DISCLAIMER: Babylon 5 and all its characters are the property of J. Michael Straczynski and Babylonian Productions. No infringement intended.
CHALLENGE: Submitted for the 5th Anniversary Challenge.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Armor Falling
By Annette


It was the 500th Anniversary of some such thing or another for the Minbari and, as Satai, Delenn was hosting a celebration on the Babylon Station. Every day for the past 5 days transports full of Minbari were arriving. The atmosphere had been festive for the most part as the Minbari were basically a peaceful race. But as is wont to happen, the peace was being disturbed by an unseen, but very much felt, presence.

Many complaints began to surface of a presence that exuded negative energy, but no one could give any sort of physical description. Since Garibaldi and most of his security squad were busy following up on these complaints Captain Sheridan enlisted Ivanova to take on a special detail… Accompanying the resident telepath, Talia Winters, around the station where she would perform low-level scans of her surroundings in the hope of getting more information about the presence.

"Captain, you've got to be kidding me! You want me to escort Miss Winters about the station while there's a psycho on the loose?" The angry Russian paced as she continued to fume. "You want me to baby sit that woman while I could be better used in looking for this nut job?"

"Commander Ivanova, I will not have you disparaging our resident telepath. You need to set whatever issues you have aside and do your job. I gave you an order and I expect you to carry out that order to the best of your ability. Are we clear?"

"Crystal." The fuming brunette answered as she spun and walked away.

Later that day Susan stood at the start of the Zocalo and awaited the arrival of Ms. Winters. "I cannot believe I have been ordered to spend time with that woman!" Susan grumbled under her breath.

"Did you say something Commander?"

Momentarily startled Susan looks up into the crystal blue eyes of the woman in question. "Nothing that concerns you Miss Winters. Let's begin our rounds." Spinning on her heel Susan turned and walked swiftly away. Struggling a bit to catch up, Talia once again wondered at the animosity this enigmatic woman felt toward her.

Each day was a copy of the next, Commander Ivanova would meet Miss Winters at a pre-determined location and they would walk in relative silence the entire time. On the fifth day, as Susan escorted her to her quarters, Talia decided to confront Susan about her behavior. "Commander, would you mind coming in for a moment, there's something I'd like to discuss with you?"

Raising her eyebrow at the unexpected request Susan replied, "Unless it's related to this operation I must return to my real duties."

Fighting the urge to roll her eyes Talia answered, "Actually it is related to the operation." Gesturing Susan into her quarters she followed her inside.

"Very well, but make it brief, I really must return to the C & C." Susan said, not bothering to hide the annoyance in her voice.

The door closed and Talia turned toward Susan. "That is exactly what I want to talk with you about. I am supposed to be scanning for hostile vibes, but the only ones I am feeling are coming from you."

No sooner had those words left the blonde's mouth than Susan was on her. Grabbing her upper arms and pressing Talia roughly against the wall, Susan moved to within inches of the telepath's face. "Have you been scanning me?"

After the initial shock of being grabbed and slammed into the wall wore off, Talia realizes just what Susan was implying. "Of course not, you know that is against the law as well as my own code of ethics!" Struggling to free herself from Ivanova's iron grip, Talia continued, "Release me Commander!" Looking deeply, and more closely than she'd ever imagined, into Ivanova's eyes, Talia couldn't suppress the shiver of arousal caused by the proximity of this woman.

Meanwhile, Ivanova snapped out of her angry haze and released the blonde, realizing she'd most likely left some very large bruises on her porcelain skin. Meeting Talia's gaze she was stunned by the mix of emotions she saw there, matching her own mix of fear, anger and desire.

Suddenly lips crash together, Susan plundering the blonde's mouth as Talia's hands slide into Susan's hair. Pressed tightly to the wall Talia thrust her hips into the strong body in front of her. Further inflamed by this Susan tried to press her thigh against the woman pinned to the wall but realized her skirt was hampering her. She quickly unfastened Talia's skirt and let it drop to the floor. No longer impeded by that article of clothing, Susan reached between Talia's legs, which parted in acceptance. Long, strong fingers glide over damp silk and Talia whimpered. Susan moaned at the sound and slipped her fingers under the waistband of Talia's panties and into warm, wet heat. She began a quick, hard thrusting motion as her lips leave the blonde's mouth and migrate to her neck.

Gasping for breath Talia maintained her grip in Susan's hair. She was just beginning to feel the wave of her orgasm building as her hips matched the frantic thrusting of the brunette's fingers. Susan could feel Talia tightening around her fingers and she increased the speed of her thrusts. Soon the telepath's grip in her hair tightened even more as the wave finally crests and she screams out her release.

Fingers buried deeply inside the blonde, Susan rests her forehead against Talia's shoulder. Feeling the grip in her hair releasing and the contractions around her fingers lessening, she slips out of Talia. Oh, that was intense. She thinks. An answering Yes, it was echoed in her mind. Realizing just what she had done and with whom Susan pulled away and looked down at her hand, still damp with Talia's wetness. Her gaze never returned to the woman in front of her as she spun and walked toward the door. Against her better judgment she turned and looked at Talia. What she saw hit her like a physical blow and it took all of her well-honed soldier skills to turn away – not follow her heart but instead the first set of orders she'd ever received. Tell no one.

Talia crumbled to the floor as she watched Susan leave - a rollercoaster of emotions, from surprise to arousal and confusion, leaving her reeling. Regaining her equilibrium she reflected on what just happened. She knew she'd probably make Susan angry by bringing her hostile behavior to her attention, but she never expected it to lead to the woman pressing her against the wall and ravaging her. It was completely unexpected but not unwelcome, and she wished the Commander hadn't run off like that. She realized that she'd actually heard Susan in her mind and had answered her as naturally as if they'd both spoken aloud. This realization gave her a hint as to why Susan would always avoid contact with her and she worried at what this same realization was doing to Susan. Taking a chance she tried to contact her but found that she was in her quarters and did not wish to be disturbed. Gathering her courage Talia maked her way to the Commander's door, intent on gaining access so that the two women could talk about what happened and where they would go from here. Arriving at the door to Susan's quarters she pressed the door buzzer repeatedly.

Meanwhile Susan had retreated to her quarters, placed a DND on her door and communicator, and was currently pacing the length of her living area. Horrified and confused by her recent actions she attempted to make some sense of what she'd done and decide on a course of action. She worried about what Miss Winters might decide to do, knowing that she'd be well within her rights to charge her with sexual assault. She was so angry at the telepath when she thought she had been scanning her. But when she pushed her against the wall and looked into her fearful, but desire-darkened eyes, she lost all control. Then, at the end, she had totally dropped her defenses and Talia heard her – heard her and answered her! She knew! Talia had heard her and knew that Susan was at the least a latent telepath.

Removing her uniform and donning her nightgown and robe Susan grabbed a fresh bottle of vodka and took a seat on her couch. Running her hand through her hair brought back the memory of long, slender fingers gripping those same strands and she quickly stopped. "Oh Lord, what have I done?" Susan wondered if, perhaps, she should just go to the Captain and plead her case – maybe she could get there before Talia. The incessant buzzing of her door interrupted those thoughts, and it was pissing her off. She was getting angrier by the minute as whoever was at her door totally ignored the DND. Then her anger turned to fear as she realized it could well be a security detail coming to get her. "Computer, who is at my door?" The disembodied voice answered Talia Winters.

Only slightly relieved by this revelation Susan knew it was time to face the music. Perhaps they could come to some sort of arrangement although she didn't hold out too much hope. "Open." She called out and the door slid aside to admit the blonde on the other side.

Talia continued pressing the buzzer, intent on staying there all night if need be. Surprisingly it was only a few minutes later when the door opened and she walked in. Not immediately spotting the brunette Talia moved further into the apartment. There, across the room, stood a vision in blue silk. Talia could see the stiff set of her shoulders and feel the tension flowing from the woman. Amazingly she felt no anger coming from her, only fear and confusion. Approaching slowly and reaching out Talia placed her hand on Susan's shoulder hoping to get her to turn around.

Flinching but not moving Susan held her ground. Further confused by the gentle touch she was still at a loss as to what to do or say. She felt the blonde move closer still, nearly pressing against her back, and then that smoky voice broke the silence.

"Susan, are you ok?"

A simple question with no easy answer and of all the possible things she thought Talia might say that was not one of them. Hearing and feeling the concern in Talia's voice caused a chink to form in the emotionally distraught woman's armor. The gentle stroking on her back caused a crack to form, and soon Susan could no longer hold back. Her shoulders started to shake and a sob was torn from her lips. Arms wrapped around her and she turned in their embrace. Burying her head in the blonde's shoulder she wept. The irony of the situation would become evident much later, but for now Susan wept and her armor fell.

The End

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