Q, and this is a thing he will fully admit to himself, gets off on it when Bond has sex with other people on missions. Bond leaves in his earpiece most times now and Q has the very dubious pleasure of listening to unseen women, although every once in awhile it’s a man, moan, grunt, and shout their way through an encounter that eventually leads to them being duped or double-crossed or worse. When Bond is feeling particularly wicked he makes sure to narrate for Q’s benefit: “Are you going to suck or just keep lapping at it like a kitten?” or “Yeah, open those legs for me. Wider.” It’s a kind of electric feedback loop of pleasure: Q gets jealous, then embarrassed of being jealous, then aroused by his embarrassment, then embarrassed of being aroused. Bond knows all this perfectly well and uses it very much to his advantage.
Q is less turned on by the thought of Bond having sex with people outside missions, though if he’s being honest with himself it’s not because he minds Bond sleeping around but because he doesn’t like that he’s not there to listen in. And there are nights when he’d really prefer Bond had him on the floor, Bond’s cock up his arse, when Bond’s busy instead with some lipsticked girl with gorgeous tits and a skillful tongue. But it’s not till one Friday, late, when he finishes up work and thinks of stripping down and getting Bond to screw around with him in Q branch, then learns from Eve Moneypenny that Bond is out with a “tall blonde infuriatingly gorgeous man,” that it occurs to Q that he might want to take advantage of his own freedom.
He goes to a bar: discreet, clean, filled with dark wood and leaning towards gay. It’s been awhile and normally Q would keep his eyes open for the big, of-few-words types, with black leather jackets and piercing eyes, who want to take home a skinny guy like Q and bend him over their knee. But Q’s getting plenty of that these days, minus the leather jackets, and maybe that’s why he doesn’t dismiss with a few condescending words the handsome big-eared smiling man who offers him a drink and sticks out his hand.
“Arjun,” he says.
“Chris.” Q shakes. The man’s grip is firm, his skin soft. His eyes are dark and wide, promising nothing threatening, nothing dangerous.
They talk for half an hour and Q goes home with him.
Arjun has pictures of his younger sisters and baby cousins on his walls. His flat is painted light green. When he puts his dick in Q’s mouth, he is careful not to choke him. Q closes his eyes and sucks obediently and to his surprise feels himself getting hard. Arjun lies face to face with him on the bed, his hand wrapped around both of them, and kisses Q long and slow and deep until they both come.
“Stay for breakfast,” he offers, smiling at Q as he runs a wet washcloth over his thighs. “I’ll make eggs. We can do that again, if you like. In the morning.”
Q never stays the night.
“Okay,” Q says. “I will.”
Bond goes on a mission two days later and Q goes out with Arjun again. They share a bottle of red wine in a bar and then go back to Arjun’s place and kiss for much longer than Q is usually interested in before they take off their clothes. Q actually sort of likes the way Arjun runs his fingers through Q’s hair as he pushes into him, moaning Q’s fake name in a low whisper.
“I know this was just a hookup,” Arjun says after. “But I kind of like you, Chris.”
Q stares at the light green ceiling. Arjun is boring. Kind, thoughtful, communicative: boring. Q has never liked boring before. He’s never gotten off on boring before.
He knows that’s not healthy.
“I kind of like you too,” he says, and lets himself fall a little further into the blanketing, muffling softness of Arjun’s smile.
When Bond comes back, Q can tell he figures it out fast. The skin on the back of Q’s neck is taut with anticipation all afternoon, as he waits for the shoe to drop: waits for Bond to reclaim him. He can’t quite muster up guilt as he pictures Bond finding the little purple mark that Q had to ask Arjun multiple times to suck into the skin of his hip. Pictures Bond digging his finger into it till Q cries out.
But Bond is whisked away by M, and Q goes home alone.
Arjun takes him to a fancy French restaurant three weeks after they first meet. “I just wanted to ask,” he says, as they spoon thick rich crème anglais into their mouths, “if you’d like to—well, if you’d like to start seeing each other. Really seeing each other.”
Q has a strange wobbly sensation of feeling that his heart ought to be in his mouth, but isn’t. “Are you asking me to be your boyfriend?” he says, just managing to banish an instinctive mocking note from his voice.
Arjun laughs. “It sounds very teenager when you put it that way. Yes, Chris, I am.”
What is it that’s stopping Q’s mouth from curling into a cruel smile? What’s stopping him from dismissing the idea he’s always found so entirely unappealing—the idea of sentimental monogamy, of having a boyfriend—straight out? Is that an idea that’s stopped feeling stifling and deadening, something he wouldn’t sabotage within the week, something that wouldn’t leave his prick soft and indifferent to every gentle caress and loving touch?
“Can I think about it?” Q asks. “Just for a bit. I—wasn’t looking for a relationship, and…”
“Yes, of course,” Arjun says quickly. “And I would never want to pressure you, Chris, or make you feel like you owed me something. I just thought I’d ask because—well, because I think you’re sweet.”
If there’s one thing Q isn’t, it’s sweet.
“Thank you,” he says. “I promise I’ll think about it.”
“Yeah?” Arjun asks, smiling a little shyly.
“Erm,” Arjun says, after the waiter takes away their dessert. “Do you still want to…?”
“Of course,” Q says, surprising himself a little with the quickness of his reply. “God, yes.”
“Good,” Arjun says, and under the table rubs a hand gently over Q’s knee. Q’s cock twitches violently and suddenly Q’s flushed and breathing hard. It’s not till Arjun takes his hand away that Q realizes: he’d thought Arjun was going to get him off, right there, in the middle of the restaurant, under the table.
“I think I’d better take you home,” Arjun says, and Q blinks up at him, then nods.
After Arjun makes Q come, his heels over Arjun’s shoulders and a pillow wedged under his arse to make him more comfortable, Q says he has to go.
“I’ve got to be at work really early,” he says, truthfully.
“The never-sleeping world of finance capital.” Arjun smiles at him. “Want me to get you an Uber?”
“That’s all right.”
“Chris,” Arjun says as Q turns to go, “you will think about what I asked?”
Q leans in and gives him a kiss. “I will,” he says, and that’s the truth, too.
Q breathes in the chill night air before putting his fingertips up to the security box outside his elevator. He thinks he can still feel Arjun’s kiss on his lips, a little bit, though maybe he’s just tipsy still from the wine. Could he do this? he wonders, as the doors open, and then there’s an arm at his throat and a hand around his wrists and as the doors close James Bond pins him against the metal wall.
“Bond,” Q gasps, the arm at his neck strong and unmoving. He struggles a little and Bond’s grip on his wrists tightens.
“No more,” Bond growls. “You’re not to sleep with other people anymore, Q.”
Q goes limp with shock. “I…what?”
Bond steps away, eyeing him warily. Q brings a hand up to his neck and rubs against the place where Bond had him pinned.
“No more, Q,” Bond says.
“And…and you?” Q asks. He’s still reeling. “Are you allowed to—”
“Of course,” Bond says, impatient. “It’s my job.”
“And when you’re not working?”
Bond stares at him. “Yes, Q. I will continue to fuck whomever I please, mission or no.”
A little burst of anger flares up in Q. “And that’s fair why, exactly?”
Bond curls his lip. “Fair? Does fairness get you off? Is that what does it? Sweet, gentle, equitable lovemaking? That’s what gets you hard, is it, Chris?”
“Fuck you,” Q says quietly. He isn’t, he isn’t just a little bit aroused by his fake name in Bond’s mouth.
“I could slap you for saying that to me,” Bond says, “and you’d like it.”
Q looks away. Bond isn’t, god help him, wrong. But this isn’t the way it’s going to work.
“I like him,” Q says.
Bond snorts. “The only reason you don’t fall asleep while he’s pushing sweetly, gently into you is because you’ve been getting slapped around and fucked six ways from Sunday and you know you can come back to me on your knees and get what you want whenever you need it. Without that he’d leave you cold, sweetheart, dead cold.”
Q stares at Bond, feeling like he really has been slapped.
Bond smirks. “Oh, did you think you’d changed?”
Q turns away. He thinks about making a break for it, punching the Doors Open button before Bond stops him and running out into the freezing London night, but he knows there’s no point.
“Listen,” he says, feeling suddenly weary. “I’m not—I’m not necessarily saying no, Bond.” He takes a breath. “It’s convenient for you if I’m always available, and you like telling me what to do, so. Fine. And I won’t pretend that I don’t get off on the idea. Of, of being your—toy. To play with and pick up whenever you want. But it’s…this is real for me, Bond, what you’re asking, it’s not just a game. It affects my whole life. It changes how my life is going to look.”
Bond watches him, something unreadable flitting into his eyes as Q speaks. When Q falls silent Bond turns away, slowly, and looks at the blank metal wall.
“This is not just about…convenience,” he says.
Q almost doesn’t hear him. Bond’s words sound more than reluctant, like he’s pulling them out into the air with great effort. Q’s heart stutters into overtime.
“What, then?” he asks, voice far steadier than he feels.
Bond squares his shoulders then, and meets Q’s gaze. “Because if I sleep with other people, there’s no risk of that changing what you and I do. But if you sleep with other people…” he hesitates, “you might stop sleeping with me.”
Q takes each word in, turns it around, weighs it. Looks at it from every angle, to make sure he understands. Then he pulls his mobile from his pocket and dials Arjun’s number.
“Hi there. Yes, I—sorry I woke you. Arjun, I just…I can’t. I’m not—”
And Bond’s hands are on him, at his trousers, reaching through his coat for his zip. Q strangles a gasp and tries to push Bond away; in retaliation Bond bites down on Q’s neck.
“—ready, I’m not ready for a relationship right now. I’m sorry, Arjun, I—no, I don’t think we should talk—I just—I have to go. I’m sor—”
Before he can get out the rest of the apology Bond wrests the phone from his hand and hangs up, tossing it to the floor.
“Bond,” Q says, a surprise of a laugh bubbling up like gas in his stomach, “he’s a nice man—”
“And you’re a filthy, needy slut who’d rather swallow a load of come than a dish of crème anglais. Yes, I was following you, and you know you don’t deserve him.”
Q inhales sharply, shocked and suddenly achingly hard. “No, I don’t,” he whispers, as Bond pulls down his trousers.
“What do you deserve, Chris?”
“Whatever you’d like to give me,” he gasps out, and Bond picks him up by his waist and slams him against the back of the elevator.
“That’s right,” Bond says, “and you have a lot to make up for. Suck.”
He lets Q’s feet land back on the floor and shoves his hand into Q’s mouth. Q does his best to close his lips around Bond’s thick fingers, drool dripping out as he gags and gags.
“Take it for me,” Bond grunts. He presses up against Q and his clothed cock is hard on Q’s bare leg. “Go on, take it.”
Q takes it. He takes it when Bond thrusts his fingers down Q’s throat so far Q nearly spits up, and he takes it when Bond reaches down and pulls his pubic hair so hard Q screams. He takes it when Bond gets him on his knees and primal and animal-like fucks him from behind. And he takes it when Bond wraps his fingers too tight around Q’s cock and squeezes and squeezes until Q’s spasming and shooting, thick white pulses hitting the floor as Q shudders his way through an anguished orgasm. “Take it,” Bond breathes, as the last bit of come slides weakly from Q’s cock, and Q does.
The next time a man tries to pick Q up at a bar, Q pictures Bond’s hand around Q’s neck and smiles.
“I’m spoken for,” he says. “You’d better move along.”