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beyond the pleasure principle

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If she falls asleep at all-- rarely-- she always wakes up before dawn. It's amusing, in a way, he'd imagine, and that's what he thinks of when he asks, "what exactly do you think will happen if you stay longer?"

Her shirt is already over her head, in seconds, faster each time with practice, the expanse of her bare legs he last remembers wrapped around him, disappearing beneath rough denim, and now, just a button undone, her smile tight as she says, "let's never find out."



-



It starts as comfort. She needs it, and maybe he has some to spare. Which is the hero version of the story. The regular, pedestrian version is that it starts as sex. She seduces him, according to the victim version. In the villain version he takes advantage of her vulnerability, because, well, he's not that guy who wouldn't. Guys like him, always do. 

The sprawling, epic version is, as it's bound to be in the sea of variables, the constant-- it starts.

And anyway, he was always the choose-your-own-adventure kinda guy.



-



She talks shop sometimes when her clothes are off and he's been silent too long, staring too hard, and she's just starting to get uncomfortable. Somewhere at the back of his head, he semi-knows complicated designs for radios and revolvers and water purifying systems, and some things he's never even heard of, and he only gets as far as hasn't anybody ever told you before he shuts up and kisses her instead, and he can feel her breathe a sigh of relief against his lips.

Familiarity breeds contempt, he's heard, but honestly, familiarity only breeds familiarity. Her skin is always salty, dust-coated from the day. But he's waited his entire life to be here, on the ground, to taste the air that now clings to her body, he's not about to complain.



-



The bullet wound still hurts her leg, on occasion, and he slows down whenever she makes an inadvertent grimace and bites back the sound of pain, and doesn't oblige when she says harder through gritted teeth, because yeah, he's not that guy, but sometimes he likes to mix it up just to keep it confusing. He definitely is that guy.



-



This is something he knows: Raven always wants to be on top, which is...the least surprising thing in the history of unsurprising things.

That he lets her-- the hero version; that he likes it-- the nonfiction version-- is, yeah, that's something else.



-



The day she looks at Finn and smiles the way she used to, before, Bellamy makes love to her because it's the only adequate revenge he can think of. He's not set to playing second lead in his own story. He's not that guy either.

She catches on pretty quick, and when he spreads her thighs, she just says don't you dare, shooter, a warning in her eyes, gone carefully blank, and she's out of his tent before he next blinks. Which is fitting in a way, he'd imagine, a bookend.



-



"That almost helped," she says, once, possibly accidentally, teasing, and then adds in a maybe almost immediately because apparently that's how fucking terrified she is of him making meaning out of things she never even said.

He flips her off, and she laughs, which is not a bookend, but for what it's worth, he doesn't really care.