Piquancy and Phantasm @bdz_fanfics
Radiance of an Opium-Dream

"In beauty of face no maiden ever equaled her. It was the radiance of an opium-dream - an airy and spirit-lifting vision more wildly divine than the fantasies which hovered about the slumbering souls of the daughters of Delos."

"You can't hide these things from me, Allen. She's my best friend. I need to know."

Bertha waved her hands around wildly as she spoke trying to emphasize the point that she had been trying to make all afternoon and no amount of patrol duty or disturbance calls could dissuade her from this line of inquisition; understandably, it was grating on Allen's nerves.

During their partnership, he had moments of annoyance but for the most part she was tolerable. At times, she was even entertaining but at the moment, it took all of his self-control not to lash out. Each time, he was polite when turned her down and did his best to be as professional a police officer as he could with her rattling on about nonsense and personal details.

"You see, I know Lydia. She is focused. I know for a fact that she went to see you because I gave her the address. Honestly, what kind of person would I be if I didn't ask about her wellbeing? If she wasn't trying to get it on with you... This is Lydia!"

"Bertha, why do you want to know? Are you really that intent on knowing every detail of everyone's life?"

So far, he had managed to keep the irritation at bay with the hope that his partner would eventually give up on this train of thought. It had kept him from saying something unforgivable but that tiny thread of patience was starting to fray.

"I need to know! First, she runs off to see you and then she goes missing again! I mean, I know it's only been two days but… This is her happiness that is at stake! So help me, even if it means sacrificing my partner to make her happy, I will do it, damn it. You have no idea how hard it was watching her grow up without ever knowing what dating was even like." Bertha twisted in her seat and faced Allen, hands still waving while he maintained his view on the streets.

"I can only imagine." His dry response was completely ignored.

"It was terrible! How on earth she got through high school as a virgin was beyond me."

Allen glanced in her direction, highly uncomfortable with this conversation.

"Please, can we not talk about this anymore? I understand that you care about Lydia but this really isn't something that I'm comfortable sharing."

Bertha was about to protest but her eyes did a double-take on the road ahead of them. At that moment, her entire demeanor changed as her mouth fell open before a grin broke out. She adopted a calm and relaxed posture before shrugging her shoulders and dismissing him with a flick of her wrist.

"Fine. I'll just ask her."

Allen followed his partner's visual path and spied Lydia, walking casually down the road, unharmed and it filled him with relief. A flutter of emotion and adoration entered within his spirit as he observed her gait and chosen outfit; a pair of flats and a light dress that reached a little below her knees. He was thankful that she appeared to be perfectly fine. In fact, as he took note of her bright demeanor, she seemed to be healthy and happy. However, he did note that she had a bit of a hitch in her step which occasionally would trigger some apparent discomfort in her face.

Not that it did much to mar her glowing and beautiful smile. For the briefest of moments he was in awe before the snort of laughter beside him startled him back into reality.

"I knew it! There is something going on between you two."

Rolling his eyes, Allen disregarded her and shook his head disapprovingly for good measure. Bertha for her part only continued to laugh.

The pain was nothing. Absolutely nothing. Lydia didn't regret those nights at the Roadhouse letting Beetlejuice own her body, mind, and soul. He was ravenous, insatiable and she loved it. Every single moment of his dominance over her gave Lydia a thrill that she hadn't expected.

Oddly enough she felt in control of herself and her autonomy. She could have fought against the flogging, whipping, and spanking but she didn't want to. Part of her knew it was a punishment worth taking and a punishment well deserved. Beej has been right when he said he knew her limits. Each time the pain became too much he had pulled back and rubbed her flesh till the sting was gone.

The only downside to the entire event were the remaining bruises all over her body.

Lydia smiled for no other reason than the fact that she felt good. The tension between herself and her ghost finally felt at balance and she could now focus on the next set of victims. After all, that is what her story was about in this universe.

In the corner of her peripheral vision, Lydia noticed the police cruiser as it, for a lack of a better word, cruised alongside her. The car window rolled down and Bertha popped her head out. Giving a rather loud whistle and one extremely inappropriate cat-call.

Lydia laughed and headed to them.

"Officer Brown! What brings the finest partnership in all of Peaceful Pines down to the dullest part of town? Surely you have yet to find anything suspicious?" Lydia batted her eyelashes at her friend.

"Only the hottest chick on the block!" Bertha hooted again, "Why I outta bring you in for questioning, missy. There are rumors, Ms Deetz, of potential scandal and you seem to be the center of all the drama."

Lydia hesitantly chuckled, her eyes meeting Allen who stayed silent in the driver seat. His face burning with a red flush while his skillfully applied mask held back any further mortification caused by his partners over the top personality.

"Well, if they are only rumors," She began with a coy smile in Allen's direction. "I'm sure I wouldn't mind going for a ride. After all, I'll be in the hands of the law and I do believe it's a wonderful afternoon for a couple of slices of pizza."

"Then it's settled, Ms. Deetz. You are under our custody for the time being. Now shall I arrest you or will you willingly jump into our car?" Bertha waggled her eyebrows much to Lydia's delight.

"Oh my, will this include handcuffs?" Lydia snorted at the sight of Allen's wide eyed expression. "I have recently discovered that I do enjoy a little rough treatment."

Allen dropped his head against the steering wheel while Bertha and Lydia both giggled like a couple of teenagers.

"Too much alike, the both of you." He mumbled.

"Yeah well, you already turned my fine ass down so now you will never know." Bertha, actually blanched once the words left her mouth. Horrified, she sat back into her seat and looked directly to the floor mat.

"Oh Bertha, you are too funny," Lydia commented as she approached the vehicle while Allen had left the vehicle to open the car door for her. She accepted the gesture along with a sweet smile that was just for him. "Thank you, Allen. Don't worry, I won't ask you to cuff me… today."

She touched his hand and lifted herself up to give him a kiss on the cheek before sliding into the back seat. She didn't miss the flutter of adoration that radiated off his aura.

"Ok, Order is in and I got us The Works. Hopefully, they can find our table." Lydia smiled brilliantly at the two uniformed officers.

The pizza parlor wasn't incredibly busy but since it was the lunch-hour there were already a few patrons occupying tables and booths. There was enough space between that each group had relative privacy and that was exactly what this particular set of friends needed.

"Lydia, it's time to spill the beans. Where were you? I tried calling your house a few times. What happened to not disappearing without letting someone know where you were going?" Bertha placed her elbows on the table and clasped her hands.

"I don't see what the big deal is. I spent the night at BJ's." Lydia glanced in Allen's direction to be met with his mask of indifference. "We had to have a long talk about some… important things."

"Oooooh like what?" This time Bertha spared a quick glance between her partner and best friend. Lydia's coy expression gave Bertha the impression that there was something spicy about the topic but to her disappointment, Lydia only shrugged.

"Just a matter of setting boundaries." She waved a hand to dismiss the matter.

"Did things go well?" Allen asked with a hint of a smile.

Lydia smirked and reached her foot across the distance under the table, touching his ankle gently. Another round of the flutters traveled her way but his face remained just as placid. Emboldened by his complete discretion she raised her foot up around his calf.

"We worked out a few kinks, so to speak?"

Bertha snorted at the innuendo, though she tried to hide her amusement and, in Lydia's opinion, she had failed miserably.

"When exactly did you and Beetleman start... Uh…"

Lydia fluttered her eyes in Bertha's direction. "You mean when did we start fooling around?"

Bertha bit her lip and hid her blush. Allen watched on with interest at Lydia's ability to continue sliding her foot against his leg while managing to carry on a convincing conversation.

"It's not a secret. Beej and I have been heading this way for a long time but if you really want to know, it was the day before you found Claire."

Lydia felt the jolt of unsettled nerves at that revelation and soon realized that she had sparked the wrong train of thought. It was far too coincidental and close to the truth. Lydia willed herself to control her emotions and it was then that she felt the approach of spectral energy.

Relief flowed through her when she sensed his comforting essence. Her eyes shot straight to the entrance of the Pizzaria when he arrived. Her companions followed the direction of her gaze and she knew the moment they had seen him because both of them emotionally clenched up.

Lydia raised her foot a little higher to nudge Allen, sending comforting and soothing energy his way before she stood up and greeted Beetlejuice halfway across the room.

He embraced her while one sneaky hand went down below the waist to give her ass a firm squeeze. His words were directly in her ear when he spoke.

"Got a little cocky there didn't ya, sweet thing." He chuckled deeply at her shiver.

"I didn't think they would jump to that connection right away."

"That's why I came, Lydsy. I gotta protect my gal, am I right? You need me. Just say it, you know you want me here." His tickling voice and rumbled innuendo caused Lydia to laugh and peck him on the cheek.

"Anytime, any place but …"

"Butt. Now that's an idea."

Lydia swatted him playfully. "Not now."

The scene they portrayed in the middle of the restaurant drew several eyes, many scandalized by the obvious expression of sexual tension. Not that they cared, Beetlejuice was feeling a bit smug at the horrified eyes of the patrons who have known Lydia since she was a kid.

Taking him by the hand, Lydia led them to the table where Bertha was gaping openly with her mouth hanging open.

Beetlejuice slid into the booth first while Lydia took the edge. She giggled at the way her friend was looking at the ghost.

"S'up Burp. Good ta see ya." He grinned, exposing his grotesque set of green teeth at the woman.

Bertha thought she was going to be sick but before she could excuse herself, the pizza arrived at the table. The server hardly spared them any glances when he placed the pitcher of coke down on the table along with the massive pie.

"Oh my gosh, Lydia! You could feed a village." Bertha exclaimed.

"You haven't seen this guy eat," she elbowed Beetlejuice who cried out in mock pain at the sudden rough treatment.

"Yeah, yeah, yeah, flattery will get ya everywhere Babes." Beetlejuice leered at the woman beside him before turning to Allen who sat directly across from him. "So, Ally-Boy…"

"Allen." unbothered, he corrected Beetlejuice as he began to pour the soda into individual glasses.

"Be nice, Beej," Lydia whispered to him as her hand slid down casually to grip Bj's thigh.

"Sure, whatever you say. No offense, old habits and all. Nicknames and shit. You get the idea, anyway, Allen, Lyds told me what she got up to at your place."

Bertha snapped back to attention.

"I was just asking about that this morning but he is like a steel trap. I can't get anything outta him." She pointed at her partner in accusation. "Spill, Lydia. Why did you want his address in the first place? You can't leave me hanging."

"Sheesh, and I thought I was nosey." Beetlejuice laughed and wrapped an arm over Lydia's shoulder.

"Actually, Bertha, I asked for his phone number. You were the one who gave me his address."

Allen turned his head in time to watch his partner blush at being caught out.

"It was better that way, because we did have something personal to discuss." Allen's unbothered speech unnerved Beetlejuice causing him to bristle and pull Lydia closer to him.

"Intense conversation I take it," Beej raised his eyebrows suggestively. "Good thing my Babes is A-plus at debate, but what can I say, I taught her everything she knows."

Lydia closed her eyes, shaking her head at the double talk. "Ignore him. There really wasn't much anyone could do, I wanted to talk with Jane. She keeps trying to sell my house while I'm still there. You know how she is."

Bertha nodded in understanding while in mid pizza bite. The others had taken slices of their own. Beetlejuice didn't even bother with a plate as he scarfed down his slices the moment he picked them off the tray before them.

"She discovered that Jane appears to be trying to sell my house too." Allen continued when Lydia took a bite of her own pizza slice. "That's what we discussed."

"More like vented," Lydia snorted, then took a drink from her soda. "She makes me so angry."

Beetlejuice squeezed her shoulder, "Who hasn't the broad pissed off? This town is full of stiffs, no offense Ally—- er, Allen."

Silence fell upon the table for a brief moment, while they all settled into their meal. Lydia observed the two officers, wondering if she could perhaps find a way to push the attention onto Jane. Beej was right in that respect. She would make a good fail-safe but it didn't stop her from wanting to slit the bitch's throat.

"So what did you guys do over the weekend," Bertha asked, shattering the silence and startling Lydia out of a murder fantasy.

Beetlejuice only cackled, "Oh boy, let me tell ya. Yer gonna love this."

Bertha perked up sensing that the conversation was about to get juicy, as if his next words were going to be the secret to the holy grail.

"You see, If you haven't noticed Lyds there ain't the innocent little school girl anymore and-"

"If you'll excuse me, Bertha, I left something in the cruiser." Allen hardly spared a glance at BJ though he could feel the annoyance coming off of the man at being interrupted.

Bertha acquiesced and stood up, allowing her partner to slide out of the booth. She didn't see the way Lydia lustfully gazed up at her partner, instead she slid into the booth directly across from Beetleman and leaned in.

"Well it's about time," she said, "No offense Lydia, but you really needed to loosen up. I just didn't think you would end up with… oh, sorry"

"Nah, don't worry about it. It was bound to happen but I kept my hands off. I know, I know, creepy old guy, sweet young girl… it's got sicko written all over it but damn it, she's hot. I tell ya, Burp, this gal can be insatiable. Sometimes I can't keep up, know what I mean?"

Bertha's face was flaming red as she listened to him. She vaguely registered that Lydia excused herself to head in the direction of the restroom.

"So this last weekend, I thought, 'Hey, let's see if she digs the whole BDSM thing' and get this, she fucking loved it. You can't tell me you haven't noticed the way she twitches when she walks. I beat that ass good …"

Wide-eyed, Bertha could feel her jaw drop and it continued to do so as each detail was revealed of her best friend's sexual exploits with a man that was old enough to be her father.

One last look at her best friend and lover, Lydia felt her heart swell with satisfaction and contentment to see them enthralled in conversation. Even if it was about her sex life, to see Beej so comfortable being alone with Bertha gave her a sense of familial comfort that she hadn't realized she had been missing.

When her memories were returned, Lydia could hardly believe the dichotomy between what she once knew to be the truth and her current reality. She had been happy with Beej as her best friend and crush, happy with Charles Deetz as her loving father and, yeah, she did kinda like Delia.

If she knew then what she knew now, could she still say that she was happy?

Now, Beej was her lover, her soulmate, and her protector for all those years. He gave her a normal childhood albeit a bit strange and unusual. The murderous, evil ghost went against his true nature to give her a good life and now, now, he was giving her a chance to experience control. The one thing they had struggled with since the beginning of their obsession with each other.

At least that was how she saw it. Beetlejuice would never be completely happy that Lydia was considering another relationship. Especially since they were still discovering the balance between their volatile tempers.

Lydia Deetz was madly in love with Beetlejuice but… there was something brewing under the passions that she felt for her ghostly lover. Burning desire couldn't cover the tender feelings of love and affection and that both scared and confused her.

Taking a deep breath, Lydia entered the bathroom ducked into a stall, locking the door to ensure privacy. With a subtle shift of power, she vanished.

It was one thing watching Beetleman caress and fondle Lydia, but it was a whole lot easier to see than to hear whatever details Bertha would be undoubtedly blabbing about later.

Truthfully, those details would inevitably irritate Allen. He would not deny the dislike that festered between him and Beetleman nor would he deny the fact that he was certain the man had some hand in recent events. They just needed proof.

If the detective knew how close he was growing to Lydia, there would be a severe conflict. Perhaps more so than the conflict that exists between Lydia and her two friends. Bath had his suspicions about his partner and the medical examiner but like with most professionals that have come across Allen Dichter, the detective trusted him. Perhaps it is misplaced but as far as Allen was concerned it was for the best.

Not that the detective's opinion mattered to him but he put all his effort into the job. It was only right. The good thing to do.

If anyone's opinion mattered it was Lydia and that both enthralled and confused him. She came into his life so suddenly, effectively turning it upside-down since now he had a reason to protect and a desire to serve. So for now, regardless of her relationship with Beetleman, he could put on his shields and hide any discomfort if only to keep Lydia in his life. He would keep it to himself and suffer in silence. As with everything in his unfortunate life, Allen would take this in stride and move forward with his existence.

As he settled into the passenger's seat of the Police cruiser, he sighed and rested his head back against the seat. He missed the days of his teenage years when he could release this pent up energy that ate away at him with one of his hand rolled joints. Unfortunately, it was something that he had to give up since he had joined the academy, and then eventually entered the force. The random drug tests made sure of that, and so he found other means of release. It was hardly the appropriate time to hit the gym and work out until he had no more thoughts trailing close behind and attacking his being. He would just have to do that directly after his shift ended.

He instead let his mind wander and drift into the memories of what it was like to hold Lydia. The gentle pressure of her touch against his skin and the sweetness of her kisses was a taste of heaven that he never felt that he deserved.

The feel of her auric energy flooded his senses all at once before he noticed the warmth he was imagining was indeed heavy in his lap.

His eyes snapped open to find Lydia sitting in his lap, her feet dangling outside the cruiser door and her arms wrapped around his neck.

Allen didn't even get the chance to ask how she got there because her sweet and devilishly soft lips were on his. She pushed her need and lust across the empath channel into his very being and he accepted it willingly. He would gladly fade into oblivion if she would just keep kissing him this way.

Her arms unwrapped and her hands found his neck, his jaw, and down the row of buttons on his uniform.

"I want to apologize to you," she whispered, breaking away from the kiss.

His mind was in a haze, unable to speak as her hands were teasing the waistband of his pants.

"I feel like I'm using you but I can't seem to help myself. I had a long talk with B-"

"You don't have to apologize." He interrupted her before she could say the name that would ruin this perfect moment. "Use me all you want, Ms. Deetz. I don't mind."

"Ms. Deetz, is it? Why Officer, I didn't think you were the kind to fall into role play," she teased and tapped his lips with the tip of her finger. She traced the moisture across his lower lip while suggestively wiggling on his lap but as quickly as the playful flirtation began, Lydia softened when she felt the uncertainty filling him.

"But … what about what you said on the trip to the city? About wanting love, a real love. You know I can't give that to you even if I like you. I mean, I am attracted to you and I feel the way you feel for me. You hide it well but my skills have grown and I sense the little hints you throw my way."

Allen tugged Lydia's hips higher onto his lap.

"You don't have to love me." He said solemnly. "You can use me. Take what you want from me. I feel so much around you that I think I'm falling, no, I know I'm falling. I want to worship you. I want to give you everything that you have ever wanted because you have given me something I never thought I could have."

Lydia hesitated, her hands returning to his collar and curled into the fabric of his uniform.

"I don't understand. What have I given you?"

"You say I can feel, but I know you are talking in euphemism for this empathic connection we both seem to share. The truth is I don't feel. I can't feel. At least not till I met you. Then you opened up a world of emotions I have never experienced before."

Lydia's eyes opened wide, her jaw going soft as her lips parted into a delicate and tempting expression of surprise. He could feel her putting things together and waited till she was ready to speak.

"You don't come across many people who understand this, do you?" She said at length. Her question was phrased more as a statement than inquiry. Allen watched her eyes flick away from his shielded expression. He didn't want to influence her in any way so he shut down his empath and sealed himself up.

"I have not met anyone who experiences what I do, no."

Lydia quirked a sly smile his way, "So you think. You know, I can't exactly figure out how you do that… that shield thing. I can still feel you, ya know? Just not as intense. Sort of like a vague suggestion."

She could feel the walls build further and she shifted quickly, placing a hand to his chest.

"No, don't. Please. Let me feel you. You have no idea how hard it is for me to talk about this with anyone other than Beej."

"I have never talked to anyone about this." He admitted, slowly letting his guard drop.

Lydia's tender fingers traced his jawline before she leaned down to kiss him with a sweetness that nearly took his breath away.

"Can I tell you a secret?" She said with whispered tones hesitating to wait for his nodded affirmation. "I have felt love for only two people before. My father and BJ. You… confuse me just as much as I probably confuse you."

"But your friends? Your family?"

"Bertha and Prudence are my family. I care about them but I can't explain what I feel around them. Comfort? Familiarity? I'm not sure anymore. Things used to be so clear before.."

Allen dared to reach a hand up to cradle her face. A light and airy euphoria filled his heart when she nuzzled her beautiful face into his palm. He wanted to ask what she meant by 'before' but he held himself in control. One wrong word could mess up whatever this moment was between them.

However, Lydia surprised him by turning her body into him, placing her forehead on his. Her eyes began to narrow in on her prey as she began to let her hands stray all over him again. He could sense the surge of lust that flowed through her and making her intentions known to him.

A devilish smile broke out shattering his mask of control as the voice inside of him began to cheer him on. Allen turned his head, examining the environment around them.

Midday, not the best time for fooling around but they were parked out back behind the pizza parlor so as not to intimidate any patrons. No one ever really came out here and there was enough tree coverage. All employees were working…

Technically, he was working as well but knowing his partner, she would be distracted for some time. How could he deny that look the woman in his lap was giving him? How could he put a stop to something he wanted?

There really wasn't much of a debate.

Allen grasped her by the waist and pulled her into a hungry kiss, he groaned at the thrill that shocked through their bodies. Uninhibited, Lydia pulled back from him so that she could straddle his lap, she reached between them, attempting to fiddle with his utility belt. The disappointed pout on her face when she realized she wouldn't be able to remove it was far too adorable that he chuckled.

He obliged her, taking matters into his own hands as he unclasped the belt and maneuvered the complex assortment of tools he needed for his job away from them. He placed it in the driver's seat beside him only to find Lydia was already working the clasp of his pants.

Her dress hiked up, he noticed for the first time that she was not wearing underwear. Gods, she had planned this.

His hands caressed the bare flesh of her rump when he noticed the stain of bruises that contrasted in deep hues upon her pale skin. They appeared to be fresh though they were not inflamed and regardless of touch, they didn't appear to cause her much discomfort as she wiggled on his knees to give his pants one more tug.

Once freed from his constraints the woman slid his hardened length deep within her. She cried out but not loud enough to draw attention their way while Allen gripped her soft supple hips with his firm hands.

She wrapped her arms around his neck and began kissing him with ferocity as she rocked back and forth upon him.

Lydia took control of the entire encounter, seeking release at the expense of causing someone to notice the rocking vehicle. Though he found that he really did not care at this point if anyone saw because the sight that he witnessed, the view of Lydia Deetz unleashed in sexual abandon, took his breath away.

He felt his release approaching as she twisted and jerked her hips upon his lap. He knew that if she were to… and there it was, the clutch and pull of her internal walls drawing him in as her body seized around him. He didn't hold back. He gave an upward thrust into her soft flesh and came hard.

Panting, Lydia dropped her head on his shoulder and nuzzled into his neck.

Slowly Allen opened his eyes, he hadn't even realized that he had held them closed so tightly. He brushed the soft black hair with his hands as she steadied herself. Catching her breath and moaning with post coital bliss.

It was then that he saw a streak of brown hair and the tail of a tan jacket enter the back of the pizza parlor. He let his eyes take in the area as he had before Lydia took him for a ride.

No people but there was a new vehicle in the lot. One he recognized all too well.

He knew the moment Lydia sensed the change in his mood because she turned her head and searched in the direction he was looking in.

"Jane," she said with disappointment. "Figures."

Allen shrugged in response. "She is well known to gossip."

Lydia nodded and rolled her eyes at the truth of the statement. She lifted herself off Allen's softened cock and righted herself. He tucked himself back in and began to redress when she removed herself from his lap and the cruiser.

Quickly adjusting her hair she turned and gave him a wink. "I'll see you back inside, Officer."

Allen couldn't help himself. He grinned like a fool and watched as Lydia snuck around the building out of his sight. He would give her a few moments before he returned. In fact, it was probably for the best since he needed to regain control of himself.

"Are you serious?!" Bertha squeaked. "How did you not? I mean, how could you control yourself? No one has that level of patience."

"Eh, well, you see… Lyds ain't a normal chick. I'd do anything for her. Even if it means I had to give ol' mini B a beat down."

Lydia watched the exchange with amusement after returning from the women's restroom. Refreshed, magically cleaned, and far more relaxed when she slid into the booth next to Beetlejuice.

"Now that's the first time I've heard you refer to jerking off as giving a beat down." She laughed derisively. "What exactly are you two talking about?"

Bertha shot back against the seat of her chair and tried to look unbothered by the direct question but the tense posture and burning red face gave away her unease. Beetlejuice on the other hand wrapped his arm around Lydia's shoulder and gave her a tug.

"Oh nothin', just chatting about how many times that cute little ass of yers almost convicted me of cradle robbing." He rubbed the nails of his free hand against his lapel as if to convey how much of a ladies man he could be. "Sweet sixteen year old Lydia Deetz in my bedroom trying on different outfits in front of me, don't think I didn't notice the change. You flaunted that piece of tight meat in front of me so many times…"

"Beej, I don't think you need to give that much detail." Amused, Lydia set one hand on his thigh and gave it a squeeze. "I'm sorry about that, Bertha. He hasn't had an opportunity to brag in a while. I hope he didn't say anything too traumatizing."

Inflamed and beet red, Bertha shook her head and squeaked out a polite response to signify that it was perfectly fine. The blush only intensified when Allen returned, her nose picking up a scent that Lydia had not anticipated during their tryst. With the slightest of movements she directed her power to deflect any lingering sexual aroma but she could do nothing to hide how Allen's mood was somehow lighter than when he left.

Lydia gave him a welcome back smile and grabbed for his soda which was now in front of Bertha since she and Beej were now deepest in the booth. He thanked her and began to cool himself with the icy beverage.

She wondered how long it would take for him to realize she was the one who chilled it back to the state when he first poured it from the pitcher. Maybe he wasn't ready for that, it would already be difficult to explain how she was able to manifest from the bathroom to outside and back.

The group settled back in and resumed eating and drinking. Throwing the conversation in any direction they could think of until they reached a lull.

"So, Allen, did ya find what you were lookin' for out there?"

Lydia watched with secret amusement at the exchange. Her lips pressed tight together to keep herself in check.

"As a matter of fact, I did."

"Oh, yeah? With how long ya took I was starting ta wonder if you were having a hard time." Beetlejuice wasn't subtle at all when he pulled Lydia up into his lap.

She felt his hands wrapped around her leg, rise up between her thighs, and then under her skirt. The table could hide his intentions well enough but the way the fabric fell did not hide the fact that he had his hand in a place not suitable for public display. Tense and excited all over again, Lydia willed herself to not react as BJ's fingers caressed her sensitive and still moist skin.

"Oh I'm sure I would have taken longer but, unfortunately, time wasn't on my side. Besides, solving a situation quickly can be just as satisfying as a deeply prolonged and thoroughly investigated solution. Even though the outcome is the same, the process is worth every careful decision and action."

The laugh that came from Beetlejuice startled Lydia so much that she clenched her thighs around his wandering hand. Bertha and Lydia locked eyes for a moment sharing a set nervous smiles with each other over the exchange and Lydia's current position.

Bertha didn't need to know exactly what he was doing to her at that moment and it took every ounce of Lydia's control to maintain a straight face while her ghostly lover continued to make a ruckus.

"For once there's something we agree on. I don't know about you but I get a kick out of trying to find different ways to solve a problem, know what I mean? Old dogs don't learn new tricks without getting a little dirty. Luckily," Beetlejuice leered at the woman on his lap, "I'm as dirty as they come."

"B—eeej" Lydia squeaked when he slid a couple of fingers into her slick folds. She smacked his shoulder and buried her face into the crook of his neck to hide the crimson stain on her cheeks. He removed his fingers and tickled her inner thigh, before kissing the top of her head with an innocence that belied his lewd actions.

Her blush only deepened when she heard a snort of laughter from Allen. It didn't help that she could feel the man's excitement growing. He knew, gods, he knew and she could easily die on the spot from the embarrassment that Beej would do this not only in front of her friends but in a public place where there were still patrons. Several eyes had indeed traveled their way along with the overwhelming sense of disapproval over the public display.

"Aww Lyds, I know I'm irresistible but do ya gotta cling so close." He chuckled deeply while his smug smirk grew by the second. Bertha, unsure what exactly just happened, politely laughed along while her partner remained a stoic statue.

"I'm going to get you back for that," she whispered into him only to be rewarded with another warm round of laughter that sent a thrill through her still tingling body.

"You guys seem so close that it's like you're attached at the hip." While bowing his head to take a sip of his soda, Allen lifted only his narrowing eyes to them with the hint of a smile while cocking an eyebrow. Lydia chanced a peek at Allen and didn't miss his provocative gestures.

Certain she would burst from the tension sent her way from two different directions, Lydia rested her head back on BJ's shoulder while he continued to massage her thigh from under her skirt.

"Gosh, he's right. I never pictured you two to be the lovey-dovey type. I mean, it's good to know Lydia has someone to take care of her but I guess I'm still.. uh," Bertha trailed off while her hands waved around to search for the right words.


"No, that's .." Bertha looked up as did the entire table to see that Jane Butterfield was scowling at the group. Her arms crossed over her heaving chest. She looked about ready to blow a gasket as she glared down at the four occupants of the both.

"Mr. Beetleman, this is a family establishment. Need I remind you that public decency is by far more important than some… silly carnal display. Sitting on top of each other is bad enough! I'm appalled by your behavior and you, Lydia Deetz. How dare you act like such a hussy when there are impressionable children around."

Lydia and Beetlejuice looked around the parlor and noticed that there were very few patrons left and only Jane along with her teenage daughter were anywhere within view of any potential misconduct. They shared a glance and shrugged before looking back at the enraged woman. Beej didn't bother removing his hand from her thigh though Lydia tugged her skirt fabric just a little higher in rebellion. A fact which sparked further animosity from Jane who diverted her attention at the others in the booth.

"You two!" she rounded on the police officers,"I'm ashamed to acknowledge you as protectors of our sweet and well behaved town. Especially you, Officer Dichter!"

Allen directed his attention to Jane without any indication that he knew what she would be referring to though he slowly took the opportunity to stand up to his full height as the woman raged at him.

"I saw you two. Public indecency, why I ought to report you to your supervisor. Shameless. Disgusting and dare I say, unprofessional." Jane grasped at her cardigan and shielded her already overly conservative bosom from his silent intimidating stature.

"What exactly are you inferring?" His face remained still, impassable while he folded his arms, and waited for Jane to continue. He casually stepped aside when he felt Bertha slide out of the booth to stand beside him.

"I'm going to have to ask you to take a step back, Mrs. Butterfield." Bertha said just as calmly even though Jane was still intent on her appalled, yet aggressive stance. But as gawky as Bertha had been as a youth her height definitely gave her the authority over the majority of people in the town, this included Jane.

The older woman took a step back but her defiant expression remained as she stared Bertha down. Pure hatred poured off Jane though the source of the hate could be directed at any of the four currently in the line of sight.

"How can you defend such behavior? Oh, if Delia were here she wouldn't stand for this."

"Again, what exactly are you referring to, Mrs. Butterfield." Allen had his hands firmly on his hips. His eyes fixated on the wide eyed woman.

"You… I saw you and... her," She pointed at Lydia. "I saw you both fooling around outside not even twenty minutes ago!"

Lydia and Beetlejuice shared a devious smirk with one another. Jane backed herself into a trap that neither of them had expected. This was too perfect.

"You must be mistaken," Lydia slid off Beetlejuice's lap, adjusting her skirt as she did so. "I was in the restroom. You can ask Bertha and Beej. Did you guys see me leave the building?"

"Pfft, 'course I did. Your mind has left the building a long time ago. As far as I'm concerned it's back at my Roadhouse in bed waiting for me to rock your world."

Lydia rolled her eyes at his crude commentary though secretly amused by his ability to poke fun at a time like this.

"Lydia was in the restroom. I saw her leave and return from that direction. Not once did she leave the building." Bertha indicates the hallway leading to the private stalls that were in the opposite direction of the entrance.

"Mrs. Butterfield, by any chance, are you under the influence?" Allen asked, cocking his eyebrow at her while leaning forward to examine the affronted woman.

Jane bristled. "Why I never!"

"Twenty minutes ago I was alone in my vehicle. Which, by the way, is parked behind this facility. You have perhaps misinterpreted what you think that you may have witnessed. Do you have anyone who can corroborate your claim?"

Jane hesitated, she looked back at her daughter who hardly seemed to be interested in her mother's latest dramatic display. The girl was too busy playing with her cell phone and listening to music with her headphones.

"I.. well… No." Jane sagged, defeated.

"Well then, without any evidence it is your word against mine. I severely recommend that you do not partake in any more substances since I'm fairly certain your daughter is not yet a licensed driver. It would be distressing for a kid to see their mother on the wrong side of the law."

Lydia could feel Allen as he goaded the woman into aggression.

"I will admit I don't have any proof but I know there is something going on between you and Lydia." She shot her distasteful look in Lydia's direction. Beetlejuice placed his hands on Lydia's shoulders, pulling her into his protection.

"You know, Lydia Deetz, I'm not so sure your mother's death was an accident. I think you had her killed. You've always been a spiteful child."

Lydia could feel the urge to slit her throat and gut Jane Butterfield on the spot but as her hand reached for the pizza cutter. She felt Beetlejuice tug her and with a firm hand and said, "Don't. It's not worth it."

Allen and Lydia both regarded him but it was only Allen who nodded. It was then that Lydia realized how close she had come to giving herself away. Luckily that same rage, that same dark intent, was coming from the officer. Surprised by this, Lydia dropped her gaze and leaned into her ghost.

It was enough of a show for Bertha to jump into the defense.

"I'm going to have to ask you to leave this table. There are limits, Mrs. Butterfield, and I won't stand to have you harass any private citizen, let alone my partner. Whatever you think that you may have seen is irrelevant but you have crossed a line with your accusations."

"Officer Brown, while I appreciate the defense, I do believe that am going to have to ask Mrs. Butterfield to come by the station. Regardless of her current offense, I am glad for the visit as it saves me a trip. I have been meaning to ask a few questions about the make and model of her vehicle. It bears some striking similarities to the one in our incident reports. Do you remember those suspicious tracks by the bridge leading to Ms. Deetz's home?"

Lydia could feel the deflated ego of the indignant woman mixed with trepidation as she turned away in a huff and returned to her daughter's table.

"Beej," Lydia whispered to him. "I swear…"

"Not now, Babes."

Allen pressed his fingers to his forehead and just like that, she felt him completely close off. Her head lifted off BJ and stared at her police friends.

"Lydia, do you need a ride back home?" Bertha asked, reaching her hand out to her friend. Lydia accepted the hand and relinquished her hold on Beetlejuice so she could stand outside of the booth.

"I'm sure that I'll be alright. I have BJ with me."

Allen moved off to the side to allow them some space but he kept his eyes fixated on Lydia. With his shields up as high as they were she couldn't tell what he was thinking. The very thought disturbed her since she no longer had a gauge for a reaction.

"Making a scene like that in public would be enough for me to write her a ticket but I'll let her off this time. Although I am going to have her come into the station to record her claims, I'll take that opportunity to question her about that one night on the bridge. If she is innocent but just happened to be there, then perhaps she saw something that may help out our case. If there was another then..." Allen spoke with a neutral tone to his partner while Bertha looked like she was ready to grill him about his sudden interest, it was either that or give him a good talking to about acknowledging Jane's words against her best friend. Beetlejuice stood up from his seat and crossed his arms. He dared the cop to continue with his thoughts. Lydia nervously wrapped her arms around herself.

"Do you really think it will stop her?" Lydia asked as she braved a few steps closer to the officers.

"Nothing's gonna stop that old bat," Bertha spat out much to Beetlejuice's amusement.

"You know, Lyds, I like this new grown-up Burp. The kids a hoot. Kinda startin' ta think of her as family, ya know what I'm sayin'."

Lydia shot him a look that could wilt a flower right along with his still half stiff dick. Allen smirked at the display of Lydia's authority over her lover.

"I think it's about time that we head back out on patrol." Allen turned to his partner indicating that she could leave whenever she was ready. Beetlejuice saw the drifting look exchanged between Allen and Lydia and though in the past something like that would spark jealousy within him to the point he would rip out the man's eyes for daring to look at his girl that way, he made the choice to walk Bertha out.

"Yo, Burp. There was something else I gotta tell ya before you get back to all that goody two shoes shit." He took Bertha by the arm and escorted her out, much to her discomfort.

Lydia giggled at them before turning to face the man beside her. He maintained a respectful distance with his arms crossed to keep his hands off of her. Being in public, he didn't think it would be wise to give any more ammunition to any watchful eyes.

"That was one interesting afternoon." Lydia prompted.

"It was," he agreed. "And I would gladly like to experience more afternoon surprises but without any interruptions."

Lydia beamed at him, trying to stroke him with her energy to show at least some sort of affection. "I feel the same."

Cracking a smile, Allen procured a pen from his pocket and picked up a napkin. He wrote down his number and handed it to her. "Just in case. If you have time, maybe tonight?"

Taking the proffered napkin, Lydia gazed at him with hooded eyes and adopted her favorite femme fatal impression, "Darlin' I would be delighted to join you this evening. Would you say around 7?"

"I could pick you up after my shift." He offered.

"Sounds delightful. I look forward to it and perhaps…" she trailed off when she saw Beej return. Allen rolled his eyes at the timing even though he made no comment. Lydia cleared her voice, "I guess Bertha is waiting for you… oh gods… she sits in that seat. After today, I probably won't be able to see a police cruiser the same way again."

Allen chuckled and took a chance by taking Lydia's hand and giving it a gentle kiss. "Thank you for a lovely afternoon, Ms. Deetz."

Lydia smirked. "You know, you can just call me Lydia from now on, Officer. Unless formal is your kink. I'm sure that I could get used to it."

With one last conspiratorial smile, Allen took his leave. She watched him, unable to stop her eyes from openly gawking at the man's body as he walked away.

"I feel that, Lydsy. Don't forget who you really belong to." Beetlejuice chuckled while he approached her. Lydia turned a bright smile on him and batted her eyelashes flirtatiously.

"Why Mr. Beetleman, do you really think I could replace you that easily?" Lydia wrapped her arms around his neck, pulling him in for a peck on the cheek before guiding him back to the booth. This time they sat across from each other while Lydia began toying with BJ's leg in the way that she had with Allen.

"All fun and games, Babes. I ain't kidding. For now, I'll let ya play around with the cop but you need to control that killer instinct." Beetlejuice poked around the leftover slices from their enormous pizza.

"How can you expect me to hold back when she keeps pushing? I swear Beej, if she so much as sets foot in my house-"

"You deal. You pretend everything is fine until the bitch leaves and you let her take the fall. They already got a sense of how unstable she is and I'm damn sure that Burp has been skewing the investigation in her direction. Don't fuck it up." He pointed a red-tipped finger at her to which Lydia rolled her eyes and crossed her arms.

"And how would you know what's going on with them? Did you get her to talk or did you brag about fucking me the entire time?"

Beetlejuice, unamused, pulled a folder out from behind him.

"I snuck into Detective Bath's joint. He's got it out for you Lyds. I'd keep that fling silent if I were you cuz if he knew you were fucking his favorite cop, your cute little goose is cooked."

Lydia took the folder and skimmed the contents. Her features began to soften as she took in the findings under the names of Bertha and Prudence. Her heart began to swell with affection for the two women. They were putting their careers on the line. They knew but they were protecting her.

"Beej. Does this mean… do you think that…"

"Don't count your chicks before they hack" He chuckled. "They may protect you now but there's a limit. You never know who your friends are but this isn't sayin' you should give up on them. Who knows, maybe one day we can persuade them to, hehe, join the cause."

Lydia handed the folder back to the ghost who immediately snapped it into the ethers.

"So what's next Mr. Ghost with the Most?"

With a cackle, he stretched and rested back with his arms behind his head. "Next, you get that sexy ass down to Officer Dichter's place and screw him senseless till he can't see straight. I want that boy eating outta your hand. Puppets, Babes. Whatever little crush you are nursing will only go so far. When he finds out what you are capable of, there is only one thing you can do. You will have to take him out… and I don't mean to dinner."

With a sigh, Lydia slumped back in the booth.

"You're right."

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