughts. She had just come, but somehow, he was the one who looked like he’d been thoroughly fucked. 

The hand that was still on her back drifted up to her waist, holding her still as he removed his fingers, earning him one last moan from her before she fell quiet again as he brought them to his lips. Her heart was pounding as she watched him, pumping blood through her body at a rate she knew was unhealthy as he brought those fingers into his mouth, and his cheeks hollowed as he sucked them clean, groaning softly as he did so.  

“Why—why’d you do that?” she asked breathlessly. 

“Wanted to,” he replied, his voice casual as he stared at her, still smirking like he was the devil as his hand rested on her hip. “You okay?”

She nodded. “I feel—I feel great… I… thank you.”

A small hum that sounded vaguely like a laugh left him, then he leaned back against the couch. “I bet you do.”

Oh, she wanted to wipe that smug look off his face, but when it was accompanied by those kiss swollen lips and his mussed hair, she couldn’t find it in herself to be mad at him. Instead, she just scoffed, and fought back the urge to kiss him again as she rolled off of him so she was sitting by his side on the couch. “You’re a dickhead.”

He laughed openly, his whole body shaking as he turned to look at her. “Maybe so,” he said, then he pushed himself to his feet, and gestured to the kitchen. “You want anything?”

“I need to get going home,” she reminded him. “I don’t exactly live here, remember?” 

If she thought she saw a flicker of disappointment cross his expression, she convinced herself she’d imagined it. “Yeah, but I bought too much taco meat the day before yesterday, and I don’t want it to go bad.”

Well, when he put it like that… “Sure.”

He gave her another smile, making her roll her eyes as he walked into the kitchen, leaving her still half-melted on his couch. She was still a mess, but she was starting to feel much more confident already. Doing this was no necessity, but it sure as hell was a lot of fun, and unless she was blind, it seemed like he was enjoying it just as much as she was. 

What was between them so far was casual and carefree, and so far it wasn’t awkward. In fact, she’d never felt more comfortable than she did when she was in his arms and he was trying to make her come apart. It was a glorious thing, whatever it was they were doing, and a part of her already didn’t want it to end, but even if it did, she knew they were still only at the beginning. 

They had a long way to go before this could ever be considered over. 

Chapter Text

The afternoons spent in her trailer were on the list of Rey’s favorite things about being on set. Well, they weren’t regular afternoons, more so just rare downtime of about forty minutes to an hour where she got to wind down or run over her lines for later scenes. There was something amusing about doing modern things in a costume from not only another world, but another time, and she wasn’t alone in finding it funny, either. 

Half the set got a chuckle when someone in full knight gear pulled out a cell phone. 

That afternoon, though, she wasn’t alone. She’d invited Ben into her trailer initially just to spend time with him, but then they started running lines together, and not even for a scene they shared. In about half an hour, he was due to have a practice duel with Gwen for a scene in which her character, Phasma, was going to tease Kylo about where he’d been sneaking off to in the night. 

Playing a character other than Kira, even if it was just for an audience of Ben, was unexpectedly a lot of fun. Phasma was cunning and bold, but held a strong sense of loyalty to those on her side. She was perhaps the fiercest warrior on the show, as much as its marketing would have liked for people believe that title belonged to Kylo. If Gwen’s Golden Globe nomination for her performance in the first season meant anything, Rey’s opinion was entirely correct. 

“You’re not exactly quiet, you know,” Rey told him, hoping she portrayed Phasma’s low, stern voice well enough. “We’ve all heard your footsteps down the halls at night. I’m just curious as to what’s got you sneaking around.”

“It’s nothing,” Ben said as Kylo, looking ever so slightly vulnerable in a blink and you’ll miss it sort of way. His eyes weren’t even on his script, making Rey wonder why he’d wanted to rehearse this scene if he so clearly had it down, but she didn’t break character to pester him about it. 

“Is it a woman? A man? If it’s a lover you’re seeing, Ren, you know you don’t need to hide it from anyone, least of all, me,” she reminded him, then she watched her costar’s face fall with signs of sorrow and distress. “It is someone. Who? Do I know them?”

“She’s no one.”

“She?”

Ben as Kylo looked away, then he nodded slowly. “Yes, she, now can we keep sparring? We’ll be the worst army in the kingdoms if we don’t know how to fight.”

She gave him an inquisitive look, then she shrugged. “I’ll figure out who’s got your eyes later then.”

“Leave it alone,” he growled, and fuck , he sounded so genuinely angry, she almost forgot they were acting. “It’ll be better for all of us if you do.”

Tilting her chin up to look down at him from beneath now hooded eyes, Rey’s posture relaxed some, and she gave him a nod. “Very well, but if this causes our knights trouble, if this gets people killed, I will not hesitate to run a sword through you. You’re a good man, a wonderful fighter, and a great friend above all, but don’t forget where your loyalties lie.”

He swallowed nervously, and her eyes caught on his Adam’s apple as it bobbed with the motion. “Understood.” Those dark eyes were now locked firmly onto hers. “But no one’s going to die.”

There was a tiny tremor in his voice that gave away the fact that he was uncertain of whether he was telling the truth, and to the unseeing eye it was missable, but when she knew him as well as she did, it was unmistakable. But that was the last line of the scene, and so once he finished, they both set their scripts down, and let out the breaths they were holding. 

“That’s a tense one,” he joked, earning him a nervous chuckle from her. “You think I have it down?”

“Ben, I wouldn’t be surprised if you got an Emmy nomination based on this alone.” That wasn’t a lie either, watching Ben perform, hell, performing with him was mesmerizing. Sure, he’d said the same thing about her, but still, she thought he was one of the most unique actors she’d ever seen. “It’s great. Why the hell did you think you needed my help with it?”

He shrugged. “I wanted to be sure,” he said, then he leaned back against the couch cushion. “If I get it right, we only have to do maybe a take or two or three, and then we can leave.”

That was an excellent point. The sooner Ben was done, the sooner they could all go home. Hell, if he got done fast enough, he’d be finished before she was out of her costume and makeup, and god, that would’ve been so convenient. “Yeah, that’s fair,” she replied, then she shifted a little closer to him, feeling a bit bold. “But we’ve got another forty five minutes until then, and you’ve clearly got this down.” An awkward laugh escaped her. “So much time, but how to waste it?”

The corners of his lips curled into a hint of a smirk. “What did you have in mind?”

Certain that her cheeks were flushed a shade of red bright enough to be visible in the darkest of rooms, she tucked a strand of her hair behind her ear, then met his gaze. “I’m still getting used to this whole thing. You know, the um, stuff we’ve been doing?” she asked, then when he nodded, she felt relieved enough to continue. “But I know that it’s a lot of fun, and you make me feel good, so… I know we’re on set, but if you think we could get away with it—“

Her friend held up a hand, then his smirk became more pronounced. “Are you suggesting we try and get each other off on set?” he asked, sounding almost bewildered—but not off put—by the idea. 

“I might be. If you’re comfortable with it.” 

A few seconds passed where he seemed to pretend to think it over, then he full on grinned, his smile lighting up the room as he bowed his head in a subtle nod. “Yeah, I’m comfortable with it.”

“Then come here,” she told him, and he looked up at her with a faint hint of surprise. 

“Already so bossy,” he whispered, then he leaned forward, crossing the space between them with that smile still plastered on his face as he kissed her, one hand coming up to caress the base of her skull while the other wrapped around her waist to bring her closer, pulling her into his lap as they kissed. 

Just like the day before, Rey’s legs parted, straddling either side of his so that she was riding his lap, kissing him fiercely as she stood up on her knees and towered over him. She could feel how his head tilted back when she deepened the kiss, his hands adjusting their grip to help keep her balanced as hers began to drift down his chest, reveling in the warmth she could feel beneath his doublet. 

A vague part of her was fairly certain they’d get in trouble for doing this in costume, but she ignored it. Kissing him felt a little too good than she thought it ought to have felt. It was addictive, calling to mind that one song with lyrics that went something like, “ might as well face it, you’re addicted to love ,” every time their lips touched. What was between them—if it was anything beyond just friends with benefits—may not have been love—at least, she didn’t think it was, but when was the last time she’d been in love?—but it was something. It made her lose a part of her rational thought, made her want to become one of those actors who hooked up on set and in costume, who ruined her makeup right before a big scene, and it made her feel powerful. 

Ben moaned softly as her hands finally lowered enough to ghost over the button of the trousers they’d put him in for the day, causing her to laugh against his lips as those same fingers then found his clothed erection. Both of them shuddered as her hands finally found it, but neither froze. In fact, she took his reactions as an incentive to move, and began to palm him through his clothes instead. 

A shiver passed through him, one she felt everywhere her body was touching his, and it sent a thrill through her as she continued, moving her hand against his cock until she heard another tiny little noise leave his mouth, and he pulled away from the kiss to stare at her. She could feel his eyes keeping a close watch as she reached for the waistband of his trousers, then she began to slip them down just enough so that her hand could reach inside. 

Before she proceeded any further, she locked eyes with him one last time. Consent had been the most important thing they’d been stressing in their adventures thus far, and this time was no different. Though they both knew what they wanted here, she still asked him the question silently, putting the words into her pupils as he looked into them, and waiting until he gave her that tiny, shaky breath that told her he wanted this to happen. 

Only then did she reach her hand further into his trousers, pulling them down further until she exposed his cock to the air. She shivered when she saw it, her whole body trembling for half a second before she composed herself, and took him into her hand. 

He’d made her come apart with his fingers the night before, and she was going to return that favor. 

She began stroking his cock slowly, recalling the vaguest notion of what to do from the rare occasions in which she watched porn as she moved. His breathing was ragged within seconds, and she thought that sound might have been the death of her as she began to move her hand faster. “Am I doing this right?”

“You’re—you’re perfect,” he breathed, sounding almost like he hadn’t meant to say anything at all. “God, Rey, don’t stop.”

Did he feel the same way she had when he’d touched her? Did he feel that same loss of control? That same desire to just melt into the air and disappear completely? 

If he didn’t, she wanted him to, and she wasn’t going to stop until he was writhing beneath her touch or he asked her to. Watching him slowly lose his control was exhilarating, and she was surprised by the thrill she got from it. She hadn’t thought she’d feel this way just from helping Ben get off, but fuck she was. 

The image of him licking his fingers clean and moaning when he’d touched her came to mind. Was this how he’d felt? Did he like making her come apart as well?

Before she could find out and they could go any further, they were brutally, cruelly interrupted by a knock at the door. Her hand quickly let go of his cock, and Ben groaned softly—she prayed whoever was outside didn’t hear it and interpret it for exactly what it was—as she moved away, freeing herself from his lap as fast as she was able to as he hurriedly reached for the waistband of his trousers. 

The door opened just as he finished pulling his trousers back up, and Rey prayed they both looked presentable—though she knew, more likely than not, that they definitely looked like they’d just been fooling around—as Gwen stepped through it with a knowing look on her face. “Solo, they’re calling for us,” she asked, stepping further into the trailer as she picked up the tails of her coat. “Better get out here before Poe comes in.”

That second sentence made Rey turn pale as she watched Ben stand up. Was it that obvious? 

Looking over at Ben, it probably was, given that the light pink lipstick she’d put on that morning was now smudged over his stupidly full lips and their hair was thoroughly mussed. Shit, Gwen definitely knew now, but if one member of the cast and crew had to know about it, then she didn’t mind it being her. Their costar had been the only one to cease the gossip in the makeup trailer the day before, and seemed perfectly content with minding her own business, so maybe it wasn’t such a bad thing after all?

“This explains the hickeys,” Gwen said as she crossed her arms over her chest. 

“Gwen, it’s not what it looks li—” Ben started, but then she held up a hand, cutting him off with a roll of her eyes as well. 

“I don’t care. I literally do not give a damn what it is, but you do realize you’re doing a terrible job of keeping it hidden, right?” She walked further into the room, and gestured to Rey’s neck, where the two day old hickeys were now hidden beneath foundation. “Yesterday she walks into makeup with these on display, and now I catch you in her trailer and you just finished putting your pants on, I can tell from how you forgot to redo your belt.”

Ben looked down at his undone belt, and she watched his cheeks flush pink before he rectified his error. “Sorry.”

“Why are you apologising to me?” Gwen asked, sounding thoroughly baffled. “I don’t care what you’re doing. You’re both single, you’re young, and you spend a lot of time together. Shit happens. I don’t care. I’m just noticing that you seem to have a desire to keep it secret, and letting you know you need to try harder if that’s the way this is going.” 

The two of them looked at each other, both half-frozen for a second before he eventually nodded. “Yeah, we are, this just… happened so fast.”

“Yeah,” Rey agreed, scratching the back of her head awkwardly as she watched Ben cross the room, and examine himself in the mirror, beginning the process of fixing his appearance as she spoke. “What do you think we should do?”

“Put up a do not disturb sign, put your hickeys beneath clothing, and don’t have sex on set.” Gwen’s voice was so deadpan that it took her a second to process what she’d said. There was no way Rey could mention that kind of thing casually yet without a blush appearing. Hell, even Ben’s cheeks turned pink when he talked about it sometimes, and he was experienced. “Just an idea.”

A tiny snort escaped the man on the far side of the room, then he turned around as he continued wiping off Rey’s lipstick from his mouth. “We’ll do the first two, but I can’t make any promises about the last one, Gwen.”

She was bright red, surely she was crimson, the color of her own blood, or ruby, or something else that was vivid enough that anyone watching could tell she was thoroughly heated and embarrassed. “ Ben!”

He glanced in her direction, then, seeming to notice she was uncomfortable, he looked to the ground sheepishly, and crossed the room to stand in front of her. “Sorry, I was mostly joking.”

“I hate you.”

“I know.”

In the background, she could see Gwen rolling her eyes as she leaned back against the trailer wall. “Just don’t fuck on any set pieces that belong to me.”

Finding a little shred of confidence, Rey nodded through her embarrassment. “Yeah, that, too,” she replied, trying to conjure to mind any piece of furniture that belonged to the character of Phasma that she could possibly want to fuck on and finding none. She wasn’t about to tell Gwen that, though. “So you won’t say anything?”

“I didn’t see anything, I was never here,” Gwen confirmed, then she pushed off the wall, and made her way toward the door again. “That said, Solo, we’ve got a scene to film.”

“Yeah, yeah we do,” Ben replied, then he briefly placed his hand on Rey’s arm, and walked over to the door with her. “See you later?”

A warm smile was tossed his way. “Not if I see you first.”

The one he gave her in return had a weird after-effect. Her heart started to beat a little faster in her chest and the blush that had already taken over her cheeks deepened in color as she stared at him. It didn’t fade away, and her heart rate didn’t go back down to normal, until long after Ben was gone, and she was once again alone in her trailer. 

A deep exhale left her lungs as she collapsed back onto the couch, recalling how just moments ago she’d been straddling Ben’s lap, making him lose his mind beneath her hand as she—

Fuck, she had to stop thinking like this. All they were doing was learning together, becoming comfortable with each other in a way they thought would best prepare them for the scene Poe had told them about two days earlier. That was it. There was nothing deeper. Her heart didn’t need to race and she didn’t need to think about him for several minutes on end after he left a room like she had some sort of crush. 

It had to be that experience of a first touch, the aftermath of finally living one of the most basic human experiences, right? She was willing to bet everything she owned that it was that simple; she was just experiencing all of this for the first time, and Ben was the one who was showing it all to her. This wasn’t a crush, she’d never looked at him like that before—and they’d shared plenty of onscreen kisses—and she wasn’t going to start now.

This was nothing. This was absolutely nothing. 

Or was it?

*

She was quiet on their drive home that evening. Ben made most of the conversation talking about how he’d thought he’d messed up his scene with Gwen every single time he did a take, and his ranting filled the silence, but all she could do was think about how they’d been caught earlier, how they’d been interrupted, and how she didn’t know if these weird butterflies in her stomach meant something deeper than just excitement. Her mind wouldn’t allow her to think about anything else. 

Luckily, Ben did. “So we’re meeting with that choreographer in two days.”

“Yeah. Think it’ll be the same one who worked on our first kiss?” she asked, recalling the pink haired woman they’d worked with the first time they’d shared a kiss onscreen. 

“Amilyn? I hope so. She makes everything feel less awkward than it actually is, but… now I can’t wear that fucking dick sock without thinking of those little sock monkeys.”

Rey damn near lost it. “Without thinking about what?

“Yeah, when I had to film that scene with Gwen she told me about how an actor once used a sock monkey puppet instead of the ones they usually hand you and… filmed the scene like that. It loosened us up, but I think it’s about half the reason neither of us could stop laughing the entire time.”

A round of delighted laughter fell from her lips, shaking her entire body as she hunched over in the passenger seat. “Are you fucking serious?”

“Deadly. I’ve thought about it during every sex scene since.” He turned onto her street, then slowed the car down as they came upon her parking lot. “It’s made acting turned on a bit more of a challenge, but I’ve always thought it’s important to laugh with your partner during sex. Makes everything more fun.”

She hummed her assent. “Yeah,” she replied, then they fell quiet again as he drove into their parking lot , and he soon pulled into a space, then looked at her expectantly, waiting for her usual goodbye or some sort of sign that she was going to leave. 

When she gave him neither of those, his brows furrowed. “Are you okay?”

“I keep thinking about how we were interrupted earlier.” She brushed a strand of her hair behind her ear, swallowing nervously as she spoke. “I don’t know about you, but I was… I was having quite a bit of fun before Gwen walked in.”

“I was, too.”

“I know this could technically wait till later, but…” With a nervous intake of breath, Rey closed her eyes, and summoned forth the courage to finish her sentence. “Could we pick up where we left off?”

“I-inside?” Ben asked. 

“Or in here, but if we do it in here I can’t quite sit on you like I was earlier,” she pointed out, then she blushed again. “I kind of liked it like that.”

He let out a slow, shaky breath. “Jesus, Rey.” But he didn’t sound offended or appalled, he sounded relieved, joyful even, by the sound and nature of her request. In fact, after another few seconds, he met her gaze, then cocked his head in the direction of her apartment building. “Inside?”

“I thought you’d never ask.” Without another word, she hopped out of the car, delighting in the sound of him turning off the engine before he joined her, and she heard his car door slam shut soon after. Together, they walked around to the back of his van, and made their way into her building, and if Rey’s hand found Ben’s as they walked through its doors, it was just an accident, she told herself, it was just what friends did. 

The elevator ride up to her apartment was mostly quiet, but Rey felt like she was bouncing on her toes the entire time. Her body temperature had to have hit the triple digits from how heated she felt every time she thought about what she was about to do. God, she wanted to feel him again, she wanted to hear the little noises he made and hear his breathing as his entire body shook from tremors. 

Making Ben into an absolute mess was already one of her favorite memories, and she wanted to do it again. 

The second the elevator doors opened, she tugged on Ben’s hand, pulling him out into the hallway as he stumbled with a series of curses that had her throwing her head back to laugh as she ran. This was the kind of thing she saw in movies, where the couple who was about to, well, fuck ran down a hallway giggling and unable to keep their hands off each other--well, they didn’t quite meet that last requirement, since Ben was bound and determined to remain a gentleman--as they rushed into an apartment, and immediately let loose the minute they got through the door. 

This was just like that, actually. The very second she and Ben walked through the door of her apartment, they didn’t even wait until the door was shut before she pinned him to a wall and kissed him fiercely, knocking the wind out of both of them as her hands came up to grip his hair in fists. 

All she could think is how exh ilarating it was to do this with him, how good it felt to have him whimper softly into her mouth as her hands slowly drifted down the expanse of his chest. She’d known he was fit from the times they’d already spent together and from years of filming with the bastard--hell, last season’s shirtless scene, where she’d caught him bathing in the river, had been rated one of the best eye candy scenes of all time--but fuck, she’d never really taken the time to appreciate those stupid fucking muscles. Ben was built like a damn greek god, and she was just disappointed she’d never really noticed before. 

Her hands finally found the button of his jeans, undoing them as she brought her kisses down onto his neck, and swept aside the neckline of his shirt so she could leave a mark there in his skin, beneath where any makeup artist or nosey set-goer could notice. Another soft little moan left his lips, and she prayed her neighbors weren’t walking around in the hall as she undid his zipper, then smiled against his skin before slipping his shirt a little further down his shoulder, and leaving yet another mark. 

“Yes,” Ben whispered, seeming to be the more logical of the two with how quiet he was being. “God, yes.”

A tiny giggle escaped her as she lowered the fabric at his hips just enough to free his cock from its confines. The second the cool air hit his skin, Ben shivered in her arms, and pulled her close against him. She could feel his erection prodding against her stomach as she moved back up to kiss him, pulling her hips away ever so slightly so she had enough room to reach between them, and take his cock back into her hand.

His breathing became shaky all over again as she began to stroke him like she had earlier, picking up right where they left off. Like that first time, she was nervous, but now she felt like she had a good grip on what she was doing, she felt like she understood what made him tick, even if they were no longer in the same position. Hopefully when he recovered, he’d let her do it again later exactly like they’d done it in her trailer. 

The best part about this thing with Ben was easily how responsive he was. On top of the delicious, low noises he made, he kept on whispering filthy things in her ear that made her blush; encouraging her, goading her on as she let her thumb glide gently over his tip. When she did that, he whispered a slur of curse words that had her certain they would both go to hell as she stroked him a little faster, pumping his cock in her enclosed fingers as she moved in to kiss him again. 

Ben’s hands came to rest on her waist, gripping her a bit more tightly than was necessary as if he were attempting to ground himself as she rubbed her thumb over the tip of him again, delighted to notice precome had started to gather there, like his body had been put on pause for the past several hours as well. She broke their kiss to press them along the line of his jaw, eager to hear what sort of filth he would spill into her ear with this new development, and finding herself soon rewarded. 

“Go faster,” he whispered, then she hummed contentedly as his lower lip quivered in response to her obeying his command. “Yes, that’s it… Fuck, Rey, that’s so go--” He was cut off by a sharp gasp, then he wrapped one arm fully around her waist, and leaned back further against the wall, making it clear to her he was no longer capable of standing on his own. 

She’d done that to him. She’d just rendered a man incapable of standing without support, and it made her feel more powerful than she ever had before. Once upon a time she’d thought the most powerful feeling in the world was riding into battle on horseback with a sword in one hand and the reins in the other, and maybe it still was, but this was coming in at a close second. 

Driving Ben to the edge? That was now tied for the most powerful she’d ever felt in a single moment.

“Rey, I’m gonna come,” he told her, his voice low and shaky, like he could barely find the words to say, his mind refusing to process it as she kept on bringing him closer and closer. “I don’t want to come on your shirt.”

“I don’t care, I’m doing laundry tonight,” she protested, then he groaned again as she finished speaking, and she could tell he was seconds away. “Just come.”

With another shaky inhale, Ben’s fingers dug into her waist, and his head fell back against her wall as he came, and she felt a fresh wave of heat wash through her as his come spilled onto her shirt just like he’d predicted. A smile parted her lips as she looked down, watching him as he came, and continuing to stroke him through it until he was completely spent. 

In the aftermath, they were both breathing impossibly hard. She looked up to see Ben’s cheeks were flushed, his lips were thoroughly swollen, and his eyes were dark as he stared down at her. A passing thought struck her that she loved the way he looked in that moment, she loved seeing him worn out and sex drunk like this, and she loved being the one to have done it. 

 Part of her wanted to run in and immediately kiss him again, but she was just as out of breath as he was, and so she settled for leaning her forehead against his, hoping it wasn’t too intimate a thing to do as she calmed down from her high. 

“Are you…” He swallowed. “Are you sure you’ve never done any of this before?”

“I’m sure.”

“This isn’t just some elaborate excuse to get into my pants?” he asked, and she snorted her laughter as she stepped away from him. 

“No, it’s not just some elaborate excuse to get into your pants, I promise,” she replied, unable to stop the frown that formed as he pulled his pants back up, and his cock was hidden from view. “I just… I don’t know, I seem to be good at figuring out what you like rather quickly.”

This time, he was the one who was blushing as he finished buttoning his pants, then he ran his hand through his hair, pulling it out of his face. “Yeah, you do.” His voice was a soft little mumble that she barely made out, and sent shivers running down her spine as he then stepped forward, returning himself to her space, and forcing her to crane her neck to look at him as he got too close. “Can I return the favor?”

She cocked her head in surprise. “Wasn’t that what I just did for you?” 

“Maybe I like being in your debt.” He stepped closer again. “So what do you say? Do you want me to turn around and leave for the night, see you on set tomorrow morning…” This time, he leaned down, whispering lowly in her ear. “Or do you want me to stay?”

As he pulled away, she met his gaze, astonished by how much heat she saw there in spite of how spent he was. Ben was a puzzle in some ways, she supposed, but she certainly didn’t mind it. She knew how to answer his riddle with one of her own, and with a tiny hint of a smile breaking out on her lips, Rey took his face in her hands, and pulled him into a kiss. 

Shock caused him to jolt a little at first, but then he softened, melting into the kiss as his arms wrapped around her waist, and he returned it, causing her mind to spin with that delightful sort of dizziness that always seemed to accompany kissing him. She wasn’t sure why, she didn’t know what caused it--it never happened when she kissed him on camera--but she reveled in the feeling nonetheless. 

Without breaking the kiss, Ben’s grip tightened around her, and she felt as if she was flying when he lifted her up from the ground. She let her arms wrap around his shoulders, holding on tightly as he whirled them around, and carried them into her living room before they sank down onto the couch, and he set to work on repaying his debt.

Chapter Text

The next few days made it feel as though time stood still. After that night at her place—a night in which she felt like his hands had managed to explore every crevice of her body—things slowed down physically, and they began to talk seriously about their upcoming rehearsal with the choreographer. 

Scripts for the scene went out the very next afternoon, but the only people allowed to have them were Rey, Ben, Poe, and the episode’s director, Charles Baca, who’d directed ten of the series’ top ranked episodes—according to IMDB—and absolutely no one else. Gwen wasn’t allowed to know, Finn wasn’t allowed to know, and the rest of the cast and crew definitely weren’t allowed to know. The scene was so secretive it was even cut from their scripts, and as far as they knew, Kylo and Kira were just going to spend the whole time kissing. 

She and Ben knew otherwise, and as they worked to memorize their lines, spending their days and evenings together learning the episode’s insides and outs, they exchanged knowing glances. This was especially prevalent at the first table read for season three episode nine, when they finally came upon the scene in question. The two actors reading the scene before them—Gwen and another actor, Armitage Hux—wrapped up, and Poe read the stage directions to transition the next scene as the two of them exchanged a knowing glance. 

“Scene eight; Kira and Kylo meet in the temple at night. The battle between the armies of Alderaan and Mustafar is upon them and there is nothing they can do to stop it. They are desperate, they need each other, and is their most desperate hour,” Poe read aloud, then he looked up, glancing at Ben and Rey. “They meet in the middle…”

Rey was blushing, and as she looked across the table at Ben, who was still listening attentively to what their devoted show-runner was saying, he was a little pink, too. In spite of his experience with this sort of thing, he was still flushed pink, and a weird thought popped into her head that it was kind of cute. Waving the thought away with a tiny shake of her head, she put her focus into listening to the rest of the scene too, and the table read proceeded as normal from there. 

They did their first read-through of the scene that night in her trailer just before they left work for the day. Strangely enough, she wasn’t as nervous as she thought she’d be when they sat down on the sofa to run through the lines. In fact, she was cool as a cucumber. She and Ben had said far filthier things to one another over the last few days, and he’d been promising her romantic things in front of a camera for the better part of a year now. 

This was fine. 

“You shouldn’t be here,” Ben as Kylo said, starting off standing on the opposite side of the room, as the script instructed. “If they catch you--”

“If,” she repeated as Kira, then she crossed her legs casually, one knee over the other as her character tried to feign a nonchalance that just wasn’t there. “If they catch me.”

Kylo looked distressed, his mouth shifting uncomfortably as he stepped toward her cautiously, as if he was afraid she was a mirage that would soon disappear. “I shouldn’t be here either.” His voice trembled, lower lip quivering as he finished speaking, and she could see everything he wasn’t saying written in his eyes. “Tomorrow--”

“I know what tomorrow is.” She held up a hand, then she uncrossed her legs, and stood up, taking a step toward him as they slowly began to close the gap between them. “I’ve been thinking about it all day, and well into tonight, and I realized I couldn’t spend my last night in my tent with the others… I… I had to find you.”

He swallowed, Adam’s apple bobbing visibly in the dim light of a floor lamp she’d turned on to set the mood for the scene. It almost made her forget that they weren’t just acting for a moment, she was completely lost to the world they were building. “I know we’re both duty-bound, I know when the sun rises we must both fight on opposite sides, and it kills me to think of facing you in battle, but…”

“You have to,” she finished for him, then she stepped toward him again, seeming to reach out for him before she let her arm fall to her side. “But it’s killing me, too.” 

Another silence fell between them as Kylo took her in, his gaze hungry, needy, and pleading for something but he had no idea what it was. “How many more hours do we have until the sun rises?”

“Not enough,” she answered him, then she stepped into his space. “I don’t know what to expect from tomorrow, but, Kylo?”

“Yes?”

She looked at him again, resting a hand on his cheek as the words escaped her, and she shook her head. “Will you stay here with me tonight? I don’t… I don’t want to be alone.”

“You won’t be,” he promised her, then one of his arms wrapped around her waist, pulling her close to him. “Not tonight.”

“Can we forget this is happening for a little while?” She let her other hand come up, burying itself in the raven strands of his hair as she took in a deep, shaky breath, her heart racing in earnest as she pressed their foreheads together. “Plea—“

He cut her off before she could finish the word, his lips finding hers as if drawn magnetically. It wasn’t directed in the script, he wasn’t originally supposed to cut her off, he was supposed to do it slow and gentle and let her trail off into oblivion, but this was better. Kylo and Kira were desperate, starving, and eager. They were about to lose everything they had, and they couldn’t waste any more time. This was their final shot. 

Rey returned his kiss with a ferocity she knew only Kira could possess, imagining the low crackle of the fire from the torches that would surround them when they actually filmed the scene, their hands covered in gloves that they’d desperately strip off, and then their heavy coats that would be untied with deft, eager fingers. 

Kylo’s frenzied, hurried kisses consumed her, but this time there was an undercurrent of the tenderness, the slow, gentle caution that Ben had, and it nearly had her melting in his arms. 

This was just a rehearsal, this wasn’t even witnessed by anyone but them, and yet they were both treating it like it was their chance to win an Oscar. At one point, she felt his hand fall down onto her chest, her heartbeat echoing back against his palm as he kissed her, and for a brief half-second, they both lost character and it was just them. It was Ben and Rey kissing, and it felt almost like a dream, like something that transcended reality in a way different from when they were just acting. 

It was a flicker of light, a brief shadow passing in front of their eyes that they weren’t sure if they imagined it or not before they were Kylo and Kira again, and then they were pulling apart. The stage directions called for them to start removing clothes, and they didn’t have their costumes or the exact choreography yet, and all that was left was a single line. 

Kylo looked down at her, his eyes full of adoration and love, then he leaned their foreheads together, an improvisation in the place of the actions they were supposed to be doing during this scene. “You’re still holding on,” he said, then the scene ended, and they stepped away from each other, both panting slightly as they stared at one another in the aftermath. 

An awkward laugh escaped Rey as she ran a hand through her hair, her mind still dizzy and her lips still numb from kisses. “Damn,” she breathed. “I think you need to get me a cigarette.”

“You don’t smoke,” he replied with a chuckle, then he stepped back, leaning against the wall as his chest heaved with each breath. “But I know what you mean.”

“Three more days until we’re with the choreographer.” 

“Well, it’s just Amilyn,” Ben said, then he shrugged. “We’ll be okay, she’s sweet, good at what she does. I mean, she has to be or Poe wouldn’t hire her.”

“Yeah.” She laughed as she slumped back against the couch again. “I know, I’m just… I’m just nervous. I feel less nervous than I did at first, but… it’s one thing to be in private with you, and another to be… even in front of just Amilyn and maybe Poe.”

“We’ll work on it until we’re both comfortable, and hey…” He threw his hands up, and made his way toward her, sitting down on the couch at her side. “If you decide you’re not, then I’m out too, and we’ll just tell Poe to fade to black. You’re not required to do anything you’re not comfortable with.”

“No, I-I want to do it, cause… I want to experience all these things, I want to do it, and you? You’re helping me find the courage to do it, so--” She reached out between them, and took his hand, hoping the gesture was as platonic as she intended it and it didn’t overstep an unspoken boundary. “Thank you.”

A blush crept up his cheeks, but he didn’t pull away, instead, he gave her a nod, and sighed. “It’s um…” An awkward laugh escaped him. “It’s a lot of fun… doing this with you, so…”

Tension develops in the air between them, a slightly awkward sort that had them both looking down and away with tiny smiles on their faces before they glanced up, and finally let go of the hand hold they had. “We should probably get going, you’ve got a big fight scene tomorrow, and I’ve got to prepare myself for the amount of liquor Poe wants to imbibe to make the bar scene as genuine as possible.”

Ben snorted, but he pushed himself up, and together they stood, preparing to make their way out of the trailer and off the set for the day. “Let’s go home,” he said, then he took her hand in his, and pushed the door open. 

*

The next three days, they spent their time perfecting their bits of that scene, making sure every line of dialogue was perfect before they met with Amilyn and Poe to start choreographing the scene. The meeting would take place on a day none of the other actors would be required on set. Eventually, they’d bring in the wardrobe department and makeup--a time during which, Rey suspected, both Rose and Paige would catch on very quickly to what was happening--but that wouldn’t happen until the final stages of filming the scene. 

Ben drove them to work that morning, and other than knowing what they were going to start doing that day, it wasn’t any different from another day on set. He occasionally looked over at Rey, his gaze cautious, as if he were checking to make sure she was okay, and while it wasn’t necessary, she found it rather endearing. 

She was probably one of the luckiest people in the world to call him her best friend, if not the luckiest person. 

“Are you sure you’re up for this?” he asked as they pulled into the parking lot, then she nearly groaned. 

“Are you?” she replied, then she quirked an eyebrow with it. “Ben, if it was anyone else, maybe I wouldn’t be, but… it is you, and I trust you, so I’m fine with this. I promise you, I’ll let you know if that ever changes.”

Giving her one last glance as they came upon a parking space, the corner of his mouth twitched into a smile. “I trust you, too.”

The blush that crept up her cheeks was definitely related to the heater running in the car--it was an unexpectedly cool fall morning--and not to any feelings that sentence might’ve stirred within her. This was just a friend thing. A friend helping a friend. There wasn’t anything romantic about this. 

Nothing at all. 

He parked the car next to one she recognized as belonging to Poe, and once it was shut off, the two got out, and made their way onto the set. 

*

Half an hour later, they were inside the set, sitting casually side by side in the temple as Poe prepared to go over the scene with them, and they waited for Amilyn Holdo to arrive, and begin choreographing. A mattress lay at the center of the floor, one of those gym mats they always used for stunts, and it squeaked weirdly each time Poe walked over it. Rey grimaced at that; she didn’t exactly want to be rolling around with Ben where someone else had just been walking with shoes that had been god knew where. 

“So, obviously after the main kiss, clothes start coming off. We’ll start worrying about those directions a bit more once we have the costumes fully ready, but mostly I need the two of you on the floor by the end of this. Amilyn and I have been working to fine tune some of the details, but it’ll be a lot of close shots. Really intimate stuff. The kind of thing that makes people go--’ whoa , do you two need the room to yourselves?’” Poe looked excited, perhaps a bit too excited given that he was about to spend the day watching Rey and Ben pretend to have sex. 

Rey could feel herself flushing, then she shook her head. “So we almost need to actually have sex onscreen?”

“You just need to make it very, very convincing. The rest of the world doesn’t exist, it’s just the two of you. The rest of it?” Poe gestured to the entire temple, then he gave them an almost mystified grin. “The rest of the world just fades away.”

Ben and Rey looked at each other, and she could tell he was still curious to see if she was actually okay with this one last time before she gave him a subtle nod, and looked back at Poe. “So we’re just very heatedly kissing without clothes on?”

Poe’s head bobbed a little from side to side. “Kinda, but a bit more than that. It needs to look like you’re no longer completely separate. You are joined. You’re part of one another. It’s… gonna feel more like softcore porn than anything else.”

A low whistle escaped Ben, causing her to laugh nervously as a knock sounded at a nearby door, then she fell silent. “Is that Amilyn?”

“Probably,” Poe replied, then he turned his attention on the door, and cupped a hand around his mouth. “Come in!”

Two seconds later, the black door just beyond the upper steps of the temple on the left hand side of the room, and a woman with a head of bright lilac-pink, curly hair walked in. She gave them a quick wave as she shut the door behind her, then they heard the sound of heels clacking against the stone of the temple floor as she descended the three large stadium style steps to the main floor. “Good afternoon,” she said casually, then the other three repeared it as she came to a stop beside Poe. “First things first, let’s get introductions out of the way. Ben and Poe, I already know you both, but you…” She turned her gaze on Rey, then took a few steps forward, and held out her hand. “It’s nice to meet you, Rey.”

“Nice to meet you, too.”

The other woman stepped back, then her hands rested at her side as she spoke. “It’s my understanding that you’ve never filmed a scene like this?”

“No, never,” Rey admitted, feeling as if she was lying even though there was nothing for her to be lying about. Amilyn and Poe didn’t need to know about her actual sexual history. They didn’t need to know that the only experience she had with any of this had started just about a week ago. “This’ll be my first.”

“But you’re comfortable going all out like this?”

“I am. I trust Ben, he’s a good scene partner everywhere else, so… What other kind of shenanigans can we get into on camera, you know?” she asked, then they both laughed nervously. “I want to do this.”

“Okay, then we’ll take this slow.” Amilyn gestured, then she summoned them forward to the mattress Poe was still standing on. “Dameron, off the mattress, you two, on the mattress.”

What followed was probably the longest day of Rey’s life. On day one of rehearsals, she did not have to take off any clothing, and neither did Ben. Day one was about mechanics, learning the basics. Amilyn had full controls while Poe sat in the background, his face unexpectedly serious as he took notes of everything they and their choreographer were doing, already working to improve and edit the scene long before filming began. 

They had another three weeks before they had to start worrying about that. 

What she did have to do that day, however, was let Ben press kisses just about everywhere. She was on the ground beneath Ben when they did the first run through of the choreography after learning it--well, part of it, given how complex it would become, they were nowhere near finished--and while she’d been fine learning it, fine having Ben be very mechanical in his motions, it was another thing entirely to have his mouth on her jaw, her neck, her chest, her stomach, and her inner fucking thighs in front of people. 

The first attempt had her struggling to keep control, starting from the moment he said his last line. “You’re still holding on,” he told her as Kylo, then they set about the motions they’d been given. They came together for another kiss, tongues meeting in the middle as they knelt down together, somehow managing not to break apart as their knees both found the mattress, then he slowly bent her back to the floor. 

She knew the kisses were going to move, that they were coming, but the moan that escaped her when he kissed her pulse point was frighteningly real, and she could only hope that Amilyn and Poe both believed it was a feat of acting, that it was just Kira losing herself to Kylo. Hopefully they just believed this was a career making performance, and not a genuine sound of arousal. 

The man doing this to her, however, definitely knew it was genuine; she could feel him smirking against her skin as he then planted a kiss over the thin fabric of the tank top she was wearing, his lips dangerously close to her nipple as he descended further down. 

It took all her strength to keep her character as he kissed her in places he hadn’t even kissed her yet when they were fooling around. Her hands were in his hair as he planted them over her stomach, as he took one of her legs and let it rest over his shoulder, and she became aware that this wasn’t something they’d done yet. She had thought of asking him to put his mouth on her, but she’d been too nervous. It had been terrifying--but wonderful--enough just having his fingers inside of her, but his tongue?

When his warm lips pressed against the fabric of her leggings, though, she knew she had to ask him about it soon, maybe even that very night. She could feel herself growing wet, embarrassingly wet in spite of the audience watching them. Maybe it was because there were only two people in the room and the camera crew wasn’t there yet, or maybe it was because someone wasn’t yelling for them to stop every five minutes and this was just a run through, but she couldn’t help feeling aroused. 

Every nerve ending in her body was on fire, and her clit was suffering worst of all as he simply let his kisses stop right before the place she wanted him most, and continued just going through the motions.

Rey was on edge through the rest of the rehearsal. Every time their lips came together, every time his hands touched any part of her, she felt a hunger surge through her she hadn’t known she possessed. This was all new, delightfully new, and it was wonderful, but she couldn’t wait to get him alone. She had to get him alone. 

When they got back to his place that night, she didn’t care what they did, she just cared that somehow she got some sort of relief from the ache that was developing between her thighs. 

She just cared that he was the one to alleviate it. 

After round one, though, it became easier to control. The motions returned to being mechanical, but it felt like forever before she regained the ability to think, and she wondered how it would be once they had the costumes, once they took the clothes off. 

How would she feel when there was a camera crew? When there were lights and people and she was actually almost fully naked? Would it still feel like this? According to a google search she’d done once, it wouldn’t. Most actors didn’t feel any sort of arousal while filming these scenes because of how controlled and feigned they were. Everything was a product of movie magic, but something told her that this scene… this would be one of the big ones that had people believing they’d actually had sex on camera. 

By the time the rehearsal was over, she felt a mixture of emotions. She was both confident and somehow more shy about it than ever, she was both hungry for food and for--well--more of what they’d been doing in the privacy of one of their apartments, and she felt exhausted but wide awake at the same time. Rey’s mind was a war zone, but for once, she didn’t mind the conflict. 

A part of her found it oddly delicious. 

“Okay,” Amilyn said after they finished the last rerun of the scene. “You both seem to have the basics down pretty well so far, we’ll add in more of the details on Thursday.” She turned to Poe. “Do you think you could get them some old costumes to use? I want to see if we can maybe get a jump on working with the costume removal, it’s a big part of the vision I have in my head.”

“And it just doesn’t look the same without it?” Poe asked, and all she had to do was nod for him to understand. “Yeah, I can do that. We’ll just use some old ones from last season I’m sure Ackbar has them lying around somewhere.”

“Perfect.” She then stepped toward Rey, and offered her a kind smile. “You did great today. I would’ve had no idea that you’d never done this before if they hadn’t told me.”

Rey blushed, then bowed her head in acknowledgment. “Thank you, um… thanks,” she replied awkwardly, then she gave a small grin in return. “See you Thursday.”

“And you. Have a good evening, Ben, Poe,” she said, gesturing to each of the men in turn before she began to walk out of the set. 

“Bye, Amilyn,” Both men echoed at the same time, then Poe stood up off the perch he’d kept through the afternoon, and made his way toward Ben. 

“Any notes?” 

Poe gave him a nod. “Yeah, a few, but they’re mostly about the clothing situation, cause Amilyn’s right, it’s a bit harder for you guys to get it perfect without the costumes, but you really went the distance here, it was a great effort.”

“Awesome.”

“But Rey, I noticed at one point that you kind of dropped character?” he asked, looking up from his notes as he approached her. “I’m assuming it was just nerves? Maybe adjusting to having to do something like this in a public setting?”

Another blush crept up her cheeks, making her wonder how she had any blood left to supply the rest of her body as her face grew hot. “Yeah, that was it,” she assured him. “I think I’m used to it now, though. I’ll be fine.”

Their boss gave them a nod, then he shut the binder. “Again, just let me know the second either of you are uncomfortable. I know this is a bit intense, and these things are par for the course for the network, but we don’t have to do them if you don’t want to.”

“I think the world might riot if Kira and Kylo don’t fuck onscreen,” she replied, causing Ben to laugh as she nudged his chest with the back of her hand. “We’ve got to give the people what they want.”

A tiny snort left Poe, then he shrugged as he began to back away. “That’s fair, but I’m just making sure you know, you can back out whenever you want to, even if it’s after the scene has already been filmed.”

“Thanks, Poe.”

“All right I’ve kept you on set long enough. You both know what time you have to be here tomorrow, I’ll see you at dawn,” he said, then he gave them a tiny salute, and started making his way from the room as they said their goodbyes. 

Once he was gone, Ben turned to Rey, looking almost a bit sheepish as he ran his hand through his hair, and dark waves fell across his face in the aftermath that he had to sweep away. “That actually went pretty well.”

The corners of Rey’s mouth twitched up as she turned to face him fully, finding the tiny tinge of pink that colored his cheeks to be kind of cute. It wasn’t a word she’d ever thought to use about Ben before, but she found it fitting in that moment, found that her best friend was actually rather adorable, and it made some sort of fluttering spawn in her gut as she looked at him. That couldn’t be good. Fluttering meant one thing, she knew it from the many lines Kira had given to Storm about the feelings she had for her mysterious suitor; lines in which she described butterflies fluttering in her stomach. 

For the time being, she was going to ignore that fluttering. She was going to ignore it with everything she had. “Yeah, it did,” she replied after what felt like forever, tucking a strand of her hair behind her ear as she watched a few crew members walk in, their sights set on the mattress Poe had left at the center of the temple. Apparently he’d summoned someone else to gather it. The showrunner wasn’t exactly in charge of handling that sort of thing. “I thought I’d be more nervous, but… I don’t know, I just felt determined to get it right every time.”

“Yeah, me too,” he replied. “It just got repetitive after a while. Almost boring, but at first it was kind of like… what we do in our apartments.” His tongue came out to wet his lip, drawing her eyes to it and the shine it left behind as he took in a deep breath. “I think you were affected, too.”

She scoffed, but he was right, she’d been quite affected. “What makes you say that?” 

“Rey, I could feel how wet you were through your leggings at the beginning. You know, when I first put my mouth on your inner thigh? I could feel it, I could smell it, and it nearly killed me.” His voice dropped lower as the workers taking the mattress out of the room walked past them. “Look, I want to take this slowly, but if you want to, and if you’ll let me, I want to taste you. I want to make you come apart with my tongue.”

Holy shit. She was going to die a sweet, delicious, unholy death just from hearing him talk. The mental images that sent through her mind had her reeling, making her think that she probably wouldn’t survive that kind of encounter, and causing her to wonder if she really was ready for it all over again. Earlier, in the heat of the moment, it had sounded like the perfect thing to do, had felt like something she wanted so desperately that it had felt all consuming, but now… now she felt nervous about being so exposed to him like that. 

She wanted him to do it, she wanted him to do it very, very badly, but she needed a little more time to get herself together, to be ready for it. “I want that, too,” she breathed, her voice practically a whisper as the air left her lungs. “Fuck, Ben, I want that, but…”

“You’re not ready for it yet?” he replied, understanding in his voice, and fuck, she was so lucky. 

“Yeah, not yet.” She stepped forward, though, tilting her head up to look him in the eye as she got a bit too close. “But I wouldn’t say no to a little something when we get back to my apartment.”

“I wouldn’t either.” Without another word, he held out a hand for hers, waiting patiently for her to take it before he laced their fingers together, and they made their way off set and into the parking lot.  

*

Half an hour later, they were sitting in front of the tv in her living room with Parks and Recreation playing casually in the background while they both nursed bottles of hard cider. Unlike the previous week when they’d burst into her apartment and been unable to keep their hands off each other before wandering into the living room, this time was much more casual. All they were doing was sitting with Rey’s legs strewn across his lap and her arm around his shoulders as they took sips out of their drinks, and watched as Ben and Leslie tried to deny their feelings for each other. 

Occasionally they shared casual kisses, and it felt like it was leading somewhere, but given how tired they both were, they were taking their time. They moved slowly, lazily, and for the first few minutes, were more focused on the plot of the show playing than each other. 

Then Ben’s hand slipped beneath her top, and things began to speed up. 

“Is this okay?” he asked, slightly out of breath from what little kissing they had been doing. “Can I…?” He took the fabric between his fingers, and began sliding it up. “Can I take this off?”

“Yes.” Her voice was equally breathless, then she lifted her arms over her head, allowing Ben’s nimble hands to remove the offending shirt, tossing it over her coffee table before his arms wrapped around her waist again, and held her close as he looked at her, watching her chest heave as they both realized she was now only donning a thin, black bra on her top half, one which he could undo with a single twitch of his fingers on the front-closing clasp. 

What surprised her the most, though, was how much she wanted him to undo that clasp. 

One of her hands came up to caress the base of his skull, pulling him in close for another kiss, their lips coming together as her other hand grasped his, and led his fingers to the clasp. He shuddered against her as she let his index finger and thumb pinch it just right, and the clasp came undone, but he didn’t stop kissing her--he never stopped kissing her. 

Ben’s hands moved up, fingertips ghosting over the swell of her breasts as he moaned softly against her mouth. She could barely fight back her grin as her tongue swept along the line of his lower lip, begging entrance into his mouth just as he found the straps of her bra, and began to push them down her shoulders. Both of them were trembling slightly--though she wasn’t sure why--as her hands moved away from him to shuck the bra somewhere over the coffee table as well, then she was being lowered down against the couch, the fabric surprisingly cool against her bare back as Ben rested his weight carefully on top of her. 

Once they adjusted to this new position, he pulled away, taking a brief break from kissing her to just… stare. She watched his eyes sweep over her bare chest, taking in her small breasts and the contours of her abdominal muscles as she panted beneath him. His breath seemed taken away for a few seconds, and it seemed like an eternity passed before he started breathing again, and she felt one of his hands at her waist, his thumb resting just beneath her left breast. “Christ…”

“What?” she asked, curious as to what made him have that sort of reaction.

“I hope this doesn’t come across the wrong way, but--” His eyes met hers, and they’d never been so dark. “You’re beautiful.”

Her breathing shuddered, his words echoing helplessly in her brain, tickling that part of her that had felt the strange fluttering during their rehearsal earlier. Beautiful seemed like a loaded word, but the way he’d prefaced it? He was just offering her a compliment, wasn’t he? Swallowing her nerves, she looked away from him for a second. “Thanks.”

Neither of them said anything for a moment, then Ben leaned down again, and kissed her softly, his lips sealing themselves with hers as her arms came up to wrap around his shoulders, her hands finding their way into his hair as her brain went into a spin. 

That spinning only went faster, became more intense as he moved his kisses down, and she gasped softly as he kissed her neck, her jaw, and her collarbone in a series of slow, lingering touches that she could still feel on her skin long after they were over. “Ben,” she breathed, suddenly feeling goosebumps form on her arms, legs, and everywhere it was possible to get them as she realized where the kisses were going. 

His lips touched the swell of her left breast, and breathing became difficult, especially when he drew the touches out into a slow, practiced torture, when he went milimeter by milimeter across her skin until his lips just barely ghosted over her nipple. They were both breathing unsteadily then, but Rey inhaled sharply as he finally moved, taking her nipple into his mouth, and swirling his tongue around it. 

This wasn’t going to make her come, but fuck it felt good--it felt really good. His teeth grazed the edge of it as he pulled off, then he pressed one last kiss there before moving on to the other one the same way he’d approached the first. Each kiss was tiny, sensual, and so gentle she almost thought she was imagining it, but every time he got closer, her heart began to race, and she knew this had to be real. 

“Ben, fuck, ” she whispered as he took her other nipple into his mouth, groaning softly as he sucked it between his lips, his tongue flicking gently at the pebbled skin. 

It made her want to say so many filthy things, admit so many things she wasn’t ready to admit. She wanted to confess to him like he was a priest instead of the man doing sinful things to her breasts with his mouth. 

The feeling he brought her was one she could have lost herself to forever, one that made her forget the world and everyone in it. Things never escalated beyond Ben taking off his shirt that night, they never took off anymore clothing, and they never sped up the kissing nor slowed it down, they just stayed like that--soft, slow, and sensual, and they drowned in it together. 

Somehow, she imagined, they’d found an act more intimate than sex, though just what about it made it so she had no idea. She only knew that she would likely be finding out sooner rather than later. 

 

Chapter Text

Another few days went by where she couldn’t stop thinking about what he’d asked her that first day of rehearsal. They were having another one soon—their third, the second had occurred two days after the first—and every single time she thought about it she felt an odd sort of excitement rush through her. 

She was both terrified of what she had to do and yet she longed to do it. Every time she was with him like that, even though they were Kylo and Kira, was electric, but she felt like something was missing. She wanted to know what it actually felt like to have his mouth between her legs, to have his tongue flicking at her clit, tasting her as she reached the edge, and making her come harder than she ever had. 

Unless she worked up the courage, though, it wasn’t happening. As of yet, he hadn’t seen her completely undressed below the hips. They’d worked with practice costumes during their second rehearsal and stripped those from each other, but the removal of underthings would be saved for when they had the proper material to hide them during filming of the scenes. 

When the time came, she wanted to know what it was like, not even because of the job or because she thought it would make the performance more authentic, but because she wanted to know what Ben could do with that mouth of his. She couldn’t stop thinking about it, couldn’t stop her brain from going into a tailspin every time she remembered how he’d told her he could smell her, could feel her as he pressed kisses to her inner thighs, as he pretended that he was eating her out with a fervor she could only describe as religious. 

She wondered if he could tell how wet she was every time or if it had been a one time thing. 

Regardless, their third rehearsal would be that afternoon after shooting. His head would be between her thighs, and she’d be writhing beneath him like he was doing things to her she’d never thought she’d experience. It was a terrifying but beautiful thought, one which occupied her mind and had her so lost in her own feelings that she didn’t notice Rose asking her to shift her head to the side so she could contour her left cheek. 

“Rey?” her friend’s voice echoed in her head. “Earth to Rey?”

The woman in question shuddered as she obeyed the command, but she turned her head to the side and nothing happened. After a few seconds of waiting, she looked at Rose instead. “What?”

“Something’s weird about you. It’s been weird ever since you came to work with hickeys,” Rose observed. “What’s going on?”

Oh, if she only knew. Rey laughed nervously, unsure how to answer that question. On the one hand, she really needed someone to talk to about everything, but on the other, she wasn’t ready to disclose this to more people, and Gwen wasn’t going to be on set that day. Gathering her wits, she tried to think of the best way to be vague about her situation and not give anything away about the identity of the man she was hooking up with to her makeup artist. 

“You okay?” Apparently she had taken too long to think, because Rose was now looking down at her with much more concern in her eyes than she’d had before. 

Nodding slowly, Rey cleared her throat. “I’m fine, I just…” She took in a deep breath, shifting uncomfortably as her friend dipped a brush into a lipstick palette, and began to paint her lips a soft rosy shade. “I can’t tell you everything, but—“

“Hold still a second, I need to get your Cupid’s bow,” Rose said, and Rey remained perfectly still, lips pursed slightly as the makeup artist guided the brush steadily over her upper lip, then dipped back into the palette. “Okay go.”

“I need—I don’t know—I need advice? Or maybe just to talk to someone, because…” She let her hands fall limp in her lap as she met her friend’s eyes. “Listen, you can't tell anyone, but this guy I’ve been with for the last couple of weeks—“

“Hickeys guy?” she asked excitedly, then as she began to paint Rey’s lips again, she received a hum of confirmation. “Okay, so it’s serious then?”

“Sure, yeah, serious.” It was, technically, he was helping her lose her virginity, which she supposed by traditional standards was pretty serious. Rose didn’t need to know just how casual it was with her and Ben, she didn’t need to know anything beyond what she was about to be told. “Um, we’ve reached a point where we’ve been discussing—uh—oral?”

A tiny wheeze escaped her friend as she set down the lipstick palette, and moved on to picking out which mascara tube she was going to use that day. “You make it sound like you’ve never done this before,” she muttered as she turned back around to face the actress, undoing the cap of the mascara as she went. The silence she received in turn seemed to tell her everything she hadn’t said. “... oh my god. You’ve never had anyone go down on you?”

“I’ve—I’ve never had anyone go down on me, no. Actually—“ She smoothed her skirt with both hands. “Before this guy, I had no sexual experience whatsoever. We still haven’t had sex in the ‘traditional,’ sense of the word. We’re working our way up to it.”

“Holy shit, really?”

“Look, I’m telling you this because I want to ask him to um, do it, but I’m nervous. We haven’t exactly gotten naked yet and doing that—“

“It’s a new level of vulnerability you’re not sure you’re ready for?” Rose asked, and when Rey slowly nodded, she gave her a gentle smile. “I get that.” 

“You do?” 

The woman in front of her set down the mascara tube, then leaned back against the counter, crossing her arms over her chest as she locked eyes with her friend. “Listen, I know you’re smart, but I’m gonna let you know it’s actually more simple than you think. Do you trust this guy?”

Of course she did. He was Ben, her best friend, confidant, costar, and practically the only family she had. She trusted him with her life. “Yes, absolutely.”

“Do you like him?”

“Yeah, he’s great.”

“Do you want him to go down on you? Do you want that?”

Rey blinked a few times, but the answer came to her immediately. “Yes, yes I do.”

“Then it’s that simple. If you didn’t want it, you would’ve told me no. If you don’t want it one hundred percent—and this applies to anything sexual or otherwise—then you don’t want it. And besides.” She shrugged, then picked up her mascara tube again. “If you really like this guy, if he’s as good as you say he is, he’ll understand if you say no and back out. If he doesn’t, call me, I’ll help you bury the body.”

A quiet snort escaped her as her makeup artist resumed work on her face. “Thanks, Rose.”

“No problem. Keep me updated, yeah? I want to know if this mystery suitor of yours is good in the sack,” she replied, causing Rey to laugh further until she realized what her friend had just referred to Ben as. 

Her suitor. An old-fashioned term that tended to mean someone who was interested in her romantically, possibly even for marriage. It wasn’t like that with him, but god, now she couldn’t stop picturing it. She couldn’t get the image of the two of them going on dates and kissing in public out of her head. Already she was envisioning sweet conversations over wine in restaurants, him kissing her sweetly as they woke up in bed together in the morning, Ben whispering sweet nothings in her ear, confessions of love, and more. The very idea of it had her feeling a little dizzy, but not at all off put. 

After all, her thoughts had been heading in that direction lately anyway, hadn’t they? She’d been unable to stop the feeling that she might be falling in love with Ben because of what they were doing. She couldn’t stop herself from thinking about it, actually. He consumed half of her thoughts, her lines on the show consuming the other half, and she didn’t mind giving him that space, it was for sale, after all, but now she had a feeling…

That space in her mind now belonged to him. 

*

Several hours later, after they’d finished filming their scenes for the day, Rey and Ben were standing together outside the costume trailer waiting patiently for Poe to return to set with Amilyn. They’d been decked out in under armor that day—since their show runner had declared they would both remove their armor prior to the beginning of the scene—and in Rey’s case, the sex scene appropriate underwear. 

Currently, poor Ben—bless his heart, as they said in the south—was being subjected to a lecture about how uncomfortable the pasties over her nipples were. They itched like heinous mosquito bites, and she had a feeling it would take multiple showers to erase the stickiness of them from her poor breasts. 

“If it helps, the sock on my dick isn’t exactly comfortable either,” he said, and she could tell that he was just trying to help, that he was trying to be a good and supportive friend, but god , she didn’t want to hear his complaints. 

She scoffed as the back of her hand came up and smacked him in the chest. “Yeah, but when we change back into our regular clothes at the end of the day, your cock won’t be sticking to your thighs. My tits, Ben, will be stuck to my bra. They will never be free.”

He snorted his laughter as she rolled her eyes at him, then he was openly guffawing as his hands came down to support themselves on his knees, and he hunched over. She was glaring at him with every ounce of ferocity she could muster as she watched him lose it. At least one of them was happy. 

“Drama queen,” he grumbled between fits of laughter.

“Oh, you’re just lucky you’re a man. If the world considered your nipples as unsafe for work as they do mine, it’d all be over for you, buddy.”

“I don’t doubt that,” he told her, then he stood up straighter as the last of his giggles left him. “But I love yanking your chain. You’re more reactive than you think you are, and it’s hilarious.”

“You’re an ass.”

“You love it.”

“Eat me,” she growled, then they both froze as they remembered what they’d been dancing around for the last several days. 

Sure, he’d said he’d be down for it days ago after their first rehearsal, and the only thing they were waiting for was her say so, but—

She thought back to her earlier conversation with Rose. Her makeup artist had helped her come to the conclusion that she was ready to say yes, but now the moment was here—the moment to tell him she was ready, at least, they had a rehearsal to attend first—and she just had to be sure of how she felt, like her friend had said. Looking into her soul, the very thing that made her Rey Johnson, she knew she was. 

“Do you want me to?” Ben asked, interrupting her thoughts and unknowingly prompting her to finally give him her answer. “I know we talked about it, but—“

“Yes,” she said suddenly, interrupting him without warning as she gave him a nod. “I want you to.”

His eyes widened from her seemingly unexpected answer. “You sure? I know you were kind of hesitant about it the other day—“

Ben ,” she breathed, reaching out to grasp his arm in one hand. “I want this. I wouldn’t say yes if I didn’t. I-I want to know what it feels like—regardless of whether or not we’ll be faking this for the cameras soon.”

The corners of his mouth twitched up as he looked down at where she was touching him, then Ben’s eyes drifted up to meet hers. The second their eyes locked, she felt the temperature in the room suddenly go up, skyrocketing so that she could tell that if it didn’t drop soon, she’d begin to sweat. 

All she could hear for the next few seconds was their breathing, their chests heaving as if they’d just climbed a flight of stairs. It made her feel flustered, almost dizzy, and she thought that maybe he might’ve been a magnet as she began to move closer to him, feeling compelled by the attraction of invisible poles. She heard herself say his name again, but that wasn’t what broke the spell. 

What broke it was the sound of a very excited Poe Dameron shouting their names, and commencing the beginning of rehearsal number three. Up until then, she’d actually almost been having fun at these rehearsals in spite of the awkwardness, but right then, as Poe and Amilyn approached them with smiles on their faces, she just wanted it to be over already, before it had even begun. 

Walking back into their rehearsal space, laying out the mat, and waiting for their cues had never been more excruciating. After the conversation she’d had with Ben, all she wanted to do was run home, drag him inside, and start taking off clothing.

Just a few short weeks ago, Rey wouldn’t have considered any of this, but now that it was a part of her life, now that Ben had a new role in her life, she couldn’t get enough of it. 

“Okay, today we’re going to run the blocking slowly to accommodate the costumes,” Amilyn said, opening up a binder that was undoubtedly fillled with her various notes on the scene. A copy of the script was visible, and she could see it was marked up to hell with highlighter pens. “I want to be sure nothing’s too awkward or needs to be changed. I trust you both to tell me if something’s uncomfortable?”

Both she and Ben nodded, then Poe directed them to take their places in the edges of the space, and told them to begin. 

Without needing further direction, both of their stances shifted, and Ben became Kylo, and spoke his first line, “You shouldn’t be here,” he said, then the scene commenced. 

Everything went as normal, according to plan, and it felt like maybe she might get through this rehearsal unscathed, or rather, it did until he managed to get her trousers off, leaving her almost entirely exposed save for the strip of underwear she’d been granted. When that happened she was barely able to hide how she was shivering, praying that if anyone noticed they’d blame it on the air conditioning as Ben began planting kisses on the inside of her thighs like he’d been directed to. 

This was how she died. This was how she was going to die, a sweet, merciless death being unintentionally teased by Ben Solo stimulating oral sex on her. She was going to die slowly from each kiss he pressed to that sensitive skin, but never touched where she needed him most. 

When his nose accidentally brushed her clit as he turned his head, she gasped involuntarily. Luckily, the sound hadn’t been overwhelmingly loud, but she knew he’d heard it, and as she looked down at him, she saw him drop character for a fraction of a second to give her a tiny wink and she thought there was a chance she might’ve been about to kill him. Hell, she would kill him. 

Two could play at this game. 

Rey fought back the smirk that threatened to blossom on her face as he crawled over her, trying her best to look like she was in love and terrified of her future as she pulled him in for a kiss, kissing him more fiercely than she ever had before. It wasn’t quite directed, but she ran her hand through his hair in that specific way that always made him moan when they were kissing at home, and as she predicted, he did indeed moan. 

The kiss ended seconds later, then the key part of the scene began. Ben as Kylo began undoing the laces of his pants, working them effortlessly before he pushed them just far enough that his cock could hypothetically spring free if it weren’t strapped to his thigh like it was, then began the task of pretending to line themselves up, looking each other in the eyes as if it were that final moment before everything really changed forever. 

She wondered how the real thing would feel, how it would actually feel to have Ben inside of her. Would she be as collected as Kira seemed to be with Kylo? Would it feel like what they were performing? Would they… would she love him like their characters loved each other by the time they got to that point? Would she no longer be acting when she let a tear fall as their fingers laced? 

Even acting as Kylo and Kira made her heart race these days. She felt like there was more to what was on screen than met the eye. There was more between them than they could’ve ever predicted—or there would be if they kept kissing when the cameras weren’t rolling—and it was starting to become scary. 

By the end of the rehearsal, Rey felt confident enough in the scene that Poe told them they’d earned a slight break, and they’d be back next week—six days before the scene would be filmed. That made her nervous. The scene was huge. The actual scene, with a thousand cast members and crew, was going to be another thing entirely. 

*

It was just before sunset that afternoon when they were finally freed to go home. As she and Ben walked out of the parking lot toward her car, she could feel her entire body buzzing, like she wasn’t quite suited to drive, but she would calm herself down by the time they got there so help her god. She just had to stop thinking about him putting his mouth on her cunt within the hour, then maybe she would stand a chance. 

Something told her, though, as they got in the car and he was also buzzing slightly in the passenger seat, that he was just as excited as she was. Maybe neither of them would ever admit it, but both of them were looking forward to it. They both wanted it very badly. 

She was terrified to think what that might’ve meant. 

Rey and Ben drove home in large part in silence, but both of them kept looking at the other out of the corner of their eyes with knowing glances that promised something more was coming. It sent thrills down her spine, made her heart pump blood faster, and made the damp spot she could already feel forming between her legs start getting worse. She wasn’t going to survive the night, not like this. 

Making it home was one hell of a feat. 

She was trembling slightly as they got into the elevator, her whole body tingling with excitement as she started picturing what was about to happen. In her mind’s eye, she could see his mouth on her neck, her chest, her stomach, her inner thighs, and before long she was envisioning his tongue buried deep in her cunt, making her writhe beneath him with its every move. Just days ago she’d been nervous for this but now? Now she knew she was ready. 

The moment the doors opened on her floor, she reached for Ben’s hand, and led him outside. “So what’s the best way to do this?”

“This?”

“You know…” She gestured between them, eyes drifting down to his lips briefly as they approached her flat. “ This.

“Oh, uh—well—there’s a few ways we can do it, actually. You could lie down, straddle my face, you could be sitting, standing… it’s up to you. Whatever feels comfortable.”

“I don’t think I trust myself to even be standing,” she said, and she would swear on her life she saw his cheeks flush a faint pink. “So um, maybe my bedroom?”

“Your what?”

“My bedroom, so I could um… lie down?” She looked up at him expectantly as she fished her apartment keys out of her pocket, finding something satisfying in the way he seemed to lose all sense of thought for a few seconds. 

Apparently he was having as much trouble believing this was really happening as she was. “Yeah, that sounds fine,” he replied, shoving his hands in his pockets as she opened up the door, and they stepped in together. “Like I said. It just matters that you’re comfortable. If you don’t like one position, we’ll change to another or stop altogether.”

She gave him a slightly apprehensive look, but then nodded, and continued tugging on his hand as she walked them both into her bedroom, suddenly aware of every charged particle of static electricity in the air. 

Once they were inside, she let go of his hand and took off her jacket, tossing it over a chair that waited patiently by a desk littered with scripts that had been highlighted to hell, then she turned around, and reached out for his hand again. “So where do we start, then?” she asked softly, meeting his eyes to find that they were already locked onto her lips. 

In his mind, she knew he was kissing her already, all they needed to do now was actually close that gap between them, and for once, she wasn’t sure where to start. “Ben,” she breathed, then she gasped as he cupped the base of her skull in one palm, his fingers tangling into the braids their hair stylist had intricately crafted that morning as he leaned in and kissed her. 

The temperature in the room was already hotter than it had any right to be, but with that kiss it went up another ten degrees. Rey’s entire body felt heated, and as he began to walk forward, guiding her back toward the bed, she could feel fire in her veins. It burned hot and bright, and as her arms wrapped around his neck to stabilize herself, she realized the embers it was creating would probably never go out. 

His tongue swept along the line of her lower lip, and she moaned softly into his mouth as the backs of her legs hit the edge of her mattress. The only place they could go from there was down, or so she thought. Ben was always full of surprises, and just like every other encounter they’d had thus far, he’d chosen to surprise her here, too. 

She gasped into the kiss as his arms wrapped around her waist, and he lifted her from the ground. As if being ordered by an invisible, unheard command, her legs followed, wrapping around his hips so that her heels dug into his ass as he lowered her onto the mattress. 

It felt like she was floating in spite of being put down as their combined weight sank into her mattress, and Ben never stopped kissing her all the while—not even when he brought his hands out from under her. He just kept moving his lips in time with hers, seeming to almost worship her like a queen as the kiss grew longer and more intense, and if she were being honest, a part of her just wanted to do this forever. 

Kissing, though, wasn’t what they came here for. 

Ben’s hand made its way up her body so that his fingers were pulling the back of her neck up, causing her to arch her chin into the air as his kisses broke away from her lips, and began to descend along the line of her jaw just like they did during their scene. When his lips touched her collarbone, she couldn’t resist quietly whispering his name just once, then she forced herself to go quiet again. He was about to be touching a lot more intimate places than her fucking collarbone. She needed to calm down. 

All it did was make the bastard smirk a little as he continued his line of descent, as his kisses trailed along the hard bone at the center of her chest, and he began to let one hand wander down the line of half the v formed by her hips. She shuddered beneath him as his fingers found the hem of her shirt, then pushed it up slightly as his kisses continued to wander further and further down. Her heart was racing like mad, and she thought she might pass out and die from a heart attack as she watched him bring his other hand down to help the first undo the button of her jeans. 

He moved painstakingly slowly, watching what he was doing like he was trying to memorize every movement, studying it with perfect scrutiny so that he could ensure he was going to replicate it later on. Whether that was what he was actually doing or not, she had no way of knowing, but it sent a fresh wave of heat through her entire body to think about it, and she was sure he’d feel that soon enough once he got her out of her jeans. 

Rey’s breathing grew heavy and borderline shaky as he undid the zipper, then his fingers crawled up at a snail’s pace to latch beneath her waistband, and she knew she couldn’t take more of this sweet, slow torture. As much as she was loving his tender touches, she needed his mouth on her and she needed it now. “Just take them off already or I’ll kick them off myself,” she growled at him, causing Ben to laugh as she lifted her ass from the mattress, and he began to peel the fabric down her body. 

The next time she inhaled, her breath hitched as she realized that his fingers had also caught on to the waistband of her underwear, and he was pulling that down along with her jeans. Within just a few seconds, her lower body would be completely bared to him for the first time, and while she felt a tiny trickle of anxiety enter her, she wasn’t scared. She was ready, like she’d told Rose earlier, she was prepared for this, and it was something she genuinely wanted. Any lingering nerves she was feeling were brought about by the excitement that always accompanied a first experience. This was her first time doing this particular thing with anyone let alone Ben, but the fact that it was him?

That just made it even better. It made it… beautiful. 

Ben’s own breathing shuddered as he pulled the fabric down her thighs, and his eyes wandered right between her legs. For the first half-second he was looking at her, she was suddenly overwhelmed with the urge to clamp them shut, but she quickly got over it when she saw the kindness that lingered in his gaze. He wasn’t disgusted, turned off, or overall repulsed by what he saw between her thighs; in fact, he actually seemed to be tampering down some enthusiasm about it. 

If that realization didn’t make her feel borderline dizzy, she didn’t know what would. 

As he crawled back off the bed, removed her shoes, and peeled the remaining pieces of fabric from her legs, Rey’s heart was absolutely pounding like a drum in her ears. The intensity of his gaze as he looked at her after, though? That sent her brain into overdrive. 

“Crawl back to the headboard, I’m gonna need some room,” he told her, and she felt like she was moving on autopilot as she obeyed his command, and crawled back on the mattress. 

They moved together. As she crawled back, he crawled forward, and together they moved until her head was resting on the pillow and he was crawling between her legs, up and over her, until his hair hung around his face like a curtain as he looked down at her. “Ben…”

“Tell me if you want me to stop.”

She shook her head. “I won’t,” she said, then she felt him shudder over her as he leaned down to place one last, head-spin inducing kiss to her lips, then he began to crawl back down her body, and she found herself unable to take her eyes off of him. 

It was captivating, if she was being honest. Every single move he made was something she found utterly riveting, and she felt like she’d almost lost control of her body, like she was blissed out before he’d even properly touched her. It was a wonder that she controlled her breathing as he lifted her legs, and placed them over his shoulders, her thighs resting on either of them as he began to press gentle kisses on her inner thighs. 

Rey’s entire body was trembling with every kiss, especially as they got closer and closer to her apex, to where he had to know she was all but dripping wet because of him. It was oddly similar to the scene they were rehearsing just about twice a week, but also not the same at all. Unlike those rehearsals, there was absolutely nothing separating his mouth and her skin anymore, and he wouldn’t just be hovering awkwardly right above her clit, he was going to actually take it into his fucking mouth. She nearly fucking whimpered at the thought of that alone, and she knew she would when he actually did it. 

Her hands began to move down of their own accord, shifting until they were able to bury themselves in his hair just as he started pressing kisses to the interior of her other thigh, and she swore she could hear his heart pounding against his chest, too. 

The seconds ticked by like that, his kisses getting closer and closer, the tension ratcheting up further and further until—

He pressed an open mouthed kiss right to her cunt and she saw stars even though her eyes were open. She sighed his name again with a swear as his tongue came out from between his lips, and licked a stripe from her entrance to her clit, sinking deep into her before he moved up, applying enough pressure that she couldn’t quite control the gasp that left her mouth. 

“Do it again,” she breathed in a rush as his tongue abandoned her clit. “Sweet fuck do it again.”

Ben laughed against her skin, then he obeyed her command, beginning to stroke her cunt with smooth, swift strokes as his hands came up to hold her thighs against his shoulders. Apparently he could feel them wobbling—she hadn’t been hiding that as well as she’d thought. 

“God, Ben…” she whispered as his tongue dipped inside her entrance again, his nose bumping her clit as he went, and he began to explore places only their hands had ever touched, tasting her properly in a way none of the men or women in the porn she’d watched had ever done to their partners. He was right, she had only been watching bad porn. 

This felt like the closest thing to heaven that she would ever find, and all she wanted to do was lose herself to it. She wanted to close her eyes and let herself fall into the abyss this offered her, but she didn’t want to miss a single minute of it. Forcing herself to keep her eyes open, Rey propped her head up on her arm, and grasped his hair a little more tightly with her other hand as she watched him move. 

In all she’d heard about this, it seemed the general consensus was that it was just for fun, just fooling around, and technically that was what they were doing, but the way he did it… There was something almost sweet about it. Ben was taking his time, he wasn’t in any rush to make her come so that he could get off of her and run to grab the Listerine like she’d heard some people did, and he even seemed to be thoroughly enjoying it. Hell, she thought there was even a chance he was enjoying it more than she was. 

It almost even seemed—if she dared to say it— loving

That thought alone was terrifying, but as Ben began swirling his tongue around her clit, thoughts left her brain entirely. A loud, obscene moan escaped her, and she could only pray her neighbors either weren’t home or hadn’t noticed, because another one followed shortly after when he took her clit between his lips and sucked. 

If she’d been seeing stars before, she was seeing galaxies now. Brilliant lights illuminated her vision as her eyes clamped shut, and she grasped his hair perhaps a pinch too tightly, causing him to groan against her clit. The vibrations that sent through her were better than any toy she’d ever used or her hands. His name seemed to be the only thing she was capable of saying, the pleasure of what he was doing to her nearly overwhelming 

And yet she knew there was more. 

As his tongue stroked her clit like he had some sort of religious conviction to do so, Rey could feel her orgasm starting to build inside of her. Tension cooled low in her gut, heat pooling right above where he currently had his face buried. “Fuck, fuck, fuck,” she breathed, then she tugged on his hair again, forcing another tiny moan from his lips as a smile parted hers. “Ben, I’m close.”

He hummed against her skin again, then he moved off of her clit, resuming what he’d done at the beginning of this encounter but at a much faster pace. She clamped a hand over her mouth, ditching the armrest she’d had in favor of not traumatizing her neighbors as he began fucking her with his tongue again, his nose consistently brushing her clit so that there was enough pressure on it that it took all her self control to keep from bucking her hips up into his face. 

All she could do as he brought her closer and closer was bite down into her palm, but apparently her muffled cries weren’t enough for him. Ben paused his ministrations, lifting his head briefly so his eyes could lock onto hers as they both panted harder than they ever had before. “Put your hand down,” he told her, then he let his tongue come out briefly, brushing her clit once before he came up again. “I want to hear you say my name when you come.”

Fuck. That alone nearly sent her over the edge, but she managed to nod, and she put her arm back beneath her head, leaving herself free to cry out when he descended upon her again, sucking her clit into her mouth as he hummed delightedly against it. He then resumed what he’d been doing just before he’d told her to stop covering her mouth, his tongue burying itself inside of her once more—

Just seconds later, she felt a familiar wave of pleasure wash over her, and she shouted his name as she came, fluttering around his tongue as her back arched off the mattress. The only things keeping her grounded was his hands on her thighs, holding her close against him as he watched her come undone. “Ben… fuck…”  

He laughed against her cunt as she finally stopped shaking around him, as the only movements her body made were caused by the heaving of her chest, then he released her from his mouth. She stared at him as he took in several deep breaths, looking at her like he was hypnotized by what he was seeing as he panted from what he’d done. Ben’s mouth was hanging open, drawing her eyes to the wet shine of his very red lower lip as his tongue darted out to collect the drop resting there. Whether that was caused by her or him, she had no clue, but she was so dizzy, so wonderfully worn out she couldn’t really think about it too much. She was too lost in her own gaze. 

Rey was so lost, in fact, that she barely even registered when he freed her legs from his shoulders and crawled over her again, looking down at her with something unreadable in his eyes as his face hovered over her own. Both of them were still breathing hard like the wind had been knocked out of them, like they’d just taken some sort of drug and they were still coming down from its high. 

There was something happening there in that moment, something she couldn’t quite make out but knew beyond a shadow of a doubt was something incredible. 

Wordlessly, she reached up, and brushed the hair from his eyes, looking into the golden flecks that were illuminated by the last rays of sunlight streaming through her window as she pulled him in a little closer, letting her eyes flutter closed as she prepared for a kiss. 

“Was it good for you?” he asked softly, gently, like he too had experienced a first time. 

She gave him the slightest of nods. “Absolutely perfect,” she replied, then he leaned down a little more, and kissed her as tenderly as she thought he might be capable of, and together they melted into her mattress like that. They kissed for far longer than was probably necessary, and a realization began to dawn in Rey’s mind—

This was not going to end the way it started. There was a road, they were on it, but this was no round trip. This has started with two friends helping one another out, but it was going to end in… something else entirely, and only time itself could tell them what.

Chapter Text

The remaining days until the scene was to be filmed began to pass in a glorious blur. With this newest door unlocked, Ben was at her place, or she was at his, damn near every night. Some nights they just watched movies, other nights they just hung out and drank--sometimes with other members of the cast and crew--and of course, there were the nights they spent making each other fall apart. 

Somehow, they got to the point where there was only a week until the scene was to be filmed. Rey wasn’t nervous yet, but she had a feeling she was going to be. Ben kept asking her if she was, but she kept assuring him she was fine. With every rehearsal, she grew more confident in what was happening, she moved more like she knew what she was doing, and even the rest of the cast could sense a newfound pride radiating from her. 

Gwen’s knowing looks as she’d pass her by on set grew in numbers. Frequently, she would pass with their costar, Armitage, and sometimes they’d be whispering together, and Rey could admit that made her nervous. 

Fortunately, all it had taken was a quick conversation, and Rey was assured that their ginger-haired co-star knew absolutely nothing of her fling with Ben. Thanks to some of the scenes and scheduling they were involved in, though, they were starting to suspect that Kylo and Kira were hooking up. The NDA from God gave her an easy out, though, and for once, she was incredibly grateful for the damned thing. 

Rose and Paige were perhaps the only ones who didn’t really ask many questions. Sure, the younger Tico knew something was going on, but she hid this knowledge well, and Paige seemed to share this respect for her privacy, which prevented many a panic attack that she was somehow being found out. 

It also helped that they were fooling around less on set these days. Rey figured it was the only foolproof way to avoid another incident like what had happened with Gwen. Luckily, Ben, sweet and understanding as always, made sure he was accommodating, and they managed to reduce their time together to their nights and rare days off. 

They had still not spent a night together since that first night, though, and they had never spent a night in the same bed. It was a sort of unspoken rule that neither of them could discuss it, either, since they both knew that actually sharing a bed was… Was it anything, really? Rey’d had Rose, Paige, and Gwen over plenty of times, and they were just friends. Ben was just a friend, so why was she so afraid of falling asleep with him next to her?

She wanted to stop being such a coward, even if she was pretty sure she was developing feelings for him it shouldn’t have mattered. Driving each other home after they’d accidentally driven to their own places to avoid the walk of shame in the mornings was starting to get old. They needed to start bringing changes of clothes with them, or maybe even just leaving clothes at each other’s places--

Whoa. That sounded intimate. Leaving clothes at his place? Setting aside a bra, underwear, t-shirts, jeans, socks--just for Ben? The thought made her shiver, and yet she wanted to do it. 

The first time she asked him to stay with her in bed was that very night, one week before they were scheduled to film the scene—also one night before their next rehearsal—and one night before the episode itself was set to commence filmwork. He’d just finished eating her out again, the back of his hand wiping over his mouth as he started up into her hooded eyes, and her brain was absolute mush. 

Perhaps that was why she asked the question. 

“Will you stay tonight?”

He froze as he was beginning to crawl over her, as his body began to warm hers like a blanket. His dark eyes blinked up at hers, and for a fraction of a second, he looked more afraid than she had ever been, but then he gathered himself, and swallowed nervously. “What?”

“Stay here, with me, tonight,” she repeated, stroking his hair as he rested his chin in the valley between her breasts. “You never do, and it’s kind of cold tonight, so… stay.”

Ben blinked at her for a few seconds, almost as if he had completely shut down, like his brain had stopped working altogether. “You want me to stay… in here?”

“Yes, dumbass.” She laughed at him as his hands gripped her hips, seeming to cling to them for support. “In my bed, I’m cold.”

“You’re sure?”

“Ben, you’ve just made me come twice, and I made you come during dinner. I think we can share a bed.”

There was definitely a hint of a blush rising to his cheeks. Sometimes she wondered which of them was really learning something here—which was gaining the experience—was it really her, or was he learning something, too?

His tongue came out to wet his lips again, and he slowly seemed to come to a decision before nodding slowly. “We’re going to have to start leaving clothes at each other’s place, we can’t keep doing the walk of shame into work. Someone will notice.”

Rey grinned, only just resisting the urge to kiss him again as he rolled off of her, and she covered herself with her blankets. “I was thinking about that, too,” she admitted, then she reached across the space between them, and rested a hand casually on his shoulder. At least, she hoped it was casual, she couldn’t tell how he’d interpreted it from his neutral expression. “It may just be easier until this scene’s done.”

“It’ll be over in a week.”

Realization dawned on Rey that it would indeed be over and done with in a week. She was going to film this scene in just a fucking week. That made her nervous as all hell, but she didn’t want Ben to know that. As far as she knew, this sleeping around thing didn’t have a spoken expiration date, but they’d both been probably assuming they wanted to end it once the scene was over. 

On top of that, there were still so many things they hadn’t done yet together, including things they did in their scene. If they stopped right after filming, there was a chance Rey would never know what it felt like to have his— fuck, she needed to stop thinking about this, but how could she? This was something that would take a bit more preparation than the other things they’d done. It would take a bit more conversation, a bit more listening and communication, but every time she looked into his eyes, she became more confident it was something they could handle. 

“Do we want to stop after that?” he asked, interrupting her thoughts about putting his cock inside of her as he whispered those words ever so softly. 

“What?”

“After the scene. Do you…?”

“Not really.”

“Oh?”

“I’m having fun, Ben. A lot of fun. I don’t want that to go away because we finished this scene.” She shifted in the bed, propping her elbow upon the pillow and her head in her hand. “I’m enjoying this; learning with you. I think… I think it should stop when we’re ready, not because we set some deadline.”

He shifted onto his side as well, almost as if he were trying to match her. “Yeah, I agree. I’m--I’m having a good time, too.”

Her lips twitched into a hint of a smile, then she cocked her head in the direction of her dresser. “I have a massive fucking pair of sweatpants hidden in the bottom drawer if you want to use them. They’ll be slightly less walk of shame-y in the morning.”

Snickering quietly, Ben crawled off of the bed, and made his way over to the dresser. “Thanks.”

“Yeah, no problem, but you’ll probably have to dig through a lot of underwear to find them,” she warned him, and she would swear that he blushed again as he bent down to open the drawer. His face turned a brighter version of the shade crimson when he began to sift through what seemed like miles of lace fabric mixed with the occasional fun printed underwear, and one that simply said, “peach” on the butt. He seemed to get a laugh out of that, but both of them were bright red as he sifted through the fabric until he found the sweat-pants Rey had told him about. 

The first thing she saw when he pulled them out was the massive line of silver sequins on the ass that spelled out in capital letters, “Bootylicious,” which she found absolutely hilarious given that Ben was far from the most bootylicious man she’d ever met, but she was also blushing too hard to laugh much. Her friend on the other hand dropped them immediately, and fell to his knees clutching his gut as fits of laughter took him over. “Really?”

“Sorry,” she squeaked, covering her face as he began to undo the button of his jeans, preparing to switch out of the denim and into the bootylicious sweatpants anyway. “I forgot about that part.”

Shaking his head, Ben sighed dramatically. “Why do you even have these?”

“You’re not the only one who’s stolen a cast member’s property,” she told him, shrugging casually like it was nothing. “Poe doesn’t have the tightest security on his closet. I don’t even think it had a lock.”

“When--?”

“First season wrap party. He still hasn’t figured out who took them.”

“He’ll think it’s me if we walk onto set like this tomorrow,” he pointed out, then he shrugged. “I can just deal with the walk of shame. I don’t want to deal with Poe’s wrath.”

Rey hummed her assent as he finally put on the pants in question, then wolf-whistled at him as he shimmied a little to pull them over his hips, and the word, “Bootylicious,” glittered at her like a sign from god himself. “Great, now get in here, we’ve got a lot to do tomorrow.”

“So bossy,” he muttered, but he obeyed her command, lifting the covers before crawling into bed beside Rey with a hint of a smile starting to bloom on his face. “Are you going to put pants on?”

She simply gave him a wink before she turned over, and shut off the lamp on her bedside table. “Goodnight, Ben.”

If he thought he’d successfully hidden the sound of his nervous swallow after that, he was wrong. “G-goodnight, Rey.”

*

She stayed awake for hours after she heard him begin to snore softly. It wasn’t a loud, chainsaw snore, but it was gentle, just loud enough for her to know it was there. A part of her found it oddly endearing, the part of her that was slowly becoming aware of what she felt for him, and beneath the joy she got from just lying beside him, she felt fear. 

Love hadn’t really been a part of her life, not in the romantic sense. She had gotten an abundance of platonic love from everyone around her, but she’d scarcely ever dated and only kissed a handful of people before Ben. Romance was not something she sought or ever really thought she’d experience, but as she turned over to look at Ben’s sleeping face, she knew it was a part of her life now. 

How hadn’t she noticed it before? When had it happened? Had it been the moment they’d met? No, that was platonic, they’d genuinely started off as friends. Had it been the chemistry reading? No… no… maybe? No. That wasn’t it either, they were both incredibly talented actors, she’d feigned being in love with many other men and women before. 

It had to have been the first time they’d kissed without the cameras rolling, the first time they’d kissed as Rey and Ben, not as Kylo and Kira. It was one thing to kiss in character, but another entirely to kiss as real people. It made them vulnerable, required them to open up to one another in ways they hadn’t before. It changed them irrevocably. They would never be the same again after that kiss, and she’d been a fool to think otherwise. 

Now she wanted him, but it was impossible to tell if he wanted the same thing. Did he love her back? Did he feel the same internal conflict as she did? Was Ben kept awake at night thinking of her? Did he love her, too? Did he even want to be in a relationship?

She was too afraid to ask. This whole situation was terrifying. Emotions themselves were terrifying. All she knew was that she loved him, and doing something about that was utterly frightening. 

Eventually, she turned over, and succumbed to sleep, knowing they didn’t have long before her alarm went off, and they would have to get up and go to work. All the while, though, her thoughts kept turning in his direction; her dreams taking on the shape of herself and Ben on this very bed writhing together in pleasure as he thrust his cock inside of her with long, drawn out, low moans that nearly made her come in her pants. 

This led her to wake up fully aware that she was wet, quite wet--embarrassingly wet--and she couldn’t help how heavily she was breathing, panting hard like she’d just run a marathon. It was sort of exhilarating, but also completely terrifying, and it came with the realization that she was starting to become ready for more than what they’d been doing. She wanted to take another step with him, but how the hell did she ask him about it?

She’d asked him for other things before, she’d asked him to fuck her with his fingers, to do the same to him, but this… Maybe she wasn’t quite ready yet or it wouldn’t be so hard. Hell, maybe even just another conversation with Rose or Gwen would set her straight, but then she remembered Rose’s advice. If she really wanted it, she wouldn’t be questioning it right now. 

The time was close, but not quite upon them. 

A soft groan escaped her, then her body shifted against something hard and warm, and she realized--her eyes shooting open--that she and Ben had gravitated toward one another in the night. He was now pressed up against her backside, and she could feel his erection pressing into her ass through the Bootylicious sweatpants she’d lent him. That thought made her snicker quietly under her breath as she pressed up a little tighter against him, craving his warmth until she remembered she hadn’t put on pants before they’d fallen asleep. 

Fuck. She’d made a grave mistake, because now she was certain that she’d left a wet spot on the front of those bedazzled fucking sweat pants, and if he woke up anytime soon, he was bound to notice. Breathing heavily, she slowly shifted her ass away from him, but he shifted with her, moaning softly into her hair as his hips chased hers. 

Rey may have been starting to fall in love with him, but first, she was going to kill him. 

“Where are you going?” he asked sleepily, and for a second she froze, realizing she’d been caught, but then he grumbled something unintelligible, and she breathed a sigh of relief as his snores picked up again. God , he was going to be the death of her, or maybe life would unveil a stunning turn of events and she would be the death of him. 

Biting her lip, Rey closed her eyes, and took several deep breaths, trying to calm herself down as she tried to join him once more in sleep. Luckily, she managed to succeed, and soon she was snoring right along with him. 

But of course, that only made the wet spot on the front of Ben’s pants that more prominent when she eventually woke up again. 

It was just before dawn when they woke up once more, both of them a little sweaty from their shared body heat, and Rey had never been more tragically aware of how aroused she was. Fortunately for her, he seemed to be in the same position. 

She slowly turned her head when she felt him grind his hips ever so slightly against hers, and they both shuddered from how good it felt. It gave her a weird sense of confidence. “Don’t be subtle,” she told him. “Please just… do it. Whatever you’re thinking… do it.” She then turned fully in his arms, the sheets becoming tangled around them in the process. “Do it.”

Ben was practically shaking as he nodded, then he scooped her up into his arms, pulling her on top of him as her legs spread out over his body, caging his hips between them. In the dim light, she could hardly see his face, but what little light there was caught his eye for half a second, passing like a fleeting shadow. It wasn’t enough for her to make out his face, but since he could hardly see her, his hands began ghosting up her sides, taking caution not to touch her in any way she didn’t want to be touched, but fuck, she wished he would understand that patience wasn’t with her at the moment. It wouldn’t be back for a while. 

“Touch me,” she whispered, leaning down to his ear for a second. “God damn it, Ben, the sun will be up soon, we don’t have a lot of time.”

Almost as if snapped out of a reverie, Ben’s breath caught, then he exhaled slowly. “Shit, yeah, sorry, I just--I can’t see.”

“Excuses, excuses,” she repeated to him, then she began to move her hips, grinding down against his erection as they both groaned from even the slightest release of pressure. “You don’t need your sense of sight to use your sense of touch.”

“Fuck. ” His hands then moved down, cupping her ass as he pulled her close against him, and slowly, steadily, a sweet friction was created between them. Every brush of her clit against him made her breathing come raggedly, like she was struggling to breathe, but she felt so alive that suffocation simply wasn’t an option. 

“We need to be faster than this,” he told her after a moment, the sun slowly starting to hue the gray sky in shades of purple. “We--”

“The only way either of us will come particularly quickly is if we do it ourselves,” she replied, then they both froze, realizing something at the same time. 

They could definitely do this themselves. Rey had never masturbated with another person in the room before, but she needed to come and she needed to come within the next few minutes and while coming with Ben felt better it wasn’t faster . She needed speed. If she was going to have a better orgasm, she’d have to do it later when they got back to his place that night. 

Without saying a word, she rolled off of him, feeling a sense of glee rise within her at the sound of Ben’s jubilant laughter as they both let their hands wander south. She could hear him struggling with the ties at the waistband of his sweatpants as her fingers began drifting down, sliding over her clit as she listened to him take himself in his hand, and begin stroking his cock with a steady hand. 

Since she and Ben had started hooking up, she hadn’t really had cause to jerk it as much as she used to. The almost nightly sessions they seemed to be having replaced almost any need she had for it, and now her hand just wasn’t the same. She was sure it would be with time, but with all the new sensations she’d become accustomed to… she found herself a touch underwhelmed by her own fingers as she began to rub her clit with a fervor. 

As she started to hear Ben’s little pants and moans, though, she found it to be a little more enjoyable than it was initially. She tuned herself into the motion of his body, the way the mattress shook beneath them both as they worked to get themselves off, as Ben’s hand slid up and down in the silhouette formed by the light of the dawn. Every sound he made sent her closer to the edge, and she whimpered his name as the friction on her clit increased, and she felt that warmth coiling low in her gut. 

She was going to come, she just hoped she could hear him come when she did. 

“Fuck,” he breathed, and she watched his thumb swipe over his tip before he began stroking himself a little more vigorously. Her fingers may have moved a little faster, her breathing coming out ragged like she was running a race, and she’d only started this a few minutes ago but already her hand was cramping like it used to when her only source of pleasure was this. 

A low moan escaped the man lying beside her, and she fell over the edge, careening over it as gravity took its hold, and she came, gasping for air as she felt a fluttering of ecstasy take over her, and all she could think was his name. It repeated itself over and over again like a broken record, but one she wanted to listen to anyway. A stuck loop she enjoyed listening to. 

He followed her shortly after, and she heard his voice crack as he said her name in turn, pitching sharply as warm ropes of come fell back against her bed sheets. She was going to have to wash them anyway, and so she didn’t care, she was too fascinated watching him as she came down from her high, too fascinated by the way he moved--the way he breathed as he came down from his. 

It was the most exhilarating thing she’d ever felt aside from when he’d made her come with his mouth for the first time. Something about being able to properly observe him as he came made her yearn to feel it again, made her yearn to see him come again in the daylight. She wanted it so badly, she wanted that damned sun to rise--

Almost as if on command, it did, and an orange-pink light faded into the room, bathing them both in a warm hue as their heads turned to face one another, and she watched sweat glisten off of whatever skin he had exposed, his chest heaving as he looked at her with eyes that were tinged deep amber in the light. Both of them were panting hard, both dizzy from what they’d just done, and before she could come back to reality again, Ben shifted toward her. 

“What are you…?” She didn't get the words out. Before she could finish that sentence, he was kissing her softly, sweetly, like he had that night after their first rehearsal, in that way that made her feel like she was the fluttery sort of drunk that actually felt good. 

It was so short, but for a split second, his body covered hers, she felt warm, and she became shockingly, suddenly aware of how deep her feelings ran. “Rey…” he whispered, and suddenly a flash of panic rushed through her. 

“We-we should get to work, shouldn’t we?” she asked, suddenly remembering the time, and feeling terrified of what Ben was about to say. 

He froze, then he swallowed nervously, and rolled away from her. “Yeah, we should get to work,” he replied, then he was pulling his sweatpants back up, and getting out of bed, leaving her reeling as she watched him go off into her bathroom. 

Somehow, her chest was still heaving as she slumped back into her mattress, thinking hard on all that had just happened. They’d both just come under their own hands, looked at each other, and shared a completely unnecessary kiss. Normally when they kissed it was for rehearsal or because it was going to lead to something more. They didn’t usually just kiss for the hell of it. 

Rey was frightened to think what that might’ve meant. She didn’t know if it meant he wanted her in the same way she wanted him—did she even want him to want her that way? Was she ready for a deeper relationship than what they had? Their friendship was perfect, every day with him was easy, effortless like breathing, and she wanted him in her life long after the cameras stopped rolling on their show. 

She didn’t want to ruin that friendship by starting a relationship they weren’t both ready for. While this remained simply friends with benefits, they still had the chance to walk away from it unscathed if they decided romance wasn’t for them, but when it became something more serious? That was something else entirely. 

It was something completely fucking terrifying, and as she rolled out of bed to get dressed for work, she wondered how long she’d be able to hold back these feelings, or if they’d ever fade away. Hell, she wondered if she even wanted them to. Emotions were odd things, and this was her first time experiencing love like this. 

In that moment, as she picked out jeans and underwear for the day, Rey realized that this was no longer just a physical first time, but it was an emotional one, and her heart no longer belonged to just herself, but to him as well. 

 

Chapter Text

The next day, they had another rehearsal once filming was over. By that point, they had the moves down perfectly. She knew them like the back of her hand, and any future changes would have to be made by the episode director. Amilyn and Poe both seemed proud of their work, and if she were being honest, she was, too. 

Rey was no longer supremely uncomfortable every time she and Ben undressed and mimicked sex for their audience. Sure, the audience they’d have when they actually filmed would be much bigger, but at least in front of the two people they’d worked with thus far, she was perfectly fine. 

Day two of filming the episode went by just as easily, especially given that Rey didn’t have to film anything that day and it was just Ben and his knights. It was him, Armitage, and Gwen for the most part, and she got to lounge around at home in her pajamas. 

If she spent some of that time googling sex facts—on private mode, mind you—to determine what to do when it actually came to putting Ben’s cock inside of her, then she couldn’t be judged since no one was around to catch her, right?

Midway through the day, she got a text from Ben; a selfie with himself, Gwen, and Armitage looking sweaty and covered with the fake blood of some epic and legendary battle as they stared at the camera. The blonde woman in the picture had thrown up a middle finger, causing Rey to laugh. It only became funnier when she saw that Armitage was looking at said middle finger with a pinched look of distaste. It was very in character for them, but maybe not so much for Ben to be mid-laugh as he stared at them both through the screen of his phone. 

It was her day off, but that damn picture made her want to be on set more than ever. She found it odd, but the fact of the matter was that she missed them—she missed Ben. 

When he came knocking on her door that evening while she was in the middle of cooking dinner, Rey had a stupidly big smile on her face that she had to calm down. “Hey,” she said, attempting to be casual as he walked inside, carrying a small backpack with him. “What’s that?”

“The clothes I’m going to be leaving here to avoid a walk of shame in the mornings.” He gave her a proud and borderline cocky grin. “Hope that’s okay.”

She gave him a small laugh as she let him pass by, then he set his bags down, and made his way into the kitchen as she stirred the macaroni in the pot. “I didn’t exactly make anything gourmet tonight.”

Ben shrugged as he began rifling through her pantry. “Mac and cheese? It’s a classic. Who needs gourmet when you have this shit?”

Rey rolled her eyes as she turned off the burner, and brought the pasta over to the sink to strain it. “How was work?”

“Boring.” He grabbed a bag of Lays chips from her shelves of food, and pulled it open as he sat on the other side of the counter from her, the corners of his mouth pulled up into a charming, boyish smile as he looked down at his chips. “We just filmed some knight stuff, you know?”

“You usually love the knight stuff,” she replied, then she dumped the pasta back into the pot, and began making the cheese sauce. “What happened?”

He shrugged. “It just… it didn’t feel the same today.” That smile on his face fell just a little bit, then he plopped a chip into his mouth, as if to avoid saying anything else, and the conversation fell silent for a moment. 

The quiet allowed her time to think as she finished cooking the macaroni. Rey thought about the question she was still wanting to ask him, about the thing she still wasn’t quite ready for yet, and she gripped the wooden spoon she was using to stir a little more tightly as she thought about how to ask it. “Ben, how’d you…?” She paused, suddenly feeling insecure in her question. “How did you lose your um…?”

Another crunching sound filled her ears as he popped in another chip, then he laughed. “How’d I lose my virginity?”

“Yeah, what made you realize you wanted to take that leap?” she asked, then she turned around, crossing her arms over her chest. “Cause I’ve been… I-I’m not ready, but I’ve been thinking about it.”

Shifting in his seat, Ben met her gaze, but she didn’t think he was looking at her—no, he was looking into the past, possibly even the distant past. The corner of his mouth twitched up, and for half a second he was smirking as he laced his fingers together, leaning on his elbows over the table as he looked at her. “I mean, I was with my first serious partner. He was… someone I loved at the time and we were alone at his place after a long day he’d spent filming and then we just started talking, then kissing, then we just—we just knew.” 

“I just,.. I think I’ll have that moment soon. I don’t think I’m there yet, but… I wanted to be sure.”

He stared curiously at her for a couple of seconds, then he let go of his own hand, and reached out for hers. “Come here.”

Swallowing nervously, Rey went to him, letting her best friend take her hand in his as she watched him run his thumb over the back of her knuckles. “Why?”

“Because I want to make sure that you’re not having any sort of crisis just because the scene is coming up,” he told her, squeezing her hand a little more tightly as he spoke. “You don’t need to have sex to do this—well, more than you’re already having—no one will notice; you’ve been doing fantastically in the rehearsals.”

Fuck the scene,” she muttered, leaning against her counter as she met his gaze. 

“What?”

“Fuck the scene. I don’t care about it. Maybe that’s how it started, but we agreed to keep going after it was over, didn’t we?” Shifting her position, she let go of his hand to put hers on the counter. “I just wanted to know. I promise. I’m not putting any deadlines on this.”

Another few seconds of silence passed between them, then he slowly nodded as he leaned back in his chair. “Okay. I just… I wanted to be sure.”

“I get that.”

“Are you sure you want it to be me, though? When it happens? You don’t want to wait for someone else?” 

There was something in his eyes then, some odd mixture of fear and hope, and she stumbled over her words trying to decipher it. “I-I y-yes I want it-I want it to be you.” But what the hell did that look mean? What was his soul trying to say that his brain was too stubborn to admit? 

“I just… this is a serious thi—“

Her eyes rolled again, then she took his stupid face in her hands, and forced him to look into her eyes. “I want it to be you,” she told him, annunciating every single word so that there was no mistaking her intent. “I don’t want it to be someone else. Not right now. Just you. Okay?”

“Okay,” he said, then they both pulled back, and she turned around to pay attention to her neglected macaroni. 

“So, you want more cheese or less cheese?” 

Ben gave her another odd look she couldn’t read, then he smiled. “More cheese,” he said, then she turned around, and poured even more cheese into the mix before stirring her little concoction once more around the pot. She was mostly focused on her work on the pasta, but the entire time she could feel his eyes on her back, watching her with heat in his gaze as she put the noodles into two bowls, then he was smiling at her again as they commenced a feast.

*

The next day was his day off, and it was her day to work with Finn and Poe. Gwen and Armitage were also on set, since the scene involved the two of them spying on the enemy camp, and so the set felt full, but as Rey took off her helmet after the fiftieth take, it felt incredibly empty. 

The five of them were sitting down to lunch, food filling all of their plates and their guts. Conversation was loud in the room, but she wasn’t participating much. Her thoughts were drifting back to the man she’d left behind in her bed that morning, slinking out of the room before he woke up. Every day her courage was growing, her will to do everything she wanted to do was becoming something too intense to ignore. 

She still wasn’t ready, though, she knew that much was certain. There were other steps they could take that didn’t involve going all the way like that, after all. If memory served, Ben’s favorite thing to do to her was bury his face between her legs, perhaps they could just keep on doing that until she was ready. Or she could ask him to finger her again but add another finger. 

The possibilities were endless, so why the hell did they all suddenly seem like they were just alternatives to a new path?

The sound of raucous laughter snapped her out of her thoughts, and she turned her head to see Gwen, head tilted back, eyes closed, body still, and mouth wide with a banana stuffed nearly to the end down her throat. All around her, Rey’s fellow cast mates were covering their mouths or eyes as they howled with laughter, then her costar pulled the bastard piece of food from her mouth, and set it down on the table with a shrug. “ That’s how you deep throat, Dameron,” she told them, then she watched Finn pat their show runner sympathetically on the shoulder as a crimson blush spread up his cheeks. 

“Hope you learned something buddy,” he said as Poe buried his entire face in his hands. 

Rey blinked at the whole scene, feeling thoroughly astonished by what she’d just witnessed as she looked up at Gwen, who simply tossed her a wink, and mouthed. “ That’s for you, too.”

Now there were two people blushing at that table, but the second person was quickly reburied into deep thought. Thanks to a phallic fruit and what was undoubtedly a stupid dare, a new idea had blossomed. 

“You all right, Rey?” Her costar asked, continuing to give her a knowing look as the laughter at their table died down. “You look a bit pale.”

Blinking herself from her stupor, Rey nodded. “Yeah, fine, I just wasn’t paying attention.”

“And suddenly Gwen’s got a banana down her throat?” Poe asked, eyes glittering with mischief as she looked into them. 

“Pretty much.” It was the truth in a way. She hadn’t been paying attention and suddenly one of her friends had nearly swallowed a sizable piece of food. No one else needed to know it was because she’d been given an idea to try something she’d never done before—least of all Poe. 

“How the fuck did you get it in that far, though?” Finn asked before anyone else could say a thing—before Poe could say anything, most importantly. “Did you practice?”

“Not really, some people just have less of a gag reflex than others.” Gwen began to actually bite into the banana she’d been deep-throating, but her gaze shifted from Finn to Rey. “It’s all about knowing your limit. Once you know that, you can take anything down your throat like a fucking pro.” She turned her eyes on Poe, smacking his bicep as she winked at him. “Something you could probably stand to learn, boss.”

The table erupted into laughter again as their showrunner put his head into his hands, and Finn patted his back as it shook from the giggles inhibiting his breathing. Everyone but the two women at the table was distracted, allowing them to share a knowing look as the men lost themselves completely. 

“You want to run lines for a minute?” Gwen asked, and for a split second, she swore that Ariana Grande was right, god was truly a woman. 

“Sure,” Rey replied, then the two of them excused themselves from the table, and made their way back toward the main part of the set as the laughter of their friends faded into background noise. 

They walked for a good minute until they were outside in the field behind the studio in which most of their scenes were filmed, then the blonde turned around. The chain mail of her sleeves made a series of clinking sounds as she crossed her arms over her chest and looked at her with something a little more serious in her eyes. Just as she was trying to figure out why, Gwen made a sound between a grunt and a laugh, and gave her a once over. “You’ve never had sex with anyone before Ben, have you?”

In just under half a second—the amount of time it took her brain to process those words—Rey’s heart stopped in her chest. “W-what?”

“You’ve never—“ Her costar stepped forward, lowering her voice and repeating it much more slowly, “had sex with anyone before Ben.”

That time it wasn’t a question, and she swallowed nervously as she tried to conjure an answer, but then her friend placed a hand on her shoulder. “Look, I’m not judging. Ben’s a good man, you’re in good hands. That said, I don’t want to know what this is or why it’s happening if you don’t want to tell me, but… I saw your face when I brought up that banana.” The corners of her mouth rose into a grin. “You looked a touch scared out of your wits.”

Scared? She wasn’t scared. Not ready, perhaps, but— scared? “I… I’m not scared,” Rey said, knowing that much was true. “I just don’t have a clue what I’m doing. I figured out the hand stuff pretty easily, but—“ Another shrug. “He’s done it to me, and I have no idea how to reciprocate.”

Gwen nodded slowly, understanding filling her gaze. “So you want to know how to suck a dick, basically?”

That hit the nail on the fucking head. “Pretty much.”

Another light chuckle escaped her, then she patted Rey’s shoulder, and let her arms fall to her sides. “I promise you, it’s not as scary as you think.” Her voice was steady and even, making it easy to believe what she was saying. “Just trust me. Have you ever attempted to put a popsicle or banana—or any phallic food—in your mouth? You know, as far as it would go?”

Of course she had. Who hadn’t been a moron in high school or college—or alone by themselves and bored as shit as a full grown adult—and gotten curious? “A few times.”

“Basically that, but don’t go to the point where you’re about to gag and don’t use your teeth. It’s all about the tongue, and the lips of course, but definitely the tongue. And of course the actual suc—“

“What about my tongue? In porn—“

“Listen, don’t take too much advice from porn. You’ll start overthinking and given your inexperience you’re definitely not about to suck dick like a pornstar,” Gwen answered her, then she sighed. “Here’s what you’ve got to do…” Then she launched into an explanation on exactly how Rey could reciprocate what Ben had done to her—exactly how she could show him how he’d made her feel. 

*

That night, she went to Ben’s apartment with a bag full of her things, still thinking over everything she and Gwen had talked about. They didn’t do much that night, it was more so some half-asleep fondling and light giggles until he slowly slipped into a deep sleep. She’d watched him do so, staring at his sleeping face—and feeling only slightly creepy about it—as he slept on through the night. 

It was true, wasn’t it? People really were more adorable in their sleep, they were more vulnerable, free of all the stressors they held in their daily lives. Her heart was racing in her chest as she stared at him, thinking of what they’d been doing—of what they were going to be doing. She shivered as she reached out, and placed a hand on his cheek, feeling his breath ghost over her wrist. 

Was he actually asleep? He didn’t shift at all, his breathing remained even, and so she shifted her hand back into his hair, tangling the silky black waves between her fingers as she stared at him, wondering how the hell they’d ended up here. 

Why did you make me fall in love with you?  

This was supposed to just make her less nervous for the scene and now she’d developed feelings for her costar. She was fairly certain he must’ve felt a little something back—how could he kiss her like he had if he didn’t—but if this didn’t work out? If he didn’t return her feelings and they were still filming for another couple of years—

Their perfect friendship was ruined. 

She needed to stop thinking about this and start focusing on the present, what they were doing and what she was going to ask him to do with her the next afternoon. She’d ask him after lunch, while Gwen and Armitage were filming but before they had to film their own scene—which was, hilariously enough, a kissing scene. The next day, she was going to ask him, and he was going to listen. He was going to hear her question, mull it over with that stupidly endearing wonderstruck look he got every time she proposed something new, and hopefully, he would say yes. 

*

The next day went fairly normally. They spent their lunch break in her trailer rehearsing the scene they were about to film one last time like they usually did. This was just going to be a kissing scene, something they’d done a dozen times by now, but both of them were perfectionists. 

They wanted this kiss—Kylo and Kira’s last before they gave themselves to each other—to be absolutely perfect. 

At the present moment, they were looking into one another’s eyes, and Ben was holding her face in his hands, their faces mere inches apart. Ben’s breath was ghosting over her lips, and she—as Kira—was only just fighting the temptation to kiss him senseless. Kira was trying desperately against the need to run and go back to her own village, and the need to kiss him one last time before she left. 

“I have to go,” she told him, her lips nearly upon his. “They’ll become suspicious if I’m not back soon.”

Kylo sighed. “But you’ll meet me tonight?”

Kira gave him a nod. “I promise.”

Then softly, tenderly, with so much emotion the part of her that was still Rey was having trouble fathoming that it wasn’t real, his lower lip trembled, and he took in a deep breath before telling her, “I love you.” Then he brushed a piece of her hair behind her ear. 

The confession, though scripted, sent chills down her spine. “I love you t—” she started, but he cut her off, kissing her breathless as he stepped closer, pressing their bodies together as he began to move his lips against hers. 

God, this was so different from how they usually kissed. The whole desperate, fleeting dance between Kylo and Kira wasn’t like the heated easiness of kisses she shared with Ben, and it never had been. It was unmistakably two different people kissing, but there was still something about it that filled her entire body with heat. 

Like kissing her best friend, it held a raw vulnerability that neither of them could truly fake. Over the weeks since they’d started this whole thing, they’d let their real life kisses slowly influence their onscreen kisses until she was starting to struggle to tell the difference between them. Either way, she didn’t mind. The kissing felt wonderful, and even though her lungs were starving for oxygen, it was as easy as breathing. 

They broke away, then broke character within the same three seconds, and Rey blinked slowly, hesitantly at him, unsure of what to say in the aftermath. 

Ben wasn’t exactly sure of what to say either, it was obvious by the way his mouth kept opening and closing, almost as if he were a fish out of water. She certainly knew the feeling. “Th-That… That, that—that was good,” he said after a while, placing his hands on his hips as he nodded to himself like he was trying to sound more casual than he felt. 

It was both charming and hilarious at the same time. 

“Those your thoughts, Ben? Very deep, so philosophical,” she teased him, shoving lightly at his shoulder. “The Greeks have nothing on you.”

A pink blush spread across his cheeks, then he hung his head down, raven waves falling limply into his eyes as embarrassment flooded his face. “I just—I don’t know. It was a good kiss.” 

“It was. The fans are going to lose their minds.”

“Oh, I’m sure they are. Especially if they ever find out what we’ve been up to behind the scenes,” she reminded him, though when it came to the public finding out about them, she wasn’t sure that was something she actually wanted. She just needed to enjoy this for a while, enjoy the secrecy they had. They could tell people eventually if they wished, but for now? 

For now she wanted it to stay secret. She wanted it to stay their secret. 

Ben shivered, then he stepped closer to her again, his hand briefly swaying in front of him like it was yearning to reach for hers, but he thought better of it midway through. “Do we ever want them to know?”

“It’s not like we’re actually dating, they don’t need to know we’re friends with benefits,” she replied casually, also looking down, but sensing something else in his gaze as she did so. She didn’t want to think about what any of it meant—the conversation was now dancing around something dangerous, and she definitely wasn’t ready to talk about the romance thing with him. “Um… speaking of, there was something I wanted to ask you.”

His eyes darted between hers as she looked up, catching his expression just as it shifted from what she dared to hope was mild disappointment to intrigue. “Oh?”

“I’ve been thinking a lot about what you’ve been doing for me lately,” she said, closing her eyes as images of him with his tongue buried deep between her thighs came to the forefront of her mind. “I… I wanted to return the favor.”

“What favor?”

“You know what, I’m just going to come out and say it,” she told him, then she reached out, her hands gripping his waist before sliding down to the waistband of his costume trousers, and using that to tug him closer as he gasped from shock. “I want to go down on you the way you went down on me. I want you to shout my name, I want you to come in my mouth, and I—I want to hear every filthy little noise your mouth is capable of making.”

Her eyes opened after he fell silent for a few seconds, and she was rewarded with the immense satisfaction of that wonderstruck look he always had whenever she proposed they do something new. It was just as glorious as she’d imagined it would be, and she couldn’t fucking wait until she got to see what look blossomed on that overly expressive face when she actually did go down on him. “Are-are you sure?”

A small laugh escaped her as her fingers shifted beneath his waistband until they were right over the laces of his trousers—where a sizable erection had already started forming just from talking about her sucking his cock—as she stepped closer. “More than ever.” 

Realization dawned on his face, eyes going wide enough for her to see the gold hidden amongst the brown of his irises. He exhaled slowly, her name falling from his lips as she continued undoing the laces. “Ri-right now?”

“Right now,” she answered him, then she finished untying the laces, and reached for the edge of his waistband again. “Unless you don’t want me to.”

“No, I-I want you to,” he said breathlessly, sounding almost as if he’d run a marathon. “Rey—”

She didn’t let him finish whatever he was going to say. Instead, she cut him off with a kiss, reaching up with one hand while still gripping his waistband in the other to wrap her fingers around the back of his neck and pull him down to her before he could start talking. 

There it was. That was how they properly kissed; heated but not starving, intense but not fleeting. Rey took her time, allowing her tongue to sweep along the edge of Ben’s lower lip before she pulled him closer against her, and let her fingers start tugging down his trousers. Luckily, she wasn’t entirely helpless in that endeavor; he’d decided he’d help her, too. 

He tugged on the fabric of both his trousers and underthings until his cock was free from its confines, then before he could do anything else, Rey broke away from kissing his lips, panting hard as she cocked her head in the direction of her sofa. Without saying a word, Ben sat down on it, even spreading his legs for her as she stepped between them, nudging them further apart with one of her own. His eyes had never held such a heated gaze as this, the anticipation on them so strong, so intense, it nearly knocked her off focus. 

She swallowed nervously, looking down at the ground as she got down on her knees in front of him. It wasn’t the most comfortable position; she felt like she was going to probably damage her joints somehow, but the look on Ben’s face? Fuck, that alone made it worth it. As long as she lived, she was never going to get this look from anyone else, like she was giving him everything—giving him the world—and she hadn’t even done anything yet. 

Both of them still breathing heavily, she kept her eyes on his as she reached out, and took his cock in one hand, stroking him slowly, experimentally a few times as his chest shuddered with each intake of air. “R-Rey,” he whispered, then she let her thumb glide over his tip, and did it again before she drew a low moan from his throat. 

It looked like he was struggling to focus, like he was fighting off the urge to melt into the sofa and let the feelings she was bringing him take him out to sea, but he was managing somehow. He was still holding on to one last, tiny shred of reality, and she was determined to make him let go. 

His words from the scene they’d be filming in just a few days crossed her mind; you’re still holding on, he’d said to her many times by now. Well, Kylo had said it to Kira a few times by now, but the point still stood. He was holding on, and he needed to… 

Gathering her courage, Rey placed a kiss on his inner thigh, continuing to stroke his cock as she did so. Ben’s breathing continued to remain scattered and uneven, growing even more so as she planted another kiss. She, however, lacked the patience for teasing that he had. Unlike what he’d done with her, she didn’t spend forever pressing teasing, torturous little kisses on the insides of his thighs. 

They didn’t have much time left, after all, they had to be out on that set kissing in about twenty minutes. 

Closing her eyes, she leaned forward, and guided his tip to her mouth, allowing her tongue to drag along the edge of it at an agonizingly slow pace before she closed her eyes, and conjured to mind Gwen’s advice. Her costar had told her this would be far more simple than she thought it would be, all she had to do was relax, and so she did. 

Taking him into her mouth was the easiest thing she’d ever done. He tasted a little salty like Gwen had warned her he might, but once she got the tip past her lips, she barely noticed when all she was focused on was making sure she knew her limit. His cock was fucking huge. She’d realized this over the many times she’d stroked the damned thing over the past few weeks, but she hadn’t quite realized somehow that it was this fucking big. 

It got to the point where she knew if she sent any further she’d become uncomfortable, and she stopped descending upon him. Instead, she used the hand still at his base to begin stroking what she couldn’t reach, and moved back up, her eyes drifting to meet his as a choked gasp escaped him. 

He was watching her attentively, his eyes locking onto hers for half a second as she came up, and swirled her tongue around his tip. At this, she saw his lower lip tremble, shaking as she went back down, her mouth descending on his cock as he moaned her name. It was, quite possibly, one of the sexiest sounds she’d ever heard, and she found that she couldn’t get enough of it. 

Wanting to hear him make it again, Rey began to properly suck, cheeks hollowing as Ben’s eyes rolled back in his head, and he leaned back against the top of the sofa as incoherent swears left his mouth. She couldn’t make them all out, but she swore she could at least hear, “oh, fuck, fuck, fuck… ” between every other breath. That was a good sign, right? She had to be doing something right? Gwen’s advice was working? 

It had to be. Ben was clearly fighting the urge to buck his hips into her mouth and fuck her throat properly. She could feel it in the tiny little twitches of his body beneath her as her head bobbed up and down along the length of him, and so she placed a hand on one of his thighs, holding him down to the best of her ability as he slowly lost control. 

Did this feel as good for him as it did for her? Did he feel like he was floating? Like his body was no longer his own, but just some limp thing he barely even existed in? Was he seeing the stars and all their constellations?

His hands came up from where they rested at his sides, previously having been clenched in tight little fists on the sofa, and gently took her hair into their clutches, holding her close against him as her cheeks hollowed once more. “G-god, Rey,” he breathed, panting heavily as she began to move a little faster. “ Fuck.

She hummed around his cock, which only drew out another low, sensual noise from his throat as he seemed to try to fight off the inevitable. That couldn’t happen. He had to come, she was going to make him come, and so she let out another soft moan around him, drawing out the sound for a few seconds longer than was probably necessary as she heard him gasp sharply. 

“Rey, I’m gonna come,” he warned her, and victorious applause sounded in her head as his hips bucked ever so slightly, and she felt him come in her mouth, heat flooding the back of her throat as he completely fell apart. Vaguely, she could hear him muttering her name and other nonsensical words she couldn’t make out, but she didn’t register them as pride filled her, pure and unfiltered. Making him come by her hand was one thing, but her mouth? Her tongue? 

Swallowing his come, she felt like some kind of god; big and powerful, and it felt good. 

As his orgasm began to fade, she slowly pulled off of him, watching his chest heave as he looked at her from behind flushed cheeks and hooded eyes, as if he were still in some kind of a daze. It reminded her of how she felt after he’d done this to her—had she looked like this in the aftermath? Had she looked equally blissed out and completely lost in the best way? 

Like he had when he’d gone down on her, Rey shifted up when she pulled off of him, wrapping a hand around the base of his neck to pull him down to her in a deep kiss, hoping he could taste himself on her tongue the way she’d been able to when he’d done this to her. Another soft little moan escaped him against her lips, and she leaned forward, pressing him further back into the sofa as their lips began to move together, taking their time to explore one another anew in the aftermath of what they’d just done. 

Her lungs, however, did not like this idea. Starved for oxygen already from what she’d just done to him, Rey broke away from the kiss, breath coming far too quickly as she searched his eyes for the answers to the questions she’d been asking the entire time they’d been together that afternoon. 

As their eyes met, he swallowed dryly, and she knew she had her answers. He felt the same way she had, and it made her feel victorious. “Y-you sure you’ve never done that?”

“I might’ve gotten some advice.”

“Please tell me it wasn’t from Poe.”

“No,” she replied with a laugh as he pulled his pants back up, concealing his cock from view. “Someone else.”

He laughed as she shifted closer between his legs, rising up so that she was almost eye to eye with him. “Who?”

“Let’s just say on your day off, Gwen deep-throated a fucking banana.” 

Ben paused, then he burst into laughter, tears springing to his eyes as he fell back against the sofa once more, and his whole body began to tremble for a completely different reason than it had a few seconds ago. She rolled her eyes, stepping back from her place between his legs a few seconds later, but as she stood up, she found that it was hard to resist letting loose a few giggles herself at the memory of Gwen and her fucking banana. 

Eventually, they both managed to calm down, and her costar looked up at her with a glint of humor in his eye as he too stood up, and put his hands on his hips. “Ready to go? I have a feeling they’ll be knocking any second now if we don’t leave.”

“Yeah, I’m ready,” she told him, then she stepped back, and together, the two of them made their way out of the trailer and back onto the set.

That day, they were working with a part of the set that had been designed to look like a forest. Specifically, it was the forest between the two kingdoms of Alderaan and Mustafar, filled with pine trees and moss covered ground that quieted the footsteps of knights—which was particularly useful for two knights on opposing sides having a quick rendezvous—as they passed through. 

The camera crew was already prepared to go when they got there, and the episode director gave them both a nod before summoning them over. Rey felt weirdly nervous as she looked at Ben one last time, unsure where the feeling came from as they approached the main part of the set, but then he gave her a tiny smile, the corners of his mouth tugging upward as they weaved between the trees, and a sense of peace washed over her. 

His smile could light up a room, and maybe it was just because of her burgeoning feelings for him, but she thought it might’ve made her day. She was going to need that kind of energy around her over the next few days, for after this scene, she only had a couple more to film before she was scheduled to work on the scene with him. 

As they took their places in front of the cameras, both positioned behind trees as they’d been in rehearsals, she knew that she wouldn’t be afraid when the time came. The crew and all the lights could be shining over them far too brightly for their own good, but as long as they were together…

What was it Poe had said when they’d first started rehearsals for their scene? The rest of the world just fades away. The cameras, the lights, the sounds, the people, and the entire world wouldn’t exist. She could do the scene under those conditions. She could do anything. 

They could do anything. Together, she and Ben were a team, but someday, she hoped that definition would be expanded, she hoped that the little looks and touches they gave one another outside of the increasingly sensual encounters they were having would turn into something else. Only time would tell if he returned her feelings, but they could figure that out later. 

For now, the director was shouting, “Action!” and she had a role to play. Stepping out from behind her tree, Kira pulled a dagger out from the inside of the cloak she wore, and began to search the woods for Kylo. 

Chapter Text

Before she knew it, it was the day before they were due to film the scene. Time had passed far too quickly, in her opinion, and now it was nearly upon them. At one point, she’d managed to tame her fear to something almost manageable, but now? Now that was a pipe dream. 

That morning, she was tossing and turning in Ben’s bed, occasionally looking over to see his still sleeping face in the growing daylight. Since they both only had one quick scene to film that day, they weren’t needed until the afternoon, and by god they were going to sleep in. Somehow, though she’d been doing this since it was pitch dark, he hadn’t noticed, and for that she was grateful, but she almost wanted him to wake up and notice that something was wrong. 

Her friends—not even just Ben, but the rest of the cast as well—had a way of keeping her calm when no one else could. Even just knowing he was next to her was the slightest bit soothing, making the fear she was feeling less bad than it probably could’ve been. Smiling a little in spite of herself, Rey turned over to face him again, and even though their relationship didn’t involve much in the way of cuddling, she shifted over, and rested her head on his shoulder. 

Deciding that wasn’t enough, she then wrapped her arm around his waist, closing her eyes as peace and warmth washed over her anxiety filled body. God, he felt wonderful; just having him beside her like this felt like what she imagined perfection did. It felt right, but until she knew for sure whether he returned her feelings, she could never tell him that. 

All she could do was pull herself closer to him, let her leg drift beneath the smooth fabric of Ben’s sheets and nudge against his, keeping her in contact with him as the nerves swirling around in her brain fought to regain control she’d tried so hard to keep. It wasn’t fair, she’d just gotten confident enough to where she thought she could handle this, but now?

She was only confident she’d freeze up when they started filming the next night. Of that much, she was certain. 

Or maybe she was going to freeze up right now. Ben’s arms flexed beneath her, and one came up to wrap around her waist as he groaned softly upon waking. Shit, she’d woken him up. “Rey?” His voice was raspy from sleep, and with the deep undertone it always carried, that sound traveled somewhere deep inside of her, making her shiver beside him. 

“Hi,” she replied quietly. “Sorry I woke you up.”

“No, it’s fine.” He cleared his throat, then he pulled her a little closer. “You okay?”

Was she? Physically she felt fine aside from slight anxiety induced nausea, but mentally? She was a bit of a mess again. “Fine, I’m just--I’m just worried again. It’s stupid.” Taking in a slow, steady breath, she buried her face in his chest. “I thought I’d gotten over any fear I had about this scene. I was wrong.”

Ben’s breathing shuddered somewhat underneath her, then she felt his fingers start gently stroking the skin of her arm as softly and soothingly as he was capable of. “Do you not want to do it?”

No, she wanted to do it, she just wanted to lose her fucking fear first, and go on that set tomorrow before she knocked it out and moved on with her life. All Rey wanted was to get the damned thing done and stop being nervous about it, but how? “I do. I think… it’s just been a minute since our last rehearsal and I want… I want to be sure it’s perfect.”

“We don’t have anymore rehearsals scheduled, Rey.”

“I know that, but I… I wish we did.”

He fell silent for a moment, then his arms tightened around her—and fuck, that felt nice—and she felt his warm, plush lips press a tiny kiss to the top of her head. “Do you want to practice it again? We could do it on our own.”

That was an interesting thought, but when? Where? They couldn’t exactly rehearse in the little space of her apartment. Where would they go? Still, it was a good idea, they’d just have to work out the logistics by that night. Time was far from unlimited with just over twenty four hours remaining until the scene would be filmed. “Yeah, that’d be great.”

“You’re going to be amazing, I promise.” 

She hummed a response as one of his hands came up, and he began stroking her hair, causing her eyes to close involuntarily as her whole body went limp against his. It felt nice, being here like this; enjoying one another’s company as they sat there and held each other close. The simple things were perhaps her favorite, underrated but also more common than anything else. This filled her with calm and serenity, something so needed in these brief twenty four and some odd hours until she was getting naked on camera to stimulate something she’d hardly done before. 

Ben was good at it, too—making her feel like she was centered, it was almost like he had a natural born talent tailor-made specifically for her. He was her rock, a part of the essence of her, and not even just as the man she was falling in love with but as her best friend. At the bare minimum, they had always been soulmates on the platonic level, destined to find comfort in one another that no one else could bring them. 

It made her smile a little as she looked up at the hint of daylight reflecting from his eyes. “So are you,” she said, then she cleared her throat. “Where are we rehearsing, then?”

The light in the room was dim, but she would swear there was a mischievous smirk on his face. That was either a really, really good sign or a really, really bad one. “You know, no one checks to make sure the third rear stage door is locked at night. They’re supposed to, but I got to talking to the guy who does security? They don’t.”

Oh god. “What are you saying?”

“What do you say we sneak back onto set after hours and have one last rehearsal in the temple? You know, for authenticity?”

“Sneak on set?”

“Yeah, no one’s around at night. We’d be free to do anything we wanted,” he told her, then the hand stroking her hair paused. “Unless you’d rather do it somewhere else.”

Rey shrugged, hardly even needing any time to make her decision before her lips started moving. “The set is fine. I think I need that anyway.”

“Yeah?”

“It’s perfect. Let’s go get dinner tonight and come back after everyone is gone.” She gave him another nod, then his fingers continued combing through the brunette strands of her hair as tension left his body. Apparently he’d been more worried about her answer than she had. 

Exhaling deeply, Ben leaned his chin against the crown of her head, and they fell quiet for a few more seconds. “So tonight… we get on set, grab the the mat, and we’ll have one more rehearsal, and then…”

“We’ll be ready,” she finished for him, then she splayed out her palm on his chest, just intending to stretch her fingers, but then she felt his heart beating beneath her hand, and she froze. It was absolutely racing—far too fast for him to be remotely tired, almost like he’d just run a marathon. His breathing was controlled, but almost too controlled, like he was putting forth immense amounts of effort to keep himself calm. 

But why? What was making his heart race like hers? Why was he nervous? There was nothing Ben had to be nervous about, he’d done this before—had both fake and real sex with people—and he’d been the one to show her everything she knew thus far—with the exception of the lessons taught to her by Gwen and Rose—he didn’t have reasons to be nervous. 

If he did, she had no idea what they were, but she wanted his fear to go away. 

“Your heart is beating really fast,” she whispered, then he laughed nervously, his heart beating just a touch faster in response. 

Shuddering slightly beneath her, Ben swallowed. “The thought of committing crime ails my fragile heart.” Another laugh escaped him, then he took in a deep breath. “I’m fine, I just… I don’t know, I think I need this as much as you do.”

Rey patted his chest, feeling his heart relax within seconds of the confession, her own doing the same as she realized she wasn’t alone in her fear. “Why are you nervous, though? You’ve done this before?”

His heartbeat picked up again. “I-I don’t know. I-I just am. Faking sex for a camera—it’s kind of a nerve wracking thing no matter how many times you do it. You’re vulnerable, you know? And there’s so many people, forgetting they’re there is hard sometimes.”

“So the fear is normal?”

“The fear is normal,” he assured her, then he kissed the top of her head again, surprising her with the tenderness of the gesture. “You’re going to be great, I promise, but we should probably get some more sleep if we’re going to stay out late tonight.”

“Mmm, true,” she replied, then she let go of any lingering tension still clinging to life in her body, and went limp against him. “Good night, Ben.”

“Good night, Rey.”

Then without another word, she let her eyes drift shut, falling asleep to the quiet sound of Ben’s breathing, the steady rise and fall of his chest, and the feeling of safety that wrapped around her like a second blanket as she held him close, and slowly succumbed to sleep. 

*

When they finally got around to filming later on, she was surprisingly relaxed. That day on set went by with relative ease. It was actually the most relaxing day of filming that she’d experienced all season, almost like the calm before the storm. The next day would be intense and probably more chaotic than she wanted it to be, but that would be just fine. 

She’d get through it— they would get through it together. 

The hours passed like minutes. Everything seemed to be on fast forward, like each minute was shorter than the last until suddenly it was time to go home and get some sleep before the next day of work. At least, that’s what it would be for everyone else. For Ben and Rey, the second Poe announced that they’d wrapped for the day, they knew it was far from over. 

Together, they got into Ben’s car, and drove to the McDonald’s across the street, grabbing Big Macs as fuel for the long night they were going to have before they sat together in the parking lot facing the studio, and watched closely as the cars of their coworkers left one after another. It made her feel like she was in Mission Impossible , like she was a part of some epic stakeout in a spy movie or cop drama. She felt oddly powerful, her nerves alight in a new and exciting way that she’d never felt before. 

Ben, in a moment of not terribly uncharacteristic observance, took notice of the way she sat on the edge of her seat. “What are you thinking about?”

“This is kind of awesome, isn’t it?” she asked, speaking a little too quickly from the adrenaline currently pumping through her veins. “It’s like we’re on one of those crime shows or a James Bond film. We’re on a stakeout, Ben, a good and proper stakeout, eating McDonald’s and whispering quietly and everything. I feel kind of epic.”

He snorted his amusement, then shoved another fry into his mouth, letting loose a moan that bordered on obscene as she watched him. She swallowed dryly as her thighs pressed a little more closely together, needing friction between them to try and satiate the need that moan gave her. Luckily, he didn’t even notice. “Mmm, you’re right, this is kind of cool.” He ate another fry, a second fucking moan leaving him in the process. “God, I’d forgotten how good these shitty fucking fries taste. I needed this.”

“Don’t get too lost in the fries, Ben, the mission is afoot—or whatever Sherlock says.”

“The game is on?”

“No I think it’s the game is afoot, I’m not sure I never read or watched any of it,” she admitted. “But I think only Poe and Charles are still there so…” They watched as a burnt orange car strolled lazily out of the stage parking lot, another one following shortly after, and then Rey knew they were alone. It was time. They could go inside the stage door and have their rehearsal. 

They hadn’t moved, but somehow, with that realization, the atmosphere of the room shifted. There was a subtle change that suddenly made the air feel rife with tension, and a sense of anticipation filled her as she looked at him in the aftermath, knowing something was coming but not knowing what. It was exciting and scary all in one, but where was this leading?

“We can go,” she said, watching his mouth shift before he gave her a nod, and reached over to turn the keys in the ignition, setting down his orgasmic moan inducing fries in the process. 

“We can go,” he repeated, then he set the car into reverse, and pulled them out of the space, never bothering to put on their headlights as they drove across the street back to the studio. 

It was the shortest, tiniest thirty second drive, but somehow the longest one of her life. Ben parked them right outside the back door of the studio, shutting off the car shortly thereafter before he turned to look at her. Both of them breathed a touch too heavily for a few seconds, and it occurred to her that he too had been feeling that same sense of anticipation that she’d gotten. Something big was in the air, coming around the corner, and any minute now, it was going to show its face. 

“You ready?” he asked, a softness in his eyes as he looked at her, his hand outstretched in the space between them. 

A tiny smile tugged at the corners of her mouth, then she took his hand, lacing her fingers with his. “Ready,” she replied, then together they opened their doors, let go of one another’s hands, and made their way into the studio. 

It was dark as they approached the door Ben had told her would be open, and she could barely see a thing until he pulled out his phone and turned on the flashlight. She still clung to his arm until he got them onto the main part of the stage, and turned on the lights, giving her that classic Solo smirk as soon as he was visible to her naked eyes. A light shone from behind him, creating some sort of glow that make strands of his hair shine like bronze as he looked into her eyes, caressing her cheek briefly before he walked past her to turn on all the torches, firelight flickering around the room with the stage lights. 

She was in a trance, a dream, a reverie because of him, and she needed to snap out of it.  “I’ll—I’ll get the mat,” she said, stalking over behind the temple to retrieve the gym mat they’d been practicing on for weeks now. Ben said something in response, but she didn’t hear it, she was too lost in her own head. Right now, they were breaking all kinds of rules that could most definitely get them fired—unlikely due to the importance of their roles, but still—and on top of that, every time she looked at him she felt like a pot of water on the cusp of its boiling point. 

There were songs, books, movies, ancient fables, and old proverbs about clairvoyance and a sense of foreboding—both for the positive and negative—knowing something big was going to happen before it happened, but she had no idea what. Was it going to be amazing, what happened that night? Or would it destroy her—destroy them —and render the next few years the most miserable of her life?

Shaking the thoughts from her head, Rey dragged the mat out onto the center of the temple floor, and searched the room for Ben. Seeing nothing, she called his name a couple of times, rushing to the edge of the temple before she leaned out behind a pillar, and called his name again. Still nothing. 

Concern starting to fill her, Rey stepped out beyond the pillar, eyes searching desperately around the studio for some sign of her costar, but found no sign of him. The hairs on her arms stood up, her entire body feeling like it was on edge. “Ben, are you okay?”

A few seconds later, relief finally came, and she heard a distant door shutting—one of their trailers going by the sound of it, metallic and loud—and after another couple of seconds she heard the sound of his deep voice calling out. “I’m back here!” Then the sound of footsteps, and she saw him appear as he stepped into the light, the flickering torches casting shadows on his face as she stepped back from the pillar, finding herself oddly captivated by the way he looked in that dim firelight as he walked closer. “I was just grabbing this,” he said, holding up one of the thick, soft faux-fur practice capes they’d been using in rehearsals. “Figured this would make the mat a little more comfortable.”

“Oh,” she breathed, feeling pure relief course through her veins as she stepped back, descending the steps to the main temple floor. “I’d thought… I don’t know what I thought.”

Ben smirked at her as he walked over to the mat she’d laid out, and shook out the cape, spreading it out over the mat so that it almost looked like a real bed. That did something to Rey’s nerves that she wasn’t sure what it meant, but she knew that sense of anticipation she’d been feeling all night was coming to a head. “Did you think I’d been dead and buried in a ditch?”

“Something like that,” she replied, then they walked over to the mat, and took their places on either side of it. “You ready?”

“As I’ll ever be,” he said, then he pointed to the far side of the temple. “I think you’re supposed to be on the steps.”

Rey blinked, then slowly nodded. “Y-yeah you’re right.” Then without another word, she crossed the room, and sat down on the steps of the temple, crossing her legs like she had in their previous rehearsals as she looked at him, that sense of anticipation building to a boiling point in the air between them as he held her gaze. 

His whole chest shuddered was he looked at her, then he broke the stare, and nodded. “Perfect, let’s do this,” he said, then he walked over to his side of the room, took his place, and they both slipped into character. 

Or at least, they tried.

“You shouldn’t be here,” Ben as Kylo said, heat in his gaze followed by something else, something of Ben slipping through the cracks. “If they catch you--”

“If,” she repeated as Kira, wondering why Ben was having such trouble disappearing completely into his character but not having the will to judge or question him. “If they catch me.”

Kylo looked distressed, his mouth shifting uncomfortably as he stepped toward her cautiously, as if he was afraid she was a mirage that would soon disappear. The part of him that still seemed to be Ben was looking at her the same way, and again she thought of the anticipation she’d been feeling in the air that night. “I shouldn’t be here either.” His voice trembled, lower lip quivering as he finished speaking, and she could see everything he wasn’t saying written in his eyes—Ben’s eyes. It wasn’t just Kylo who wanted Kira that night,  she realized, but Ben wanted her as well. “Tomorrow--”

“I know what tomorrow is.” She held up a hand, then she uncrossed her legs, and stood up, taking a step toward him as they slowly began to close the gap between them, tension climbing to an all time high between both her and Ben and Kylo and Kira as they both began to slip a little of themselves into the performance. “I’ve been thinking about it all day, and well into tonight, and I realized I couldn’t spend my last night in my tent with the others… I… I had to meet you.”

He swallowed, Adam’s apple bobbing visibly in the flickering light of the torches he’d turned on to set the mood for the scene. For a moment, she forgot they were even acting; this was real now, they were admitting what they wanted—on a physical level, at least—and they were actually about to— “I know we’re both duty-bound, I know when the sun rises we must both fight on opposite sides, and it kills me to think of facing you in battle, but…”

“You have to,” she finished for him, then she stepped toward him again, seeming to reach out for him before she let her arm fall to her side. “But it’s killing me, too.” 

Another silence fell between them as Kylo— Ben?— took her in, his gaze hungry, needy, and pleading for something within her that she hoped he knew she was ready to give. “How many more hours do we have until the sun rises?”

“Not enough,” she answered him, then she stepped into his space. “I don’t know what to expect from tomorrow, but, Kylo?”

“Yes?”

She looked at him again, resting a hand on his cheek as the words escaped her, and she shook her head. “Will you stay here with me tonight? I don’t… I don’t want to be alone.”

“You won’t be,” he promised her, then one of his arms wrapped around her waist, pulling her close to him. “Not tonight.” And fuck, she knew that was just the dialogue they’d practiced a million times, but somehow, tonight, it felt like so much more. It made the air feel a thousand times thicker and infinitely more heavy. 

“Can we forget this is happening for a little while?” She let her other hand come up, burying itself in the raven strands of his hair as she took in a deep, shaky breath, her heart racing in earnest as she pressed their foreheads together. “Plea—“

Just like the first time they’d rehearsed this, Ben cut her off before she could finish the word, his lips finding hers as if drawn magnetically. This time, though, the kiss was pure, raw Ben Solo, right down to the tiny tremble in his lower lip that she knew all too well from the moment they’d first met. There was no trace of Kylo Ren anymore, and he wasn’t acting, he’d dropped character so completely, she wasn’t sure he’d ever been in it in the first place. 

Rey returned his kiss with a ferocity she hadn’t known she possessed. Before now, she’d thought only Kira could kiss like this, only a fierce, strong, brutal warrior, but as the kiss grew more intense grew more intense, she knew she could, too. This felt so good, so perfect, she found herself unable to wait to see what it would lead to, wishing they were on the floor, rolling around on the mat already. 

Ben’s frenzied, hurried kisses consumed her, but they carried an undercurrent of the tenderness, the slow, gentle caution that nearly had her melting in his arms until the moment he broke away, and looked down at her with more love and tenderness than she’d thought existed in the entire world. 

This wasn’t just a rehearsal, anymore, but Ben leaned their foreheads together, just like he had at their first private rehearsal, and sighed. “You’re still holding on,” he said, then the scene ended, but they continued clinging to one another like they were each other’s lifeline.

Neither of them moved for several seconds, the tension was so heavy in the air she almost felt like she couldn’t breathe, and the sound of the torch fire flickering faintly in the background seemed to roar in her ears it was so quiet. She wanted to move, or maybe she wanted him to move, but he wasn’t moving, so it was going to have to be her. Swallowing her nerves, Rey let one of her hands delicately hover over his cheek, certain she was trembling so hard she’d cause the earth itself to quake as she leaned in, and brought her lips to his in a kiss that was undoubtedly between her and Ben, and no one else. 

He returned it curiously, his lips questioning against hers, asking everything he couldn’t say while he was kissing her, like he couldn’t believe this was even happening. Fortunately for them both, it was very, very real, and it was only just beginning. 

Still he pulled away before she was ready for him to, and she watched Ben pull back, his chest heaving with every breath as he struggled to find the words to say next. A part of her just wanted to let her hand drift up into his hair, and pull him back into another kiss as they sank to the floor, but she couldn’t do that, they needed to talk about this, they needed to address what it was they both wanted here. 

“Ben…”

“Am I—am I seeing this wrong?” he asked, his voice soft and almost innocent sounding as he blinked at her. “Rey—“

She shook her head. “You’re not, I promise you’re not.” 

“Are—are you sure? Rey, I…” He took a deep breath, then one of his arms wrapped around her waist again, and he gave her that sweet, boyish smile that made her want to melt into him. “I want to do this with you, I want to make it good for you, but I want you to be absolutely sure you won’t regret it.”

“I don’t think I can regret anything when I’m with you,” she mumbled, her voice almost too quiet for her to hear, then she gave him a nod. “I am sure, Ben. I won’t regret it, so please, god damn it, I need you inside of me and I need you inside of me last fucking week.”

Surprise filled his face, but then he nodded to her, and she watched, shaking, as he knelt in front of her, eyes never leaving hers the entire time as his hands skimmed down along the sides of her body. “Okay,” he whispered, then he leaned forward, gripping her hips as he pressed a kiss to the center of her abdomen, adding another further down a second later as his hands came around to undo the button of her jeans. 

Before she could ask him what he was doing, the button was open and his deft fingers undid her zipper so quickly she couldn’t even blink before it was over, and his fingers were sinking themselves beneath her waistband. “Ben…” she breathed, then she watched as he slowly began to pull the fabric down over her thighs, dragging her underwear with it as he watched her shiver with every passing second. 

“Don’t be afraid,” he replied, pressing a kiss to her hip bone. “I’m here.”

“I’m not afraid.” But in a way she was. This was terrifying. He’d had his mouth on her before, but he’d never done this to her as foreplay, not the precursor to something else—unless it was more of the same thing—this was different. 

Ben’s hands at her hips began to tug her forward, and she shivered as he leaned back, crawling backward onto the cape covered mat as she stepped over him, his body falling between her legs. A thrill ran down her spine, spiking adrenaline in her veins as she knelt down, straddling his waist, and she took his face in her hands again before kissing him long and deep. 

A tiny moan escaped him as she swept her tongue along his lower lip, sparking something in that feral part of her that wanted this to be raw and intense, but she ignored it, knowing they needed to handle this delicately. She’d always wanted this moment to be one she remembered forever, and so she couldn’t just let instinct take over and lose herself to it. She wanted to give him her entire heart and soul for nothing except his in exchange. 

At least, in some sense of those words. Emotional love still hadn’t come up as a topic of conversation between them. Maybe one day it would, but their relationship beyond this arrangement, beyond this friendship wasn’t going to change just yet. 

Ben hummed against her as her hands drifted down, skimming over the fabric of his clothing as she prepared to undo the button of his jeans, to free him the way he had freed her—but suddenly he stopped her, his hands covering hers as he broke the kiss to look into her eyes. Both of them were panting hard by then, both of their chests absolutely heaving as they stared at one another in the aftermath of the very heated kiss they’d just shared. “Not yet,” he breathed, then she felt his hands coming up again to support her back. “You need… you need foreplay.”

“Ben,” she replied, praying her voice didn’t sound like as much of a whine as she thought it did. 

“Come here.” But where did that mean? She was already on top of him. Where was there to go from here? 

It took her an embarrassing amount of time to figure out what he meant. His eyes had to flicker from the apex of her thighs to her face about fifty times before she realized he wanted her to straddle his face instead of his waist, he wanted to— holy fuck —he wanted to eat her out like that. 

Rey was going to have a stroke in her twenties, but it would be worth it. 

She crawled forward, bringing herself exactly where he wanted her as his hands came up to support the backs of her thighs, hints of mischief and anxiety in his eyes as he watched her get into position. Why was he nervous? These were all her firsts. She’d never ridden anyone’s face before, never had anything inside of her but his fingers and tongue, so why was he the one who suddenly looked scared? 

There were so many questions she wanted to ask him, but whether or not she had the courage to know the answers still hung in the balance. 

Before she could consider whether she wanted to ask, Ben’s thumb rubbed a distractingly soothing circle into her skin, then she felt his lips press against her inner thigh, and she shivered on top of him, her fingers digging into his hair in anticipation of what was coming. He could’ve given her all of the warnings in the world, though, and it still wouldn’t have been enough. His tongue licked a stripe from her entrance to her clit, and she nearly keeled over. It occurred to her that perhaps the position they’d found themselves in wasn’t the most convenient for having oral sex given that she couldn’t keep upright, but there was something so enthusiastic and determined in the way he was starting to eat her out, she figured she could at least try for a little while longer. 

This was new. It wasn’t a feeling quite like any she’d ever felt before, but it was also very familiar. This new angle had him seeming to lick deeper with every stroke, his nose brushing her clit with the effort. The combined feelings made her certain that if she wasn’t embarrassingly wet before, she most certainly was now. “God, Ben…”

He laughed against her clit, the vibrations shooting right through her as she gasped from pleasure, unable to believe this was real, that he was real. How did she get lucky enough to have a costar—a friend , or just anyone really—like him? How had she become so fortunate as to have Ben Solo’s tongue inside of her as he licked and sucked like a man starved?

Another moan escaped him, and she thought she might’ve seen entire galaxies in her vision as her eyes clenched shut. All she could do was pray that there was absolutely no one within a mile of the set as she cried out at a volume that was definitely obscene, the feelings he was bringing her already becoming too much for her to handle. 

As his lips closed around her clit and sucked, she thought she might’ve bit her own hard enough to draw blood. If he didn’t stop, she was going to come soon, and maybe she didn’t have a refractory period like he did, but she still wanted the first time she came that night to be around his cock. She wanted them to come together, or at least try to. They could attempt it, right?

“Ben… Ben I’m going to come,” she warned him, causing him to laugh against her cunt. 

“That’s kind of the point, Rey,” he replied, taking a moment to breathe as she sat back on his chest. “I want you to come.”

“But I want to come with you.” She took his face in her hands, watching the shadows cast by the torchlight as they danced across his features. “I want us to come at the same time.”

Another shiver passed through him, and again she could see that he was nervous as he rubbed gentle circles into the back of her thigh. “So you have no interest in letting me do this for you? Absolutely none at all?”

“Ben, please,” she whispered, then she crawled back so that she was straddling his thighs, reaching again for the button of his jeans as his intense, dark eyes watched. She could see the gold flickering in his eyes like little fires, impeccably tiny flames dancing around as they waited for her next move, and it made her breathe a little heavier as she slipped the button through its hole, then reached for the zipper. The most expressive part of Ben had always been his eyes, they gave away any lie he ever told, exposed so much of his soul, and seemed to sometimes tell his entire life’s story. 

She wondered, if she were to be bold enough to ask, would those eyes tell her whether or not he felt for her what she felt for him?

As her shaking fingers slowly undid the fly of his jeans, Ben’s hand came up, covering both of hers with his. “I-I have a condom,” he said suddenly, blinking at her with hope in his eyes as he sat up, and reached into his back pocket. 

“When did you get—“

“I bought them a few days ago, I’ve been keeping them in my trailer just in case,” he admitted, an oddly endearing blush creeping up his cheeks as he continued digging in his back pocket. “Is that okay?”

“It’s perfect, you’re perfect,” she replied, shifting back again as she watched him pull out a little metallic package—presumably the condom in question—and place the edge of it between his teeth. 

Her breathing only grew more ragged as she watched him tear open the condom, then he shifted forward, and she rolled off of him, unable to remove her gaze as he shifted over the fur cape—the very same one he’d be wearing during the scene the next day—and hooked his fingers beneath his waistband before taking off his jeans completely, kicking them off to the side along with his shoes and socks. 

Both of them were stripped below the waist now, and somehow, seeing him as naked as her, Rey felt a renewed burst of confidence ignite somewhere deep in her gut. As Ben slowly removed the condom from its package, she reached for the hem of her shirt, and lifted it over her head, discarding it where he’d tossed their other clothes so that she was left only in her bra. This she quickly remedied by reaching for the front clasp, and letting it come undone with a quick pinch of her fingers before it fell from her shoulders into a pile on the floor. 

He was now the only one who was even half clothed, but soon he followed suit, reaching behind his head to grasp his shirt in one hand, remove it, and toss the damned thing in the same direction as hers. 

Now all there was left to do was watch him as he took his cock in his hand, stroking it a few times—the whimpers he gave in response shooting arousal throughout her entire body—before he finally rolled the condom over it. Once that was done, he turned to look at her, blinking a few times as if he was trying to reassure himself that she was real. 

It took him a couple of seconds, but eventually he seemed to decide that this was actually happening, and he crawled over to her. Rey rolled back into the fur cape, letting his body shift over hers as their eyes met again. It felt like she was standing at a cliff’s edge all of a sudden, like she’d reached the point of no return. 

Her breathing became shaky once more, and she felt Ben reach up to brush a strand of her hair behind her ear as he took notice. “We don’t have to do this,” he whispered, even though she was currently wrapping her legs around his hips, digging her heels into his ass in anticipation of what was to come. “We can just go back to rehearsing if you want.”

“Ben, I want this,” she breathed, tugging him a little closer as she wrapped her arms around his neck. “I want you .”

“You’re sure then?” His eyes searched hers in a way that seemed almost desperate, like he was trying to find even the tiniest hints that she didn’t want this—didn’t want him. He could try all he wanted, though, and he’d never find that sign. Rey wanted him, fully and completely, in a way she’d never wanted anyone else. “You don’t want anyone else.”

It wasn’t a question because it was fact, and now he knew it, too. She didn’t want to wait around for someone else, someone he thought she’d be romantically in love with, because she trusted him—she wanted it to be him. “I don’t want anyone else,” she promised him, her voice more serious and sober than it had ever been in her entire life. “Just you.”

“Just me?”

“Just you ,” she promised him, holding him a little closer to her as she whispered those two little words. 

“Then you can have me,” he whispered. 

If his voice trembled slightly on that last word, she didn’t call him out on it, she just watched as he shifted on top of her, lining himself up with her entrance as his quivering lip gave away the only sign of his nervousness. She tried to stop her own shivering as she felt his tip press against her, but that effort only made her more nervous, so she relaxed against him, letting her eyes find his as her fingers stroked his hair, and he began to press his cock gently inside of her. 

At first, it didn’t feel much different to his fingers. It was the exact same concept with an entirely different execution, and it made her feel as if she were being filled with every inch of him she took. A tiny gasp escaped her as she realized it actually felt good— not as good as it had when he’d had his mouth on her, but still good. Ben made her feel incredible, and with how close he’d brought her to orgasm already, she had a feeling she was going to enjoy this. 

“Just tell me when to stop,” he whispered above her, his voice so tender and sweet she almost didn’t register the meaning of his words. 

Luckily, the meaning registered half a second later when she realized she’d hit her limit for how much of him she could take, and she gripped his hair a little more tightly than was necessary. “Fuck, Ben,” she breathed, clinging to him as tightly as she could as he suddenly stopped moving inside of her. “Right there, that's… there’s my limit.”

He gave her a tiny nod, then he moved forward, and pressed a gentle kiss to her forehead. “Okay,” he replied, then he leaned down, and captured her lips with his before he finally began to move, and she held onto him for dear life as what felt like the last traces of her inexperience began to slip away. 

His movements were slow at first, hesitant, like he was afraid to hurt her. It felt good, but it was also almost frustrating, as if he believed she was made of glass. She needed him to see that she was anything but, that if either of them was going to come that night, he needed to start moving a little bit faster, needed his thrusts to be a bit harder— deeper even. Now that she’d had a second to get used to the feeling of him inside of her, she felt like she could handle letting him sink a little deeper. 

A moan escaped them both when she shifted her hips to meet him on the next thrust, forcing him to move a little faster—the way she wanted him to move—on each subsequent movement. Always the world’s most understanding partner, Ben quickly caught her message, and began moving a little more quickly, thrusts becoming a tad more intense but no less gentle as he locked eyes with her again, watching for any sign of discomfort on her end. 

He could look for days, weeks, or even months, and he would find nothing. All he would see was more signs of green lights, because she wasn’t entirely sure she’d ever stop wanting him like this. What they’d started in motion was a chain of events she wasn’t sure they’d ever be able to stop, and with every second of sweet friction between them, she felt like she was on a never ending ride that had just been told to accelerate. 

“Ben,” she breathed as he hit a particularly difficult to reach place inside of her, his name leaving her again shortly after as he repeated the motion, kissing her again while he thrust in deep. 

It felt like she was seeing stars in her vision, eyes falling shut as his kiss stole the breath from her lungs. Time itself seemed to slow to a halt, the entire world ceasing to exist beyond this temple, beyond this stage. This place had been built to become somewhere holy for their characters to worship, and now they—and soon, Kylo and Kira—were desecrating it in the most deliciously pleasant of ways. The temple was fake, not real, a prop, but something about giving him everything here felt right. 

This was always meant to happen here, on this date, at this time, with him, exactly like this, and nowhere else. Fate itself had decreed this the only possible outcome probably from the moment she and Ben had met, and as she returned his kiss, as he rocked his hips against hers, she felt perfectly at peace. 

He broke away from the kiss a few seconds later, allowing both of them to breathe as one of his hands began to drift down her body, fingers splaying out over her abdomen for a second before they continued to journey further south. She gasped against him as his thumb found her clit, as he began to rub little circles into it in time with each of his thrusts. All she could think as he did that was his name, and she said it like a prayer—ironic, truly, given where they were—as he began to drive her toward the edge. 

Already she could feel her orgasm building, could feel herself growing closer and closer with every passing second—she just hoped that as close as she was, that he wasn’t far behind. She cried out as she met him thrust for thrust, both of them whispering each other’s names in their ears as they built one another up to that shared climax. 

“Ben,” she whispered, gasping as her head tilted back from pleasure, allowing him to plant open mouthed kisses—even ones that left little bruises that Rose and Paige would undoubtedly make fun of her for—along the line of her neck. “Ben, I’m so close— fuck …” There had been a way she intended to end that sentence, but as his thumb pressed further against her clit, all possible trains of thought were beautifully derailed. 

Come , Rey,” he whispered to her, lips and breath hot against her neck as he thrust a little deeper inside of her. “Just come for me, don’t wait.”

When he said it like that; how could she refuse? Rey gasped as she came, fighting harder for air than she ever had before as waves of pleasure rushed through her, undoubtedly causing his orgasm in turn as she heard him cry out sharply just before she felt an extra warmth inside of her. She’d gotten exactly what she wanted, she soon realized; she’d gotten him to come at the same time as her, and it still wasn’t over. They’d reached their peak, but they still weren’t spent. 

Ben’s thumb rubbed over her clit once more, and galaxies filled her vision as she swore loudly enough to wake up the whole damn city. “Fuck, Ben…” she whispered, repeating his name like a mantra as she began to come down from her high. “ Ben, Ben, Ben…”

“I know,” he replied, repeating those two words as he left kisses along the sides of her face, the movements of his hands and cock slowing all the while. “I know…”

What did he know? That she’d come? That she felt good? Great? Absolutely incredible? Was that what he knew?

Both of them were panting hard in the aftermath, seeming unable to breathe in spite of the frenzied, lazy kisses they kept sharing—the ones he was now pressing to her lips as he held her in their post-coital haze. Beside her, one of her hands collapsed, going limp in his hair as he slowly stopped rubbing her over-sensitive clit, and brought his hand up to meet hers. As if they’d been drawn to do so magnetically, their hands both opened up, fingers then lacing together like they’d been made to weave between each other, like every piece of open space between herself and Ben was tailor made to fit together. 

She tried not to think about how that feeling also applied to where they were currently still joined. She tried not to think about that at all. 

They stayed like that for a while, just breathing, his kisses coming to an end as he took the opportunity to just stare down at her through the messy curtain of his raven tresses. She found herself mesmerized by him again, and with her free hand, she reached out and touched the tinges of amber she found in that dark hair, watching them flicker in the firelight as his intense, beautiful eyes stared down into hers. Though her fingers were trembling horribly, she smiled at him as she brushed a strand off of the thin sheen of sweat that had developed on his forehead, and giggled softly at how she’d somehow managed to make him look worse. 

Ben seemed oblivious to this, and instead joined her in laughter, which only made her laugh harder as he rolled off of her, then adjusted the fur cape so that it was covering them both like a blanket. He then reached beneath the fur, and pulled the condom from his softening cock, tying it off as best he could before hurling it in the direction of the trash bin they knew was always waiting behind camera number three. At least now if someone walked in and caught them, the first thing they’d see wouldn’t be Ben’s entire bare ass. 

Once he was done, he looked down at her again, making more giggles fall from her lips as he swept her into his arms, allowing her to use his chest as a slightly sweaty pillow. “What’s so funny?” he asked her softly, hand reaching for hers again as he pressed a feather light kiss into her hair. 

“Your hair’s all messed up, I made it worse,” she explained, reaching up to try and rectify her mistake again, this time to a higher degree of success as she brushed the strand behind his ear. “There we go.”

“Yours isn’t exactly golden either, Rey,” he informed her, eyes scanning the perimeter of her face as if proving his point. “You look well and thoroughly fucked.”

“I feel well and thoroughly fucked.”

They both giggled at this, then he tucked a strand of her hair behind her ear, taking in a deep breath as his thumb ran over the back of hers. “So it was good then? For you? I didn’t make your first time completely suck?”

“Good?” She felt offended at calling what happened just “good,” it had changed her life. She was going to wake up in the middle of the night in the days to come wishing she’s was right back here with him, and they were still writhing in the cape together. “Ben it was absolutely incredible.”

“Yeah?”

“It was—it was perfect. You were perfect. You made me feel… wanted, safe, comfortable, like I was having a good time, and it was everything I’d ever wanted from something like this, so…” She leaned forward, pressing a kiss to his jaw as she spoke. “Thank you.”

He shivered beside her, but his hand came up to gently stroke the skin of her back, and she knew he understood that this was perfect for her. “It was incredible for me, too,” he told her, saying nothing else as he then leaned forward, and captured her lips between his, pulling her on top of him as he rolled back into the cape, and fabric rustled around them as he began to lazily, sweetly kiss her. 

It occurred to Rey that eventually they would need to leave. They couldn’t sleep here and zone out in that haze that had fallen over them in the aftermath, but she could enjoy this for at least a little while longer. They could lie here for another few minutes and let their kisses confuse each other with words they weren’t sure they were ever going to say, and she was perfectly content with that. 

Leaving was going to happen at some point, but she was choosing to live in the moment. Rey chose to let Ben hold her as he kissed her more sweetly than anyone ever had before, as they finished making love for the first time in the exact spot where—in a few short hours—their beloved characters would soon be following in their footsteps, and history would repeat itself. 

 

Chapter Text

It felt like hours passed on that mat. Weirdly enough, she felt warm and comfortable on a mat that had previously been a source of irritation. Ben, combined with the fur cape—which she prayed wasn’t stained from, well, both of them—seemed to have made it much more tolerable. 

After a while, they’d stopped even lazily kissing, and just laid there staring up at the ceiling. Ben’s fingers were tracing gentle circles in her back, right around the ridges of her shoulder blades as he hummed quietly to himself. She thought she might’ve recognized it as some old, soft rock ballad, but she couldn’t quite place it. All she knew was that she was slowly falling asleep in his arms, and it was the most eccentric of circumstances for her to fall asleep in, but it felt right. 

Somehow, this felt more like home than her actual apartment did. Was that what falling in love made people feel like? Did that mean home was no longer a place, but a person?

A contented hum escaped her as Ben pressed a kiss to the top of her head, but she was so blissed out from everything that she wasn’t sure whether or not she’d imagined it. She hoped it was real, but what were the implications if it was? What did it mean for Ben to give her all these little touches and kisses as he tended to do? Why was he still holding her so tenderly even though they both knew they needed to leave the set and go home? 

It started to hit her that whether he knew it or not, Ben was also falling for her as well. At least, she hoped he was—surely all the signs pointed to him experiencing a fall not unlike her own, right?

“We need to leave,” she whispered eventually, though it pained her to do so. All she wanted to do was stay here forever, to let him hold her on the floor of the temple their characters called holy and never leave. A part of her wondered if Kylo and Kira would get something like this, if they’d be able to hold one another after they made love and just enjoy being in each other’s company. Another part knew they probably wouldn’t, they’d be forced apart again soon after they finished here, and she felt sorry for them. She and Ben were incredibly lucky, she realized, to have this little moment, these precious few seconds of peace. “We need to clean up, go home, and get some sleep.”

Ben groaned, and wrapped his arms around her a little more tightly. “Not yet,” he protested, as if he found this moment as precious as she did. “We have a few more hours before anyone will be here.”

“That doesn’t mean we should stay, Ben. Staying would be dangerous.”

“How come?”

“If we get caught naked together in the sacred knights’ temple, do you know how traumatized that poor fuck is going to be?”

“I think I’d consider that a gift from god,” he teased, tracing a circle a little further down her back. “You have a great ass.”

A small giggle escaped her, then she turned beneath the cape, the front of her body flush against the side of his as she tilted her head up to look at his face. He was staring at her from beneath hooded eyes, which seemed to hint at some sort of mischief between every flicker of the light as her hand came up, and rested on his cheek. “If I stay here any longer, I will fall asleep like this, Ben.”

His eyes closed as her fingers crawled up a little ways into his hair, compelled by a need to touch it, to feel it beneath her skin. “Would that be so bad?” he asked softly, his voice almost a whisper as one of his hands came up beneath her chin, causing her breath to hitch. “If we stayed? Just a little longer?” A smirk blossomed on his face. “We don’t have to sleep.”

“We’ll get caught.” Her voice had fallen quiet, barely even a rush of air as he started moving closer to her again. “We’ll lose our jobs.”

“We won’t,” he replied, taking in a deep breath that he released slowly, his whole body trembling as his thumb brushed over her lip. “Just… let’s stay here—j-just a little while longer.” He shifted a little closer to her, his face mere inches away from hers as he began to press her back into the mat again. “... please.”

Rey let her eyes drift shut, her body following the cues that just seemed to come naturally with him as the hand in his hair pulled him even closer until his lips almost seemed to ghost over hers. “Okay.”

She could feel him smile in response. “Okay?”

“Yeah, just… please tell me you have another condom.” Her voice was trembling badly, but not even from pure emotion, just from needing something—needing him— and it was terrifying and electric at the same time. She just needed him to kiss her again, right now, before they lost too much time in the temple. 

“I do,” he replied, then he answered her prayers, his lips finally meeting hers as he pulled her into another head-spinning kiss, and pressed her back into the cape and the shitty little gym mat he’d laid down. She couldn’t fight back the smile that tilted the corners of her mouth as she kissed him back, feeling like she was floating. A thought passed through her head that it should always be like this, him and her tangled up in sheets or a cape, her fingers running through his hair again as they sank into the ground, and set the scene for round two. 

*

The first people to arrive on set usually got there at a quarter till five. Rey left the set with Ben at half past four. After he convinced her to stay, they wound up repeating their desecration of the temple another two times. Both times, he would hold her after, even when the torchlight began to fade and he had to re-light it so they could see, he still held her for a few minutes in the dark, whispering gently in her ear as he asked her if she was afraid. 

As long as she was in his arms, she knew she wouldn’t be.

She was, however, when they walked back into the set the next morning, a little more sore between her legs than she’d thought she’d be. At least she wasn’t nervous anymore—what had happened the night before took her nerves and melted them away. Apparently all she’d needed was, in fact, one last rehearsal. 

As they walked onto the set, though, she found it hard to look at him. Not because she was scared to, but because every time she did she couldn’t help but burst into laughter, and her cheeks flushed crimson. She couldn’t look at him because she was positive that if she did, everyone would be able to tell what they’d done.

Unfortunately for her, Ben was in the same boat, unable to look at her without that stupidly endearing grin of his announcing to the world that something had transpired between them. So far, no one knew except Gwen, and Rose only knew that Rey was hooking up with someone. By day’s end, the entire cast and crew and possibly the media would know everything if they couldn’t get their shit together, and sometimes she really thought they had. 

Then she’d remember how he’d cried out for her when he came that second time and she’d melt all over again. 

“How are you feeling?” he asked as they made their way toward the makeup trailer. “After all this?”

“A little sore, a little like I should probably take a day before attempting that a—fourth time?” They both laughed, then she shrugged as they came to a stop. “But I would entirely like to do that again—“ she placed a hand on his arm, managing to look at him for the first time since they’d started walking into the set. “In the comfort of my own bed.”

He snorted his response, then he gave her a nod. “I think that sounds like a good idea, last night was a little—“

“Spontaneous?”

“Yeah, spontaneous,” he replied, then he fell quiet, his eyes drifting down for a fraction of a second before they flickered back up to meet hers. Had he— no —had he just been staring at her lips? Sure, they’d kissed many times by now but it was always just before or just after they had gotten one another off. They didn’t just kiss goodbye to kiss goodbye. 

Perhaps that was why he’d forced himself to look away, because he was trying to remember that.

“You feeling okay about everything?” he asked instead, placing a hand somewhat awkwardly on her shoulder—as if placing it on her cheek like he had last night was suddenly too intimate. 

Maybe this had started because she was scared, but now she had a feeling that he was the one who needed comfort. Somehow the roles had reversed slightly, and through some combination of the platonic love she’d always held for him and the romantic love she felt for him as of late she knew without a shadow of a doubt that she needed to help him this time. Resting a hand over his, she gave him a nod. “I think I’ve got this.”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah,” she replied, then she patted him on the chest. “Why? Are you nervous? Scared to take your clothes off all of a sudden?”

Ben scoffed. “You wish,” he replied, then he shook his head as he stepped away. “Go get your makeup on, then we’ll see who’s afraid to take off the other persons clothes for an audience.”

Oh, that bastard. She wasn’t about to let him have the last word. “Nothing can stop me now, I’ll take off your clothes for Madison Square Garden just to see the look on your face,” she told him, then she winked before turning around and walking into the makeup trailer, knowing by the lack of heavy footsteps behind her that he was completely frozen, and he didn’t move until long after she closed the door. 

When she stepped inside, Rose was sound asleep in the chair that had been set out for her. Soft little snores left the small woman as she slept on through the morning, looking every bit as exhausted as Rey felt—especially given that she was still aching a little between her legs as she approached—while she stepped cautiously toward her. 

“Rose?” she asked softly, watching as her friend snapped to attention, and looked up at her with a warm grin. 

“Hey,” she replied, stretching to relieve whatever tension had developed during her cat nap. A few seconds later, she stood up, and looked Rey up and down, filling the actress with a sense of anxiety as she found herself being suddenly scrutinized. “You look different.”

Rey’s breath caught in her throat as she walked toward the makeup chair, and sat down, praying all the while that she wasn’t walking funny as she moved. “Do I?”

“Yeah, did you get a hair cut? Lose weight? If you did, Poe is going to have a stroke,” she told her, getting her supplies together as Rey fought desperately to find a way to change the subject. 

“Uh… no? Where’s Paige? I thought she was supposed to be in this morning.”

Rose shrugged as she opened up the tube of primer. “She’ll be here, she’s just not scheduled to get here until eight.”

“Really?”

“Yeah, she’s just helping me on the side today. You know, helping me freshen you and Ben up between takes.” At this, a knowing grin broke out on her face as she began to paint primer on Rey’s. “Speaking of, they told us what you’d be doing today—made me sign one hell of an NDA—but they told us, and basically holy shit how did you keep that sex scene a secret? I would’ve told everyone I know within seconds!”

Apparently she wasn’t going to be as successful with hiding what was different about her as she’d hoped. The conversation, though never really about him in the first place, had drifted right back to Ben. “It’s been surprisingly easy,” she admitted, having truthfully never felt any fear about keeping the scene itself a secret. “I’ve had Ben to talk to the entire time, and he’s—“ She laughed to herself, remembering all they’d done together since they’d first found out about the scene weeks ago. “He’s my best friend. That’s made it—I don’t know—it’s made it feel so stupidly easy. I’ve never worried about telling anyone or keeping it a secret because he was always there, you know?”

Rose blinked at her a few times as she switched to applying foundation on her friend’s face, like she was trying to put a piece of a puzzle down but couldn’t figure out exactly where it fit. An inquisitive look appeared on her face as she leaned in with a beauty sponge, and began to blend the pigment. “You guys are really close, huh?”

“Yeah, he’s great. I’m lucky to have him.”

“He’s a good dude,” Rose said in agreement. “A lot of leading men tend to be dicks, but he’s kind of—I don’t know— sweet?

Sweet; a perfect word to describe Ben, but also not enough. He wasn’t just sweet, he was kind, gentle, loving, and everything a person should be. In spite of his growing fame from their show he never let it get to his head, never let himself feel as if he was entitled to the privileges his life allowed. He was one of the most normal people she knew in the realm that was Hollywood, and fuck she loved him more than words could say. 

She loved him so much there was this weird ache in her chest that she could only think was caused by missing him. He’d been gone for only five minutes, but fuck, she already yearned to be close to him again. 

“Yeah,” she replied eventually, letting a smile briefly cross her face as Rose began to place powder on her nose. “He’s wonderful.” All she could do as she looked down was pray that the foundation concealed the blush that was undoubtedly creeping up her cheeks as Rose placed a layer of powder there, too. 

Unfortunately, her poker face was nonexistent. As an actor, she was trained to feign emotions she wasn’t feeling, but that was when she was slipping into someone else’s mind, into another person’s shoes. She could be Kira and be sad or happy depending on what the scene called for, but the cameras weren’t rolling and she wasn’t on a stage, she wasn’t in anyone’s shoes but her own. Kira could lie. Rey couldn’t. Rose could see it. 

“Rey, I don’t mean to pry, but… the way you’re talking about him right now—I’m starting to think I know the identity of your mystery guy,” Rose admitted, but she went about continuing Rey’s makeup as if nothing was wrong. They were just talking about their favorite type of pudding, for all anyone knew. “Have you and Ben taken your relationship off camera?”

“We’re not romantically involved.”

“That’s not what I asked.”

“You asked if we were in a relationship, and aside from our friendship, no we’re not,” Rey answered, dancing around giving Rose the truth as her friend reached for the contour powder behind her. 

“Okay, but—“ Rose paused, then her eyes went wide as she turned around, and pointed a finger at Rey. “ Oh my god you guys had sex last night, didn’t you? That’s why you look different! You had sex!”

“Shhhh!” Rey stood up abruptly, covering her friend’s mouth with one finger. “Do you have to announce it so loudly?”

Taking a moment to breathe from having gotten excited, Rose stepped back, and crossed her arms over her chest. “Sorry,” she whispered with a shake of her head, then she laughed. “ Wow , you’re not denying it, so I’m assuming I’m right?”

Deciding she could trust her friend, Rey have her a slow nod, and let out an uneasy breath. “Yeah, you’re right. We—we started this thing because I’d never had sex or filmed a sex scene and I was nervous and so one thing led to another and we started hooking up,” she admitted, then as Rose began to get back into action, she started to relax. “I got nervous again yesterday morning and Ben suggested we rehearse one last time, so we snuck onto set, started rehearsing, but reality began blending with fiction and before either of us can really process it, we’re on the floor and hes—“ She paused, remembering how it had felt when he first entered her, when he’d realized you don’t want anyone else , and let himself go. “He was so gentle . We’re just friends, and I don’t know if it’s anything deeper than that for him, but…” Weird emotions began to well up within her just by talking about it, and she found herself suddenly fighting back the urge to cry as she confessed everything. “He made it feel like I think it’s supposed to. He lit torches, got a blanket—well, a cape—he came prepared; fuck he was—he was perfect.”

For a few seconds, Rose fell quiet, then she set down the contour kit, and picked up the blush, resuming their conversation as Rey’s memories continued repeating themselves over and over. “Were… were you guys in the fucking temple?”

“We were.”

A snort escaped her. “Holy shit you had sex on set,” she breathed. “Poe is going to kill you if he finds out.”

“Which is why you will say nothing.

“Oh, I won’t say a word, I just hope whatever you fucked on, you cleaned it up after. If he sees come stains he will know. He’s not stupid.”

Shit. Had they cleaned up enough after? They’d had sex on that cape three times. Even with the usage of the condom she was certain they’d managed to get some sort of stain on it. All she could hope for at this point was that it wasn’t obvious, and that Poe didn’t put two and two together and realize who had fucked on the cape. 

Rose’s voice brought her back to reality a few seconds later, taking her thoughts from what would happen later back to the present. “I have to ask, though… cause I noticed something while you were talking—you don’t have to answer this—but are you in love with Ben?”

Swallowing dryly, the look she gave her makeup artist seemed to be all she needed tl have a confirmed yes. The nod she also gave was just the icing on the cake. 

“And you don’t know if he’s in love with you?”

She shook her head. 

Rose hummed her acknowledgement as she set down the blush, and began to work on Rey’s eyes—just mascara and a touch of eyeliner—as she continued speaking, “But you said that he lit torches? Like one would light candles? He came ready, brought out a blanket, and he was so gentle that you started trembling a little when you were talking about it, is that right?”

Her voice broke. “It is.”

“Did he ask you a thousand times if this was truly what you wanted? Did he doubt whether you wanted him to be your first? No, wait… Did he act really soft and keep whispering sweet things in your ear and make you question his true feelings?”

“Yeah.”

“He’s in love with you,” Rose told her, perhaps more bluntly than she meant to. “He is head over fucking heels gone for you.” 

“What?”

Her friend sighed as she began to line Rey’s eyes with a soft brown eyeliner, and paused for a second to focus on her work. “Babe, he’s a great friend, I’m sure, but you need to look closer. You’re in love with Ben, and Ben is in love with you. If I’m being honest, I’ve caught him looking at you a few times and it’s been… suspiciously sweet.”

Rey blinked as the pencil retreated, both wanting desperately to know more and wanting to wait for the chance to ask Ben for the truth. She felt torn, but the more Rose talked, the more likely it seemed that maybe she was right, maybe Ben did return her feelings. She’d been thinking for a while that things between them had changed, but had they really changed enough for… this?

Before she could ask anymore questions, a knock sounded from the front door of the makeup trailer, and her makeup artist was ushering whoever was outside to come in with a singular verbal command. She straightened up as the door opened, and heavy footsteps climbed up into the trailer. “Sorry I took so long, Poe had something he wanted to run by me,” Ben said as he walked in, and though Rey had no food in her mouth, she managed to choke on something as his image filled the mirror behind her. 

“It’s fine,” Rose replied, as if she hadn’t just been accusing him of being in love with the other person in the room thirty seconds ago. “Go ahead and sit down. I don’t have much work to do on you.”

“Because I’m already perfect?” He smirked at them both, offering a wink to Rey as he sat down in a neighboring chair. 

“No, because you don’t require eyeliner,” she told him bluntly, then she returned to her first customer, finishing off the last bit of Rey’s eyeliner before she set down the pencil, and gave her a nod. “You’re free.” She turned to Ben. “And you’re mine .”

He snorted his amusement as Rey got up out of the chair, and began walking out of the trailer. Both he and Rose began to laugh at a joke he made, but she was still too caught up in all that had been said before he walked through the door, and so she made her way out of the trailer as the conversation picked up again without her. All she could think about was her best friend and his potential feelings, how everything had changed between them since this had started. 

Had they really both fallen? Was he as gone for her as she was for him? Was he thinking about her when he fell asleep at night? 

Fuck, everything was so different now. Her entire outlook on life was different now. She’d once thought that after this show, she and Ben would just keep hanging out when their schedules allowed them to, but now? Now she became fairly certain that she was going to have him in her life a little more permanently. 

She was going to have to talk to him about this eventually, sure, but they needed to get through this scene first. On the off chance that he didn’t actually return her feelings, she didn’t want everything fucked up right before this scene when they’d spent so much time working on making it perfect. 

After filming, she would talk to him, after this was over, they were going to have a conversation, he was going to shut up and listen to her, and hopefully it would end in kisses and warm embraces, but if it ended in heartbreak? 

She’d be okay. 

*

An hour later, everything was nearly ready. The crew were almost completely set up and she and Ben were chatting off to the side making some last minute adjustments to their costumes. Well, she was adjusting his cape, and by adjusting, that meant checking it over for stains caused by their actions from the night before. 

“Find anything?” He asked, mischief rife in his voice. 

Snickering quietly to herself, Rey stood up straight, and walked around in front of him, her thick skirts swishing loudly as she moved. “A couple, but I don’t think the camera will see. They’re not exactly shooting us to look at our clothes.”

A small laugh escaped him as he laid a hand on her shoulder, eyes scanning hers for any sign of the anxiety that had plagued her the night before. Fuck, he was so gentle with her, every single second he spent with her he seemed utterly devoted to making sure she was okay. It was probably the best thing about him if she was being honest. “Are you okay with it? Really okay? Now’s the time to back out.”

She cocked her head to the side, giving him what she hoped was a clear look of mild annoyance that would convey the fact that yes, she was indeed ready. Especially after last night, she felt more ready to do this stupid scene than ever. All the nerves she’d felt over the past couple of weeks… they weren’t gone, but they had faded to just background noise. “I’m fine,” she assured him, then she let her eyebrows twitch up. “Are you?”

Ben laughed as he reached forward, and adjusted the laces on the front of her dress, his fingers just barely brushing against the undersides of her breasts as she shivered from the contact. A smirk blossomed on his face as he finished adjusting them, then he leaned in a little closer, as if he was whispering some sort of secret. “I was born for this.”

She opened her mouth to say something else, but before she could, hands clapped together behind them, and the episode’s director, Charles, was ordering everyone into places. Instead of replying, she simply shook her head at him, mentally vowing to get him back for that trick later as she took her place on the far side of the temple, hiding behind a pole as the lighting crew got to work on setting the scene. 

All sound in the room vanished as she leaned against the pole, watching the crew lay out the mat that she and Ben would be lying on—the very same mat that they’d fucked on the night before—as all the other finishing touches came together. Suddenly she understood why he’d asked her again if she was nervous, this was an anticipation she’d never known before. Last night it had just been the two of them, and now she was about to take off her clothes and do it all over again for an audience of about twenty people. 

Fuck , maybe she was nervous. Her heart was starting to race as she looked out onto the set, watching a crew member light the last of the torches as she remembered vividly how her costar had lit them the night before. Flashes of memories darted in front of her eyes as she let them shut, taking several deep breaths as she remembered all their rehearsals, all of their choreography, and the things they’d done last night. 

Remembering Ben’s eyes, his soft little touches and whispers, gave her a tiny burst of confidence, one just large enough for her to open her own, and look across the room at him. Those eyes were staring at her now from behind a pillar, and though she could only see half of his face, it was clear he was offering her a smile, and her breath caught in her throat as he gave her a wink. 

Before she could process that wink, the sound in the room resumed as normal, and the final calls for “quiet on set,” sounded loud and clear. The time had come, and whether she was afraid or not, this was happening. She could do this, she had Ben, she had the comfort of knowing it would be him. Kira and Kylo were about to be done justice, and that would be because of them both. 

“Action!”

Taking in a deep breath, she stepped out from behind the pillar, and the scene commenced as they’d rehearsed it several times. 

There was a heat in his gaze when they stepped out from behind their pillars, searching around the room for one another for half a second before they both looked at one another with relief in their eyes. “You shouldn’t be here,” Ben as Kylo said, heat in his gaze followed by something else, something almost mischievous. Memories danced behind his eyes as she watched, and she could almost hear his soft moans from last night in her ears as they made their final approach. “If they catch you—”

“If,” she repeated as Kira, her own voice echoing in her mind as she met his gaze. I’m not afraid. She took a step toward him, hands folding behind her back as she let her chest carry her forward. I want to come with you. “If they catch me.”

Kylo’s mischief gave way to distress, his mouth shifting uncomfortably as he stepped toward her cautiously, as if he was afraid she was a mirage that would soon disappear. The only mirage, though, was the illusion that she was alone with him. Somehow, through the magic of the scene, the remaining crew members didn’t seem to exist anymore. “I shouldn’t be here either.” His voice trembled, lower lip quivering as he finished speaking, and suddenly she was cast into last night, where he’d looked at her with something in his eyes—Ben’s eyes—that had felt impossibly sweet and gentle. “Tomorrow—“

“I know what tomorrow is.” The hilarity of that statement was, this very scene that they were now filming had always been the tomorrow she’d been picturing when they’d rehearsed. It was a future event, a thing that hadn’t happened yet, but now it was happening, now there were dozens of eyes on her and Ben, and tomorrow had become today. “I’ve been thinking about it all day, and well into tonight, and I realized I couldn’t spend my last night in my tent with the others… I… I had to meet you.”

He swallowed, Adam’s apple bobbing visibly in the flickering light of the torches. Impossibly enough, in spite of the eyes in the room, she again forgot they were even acting; this was real now, they were admitting what they wanted, and suddenly she was starting to realize that Rose’s words in the makeup trailer might’ve had some weight to them as bits of Ben began slipping in through the veil of Kylo. She could only hope the cameras didn’t notice, but there was also the fact that no one knew him like she did to protect them. “I know we’re both duty-bound, I know when the sun rises we must both fight on opposite sides, and it kills me to think of facing you in battle, but…”

“You have to,” she finished for him, then she stepped toward him again, seeming to reach out for him before she let her arm fall to her side. “But it’s killing me, too.” 

Another silence fell between them as Ben  took her in, no longer Kylo in her eyes, he was completely himself, and his gaze was hungry, needy, and pleading for something, but this time she didn’t think it was actions. It was words, unspoken and heavy, and she could only hope she’d guessed their meaning right. “How many more hours do we have until the sun rises?”

“Not enough,” she answered him, then she stepped into his space, and suddenly the rest of the room was no longer visible to her, but she could still feel the crew’s eyes on them all the same. “I don’t know what to expect from tomorrow, but, Kylo?”

“Yes?”

She looked at him again, resting a hand on his cheek as she realized the moment was getting close, they were about to take their clothes off in front of all these people, and she was about to have to not die when she heard him moan into her ear. “Will you stay here with me tonight? I don’t… I don’t want to be alone.”

“You won’t be,” he promised her, then one of his arms wrapped around her waist, pulling her close to him. “Not tonight.” You don’t want anyone else. 

“Can we forget this is happening for a little while?” She let her other hand come up, burying itself in the raven strands of his hair as she took in a deep, shaky breath, her heart racing in earnest as she pressed their foreheads together. Just you. “Plea—“

Just like the first time they’d rehearsed this, Ben cut her off before she could finish the word, his lips finding hers as if drawn magnetically. Then you can have me. Like last night, though, the kiss was pure, raw Ben Solo, right down to the tiny tremble in his lower lip that she knew all too well from the moment they’d first met. Just tell me when to stop. 

Could he tell how fast her heart was racing? Could he sense the nerves that she couldn’t fight off even though his presence was a soothing blanket? 

Unsure if he could tell whether or not she was nervous, Rey returned his kiss with a ferocity she now knew she possessed. It was a little awkward in front of all these people, but she’d started to get used to kissing in front of them. At the bare minimum, she was used to Poe and Amilyn bearing witness to their scene. Surely if she could handle them, she could handle all the other eyes? The cameras? A part of her almost wanted it over with, and she found herself wishing they were on the floor, rolling around on the mat already. 

At least, that’s what she wanted for a second. Her emotions were all over the place, torn between losing herself to Ben’s frenzied, hurried kisses and remembering the crowd. In the end, she wound up melting in his arms until the moment he broke away, and looked down at her with more love and tenderness than she’d thought existed in the entire world. 

He leaned their foreheads together, just like he had at their first private rehearsal, and sighed. “You’re still holding on,” he said, then she as Kira growled low, the noise coming from deep in her gut as she tugged him forward, and pulled his entire body against hers. “Let go.”

Oh, that wasn’t scripted. What it did, though, was make heat coil inside of her, and cause a fresh wave of dampness between her legs as she found herself suddenly, completely, wet. Both of them were panting hard, still completely out of breath and still struggling to find focus after their last kiss, but that was precisely what the choreography demanded. Using the energy from the nerves that had built up inside of her, Kira pulled him in for another kiss, and his arms wrapped around her a little more tightly, both of them kneeling down in perfect sync as they continued kissing. 

This was it, this was when Kylo and Kira sank to the floor and consummated their relationship in a way that Poe had described as “softcore porn.” Those nerves in her body began to rush back to her head again at this realization, and as Kylo began to bend her back, as her legs adjusted themselves and she was lowered to the floor, she could feel herself starting to tremble. Fuck . This was terrifying, terrifying and also weirdly arousing at the same time, she realized, eyes remaining shut as if she could pretend the rest of the room didn’t exist. 

There was a conflict warring in her brain between wanting to be turned on by her costar laying her down, putting his leg between her thigh, and starting to drag his kisses down onto her neck and the mild fear she felt from the eyes in the room. The trembling only grew worse as Kylo’s hand reached for the laces of her dress, and he began undoing them, and she thought she alone might cause an earthquake, but then he stopped kissing her neck. Suddenly, she opened her eyes to see pure Ben staring at her, a softness to his gaze matched only by what she’d seen the night before when they’d done this for real. “You’re—you’re trembling,” he whispered, his voice so quiet she wondered if it would actually be picked up by the mics and equipment positioned throughout the room. 

Letting out a shuddering breath, her eyes fell on his lips, which always gave away his emotions even if he was trying his hardest to hide them. His lower lip was also quivering as she’d suspected it’d be, and she almost smiled as she watched it. “So are you,” she breathed. 

That lip quivered again as he gave her a tiny smile, then he took in a deep breath. “It’s just us now. Okay?” Another deep, shaky breath, then he leaned in and kissed her again, probably just so the cameras would think they weren’t completely screwing up the scene, but something about it still felt impossibly real all the same. “Just you…” kiss. “And me…” Another kiss, this time on her neck as his hands resumed their work on the ties of her dress. “No one else.”

The nerves melted somewhat at that, and she gave him a tiny nod and a smile as he undid the laces completely, then began working on removing the dress from her shoulders, kissing every piece of skin he exposed. “Just you and me,” she whispered, then she reached for the ties of his cape—his tragically stained cape—and began removing his clothing as well, both of them sitting up in order to properly remove what they’d just untied. 

As she slid her dress from her shoulders, her eyes never left him, not even when the cool air around them descended on her mostly bared chest, not even when she felt the rest of her slowly become exposed as the dress found itself discarded. Once her clothes were off, Ben crawled over her again, then they were kissing, the scene resuming as normal as Poe’s instructions ran through her mind. 

The rest of the world doesn’t exist, it’s just the two of you, his voice said in her mind as Ben— Kylo— began to press kisses along her collarbone, kissing further down her body as he moved on to the next part of the scene. Her heart was racing faster than it ever had before, her whole body feeling as if it was on fire as she tilted her head back the way she’d rehearsed a million times, trying to trick herself into believing he was actually going down on her. 

The rest of it? Poe’s voice continued as Kylo finally wound up between her legs, his lips pressing kisses to her inner thighs as his hands came up to wrap around them, holding her in place against him as she rested her legs on his shoulders. As he finally feigned going down on her, Rey tilted her head back, trying to envision the stars she’d seen the first time he’d done this to her, and what she’d felt every time since as she lost herself to the character—to the scene. 

The rest of the world just fades away. He was right, she was so lost to the fantasy that reality simply ceased to exist. She found herself completely surrendered, focused on Kylo and Kylo alone. The world was gone, her nerves were gone, and for the next minute or so while he pretended to do filthy things to her with his mouth, it stayed completely still, time itself came to a stop, and even as she feigned her first orgasm—because, of course, on television women could come in thirty seconds—and he crawled back over her, it felt more like when they’d been alone at two in the morning than anything else. 

Her breathing shuddered again as she whispered his name, as he leaned over her, and pressed a kiss to her forehead, and she gripped his hair a little more tightly. For a half second, they locked eyes again, then he began to move, moaning softly into her ear as she whimpered softly, one of her hands gripping his back as he pretended to enter her as gently as he had the night before. His lips found hers, and she swore into the kiss involuntarily as he actually grinded against her clit on accident, but she could feel him smirk against her lips as he did it the proper way on the next thrust, the scene moving effortlessly as it was always meant to, as the writers and actors had intended for it to be. 

And so the world faded away, disappearing completely into the background, completely into the white noise of the universe, as if it would never be seen again—as if for the rest of time, it would only be the two of them, and whether they were Kylo and Kira or Ben and Rey, it would never be the same. 

Chapter Text

It took them the entire day. Off and on all through the remainder of the morning and the afternoon, Rey and Ben were pretending to have sex for the cameras, the attempts all awkward but growing easier each time. Every time they did another take, if she felt her nerves returning, all she had to do was look into his eyes, and calm would wash over her. 

By the time the sun had set outside at the tail end of their last take, she was almost bored with filming. All she wanted to do was go back into one of their trailers and do filthy things to him until he couldn’t see straight. Going by the way she could tell his cock was straining against the silly little thing it was trapped in, he wanted that, too. 

On that last take, she couldn’t help smiling into every kiss, and something in the way his lips were moving told her that he couldn’t either. They’d done it, they’d filmed the scene that had started all of this, and now they were free of it. She could finally just be with him the way she always wanted to, without the pressure of the scene or the cameras. 

This was her chance to tell him everything, but going by the look in his eyes as he laced their fingers together one last time, she thought about what Rose had said to her that morning, and wondered if maybe, just maybe, he might have beaten her to it. 

As the scene began to come to a close, Rey brushed his hair out of his face, whispering sweet nothings to him in character as Kylo came down from his orgasm. Both of them were panting heavily, the hands they’d laced together holding steady in their grip as he kissed her one last time, and though they’d been doing this off and on all day, it still made her head spin. 

Cut!

And with that, the scene was over, Kylo was Ben again, and she was just Rey. Both of them smiled at each other as they pulled away, and he rolled off of her to accept a robe from one of the crew, handing it to her as another robe was handed their way. A blush colored her cheeks, but she accepted it with a quietly whispered, “Thank you,” and put it on over her very scantily clad body, concealing all the parts of herself she’d never let anyone aside from him see before that day from view. 

Grunting quietly, Ben pushed himself to his feet, and offered her his hand, his eyes warm when she placed hers in his, and she could practically see sunlight in his smile as he pulled her to her feet. “You were incredible,” he told her as they tied the belt of their robes. “I wouldn’t have been able to tell you’d never done this after that first take if I hadn’t known.”

A laugh escaped her as she shoved at his shoulder. “You know better than anyone, though.”

“Maybe, but you still killed it either way.”

“I had a really good teacher,” she whispered, thinking on all they’d done together, all the experience she’d pulled from to make that scene something. 

“Well, it wasn’t just me. Amilyn? Poe? They put the whole thing together,” he protested, looking a little sheepish at her praising of his skills. 

Shrugging, Rey crossed her arms over her chest, then beamed at him. “Yeah, but to me?” She took a step closer, lowering her voice as she looked around to make sure no one was watching them too intensely even though she wasn’t saying anything particularly scandalous. “You were the one who counted most. The only reason I was able to do that was because you made me feel safe. So thank you, Ben, for keeping me sane through all of this, and for being the greatest scene partner I could’ve asked for.”

Shaking his head, Ben reached forward, his hand landing on her shoulder as he suddenly pulled her close, and for a second, she thought he was about to kiss her in front of all their costars and friends—everyone—but then his arms wrapped around her shoulders, and he pulled her into a warm, sweet embrace. 

Shock rushed through her, but then she was hugging him back, embracing his warmth as he lifted her up from the ground, and suddenly the world began to quite literally spin around her. A delighted laugh escaped her lips, her hands digging into the fabric of his robe as if a part of her was afraid she’d fall, but she soon loosened her grip as Ben’s tightened around her waist, and she realized he was never ever going to let her fall. 

Not physically, at least. Emotionally? She’d already fallen head over heels for him, and she wouldn’t have had it any other way. 

More laughter filled her ears as he set her down, then readjusted his grip, his hands coming up to hold her face, cradling it in his palms as he smiled brilliantly enough to ignite a thousand suns. “I’m proud of you.”

She couldn’t help the next giggle that fell from her lips. “I’m—I’m proud of you, too.”

“I’ve done this before, but… I think that’s the only time I’ve actually, thoroughly enjoyed it,” he admitted, then he looked like he wanted to say something else, but another voice interrupted the conversation. 

Poe clapped his hands together, then he cleared his throat. “Great job today everyone, this went…” A breathy laugh parted his lips, then he walked up to Ben and Rey. “Fantastically, if I may say so myself.” He turned to the others, “I just want to remind you all that we’ll be meeting for a few more shots tomorrow morning, then we’ll start filming the next scene. For now, go home, get some rest, and as for my two stars…” he turned back to them with a smile on his face. “Put some fucking clothes on.”

Both of them laughed, then she reached over, and patted the part of Ben’s chest that was still exposed by the deep v of the robe. “Yeah, Ben, put some fucking clothes on.”

He snorted his laughter, then they both turned around, facing away from the main part of the set and the crew. “We need to get our makeup off,” he said as they began walking out of the temple, and he offered her his hand as they began climbing the steps to get out. 

For a half second, Rey looked down at that hand, her heart racing faster as she took note of the tiny gesture and what it meant. It was chivalrous, and it was so small, but so significant at the same time. This sort of thing rarely happened before they’d started hooking up, but ever since, they’d started to make tiny little gestures of affection toward one another, and her breath caught as she rested her hand in his, and had yet another realization that Rose had been right earlier. 

There was something between them, something they both felt, and they couldn’t keep denying it much longer. 

“Thanks,” she whispered, allowing Ben to hold her hand until they reached the top of the steps. When they did, she couldn’t help but notice that his hand lingered long after they’d separated to go to their respective makeup artists. It was like even though they were only going to be ten feet apart, they both feared the distance would become miles. 

Rose was smiling brightly as she approached her, breaking through the dark clouds brought about by even the glimmer of a thought of separation from Ben. “I think the entire room needs a cold shower right now,” she said, already pulling a makeup wipe out of the blue package as her actress made her final approach. “I’ve worked a lot of love scenes before, but shit , you guys actually packed heat .”

Rey snorted, trying her best to downplay the situation as much as she could. “It was fake sex in front of a camera. How hot could it have been?”

“Wait till you see the results,” Rose replied, then she began wiping the makeup off of her face with a delicate hand. “If it looked good live, it’s going to look incredible when they cut it in post. I think it’ll probably make headlines.”

“Headlines?”

“Or it’ll make the top of every single top ten greatest tv sex scenes list,” Rose replied, then she gestured for her to close her eyes. “My point is, you’re doing a great job at using your real life chemistry and putting it on the screen. The only thing that made it kind of awkward is that I know what you did here last night.”

A blush crept up her cheeks as her eyes darted over to where Ben was laughing at a joke Paige had made, smiling down at her in a way that was slightly more reserved than the way he always smiled at Rey. Every time she saw that smile directed at her, she saw his dimples and the crinkles by his eyes. Right then, he didn’t have that. It almost reached his eyes, but not quite, not until—he looked over at her, and suddenly there it was, the sun and stars themselves. 

That smile could light her way home on a foggy night, she thought, and she just hoped it would still shine for her even after she told him how she felt. 

“Rey?” Rose asked, pulling her back to reality as she slowly looked back at her, still somewhat entranced by the memory of that smile. 

“Sorry,” she muttered in response, then she gave Rose the other side of her face, forcing herself to look away from Ben. “I have a lot on my mind.”

“You’re going to tell him after this, aren't you?” Her makeup artist wiped at a spot of foundation on her cheek, cleaning her off as best she could, and doing so rather quickly. Apparently she could sense how eager Rey was to escape and get everything off her chest; she just hoped it wasn’t so obvious to the rest of the room. “You’re actually going to do it?”

She laughed nervously. “I’m going to try.”

Rose gave her another knowing grin in response, then wiped off the last of the foundation from her forehead. “I know you’re probably scared shitless right now, but you can do this.” 

“I am.”

“Scared shitless?”

“Yeah,” she breathed, then her gaze was stolen away from Rose again when Ben finished up with Paige and walked past her, heading in the direction of their trailers. “I should probably follow him. I’m covered in fake sweat and I smell like—“

“Sex?” Rose offered, then she smacked her shoulder with the back of her hand. “Yeah, you do. Go. Get clean, change your clothes, then get him.”

A laugh fell from her lips. “Thanks, Rose, for everything.”

The other woman took one of Rey’s hands in hers, looking her firmly in the eyes as her own lit up. “ Go. Stop talking, and go.”

“I need to change—“

“Yes, into a t-shirt and jeans and nothing else, don’t make yourself fancy, don’t stop, don’t collect two hundred dollars— get a move on. ” And with that, she let go of Rey’s hands, and pointed in the direction of her trailer. 

This was the time to lay all her cards on the table, and not stop until Ben listened to every word she had to say, whether he reacted happily or not. 

Before she could allow herself to stall any longer, she moved past her friend, and made her way toward the trailers, following distantly on Ben’s trail. Her heart was racing the entire time, and she made her way up to her trailer with her breath held and her eyes unblinking. She was a mess, a bundle of nerves, a bomb waiting to go off, and as she walked up the steps to her trailer door, her hand reaching out to open it, she realized one very important thing. 

All that bravery she’d spent so much time building up was about to crumble. Within a matter of seconds, she was going to be right back where she started, and the denial would be in full swing once more. It was now or never, she didn’t want to wait until she was cleaned off, or until she was in a t-shirt and jeans, or until she was presentable—she just wanted to get this off her chest and she wanted it off her chest now. 

Grunting with frustration and all the pent up energy that had built up inside of her, Rey stepped down from her trailer, and made her way toward the one just over twenty feet away. Through the windows—though blinds prevented her from seeing inside entirely—she could see that Ben’s lights were on, and she took in a deep, shuddering breath as his shadow moved past one of them. At least it was confirmation that he was inside. 

Fuck, ” she breathed, then she pushed on, walking toward the front door of his trailer with a determination she didn’t even know she possessed before she climbed its steps, and knocked three times. 

This was it, the point of no return. There was no exit now that wouldn’t result in something supremely awkward going down, and she wasn’t sure if she was emotionally prepared for that yet, but she had to be. 

A few seconds later, she heard footsteps approaching in time with a couple of swears and frustrated grunts. A tiny laugh escaped her as she covered her mouth with her hand, finding it oddly endearing that Ben seemed to be struggling to reach the door. Stifling more laughter, Rey leaned against the door frame, waiting patiently until her slightly out of breath best friend opened it, rendering her out of breath shortly thereafter. 

He, like her, was still wearing a robe, but unlike her, he’d at least thought to put on some jeans. That was as far as his ideas of getting dressed seemed to go, though, because she was met with an eyeful of Ben’s bare chest, exposed by the untied robe, as he looked down at her from behind the strands of hair that had fallen into his eyes in his rush to get the door. Both of their chests were heaving as they looked at each other, and Rey found herself having to wrench her eyes upward—as tempting as his chest was to look at—in order to avoid accidentally confessing her feelings in the most awkward, blubbering manner she could imagine. 

“Hi,” Ben whispered, then he cleared his throat. “Uh, everything okay?”

She gave him a nod, then tucked a piece of her hair behind her ear. “Everything’s fine,” she told him, then she looked down at the ground. “Can I come in? I need to talk to you about… something.”

After a second of silence, she looked up and found him staring at her with the same hesitance in his eyes that she knew she had in her own. Slowly, he began to step away from the door, making space for her to enter the trailer with him. “Yeah, come on in.”

“Thanks,” she replied, then she stepped into the trailer, and shut the door before she leaned against it, and closed her eyes, focusing on breathing deeply, on keeping calm as best she could. God, she was fucking terrified. This was the scariest moment of her entire life, but the risk was good—it could possibly lead to the best moment of her life. 

Her eyes opened again when she heard Ben step closer to her again, and this time she had an unobstructed view of his eyes—which was helpful, since his robe was still fucking wide open—and the fear and hope she could now see in their depths. “You didn’t change your clothes.”

“No, I… I needed to come here first.”

Lips pressing together, Ben leaned back against a nearby counter, then he looked down, and instantly the energy in the room shifted. It was like those moments before a thunderstorm, where the air pressure dropped and she could tell something big was about to happen. Everything was going to change, and though it had been her intention to come here and create this situation, somehow he could feel it, too. “We—“ he started, then he laughed to himself, and crossed the room, bracing himself against the counter near another window. It wasn’t even open, but that didn’t matter, he was looking down at the granite, staring at the crystals in the flattened rock as if he suddenly found it mesmerizing. 

“Ben?” she asked, pushing herself off of the door, and stepping cautiously toward him, unsure whether or not she should reach out and touch him. “What’s going on?”

Slowly, he turned to look back at her, his mouth shifting as he gave her a once over, eyes scrutinizing her form carefully, like he was somehow afraid that this would be the last time he was ever allowed to look at her. The tension in the room felt like a thread pulled taut, all there was to do at that point was wait to see who would break it. “Do you remember that first serious boyfriend I told you about?”

“The actor?”

“That one, yes.”

“I remember.”

Ben nodded, then he inhaled slowly, his breath leaving him at just as steady a pace as he grit his teeth, then prepared to speak again. “There are people in your life who teach you important lessons. Some teach you how to read and write, how to count, how to do your taxes, how to find a job, and some teach you emotions.” He looked at her then, a tiny smile tugging at the corners of his mouth as he tried to find the words to say, and though she’d come here with a very specific agenda and was quickly losing her courage, she found herself hanging on his every word. “Someone teaches you how to rage, how to find joy, how to be calm, stressed, bored—“ His breath catches in his chest. “And someone teaches you how to love and what love even is. Within that emotion though, you find subcategories, don’t you? Your parents—your family —they teach you familial love, friends teach you platonic love, and that boy… he taught me what it meant to realize some people’s souls aren’t complete alone.

“He wasn’t the person I was meant to be with. We broke up after two years, but he taught me what it meant to love someone romantically. He taught me how to show someone through not just words but through the eyes…” His gaze locked on hers, and suddenly she could see the endgame of this speech, suddenly she realized she didn’t need to still be afraid—he was probably way more scared than she was right then. “Through little gestures of affection… touch… ” He held out his hand, seeming to hold his breath for a minute as he waited for her to take it. 

She blinked at him for a second, still barely able to process what was happening as she put her hand in his, then their breath left them in a rush of air, some of the pressure in the room relieving itself in the process. “Ben…”

“Through that first love, I learned what it felt like to let someone in—to need someone. And I learned that, when you’re as stubborn as me, it’s ridiculously easy to mistake for something that’s strictly platonic. Especially when the friend you love the most is also the person you want the most to be with.” His thumb rubbed gently over the back of her hand, tracing the ridges of her knuckles as he laughed softly to himself, a sincerity to his eyes she’d only caught glimpses of before. “And it’s incredibly difficult to tell when it’s mutual—when the person you want to share your soul with hasn’t told you that’s what they want, too. It’s terrifying, and I’ve been scared—I’ve been avoiding it for weeks now.”

Weeks? Wait … oh...

“That brings me to you.” Ben reached forward, and took her other hand from where it was just hanging limply at her side, their fingers trembling just enough that it was difficult to get a grip on each other. “In spite of learning everything, I somehow didn’t see you coming. You asked me to help you, and my brain thankfully told me to say yes, and somewhere along the line… I don’t know when it happened, but that love I’ve always felt for you? The love I’ve had for you since pretty much the day we met? I think somewhere between the first time I kissed you off camera and when I made love to you last night, it became something else.”

Holy shit. Her brain was going into overdrive. This wasn’t really happening—it had to be a dream. She had come in there expecting to have to anxiously tell him she was in love with him, and then there was Ben, laying his heart on the line, not knowing if she loved him back because she’d been too scared to tell him. His soul was being bared with every word he spoke, and fuck , she was nearly rendered incapable of thought. “What?” she whispered, and it was then that she realized she was crying , that moment when her voice broke, when her emotions caught up with her before her mind did. 

Gripping her hands a little more tightly, he pulled them close to his chest, stepping a little closer into her space. “Rey, I feel that kind of love for you, the kind where I think I want to wake up next to you every morning and kiss you every night before I go to bed, and write fucking poetry. I want to shout from the god damn hills everything I feel for you because it’s so strong, it’s overwhelming.” He closed his eyes, then she watched a wet drop of salty water rush down his cheek, and she realized that— fuck —he was crying, too. 

Did he even mean to? Did he realize he was crying? She was still barely able to process that there was water leaking from her eyes, that she was so overcome with joy, love, and a thousand other tiny emotions she wasn’t sure the English language had names for, that she was crying

“I almost said it while we were filming. I nearly dropped character, and told you I loved you in front of the crew, god, and everyone, because I keep holding this back, and I just—“ His tongue came out to wet his lower lip, then he shook his head. “I had to tell you now, because sometimes you look at me, and I start thinking, that maybe, just maybe, you feel the same way. So… I… I love you, Rey, as more than just my best friend. I love you in a way I’m not sure I’ve been taught how to love yet, but if you’ll let me, I’d really like to learn it with you.”

By that point she was shaking so bad he was the only thing holding her steady, but she still managed to give him a nod before she leaned forward, and soon found herself smiling as he rested his forehead against hers. “Yes,” she whispered, then she laughed. “I don’t really have a big speech or epic words prepared, but if I did, they’d boil down to the same point you just made. At some point in all of this, my feelings changed, and the reason I came into this trailer—wearing only a robe—“ They both laughed at this, then she let go of one of his hands to place one of hers on his cheek. “Is because I knew I couldn’t deny it any longer either. I needed you to know that I love you, too, the same way you just said you love me.”

A tiny, very charming little giggle escaped him, then he wrapped his arms around her waist, pulling her into a warm embrace that had her feeling like the stars had all aligned in the night sky. Ben felt warm and comforting, like an old blanket she’d had for years but never truly appreciated until right then. “I’m sorry I didn’t tell you sooner, I was so scared—“

“Me too,” she breathed, one of her hands coming up to stroke the tousled waves of his hair. “God, Ben—“

He pulled back from the embrace a little ways then, and she watched as he looked into her eyes, smiling as she watched him. Fuck , this was how he’d been looking at her for days, maybe weeks, and somehow she’d never realized it was because he returned her feelings. She’d suspected for a while now that this wouldn’t end the way it had started, but she didn’t know love the way he did, she’d never known—

Oh, who was she kidding, she’d known she was just in denial. 

Another laugh escaped her, then she shifted, placing her hands on either of his cheeks, then she leaned in, tugging him forward as she went, and pulled them both into a kiss that quickly consumed them. It felt like she was on fire, like there was something burning between them, but the flame wasn’t malignant or harmful—it was light; brilliant, bright light that shone brilliantly against the backdrop of the rest of the world. 

It was deep, intense, and breath stealing, the way his mouth moved against hers. They’d shared immersive kisses before, but never like this, never like they’d been starving for years and the other person was the first food they’d laid eyes on, never like they needed each other to survive. They’d been holding out on each other for all this time, and now? Now they didn’t have to. 

They were finally allowed to hold nothing back from one another, and fuck , it felt good. When Ben’s tongue swept along the edge of her lower lip, she didn’t hesitate to allow him access, letting him tilt her head back as he deepened the kiss, backing her into the nearest wall as he began to explore her mouth. She moaned against him as her fingers wound themselves into his hair, tugging on it just enough to get a moan out of him as he tugged her close against him, then she was lifted up into the air, and pressed against the wall again. 

Without hesitation, Rey wrapped her legs around his hips, keeping him close as they enjoyed the last few seconds of the kiss, both of them knowing they would need air soon, but not wanting to pull away. They’d starved themselves of really, truly, properly kissing for so long, she didn’t want to end this now. At least they knew about their feelings for each other, this would happen again. Probably seconds after the first one ended. 

Their lungs protesting violently for air, they managed to pull away, both breathing hard—chests heaving, visions full of stars and everything—as they rested their foreheads against one another. Breathless laughter escaped Rey as she slowly dragged her fingers through his hair with one hand, reaching up with the other to touch the dimples of his smile as he beamed at her like she was the sun. 

Ben loved her. He really, truly, deeply loved her, and it wasn’t in her head, it wasn’t a lie. He was as in love with her as she was in love with him. They had been so stupid all this time, so stubborn, so in denial, and they’d wasted so much time. At least they weren’t wasting time anymore. 

“What?” Ben asked, undoubtedly hearing her breath leave her in a rush. “What is it?”

Another laugh. “You love me.”

His lips briefly brushed hers again, he was still too out of breath to kiss her properly, but then he touched her cheek with his palm, fingers tangling into her hair as he nodded. “I love you,” he said, then they stayed like that for a few more seconds before he swallowed nervously, and hit his lip. “Rey, I really love you.”

“I really love you, too.”

He didn’t say anything else after that, instead, he just kissed her again, the kiss much more relaxed and easy this time rather than desperate. They fell into it in a way that felt natural, allowing them to melt into each other as he pulled her away from the wall, holding her close as they descended toward his sofa at a speed that felt like falling, but the way he held her tight against him, she knew it wasn’t. 

They were past that stage of worry and denial now, and she knew that from then on? He would never let her go.