Eames first meets Arthur on a relatively simple job. It's one that needs a skilled forger, and Eames is skilled, in the general region of the job, and terribly bored, so inevitably their paths cross.
It's rather hush-hush otherwise, which is why the company wants to limit the number of people actually in the dream. Eames knows that Arthur would have preferred to work alone, he can see it in the twist of his lip and how he rolls his eyes, and he can't help but try to needle Arthur further so he can see his different looks of exasperation.
The architect is new to the business, freshly graduated from university. Eames can tell that he'd rather be designing levels for the military dream-share, but they all have to take what they can get, these days. His layouts are all steel and glass, strict and orderly, the kind of thing that Arthur would like. Eames will be responsible for dreaming the level, since Arthur might get eliminated at any point depending on the security, and Eames is the lynchpin behind the success of this plan. Eames' mind is more suited to bright, vivid tropical landscapes, architecture with sinuous curved lines - but the architect isn't familiar with the places that Eames has been in. Then again, it's better to limit the area of the dream, since Arthur would probably whinge at him nonstop if he had to run through a shanty town and navigate a maze of haphazard stairways while shooting at bodyguards. A pity, though, Arthur would look extremely good with a gun.
But Eames is a professional, despite how he seems, and he learns the layout by heart.
It's a hotel layout, to go with the plan - Wilford Grant has a weakness for dominant women. Eames will masquerade as one to seduce him, and Arthur will take care of security. People are always less on guard when they're hopelessly aroused, and Eames is going to capitalise on that. Eames can double as an extractor, as having an additional person along on this would just complicate matters. They just need Wilford's password to his company's mainframe, and somehow the company that hired them believes that it's easier to extract it from the mark's head rather than do a little social engineering, but who is Eames to argue? If everyone used his real-life methods, he'd be out of a job.
Eames is looking forward to wearing that little number from his jaunt in Spain. She had flowing red hair, an incredible body, and the most sensual throaty moans he'd ever heard. He practically knows her by heart, thinking of a day that he'd need to use her, and perhaps now is the time. He admits that this decision isn't solely influenced by the mark's taste in women, as Arthur is so straight-laced that Eames would love to make him blush.
They bid farewell to the architect the night before the job. The company's informed them of the location and has hired someone to operate the device, so all they have to do is to show up and look inconspicious until the man dozes off. It's an extremely long train ride, and they're in first-class, so they should have a degree of privacy. Arthur, as usual, shows up in neat, unwrinkled, impeccably-pressed clothing. He probably ironed it just before they met. Eames prefers to dump his clothing in the basket for the hotel laundering services, while Arthur seems to be the kind of man who knows how to use an iron and is unafraid of showing it.
Arthur looks at Eames' boldly-patterned silk shirt and mildly rumpled pants, and consciously restrains himself from rolling his eyes. He would probably skip the restraint if he knew what Eames had been doing (or who he had been doing) to get the pants rumpled.
"Laugh it up, darling, I have it under good authority that I look fantastic in this shirt."
"The job specified inconspicuous. In what world does that qualify, Eames?"
"Well, Arthur, I hardly think anyone will suspect me of being a diabolical mastermind in this get-up."
Arthur makes an exasperated noise, the huff of breath that he does when Eames is being particularly irritating, and storms onto the train. Eames follows behind him.
From then on, it's a waiting game, but eventually Wilford succumbs to sleep, and Arthur's cell phone beeps. The cabin is mostly empty thanks to the company buying out the seats, so they sit down next to the mark while the girl hooks them into the device. Wilford Grant is breathing heavily, somehow managing to seem like a pervert through snoring. Eames is glad when the sedative kicks in, so he doesn't have to hear it.
The dream's one layer, since they can't maintain two with this headcount, so they carry weaponry around in case the mission goes terribly wrong and they have to abort it. Eames has a small pistol, whereas Arthur has decided to carry an arsenal around. Some extractors have trained their clients' security systems to torture, rather than kill, so they need to be prepared for any eventuality. They materialise in a bustling hotel lobby, and Arthur starts glancing around for security and noting the exits, typical responsible-person behaviour. It's like he feels the need to compensate for the sloppiness he perceives in Eames.
Eames ducks into a secluded corner, and changes. The red hair cascades down his shoulders, and he's planned a wonderful dress for this occasion. It's black and has a high neck, it doesn't expose everything, but gives the hint that there's a lot to offer. His stilettoes click on the floor as he strides back to Arthur. He's playing the dominant-female role, so he doesn't bother with the mincing steps and high-pitched voice, this demands a low contralto and a walk like he owns the world.
"Hello, darling," he purrs, and he feels a frisson of amusement when Arthur jumps and does a double-take. Sure, Arthur snaps back to his usual state a moment later, but it's very gratifying to elicit that reaction from someone so straight-laced. "Watch my back, why don't you? I'll be in room 541." He brushes his lips against Arthur's cheek, and casually waves at him as he strides towards Wilford.
He has a hotel room in this building, the keycard's in his purse - he just needs to cajole Wilford Grant into going with him. It shouldn't be hard. There's a group of women fawning over Wilford, but Eames figures that he'll be so turned on by his persona that he shouldn't have trouble luring Wilford away.
It's an easy seduction, honestly, the company could have got someone less pricey to do it. Wilford's practically eating out of the palm of his hand, and the women are glaring at him (and his curves), but no one is suspecting that he's an invader. The security doesn't pay him any attention, they're probably used to situations like this, and he can tell that Arthur's itching for a fight because he's looking at the security guards, his wiry body tense, ready to spring into action.
Arthur's always so intense.
Eames likes that.
He focuses his bright green eyes on Wilford, who's practically blushing at the attention he's getting, and whispers something about continuing their exchange upstairs, in his room. He isn't paying attention to what he's saying, he's on autopilot, and this is just one iteration of the same situation that he's had to forge so many times before. It's time to reel Wilford in, so he tosses his head, his mane of red hair swaying around his face.
"I'm warning you, I'm terribly dominant in bed. Are you sure you can keep up, Mr Grant?"
He licks his lips, and Wilford gulps, then nods his head frantically in agreement.
Arthur looks at them and rolls his eyes, and Eames feels a flash of irritation. Would it kill him to be impressed?
He pushes Wilford into the elevator and leads him to the hotel suite. He's tearing at Wilford's clothes the moment the door of the suite's bedroom closes, he wants to give the impression that he's the one in charge of this encounter. Clearly Wilford has some sort of inferiority complex because the man's dick is about two inches long. He makes a cutting remark about it, hissing disgust through his body's lush lips, and Wilford blushes with arousal.
It doesn't take much convincing to get him to lie on the suite's bed, Eames straddling him, his dress hiked up for Wilford's benefit. Eames overcomes his revulsion for the man, stroking manicured fingernails against Wilford's upper arm. Wilford is bound firmly, his legs and arms are cocooned in rope, and he's practically slavering for Eames' body.
"I like to play rough, Wilford. Are you familiar with the concept of safewords?"
Wilford nods frantically, eager to please. Eames tries to avert his eyes from the pathetic spectacle.
"Now, Willie-boy, forget whatever nonsensical safewords you usually use." A slight pause to grasp Wilford's chin possessively, digging red talons into his flabby cheeks. "What I want is a secret from you, you limp-dicked piece of trash." A grip on his neck, where his collar would be, simulating his submissive nature.
Wilford is so aroused that he'd probably sign all his assets over to Eames, if Eames asked.
"Tell me the password to the mainframe. That will be your safeword when I whip you like the little bitch you are. And if - if - you're enough of a good boy, I'll let you worship my body like you want to."
Wilford's lips start to form words, and - is that the sound of gunfire right outside the door? He needs to hurry up.
Eames grinds his body's crotch against Wilford, careful to do it so that his breasts bounce. "Hurry it up, Willie-boy, if not you won't be able to lick my cunt."
He supposes this is in character, but honestly, he can see why Arthur rolled his eyes. This is so stupidly easy that he actually regrets taking the job. Wilford blurts out a sequence of numbers and letters, squirming against the bonds. Eames commits the sequence to memory.
"I'm going to get the hot wax and the whip. Don't go anywhere, you disgusting worm."
Wilford's eyes practically roll into the back of his head in arousal. Eames' eyes desperately want to roll themselves at how much of an imbecile Wilford is. He shuts the door to the suite's bedroom, and heads out the main door to check on Arthur. He pulls his dress down, to avoid being too obscene.
Arthur is standing in the corridor with a gun in his hand, chest heaving, looking slightly rumpled. Three security guards are crumpled against the wall, bleeding onto the floral carpet.
He motions to Eames. "Done?"
"We have some time to kill until we have to wake up, darling. Care to show me what you're made of?" Eames purrs, leaning closer to Arthur, and he can sense that Arthur's turned on but trying not to show it.
Eames shifts out of his female form, and kisses Arthur on the mouth. It's wet and sloppy and full of tongue, and Arthur is too startled to kiss back, his eyes widening.
Arthur pushes Eames off, and steps away.
"You should know better than that, Eames," he says. In one smooth, controlled motion, he brings the gun to his temple, and shoots himself in the head. The gunshot rings out through the corridor.
Eames can't help but feel insulted at the brutal rebuff. In any case, there's no reason to stay here anymore, and he suspects that more guards are closing in. The elevator dings.
Arthur has no idea how to take advantage of a situation. In fact, the man has no creativity whatsoever.
Eames presses the pistol to his head, and pulls the trigger.
The second time they meet is during the Fischer job. Arthur isn't quite as hostile towards Eames after the relative success of their first job, but Eames delights in needling him at every turn.
When they're on the shore, dripping wet after escaping from the sinking van, they have a bit of time to kill before the sedative wears off. Cobb and Saito's whereabouts are unknown, and Ariadne looks like she's about to cry when she tells them the exact details of what had happened after she went deeper with Cobb. Arthur looks vaguely dismayed, which in Arthur-terms means he is probably devastated. It's natural - Arthur's known Cobb for quite a while, even before he lost his wife, and they've worked together on so many jobs that they're probably close friends.
They need a distraction.
"So, Arthur, darling, how did you manage to create the second kick in time?" It's actually an honest question, since he doesn't remember much of waking up in the hotel before waking up in the van. He vaguely remembers staring at an unfamiliar ceiling before waking up on this level, but that's about it. Eames edges closer to Arthur, seemingly intent on hearing the tale, invading his personal space, and Arthur studiously ignores him.
Ariadne looks at Arthur curiously, and Yusuf looks like he's bursting to tell his own tale - not surprising, the man probably doesn't get to see much action as a chemist. But this is Arthur's moment.
Arthur flushes, and starts to tell them about the gravity loss on his level, and how he had to jury-rig a drop without gravity while fighting off security. As usual, Arthur makes it sound incredibly boring, as if he's deliberately trying to underplay his accomplishments, but Eames has a very vivid imagination and can picture how the scenario actually went. It's a pity that he wasn't there to see Arthur fight - he did look very dapper in that suit, and Eames would love to see the savagery that Arthur keeps tightly under control, buried deep beneath the surface.
Yusuf eagerly continues, and tells them what happened on the first level, and Eames asks questions to keep him going, while working out the timeline in his head and trying to correlate the events in Yusuf's and Arthur's stories. Arthur's solution was impressive, given the time constraints that he had.
Maybe the man has some creativity after all.
The third time they meet is at the hotel lobby, the night after the job. Eames doesn't have anywhere to go, so he's decided to stay at the nearby hotel and relax. It's been a long time since he's been in Los Angeles, but for now he just wants to forget about anything related to the Fischer job. He's people-watching, observing their body language for his next con, and it's relieving that he can actually think of the future now instead of worrying that he'd die on one of the levels and get cast into limbo.
He notices a familiar figure, and he'd recognise that stride anywhere. Arthur cuts through the crowd smoothly, like he can see the optimal route to take, flawlessly moving through the milling tourists, and he's heading towards Eames.
Eames can't help himself, he gets up to greet Arthur.
"I was just thinking about taking a next job, and since you're in the vicinity - care for a drink, Eames? We can talk about it."
It's Eames' turn to be shocked, but he's good at acting, so the shift in expression lasts a split-second before it's wiped off his face.
"Meet you in the bar in ten minutes, darling."
"No, the matter's quite confidential, Eames. You might like people to listen in, but I don't. Meet me in my suite at ten past." He gives Eames the room number, and Eames is astonished again. The Arthur that he'd met on the first job wouldn't waste his money on a suite. Despite Arthur's taste for fashion and impeccably tailored suits, he was remarkably unwilling to spend on any other personal indulgences unless they were necessary.
Eames knocks on Arthur's door at five past, hoping to catch him in a state of deshabille, shirt slightly unbuttoned, vulnerable, and his hopes sink when Arthur promptly opens the door. His hair is neatly slicked back, he's wearing a pressed suit, and he stands in the doorway, staring at Eames.
He looks hungry.
The moment Eames steps in, Arthur closes the door behind him, and locks it. In a swift motion, he presses Eames against the door, grazing his teeth against Eames' neck.
Eames struggles to maintain his composure, which is very hard when he's subjected to this side of Arthur. The tip of Arthur's tongue is extremely distracting, and Arthur's licking up the line of his carotid artery, as if he wants to consume Eames and leave nothing behind.
Arthur's breath is warm against Eames' throat, and he murmurs, "I know you've wanted this. Playing footsie with me on the Fischer job was a tad obvious, though."
Eames grins like the cat that's got the canary. "In my defense, that was a kick."
Arthur isn't the kind to tear Eames' clothes off, he fiddles with the buttons on Eames' shirt and slides the shirt off smoothly, then hangs it on a nearby hook. Arthur makes quick work of the laces on Eames' shoes, slipping his feet out of them. Eames' pants, however, come off in a rougher fashion as Arthur fumbles with the button and the zip. Eames does Arthur the courtesy of stepping out of them and taking his underwear off at the same time. Eames walks further into Arthur's suite, unabashed about his nakedness. Arthur's only concession to the situation is that he's barefoot.
Arthur looks almost feral, advancing towards Eames, and Eames can't bring himself to object. He's never seen Arthur this eager before. He walks into the carpeted bedroom, because fucking on hardwood floors would get quite painful after a while, and Arthur follows closely after him, like a predator stalking its prey. Arthur's bare feet sink into the plush carpet, and Eames stands in the bedroom, waiting, unsure what Arthur is going to do next.
Arthur drops to his knees in one smooth motion, and puts his lips around Eames' cock. His eyelids are lowered, and he's so completely engrossed in his task that he isn't making his usual effort to be neat. His tongue curls around Eames' cock from time to time, and he's eager for more. Eames can tell from the way Arthur's hands grasp his body possessively, like he wants everything that Eames has to offer.
Eames looks down to see Arthur's cock straining against his pants. Arthur's perspiring slightly, and his hair is getting dishevelled, it's a stark contrast to his fastidious image. Eames is so close - the boy has the tongue of an absolute devil - but it would be ghastly to come like this. In all his fantasies about Arthur, all his lucid dreams, the one thing that he wants is -
"I'm going to fuck you now, Eames."
Arthur abruptly ends the blowjob, leaving Eames hard and waiting for more, and if that was the foreplay, Eames is looking forward to the main event. He stands up in a smooth motion, dusting his pants off, and motions to Eames.
"You may take my pants off, Eames. Leave the shirt and the vest."
"With pleasure, sweetheart." Eames takes his time, deliberately creating new creases in the fabric just because he enjoys Arthur glaring at him. He roughly shoves Arthur's pants down just so he can hear the stitches threaten to snap. The pants eventually come off, along with Arthur's underwear, and they slide into a crumpled heap on the floor. Arthur heads off to the bathroom, hopefully to get lubricant since Eames hasn't been fucked dry in a while and wouldn't care to repeat the experience. Eames takes advantage of this break in the action to lounge on the bed in his best ready-to-be-debauched position, ass facing up, face down, ready for whatever Arthur has planned.
"What are you doing? Face up, Eames, I want to see what you look like when I'm fucking you."
Eames turns over. He'd be more annoyed, but honestly, seeing Arthur be so dominant is going to be one of the highlights of his sex life. It might even outrank that time with the Asian twins.
Arthur's careful about lubing Eames up, but he isn't gentle about it, just thorough. His motions are slightly jerky, as if he can't wait to get to the part where he fucks Eames into the bed.
Eames puts his legs up, exposing his hole to Arthur, and Arthur holds Eames' legs up as he pushes in. Eames was perfectly capable of holding his legs up for however long Arthur wanted, but he supposes that Arthur wants to show him that he's in control, and it's amusing that Arthur's so eager to prove himself.
Then Arthur starts a brutal rhythm, in and out, and it's torturous due to the way that Arthur varies the thrusts. They go from slow to fast to slow again, and he suspects that Arthur's using a song to time his thrusts because they seem to be following a time signature. It's good that Arthur's holding his legs up because Eames can't think enough to consciously keep them up.
Eames can't help it, he can't pretend anymore, and he moans.
"You like what I'm doing, Eames, sweetheart?" Arthur stops the relentless thrusts, there's a lascivious grin on his face as he hisses the term of endearment, and he looks at Eames like he's drinking the spectacle in. The sight of someone so calm, so assured, coming undone by his hands.
"I am highly enjoying this situation. Now move, you bastard."
"Oh, Eames. What happened to darling?" But Arthur's satisfied by Eames' response, and he grasps Eames' legs tighter - the tips of his fingers are turning white because of the pressure of his grip, and he's going to leave bruises on Eames' thighs, and there could be nothing better. Arthur's pounding into Eames' ass, and Eames might be the one who's completely lost control because he can't even tell what he's babbling about besides gasps of "yes", "more", "harder". His cock is hard and neglected, dripping precum, and Arthur's hitting his prostate every three thrusts.
Arthur licks his lips, then loosens his hold on Eames' legs, and leans down to stimulate Eames' cock with his hand. His calloused palm rubs against Eames' cock, then he curls his fingers around the cock and moves his hand up and down, up and down. Eames isn't able to fake the look he usually gives when having sex, the smug look which says yes I am completely in control of this situation, and he's spread open before Arthur, helpless under his dominance, arching into his touch, on the edge of something he's having trouble finding words for. Arthur's controlled breathing is getting heavier, his grip on Eames' cock is getting firmer, and the rhythm reaches a sharp staccato, and Eames can barely breathe. His mind is fogged with arousal, and he can't imagine anything other than this, he can't pretend that there's anything except this moment, anything except Arthur's hands on him, eyes piercing through him, devouring him.
He arches up, mouth opening in a muted cry, and Arthur tells him that it's okay to scream, no one will hear him, and Eames lets go.
Arthur smiles as he watches Eames come apart.
They're panting, trying to recover enough for a second round, and Arthur's mapping Eames' hand with his tongue. Eames shivers - Arthur's tracing his lifeline and licking down to his wrist, and he can feel Arthur's hot breath pulsing against his palm. He wants to kiss Arthur, but doesn't.
"Not that I mind this turn of events, darling, but weren't we supposed to talk business?"
"Oh," Arthur smiles slightly, "I lied about that. Must be your bad influence."