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Louise blinked a few times while Eleanor’s words sunk in. Woodward and Eleanor were a couple. How on earth had she forgotten about this? It certainly made Eleanor liking *her* less credible.
“Not that *I* want her,” Louise thought.
She knew she was lying to herself, though. The goosebumps all over her body told her as much. She had been about to kiss Eleanor. For the second time!
And Eleanor had stepped away just in time. For the second time. She wasn’t into Louise. Probably not even into women. Louise was usually very good at knowing that kind of stuff. How had she gotten it so wrong here?
Then again, what about all the flirting? She hadn’t imagined it. Even Hobbs had noticed the long looks El had given her. “She must know I’m gay,” Louise realized. “She’s using it against me.”
“Louise?” Eleanor asked.
She was standing surprisingly close all of a sudden. Her eyes were searching Louise’s face. Louise’s gaze snapped to the door. It was closed. She quickly scanned the room. It was empty apart from her and El.
“Where’s your…,” she stopped.
“Where’s my what?” El asked, looking around.
El waved a hand at the door. “Off to check on Hobbs.”
Louise frowned. She had completely zoned out for a moment, apparently. She had no idea what El and Woodward had just discussed.
“I should do the same,” she finally stated and started walking to the door.
El stepped in front of her, holding up a hand. “Wait, please,” she said softly.
Louise averted her gaze, tucking her hands in her pockets.
“You can’t run away after accusing me of lying.”
Louise huffed. “I’m not running away.”
El arched an eyebrow, shifting her weight to her other leg.
“What do you think I lied about?” she asked.
Louise shook her head in disbelief. “Like I’m going to tell you.”
“Something is clearly bothering you. Tell me.”
“No! This is not…” Louise said, needing a moment to find the right words. “I am here on a mission! You are under investigation. Stop acting like we’re…”
“Like we’re what?”
Louise blew out an exasperated breath. “We just can’t talk like this.”
El stared at her for a long moment. It made Louise uncomfortable, but she managed to stand her ground and stay silent.
“Fine,” El said. “Then don’t tell me why you’re upset. But I promise you: I haven’t lied to you about anything.”
Louise rolled her eyes. “Stop it!” she pleaded. “Stop pretending you like…” She quickly closed her mouth. Heat rushed to her cheeks. Damn, why was she such a blabbermouth around this woman?!
El crossed her arms. “Stop pretending?” she asked. There was an edge in her voice that hadn’t been there before.
Louise looked away. She didn’t know what to say. She had already said too much, so she just shrugged.
“Okay,” El said, “I’ll stop pretending for the both of us.”
Louise’s eyes snapped back to El, unsure what she was talking about. El moved so quickly Louise didn’t have a chance to stop her. The first thing she registered was the scent of peppermint all around her.
Then, hot, full lips pressed against Louise’s.
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