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Midnight in the Garden

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"Dave! What are you doing wandering around this late?" David had chosen the garden as his late-night destination, assuming it would be empty. Rush's voice from the darkness proved otherwise. He moved towards the bench where he could see a faint glow from Rush's talisman and sat down beside the younger man.

"I had a somewhat...unpleasant dream," David admitted. "I needed some time to clear my head before going back to sleep." He drew his jacket more tightly around himself - the night was colder than he had anticipated. "Though I'm not sure that I even want to attempt sleep again tonight."

Rush dropped a hand on David's shoulder. "That bad?" he asked with a squeeze.

David nodded, then realized that the motion was invisible in the near-total darkness. "It was Nagapur. But...it was here, in Athlum. The Conqueror had unleashed the power of the Valeria Heart upon the city and the people." He frowned, remembering that the Conqueror had stolen the remnant some weeks ago. "He must have brought it back with him. Or...well, it made sense at the time. You know how dreams are," he finished weakly.

"We are not gonna let that happen," Rush replied fiercely, sliding closer to David and slinging his arm across the ruler's shoulders. "With mom and Irina working to find new remnants, and the generals and me to defend the city, nothing can defeat us." If he neglected to mention that Irina and the generals were all present and mostly helpless during the destruction of Nagapur, David was not going to contradict him.

They sat like that for a few minutes, David leaning back slightly into Rush's arm. He can't suppress a shiver, though he's not sure whether it's from the chill in the air or the residual emotions of his dream. Inching even closer, Rush leaned his forehead against David's temple. "Whatever the Conqueror does next, we can handle it," he whispered, his breath hot on David's cheek.

To his dying day, David would never be able to say for certain what made him turn and press his lips to Rush's. Some combination of the late hour, the need for comfort, the almost impenetrable darkness, the lack of sleep impairing his judgment. Whatever it was, Rush's lips parted easily against his allowing him to lick long strokes into the other man's mouth. He slid his hand around the back of Rush's head, carding his fingers through the shaggy black strands. The way they fit together, gods, David had never felt anything so right.

Rush pulled back suddenly, to David's intense disappointment. "I'd hoped," Rush rasped, voice low, and then there was a flurry of movement ending with Rush pulling David up to stand pressed up against him, one thigh slotted between his legs. David's moan didn't have a chance to escape before Rush's mouth was back on his. He rocked against Rush, hands skimming along the other man's back and ass while Rush nipped and sucked at his lips.

David was trying to decide if stopping to invite Rush back to his bed would break whatever spell they were under when Rush dipped his head to lick along the leather of David's choker. "Been wanting to do that," he admitted sheepishly. David could just make out a whisper of noise that sounded suspiciously like a shoe scuffing the stone ground beneath them.

He smirked, forgetting that Rush couldn't see. "Feel free to carry on. Although we might be more comfortable indoors. My chambers, perhaps?" Only his years of training kept his voice smooth and even against the desire pounding through his veins. Even if they only continued what they were doing, David was certain that the nightmares would not return tonight.

Rush took advantage of the moon peeking through a hole in the clouds to grab David's hand and start pulling him back toward the castle proper. "Sounds like a plan," he said, a hint of laughter in his voice. They walked entirely too close together, shoulders and elbows bumping companionably. David paused when they reached his door, wanting to give Rush an opportunity to change his mind, but Rush pushed the door open himself and tugged David inside. "C'mon Dave, let's scare away those nightmares."

It occurred to David much later that he never did find out why Rush was sitting alone in the pitch black garden in the dead of night, but perhaps it was best not to question something that felt like fate. He stopped only to close and lock the door behind him before following Rush to the bed and to anywhere else he wanted to lead.