One of the first things Garak was ever taught in school was that to maintain a level of excellence in any skill, one must practice constantly. He'd sworn by this mantra his entire life, and prided himself with how hardly any of his skills were dulled even after years away from home. But there was one area where he'd let himself go, which he was currently lamenting greatly.
He was on his side, every breath loud as a bellow as he pressed his cheek against the triangular Federation standard pillow, his fingers locked in a white-knuckled grip around the edge of the bed to keep him steady through every thrust from Julian's hips. Straddling one thigh and clutching the other to him, as if for support, Julian slammed into Garak with about as much subtlety as a charging screech rhino. And had the circumstances been different Garak would have stuck his nose up at it.
But as it was... Garak positively loved it. Which was made embarrassingly evident on the next, deep thrust when he completely forgot himself and moaned.
He was mortified to the point of losing some of his hardness, but Julian was only spurred on. Enough so that he gently shifted Garak's leg over and away, coaxing him onto his back, before settling in between his now spread thighs and quickening the pace.
It was not as if Garak wasn't enjoying himself, but it had been decades since he'd allowed himself to be thrown into any situation where he hadn't felt at least marginally prepared. But he'd been taken utterly by surprise when Doctor Bashir – Julian... had leaned in earlier that night, easily crossing the couple of inches of space Garak had deliberately put between them as they settled on the couch together, and put his teeth on Garak's exposed neck ridge without any sort of warning or confusing human signals like kissing. It had been years since he'd felt any sort of tender touch, and clearly he'd been an idiot to assume that the self control and finesse he'd prided himself with possessing in bed would magically remain at the level he was used to.
He cursed himself even as he shamelessly surrendered, every delightful but ham-handed caress a testament to how he'd foolishly ignored his earliest teachings. Had he been at his preferred level of accomplishment he would have realized Julian's intentions much earlier and would have made him work for it. But Garak would have let Julian have him in the end, of course. Or, optimally, Garak would have ended up being the one initiating things, after keeping Julian confused for a few more hours.
Had Garak had his way, there would have been a full evening of appropriately rousing debate, possibly even a light argument before any intimate touching would have been allowed to happen. And as for the bedroom, Garak would have been a lot happier keeping that step a few gloriously frustrating evenings away, because one of the few things he'd never lied about was how anticipation increased one's enjoyment of things. Of course, the fact that he mostly used the argument as an excuse to be late for lunch just to see his dear doctor so wonderfully riled up was perhaps a slightly dirty trick.
But it had taken a shocking total of ten minutes before Garak had let himself be dragged towards the bed, and even more shockingly he'd barely resisted when Julian had started tearing at his clothes, ready to rip them apart if they didn't come off fast enough. It would have been the perfect opportunity for Garak to call a halt to things and teach Julian how proper lovemaking was supposed to proceed, but instead he'd just... undressed. At least his own hands didn't ruin his clothes, but he hadn't paused to show them any consideration either, simply shoving everything down or aside, leaving the garments in crumbled heaps on the floor.
In his defense he had been somewhat distracted at the time, because Julian had wisely decided to spend the time getting naked himself, and it had definitely been a treat to finally see that hideous uniform flung away, replaced with so much strangely smooth skin, even though Garak had barely had time to look before he was tackled onto the bed. The charging rhino analogy came to mind once again.
“God, Elim, you're amazing,” Julian panted, but Garak had never been one to put much faith in praise given in the heat of the moment. Nevertheless it did have an effect, providing further evidence that Garak was sorely rusty at this particular game, because before he realized what he was doing he moaned again, rolling his hips in encouragement.
“Oh!” Julian gasped, and snapped his hips just right. He probably had no idea what he was doing, but Garak was willing to forgive the ignorance as Julian was very good at taking hints and instantly realized that he'd struck gold. That perfect angle made Garak cry out something that might have been encouragement, but he was rapidly reaching a point where forming words was just too much effort. Which should have been enough to throw Garak into a complete panic because without words, what was he?
Apparently what he was at that moment was needy beyond imagining. He'd managed to convince himself over the years that he didn't need shallow, physical release. He wasn't stupid enough to think that he didn't need companionship, but that had been out of the question from the moment he'd been told subtly, but in no uncertain terms, that he was no longer welcome at home. So he had been making do with nothing, when he should have at least thought to hire a dabo girl now and then. Thanks to Quark, even a member of the most hated species in the quadrant could have pleasant company for a night. The price might be slightly steeper, but it wouldn't have been impossible, and Garak was slowly strangling himself with all the should-haves.
The uncomfortable truth was that from the first moment those warm human lips had touched him, just brushing past to pave the way for the scrape of teeth, Garak had been lost. Lost in the touch, taste and smell of the one person in the system who didn't look at him with wariness at best and outright distrust at worst. If Garak were to be brutally honest with himself, rare as it was for that to happen, he'd probably been lost from the first moment he'd seen that slender form step through the airlock and decided where his “in” would be with this odd, yet powerful Federation.
Julian, beautifully quick study that he was, had obviously decided that whatever he'd gotten right was worth keeping up, so within minutes Garak was a shivering, panting, moaning mess. All embarrassment forgotten he writhed and babbled, too out of it to even try and help things along. All he could do was claw at the sheets and meet every perfect thrust of Julian's hips with his own.
“Sweet mercy, don't stop, don't stop, don't... oh, stars above, Julian!”
“Yes, Elim, yes!”
Some stroke of brilliance prompted Julian to lean in and sink his teeth gently into the top edge of Garak's chest spoon and instantly, not to mention shamefully, Garak came, soaking the sheets under him. His body appeared to be trying to make up for all the time spent not doing this by releasing what looked like months worth of come, sliding off Garak's body in sluggish rivers to the bed below. Julian's eyes very nearly rolled out of his head, and his gaze remained fixed on the shining wet trails as he stuttered through a few last oversensitive thrusts and finally found the edge himself.
Julian pulled out, making them both grimace, before dropping off to the side like a sack of tubers, breathing harder than Garak would have expected, given his enhancements. But then again, since Julian had not yet seen fit to share his genetic tweaks with the world, it could be partly an act. One Garak would have applauded if he wasn't so busy being ashamed of himself. Some paragon of Cardassian skill he was.
“How the hell do you do that?” Julian panted. Garak raised an eyebrow at him, confused, but certainly not about to reveal it.
“No, really, how? I mean... I spent bloody weeks studying Cardassian social norms, reading every bit of romance or even smut I could get my hands on, and the only thing I could conclude with any amount of certainty was that however I chose to make my move I would have to work for it.” He huffed and rolled his eyes. “But of course you somehow managed to suss me out anyway and while the whole instant surrender thing was wonderful, somehow I don't feel like the winner in this.” He paused to glare at Garak. “You're a bastard, you know that?”
Rarely had fortune shone so brightly on Garak, so the grin he sent Julian following his tirade was perfectly genuine. He had been granted a reprieve. A second chance to do it right. He still wasn't proud of his complete loss of control, but as long as Julian seemed to think it was all an act, Garak could live with it.
“Well it wouldn't do to let you get too comfortable, now would it?” Garak chuckled, making sure his best superior mask was on.
“God, you are infuriating.” Julian's eyes narrowed. “And how is that sexy?”
“As I'm sure your research taught you, fury and arousal are very close cousins for Cardassians, so really, it shouldn't be so baffling to you.”
“Everything about you is baffling to me.”
“Everything?” Garak asked, rolling onto his side to face Julian. He only barely managed not to wince as he rolled onto a now very cold wet spot.
“Well... perhaps not everything,” Julian conceded, throwing a pointed look at the damp sheets. “If nothing else I still cling to the hope that that is a fairly universal sign that you enjoyed yourself.”
“Oh I did, I assure you. However, I wouldn't expect such easy results next time if I were you.”
Julian rolled onto his side as well and met Garak's eyes dead on. “Then I suppose it's a good thing I never expect anything to be easy when it comes to you.”
“Clever boy,” Garak murmured, because suddenly they were very close and... there was the kissing Julian had forgone earlier. And as he had actually managed to find the exact right time for that particular exchange of intimacy, Garak happily indulged him. And then later... later Garak would show his young friend how it was done.