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A Difficult Subject

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Aidan is dozing, formless images melding before his closed eyes, his brain slowly waking. When the bed dips beneath his boyfriend, he opens his eyes and turns, giving Jamie a smile and reaching for him. "Hey. You're up early."

He smiles softly, maybe a little sadly before it's brushed away, and leans into his boyfriend's touch. "Morning. Couldn't sleep. How're you feeling? Not too hungover, I hope."

"Nah, not at all. I'm a professional." Aidan snickers and hugs his lover to him. "You should've woken me. Maybe I could've helped."

Jamie accepts the embrace, but he's still a little off, a little distant, and he looks like he needs to say something. After a moment, he finally works up to it. "We didn't finish talking last night, and there's something you really need to know before I get more steel embedded in my body. Do you wanna talk now or after coffee?"

It takes a moment, and the uncharacteristically serious tone of voice sinks in before the meaning of the words. Then Aidan blinks and sits up so he can look at his boyfriend full on. "I don't need coffee. Talk to me, love."

Jamie sits facing Aidan, legs crossed, toes bouncing nervously. "It's about the Dom, how we met." He exhales slowly, decides he has to test the waters before fully plunging in. "When I asked for him, I... I described you. And he's certainly no celebrity look-alike, but he bears enough of a resemblance that it was good enough." The more he talks, the more evident a sense of shame becomes.

"...Oh." Aidan is missing something. He's sure he must be, because the confession isn't half as awkward as Jamie looks right now. "Okay. That... that sounds really flattering."

Okay, good. Good start, that doesn't creep him out. Maybe we'll get through this after all. He pauses again, mulling over his words but fuck, there isn't a good way to say this. "You... You have to understand, I was crazy for you and I knew, I mean I knew there wasn't a snowball's chance in hell you'd ever want me for real, for more than an occasional hook-up if even that."

Aidan opens his mouth to speak, then shuts it again. Smiling a little, he shrugs. "I can't say I'm sorry to have disappointed you."

"Fuck it," Jamie says quietly. "I can't in good conscience let you do something huge without knowing so... so..." He swallows and plunges right in, "I hired him to be you, Aidan. More than once. I know how awful that sounds -- how awful that is. I'm sorry, I get if that's too messed up."

"...You hired him to be me?" Aidan echoes in question. He's silent for a moment, trying to process. "You mean, like, you called him by my name, while you were thinking about me?"

He nods, watching Aidan's eyes, trying to figure out how bad this is going to go. "That was the storyline I mentioned. You wanting me. The things I did, playing girl, telling you that you never have to deal with my cock, I was so sure because... because that was part of it. Part of how I imagined it going, not that I ever really thought I would have the chance."

Aidan shakes his head slowly. He feels like he's trying to swim through mud, and can't figure out which way is up. "Jamie, I'm a performer," he points out, worried he might be wandering into a minefield. "It's part of my job to... to inspire people to fantasize about me. The fact that you... I mean, enough so that you..." He spreads his hands. "I guess what's freaking me out here is the thought that I won't measure up. You had this perfect thing going, but I'm not him."

"Perfect?" Jamie furrows his brow, incapable of understanding that. "Danny, he wasn't you. We didn't share a history, the connection he and I eventually developed was nothing like what you and I actually have or what we have ever had. Connor is a wonderful person, infinitely patient and he did his best, but he isn't you and he could never measure up to the real thing - to what I wanted so desperately and finally have. I promise you, you're better. I never loved the Aidan he played, just lusted after him. With you, I have both."

"You have..." Aidan cuts himself off with a sigh. Licks his lips, and tries again. "You were roleplaying. He was playing me in your scenes."

Jamie nods again, slowly. "Yeah, he was. He never knew who, exactly, he was playing, but yes."

Aidan studies him, mentally tracing his features. "I have a problem with you doing that again."

"I haven't since early December, since the arrangements for my visit were finalized and I started to, I don't know, hope. I have no intention of doing it ever again." His voice is quite serious but also careful. He still doesn't know how this is going to go.

"You won't need to." Aidan is firm on this point. "You have me." He blows out a breath. "I need you to tell him-- Connor. I need you to tell him goodbye. Finish it."

Jamie is silent for a moment. The request is painful, deeply so. Connor has become a lot more to him than just a stand-in. He buries most of it behind a flat expression and nods slowly, clearing his throat. "Okay. I will. Anything for you," he echoes the sentiment from that frigid December night, the one that led them here. Finally showing, rather than just telling.

"Jamie..." Aidan's threading his way cautiously. He's never been in a situation remotely resembling this, and he's unsure of his footing. "When you want me, you'll come to me. Because I'm yours." There it is. Out loud, stark as day.

"I know I will. Of course I will, and if the revelation didn't scare you off, then, well, of course you are," he says like none of that was ever in question, not for a moment. "He wasn't always you. Sometimes he was himself, he was himself when he got me through my piercing, and," he sighs and shakes his head. "None of that matters. You want him gone, he's gone. It's as simple as that."

"He was the one... for your piercing? Fuck." Aidan shuts his eyes. "He was, of course he was. Shit." He forces himself to look at his lover, and sheepishly admits in a small voice, "Now I'm jealous."

"I like him a lot. He's the first person I've trusted that much since... In many years. But I'm not in love with him, I'm not dedicated to him, he doesn't make me half as happy as you do. I promise, if anyone should be jealous here, it's him."

Aidan nods slowly, telling himself it's the truth. Telling himself he needs to believe it. "Do you trust me?"

"Yes," Jamie answers simply. He bites his lip and decides to continue, now is the time to reveal all. "I was scared at first, and I feel like... it's rare now, but I still feel like, someday, you're going to realize you need a woman, like I'm incredible for now but I'm only for now. Every time we talk, though, every time we're together, that fear gets replaced with trust little by little. When we scene, that's gonna help it get stronger and deeper too. Trusting someone I love with that part of my sexuality has consistently gone wrong for a long time. I couldn't think about doing that with you if I didn't trust you immensely already."

Reaching out, Aidan cups Jamie's cheek in his palm. "I won't lie to you -- I miss women. But just for fucking." Realizing that probably doesn't sound the least bit reassuring, he clarifies, "But I don't think about them. Because I want you."

Jamie leans into the touch, closes his eyes for a moment before meeting Aidan's gaze again. "You know you can have both, right? I was always expecting you'd continue to sleep with women, honestly I thought you have been and assumed I wouldn't want to hear about it."

"I had this weird..." Aidan trails off with a crooked grin. "I guess I kind of figured that, since you were in a cage, then I could wait too."

"I have to admit that I like that," Jamie smiles back, starting to relax. "I do sort of like the idea that you're celibate when you're forcing, well, 'forcing'," air quotes, "me to be. Means you have perspective on how torturous it is," he laughs. "But I certainly don't see that as a requirement."

Aidan laughs. "All right, I'll think about it. You honestly don't have a preference?"

"About what? You sleeping with women?" He arches an eyebrow, that now-familiar expression he gets just before he says something downright arrogant.

"...You're not concerned," Aidan concludes. "Got it."

Jamie shrugs, 'cause he's gonna say it anyway. "I know you'll always come back to me, and I know I'm hotter. I'm just not always convenient. There's nothing to be concerned about."

Now Aidan grins, his eyes lighting up. "I really love you," he says, kissing Jamie.

He grins right back and leans into the kiss eagerly, tension fully washing away now. "I love you, too. You still wanna do this scene today?"

"Yeah... Yeah," Aidan decides, and gives him a wink. "I just need to find my motivation."

"Motivation?" An arched eyebrow again, way less cocky this time. "You mean beyond wanting this man you love -- who is a total slut for you, by the way -- to be even prettier for you?" Jamie trails a hand down Aidan's chest as he continues, "And beyond wanting to watch him completely come apart under the things you do to him?"

"Will you? Completely, I mean." Aidan captures Jamie's hand and holds it to his chest. "I feel like sometimes you tell me what you think I want to hear, during sex," he says softly. "I want you to truly let go of your control."

Jamie smirks at that. "I think I mean more of it than you're ready to accept. Telling you how enamored I am, how I'll do anything, how much I belong to you." He licks his lips, starting to get hungry for it already. "I'm very ready to give up control and let both of us learn how much I really mean it all."

Lifting Jamie's hand to his mouth, Aidan slowly licks along his finger, eyes pinned to his lover. "I'm counting on it."