DISCLAIMER: Bad Girls and its characters are property of Shed Productions. No copyright violations intended.
SPOILERS: Episode 2.16 & 3.1 Story idea came from scenes between Nikki & Helen in these two Eps.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Conversations In The Dark
By Artemisrulz


Nikki's heart clenched in her chest as she heard the Jailer's key turn in the cell door lock. Then it quickly plummeted down to her stomach as though she were aboard a rapidly descending elevator. At this time of night there was only one person it could possibly be. One person she really didn't want to see right now, not when she didn't have the strength to hide what she was feeling or how raw she was inside after events earlier in the day. She closed her eyes tightly and held her breath as though feigning death would keep the inevitable confrontation at bay.

There was a quickly murmured exchange of words and then a brief rustling sound as Barbara Hunt shuffled uncertainly out the door, which promptly shut behind her with a decisive thud. 'No, no, no…..' Nikki repeated over and over in her head, face hugging the wall, as she felt the mattress dip lightly when Helen Stewart, the current Lifer's Coach ensconced herself by Nikki's side. Wade fumed silently to herself as she willed the tears to evaporate from her face. She wouldn't give Helen the satisfaction of seeing her this way, not when she knew her now "ex-lover's face" would show no obvious signs of emotion at all over their recent estrangement. 'Thinks she's the bloody Queen of England does she' Nikki mumbled under her breath. 'She thinks everything should happen only on her terms and I'll just bow and scrape before her for any wee bit of precious time and attention.' True or not this particular fact really rubbed Nikki the wrong way. Damn, Helen Stewart, she was insufferable, totally insufferable and there wasn't a bloody thing Nikki could do to stop her heart betraying her when it came to the beautiful Scotswoman. It wasn't even that Helen Stewart was beautiful by all the usual standards, there was just something about her that got under Nikki's skin and left her helpless to deny the petite blond woman anything she wanted.

The inmate sighed in resignation when a delicate hand fell on her shoulder and urged her to turn over as Helen breathed out her name in her soft Scottish Burr. "Hiya Nikki, Are you doin' all right?" God, the words that caressed Nikki's ear were like a bloody benediction from his holiness himself, making it impossible to ignore their underlying implications. Giving a mental shrug of surrender the reclining woman looked up wordlessly at the face hovering above her in the dim light ghosting through the bars of the cell's only window.

The taller woman's tear filled eyes regarded the face looking down at her so intently for several long moments before she finally lost her attempt to quell the anger rushing through her veins and she spoke. "What? Come to tell me again how much you don't want me? How you don't love me? I'm not bloody daft you know I understood you only too well the first time round. You could have sent a bloody post card for that 'could yah?"

Helen grimaced as a feeling she'd rather not clarify as guilt rushed through her body lodging itself firmly in her heart. "Ah, Luv, no!" She choked out as she tried to swallow the huge lump stuck so firmly in her throat. With a deceptive ease born of much practice she managed to quickly force a grin to form on her face as she lightly touched Nikki's arm and said in a markedly cheery voice. "No Nikki, I've come to talk to you about your appeal, if we're ever goin' ta have a future…"

The other woman interrupted her with a strangled gasp. "We don't have a future anymore, remember Helen? Loving me hurts too much, is too inconvenient…to far outside those bloody sign posts of yours…it's what you said wasn't it? Besides, my Solicitor already cancelled our appointment."

Helen frowned in confusion for a moment until she realized Nikki didn't know why Claire had cancelled her appointment and intended to reschedule the meeting for the following week. "Oh Nikki, it's no like that. Claire's just really busy with court commitments right now; we'll make another appointment for you to meet with her next week."

"Oh." Nikki croaked out. Open Gob insert foot once again. "I thought…"

"What? That I was just gonna let you rot in here? Not a chance Nikki, not a chance." Helen responded passionately as she idly brushed Nikki's hair behind her ear. Even the gentle stroke of Helen's fingertips across her brow caused Nikki's heart to suddenly leap from her stomach into her mouth. God, what was it about Helen Stewart. Loving her was like the roller coaster ride from hell. One smile could take Nikki to the highest highs and one thoughtless word or gesture could plunge her to the lowest of lows. Yes, Helen Stewart was definitely an addiction. One Nikki knew she could not overcome.

Suddenly Helen stood and glided silently across the room to stand in front of the window, as she crossed her arms over her chest, leaving Nikki to feel as if she was yet again about to lose something infinitely precious if she made one wrong move. "Helen, Are you Okay?" Nikki asked with cautious concern as she moved to sit up and swung her legs over the side of the cot.

"Nikki, I…..I just need you to listen to me for a bit, hear what I have to say. It's important to me that you understand…Well, exactly how much you mean to me and why all of this has been so hard for me."

Helen sighed with relief as for once Nicola Wade managed to keep her gob shut with no questions asked. It wasn't a confession that Helen had intended to make, but once started she was incapable of stopping herself. Wrapping her arms around herself more tightly the petite woman's face grew still and her eyes seemed to focus on some place and time far, far away from Larkhall Prison. For a long moment Helen simply stood and wished it was her lover's strong arms she was safe inside as she searched for a strength she wasn't quite sure she possessed. At last, Helen swallowed hard and finally did something she had never done before, she surrendered to a power greater than her own and opened up her heart, prepared to trust the woman she could sense waiting patiently behind her. The mere sound of Nikki's breathing gave the petite Scot all the encouragement she needed to let go of the secrets that had always bound her heart so tightly before.

"Nikki, Ya know my father was a minister and that my mum died when I was thirteen? Well, my father was always emotionally absent and hadn't much use for me, but it wasn't just that...despite all of his religious convictions he still had a bit of a soft spot for the bottle and when he was in his cups he could be abusive too. He would always put me down and tell me I was a stupid, worthless whore, good only for one thing...just like me mum. He used to hurt her, my mum, badly sometimes. I never understood why. It's just that after so many years, I began to believe him and as a teenager, I started to go with whatever boy, well, with whoever fancied me and a few of them were a lot like my dad. I…I let them do whatever they wanted with me because it was the only way I could feel like I mattered, like I was of some use, had some value in this world. Then I finally found someone who truly loved me and helped me start to see that I was someone special and that I was someone worth loving. I was in Heaven Nikki. I'd not really known love and tenderness like that since my Mum had died. After a while we grew careless in our meetings and we were in my room one day when my father came home unexpectedly and caught us together."

Helen began to tremble unconsciously as she struggled to continue her story and it was all Nikki could do to remain motionless on the bed. "Being a minister and what, my father was big on the 'Spare the rod and spoil the child philosophy.' I thought he was going to kill me that night Nikki, I was so scared and so ashamed. The scars on my back are not from a fall off a horse as I told you; they were from the buckle on my father's belt. After that day I felt so alone and so hopeless that I wished I was dead and in a way I was. I willed myself to be that way, to never love so much that the loss would cause me that kind of pain again." Helen raised her hand and clamped it tightly over her mouth to stifle the sobs that had begun to wrack her small frame.

In an unexpected moment of total clarity Nikki Wade at last reached out with her heart instead of her head. She said nothing but rose quietly and moved to stand behind Helen. Slowly she wrapped her arms around the weeping woman and Helen spun about throwing her arms around Nikki's waist and squeezing her so tightly she was in danger of crushing a few of the taller woman's ribs. It was a sweet pain and Nikki bore it gladly.

"Helen." Nikki prodded gently "Your Dad, Why did he go off so bad over you snogging some lad from the village?" Nikki could understand a father's surprise and disappointment over catching his teenage daughter in such a situation but not the violent way in which Helen's father had reacted. Helen remained silent for several moments. Then her body tensed in Nikki's arms as though she were expecting a less than sensitive response to what she was about to say.

Helen sighed in resignation and dropped her head to Nikki's chest. "Because it wasn't a boy Nikki, it was a woman, a teacher from my school to be exact. It was quite the scandal. After my dad finished with me he had her arrested and while she didn't end up going to jail she did leave the area and I never saw her again. She also ended up losing her children to her ex-husband because of me, because she loved me and I was left alone to shoulder the derision and disgust of all my mates at school and the gossiping old harpies in the village. I was more alone and more of an outcast than ever."

As "Oh." Was the only remotely intelligent response Nikki could immediately come up with, she just held Helen for several minutes, stroking her silky blond hair and letting her cry herself out. Inside she was a roiling mass of rage and horror at the unfairness of what Helen had been forced to endure, not to mention feeling a bit betrayed by her lover's not having shared this bit of information with her before. Nikki sincerely wished she could kill every fucking bastard who had ever dared to harm the beautiful woman she held in her arms. How the hell anyone could hurt, much less abuse or take advantage of a soul as noble, gentle and kind as Helen Stewarts was beyond Nikki Wade's capacity to understand or to forgive.

Nikki swallowed hard, pushing all the feelings of hostility deep down inside. She would deal with them later, when she was alone and Helen wasn't there to see her. Somehow Nikki instinctively knew that the smallest sign of anger or aggression on her part right now would cause Helen to flee and never come back. So much finally began to make sense now and she realized what a totally daft wanker she had been before when it came to dealing with Helen's seeming need to control everything. Nikki now understood that it was totally a defensive response born out of fear rather than an offensive reaction to anything Nikki had done.

"Helen." Nikki whispered softly against the shorter woman's ear. "I'm…..I'm so sorry my Love, I'm so sorry he hurt you. It...It just wasn't your fault baby. It was him, it was all him, all your father Luv…Not you." Pulling Helen more tightly against her Nikki continued speaking in a soothing tone. "Look at me Helen. Look into my eyes you don't have to be afraid with me. I won't hurt you." Nikki placed her right palm on Helen's cheek and gently urged her to raise her head. Slowly Helen looked upward and peered cautiously into Nikki's brown eyes. Expecting to see pity, anger or disgust after the revelations she had made Helen was surprised to see nothing but love and warmth in Nikki's thoughtful gaze. Nikki leaned her forehead against Helen's and whispered, breath ghosting across Helen's full, red lips. "You are beautiful Helen Stewart and I love you."

Helen let out a laugh that was half a sob and closed her eyes as she allowed her body to relax fully into Nikki's protective embrace. In that one perfect moment Helen Stewart felt warm and safe, cherished and loved and no longer lacking in any way. It was something she had only experienced as an adult, in the arm's of her dark haired lover's embrace, and she knew with utter certainty that no matter what else happened this was the one place she would always return to as long as there was one breath left in her body. This was truly home, where she fit so perfectly and belonged with everything that she was.

Wrapping her arms around Nikki's neck she lifted her face, a silent offering that Nikki was quick to acknowledge and accept and they kissed. Lip's soft against one another's mouths, tongues gently swirling and dancing together. It was the sweetest surrender on Helen's part, a solemn promise on Nikki's part and a sacred benediction between them both. It was as close to the divine as either woman was likely to ever come.

With a soft sigh Nikki pulled away and stared intently into Helen's eyes. She could at last see all the way through, to the depths of Helen's soul and Nikki Wade knew what a gift she had been given. She welcomed the weight of the responsibility that came with it as it settled warmly across her strong shoulders. She finally understood why Helen ran from her every time she raised her voice in anger and disapproval of who Helen was and what she believed in. Nikki felt shame and regret at her own obtuseness and frequent bouts of self-absorption as she realized exactly how much Helen loved her and what it had taken for the petite Scot to offer up her heart. The pain, the sacrifice and the courage it had taken for the other woman to even consider loving Nikki the way she did. The inner war Helen must have waged to overcome the legacy of her father's twisted religious upbringing & abusiveness was simply beyond the comprehension of the average person. Nikki understood it though. She knew what it felt like to be rejected and degraded by one's family and her heart ached for the gentle soul before her that had carried such a heavy burden on her own for so long.

"Oh God, Helen…I'm so sorry!" Nikki whispered passionately. "I must have hurt you so much with my anger... The names I called you and the way I constantly questioned your motives and honor. God, when I think of the way I attacked you verbally over every little betrayal or transgression I imagined on your part. Oh God, Helen I am so sorry. I understand, only now, how much you truly love me and I am humbled by it…I…God, I hardly deserve you. Not after all I've put you through…" Nikki trailed off sadly.

"Ach, There you go being a right Martyr again Nikki." Helen protested with a chuckle. "You'll no get away with taking all the blame. I did my own share of stupid, hurtful things when it comes to our relationship. I...I can even admit now that I did constantly play the power game with you. I used my position as your jailer more than once to keep you at a distance. I think we can both shoulder the blame equally for all that has gone wrong between us."

"It's not that I don't understand why you react the way you do when it comes to authority figures, Luv. What with your parents turning their backs on you, when all you wanted was to be yourself…And the reason you're in Larkhall. Well, the bloody justice system really went and let you down. But I am part of that system, Nikki and I have to work within its bounds. I just wish you wouldn't take me doing my job so personally sometimes."

Nikki sighed deeply and ran a hand through her short, dark hair. "I guess…..I guess I can see your point Helen. It's just neither of us is one to back down from a fight, especially when we feel we're right. All in all, Helen…We're really fighting the same battles, it's just that we have different ways of reaching our goals." Nikki paused to examine her thoughts and consider what she desperately wanted to communicate. Finally she gathered her nerve and began to speak slowly. "Basically Luv, You're more of a diplomat and need to follow specific rules of engagement…and me…" Nikki continued with a self-deprecating laugh. "Well, I'm more like a bull in a china shop, charging straight ahead and damn any sorry bugger who gets in my way!." The dark haired woman finished with an impish smirk.

"Mmmm….." was Helen Stewart's initial response as she belatedly realized she had no defense whatsoever against that bloody sexy grin of Nikki's. Laughing at them both she pulled the taller woman's head down and kissed her softly on the lips. "What you say is true Nikki and I'd never ask you to change who you are for me, but it would be bloody well nice if you could try not to trample me so thoroughly underfoot once in a while!"

And with that said Nikki Wade felt the edge of the cot hit the back of her knees as she was tumbled onto the blankets with one very determined Scot atop her whose strong hands and hungry lips were dead set on making the most of the short time they had together. "But what about Babs…" Nikki gasped breathlessly.

"She's not due back from completing the emergency inventory at the canteen for another twenty minutes." Helen spat out before claiming Nikki's lips again.

"And Fenner…" Nikki choked out.

"Not working tonight." Helen added impatiently.

"But what about…" Nikki began to say when a petite hand covered her mouth firmly.

"Nikki, Could you just, for once…..Do what I say and…Shut…Up!" Helen growled in total exasperation.

"Ooooo, I do so love it when you're bossy!" Nikki laughed as she gladly shut up and proceeded to do her best to kiss her jailer totally senseless. Then gasped a final, very shocked, "Bloody Hell!" as she ran her hands under Helen's twin set and realized the woman was not wearing a bra, which led Nikki immediately to wonder what else the lovely Scot might not be wearing under her suit.

Nikki edged her fingers under Helen's skirt and was once more shocked to find that the usually prim & proper Helen had also apparently forgotten to don her knickers before leaving home today. Nikki supposed it was just as well as they'd likely be soaked clean through and require removing at this point anyway. As her excitement grew Nikki arched upwards, ready to tumble Helen onto her back and ravish her to within an inch of her life.

She was halted abruptly by two small hands which had previously been busying themselves by unsnapping Nikki's bra and pushing said garment and t-shirt up over the other woman's chest. Brown eyes locked with green and Nikki found herself frozen by the raw passion and need filling Helen's face. "No." Helen murmured. "This is my dance, Nikki. So I'll be doing the leading this time, Okay?" Cocking an eyebrow in amusement and more than a little anticipation of what was to come, Nikki simply nodded her head in agreement and allowed her body to relax against the sheets afraid any resistance might cause Helen to remember exactly where they were and exactly what the dangers of being caught out were at any moment. That was something the tall lifer was certain she would not survive. The smile of triumph and gratitude that lit up Helen's face made any surrender on Nikki's part well worth the making.

Never breaking eye contact Helen's nimble fingers quickly stripped Nikki of her garments, and tossing them aside along with her own shirt as she slid her body down Nikki's, slipping her thigh between her larger lover's legs and wresting a shuddering gasp from her lover's lips as her own wet, heat came in direct contact with Nikki's. Helen slid her arms under Nikki's back and grasped Nikki's shoulders with deceptively strong fingers. As the soft skin and hardened nipples of both women rubbed against one another, Nikki arched upwards, throwing her head back against the pillow, her mouth opened wide in a silent scream of pure, animal pleasure.

"Nikki!" Helen hissed. "Nikki, Look at me." The dark haired woman's brown eys snapped upwards and locked onto Helen's. As soon as she was sure she had Nicola's undivided attention Helen began to move her hips, pressing down into Nikki, their wetness allowing them to slide easily against one another, with Helen moving her hips in agonnizingly slow circles, the pressure against Nikki's mound increasing and decreasing over and over. A low growl escaped Nikki's lips as her hands carressed their way down Helen's back feeling the muscles rippling and straining under her fingers, until she was able to grab onto Helen's behind and pull even closer and harder against her, urging Helen to quicken her pace. Looking deep into one another's eyes, seeing everything there they needed to see...passion, joy, forgiveness and love...so much love. Their breathing quickened and their bodies moved faster, surging against one another over and over until Nikki was sure she was going to lose conciousness just from the pure unadulteraded emotion of it all and the physical pleasure that coursed so demandingly through her body, binding the two of them ever closer together as they slowly began to peak together. A low moan rose up in Nikki's throat and Helen began to call her Name. "Nikki, Oh god Nikki..." as they both found release together and soared for one blissful moment far, far away from the walls of Larkhall and everything that had ever pulled them apart. Helen fell gasping into Nikki's arms and she clutched Helen against herself as tightly as she could. They lay still together, safe in one another's embrace for a few minutes more, until Helen sighed and pulled away. "I'm sorry, Nicola. I don't want to but I have to go, Barbara will be back any time now."

"I know. It's okay." Nikki smiled as she ran her fingers through Helen's hair and kissed her lightly on the cheek.

Both women quickly dressed and then embraced tightly, taking the time for one final kiss. "I love you, Helen. Thank You...For all of this...I..."

Helen stopped her with a finger against her lips. "It's all right, my love. I know...I know..." Both women startled and turned at a soft scratching upon the cell door and sighed in resignation as they realized Barbara had returned. It was the signal that all was clear for Helen to slip away. Giving Nikki a quick peck on the cheek, Helen squeezed her hand tightly and was gone. Barbara took one look at her cell mate's face as she prepared for bed and knew the risks she and the young Scotswoman had taken to make this evening happen were more than worthwhile. Nikki just smiled and patted Barbara on the back before she crawled into her cot and drifted off to sleep knowing she'd only have the best of dreams that night. Barabara Hunt sighed happily as she setteld into her own bed thinking that whatever else may go wrong in the world, love would always find a way, even in a hell hole like HMP Larkhall.

The End

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