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30th-Century Night

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"I know it's not a nice solid dumpster," said the douche in a rumpled three-piece suit, "but the roof's not too leaky most days."

Karkat managed somehow to tear his eyes away from the kitschiest sword stand ever and its glittery hopefully-fake diamonds and give the man a long, unamused, unimpressed stare.

He hoped it was unimpressed. Apartment, his ass, this was a fucking penthouse suite. There were highly polished wooden floors everyfuckingwhere and marble countertops with inlaid fake-gold patterns (dear lord he hoped fake) and a chimney with a flatscreen showing a badly pixelated fire and faced by a fur rug.

It was ridiculously gaudy. It was also ridiculously expensive.

Bring a lot of your whores back here, Hefner? Karkat didn't retort, because hey, he was standing right here, wasn't he.

His ratty sneakers were damp and not that clean. He made sure to grind them on the floor with each step. Might be stomping a bit. He hadn't been cowering in the entrance, alright? He'd just been taking that unbelievable amount of bullshit in.

Hah, entrance. That was just the fucking code-locked elevator. Karkat started making his cautious way out of the hall, and up a totally unnecessary step into ... probably the living room, with the fur rug and a couch that sprawled leatheringly around two of the walls and a humongous flatscreen. It was all open plan, computer corner here, kitchen there -- or maybe it was just a bar, guys like that got caterers didn't they, fuck cooking -- oh wait, the actual bar was right there, along that other wall. It was a real bar, too, stools and all.

The man leaned against a wall in between the chimney and a portrait that looked made by a three year old and had probably cost several grands, arms crossed casually, watching him through the douchiest shades known to man. Karkat scowled a little deeper and refused to look impressed. He was mostly impressed by the goddamn fucking waste.

He also refused to acknowledge the man until he had drifted to the full-wall French doors opening onto, hah, what else, a roof patio complete with pool, and spied the not-quite-hidden start of a fire escape over there.

Okay. A second way out. Okay.

"Dumpster was cozier," he said in as much of a neutral tone as he could, watching the man in the reflection of the glass. It was getting dark outside, less with the hour and more with the dark clouds massed overhead.

Out in the street he'd already given the rich asshole plenty of lip, which seemed to amuse him more than anything else, but he knew a lot more easy escape routes from there. From up here, not so much. He wasn't sure how far the guy would keep being amused by Karkat's lack of respect.

A quiet little huff of a laugh. "Cozy for a normal-sized person, maybe. You'd have had a ton of space."

Karkat glared at him over his shoulder, and made sure to plant his hand on the glass pane to leave a big dirty handprint on it. (He smudged his fingertips, though.)

Karkat hadn't been looking for a hiding place in the dumpster; he'd been looking for food, which was almost even worse, and if he wasn't about to pass out from hunger he'd have recoiled from the slap of scent to the snout on opening it. Thing was, once head down in there he did recoil. And then the brick he'd been using for a stepladder tumbled away, and then he'd almost taken a header in detritus, which would have been a fine, fitting end to his day. Pitching forward he'd already been thinking fuck it, I give, let them throw me away with the rest of the trash tomorrow.

Only then a hand closed on his belt and dragged him back out.

The guy had a half-eaten sandwich in his pocket.

Karkat had followed him home.

He was pretty sure either way they'd find him in a dumpster tomorrow, the only difference would be the number of chunks he came in. Whatthefuckever.

"So."

"So," the douchelord repeated, still watching with his arms crossed douchingly.

Probably was waiting for an impressed look. Maybe demure murmuring. I cannot believe you are doing little me such a honor canned bullshit.

"This is the tackiest fucking place I have ever had the displeasure of having my eyes assaulted by," Karkat said, "you should be ashamed. Hell, shame is a waste of time, considering you came up with this monstrosity in the first place, I should just sue you for fucking ocular damage."

He expected annoyance; he got a quick flick of a smile instead. "Huh, I thought the mental trauma would get to you first."

"Maybe the trauma got to you first because of those affronts to fashion on your face. Guess that's one thing they're good for, then."

"Hey, now, don't diss the shades or you're sleeping in the guest room. The bed is shaped like a heart and covered in pink satin."

Even exhausted and wary and knowing full well what the douche wanted him for, Karkat almost laughed. He managed to stop himself. The guy could afford to shoot the breeze; Karkat was making a business transaction, and he wasn't interested in anything else. He was actively not interested, in fact.

"That's nice. So." He turned, stuffed his fists deep in his pockets -- the man was still far enough away he'd have the time to pull them out. "If you say you've got nothing but caviar I'm walking right the fuck back out. Shit's disgusting."

He won another quickly smothered smile. Yay, Asshole McMoneybags found him entertaining.

"Shit, son, everyone knows the fridge is for keeping computer parts and manuscripts. I'll call for Italian." He eyed Karkat up and down. "Mexican? Indian?"

Wow, that was subtle. Karkat sneered, finding the energy to bristle somehow. "I can smear on blackface and call you massa if I'm not dark enough for your tastes."

He couldn't see him blink or anything with those ridiculous shades, but the man uncrossed his arms, lifted his hands in surrender that almost -- for about half a second -- felt sincere. "Dude, you could be gray for all I care. I was just wondering."

Karkat took in a deep breath and released it slowly, nerves twanging. "Just... call for fucking pizza. There is no fucking reason to want to know that that isn't racist."

"I bet you there is."

"Oh? Like what? You doing a census for the government? September: lured twenty-three teenagers to my penthouse, five Asians, eight Hispanics, nine blacks, one natural redhead."

The man pushed away from the wall; Karkat tensed, but all he did was turn and go back to the kitchen counter, waving a hand lazily over his shoulder. "Give me some credit, I'd totally pull at least five white kids."

He picked up a flier from the counter, fished a cellphone out from his slacks.

"Any preference for the pizza?"

Karkat worked on getting his hackles back down. "... No anchovies. That shit is the devil, and don't tell me to just take them off, it pollutes everything."

"Sure thing, Sahib."

"Fuck y --" No, no, no handing him straight lines. "...Go to hell."

"Yeah, that's the plan. Anyway, bathroom's that way. Subtle hint." He waved his hand vaguely, without even turning back to check. Karkat could have picked up that horrid crystal wizard thing and brained him. He could have picked up a number of things and pocketed them. He just breathed through his nose and went.

The bathroom was, of course, fucking huge. There were several mirrors -- no narcissism at all here! -- two sinks -- gold-plated spigots, what the shit -- a shower stall that could have fit a normal-sized tub, and an actual tub that was party-sized.

The door locked. Karkat locked it. Then he undressed.

Scrawny and underfed and bruised at random all over the place. Skinned knees, skinned knuckles, scarred. Hair like a bird's nest dipped in motor oil, baby birds included. Sexiness incarnate! What the fuck did that asshole think he was getting? Karkat tore his eyes away from the mirrors, stared at the floor. Shit, he'd sleep right here if he could, fluffiest bath mat ever, wouldn't that be a step up in comfort.

Shower, first; he scrubbed, and rinsed, and washed again, gargled some water so his mouth would at least be slightly cleaner -- and then fuck that noise, he drew himself a hot bath, with weird salts and sudsy things that built up like towers of clouds.

It wasn't as relaxing as it should be; he kept slipping because the tub was too long for his feet to press against the end and wondering when the guy would knock at the door. Or worse, show him how much of a polite fiction the flimsy lock was.

He gave up, climbed out, stepped in and out of the shower to rinse the foam off. Shit, he could sleep on the fucking towels, too. They were thick as sin.

He could probably wear one out. His clothes were splattered with mud and dumpster juice. Or the man's bathrobe; it was a pretty sure bet he'd like that. Just...

... Just him, damp and naked in terrycloth. There was softcore porn that went like that.

He went and picked up his jeans.

"Yo! Left you a change of clothes outside. Throw your shit at the washing machine next door."

Karkat jerked. He hadn't heard the man move through the door. He didn't hear him move now, not until a chair was pulled on the floor a dozen feet away. Karkat quickly wrapped himself in the robe and cracked the door open. Behind a fake potted plant he could only see the man's shoulder, sitting at the computer desk and turned away. Karkat grabbed the clothes and disappeared inside.

The jeans were too big, but there was a belt. The wifebeater was too loose to be skintight and not loose enough to pull the 'about to fall right off oh my god a nipple' look. The sweater ... was fucking Angora wool. Of fucking course. Karkat looked like a Q-tip with the skinny jeans and the fuzzy cream top, but whatthefuckever, he had several layers on, and even a belt to keep some of them there.

No underwear. He wasn't sure he would have worn anything Douchelord provided anyway. Way too nasty. Meant he was commando in the guy's jeans, though. Not awkward at all. At least they were clean.

He exited the bathroom, feet bare and damp on slick wood. The guy didn't turn around to check on him, probably too busy checking out who'd unfriended him on Facebook. "First on your left. You're a smart kid, figure it out."

Karkat went and figured it out. The washing machine dried, too. Good. He put his shoes back on. He wanted them close, just in case.

"How long until the pizza gets here?"

"Hm. Five minutes."

The guy was indeed on Facebook. Karkat was done being surprised.

The man had taken off his tailored vest, but underneath he still had on a stupid-ass pretentious waistcoat over a rumpled white button-up shirt. Who the fuck wore waistcoats in this day and age, especially bright red ones.

He turned in his chair to face Karkat, and even through the shades Karkat could see him do a slow pan up -- the whole length of his legs, what he could guess of his chest, his collarbones which the sweater unveiled much too much of. His eyes.

"Congrats, you found my face," Karkat said acidly.

Then he went on his knees.

His hands looked weirdly out of place on the smooth, pressed slacks, all dark and beaten to hell and nail-bitten, knuckles scabbed over. He slid them up the man's thighs, nudged those apart, leaned in. He had no clue how to open up that kind of pants, especially from the outside. His throat was all in a knot which was good because being sick would be bad and bad because how was he meant to swallow if nothing was going through.

Hopefully the asshole wasn't expecting a deepthroat. Better not; he'd be shit out of luck. Karkat pressed a kiss against the man's inner thigh; it delayed the arrival at Groin Station some. His hands traced his belly, undid the ridiculously huge cowboy-style belt buckle, loosened the belt. Breath held, he pressed his mouth against the man's crotch through the slacks, against that lump he could feel right through too-thin layers of cloth, felt his cock stirring.

Okay, he could do this. If he did it good enough maybe the guy wouldn't even want to--

"--Alright, not so fast there." A hand landed on his head, and he flinched, but it didn't pull on his hair or push him down, the fingers just scritched their way down into his damp hair. "Whoa, my poor flustered boner, not even getting his first date before you try to get him in your backseat. You cad."

The guy tilted Karkat's chin up. Damn it, no, Karkat didn't want to look at him, he wanted to pretend there was no one to witness this egregious bullshittery, this -- this--

This face looking down, unreadable with those hidden eyes but he wanted to read things in it anyway, in the imperceptible and probably imagined set of the corner of his mouth.

"Come up here," he said quietly. It sounded almost like an invitation instead of an order. Hah. Karkat reluctantly pushed himself up, using the man's knees for balance, allowed hands to curve around his waist and tug him forward until he was straddling the man's lap, knees tucked around his hips on the ridiculously roomy CEO-style desk chair.

Great. Just awesome, just fucking awesome, he loved not having his feet on the ground and being impaired, did wonders for running the fuck away without tangling himself up and falling like an idiot there.

Arms wrapped loosely around Karkat's waist, the Douchelord just fucking looked at him. And looked some more. And then kept looking.

"... Okay what the fuck, are you trying to drink out my soul through a metaphoric straw there? because I could be sucking yours out right now, but apparently you, you, fuck, what the hell?!"

A snicker. The man's pale lips curved at the corners some. "Meat straw. That's a good one. Gotta remember it for later."

"I am going to headbutt you in the shades," Karkat informed him through gritted teeth.

"Whoa, can't have that. Those are vintage, man. Family heirloom and all that shit."

Karkat hissed. "Your family has a business in bargain bins?"

The guy didn't even acknowledge the touché, just started nodding away in mock-seriousness. "Shit yeah, one dollar here, one dollar there, do you even know how fast that shit piles up? Scrooge McDuck has nothing on us, dude, we've got like this Olympic pool of nothing but quarters." His hands were tracing back and forth along Karkat's waistband, his hips, and then around his back. "They throw us in as toddlers to see if we got the right attitude to be in the business. You give into exhaustion and drown and get crushed to death, tough luck. Of course I, personally, walked over it like some rad ninja Jesus, but--"

"Oh my flying shitfaced god just grope my ass already." He felt behind him, grabbed the guy's wrists, slapped them down in the appropriate places.

He was blushing. He glared down, and dared the guy to mention it.

The guy tilted his head thoughtfully, and gave Karkat's ass a little squeeze. Karkat's face heated up a little more.

"... Hm, yeah, nice."

Frgh.

The man leaned in, bleached-white hair tickling Karkat's forehead. Karkat stared down stubbornly. No use making it a staring contest when the asshole had those fucking cheating shades on.

"Okay if I kiss you?" he asked, all quiet and rough, and after the shoot-the-breeze bullshitting tone it was a bit like a kick to the head. Karkat blinked up, startled.

"Uh--"

The man's hands were still on his ass. Not squeezing, just rubbing themselves along the curve, back and forth, back and forth, and if it'd been anywhere else on him Karkat might even have found the rhythm soothing. As it was, it just made him blush some more.

"Why the fuck do you even want to."

"Durr." An amused puff of breath, not even a laugh. "Maybe because I think you're cute?"

Nrrrgh. Why was he flirting, why did he think he even still needed to flirt, Karkat was in his goddamn lap, he'd peddled his ass for pizza and a night in a dry place and they both knew it. "Of course you think I'm cute, Jesusfuck, else I'd still be freezing my balls off in between two dumpsters. That doesn't--"

The man hummed, mock-thoughtful. "Nah. I did see your ass first. If you'd turned out to be fugly I'd have just broken out the paper bags for your face."

Karkat growled, and almost did headbutt him in the shades. He swayed forward with intent, at least, but the asshole just swayed back, chuckling under his breath.

"Oi, oi, no attacking the shades, I'd forgive you for ruining my nose sooner than I'd forgive you for the shades."

"So just fucking take them off," Karkat snapped, out of patience.

The guy smoothed his hands around the outer curves of Karkat's ass, curved his fingers underneath, pulling the cloth in between taut. Going commando, Karkat couldn't help but notice; he twitched.

"Don't think you're ready for the sheer rad intensity of my gorgeous peepers, kid, you'd fall dead from the shock."

"Okay!" Karkat agreed, ferociously amiable. "Then you're not kissing me. I don't want to risk catching douche through skin contact with those things."

Whew. Mouth purity safe.

Not that he'd been about to put it on the guy's dick or anything.

"You drive a hard bargain," the man said, and then one half of Karkat's ass was weirdly cold, because he was taking the offending things off his nose, dumping them on the keyboard. His lashes were impossibly pale.

He cupped Karkat's cheek and slid his hand through thick, wiry hair, cupped the back of his head, pulled him closer. He tilted Karkat's head, and Karkat still hadn't seen his eyes, thinned into slits, striped through with ivory white.

Mouth on his, parting to suck in his lower lip, nibble on it. The tip of a tongue, tracing the corner of his lips. He was pulled close, held, an arm looped around his back and the other hand kneading his neck, as his mouth was slowly coaxed open.

It -- it didn't feel bad. So far. He didn't know where to put his hands; they were curled defensively over his chest, which was silly and too revealing of how nervous he was and he didn't want to seem weak; he set them on the armrests, for leverage, but he didn't think he'd manage to force himself out of that hold.

It didn't hurt. The guy was slow and thorough, tongue sliding lazy, powerful between Karkat's lips -- curling to brush against his palate, a ticklish, teasing gesture. Karkat let out a little groan. The guy sighed quietly against his lips as if in response, and then Karkat realized he'd started kissing back and hadn't really noticed.

He felt... weird. Kissing wasn't that bad, really, and the guy definitely knew his way around a guy's oral cavity. It was pretty alright, actually. And it was so slow and patient, it felt almost safe. Almost. It was just... knowing what happened next, he couldn't choose between keeping on kissing forever and hoping he forgot the rest, and saying okay, drop it, let's just cut to the chase and get it over with.

Cautiously, he rested a forearm on the guy's shoulder. Not quite holding onto him, but close enough. Two big hands started smoothing their way up and down his back, enjoying the fuzzy sweater. Karkat was surprised that he did too, holy shit, that was quality wool. Made his back tingle.

The arms tightened on the next pass, pulled him closer, close enough that when they fitted themselves on his ass once again there was only a distressingly small number of inches left between Karkat's crotch and his.

The guy was definitely hard now. The slacks didn't hide that. And here Karkat was, thighs wide open, being slowly rocked back and forth, and Karkat might still be wearing nice thick safe jeans but no, the guy was definitely thinking of fucking him.

"Uh, sure you -- nnh -- you don't want a blowjob?" One blowjob, three, ten. Just -- damn, from what Karkat could tell through brushing quickly against that particular lump, he felt thick. Shit. He wriggled back a little, testing the give in his hold. He didn't find a lot of that.

"Mmh. I want..." the man mused against his lips, eyes hooded.

Karkat growled, leaned back to break the kiss; the guy leaned in. "... What the fuck do you want, don't make me wait like that."

"I... want..."

"My fist in your face? I could find it in myself to oblige." Karkat had both hands on the guy's chest by now, back arched to lean out of his reach, which didn't mean his arms weren't tight around his waist to pull Karkat's hips against his stomach.

A flick of a smirk. "I want pizza."

He rocked forward and out of the chair, making Karkat yelp, and held him up against him by the ass cheeks until Karkat let his legs slide down the outside of his and could be lowered to the floor.

"Oh my baby Jesus do I want to murder you in the face. I bet I could live in your place for a month before anyone even mentioned it to the cops, due to the amount of people who'd be too busy being relieved if you were just fucking gone! Only if I had to live here that long I'd kill myself, this place is horrible, you are horrible, I fucking hate your guts--"

"Ass virgin, huh?"

The fucking asshole was smirking the long, satisfied smirk of the asshole smug cat who got the cream, the canary, and a bowl full of asshole gourmet gooshyfood on top.

Karkat kicked him in the tibia.

He immediately flinched back, arms raising to defend; he'd forgotten himself.

No counterattack. The man just let out a very mild "ow" and picked up his cellphone to assure someone named Marcel that yes, he could let the pizza come up. Karkat took a couple of twitchy, jangly-nerved steps back.

His back tingled. The back of his head tingled. His lips tingled. His ass fucking tingled. And he was cold now too. What the fucking fuckity fuck.

Call made, the guy turned to prop his ass on the desk, looked at him. His eyes were an odd light color from there, startlingly warm. Karkat couldn't decide if it was brown or what.

"Hate me, hm?"

Karkat looked away and down. Good plan, insult and reject the guy who seemed to want to pretend real hard to be his freaking boyfriend. Or at least some kind of benevolent seducer of homeless teenagers, like turning on the charm meant it wasn't skeevy.

"Aw, bud, brosef, you're moving kind of fast--" And then suddenly he was in Karkat's space and how the fuck had he gotten here so fast, that wasn't possible, but Karkat couldn't jump back; there was an arm around his waist and another on his hip and with a practiced twist the guy  had Karkat swung over his arm, back arched and totally out of balance, like he was some fancy-dancing chick at the end of some stupid dance. The asshole was leaning over Karkat with his eyes heavy-hooded and his mouth ridiculously duck-lipped. "--Leaving me swooning all over the place with the power of that declaration, you awful rake -- my Casanova of loathing, my rancorous Don Juan, my Lothario --"

"Auuugh just put me down!"

"Hm. I should totally dump you on your ass there, babe, but it's much too sweet to be subjected to that kind of abuse." He swung Karkat back upright, patted his buttocks. "Not its fault it's attached to the rest of you. There, there, sugar, you're safe."

Karkat closed his eyes, breathed in, breathed out, and then allowed himself to speak. "... Stop talking to my ass."

"It'll feel neglected."

"No it won't, because spoiler, it's not sentient!"

He glared up at the guy, who gazed down, casual like he didn't have a hand firmly fitted to the curve of Karkat's right butt cheek.

He was spewing some bullshit about how he was sure Karkat's ass was sentient, some parts of himself sure seemed to be hint hint, but Karkat didn't even listen.

"Your eyes are red."

"I am actually a devil summoned from hell to take your soul after a night of satisfying all your desires. Which means you are the vilest liar for pretending you don't like the place or are not completely into me, because, babe, I was made for you."

He'd leaned in, voice dropping into an intimate bass register. Karkat gave him a long deadpan look and planted his hand in his face to push him back. The guy went, chuckling.

"Okay, fine, I'm an alien bodypainted into the whitest guy alive. My species actually--"

Karkat raked a hand through his own hair, suddenly exhausted. "I know what an albino is, asshole, I just didn't expect it."

The elevator dinged. The guy went to greet the pizza guy, taking four boxes off his hands and trading them for, wow, were those all hundred dollars bills? Shit. He could feed himself for weeks with that kind of money. Shit.

Maybe the guy would want to keep him around. (He could certainly afford to feed him.) Karkat vaguely considered letting him. The constant irritation and the sexual availability made it not worth it, but barely.

He kept out of sight while the pizza guy was there, but pretty soon the door was closing once again. Karkat trailed the pizzas to the kitchen counter. (Also the guy but who cared about him.) Just smelling them and suddenly his stomach was howling.

"... I thought human albinos had blue eyes, though."

"I'm special that way."

"You're certainly special in some way," Karkat muttered back under his breath, unflatteringly, but then he was distracted by pizza. The first box was open, all hot and gooey and cheesy-delicious.

He almost reached in, checked himself. Not first, without invitation. He sneaked the guy a glance. He'd gone around the counter to get something from he fridge, probably drinks. Okay, he wouldn't be right back. Karkat reached out to steal a slice.

The boxes disappeared, landed on the kitchen table. "Tut-tut, we do not eat standing up like savages in here. We sit like civilized people at Casa de Strider."

... Strider, yeah right, like hell that was his real name. It sounded like a porn name or something, a scene name more than anything. Whatever; Karkat accepted it with a shrug. Strider was still acceptable. Now if he tried to convince Karkat his first name was Pookie or Lover or Master and to call him by it, all bets were off.

Strider deposited a bottle of beer and a can of soda on the table, then pulled himself a chair. Karkat glowered over the counter for a few seconds before making his sulky way around.

He reached for a chair. The guy leaned back, looked up at him. Karkat paused.

He didn't ask, didn't order him to, but that gaze on him, the way he sat, away from the table...

"Do I -- have to sit on your lap?"

A long, silent look. Karkat broke eye contact to gaze at the floor.

"Aw, kitten." Strider's voice had gone quiet and soft, too sincere; it made Karkat's face heat up with shame. "No groping while we eat, I promise. I just... for such a bony little fuck you're kind of nice to cuddle, okay?"

Okay, and now his face was straight out burning. "Cuddle?"

"Shh, babe, let the murdered horse of coolness lie dead, no need to get violent on it, it's too late, bitch is dead, put down the truncheon already..."

"What the fuck are you even saying," Karkat stated flatly, and allowed Strider to take his hand and pull him into his lap, mostly to shut him up.

"I don't even know anymore. Who the hell cares, bub. Have some pizza."

"You're the weirdest asshole I've ever met, and I hang out with lifestyle hobos," Karkat commented, and pretended he was sitting on a chair and so it was perfectly alright to shift around a little to make himself comfortable.

That was definitely a boner against his ass. Cuddle, shyeah right. He didn't mention it, just took a slice when Strider held out the box to him and started devouring.

It was still burning hot. It was greasy. It was delicious. It filled his mouth with tomato and a dozen other flavors and then slid down his throat to sit all nice and warm in his too-empty stomach. By the third slice he was warm from the inside out, and he wanted to make little happy noises that might be misconstrued by the perv he sat on, and he didn't even care anymore about that arm draped loosely around his waist, hand resting casually on his thigh.

By the sixth slice he was reluctantly admitting that if he ate more he was going to throw up; if not immediately, then later on when the guy fucked him. Strider's hand was on Karkat's thigh, absently tracing the inner seam of his jeans as he waited for him.

"Okay, I'm done." Karkat licked sauce off his fingers quickly, furtively. He still felt the deeper intake of breath as Strider saw it. ... Maybe he could still talk him into a blowjob instead. Some guys liked that better! "So.. urr."

Strider's hand came up, nudged his chin. Karkat breathed out to steel himself and turned, leaned into the kiss. Kissing was... still okay. If tomatey. That wasn't a bad thing to be. He shifted a bit in his lap, so he wouldn't hurt his neck, and allowed the guy to deepen the kiss, smooth his hands down the ridiculously fluffy sweater over Karkat's ribs, his hips.

"God, I want you," Strider whispered, quiet and scarily intense against his neck, arms like iron bands around him.

Karkat couldn't escape. He told himself it was fine, he had no intention of cheating Strider out of his part of the bargain. Nope.

"Shh, kitten." A kiss to his jaw; another under his ear, and he nuzzled there. Karkat tilted his head to bare more neck, eyes closed. "Hey. One hundred percent bullshit-free seriousness up that bitch, I have zero intention of making you hurt. Turns me the fuck off."

Was Karkat taking him at his word? Hah. He sounded sincere, but maybe that was his kink. Surprise anal tearing, woo. Karkat scrunched his eyes closed and kissed Strider, so he couldn't promise more things Karkat couldn't trust.

"Put your arms around my neck, yeah, good, here we go." He lifted himself off the chair, Karkat in his arms. Seemed to have a goddamn fetish for carrying him around and showing off how strong and manly he was, or maybe he was trying to minimize occasions to run the fuck away. It made Karkat nervous either way, always scared of being dropped.

"Uh -- couch?"

"Babe, no. You at least rate a bed. So... heart-shaped, or mine?"

"Yours is worse somehow, isn't it," Karkat said tiredly. Strider just smirked back faintly. "... Okay, why not, let's discover shit Man was not meant to see. We only live once."

"Speak for yourself, I've lived plenty of times. Actually so have you, you're just kind of forgetful."

Karkat spared some of his attention away from the corridor and the horrible paintings and doors along it to steal a glance at the man carrying him (fucking bride-style of course). "What the fuck, dude. Are you just fucking semantics in the ass without lube or are you actually saying you believe in reincarnation?"

"Exactly so." Strider gave him a totally deadpan look, and pushed a door open. "Ours is the hate that crosses time, space, and even death itself, fuck that asshole in the face."

Oh, still joking. Karkat relaxed. "Hate?" He gave a quiet snort. "I can buy that."

That room was dark, at first. Strider paused on the doorway, started to hum. Karkat elbowed him in the chest.

"If you fucking sing that wedding song, God help me--"

"Ow. It was 'Baby it's cold outside'. No respect for the classics."

He turned on a bedside lamp, still carrying Karkat, which was not in any way frustrating or unnerving because of how possessive it came across as. The room was...

.... there were quickly scribbled sketches pinned to the walls haphazardly, a long desk made of cheap wood and cinderblocks for feet, loose pens and chewed-up pencils and a beat-up old laptop, there was a futon right on the floor and abandoned clothes draped on the furniture, it was the most real room in this whole suite and Karkat couldn't imagine how it even existed on the same plane of existence.

Couldn't imagine why he was granted leave to see it. On blind instinct the sight made his belly clench, with apprehension and confusion and maybe actual fright, because he couldn't figure out why, why he got to, why some homeless guy, gutter trash, why he'd --

"You're thinking. Tssk, dreadful habit. Gonna have to kiss you stupid again, kittycat."

Strider nuzzled into his neck, voice quiet and purring and a little smug. Karkat kicked his heel at him a beat too late. He was deposited on the futon -- comfortable, quality, the asshole hadn't pushed the asceticism that far -- and nudged onto his back.

He didn't have time to move that Strider was covering him, body pressing down on Karkat's. He felt truly small there, felt every single inch of size and width Strider had on him, felt just enough of his weight to tell that no matter how slender the man was he was still corded with tight muscle. Karkat was smaller and weaker and trapped, not one inch of him that didn't feel Strider's presence.

"Don't call me kittycat," he managed, and closed his eyes, breath hitching.

He could do this, he could, he didn't even have to do much, just let Strider do as he willed, and it wasn't all bad, Strider was warm and he was actually pretty gentle and maybe it wouldn't hurt to -- oh, oh shit, he was so big, there was no way Karkat wasn't going to bleed.

"Crabbycat?" Strider said as he kissed his face. "Say I can call you crabbycat. This is my fondest dream."

"No, fuck you -- ah."

Strider kept rocking gently against him, slacks against jeans, and Karkat's whole body moving with him. "Hurting you?"

"--no, s'okay." It felt weird, it felt like -- he was scared and twitchy but the pizza was still nicely hot in his comfortably full stomach, it tangled him up, made everything strange. He shifted one of his knee to the outside a little bit so Strider would stop pinching the side of Karkat's knee with his somehow. Strider let out a shuddery breath against his neck.

Maybe he'd come in his pants and all would be good. Yeah. That'd be cool.

The next thrust was heavier. Karkat stopped breathing. That -- couldn't be what it was.

It was. Shit.

Stupid body. He was getting hard.

He didn't want to get hard, he didn't -- it wasn't because he wanted to that he was here, it was because he had to, now Strider was going to think he got off on it, think he was a slut --

... Hah, he already thought Karkat was a whore. He was even right. Cheap one too. He should have arranged for money as well. Hah. Haha.

Shit, it felt good, it kept feeling good, even when Strider slipped his hands up his sweater, all warm and weirdly rough against his sides, it felt good even when he didn't want it to.

"Cat? Kittycat." It was almost like a nickname. One based on his actual name, that was, who he was, not a play on how Karkat was a mangy stray that scratched the hand that fed. "You're shivering."

"Sorry. Sorry, I -- sorry." He could tell Strider had pushed himself up on his hand to look down at him, but he couldn't open his eyes.

"... Aw hell. Shh, babycat, crabbykitty, it's okay, you -- shit." A deep breath, a rough hand cupping his cheek. "Look at me, babe."

Karkat did, somehow. The light was muted. The ceiling beyond was weird. Strider's face...

"... You can leave if you want to. Just say the word. I'll get off you. Have the most epic blue balls of this century but I really will."

He looked all -- sorry and sad and non-faky and non-wall-faced and like he actually gave a damn. Karkat scrunched his eyes closed and took in a gasping, shuddery breath. "Are you trying to make me cry, shitsucker?"

Cautious but dry; "... Nooot especially but how hard can it be? You look like a total soft touch. Bet you cry at sad commercials."

Karkat sniffed a little. He wasn't crying yet. He still felt a little damp. "I can't leave, it's storming outside. Where the fuck would I go?"

Strider gave his temple a slap, but so light it was more noise than feeling. "There's this thing called a guest bedroom."

"... oh."

Strider laid back down -- not on top of him, quite, but on his side, against Karkat's side, overlapping a little. He nosed his temple, kissed it. His arm draped loosely over his waist. When Karkat squirmed he immediately lifted it to free him.

Karkat settled down. It was warm there. He sighed shakily when Strider draped his arm over his waist again, but didn't protest.

"It was the deal."

"Give me your hand, I'll jerk myself off with it like you're some kind of really warm and oddly alive flesh puppet. Condition fulfilled."

Karkat wrinkled his nose at the flesh puppet thing. Creep. Pretty sure he was saying that shit just to bug him, though. Thinking he was funny playing up the creep angle.

He still had Karkat in his bed and he was still ready to let him go. If he meant it. Karkat didn't want to believe him, but he did anyway, despite himself.

"But you want to fuck me."

Strider breathed in his hair, eyes closed. "God yes." It wasn't like he was humping Karkat's hip but they were close; he could still guess at that hard cock even though his jeans. "Swear to fuck if you weren't two sizes too small I'd cut you open and wear you like a cloak, I want to crawl inside you and stay there--"

Karkat batted at his shoulder, groaning. "Okay. Okay, stop. Cease. Desist. Dirty talk had a critical failure and imploded. I am possibly negatively interested now. My dick just inverted."

Strider cracked up, face buried in his neck. He wasn't loud but Karkat could feel his snickers, the way his body shook, his breath puffed out against his collarbone.

"Jesus, you're a dick pimple of the highest order," Karkat concluded, staring blankly at the ceiling in pure disbelief. "You've got jailbait in your goddamn bed and it turns your crank harder to troll him than to actually get it on."

Strider bounced up, leaning on an elbow to stare down at him, a weird half-smile on his face. "Oh yes jegus tell me I'm a better troll than you are. C'mon, crabcat, say it, say it!"

"Is there even any fucking question? King of basement dwellers and four-channers everywhere, the Dread Douche Emperor of Trolltopia! You are the troll master, it is you -- mmph."

Suddenly, tongue in his mouth. Lips on him. Strider was heavy, pushing himself closer, kissed him with an intensity that was honestly mildly scary. He just felt... hungry. Karkat did his best to kiss back and not get overwhelmed, but he was overrun, invaded, mouth practically fucked by that tongue, hard cock pressed in the hollow of his hipbone, thigh pushing between his to spread his legs open.

"Oh fuck yes, fuck, crabbycat yes, keep at it--"

Strider was muttering crazy nonsensical things in his neck as he kissed it all over, up and down his throat, his jaws, all over his face. Karkat's hands caught in the lapels of his stupid waistcoat, trying to anchor himself against the onslaught.

"Keep at what, you crazy fucker -- ah, ah fuck, slow down -- Strider, slow down!"

A deep, shuddery breath was heaved out against his collarbone. Strider dropped a little kiss in the V of exposed skin on Karkat's chest and reined himself in. "Okay. Alright. Sure thing. Cool as ice there. Can I get your pants off. Like. Now."

"That sure sounds like slowing down to me," Karkat managed to say, relatively calmly and not freaking out at all.

Shit. No underwear. He'd go pretty much straight from 'normally dressed' to 'Enter Here.'

He was kind of hard. What the hell, body. That didn't stop him being about two steps from freaking out and running. Shit, Strider was strong, if he fucked like he humped Karkat's ass was going to be destroyed. And then what the hell would he do tomorrow, limping along in the streets? That was like going around with a "I am down on the ground, please kick me some more" sign taped to his back.

"A list of reasons why you should let me see you naked." Strider smoothed his hand down Karkat's ribs, back up his side, ruffling up the sweater, made a pass on his nipples; the soft fuzz tickled. "One, I would really like to see you naked. Two, I bet you look gorgeous naked."

"Like hell I do--"

"Shush. Need to check that out, or I won't know that I win, and boy do I like to win. Three, my boner and your boner would be excellent friends. Friendship is magic. You'll make the ponies sad. Don't make the ponies sad. Make magic with me."

Karkat couldn't help choking on something that was almost a laugh, if an incredulous one. "You're a loon--"

"Four, if you get naked in my bed I won't nag daddy Strider for a present at Christmas, or my birthday, or ever, I pinky-swear. I'll be too busy playing with you to care. Also I'll even eat my carrots." A low, fake-Italian-accented purr, fluttery eyelashes. "I'll eat your carrot."

"Pff-- no, shut up, just shut up, ahaha, fuck--" Okay, now Karkat was laughing, half from nerves and half from sheer what the fuck. He couldn't stop himself. He shoved Strider's shoulder, tried to glare at him; he didn't really manage it. Strider smirked down at him. "I'd almost give the okay just to prove how full of shit you are."

"Five, I will totally bribe you with blowjobs. I can not bribe you with your pants on. Please take off your pants for a satisfying bribery experience."

Karkat stared at him, breathless, unsure.

Took the plunge, dizzy, shivery with nerves. "Like fuck you can't, it's called a zipper. The more you know!"

The grin he got in return stopped him breathing for a second, all big and pleased and utterly, scarily sincere. "You drive a hard bargain. Almost as hard as my snot rocket down there. Alright, prepare to be schooled in the fine art of fellatio--"

Karkat gave up, just reaching for his hair and grabbing a handful and pushing him down. "I swear to fuck you could be the worst at giving head in the whole galaxy and I'll still come just from all that blessed gorgeous silence!"

Strider laughed silently against his belly as his long fingers undid Karkat's belt and tugged the tab down.

"Why hey there little fella. There, there, no need to be shy."

Karkat glared down, cheeks heating. Strider had shifted to lay belly down between Karkat's spread legs, propped up on his elbows; he was peering curiously at what he could see of Karkat's erection through the open pants. "If you start chatting up my dick I am so gone, it'll be like I was never here."

Strider looked up at him, red eyes half-veiled by mussed white hair, so serious it was like a bullet to the head.

"Can't have that."

He leaned in, kissed Karkat's cock right through the open zipper. Karkat's toes curled.

Just little kisses, a rain of them, up and down his shaft and on his belly too, nuzzles to his cock and to his treasure trail indiscriminately, at this point he wouldn't even be surprised if Strider rubbed his cheek against his crotch and started to purr like Karkat had bathed in catnip. It was a little hard to breathe.

Oh hey, the ceiling wasn't weird-colored, the ceiling was a skylight. Fascinating discovery. Strider seemed determined to kiss every single square inch of his cock, possibly twice. Wet, openmouthed, rather French kisses. Karkat sneakily bunched up the blankets so it wouldn't show when he clenched his hands. He couldn't look away.

Strider looked up at him and winked.

"--Ow. No kicking. I bruise easy. And what then, what'll we tell the neighbors, I can't keep walking into doors every week, honey--"

"Go down on me already you walking case of crotch rot!"

The asshole chuckled. "Oh hey, that reminds me." And then he sat up, leaving Karkat's cock a little damp and exposed to the cool air of the room. What? What? No, hey --

Oh. Nightstand. Condom. Okay. Yeah. He nodded dazedly as Strider shook it under his nose for approval. Okay sure, so long as there were no holes in there.

Pineapple-flavored. What the fuck ever.

Strider unpackaged it quickly, placed the tip on his cockhead, and unrolled it down the whole length of Karkat's erection with his mouth.

Oh. Hey. Skylight. Nice to see you again. The storm clouds were a little orangey from the city lights. The glass was splattered with raindrops. Pretty. Karkat was flat on his back. How the heck had that happened.

Lips a firm, tight seal around him, Strider pulled off him. Even through the condom his mouth was hot, his tongue, shit, the way he sucked a bit, not too hard yet, teased his crown, oh, went back down right to the root of him. Karkat might not be huge but how the fuck did he do that so easily, oh shit. Felt good.

He closed his eyes, felt blindly for the man's head, slipped his fingers through silk-smooth hair; as Strider's head kept bobbing steadily he petted, caressed, there, there, good, yes, more -- words he couldn't say, but gestures he could make. Strider's hair felt so nice and fine, goddamn bastard must buy the designer shampoos --

Pleasure rose, pressure. After the thin rubber barrier it was a shock when Strider's mouth found his balls, bare skin; his hands tightened in the man's hair. He groaned. Moaned. Whatever, it was embarrassing; he bit his lip, tried to keep quiet and then forgot.

"--kat, hey, Cat."

"Uh -- what?" Okay, his mouth was off Karkat's anatomy, he was not okay with that. He pushed himself up on an elbow, squinted.

The asshole curled his fingers around Karkat's shaft and pressed his cheek against it like it was a precious little kitten and he wanted to cuddle it. "Can I take your pants off and behold your naked glory. Pretty please with your cherry on top. I am holding your boner hostage."

With a cry of frustration and annoyance Karkat let himself fall back, pressed both hands to his face so he didn't have to behold the most irritating asswipe on the planet. "Okay, fine, I fucking give! Tear my clothes off and have your way with me, go ahead! God I hate you."

"You can't tell because I'm laying down but I'm swooning all over the place. So romantic. The romantiquest."

"What did the English language ever do to youuuuuu."

"It was tragic. We do not speak of it. Needless to say I am still traumatized to this day."

Karkat would have kicked him, but at that point he sat up and divested Karkat of his ratty shoes and then yanked Karkat's borrowed pants off, lifting his ass off the futon. Karkat fell back down bare-assed with his pants around his knees, and Strider was quick to pull them all the way off.

After that...

"Is -- is it -- like. A rule or something. That--" he licked dry lips; "--the hornier you get, the more bullshit you spout?"

Strider moved over him, still clothed in his stupidly fancy stuff, hands resting on Karkat's bare hips and gliding up. "Pretty much," he said, and, "Arch your back a bit."

Karkat did. The angora sweater and the tanktop ended up bunched over his chest, nipples barely peeking out under the wool. He could borderline feel Strider's hungry gaze on them. His hands clenched on the blankets, wishing he could curl them in the sweater, shield himself.

"You're gorgeous."

"You're delusional."

The guy's voice took on a teasing lilt. "Also your chubby is going on a diet."

--fuck. He lifted his head to check, and sure enough his dick was going soft. Nothing to be mortified about. No, wait, he wasn't even supposed to care about getting off, when had he started? He let his head thump back on the mattress with a frustrated groan. "Just -- ignore that. It's -- it'll come back." Or not. Karkat was betting on not.

"Crabbycat. Hey. Look at me. Look into those gorgeous as fuck fiery irises of intense hotness."

Karkat did, mostly because he was too busy snorting in disbelief to think better of it. Strider was looking down at him, a vague little smile on his face. (He did have disturbingly gorgeous eyes, the son of a bitch. Karkat vaguely wondered why he hid them. It couldn't be because he didn't like the attention.)

"Nerves?"

Karkat snarled. "Fuck you."

Strider opened his mouth, seemed -- miracle of miracles -- to reconsider, and closed it again. Alas not for long. "There is so much I could do with this one I don't even know where to start, babe."

He rested his hand on Karkat's inner thigh, caressing. Karkat's legs snapped closed of their own volition.

Strider considered his trapped hand, one single eyebrow quirking up pointedly. Face flushing hot, Karkat forced himself to part his knees again.

"You don't need to say it," he made himself say. "El-oh-el it's the other way around, so funny, hah, I could just--"

"Shush."

Blink. Why did he have a hand on his face, patting away. Ow, his nose. The fuck.

He pushed it back only to see Strider's face closing in. He let himself be kissed with only a little confused grunt, kissed back, it had been nice and safe and a good delaying tactic up until now...

And then it failed him because he was naked (having his top hiked up to his armpit and nothing else did not count as dressed in his book, he might as well wear nothing but thigh high socks and a pretty hair ribbon for how dressed he felt) and that meant Strider could, and did, press his body to Karkat's, covering him entirely once again.

He made a little noise in Strider's mouth. (He wasn't calling it a whimper.) His hands came up, snaked under Strider's arms to clench on the back of Strider's button-up shirt. He wasn't sure if he wanted a grip to try to pull him off at some point or if he was just clinging. He was shaking, he could tell he was, he couldn't stop.

"So," Strider whispered as he nuzzled Karkat's cheek. "Anal killed your grandmother and poisoned your dog. You and anal have, like, a fated hatemance going on."

Karkat growled, the sound choked up in his throat, and bit at his chin. The guy took it for an invitation to start nibbling on Karkat's ear.

"I hear you. You hate anal more than you hate me. Sob, cruel kitten. But I shall go on."

He nuzzled his way into Karkat's neck, ticklish. Karkat dug his fingers in the muscles of his back and growled a wordless threat. He wished he had claws. "Stop dragging it on and just do it, okay. I'll -- I'll get over it."

He was still hard, Karkat could feel the stiff length of his cock against his groin, pressed right up to his balls, hips rocking in little twitches. It wouldn't be hard to, to...

"... Nah. Got a better idea. You gotta trust me not to surprise cornhole you, though. Think you can manage?"

Karkat forced his eyes open, met Strider's red -- much too close, nose to nose. He stared for a few seconds.

"Trust is for chumps," he grumbled in the end, but he relaxed a little anyway. Strider flicked him a smile and stole a quick kiss before pushing himself up, kneeling up. His fingers flew over all those buttons like he barely needed to brush them and here they were, swooning under his touch, undone.

Karkat was getting loopy with exhaustion and fright. What the hell, brain.

Pale skin. And some more pale skin. Finely defined muscles. A couple of very unexpected knife scars. Karkat lifted a hand without thinking, and then Strider had seen him and he wasn't about to retreat so he finished reaching out, tracing one with index and middle fingers.

Strider didn't move as long as Karkat's hand was on him, like he didn't want to spook him, but the second Karkat let his hand fall back his pants were pushed down his thighs and he was wriggling out of ... was that Tony the Tiger on his crotch-cover.

"Good thing my boner was already dead. You are so fucking suave, it slays me."

"I know right," Strider deadpanned as he did an awkward dance from knee to knee to free himself from his underwear. "I slay me too sometimes, like I'm all minding my own business, going down the street like a rad as hell sexy bastard and whatnot, and suddenly a mirror. Bam. Another Dead Dave. Good thing I've got infinite respawn, but still it's irresponsible as shit to plant these things willy-nilly."

Oh. He wasn't going to pretend to be named Stud, then. Dave was a pretty banal name. Maybe it was a reference to something Karkat had missed; hard to follow the latest TV and internet fads from the gutter.

Maybe it really was his name.

Maybe he was still flapping his noise hole. Maybe there was only one reliable way to stop that.

Karkat sat up, linked his hands behind the idiot's neck, and yanked him down for a kiss.

He'd yanked hard enough and Strider didn't have any way to catch himself; he fell on top of him, and then started laughing in Karkat's mouth. Karkat might perhaps have cracked a smile. Perhaps.

... But wow, all that naked skin. All that... naked. Against him. That was, yeah, uh. A bit intimidating. He concentrated on kissing. Kissing was nice. He liked that part.

Strider shifted his weight over him, straddled his hips. His boner bounced on Karkat's belly, left a little drop of wetness. Ngh.

"Spread your legs just a bit, babe." He slipped his hand between Karkat's thighs, shockingly warm, wriggled his fingers, tickling, until Karkat jerked his knees apart. Okay, he was still straddling Karkat's lap, he couldn't get at his asshole. He allowed it. Even when Strider pulled out the bottle of lube and pumped his own dick once, twice, long and thorough.

He cupped Karkat's balls with his lube-slick hand, caressed them, the spot behind them. Nudged his fingers down between his inner thighs. Then he guided the tip of his cock there and with a long stroke he pushed himself down the same path.

Pause. Deep breath. For Karkat too.

"Squeeze your -- yeah. Like that. Fuck, you're perfect. Fucking perfect. Mnh."

He was a little less coherent with his dick trapped between Karkat's thighs, rocking on top of him the same exact way as before only there were no more clothes in the way and he was heavy on Karkat, taking over everything, his entire awareness. Where his body wasn't covered by Strider's he was buried in the mattress instead; full-body contact felt like a gigantic understatement. Karkat closed his eyes and tightened his hold around his shoulders and buried his face in the man's neck, hidden by tumbling white locks.

It managed to be possibly more intimate than actually having any of the guy's body parts inside him.

He didn't know how he felt about it.

(Like maybe he could feel safe?)

(No, that was fucking stupid, safety was for chumps. It was always a lie anyway.)

Strider's cock kept gliding between his slicked thighs, only a few inches back and forth but it left his skin tingling nevertheless. He couldn't help being intensely aware of that ridiculously small area, of the way Strider's belly rubbed on Karkat's own cock, still lying limp in its abandoned condom, of the lips on his shoulder, the little murmurs in his ear.

It tingled. Pretty much all over.

"Why do you like smothering me so much," he muttered into Dave's -- Strider's shoulder. "Is that your fetish, you creepy asshole -- ah."

Cheater. Dragging the flare of his cockhead up against the underside of Karkat's balls. And then plunging back to the hilt, not too fast but still enough to make him bounce on the mattress some; shit, it might not involve actual penetration but Karkat still felt fucked.

Not... in a bad way. He supposed. Mnh.

"Yeah. Squashed Karcrab. Cat pancakes. My favorite. Wish I was two hundred pounds heavier. Gog I want -- I want, I wish we could merge, I want to roll around in you, wear you like a backpack, we could go out that way, you'd never need a chair, no sir my lap is at your service--"

Karkat squeezed his thighs a little bit, muscles shifting around his cock. Seemed like a good way to make him go incoherent again, even if not for very long. He grinned a little when it worked, victorious. "If you mention unbirthing or vore I'm figuring out teleporting just so I can abscond. Just saying."

He ran his hands down the guy's back a little, testing. It wasn't bad. He was warm. His muscles tensed under Karkat's hands, he rolled his back like a cat wanting more caresses, groaning.

"You spout such goofy creeper bullshit when you get aroused even a little bit, asshole, I'm surprised you're not still a virgin."

Strider tried to speak again. Karkat clenched his thighs a second time. He was rewarded with a harder thrust, and another. So much leashed strength in that man.

"Fuck, fuck, fuck, I want to, I need to move harder, is that okay, sorry for the cuddles I love cuddles you're so fucking cuddlable, kittybabe --"

Karkat was finding himself a little breathless as well, and most of it was his reaction to how much of an effect he had on Dave. On Strider. "Yeah, yeah, okay, I can take it, go ahead."

Another few heavy thrusts down on him, bellies pressed tight together, making Karkat's own dick stir, and then Strider abandoned him. Karkat blinked up at him, arms empty, a little cold when the guy was suddenly on hands and knees over him, shuffling over -- grabbing his knees, dragging him to the edge of the futon. Lifting his legs.

Okay no from here he could definitely fuck him.

"Hey -- what the f-- Strider?"

He'd sounded more unsure than he meant to; Strider's manic need faded a little. He flicked him a little smile, and hugged Karkat's thighs to his chest.

And then he thrust between Karkat's thighs, until his cock bumped into Karkat's balls from behind, until he, oh, there it was.

Strider shifted back, braced his knees, spread some to accommodate how low the futon was to the floor, and thrust again. Karkat stared, propped up on his elbows and oddly mesmerized. It looked so -- so silly, but --

"Peekaboo," Strider said, in synch with his surfacing cockhead. Karkat tried to knee him in the head.

His legs were still trapped; he didn't manage. He growled, eyes gone to slits.

"Whoa, stallion, no bucking, you'd take Mister Happy with you, snap him off at the root." Strider dropped a kiss to the side of his knee, rubbed his leg -- soothing, trying to be soothing, Karkat was going to hurt him for real -- and then he started to really fuck.

It was, it was -- silly, and safe, and weirdly nice, not extremely stimulating but warm, and he could feel the whole impact of him traveling through his own body, and -- okay, he hadn't known he had that many nerve endings in his inner thighs. Tingles, again.

And then there were the irregular bumps to his sac, the long glides across his taint. He spent a minute or two chewing on his lip, hesitating.

Thought, oh, fuck it, and curled his fingers around his stirring cock.

"Oh -- oh yeah, pull it, show me how you straddle your paddle --"

"Stop breaking the mood!" Karkat snarled, but his hand kept moving. Strider's eyes were fascinated, fixed on his cock. "I'm not doing it -- not so you can -- ogle and shit, I'm not."

Strider let out another near-silent laugh, this one breathless, oddly arresting. "But it's so oglable. Also if I don't shoot the breeze, I'm gonna shoot my load. Shit be embarrassing."

Was he really that close? His face was flushed, true, but that he could still be so glib made Karkat doubt.

He rocked back to meet his next thrust, experimentally, thighs clenching some. Dave gasped, leaned into him, bending him almost double. Karkat's abs strained to resist the weight; he grunted with the strain, hands gripping the blankets, trying to brace. "Heavy!"

Dave dropped feverish little kisses on his knee, nuzzled. "Shh, shh, you're bendy, just bend, just -- pillow, get me that pillow, fuck yes thanks --"

This time Karkat couldn't even protest; it was getting hard to breathe, Strider had pulled his knees toward his chest and tucked the pillow Karkat thoughtlessly grabbed for him under his hips to prop them up, and now when Dave let go his knees, his upper legs were heavy enough to threaten to fall on his face and possibly break his spine, and he was spread open, oh hell, so completely vulnerable.

"I -- feel like -- like a goddamn porn star -- real people aren't supposed to -- shit, Strider, please don't."

His hands were smoothing up the back of Karkat's thighs, thumbs rubbing behind his knees, keeping him folded in two. Karkat's balls pulled up (down? up his cock) with gravity -- such a weird feeling -- and if he could have told himself that was what Strider was looking at, but no, it was his hole.

"... Fuck, that looks tight."

Oh hell. Oh shit. "Strider --"

He dragged his eyes away, met Karkat's eyes. Karkat could only stare back and not let his face show how scary it was to have the man's thick, hard shaft resting casually against the curve of his ass, radiating warmth and, and intent somehow.

"Shh, I promised no surprise cornholing, babe, just--"

"Not a surprise if you tell me first, is it?" Karkat snapped back, and bit his lip.

"Aw, c'mon. My word on it. No --" his voice went thick there, making Karkat's heart kick up a notch, "no putting it in, not anything in, exit only, okay, I respect that. Just, can I -- can I just. Like. Touch it."

Karkat had been flushed with embarrassment and reluctant arousal for a while now but his face burned at that, the words themselves and the image in his mind, but most of all the need in Strider's voice, the all too sincere desire.

"Fucking perv," he growled, closing his eyes. "Whatever, get it over with--"

One of Strider's hands raced back up his thigh; without support Karkat's hips twisted a bit, he had to strain to balance himself. He shuddered, clenching against his will as the pad of the man's thumb spread his ass cheeks just a little bit more, spread him open. Touched him.

"Fffuck, fuck, how long are you, how long, Dave please--"

Strider was making little soothing noises, crooning bits of song, even as he shifted his hips and his dick went and nestled between Karkat's ass cheeks, dragged back until the head, oh no, no no no, Karkat had one leg free to kick with--

"Hey." Knee captured. A light kiss to the inside of it. Dave's red eyes were so, so -- "Trust."

What the fuck even was trust. Shaking, he slung his leg over Dave's shoulder for support, awkward, tense, eyes closed tight like if he didn't see it he could pretend the guy wasn't rubbing slow and thorough all over his pucker.

And then Dave was surging forward, pressing Karkat's knees into his chest with the weight of his body. For a fraction of second Karkat thought he was shoving it in and he just wasn't feeling it yet, but no, there it was, rubbing against his balls, his own cock, and they were so close and he was so relieved that he just wrapped his arms around Dave's neck and held on, folded tight and rutted against and his mouth mashed against Dave's, and he didn't even know who had kissed who first.

Dave was mumbling things in his mouth as he thrust, a jumble of catkittycrab sohotyeswant, running together until it was nothing but background noise, until all the meaning was in the tone. Karkat groaned back, rocked against him as much as he could, ragged nails digging into his back. He bit at Dave's lip, at his chin, anywhere he could reach, kissed him again, deeper, taking over.

Amongst the jumbled bits of words falling out of his lips Karkat thought he'd almost heard his name.

Wet heat splattered his body. Strider went rigid over him, stopped breathing entirely, shockingly silent. Karkat moaned a protest in his mouth, tried to rock, no, no, damn it, it'd started to feel good and everything. There wasn't enough space for him to shove his hand between their bodies and jerk himself off, and then there was even less space as  Strider spread his legs and slumped on top of him like a felled tree.

"Hate you fucking hate you gonna kill you in the face fucking shit Strider--"

Karkat shoved at him. Strider nuzzled lazily against his neck and didn't budge, humming smugly. "Welp. Was s'posed to smother you with a pillow mid-orgasm, right? 's like, serial killer 101?"

"--Shut up shut up shut up get off me I fucking hate you--"

Low, rough-edged laugh, rumbling as they rested chest to chest. The vibrations were torture. Karkat latched onto the top of his ear with his teeth.

"Ow ow okay!"

He rocked lazily on top of Karkat, who couldn't help but gasp and release it. "Not enough, fucking cocktease, get off me, need to -- shit, need to oh thank god."

He'd thanked God too early. Strider had pushed himself up, but when he tried to grab a hold of himself the asswipe pushed his hand away. No, no, damn him--

... Oh. Okay yes mouths were an alright substitute. Yes. Proceed.

The condom had shifted some, uncomfortably, but it was still on him somehow. Dave slid it back into place with his mouth.

He didn't tease this time, didn't take it long and slow, just swallowed him to the root fast and hard, several times in a row. Karkat fisted his fingers in white hair and came.

By the time he'd stopped shaking Strider had crawled back up his body and slumped heavily by his side, face down on the mattress. One arm was thrown across his chest, heavy. Possessive. Karkat breathed, listening to Dave's little groans and the rain plinking quietly on the skylight.

"So..."

"Was it good for you, baby?" Karkat finished first, because by now he could smell a horrid cheesy set-up coming from a mile away.

Strider went snrk. "It was divine," he said around a laugh, "I saw angels, oh no, wait, it was you."

Karkat rolled his eyes and shifted a little to give him the side-eye. His hair was stuck to his forehead by sweat. Actually so was Strider's. "I have nothing against kicking your mouth in, now it's done being of use to me, you realize."

"So callous. What, you're not going to marry me anyway now you've taken my most precious flower? But you promised you'd still respect me in the morning!"

Karkat gave a slow blink. "I lied."

No comeback, just tired chuckles. Looked like he won this round. He allowed himself a little quirk of a smile.

Damn but the futon was nice. Quality. He might want to commune with it some. Yes.

"Hey, crabbycat?"

"... What."

"How old are you? By the way. Just to know."

Growl. Damn it. "Eighteen, now stop ruining my afterglow."

Dave lifted his head from the mattress to stare at him. "Dude, I've already jizzed all over you, that horse has left the barn. It is never coming back to the barn, it is now crossing the state line and heading for Mexico at a fiery gallop, tossing its glorious mane all the way."

"What's it with you and horses," Karkat grumped, looking away, "dead horses, cartoon ponies, now horses escape artists..."

Poke, poke, pointy finger in his ribs. "Crabkitty."

"Sixteen," he mumbled, glaring daggers at an unsuspecting bit of wall with tattered, yellowing posters plastered on. "In a month."

Strider considered it in silence for a few seconds, and then slumped back down. "... Oh well," he said philosophically. "I was already going to hell anyway."

Quiet again. The rain kept plink-plinking on the roof. Somewhere far away, the thunder rumbled. Karkat didn't think there were a lot of more satisfying feelings than being warm and cozy when outside it was all wet and cold.

Alright, being warm and cozy and recovering from a pretty awesome orgasm topped it, but not by too much.

His hip joints ached a bit. He still had the condom on, like a sadly deflated party balloon. Strider's come was drying in his pubes and in a trail up his stomach. He didn't want to move.

He thought Strider might be asleep, and that he'd wake him if he did move anyway, and that...

"How did you know my name?" he asked, very quietly. Because the more he thought about it, and the less he could get rid of the thought that he actually had heard karkat, karkat moaned into his mouth.

"Mnh?"

He turned to face him, Strider's arm shifting to end up around his waist instead. He stared. Palest lashes closed, face slack, content. "Where did you learn my name."

He expected a crack about stalking, Strider had nothing better to do with his time, those piles of money just generated themselves -- he expected a crack not about stalking, because stalking was the actual answer. He expected...

"Dude... 'd know you anywhere."

Karkat blinked dumbly, staring at that relaxed face.

"What?"

Dave's brow furrowed; he cracked open one eye to glance at him. "Mnrgh. Told you already."

"Told me what?" Karkat demanded, frustrated. "You told me you're an alien, you told me you're a devil, you told me you're a virgin-- I disbelieve that one even harder, by the way, if that were possible."

"Heh." A secret smile. "We're all aliens to each other, baby."

"Oh, fuck you." The asshole had no intention of telling him. (The asshole had already told him. But, just. No.)

With a sigh, he tried to relax into the mattress. His knee touched Dave's thigh, his breath ruffled pale hair. It was still warm and cozy, the light of the bedside lamp only making it more so.

He was half-asleep when Dave twitched himself back to wakefulness. "Oh -- when you leave tomorrow."

... right. Yeah. When he left tomorrow. As per the agreement. Not that he'd honestly thought Strider might caress the hopeless desire to keep him around a little bit longer. Not after all the cuddles and the mad flattery or anything. The man was just touch-starved, any piece of jailbait ass would do. Karkat had known that. He had, right?

"If you. Like. Have a board meeting early. And you absolutely have to abscond while I still snooze the snooze of the thoroughly laid. Leave me some pizza, okay?"

Karkat groaned and ... didn't kick him, because that'd be presuming too much, now, somehow. "Sure," he promised, and almost managed lightly. "The plasma screen is non-negotiable though."

"Sure, go ahead. My casa es su casa."

Karkat snorted faintly. He didn't say anything about the accent and the pain it wrought on actual Spanish speakers, though. Not even because then the asshole might ask him nosy things about his origins again (Dad from India, mom from Puerto Rico, kid not really from anywhere woo.)

"If you've got time, though, I'll show you a bit of parkour tricks."

"... Okay, that one completely lost me. I am adrift on the Whatthefuck sea on my way to Port Whatthefuck from Whatthefuckistan. It is a very large sea."

"No, see, it totally makes sense."

"If your brain is rotted through. Is that it? You're a fucking magical zombie? Suddenly all makes sense!"

"Noo, no no no." Strider started walking his fingers on Karkat's hip, in a way that was probably supposed to be illustrative of something besides an interest in fondling his ass. "Parkour means you can climb up the next building over, and then climb your way to my rad pool which you'd look very nice in speedos by. 'Cause if I give the keys to an underage kid... I might have forked over enough hush money to the concierge for him to pimp me some more twinks for you to frolic with but it ain't gonna do jack shit about the paparazzi."

Blink. Blink. Suddenly Karkat's mounting anger was gloriously derailed. Two times in a row. He -- he couldn't address the first yet. He just -- oh.

He licked his dry lips. "Paparazzi? Are you -- uh. Famous or something?"

Strider started snickering, turning on his side to face Karkat, arm crossed over his stomach and all loose-limbed and amused and unfairly gorgeous. "I just have one of those faces."

"You're famous. I'm not even surprised, actually, it was that or possessed of extraordinary business acumen, but you're too annoying to be a successful con artist. What I'm surprised is that people would even want to be invited by you twice in this ridiculous showpiece, how can they not figure out they're being trolled?"

A chuckle. "I ask myself that every single day. And then I ask myself, is it still funny? And it is, so as the wise man said, Cowabunga."

Karkat couldn't help looking vaguely admiring. "God, you're a douche."

"Guilty as charged." He tightened his hold on Karkat's waist, leaned in for a quick kiss, then flipped on his back and released him like it was no thing, all that easy affection, those weirdo promises, that... that thing Karkat didn't believe. "And if you don't feel like coming back to get some more sugar, that's cool, the parkour thing will help making you a very successful cat burglar. See, Jesus would want me to pass the lore down onto you."

What the fuck, he was all over the place. Karkat got this one though, as much as it gave him a headache to think he could follow Dave Strider's mad rambles. Give a man a fish versus teach a man to fish. Enabling Karkat to feed himself.

By becoming a burglar, woo. Karkat was fucking swooning, no, really, he was. He punched Strider in the biceps, slapped the condom on his leg, and then cuddled up to his side, glaring a challenge to say a single word about any of this.

"I'm imagining you in a catsuit, by the way," Strider commented casually, and wrapped an arm around his shoulders. "Skintight. Oh yeah. If you come back you are so wearing one."

"I'll wear one for your funeral."

"Good, you should still be in fuckable shape by then." A friendly kiss to his forehead, like Karkat was six and not sixteen and he hadn't just banged him. He blindly threw the condom off him over the edge of the futon and clicked off the bedside lamp.

The room was dark, but flickers of lightning and billboards tinted the walls, the sheets, Strider's profile. Street noises and thunder were a distant purr.

It was safe in here. He liked that.

Eyes closed, half asleep, he asked, "Were we together in your past life?"

"Haha. Nah. You didn't hate me enough."

"Could fix that now," Karkat mumbled.

Dave's hand ruffled his hair. "Yeah, okay."