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Out of my Depth

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Gwaine would swear blind that he was at the Trials for Morgana, and he was, really, but he honestly couldn't remember a single one of her dives. He was a horrible brother and he knew Morgana would never forgive him if she found out, but the moment her teammate – a six foot five hulking specimen of man – stepped into his peripheral vision, Gwaine was gone. The man was all muscles and concentration, with a fucking gorgeous arse barely covered by his Speedos, and Gwaine couldn't even pretend to concentrate on anything else.

When the announcer called him - LaMer - for his fifth dive and he realised that he'd clinched a spot on the Olympic team, his smile lit up his whole face. He didn't celebrate with the team right away, instead climbing up the steps to do his final dive.

Gwaine watched with rapt attention as LaMer walked confidently to the end of the platform. When he bent over and placed his hands on the platform the crowd went wild.

Gwaine was out of his seat before he realised he was caught up with the rest of the spectators. He watched, transfixed, as LaMer slowly raised himself to a handstand. The muscles in his arms and back rippled with exertion. After what seemed an eternity, he twitched ever so slightly and vaulted himself off the platform, through a series of twists and turns, finally righting himself and slicing through the water with hardly a sound or splash.

The crowd – Gwaine included – erupted into raucous applause. If Gwaine could've heard the announcer over the loudspeaker, he would've heard the glee in the man's voice proclaiming Percival LaMer Great Britain's best chance to win its first ever diving gold in the Olympic Games.

- - -

Gwaine practically forced Morgana to invite him to the unofficial after party. (Unofficial, as in if any of their coaches knew they were out drinking they'd be in serious trouble.)

She made him promise to behave, and he meant it (mostly). All he wanted was a chance to see LaMer. Okay, and maybe get his number and make out a bit. He didn't need to fuck LaMer in the pub loo, but he definitely wouldn't turn down the offer when it inevitably came.

He forced himself to go back to his hotel room and cool off for a bit before heading over to the pub. He didn't want to appear over-eager (he was), but he also didn't want to miss his chance with LaMer (and he was just realising he should have asked Morgana for his first name).

When he eventually got his act together and got to the pub, it was surprisingly crowded. He squeezed his way through the crowd and over to the bar, trying to scope out its occupants while waiting for his drink. He spotted Morgana heading for the ladies' and then spotted his bloke sitting alone on the opposite side of the pub.

He waited until Morgana was well out of sight (she was a horrible cockblock) before making his way over to LaMer, who was equally as good-looking fully clothed as he was in those tiny Speedos. It was just loud enough in the pub that it would be hard to hear, so after making the universal signal for “I want your sex” he slid his way into the booth next to LaMer.

“You were incredible out there today.”

Gwaine wanted to bash his head against the grimy pub table. Of all the cliché things he could have said.

“Uh, thanks,” replied LaMer.

“Gwaine,” he said, extending his hand. “Percy.” They shook hands, Gwaine struggling to take his eyes off the way Percy’s biceps bunched and flexed with the motion. In fact, he was even better up close than he was on the diving platform. (Though Gwaine would admit he'd prefer it if he was still wearing his swimsuit.)

“You're Morgana's brother. She's mentioned you.”

Fuck. If he already knew Morgana was his sister, chances were she had shared her opinions on his sex life.

“Ah, you know you can’t believe everything Morgana says. Horrible wretch. Unless she was telling you about all my work with orphans and rescuing stranded animals and doing other terribly charitable and manly things.”

“It's okay. You probably don't want to know what she’s said anyway. I know Morgana is prone to exaggeration. You can't possibly be as bad as she says.”

“Finally, someone who hasn't fallen for Morgana's charms. She's a bitch, I tell you. She looks all innocent and pretty, but she's nothing of the sort. Bewitches people with her hair and her eyes.”

“And you never try to do that?”

“No, never! I'm insulted you'd even insinuate something like that,” Gwaine replied as he batted his eyes and ran his fingers through his hair.

Percy threw his head back in laughter.

“Can I get you a drink?” Gwaine offered, noticing Percy's glass was nearing empty.

Percy gave him an appraising look. “Sure. Ginger ale. I don't drink this close to a competition,” he added in explanation.

When Gwaine got back to the table after a harrowing experience at the bar wherein he was mauled by nearly an entire hen party, Morgana was seated next to Percy, talking his ear off.

Gwaine put the drinks down and gave Morgana a hard look. She needed to leave. Now. He needed to turn on his A game and that wasn't going to happen with his sister around.

“Apparently I'm not wanted here. Thanks, Gwaine. I'll see you tomorrow, Perce,” she gave him a peck on the cheek before exiting the booth. The look she gave Gwaine before walking off made it clear he was lucky she didn't knee him in his Crown Jewels just then.

“Fun chat, then?” Gwaine asked, taking a sip of his drink.

“She was just listing all the reasons I shouldn't go home with you tonight.”

Gwaine choked on his mouthful of drink.

“What the fuck??”

Percy doubled over with laughter. “Oh man, you should see your face!” he cried.

“You're taking the piss.”

“I am.”

“That's not fair.”

“Why not?”

“Because I’m horribly offended you would think of me that way. What kind of man do you take me for?”

Percy leveled him with a look Gwaine thought said something like “I know exactly what kind of man you are, you don’t fool me, now please take me to the loo and shag my brains out.” (That last bit might have been hopeful imagination on Gwaine’s part, though.)

“So tell me about that dive earlier. The crowd went fucking wild.”

Percy saw the wild subject change for what it was, a major deflection, but humoured Gwaine anyway.

“It was a risky move. Coach never wants me to do that one, but I love it. You don't see a lot of armstand dives.”

“If your coach didn't want you to do it, why did you?”

“I guess I was feeling a bit confident? It's fun for me to do, and I knew I was safe unless I totally butchered it. Every dive is a risk, but given the scores, I thought I'd just go for it.”

They talked uninterrupted for a while longer, with Gwaine's charm turned on high. Turned out Percy and Morgana had actually been diving together for several years and were quite close, Gwaine just hadn't been around enough to notice.

“So if Morgana wasn't giving you a list of reasons you shouldn't go home with me, does that mean there's a chance you will?” Gwaine asked eventually.

“Oh, no. Definitely not. Not tonight, at least.”

“What? Why not? Don’t think you can handle all of this?” Gwaine gestured at himself.

“Something like that.” Percy chuckled. “Listen, I should really go. I have an early practice spot tomorrow, and I don’t want to be late. I’m glad you came over, though.”

Percy apparently wasn’t kidding about the lack of shagging. Gwaine deflated, but tried not to show it. “You are? I mean, of course you are. Who wouldn’t be?”

“Night, Gwaine,” Percy chuckled. “Hopefully I’ll see you around?”

Gwaine gave him a manly nod, and with a wink, Percy was off.

- - -

Gwaine didn't want to seem too eager (he was), but he also had a legitimate excuse to be there, so he only waited a day before heading down to the practice arena. He'd snagged a copy of Morgana's schedule so he knew the best time to go to make it seem like he was there for her (which he totally was) but also to talk to Percy.

Easily his favourite part of practice was watching the post-dive showers. He'd never understood the purpose of them, but he also wasn't about to question something that meant he could watch a man like Percy stand under the spray, water cascading down his body, touching every inch of skin and muscle Gwaine wanted to touch himself.

- - -

“Do you ever lose those tiny trunks when you hit the water?” Gwaine wondered aloud when Percy took his seat on the bench a row in front of him.

“It's been known to happen,” Percy chuckled.

“If you could arrange that today, I'd be grateful.”

“I'll talk to Coach.”

- - -


- - -

Gwaine waited for Percy outside the changing rooms after practice several days later. He’d have preferred to wait inside the changing rooms but he’d been informed by a Percy-sized security guard that they were for “athletes only” (Gwaine was an athlete!).

He flinched every time the changing room door opened, so he was jumpy by the time Percy finally threw open the door and started walking down the hall.

“Hey, Perce, how about dinner and watching a film tonight? Maybe on my sofa?”

“Gwaine,” Percy practically shouted, spinning around to face him. “Leave me alone. I can't do this. You have to stop.”

“Stop what?” Gwaine asked, confused.

“Everything. Stop texting me, stop calling, stop coming to practice! I can't deal with distractions at the moment. So just stop.”

Without giving Gwaine even a chance to respond, Percy turned tail and stormed out of the building.

“I hate to say I told you so.”

“Of course you would overhear that. Why can't anything in my life be easy?”

“Oh, poor baby. Spend your days watching Olympians strut about, not a care in the world. Yes, why can't your life be easier?”

“Morgana, can we not do this now? As you've undoubtedly seen, I've just been spectacularly crushed. I need to go get blind drunk and stumble about until I find my pride. Possibly find some good-looking bloke to--”

“You really think that's going to help?” Morgana asked.

“Help what, Morgana? You heard him. He wants nothing to do with me!”

“If that's what you heard, you're stupider than I thought and you don't deserve him.”

“He told me not to call, text, or see him. I think that's pretty fucking clear, 'Gana.”

“He said he can't handle distractions, Gwaine. All you've done is flirt and interrupt practice. You text him when he should be practicing or working out and always expect an immediate response. I don't know how you got his number, but whoever gave it to you should be ashamed.”

Gwaine had the decency to look embarrassed.

“You utter shit,” she shouted at him, punctuating each word with a slap to his arm. (Morgana did not hit like a girl, either.) “Stay out of my stuff, arsehole.”

“Whatever, Morgana. It doesn’t matter anymore.”

She rolled her eyes in response.

“We are less than a month from the Olympics, Gwaine. Four fucking weeks. You know how hard I've trained for this, how long. Percy trains twice as hard as any of us on the team. He is our country's greatest chance at winning a gold medal. You might not think so, but that's a lot of fucking pressure, brother.”


“Yeah, oh. That's what he means when he says he doesn't need any distractions at the moment. None of us do.”

“So what do I do?”

“Do you really want my opinion or are you just going to get pissed and find the nearest available shag for a quick one?”

“What do I do?”

“Be supportive. Quietly,” she adds, poking a finger into his chest, before Gwaine can insist he has been supportive, in his own way. “Come to practice, but don't sit right behind him. Observe from afar. Show him that you care about more than his arse, because that's all he thinks this is right now.

She paused.

“But Gwaine, if all you do care about is his arse, then walk away right now. Percy is a good man and my friend. He's not a casual shag kind of guy. He's not afraid of commitment or working hard for a relationship, unlike some people I know. If this is all about the chase to you and you'll forget him once you get your prick sucked, then don't pursue this. I'll tear off your bollocks myself. But if you want more than that, if what you feel is more than an infatuation, you can fix this.”

Satisfied with the sheepish look on Gwaine’s face, Morgana gave him a peck on the cheek and said “please think about it before you decide what you're going to do.” Then she left, too.

- - -

Gwaine did stop at the pub that night. But he only had one drink and barely noticed anyone around him. He didn't even notice when the bartender he'd been trying to shag for months left her number on his bar mat.

When he woke up the following morning, he knew his decision. He sent Percy one text (and not of his arse, though he was constantly tempted).

I heard what you said yesterday. I'm not going away, but I won't distract you anymore, either.

He was disappointed but not surprised when he didn't receive a response.

- - -

Gwaine waited four excruciating days before showing up at the practice arena again.

He got there in time to watch Morgana and the girls practice, and actually watched them this time. Of course, he also watched Percy warm up, but he didn't approach. Morgana had been right. It was just as important for him to show his support as his interest. It certainly didn't hurt that he could watch Percy uninterrupted as he swam laps or contorted his body into mind-boggling yoga poses that only served to give Gwaine ideas, no matter how good he was trying to be.

After another two days of quietly showing his support, Gwaine was getting antsy. It wasn't in his nature to sit idly. He was a man of action (especially when it came to matters of the, er, heart). He started second-guessing Morgana's advice. At least when he was “distracting” Percy, he had his attention.

This patience lark was maddening. He had not once caught Percy's eye, didn't even know if Percy realised he was in the stands. He fancied himself hard to miss, but that sadly didn't always hold true for others.

He was well and truly on his way to a spectacular mope when a wet towel landed in his face, causing him to start and splutter.

“What are you doing here, Gwaine?”


Percy just looked at him, eyebrows raised in question.

“I'm just, that is to say, I mean, I'm supporting the team.”

“Supporting the team?”

“Yes, you know, moral support, diving solidarity, et cetera. Not distracting, just sitting here quietly. Minding my own business but in a totally supportive way.”

The look Percy gave in response made Gwaine feel as if he were being very thoroughly evaluated.

“I'm sorry I shouted at you.”

Gwaine was confused; he was fairly certain he was in the wrong, so why was Percy apologising?

“It's okay. I understand.”

“It's not okay. I had a shit practice that day. Coach called me out, told me I lost my focus. He was right, but I shouldn't have taken it out on you.”

“It's okay. I get why you did.” Gwaine couldn't stand Percy's beating himself up.


“Yeah. Uh, Morgana might have clued me in a little. Best chance for Britain, yeah?”

Percy let out a breath and sat down next to Gwaine. It was then Gwaine noticed Percy was only wearing a towel around his waist (and how had it taken so long to notice that?). He was mostly dry, but a few stray water droplets still clung to his skin. Gwaine kind of desperately wanted to lick them off, but fortunately there was, in fact, a tiny portion of his brain that was still functioning and recognised that was probably a poor idea.

“That's quite a bit of pressure.”

Percy chuckled mirthlessly.

“You could say that.” He paused. “I didn't sign up for this. I started diving because I watched all these incredible athletes and wanted to be like them. I never understood what it would mean to get to this level. I'm not even sure I know what it means now other than if I don't win, I'll have roughly sixty million people disappointed in me.”

“I won't be,” Gwaine said before he could stop himself.

“Really?” Percy asked, skeptical.

“Yeah. Really. It sounds cliché, but it's incredible just to make it to the Olympics. There's no shame in not winning.”

- - -

After that, things got a little easier. Gwaine still showed up to practice every day to cheer on Morgana and Percy, and Percy came to talk to him once practice was over. Gwaine didn't text him quite as much (still no arse pictures, either), and certainly not during practice anymore.

- - -

“What's on your necklace?” Percy asked one day during their post-practice chat.

Gwaine glanced down. He hadn't realised he was playing with the twisted metal charm hanging from his neck while watching Percy dive. He chuckled to himself; it was ironic, really.

“It's called Excalibur's Amulet. Legend has it the Lady of the Lake who presented King Arthur with Excalibur the sword also gave him this amulet. Mum got these for Morgana and me when we were younger. Ehm... I might have played a prank on 'Gana that ended with her maybe nearly getting knocked out and falling off the pier into the lake near our house. And then I might have nearly drowned both of us trying to save her instead of calling for help.”

Percy snorted.

“Don't look at me like that, it was an accident.”

Percy's eyebrows rose in disbelief.

“Okay, so the prank was intentional, but the almost drowning certainly was not. Anyway, the charm is supposed to guide you through proverbial troubled waters. It's certainly fitting.”

“Percy!” came a shout from the pool deck.

“Yeah Coach?”

“Let's go.”

“Sorry,” Percy shrugged.

As he stood, Percy's towel snagged on one of the cheap stadium seats. When he bent to retrieve it Gwaine caught a glimpse of woven lines peeking out of the top of Percy's Speedos. (And good Lord it was lucky he was able to focus on anything at all what with Percy's perfect arse staring him in the face.) But something about that pattern looked familiar.

“You have a tattoo?” Gwaine blurted.

“You're just noticing that now?” Percy asked, blushing.

“Well, I've been trying very hard not to stare at your arse.”

“That's honestly a little disappointing. I think I might be offended.”

“Come on, then. What is it?”

“I think you might just have to wait and find out.”

Gwaine flashed his best pout, but Percy just threw his head back in laughter and wrapped his towel round his waist again.

“Let's just say you're not the only one familiar with that bit of Arthurian legend.” And with a wink, he bounded down the stadium steps and off into the locker room.

Well, wasn't that interesting?

- - -

The final two weeks before the Olympics Gwaine hardly saw Percy at all. Well, that's not entirely true. Percy's face (and gorgeous body) were plastered all over the news and the city, proclaiming everyone's love and support for their favourite Olympian. Thankfully, Morgana managed to get passes to the arena so Gwaine could still watch practice, so he wouldn't have to miss Percy there.

He wasn't allowed on the pool deck for security reasons, though he figured he could probably flirt his way down there if really necessary (and hey, why shouldn't he use the considerable resources at his disposal?), but he didn't want to be a distraction. And this time he wasn't even being snarky about it, he honestly got it and didn't want to hamper Percy's focus at all.

So instead he found other things to occupy his attention.

There was a lot of very toned, athletic flesh in the swimming and diving arena, but for the first time, maybe ever, he found he was only interested in one person. But who could blame him? Percy was a perfect physical specimen – sculpted chest and abs, arms like tree branches and thighs that could break a man in half. (Not that Gwaine had ever imagined a scenario involving being pinned between those thighs, no.)

And Percy was in constant movement. When he wasn't actually climbing to or on the diving platform, he was stretching or jogging or doing some of those complicated but mouth-wateringly sexy yoga moves Gwaine had seen before.

So when Gwaine said he didn't see much of Percy in the days leading up to the Olympics, he meant up close and personal. He certainly saw Percy, lots of him, skin and muscle and sinew (and almost cock and bollocks and arse, because Christ those suits were tiny), but even all that skin wasn't enough to stop him from missing the man himself.

- - -

When his phone rang the night before Percy's event and it showed Percy's number on the screen, Gwaine nearly dropped his phone in surprise. Half asleep, he figured he was hallucinating, but he answered on the off chance he wasn't.

“Percy? Is everything alright?”

“Yeah, it's just...” he paused. “ Well, it's ironic, really. I could use a bit of a distraction.”

“So you called me?”

“This is stupid. I'll go. You were clearly sleeping.”

“Wait! It's not stupid. I was just surprised is all. Don't you have teammates to distract you? Why me?” The question came out far more direct than Gwaine intended, but he was surprised and sleepy, not in top form.

“They're sleeping, or should be. Plus, I, uh, missed talking to you.”

“You missed me?” Gwaine teased, not so secretly elated.

“Shut it. Don't let it go to your head.”

“My head is swelling as we speak. It's getting bigger and bigger the more I think about you missing me.”

Percy gave a choked cough on the other line.

“That's not what I meant,” (it was absolutely what he meant). “Get your mind out of the gutter, LaMer.”

- - -

When they hung up the phone an hour later, Percy's mind was definitely off the competition the following day. To be sure, Gwaine's was, too. The conversation had ranged from the heavy – Percy's fears of failing a nation – to the ridiculous – Gwaine's reenactments of parts of the opening ceremony – and always with an undercurrent of fun and flirtation. Gwaine might have even offered up a picture of his arse in exchange for a close up of Percy's tattoo (or a full body shot, Gwaine wasn't picky).

When Percy had called, Gwaine was on the edge of sleep himself. Now he was keyed up. He couldn't stop thinking about Percy.

The way he was just as good at giving a hard time as he was taking.

The way he was willing to share little pieces of himself with Gwaine, unashamed and unafraid.

It didn't take long for Gwaine's thoughts to turn down a more salacious path. He wished he could be with Percy right at that moment. He had plenty of ideas for how he could wear Perce out and help him sleep. He hoped (believed) that once the Olympics were over that he'd be able to put those thoughts into action.

He couldn't decide how he would prefer it to go. He wanted to bend Percy over his kitchen table, pound into him until the table skittered its way across the kitchen floor.

He wanted to spread Percy out on his living room rug, lick and bite and taste him from head to toe. He wanted to swallow Percy's cock down to the root, choke on it until his eyes watered, but then bathe it in tiny licks and kisses until Percy came undone.

Before Percy, Gwaine would have identified as a semi-versatile top. But Percy, however unintentionally, was making him rethink his whole sexual outlook.

He had visions of Percy splayed out on the pool arena floor (or perhaps up high on the platform), speedo long discarded, water pooling in the divots on his chest and stomach and Gwaine riding him with abandon. The sounds of pants and groaning, skin slapping obscenely, echoing throughout the arena.

The vision that made him come undone, made him go positively dizzy with want, was Percy letting loose and pounding into Gwaine from above. He would pin Gwaine to the bed – face down, hands splayed on Gwaine's hips, immobilising him, preventing him from tossing off, just ruthlessly thrusting and grinding, finding his pleasure in Gwaine.

At the thought of Percy shouting his climax as he came in Gwaine's arse, Gwaine came. Hard. His hips rose from the bed, hand squeezed tight around the base of his prick, and come shot out of his cock, hitting him from shoulder to abdomen.

He thought of Percy as he cleaned himself up, hoping the other man found a similar way to relieve his stress.

- - -

The following day the swimming and diving arena was pure chaos. There were so many events going on seemingly at once that it was hard to focus.

He wanted to reach out for Percy, wrap him in a hug, perhaps snog him senseless (for luck, of course!) but he settled for a less than satisfactory text.

photo (1)

The response was a little disappointing, but he could see Percy on the floor and he was concentrating intensely. He still had his warm-ups on and was sitting with his team with his headphones on. Gwaine could see the subtle movements of his body, barely twisting, turning, tucking, as he ran through his dives in his head.

Despite having watched Morgana for years, Gwaine had no clue how the competition would go or what would earn the best scores (apparently he didn’t pay attention at these things like he thought he had). They all looked pretty fucking good to him. The judges must have agreed, because after Percy's first three dives he was in first place. The predominantly British (or Brit-friendly, he supposed) crowd was going wild.

Gwaine sat at the very edge of his seat, knees bouncing in excitement and anxiety. He didn't understand how Percy could be so calm.

Percy's fourth dive – back two and a half somersault with two and a half twists in the pike position, according to the lady behind him – looked gorgeous. Gwaine was half out of his seat to cheer when Percy entered the water. He didn't need to hear the gasps and groans of the crowd to know that amount of splash upon entry was bad.

“Oh dear,” the lady exclaimed. “He over-rotated on that last flip.”

“Do you think so?” Gwaine turned and snapped at her.

Gwaine fumbled his phone out of his pocket, thinking vaguely of texting Percy something encouraging. Before he knew what he wanted to say, his phone buzzed in his hand.

Morgana. Of course.

He caught sight of Morgana watching him from the arena floor and glared at her.

photo (2)

Fine, she was right, but he didn't have to admit that to her.

Percy didn't even look up when his scores were announced. It wasn't good. He had dropped out of medal contention and into to fourth place with just that one mistake. Gwaine watched Percy with his coach as the next round of dives took place. He couldn't tell what his coach was saying, just saw the tight set of Percy's shoulders, muscles taut as his coach spoke to him.

His coach patted Percy on the back as he rose for his fifth dive. At the top of the platform he shook out his arms and legs in quick succession to loosen up his muscles. A few long strides, knee up, jump, and then he was vaulting through the air.

“Ooh, not very risky,” commented the opinionated old Biddy behind him.

Gwaine tried his best to ignore her and focus on Percy coming out of the pool. His coach whisked him back to the bench immediately and together they sat and stared at the scoreboard. Percy put his headphones back in when the first number flashed across the board.

“That's it?” Gwaine shouted when they were finally posted. “Bollocks!”

“Why was that so low?” he almost shouted at the annoying (but frustratingly knowledgeable) woman behind him.

The poor old lady looked taken aback and, sure, Gwaine should know better than to take out his frustrations on an 80 year old but he was stressed, dammit.

“Those are actually quite high, dear.” Gwaine was about to exclaim that they absolutely fucking were “not quite high, dear” but she must have seen as much in his face and continued on hastily. “It wasn't a very risky dive, not a very high point value, so he won't get top marks.”

Gwaine muttered his thanks before turning back round in his seat.

“He'll need top marks if he wants to medal,” the lady said to her companion.

At the end of the round Percy was thankfully back in medal contention, though resting in a shaky third place.

Gwaine flicked his phone open, ignoring the new incoming message from Morgana.

He pressed send and looked over at Percy, hoping he would check his texts and Gwaine wouldn't be overstepping or breaking his concentration.

photo (3)

Percy shook his head, but he looked more relaxed than he had after the previous dive.

Soon enough Percy was rising from his seat and heading to the platform for his sixth and final dive.

He walked to the end of the platform, appearing to gain confidence with every step and came to a stop at the very edge.

Gwaine couldn't imagine what it was like up there, the swell of the crowd, every eye upon you, metres above the unforgiving water. It gave him goosebumps just imagining it.

Slowly, or so it seemed to Gwaine, Percy bent forward and placed his hands on the platform. With one last deep breath, Percy engaged his arms, muscles bulging as he lifted his legs from the platform. Gwaine's heart was in his throat as he watched Percy's legs rise into the air.

“Oh my,” came a quiet voice from behind him.

Risky enough for you? Gwaine thought smugly to himself.

The next second went on for an eternity, but finally Percy's shoulders twitched and he catapulted off the platform into his signature dive, twisting and turning, making Gwaine dizzy just watching.

The only evidence that Percy had even entered the water upon completion were the minute ripples coming from immediately below the platform.

After Percy there were only another two divers left, but neither was in medal contention so the crowd, who had gone mad with applause after Percy's spectacular dive, quickly grew quiet again. The scores came up on the monitors one by one. When the final score flashed and the counts were tallied, Percy had jumped up another spot into Silver medal position. The crowd went wild. Gwaine shouted himself hoarse and clapped til his hands were sore.

Gwaine saw Percy's face when he caught the final score for only a moment before he was swallowed up by his coach and teammates.

When his teammates escorted him back to the changing rooms, Gwaine wanted nothing more than to follow. He was half out of his seat with an ill-conceived plan of action when he realised that the women, and therefore his sister, were up next. He sat down and glanced to the pool deck to find Morgana scowling at him.

“Oops.” He shrugged.

Shortly before the women were due to start there was a commotion at the end of his row. He saw Percy's head above the now-standing crowd, blushing furiously. People were applauding and slapping him on the back, taking pictures and congratulating him, as Percy tried to make it down the row to Gwaine.

When he did finally reach him, Gwaine threw his arms around Percy's neck and pulled him into a hug without hesitation. Percy took Gwaine’s head in his hands and turned it upward, bringing his lips down to meet Gwaine’s as he did so. Percy’s lips were warm and wet against his own and tasted faintly of chlorine when he slipped his tongue out and ran it across Percy’s bottom lip.

“Thanks,” Percy said after a few moments.

“For what?”

“For telling me to go for it. Believing that I could. Being happy with second best.”

“Oh. Well, if that's all.” Gwaine kissed him again. “You're welcome.”

They sat, Percy's long legs splayed out into Gwaine's space, but he wasn't even close to complaining.

As they watched the women's competition, Percy explained many of the dives and attempted to explain the point system (Gwaine was still confused as fuck). Morgana did great, every single dive was flawless as usual, but her dives weren't challenging enough compared to her competition to pull in the high points. She ended up coming in fifth overall but Gwaine couldn't have been more pleased for her. She was still young and had at least one, if not two more chances to go for the gold.

As they filed out of the stadium together, Gwaine turned to Percy.

“So, I heard a rumour.”

“What's that?” Percy asked.

“Apparently the IOC bought and distributed a hundred and fifty thousand condoms to the Olympians.”

Percy smirked. “Not a rumour.”

“It'd be a shame to let those go to waste, don't you think?” Gwaine asked hopefully.

“A shame indeed.”

-the end-

P.S. They used all the condoms. All of them.