Graveyard shift in the station means two guys at a desk near the bullpen and absolutely no one here in the file room. It’s probably for the best given the dark mood pooling around Harvey like swamp water. Jim swallows a yawn as he flips open another case file. The words on the page are blurred, and Jim rolls his neck to loosen a bit of the tension. Squatting on the floor isn’t comfortable, but there’s no real place to sit. The whole place is a mess. There are boxes all over the place and reports stuffed in drawers seemingly at random. As he and Harvey piece together a case that’s going nowhere, all the extra legwork is like pouring salt in the wounds.
It’s like his partner’s reading his mind when Harvey slams a cabinet shut, the metal bang cracking through the room as loud as a gunshot. He rips off his hat and throws it into the box that Jim’s elbows-deep in. “I can’t find a damn thing in this place! How long is it going to take for them to ‘re-organize’ this shit? A to Z. New to old. It ain’t rocket science.”
Nostrils flaring wide, Harvey’s the proverbial bull in the china shop and about zero-point-two seconds away from stampeding. Jim rises to his feet, hand going to Harvey’s chest before a towering stack of boxes gets kicked over into a hopeless scatter. “Hey,” Jim says sharply, pulling Harvey’s attention away from the offending papers to him. “Calm down, it’s not helping.”
“Not helping? I’ll tell you what’s not helping: Digging through this garbage dump for some moldy old reports that are only going to tell us what we already know.”
“Okay then," Jim says, but Harvey hasn't gotten it out of his system. Jim forcibly steers him away from the loose files with a solid shove. It's like trying to move a freight train. "How about we take a break, yeah? Maybe grab some coffee and walk around the block. We can come back at it with fresh eyes."
Harvey's fist stays balled up, his chest heaving on full, rapid breaths. After a tense cluster of seconds, he blows out an angry whuff of air, but the worst he does is thump the top of the nearest cabinet. It might not be the best idea to relinquish his hold entirely, so Jim keeps his grip light until he’s certain Harvey’s not going to flip. They were in here after hours on a hard-earned favor; busting up the place is the last thing he wants in a precinct that already thinks he’s the worst kind of troublemaker.
"Get your paws off me." Harvey sounds less agitated and more resigned as he looks first to the hand on his shoulder and then drops his gaze to the spread of Jim's other hand braced just above his hip. "Or be a real pal and move that one a little to the left."
Jim pulls back, scowling. He mutters,"Sorry," and instantly regrets the reflex apology ‘cause Harvey's the one being an asshole. Par for the course.
A heavy sigh echoes through the room as Harvey runs fingers through his hair. It doesn't help fix what hours under a hat did to it. His shoulders slump, the last of the fight draining out of him. "Naw, it's okay. I know you're..." Harvey makes a wobbly gesture aimed at Jim's crotch.
Jim can’t control the twitch of his cheek. Just like he can't do anything about the cold leaden feeling that seizes his guts. "I don't know what you mean," he says, as evenly as possible. It takes all he’s got not to wipe suddenly damp palms on his hips. If Harvey had dug around in his past, how many others in the GCPD knew that his driver’s license hadn’t always read male?
Harvey rolls his eyes. "AC/DC. A switch hitter or whatever you want to call it. Look, I know one when I see one all right." He slumps against the cabinets, lazy and a little smug, and combs his fingernails through his short beard. "What do I care if you like ordering the taco plate and the burrito special?”
The knot in Jim’s stomach unravels slightly. “The term is bisexual,” he says. The department isn’t a bastion of tolerance, but Jim’s a terrible liar when it comes down to it, and owning up to this seems the safer choice than inviting Harvey’s further scrutiny. The guy misses the mark a lot on account of laziness, but when he hits the target--and that’s happening more and more these days--it’s frequently a bullseye. The longer Jim thinks about it, the more it feels like only a matter of time before Harvey starts putting two and two together.
“Yeah, that….” Harvey’s expression hovers between wary and leering when he ventures to ask, “You're not going to report me for sexual harassment are you?"
How the hell did they end up as partners? Jim shakes his head and hopes he’s banking some solid karma. It could be worse, though. It could be a lot worse. He’s in the middle of saying forget about it when Harvey interrupts him, saying, “Cool. So let’s hop on the H train together ‘cause I need a little something right now to get my mind off this whole clusterfuck.”
“The H train?” Jim says, not following.
Harvey skewers him with a look usually reserved for the dullest mopes. “You know, the H train...to J town.” He adds an unmistakable hand gesture and Jim rolls his eyes so hard it’s a wonder they stay inside his skull. “C’mon, be a pal. All this overtime means I haven’t gotten laid in days.”
“Days, huh. Cry me a river.”
“I’m not trying to get a brojob out of you, man, just a helping hand. I’ll return the favor, partner. Rosie here’s good for it.”
Harvey thinking he isn’t straight as an arrow is one thing; Harvey knowing what’s in his pants is something else entirely. It’s all pink elephants though, and trying not to think about it only makes Jim picture it, all-too-vividly. He swallows thickly, a strangely pleasant thrill going through him at the notion of Harvey’s hands on him. Harvey takes shortcuts whenever he can, but while Jim can’t entirely say why, he suspects if Harvey Bullock does one thing well, it’s probably a roll in the sheets. Jim tries really hard to get his mind back on the case and not the idea of crawling up to Harvey in the middle of a big bed. He can’t quite shake it. Back in the army and before, Jim always thought of himself as a lesbian. It wasn’t often a guy got a reaction out of him, and to feel the sudden pooling of heat and lust low in his body now...for his goddamn half-useless partner.... Jim shifts uncomfortably.
“That won’t be necessary,” he says. He means it as a dismissal, not that he’s agreeing to the terms, but the grin on Harvey’s face says once again they’re not speaking the same language.
And Harvey, Christ-- Jim watches stunned as Harvey wastes no time at all in whipping out a handkerchief from his jacket pocket, crumpling it in his fist as he goes for his zip. The sound of his fly peeling open and the scuff of his shoes as he widens his stance echoes through the room. Scarlet silk boxers show through the split vee at his crotch; ridiculous and obscene and so utterly appropriate for his big lug of a partner. “Okay,” Harvey says, eyebrows waggling. “You take it out. It’s more fun that way. Then wet and slow, Jimmy boy.”
“I never kid about handjobs.” Harvey’s tongue flashes over his lip and he nods helpfully at Jim’s hand. “C’mon, don’t make it weird. Look, if you want me to start, I can do that. Break out the snake and we'll get this party started.”
On the surface Harvey looks like a normal human being; there’s no antennae or lizard eyes to betray whatever planet in outer space the guy came from. Jim’s time in the army put him around a whole lot of assholes who liked to do shit like teabag whoever rolled out of their bunk last, but Harvey’s a different kind of special snowflake. After the crap they’d been through recently, Jim finds himself starting to honestly like the guy. And there it is, that shifty turn of his stomach that makes it plain as day that he wants to go for it--they were in it deep with each other anyway, so why the fuck not. Only that’s not an option. He doesn’t have the luxury of easy; he never does.
“What is it?” Harvey asks, and his concern almost sounds genuine, like he might actually give a damn. He claps a hand on Jim’s shoulder, grip tightening into a reassuring squeeze. It works right up until he opens his mouth again. “If you have a pencil dick, it’s okay. I mean, you make up for it with those big swinging balls--the way you keep on hounding the captain is remarkably stupid yet impressive, my friend.”
Jim weighs his options, ‘cause a growing part of him wants Harvey to know. To have someone in this city other than Barbara know, someone who he cares about--even if he kind of hates to admit how much he cares about Harvey-fucking-Bullock--would make him feel a little less alone. He’s hyper aware of Harvey’s meaty hand on him, the warmth of it spreading through his shoulder. The longer Jim’s tongue stays stuck to the roof of his mouth, the more the cracks show in Harvey’s expression, bonafide worry seeping to the surface. Jim knows Harvey can keep a secret when he wants to, but will he?
The breath Jim takes aches in his lungs. His guts do that sideways twist again. He’s always hated the feeling of having to gather up the strength to say what shouldn’t even matter. At least it isn’t in public where Harvey could make a scene, and if he opts to throw a punch, Jim knows the only way the guy can take him in a fight is by surprising him. Jim releases his breath slow and steady through his nose and steels himself for the unknown. “Harvey, if you really want to go down this road, there are things you need to know about me.”
“Please don’t tell me you’ve got the clap,” Harvey says, with a smile and tone that aims to diffuse whatever it is that’s dampening the moment. After another stretching silence, Jim can see the instant Harvey starts to wonder if he’d hit the nail on the end.
“Harvey, I don’t have the clap.”
“Thank God. So what’s the problem? I’m not asking to go steady, and I ain’t even saying no homo.”
“I’m trans,” Jim says, as calm and matter of fact as he can manage. His heartbeat thuds in his chest, but after that initial burst of panic that’s it. It’s out there, and there’s nothing except waiting for the look of confusion, or disgust, or anger. When Harvey’s expression doesn’t change, Jim blinks and tries again: “Transgender. As in, I used to have tits upstairs and downstairs my balls are purely metaphorical.”
“And…” Jim repeats lamely. This isn’t how it usually goes. Harvey seems completely unfazed, neither more or less interested in getting into his pants.
“Is that it?”
“Uh, yeah, that’s it.” The world around him seems unreal, like he’s stuck in slow motion or caught in the blast radius of a bomb. Jim’s brain tries to wrap itself around how of all the people he’s ever come out to, it’s Harvey who takes the news like it’s as important as what color socks he’s wearing.
Harvey stretches an arm over the filing cabinets behind Jim. His bulk shields the glare from the desk lamp at the other end of the stacks and blocks a good bit of light from the overheads too. “Shit,” he says, “didn’t mean to make it all anticlimactic for you, buddy, but hey, I can fix that. ”
The dryness in Jim’s mouth vanishes, and he swallows the sudden rush of saliva. His gaze darts down between them to the flash of red boxers and the bulge of half-wood in Harvey’s crotch. When he looks up again, Harvey holds his gaze, and Jim doesn’t stop his partner from unbuckling his belt and popping the button at the top of his slacks. Part of him wants to sink into the metal at his back, to not go any further and just leave things here without sex to muddy up their working relationship. The nagging voice in the back of his skull that’s winning out asks what he’s worried about. This is the same mutual jerk-off that Harvey was offering when he assumed Jim was cis.
“I thought maybe you had some real skeletons in your closet, boy scout.” Harvey crudely licks his fingers and goes to stuff them down Jim’s pants. “Like I ain’t ever slept with a tranny before.”
Jim’s hand clamps likes a vise around Harvey’s wrist, blunt fingertips pushed just past the elastic of his briefs. “Hey, watch your tongue.”
“The boys and girls over in Mooney’s end of town, that's how they advertise,” Harvey says, faintly whining. He gives up a grudging apology when Jim’s grip doesn’t budge, and when Jim’s expression doesn’t soften, Harvey’s second attempt at sorry sounds like he means it.
“Handjobs,” Jim reminds him before he lets Harvey’s hand push a little further into his pants. His heartbeat is racing so fast it's making him lightheaded.
"Just dicks, I get it. I'm not one of those guys who'll try and slip it in."
And there's the sincerity again, the shine like a nickle in the gutter. Against his better judgment, Jim relents entirely. He loosens his grip on Harvey’s wrist, curving his hand over Harvey’s groin and finding the slit in his boxers. His questing fingers find hot flesh and Harvey’s not far behind in the chase. Jim’s stomach muscles twitch and tense as Harvey’s damp fingers find Jim’s cock and tease him hard.
“Wet,” Harvey reminds him when Jim’s got a whole handful to stroke.
Jim doesn’t bother to respond and enjoys the feel of a heavy cock in his hand for another moment before he spits a thick glob into his palm and turns the tunnel of his fist into a slick mess for Harvey to fuck into. He doesn’t even need to give Harvey instructions in turn, the tug of Harvey’s thumb and finger pinched around his cock is perfect.
Edging an elbow up onto the top of the filing cabinet, Jim tips his head back and surrenders to the rising pleasure radiating through him. His mouth goes slack, and he turns his head slightly towards Harvey’s when Harvey shuffles a step closer, head hanging and near enough that soft whiskers brush against Jim’s cheek. Jim can taste the cigarettes on Harvey’s breath and it kicks up that ages old craving for a smoke.
“I kinda want to kiss you right now,” Harvey says, words mumbled near Jim’s ear. He smells like cheap aftershave and his beat up leather jacket, not to mention the pastrami sandwich he wolfed down at his desk. If Jim normally hates the mix of leather and lunch when they’re in close quarters, right now it isn’t so bad.
“Dream on, Romeo," Jim snarls.
A long stretch of seconds later, still fucking lazily into Jim’s slick fist, Harvey grins. “Worth a shot.”
That’s the last thing either of them says, Jim’s quiet laugh fading into the mix of their breathing turning ragged and the rustle of fabric. When Jim gets wet enough that there’s no friction left, Harvey gives up on jerking him and flattens his hand, letting Jim take over and fuck the tight space between his fingers.
Jim rocks his hips, suppressing a moan when he hits the rhythm that gets him off best when he’s strapping one on. He’s practically up on his toes, muscles tensing as the sizzle of pleasure builds towards an orgasm. The hand he’s got on Harvey has turned sticky, but he doesn’t need to spare even a thought to re-wet his fingers ‘cause Harvey does it for him, spit wiped fresh onto his hand to turn it back into an easy glide.
When he comes, the shudder that goes through Jim from head to toe rattles the metal drawers. The explosion of his breath echoes off the rafters, with the gulping breath that follows undercut by a gritty curse as Harvey’s hand closes over his own. Jim feels every twitching pulse as Harvey blows his load, and he grinds himself harder against the fingers still crammed down the front of his pants.
Harsh breaths evening out, they part without a word. Doing up his belt again, Jim makes a face at the spatter Harvey’s left on more than one drawer-front, and he ignores the way Harvey sucks his fingers clean before mopping up the mess with his handkerchief.
Going back to the box he’d been halfway through, Jim throws Harvey his hat. The dusty case files look even less promising than they had. “How about we call it a night,” Jim suggests, euphoria fading into exhaustion.
“Fine by me, I was ready to quit two hours ago.”
“Bum a ride?”
Harvey tugs on his hat. “You’ll owe me one,” he warns. Jim’s ready for it but finds no hint of a leer, nothing at all to get his hackles up beside Harvey’s usual MO: Racking up favors to call in when the chips are down.
Exiting the file room, Jim hesitates for a moment at the threshold. “I can live with that,” he says, and steps into the hall, trusting Harvey to turn off the light behind him.