Raleigh Becket’s heard of Chuck Hansen. Who hasn’t? The youngest, most brilliant Ranger with the highest Kaiju kill score. Graduated Jaeger Academy at 15, summa cum laude, more or less - the Academy doesn’t really do fancy hats or flying colors. The Hansen kid has been jockeying in sims longer than he’s had pubes.
First time he gets a real good look at the kid’s face is when Chuck’s grinning at the cameras after taking down Mutavore in Sydney, Hansen senior in the background. It’s a cocky grin, but the lines in his face are telling the press to fuck off, because what the hell do they know about being a Ranger? Something in Hansen’s eyes tell Raleigh the kid isn’t even comfortable in the spotlight. Wants to dive back into the conn-pod and smash more things.
Second time he gets a real good look at the kid’s face, it’s in front of him, which is definitely a better way to appreciate it. Except Hansen junior opens his mouth and bullshit flies out. Somehow, the kid really knows where to hit Raleigh where it hurts. Fuck you, you little brat, you weren’t there. You didn’t feel your brother ripped out of your goddamn brain. I don’t care how fucking brilliant everyone says you are, you definitely need a kick in the ass.
Third time he gets a look at Chuck Hansen it’s a blurry presence inside Mako’s memories. He didn’t realize they share so much history. Doesn’t get most of the details, either, before their drift goes awry and they nearly blow up the goddamn Shatterdome.
Fourth time, Chuck Hansen’s face gets intimately acquainted with Raleigh Becket’s fist. Because the little shit is right, Raleigh fucked up, except Chuck’s yelling at both of them and Raleigh knows he’s the one who flung Mako into the RABIT. Putting two people with PTSD in a Jaeger together maybe wasn’t the best idea, but he’ll die before he lets Chuck Hansen gloat about it to his face.
Chuck has an interesting look on his face when he realizes Raleigh is still ghosting with Mako and her moves are in Raleigh’s body, flinging him to the ground with a leg hook and way more speed and flexibility than a man of Raleigh’s size should be wielding.
There’s more of Chuck in the Drift the second time he and Mako fight together in Gipsy Danger. Mako respects him, which was about the last thing Raleigh was expecting to see. He expected me to do better, is what he gets from Mako through their connection. Chuck is strong and intelligent, she communicates wordlessly, a dedicated and responsible pilot. So are you, Raleigh thinks. But Mako is adamant. He’s not usually this reckless, she argues. What’s so unusual now? You are, she answers. Raleigh doesn't get it. So Mako shows him.
What the hell. The brat likes him. And has been treating him pretty much like an eight-year-old treats the classmate they have a super secret crush on. Flinging insults and rocks their way and hope they never notice, or something.
So he’s seeing Chuck in a different light now. Wonders what he might look like naked, in that different light and all. And Raleigh spots Chuck in the crowd, giving him this slightly dimpled smile as Raleigh greets Herc. Well, more like an optimistic nod. It’s the most positive response Chuck has given Raleigh so far. And goddammit, it gets to him. Curse those fucking dimples, how dare he.
Raleigh Becket is a man of action, when he's not traumatized and trying to forget he is still alive whilst his brother isn’t. So he finds Chuck, follows him from his quarters through a relatively quiet hallway that leads to Striker Eureka’s maintenance bay, and when Chuck spins around to see who is stalking after him Raleigh surges forward and slams him into the wall.
Oh, those are some fine muscles, all round and steel and possibly rippling against Raleigh’s arm.
“The fuck, Becket?” Chuck growls, and Raleigh is immensely satisfied at having caught him off-guard. And isn’t going to waste any time getting into a discussion with Chuck, since he might as well be talking to his dog instead. Who would be a much better listener.
So Raleigh leans forward until his lips brush against Chuck’s ear. “You like me,” he whispers, self-satisfaction thick on his tongue.
Chuck pretty much flings Raleigh across the hallway. He sort of expected that, except not the strength that went behind the push, so it takes him a second longer to regain his balance. A second in which Chuck grabs his sweater and slams Raleigh into the wall instead.
Chuck’s face is all huffy and red and also phenomenally pissed off, which honestly isn’t much different from his usual expression.
Raleigh figures, what the hell, if Chuck is going to beat him up he might as well get the most out of it, so he curls his arm around Chuck’s lower back, slides it down and grabs a handful of ass. Which feels fantastic, honestly, and totally worth Chuck headbutting him half a second later.
This is where he figured the next thing landing on his face would be Chuck’s fist, or maybe the kid would just knee him in the dick and run, but instead Chuck’s hands are still clutching his sweater and he’s being pushed against the other wall.
Raleigh laughs. “You like me,” he repeats.
“Fuck you,” is all Chuck manages. Kind of raspy and hoarse, that came out.
Raleigh grabs that sensational ass again and pulls, kind of smashing their crotches together and well now, seems like Hansen junior’s got a hard-on. Raleigh’s own dick is definitely starting to pay attention.
Chuck tries for a fiery, angry glare at Raleigh and misses, hitting steamy and sultry instead.
Raleigh rolls his hips against Chuck’s and they both groan. It’s the sweetest sound Raleigh’s heard in ages.
He angles his face towards Chuck’s. “I like you,” Raleigh says, grinning like an idiot.
“Fuck you,” Chuck repeats, but it sounds more like an invitation.
“Maybe later,” Raleigh laughs, and heat flares up low in his stomach when he feels Chuck harden at that. Like it didn’t even occur to the brat before and his imagination just kicked in. Raleigh grins and grinds into Chuck, driving more sweet sounds out of those wonderfully curved lips.
Since Chuck isn’t really saying anything useful anyway, Raleigh decides to capture those lips and see what else they’re good for.
Chuck’s kissing is, well, interesting. Like he wants to but isn’t sure what he’s doing. That’s okay, Raleigh does know what he’s doing, so he reaches up a hand to tilt Chuck’s jaw, thumb pressing down on the lower lip to get that mouth open a bit more, and slips his tongue inside.
Chuck nearly bites it off, pushes himself off Raleigh, wipes his mouth. “The fuck was that!?”
Raleigh raises an eyebrow. “That was my tongue. You don’t like?” Raleigh’s hands, now sadly empty of Chuck, slide down his own chest and abs. Chuck’s eyes keenly follow the movement.
Chuck’s face is possibly scrunching up with conflicting emotions. He can’t be serious though, Raleigh figures. Surely the kid’s frenched before? He remembers, with a slight sting, the shit he and Yancy did in their glory days. But then, these aren’t the glory days. These are the dying days of the Jaeger programme and possibly the world. Maybe Chuck hasn’t had the time of his life and hasn’t been living it up. Maybe he grew up like Mako did, a singular mind with a singular purpose. But Mako is all steel and discipline, and Chuck is a raging mess poured into a conn-pod suit. Dedicated, brilliant, yes. And Raleigh remembers what Herc was like back in the day, and something about the two of them Drifting starts to make sense. They can barely look each other in the eye, but inside a Jaeger, maybe, just maybe, they are the perfect storm.
Well, he isn’t about to get all hugging-it-out now, so instead, Raleigh hitches his sweater up, exposing what he knows to be a set of killer abs.
Chuck’s jaw kinda drops. It’s cute.
Raleigh slithers his other hand down to his crotch and palms his erection through his jeans.
Pretty sure he can see Chuck’s mouth water, there. And Chuck just kind of makes a noise at him.
Raleigh sighs, steps forward, closes the distance between them, pushing Chuck into the wall again. Grabs his jaw, angles it, same as before. “Don’t bite this time,” Raleigh says.