Of all the available possibilities that New York held on a Friday evening, Rafael didn’t know what bad thing he’d done in a previous life to deserve this one. He was still at work, two unwinnable cases on his hands, and he had Sonny Carisi in his face, arguing with him.
They’d been going back and forth about something, some point of law that Carisi had his teeth deep into, like a dog with a bone. Rafael was tired. He’d broken a couple of personal rules already. As a long day had slipped into night and he was still stuck in his office, he’d had a glass of whiskey. When Sonny showed up, one glass turned into two. Instead of shooing Carisi out and hunkering down with some work, he’d let him stay to argue.
Rafael had been doing this long enough to know when something wasn’t going anywhere. He’d lost one case, the other was mired down in swampy levels of politics, counter-offers, and recalcitrant witnesses.
Sonny kept beating the same drum. “If we can get the video, we won’t need Deloitte’s testimony.”
Apparently Rafael explaining that this purported video evidence, which Sonny hadn’t even seen nor could necessarily even prove existed, wouldn’t be allowed by the judge, wasn’t good enough. Apparently Rafael didn’t know his law well enough for the lanky cop sitting in front of his desk, who was doing his finger-pointing routine now.
“There’s precedent, and if we can get it by Monday - ”
Sonny’s finger was beating on Rafael’s desktop. Why had he let him in here? He wasn’t even drinking the whiskey that Rafael had poured him.
That shut Sonny up, for all of two seconds, long enough for him to open his eyes in - what? Shock, hurt? With the inevitability of rain in April, he started talking again. His fingertip was white to the knuckle with the pressure he was putting on it.
“You can’t say that when we still can try for a warrant,”
“We tried. Didn’t happen.”
“With the phone records, we can try again.”
“The phone records are nothing.”
And he was off again. Talking about a case he’d worked in Homicide back in the day, how they’d managed to get around it. As Rafael lifted up from his chair and walked around the desk, Sonny kept going. In the back of his mind, Rafael knew that Sonny was just as frustrated as he was, that this volley of words was keeping Sonny in that same level place of coping that the whiskey did for Rafael. Or should do. It wasn’t really working that well right now.
There was no more work to for them to do on this one. A weekend stretched between them and the next court date. Whatever awful things that were yet to happen in the city would be waiting for SVU on Monday. Rafael should know by now when to cut his losses and focus on the next thing.
He wasn’t short of things to do, crises of jurisprudence and conversations with SVU Detectives aside.
Over the next two days he could get started on that piece the Harvard Law Review had so kindly asked him to contribute. Then there were the three books on his nightstand that he’d stalled a few chapters into. A new recording of Mahler’s 7th had been released, and he had those new speakers set up so he could listen to it anywhere in his apartment. Like right next to the liquor cabinet, which he felt required his attention very soon.
“ - and if the testimony is comprised because of that jackass and his lawyer, what we’ll have to do is, get an order from the judge to - ”
He paced, waiting for Sonny to quit with the performance. What on Earth was he going to do with him? Too smart to dismiss, too annoying to encourage, too pretty to ignore. It wasn’t amusing tonight, like it usually was. Rafael was too tired to get decently irritated.
Walking to and fro on the carpet, he stayed close enough to his desk to keep Sonny from getting up to stalk him around the office to make his point. Sonny’s hand was flat on the tabletop now, fingers bouncing up and down with unspooled energy. Such a kid. So much life left in him, even after the week they’d had.
“And you know yourself, Counselor, what it means when that happens, we’re in a position where we can get leverage - ”
The sarcasm kicked in around halfway through the sentence. Rafael didn’t respond. It was as if Sonny was trying to get a full week’s allowance of speech used up at once. Sonny’s words came out so quickly when he was anxious. He never seemed to be entirely assured that anyone would keep listening to him. Or maybe he just felt that way around Rafael Barba. Rafael could allow that he had reason to believe he’d be cut off and dismissed at any point.
Tonight’s point of no return should probably come now. If not fifteen minutes and a wasted glass of whiskey ago. Rafael’s boundaries had been pushed beyond their usual limits; Sonny shouldn’t still be in here, not now, when there was no reason for it. No reason that would help the case. But maybe enough reason to keep Rafael from being distracted by the glare of his own failures.
“The Lubitsch case went the wrong way, but we might be able to use something from it next time,”
Sonny had twisted in his chair to look up at Rafael as he was talking. It was clear in the arch of his brows and the pinched lines around his eyes that he knew he was past due Rafael kicking him out, and this was his last volley of defence against his own empty Friday night. His voice faltered and dropped off before he completed the thought.
Standing behind him, Rafael palmed the side of Sonny’s jawline, right where it curved up into the elegant line of his cheekbone. The expression on his face indicated that Sonny was about to start talking again, so Rafael bent down to kiss him.
Sonny’s mouth opened under his immediately, so docile that it wasn’t hard at all to keep going. Under Rafael’s fingertips Sonny’s heartbeat throbbed. This was almost familiar, like they’d done it before. He let Sonny’s tongue work quickly against his own, feeling it’s eagerness. Like this was what all the talk had been practice for.
Something uncertain caught up in Rafael’s belly and he pulled back, his hand still cupping Sonny’s head.
“Please,” Sonny breathed out, “Rafael.”
He couldn’t have Sonny saying his name like that. Bending down again he tipped Sonny’s head back farther to let himself in. This time Rafael felt lips tremble slightly under his own.
Pulling back to look at Sonny’s face between his hands, Rafael wondered out loud, “What am I going to do with you?”
Sonny lifted a hand to press Rafael’s palm closer to his face.
“Anything you like.”
At the end of Rafael’s bed there was a cushioned bench. It was useful for leaning against while putting on his shoes, or for sitting down Sonny Carisi to undress him. Sonny needed a little centering once he got into the bedroom, for his nervous, scattered, horny energy to be contained. It only took the most gentle push down on his shoulders to get him seated. His knees splayed wide for Rafael to stand between them to slowly tug his tie loose and slip his jacket off shaking shoulders.
He kept pushing Sonny’s hands down by his side, not letting him grab back. When Sonny opened his mouth to complain, Rafael kissed him. He could feel the pleases strumming through Sonny’s body, like he was barely holding back from letting a lifetime’s worth of thwarted desire flood out. Rafael could do a lot, but in one night he couldn’t possible deal to all of Sonny’s barely-restrained needs.
In the Uber ride to Rafael’s apartment they had discussed this. It hadn’t been graphic, if anything, it had the detached, professional tone so many of their work conversations lacked.
Sonny had promised that he’d say stop if he wanted to, and Rafael had sat as far as possible away from him as the car seat would allow, leaning back against the window to stare Sonny down. Wanting to get all the assurance possible that Sonny was on board. If it helped punch down the suspicion in his gut that this was a terrible idea, that was a bonus.
Rafael had practically barked at him, “You know you can always call it off. There’s never a point of no return -”
Sonny cut him off. “I get it.”
Grinding his teeth, Sonny looked away from Rafael, staring at the back of the driver’s seat. “I meant what I said. You can take it.”
“I’m going to need a little more enthusiasm than that.” It came out sharp. Sonny looked at him, hurt flashing in his eyes before the defences went back up.
“I want to, Rafael. I’ll say stop if I need to. Trust me on that, at least.”
As if trusting Sonny had ever been the problem.
For the remainder of the ride, they’d been quiet, the Uber driver’s insipid playlist spooling through bland acoustic songs. Rafael always suspected that any middle-aged man wearing a suit in Manhattan would get the worst music put on for his ride, no driver wanting to affect their rating by blasting out something with anything like personality, but he was glad for once for such a tepid soundtrack. It made it easier for him pass through familiar streets while staying hyper-aware of every small shift and change in breathing pattern that Sonny made next to him.
There were so many choices to make. It wasn’t as if Rafael hadn’t thought this sort of scenario through before, but nothing in his imagination had gotten close to the living, breathing, expanse of body directly in front of him.
He knew he wanted Sonny sprawled on his back, but where? The bedroom floor had some merit as an option. It meant Sonny would be truly pinned, with nowhere to fall to,
“Under the sheets,” Rafael ordered, still thinking on how to keep those limbs contained. As Sonny scrambled onto the bed to pull the covers down and slip under them, Rafael decided to test just how far he could go.
“Lie back, Dominick.”
Sonny’s head jerked up, and he shook it, even raising a hand in protest. “No.”
Smiling, Rafael rolled down his suspenders and began to unbutton his shirt.
“What did you say, Carisi?”
It was uncomfortable for him, it was clear, to not easily comply, to be forced to draw the line. But Sonny shook his head again, lying back on the pillows. “Not here. Sonny, please.”
Good. He was obedient but not too far gone. Rafael could have flung insults at him, pulled out every nasty name in the book, and Sonny would probably have let him - there was more than a touch of the masochist in the man lying in his bed. But Rafael didn’t like playing that particular game. It wouldn’t be fun, not tonight. Not with Sonny.
“Keep your hands there.”
Sonny curled his fingers into fists. They were laid out crucifix-style either side of him. He was so long, one knee askew and flopped over, the other stretched out down the bed, furrowing the sheets pulled across him.
Shirtless, shoeless, but with his suit trousers still on, Rafael crawled over him on top of the bedclothes. He pressed his hands either side of Sonny’s chest, feeling the pull as his lungs gasped for air.
He wondered if Sonny had picked up on the scents of sea salt and bergamot in the room. If his mind, muddled with desire and eagerness, had strayed to the high-count bed sheets and the soft lighting. It suited him, the luxury, as Sonny was a sensualist, just like Barba, even if he’d never put it like that. Rafael enjoyed having him surrounded by good things, all safe and tucked up. And at Rafael’s mercy.
He held himself above Sonny by his wrists, Sonny’s heaving chest beneath him. There were so many pathways for him to consider, now they were finally both here. He stroked firm lines down the lean arms, slipping a thumb into Sonny’s mouth.
Sitting back to unzip his fly, Rafael kneeled in the space between Sonny’s splayed legs. Sonny’s head lolled back, his arms spread Christ-like as his neediness shaded into pliability. Good. Running a hand up his neck, Rafael murmured, “This big mouth. What can it do?”
Sonny’s lips were eager. His mouth felt hot, his tongue pressing up around the pad of Rafael’s thumb. Still trying to impress Rafael, when the real impression came from his splayed-out limbs, the desperate little noises he was trying to choke off, and the wild look in his eyes.
Rafael kept the weight on him, but withdrew his thumb to brush Sonny’s lips. Soft.
“S’okay,” he murmured, looking down at the pink flush that crept over Sonny’s chest and neck, the blush on his cheeks, the tension he still held in the lines around his eyes.
“I’ll look after you.”
At that, Sonny inhaled in a rush, his head tipping back to expose even more of that long neck. What could Rafael do but run his mouth along it? Sonny made incoherent sounds, audible only as breathy gasps between his open lips, but Rafael could feel them in his throat as he nibbled around Sonny’s Adam’s apple.
More than anything he wanted Sonny to feel safe after he came. Rafael could make him giddy, wind up his nerves to fever pitch, validate how hard Sonny always tried with words, touches, and eventual release, but that would be hollow if he couldn’t bring Sonny back afterwards.
Hitching his hips back a little, Rafael felt how hard Sonny was under the single sheet covering his legs. One option was to ride him, keeping Sonny pinned down, let him feel used but, perhaps, not something so different from what he was used to. Or he could blow Sonny, long and slow, maybe with a cockring slung around him to keep the edge on. Though Sonny already looked pretty desperate, he would look so much more pretty once Rafael had taken his time with him.
Moving up quickly, Rafael shucked off his trousers and underwear. Sonny’s eyes tracked the movements, his tongue parting his lips as he got his first glimpse of Rafael naked, but he stayed supine, right where Rafael wanted him.
Rafael reminded himself of how important direct communication was in situations like this. In bed, they were still strangers, and here was Sonny, stripped of his bravado as well as his suit.
“Tell me, how much experience have you had with men?”
Sonny’s face creased, looking uncomfortable, and his hips bucked under Rafael’s weight. Rafael moved his hand back up to his jaw, holding it in place as he brought his face down in front of Sonny’s.
“I - I - ” Sonny looked stricken. “I’ll do anything you want, you can have it all, please just - you can make me - ”
“Shh, shh. I’m not going to make you do anything, Carisi. Let’s keep it simple. First time or no?”
Twisting his head in Rafael’s grip, Sonny’s eyes screwed shut. He breathed out, “N-no.”
“Good, OK. Now, was this consensual or not?”
Sonny’s eyes stayed closed, but his nod was sharp and affirmative. A knot in Rafael’s gut began to unravel.
“Did you enjoy it?”
His bright pale eyes sprung open. “Yeah, of course. Yeah. I like sex, Raf, I just don’t - there’s not been - I haven’t done everything.”
Rafael smiled down at him. This was getting more and more fun. “Oral?”
“To, uh, give? No. But I swear - ”
“Mmm,” Rafael bent down and nipped at his lower lip, sucked it into his mouth then swallowed down whatever protests Sonny was about to make. It turned into a sloppy kiss, Sonny increasingly frantic under him, and Rafael folded down to cover him, knitting their fingers together and spreading Sonny’s arms wider across the bed.
He drew aside just enough to bite along the edge of Sonny’s jaw. “Such a fine mouth, when you’re not using it to argue with me.”
Sonny laughed at that, squeezed their palms closer together. It made Rafael’s chest ache, a little, the old intimacy of laughing together in the new environment of his bed. As if this was something he’d need to find more room for.
He shut off that line of thinking and returned to his present concern. Six foot of barely-contained nerves and endless limbs, lean muscle and surprisingly soft skin, and clearly so, so reactive.
Moving his head down he rubbed his cheek briefly along Sonny’s left pec, then caught his nipple between his teeth. From the sounds Sonny made, his hunch had been right. Under him, Sonny pressed his chest up, and Rafael worked over it with a little more sharpness in his bite. Unfurling their hands from one another, he pushed one arm down under the sheet to cup Sonny’s balls.
Sucking at a spot in the center of Sonny’s chest, Rafael felt Sonny’s heart thumping in his rib cage as he moved over to the other side of his chest, still playing lightly with his balls.
It was barely more than a brush of his fingers, but the combination of pain and pleasure clearly worked. Sonny grasped at Rafael’s shoulders, pushing his mouth harder into the tender flesh. Rafael sucked harder then pulled back to regard the reddened skin, the tough buds of Sonny’s nipples, and up to the wasted, thrilled look on Sonny’s face.
Balancing on one hand planted on the mattress next to Sonny’s waist, Rafael pulled his hand out from between Sonny’s legs and trailed it up and down his torso. His fingernails caught over the dark markings his mouth had left behind, and Sonny groaned as he pinched over the thin skin across his ribs and down to his hips.
Sonny’s stomach was defined with muscle and a soft hollow, as if he’d been skipping meals.
“So thin, aren’t you? Skinny boy, are you looking after yourself?”
The dazed face staring up at him looked confused at that, and it took Rafael rubbing the depression of Sonny’s waist to get a comprehensible answer.
“Been busy, ya know. Too much coffee.”
“Not enough food? You?”
Rafael smiled as he said it, keeping it light, but he didn’t like the suggestion that Sonny was neglecting his health. There was already enough weight on his shoulders. No wonder he was so intent on giving up control.
From where he was sprawled on his back, Sonny curled up a little, inadvertently showing off those abs as well as the extreme degree of bed head he’d gained.
“You ever gonna let me cook for you, Rafa?”
This was more conversation that Rafael wanted to deal with. He scraped his nails down Sonny’s inner thigh, which didn’t shut him up but did transform his dinner party requests into guttural moaning. Sonny’s head flopped back onto the mattress and his chest heaved as Rafael pulled the sheet off of him and breathed - just breathed - over his dick.
Good thing Rafael had a decent-sized bed, the amount of leg that Sonny had to kick around.
“Be careful with those things.”
He said it with a smile, making soothing strokes along the side of Sonny’s hips, then placed a rewarding kiss to the inside of his left thigh as it was compliantly placed back on the bed.
“Let’s move you up,”
Rafael lifted from the bed, folding Sonny’s knees so his feet were on the mattress, the inviting curve of his ass just visible in the low light of the room.
Sonny was quite a sight. His dick was hard and rosy, a sheen of sweat spread across the pale skin, and positioned like this for Rafael he stared up, face open and wanting, still breathing hard.
Patting the side of his legs in approval, Rafael climbed off the bed.
“Wait there a second.”
Making a questioning whimper, Sonny curled into himself a little as Rafael walked over to the armchair in the corner, confident that Sonny would stay put while he got a nice view of his ass.
He returned with the thick cushion, one with a little more support than his downy pillows, and loomed over Sonny again, whose back relaxed into the mattress as Rafael got closer.
“Lift up those skinny hips for me, OK?”
Always trying to be helpful. Rafael would rather move him around himself, get his hands on that backside, slipping the cushion underneath Sonny to prop him up. Once he was in a position Rafael was happy with - splayed so much further open, it was intoxicating - Rafael moved back down to cover Sonny’s body with his own. They rocked against each other for a while, kissing messily, returning that heat back. Sonny felt urgent under him. He smelled amazing, musky, skin salty as Rafael worked his mouth back down, trailing touches along the flesh he’d already worked over to tenderness.
He left behind some new sore spots, Sonny making it too easy for him with the squirming and all those delicious sounds he made.
When he got back to Sonny’s cock, Rafael didn’t mess around. He licked a long stripe up from the base to the tip, pushing his tongue into the slit.
“Raf! God, Christ!”
There was a joke about blasphemy to be made, but Rafael had much more pressing matters to deal with. He grasped Sonny’s ass, thumbs resting either side of his balls, and spread him open.
Sucking over Sonny’s sac, Rafael let himself sink into the hot flesh, the thick wiry hair brushing against his face. Keeping his mouth wet, he worked down over his taint, pushing his tongue against the muscle there. Sonny made noises of shock, which only drove Rafael on further.
He licked hard over Sonny’s hole. That earned him a “Fucking hell Raf!” and he moved his chin slightly to suck a raw spot into the pink crease of Sonny’s inner thigh. Pushing one thumb against the mark he’d made, he pulled and lifted with his hands just enough to get Sonny’s pelvis tilted that much more open.
Licking against the tight ring of muscle, Rafael let spit smear out the sides of his mouth. Sonny’s legs were trembling as he pushed in harder with the tip of his tongue. Between Rafael’s own legs, he was hard and pressing against the bedding, his hips bucking on their own accord.
Above him, Sonny was babbling about how he couldn’t believe this, how Rafael’s mouth was amazing, how he’d wanted - but there he trailed off into gasps. As if it was still too hard for Sonny to face up to what he wanted.
Or maybe Rafael was just doing such a good job that he’d finally shut Sonny up.
He held Sonny’s hips firmly, pulling him close, tasting Sonny as deep as possible. Making space to slip in a fingertip between his lips and tongue, and feeling Sonny grasp him inwards. So much desire in his body, once Sonny let it go. Once Rafael had given him permission.
The angle wasn’t great on his neck, and Rafael sat back to admire his handiwork and give his back a break. He let his thumb trail around the rim, pushing gently at the edges. Sonny stared up at him, wide-eyed, huffing short breaths.
Dropping a kiss on his knee, Rafael smiled down at him.
“You’re so good, Sonny. You let me do this to you. You like it?”
The thickness of Sonny’s cock and the trail of precome on his belly indicated that his body was on board, but Rafael kneaded his thumbs along the stiffened muscles in Sonny’s thighs, waiting for a response.
Sonny choked out, “Yes! I never - this is the first - God, Raf,”
“Please, please, yes.”
Rafael pushed his middle finger inside, just an inch. Sonny’s body bucked, but he pushed his hips down.
Sonny didn’t need to finish the question, though Rafael would have enjoyed hearing him beg to be fucked. Tucking his hands under Sonny’s knees, Rafael spread him a little farther.
“You’ll let me in, won’t you?”
“Please, Raf! Please - I’ve thought about it so much,”
“Has anyone ever…?”
Rafael punctuated his unfinished question with a twist of his finger. Sonny cried out, head pushed back into the mattress.
“No, no. You’d be the - please - I want it so much, I want you to feel good, I know I can - ”
It was all Rafael could do to grasp the base of his own cock and take a breath, staying steady on his knees. He’d always thought it would be good, would be satisfying, but never expected it to feel like this. For Sonny to sound so perfect, to look so divine. To feel so good around his hands.
The supplies were in the second drawer of his bedside cabinet. Sonny didn’t need to know what was in the third drawer down. Not yet at least. Maybe, sometime, but Rafael tried not to think about that, wanting to keep his attention on this moment, not on the possibility of more.
He rolled on a condom, ignoring the slight tremor in his own hands, and smeared a little slick on himself. More of it on his hands, rubbing his fingers together to keep them warm. Aware of the flinch Sonny had made at the sound of the lube being uncapped, he kept his touches gentle, beginning back at his taint, making smooth circles against the skin.
Sonny’s shoulders dropped from around his ears, the tense lines in his body easing a little as Rafael kept his touches light. While he worked a second finger in, he kissed up and along Sonny’s lower belly.
A tentative hand touched the back of Rafael’s head, not pressing him down - which was a good decision by Sonny, because Rafael hated being forced anywhere - but just patting his hair.
He lifted his head up, watching Sonny’s expression as he pushed in a third finger, the welcome weight of Sonny’s hand stretched around the back of his neck.
“Nnngh,” Sonny’s face was spectacular, moving between tension, acceptance and pleasure as his body pulled Rafael eagerly inside. “Good, good. M-more,”
Rafael kissed his stomach and rubbed his face against the taut skin there. Sonny’s whole body heaved underneath him, every breath he took shuddering through both of them.
He shifted his fingers inside Sonny. It was dizzying, bringing him so close, and Rafael had to beat down his own frantic want to focus on Sonny’s reactions. Judging by the emerging looseness in his body, and the tightening of the hand around Rafael’s neck, he was ready.
Moving back up over Sonny, one hand anchored on his chest, a frantic heartbeat under his palm, Rafael looked down at him. Sonny nodded back as Rafael brought the head of his cock to the edge of his entrance.
He had meant to say something about this, a final check, or a promise, or praise, but as he slid inside all Rafael could manage was a gasp of his own.
They fit together so well; Sonny was impossibly tight around him, but the length of his arms and legs as they wrapped around Rafael, bring them as close together as possible, felt more secure than Rafael could remember feeling in years.
Together they picked up a rhythm quickly. They were both too wild to start slowly, and Rafael snapped his hips hard, relishing the sound of their skin slapping together, the sight of Sonny’s mouth hanging open as he moaned, the fire that burned under Rafael’s own skin growing even hotter.
Of course they matched each other perfectly. Hadn’t they always? Wasn’t this what Rafael had wanted, from the first time he’d seen Sonny?
Holding himself up on his elbows, Rafael hung his head down against Sonny’s collarbone. Sweaty arms wrapped around his back. He thrust deeper, pushing his weight into one hip so he could pick up one hand and push it down between the press of their bodies.
There was still enough slick on his hand for Sonny’s cock to slide against it. Sonny let go a series of affirmative cries.
“Yes! Yes! Yes! Like that - oh, Raf, always - ”
Closing his fist around Sonny, Rafael pulled harder, keeping the pace of his hips frantic. He knew he was close himself, and he needed Sonny to unravel underneath him. He needed to get a little control back, as his was rapidly evaporating.
His eyes screwed closed, Sonny’s head twisted to the side as he came. His whole body rocked with it. Nails dug into Rafael’s sides and the legs locked around his hips squeezed even tighter.
But nothing was as beautiful as Sonny looked afterwards. Dazed, soft, even, Rafael thought, poised to pour his own heat into him, awestruck.
He spluttered out something, blessedly incoherent, and came hard, his body arching over Sonny’s.
On either side of him, Sonny’s feet landed back on the mattress. His arms hung onto Rafael, who was pressing his forehead into Sonny’s neck, gasping for breath.
By the time Rafael had regained a tiny degree of composure, Sonny’s own breath had evened out. He barely winced as Rafael withdrew, still looking stunned, and his limbs were sluggish as Rafael shifted him to lie down.
He would go grab a towel for them, a glass of water for Sonny, turn the lights on so he could pick up his strewn clothes and rearrange them into a little order. But first he had to make sure Sonny was back with him.
Lightly drawing lines along Sonny’s chest, he said, “Hey. Sonny. Are you there?”
Sonny just stared up at him, a half-smile playing on his open lips.
Rafael pushed back the sweaty hair off Sonny’s brow. “How do you feel?”
Smiling harder, Sonny let his head flop from side to side, eyes still fixed on Rafael’s.
“You have to talk to me. Just a little.”
“‘M here, Raf.”
Kissing across Sonny’s forehead, Rafael felt his own shoulders drop, the last bit of tension leaving his body.
“This what it takes for me to shut you up?”
Threading their hands together, Sonny breathed in deeply, their chests resting against each other.
“Just needed you to really try.”
Rafael always took the stairs. It was a good habit to have from a cardiovascular point of view, and he hated the wasted time and enforced stillness of elevators. His apartment was only on the second floor, so unless he was carrying something exceptionally heavy, he’d veer to the right as soon as he walked in the building’s front doors and make for the narrow stairway.
Tonight he was carrying something exceptionally heavy. True, he didn’t have Sonny in his arms or over his shoulder, thought it was a striking image; Rafael’s lumbar region would never forgive him if he tried. But he felt the weight of Sonny on his shoulders even as he only touched him with the tips of his fingers, a gentle nudge at his elbow to walk through the elevator doors.
He hadn’t heard the gunfire personally. But Rafael had it ringing in his ears.
Sonny looked washed. The gun had been in the hands of a perp who’d been blackmailed by his own brother-in-law over the assault of his fifteen-year-old foster daughter. When Rollins had alerted Sonny that their suspect was armed, and was on the way to the in-laws’ house to settle the score, Sonny had managed to get the foster daughter out through the backyard. He’d held her close and run her through the tight alleyways between buildings, the shooting going on behind them between two uniforms and the cornered man.
The officers had been unharmed. Their perp had given himself up soon after literally shooting himself in the foot. Rollins had arrived as they had him pinned to the sidewalk, cuffed, screaming in pain, and she’d gotten a kick out of his incompetence.
But Sonny had been shepherding a terrified young woman through a maze of houses, with the possibility of a stray bullet hanging over his shoulder. When Rafael had arrived at the precinct he saw Carisi sat motionless in a corner, gazing into the middle distance, his face scratched up by a low-hanging tree branch that had caught him on the way out.
By the time Rafael was out of Liv’s office, Carisi was still there. Rafael had paused to look over at him, waiting to see his eyes snap up to meet his. But Sonny looked like his strings had been cut.
Once he was outside, Rafael sent a text. If you want to come over, I’m going home now. You look like you need somewhere to be.
The response came less than a minute later. You sure? Followed soon by a Can be there in 20.
By the time Rafael got his coat and briefcase out of the back of his cab, Sonny’s ride had pulled up behind them. Rafael laid the coat over one arm and waited. It wasn’t too dark for Sonny’s distinctive profile to be obscured as he turned to look out the car window. Rafael could see the same lines creasing his forehead as he climbed out, his long legs looking ungainly. Maybe stiff from running. Or wobbly from the come-down of the adrenaline.
He walked up to where Rafael was waiting. “Hey.”
“You didn’t bring anything?”
Usually Sonny had a bag with him, full of work he’d stew on over the weekend, or both Rafael with questions over, plus a change of clothes, a copy of some terrible film on DVD, a gift of food. Rafael teased him about it, already used to the sight of a worn messenger bag dumped on his kitchen bench.
“Nuh-uh. Came straight here. Left my things at work, not like my phone or anything, Amanda said she wanted me to text her about how I was doing - can you remind me? - but my gym clothes and stuff, I didn’t even think about it until I was in the cab,”
Ushering him inside, Rafael stayed quiet. Sonny wittered on, downloading his brain, but instead of bouncing from topic to topic he just faded out mid-sentence, picking up another strand of thought hazily.
As the elevator doors opened, Sonny was talking about a recipe he wanted to make Rafael. He didn’t sound insistent or passionate like he usually would, his voice flat. “Apple pie but with a cake-like base, instead of pastry, it’s from Nigella Lawson, I think it’s based on an Italian recipe ‘cause I swear I had something similar years ago. Small bakery near my Nonna’s that was Italian, or at least Italian-ish. Maybe I was fourteen? But I remembered it, when I saw the recipe. I thought of you…”
Sonny’s voice trailed off as Rafael unlocked the door to his apartment and stood aside, waiting for Sonny to go in. Sonny looked at him, unsure, a little dazed.
Rafael spoke. “Do you want to come in? Or I could leave you here on the doorway like an orphan, trying to sell matchsticks to passers-by.”
That made the sides of Sonny’s mouth twitch up in an almost-smile. His hair was unravelling, and in the half-light of the hallway he looked like one of Caravaggio’s debauched saints.
Once Rafael had the door closed behind them and his coat hung up he reached out a hand to Sonny, who only looked dumbstruck for a split-second before handing his own coat over.
“What time is it?”
Sonny tapped at his ugly Apple Watch. “Early. Not quite eight.”
“Are you hungry?”
Screwing up his face, Sonny brushed his hand over his belly dismissively like a child would to say no,
Rafael stepped closer. “You feel nauseated? Anything like that?”
Shaking his head, Sonny replied, “No, no. Just don’t want to eat. I had four donuts when we got back from lockup. They were stale. It was gross. I just felt like I oughta have something, and Fin shoved the box at me.”
Dragging his hands down his own face, Rafael sighed. “Why do you do this?”
“I’m sorry, Raf - ”
“Four donuts? Four. Donuts.”
“If you want to eat, we can order something, I can go out and get - ”
For the first time, Rafael raised his voice. “Stop.”
Sonny did. His mouth closed in slow-mo. Rafael came up to him, looking him up and down, resting his hands on Sonny’s arms just above the elbows. He rubbed slow circles with his thumbs.
“Listen. All you have to do listen. Drink some water, right now. Then you can go wash up. There’s extra towels, and you left some clothes behind, they’re clean and in the same cupboard.”
Nodding along, Sonny leaned in. Rafael tried not to look at his lips. He kept speaking in an even, calm tone, keeping his voice low. “Then you can come back out here. I’ll put the TV on, find something mindless, we’ll just watch. You understand?”
He paused here. Sonny’s eyes weren’t dull anymore like they had been at the station. They were sharp, even with the lines around them creased deep with fatigue.
Rafael continued. “Or you can go straight to bed. Leave the light off. Sleep. I’ll wake you in the morning. We’ll go somewhere, eat a disgusting amount of brunch.”
That made Sonny smile, a sweet and tender smile. It was enough to make Rafael grip him a tiny bit harder. “Or you can put the bedroom light on. I’ll come in after my shower. But the usual rules apply.”
One of the rules was that if Sonny was in the bedroom, he had to be naked.
“You’ll stay on top of the covers. Lying face down. Wait for me.”
He’d have to keep his hands to himself. No touching until Rafael gave permission. That was another rule. Rafael wasn’t terribly strict about this one, given how good Sonny looked when he broke it. But Sonny was so proud when he managed to hold to it.
There wasn’t anything much that Rafael was terribly strict about, though Sonny seemed determined to act like his word was law. He certainly thrived on well-maintained boundaries.
Rafael could already see it, the glint in his eyes, the swagger in his step as he walked off to the bathroom. But he wasn’t sure that the shower wouldn’t drain that off of him. Maybe he’d jerk off in there, collapse on the bed in a dead sleep, and then wake up eager to make it all up to Rafael in the morning. There were far worse scenarios.
Plucking some olives from a jar, Rafael snacked in the kitchen listening to the sound of the shower steadily beating from one room over. He hoped Sonny had noticed the new Diptyque shower oil he’d put in there. It smelled of roses and blackcurrants. Rafael wanted to know how it would feel on Sonny’s skin.
Eventually he’d tease Sonny about how he’d ‘accidentally’ left his clothes behind at Rafael’s. But not tonight, not when Sonny had been through the wringer. Maybe sometime after Rafael had given into the impulse to buy new PJs for him. There was a cashmere-blend Hamilton and Hare top that Rafael had saved in his Mr. Porter shopping cart for weeks, which would feel so soft, and keep Sonny warm when he needed it.
The shower stopped. Rafael stilled, trying not to listen in a creepy way. Picking up an old New Yorker, he leafed through it as a distraction, reading the cartoon captions.
After he’d gone through it cover-to-cover twice, he decided it was time to check in. Sonny hadn’t reappeared, so TV watching was out.
He could see the light coming from the bedroom in the hallway.
Pausing at the doorway, Rafael took a hard look. Sonny was just as he’d imagined him, his body lying right in the center of the bed, his head nestled between the pillows. Hands by his side, fingers curled loosely into his palms. The stretch of his back, from his broad shoulders down to the narrow hollow of his lower back, flowing into the swell of his ass, and down into those thoroughbred legs, seemed miles and miles long.
Sonny’s fingers twitched. He wasn’t asleep, despite the heaviness of his limbs. There was still tension in the slope of his neck and the hitch of his shoulders.
Rafael went to take his own shower. It wouldn’t hurt Sonny to wait a little longer.
“You’re still with me?”
Rafael asked it while drawing one heavy fingertip down Sonny’s back. He knew Sonny was still awake, but he wanted to hear how verbally inclined he was. At the sound of Rafael’s voice the back of Sonny’s head lifted up. His muscles flexed under Rafael’s slight touch.
“M’here. You’re the one who made me wait.”
Climbing up the bed on his knees, Rafael snorted. “That sounds like a complaint.”
Sonny wriggled on the bed, bringing his hands up either side of his shoulders. “Felt like forever. I left the light on, did what you said.”
“All I did was give you a choice. Didn’t make any promises.”
A small whine came from the tousled head on the bed. Sonny turned his face to look over his shoulder, taking in Rafael wearing nothing but a pair of pyjama pants. “Been waiting for ya. When’re you going to start - ”
Rafael cut that nonsense off with a sharp pinch on Sonny’s ass. His head fell back down on the mattress, but Rafael could make out the grin on his face.
“Hands back down by your sides.”
That happened fast. Sonny’s hips rocked a little. Rafael leaned over him, running both hands down his back, watching the play of muscle under Sonny’s skin, the knobs of bone down his spine, the dimples either side of his sacrum.
“Widen your legs a little - that’s it,” Rafael settled himself over Sonny’s left thigh, knees supported by the mattress, his balance held steadily on the bed. He mentally thanked his Pilates teacher for the good technique, then gave his attention back fully to Sonny.
Last time they’d used the blindfold. Rafael had been thrilled by the effect some ice cubes had had on Sonny. He briefly considered a restraint, but Sonny was pliant from the shower and fatigue.
While he was thinking he kept his hands busy, stroking down his sides, pulling and pressing on the flesh. Sonny’s breath came in little hitches, but the tension in his shoulders was beginning to let go.
“You’re tense here. Been working hard?”
Sonny rumbled something in response. Hard to make out with his face squished into the mattress.
Rafael kept talking, knowing Sonny was listening. “Been looking after everyone? Been running around, being the hero?”
He lowered himself down, blanketing Sonny’s back with his body, pressing a kiss into the nape of his neck. “Been taking care of yourself?”
Mumbling something, Sonny relaxed under his hold.
Rafael lifted himself off again. “Or have you been eating junk? Four donuts, Christ,”
“Raf, you know I don’t always -”
The smack came from Rafael’s right hand, onto Sonny’s left side. Sonny gasped, barely getting his breath back before Rafael hit the other side of his ass.
Rafael leaned all the way back, the palm of his hand tingling with warmth. He gave Sonny a second or two to wait, then another couple of seconds to drive him a little crazy. Then he slapped again, keeping his hand open on Sonny’s ass and rubbing at the pinking skin.
Sonny’s hands were fists at his sides. He took a long shuddering breath, and right before he’d finished exhaling Rafael spanked him again just to hear the sharp inhalation.
Letting his fingertips gentle, Rafael stroked down to rub a thumb idly in the crease where Sonny’s ass met his thigh. “This OK?”
Sonny’s head lifted again. His face was flushed, eyelids heavy. When he spoke his voice was barely more than a whisper. “Please.”
Rafael’s fingers curved around Sonny’s hip. “More? Or do I stop?”
“Don’t stop, Rafael, please don’t, I, I,”
His voice cut out as he inhaled. Rafael shushed him, stroking his sides. Kissing up his shoulder blade, he held his mouth close to Sonny’s ear.
“Just a little more, then. You’re being so good.”
Three times more, open handed slaps to Sonny’s firm ass, going from side to side. They seemed louder every time, even though Rafael was putting less and less force into them. Between the sounds came Sonny’s ragged breathing.
Resettling himself next to Sonny’s legs, Rafael rubbed little circles down the back of his thighs. Sonny got tight hamstrings even on days when he hadn’t been running away from lunatic gunmen.
Sonny was making little hiccuping noises, almost sobs. Rafael lay down next to him, their heads parallel, faces turned to each other. He kept one hand on Sonny’s back, making feather-like strokes up and down it. Sonny’s eyes were closed, his lashes silver with unshed tears.
They lay like that until Sonny’s breath was back.
Rafael pushed at his shoulder until he rolled to his side. Sonny’s chest was flushed pink, and his dick was hard.
“I keep waiting for you to pull out a bullwhip.”
That was the Sonny who Rafael had been waiting for. The painful draw of his features had melted away, his eyes were dark with arousal, and he was even smiling. Rafael smacked him on the hip once more for the sass, then leaned in to kiss him open-mouthed and messily.
“Not my weapon of choice.”
Sonny made to look down between Rafael’s legs. “Where is your weapon of…”
“Shush. Flip over and lay back down.”
“Mmm,” Sonny spreadeagled on his back, his limbs loose on the bed, “Can I…?”
“Yes, you can touch.”
Eager fingers reached for the drawstring of Rafael’s pants, and he laughed as they were rolled down. Shaking them off his legs he watched as Sonny stroked himself slowly, eyes wide with anticipation.
Sonny kicked the bed with his heels. “C’mon.”
“Still being mouthy?”
Rafael kissed the grin off Sonny’s face, letting their legs entwine. They rubbed their hips in uneven circles, bellies pressed together. Sonny whined when Rafael pulled off to grab some lube, getting a tweaked nipple in response.
His hands slicked, Rafael reached between them and grasped their erections together. Under him Sonny stretched and flexed in waves, his hips hitching under Rafael’s guidance. One of Sonny’s hands was wrapped around Rafael’s bicep, the other skittered over his back. His mouth was open, chin tilted, begging for kisses, and Rafael ducked his head to oblige.
Hips rocking, they kissed their way through each mutual thrust until Rafael pressed his thumb to the underside of Sonny’s cockhead. Breaking off the kiss Sonny’s head pushed into the mattress as he came. He was quiet this time, shaking under Rafael’s weight, sweat beading on his brow. Rafael studied his face. The flare of his nostrils, the tremor of his eyelashes, how slack his mouth went afterwards.
Moving up Sonny’s torso, Rafael guided Sonny’s hand to his cock. Sonny got it immediately, tightening his fist and lifting his head with his bottom lip stretched down invitingly.
Their hands worked together. Rafael looked away just as he began to come, his eyes going unfocused as he felt the pulse from the soles of his feet up to his skull. It was stronger than he expected, more sudden, and when he regrouped to open his eyes afterwards he saw Sonny’s chest and chin splattered with come.
Sonny’s hands were still on him, one lightly curled around his balls, the other resting on his hips. He stared up at Rafael with a goofy expression.
“You need another shower.”
Running a finger through the mess on his collarbones, Sonny smiled. “Don’t know if I can stand up after that. God, Rafael…”
Climbing off Sonny, feeling a little unsteady on his legs himself, Rafael rummaged around for the tissues and baby wipes he kept a stash of. Not quite the same as luxury shower oil, but more efficient. He made an undignified grunt bending over the drawer, and Sonny made a sound of concern. “You alright?”
“Of course. Lie back. You’re a real picture like this.”
Sonny was covered in come. It was a hell of a sight. If sleep hadn’t been a priority for both of them, Rafael would’ve come up with a more fun method of cleaning him up.
But baby wipes it was. Sonny settled down. Under heavy eyelids he tracked Rafael’s movements. “OK?”
“I said I was - oh, Carisi.” Rafael sighed, then kissed the tip of his nose. “You’re OK. More than. You were good, very good for me.”
“M’gonna try harder, Raf.”
“Get under the covers. You don’t need to.”
“Gonna make you apple pie.”
“Is that a fact?”
“Mmmm,” Sonny trailed off as he curled onto his side, leaving room for Rafael to climb in next to him. “Gonna.”
Rafael patted his hip. All Sonny needed to do was not get shot. “Get some sleep.”
It didn’t take at all long for Sonny to obey.
Like the rest of this, this is unbeta'd and, you know, a flimsy excuse for filth.
Carisi was an attentive student. His dedication to learning how to blow Rafael was really quite admirable. Rafael wanted him to learn to relax a little, though, instead of approaching the task with bullish determination.
The most recent attempt led to a heated debate conducted with Sonny on his knees in front of Barba’s couch, his hands gripping Rafael’s thighs desperately, an episode of Nailed It unfolding behind him on the TV screen.
“You should choke me with your dick.”
“I’m not choking you.”
“I can take it.”
Rafael placed a hand on Sonny’s head, stroking hair out of his eyes. “It’s not about what you can take or not. I know your limits.”
“But I want you to be able to do anything you want with me...”
“Which you let me do. Except right now, when you interrupted me in the middle of watching these people’s ugly cakes, on a show that, may I remind you, you chose.”
“But I want to get good at it.”
“Being choked by someone isn’t ‘getting good’.You’ve been watching too much porn.”
Sonny’s eyes crinkled at that. “Well, it’s not like I can see you every night.”
Rafael kept playing with his hair while deciding to ignore the subtext in that statement. Instead he wondered out loud, “Maybe I should ban you from it. Make you use your imagination. Or knock it off all together.”
“You’re not going to let me…?”
Laughing, Rafael looked down at him. “Of course not. I can’t make you not do anything, Carisi. All I ever do is make suggestions.”
Sonny’s cheek rested on Rafael’s knee. “I like your suggestions.”
“Then I suggest you find better quality porn.”
“Why don’t you show me what you like to watch?”
Rubbing a thumb over Sonny’s lower lip, Rafael watched him wet it with little kitten-licks of his tongue, darting between sharp white teeth. Eyes blown already, a flush creeping up his neck, Sonny was a picture. Between his legs, Rafael was already hard and throbbing, but instead of pressing Sonny’s face downwards he kept rubbing slowly.
“Tell me what you think about when you watch that stuff.”
Sonny swallowed at that. His lips twitched around Rafael’s thumb. “Like, blowjobs? Depends. I mainly think about you - doing that. Taking that from me.”
Staying quiet, Rafael watched the blush bloom over Sonny’s cheeks. He kept talking, his voice growing reedier. “Your hands around my head. The feel of your cock in my mouth. Being able to keep my throat all, you know, open. Ready. So that you’d really feel it. And you wouldn’t stop, and I’d feel you go deep inside me, and then…”
Shuffling on his knees, Sonny looked unsteady. Rafael pressed his thumb down the column of his neck to the hollow at the base. Inhaling sharply through his nose, Sonny’s voice was darker as he kept on, “You coming so hard, and it’s all I can taste, and it’s dripping down my chin, and you’re looking down at me Raf, the way you do, and then,”
Sonny stopped, his eyes shifting. Rafael tapped his jaw. “And then what?”
“It’s not something they do in the videos.”
“I don’t care about them. Tell me what you think of.”
“Umm.” Sonny shifted his weight on his knees again, then looked back up, his eyes fiery with bravado and his best shit-eating grin wide across his face. “You kiss me. Real messy. Tasting yourself.”
“And, uh, maybe you were sucking me off too, and you’ve got my come in your mouth, and we mix it.”
Rafael smirked. “Come play? Here you are, walking around looking so innocent, thoughts like this in your head.”
Biting at his thumb, Sonny lifted his head briefly. “It’s your fault. Making me thinking nasty stuff.”
The smile dropped from Rafael’s face. Using one finger tip, he pushed Sonny’s head away and stood up.
“Turn the TV off.”
Sonny hastily spun around to find the remote, and the picture snapped off into black.
“Hands behind your back.”
Looking breathless, Sonny obliged. Rafael could see the tension in his shoulders as he held each wrist in his own grip.
Rafael took his time unzipping his pants, slowly urging the suspenders off his shoulders, unbuttoning the bottom of his shirt so he could tuck the tails away.
No doubt Sonny could see how hard he was, could probably smell his arousal, too. But while his eyes looked up pleadingly, Rafael kept moving deliberately. There was a plush rug under them. He didn’t have to worry over Sonny’s knees. Carefully, he eased his cock out of his underwear, biting off a sigh at the relief of release.
He brought his thumb back to Sonny’s lower lip. It didn’t take much pressure for his jaw to drop open. Sonny’s head leaned forward.
There was no other word for it, Sonny keened. Rafael couldn’t help but smile, although his hand stayed firm on Sonny’s jaw.
“Just keep it like that.”
Sonny’s lips were wide. Rafael guided his cock forward with one hand as he kept the other stroking Sonny’s mouth. He murmured, “A little more tongue,” and Sonny’s tongue shot forward.
It made Rafael think of him eating ice cream, which was too adorable to focus on, so he moved his attention back to placing the head of his cock on Sonny’s lower lip.
“There,” Rafael breathed, urging Sonny’s mouth to close around it. “Stay soft.”
Lifting both of his hands to thread through Sonny’s hair, Rafael felt the weight of his skull in his palms. Fingertips on the nape of his neck, Rafael rocked his hips, a tiny amount. In response Sonny tried to pitch his head forward. Rafael kept it in place, and watched as Sonny got the message, his shoulders sagging down as he relaxed.
His mouth was hot, wet, silky. Rafael let himself get a little lost, moving forward and back steadily. Sonny stayed soft beneath his hands. Closing his eyes, he sucked over Rafael in steady pulses, his cheeks hollowing out around the length that Rafael had allowed him.
Rafael couldn’t resist floating one hand down to press at the bulge of his cock through Sonny’s cheek. “So good. This is perfect.”
A shudder ran through Sonny, and Rafael stroked his hair back. There was a light sheen of sweat on Sonny’s forehead, and Rafael wanted to kiss the salt off his brow.
Instead he put a little pressure on the back of Sonny’s head as a warning. Choking off his own breath, he felt his orgasm build, winding slickly through him as time slowed down. For a moment there was nothing else but what connected them - the space inside Sonny’s mouth, the comfort of his lips, the generosity of his obedience, the kindness of his eager tongue. Then he was coming, thickly coating Sonny’s lips and chin.
There were tears in Sonny’s eyes as he blinked them open. Rafael dropped down to his knees and with no preamble roughly unzipped Sonny’s pants to grab at his dick. He was hot, and unbearably hard in Rafael’s grip, and Rafael had to use his other hand to prop Sonny up as he began to pull at him in the steady stokes he knew would get Sonny off.
Sonny’s mouth dropped open, still dripping, wet and obscene, and Rafael crushed their mouths together. It was a noisy kiss, ungraceful with both of their urgency combined, and Sonny was struggling for breath as Rafael’s hand wound him closer and closer to finishing.
“I’m - I’m,” Sonny rested his forehead against Rafael’s, his upper body shaking as he came over Rafael’s fist. His own hands were still held tight behind his back.
Rafael mouthed over his cheek, feeling the hot gasps of air Sonny made begin to even out. He raised his hand to his mouth. It was smeared with come. Sonny’s eyes were watery as he watched Rafael swipe his tongue over it, then softly bring their mouths together again.
He felt a tear run down Sonny’s cheek and splash on his face. “You OK?”
Nodding, Sonny hummed, “Mmmm.”
“Let your hands go. We’re so dirty.”
Rafael wiped his hands on Sonny’s shirt - “Hey!” - and began to stand up. Sonny wavered on his knees for a moment, like his strings had been cut, then accepted Rafael’s hand to pull him to his feet.
Keeping one hand wrapped around his waist, Rafael squeezed the hand he still had in his grip. “Was that what you wanted?”
Sonny’s eyelashes fluttered. “Nah.” He smiled. “It was better.”
Rafael wanted to tell him, he didn’t have to measure up to anything in porn, there was nothing Sonny had to learn to do. But for once the right words escaped him. Instead he tilted Sonny on his heels and said, “Shower. Now.”
Sonny went, but not before kissing Rafael one last time, and giving him a smile that didn’t help with the speechlessness problem. As he watched Sonny stagger towards the bathroom, he remembered his challenge from earlier: showing him what Rafael liked to watch.
While Sonny was cleaning up, Rafael would have time to set up the DVD player in the bedroom and select a few of the more exceptional movies from his collection.
After all, he didn’t want to stand in the way of furthering Sonny’s education.