Rhys twitches in his seat, blinking and nodding as the guest executive pleads his case. Everyone, from arms dealers to children's toy companies, wants a sliver of the empire that Rhys has brought up from the shattered skeleton of Helios.
The universe does indeed rest on Atlas' shoulders.
Rhys snaps to attention, proud smirk dissolving as he's forced to abandon his narcissistic daydreams. The suited man across from him is sweating, face flushed and hands trembling as he worries at a fidget trinket with his thumbs. The CEO's eyes narrow, taking in the rather humble statistics plastered across the holoprojector's screen.
"Those numbers aren't that impressive," Rhys points out, watching the man struggle not to fall apart in front of two of the three most powerful men in this corner of the galaxy. "Tim, what do you think?"
His business partner casts him a judgmental glance, never approving of how Rhys likes to toy with his dinner. Power has inflated the cyborg's head over the past three years, eroding his awkwardness and causing him to become more and more like his idol with every cutthroat decision. But Tim is different. He understands what Rhys never will: the feeling of utter helplessness when someone has endless power over you. Timothy is the only thing keeping Rhys in check, reminding him of his roots and, at times, even his humanity.
"I'll sponsor him if you won't," Timothy says with a shrug, leaning back to watch Rhys scowl with a look of teasing satisfaction. "Come on, even a bastard like you has to admit that there's potential here."
Rhys relents and nods with an agitated eye roll, beckoning the man over with his cybernetic hand and clearing his throat as Tim moves in to provide a signature as well.
"Oh thank you, thank you SO much, you don't know how much this means to me-"
Tim leans over the desk as the guest continues, sharp chin brushing Rhys's gelled coif and cologne flooding the smaller man's nostrils. Rhys tenses; Tim can see his legs straighten, a muscle in his tattooed neck twitching as his eyes flick to catch Tim in his peripheral vision. Their guest is completely ignorant of the sexual tension, gesturing wildly and thanking them every five seconds. The signatures are given and one of Rhys' assistants shoos the man out, refusing his desperate attempts to ask for a picture with his "saviours."
Finally, the door slides closed, its metallic click sealing the end of their workday. Tim pulls away but only makes it a meager two inches before Rhys is twisting out of the chair, grabbing a fistful of his shirt and fighting his retreat with a spoiled pout, porcelain cheeks flushed with the evidence of his arousal.
"Jesus, I thought it'd never end," he whines, inner bastard receding as he finally allows his walls to collapse in the presence of trusted company.
Tim's heart skips a beat as it always does when Rhys touches him; lips automatically parting when the CEO cranes his neck, eyebrows furrowed in desperation as he awaits Tim's much needed kiss. Tim takes his time, slipping a loving hand up to rest behind the pale neck, thumbing a fading bruise that peaks out from beneath the collar of Rhys' dress shirt. He massages a tense occipital with his thumb and leans in closer, first brushing a soft nuzzle against the forehead, then sliding down over the bridge of the strong nose and onward to the defined, plush lips. Rhys rewards him with a desperate gasp, arching up out of the chair to press their chests together.
"Jack....," he breathes.
For perhaps the millionth time, an emotional dagger digs and twists up beneath Tim's ribs, his expression souring as reality slams into him. He pulls away too abruptly, startling Rhys and accidentally making him lose his balance. The pseudo-lover tumbles, tilting over the edge of the chair's arm and gasping out a curse, gagging when Tim snatches the back of his jacket and hauls him back up. Rhys glares and opens his mouth to berate the other man, but the expression softens when he sees Tim's distressed face. He's about to say something when the door slides open once more to reveal an all too familiar black and green android, devoid of a synethic skin covering. Jack prefers the cold, metallic look, and Tim finds that it matches his personality.
"Heyyyy kiddos, sorry m'late, someone thought I was a service bot and some good natured strangulation was needed," it chortles, striding in with a swagger. The booming digital voice echoes in the high ceilinged office, sending a cold shiver down Tim's spine and an elated smile across Rhys's face. Tim frowns; Rhys is always so different around Jack. So utterly submissive and servile.
The third and final member of the Atlas ownership is none other than Jack himself, regrettably lacking his organic body, but that's where Timothy comes in. Jack gets off on the control he has over Timothy, and picking on the body double made him feel better about his predicament. But eventually, the man-turned-android had let him become a (closely monitored) business partner after he'd shown a knack for risky yet profitable investments.
"Jack!" Rhys practically gushes, bolting up out of his seat fast enough to send the arm of it slamming into Tim's crotch. He buckles and wheezes, eyes watering as he doubles over. He flushes a deep rosy pink when Jack barks out a brazen laugh, walking up to smack a cold robotic hand down on his shoulder.
"Careful kitten, don't damage our little meatbag. Consider yourself lucky Tim Tams, imagine not even HAVING balls in the first place!"
Rhys reaches out to apologize and comfort Tim, eyes locking with the doppelganger's and communicating beyond just bruised testicles. But then Tim's staring at Jack's perky metal ass, and Rhys is pulled up against the cold abdomen, momentarily forgetting Tim as he embraces Jack.
"Looks like you lil beauties were getting it on without me, you KNOW I hate it when you canoodle behind my back," Jack growls, whirling to poke Tim between the eyes three times to signify his displeasure. "You're only here to help with business, cuddle Rhysie for me, and occasionally, UNDER MY SUPERVISION, give him the classic Jack Original. Get your head out of your ass."
He says it in a playful tone, but Tim knows he means business. Jack's cold green eye ports glare down at him until he nods and drops his gaze, straightening back up as much as he can and struggling not to scowl. Why can't Rhys see that Jack is just using him to survive and thrive, playing on his heartstrings like Mozart and his piano? Rhys had spared Jack back on Pandora, mistaking his manipulation for some sad excuse for romantic feelings. Of course, the endoskeleton incident had made Rhys wary. But after Jack had spun his sob story and claimed that he was going mad for lack of a controllable body, Rhys had forgiven him. And shortly thereafter had downloaded him into a specially commissioned android body, accepting Jack's proposal that Timothy be hunted down and re-hired to stand in for what the body couldn't do.
But seeing Rhys being used isn't the most painful part. The most painful part is how Rhys ignores both Tim's obvious suffering and how much Jack revels in it.
"I came onto him first, he didn't do anything out of line, Jack," Rhys whispers into the bolted and plated throat, seeking to save Tim from the brunt of Jack's anger. He's been doing that more and more lately, as well as eating alone with Tim while the android recharges himself.
Those two developments are the only reasons Tim hasn't fallen into a complete state of suicidal depression.
"Oh DID ya now? Just so hungry for that perfect physique aren'tcha baby? Mmmm...how about we skip dinner and head straight for dessert?" Jack purrs, reaching up to rub Rhys's full bottom lip with his artificial thumb pad. The submissive man nods, glancing over at Tim, offering a gentle smile which he hesitantly returns. And then Jack's heading for the door, hip joints clicking and whirring as he drags Rhys out the door to their group living quarters, rudely yelling for Tim to follow.
Tim sullenly obeys, wincing as the leftover pain aches in his groin. The never-ending jealousy boils in his gut as he watches their forms, eyes lingering on Rhys' attractive hips and legs. All too soon they've reached their destination, passing a grand total of five security checkpoints before they can finally enter the lavish suite. Tim's not one to reject this kind of over the top lifestyle; in fact, he's the one who decorated most of it. But he'll always feel like an imposter in any expensive setting. It's just a constant reminder of Jack, and his permanent, utter servitude to the egotistical psychopath.
Rhys laughs loudly and Tim refocuses, walking over to the bar to pour himself a drink as Jack corrals Rhys towards the sprawling bed at the far end of the room. Tim sips the drink and watches, fixated on Rhys while he pulls his shirt off to reveal a heavily tattooed body and the scars of his updated cybernetic prosthesis. The sleek black pants follow, slipping down his toned legs to reveal a cute yellow pair of Hyperion briefs. Tim's knees weaken at the sight of the shapely ass, his cock twitching as the CEO gyrates playfully against Jack's thighs. For almost a year he's longed to be able to fuck Rhys, but as of late Jack forbids anything beyond cuddles and the rare blowjob. Despite promising to let Rhys experience his organic body again.
"Get your sorry ass over here Timmy, time to reestablish some rules of the house," Jack calls, and Tim obediently finishes his drink, wiping his mouth on the arm of his shirt. He draws a deep breath and walks over, heart jumping when Rhys turns and gives him a heavy-lidded look of sexual hunger.
But before anything can be said, Jack reaches out to grab Rhys by the wrist, yanking him down into his frigid lap. Rhys gasps, goosebumps pebbling his skin as he's shocked by the cold contact.
"Well don't just STAND there, dumbass, go get my dick!" Jack snorts, wrapping a possessive arm around Rhys's torso and studying Tim's every move. Tim walks to the wall of parts, selecting Jack's favorite cock: a synthetic onyx nine incher with golden striped ribs for an additional punch. Rhys wiggles out of the way as he squats to secure it in place and then leans in to kiss Tim's throat, silently thanking him for the favor. But Jack isn't happy with it, yanking Rhys back against himself with an annoyed tsk.
"Oh, so I can't even kiss him now?" Rhys snaps, and Tim freezes in his application of the robotic genitalia. "You used to be fine with it, is it so wrong to want your organic body? Which YOU suggested him for? Why do you always just make him WATCH now? Are you jealous or something?"
"I'm NOT jealous, don't you fucking dare question my motives," Jack hisses, shoving Tim away and finishing the job himself. "I know you two've been spending more time together, you're not exactly helping me feel SECURE, pumpkin. Imagine if YOU were stuck in a fuckin' green bean can for life and YOUR boyfriend started spending more time with the cuddle stand-in."
Rhys droops like a wilted flower, as he always does when Jack turns the blame on him. Tim glares at the carpet and clenches his fists, containing his anger as best he can. And he's pretty damn good at it, having bottled his emotions since signing up for the doppelganger job long before the destruction of Helios.
"M'sorry baby, please don't be upset," Rhys mumbles, leaning in to nuzzle up under the chiseled steel chin. Jack flicks his fingers, cueing Tim to look up at him.
"Get out, we don't need you here right now," Jack growls, and Tim nods, standing to go to his own separate room. Rhys gives him a sullen glance and turns away to straddle Jack's lap, turning his back and closing himself off from Tim.
Tim clicks the lock mechanism as soon as his door closes, slumping down to his knees and thunking his forehead against the metal. He truly doesn't know how much more of this twisted situation he can handle. He's come to care for Rhys more than he's comfortable with, and it scares him. Jack's going to figure it out sooner or later and dispose of him, behind Rhys' back. To be quite honest, he's shocked that Jack has kept him around this long in the first place.
"Fuck you," Tim curses through gritted teeth, directing it at both himself and the two other men. He blankly stares down at his hands as the tears drip down onto them, rolling off and deepening the shade of the dark grey carpet.
"Jaaaack," Rhys' voice lilts, loud enough to reach his room. Jack's voice joins his, but Rhys remains the loudest. He always is.
Tim bites his lip, growing hard despite how upset he is. Rhys' voice always does it to him; every time Tim masturbates, he imagines his face buried in the crook of that beautiful milky neck, Rhys crying out 'Tim' directly into his ear.
The brazen noises grow louder, the smacking of their rough sex leaving nothing to the imagination. Tim whines, slamming his fist against the door and pushing himself up, fumbling for his button and zipper as he walks towards his dresser. He finally works himself open, eager erection pushing out and straining against the soft material of his boxer briefs, desperate for release after an entire day of being in contact with his gorgeous cyborg.
Not his, he corrects himself with a pang of misery.
He pulls his shirt off and struggles out of his pants, not even bothering to remove the underwear. It only takes a little bit of coaxing to get his boner to push out of the slit, proudly standing to attention and weeping out a bead of precum as Rhys belts out a pleasured shriek. Tim squats and digs for his fleshlight, snatching the lube up off the nightstand and impatiently squirting it liberally into the soft silicone hole. He readies himself, climbing up onto the bed and kneeling, spreading his legs and bracing himself against the wall with a shaking hand.
His eyes roll back as he slips inside, groaning at the tight slick squeeze and letting the noise die down into a pitiful whimper.
"Rhys," he gasps, snapping his hips and pumping his arm at the same time, thrusting wildly as he imagines Rhys doggystyle in front of him, screaming and writhing as Tim fucks into him. "Oh, GOD, Rhys!! You're so perfect, so beautiful, god, I just want to hold you and make you mine, nobody else's."
He pants out sweet nothings with eyes closed, tears wetting his cheeks but erection still going strong as he pummels the toy, thighs straining as he struggles not to cum before he hears Rhys peak. And a short couple minutes later, Rhys' first hits, his orgasmic scream echoing through the corridors and spurring Tim over the edge. Tim bucks and shivers, mouth falling open in an expression of utter loving ecstasy while his cock twitches and fills the warm toy with spurts of his cum. He savors the peak while it lasts, but the pain comes trickling back when he opens his eyes and it's just his pillow and toy staring back up at him. Jack yells out an orgasm next and Tim snarls, yanking the toy off of himself and throwing it across the room, collapsing down into the soft comforter to pull his pillow close.
He commands his music system to start playing something to hide the sounds of his crying, but they could probably still hear him if they really tried. He sobs hard enough to shake his entire body, snuggling down under the covers to surround himself with softness as he fights through the onslaught of emotions. It continues for a good thirty minutes until he finally drifts off into sleep, still curled up deep in his lube and cum stained bed.
He doesn't notice the slim man slipping between his sheets and sleeping next to him until he abruptly wakes for a piss two hours later, stretching and grunting in surprise when his hand smacks into a nose.
"Ow!" Rhys hisses.
Tim stares at him with a stupid expression, blinking and taking in how the dim light glints off of Rhys' cybernetics and mismatched eyes. His unkempt, sex-ruined hair frames a bruised face and red eyes, swollen lips unintentionally pouty.
"R-rhys?..." Tim whispers.
"We had a fight, Jack hit me and left," he explains, sniffling and shifting to better face Tim. "Look...I'm uh...sorry. For how he's been treating you. How he's always treated you. I...I've been letting it all go to my head, and seeing how kind you always are....it's just refreshing. I wish it were different," he says, avoiding Tim's eyes until Tim reaches out to caress his chin.
"It CAN be," Tim breathes, moaning as Rhys burrows up against him.
"I don't think I'm ready for that yet...I mean, Jack is my boyfriend still...and he'd do something entirely irrational if we....yeah," Rhys worries, looking completely defeated and heartbroken. "I just...he's still affectionate. Doesn't that MEAN something? Doesn't he...still love me?"
Tim pulls him close as he starts to cry, tucking Rhys' messy head under his angular chin and pulling the blankets back up over both of them. His bladder is insistent, but it can wait.
"I don't know," Tim lies, but they both know the truth. Have known for a while now.
"Make love to me," Rhys murmurs into his neck, reaching down to fondle Tim through his boxer briefs. Tim quickly nods, floored at the surprise offer to finally be intimate with Rhys.
"Yeah, okay...gotta piss first, be right back," Tim warns, extricating himself from Rhys' grip to scurry away and do his business. When he returns Rhys is sitting up, holding the lube bottle in his hand and positioning himself on his back. Tim wastes no time, desperate to snatch up this chance at pleasuring the smaller man. He shuffles up onto the bed and steals the lube back, smearing it onto himself and pushing a dollop up into Rhys.
"Be careful, he...he was rough," Rhys explains, spreading his legs and welcoming Tim between them. Tim locks Rhys' head in place with his forearms, leaning in for a passionate kiss to distract the other man as he pushes in. Tim's quite large - mirroring Jack's body of course - so the stretch burns Rhys' already battered hole enough to draw a few tears. But within minutes Tim is gently rocking, sliding against that sweet spot until Rhys is writhing and moaning, trying his best to stay quiet for both of their sakes. Rhys' cock is hard against Tim's belly, stimulated between their bodies with each rock, and soon the intensity is just too much.
"Tim!!" Rhys gasps, bucking against the body double and covering the both of them with his cum. Tim shudders at the use of his name, showering Rhys with kisses and paying extra attention to the swelling bruises, moaning into Rhys' skin as he finds release in the tight, clenching hole.
"Rhys!! God, baby, oh my god, you're so beautiful, I love you so fucking much!" he cries, blushing when he gets to the confession, instantly regretting it. Rhys gazes up at him with an unreadable expression, then gives him a growing smile.
"Love?" he replies, now looking completely shocked.
Tim scowls in embarrassment, rolling away and flopping back against the mattress. Rhys rolls with him, not letting him escape and demanding an after-fuck cuddle.
"Six sirens Rhys, you're cute but you really are an idiot sometimes. And please...only call me Jack if we're WITH Jack, when you said it earlier in the office...that hurt," he sighs, finally smiling as Rhys burrows into him for an apologetic kiss.
"Sorry, it just slipped out, it's confusing going back and forth and I didn't know you have such strong feelings. I guess I shoulda known, you never really seemed to enjoy the roleplay lately. And I...don't know what I feel, but I know it's something. Something different from with Jack. Jack is distant...but you're different. You actually put effort into my feelings," Rhys confesses while nuzzling his chin.
That's more than enough for Timothy.
Rhys stays for about an hour after that, finally pulling away and kissing Tim, not wanting to get caught with him after such an intense fight. Jack would go absolutely nuclear if he walked in on THAT.
"I uh, I wanna do this more often," Rhys says, awkwardly shooting a signature finger gun and sliding off the bed to get dressed.
Tim nods, watching as he leaves the bedroom, staring up at the ceiling after the door closes. He grinds his teeth, enraged at the fact that Jack has the gall to not only emotionally abuse, but ALSO physically abuse Rhys. Not that it should be a surprise to any of them. He can't imagine how confusing and frustrating all of this must be for Rhys. But he can't shake the gnawing worry at the back of his mind that the cyborg is using him just like Jack has all these years.
As if this situation needed to get ANY more complicated than it already was. Tim knows Jack's dark side far better than Rhys, knows that if he really wants to, he can make you suffer in the most exquisite ways possible. His fear is the only reason Jack allows him so much leeway with the company.
Sleep evades the doppelganger and he finds himself more scared than he's ever been in his entire life.
But as always, the only thing to do is keep moving forward.