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The Waiting Is the Hardest Part

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Enjolras gives Grantaire a distasteful look as soon as he lets himself into the back room of the Musain, but Grantaire just rolls his eyes and ignores it as he makes his way to his customary table with Bahorel and Jehan. God knows what he did to earn their fearless leader's ire this time, but there's always something. He's a few minutes late because of the buses, which is reason enough for Enjolras to give him dirty looks.

Bahorel nudges him with an elbow and cracks a joke as Grantaire drops into his seat, and Grantaire lets the conversation distract him as Enjolras clears his throat significantly and makes a point of getting back to what he had been saying.

When the meeting's over and the others are making their way out, Grantaire fusses with his bag and his wine bottle, swearing as he sends it rolling across the table and off the other side to be lost on the floor amongst the forest of chair and table legs.

As soon as the last of their group has finished his good-byes to Enjolras and left, the thump of his footsteps disappearing down the hall, Grantaire stops his chase of the errant wine bottle and looks up at Enjolras from where he's crouched on the floor, grinning. "Alone at last."

Enjolras huffs and rolls his eyes, but a hint of a smile pulls at the corner of his mouth.

Grantaire straightens, abandoning the bottle, and moves toward him.

Enjolras edges back, a frown pulling at his brows. "No, don't try that, R. I'm irritated with you."

"Oh Lord, you're always irritated with me. What is it this time? My tardiness? The wine on my breath? The soup stain I wasn't able to wash out of my shirt? I'd have gone home and changed for you, but then I'd have been even later."

Enjolras lets out a sharp sigh that rattles as it trails off, the one he uses when he's truly irritated, but not actually worked up to angry yet. "Do you think you could try to be on time, once in a while?"

The smile falls off of Grantaire's face, replaced by a frown of his own. "Do you think I don't? The buses—"

"I think, if this truly mattered to you, you'd take greater pains to make sure of it. I think you'd be surprised at what you're capable of, if you actually applied yourself to it. But you don't, you never do, because what we do here doesn't matter to you. You've other priorities that take precedence. I bet you couldn't even go one week without showing up here late with some excuse or another."

He seems to realize what it was he's said almost as soon as the words are out of his mouth. His eyes go a little wide and his expression shifts toward consternation.

Grantaire raises his brows and waits to see if he's going to recant, if he's going to back-track and try to make it out to be less than it was. After a moment, though, his expression hardens with resolve, so Grantaire asks, "Bet me what, then?"

"A boon of my choice, to be decided when--"

"If."

"--when you fail."

"That's hardly fair. I'm not going to agree to a bet when I don't even know what the stakes are, when you could ask me for anything."

"You wouldn't be so worried about it if you didn't know as well as I do that you'll fail."

Enjolras is in rare form tonight, pushing every button that Grantaire has. He hisses out a sharp breath. "Fine," he snaps. "Why don't we see you put your money where your mouth is and take on a wager of your own, then?"

Enjolras scoffs. "Showing up on time is hardly a bet worth making. I don't have an issue with punctuality."

"No. You're right." Grantaire moves toward him, closing the distance with measured steps until he stands right before him, toe to toe. And he smiles, slow and sharp. "It's only fair that if you're going to challenge me, I get to choose a wager that challenges you in return."

Wariness slips into Enjolras's expression. He looks Grantaire over like he can find some hint there as to what Grantaire's thinking, what he might intend to propose.

Grantaire leans in and breathes close against Enjolras's ear, "One week. Seven days. No orgasms."

Enjolras pulls back and frowns at him, but Grantaire just smiles, brows lifted, expression saying, Well?

The others in their group might think that Enjolras is celibate, might make jokes about his only romantic interest being his cause, but Grantaire knows better. They've been fucking for months, and Grantaire's quickly learned that Enjolras approaches sex the way he does everything else in his life -- with fervor, with single-minded focus and dedicated passion. He likes sex, and this will be as much of a challenge for him as time management will be for Grantaire.

He knows it, too. It's obvious on his face. His caution just makes Grantaire's grin sharpen, and it's that that pushes Enjolras over.

"Fine," he snaps. "One week. And if--"

"When," Grantaire says with a laugh.

"If you win, then what?"

"Same as you. A boon of my choice, to be decided at the time of victory."

Enjolras doesn't look as comfortable with that arrangement now that he's on the other end of it, but after a moment he draws himself up, pulls his shoulders back, and meets Grantaire's eye with his own steely gaze. "All right, then. A week for each of us. Seven days, starting... now?"

Grantaire thinks about it a moment, lets his gaze slide over Enjolras from head to toe and back again. He's tense and vibrating with a purpose, and Grantaire has always liked him best this way. He grins and slides in again, slips a hand onto the small of Enjolras's back and uses it to pull him in until their hips are pressed together and Enjolras's breath goes short. "That's hardly fair to you, when I don't even risk failure until our next meeting. Tomorrow's meeting, shall we say?" He skims his lips up Enjolras's neck and laughs quietly against his skin when Enjolras tips his head back on a sigh. "From the start of the meeting tomorrow to the start of the meeting a week hence. That makes it easy enough to remember. And it gives us some time yet."

"Some time to do what?" Enjolras asks, disingenuous.

Grantaire grabs him, his hands curving underneath his thighs and lifting him up, his back against the wall and his hips pressed tight to Grantaire's as Enjolras wraps his legs around Grantaire's waist. Enjolras turns his face up to the ceiling and Grantaire latches on to his neck, sucking a bruise there that'll last nearly as long as the wager will.

Celibacy for Enjolras means celibacy for Grantaire as well. But they've some time left, and Grantaire intends to make the most of it.

#

A week of taking pains not to be late mostly means a week of showing up to their meetings ridiculously early, and sitting around with little to do but sketch and irritate Enjolras while he prepares for the meeting and they wait for the others to arrive.

It's godawful boring, or he's pretty sure it would be, except that Enjolras seems to be struggling with his half of the wager just as much. The first day, he shoots Grantaire glances that aren't circumspect at all, but stays where he is at his own table at the front, his jaw tight, the bet still fresh in his mind and his determination strong.

The second day, Grantaire shows up an hour early because he didn't trust the buses from his work with any smaller a margin for error, and Enjolras manages to hold out half an hour before an argument brings him in close and suddenly his hands are on Grantaire's hips and his mouth on his neck and he's biting off oaths against Grantaire's skin. He wrenches himself away after a few dizzying kisses, gives Grantaire a dark look like his libido is all Grantaire's fault, and then retreats back across the room to resume his work.

Four days in finds Grantaire bent back over his table, Enjolras a solid weight above him as he works a hand down Grantaire's pants and snarls against his ear that it'd be no less than what he deserves if Enjolras left him hard and aching and unfulfilled.

The fifth day, Grantaire gets to the Musain forty-five minutes early and kills half an hour smoking outside until Jehan shows up with Bossuet in tow, because contrary to popular belief, he is not actually trying to make Enjolras's head explode.

On the very last day of the wager, the skies open up and sleet pelts down and there is absolutely no way that public transportation is going to get him anywhere in anything resembling a timely fashion, so when he gets off work, he trudges the mile distance to Enjolras's apartment and pounds on the door until Enjolras finally tears it open, looking irritated and startled and alarmed by turns. "Grantaire?"

"In the flesh." Now that he's not moving, the chill overtakes him, and he shivers violently. "The weather's crap, if you haven't noticed, it'd take me five hours to get across town on the buses in conditions like these. Can I bum a ride?"

Enjolras backs away, swinging the door open wide. "Jesus Christ, get inside. You look like you're about to turn into an icicle. Your coat's drenched, take it off, it's not doing you any favors."

Grantaire steps inside the apartment and starts shedding his sodden layers, coat and scarf and the sweater underneath, which hasn't been soaked through but is damp enough to make him shiver. He's left in just his shirt and his jeans, which are soaking wet from the knee down, where his coat didn't cover.

Enjolras gives them a long look, then shakes his head. "No, take them off, or you're going to catch your death."

Grantaire frowns and pulls at the wet denim. "You're not my size."

"I'll throw them all in the dryer, we've got time to wait for them to dry out. There are blankets on the couch you can wrap up in."

"In my underwear?" Grantaire asks with a lift of his brow and a crooked cant to his lips.

Enjolras just give him a flat look. "I've seen you in less."

So Grantaire shrugs and toes off his shoes and his squelching socks, and twists his hips as he pushes the wet jeans off his hips. He doesn't time it intentionally, he's thinking more about the gooseflesh pimpling his arms than about their bet, but all the same, he's shimmying out just as Enjolras comes out of the kitchen with a cup of steaming coffee, and it makes him stop in his tracks, his eyes going a little wide and his breath coming a little sharp.

"There are other ways to warm me up, of course," Grantaire says with a waggle of his eyebrows, because he's constitutionally incapable of ignoring Enjolras looking at him with that sort of expression.

He doesn't mean it as an honest temptation. And Enjolras doesn't seem to take it as one, just rolls his eyes and comes over to the couch to give Grantaire the coffee. Grantaire's fingers graze against his as he grasps the mug, and Enjolras's gaze meets his and holds. And the next thing Grantaire knows, the coffee's on the side table and Enjolras is gripping his hand, climbing up over Grantaire to straddle his lap and press his back into the couch.

"Fuck," he mutters as he presses his free hand to Grantaire's chest. "You're cold as ice."

"It's a sleet storm out there, Apollo, what do you expect?" He arches up into the pressure of Enjolras's palm, wonders if he can feel Grantaire's heart tripping beneath his touch. "Warm me up," he breathes, and this time, it's definitely meant to tempt.

Enjolras shuts his eyes and leans his forehead against Grantaire's shoulder, his shoulders heaving. He looks like he's fighting for control, and Grantaire should help him with it, should shiver and make a crack about the cold and pull the blankets over himself so Enjolras can keep focused, but he's here and he's so warm and it's been a week. He's only human.

He frees his hand from Enjolras's and hooks both around the back of his neck, thumbs braced along the edge of his jaw to tip his face up, to guide him up and into a kiss that starts sweet and slides straight into filthy, all tongues and teeth and breaths gasped out into each other's mouths.

Grantaire's already practically naked and Enjolras is still wearing far too much, sweater and pants and socks and shoes, bundled up against the cold and in preparation of venturing out into it. Grantaire keeps one hand curved around the back of Enjolras's neck, holding him in place in the kiss, and moves the other down to slide beneath his sweater and seek out the warm skin of his stomach.

Enjolras's breath stutters against his lips. He rocks into Grantaire's touch, and uses the movement to grind their hips together. Grantaire only has the thin cotton of his boxers covering his cock, and he's already half hard from having Enjolras above him like this, warm and close in a way they haven't had for a week. He drops his head back and groans. He keeps his hand low on Enjolras's stomach, feeling the way the muscles tighten and shiver for him, but slips the other to Enjolras's hip, where he can grip his belt loops and use them to wrench Enjolras in again, until they're both groaning.

"Take them off," Grantaire snaps, pulling and pushing at Enjolras's clothes. "God. Off."

Enjolras sits back, putting his weight back onto his haunches, onto Grantaire's thighs. He grabs the back of his sweater and hauls it off over his head, and Grantaire hums happily as the strong expanse of his stomach and chest is bared to him.

He reaches for Grantaire's shirt next, fingers curling in the thin fabric. Grantaire has to lean forward off the back of the couch for Enjolras to be able to get it up. It brings them in close, presses them together from shoulders to hips. It makes Enjolras's breath come a little faster, makes his gaze drop and heat with appreciation, makes him scramble off of Grantaire's lap and slide down between his knees, kneeling on the floor as he pulls at Grantaire's boxers in sharp demand.

Grantaire lifts his hips off the couch for him, helpless to do anything but. Enjolras pulls them down and off, then catches Grantaire's hips in his hands and pulls them to the edge of the couch cushions, so he can lean forward and swallow Grantaire down into the wet, eager heat of his mouth.

Grantaire swears, a string of them falling off his lips as Enjolras uses his tongue, licks long stripes up Grantaire's cock and swallows him down again. He hums in the back of his throat like he's pleased and Grantaire nearly comes up off the couch, one hand going tight in Enjolras's hair.

"Fuck," he mutters. "Fuck. Enjolras--"

Enjolras pulls off of him long enough to smile at him, something bent and more than a little wicked. He wraps his lips around the head of Grantaire's cock and sucks

Grantaire can't help but buck up against him, fucking into his mouth. And Enjolras, god help him, Enjolras just lets him, opens his throat and takes him and Grantaire is lost, grabbing handfuls of Enjolras's hair and just taking him.

He's a breath away from coming when he fights himself back, uses the fingers twisted in Enjolras's hair to ease him back and then sits there, gasping and shuddering. He squeezes his eyes shut and tries to master himself.

Enjolras makes an unhappy sound and pulls against his grip. "Christ," Grantaire breathes. "Give me a second."

"I don't want to," Enjolras snaps with a peevish look, and, since Grantaire won't let go of him, wraps a hand around his cock and strokes him instead.

Grantaire chokes on a sound and tries to grab him to still him, but that loosens his grip on Enjolras's hair enough for him to bend forward and lap at his cock again, and Grantaire is gone, hips thrusting forward as he comes. Enjolras swallows down every drop.

When his orgasm releases him from its grip, Grantaire slumps down onto the couch, gasping. Enjolras is still between his thighs, looking immensely pleased with himself. He never even got his own pants off, for fuck's sake.

Grantaire hooks a hand under his arm and pulls him up with it. Enjolras comes, kneeling over him again, but clicks his tongue and leans back when Grantaire starts pulling at the button and zipper of his fly. "Ah-ah," he says, scolding but smiling through it. "There's a bet on still. You're not going to make me give in so easily."

"Oh, is there? I'd nearly forgotten." When Enjolras keeps twisting his hips away from Grantaire's attempts to work his pants open, he settles instead for slipping his hand inside them and grazing his fingers over Enjolras's cock.

Enjolras hisses and pushes into his touch before he recalls himself, and shifts back.

"I could return the favor," Grantaire offers, and bites at his lips so Enjolras takes his meaning.

In all honesty, he's not thinking about the bet at all, only the fact that it's been seven days since he's been able to have Enjolras like this, and he misses it terribly, and the idea of being able to get his mouth on Enjolras's cock is one that sends a bolt of anticipation right through him. He curves his fingers around Enjolras's cock, as best he can with his pants getting in the way, and sucks at the side of his throat.

Enjolras shudders in his grasp and caves, listing forward, his weight pressing into Grantaire. "Well," he says, already breathless but fighting not to sound like it. "Midnight isn't so far away. I suppose we can keep each other occupied, until then."

Grantaire grabs anew at Enjolras's fly, and this time, he lets him open it, lets him push his pants and his underwear down his thighs until Enjolras has no choice but to climb off Grantaire's lap so they can get them off the rest of the way.

And then they're both naked, Enjolras standing between Grantaire's knees while he reclines on the couch, and the sight of him steals all the breath from Grantaire's lungs. It feels like it's been a year since he's gotten to look his fill like this, rather than a week. He sits up, folding his legs beneath him so he can rise up onto his knees, and leans forward to trail a hand over Enjolras's stomach, up to caress the muscles of his abs and chest, down to stroke over the scratchy hair on his thighs. He lets out an unsteady breath and leans in, face pressed low on Enjolras's stomach where he can breathe in the smell of him.

Enjolras makes a low sound and curves his hand around the back of Grantaire's head. He doesn't grip or try to direct, just leaves his hand there, holding on while Grantaire turns his head and his lips find Enjolras's cock.

Enjolras shudders. His hands close on Grantaire's hair, just tight enough to hurt. This week has been hardest on him, Grantaire thinks. At least Grantaire has been able to jerk off in the privacy of his own home, brief and unsatisfying though it may be.

Enjolras could have, too, and Grantaire would be none the wiser. But Enjolras isn't the sort to stretch the rules and then keep quiet about it. When he rebels, he does so loudly and obviously. He'd have told Grantaire of his failure, if he'd given in to his baser desires.

He's hard as iron in Grantaire's hand, and precome wells up from the tip of his cock and drips down it every time Enjolras closes his eyes and shudders at the touch of Grantaire's mouth. Grantaire laps them up, savoring the burst of salt and bitterness on his tongue like it's the finest delicacy. He circles his tongue around the head of Enjolras's cock, tracing the bundle of nerves that makes it most sensitive, and is rewarded by Enjolras's breathless curse and the tighter pull of his hand in Grantaire's hair, pulling him back, pulling him off.

Grantaire doesn't pout, not like Enjolras did. He sits back on his haunches and looks up at him, waiting to see what he'll say. He knows Enjolras well enough to know he won't send him away, not at this point. They're too far gone for that, now.

Enjolras breathes for a moment, just breathes, his chest shuddering with each one until finally they even out. "Bed," he says, and that's enough.

Grantaire scrambles off the couch, catches Enjolras's hand in his and pulls Enjolras along with him, down the hall to his bedroom, where he hesitates just long enough to turn the lights on and get the lay of the land before he pulls Enjolras over to the bed itself.

Enjolras pushes him down onto it, tries to climb over him and take control back, but Grantaire twists beneath him and flips him onto his back, then bends low and sucks Enjolras's cock into his mouth before he can regain the upper hand.

Grantaire drives him on mercilessly, his mouth brutal and fast, his hand stroking along the shaft or slipping down to stroke over Enjolras's balls. Every bust of salt on the back of his tongue is a vindication, and when Enjolras finally swears and jerks him back off his cock, Grantaire's grinning and panting.

"I'm not going to be tricked into giving up the bet that easily," he says. Grantaire thinks he means to look and sound ferocious about it, but his eyes have gone glassy and dark with want, and his gaze drops to Grantaire's mouth and holds there like he's mesmerized, and the words lose much of their power.

"We could stop," Grantaire suggests, a gamble, because he may not be hard again yet but there's already interest stirring in is belly enough that he'll be disappointed if they call an end to this now.

Enjolras's brows crease. He looks none too pleased by that suggestion, much to Grantaire's pleasure.

"Or..." Grantaire lets the word trail off, suggestive, as he slides a hand up the inside of Enjolras's thigh. He presses his fingers between Enjolras's cheeks, seeking out the tight pucker of his entrance, and smiles fiercely when the lightest touch punches the air out of Enjolras's lungs.

"Yes." He breathes it out on a groan and shifts on the bed, spreading his knees wider, making it easier for Grantaire. "Do it."

Enjolras doesn't beg or plead, not for anything. He just demands like it's his due, and Grantaire loves it. He grins hard and leans across Enjolras to grab his lube and condoms from where he keeps them in the bedside table, then nudges his knees even farther apart so he can settle down on his elbows between them and get in close.

He laps at Enjolras's cock as he works to get the bottle open and his fingers slick. Enjolras makes choked-off, aborted sounds at the touch of his mouth, his hips flexing almost imperceptibly before he forces himself still. Grantaire grins and scrapes his teeth over skin, very very carefully.

It makes Enjolras go wild, air exploding violently out of his lungs, his head thrown back to release all the sounds he's been fighting to keep in. Grantaire waits until he's settled enough to stop squirming all over the place, then presses one slick finger against his entrance and rubs careful circles there.

He loves watching the way Enjolras falls apart beneath him. It's always been his favorite thing about having sex with him, the way he starts off fierce with a determined light in his eye, like he's not going to be made to show his hand this time, and then starts the slow slide into wanton need even from the very first kiss.

Grantaire kisses down and sucks Enjolras's balls into his mouth, each in turn, as he keeps his finger moving, stroking around and around until Enjolras gives a long, reluctant sigh and starts to relax beneath him. Just a little bit, but it's enough, enough that he can start to work the tip of his finger inside and make it good for him.

He breathes evenly through the first finger, each breath careful and measured. His hands curl into the blankets beneath him when Grantaire gets past the first knuckle, and a slight tremor runs through his thighs when Grantaire seats the whole length of his finger inside him and twists it carefully, but his breath stays regular.

Grantaire slides his finger out and back in again a few times, fucking Enjolras with it, until Enjolras makes a sound in the back of his throat that sounds like frustration. He pulls out of Enjolras entirely, then, and soothes his demanding growl with kisses pressed to his skin, his tongue testing out the muscle where it's begun to relax and stretch, keeping Enjolras preoccupied while he adds more lube to his fingers.

And then he returns, two slick fingertips pressed against Enjolras's hole, and Enjolras's careful breathing goes ragged and sharp. He throws an arm over his eyes like it's too much to bear, and Grantaire watches him carefully as he works them in together.

It's always a revelation, watching the pleasure dawn and crest over Enjolras's face, cataloguing all the ways it transforms him. He throws a leg over Grantaire's shoulder, and Grantaire grins against his skin and catches him under the knee, pushes it up against his chest a little for the way it opens him up more, bares him to Grantaire's gaze, but mostly because he knows Enjolras enjoys the idea of being bent in half, and it brings him that much closer to falling apart.

When Enjolras slides a hand down his stomach to curl fingers around his cock, Grantaire muffles his laughter against the soft skin at the inside of Enjolras's thigh, then swats Enjolras's hand away and clicks his tongue. "Ah-ah. You're not going to throw in the towel on your wager already, are you?"

"Fuck you," Enjolras snarls. "And fuck your wager."

Grantaire just laughs more, breath gusting against his skin, and twists his fingers in deeper. "Ready to know what it is I'll ask of you, in exchange for losing?" He doesn't even know himself yet, didn't dare start planning for Enjolras's failure in advance because Enjolras rarely fails at anything he puts his mind to. He figures inspiration will come to him in the moment, if it comes to it.

That time has not yet come, though. All Grantaire's teasing does is make Enjolras's jaw tighten and his hands turn white-knuckled where they grab at the blankets. So Grantaire pushes his fingers in deeper and curves them until he finds the place that makes Enjolras go wild, makes him thrash and hiss air out through his teeth and toss his head upon the pillow like it's all far too much to bear.

"Stop," he chokes out after enduring it for a minute, and reaches one hand down to grab at Grantaire's wrist. "It's too much. R, stop."

Grantaire stops. He lets Enjolras have a minute, and then another, with just the stretch of his fingers inside him and the small pleasure of the kisses that Grantaire leaves in a trail up the back of his thigh. Grantaire waits, trembling a little, until Enjolras sighs and some of the tension slips out of him, and his fingers go lax around Grantaire's wrist.

He starts moving again slowly, tiny little motions in and out, just a slight rocking until Enjolras starts to respond with a hum of pleasure in the back of his throat and the clench of his muscles around Grantaire's fingers. Grantaire adds more lube and it's easy now, a slick, easy glide. Grantaire sucks at the skin behind Enjolras's knee and pulls away enough to ask, "Ready for another?"

Enjolras groans like he knows the wager is already lost, and pulls his arm off his eyes to rub his hand over them instead. Grantaire wonders if he'll refuse, if he'll call an end to this and wait out the end of the week. But when Enjolras speaks, his voice gone hoarse with need, all he says is, "Yes."

Grantaire is careful with the third, is slower, making sure that Enjolras has relaxed enough to take them before pushing them in any further. Enjolras's shoulders are heaving with great, shuddering breaths by the time Grantaire's worked them in to the last knuckles, his cock scarlet where it lies dripping on his stomach, his face and throat and chest flushed a vibrant red that makes Grantaire want to kiss and bite every inch of it.

He eases his fingers out, despite the unhappy noises Enjolras makes about it, and reaches with unsteady hands to tear one of the condom wrappers open and roll it down over his cock.

Enjolras pushes up on one elbow to watch him, his eyes bright as they follow the movements of Grantaire's fingers. When Grantaire's finished and has slicked lube over himself, he catches Enjolras's other leg beneath the knee and pushes that one up, too, as he gets into place. Enjolras's eyes are infernos, and they burn into Grantaire as he fits the head of his cock to Enjolras's entrance and shifts his weight forward, just the slightest bit of pressure to start easing him open.

Enjolras pants as Grantaire slides into him, his chest heaving and his mouth gone slack, gaping open. Grantaire shifts his weight, leaning forward to press kisses against the corner of his mouth, to lap inside and swallow the sounds he makes before they're ever given voice.

Enjolras's hands release from the blankets, only for him to wrap his arms around Grantaire's back and grab on just as hard to him there, fingers biting into his skin, leaving bruises. It just makes Grantaire grin against the kiss, makes him flex his hips and slide in a little deeper as he takes the kiss a little harder.

When he's buried, balls-deep and unable to go any further, he draws back, lifting up onto his elbows so he can watch Enjolras's face, so he can witness the transformation when he slides out almost all the way, and then back in with one smooth, easy glide.

His face is eloquent, showing every flicker of pleasure and surprise. Grantaire bites at his chin and fucks him again, keeping everything slow and careful.

Usually, they fuck like animals, wild and frantic whenever the need builds up between them too high to be contained. Usually it's gasped breaths and growled demands and both of them grappling with one another to be on top, to drive the other one pell-mell to orgasm. But that's not what Grantaire wants now. He could let go and fuck Enjolras wildly, could send him careening off the precipice and into his climax, but he'd rather take his time and guide Enjolras there, one slow, inexorable step at a time, until he stands there at the peak knowing what the stakes are, and makes the choice to fall. He wants to take Enjolras apart.

He laps at Enjolras's neck as he moves in him, murmurs there against his skin, against his ear, "Shouldn't have made me come first. Now I've got the stamina to match you."

And Enjolras moans, a little bit wild and a little bit lost.

Grantaire keeps each stroke slow and deep, wringing sounds out of Enjolras with every movement. He throws his head back on the pillows, groaning, panting. He's gorgeous like this, in a way Grantaire rarely has a chance to appreciate when they're fucking desperately. A flush crawls up his throat and across his chest, his eyes are gone glassy and dark, and every muscle strains in sharp relief as he tightens beneath Grantaire. Grantaire kisses him, keeping it light, teasing him with it, until Enjolras sighs and makes a frustrated sound for Grantaire to lick off his lips.

When Enjolras shifts, pushing a hand between them and down to where his cock is trapped between his stomach and Grantaire's, Grantaire pulls back and stops, clucking his tongue. "Come on, now." He catches Enjolras's hand by the wrist and guides it away, presses his hand into the sheets. "You're not going to give up that easy, are you?"

"Fuck the wager," Enjolras snarls. His eyes fly abruptly open, like he's startled even himself with it. "I want-- I need you to-- Christ, Grantaire." He shudders violently beneath Grantaire's weight. He's so close. Grantaire keeps himself very still, so he won't send Enjolras off unintentionally.

When Enjolras catches Grantaire's gaze, his eyes burn with a fervent intensity. He twists his wrist in Grantaire's grasp, turning his hand around so he can grab on to Grantaire in return, like they're holding on to each other now rather than Grantaire holding him down. "What do you want?" he asks on a rush, his gaze probing Grantaire's. "If I lose. If I come. You get to ask me for something. What is it? What do you want?"

Grantaire hadn't really been counting on Enjolras losing the bet. Enjolras was always so dedicated to whatever it was he set his mind to, there hadn't seemed to be much of a pressing need for Grantaire to decide on his request, because he was sure it would be moot anyway. He stares down at Enjolras, scrambling for something, for anything. And when it comes to him, it does so too quick for him to second-guess the wisdom of it. "Go on a date with me," he gasps, and shudders inside of Enjolras.

Enjolras goes very still beneath him. His mouth gapes open and shut soundlessly for a moment and his brows knit. When Grantaire moves in him, a shallow thrust to test his reaction, to see if he'll give in to the pleasure now that he knows what he'd be agreeing to, Enjolras squeezes his eyes shut and curls his hands into fists.

Grantaire pulls out and slides into him again, a little deeper this time. Enjolras sucks in air, then lets it out on a string of whispered oaths. His stomach muscles jump beneath the hand Grantaire rests there to brace himself as he fucks into him.

And Grantaire realizes what he's doing with a sudden burst of clarity and agony. He's fighting it. He'd been ready to give in and let himself come, and finding out that the price he'd have to pay for it would be a date had instead renewed his determination to resist.

Grantaire squeezes his eyes shut against the burn of disappointment and presses his face into Enjolras's shoulder, freezing inside of him. He has to breathe through it. He reminds himself that he'd always known he wasn't lucky enough to have this. He'd just grown complacent and forgotten. He's always known it was the greatest miracle he could expect that Enjolras was willing to be with him even like this, when it's just physical intimacy and mutual gratification. He shouldn't have tried his luck, or showed his hand.

Enjolras makes a sound beneath him that's somewhere between frustration and relief. He pushes at Grantaire's shoulder, and Grantaire would think that he meant he wanted Grantaire to stop and get off of him completely, if it weren't for the leg that Enjolras has wrapped around his hips, as tight as ever.

"What do you want?" Grantaire asks, and if the words are thick and a little pained, Enjolras doesn't seem to notice.

"Move."

"You'll come," he says, and drags a thumb up the vein on the underside of Enjolras's cock, to prove his point. Enjolras shudders and drips precome onto his stomach.

Enjolras shakes his head, his mouth set into a stubborn line. "I won't. Not yet. I swear I won't."

Grantaire wishes he could tell Enjolras how little he cares for that oath, how much he'd rather that Enjolras gave in and let himself come. Instead, he slips an arm beneath Enjolras's back, grasping him around the narrowest part, and pulls him up into Grantaire's next thrust. And then he does it again, and again, until they're fucking as wildly as they ever do, but this time Enjolras is squirming beneath him, his face scrunched up as he fights against the effects Grantaire's body has on his even as he begs for more.

Grantaire could almost regret having come once already. If he hadn't, he'd be as close to losing it as Enjolras is. He could let go, let himself come, and then let Enjolras go take a cold shower or whatever he wanted to do to take care of his erection so he could win his stupid bet.

But he's not that close, and he's too hopeless over Enjolras to be able to tear himself away now, better to have a fraction of what he wants than noting at all. He presses his face to Enjolras's shoulder, mouthing at his collarbone as he drives them both on.

When Enjolras reaches for his own cock again, Grantaire doesn't stop him. Let him jerk himself off, it'll only get this over with faster so Grantaire can slink off and go nurse his rejection wounds in private. But though Enjolras takes hold of himself, he doesn't stroke, just wraps his fingers tight around the base of his dick and holds on.

Grantaire realizes with a woozy sort of clarity that he's trying to hold it off, trying to keep his orgasm back this one last, desperate way. Grantaire groans and drags his thigh higher up on his hips, fucking into him harder until Enjolras rolls his head to the side and stares off at nothing with eyes gone wild and distant. And then he shuts his eyes and smiles like the cat who's got the cream, and his hand starts moving between them, pulling himself off with quick, sharp jerks.

It only takes half a dozen of them and then he's coming, shaking apart beneath Grantaire and swearing reverently. And Grantaire's coming, too, pulled over the edge with Enjolras, and it's all he can do to clasp Enjolras close and spend himself inside of him.

He takes his time coming down from the high, because once he does he knows he's going to have to leave, and the long, wet walk back to the bus stop is going to be hell when he's got only rejection for company. He and Enjolras fuck, it isn't anything more than that, and while Grantaire has occasionally spent the night before, when they fucked so late into the night that the buses stopped running, and it was silly for Grantaire to spend time getting home that could better be used for sleeping. But he feels it's important to have boundaries now, and clear lines of demarkation between what they are and what they'll never be. That starts with not spending the night.

When he starts trying to remove himself from the tangle of Enjolras's limbs, Enjolras holds on tight, and then starts laughing, low and soft, until Grantaire opens his eyes and frowns down at him. "What?"

Enjolras's lips curve into a brilliant smile. He's still got his head rolled to the side, still staring off at nothing. When he jerks his head, Grantaire follows his gaze, and realizes.

Not nothing. Enjolras is staring at the digital display of his alarm clock, glowing numbers informing them that it's a quarter past the hour. His smile spreads. "The meeting started."

Grantaire sits up and understands what he means. "You won your bet. Congratulations." His voice comes out sounding like wood and he can't help it. How can he be anything but hurt when Enjolras is clearly so elated at avoiding having to go on a date with Grantaire? He swings his legs off the side of the bed and goes to stand, so he can grab his clothes and dress and leave, the hell with the sleet.

Enjolras catches him by the elbow. Grantaire steels himself before turning to face him. He's still lying in the blankets, half his face mashed into the pillow, looking thoroughly content. "Yes. I won," he says. His hand tightens, pulling Grantaire back. "And you lost."

Grantaire swallows against the stone in his throat. It's hot and heavy and it hurts so bad. He just wants to be able to leave. "Yeah," he says, too harsh, too grudging. He's being a poor losing, but fuck it, he's got bigger priorities right now. "All right, tell me. What do you want? Another month of showing up to meetings on time? Some artwork for our next campaign? A promise that I'll help you guys with your canvassing when it comes time for it? One week of feigning enthusiasm for the cause—"

One quick, lithe movement has Enjolras rolled up onto his knees and pressing in against Grantaire, his arms around Grantaire's neck and the blanket sandwiched between them. "Go on a date with me," he breathes against Grantaire's lips, and kisses him while Grantaire is still jerking with surprise.

Grantaire kisses him back for the space of a few breaths, because he's not an idiot. But then he jerks back and holds Enjolras away. "What?"

Enjolras's smile pulls crooked and a little wry. He smooths his hands over the side of Grantaire's face. "You heard me. I know you heard me."

"But why would you—"

Enjolras kisses him again, hard, like he's trying to make a point. "Because," he says. "I didn't want you to think I went out with you because I had to, instead of because I wanted to."

"Oh," Grantaire says very faintly, and leans in against the solid strength of Enjolras's chest. "That's… good." It's very good. He shuts his eyes and wonders how long it's going to take him to start feeling like it's true. "Where do you— Oh fuck, the meeting." He opens his eyes again and stares at the clock and its glowing numbers burning their condemnation in vibrant red. "We're going to be so late for the meeting."

"We're going to miss the meeting," Enjolras says firmly, and pulls Grantaire down underneath him.

"I am such a bad influence," Grantaire says, dazed. He is definitely not going to come again any time soon, but it's nice just lying with Enjolras like this, with their skin pressed together keeping each other warm.

"You really are," Enjolras agrees, and grins like it's the best thing in the world.