Simon Cowell wanted to get it on with Paula Abdul

Dec 15, 2011 at 8:47 a.m. ET

Simon Cowell said he considered getting it on with Paula Abdul -- but thought the fantasy was probably better than reality.

Simon Cowell Paula Abdul

We always thought there was a lot more behind the perpetual bickering of The X Factor judges Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul than meets the eye. Turns out we were right, and that thing is incredible sexual tension.

On Barbara Walters' 10 Most Fascinating People Wednesday night, Cowell said he considered taking Abdul to bed -- but quickly reconsidered.

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"We didn't like each other in the beginning," Cowell said, adding, "I think it was sexual tension -- on her part."

"That she really wanted you?" Walters asked.

"A million percent," Cowell said.

"What happened? Did you want her?" Walters asked.

"I considered it," Cowell admitted. "But then I thought, 'I don't think the after would be as good as before.'"

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Of course if it had happened, don't think Cowell would have cuddled afterwards.

"I'd let her stay for a few hours, but then it would have to be, 'Good night,'" he said.

Lest his judging table partner think he was just messing with her, Cowell offered this reassurance for her ego: "If you're watching Paula, it is true," he said.

Eh. She could do worse.

Cowell and Abdul first met while preparing for the first season of American Idol in 2002. Abdul has been married twice, to Emilio Estevez from 1992 to 1994 and fashion designer Brad Beckerman from 1996 to 1998. Her relationship with restaurant owner J.T. Torregiani ended in 2008. Cowell has been engaged to makeup artist Mezhgan Hussainy since February 2010. No wedding date has been set.

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