“Your mate Ray thought he was so bloody clever but a shotgun blast to the stomach isn’t a clever way to die.”
It had taken three men to pull Bodie off McCauley and in the process he'd managed to leave his mark on all four of them. McCauley had been bent over and limping as they’d led him away, Murphy clutching a bloody hanky to his own nose.
The police station hadn’t been designed for holding many prisoners and they could hardly put Bodie in a cell with any of McCauley’s men, so Cowley had ordered Bodie handcuffed to the metal stair railings until he calmed down. Bodie had taken deep breaths, forcing himself to slump in a defeated fashion, while calculating just how long it would take him to catch up with the van leaving for London with McCauley in it. Just how long it would take to get him to tell where Doyle’s body was, already making plans for just how slow and painful a death McCauley was going to face in turn. There was a shotgun in the boot of his car, for starters. Bodie had been handcuffed to the stairs for about twenty minutes when the small boy had wandered over to him.
“You Bo-die, mister?”
Bodie raised his head to stare at the boy. “Yes.”
“I thought I heard one of the other coppers say your name. I’m Billy Compton. I’m waiting on me mum, they’ve got me dad downstairs.”
“Look Billy, I—”
“Ray said he had a best mate called Bo-die when I told him about Dave and how I ain’t seen him since me Dad took me from me school.”
“You knew Ray?”
“The other men ignored me but Ray was nice, even kicked a ball about with me. I didn't like it when they tied him up, didn’t seem right. Mr. McCauley told dad to take him away and dad didn't like to leave me alone with the rest of those blokes, so I went with him.”
Bodie strained forward against the handcuffs. “Do you know where they took Ray? They shot him and—”
“Don’t be daft, me dad wouldn't shoot anyone. He left Ray in the castle and then we went back to the farm.”
“Where's the castle?”
“I dunno. I were sleeping, woke up when we got there. Dad took Ray inside and I fell asleep again. It were a castle though, had a tower like in me books.”
The local police had insisted there were no castles anywhere nearby and the maps had confirmed it, revealing nothing of interest. Despite all the evidence to the contrary, Cowley had readily agreed to Bodie’s demand that they send out the squad and the local police to look for what might pass as an eight year old boy’s idea of a castle.
That had been an hour ago. A simple equation kept working its way through Bodie’s mind. Speed meant a larger area covered, but also meant potential castles missed. Billy had said he’d woken up when his dad had got out of the car to open a gate into the field where the castle was, so he broke the speed limit down every lane, slamming on the brakes at every five bar gate he saw. They were in Wiltshire, that was an awful lot of wear and tear on the brakes and they were already beginning to squeal. Another dead end. Bodie was slamming the car into reverse, ready to turn around, when a half overgrown gate caught his eye. It looked like there were recent tire tracks in the long grass and he jumped out of the car and walked over to it. In the middle of the field, hidden from the road by a high hedge, was a folly in the shape of a grey stone turret and Bodie could easily see where a small boy might think it was a castle. If only Doyle were really still alive… As he opened the gate and ran toward the folly, gun in hand, the idling car forgotten, he started bartering for Doyle’s life with a god he didn’t believe in.
The rotten wood door gave way under the force of Bodie’s momentum as he barrelled through it. The round room was empty. Bodie’s shoulders slumped as he carefully checked the walls. Apart from one window aperture, the walls were solid stone. It had to be the right place. Nothing else came close to Billy’s description and the gang hadn’t had time to move Doyle since then. Bodie started kicking at the loose rubble covering the floor. Still nothing. In one corner was a pile of dry branches and when Bodie pushed them to one side he found a trap door. As he pulled upward on the door’s handle he could hear Doyle’s hoarse voice.
“Back already? I don’t care what you do to me you fucking bastard, I’m not telling you anything.”
Bodie practically jumped down the ladder. A roughly hewn cellar was illuminated by a battery powered camping lantern sitting on the floor beside a tray of surgical tools. Ray was tied, spread eagled, to four rings set into the stone wall. Near his feet was a pile of material that Bodie realized used to be Doyle’s clothes. The only things he still had on were his underpants and his boots.
“Christ Ray, we thought you were dead.”
“Rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated.”
Bodie stood there relishing the sight of an alive, and apparently uninjured, Doyle. “What happened to your clothes?”
“Thought I’d be more comfortable this way... The bastard cut them off me with a hunting knife. Cut me down.”
“No, I don’t think I will.”
Relief had passed quickly. Bodie was angry, he couldn’t remember the last time he’d been this angry. Ray was always taking stupid chances and he was sick of it. Ray had insisted on volunteering for this undercover job, ignoring all of Bodie’s protests as usual, and if it hadn’t been for the luck of talking to a little boy that recognized his name, Doyle would have, at the very least, starved to death.
“Stop fucking about, Bodie, put that bloody gun away and cut me down.”
Bodie slid his gun back into its holster, advancing toward Doyle while trying to quell the sudden urge to hit him. He couldn’t punch Ray while he was tied down, it wouldn’t be right. He picked up the hunting knife and moved in closer to where Ray hung on the wall. Once close enough he dropped the knife and surprised himself by kissing Doyle, leaning his full weight in to him, forcing Doyle’s head back against the wall. He was again surprised when Doyle’s mouth opened under the pressure, much less surprised when Doyle bit down hard on Bodie’s lower lip causing him to jerk backwards.
“You opportunistic bastard!”
Bodie flinched but moved in again, bending his head, biting hard into the side of Doyle’s neck, wanting to brand him, wanting to know he was real, that he’d really found him, that Ray was really alive. Bodie’s hand started sliding down Doyle’s chest, stopping to play lightly across the skin above the waistband of Doyle’s underpants, petting his stomach, his hand suddenly stilled by the force of Doyle’s low, cold voice.
“Cut me down, now Bodie. You move that hand any further and you better plan on killing me else when you do cut me down I’ll kill you.”
Bodie focused on his ragged breathing, calming down, startled at how close he’d come to... No. He couldn’t have done that.
Bodie scrabbled around on the floor for the knife and cut the ropes tying Doyle’s legs to the wall. Then he cut the rope that secured his wrists. Doyle flexed his wrists, still surrounded by rope and curled his arms, wincing as the blood flowed back in to his extremities. Then he punched Bodie, who stood still and took it, before reaching for what was left of his clothes. Bodie silently took off his jacket and offered it to him.
“No, I want your polo neck. If you think I’m walking in to see Cowley with your teeth marks on my neck, you’ve got another bloody thing coming.”
Bodie silently took off his polo neck, leaving him in his vest, and handed it over, waiting as Doyle pulled it on before putting on Bodie’s jacket. Bodie hesitated for a moment and then reached for his waistband.
“What are you doing?”
“You still look cold thought you might like my trous—”
Bodie dropped his hands to his sides. “I’ve got a blanket in the car.”
“Then let’s get out of here.” Doyle stood well back and gestured to the ladder. “After you, mate.”
Bodie knew if Doyle didn’t trust him at his back any more, they were finished as partners but also that he had no one to blame but himself. He moved heavily toward the ladder.
Apart from Bodie’s radio call to alert the squad about finding Doyle alive, that was greeted by a lot of raucous responses, the trip back to the police station was made in complete silence, Doyle hunched in on himself, obviously brooding. Bodie found himself wondering if Doyle would tell Cowley why he wanted a new partner as that would undoubtedly lead to his expulsion from CI5. Not that it mattered, if he wasn’t teamed with Ray any more he’d leave anyway, cash in his Swiss bank account and become a gentleman of leisure. Doyle jerked his head around to glare at him as Bodie snorted at the image of himself in tweeds, propping up the bar in a village pub.
All the confirmation Doyle needed that the squad had thought him dead was there in Cowley waiting outside the police station to shake his hand as he got out of the car. Cowley was patting him on the shoulder, smiling at him, when it must have suddenly occurred to Cowley just how strange his behaviour must seem.
“Away with you and get yourself cleaned up. Wrapped in that blanket you look even more disreputable than usual, if that’s possible.”
Doyle was relieved that Bodie didn’t try to follow him in, hovering next to Cowley instead. He’d deal with Bodie later.
The station sergeant told him there was a basic shower in the back and told Ray he’d try to find some spare clothes he could put on afterward. Ray was grateful when a few minutes later, as he shrugged out of Bodie’s jacket, Anson walked in carrying Ray’s own holdall from his undercover assignment.
“Cowley thought you’d like to have this.”
“Thanks.” Doyle got a better look at him as Anson moved closer to drop the holdall on the bench. “What happened to your face?”
“What?” Doyle finished pulling his boot off and stared up at Anson.
“McCauley told us he’d shot you in the gut and left you to bleed to death slowly. It took three of us to pull Bodie off him and at that I thought he might still succeed in breaking McCauley’s neck.”
Doyle’s hands tightened on the bench. “Bodie doesn’t look like he’s got a mark on him.”
“Probably hasn’t other than an accidental bruise or two.”
“It’s not like we really wanted to pull him off McCauley, just that Cowley expected us to do it.” Anson gestured toward Ray’s chest. “So why are you dressed like that?”
“’Cos I’m bloody freezing. That Compton bastard cut my clothes off, left me chained to a wall staring at a tray of nasty little knives. Guess he thought it would soften me up before he or McCauley came back to ask me some questions.”
“They weren’t coming back.”
“How do you know that?”
“McCauley really thought you were dead, he was crowing about it. If it hadn’t been for Billy—”
“Yeah, he recognized Bodie’s name from your talking about him. Bodie got it out of Billy that his dad had taken you to a castle. It was Bodie that got us all out looking for you and he was bloody lucky. The locals told us flat out that there wasn’t a castle in the area, said it had to be the boy’s imagination and Compton wasn’t talking, think he’s still more scared of McCauley than of us.”
Bodie, hunched in a thin windcheater someone must have found for him, was still outside with Cowley when Doyle emerged from the station. Doyle moved to join them, handing Bodie his jacket.
“Here, you can have this back.” Doyle tugged at the neckline of Bodie’s polo neck that he was still wearing underneath his clean shirt and Bodie’s eyes dropped. “I’m still cold though so you can have this back later.”
Bodie took the windcheater off, put his own jacket back on, muttered something about giving the windcheater back to the desk sergeant and walked in to the station.
“Should you be going to the hospital?” Cowley was watching him a little too closely.
“I’m all right, sir, just a few scratches and an extra bruise or two.” Doyle dragged his sleeve across his face. “Cold and tired more than anything.”
“If you’re sure...”
Bodie had rejoined them, if it could be called that as he was still standing a couple of feet away. Cowley was looking backwards and forwards between them like he was calculating something.
“I’m sure, sir. Bodie’ll drive me back to London, I’ll sleep for three days and I’ll be fine.”
“Aye well, I’ll see you tomorrow afternoon for your report.”
“Right, sir. Well, we’ll push off then.” Doyle started walking towards the car park sure that Bodie would follow.
Bodie caught up as Doyle reached the Capri. “Ray—”
“Shut it. I’m not good company right now and I don’t see why anyone else should have to suffer. You drive, I’ll sleep.”
Doyle woke up as Bodie stopped the car outside Doyle’s flat. Doyle climbed out of the car, talking over his shoulder.
“Turn the motor off Bodie you’re coming in. I want a word with you.”
Bodie could guess the words Doyle had in mind, most of them Anglo-Saxon.
Doyle waited for Bodie to precede him up the stairs and then, after opening his door, stepped back again for Bodie to go first through the door, before stepping inside himself and locking the door behind them.
“This is getting old fast, Doyle. You’re acting like you don’t trust me anymore.”
Doyle’s knee rammed in to the back of Bodie’s legs as he walked in to the kitchen, the motion collapsing Bodie on to his knees. While he was still off balance, Doyle caught his arms forcing them across and back, cuffing them together behind his back.
Doyle walked around in front of Bodie. “I trust you more like this.”
As Bodie started to try to scramble back to his feet, Doyle pushed down roughly on his shoulders.
“Stay down Bodie. If you try to get up again you’ll be sorry. I want you to know what it feels like to have someone you thought was a good mate, your best mate, treat you like shit.”
Bodie couldn’t meet his eyes. “I wouldn’t have—I didn’t mean...”
Doyle stepped in close, Bodie’s kneeling body almost touching his thighs and caught hold of the hair at the back of Bodie’s head, wrenching backwards, forcing Bodie to look up at him.
“What you did...” Doyle’s other hand moved to clutch at the side of Bodie’s neck. “I thought we were—How do you like it?”
As Bodie was forced to gaze up at him he realized that Doyle’s cock was pushing against his zip. Without hesitating he wrenched forward against Doyle’s hands, closing the gap between them, dragging his cheek across Doyle’s erection. Doyle gasped, but Bodie noted he didn’t drag his head away from Doyle’s crotch.
“I like it a lot.” Bodie mouthed at Doyle’s erection through the cloth, feeling Doyle’s hips jerk. “I’d like it better if you unzipped this for me. I seem to be a little tied up.”
Bodie held his breath, not sure what Doyle would do next, only breathing out as Doyle’s hands moved from Bodie’s head to work on his flies, easing the zip open, releasing his erection. Bodie didn’t hesitate, licking up the length of Ray before swallowing him down.
“Christ!” Doyle’s hands found Bodie’s hair again, fingers tightening on his skull.
It had been a long time for Bodie, but after a little initial gagging when he forgot to ease in to it he was surprised how fast it came back to him, like riding a bike. He stifled a laugh, worried about choking and about whether he might be losing his mind. He was pretty sure Ray had lost his. As he hollowed his cheeks and tongued at the head of Ray’s cock he found he didn’t know or care.
Bodie kept right on, taking Doyle deeper and swallowing around him.
“Fuck, I said stop.” Doyle wrenched Bodie’s head back.
For the second time in one day Bodie thought about killing Ray. That was before Doyle pushed down on his shoulders, moving around him to kneel behind him, reaching for Bodie’s flies. Doyle stopped dead, his erection pressing against Bodie’s cloth covered arse, his stomach against Bodie’s handcuffed hands, his fingers hovering above Bodie’s zip. Bodie was definitely going to kill him.
“Fucking get on with it.”
Doyle moved fast at that, opening Bodie’s flies, dragging his trousers and briefs down to his knees. Bodie winced as the cloth caught briefly on his erection before gasping as Doyle wrapped his fingers tightly around it, stroking, rocking his own erection against Bodie’s bared arse.
Doyle’s hand on his cock was almost too tight for comfort, Doyle’s other hand, pushing Bodie’s upper body down, was tight enough to leave bruises on the back of Bodie’s neck. As Bodie breathed in to it, feeling the drag of Doyle’s cock against his arse it was almost perfect. Almost.
“What’sthematterDoyle, notgotthegutsto fuck me?” He knew he was slurring his words but was impressed he could even manage to get them out past gritted teeth.
“Didn’t know you wanted—”
Doyle’s hands tightened further causing Bodie to grunt before they relaxed, but only slightly.
“No lube. I’d rip you—”
“You’resupposedtobe... the... fucking... cleverone.” Bodie panted through it. “We’reinyourbloody... kitchen.”
“Right...” Doyle stopped moving. “Right.” Doyle let go of him.
Bodie could hear Ray scrambling to his feet, gratified by how unsteady his footsteps sounded as Bodie pushed his forehead into the lino and tried to get control of his ragged breathing, the sound of cupboards opening and slamming closed echoing above his head.
Doyle dropped to his knees again behind him. “I’ve got salad oil—”
“Fine, anything, just fuck me.”
As much as he wanted it, Bodie still tensed as the first oily finger breached him.
“You all right?” Doyle’s other hand slid in a quick caress over Bodie’s arse.
“Yeah, yeah, just don’t stop.”
Doyle added more fingers, twisting, finding Bodie’s prostate with an expertise that could only be born of experience. Bodie felt himself slipping, knew it was too soon.
“Now Doyle. Now.”
Doyle entered him in one long, slow push. Balls deep he stopped, hands stroking Bodie’s thighs, like he couldn’t stand to be completely still. Bodie breathed in deeply, savouring the feeling, before pulling forward slightly and then pushing back hard against Ray. It was obviously the signal Ray had been waiting for, as he pulled back and slammed home. A string of curses from Bodie, all formed around the dire consequences if Doyle were to stop or slow down, egged Ray on, slamming into Bodie hard enough to drive him forward and down again against the lino. As the tension built and Bodie felt his climax inevitably drawing in on him, Doyle’s still oily hand slid from Bodie hip to tighten around Bodie’s cock again. One stroke, two and it was over for Bodie, Doyle rapidly following, spilling deep inside him.
As Bodie’s senses came back to him, he knew he’d have to get Doyle to move as where he was draped across Bodie’s back, his hands were going numb in the cuffs and Ray was still forcing his forehead in to the lino. He kept his mouth shut because once they moved he knew his Ray well enough to know he’d want to talk about it and he still wasn’t sure how much he should reveal. Doyle suddenly jerked upright, Bodie gritting his teeth at how that sudden movement dragged against overly sensitized parts, before Ray slowly and carefully eased out of Bodie, muttering about what a bloody mess they’d made of themselves and the floor. Doyle flopped over on his back to lie alongside Bodie.
“...Could you take these handcuffs off?”
Doyle scrambled upright again, shoving his hand in to the pocket of his jeans, still halfway down his thighs. “Course, sorry mate.” He took the handcuffs off, flopping back to the floor as Bodie rubbed at his wrists before flopping back down himself, on his side, facing Doyle.
“So...” Doyle scrubbed at his face. “This is your thing, right?”
“Your thing. Restraint... Bondage... A bit of S&M... Y’know.”
“Hardly S&M, mate.” Bodie grinned at him, couldn’t help himself.
“Help me out here, Bodie.”
“Thought I already did.”
“I swear I’m going to do for you.”
“Thought you already did—”
“Enough. I’m trying to understand here, Bodie. I just meant, are you in to this sort of thing? Is that why you reacted the way you did in the cellar when you saw me tied up?”
“No.” Bodie rolled to his back, barely hiding a wince.
“No, what?” Doyle rolled up on an elbow to stare down at him. “I need... You’ve got to give me something I can work with, here. I’m at a loss. No, it’s not your thing or no, that’s not why you tried your luck in the cellar?”
Confusion suited Doyle, but Bodie knew he was only a few steps away from annoyed all over again. He turned his face away before he answered.
“No, it’s not my thing, prefer a nice soft bed for starters. As often as we get tied up or beaten up in our line of work I’d have a permanent hard-on... And no, that’s not why I almost got carried away in the cellar.”
“Then why?” Doyle reached out and turned Bodie’s face toward him again. “I didn’t think I was going to make it out of there alive. I was so bloody glad to see you and then... Christ, what got in to you?”
“I thought you were dead, dead Ray. I was so relieved to be wrong... and then so bloody angry at you for almost getting yourself killed.” Bodie pressed his face in to Doyle’s palm. “I just couldn’t hold it in any longer. How I felt. How I feel.”
“Now that...” Doyle kissed him for the first time, moaning low as Bodie deepened it. “That I can work with.”