He wakes up, and is suddenly, abruptly, immediately, struck with thought. Venom sits in his brain and watches him navigate. And that’s the thing, he guesses, that’s the point.
He does not believe, not for one second, that this was how his life was meant to go. It wasn’t like he’d been immoral. He’d done the right thing. He kept trying to do the right thing, that was the problem.
Doing the right thing was hard, as it turned out, and opening Anne’s laptop and changing his life for the fucking worse had not been hard enough.
Still. Philosophy got him nowhere, nothing functional in a way he could actually get his teeth into.
And he’s been getting his teeth into, uh. A lot more recently. Even if they’re not technically his teeth. Whatever.
Anyway, the point was philosophy was unimportant, and he knows that deeply because Venom keeps fucking telling him so.
“Not important.” He growls, directly into Eddie’s- amygdala, or whatever the bit was that dealt with philosophy. Brain parts, brain bits, something about hemispheres and lobes-
“That’s not important either.”
“Yes, thank you,” he scratches out. It’s early morning. The tenderness of his throat makes his gently clasp his hands to his neck, and Venom, if Eddie could see him, would smile a weird-split-grin that meant he was confused.
“That won’t help.”
Eddie sighs forcefully, hauling himself from bed and wincing as he does. The silence from Venom is telling: a shifting presence in the back of his brain that sits and shuffles its feet. Or it would, if it had feet. Which Venom didn’t, technically, not when he was hovering like a scratched, satisfied itch in Eddie’s brain. Whatever, though, the silence was telling because it meant Venom could feel the dull ache in his throat as well.
He frowns and shakes his head, just a little, and spills a harsh breath into the apartment.
“You can help with the throat, can’t you?”
And slowly, softly, like sitting sand through some kind of fuckin’- his brain provides the word “cheese-grater”, which is not the word he was going for- the ache dulls and dulls until it is gone.
“Thank you,” he rumbles, a little deeper in his throat now he’s not having to speak over spiking pain.
“You are welcome.”
“Mm,” Eddie returns, squinting into the light. The city buzz filters into the room, slowly. He is aware of one thing, then another, and then another, and he was never good at meditation. He never was, but having Venom in him meant that he kind of had to get okay at it. Venom didn’t like it when his thoughts were scattered across the floor of his brain, preferred them in stacks and conveyor belts. Venom preferred their shared memories in an organised kind of chaos. And it’s not like-
Look, he didn’t have to do it. Didn’t have to meditate. Eddie didn’t have to do anything, because in theory Venom could just… grasp out and tell him. Things would fall into place easily that way. Like how he ate meat more often now, or how mealtimes we’re comparable to a weird kind of cohabiting thing. Anne and- whatsisface, they did that, which up until recently he’d still been kind of weirded out by but-
Eddie scrunches up his eyes, squints into the middle distance of San Francisco. “What?”
“The name of her boyfriend. It is Dan.”
“Mm,” he mumbles, looping and unlooping his fingers in time to his heartbeat. “I should’ve… remembered that.”
“Yes,” Venom purrs. “But that is why you have me.”
“Mm,” he mumbles again, an assent this time rather than contemplative. It was certainly true that Venom was good at remembering things in a way he wasn't. Eddie could talk fast, think faster, but god-be-fucking-damned if he could do an interview without prompts. They were both good at what they did, Eddie thinks.
Not that Venom’s memory would be of any use if all he was doing was eating people.
“That,” Venom purrs into him, “is why we have each other.”
Eddie makes a soft noise of agreement in the back of his throat. Venom seems to like that, settles back in his brain and whilst he is never unimposing, his presence in the balance of Eddie’s brain sits a little less unsettling.
So he gets back to meditating. Or starts meditating. Whatever.
He didn’t do it like he was meant to, not really. The books always said something about clearing the mind, letting it settle, pools of water, etcetera. It, uh. It’s not that easy, anymore, if it was ever easy before-
“Your mind was a dumpster fire before.” Venom helpfully provides.
And as much as Eddie frowns and dismisses him, he’s kind of right. Venom fits into his brain like a jigsaw, cogs in a grand machine. And maybe it hadn’t worked at the start, that much was true. But it certainly fit now, worked-
“Of course it works better now,” Venom says, deep into him. “We are much better together.”
And damn if he isn’t right. But of course, that’s not the point. He’s trying to meditate, that was the point. Just to make sure- make sure he was still with it, so to speak. Carlton Drake had been a fuckin’ lunatic before and after he’d been… possessed, but there was a point at which the power he shared with Venom had to get dangerous. Eddie wasn’t the kind of man who’d slip, at least not when it came to whether Venom could eat people. But the worry is there. The little doubt, an itch that even Venom’s tangible presence in his brain couldn’t satisfy.
So he meditates. Or tries to meditate, he amends and thinks briefly of Venom’s tongue on the back of his neck.
He blinks, scrunches up his eyes and squints again, staring into empty space and doing his level best to shove an image of frank disapproval at Venom. “Did you-”
“Did I what? Venom purrs, smile in his voice. It’s- And then there’s no image of Venom’s tongue on his neck. Instead, there’s Venom’s tongue in his mouth, and it’s- It slips into his mouth, slowly, and then explores in a way that would be gentle were it not for the way that Eddie’s lips collide with sharp teeth. Blood drips down his mouth, slow burn ache twisting through his brain, filtering through both consciousnesses and then-
And then, as quickly as the image arrived, it is gone.
“Okay,” he mumbles, unsteadily.
“Okay,” Venom echoes, immediately.
He splays his fingers wide, leaning back over the bed and very pointedly tries to show disinterest. “Okay Venom, cool of you to- you know I’m trying to meditate here, right"
“Like, I’m trying to-”
“Yeah,” Venom says, guttural and rumbling, which is odd, because Eddie hadn’t thought Venom’s voice could get any fucking deeper. It almost drops below the registers of his hearing, if that was even a problem given the brain-sharing situation. It doesn’t vibrate in his ears; instead, it hits his bones. It’s like warmth after a cold winter the kind of power you felt stood by a speaker at a tiny music show in someone’s front room: But weird and- kind of sexual?
“Why would you question that?”
Eddie blinks, feels himself frown at the caught out thought. “Because,” he says, “You know…?” He shifts forward, leans forward so his body is hunched over his knees to gesticulate. “It’s weird. Kind of. Like you know, you’re me? We’re us! It would be weird if-”
He feels the purring voice down his spine before he hears it. “Why,” Venom says, coalescing himself, pouring forth from Eddie’s neck and curling around his throat before hanging in the air above his face. “Would that be weird?”
Eddie shrugs because he genuinely doesn’t know the answer to that question but he still feels the itch of discomfort somewhere, even if it wasn’t somewhere he could pin down. “I dunno,” he says, instead of trying to voice the deep-weird itch that Venom usually scratched rather than agitated. Venom could feel it anyway, so it didn’t matter.
“Eddie,” Venom says, sharp. “Know thyself, Eddie,” and this time the image is so strong it almost knocks him back. Venom’s tongue in him and around him, the way he felt when it was them, they were Venom, together, and there wasn’t this sheet glass divide between them both that only got in the way.
He can feel himself groan, that time, with the way Venom is soothing things he didn’t even know were wrong, It’s an animal thing, almost, because they fit together the way an animal might, using muscles and having a purpose; together they worked. Venom feeds him the scene, watches from his hindbrain as Eddie flops back onto the bed and thinks about tongues and the way his cock was rapidly stiffening. At some point, Venom has retracted into him, spreading tendrils over his body but not staring him in the face the way he had been.
“If this is what meditation is like, you should do it more often,” Venom says, laughing.
“Shut up,” he says, putting his hands to his face and dragging clawed fingers over skin. ”I was tryin’.”
Venom laughs again and then doesn’t bother to say anything else. All he does is feed him images of what-
Of what Eddie realises pretty quickly is just sex. Or Venom’s idea of sex.
“Our idea of sex,” Venom purrs, “Not mine or yours.”
“Stoppit,” Eddie grits out, but it’s fonder than he’d anticipated. He groans, and swats a hand out at thin air when the pit of his gut starts to feel warmer. “Let me meditate, asshole. C’mon, I’m trying to make it a nicer place for you to be,”
Venom immediately retracts whatever influence he’d been putting on Eddie’s brain, and in shock, he feels himself make a small, bereft noise without thinking.
“Do it, then.” Venom says, and for a moment Eddie is too busy thinking about the lack of slick-sliding warmth that he forgets to reply. In response, Venom tenses his shoulders and forces him upright. When Eddie frowns, he laughs again. “Meditate.”
Distraction after distraction, Eddie thinks, clicking his tongue and squinting his eyes. So he meditates.
It’s not how it’s meant to be, he doesn’t think, because in theory the mind was a pool, or a pond or whatever, and there was something about raindrops and seeing the bottom or something.
It doesn’t work that way for him, because there was- Venom, there was Venom, sitting in his head. It didn’t matter about rain or anything like that, because there was a-
Well. There was a Venom stuck in his brain, disrupting the water. So instead he does a body check. He tenses every single muscle, including ones he hadn’t known he had when he’d started meditation.
He flexes his toes, first, feels them move and relax. It’s catharsis, a reminder that even if he had Venom, he was still… at least some way human. He tenses the front of his feet, scrunching up the toes, and then he leans down, grasping and yanking them as far bad as they would go. He feels the burn beneath his slightly too strong grip, then lets them go. That’s a check for that box, then, feet definitely attached to his legs.
Venom watches from the background and lets him get on with it. Presumably, that meant his brain had been a little… untidy recently. Venom normally didn’t like to keep to the shadows.
Anyway, he twists his feet around, pulling at the muscles in his calves. He digs his thumbs into the knots of them, tries to get the blood moving. He has no idea how long he’d slept last night, but apparently a while. Must’ve been, for his legs to ache as much as they do. Inactivity did that to him, these days.
That might have been something to do with Venom convincing him to climb the biggest buildings in San Franciso, in descending order, but then with the way Venom worked it was difficult to know for sure. Sometimes he just didn’t bother fixing stuff, but Eddie got the feeling that was mainly because he wanted Eddie to ask.
Anyway, Venom prods him from the back of his mind, so he moves from lower leg to upper, digging his fingertips in around his kneecap as if to assure himself it was still there. He checks that off, too, because his kneecaps were definitely there.
Then his thighs, Eddie pulls them together and spreads them apart. He tenses around his ass, one leg then the other.
And that’s when his control over the situation begins to disintegrate. His dick is still half hard, and Venom knows it, because it was kind of his dick too, which was a weird thought. Whatever, the point was he was still… well. He was still hard, and now he’s noticed it, he’s acutely aware that it was a problem he would have to solve.
“You are bad at meditating.” Venom observes.
“Thanks,” he huffs out, staring down at his dick and wondering how to solve his, uh. Predicament.
“Do you even know how to meditate properly?"
“Sure,” Eddie says, still looking pointedly down at his cock. He could jack it, or whatever, but he’s not sure how to do that, anymore. Since Anne, it’d felt like he was breaking some rule, something in place that was beyond him that he couldn’t break. “Sure, I do.”
“Mm,” he mumbles, and he’s thinking now about how off-limits Anne was, because god forbid he think about her and- Dan, was it? Dan again, because that was a sure-fire way to make him go mad and lose all composure, and literally start biting people’s heads off-
“Eddie- Eddie. Look at me!”
And he’s not really paying attention even but that never seemed to matter with Venom, because he feels his head jet up without permission and his back straighten into a rod. And there he is, built of smoke and slime and vapour, hanging in the air and flowing out from the back of his neck. Big teeth and big tongue and all, Eddie looks into Venom’s mouth instead of his eyes.
“Hey,” he says, tongue suddenly heavy and breath even heavier. Venom’s mouth had a lot of teeth. His mouth, he should say. Their mouth-
“Our mouth.” Venom purrs, and god, if Eddie doesn’t feel that stir in his gut.
“Yeah,” Eddie breathes.
The noise that Venom makes then is not English. Instead it is guttural and rumbling, wordless. Slowly, without much difficulty, Venom has him forcibly pinned to the bed. He feels-
Hypnotised, maybe. Maybe that was the word for this, because Venom’s tongue is out and he feels his eyes shut slowly, like he’s just-
He almost thinks prey. He almost thinks it, really does, feels it trip at the end of his consciousness. It doesn’t stick, of course, because this was symbiosis. Venom was him and he was Venom, so instead? Instead, he opens his eyes again and takes Venom’s tongue into his mouth.
And Venom says, audibly, “That’s better,” and then it’s not just Venom’s-tongue-in-his-mouth, its kissing. Venom is hardly gentle with him, and he… he doesn’t quite give as good as he gets, because at the end of the day he was only mostly human, but Christ he fuckin’ tries.
Venom coalesces around him, pours forth in a way that he’s never done before, and the tongue explores deeper, deeper into Eddie’s mouth, easing in until he’s choking and-
Hands at his neck, or claws at his neck, Venom grasps him and for fuck sake, he doesn’t even need to breathe like this-
And Venom must hear that. He must do, because then the tongue is so far down his neck he can’t breath around it. It goes in, and further in, until he’s swallowing around it. He gags, just once, before Venom soothes out that problem. His reflex disappears in a snap, and Eddie doesn’t have to worry about it anymore, hot and slick against his mouth until their lips-and-teeth are pressed together and Venom is- he’s bigger, around him now and grasping tightly at him as Eddie claws back, and good fucking god why hadn’t he done this before-
Venom laughs, and the shift in teeth splits his tongue open.
Blood pours down his chin and it aches, stings and sticks, but he barely feels it against the stretch of his throat and this feeling of being filled-
Then the tongue is wrenched from him. He feels-
God knew what he felt. He was feeling something, and it wasn’t good, because goddamn he wanted to fuckin’ feel that again. Fullness, absoluteness, completeness. He was something bigger already, something bigger than human, but god all he wants is for-
He puts the back of his hand to his mouth and makes a strange noise into skin that already smells like sweat.
“Yes,” Venom hisses. “I thought so.”
And then, Venom is moving around him, fluid and even now with something Eddie associates so strongly as power. His underwear is discarded, and he rips off the shirt himself, even though there was probably no need for that, because there’s already tendrils drifting over his body and curling in and around him, not for a purpose, but- exploratory. As if they’ve been together all this time and somehow hadn’t seen each other, hadn’t thought twice about the physicalities of anything beyond recovery-
And he’s suddenly very struck, almost overwhelmingly so, with the thought that he wanted to see Venom. He wants to see him, clear as day, so he scrambles to the full-length mirror in the corner, legs stronger than normal and body alert to everything it could possibly be.
There are cars outside, helicopters, static-hubbub. It clinks against his consciousness because when he stands in front of the mirror it is quite clear that he would not be doing any more thinking for a while. Venom, ever the good soul-
“You’re welcome,” he pants, and loses his train of thought for just a second before he is once again entranced by the goddamn sight of it. Venom has split the image- or split something, anyway, because half of him is- well, him, Eddie, and half of it is him, Venom. He’s split down the middle and suddenly his dick is very interested in the idea of his body being split down the middle in multiple senses of the word.
His hands find his cock without thinking. It might be him or it might be Venom but whichever one of them it was, it was getting hard to say he gave a shit, because there’s sparks behind his eyes at the way Venom-or-Eddie knew exactly what to do, knew exactly how it worked, exactly where to press and pull and he’s already speeding up-
“Slower,” Venom says, but it’s quiet. It’s clear he’s into it, having the fucking time of his life. Venom’s voice is ragged, torn at the edges and cracked up the middle, which was fitting because Eddie is starting to crave being filled and split and whole-
The noise Venom makes is again, not English. It’s barely even a noise, just a rumble. Eddie laughs at it, softly, and Venom spreads over his eyes in a way that makes him tilt his head back and bare his teeth. His neck is fully on show, and the slow jerks he’s making at his dick time perfectly with his heartbeat, with the rhythm of Venoms purrs, with the goddamn tightening around his neck-
Eddie gasps, without permission. It’s an intake of breath that fills his lungs but just barely, because he was so much bigger now, broader, wider and- Eddie gasps, and immediately, Venom pushes a thick, languidly rolling tongue into his mouth.
His grip at his cock tightens. His throat convulses, and he’d gasp out of reflex but there’s no space to- its every inch down his throat. Every inch of it, and with his eyes covered, he couldn’t even- he doesn’t-
He can’t tell how Venom is actually even doing it, because his hands are suddenly stronger and wider, body broader and whole being taken up, taken in, and he feels something tighten-
Tighter and tighter, warmer and softer, something inside him shifts and suddenly he’s desperate. Salivating, if he wasn’t before, drool dripping down his chin and one arm shoving forward to the wall and cracking the mirror in a way that would be very bad and worrying in any moment but this one, the feeling of being filled in and out and tongue down his neck until god, Eddie would almost swear he felt fuckin’ speared, opened and vulnerable but god, there was nothing less vulnerable than they were, nothing more or less at all than him, human and yet not that, huge and corded muscles rippling against and over skin he can just feel beneath, and-
The tongue in his throat flexes, makes a deep noise of satisfaction as if he can feel it coming, which he probably could to be honest, and the thought that Venom knows them better than he knew himself is twisting in his gut, warm and flexing and-
All at once, desperate switches to sated in their head. The orgasm hits him later. Seconds later, in fact, he blinks, breathes, and then-
The tongue goes from his mouth and his eyes roll up into his head and he makes a ruined, ruined noise. His knees threaten to give out from under him and Venom shifts over his skin in a way that makes him shiver, or would if he wasn’t already convulsing and making choked sounds and clinging to the wall with desperate clawed fingers and heaving breaths in a way that made his lungs feel big and small at once and then-
He’s finished, panting. He drops to his knees, shivers again, and tries really hard not to think about how that had probably been loud.
Still, it wasn’t like it was a quiet neighbourhood. Whatever, they’d never gotten in trouble before.
Venom makes him draw his tongue over his teeth and they smile, together, at the mirror.
“We’re doing that again.”
“Oh, yeah,” Eddie says. “We’re 100% doin’ that again.”
“Wasn’t a request. Was an order.”
“Mm,” he says. “Mm-hmm. Good for you too, dear?”
And Venom, Eddie can feel it, curls and preens, and says, “Yes, Eddie.” If Venom was able to smile fondly, Eddie knows he would. “It was good.”