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Abyss of Shadows

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Prologue

Sounds muffled, vision distorted - it's hard to breathe. Voices taunt, laugh, and his lungs scream for air. He can hear water piling passed the rapid pulse in his ears, his limbs are locked. He begs, cries, screams - but they do not listen. This may be the point where they finally kill him... One particular voice is faint, echoey - like coming from down a long tunnel. The more it speaks, the clearer - and closer it sounds. It's gentler than all the other voices. It says something. He focuses on it as it forms words. It sounds like a name. His name.

John...

He likes that voice. He tries to block everything out except that voice.

John.

Something is still holding him, but it feels more like an embrace rather than restraint. He clings to it and concentrates on the gentle voice.

John...

~~~~~~

"...It's okay, John. You're doing great. Listen to my voice. Feel my arms around you. Just breathe. You're safe; you're not in danger. I've got you."

His vision was getting clearer, his hearing less distorted. He was not choking for air; he was breathing too much, too fast. He greedily gulped as much oxygen as he could, while he still could. He was growing more lightheaded, his blood pumping madly from his overworking heart. But he could still hear that voice - feel the protective arms, which he clinged to.

"Shh, it's okay. I'm here. Breathe with me. In. Out. Deep breaths, John. That's it. In... Out..."

His lungs still hurt, but they weren't empty, he realized. His vision began to clear and his bathroom hazed into view. It's his bathtub that he was sitting in, a familiar strong body pressed behind him with just enough water around them to cover the bottom porcelain surface. He's fully clothed, but he felt so vulnerable and exposed. He studied the legs straddling his own and realized that they give protection - not imprisonment. He could break away if he wanted to - but he didn't. He wanted to be held, protected, never left alone again. He isn't safe if he's alone. He can't protect himself against them. All they want is pain, blood, revenge -

"Focus on me, John." The voice sternly interrupted his racing thoughts. "You're not there. You're here. You're with me. There's no one else. You're safe." The arms encircling him stroked his biceps with the thumbs, coaxing the trembling to ease. "Keep breathing. In through the nose, just like we talked about. Count with me. One...two...three...four..."

He tried to do as asked. His breaths were just too shaky to hold the whole four counts. But he wasn't reprimanded when the air left him in one, shuddering gust before the count was over.

"It's okay; try again. Breathe deeply. In through the nose, John. One...two...three...four..."

His entire frame shook with effort, but he managed the four seconds this time. One of his fists clenched hard into the denim jeans next to his own leg as he concentrated and his vision became clearer - when he was able to keep his eyes open, that his.

"Again. Let it out slowly this time, okay? You can do it. One...two...three...four..."

His breath still shook when he let it out, but he was able to do it slower this time. The dizziness finally began to subside. And it didn't feel like he was about to lose what little was in his stomach at any second.

"That's good. You're doing better. Just keep breathing. You'll be okay. I got you."

Following the soothing voice, John kept breathing - four seconds in (through the nose), four seconds out (through the mouth), repeat. Gradually, the pressure in his chest eased and breathing no longer hurt, nor was it as difficult. He could see everything clearly, hear the soft voice behind him, feel the shallow sheet of water around them - not enough to even cover his fingertips if he laid his palm down flat. He was clothed, there was light everywhere - not a shadow in sight. The arms encircling him were tender and careful (but firm) as if he were made of the finest china or the frailest balsa wood. Those hands did not harm - he remembered, now. They protected and healed.

"It's okay. You're okay, now. I'm here, John. You're alright." The voice mutters close to his ear. It's low and gentle. He wished it could wrap around him in a little cocoon and close off the rest of the world. "You did so well. You made it."

He pursed his lips and nodded stiffly, suddenly feeling as if the dam in his tear ducts would burst at any moment. He was so drained. And stiff. And sore. Not to mention nauseous.

"How..." He had to forcefully clear his throat so it didn't croak, "How long this time...?"

"Just a couple of minutes." The smooth hands continued to rub his arms, careful not to hold too tightly.

"Dorian..." He urged firmly; his partner said this every time.

The android sighed wistfully before answering, "Eight minutes and forty-two seconds. But that's an improvement," he added the last part quickly before John had a chance to sink once more back into his self-deprecation. "You're doing better; you're coming back quicker."

"Yeah, well, I shouldn't have to 'come back' at all," John growled bitterly. "I can't even fucking handle sitting in my own bathtub - with barely any water in it!"

"You didn't used to be able to sit in any water at all. You're getting - "

"Let's not forget about being in the dark!" John plowed on as if Dorian hadn't spoken. "I see one dark shadow anywhere and I go into hysterics!"

"John, after what you've been through - "

"And not to mention being alone! God, what am I, five?? Yeah, I bet that's a real commendable quality! You might as well hand my failed psych eval to Maldonado now! Like they're ever going to let me back on the force..."

Dorian released another silent sigh as John's fist beat frustratedly into the side of the tub. He held John (if possible) closer against his chest, leaning his forehead against the back of his head, "Don't do that. What happened wasn't your fault. Nobody blames you for anything."

John didn't want to hear it. It was bad enough that he could remember almost every damn thing that happened in those two weeks. The fact that his coworkers - his friends, and most of all his partner - witnessed everything just made it all worse. And he hated the pity - the way Richard Paul hadn't even thrown a jibe at him when he was finally able to have visitors at the hospital. He couldn't stand the way they all looked at him - as if he were some fragile, abused animal at the mercy of blood-thirsty sadists. Well, being at the mercy of blood-thirsty sadists was accurate... But, nonetheless, he hated feeling this damn helpless - hated being this damn helpless. He was a damn cop, for crying out loud! He'd seen more gore and carnage than any one person should even accidentally see in a lifetime. Hell, he's even been in the middle of it!

What the hell happened to strong, independent, unshakable John Kennex?

"I want out," John stated suddenly. "Let me out of here."

"Okay, John. Just take it slowly." A scoff was his only answer as John pushed himself up. He stopped short when he had to grab onto the rim of the tub when his balance wavered for a moment, but stubbornly forced his body to move passed the ache in his knee. Dorian followed closely behind, lest he could offer any help - which the aforementioned didn't like to admit to needing from time to time.

-----

When the bi-nightly call came in much later in the night, Dorian quietly slipped into the main room; getting John to sleep was never easy anymore and the last thing he wanted was to disturb him. He let the call go to visual as he sat himself at the kitchen bar. The solid face of Captain Maldonado appeared before him and he tried to offer a smile in greeting.

"Good evening, Captain."

"Dorian," Sandra acknowledged in return, obviously having just as much difficulty feigning optimism as the android. "How's he doing?"

A crestfallen expression melted Dorian's pleasant façade, "He's..." The events of earlier that day replayed in his memory banks: the broken coffee mug that resulted from John startling at the squeal of the teapot when Dorian had attempted to cook some quick noodles for lunch; John's refusal to allow his new prosthetic to be detached for charging - insisting that he'd rather have the portable charger, which was not as effective; and then in the bathtub, wherein they'd been attempting to gradually alleviate John's prone panic attacks when it came to water - among other things. "He's trying." Dorian finally reported.

A shadow passed over Maldonado's face at the vague implication, "Any progress?"

Dorian dropped his gaze, fingering a coffee stain from this afternoon's mug accident, "He's still got a ways to go. He needs time."

Sandra seemed to contemplate something before responding, "Maybe I should come by tomorrow. Keeping himself cooped up like this isn't good for him."

"Captain, with all due respect, I don't think that would be the best idea. He's unpredictable with me on his good days. And I know he doesn't want to be seen by anyone; it might upset him more. I consider it a miracle that he allows me within arm's reach."

"Be that as it may..." Sandra carefully spoke after a thoughtful look crossed her features. "It might do him some good for me to check up on him. I may be his superior, but John and I go way back. He's my friend." After a moment, she added meaningfully, "And it'll give you a chance to take a break, too."

Dorian dipped his head briefly in acknowledgement, "I appreciate the sentiment, Captain, but I'd much rather stay by his side; anything can set him off nowadays. I think it's better I'm nearby just in case anything...happens." His voice processor stalled for a split second on the last word, remembering full well the events when John would have a NOT so good day.

"I can respect that," Sandra replied with a nod. "But I'm still coming by tomorrow. Who knows? It might be good for him."

A genuine smile eased onto Dorians face for the first time since John woke up in the hospital all those weeks ago, "While I'm no psychologist, I - " suddenly, he stopped. A faint, yet distinctive noise that the android had become far too accustomed to over the past three months emitted from the bedroom. After a quick glance back in the aforementioned direction, Dorian met his Captain's now-disturbed stare. "Captain, I have to go."

"Dorian, what's - "The connection was cut and Dorian was halfway to his destination before Maldonado had time to blink.

Two dull lights greeted him to reveal an extremely restless sleeper. John, to be exact. The sheets were twisted around his torso, damp with sweat. His eyes were clenched shut and his breathing was erratic. It wasn't clear whether his hands were fighting against some unknown enemy or if he was struggling to get away from something. The repeated mantra of 'no's were increasing in both volume and frequency.

A night terror.

Dorian was well-acquainted with the routine; it was almost nightly.

A wave of guilt stuttered his systems a just before he leapt towards the bed, trying to quell John's struggling and panic. He attempted to subdue the blind blows whilst trying not to appear aggressive to the best of his ability. He shushed his distressed partner with gentle hands and voice, praying against all logic of doing so that John wouldn't tear his stitches again.

"John. John, hey. Shh, it's okay," Dorian let every strike bounce off of him while trying to calm the frantic assault of John's fists. "Just a dream, John. You're not there; you're safe." He managed to free one of his hands, bringing it up to John's sweaty hair. He combed his fingers through the tangled strands over and over again. John's hands gradually quit fighting against him and let themselves be held in Dorian's own as the android rubbed soothing caresses into the clammy skin. "I've got you, John, I'm here to protect you. It's okay," the last part was spoken quietly, the android's tone softening as John's heavy breaths began to even out. Dorian didn't halt either one of his placating touches, blue lights dancing up and down his temple while he watched and processed every detail of John's softening features. "I'm sorry. I only meant to be gone for a minute. I won't leave you alone again - I promise." At his words, the deep crease of strain on John's brow began to ease and his fingers grew steadily more slack in Dorian's hold. The android shifted from finger-combing his human's hair to petting it tenderly as he scanned John's vitals. Heart rate decreased to normal after a few moments and he was soon breathing evenly once more. Still, Dorian did not pull away.

A mumble seeped passed John's lips, but it was undecipherable even to an android's high-def hearing.

Dorian's systems stalled for a split instant at the sight. He was certain that, had he a pair of lungs, the sensation would have been similar to his breath catching in his throat. But he quickly brushed it aside, leaning over to touch their foreheads together, his hand in John's hair never so much as faltering.

"You sleep now, baby. I'll watch over you."

Chapter Text

Chapter One

Laundry in the wash: done. Breakfast prepared: done. Clothes set out for the day: done. Coffee brewing: definitely done.

Dishes washed and put away. Synthetic leg charged. Cell phone charged.

And it was only 6:00 a.m.

John called him crazy multiple times over his tendency to rise before the sun even came up. What John didn't understand, however, was that Dorian enjoyed it; the domesticity, daily routines - all of it made him feel so incredibly...human.

He lived in an apartment - he cooked, cleaned, shopped, and even drove the cruiser every now and again. When not charging, he 'slept' in a bed. He took real showers. He watched television while folding laundry. He experimented in the kitchen often, managing to sway John away from his noodle breakfasts, lunches, and/or dinners from time to time.

Dorian liked to utilize every spare moment he had to living this way. He wouldn't trade it for anything in the world - short of being human, anyways. But his favorite detail of the whole package...well, he was just glad he possessed the ability to enjoy such a sight - human or android.

John shifted, fast asleep while Dorian held vigil beside the bed. The android loved watching his partner like this - how at peace he looked, relaxed. How the worry lines seemed nonexistent. This was when John Kennex was left bare, without any masks of indifference or tough shields to hide behind. It was such a rare sight and Dorian couldn't resist drinking in every second of it.

Sometimes it was replaying recordings of these images in his head that allowed him to sink into blissful relaxation when he was restless or troubled. Not that he would ever tell John that.

John shifted again, onto his back and slightly facing the android's direction. He appeared to settle at first, but then he seemed to sense something in his semi-conscious state. One bleary eye cracked open before he startled.

"Jesus Christ, Dorian," he groggily groused with a sleep-heavy voice. "I'm still too young to have a damn heart attack."

Dorian felt the corner of his lips tighten into a light smirk of amusement, "I didn't mean to alarm you. I was just debating whether I should wait for you to wake up or do it myself."

John halted in the middle of rubbing his eyes to stare flabbergasted up at his partner, "Ohhh no. Please tell me you were SO not watching me sleep."

"Okay," Dorian agreed matter-of-factly. "I was SO not watching you sleep." He recited and John looked relieved. "But I was."

Another stricken look twisted John's expression. He raised his hands and averted his eyes, his voice disbelieving, "Okay, that's not creepy at all..."

"I like watching you sleep, John," Dorian replied simply as he moved to sit on the edge of the bed. "It's fascinating."

John rolled his eyes with a shallow sigh, "Well, I guess there are worse fetishes," he joked lightly, snuggling back into his pillows - or at least he tried to.

Dorian flicked the covers back, "Worse than sleeping in the nude?"

John scrambled to yank the sheet back in attempt to maintain at least a portion of his covers, "Hey! That's not a fetish; it's a comfort issue."

"You mean a 'convenience issue'?"

"Oh, sure. Like you're the first out of bed after a good time for the sake of modesty..." John huffed.

"At least I manage to get out of bed at all..." Dorian retorted cheekily, nodding at the unruly condition of his partner.

"There's this thing called 'sleep.' It's essential for human beings' ability to function."

"In that case, I should probably let you sleep for the next century."

John ignored the jibe in favor of cheekiness, "Hey, it worked for Sleeping Beauty."

"Well, I doubt she needed as much sleep as you apparently do." John rolled his eyes before clamping a pillow over his head, unimpressed and yet used to the snarking attack on his character. "And from what I've researched, the handsome prince didn't get too shabby of a deal out of it, either."

The pillow came back off of John's stubbled face. A mischievous grin stretched it wide, "Oh, you bad, perverted robot, you."

A faux-contemplative expression passed over the android's face, "Not exactly the sexiest thing anyone's ever called me in bed before..."

"Oh? I suppose you'd prefer 'Handsome Prince' instead?" John snorted.

"I believe the term 'Prince Charming' would be more accurate. Besides, given the current circumstances, I'd say it's all very fitting."

A smirk found it's way to John's lips as he folded an arm behind his head, "You gonna wake me up before you go-go, Officer Humble?"

"Something like that..." Dorian's smirk was much gentler than his partner's when he spoke, yet still filled with implications.

A low hum seeped from John's throat when Dorian dipped towards him, demonstrating his impression of Prince Charming and his legendary wake-up kiss. In John's opinion, Prince Charming had nothing on an android who probably studied everything there was to know about kissing, intimacy, and sex a dozen times over. Seriously, do DRNs have to be perfect at everything?*

Docile and full of honest affection, their oral dance was both soothing and stimulating at the same time. There was no need to rush things.

After a moment, Dorian eased off from their connection and his eyes blazed ocean-blue bright as they bored into John's hazel ones, richly green except for the thin, golden ring around his dilated pupils.

"Prince Charming, who?" John hummed lowly, his voice thick with a borderline growl beneath his words.

"I suppose surpassing the performance of dramatized, fictional characters is a win in this circumstance?"

"Hey, if topping a random handsome stranger waking someone up from practical death with that kind of mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, you can save my life anytime."

"Flattering," Dorian replied flatly. "I'll remember that if ever I need to help clear your nasal passages in the middle of the night."

John looked proficiently confused...and unimpressed, "The hell is that supposed to mean?"

"Well, for starters, I don't think Sleeping Beauty snored..."

"Hey! For the last time, I don't snore! ...No matter what my bed says."

"- But I'm happy to report that there are no signs of sleep apnea - "

"Gee, thanks."

"And I still find you the most alluring human I've come across..."

John raised a half-mocking eyebrow, "Oh, yeah?"

"I agree with what Julian once said: there's beauty in flaws, John. Perfection does get boring, to be honest."

John's eyes softened. His hand creeped around until it found Dorian's fingers and squeezed. "You're not perfect either, you know..."

Dorian's downcast eyes traveled up to lock with John's. After a moment, a smile eased into his features. He squeezed his partner's hand back in return, "Would you believe that was the most romantic thing anyone's ever said to me?"

John couldn't help but chuckle with a huge grin, "Well, we know your standards are pretty low if you're with me. I'm not exactly Romeo Montague, you know."

Dorian's smile remained, yet grew gentler, "You don't need to be." When he leaned in this time, their kiss remained tame, but far less chaste. John opened to accommodate immediately, exhaling heavily through his nose and releasing the lowest vibration from the back of his throat.

Dorian echoed the pleased sounds coming from his partner as he traced John's lips with his tongue and delved inside. A shudder caused John to arch up a little from the buzzy-tingly sensation of Dorian's charged tongue against his own. John untangled one of his hands so it could scrape its way up to clasp behind Dorian's neck, encouraging the android further. Dorian mirrored the gesture. Blue lights spiraled through his fingers while his touch explored John's jaw and throat.

A spike of excitement surged through John's spine and he grasped a fistful of Dorian's shirt collar to tug him further onto the bed. The android complied easily enough, if making the angle a bit awkward to accommodate in order to avoid crushing John's very human body.

It quickly became apparent what John wanted when he began tugging insistently (if a little clumsily) at Dorian's jacket. After a few frustrating moments of divided concentration, John finally pulled away to focus on removing the stubborn material. He shivered with both bliss and irritation as he felt Dorian's tongue trace the shell of his ear just as he managed to pull the jacket off.

"Goddamn, Dorian. Why do you even bother with all of this?"

Dorian hardly halted his teasing touches as he replied, "Well, normal people get dressed for the day when they're up and about."

"Yeah, but when we don't have to be anywhere? What's the point?" Obviously still failing in his attempt to remove the dark shirt that still smelt of Downey, John persisted instead to run his hands up underneath. He could feel the warm, very life-like skin light up under his fingers as they climbed higher up the defined back.

"Simple manners, John. And tact."

"Hey, I've got plenty of tact, thank you very much." John barely managed to disguise a pleased groan with a heavy sigh when he felt warm fingertips that buzzed with what felt like static electricity from a birthday party balloon graze across his pectoral. The stark tingle to his nipple made him shudder and he felt his left leg instinctively shift to the side. Almost immediately after, he brought it up to bracket against Dorian's torso, "Fuck, D..." A low hum answered him as his partner followed his fingers' path with his lips and tongue. It was definitely getting harder to think. "What time is it, anyway..?" He caught himself glancing at the alarm clock even as he asked. "Ah, no. No, no! No, you did NOT wake me up before seven in the damn A.M.! Jesus Christ, Dorian! I don't even have to go in today! This is my first real day off since before the Blacksmith case and I - "

"Exactly," Dorian punctuated by nipping his way from John's chest and down his abdominals. He didn't even falter. "I didn't think you'd want a perfectly good day to go to waste. Thought maybe you'd want to make the most of it."

John shivered when Dorian's perfect teeth grazed one of his sensitive spots and tried to remember to be irritated. "Dor - damn it, D! You remember what happens when you don't get enough charge between shifts? Do you have any idea of what the human equivalent is like?"

At last, Dorian ceased his infuriatingly pleasurable ministrations and pulled up enough to look down into John's grumpy gaze. He scraped his bottom lip between his teeth, looking a little chagrined, "I apologize; I didn't mean to be so thoughtless. I'll let you go back to sleep. Get as much rest as you - " the android gave an uncharacteristic yelp when John yanked him back over his body just as Dorian began to leave the bed.

A bit aggressively, John clamped a hand over the back of his partner's neck and yanked him forward to devour the full lips. Dorian hesitated for just a second in surprise. This time, John locked his leg around Dorian's waist insistently, "You leave this bed before I'm done with you, and you're in big trouble, mister."

That mischievous grin returned to the android's features. He studied John's face once-over before delving in again, enveloping his partner's frame within his own.

This was one thing Dorian never could get enough of: John, at his barest, purest, raw self. Everything he kept buried under lock and key was laid out to see: his passions, his fears, his vulnerabilities... And that he trusted Dorian - of all the people in his life - with those things was a more precious gift than Dorian felt anyone could ever deserve. He cherished that deeply.

After a bit of rustling around, Dorian finally managed to pull the rest of the sheet away from what little of John's body it was covering, "What's the big idea trying to hide from me, anyways?"

"What kind of a tease would I be if I didn't?" John retorted quickly with a smirk. His hands were already working on ridding his partner of his trousers. "Gotta make you work for it, you know."

"Funny. I recall me being the more patient of the two of us."

"Semantic bastard..."

"Careful, John. Need I remind you of how much of a tease I can be?" Emphasizing his point, the android firmly rolled his hips against his partner's, causing a groan that couldn't be disguised to rip through John's throat.

John barely contained himself from arching up against the friction, "Oh, sure," he huffed only partially to himself. "The guy doesn't even bother to take his pants completely off first."

"Did I ever tell you how picky you are in bed?" Dorian chided even as he moved to alleviate the aforementioned problem. "Did I ever tell you how sadistically nonchalant you are?"

"I would think that one of us has to remain coherent enough in order for us to get off."

John rolled his eyes and tore off Dorian's shirt with a bit more force than was necessary, "Is this your idea of pillow-talk, or a pissing contest?"

Dorian halted for a quick instant to level John with a most perplexed stare, "Why, Detective, I had no idea you were into such fetishes."

John blanched before noticing the sly twinkle in Dorian's eye. He narrowly stopped himself from smacking his partner in reproach, "Smart ass."

"Gotta keep you sharp, man," the android replied smugly before pinning his partner beneath him again, the electric humming of his skin buzzing against John's as streaks of blue light danced all across the surface.

John could feel goosebumps prickle his flesh and a chill shook him. Before Dorian, he would have never dreamed that synthetic just may be a bit better than the real thing. (Although John hadn't thought of his partner as a 'synthetic' for a long time.)

Something between a growl and a hum seeped from John's throat when he felt something very warm and very familiar breach him. He had to break away from Dorian sucking the life out of him in order to replenish enough oxygen to his brain and realize just what happened. Only a second longer was all it took for him to notice a light, circling pressure along his inner walls.

He was still moist - and a little stretched - from their last encounter late last night.

John had needed to de-stress and couldn't seem to wind down enough to get to sleep. Considering the long-awaited trial and the headache that ensued with finally nailing that Blacksmith bastard after that jigsaw puzzle of a case, John had nearly forgotten what it felt like to not be wound up so tight. From pacing the apartment after tossing about in bed for a few hours, to jogging a couple of miles' worth on the treadmill, to watching late-night, boring rom-com reruns, Dorian had finally intervened and ran him a steaming hot bath - which he practically had to wrestle the stubborn mule of a man into submission in order to accomplish such a task. After being coerced into a massage, John had eventually allowed it. Nearly drunk with exhaustion that had finally managed to make itself sensate, John had barely given enough time for the knots in his neck and shoulders to be eased away before Dorian's skilled hands (among other things) were made useful elsewhere.

Needless to say, there was no way John could have made it to bed on his own after that.

Dorian eased back just a bit when he felt his partner tense at his touch, "Are you okay?"

"Yeah," John replied a might breathlessly. "Yeah, I'm fine. Just still a little sore, is all."

Spirals of blue trickled down Dorian's face and he looked thoughtful, "Hmm. Perhaps I can help with that?"

John let out a weak groan when he felt what he assumed was Dorian's thumb, circling around the swollen flesh of his entrance where it gripped his partner's p knuckle - as if trying to sooth it, "I'd prefer if you made me more sore, if you don't mind."

That annoyingly cute dimple appeared at the corner of Dorian's mouth. His eyes glinted with glee, "I think I can do both."

John didn't have a chance to question what that meant; he shivered again when he felt his knee being braced over Dorian's arm and the android worked his way further down his torso. A gasp ripped through his throat when he felt hot air just millimeters from where he wanted it to be. When the tingly-buzzing tongue traced said area around the shaft, John couldn't help shooting a hand down to grip the back of the perfect neck, ghosting over the electrical port beneath the left ear with his thumb. With a small exclamation, Dorian pulled back and leveled a calculating stare at his partner. The corner of his lips tightened a little - partially in reprimand, partially in amusement.

"You're making it very difficult to seduce you if you keep distracting me like that..."

John cheekily grinned, only a little bit breathless, "Oh, you were trying to seduce me?"

Apparently, Dorian took that as a challenge; his eyes narrowed just a fraction and his grin turned into a sneer of determination before he abruptly ducked down again, his oral teases turning borderline aggressive at the crease of John's groin and thigh. Simultaneously, the single digit that was still currently imbedded in John's entrance smoothly slid out to just the tip. Then it, along with it's next door neighbor, thrust back in with just a bit more finesse than John felt should be physically obtainable. The whole combo sent John arching deeper than he thought possible, both hands scrambling for purchase now. Dorian came back with something between a hum and a chuckle in response.

"You're evil," John gasped once he managed to catch half a decent breath. "You're pure evil. That's cheating!"

Dorian withdrew again to deliver that damn smug grin, "Are you complaining?"

"For the sake of the principle, I am."

"Oh?" Dorian pulled away from creating a rather generously well-endowed red bruise over John's femoral artery and removed his fingers. "You have my apologies, then. I will cease my efforts immediately..."

Dorian didn't have a chance to pull back completely; he'd barely made it to sit up on his knees before John surged forward, grabbed hold behind his partner's neck again, and smashed their bodies together in a lip lock that almost hurt.

Triumph nearly physically surged through Dorian, blue lights dancing all over his skin as he reciprocated John's aggressive passion. He couldn't help the chuckle that rumbled deep in his throat at his human's stubborn wit that just didn't know when to stop.

They both knew what he really wanted.

Dorian barely managed to push John onto his back again, draping himself over his partner once more, before John grabbed him by the wrist and placed it back between his legs. Their connection did not break until the android surged in again - three fingers this time. John released a breath that was a much higher pitch than usual - one that he would never admit to.

"Am I still boring you, Detective Kennex?" That damn smirk could almost be heard in Dorian's tone.

John released an unrestrained groan when all three of those fingers managed to simultaneously miss the perfect spot by just that much. He almost forgot to take his tongue put of Dorian's mouth before retorting, "You're such a cheeky bastard..."

"And you're a demanding grump."

"You complaining?"

Dorian paused, appearing to contemplate, "Not really." When he dipped forward for another kiss, his mission must have been to suck the life out of his poor human, because that's exactly what he managed to do - carefully avoiding that one spot that John desperately wanted the digits to go until the fourth was worked in. John was caught between wanting more and wanting the relentless teasing to stop.

His voice was both guttural and needy at the same time, "You're...enjoying this, aren't you?"

Dorian's eyes seemed to sparkle, "You know that I am." There wasn't even time for the next breath before he nudged his impressive length in, his face illuminating in various intricate blue patterns as he processed every single minute reaction in John's body: the hitch in his breath, the fluttering of his eyelashes before settling against his cheeks, the impressive bow that his spine arched into the further Dorian breached his body, fingers sliding carefully out one-by-one the more their space was compensated. "I like watching you, John. You fascinate me to no end."

"You know what else is fascinating? You're - ah, fuck! - unbelievable...pornstar dick." John worked up the energy to jibe, willing his body to adjust to the sizable intruder as it settled in completely. "You'd think...-ah!-...that your designer...would give you a more reasonable size. You've officially ruined me..."

"Well, you know what they say," Dorian replied evenly, his gaze archiving every microsecond of this priceless image. He began to punctuate every third word with a shallow roll of his hips. "Once you go android....you never go back..."

There was about a five-second pause. Then John released a laugh that ended in a choked groan when Dorian's movements began to gradually increase in force - but not speed, "Oh, my...God...that was...so incredibly...bad."

Dorian didn't even falter, "Am I wrong?"

John took a moment to contemplate (which may have been interrupted once or twice by the very distracting movements of his partner), "Yeah, actually."

Dorian did stop this time. A combination of confusion and a little hurt crossed his features. Before he could say anything, however, John reached out and tugged him down again for a kiss that would have rendered the bot breathless, if only he had the requirement (rather than the desire) to breathe.

"I went Dorian, and I'm sure as hell never going back."

Dorian's eyes rolled so hard, they may have actually done a full circuit, "And that, my friend, was just as equally horrible."

"Isn't...honesty the best policy?" A hiss ended John's question when Dorian began moving again - same speed, increasing intensity.

A serene upturn of the lips graced Dorian's expression and his eyes seemed even brighter than before, "Yeah. It is."

John Kennex certainly wasn't the smoothest sweet-talker (or the most efficient in the matter), but he was nothing if not sincere.

It was one of Dorian's favorite quality of his.

Very little was said for quite awhile. They were in no hurry, having burned off all of the pent-up tension, anxiety, and negative energy from the past five months the night before. They could take their time, now. As John said, they had nowhere to be.

"Hold onto me," Dorian husked in his ear after teasing the lobe relentlessly with teeth and tongue for the past several infuriating minutes. John had to blink the blissful haze from his eyes before he was able to will his arms to comply, scratching their way up his partner's back and locking around his shoulders.

Dorian was so good - so perfect - that John could swear he got more drunk off of what the android could do to his body than the richest bourbon Val could hide away in her desk. Dorian was so good at taking John out of his head that the human barely noticed when Dorian brought them to sit upright, John held securely in the bot's lap. The angle was so incredibly right; John had to bite down on a smooth, dark shoulder in order to stifle the very undignified noise seeping from his throat. Dorian reciprocated by sucking a bruise into the junction between John's neck and shoulder. One hand clenched firmly - but carefully - into John's mussed hair while the other supported all 178 pounds of human flesh.

Once again, did DRNs have to be fucking perfect at everything?

When Dorian started moving again, he began at the same pace he'd kept for the past half hour or so, but steadily (finally!) built speed. John fell away from where his teeth imbedded themselves into synthetic skin, a long keen escaping him. He would have felt embarrassed if he wasn't so caught up in not giving a fuck (depending on how one looks at it) at the moment. All he could think about was how much he wanted more of the euphoric sensation. He could only hold on while Dorian manipulated his body to dance with his own.

And, boy, what an accompanying orchestra John's voice made of the whole ordeal.

Not even five pumps into the new choreography and John already attempted to brace his knee on the bed to use it for leverage in assisting the pace. Dorian, however, was having none of it.

Snaking his arm under the sweaty knee once again, the android maneuvered the limb to settle around his waist instead, both arms now bracing his partner's weight entirely. John thought the angle couldn't have gotten any better - until now, that is. In fact, he probably would have fallen over from shear sensory overload if not for his partner's sure grasp.

John's leg clenched tighter around Dorian's frame, arms locked in what have been a death grip for any human being around the bot's neck and increasingly-frequent gasps muffled into the sturdy shoulder. His own erection was pinned between their stomachs and teased just right by the synchronized rhythm of their bodies. He didn't even bother reaching for it; the delicious friction inside of him was MORE than enough stimulation, thanks. Besides, he couldn't have been sure that he had the coordination, at the moment.

Of course, count on the damn computer - with all of its simulated colloquium programs and comprehension of emotions, somehow can't understand the concept of human limits - to have other ideas.

"Come on, John," a low growl purred in his ear. "Don't hold back on me. Show me. Let me see you."

"I can't..."

"You can," came the slightly husked reply as Dorian unwound one of John's arms from around his neck and instead directed it between their bodies. "I want to see. Don't be ashamed."

"I'm...I'm not." Despite his words, John continued to bury his eyes into his partner's shoulder.

Dorian countered this action by shifting to capture John's mouth again, forcing him to bring his head back up. The attack was so fierce that John was thrown off-balance, fumbling to counter the weight-shift, as Dorian let their bodies fall a bit onto their sides, John's leg coming up just in time to bracket Dorian's ribs so as to not be crushed under his hip. The jostling sent a sudden jolt through John's body when the perfect spot was finally hit inside him. A high gasp seeped between their locked lips, a shudder wracking the human's frame. Dorian only faltered for a second before resuming his ruthless, yet steady deliberate thrusts. John's blunt nails pierced his partner's back as his prostate was grazed a little more each time. Damn pin-point precision... John couldn't help the odd mixture of jealousy and annoyance; Dorian was doing this on purpose.

And because the android was a sadistic bastard, he released one hand from John's hips and brought it to join John's free hand. He laced their fingers and broke their lip-lock to place an open-mouth kiss to John's knuckles. John flushed, but he wasn't sure anymore whether it was from the intimate gesture or the fact that Dorian had brought their twined hands back down to his erection. Simultaneously, the bot altered his rhythm from long, pounding thrusts to short, rolling stabs. He was now hitting his target every time.

It was all John could do to keep from screaming in ecstasy and crying from relief. His panting breaths ricocheted off of Dorian's cheeks and back to his own, his chest heaving from excursion. He could no longer keep up; he just let Dorian guide their hands and brace against his body.

Dorian could not for a microsecond - even for the aesthetically-preferred blink - look away from the sight before him. This...

This was one of his favorite images. It was nothing short of stunning: John, body arching, eyes shut, mouth gaping, breath short, the most gorgeous noises escaping those strained vocal chords. He could replay this is in his inner display screen forever. There was only one thing better than this...

"Look at me, John." His only answer was a deep arch and a hoarse cry. Another lovely sight, but still not quite was Dorian was looking for. He slowed down his pace, but did not deviate from his aim. "Come on, John; I'll give you what you want. Just let me see you."

The bot let John's other hand free itself from where their fingers were still laced. It traveled up instead to lock with its twin around Dorian's shoulders, blue lights igniting wherever their skin met. After a few deep, measured breaths, John was able to comply with his partner's request; it had taken a lot of practice for him to be able to do that in the heat of their play.

That stupidly-adorable smirk returned, but not out of mischievousness. He pinned his human under his body, delivering a handful more of his perfectly-aimed thrusts - just a little bit deeper each time - and slowed to an agonizingly torturous pace, his length embedded perfectly. Then a low humming emitted, causing John to shiver. The humming then escalated to light, then heavily buzzing. By the time it was at full, powerful vibration, John was thrashing, scrambling for purchase, voice beginning to crack from strain.

It was then that Dorian resumed his movements full-force. Within seconds, John achieved his release, ripping Dorian's from him nearly instantly after.

The bot continued his movements, never faltering for a second despite the tremors of his motor relays and the stalling of his visual systems for a brief moment. The only thing that prompted him to slow - and then stop - was his partner's body arching into him, pushing him back with much effort.

Dorian pulled out with care, a weak groan emitting from John. He righted them against the pillows before settling in next to his partner, who easily wrapped himself around him again. John had not yet regained the ability of speech yet as his strained lungs attempted to recover lost breath. Dorian could detect the slight rasp, running his fingers absently to and fro across John's sweaty throat while he watched him.

This was the best part, just being able to admire the blissed-out image privileged only to his eyes. He knew better than to relay to John just how gorgeous he finds him, but that did not stop him from reciting it to himself every time. Besides, deep down, he's sure John already knows.

Dorian valued flaws. He saw them as distinctive as humans consider of fingerprints; they make each person an individual. Unique. The perfect format for their other half who compliments them to a fault. And John was perfect for Dorian - from his relentlessly putting-off demeanor to his insatiable love for noodles and little else. There was not a part of his partner that he did not love.

His musings brought him to his wandering fingers, where they danced across John's drying skin. His chest was no longer heaving as hard and his limbs no longer trembled with aftershocks. Little streaks of semen created random designs across the expanse of the stomach against his own. Dorian soon found himself tracing the edges of the connection port on the end of John's right leg. His eyes softened with sympathy at the image. He wished he could have prevented that.

A small hitch in John's breath snapped the android from his reverie. His fingers laced their hands together again and instead brought them back up between their chests. John's eyes hadn't reopened, but a single line of tension creased his brow, "Don't..." He said quietly. It was both a demand and a plea.

Dorian watched his face as a wave of sadness crept up on him. His visual fizzed in and out of focus for a split second, "I'm sorry, John." There were multiple things to apologize for.

A slight expression of pain scrunched John's features and he clung to Dorian tighter. "Don't go yet." His voice had become small, strained. Dorian instantly became high-alert.

Please, not now. Just a little more time..!

"I haven't gone anywhere," the bot insisted, wrapping his partner tightly in his hold. "I'm here. Hold on a little longer, John."

"'M so tired..."

"I know you are. Just hold on. I'm gonna get you out - I promise."

The image fizzed again. An expression of pain crossed John's face, more intense than the last. John clung to him with every inch of himself - as if he expected Dorian to just vaporize.

"No..."

"Focus on me, John. I'm right here."

"Don't leave. Please."

"I'm here. I'm not going - "

"No - !"

"John!"

The fizzing shorted out the images to an undecipherable degree.

 

The wailing of a heart monitor screeched from somewhere nearby. Then all visual disappeared.