Here they come. Corona smiled at the pair of headlights approaching the outer gate, waited until they were close enough to be sure they actually belonged to the van Jack had borrowed from work, and then hopped off the edge of the roof. She grabbed the handrail outside the balcony, lowered herself to the ground, and jogged over to open the gate for him and Taura. She waved and motioned at the already-open warehouse door as they passed by and she barely made out Taura hunched over in the driver's seat waving back. She closed and locked the gate while Taura eased the van into the warehouse, then darted inside and slid the door shut.
"Welcome home." Corona greeted each of them with a kiss.
"Thanks." Taura let out a slow breath and flicked her hands as if trying to restore circulation. "Driving still makes me nervous despite learning several months ago."
"I've been driving for the better part of a decade and it still makes me tense," Jack said. "Dealing with traffic in this city sucks until you get onto the streets hardly anyone ever uses in areas like this one."
"That's why I haven't done much driving," Corona said as she headed up the stairs to the loft. "I know I should keep practicing so I don't get rusty, but it's just so much easier to fly wherever I need to go."
"Sometimes I'm envious of those wings." Jack followed her up to the loft, slipped his coat off, and tossed it onto the back of the sofa. "But I'll be happy enough if my car is ever put back together."
"I hate to say it, but it was pretty thoroughly destroyed when that old motel blew up." Taura took her coat off, clopped over to the bed, and sat on the edge. "Such a shame. That car had such style."
"Yeah." Jack took a quick breath. "Well, if it can't be rebuilt, maybe I can find one like it sooner or later. At least we were able to get a van that you and Taura can fit into without too much trouble."
"And it's an automatic." Taura chuckled. "I'm not sure I could get the hang of a manual transmission."
"It's not that hard to learn," Corona said, walking over to join her. "I didn't have too much trouble with it once I figured out how to start the car moving without stalling it over and over."
"Still glad I was unconscious during all that stuff." Jack tossed off a lopsided grin and pulled his T-shirt off.
"Yes, that part was a little frightening." Taura glanced at Corona and smirked. Corona snorted and whapped her with her wing.
"Just for that … well, that and sending the TickleBot after me ..." Corona giggled, pounced on Taura, and pinned her to the bed. She slid her hands under Taura's shirt and tickled her sides, causing Taura to belt out a laugh and try to double over.
"Jack," Taura gasped and burst into laughter again. "Help!"
"Hey, you brought this on yourself."
"You were involved, too, so you're next." Corona giggled and doubled down on the tickling, moving up Taura's sides to her armpits and neck. Taura's laughter turned into a wheeze and Jack snort-laughed.
"I've never heard you make that sound before."
"I think she's gonna be making a lot of sounds you've never heard before." Corona winked at him, flopped back onto the mattress, pulled Taura down on top of her, and then hooked her legs around Taura's to prevent her from slipping away. She shoved her hands back under Taura's shirt and continued tickling, pausing for a moment to fondle her breasts, and then sliding her hands back to Taura's sides and belly.
Jack snickered and took a step back, but Taura lunged, grabbed his wrist, and pulled him onto the bed.
"Ah-hah!" Corona giggled again, wrapped her wings around both of them, and went after Jack with her left hand and kept going on Taura with the other. Jack squealed and tried to get away from her.
"Speaking of sounds I've never heard before," Taura said. "That was bizarre coming from you."
He laughed again, then leaned past her and kissed Corona. She slowed the tickling, then stopped altogether when he began sliding his hand over her chest.
"C'mon," she breathed, "don't distract me when I'm just getting started."
"Well, what sounds more fun, tickling or ...?" He moved his hand between her legs.
"Oh … well, I guess you've talked me into it." She grinned.
Jack winked at Taura, kissed her, and glanced back to Corona.
"Just don't destroy this bed, too."
She burst out laughing and reached for his belt buckle. "No promises."