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Sometimes the Shortest Path

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Eames was a consummate professional, no matter what anyone might claim to the contrary. That being said, he was also a human being, and he had normal human needs and desires.

A lot of people, mostly those new to the dream-share, tended to get the wrong idea about forgers. The fact was that there were not many with the proper temperament and skill set to forge. Not successfully, at any rate. Not properly. Eames knew several fools who claimed to be forgers who could barely put on a face other than their own, who couldn't have convincingly forged a real person even if they were given years to study and the mark was half blind.

He was something special and he was the cream of the crop. He knew this and he made sure that everyone he worked with knew it. Some thought this came off as arrogance, but it was merely a matter of making sure his colleagues knew they were getting their money's worth and then some when they hired him.

But even then, many still had the wrong idea. That being a forger meant Eames was somehow a prostitute for hire. That sex was the quickest and easiest way to distract the mark during any given extraction.

Well, that last might well be true, but damned if Eames was going down that road. And he refused to work a second time with anyone who asked it of him.

That was something that he appreciated about Arthur. The man might clash with him on a lot of the aspects of any job they were working together, he might deliver his rare compliments in a rather supercilious tone, but he understood how difficult Eames' job was, and he never asked more of him than Eames was willing to give.

That was what made this current situation so ironic.

It had started innocently enough. They'd mutually decided that the best way to get into the mark's mind would be for Eames to forge his co-worker, a lovely young woman that he clearly felt a great deal of affection toward. Eames hadn't been sure whether they were sleeping together, even once he'd gotten himself into a temporary position in their workplace in order to study her up close, but he was convinced that forging her was the way to go.

That was, until their mark cornered him in the copy room and kissed him breathless, tipping Eames' senses and his entire expectation of the job on its head.

For one brief moment Eames thought he might protest. He was a professional, dammit, and sex with a mark was not something he did.

But then he gave in, melted into the kiss, and willingly went to his knees. Here in the copy room they weren't a forger and a mark. It was Eames and Chris. And he liked Chris. He was tall, broad-shouldered and built, with piercing blue eyes and a chin covered with the scruff that Eames had had to shave off his own in pursuit of this temp job. The man had amazing muscles for someone who worked in an office, and when Eames had his huge cock in his mouth, their respective jobs were the last thing in his mind.

It was probably a sheer miracle that no one walked in on them, Eames thought. But the danger of potentially being caught only added to the arousal and he got himself off into his palm just a moment after Chris shot off on his tongue and down his throat.

With that moment of occasionally disturbing clarity that came in the wake of a good climax, Eames thought that he was going to have to completely restructure his approach to this job. Then Chris dragged him to his feet and locked lips with him again, and brain functions went offline for a while once again.

When Eames left the office for the day and headed to his meeting with Arthur, he had Chris' address in his pocket, and a foolproof plan in his mind. It just figured that the first roadblock he ran into was Arthur.

"Absolutely no way," Arthur snapped, when Eames had barely gotten his plan outlined.

"What?" Eames scowled. "It's perfect. This way we don't have to find a safe place to sedate him. He'll be at home, I get him dosed, he gets what he expected in the dream while you perform the extraction, and then--"

"No," Arthur repeated stubbornly, and far too vehemently in Eames' mind. "You are not using sex to distract the mark."

"Why are you rejecting a sure thing?" Eames demanded. It would have been nice if there'd been someone else on this job with them to arbitrate but they were pulling it alone, with Cobb's promise to pop in if he was truly needed, and so Eames had no one to back him up on the brilliance of his plan. "It's not as though I can use my forge of Nat; it's pretty obvious that she's not who he wants."

He paused a moment to preen. Because Chris could have had anyone he wanted, in or out of the office, he was that attractive. The fact that he'd wanted Eames... well, that was quite the coupe.

It would have been nice if Arthur would stop glaring at him as though he wanted to set him on fire, though.

"What?" Eames snapped, scowling back. "I've already sucked his cock. We're good to go. It's the perfect plan!"

Arthur winced at this, and Eames fought the urge to roll his eyes until it hurt. He hadn't pegged Arthur as homophobic, but one never knew. He generally tried to keep his own preferences quiet, but he'd thought Arthur would have sussed them out by now. Arthur did like to know the best and worst of anyone he worked with, after all, and sometimes that meant personal information as well as professional. Eames really didn't mind, though he had found it difficult to gain any information on Arthur on his own. Damned slippery bastard.

"Eames," Arthur said, and he was speaking slowly, looked almost pained for some reason. "You've always made it a point in the past to avoid using sex, aside from some heavy flirting, in any job you work, any forgery you do. Why are you changing that now?"

Eames blinked, because he hadn't really realized that Arthur had noticed. He ought to have known, he supposed.

"Well...." He shrugged and grinned a little sheepishly, not wanting to give too much away, but unable to deny that the truth was probably the best approach this time. "I'm going to sleep with Chris anyhow. So why shouldn't we use it as a chance to pull off this extraction?"

He wasn't sure why Arthur suddenly looked as though he wanted to kill someone, or whether it was him Arthur wanted to kill, but the important thing was that this argument worked.

"Fine," Arthur snarled, rising to his feet. "You can get everything set up. Just let me know when you need me."

And then he stormed out of the room, leaving Eames feeling very confused, and a little disconcerted.

But he had permission, and so he did as Arthur had instructed.

***

Chris was even more handsome outside of work, Eames thought, turning up at the man's doorstep in plenty of time for dinner. He was wearing a teeshirt and tight jeans, his hair loose from its ponytail, and his eyes were bright as they ran over Eames in turn.

Eames had made an extra effort to look as though he hadn't made any effort at looking good. His collar was undone, his hair artfully mussed, and he had left the belt off of his trousers. He hoped he looked equally ready for a meal out or hopping straight into bed, as Chris hadn't specified.

It turned out to be the latter, and Eames didn't mind in the slightest. He was half-hard in his pants just smelling Chris and recalling those heated moments in the copy room with Chris' cock down his throat, and he certainly didn't need any wining or dining before the main event.

"What about Nat?" he made a point of asking breathlessly, as Chris pulled him into the bedroom, getting them both stripped with large, efficient hands.

Chris quirked a brow at him. "She's my best friend," he said mildly, then he grinned, eyes crinkling at the corners, teeth flashing white. "Did you think we were more?" he asked, then he laughed.

"I thought, maybe..." Eames managed, but then Chris tipped him onto the bed and stripped away his boxers, and words completely escaped him. They were done discussing the subject, anyway, and when Chris settled on top of him, huge and heavy, all hard muscles and musky heat, it was one of the most difficult things Eames had ever done to retain the presence of mind to get him dosed with a quick acting sedative.

Eames huffed as Chris collapsed on top of him, squirming free and pulling on his boxers before going to letting Arthur in the back door. Arthur's gaze ran over him quickly, then he eyed Chris' supine form where he was sprawled naked on the mattress, and his face twisted with what Eames read as disapproval. Which he had to admit disappointed him a little, because he'd honestly expected better from the point man.

"Let's go," Eames said shortly, gesturing to the silver PASIV device in Arthur's hand. He was still hard in his boxers and wanted to get into the dream and get things going again with Chris.

Arthur grimaced, but got things set up, and the two of them dove into the dream, Eames the dreamer, Chris the subject, and Arthur acting as the extractor.

Eames dreamt up a picture perfect replica of Chris' bedroom, allowing Chris' dreaming mind to fill in all the blanks that he might have left due to unfamiliarity, and the two of them picked up where they had left off in reality.

If Chris noticed the slight delay, or the fogginess of diving into a dream, he didn't let it deter him. He kissed Eames as though he was going to eat him, his hands were huge and firm as they moved over Eames' body, and his hard cock split Eames open just as deliciously as it would have done in reality if Eames hadn't brought this into the dream-share.

Before he lost himself entirely to the fucking, giving all his senses over to Chris and his forceful fucking, Eames spared a moment to hope that wherever he was, Arthur was finding out what they needed to get from Chris. Then he gave himself over to physical pleasure and just took what he needed from the man, giving Chris back all that he had to give.

It was one of the most satisfying fucks Eames had had in the while, and he and Chris were both laying there, lounging in the afterglow and trading sleepy kisses when the timer ran out.

Eames awoke to damp boxers, a softly snoring Chris, and Arthur's sharp stare. He couldn't tell if it was disapproving or not, but he rather suspected it was.

"Did you get it?" he asked, carefully unhooking himself and Chris from the PASIV device.

"I did," Arthur replied shortly, nodding, then he gave Eames a strange, curious look.

"I'm staying," Eames replied, answering the stare. "Could never face Chris in the office tomorrow if I just fucked and ran."

"You're not going back tomorrow," Arthur replied shortly, almost indignantly, but he was putting the PASIV back together, and there was a bright flush to his cheeks that Eames couldn't quite understand. Arthur knew that he and Chris had had sex, but he hadn't had to see any of it, so what was his problem?

"I know that," Eames replied, then he decided to shamelessly utilize more of that damned honesty. "But I'm still waiting here until he wakes up, in the hopes of a second go-round."

Something ugly in Arthur's face twisted and Eames really was getting offended, so he did his best to get the other man out of there quickly.

"See you tomorrow, at the usual time and place, right?" he prompted, moving as though he would strip off his soiled boxers right then and there. Chris was naked, but he was lying on his belly on the bed. This gave Eames a magnificent view of his arse but spared Arthur having to see anything else.

Arthur gave him one last glare, so fierce that the hairs on the back of Eames' neck stood to attention and a shiver danced down his spine. But then, much as he had earlier, he slammed out of the room and out of Chris' house, and then Eames was left to it.

It was enough to put a man off his game, Eames thought resentfully, as he went into the bathroom to wash off and lube himself off -- after all, when he woke, Chris would think they'd already had sex once -- but not quite. Chris was very attractive, and Eames was as eager to tumble him in reality as he had been in the dream-share.

Whatever Arthur's problem was, they could deal with it tomorrow. Tonight, he thought gleefully as he heard Chris stirring in the other room, he had something else to focus on.

***

Eames managed to pretty much forget about Arthur and his unexpected disapproval in the warmth of the afterglow and slight soreness from getting his arse fucked so very thoroughly the night before, and so it was almost like a physical slap to the face when he opened the door the following morning and saw Arthur's expression.

If he'd thought about it at all, he'd have hoped Arthur would have cooled down, but if anything he only looked angrier and more disapproving. Eames gave vent to a heavy sigh. Oh, this was going to be pleasant.

"Arthur," Eames said warily, shedding his jacket. They were meeting in Arthur's hotel room, and right now Eames deeply regretted that fact. Not only did he feel somewhat trapped inside these four walls with an irate Arthur, but it was on Arthur's home territory, so to speak. Eames really ought to have suggested they meet at a nice cafe or something

"I put in my notice this morning," he offered when Arthur remained silent and didn't seem inclined to jump right down his throat. "Wouldn't do to simply vanish the morning after sleeping with Chris; he might get the wrong idea."

Arthur's nostrils flared at the mention of their mark's name, as though he had smelt something vile, and Eames had had enough, he truly had.

"Look, what's got your knickers in such a twist?" Eames wanted to know, folding his arms and glaring back at Arthur. "We got the information and we got paid, didn't we?"

He paused a moment, struck by a horrible thought. "We did get paid, right?"

Arthur huffed and looked to be dangerously close to rolling his eyes, which was something Eames would have paid good money to see. "Yes, Eames, we got paid," he replied in tones of utmost scorn; something that Eames really did not feel he deserved in response to a legitimate query. After all, working the wrong side of what was both legal and moral as they did, it wasn't as if there was anyone they could report their employers to if said employers decided to renege on their verbal agreement.

"Then what is your problem?" Eames thought it was only fair to ask, though the utter exasperation he loaded his voice with might have been a bit much. Really, though, he had no idea what Arthur was on about.

Well, whether he had expected Arthur to reply or not, he certainly did.

"Since when do you have sex with a mark?" Arthur burst out, his eyes flashing with a fury that Eames had never really seen him evince before. Arthur was usually so steady, so calm, even when Eames actively attempted to rile him up. Though in this case he didn't even had to try; he was nothing so much as he was confused over why this was such a huge issue to Arthur.

"Since our mark was an attractive man who snogged me in the copy room," Eames replied tartly, leaving out the resulting blowjob because it had already proven to make Arthur more angry. "Since he invited me into his home. And since this proved to me that there was no way using a forgery of Nat was going to work. Jesus, Arthur, why are you in such a snit over this? I got the job done, didn't I? And I'm certainly allowed to have a sex life!"

That had probably been the wrong thing to say, judging from the way Arthur's eyes flashed more sharply. His face was a bright shade of red and he had his lips pressed tightly together, which Eames thought was a shame, because he was quite fond of Arthur's lips. In fact, if Arthur hadn't been so obviously horrified by the idea of Eames and sex... or maybe it was just the fact that he'd had sex with a man.

"I never pegged you for a homophobe--" Eames began, starting to get a little angry himself, but before he could quite finish this thought something in Arthur seemed to snap and the point man was in motion, moving so quickly and violently, so unexpectedly that Eames hadn't any chance to defend himself, even though he'd thought he was better than that.

Before Eames' head stopped spinning he realized that he was on the bed with Arthur's weight bearing him down into the mattress.

Oh, Eames thought as he recognized that he had ended up on his back a second time, and found he was even more happy to be put there by Arthur than by Chris. Well, this certainly explained a few things....

That was, if he wasn't completely misreading the entire situation.

And then Arthur's mouth crashed into his, lips not pulled tight any longer, and Eames was gleefully certain that he had not misread. Even though he was a bit confused as to what was actually going on, and more importantly, why.

"I," Arthur said a bit breathlessly, once he had finished kissing Eames equally breathless, lifting his head just enough to speak into his chin, not moving so much as a millimeter away, "Am not a homophobe."

"Yeah," Eames grunted, wondering what Arthur would do if he grabbed a double palmful of his delightful arse. "Picked up on that."

Arthur was nowhere near as heavy as Chris had been, but he was resting his full weight on Eames, as Chris had not seemed to dare to do. Eames felt that he quite liked it. Arthur was all muscle and sinew, he was lean and harder even than Chris had been... and Eames wasn't talking about the erection digging into his thigh, though he might as well have been.

"To what do I owe this unexpected pleasure?" he couldn't help asking, even though this might well bone everything up. Still, while Eames was a man more inclined to go with his instincts and not as prone to demanding specificity as a certain point man.... Well, he and said point man had been dancing around one another for so long that Eames had become convinced that he had completely mistaken Arthur's intent and that he had never been interested in Eames "that way". It had been a bit better than thinking that Arthur had been able to resist his charms for such an extended period of time....

And yet here they were, and Arthur seemed to mean it. His tongue had just been in Eames' mouth, after all. And now Eames needed to know that was going on, because as much as they might squabble and argue, he honestly considered Arthur a friend -- or at least the closest thing to a friend that Eames was capable of having -- and he quite liked working with him. He didn't want to lose that over one night of passion.

Of course, if it was more than one night, and he didn't lose Arthur... then he would be even more amenable to this than Arthur seemed to be.

"Eames?"

"Yes, love?"

"Just shut up and take it," Arthur growled, and really that shouldn't have done what it did to Eames, turning his innards molten and raising the hairs on his arms. He still wanted to know exactly what they were doing here, but it was hard to insist they discuss it when he was so turned on he could hardly see straight. Not that he needed the ability to see, as Arthur closed the distance between them once again and very successful laid siege to Eames' mouth and all of his senses.

Arthur kissed the same way he did everything; with great skill and complete thoroughness. Eames was not disappointed to discover this, even though his own manner of kissing was decidedly more sloppy. Or, as he preferred to think of it, enthusiastic.

Well, it wasn't as though Arthur wasn't enthusiastic. There was no mistaking the lithe squirm of his tongue between Eames' teeth and the hard-on pressing into his hip as anything other than very eager enthusiasm.

Eames still wanted to know why this was happening, needed to know, but the clamouring desires of his body were rapidly overriding his better judgment. And it wasn't as though this was a life-or-death situation... well, he certainly hoped not anyway, though Arthur did seem as though he might be prone to violence if Eames tried to call a halt to his actions. So Eames decided -- or, rather, his cock decided for him -- that he would just go wherever Arthur wanted to take this, and they would discuss it afterward.

Once he'd reached this conclusion, things seemed a whole lot more pleasant; and they had already been very pleasant to begin with. Arthur licked at the crooked line of Eames' teeth, traced the swell of his upper lip, then he seemed determined to taste every last centimeter of Eames' mouth. Eames was inordinately glad that he'd brushed his teeth since kissing Chris goodbye that morning.

Not that the possessiveness wasn't turning him on like nobody's business. Because Arthur might have deflected Eames' attempt to question him as to the why of this, but Eames wasn't stupid. If this wasn't a result of badly concealed jealousy he's eat his totem.

The hands that suddenly spread themselves over his chest as Arthur levered up and back a little, breaking their kiss in order to nip at Eames' chin only seemed to underline this realization. Eames allowed himself to let out a low groan as Arthur's nimble fingers twisted at his nipples through the material of his shirt, and then, with a boldness that really ought to come to him more naturally than this, he dared to grab at that fine arse that had been tempting him for far too many years now.

This caused Arthur to let out a truly delicious sound and grind his hips and hard erection down into Eames. And then there was how absolutely wonderful Arthur's arse felt in his hands. Just as tight and firm as he had expected, and he squeezed with deliberate intent to enflame. Which of the two of them he intended to arouse he was a little unclear on. Probably both, though, and it appeared to be working.

Arthur pinched Eames' nipples again, harder, perhaps in vengeance or perhaps only to titillate, and then he broke their kiss and pushed away.

For a moment Eames was distraught, thinking that he'd gone too far, but Arthur only straddled his hips and then his sure fingers were at Eames' shirt buttons, and he realized what the other man was doing. Silently agreeing that naked would be infinitely better, and as quickly as possible, Eames began working on Arthur's clothes in turn.

Getting stripped would have been easier, perhaps, if they'd disentangled themselves and each removed their own clothing, but where would have been the fun in that?

Even with this slight handicap to overcome, the two of them got nude swiftly enough. They were both talented and determined, and there was sex to be had. Sex that had been simmering on the back burner for literally years. Sex that Eames had wanted pretty much as long as he had known Arthur.

Once they were both as bare as the day they'd been born but quite a bit larger and more knowledgeable all around, Eames made an attempt to roll Arthur over and grind him into the mattress. He would have assumed that this would be easy, because he had both weight and muscles on the other man. But evidently he would have assumed wrong, as Arthur seemed to take this as a challenge, wrestling until the two of them wound up where they had been before stripping, with Eames firmly pinned beneath Arthur.

"Nice try," Arthur grinned down at him, and Eames experienced the overwhelming urge to lick at those adorable dimples, to take his turn sticking his tongue in Arthur's mouth. "But I'm in charge of this. You obviously prefer it that way."

Eames would have argued that, but Arthur was naked on top of him, their hard cocks rubbing together, and then Arthur laid claim to his mouth again, which effectively distracted him. Eames felt the overwhelming need to grope that fine, tight arse without any pesky trousers in the way, so he did. And it was even more amazing than it had been the first time he'd gotten his hands on it, which only made sense.

Arthur seemed to like it quite fine, if the way he ground down into Eames was any indication. Not to mention the noise that he made; somewhere between needy and demanding. Eames approved. Oh, yes, he approved.

Eames would have quite liked to do some more kissing, even though they were both bare naked and wrapped around one another, but Arthur only dropped a light kiss on his lower lip, then made his way to the delicate skin of Eames' throat. Eames would have arched his neck even if Arthur hadn't sunk his fingers into his hair and tugged, but that definitely had him slamming his head back into the pillow.

Arthur's lips were hot and damp on his neck, then he used his teeth, sharp, his tongue lapping wet and lithe at the flesh caught between them. Eames didn't mean to let out a low, choked sound, because doing so was an admission, but he did have such a weakness for a man who knew how to properly bite, and who showed enthusiasm for the art.

All too soon, however, Arthur loosed the captive flesh and reared back, glaring down at Eames. Eames had absolutely no idea what could have made Arthur peevish, and when he spoke it didn't clarify much.

"Did you bathe this morning?" Arthur asked, nostrils flaring.

"Of course!" Eames replied immediately and more than a little offended. He might have fucked the night away, but he wouldn't have come to this meeting without washing said fucking away. "What sort of--"

"Did you use his shower?" Arthur asked, interrupting before Eames could finish expressing his outrage.

Eames blinked, startled into silence, but only for a moment, because he and Arthur were naked in bed together, so why had they stopped the foreplay?

"Of course," he replied, not seeing any reason not to answer honestly. "Why would I bother going all the way back to mine?"

Which was, evidently, how they ended up in the shower, Eames pressed face-first into the tiled wall, three of Arthur's fingers sunk to the third knuckle in his wonderfully sore arse, sharp teeth biting into his now properly cleansed shoulder.

"I never... I never would have pegged you as the jealous type," Eames managed to gasp out as Arthur carefully but ruthlessly stretched him open.

"Not jealous," Arthur replied, sounding disgustingly put-together. Of course, there was a dark tone to his voice that Eames hoped he wasn't imagining, that bespoke deep arousal. "Just possessive."

Eames would have expounded on how ridiculous this was, how it shouldn't have mattered whether he smelled of Chris' hygiene products when Arthur didn't even know what Chris smelled like, he might even have admitted how turned on he was to hear Arthur growl the word "possessive" in his ear, but that was the point at which Arthur replaced his fingers with the hard, blunt head of his cock, and while Arthur wasn't physically as large as Chris had been, his cock definitely didn't suffer by comparison.

With his face mashed against the cool tile wall, Eames had no way of knowing whether Arthur had used a condom or how he'd managed where lube was concerned, but he found he didn't much care as Arthur punched his way inside. It came to him in this moment that he trusted Arthur, but even more than that, he just wanted to be fucked.

Eames' arse was still sensitive and aching from the night before, but this only added to the sensation of Arthur's hard cock driving up into him, undeniable and inexorable. He was pretty sure he let out some undignified whining sound, but Arthur was groaning into his neck, Eames could feel it rumbling in the man's chest where it pressed against his back, so he doubted that Arthur had noticed.

Arthur was only gentle as long as it took him to press inside. Once there he set to a vigorous, steady rhythm, fucking Eames with the intent to get them both off, and to make sure that Eames knew he was being claimed on no uncertain terms.

With Arthur fucking him from behind and the shower wall before him, Eames had nothing he could really hold onto. He tensed the muscles in his legs to keep himself upright, and the wall braced him in the front, but he was denied the chance to touch any of Arthur's tempting body. He was going to have to make up this lack later, he mused, but most of his attention was focused on the way Arthur was so handily working him toward orgasm.

Resting his forehead against one arm to keep it from knocking into the wall, Eames fumbled with the other hand, trying to get his shaking fingers wrapped around his bobbing, sadly neglected erection. With one of Arthur's elegant hands locked on his shoulder, the other gripping his hip so hard he thought it might leave bruises, all of Arthur's considerable attention and energy poured into pounding the hell out of Eames' arse, he couldn't expect anything like a reach-around. Which was fine. Eames expected the amazing from Arthur on a regular basis, and Arthur regularly delivered, but it would honestly be a miracle if they finished this without slipping on the tiles and braining themselves.

As though reading Eames' mind -- and nothing Arthur did would surprise Eames at this point -- Arthur came to an abrupt stop, his cock buried deep in Eames' arse, his hands still holding on tight. He nipped Eames' shoulder again, then leaned forward, dragging a moan out of Eames as this shifted his hard cock inside of Eames, pressing against all the good places.

"Shall we finish up on the bed?" he purred in Eames' ear, and Eames was pleased to note that his voice was rough and hoarse with unconcealed passion.

"Get the sheets all wet," Eames managed to get out, trying to still his hand on his erection; though by this point it was moving more on instinct than anything else, palm sliding slick over the shaft in the warmth of the shower spray.

"Do I seem as though I care at this point?" Arthur queried, giving his hips a couple of quick pulses, even though he really couldn't get deeper. "You're going to get them wet no matter what when you come, anyway."

"F-fuck," Eames replied, less than eloquently, but Arthur presumably took this for the "yes" that it was.

Eames liked to think that he was a man who was always in control of his senses, who had a firm grasp on what was going on around him, but he had to admit that the next few minutes after that were sort of a blur, and the next thing he really knew, he was on his back, his knees nearly up around his ears, and he'd have protested this completely undignified position if Arthur's cock hadn't been back inside him, just as large, and thrusting just as hard as it had been in the shower; only now from an even more effective angle.

A part of him marveled at Arthur's strength and skill, in putting him and keeping him in this position, and boning the hell out of him. But mostly Eames found that he had to grab at the bedcovers beneath him and just hold on as Arthur fucked into his ruthlessly.

He didn't even have a chance to get his hand back on his cock before he found himself crying out and tightening around Arthur's driving cock, his climax breaking over him like a physical blow, several times more intense than any orgasm Chris had gotten out of him the night before.

He was still riding the wash of unrestrained release, his thoughts and senses wallowing in crashing waves of pleasure, and so he barely heard or felt Arthur following him over the edge in short order, but he did enjoy the broken sound that Arthur made, and he managed to bring up a hand to pat heavily at Arthur's wet hair as he unfolded Eames and collapsed on him once again.

And here they were, as they had been when Arthur had pounced him into the bed, and yet everything had changed. Partially because Eames was covered in jizz, but there had been shifts in emotions and that kind of stuff between them as well.

Since Eames didn't really want to talk about those things, as soon as he could form words again he said the first thing that came to his mind.

"I do hope you realize I'm not going to be able to walk tomorrow."

Arthur levered up on one elbow, and he was still resting most of his weight on Eames, which ought to have been uncomfortable, but it really wasn't. It was sort of like having a sweaty Arthur blanket, and Eames reveled in the closeness, even though he wouldn't have admitted to this in a million years.

"That's just as well," Arthur replied with a wicked grin, "Seeing as you're not going anywhere."

"Hm." Eames thought about that for a moment, feeling a little regret as Arthur slid off of him to one side. He didn't go far, though. Long, lean fingers traced through the come on Eames' belly, then locked around his shoulder, tugging Eames onto his side so that Arthur could kiss him again. Eames responded with the proper amount of enthusiasm, but he wanted to nail down exactly what Arthur's intent had been concerning his last statement.

"Does that mean that you've laid claim to this fine arse?" Eames rumbled, stretching luxuriantly and taking pleasure in the feeling of having been well and thoroughly fucked. He was sore, after Chris and then Arthur, but it was a good sort of soreness. And maybe he could use it as an excuse to get his own cock into Arthur's tight little arse next time... if there was going to be a next time. He didn't exactly await Arthur's response with bated breath, but there was a lot riding on it. And not just the state of Eames' arse.

"I thought that was fairly obvious," Arthur said dryly, sliding his hand down and around to grab at Eames' nearer arse cheek.

"And... does that mean that I have a claim on your even more lovely hind end?" Eames ventured, because he really wasn't inclined to take anything for granted, even at this point. And even though he had wanted the man for years, Arthur was asking a lot of him out of the blue like this.

"Eames, don't be obtuse," Arthur growled, his fingers tightening and then he pressed forward to kiss Eames quite breathless. "I know you're not actually that dense."

"Compliments will get you everywhere, darling," Eames purred. Then he chuckled. "Well, not that you haven't already been most everywhere."

One corner of Arthur's lip quirked upward and Eames almost thought that he might chuckle in turn, but he just gazed at him with dark, intense eyes. "I'll have you know that I've barely even started," he growled.

"Ah." Eames paused a moment, then he couldn't help smirking. "Well, I suppose I'd best stick around for that, then."

"You'd better," Arthur said, but he sounded fond. "And no more fucking the mark, Eames."

"Perish the thought," Eames grinned, and this time when he moved to tumble Arthur back into the sheets, Arthur let him.

"Although," he could resist adding, "If I'd known sleeping with a mark would finally get you into my pants, I'd have done it years ago."

"Eames...."

"Yes, love?"

"Shut up."

And since Arthur's lips closed over his a moment after uttering this affectionate rejoinder, Eames didn't mind shutting up in the least.

[end]