TITLE: Dancer for Money
CHARACTERS: too many, it's m/m
FEEDBACK: You know it ;-)
WARNINGS: Angst and sex and references to drug use...
Author's note: No spankings yet, but if you read between the lines you might catch that there is a dp relationship already mentioned.
We sit across from each other. He shakes another cigarette out of his case. It's a small silver case; a gift from Him. He lights it and I pretend not to choke on the sharp smell as he blows the smoke into my face. I could never stand the brand he uses.
I've run out of things to say. He's quiet too. We haven't talked for so long and we really never had anything in common, except for Him. I look out at the rain. It hasn't shown any signs of letting up since we came in here.
I fiddle with my coffee cup and I study him. There's lines on his face now that weren't there before.
"So that's what you do now, is it, dance?" he asks. It's a minor modification of a question he's posed twice already.
"I guess," I reply, still shirking the issue, he doesn't have to know what kind of dancing.
"Pays well?" he continues, I shrug slightly.
"Covers the bills, and you… I heard you quit…" I stop talking, his face grows dark. He wouldn't want to talk about that I guess. It's history, their history.
A passing car sends a wave from the gutter up over the pavement. Muddy droplets trail down the window. I fiddle with my cup again, but keep my eyes on the road outside.
"Damn rain won't let up, will it?" I laugh nervously, my stomach filling with ice. God, I'm so late, I shouldn't have taken him up on the coffee, should've gone straight to the club.
"You can share a taxi with me… if you have some place to be?" he says quietly and against my better judgement I smile weakly and nod.
I decide, as we get into the taxi, that I'll ask him to let me off at the park, the club's not far and if I run…
"Waterby Road," he says before I can express my wishes. I sink back into the seat and swallow, the club's on Waterby Road.
I don't have to ask how he knew. He's seen me there of course. He knew all the time while he watched me avoid his questions. I can't look at him.
I shouldn't feel ashamed. I rarely do, most guys find it exciting what I do. But it's different with him. I never wanted him to judge me, his opinion always worried me, not that he ever expressed any views on me back then, it was all about Him then. All about Alex, lucky, care-free, gorgeous Alex, dazzling, enchanting, dangerous, dumb, crazy…
"He always said I looked best with my clothes off…" I say, no I snap, I don't know why, I just can't stand the feeling of Him being this missing, yet nearly tangible participant in our conversation.
"He said many things…" he agrees with me. I wish he had reacted more, become angry, thrown me out of the car… anything but the quiet sadness I see when glancing at him. "He wasn't often right," he ads quietly.
I can't reply. He's hit the nail on its head. I start crying, at first I don't notice, but then the tears fall down on my hands and I wipe them away, angry with myself.
We sit there, the air thick with unspeakable words. Neither of us brave enough to delve into the chasm that awaits us beyond the one thing that brings us together.
He doesn't drop me off, he walks me in. I can't bring myself to stop him and Sam just grins a little and nods us through. The brawny, dark skinned man is used to seeing me with older men, he teases me about it in his taciturn way in the after hours when we have a fag together wait-ing for the bus, says I should go home with him sometime.
I give Nick a shrug when he asks where the hell I've been and then there's Guy. There's no shrugging him off, he sticks his face up close to mine and spews a garlic stinking lecture all over me.
I take it, but can't forget about my silent shadow waiting close by, melting into the few as-sembled regulars and sticking out like a sore thumb with his well mannered request for a whiskey. Guy looks him over from over my shoulder and sneers at me.
"I told you, no boyfriends!" he says but leaves it at that.
I walk up to him as he sits down in the back, I know I should be getting ready. Nick is waving frantically for me, but I can't go yet.
"You staying?" I ask.
"Do you mind?" he returns, a warning in his voice that I can't quite understand.
"You know I do…" I whisper.
"Yes, why? I've obviously seen you before, hell I've seen you dancing on my living room table…" he seems to be getting me back for my snide remark in the car.
I pick up the glass from the table and smash it on the floor and then sink down crying. Almost a year. He's been gone for a year and I haven't wanted to think about it, haven't wanted to remember all those times, and now the memories overwhelm me. We were so pissed, they'd had a fight, another fight and Alex was plotting his revenge. Walking on the ledge…
`I'm immortal Jamie, look at me!'
Guy is screaming at me, but I'm lost. There's no turning back now, the floodgates are opened and I can't even catch my breath. My voice is hollow and it frightens me, I can't hold back. Then strong hands on my arms, someone is picking me up from the floor and I turn my face into Sam's tight black t-shirt and let him carry me into the back.
Sam puts me on the sofa, wresting my clinging hands from his shirt and then he leaves. Nick is beside me, stroking my hair from my face. He kneels by the coffee table, handing me a glass of water, then quietly makes a thin, white line on the coaster.
I try to drink the water, but cough most of it up again. I take the straw from his hand before the doubts set in.
"Oi," Sam gives a nod as I sit down beside him. The streetlight gutters.
"Got any?" I drive my hands into my armpits, there's a chill in the air. The hood of my shirt is pulled down low over my face.
He takes a crumpled pack from his jean pocket and sticks out a cigarette for me. I take a token drag and then I just hold it in my hand. I'm coming down and fast.
I stare at the stacks of wet, brown leaves on the pavement, the rain's let up at last. Predictably depression's setting in. I rock slowly and take another drag. I have to get home and sleep it off. I have to pretend I'm stronger than this, but I'm swirling into a black cesspit of despair and I won't make it home.
"All right there, mate?" Sam's voice is a quiet rumble next to me.
"I'm good," I lie and put out the cigarette, handing him back the remains.
"You're not," he shrugs.
I nod. Slowly my head falls down on his shoulder and after a moment his arm comes up around me. He smells of sweat and smoke and vaguely of liquor and vomit. We sit there until the bus arrives and when it does he stands, shrugging out of his jacket and placing it around my shoulders.
I go home with him.
It's rushed and feverish; neither of us in a mood for subtlety. He tears his t-shirt off and pushes me down on his narrow bed, ripping my jeans off me in one quick pull while I fight to be free of my shirt. Every muscle on his body is defined and bulging, mine is lithe and sinewy.
There's a moment of complete still while his trembling hands work the rubber onto his strain-ing cock. He bends over me and I wrap my arms around his shoulders. It's a little bit awkward, but intense. He fucks me hard and deep; there's pain, but I relish in it, drink it down and let him own me.
I fall asleep with my arm resting on his chest.
The morning outside his small window is bleak and wet when I wake up, promising another rainy day. I'm alone. My jeans and my shirt lie folded on the swivel chair by his desk; the computer screen is black, but the hard drive is humming slightly.
I slip into the outer room. I make no sound and for a moment I watch him move in the small kitchen, unaware of me. He is wearing an unbuttoned short sleeved shirt and my stomach jolts as I get a glimpse of his muscular abdomen as he takes the pot from the boiler and pours into two mugs and then he snatches the hot toast from the toaster, juggling it slightly and blowing on his fingers; I catch myself smiling.
"Oi," I say and he looks over at me, a funny little half smile on his lips.
"Toast?" he asks, holding a slice up as evidence, I shrug and nod.
I sip at the tea. Hot and sweet. I rarely stay for breakfast, part of me always wary of seeing my actions exposed in the stark daylight. But this is rather nice.
"Tired?" he says and I give a vague nod. "That shit isn't you, you know?"
I put the mug down and take another slice of toast, not responding, pretending that he didn't bring it up. I look out into his apartment, it's bigger than mine, older and more worn. Still, it feels lived in, not like my empty bookshelves and mismatched chairs.
"Right," he says and gets up from his seat.
He makes too much noise washing his mug; his movements are hastened and rough. He seems suddenly as intimidating to me as he might to the unlucky bastards who get on the wrong side of him at the club.
I get up and head for the door. I don't say anything and he doesn't look up.
As my hand closes on the door handle another closes over mine. His breath is on my neck and I feel him press against my back. A tremble runs through me.
"Always clear off when you get uncomfortable, eh?" he says and I let my hand drop, his stays on the handle. "You worry me, all right?"
"Ain't yours to worry about," I mutter.
"Fuck you, Jamie. God, fuck you!" the muscles in his arm bunch as his fist clench in front of me and I wonder absently if maybe he will hit me. I wonder how it might feel.
"You already did!" I push.
"Go to hell, you little shit!" he sounds more weary than angry and I nod my head slightly and then rest my forehead against the door in front of me.
"Sorry," my voice is dull, distant. "The sex was good though…" I hear him snort behind me and then chuckle in a slightly cynical tone.
I turn around, still slumped against the door with him still leaning over me, his breath smells of coffee. I give him a half smile and trail a hand up to the collar of his shirt, holding on, he shakes his head, but his eyes light up.
"That guy…" I give my head a sharp shake and feel my face harden, my hand drops from his shirt, he rolls his eyes. "OK, I won't ask, you're not seeing him again though… right?"
"Never saw him in the first place, he…" I begin, then shake my head again and shrug. "I should…" I nod at the door behind me, for the longest moment he just watch me, eyes soft and searching.
"Later," he says finally and steps back. I swallow and just stand there wanting to speak, but there's nothing to say. He reaches out a hand and nudges my chin up giving me a grin, one that strikes a cord I me and I straighten up and kiss his cheek, just brush against it with my lips before I turn and leave.