It had seemed smart in the moment. Agree to go with the black leather manbun version of himself to distract the creepster away from Barry and Iris. It would give them some time to get out and regroup. He knew Barry. Barry pathologically rescued people. So it would just be a matter of time.
A heart attack inducing ride on a stupidly sexy bike had brought them to a nice apartment in a fancy looking building. None of the other dwellers they’d passed in the hall would make eye contact with Reverb, let alone glance at his guest. It was bone chilling and sort of awesome at the same time. Usually Cisco couldn’t intimidate the five year old that lived next door into giving him back his mail. Granted, the Lego catalog was killer this year.
The apartment was modern in a chilly way. All the furniture looked slick and new. Designed to show off and not to kick back on. Which might explain why Reverb looked like someone had put the screws to his spine and turned.
“Nice place? Are the original owners under the floorboards?” He tried on a smile, but he knew it was hanging all sorts of wrong on his face.
“I cannot believe we’re genetically identical,” Reverb looked him over critically. “It’s a horror show.”
“I like to think of myself more as a quirky prime time sitcom. You’ve got that nine o’clock fake gritty teen drama thing going,” Cisco stayed in the doorway, reluctant to step inside his double’s lair. “Found the Buffy to your Angel yet?”
Reverb looked at him blankly, then seemed to dismiss him entirely. He slid his goggles upwards and shucked off the heavy coat to hang on spiky hook. The side zipping jacket underneath stayed on. He got halfway into the living room before realizing that Cisco was hanging back.
“Take off your jacket and stay awhile.”
“I’m good,” the jacket felt a little like armor at that moment.
“You’re a disaster, is what you are,” Reverb threw up his hands and leaned on the back of his couch. “How long have you been playing in the kiddie pool with our abilities? Months? A year?”
“I almost died using what I did,” Cisco countered, trying to remind himself to play nice. Be convincing. “I like having all the blood inside my skin. I’m greedy like that.”
“I was knocking Snow on her ass three days after I started seeing visions,” the goggles glinted in the light. Goggles that would have the right frequency. Cisco reconfigured his plans. He walked slowly down the hallway, accessing as he went.
When he got in reaching distance, Reverb reached out and snagged his coat.
“Stay awhile,” he challenged. Two fingers pinched the coat’s zipper and slid it down an inch. The sound triggered a sense memory that sent heat simmering over his skin. It had been too long since someone had touched him with intent. There hadn’t been enough time with Kendra and...just and.
“You’re blushing. That’s disturbingly innocent. Such a child.”
“You realize all your insults are betraying a very low self-esteem,” Cisco’s breath stuttered. “Doubles and all.”
“I didn’t say that you weren’t a handsome motherfucker,” Reverb took the zipper down the rest of the way fast. “Bet you’d look real nice on your knees.”
The phrase snapped Cisco back into the moment. He reconfigured his plans again. Barry was fast, but he’d need time to figure out where they were and how best to approach. That was if he didn’t get distracted by a side mission like the world's most hyper Grand Theft Auto player. Cisco had a least forty-five minutes. He could do a lot with forty-five minutes.
His shoulders squared and his chin went up. The coat fell loose around him.
“Do you now?” Cisco huffed a laugh. “Thought you said you were watching me? Or did you close your eyes during the scary parts?”
“What do you mean?” Reverb’s hands were on Cisco’s waist now, warm and suggestive. Used to being the scariest person in the room, Reverb was willing to make himself vulnerable against a lesser threat. It wasn’t hard for Cisco to reach down and slowly circle his fingers over familiar wrists. Reverb laughed. “Is this supposed to be intimidating, pup?”
“If you'd had the guts to pay attention, you'd know exactly what it was. See, this pup lost its master last year and I’ve been off the leash ever since,” he tightened his grip, pressure hitting all the places that had made him hiss in pleasure. Sure enough, he caught Reverb’s pupils dilating even as he struggled to get away. Cisco’s voice naturally slid down the register to something deeper, “You think putting on black leather and lace makes you a dom? That’s real cute. All I’m seeing is a kid playing dress up. A boy who wants someone to take him over their knee.”
“I’m one of the most powerful fucking metahumans in this shitty town. You can’t do a fraction of what I do,” Reverb got one hand free and flexed it menacingly.
“And I’m impressed,” Cisco said, slow and measured. Sincere because he did mean it. Had to mean it for it to work. “You’ve got a lot figured out. Doing so well with what was given to you. Hiding like a cunning little viper, ready to strike. Very clever.”
“Damn right,” Reverb unconsciously relaxed. It was apparently a universal truth that Cisco Ramons would turn to putty with a little praise. Cisco wasn’t proud of it, but in that moment it was critical.
“But you need someone to be stronger and smarter, don’t you?” Cisco took a step forward, pleased when Reverb took a step back, stumbling a little.
“Fuck no,” the protest was weak. “I’ve never need anyone to back me up.”
“Of course not. You don’t want someone at your back. Not a minion or a lackey or a bodyguard,” he took another step and as predictable as the tides, Reverb followed the dance. Cisco moved until he had Reverb against the wall. He pinned the wrist still in his grip to the slate grey paint. “You want someone to take care of you.”
“It’s okay,” Cisco leaned in and nipped once at the side of Reverb’s neck. “You can trust me to understand, can’t you?”
“Yeah,” the agreement came out as a moan.
“And you know you’re more powerful than me. This stops the second you decide it does, right?” Another bite, less playful and with far more teeth. “So why don’t you be a good boy and get to work. Because I’m not even thinking about letting you get off until you show me how pretty you can beg.”
The last flare of defiance died behind Reverb’s eyes. He clenched his free hand and then, slowly, offered it back to Cisco.
Reverb slid down to his knees, mouth already parted. Cisco gripped both wrists in one hand at just the right height for Reverb to kneel and his arms to stay uncomfortably stretched. Cisco took a moment just to admire the scene.
No wonder Thawne had been so tempted. He looked damn good like this.
“Go on then,” Cisco said softly. “Get me undressed. I’m sure you can figure out how.”
Reverb licked his lips and got to work.
By the time Barry came to save him, Cisco was sitting on the black leather sofa leafing through a very trippy magazine. It was sort of a mash up between Scientific American and Cosmo. Beside him, Reverb was curled up under a fuzzy bright orange blanket that had been yanked out of it’s hiding place with a vague look of shame and without explanation. The goggles were safely in Cisco’s coat pocket. He’d never gotten around to taking it off.
The memory of the fabric enclosing them both as Cisco took his double over the couch while Reverb muffled his screams by biting his forearm until it bled would stay with him every time he wore it thereafter.
“Cisco!” Barry was before him, lightening still fading from the air around him. “Are you okay?”
“Yeah!” he said brightly, casting the magazine aside. “You know me. Talked my way out of it.”
“Great cause we’ve gotta go. Things are not good.”
“Let’s get to the world saving then,” Cisco got to his feet. Barry glanced over at Reverb and Cisco fought down a surge of protectiveness. “He’s harmless once you get to know him.”
“He stopped me dead.”
“And that was interesting. Better times and places to do that poking. You wanna waste time taking down a two-bit heavy like him?”
“Okay,” Barry conceded, his mind clearly not fully engaged. Cisco could’ve hugged him. Good old oblivious distracted Barry. “Back to the labs? Harry is probably having a cerebral hemorrhage by now.”
Cisco left the magazine at Reverb’s feet. The note he’d penned sticking up like a flag:
Had to borrow your eyewear. I’ll mail it back to you before I head out. Black isn’t our color, by the way. Try out some red and yellow, one of these days. The dark side might have cookies, but I guarantee the light side gives better head.
See you in our dreams. - The Other C