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Shadows of the Past

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The other Dart Fighter came out of nowhere, suddenly appearing behind the tail of Robert's own spaceship, its golden-black color coalescing perfectly with the deep blackness of outer space and the bright yellow glow of Borussia's next solar prominence that shone brighter than the metal surface of the small hostile vessel that reflected the light of the star in front of Robert's ship.

Major Robert Lewandowski cursed under his breath, and only the mind device that connected his brain with his Fighter saved him from the inevitable crush, his ship responding to his frantic thoughts and diving down under the enemy right before the Borussian Fighter crashed into him. One moment of abstraction when he hadn't paid attention to his sensors because of the first prominence had almost led to a catastrophe, and Robert gritted his teeth and swallowed down another curse, daring to breath again when the moment was gone and his Fighter was back on the right course. Robert caught a glimpse of the other pilot's face under the helmet, a pale mask of utter concentration, but Robert knew that the eyes of the skilled Borussian pilot were glowing with the same grim determination he felt himself – determination to win this war and defeat the enemy, no matter what it would take Robert to achieve this goal. Only one man would fly such a maneuver and risk his own death by crashing right into Robert's ship, one special blond major, the commander of Borussia Prime's Yellow Fleet.

“I'm not that easy to kill, Marco Reus!” the dark-haired major with the piercing blue eyes growled, forcing his own red and white colored Fighter into a tight loop to take advantage of the other pilot's temporary surprise and land a well-placed shot right before the Borussian Fighter's nose. He could destroy the other Dart Fighter and kill the man he hated more than anybody else in this universe with one single shot out of his laser gun from his position, and Robert could never tell later on what had kept him from doing so. The shadows of his past were still looming over his head, the memories of what had once been between them burnt into Robert's natural photographic memory forever.

His fingers hovered uselessly over the red fire button for a little eternity, and his moment of hesitation gave Marco the chance to bring enough distance between himself and Robert's ship to start another attack. Robert watched him coming closer with high speed, frozen in place and still trapped in the pictures floating his mind. It didn't look like Marco perhaps having the same issues with killing him when he got the chance to bereave the Red Fleet of their commander and current leader, and Robert steeled himself for the impact of the shot that would make his vessel explode – and him with it - when a sudden bright light was blinding him despite the visual cover that was integrated in his helmet. There was a burst of several laser shots, placed indefinite enough to give Marco the time to escape them, but they were saving Robert's ass nonetheless, and the dark-haired major was finally able to shake off the memories and pictures that had kept him under some kind of spell and accelerate his Fighter to get out of the line of fire until he'd regained his composure.

Alliance 9, please respond! Here's Alliance 25! Alliance 9, please respond! Robert, what the hell do you think were you doing?! Do you really have such a death wish that you're always offering yourself on a silver platter like that to them?” the distorted voice of his wingman and second-in-command sounded through his earpiece, urgent and angry enough to make Robert pull a face about his own stupidity. The Alliance 25, a red and white Dart Fighter like his own one, emerged at his left side, and Robert could see the other pilot turning his head to look at him through the windshield of his vessel.

Captain Thomas Müller was his wingman for almost six years now, and he was Robert's best friend and worst critic at the same time, always covering his back but never afraid to chide him when Robert was risking too much again, sometimes even in front of their teammates and subordinates or superiors. Robert knew that Thomas was always right with what he said, but it never kept him from risking his life again, because that was simply who he was, and this would never change, no matter how often Thomas would beg him to be more careful and considerate of his own health.

But the younger captain with the thick dark-blond hair and the bi-colored eyes was not only his second-in-command and his friend, he was also his husband, lover and significant other, the one who'd been able to fill the deep gap in Robert's heart and soul after years of despair and loneliness – when Robert's path had almost led him to self-destruction.

Alliance 25, here's Alliance 9. Stop cursing, captain, the others can here you!” Robert said when he'd activated his radio device. “I'm fine, and my ship is undamaged,” he added after a tiny pause, grimacing when Thomas' mocking snort crackled in his earpiece unnaturally loud.

“Yeah, thanks to me.” Thomas gave back, and Robert could hear that the other man was truly pissed off at him, even though the younger one kept his voice carefully controlled. “Mats' Fighter is damaged, Sven is accompanying him back to the Arena.” his husband and wingman then informed him, and Robert swallowed, angry at himself that one of his men had been shot because he'd been too busied with himself to protect them.

“How bad is it?” he asked, and Thomas sighed through the radio. “He should make it back to the Arena with Sven's help. Joshua and Leon shot three Borussians disabled, I shot one, too. Their pilots should make it back to their mother ship, but it will keep them from attacking Municha Prime for some time. They're running out of Fighters and have to see to the repairs of the damaged ones at first.”

“Alright. Fly back to the Arena and wait there for me, I want to see for myself that they won't try another attack before I'll follow you.” Robert ordered him, grabbing his steering wheel tighter. He didn't need it because of the mind device that connected him with his ship, but he needed something to hold on to after his encounter with Marco that had almost killed him in the process.

Thomas hesitated for a few seconds, and Robert could literally hear the other man's angry thoughts in his own mind, but then his second only sighed again and made a turn with his Fighter. “Understood, sir. See you on board the Arena, major,” he said, tersely, “and you'll better come back unharmed and in one piece, Lewandowski!”

Robert smiled grimly, setting up a course that would bring him close enough to Borussia Prime to check any kind of military activity with his long-distance sensors, but not close enough to be attacked by the planet's weapons.

“I will, don't worry. You can check me for possible injuries yourself when I'm back, captain,” he chuckled without any true amusement, and Thomas' answer sent a shiver of anticipation down on his spine.

“I will check you thoroughly when you're back, major, don't you ever doubt that!”

 

***

 

Thomas was waiting for him in their quarters when Robert returned a couple of hours later, standing before the wall he'd turned transparent to look outside and watch the blinking stars with his arms folded across his chest. One of them was Municha, the beautiful yellow sun their home world Municha Prime circled around, and Robert felt a strong wave of homesickness crushing over him. It was mixed with the longing for another home he'd once known, a home long gone that belonged to another life and to a past that was still haunting him in his dreams too many times.

The dark-haired major swallowed down the bitter bile that was rising in his throat at the thought of the home he'd lost – the love he'd lost – meeting his husband's thoughtful gaze when Thomas slowly turned around to look at him, his posture never changing.

“Have you eaten?” the younger man asked after a moment or two, and Robert carded his fingers through his tousled hair and shrugged. “I'm not hungry.”

“You will eat nonetheless,” Thomas simply said, jerking his head at the table where he'd set up dinner for them earlier. Robert knew better than to object, just nodded and crossed the room to sit down on his usual chair. Thomas looked down at him before he joined him at the table, filling Robert's plate with food without saying anything. Robert took the plate and started to eat, feeling Thomas' eyes on his face when the other man did the same.

“The other Fighter, that was him, wasn't it?” Thomas said after a while, his words more a statement than a real question.

“Yes.” Robert kept his eyes on his plate, not wanting to reveal his emotions to the younger one.

“You could have shot him.”

“Yes.”

“Why didn't you do it?”

Robert carefully laid his spoon back onto the table beside his plate, raising his head to look at Thomas at last.

“Did you want me to kill him?”

Thomas gave him a long thoughtful look. “That's not an answer to my question. He had lesser qualms to kill you, Robert. He was about to shoot you when I came to your help.” His husband didn't even sound angry, he was merely stating a matter of fact, which surprised Robert, because Thomas usually had no problems with showing him when he was angry with him. It was clear that he was hiding his feelings from Robert this time as well, something Robert did himself far too often, and Thomas' unnatural calm made the dark-haired major want to shift uncomfortably in his chair, but he didn't give in to his urge.

“Yes, I know,” he said, staring down at his stew without really seeing anything. There was a long silence, then Thomas sighed, pushing his chair back to stand up.

“Seems that he got over you much better than you've gotten over him.” He pointed at Robert's plate. “Are you finished?”

Robert was sure that he would get sick if he ate any more bite, and he nodded with a grimace. “Yes, thank you.”

“Fair enough. Take a shower, then, you look as if you needed one, Robert,” Thomas said, taking his plate to carry it away and leave Robert alone with his dark thoughts.

It was only when the hot water of the shower was cascading over his tense shoulders that Robert realized that Thomas hadn't answered his question whether or not he'd wanted Robert to kill Marco Reus either.

 

***

 

Thomas was standing before the transparent wall again when Robert emerged from the small bathroom that belonged to their quarters on board the Arena, a luxury only the higher ranking officers called their own. The other airmen had to use the communal shower on each deck, and even though Robert didn't need any luxury and never minded showering together with his team, but tonight he was deeply grateful for the privacy of their quarters, especially regarding all the unspoken things and feelings standing between Thomas and him.

Robert stopped behind Thomas, uncertain all of a sudden, feeling naked and vulnerable despite the bathrobe he'd slung around his still damp body after his shower. He knew that Thomas had sensed him coming in, but the younger one ignored him for a while longer, a motionless figure in the dark shadows that had fallen over their living room when Thomas had turned off the lights to regard the stars twinkling and shining outside.

The dark-haired major waited for his husband to finally acknowledge him, the shadows of his painful memories darkening his thoughts and pressing down on his shoulders like a heavy weight.

Borussia is beautiful,” Thomas eventually said musingly, and Robert felt himself tensing up.

“You wanted to check me for injuries,” he countered, not willing to talk about the sun he'd grown up under – or the man who'd grown up together with him. The man Robert would have died for in a another life that was long gone, faded to a shaded memory of a past Robert wanted to forget so badly but never could.

Thomas craned his neck to look at him over his shoulder, his eyes glittering in the dark. “I will check you for injuries, Robert, and he'll have to pay for every scratch and every bruise I'll find on you.”

“There are no bruises and scratches, Thomas.”

Thomas unfolded his arms, bridging the distance between them to lay his hand under Robert's chin and look into his eyes. “Still so protective of him, aren't you, Lewy? He would kill you without thinking, but you can't let go of him.”

“Marco doesn't matter any longer, Thomas. It's you whom I love.”

“Oh yes, he does matter, Robert. He'll always do.” Thomas didn't touch him except for his fingertips still holding Robert's chin, and the older man set his jaw into a firm line. “Is that why you want me to kill him, Müller?” he asked, and Thomas' lips twitched into a brief smile.

“I never said that I wanted you to kill him, Robert – not as your husband, that is. It wouldn't change anything, it would probably only tie you more to him. But as your second and your wingman I have to remind you of your responsibilities and duties towards your people and your team every time you risk your life, and that I'll do until you've learned that getting yourself killed won't give you the peace you're hoping to find.”

“I don't know what you mean, Müller,” Robert murmured, but he peered down at Thomas' fingers when he said that, long and elegant digits that were shimmering pale-white in the light of the stars falling through the translucent alloy of Arena's protecting walls.

Thomas just snorted. “Sure you do.”

Robert's shoulders slumped under the soft cotton of his bathrobe. “I'm sorry.”

“Don't be.” Thomas gently urged him to lift his chin up and meet his eyes again. “You're hard work, Lewy, but I already knew that before you trapped me with those big blue eyes of yours,” he chuckled, leaning a little bit closer until his warm breath was ghosting over Robert's cold cheeks. A heavy shudder wrecked Robert's slim frame, and he unconsciously licked over his suddenly dry lips.

“So what are you going to do with me now, captain?” he breathed out, and Thomas' eyes went dark, his smile turning predatory.

“Now I'm going to make you make up with me for almost having yourself gotten killed again today, major – and I'm going to enjoy every single second of it!” he whispered huskily, finally closing the remaining distance between their mouths.

 

***

 

Thomas' kiss was burning Robert, making him feel flushed and hot within the blink of an eye. There was nothing soft or delicate in Thomas' fierce kiss, and it was the punishment the younger man had intended it to be for all the worries and fears Robert had pulled him through earlier that day.

Robert couldn't fight against it, all he could do was to surrender to the passionate onslaught and let his husband have his way with him, opening his mouth for him and melting against Thomas' lithe frame. The dark-blond captain was still wearing his uniform, and seeing their roles reversed sent a thrill of anticipation through Robert like it always did. It was a relief to give up control and let the other one take the lead, and a low moan escaped his throat when calloused hands found their way under the bathrobe to cup his bare ass and press him close to Thomas' slim but strong body.

The dark-haired major was tired down to his bones, every cell of his exhausted body screaming for sleep, but his mind was still racing, and Robert knew that sleep wouldn't come to him in the state he was in anyway. Thomas knew how to handle him and how to grant him some hours of restless slumber after days like this one, and this was all Robert wanted and needed tonight.

His lips felt numb and bruised from the angry attack of Thomas' hard kiss, but Robert didn't try to pull back, his fingers digging into Thomas' scalp to pull him even closer instead. He needed to forget for a few hours, and Thomas, his other half, husband, lover, friend, wingman and second-in-command, was the only one who could give him what he craved, the only one knowing him better than Robert knew himself. There was only one other person in this universe that knew him as well as Thomas did, but Robert didn't want to think about him right now, not after their painful encounter a couple of hours ago, an encounter that had almost led to Robert's death - and to Thomas becoming a widower far too soon.

Thomas growled disapprovingly at his lips when Robert pulled him closer, stepping back and pulling away from his mouth with a shake of his head. “Oh no, Lewandowski. I'm the one in charge tonight, you'll better not forget that again!”

The younger one pulled at the belt that kept the white garment together around Robert's body, and the cotton opened and glided from Robert's tanned shoulders, landing in a small heap before Robert's feet. The dark-haired major lifted his chin up, his arms hanging down at his sides as he let his husband regard him. Attentive eyes narrowed ever so slightly as Thomas checked him for injuries, traveling up and down on the landscape of Robert's male body in order not to miss even the smallest cut or bruise.

Thomas growled and stepped closer again when he didn't find any, and Robert smiled weakly, defiance and challenge visible in his own with desire dark-blue eyes.

“Told you that I'm fine,” he whispered, and Thomas swallowed audibly, the expression of the determined hunter never leaving his face. “You did,” he agreed, “but you put yourself in danger today – again - and you'll have to suffer the consequences of your stupid behavior now, major!” he snarled, scooping Robert up in his arms and carrying him over to their small bedroom to show him how angry he still was for the fright Robert had given him when Marco Reus had been so damn close to shooting him.

 

***

 

“Don't move! Don't fucking move a single finger, Robert, I'm not done with you yet!” Thomas snapped a few minutes later when Robert was trying to wriggle on the sheets to find a better position, and he froze, only turning his head a little bit more to the side because the cushion his face had been pressed into was threatening to suffocate him. Thomas let him do that, waiting for a second or two before he fixed the ropes around Robert's wrists and tied them to the bedposts. It was not the usual piece of furniture to be found aboard a war-ship, but Robert and Thomas had earned the privilege of furnishing their quarters the way they wanted to as the military commanders of the Red Fleet, the biggest and most important fleet of Fighters Municha Prime had built to win this war.

Colonel Heynckes wasn't interested in the private lives of his subordinates as long as it didn't affect their jobs, and in Thomas and Robert's case, their private life granted him that Robert was always focused and at his best when it came to his job because of Thomas' special way to ground him again after days like the one that was just about to end.

Robert was already hard and aching, but he wasn't allowed to move and seek the friction he craved by rubbing his groin against the mattress, and so he lay still, hoping that Thomas wouldn't tease him for too long because he really needed to come any time soon – almost even more than he needed to forget for a few merciful hours.

Thomas was still fully dressed, looming over his back, but he ripped his jacket open now to carelessly toss it to the side, the red color of his tight undershirt accentuating his slim torso and his perfectly defined breast-muscles. The younger man bent down to nip at Robert's earlobe with his teeth, his breath hot against Robert's shoulders, damp from the sweat of arousal that was slowly cooling in the rather cold air of their bedroom.

“You were stupid today, Major Lewandowski, so damn stupid! When will you finally learn not to try and get yourself killed all of the time?” Thomas' words were barely more than a harsh whisper, and Robert shivered, earning another playful bite with the tiny motion.

“I'm sorry, Tommy,” he croaked out, clenching his fists when another painful wave of desire shot through him.

“No, you're not. You're going to do it again tomorrow when Heynckes will let you loose once more, and the day after tomorrow and the day after that and so on – just until you've eventually succeeded, Robert.” Thomas made his way down from Robert's sensitive earlobe to his neck and his shoulders, biting hard enough to make it hurt and leave a small red bruise along the way, but not hard enough to cause serious damage or actually hurt Robert. It was just enough to make the dark-haired major focus on the next spot where his husband would place another claim-mark and take his mind off his encounter with the blond commander of Borussia's Yellow Fleet.

Robert groaned into the pillow, his hips trembling with the effort to keep still while Thomas continued to set his claim on him with his lips, his teeth and rough hands, reminding him thoroughly of whom and where his heart belonged now, soothing the marks he left on Robert's tingling and aching body with hoarse words of passion murmured against Robert's shivering flesh.

His mind was spinning with the forceful waves of desire and pure need that captured his body, and he tugged at the ropes binding his hands, but to no avail. His poor cock was trying to tear through the mattress by the time Thomas finally pushed one lubed finger into his secret channel, gentle enough not to cause him real pain, but hard enough to make his hips jerk and pull a soft cry from his lips.

“You're mine, Robert! You were mine from the moment I found you in the wreck of your ship, unconscious and bleeding, more dead than alive, and I won't let him take you away from me – in which way whatsoever, do you understand? You're mine, only mine!”

“Tommy, please!” Robert ground out, dizzy with need and want, and it cost him all of his strength not to push back against the relentless finger stretching him open with such great skills. “Tell me who I am, and I might gonna give you what you need, Robert Lewandowski!” his husband demanded, and Robert balled his fists, struggling against the ropes keeping him from turning around and taking the younger man into his arms.

Thomas had added a second finger in the meantime, and it was too much and too little at the same time, too little to quench the fire raging inside him, too much to lay still and just take what Thomas was giving him.

“You're Thomas, my beloved husband.” Robert croaked, and Thomas bent down deep until the soft material of his clothing was brushing against Robert's oversensitive skin. Sharp teeth pulled at his earlobe before biting into his shoulder, the clever fingers never faltering in their doing. “Tell me who I am, major!” Thomas demanded again, and Robert gritted his teeth, not wanting to give in and say the words the younger man wanted to hear.

“You're my everything, the one I love and desire!” he growled, a sound of protest fleeing his lips when Thomas suddenly stopped, pulling his fingers out of Robert's quivering hole. “One last time, Robert Lewandowski. Tell me who I am!” Thomas snarled right next to his ear, and Robert could see his eyes glowing dangerously in the darkness when he craned his neck a little bit more.

The dark-haired major closed his own eyes in defeat for a moment, drawing in a shuddering breath. “You're my second, my wingman, my captain. You're the one saving my ass and keeping me alive when I'm risking too much again. You're the reason why I'm still living and breathing, the one I come home to every night. You're mine like I'm yours,” Robert whispered, and the heated kiss he got as a reward for his obedience stole his breath from his lips. They kissed until Robert's neck hurt from the uncomfortable position, but he didn't really care about it, all he cared about was that Thomas was finally willing to give him what he needed so badly, unzipping his pants and lubing himself up to enter Robert with one swift and deep thrust.

The dark-blond captain braced his left forearm against the pillow right next to Robert's head, closing his calloused fingers around Robert's throat, not tight enough to really choke him, but tight enough to remind him that Robert's life lay in his hand and that he could choke him and take his life away from him if he wanted to. The fingers of his right hand dug into Robert's hipbone when Thomas began to move, setting up a hard and fast rhythm – just like Robert needed it in his painful arousal. Robert's hands were still tied to the bedposts, his legs spread wide with Thomas half lying and half kneeling in between them, and his world shrank to the rather small bed in their dark bedroom, nothing else existing any longer while Thomas possessed him hard and fast, almost angrily, granting the older man the forgetting he craved more than anything else.

The heavy weight of Thomas' hand around his throat grounded him, and Robert focused on the way Thomas moved inside him with his hard cock, in and out, in and out until the whirling mess of his thoughts finally stopped spinning around, no room left for anything other than the desire and lust his love made him feel.

“You will come untouched for me, Lewy. You will come for me and give yourself to me completely, understood?” Thomas' lips were in his hair and panting against his ear and his damp cheek, and Robert gladly succumbed to his ecstasy, time standing still when his body went rigid beneath the other man, everything exploding into a million glittering lights like the stars outside the huge war-ship were glittering, still visible because neither Thomas nor Robert himself had bothered to make the wall become opaque again.

Borussia was the biggest star of all of them; the biggest one because of the ship's close position to it, but Municha was glowing somewhere in the distance as well, the life-giving sun of Robert's new home, and the brief thought that Robert could see her warm golden light through his closed eyelids crossed his mind before it vanished again, the intense pleasure of his climax erasing every coherent thought and any other emotion – even the thought of the man Robert had once loved as desperately as he now loved his husband.

Thomas followed him onto the height of ecstasy only seconds later, filling the emptiness deep inside Robert with his love and passion, and for some peaceful minutes they simply lay there, listening to each other's slowly calming breathing.

Robert was already drifting off to sleep by the time Thomas pulled out of him and went to the bathroom to fetch a wet cloth and clean him up, the arms of his second, wingman and husband holding him safe during the short night – until another day would begin.

Another day that would bring more fights and more war, the anxious question whether or not Major Robert Lewandowski would survive this new day like he'd survived all the previous ones so far remaining unanswered until night would fall over Municha Prime again, the planet that was Robert's home now, a home chosen not by heart - but by fate and the shadows of Robert's past.