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            There was blood on the boy’s chin, trailing down from where he’d bitten through his lips. 007’s eyes flickered over the rest of Q’s face before dipping below the loosed gag draped around his neck. A shallow chest was crisscrossed with fine scars, still red and raw from where a straight razor had been drawn with deceptive delicacy. Apparently the interrogators liked to play with their food.

            When James lifted Q into his arms he chose to ignore how distressingly light his quartermaster was. The pale stretch of his back was cool against James’ fingers, spine curving malleably when he hefted the limp form closer to his chest to slip through the door. Two bodies lay broken in the hall, two out of eleven he and another agent had taken out before they’d found Q. Now he stepped over them, frowning as the faint wheezing of the young man’s breath reached his ears, shaping faint whispers that could be words. James didn’t have the time to make them out, and neither did Q. He broke into a run when a line of blood drew itself down from the corner of Q’s mouth, darker and more sinister than the blood smearing his chin from the cut on his lip.

           

 

            Outside the hospital room James rolled a cigarette, unlit, around his mouth. Moneypenny had been the last attempt from the office to bring him back to report. But even her admittedly persuasive charms could not lure him away from Q. He could see the slender figure through the small window. Finger clipped with the heart rate monitor, oxygen feeding through his nostrils, an IV hanging from his arm. The damage had been far less than they’d feared. There was no internal bleeding.

            Meanwhile, MI6 hadn’t found them yet, Moneypenny had said. The men who had taken Q. Lackeys and hired muscle littered the floor of the compound, but no brains. Bond tightened his fingers around Q’s glasses clutched in his hand. Two days ago Q stayed late in the office, fiddling with another piece of equipment Bond had neglected to bring back whole. It was one of the newer radios, something the agent needed for his next mission. Q had sighed and set to work, muttering obscenities at Bond and about overtime as he clocked in another few hours.

            At the time James had been amused, sticking around to harass the geek a little before Tanner shooed him out.

            Whereas Q usually took one of the MI6 chauffeured cars home, that night he hopped the last train, unwilling to bother with signing the paperwork for an escort afterhours.

            And that’s where they got him. Dozing in an empty car, laptop cradled in his arms like a baby, glasses slid down his nose. His hair was perpetually mussed from constant tugging fingers as he watched Bond on a mission with baited breath. Drops of tea stained his tie, the sleeves of his cardigan pulled down over his fingers. They didn’t bother to wake him. Instead it was a blow to the temple that sent Q sprawling, his laptop saved by one of the goons.

            As was to be expected Q’s kidnappers couldn’t make heads or tails out of his encrypted system. And as was to be expected from a trained employee of MI6, Q pled ignorance. He rattled off a learned backstory, fake name. Insisting even as they beat him senseless that he didn’t know what in the world they were talking about. With teeth stained red by his own blood Q cried compelling but fake tears about a dog he didn’t own, a wife he didn’t have, fear he didn’t feel.

            Each one of them knew the risk. The moment they signed their life away to their country, they knew.

            It didn’t make James feel any better when his head snapped up, lunging forward when the frantic beeping of a machine burst from behind the pasty white wall. His cigarette lay forgotten in the hall as he dashed into the room.

            “007,” Q weakly acknowledged, slowly taking in his surroundings. “Not dead, then. Lovely.” His brows furrowed slightly and he blinked owlishly up at Bond. “Glasses please.”

            If Q noticed the slight tremor in the agent’s hands as he handed the chipped frames over he didn’t mention it.

            Sighing and sinking back into the pillows, the quartermaster lifted his arms experimentally, wiggled his toes. “They’re nothing to worry about,” he stated drily. “Though it’s obvious they were working for someone making a point to keep his or her distance.” Grunting with the effort to sit up, Q reached for the glass of water sitting on his bedside table as he tugged the oxygen tubes from his nose. “You look awful, 007.”

            “No sleep,” the agent explained.

            “Because of me?” Q wondered, shrugging when Bond remained silent. “I suppose if one might force a silver lining; an elaborate kidnapping does wonders for one’s ego.” When Bond didn’t smile Q set the glass of water down. “Oh,” he said brilliantly. “You think this was your fault.”

            “Wasn’t it?” he countered hoarsely.

            Frowning down at the IV in his arm, Q answered simply, “No.” He fussed over the needle, poking at it and groaning lowly until Bond grabbed his thin wrist and squeezed.

            “Q,” he warned.

            “Still underestimating me,” he sighed, hissing when the agent abruptly dropped his hand. “I saw them coming. I’m not a complete desk ape.” Pursing his lips primly, he continued, “At one point they had me try to break into my own laptop. Instead I triggered the distress signal – thank you for answering in a timely manner,” he added. “And then I, in laymen’s terms, hooked into their system without ever compromising my own. They’re being tracked as we speak, but more importantly the source if this entire affair is being traced. Smartphones are the greatest advancement in surveillance of the past hundred years. Makes my job almost laughably easy-” He paused, the hairs standing on the back of his neck as James Bond leaned into his space. The man smelled of musk and expensive cologne. Q swallowed.

            “They burned down your entire apartment building.”

            A brief flicker of distress and shock shadowed through his dark green eyes. “... They know where I live.” He blinked rapidly. “Lived.”

            “They’re gunning for you Q,” James informed him calmly. “There was a scan run on your system. They’ve rigged you.”

            Now Q’s eyes widened behind his lenses. His teeth scraped over the scar of his bitten lip. “Oh?”

            “They made a shoddy job of it, but you’ve got a tracker inside of you. And…” James hesitated, glancing at the IV. “Until it’s removed you can’t go back to HQ, or near any classified locations.”

            “P-preposterous,” he argued, face flushed with distress. “Let me at the damn thing and I’ll deactivate it.” Bond chuckled as if at a dark joke. “What? Double-oh.”

            “I guess you could call it brilliant, what they did,” the agent conceded. “It’s one of the earliest internal cameras ever built, battery run and with no external signal aside from the remote connection to what M guesses to be a radio. The technology is so simple that there’s no way to hack it. We’d thought to scramble the signal, but they’ve laced it with a highly sensitive alloy that reacts violently to fluid compounds.”

            Q stared at him. “You’re joking.” When Bond only rolled his eyes Q scrambled further up the bed, his skin itching something terrible as he wrestled the blankets off. “Absurd, this is… absurd,” he snapped. “You mean to tell me that some Girl Guides-level science experiment has stumped MI6?”

            “It’s not priority,” James admitted lightly, waiting for the explosion. He wasn’t disappointed.

            “Not. Priority?” the young man spit dangerously. “I am not priority?”

            “You,” James injected smoothly, “Are safe. That is priority. You don’t need to be in Q Branch to do your job.” He smirked. “What was it you once said? About all that damage you do at home in your pajamas?”

            Seething, Q kicked out of the bed, stomping across the cold floor until the IV still trailing from his arm caught him up. Tangling with it briefly, he yelped when Bond grew impatient and simply ripped it from his arm. Staring with abject betrayal at the man, he scuttled away when the blond made to usher him back. “Trousers,” he demanded.

            “Actually, I like this look on you,” James said flatly, easily catching his quartermaster’s flailing arms (though not without suffering a nasty elbow to the stomach) and wrestling him back to the bed. “Now only if you’d act the part.”

            “Of an invalid?” he squawked.

            That was the loudest James had ever heard Q get. Truth be told, he was shocked; which was the only excuse for how the nurse got halfway across the room before James noticed her, jerking into gut instinct and freezing guiltily when M appeared in the doorway. His dry expression drifted into perturbed with one arched brow. James set the startled nurse on her feet, and even dusted off her shoulder. But M only continued to look vaguely stormy, his eyes following the nurse’s shuffle as she ran a quick check on Q’s vitals, murmuring a quick, “Looking well, Mister Boothroyd”, before disappearing out the door with Q’s clipboard.

            “Have you told him?” M asked abruptly, zeroing in on James with an impatient air. “The doctor’s have cleared him. Our med staff will be running tests over the next week or so.”

            Q interrupted loudly, “Excuse me… If this ridiculous piece of garbage is in my system then if I’m not mistaken biology ensures it will…. Exit within a couple of days.”

            “It is of a design that will stay within your system for quite a while longer,” M sighed, pinching he bridge of his nose.

            “We’ll see about that,” Q snapped irritably. “And what was 007 supposed to tell me?” He shot a dark look at the agent, who only smiled wryly in response.

            “You’ll be staying with Bond for the next week.”

            He was blinking very rapidly now and James saw the flush creeping higher up his quartermaster’s neck.

            “House arrest,” he ground out, “With 007.”

            “Do tell me how you really feel,” James drawled.

            “Enough,” M growled when Q, looking pinched and decidedly snide, opened his mouth to retort. “The safest place we can have you is with a Double-Oh.” With a mischievous twinkle in his eye, he added, “Besides, he volunteered.”

            Q sputtered as James sent M a withering look.

 

 

            “Remind me,” Q said lightly, “why anyone could possibly conclude that I am safer with you?”

            “I’m moving into a new flat at the end of the month,” he grunted, shoving aside the endless tins of Q’s tea to pull out his French Press. Q had invaded every corner of his home since yesterday morning when they’d moved him from the hospital. Wires James assumed were usually neatly taped down slithered over the floor like drunken serpents, connecting to numerous blinking screens that cancelled out the typically soothing light from his frosted ceiling lamp. Q was wrapped up in a mound of blankets looking mildly queasy after Med had stopped by to administer a harsh brew that was supposed to – in so many words – force the tracker out of Q’s body with minimal damage. The results were not the most pleasant. “This location isn’t a hazard.”

            “I don’t believe you actually volunteered,” Q started after a moment of silence. His upper lip was moist from the thick steam emitting from his mug. Another mandate from Med was a change of teas. Q voiced his opinion on the matter and was promptly ignored. The heady mint flavor of the tea cooled throughout his body and made the air sweeping through his lungs just slightly sharper. He missed the comfortable warmth of Earl Grey. By no means a boring person – in his indignant opinion – Q was nevertheless somewhat set in his ways, and being uprooted and given a new regimen of unpleasant medication and exotic tea was not sitting very well with him. Not to mention the MI6 agent (a coffee lover) that was currently acting as jailer.

            “I always fancied a career as a wet nurse.”

            “Prat,” he grumbled waspishly.

            Q stayed that way, a human gyro cocooned in blankets, until Eve Moneypenny brought by the last box of the sleek tools Q used to make technological wonders. She was surprised James was so blasé about this many people coming in and out of his space. But he’d already set up his new place through the agency; this flat was almost run up on the lease. When Bond was finished with something; he was over it, end of story. She smiled exasperatedly at the stripped walls and nearly empty main room. It had been a nice place, but the man had never been one to stay put, nor linger; even on the good things.

            “Good to see you two haven’t killed each other yet,” she announced pleasantly, gracefully stepping over the snaking wires streaking the floor. Q had claimed the sofa, one of luxurious cream leather. Eve wouldn’t be surprised if the quartermaster fell asleep splayed across his computers. “I’ve got twenty quid says you’ll last at least another four days. Don’t disappoint.”

 

 

            It was at their second dinner together that Q finally relaxed. He’d never admit it, but his cooking was appalling besides the occasional pasta and rice. James Bond, however, apparently knew what he was doing. Hovering between the dining room and the kitchen, Q was absently sniffing at the mint of his tea as he curiously watching the agent – a living weapon – finely chop vegetables for a fresh salad. It was eerie, entirely too domestic. Q wandered back to the couch, unsettled for reasons he couldn’t name.

            Twenty minutes later, still wrapped in a blanket, Q plopped down at the dining table. His eyes were large behind his glasses before they narrowed suspiciously at the crisp flutes liberally filled with Taittinger Brut La Francaise, or so read the bottle chilling at the head of the table. Besides the salad colorful with radish spirals and peppers, carrot coins and kidney beans, there was a casserole dish with what he assumed was homemade cottage pie. The mashed potatoes looked alarmingly good, and the smell was making his mouth water. Q shoveled his portion onto his plate defensively, watching as Bond took a sizably smaller helping for himself before he looked expectantly at Q.

            “Why are you looking at me as if I poisoned your dinner?”

            Flinching at the word “poison”, Q cleared his throat. “It’s unsettling to see an agent I have witnessed snap a man’s neck with his calves playing the domestic.”

            “It’s not playing,” Bond said, cutting into the steaming vegetables and meat beneath the potatoes. “Still underestimating me?” he parroted from earlier, finally grinning around his fork when Q rolled his eyes. Jams paused, pulling a bottle of pills from his pocket and tossing them over to the other man. “Don’t forget your happy pills. Safe, of course, to mix with alcohol,” he promised with a nod towards the champagne.

            “Doubtful,” Q groused mulishly.

            On one level it was disappointing that the cottage pie was possibly the best he’d ever tasted, only because he couldn’t make some snide comment to reestablish the familiar dynamic. Then again, 007 looked genuinely please when Q inhaled his food and didn’t hesitate for seconds. Washing it down with the rich champagne left Q feeling warm and delightfully content. Bond had remained silent, methodically working through his meal. He swept both their plates away, snorting when Q only waved his thanks. Shutting his eyes for a moment to bask in the after glow of a filling dinner, he opened them to find another glass of champagne sitting under his chin and tickling his nose with bubbles. “You’re trying to get me tipsy,” he said tiredly, deciding to ignore Bond’s patronizing smile as he sipped liberally from the glass. Maybe it was the food, but Q was feeling somewhat mutinous. “Q Branch is falling apart without me,” he said without prompting. “Who could possible man the helm?”

            James drifted into the living room, Q trailing behind him. He pointedly did not mention that they had found a temporary replacement; one of Q’s own diligent tech minions. And apparently she was doing a fine job, though no major disasters had shaken up the headquarters in some time. He was amused to see the tea mug left on the table, its place claimed by the tulip flute of champagne. “I’m sure no one,” he assured his quartermaster. It looked like the uptight tech could let loose when impelled by as perceived unfair circumstances.

            “I haven’t drank since my college days,” he confessed, slumping down onto the couch next to Bond and making only a mildly unhappy noise when the agent shoved his impromptu rollaway aside with his foot, taking his computer along with it. “Are you changing your routine because I’m here?” he asked suddenly, the suspicion in his tone blaringly obvious. “This is a highly unusual set of circumstances for the both of us.”

            “Talkative, aren’t you,” surmised James, not unkindly. He noted with growing amusement that the glass was already half empty. He tipped his own glass and drained the rest of the liquid, not taking his eyes off Q. The floppy-haired boy  - really not a boy, but Bond couldn’t help the affectionate term – was staring at the flat screen resting sleekly on the wall. “You’ll have to take your meds in an hour.”

            Q deflated. “And I thought we were on good terms.”

            “Tough love, as they say, Q.”

            In the silence that followed James turned on the TV. It had come with the flat, courtesy of MI6. He’d never found much use for it besides some old films that he’d catch on the Golden Cinema channel during nights that sleep evaded him. Next to him Q perked up when the screen blinked to life and Angelina Jolie’s face was shown in sharp definition, hefting a gun as she tore through what James assumed to be Russian spies. The film Salt had been interesting, though flawed as any cinematic portrayal of agent-life was. Q seemed intrigued enough, sitting up slightly in his seat and finally allowing the blanket to slip down his slender shoulders. He continued to drink absentmindedly, snorting derisively whenever some flashy technology was portrayed onscreen, obviously falling short of his standards. James found himself watching Q instead of the film.

            Q had polished off another glass by the time the credits rolled. They’d been nearly to the end and James wondered if he should be alarmed that Q was swaying slightly.

            “Americans,” Q finally scoffed suddenly, snuggling deeper into the nest of blankets until his head looked like a tuft of grass sprouting from woolly dunes. “The CIA’s firewall is decent, granted, but the rest of the government really is just a picket fence with the gate left open. No wonder China always targets American intel first.” He paused, peeking over the fold of the blankets to see 007’s skeptical brow arched. “You penetrate unsuspecting women, I penetrate firewalls,” he said starchily, expression cracking when 007’s eyebrows actually shot up in surprise. “Don’t look so contrite. You know very well I’m in your ear  - and you’re in mine – on missions. Every…” he paused, emerging further from the blankets with renewed conviction, “Every ‘oh, James’ is right here-” he brushed the tips of his fingers against his own temple. “I should start charging for the show,” he decided glumly, rubbing his palms over his eyes. The skin across his chest and back itched vaguely from the healing cuts. Ointments from the Medic department at MI6 had done wonders even over a few hours, but the healing still tickled. Q scratched absently at his chest, jumping when a large callused hand closed over his fingers to hold them still.

            “It bothers you?” the agent asked impassively, close enough to Q to smell the fruity burst of Champagne lingering on his quartermaster’s tongue.

            Commercials blared annoyingly on the screen, bathing their faces in swimming blue and red colors. Q looked confused, though he tended to hide that well even intoxicated.

            “It’s not… important,” he finally settled, struggling to read the emotions on Bond’s face. Impossible with the colorful blotches patched out from the TV. “As long as the mission is completed, I don’t care what you do. Though,” he said thoughtfully, “I would like it if you wouldn’t break every bloody thing I send you out with.”

            Holding Q’s eyes for an uncomfortably long time, James snapped his attention back to the television, flipping the channel to Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes. Underneath the blankets Q was wearing a threadbare thermal shirt, the gray of the cloth making his skin seem that much brighter and his hair that much darker. “Maybe I need incentive,” James suggested blandly.

            “I doubt any of Q Branch would be up to your standards,” he morosely shot back, again burrowing into the blankets. “No other agent has the quite the destructive streak you do, 007.”

            “No other agent is quite like me, period,” he corrected smoothly.

            “I’ll drink to that,” the quartermaster snorted, bending over to pick up his champagne flute.

            A broad stretch of back was revealed. The scars were barely visible, and plaid boxers peeped over the hem of loose cotton pajama pants that may have once been blue but currently were drabber gray. He had a mole on his back, just a tiny one. Something a woman might call a beauty mark. His spine didn’t jut out like some thin people, instead drawing the line between fine panels of smooth sinew. James doubted any employee of MI6 wasn’t at least marginally athletic in their build. Thick waves of dark brown hair flopped over Q’s forehead and there was the muffled clatter of his glasses hitting the wood floors. James heard a low grumble as Q felt around for them, the hand holding his glass flung out for balance. He looked all at once ridiculous and endearing. Ever since the showdown at Skyfall and the events leading up to it, James had grown fond of Q despite his prickly disposition, matronly protectiveness of his precious equipment, and shapeless wardrobe that left much to be desired. But he was Q. He was the most consistent voice in James’ ear, usually the first - albeit exasperated - face he saw when he stumbled back to base. Once Q had sat up with him through a terrible recovery from a drug he’d inhaled, grounding him by droning on and on about the latest gadgets and complex systems he was working on.

            “Bond?”

            He blinked Q into sharp focus, swimming in his murky green eyes right before the lenses of his glasses covered them. They glowed eerily in the reflected light of the flat screen, twin squares of milky green. James retrieved the champagne and poured a long line into Q’s glass as Sense and Sensibility played in the background.

            “I’d like to say I hate period pieces,” Q lamented, “But I own every version of Pride & Prejudice ever made.”

            James’ brows furrowed. Maybe he should cut his quartermaster off…

            “Even the Bollywood version,” Q murmured sleepily. “Bride & Prejudice. I liked it. I actually quite like Bollywood…”

            “Your pills must be kicking in,” James observed, plucking the glass of champagne cleanly out of the man’s hand. “Any other confessions, Q?” Fever-clear eyes peered up at him, staring hard enough that James hesitated. Oh, if he could take back the question, mesmerized as a pink tongue slowly swiped across moist red lips.

            “You infuriate me, 007,” Q finally breathed, suddenly feeling hot. He shoved the blankets down until he sat in nothing but his thin pajamas. “You are… infuriating.”

            He couldn’t help the snort of laughter, and was nearly able to smother it with a cough. But Q was up on his knees by that point, a bony finger jabbing into James’ chest just shy of painful.

            “You… break my things.”

            James frowned defensively, grabbing Q’s hand and ignoring the young man’s pitiful attempts to free it from his grip. “Everyone breaks equipment.”

            “No,” he argued vehemently, his glasses falling askew as he flailed in Bond’s grip. “You seem make a point of breaking them. Or just losing them!” Giving up rather pathetically, Q just hung limply from Bond’s grip; his shirt rucked up around his waist. “I’d appreciate it if you would cease and desist.”

             “Holding onto to you, or breaking the equipment.”

            His ears turned pink. Alcohol and the painkillers sung in Q’s veins, having a merry go of it and leaving him slow and warm. “Well, you can’t just drop me.”

            “Do you dislike me, Q?” James asked, honest curiosity shining through. He slipped onto the couch, eyes going to trace Q’s palm held deftly in his fingers. He traced surprisingly normal hands gently while he waited. It wasn’t a question he’d ever asked anyone before, save when he was a very small child.

            “I’m afraid it would take a stronger man than I to dislike you,” Q graciously divulged, crowding his fingers into Bond’s grip until their fingers were tangled. “Women open like flowers to the sunshine when you walk past.” He squinted, smacking his lips thoughtfully. “How many people have you had, Bond?”

            He’d be a liar if he said he didn’t like the sound of his name on Q’s lips.

            “A few,” he said, adding quietly, “And a few have even had me.”

            “Your life belongs to England,” Q pointed out uncertainly. Bond was tracing patterns up his arm, still sensitive from the IVs. He gasped when the tip of a finger swirled around the inside of his elbow. The barrier of blankets the only thing between them; Q realized his glasses had fallen. Making a small distressed sound he looked down for them but a hand cupped his face and angled it up until he met Bond’s electric blue eyes.

            “She’s an understanding mistress,” the agent whispered.

            His lips on Q’s were hot and full. The quartermaster melted into him, opening to him as Bond licked his way into his mouth. A strong arm caught him up behind his back and Q breathed hard out his nose as he felt Bond’s broad chest pressing against him.

            He let out a surprised “oomph!” as he abruptly collapsed back into the pile of blankets, staring up dumbfounded as Bond slid gracefully away. “W- bloody-” Scrambling up, Q glared hotly at the receding back of the agent. “Some bloody consistency would be nice you bearded twat!” Going after the other man was tempting, but his legs were far from adequately functional. Q stewed in his outrage until Bond’s silhouette reappeared in the darkened lights. He puffed up, but a steaming cup of tea was shoved into his hands, effectively silencing him. Bond sat next to him, blue eyes cleaned of that predatory glint. “You make very little sense,” the quartermaster stated outright. “But thank you for the tea.” He felt his irritation waning under the onslaught of the drugs. “Are you hoping I’ll forget it ever happened?”

            “I’m hoping that when you’re sober you’ll be coming back for more,” James said. He caught the cup of tea right before it spilled, Q already splayed inelegantly across the couch cushions as the mix of alcohol and medication finally crashed his system. Careful not to wake the quartermaster, James gently carried his charge to the bedroom and arranged him comfortably beneath the sheets. With one last brush of his thumb over a smooth cheek he retired to the couch to await the morning.

 

 

            Q stood over him, redefining the term “bedhead” and apparently defying gravity as well. His hair stood practically on end, a tousled mess of waves and odd curls. James had listened to him toddle into the kitchen, listened to him put together an aromatic blend of mint tea (still on doctor’s orders), and then he’d listened to him shuffle into the living room on socked feet.

            “Get enough beauty sleep?” he asked, cleanly rolling away when Q tipped his tea threateningly.

            “Ah, yes,” he quipped, eyes flashing, “I always sleep like a baby after a good molestation.”

            Now James was frowning. “You’re not some pitiful ingénue, Q. Don’t act like one.”

            “I was drugged. And… intoxicated.” He winced at the memory. He’d not had a hangover for… Q wasn’t sure he’d ever had one. But his pounding head informed him that he’d broken his record of sobriety – smashed it, rather. And he blamed Bond. “I’ve seen you in action, 007. If you’re playing some game there are plenty of other willing aspirants for your head games. I, however, am not one to flagrantly disregard the rules against fraternization considering I hold your life in my hands at any given time and you could very well snap my spine with your bare hands.” Taking a deep breath, he wilted like a spindly flower onto the couch and groaned. “My head.”

            “I also risked my neck to pull you out of that mess,” James pointed out patiently. “A mess that you apparently saw coming.”

            “And I am to just get on my knees for any old bloke then? Tanner held the door open for me the other day. I’d better whore up for him then.” The rush of words was uncharacteristic and he bit his tongue painfully in retribution. Last night he hadn’t been himself, his guard had been down, his inhibitions were gone and yes, though Bond’s lips had felt as sinfully good as Q had secretly imagined them to be, there was still no excuse for either of their behavior. Though Bond never really had an excuse for anything. Running fingers through the wild tangles of his hair in a helpless attempt to tame them, Q grumbled, “By that logic you owe me quite a few favors, don’t you Double-oh?” He hiccupped in surprise when James Bond slid with the grace of a jungle cat to the floor.  

Kneeling between Q’s lanky legs, James fixed the young man with a barefaced stare.

            “No,” Q whispered. “No, you always win. You always get the girl, or the boy. Always. And that’s not… I’m not going to be another trophy - albeit it a trifling one, compared to your other conquests.” He was babbling, the muscles in his legs jumping when Bond calmly pressed open palms to his inner thighs. “You know they call them Bond Girls. Who will be next? I banned betting pools in my department, but-”

            “We do what we need to ensure the mission,” James defended. “This isn’t a mission, Q. This is what I want. And I am what you want. We both win.”

            “Ha,” he barked, breath hitching as the loose waist of his pajama bottoms slipped down his hips. “Your ego never ceases to amaze me.”

            “You know technology, you can spot the slightest change in thousands of encryption codes racing across a screen. But I know people, Q. And as much as you might deny it, you are human.” He leaned up between his quartermaster’s legs and inhaled the rich scent of the skin along his long neck. “I can smell it on you, how much you want me.”

            “I will pour this tea on you,” he threatened weakly, eyes bugging behind his glasses as the agent slid a hot tongue along his pulse point before descending beautifully down his body to settle again between spread thighs. The agent watched him impassively, only the barest hint of a smile playing across his lips. Those lips that were moist, lips that Q had seen kiss what felt like hundreds of other mouths. He frowned and set aside the tea, lunging forward and coming up a breadth away from that wicked mouth. Stormy green eyes, forever edging into gray, lifted to meet Bond’s liquid gaze. Their mingled breath was tinted with mint tea and toothpaste. “I’m not one of your Bond Girls,” he warned.  He felt Bond smile, the curve of his lower lip hitting Q’s.

            “Certainly not,” the agent acquiesced.

            “You did not seduce me.”

            Muscle moved subtly beneath his broad shoulders as he slid rough hands up Q’s slim back. “I’d argue that I am the victim here, of your charms.” With the slightest pressure he rocked Q into him, chest to chest. Q’s bony shoulders crowded him and James said against a pair of full lips, “Now if you’d be so kind to allow me to suck your cock, Quartermaster.” The hitch in Q’s breath was lovely, speaking volumes, as much as the increased heat coming off of him, the heightened scent of arousal.

            “I… haven’t showered,” he said lamely, clutching at the couch cushions as Bond gripped his hips and slid him effortlessly forward. A quirked eyebrow was the only response before the agent was pushing his boxers out of the way and exposing an embarrassingly progressed erection. Then the blond licked his lips and with a last searing look that stuttered Q’s heart, James Bond bent his head and licked a long wet line up Q’s cock, nearly driving him to bite through his lip a second time.

            He’d never seen 007 do this, not on any hidden cameras or surveillance tapes. There had only been several times he’d seen  - with the rest of the department – Bond have sex at all (though hearing Bond have sex was another story entirely, a common one). Q had a sneaking suspicion the sex had been for show. Gasping when Bond nipped at his sac, Q dug his fingers against the agent’s scalp, dragging them through short blond hair. His other hand was shoved into his own mouth, silencing the gasps and whimpers that he would absolutely not allow to escape, despite the dizzying pleasure as 007 abruptly swallowed him down a tight throat.

            “How-” he wheezed, bucking up against Bond until the man’s nose was pressed into his belly. “No gag reflex…. Missed that part of training…” Giving in to the long keen that tore out of his mouth, Q thrashed against the leather of the couch. He rubbed his hands over his chest, practically tearing his shirt off as his temperature continued to rise. Bond made an appreciative hum against his pulsing cock and Q had to squeeze his eyes shut and bite down hard on his already swollen and wounded lip to stop the pressing flow of filthy curses from surfacing.   

            Bond hollowed his cheeks all the way off Q’s cock. With a mischievous twinkle in his eye he blew a tortuously cool stream of air over the quartermaster’s twitching erection, merely grinning when Q grabbed him by his short-cropped hair.

            “Bond,” he warned, light voice sounding haggard.

            Instead of answering James slunk up with his hands settled on either side of Q’s head against the couch. The young man was staring up at him, eyes wide and pupils blown with arousal. His skinny legs were framed by the agent’s muscular thighs. Graceful fingers feathered over the cushions at a loss of what to do. James smirked, reaching down to pull his own leaking cock out. It swung heavily and clipped Q on his lips. The skinny man sputtered indignantly, squishing himself back into the leather of the couch. But James caught his chin and stared down into his eyes, obscured by tendrils of dark brown hair and crooked glasses.

            Looking between Bond’s face and the beads of precum collecting on the head of his prick, Q made a decision. “Two can win at this game,” he growled. And Bond threw his head back as Q mouthed the head, slapping the agent’s heavy hands away when he tried to stroke his cheek. “Not a woman,” he snapped before bobbing his head with agile determination until 007 was thrusting shallowly down his throat.

            “Don’t finish me,” James ground out, hungrily eating up the sight of the pretty young man sucking him off with surprising (though maybe not so surprising) skill. Q only grunted, nails digging grooves down Bond’s thighs and freeing him from his pants. Old aches were waking up slowly in James’ legs and he dropped his head, breathing deeply as he clung to the back of the couch. Q tilted his head beautifully and took him deeper, something dark and hot flashing in his eyes.

            His eyes rolled shut when Bond rubbed his nose against Q’s tangled hair. But the warm hand pushing down his back brought them right back open, and sent him skittering back in alarm. 007 was left with his cock out, bent over the couch as if he’d been holding something – Q. Shirt shucked up to his armpits and pants completely dropped away, Q didn’t even want to consider how ridiculous he looked, regardless of how Bond seemed to be enjoying the view. Squaring his jaw, he said firmly, “I’ve not showered.”

            “Then let’s,” James said lightly, standing up straight to hold out his hand to his quartermaster.

            Stubbornly refusing to take the proffered hand, Q tugged down his shirt in a rather pathetic attempt at being dignified and sniffed. “If we’re not sacked after this horrendous mutual mistake, then I might just do it myself.”

            “Only a healing regimen,” James shrugged. “Hot water, deep tissue massage.” He flashed a grin when Q laughed, quick to catch himself and smother the laughter with a prudish cough.

            It took far longer than their matching erections would infer, but eventually Bond had Q in the shower, drenched under a steaming stream of hot water. The glasses were gone, and his hair snaked down his neck in beautifully winding tendrils like swirling tattoos. They were kissing, slowly, after a brief scrub of soap that left red streaks over Q’s chest and back. Q almost seemed to relax without his glasses, as if blurred vision also somehow blurred his scruples. Though it didn’t do a thing to diminish his attitude, but James would have mourned any other way.

            “You are confusing, Q,” he informed the other man when the quartermaster broke their kiss to breathe deep against James’ jawline.

            “You went to your knees first, Double-Oh.”

            Their erections rubbed, slicked by water and precum. James smirked and slung his hand loosely around them and jerked while Q stiffened and bit down on his jawline. “Like me on my knees for you?” Before Q could answer, James spun him, forcing the younger man to catch himself on the wall. He dropped to his knees, holding Q’s slim hips in his big hands.

            “Wha- OH.” Q slammed a fist into the wall, hissing when Bond lapped at his entrance, shoving the cheeks of his ass part none too gently.

            “Anyone ever done this to you, Q?” he asked innocently, rubbing tight circles around the puckered skin with a slicked thumb. Lube had been easy to sneak from the medicine cabinet before they got in. Condoms were tucked away tastefully in nearly every part of his apartment. They’d be the last to go with the move to the new place.

            Slack jawed and trembling, Q eventually managed, “Considering the risks of anilingus it hasn’t been high on my priority list-” He broke off in a hoarse groan, nails clawing at the tiled walls. “I might… reconsider.”

            “Oh, I hope so.” He hardened his tongue and pushed in, digging crescents into the round globes of Q’s ass while the quartermaster rolled up onto his toes, back arching gorgeously as his hands twisted helplessly against the wall. He was coming undone in a stunning fall of whimpers and bared teeth. James kept his eyes open, the water pounding hot against his back, mixing with the musky taste of the deepest part of Q. His cock ached. James moved a finger alongside his tongue and breeched the tight ring of muscle, holding Q still with his other hand when the young man bucked.

            “007,” he breathed hotly, peering down over his shoulder. Bond was opening him up with tongue and fingers, sliding in under the soothing heat of the water. Q was too afraid of collapsing to fist himself, though the pain of arousal was making itself clear as his erection jumped in a weak plea for attention. “Christ, you brute.”

            “You’d like me to hurry it along?” he proposed, ignoring the strangled protest as he inserted a second finger along the first.

            Q was panting, forehead resting against one arm as the other finally traveled down his long torso to grip his dick. Bond was using his tongue again, and the rush of water put Q in a haze of warmth that soothed the tension of being entered. The agent was loosening him with utmost care and suddenly Q felt a strange flare of jealousy. How many men had he done this to? On-mission sex didn’t faze Q. It was a job. Means to an end (or so he told himself and stubbornly believed).  Just then 007 spread his fingers wide and Q’s head lolled back, boneless. “… Fuck.”

            “As you wish,” was James’ cheeky reply.

            The tip of the blonde’s slippery cock nudged into him. He stiffened. A strong arm anchored itself across his chest and Bond placed open-mouth kisses on his shoulders as he waited until the tension eased along Q’s spine. The push was wide and Q turned to catch the agent in a bruising kiss, wrapping one arm up behind Bond’s head and forcing himself into an even harsher arch. The wet slip of their mouths was brilliant, the weight of Bond’s agonizingly slow entrance a strange symphony singing in his veins. Gentle. Not what he would have thought, but 007 was reading his body like a book and Q opened for him, pushing slightly back, crying out when the agent was fully seated within him. His body pulsed, pushed and pulled, rough fingers scraping over a nipple, a hot tongue still claiming his mouth. He’d never been so wrapped up in anyone before.

            “Q,” James ventured, voice thick with need.

            “Move,” was his only reply.

            That both their bodies were covered in a sheen of water made the filthy sounds of skin grinding skin that much sharper. Q grunted and shoved back, trying to give as good as Bond. He’d braced himself on the wall, bent forward at an obtuse angle as 007 pounded him. Every thrust was sizzling pleasure eating up his spine and his hand was a blur on his own cock as he worked himself. Bond was biting at the back of his neck, teeth a scrape of splintering sensation as the agent rode Q rough against the wall. He’d never been fucked like that; opened up so gently and taken so hard. Every dizzying crash of pleasure wrung a cry out of him and Q was gasping and whimpering Bond’s name like a mantra.

            The boy was beautiful. His long pale back curved to tilt up his tight little ass so James could fuck him at the perfect angle. Big hand spread his cheeks wide enough too see every inch sinking into puckered pink flesh and James growled, claiming Q with his teeth as he snapped his hips viciously until the quartermaster was nothing but a mess of pleas and curses.

            “There! Hell, Bond. Just. There.” Q keened and shoved his face against the wall to give the agent a better angle, crying out when each violent thrust hit him just right. He was splayed against the wall, holding himself up now with both hands spread out, the cold tile smarting against his nipples rocking back and forth.

            Winding his tongue around the shell of Q’s ear, James murmured, “Q… Q, you fit little piece. Take it.” He grunted as the pleasure spiked; Q was clenching around him in a vice of velvet heat. Not much longer; he hoped his legs would hold. The painful yawn of old wounds only added to the razor edge of pleasure. He worked his hips in tight circles, humming along to Q’s ragged cries. Hugging the thin body closer, he slid a hand down to grip Q’s neglected cock. His reward was a yelp of surprise and desire, and narrow hips bucked back into him fiercely, only to inspire him to fuck deeper and harder into that willing body, into Q.

            He nearly dug grooves into the tile when he came, biting bloody into his own arm to keep back the humiliating sound that came out when he streaked the wall. Bond chuckled in his ear, his pace picking up until he was slamming Q bodily against the wall over and over, oversensitive and dizzy from his orgasm. His breath was pushed out, nothing but Bond’s cock fucking into him deeper than any had before. Riding that heat and looking over his shoulder - a pretty picture of swollen lips and dripping wet hair – Q mumbled, “You’ve made your point, 007. You break it you buy it.”

            Never in his life had he gone into an orgasm laughing. He supposed there was a first time for everything as he came deep into Q’s ass, laughing against the quartermaster’s cheek. Slowing, he grabbed the man’s chin and held it, kissing him hard with his eyes open and rolling his hips a last time just to see Q’s eyes roll back in his head.

           

 

            Looking at his fingers with growing distaste, Q sipped his tea while tapping away on his laptop. He was bundled in a too-large robe, hair still stuck up at all angles in a damp series of cowlicks. His glasses were back on his face, giving him the perfect details of his disastrously pruned fingers. Shifting uncomfortably in his seat, he shot a mild glare at Bond as the agent came striding through fully dressed in a sharp suit.

            “Miss MoneyPenny seems to think they’ve got the bastards,” he mentioned, casually dropping some aspirin on the table. If looks could kill the tablets would be ash for all the ire Q sent their way. “And how are you feeling?”

            “A touch homicidal,” Q deadpanned. He looked at Bond’s crotch meaningfully. “And,” he added with a pretentious air, “don’t think this awards you any leverage. You continue to destroy my equipment any longer and-”

            James caught him before he could finish, his tongue wiping away any lingering threats. Withdrawing only until their breath mingled between them, James offered a crooked smile. Q merely blinked and scowled, hunching his shoulders closer to his mug of tea. Earl Grey. He’d made an executive decision to retire the mint.

            Eyes lingering on that slender neck, 007 sat down across from his quartermaster, watching him work while he drank his strong cup of coffee.

 

The End