Actions

Work Header

Catch the Thunder

Chapter Text

"I think I get it, Bob," Freed said as he stared at a red-lit stage. "I'm a masochist."

The bald bartender with too much makeup giggled at the confession. "Nothing wrong with being an M. I've seen your fencing matches on the tele. A swordsman like you takes pain well."

"Nah, not that type … I think," he added, really unsure what he thought about the kinkier aspects of sex. He never tried handcuffs and such, so Freed really was unsure if he would like that. "I'm the type who likes to be teased and denied."

"Well, that's why you're here," the cross-dressing bartender said cheerfully.

Freed just grunted. "Yeah. Here." The South Pole Club, a gay strip club, sitting with a bartender he knew by first name, waiting for a dancer whose real name he did not even know. "When will he be on?"

"Second act, same as always," Bob replied.

"Second," the green-haired man grumbled.

He wanted his favorite stripper to be the opening act, but that coveted spot was only for the club's darling, a true professional named Ice Prince. That man made everyone else look terrible, but he riled up the crowd every time. The man Freed was waiting for was a polar opposite to Ice Prince. They called him Thor, probably due to the lightning-shaped scar that ran down his face and over one eye. It was a frightening scar, plus the man was a massive blond, more like a body builder than a stripper, and when the clothes came off, all of his tattoos made for a stunning visual. "Threatening Thor" was what some in the audience called him, but that was what made Freed fall for him.

Bob brought over another martini without even needing to be asked. He knew this regular customer that well. "You should request him this time. I don't think you've ever spoken a word to Thor."

Freed blushed a little. Oh yes, it was tempting, but … "I wouldn't even know what to say to him. I'd choke up, stare like some idiot, act like a totally smitten fool. No," he sighed, picking up the new drink. "Like I said, I'm a masochist. I'd rather watch him from afar. After all, lightning is beautiful when seen in the clouds, but terrifying when it strikes right in front of you."

Bob's jiggling face pouted until his cherry red lipstick looked like a blooming rose. "Oh dear! I really shouldn't say this. We're not supposed to push customers into something they don't want but … oh dear."

Freed took his eyes off the empty stage and looked back at the bartender. "What it is?"

"Well, you see … Thor hasn't been doing well."

The green-haired man jolted. "What? Is he sick?"

"Oh, no, nothing like that at all. I mean work-wise. He's a good man, but his sort of personality appeals to only certain types of people, folks like yourself. Timid and masochistic, that's his pull. The thing is, those sorts also don't call on dancers for a personal session. The owner had some harsh words for Thor just yesterday. He said he'd better get at least one lap dance today or he's out."

Freed felt his heart drop. "They'd fire him? But he's good!"

"Talent and success aren't always hand in hand. Thor is a good man and a great dancer, but if he doesn't make this club money, Mr. Fernandes will show him to the door."

"Jellal Fernandes," Freed seethed.

He had seen the club owner plenty of times, coming out on stage to welcome good crowds, sometimes introducing if the club was having a theme for the day. He had a charming smile and either a tattoo or facial paint that really stuck out in some mystical sort of way, but there was something about the glint in his eyes. He looked at the crowd like looking at slaves that were moving to his will. Maybe that was a good comparison. The audience fell under Jellal's spell, enchanted by sex appeal and thumping music, driven to spend their hard-earned money on alcohol and lap dances.

"Bob," Freed said as softly as he could while still being heard. The bald bartender leaned in a bit closer. "What do I have to do to … um … to request Thor?"

Bob looked like he pitied Freed. He had broken the rules, but he liked Thor. He was a good man. If they lost Thor, they lost Freed and many others who came to sit in their seats, squirming with unfulfilled desire, too shy to tuck away the dollar bills, but still buying up the booze.

Deftly, the obese man pulled out a card and explained how to fill it out, including just how much attention Freed wanted. It was $10 standard, plus Bob explained that there were differences in contact. $10 was what he described as an air dance. No actual physical contact. $15 got a person one-way contact, but you had to keep your hands to yourself. $30 was two-way contact. Both dancer and receiver could touch one another. To splurge, he could get a private VIP room at $180 for half an hour of erotic dancing. Freed shook his head at that. He had money, but that seemed like too much for his first time. Also, Bob advised, he should tip the dancer. Some of that tip went to the manager to pay for costumes and makeup, but the rest went to the dancer himself. Strippers made most of their money in tips.

Freed filled out the card, blushing fiercely. Then he took his usual seat. His heart was pounding now, knowing he would finally get to talk with Thor. He drank a little faster until his head began to spin. He needed to slow down, breathe easier, and not make himself sick with anxiety. Thor's career was at stake!

The lights finally dimmed. Jellal came out to welcome everyone. A joke, a smarmy grin, and that glint in his eyes as he practically ordered everyone to "enjoy yourselves to the fullest." Then he moved aside, the stage curtain pulled back, music began, and the spotlight shined on the opening act: Ice Prince.

Freed had to admire this dancer. He was pure talent. He danced because stripping was something he loved to do. You could see it in the way he moved his body. This raven-haired rogue rallied the rabble, getting cheers and catcalls. His greatest talent was to tease, tease, tease, and then suddenly go from fully dressed to nothing but a thong in three seconds flat. It wowed every person there … everyone but Freed. What was so amazing about removing clothes that fast? He preferred more stripteasing to the dance.

Freed glanced around at the audience. There were regulars, himself included. He had given nicknames to most of them, just like the dancers on stage had nicknames to hide their true identity. As Ice Prince danced, the loudest hooter was "Pinkie," named because the kid (he looked barely old enough to be let inside) had bright pink hair. Really, could he scream "Hey look, I'm gay" any louder? Then there was "Beastman." Freed overheard his name was really Elfman, but he thought Beastman fit the hulking giant better. There was "Smelly," because the short gentleman with a super-firm chin always reeked of expensive perfume. Then there were some newcomers who had just begun frequenting the club within the past few weeks. Freed nicknamed them "The Dragon Twins" because they both wore the leather jackets of a biker gang with two black and white Asian dragons embroidered on the back. Really … gay men dressed in tight leather! One even had an earring and sometimes came in wearing a feathered boa. Could they get any more homosexually stereotyped?

Then … there was "Scarlet." In a bar full of gay men, she stood out as brightly as her ruby-colored hair. Freed had been stunned the first time he saw her arrive, so much so that he had to ask Bob the bartender if Scarlet was really a woman or one hell of a cross-dresser. The bald Bob giggled and said she was "Mr. Fernandes's woman." Apparently, Scarlet had a kink for observing gay men, which her lover fed by letting her sit in what was otherwise a club exclusively for men. Freed also heard rumors amongst the staff that Scarlet was even further indulged privately by Jellal and his identical twin, Siegrain. Freed really did not want to think about just how this woman got her homosexual kicks through twin brother incest. He supposed Jellal preferred to let the woman get her fill inside the club rather than risking the career of his rather popular politician brother by having wild rumors fly around.

The music ended, the blue light that accented Ice Prince faded as the crowd cheered wildly. The raven-haired dancer slipped backstage, but in no time he was roaming the audience, immediately going to Pinkie's booth for a lap dance. Freed did not know what Pinkie did for a living, but he was loose with his money when it came to Ice Prince.

Watching the darling dancer take his seat and start to gyrate reminded Freed of what he had ordered. He blushed brightly, and once again his heart pounded rapidly.

When the lights changed from blue to yellow, Freed actually gasped. It was coming, as sure as thunder after a lightning strike. The music rumbled to reinforce that concept. Then suddenly, the lights went out, a strobe light flashed with the sound of a thunderclap, and when the yellow light was back on, Thor was on stage.

Freed's throat went dry. It was always a flashy entrance, but newcomers were initially a bit shocked by the large man. The yellow light highlighted golden hair and made his eyes appear orange. Freed often wondered what his real eye color was, but the yellow-orange gleam was predatory and thrilling. Scarlet especially squirmed under that hard gaze. Freed glared at her. If she was so intrigued, why didn't she buy a lap dance. Or maybe she was not allowed to, since this was a gay club.

Unlike nearly every other dancer, Thor rarely used the brass pole. He could dance. The pole was only to stabilize him if he slid down, his back resting on the pole, while his knees bent to the sides, showing off the crotch hidden behind leather trousers.

Damn, he looked hot in leather!

Freed stared and thought about how those legs would soon be around him, how that crotch would soon be rubbing against him, teasing him. Already, he was hard, and his breath came panting fast. Then slowly, teasingly, Thor began to unbutton his white shirt. It was not the fast stripping of Ice Prince, but deliberate, drawing out the painful anticipation with a sadistic smile on his face. Under that white shirt, black tattoos, like some sort of tribal design, curled around the bulging muscles.

Freed watched the muscles work as Thor did a routine that was more like graceful fighting than erotic dancing. Sometimes, he caught movements that were definitely Tai Chi, and other times the gyration of his hips was beyond breathtaking. When he did that, with that firm gaze reaching the whole audience, the crowd gave a collective gasp. He was the god of thunder on that stage, hammering at the groins of men.

Even slower were the trousers. He took almost a solid minute just caressing the belt out, pulling it slowly from the buckle, slithering it from the belt loops, until the whole belt was in his hands. He folded it together, and then snapped it. It gave the sound of a leather whip, and Freed moaned.

Fuck, maybe he really was a masochist. Getting whipped by this sexual beast would be pure joy.

Thor never actually took off his trousers, and Freed guessed they were too tight to do so easily. Instead, he undid the button and unzipped the fly. It was just enough to show to the audience that, indeed, he was wearing nothing underneath. That happy trail went down, down, down, to a blond patch. The treasure was just below, hidden by black leather, a hint of a thick root nestled in those blond hairs, just enough to tease at a full monty without providing it.

Far too quickly, the song was over, the lights went out, the strobe light flashed like lightning again, and thunder rolled over the speakers. When the lights were back on, Thor was gone.

Freed was left breathless. His throat was dry, his hands sweaty, and his arousal was so painful, he was tempted to race off to the bathroom for a quick release. He would have, but there was one issue.

"Thor" was coming!

Next Chapter: "Lap Dance"

Chapter Text

Freed gulped down his drink, hoping to calm himself. He did not even watch the next dancer. He knew which door the dancers slipped through on their way to lap dances. He stared at the door, waiting, anticipating his thunder god.

When the massive man turned the corner and walked out, Freed leaped. This was really happening! After months of sitting in the dark and watching, he would get a chance to see Thor up close. His chest jolted, like being shocked with electricity with each step of the blond.

Finally, Thor stood over him, glaring down. That scar on his eye stood out, and his gaze narrowed.

"Did you request me?"

Freed felt tiny under that stare. Mutely, he nodded. He worried that maybe this annoyed Thor. Maybe he thought this was just some sick pervert. He feared seeing a sneer of disgust from this man he admired so deeply.

Instead, Thor smirked, a chuckle rumbled in his chest, and he suddenly straddled Freed. The green-haired man stiffened in shock.

"Don't be scared," he said gently, but his eyes were still predatory. "I don't bite … unless you want it."

"Oh God," Freed moaned. His groin ached, but he steeled himself back.

The blond snorted a laugh, and then Thor's hips moved. Freed felt the friction of leather against his pants. The ache in his cock increased, burning, wanting more.

"You can touch," Thor told him. Freed was too enthralled to move. "Did you not want to touch? Or maybe…" Thor suddenly grabbed Freed's wrists, pinning him down, and leaned in close like a beast about to devour his prey. "Maybe you prefer to be restrained." His hips gave a sharp thrust up against Freed's crotch.

"Yes," he hissed, hardly knowing what he was doing.

Thor smirked and shook his head slightly. Freed wondered what that meant. Maybe all of Thor's clients were like this, masochists wanting to be dominated by the thunder god. Freed did not want to be just another person.

"C-can I … touch your chest?"

An eyebrow raised in amusement. "Feeling adventurous? Go ahead."

The blond released one hand, and Freed slowly lifted it. He ran his hand over the buff pectorals, smooth and waxed. Then he traced one of the tattoos.

"You're an interesting one," the dancer muttered.

Freed gazed up hopefully. Interesting? Was Thor interested?

"You have an interesting face," Thor said. "So scared, yet so aroused!" He thrust up again hard and gyrated his hips against Freed.

"Ahhh!" Freed cringed, shuddering. He was liking this too much.

"That's a nice sound," Thor purred. His hips swirled against Freed's body.

"W-Wait!"

"You wanted a full song, right?" He pressed even harder, stroking Freed's arousal mercilessly with his crotch.

"N-no … I … sh-sh-shit!"

Freed tried to pull away, but it was too late. He felt the release in his pants, his mind blanked out, and pleasure mixed with utter mortification.

Thor backed off the instant he realized the problem. He looked worried for his customer. He realized other patrons had looked over at the green-haired man's raised voice. He glared at them, silently telling them 'Fuck off!' Then he knelt beside Freed and put a hand on his arm.

"Are you all right?"

"No!" Freed snapped.

He was humiliated! In front of this man! He yanked himself out of his chair and ran to the restroom. He could feel cum dripping with each step, and tears of shame came to his eyes.

He ran into a stall and yanked his pants down. It was a sticky mess. He held back sobs as he tried to wipe clean everything he could.

This was an issue. He knew that. He just never thought it would be a problem in public.

His beige cotton slacks were darkened where the moistness soaked through. It was way too obvious. Somehow, he would have to make it home with these ruined pants showing to the whole world that he was an idiot who came in his clothes.

He heard the restroom door open and heavy feet march in. "Greenie! You in here?"

"Oh crap," he muttered. It was Thor's voice. As if it wasn't bad enough humiliating himself in front of this god, did he really have to come and punish him more?

"Hey," he said softer, and knuckles rapped on Freed's stall. "I brought you clothes. Figured you'd need a change."

Gratitude gushed into Freed's heart. This god of thunder was actually caring for him! Slowly, he opened the door and peered out. Thor stood much taller than him. In his massive hands were neatly folded jeans and a pair of boxers.

"The jeans are prop clothes. They might be a bit big."

"And the boxers?" he asked, sniffling up tears still.

The large blond looked away, and Freed wondered if it was the lighting or if the man's cheeks really did turn pink. "They're mine. They'll definitely be too big for you, but it's better than commando, right?"

Freed's eyes widened. Thor's own underwear! It was Christmas!

"Don't look so damn happy," Thor snapped. "It was my fault. I'm just helping out a little."

Freed still grinned with excitement and took the offered clothes. He shut his stall again, gladly took off the messy cum-coated clothes, and slowly slid on Thor's boxers. Silk! They felt amazing against his skin. They were far too large, though, and began slipping down almost instantly. He pulled the jeans up. Those were almost a perfect fit, just too long in the legs. He wrapped his belt on to hold it all up, bunched up his messy pants and underwear to best hide the stains, and slowly opened the door. Thor was still there, leaning against the restroom wall, arms folded, staring in a piercing way.

"Hey, Greenie. So, they fit? That's good."

"I'm so sorry," Freed gushed out. "I messed it up, didn't I?"

"Your cum didn't get on me. Don't worry."

"I mean, the lap dance."

"Hey, you obviously enjoyed it," he shrugged. One eyebrow arched in amusement at this frantic man.

"I ruined it, though. It was supposed to be…" He broke off sharply.

Thor smirked wryly. "Supposed to be what? Perfect? Magical? Wasn't it? Your dick sure thought so."

"No, that's … I mean, it's a problem. I didn't think … Oh God, I'm so sorry."

"Ah, I see." He nodded thoughtfully. "I wasn't paying attention, I guess. Your face kind of distracted me."

"My … my face?"

"Never mind," Thor grumbled.

Freed felt a leap of hope. Thor liked his face! "I've been coming to this club just to watch you," he confessed in a rush. "I never thought I'd actually get to be this close. You're … you're a god, Thor!"

The blond cringed slightly. "I'm a fuckin' stripper. Gods don't do what I do for money."

"I still … I…" Freed was so flustered, his usually eloquent mind was in a frenzy. "Can I … get more time with you?"

"You could buy another lap dance."

"I mean … outside of here."

Now, Thor's whole face went shocked. "You?"

Freed lowered his head. Really, what the hell was he asking? "I'm really not sure what I can ask for, or what I have to do. I … I'm not propositioning you," he insisted. "Just … maybe some time outside of work? Your choice. Doesn't have to be sex. Just … away from here." He desperately needed a change of scene after humiliating himself like that.

Thor considered it with a low hum. He eyed this young man up and down, debating something. Then he gave a weary sigh. "Why the hell not! I'm still working, but if you can stay until after closing, we can go somewhere. I wanna get my boxers back from you, anyway, and I have to return those jeans by the end of the week."

"Really?" Freed cried out, his eyes alight with stars.

"Sure, I know a little place that's private. We can do whatever you want."

The restroom doors burst open, and Ice Prince entered. "There you are, Thor. Jellal is searching for you. That lap dance…"

Thor cleared his throat loudly, and the raven-haired man stopped, suddenly noticing Freed standing there.

"Is there trouble?" Freed asked worriedly. "You can tell Jellal, I'm not angry."

"That's right," the blond growled at the star stripper. "Greenie here wants … more."

Ice Prince arched an eyebrow. "Not your usual type."

The hard eyes narrowed. "Do you have a problem with him, Ice Prince?"

"Nah, if you're fine with it, then I don't have to worry. Well, I've gotta go dance more. That pink bastard is working me to death again."

Thor looked back to Freed. "Gotta go, Greenie. Meet me at the bar twenty minutes after closing. Did you drive?"

"Yes, I have my car."

"Good. I walked. You can drive me home after we're done with whatever you want tonight. Oh, and you bring your own supplies."

"Supplies?"

"Handcuffs, rope, floggers, butt plugs. Just warning you now, I don't do dress-up."

"What?" Freed shrieked in mortification. "I … I said I don't want sex. Or, I don't need it."

"Whatever you do need, you provide. That's my policy."

"Just a night together," he insisted. "Just … I … I don't need that stuff."

"Whatever ya want, then. See ya." He turned and strode toward the door.

"W-wait!" Freed cried out. When those narrow eyes stared back, he gulped dryly. "Um, I was told … uh, t-tip. Leave a tip." He pulled out his wallet. The dance had been only thirty dollars, but he knew Thor was in a financial bind. He pulled out three ten dollar bills. "See if this makes your boss happier."

"Fuck him," Thor growled. "The bastard takes a percentage of my tips. You give me that much, he'll take most of it."

"Then only give him ten and keep the rest for yourself," Freed said with a sly smile.

Thor chuckled at the deviousness in this man's smirk. Ice Prince was right: this green-haired man was not his usual type, but he was damn interesting. Thor stepped back into the bathroom with a sadistic smile.

"There's a way you leave a stripper a tip, ya know."

Freed's mouth dropped. He had seen it many times in the club. Whenever Pinkie had Ice Prince dance for him, he tucked a couple dollars into his thong. He glanced down at the leather pants, knowing full well that there was nothing on underneath. If he reached in there, he chanced touching that. Still, shaking with nervous excitement, his hand reached forward.

"Nu-uh," Thor smirked. "On your knees."

Instantly, Freed dropped to his knees, not realizing just how disgusting the restroom floor might be.

"Use your mouth," Thor ordered.

Freed shuddered at the dominance of this man. He could not disobey this god of thunder. Meekly, he put the three bills into his mouth and leaned in closer. His nose pressed against the lower belly. He could smell the sweat and musk of this man, a fragrance of soap, and the tang of leather from his pants.

His eyes turned up, but that hard gaze pierced straight through him. He tried not to gasp too hard, lest the bills get sucked back into his throat. Instead, he pressed closer. His face rubbed against hard abs and leather. His chin could feel the soft lump in those pants as he tried to figure out how to angle his head to push the dollar bills into the narrow gap between flesh and fabric.

"Use your tongue, Greenie."

Freed groaned softly at the order. Yep, he was definitely submissive, probably a masochist, too. His tongue slid out, but the money was in his mouth. He had to press the bills down with his tongue, tucking them away into the pants with just his mouth.

He got two in, but one fell to the floor. Freed looked at the ten dollar bill with humiliation. He began to lean over, opened his mouth, and was going to pick the bill up that way.

A hand suddenly grabbed his cheeks roughly and yanked his head up, tongue still hanging out. He sat there on his knees, panting like a dog, tongue lolling, gazing up at a man he wanted as his master.

"Nu-uh. That one's dirty. It goes to Jellal. Hand it to me."

Freed reached down, picked the bill up, and presented it like an offering to his thunder god.

"Not bad," Thor said softly, taking the money.

Curiosity and fascination shone in his eyes that turned orange in the club's red lighting. Then the gleam in Thor's eyes suddenly shattered. He pulled away with a jolt, as if lightning had struck him this time. For a moment, Thor looked confused, and Freed wondered why.

"You're used to this, aren't you?" the dancer said, almost in accusation. "Probably go to some professional Dom once a week for a scene, right?"

Breathlessly, Freed confessed, "It's my first time."

Again, the blond's eyebrows flinched as some thought disturbed him. Instead, he yanked the money out of his pants and turned away sharply. "You tip too high, idiot. Who the hell gives a hundred percent gratuity?"

"A man truly grateful," Freed answered with pure honesty.

Thor stood silently, but suddenly he stormed out without another word.

Freed stayed there on his knees for another minute, catching his breath and remembering the smell of sweat and leather. He would get to spend the night with the thunder god! It made his heart race. Plus it seemed like him asking just might get the dancer out of some trouble with Jellal. So what he asked was not annoying or overstepping his boundaries. It actually turned out to be helpful.

Freed watched the rest of the show in a daze. During a break, he took his ruined clothes out to his car so he did not have to hold them and remember his embarrassing scene. Once more, Thor came out onto the stage to dance. This time, those predatory eyes looked directly at Freed. It made the green-haired man gulp, and already he felt life returning to his cock. He definitely did not touch himself, though. No need to ruin Thor's boxers.

Although, coming in Thor's silk boxers…

Freed groaned a little at just the thought of it, and as if he could sense his partner's dirty thoughts, Thor lowered the zipper further and further. Absolutely nothing was on under those leather pants. The root of something huge teased the whole audience. Freed smiled privately. He was wearing Thor's missing underwear!

After Thor's dance, Freed did not want to watch anyone else. No one could compare, in his mind. He sat at the bar with Bob, nursing a drink to keep down his anxiety, yet not wanting to get drunk. Bob kept smiling at him, but the bar was busy. He did not speak much to the nervous man.

Finally, the show was over. Patrons left, heading home for a night of jerking off to memories of their favorite dancers. Pinkie shouted out to Bob. He was a regular, and it seemed he knew the cross-dressing bartender as well.

Finally, with the club almost empty, Bob went over to Freed. "So, the dance went well?"

"Very well," he smiled. "Maybe too well."

"Could it be that you're waiting for a certain someone?" he asked, simpering smugly. "I heard that you asked Thor for some … private lessons."

Freed blushed fiercely. "It's not like I wanna hire him. I would never treat Thor like some prostitute."

Bob smiled sympathetically. "Dear, these guys get men off for a living. Don't feel ashamed."

"I … I don't want that just for money."

"Oh?" he chuckled. "Are you hoping for love?"

"It's possible, right?" Freed shouted. "Maybe … maybe we can become friends, and maybe one day he could love me."

"Oh dear," Bob sighed in anguish. "Don't get your hopes up too much, sweetie. This is Thor we're talking about. He doesn't really have friends, as far as I know."

That saddened Freed. How could such an amazing and caring man not have friends? The blond had let Freed borrow his own underwear just because he felt guilty for humiliating him.

"Well, in any case." Bob slid his hand over the bar and right over to Freed. When he lifted it, the green-haired man saw a condom square hidden under those pudgy fingers.

"Bob!" he cried out.

"Thor doesn't bring those to work. I know, I've scolded him many times about it, but he keeps insisting that if his clients want something, they have to bring their own supplies. So … just to be safe."

Humiliated and afraid someone might see, Freed snatched the condom away and hid it deep within his pocket.

"I … I'm not doing it unless he really wants it also," Freed insisted.

"Of course, deary. Oh, and here comes the lucky man."

Freed jolted and looked around. Jellal was walking out with his redheaded lady hanging on his arm, a king and his queen. Behind them, looming over like a royal bodyguard, was the scar-faced blond.

"Good work, Bob," Jellal called out. "Lock up the place."

"Of course, sir," Bob nodded. "Evening, Miss Erza."

"Thank you for your hard work, Master Bob," the redhead said with a warm, gentle voice that surprised Freed.

"She actually sounds nice," Freed muttered after the two left out the door.

"They run a tight ship, but Miss Erza is a caring woman, and Jellal, for how strict he must be with issues of business, he's only that way because he cares for the South Pole Club as a whole."

Freed would have normally asked more about the two, except a shadow now loomed over him, and his heart pounded like a thunderstorm. Thor was wearing those same leather trousers, but this time he had on a skin-tight black shirt and a long furry coat tossed over his shoulders, arms hanging loose. He nodded silently to Bob, and then he stared down at Freed.

"Ready?"

Freed bolted to his feet. "Y-yeah. Uh, follow me. See ya, Bob."

Bob blew him a kiss. "Have fun, lover boy!"

Next Chapter: "A Cheap Motel"

Chapter Text

Freed walked out of the club, and he heard heavy boots striding just behind him. No one had ever called Freed short—he was taller than many of his friends, although not towering—however, standing next to this blond god, he felt tiny. He rushed to his car and hurriedly opened the passenger door for the burly strip dancer.

Sharp eyes glared down at him, sending a spiking thrill through Freed's nerves. "I can open a door by myself, ya know."

Freed's mouth opened, but the words caught like a scared mouse in a trap. "Th-the handle sometimes sticks," he said in an excuse, cringing that he was treating Thor with too much attention. A man like this would probably hate basic chivalry. He rushed around to the driver's side and slid in. He waited until Thor buckled his seat belt. Then he started up the engine and pulled out of the strip club's parking lot.

"Turn right," the blond said laconically. "Three lights down, make a left."

"Are we going somewhere?" Freed asked, making the turn onto the street.

"A little place I use. It's the cheapest motel in the city, hourly rates, more or less clean, rents ten bucks an hour to us strippers. That way our clients don't have to use up a crapload of money."

"I'm not a client," Freed insisted.

"Well, it's true that you didn't offer to pay me. I figured we'd work that out when we got there."

Freed's brows tightened. "I don't want to hire you."

"Then ya ain't getting much. I don't do shit for free."

Freed sighed in irritation and decided not to complain. He figured if he could just talk to this man, they could find some common interest, something that could make them friends. He wondered just how often Thor got clients, but he figured it was rude to ask. He probably did not want to know, anyway.

"What's after the left?" Freed asked as he came up to the light. Thor had his hand to his mouth. "Hey, are you all right?"

"Yeah, I tend to get motion sickness in cars. I'll be fine once we get to the motel. Keep straight for a mile. Look on your right for the sign with a neon igloo. That's the one." He went quiet again with his hand fisted up and pressed to his mouth.

Freed smiled sympathetically. So, the almighty Thunder God got carsick, huh? He felt like he was learning new things about this man already.

Not long later, he saw a flickering motel sign. Pole Palace, and sure enough, there was an igloo in white neons with a suspiciously phallic North Pole. Freed parked the car, and the blond practically catapulted himself out of the vehicle. They went in together, entering a little foyer where Thor told the worker they wanted the hourly rate. Freed disliked that the worker seemed to know Thor by sight. Just how often had he come here?

"As usual, the corner room," the worker said, handing the blond a key. "One hour charged to your card now, sir," he said to Freed. "Additional hours are charged at the time you return the key. It's a twenty-four hour time limit. Good evening, sirs."

They walked out and passed by other motel rooms. Some had sensual moans coming out through the walls and windows.

"Prince … nnngh, Prince."

"You're sensitive like usual, you pink bastard. Now, roar for me."

"No, not there. Your hands are too cold. Oh damn, so cold! So good! Oh God, that's … ahhhhh!"

"That's the sexy sound I like to hear from you."

Freed toned out the groans coming out of almost every room. It was like walking past an orgy. (He had that experience once in college, a party he would rather forget ever happened.) He probably could end up just like all of them: a moaning voice in the night, paying for a release of sexual desires. Freed did not want that, though. The thought of hiring Thor, like some cheap prostitute, was repulsive to him. Thor was a god, not a hooker. He wanted to worship this man, bow to him, obey him, but he did not want to pay. He wanted Thor to want his adulations.

"He said this was your usual," Freed mumbled questioningly as they walked along an ill-lit corridor to find the motel room.

"My clients tend to upset other people here," Thor answered.

"Noisy?"

"Very." He looked disgusted, but he said nothing more. "If you need to scream, it's fine. The corner room has the best insulation."

"Scream?" Freed frowned.

"You're a masochist, right?"

"I … well, I think I am."

Those narrow eyes glanced down at him, and for the first time Freed saw their natural color. They were a lovely shade of blue.

"So, you're still experimenting with the whole scene, eh?"

"Huh?" Freed had no clue what he meant.

"We can experiment. Tonight, we'll see what you like, how far I should take it, where your limits are."

"Take … it? How far?"

They got to the door, and Freed let them both in. He decidedly did not hold the door open this time, but marched straight in. The room was definitely the worst he had seen. The bed was neatly made, but the walls were cracked and peeling, stains marked the carpet, and the place reeked of cleansers and an overload of air fresheners that vainly tried to cover the smell. He could see why the motel rented hourly. Likely, no one would want to stay a full night in one of these rooms, let alone twenty-four hours.

Thor tossed his coat off and marched over to the bed, not even taking his shoes off. "So, let's work it out now."

"Wait, wait," Freed cried out. "I'm not hiring you for sex."

"Of course you're not. You said you didn't want sex. That's the only reason I agreed. No sex. Straight up BDSM."

"No!" Freed blushed as he remembered what Thor had said about bringing his own supplies. "I don't know if I want that sort of thing."

Thor crossed his arms. "You've been really weird all night. So what do you want from me?"

Freed blushed and looked away. "Not much, I guess."

"Standard spanking?"

"No! Look, I … I don't know if…" He growled in frustration.

"I'm sorry, Greenie," the burly dancer said softly, hoping to calm him down. "I forgot, you're new to this. I've never had someone new. Here's how it works. You decide what you want me to do. I might say no. I don't do a lot of kinky shit. For the things I agree to do, we negotiate a price. I do what you want, for as long as you want. My prices are set for half-hour intervals. No half price if you only last fifteen minutes, got it? You want another half hour, all activities cost you again. So if you want spanked, but then want to be my dog, and thirty-five minutes later you want more spanking, I charge you again."

Freed shivered at the idea that Thor had worked out such a precise system of payment for sexual favors. "Do I have to pay you just to talk?"

"Talk? Like dirty talk?"

"Like … talking. Two people, mouths moving, intelligent conversation."

"Talk is free. Dirty talk is base-rate five bucks."

"What about kissing? Do I have to pay just to have you kiss me? What if I kiss you and you don't kiss back?"

The scarred eyebrow raised high. "What the hell? Kissing? I thought you said you don't want sex."

"I'm not going to pay you for sex, but do I have to pay just to kiss you? If I do, I won't kiss you. I don't want to have to pay you to do anything."

"Not pay … oh shit, I have no clue what you even want." The blond rose to his feet and paced away in frustration. He stopped by the restroom and suddenly spun around. "Is this a game already? Is that the deal? If you're playing I-don't-want-it games, that falls under rape fantasy and that's fifty bucks."

"It's not a game. I just don't want to force you to do anything."

"Look, Greenie—"

"Freed."

The dancer looked over in confusion.

"My name, it's Freed. Freed Justine."

One hand ran through his spiky blond hair. "That name is way too weird to be a cover-up. You know, normal policy is that a dancer and client never learn one another's names."

Freed looked sad and disappointed. "Your name isn't Thor?"

The blue eyes narrowed. "Do I look like a fucking Thor?"

"Yes," Freed answered instantly.

"Well, it's not my name. I don't give out my name. That's some stage name my jackass boss came up with, because of this." He pointed to the lightning-shaped scar on his eye. "Look, someone probably told you about my job situation. That's why you're doing this, right?" He watched as Freed blanched a little. "I'll be honest: it's the only reason I went with you tonight. A kid like you, I would normally turn down."

Freed felt like a rapier had just stabbed into his heart. He remembered what Ice Prince had said about not being Thor's usual type. "Why? Do you not like me?"

"I don't even know you," he snapped. "Besides, I'm not the sort of man you think I am."

"I don't think one way or another," Freed admitted. "I want to get to know you, so I can make my own opinions. Even if I'm not your type, I thought…" He stopped and looked away with a sinking feeling of disappointment. "Well, maybe this isn't usual, but we're about the same age. We could hang out after work, maybe even be friends."

Thor stared at him hard for almost a solid minute of tense silence. "Friends?" he said softly, in total disbelief. Then he yelled angrily, "Fuckin' friends?" He let out a bitter, scoffing laugh. "Dammit, you really are something, kid."

"Please, call me—"

"You're a kid," he roared. "You're a goddamn fucking kid. I bet you're younger than me, and you ain't bad-looking, so why the hell are you hanging out in a gay strip club? It's supposed to be just old men and perverts, and you wanna be fuckin' friends!"

Freed backed up a step. "Is that your type? Old men?"

The stripper froze for a moment, and Freed saw a swallow get stuck in his throat. Then he turned away angrily and took a few steps in the opposite direction. "It's what I normally take. Look, I … I'm not anything at all what you think. Hell, I'm not even gay."

Freed's eyes widened. "Not … but … then why…?"

"I'm a sadist who uses and abuses old men, all right?" he snapped, still looking in the opposite direction.

"Uses? I don't get it."

"My clientèle is extremely limited, but the men who like this sort of thing will pay good money for it. Jellal only cares about numbers, not how much I can make from those few men, since most of that is private, on-the-side money. Jellal only gets his money when one buys a lap dance or V.I.P. room, and those are always just to arrange a meeting after work for … private sessions."

Freed felt uncomfortable hearing all these details about the inner workings of a stripper. "So, why only old men if you're not gay?" he asked in confusion.

"I told you, I'm a sadist, and I don't hit women."

"So you hit old men?"

He chuckled darkly. "I beat the motherfucking shit out of them. They pay a lot for it, too."

"But if you're not gay—"

"I beat them. I don't fuck them. I might have done a handjob or two, but I've never once fucked a client. There aren't many men in this town who want that sort of thing, and then they only want it once in a while, a breather, how rich old men deal with stress, so it's not exactly a full-time job. This dancing gig is just to cover bills between jobs and make it easier for me to find new clients. I know how to dance, and I know how to tease without giving a person what they want. That's what I do: tease the old bastards and beat them until they come on their own. They get their kicks; I get to work out aggression."

"Aggression?" Freed pouted, sensing a deeper darkness in this troubled man.

"Do you really wanna know?"

"I want to be your friend, Thor."

"Dammit, don't call me Thor. I hate that name."

"What should I call you, then?"

The blond glanced back over his shoulder and eyed the thin, green-haired man up and down, assessing the level of danger in him. He sensed nothing bad. "I'll tell you why I do it. If you run away, you can keep thinking of me as Thor. If somehow you don't run for the hills, I'll tell you my real name, and we can play this your way."

Freed gave a small nod and braced himself for whatever turbulent past this man had.

"Come here," he waved, and Freed eagerly got closer. Thor pulled off his tight, black shirt, exposing the tattoos. "Look closer, but don't you dare touch me."

Freed kept his hands behind his back to show he would not touch. He inspected the swirling tattoos. They were truly a work of art, such smooth lines that enhanced the shape of his muscles. However, he noticed something odd.

"They're on top of … scars?"

The blond nodded slowly. "I got the tattoos to hide the scars. Shit load of scars, right? How do you think I got them?"

Freed honestly had no clue. The lines were too straight to have been caused by knife fights. "Surgery?"

"Close. My bastard father was a scientist, a real cracked one. He would … do things to me," he said softly.

Freed looked up in horror from the black tattoos to the darkness in the man's deep-blue eyes.

"I was a really scrawny and sickly kid, so he would inject me with things to make me a son worthy of his legacy. Steroids, protein concoctions, Devil knows what shit he used on me. I was the human test subject in his mostly-illegal research. Hell, maybe he was trying to create a super-human like some comic book. One day, he decided mere shots were not enough. I needed something more, something permanent. I still don't know precisely what he did to me. I just know it was … painful." His eyes tensed up with childhood memories. "It's not a time of my life I like to remember."

He pulled away and yanked his shirt back on, covering the tattoos and the scars.

"Luckily, my grandfather realized what he was doing, took me in, and sent my father away. He's an internationally wanted criminal now, part of a whole criminal organization called Raven Tail, rather famous on the INTERPOL lists. I haven't seen the bastard since that time, but I know that if I do, I'll kill him … slowly. I'll torture him over many months, like he did to me, and when I've had my fill of hearing him scream, I'll beat the motherfucker to death with my own fists. That's why I take old men. I pretend they're him, I humiliate them, I whip them, I beat them until they either come or they use a safeword on me, and then I leave. I get out aggression, and I experiment to see what sorts of things I can do, how much pain I can inflict, before they use a safeword."

"Safeword?"

"A word that tells me I've gone beyond what they can handle, something stronger than just yelling Stop. So yeah, that's what I do. Consensual torture. I beat up old men to train myself so I can one day torture and kill my father. If the old men get their kicks in the process, good for them. I don't give a rat's ass what they want or what they think. They're not allowed to even touch me. I don't kiss them, I don't hug them if they cry, I beat their cocks rather than jerk them, and I sure as hell don't fuck them."

Freed nodded thoughtfully, trying to digest this horrific tale. Inside, he was shivering. He truly could not imagine what this man's childhood must have been like with a father who would cut him and do experiments on him.

"Hey," Freed said quietly, "if you ever find that father of yours, let me know. I'd like to get in a few punches as well."

The blond stared at him in shock. "You … you're not … sickened by me?"

"I'm sickened by him, not by you."

"I'm the one beating up old men."

Freed just shrugged. "They're masochists. They like it, and it's how you deal with your emotions."

"I thought you'd vomit and run away."

"I don't run out on friends."

"We're not friends!" the blond snapped.

"Not yet," Freed shrugged lightly, "but I care about you."

"You care about Thor, some asshole slut who prances around on a stage."

"I care for whatever man is standing in front of me right now," Freed objected, looking firmly into those oceanic eyes.

The blond's brow tightened at that, crinkling his forehead. For a moment, the two men looked at one another, and a clock ticked away the seconds. Finally… "Laxus. My name is Laxus."

Freed held his hand out to shake. "Nice to meet you, Laxus. My name is Freed."

He snorted a wry laugh, yet he took the hand in a crushing grip. To his surprise, the man held back just as firmly. Laxus raised an eyebrow in surprise.

"You're stronger than you look."

"Thirteen years of fencing lessons builds up your hands and arm muscles."

"You continue to impress me, Freed. How about we go out for drinks? We can talk about something more normal."

"Normal is boring," Freed smirked. "But I could use a drink. You laid quite a crapload of stuff on me just now."

"You didn't run away."

"I told you, I don't run on friends. I stay by their side and fight with them. That's my way."

"I like your way," Laxus said in amusement. "Come on, you owe me a drink."

Freed went outside, past the moans and huffing grunts. He walked back to the front of the motel and returned the key.

"That was fast," the concierge frowned.

"We had a misunderstanding," Freed smiled, happy to slowly be straightening things out with this thunder god.

Next Chapter: "Whiskey and Gin"

Chapter Text

Hesitantly, Laxus followed behind Freed. He had never just hung out with a guy before, and it was a weird concept. He walked behind the green-haired man to the car and sat with stiff movements.

"Relax. I don't bite," Freed laughed, remembering what Laxus had said to him during the lap dance. "You were way more confident earlier."

"Earlier, I was in my own environment. I feel like I'm trapped in your world now."

"My world?"

"A world of going out for drinks with friends, relaxing on a couch, chatting about the weather, maybe going to a game and cheering on your favorite team. The normal world."

"I can't promise I'd cheer at a game. I don't much like sports besides fencing."

"Swords, right? You compete?"

"I've been on TV."

"No kidding!"

"Bob has even played some of my matches on the screens in the club's bar."

"Bob the drag queen bartender? You know him?"

"Just from the club." Freed backed his car out of the driveway and onto the street. "Don't you ever hang out with people from work?"

"I've gone drinking with Gray once or twice, but only because he kept bugging me."

"Gray?"

"Oh shit," Laxus realized in horror. "Forget that name."

Freed thought about it. "Ice Prince?"

"I said forget it!" he snapped. "We're not supposed to let clients know our real names."

"I'm not a client, and I'm not interested in him. I probably won't return to the South Pole Club again, anyway."

Laxus looked worried. "You're not coming back?"

"I was only coming to watch you. Now I know you're not gay. Sort of squashes my fantasies."

"Oh," Laxus mumbled, and he looked away.

Laxus was silent through the rest of the ride, but Freed did not really feel up for conversation, either. His mind still whirled around what he had been told. Besides, if they did all of their talking in the car, they would have nothing left to say while drinking.

He also realized that Laxus did not look well.

"Carsick again?"

"Shut up," the hulking man growled. "Dammit, I forgot my headphones. Don't you have music in this car? I feel less sick when I listen to music."

Freed turned on the radio. "Find what you like."

It was set to a classical station, something Freed preferred while sitting in traffic because it kept him calm. However, he figured a man like Laxus would like something more upbeat. To his surprise, Laxus let out a sigh of relief and kept the radio right where it was.

"You can change the station," Freed offered again.

"Nah, this is good. Do you like classical?"

"Enough to know this is Mozart's Flute Concerto Number 1."

"Good ear. My mother used to tell me that flute music settles the stomach."

Freed was about to ask about his mother, but he figured that if Laxus had an issue with his father, more than likely he should not ask about what happened to his mother. Instead, he sat back and listened to the soaring, gentle tones of the flute filling the car and easing the stomach of his passenger.

They went to a pub Freed knew. Maybe it was a bit classy, but he liked a place that was clean and the drinks were strong. Besides, he was not the sort for sports bars and dance clubs.

"I like this place," Laxus said as he got out of the car.

Freed's eyes lit up. "You've been here?"

"A couple times." He glanced over and saw Freed's gleaming face. "Don't look so damn pleased with yourself, Greenie. I've been to probably every pub in the city at least once."

Freed knew he was right. The city was not that big. There was a good chance Laxus visited many of the same places he liked, and they simply never crossed paths before. They walked in together. This late at night, there were not many patrons, and most of those were already drunk. They found a seat away from the others, and a waiter came up.

"Last call is in twenty minutes, just warning you."

Freed hardly realized it was that late already.

"Then I'll have a triple Blue Label, neat, with a water back," Laxus said. He looked to Freed, nodding for him to order.

Scotch whiskey! That was a heavy drinker's order, but completely the sort of drink Freed figured a man like Laxus would order. Freed felt intimidated and stuttered.

"Order what you normally do," Laxus said in a commanding whisper.

He gulped and nodded. "Sapphire martini, up, two olives to the side in a shot glass."

The waiter nodded and went off.

"Refined," Laxus smiled wryly. "I figured you were a martini man. You seem to be the type. You also know what you like. What a man orders says a lot about him. You learn that working the sort of job I do."

"Can you really tell what every man in that room is like just by what he's drinking?" Freed asked with interest.

"Not completely, but I can tell a lot. That pink-haired brat likes flaming drinks. He's still a kid, probably just barely old enough to drink, but he wants to show off. He likes attention, and he likes to horde. Just look at how he buys up Ice Prince's time. Those dragon twins…"

Freed chuckled that Laxus had given them the same nickname he did.

"… order tequila shots to start, but they stick to cheap-ass beer for the rest of the night. They want to get drunk quick, but not get sick. They think they need to keep drinking, but they're pressed for money. The beer also makes them appear manly. They were probably raised in homophobic homes, broke free, met each other, started whatever biker gang they're in to keep their bad-boy reputation while banging one another. They're both too self-conscious with the concept of bottoming, so they both want to seem like they top. That's why their drinks are always identical."

"They're a couple?" Freed asked. He had suspicions.

"I don't need to see what they drink to tell you that. I've heard them in the restroom slamming each other against the walls."

Freed grimaced. "Do you get that a lot?"

"Not really. Not many couples come there. Now Miss Erza, on the other hand, drinks straight up bourbon when alone, but she will only drink strawberry daiquiris if Jellal is around. She's hard on the outside, but sweet on the inside. She really wants to play up that sweet side to her lover. Then there's you. You drink gin martinis or chilled chartreuse. I've never seen you guzzling beer or hitting the hard spirits. You have taste, you know what you like, and you try too hard."

"Try too hard?" Freed repeated, stunned by that assumption.

"You know you're better than the assholes in that club. You're probably well-educated, maybe you even came from a wealthy family. If not, then at least you're into some wealth now. In either case, you've come to define your social status through your drinks. Martinis are the drink of the upper class, and you've taken that a step further by ordering a damn good gin and specifying your taste: olives to the side. Also, you don't drink chartreuse because you particularly like it. You drink it because you think it's refined. You make a face whenever you sip it, but you refuse to mix it. You're afraid to slip into the same level as the pervs in that club, so you try too hard to separate yourself from them by ordering something those Budweiser bums have probably never heard of before."

Freed dropped his head, thinking about this observation. It was true, he ordered chartreuse, not because he liked the potent flavor of the liqueur, but because people often raised their eyebrows and asked about it. He could then brag about the 130 herbs and how only two monks in France know the secret technique for making the drink. It made him sound well-versed in drinking, which somehow equated to refinement. It kept him a step above the sleaze-balls who frequented the gay strip club purely to get off.

Their drinks came just then. Laxus got his scotch whiskey with the side of water. He remained in a casual yet somehow domineering stance, leaned back in the pub's booth, staring with those stormy blue eyes.

"And your choice in drink?" asked Freed.

Laxus raised his glass in salute. "I like it strong, I like it hard, no frills, nothing sweet." He took a sip of the whiskey and let it flow over his tongue.

Freed gulped as lewd thoughts filled his head, but he calmly pointed out, "And yet you ordered the water. I know it cuts the scotch, opening up the flavor of the drink."

Laxus chuckled at his keen observation. "When I find something I like, I want to indulge."

Something he likes…

But Laxus was not gay. He would not like Freed, not that way. He would not want to indulge in him.

Laxus lifted the glass of water. "Now, most drinkers blend a few drops of water into the scotch. Cuts the alcohol burn, lets the flavor break through. I like the burn. I like how it tingles all the way down. However, it'll numb your taste buds if you're not careful, or if you drink a lot, and I like to drink a lot of scotch. So the water…" He took just a small sip. "…it cools off the tongue, washes it all down, before the alcohol can numb it. I get the full effect of the scotch without weakening it, and I can enjoy it for as long as I want."

Freed immediately sipped his martini to hide his blushing. He felt his heart flutter at those deep words, but he forced his eyes down.

"So, Mister Martini Drinker. Tell me how you really are," Laxus ordered, leaning back and swirling the scotch in his hand.

Freed set the martini glass down and stared at it as he spoke. "I suppose my family is well-off," he said guardedly. "I'm currently a university student, but it's assumed I'll take over my father's business. Needless to say, he wasn't all that happy to find out I was gay."

"Only child?"

"A brother and a sister. Bickslow's a perverted idiot, but my father is trying to set him up with the marriage alliance he couldn't get out of me. My sister Evergreen is the real brains in the family. I'm the pretty face my parents like to show off at parties."

"Sounds monotonous."

"Achingly so," Freed groaned. "That might be why I got into fencing. I'm in charge, no one controls my destiny, I fight my own battles, and it lets me gain a victory that has nothing to do with family prestige or money. If I want to be the pretty little princeling prancing around, I can pretend to be that, but if I want to be a demon with a sword, I can be."

Laxus chuckled into his drink. "Now I want to see you fight. I've never seen a fencing match before. Sounds interesting."

"I'll take you to my next match."

Laxus froze with the cup to his lips, and slowly he pulled it back down. "You're assuming a lot, Greenie."

"My only assumption is that you'll eventually call me Freed, not Greenie, and we'll become friends by the end of the night."

"Like I said: a lot!" He took a large gulp, set his tumbler down, and immediately picked up the water to chase it.

"So, you really aren't homosexual?" Freed asked, sounding just a little disappointed.

Laxus gave a shrug. "Not one way or another, I guess. I've spent my whole life pretty much avoiding any sort of relationship beyond work acquaintances."

"Does that make you a virgin?" Freed smirked.

Laxus' eyes widened and his cheeks flushed. "Hey now!"

"Good," Freed smiled, feeling looser with some more alcohol in him. "I am too, so I don't have to feel totally out of my league while around you."

Laxus coughed out his scotch, spraying the table with alcohol. "You? A virgin? Shit, a guy as good-looking as you should have women all over him."

"I'm rather uncomfortable around women. They're my biggest weakness. I prefer the company of men."

"Does that have something to do with your parents?"

"They were trying to arrange a marriage for me before I even understood the difference between boys and girls. As soon as I turned fifteen, I was paraded around to every eligible débutante in five hundred miles. Each girl was primly schooled to believe that a flighty, flirty attitude was the best way to impress a gentleman. I took up every fencing tournament I could enter just to get out of that hell."

"And that turned you gay?"

Freed chuckled and shook his head. "You don't turn gay. You either are or you aren't. I have never found women to be sexually appealing. More like they're scary, intimidating creatures that I fear will put their hands all over me, and I feel disgusted by the mere thought of it."

"So you don't like women at all?"

"I don't mind women. I have plenty of female friends. I just don't find them sexually appealing."

Laxus cocked his head to the side with an arrogant smile. "So what do you find appealing?"

Freed's brain screamed "YOU!" However, he held that thought back. Laxus was not homosexual, after all. "Someone taller than me. I typically go for light-colored hair, but not always. Strong men, independent … muscular," he admitted, hardly helping to take a look at how Laxus' tight shirt showed off those hulking muscles. "I want a man who can support me, who can … d-dominate me." He bit his lip and turned his head aside as he felt himself blush.

"Dated many men?"

Freed scoffed while rolling his eyes. "I'm not even sure if you'd consider it dating. How about you? You must have women all over you, when you're not entertaining men."

"I tried the whole dating thing in high school. Wasn't all that impressed. Just a pain in the ass. Too much drama, ladies just wanting me to pop their cherries."

"And you didn't?"

"Like I said, it was a pain in the ass. I wasn't interested in that stuff. Didn't want sex, sure as hell didn't need some girl screaming in my ear when my hand serves me just as easily, and without all the PMS bullshit. None of the girls I dated got me hard, anyway, no matter how they tried. People in general don't get me aroused, girls or guys."

"What does?"

"Hell if I know!" Laxus grumbled, but Freed thought he saw a bit of a blush to his cheeks. He wondered what could interest a man like this if lap dances and pretty ladies did nothing for him. However, Laxus steered the conversation away from his own love life. "So, did your parents ever managed to get you to try dating a few girls?"

"Oh hell no!" Freed sneered. "At least Bickslow and Evergreen backed me up when it came to that."

Laxus eyed this long-haired man up and down. "Pretty rich boy, always in control, always expected to be the perfect son to a perfect family. No wonder you want to escape into some fetish-filled fantasy where you have no control, where someone strips you of your pride, where you can face your fear of humiliation without anyone else seeing you that way."

Freed felt his heart sink a little. "Do you see that a lot? Is it a common theme amongst your … clients?"

Laxus gave a shrug and knocked back the last of his drink. "I'd be lying if I said it wasn't. Every single one of my clients is well-off financially. They have to be to afford me. Bankers, lawyers, doctors, CEOs, maybe a politician or two: people who are always in control, who must maintain their image, who can't let their fake smile, their fake grimace, their fake life, slip up for even one minute. Those are the sorts who desperately need to escape. They need to be humiliated in a setting where they won't lose their job just because they're a whining, mewling, pissing-themselves mess. They need balance. They need escape. They need to hurt. They need to let go of the white-knuckled clench on their reputation and feel normal for one night."

"Normal being…?"

Laxus smiled vilely. "Crying like the baby they are inside, punished for being the bad boys they have to be in the real world, broken and beaten in a world where everyone is afraid to even touch them wrong."

"And you give them that?" Freed asked hesitantly.

"Like I said before: I beat them; I don't fuck them."

Freed stared down into his martini. "I … don't think that's what I want."

"I can tell. I knew from the very start. You're a raging submissive, maybe you'd like a little light bondage and humiliation, but you're not into the hardcore pain I usually dole out."

"No, I … I don't think I'd like that."

"Because you still feel the struggle of independence. Most of those men—not all, but most—have given up, succumbed to their lot in life, their perfectly planned destiny. They studied hard, married well, worked diligently, and never allowed themselves to do something just for themselves. That's why they need something extreme now that they're old and miserable. Nearly all of my clients absolutely hate their wives. I'd almost pity them, except they let themselves be placed into that role, and they're probably doing the same damn thing to their kids. In forty years, it'll be their sons seeking out a sadist to beat the misery out of them. You, on the other hand," Laxus went on, "I can tell you're still fighting that. That puts you a cut above the pompous assholes I beat up."

"Is that why you're here with me?"

"Maybe," he shrugged languorously. "You show me that some pretty rich boy can be more than a mindless robot following the orders of his parents and society, marrying whoever they tell you to because that's your social duty, the traditions of your caste, noblesse oblige, generations of prestige riding on what they decide you have to become. You're the sort of man who says 'Fuck it' to all that bullshit. I like that. Besides, you're good company." He looked down at the empty glass. "And I'm out of alcohol."

Freed finished up his martini. "I can take you home. It's late."

"You're paying for this," Laxus pointed out. He rose and headed to the restroom.

Freed watched Laxus' ass as he walked away. "As you wish," he whispered, wanting to be ordered around just a little more.

Freed paid the tab, and Laxus came out. Together, they went back to Freed's car.

"I'll tell you where to take me, but you're not dropping me off at home," Laxus said sternly.

"I understand," Freed nodded. "I'm sure you think of me as nothing more than some stranger, maybe even a stalker."

"Nah, I've seen stalkers. Gray's got one that follows him everywhere."

"You mean Ice Prince," Freed corrected with a smirk.

"Ah shit," Laxus growled, realizing he messed up again. "Hell, you know his name now, no big deal. Anyway, I'd rather think of you as a fanboy," he chuckled as the car started up. "But I'm glad you understand one thing. I don't know you; you don't know me. Most new clients don't comprehend that. They've built up such an imagination about Thor, that person on the stage, they think they know everything about me. They know jack shit! My clients never even learn my real name. You know just my first name. That's all I'm willing to give out for now. We're not acquainted, not yet. You know a dancer; I know someone who frequents a club where I work, someone I haven't talked to before today."

"Not friends yet, huh?"

Laxus slid a glance over. "Maybe getting there," he said softly. "Make a left, then a right on Strawberry Street. Past the bridge, you'll see a gas station. You can drop me off there. I'll walk the rest of the way."

Freed drove down a road mostly empty, although there were a few cars out, people coming home from bars, night owls up for nocturnal wandering, and a few night-shift workers coming back from a tiring evening of work. Freed realized Laxus was holding his mouth again, so he turned on the radio.

"You don't seem like the classical music type," Freed mentioned.

"Shows how much bullshit you assume based on my appearance," Laxus mumbled.

"Do you like opera? I have a friend, Mira, who sings at the local opera house. She gives me tickets once in a while."

Laxus glared over at him. "That almost sounds like a date."

Freed chuckled and shook his head. "I don't hit on straight guys. I'm just trying to think of something we can do, something we both like. We both like classical music. It's a start."

"A start to what?" the gruff man grumbled.

"Being friends. Nothing romantic, just friends."

Laxus glared at him for a minute. "You honestly do sound like you're not interested in romance anymore."

Freed was amused at how he said that in such a hard way, yet almost with a pouting sound to his words. "Like I said, I won't hit on a guy if I know for sure that he's heterosexual. It's a crappy thing to do and makes people uncomfortable, just as awkward as I feel if a lady tries to hit on me."

"I see," Laxus muttered. "I guess that's good. You respect them."

"If I want people to respect my orientation, I have to respect theirs. Still, and I don't mean to sound rude, but it seems so weird, thinking you're a straight man working at a gay strip club. I guess it makes sense, though. You can dance for them and never have to worry about getting sexually aroused. I'm sure that's something men have a big problem with. It's so easy to tell on guys." He laughed as he realized that maybe female strippers had an advantage in that department.

Laxus was quiet as they drove along the shadowy boulevard. Finally, he muttered, "I guess it's more like I'm not gay, but I'm not straight."

Freed glanced over, surprised by that revelation. "You mentioned that you don't get aroused by people. Asexual?"

Laxus sputtered out a sigh. "Hell if I know. I don't label it. Girls are hot; guys aren't bad. Still, I don't really wanna fuck either one. I guess I'm just not interested in either gender sexually." He mumbled to himself, "Not until now."

Freed slammed on the brakes, and the car behind him honked angrily. He looked over in surprise.

Laxus roared, "What the fuck are you doing?"

"Not until now?" Freed repeated in shock.

"You could have caused an accident."

"What do you mean, not until now?"

"I don't know. Drive already!"

Slowly, Freed started the car moving again. Laxus rubbed out the tension in his forehead.

"Seriously, don't scare me like that. I don't handle transportation well as it is, so I don't need you driving like a crazy person." They were both silent for a while. Then the car came to a stop at a red light. The motion sickness twisting in Laxus' gut eased up while they were halted, and finally he felt like he could talk. "I just meant that you're interesting. That's all. I noticed you in the audience, but I didn't know why you were there. Then you called for me. That takes guts. You're not like people who normally request me. You're an enigma, you're more forward than what I'm used to, and a lot younger than the people I normally get. You're funny and awkward and pretty good company for drinking. You're into a cool sport like sword fighting, you're not all passive and mewling, and you're a hot dude."

Freed jolted, and he was glad they were stopped at the light. Laxus thought he was … hot? He felt his face beaming with an eager smile.

"I don't think I'd actually want to fuck you," Laxus clarified, "but I wouldn't mind doing … other stuff."

"More than drinks?"

Laxus folded his arms and looked out the window to hide his blush. "Yeah, more than drinks."

"Stuff as in…?"

"Whatever you're wanting," he shouted irritably. "Ya wanna act submissive to me, I can do that. You want tied up, smacked around, wanna be turned into a piece of furniture or an animal, it's all good."

"But you wouldn't get any satisfaction from it," Freed pointed out.

Laxus gave a petulant shrug. "I might. You're about my age, you're hot, you're not some saggy meatbag with warts and wrinkles. It could be … fun."

Freed watched the red light and thought about this offer. "Do I have to pay?"

"Only for the hotel. I ain't got the money to cover costs like that."

"I don't want to be a client."

"Dammit, I'm offering this on my own accord," Laxus snapped. "However, I can still pick what I do and don't do."

"Fair enough. Do you want to head back to that igloo place?"

"The cheap motel? I hate that shit-hole."

"Then someplace nicer than that. A real hotel? The Hilton is close by."

"Can you afford it?"

"I won my last fencing tourney. I can afford it."

"If we're gonna do this, I need another drink."

"I'll get a room with a wet bar."

"Now you're talkin'," Laxus chuckled. However, the laugh was quieted when the light turned green and Freed began to drive. Laxus held his hand up to his mouth again.

"You really have an issue with motion sickness, huh?"

"I don't like to talk about it."

"Has to do with your father then, right?"

Laxus glared over to the driver's seat. "For bringing that up, I want to beat the shit out of you right now."

"I might like that," Freed smirked. "I was just telling Bob today…"

"Bob the drag queen?"

"Yep, him. I told him I think I'm a masochist. I'm not sure if I like being beaten, but I like the idea of being restrained, maybe teased without fulfillment."

Laxus blinked his eyes in shock. "You like…? Fuck!" He looked away and covered his gaping mouth.

"What?" Freed asked in worry. "Are you sick again? I can pull over."

"No. That's what the old men like. Fuck!"

"Do you mean, no fulfillment? Is that bad?"

"No, it makes it easier on me, but … but I was thinking … of maybe fulfilling you."

Freed slammed on the brakes again, and this time the driver behind him shrieked "Asshole!"

Laxus also screamed at him. "I'm serious, drive properly or I'm jumping out of this moving death-box."

"Fulfilling me?"

"Do you repeat everything I say?" Laxus snapped. "Drive, and the next time you slam on the brakes, I'm jumping out of this car and walking home."

Freed made sure to drive as safely and smoothly as possible as he continued to the hotel.

"Look, if you want just a cock-tease, I can do that. I'm good at it. Damn good. But you came pretty quickly earlier."

"I'm really sorry…"

"Shut up!" he snapped, and Freed jolted to obey. "I just thought … well, I can work on you with that. I was distracted earlier tonight, what with Jellal threatening to fire me, so I wasn't paying attention to your needs. If we're in a hotel, I can train your body to hold back until I allow you to come. It'll help you with the premature ejaculation issue. Just an offer, though."

"Can you … can you tease me all night?" he asked nervously.

"I'm off work tomorrow. Do you want to set a time limit?"

"Sunrise," Freed said instantly. "I want to be able to hold off until the sun rises."

"That's one hell of a cock-tease! I've never done it that long. Those old men can usually only last an hour. Four hours … you'll be hurting. Seriously hurting."

"Good," Freed smiled slyly.

Laxus chortled wryly. "You really are a masochist."

"I figured I probably was one. Are you really a sadist, or is that just your job?"

"Sometimes after I've beaten up an old man, I go home and jerk off to videos of BDSM torture."

"I'd like to see you do that while you work on me."

"Jerk off, you mean? Hell, if you can last all four hours, I'll spray it on your face."

Freed's foot began to move over to the brake pedal again.

Laxus screamed at him, "Slam on the fucking brakes again and I'm gone!"

He forced himself to keep driving, although his hands clenched the wheel as he imagined this thunder god's cock covering his face in cum.

"I seriously am a masochist," Freed mumbled.

Next Chapter: "Supplies and Surprise"

Chapter Text

As they drove on, Laxus kept one hand pressed against his mouth. In spite of the music, his stomach jolted with the motion of the car, the blurring of the passing scenery, and occasional stops and starts as they reached traffic lights.

"Hold up. Stop here, this shopping center," he suddenly mumbled.

Freed looked over. Laxus was pale. He figured that maybe the man just needed some air and to rest, so he gently pulled the car over to a parking lot with a galleria of boutiques and other quaint shops. As soon as the engine turned off, Laxus got out of the car and began to walk away. Worried, Freed scurried out and followed.

"Wait, where are you going?" he cried out.

"I need a moment to rest my stomach, and you need supplies."

"Huh?"

Laxus glanced back, and there was a smile on his gruff face. "You're new to this. You don't have anything, do you?"

Freed froze and gulped hard. "S-s-supplies?"

Laxus chuckled and kept walking. Freed hurried after him. Finally, near the back of the galleria, he saw a store that was actually open, although it was after 2AM.

"W-wait! That's … it's … it's a…"

"A sex shop," Laxus nodded. "It's fine. I know one of the workers."

Freed had checked out the "adult" section in the library once in college, but he had never entered a sex shop. Fretfully, he continued on and entered just behind Laxus. Inside the store, the lights were dim, the walls were painted black with red highlights, and there were shelves upon shelves of items.

"I wanna pick up something," Laxus told him. "Browse around. If you want anything in particular, better buy it now. I told you, you provide your own stuff."

"B-but … I…" Laxus took off before Freed could speak clearly. He was left by the entrance, alone and nervous. "I don't even know what to get," he whispered.

Freed gawked as he shuffled slowly through the aisles. There was a full wall of dildos of every shape and size (and some that were outright terrifying!) Strap-ons, masturbation sleeves, anal beads, butt plugs, two-way dildos, blowup dolls, handcuffs, whips, crops, clamps, anything and everything he had ever seen used in online porno movies was all crammed into this tiny store. Most of the items were clothes: frilly lingerie, sexy schoolgirl and naughty nurse costumes, even hardcore BDSM bondage gear. He looked at one area that seemed innocent, what looked like candy and boardgames, until he realized they were lolli-cocks, gummy boobies, and sexual favor games. He quickly dropped the penis-shaped dessert and backed away.

He was amazed to see a corner of the store that appeared to be a library, with plush chairs and a reading lamp. This looked the most relaxing and least perverted, so he walked over there. The books, however, consisted of The Kama Sutra, The Joy of Sex, The Perfumed Garden, The Mirror of Coitus, The Tao of Love and Sex, Tantric Sex for Lesbians, Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex: But Were Afraid to Ask, and he was not at all surprised to find Fifty Shades of Grey, Delta of Venus, and The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty.

Freed sat in one of the chairs and gazed around, truly in over his head. He might have been frequenting a strip club for months now, but this was still far more than he had ever considered.

Suddenly, something caught his attention. He looked around frantically to see if anyone was around. There was a lady at the cash register playing on her phone, two ladies checking out the dildo display, and one man studiously searching between condom brands. Freed bit his lip, slipped silently off the chair, and weaved through the racks of sexy costumes and foreplay toys. He saw a riding crop hanging on a hook. Freed used to go riding on his family's estate. It was considered an appropriate past time for the son of a rich businessman. Even back then as a child, Freed sometimes flicked the riding crop against his own leg, feeling a thrill at the light pain.

"Good choice."

Freed screamed and leaped around, making everyone in the store look over to him.

Laxus laid a heavy hand on his shoulder. "Easy there, Greenie. Does this interest you?"

Freed's shaking hands had gripped the riding crop so hard, the flexible stick was bowed. "It … it's … a good crop. Good quality."

He heard the two girls whisper to one another, "Omigosh, he is such a stereotypical uke. It's adorable!"

"Yeah, and look at the seme! Oh man, if I was into guys, I would want him."

Laxus rolled his eyes at their whispers but otherwise ignored them. "You gonna get it?"

Freed looked at the crop. "Can … can you use it?"

"I'm damn good at it."

He gulped thickly. "Then, this. It's not that expensive, either." He saw Laxus already had an opaque black bag. "What did you get?"

"This?" He shook the bag, then he leaned in close and whispered, "You get to find out soon."

Freed gulped hard and hoped that no one would care if he got a little erect in a shop like this.

"You might want lube," Laxus suggested. He went ahead, reached to a shelf, and pulled down a bottle of anal lubricant. "Oh, and … um … this." He plucked out something else.

"What is that?" Freed asked suspiciously.

Laxus glanced down at him. "Have you ever had someone play with you down there?"

Freed blushed heavily. "N-no, not really."

Laxus showed him the box. "Enema. It'll help."

"Oh!" he squeaked. He had read websites that mentioned that.

"Hmm … maybe a toy?" Laxus asked, eying the shelves and ignoring the look of blended horror, arousal, and uncertainty in the young, green-haired man. "I'm not sure what you're wanting."

"Me neither," he mumbled, looking around at all the possibilities. It was intensely intimidating.

"Get a cock ring, at least. You have that … issue."

Freed blushed heavily, being reminded of how he came so quickly earlier that night.

"Hey, don't worry," Laxus smiled, wrapping an arm around his thin shoulders. "We're gonna work on that, right?"

"R-right," he muttered.

"A cock ring will help. Let's see … not metal, those are a bitch. We don't need a vibrating one or anything weird. Here." He pulled off a small box with a picture of a simple circle. "Stretchy, so it won't hurt. You're not packing a monster in there, are you?"

"Packing a…? Oh!" he cried out, realizing what Laxus meant. "Uh … no, wish I was, haha!" He laughed nervously and rubbed the back of his head, but then he realized he was acting like a nervous idiot. "Um, no, I'm pretty average in size, I guess."

"Good. Being large in girth means a lot of toys just don't work."

Freed dared to tease this thunder god. "Are you saying that out of experience?"

Laxus glanced down, once again amused that this mouse sure knew when to bite. "Actually, yeah."

Freed's tongue dragged over his lip as he thought about what sort of package Laxus must have. If all went well tonight, he would find out.

"Ready to go?"

Oh God, was he ready!

Freed paid for his items. He feared the cashier might glance at him and Laxus in bawdy amusement. Instead, she rang up the merchandise as if he was buying milk and bread. He supposed, compared to some of the items in the store, a riding crop and cock ring were really tame. They put their purchases in the back of the car, and Freed continued down the road.

It was only a few minutes before they saw the large hotel. Freed parked, they took their bags, and they walked in. Rather than some dusty lobby with spiderwebs and flickering neon lights, the entryway to the Hilton was posh, and the nightwatch worker somehow had a beaming smile despite it being two in the morning. Freed ordered a room with a single queen-size bed. It was the cheapest that had a wet bar, and he figured they would probably not be doing much sleeping in that room. He really wished the rest of the world would adopt the Japanese custom of love hotels.

They rode an elevator to get to the floor. Freed twitched his fingers, a nervous habit he had in elevators.

"Relax," Laxus said soothingly. "We won't do anything you don't want."

Freed was about to assure him that his twitching was not about what was to come, but he realized that he really was feeling anxious deep down inside. He was heading to a hotel room with the man he had fantasied about for months. He had never had a sexual encounter with another person, nothing beyond making out with boys, and certainly nothing like what he was about to experience.

They arrived, he used an electronic key to enter, and he turned the lights on in the hotel room. It was more spacious than he had thought it would be, and they were near the top floor, high above the city. Laxus immediately checked out the wet bar and found it nicely stocked. He offered to get a bucket of ice from the disperser machine down the hall. While he was gone, Freed went to the restroom, used the enema, and made sure he was clean down there. He was still wearing Laxus' boxers and the borrowed trousers. He would have to give those back.

Once he was done, he walked to the large window and peered down at the empty streets. This whole night felt surreal. It was a dream, right? He was at home, fantasizing about "Thor" again, that stripper with the lightning bolt scar.

He heard the door behind him open, and in walked his thunder god. Freed's heart raced. This was no nighttime fantasy. Thor was Laxus. Laxus was about to give Freed his first taste of BDSM. No sex, just kinks. Merely watching the hulking man walk around aroused him.

"Need a drink?" Laxus asked as he pulled out two tumblers and filled them with ice from the bucket.

"Nothing strong," Freed whispered.

"You sound like you need a strong one."

"No, I've drunk enough tonight. I shouldn't have even been driving, but I figured if you get carsick, you probably wouldn't want to drive."

"Never learned how, to be honest." Laxus opted for some straight up spiced rum. He then made Freed a Cuba Libre, with Coke and white rum. "Cheers."

"Kanpai," Freed smiled, clinking glasses before sipping the alcoholic soda. "So, how does something like this start out? Do I just get naked? Do we make out? No kissing allowed? Can we work up to it?"

"Dunno," Laxus shrugged languorously. "I work differently depending on the client. Usually, I take charge right away, order them around, demand that they prepare themselves, and humiliate them the whole time. Wanna try that?"

"I … I dunno. Maybe?"

"Or we can ease into it."

"Y-yeah," he nodded, gripping the highball glass to keep from shaking.

A large hand stroke down his hair. "Relax, kid."

"I'm … I've never—"

"You don't have to worry about anything. Surrender everything to me. I'll take care of everything. I'll tell you what to do. Don't think. Just obey me."

Freed looked up in surprise. Obey him? As he gazed into those electric blue eyes, he wanted to worship this thunder god.

"I'll obey," he whispered obediently.

"Good boy," Laxus smiled. "First, close the curtains. I'm not here to give a show."

Freed felt numb as he stood, set his glass aside, and walked to the window. He looked out at the real world one last time. Closing off these curtains was not just to give them privacy. It was to separate them completely from life outside this hotel room. He was willingly trapping himself in a fairy tale land.

"Good. Have you used the enema?"

"Y-yes," he muttered, feeling embarrassed.

"Good. Now, stand beside the bed and face me."

Laxus leaned back in a chair as he watched Freed obeying his orders. He liked being able to demand others to obey his whims. In real life, he had a shitty childhood, a shitty teenage life, and now he worked a shitty job with a shitty boss who had threatened to fire him more times than Laxus could count. Here, he ruled. His orders were absolute. He was the boss. He was a god, and this was his realm! Laxus liked the feeling of that power.

"Remove your socks and shoes," he said, and he took a sip of the spiced rum as he waited. "Now your shirt." He liked the blush on Freed's cheeks as he slowly unbuttoned his shirt, slipped it off thin but toned arms, and set it aside. "Now your belt, but leave your pants on."

Freed gulped as he threaded his leather belt out from his pants.

"Hand it to me." Laxus stuck his hand out, and Freed obediently delivered the belt into that massive palm. "See, obeying me is easy, right?"

Freed meekly whispered, "Yes."

"Say, yes sir."

"Yes … sir."

"Good. You will address me as sir. Or do you prefer master?"

"I … I … uh…" Freed dropped his head. "Sir is fine for now."

"Of course it is. Now, fetch the bag I bought, but don't peek."

Freed walked barefoot and shirtless to the black bag. He felt there were a few items in there.

"This isn't just for you," Laxus clarified sternly. "It's something I've been meaning to get for months, and this is just a good excuse. Got it?"

"Right," he nodded. He should not expect that Laxus would buy something just for him.

Laxus reached into the black bag and pulled out two boxes. One looked like some sort of control system, and Freed saw from the picture on the front, it was almost like a remote control, but with disk-shaped pads like something a doctor would hook up to monitor the heart. When Laxus pulled out the other box, Freed coughed in surprise.

"That's … it … it's a—"

"Butt plug," Laxus smirked, and he handed the box to Freed. "I warned you to buy lube, right? But this isn't some average lump of silicone to shove up your ass. It attaches to this," he said, holding up the first box. "Do you know what this is?"

Freed had no clue. The box only said ElectroStim Ero-Controller.

"You're into sports, or at least fencing. Ever been injured and had a physical therapist put on electrical stimulators to massage the muscles?"

"Yes, it happened when I injured my elbow a couple years ago."

"Same concept, but instead of hooking up to some pads that go on your arm, this hooks up to that," he said, nodding to the butt plug box still in Freed's hands.

"It … zaps you?" he asked in a breathy whisper. "In- … inside?" He felt the blood rushing south really fast.

"That's right," Laxus chuckled. "I'm not gonna fuck you. I'm gonna watch this give you the tingling prostate massage of your life, and with this controller, I'll be able to adjust how much electricity you get. I won't let you come. Not until sunrise. That was the deal, right?"

"I feel like I could come just thinking about it," Freed admitted.

"I won't let you." Laxus' eyes were hard. "Starting right now, I'll be that thunder god you thought I was all this time. I'll zap your ass, and I'll train you to obey me. Ooh yes," he chuckled, watching the shock in Freed's face. "This is gonna be fun."

Next Chapter: "Electric Blue"

Chapter Text

Freed thought Laxus would immediately start to do something. Instead, the blond sat in a chair, fingers together with his chin resting on the tips, staring at Freed. Those electric blue eyes were so potent, Freed felt himself blushing hard. He looked away uncomfortably.

"What's wrong?" asked Laxus.

"N-nothing. Just … you're staring."

"I'm thinking."

"About what?"

"What I should do with you first." He continued to stare, and Freed felt tiny as he was scrutinized. "Does this make you uncomfortable?" Laxus asked in amusement. "I don't want you to be uncomfortable around me. Not just from this. To assure you, I'm clean."

Freed looked up in surprise. "Wh-what? Clean?"

"I figure you might be worried about that sort of thing, especially considering my profession. I don't do drugs, and you know what my sex life is like. Still, Jellal has us tested once a month, some law I guess. None of his strippers are allowed to have an STD. We'd get fired. Our tests were last week. I'm clean. I've never had an STD in my life."

"Oh!" Freed had not even been thinking about that sort of thing, but he belatedly realized that this was really important. After all, strippers had reputations. "Um, me neither. Well, I can't say I get tested, but … before today … a-and I don't do drugs. Well, once there was that frat party with the marijuana, but besides that—"

"Shut up already."

"Ah! Y-yes, sir."

"What party?" Laxus demanded.

"It was, um, a party on my campus. Some Greek-letter fraternity, I'm not even sure which, a friend dragged me there. It ended up out of hand, kinda turned into an orgy."

"Did anyone do anything to you?"

"I got felt up by a girl just before bolting out of the dorm."

"Bitch," Laxus grumbled. Freed was amused to see him looking jealous. "Do girls often flirt with you?"

"I'm not sure I'd say it happens often…"

"Don't go to parties like that anymore," Laxus snapped. "College frat parties and drugs … too much trouble could happen."

"I don't do that anymore," he assured. Still, this jealous side was amusing. "You can't really order me not to do it, anyway." He knew he sounded flippant, but he wanted to tease his thunder god just a little.

Laxus finally stood and strode up to him. He glared down hard, and Freed cowered before those predatory eyes. "If I said don't do it, then don't do it."

Freed felt like the air had been sucked out of his lungs. "Y-yes, sir." Right at that moment, he felt like if Laxus had ordered him not to breathe, he would have died of asphyxiation.

"Remove your clothes."

Freed gasped as his heart surged. It was about to happen!

"Now!" came a quiet but forceful order.

Freed slowly undid his pants and stripped off the last of his clothes. He gulped as he stood there, completely naked. He almost wanted to cover himself, hide his shame, but a small part of him also wanted Laxus to see and approve of him.

"You actually look good," Laxus said, as good of a compliment as he would dole out. "Now, walk over to the bed. Lie just the top of your body down."

Shaking with the thrill of this perversion, Freed walked to the luxurious bed and laid his torso down with his feet still on the floor.

"Spread your legs a little." He obeyed the order. "Hands out in front of you." Again, he followed the commands and stretched his hands above his head. He heard Laxus striding forward slowly. "Going to frat parties, huh? Aren't you a college student? Shouldn't you be studying? Yet here you are, partying, going to strip clubs, propositioning strippers—"

"I didn't—"

There was a whistle through the air, and something smacked him on the butt. Freed gasped and stared straight ahead, trying to sort out what just happened. That … was a riding crop. Laxus had just whipped him. It took him a moment to even process this fact. Freed had never even been spanked in his life. His parents firmly did not agree with the practice of physically punishing children. So the strike shocked him.

"How many university parties have you been to?"

Adrenaline made Freed shiver. "I … I don't know. Um … less than ten?"

"Less than ten, huh? Shall we make it nine?"

"Huh?"

Laxus chuckled softly and leaned in close to Freed's ear. In a sinful whisper, he explained, "I'm punishing you."

"O-oh!" Punishing! Being scolded, being upbraided, belittled, humiliated, whipped into obedience: there was no longer any doubt in Freed's mind. He was definitely into this sort of perverted thing. "Um … well, in that case, can we round it up and make it ten?"

"Heh! Masochist."

The riding crop struck him so suddenly, Freed cried out with a high yelp. He was instantly humiliated by the distinctly unmasculine sound.

"Are you okay?" Laxus asked with wry amusement.

"Just … didn't expect it."

"It's best that way." He cracked the riding crop over Freed's bare ass again. "But seriously, if I hit you too hard, you gotta tell me."

"I'm fine, really."

"You won't be later. Think of a word, one you'll remember, but one you don't use often."

"Huh?"

"You need a safeword. It shouldn't be a word you'd use casually, though. It's something you only say if what I do is way too much. I won't stop if you tell me to stop, but I absolutely will if you use the safeword."

"Okay. I … I've read about safewords. Um … something I would remember … ah! Écriture."

Laxus arched an eyebrow. "The hell sorta word is that?"

"French," he shrugged meekly. "It means writing. I … I kinda … like writing stuff."

"Only a pretty rich boy like you would use some foreign word like that." Laxus whacked the crop against him again. "Trying to make me look dumb?" He let the crop fly again, whipping Freed on the butt.

"Ahhh! N-no, I'm not … I didn't mean—"

"It's a nice sound, you speaking French." Laxus whispered again into his ear. "Maybe I should push your limits just so I can hear it again."

He slapped even harder, and Freed shouted. That time, it really hurt. However, Laxus struck again, and the sting pierced deep into Freed. He clutched at the bed cover.

"S-stop," he gasped.

The leather tongue of the riding crop struck again, almost shattering him. "I said I wouldn't stop if you say stop. Only the safeword. Is it really too much to handle? If it is, you gotta use that word."

Was it? It hurt, his ass stung, but he also liked this. It was supposed to hurt. That was the whole point. How much was too much?

The crop struck again, like a firebrand against already raw skin. Freed cried out at the pain, but he struggled to hold it in. Then another struck, much harder than all the others. This time, Freed's knees buckled under him. He slid to the floor, sobbing into the bed.

"Écriture," he groaned. He understood fully now what too much felt like.

Arms grabbed him. He flinched, fearing more punishment, but instead Laxus placed him gently on top of the bed.

"I told you, nine was enough. Ten was too much. Also, sorry if that was mean of me. I need to test your limits, though. I also really need to make sure you know how to use a safeword. That's important. Are you okay?"

Hardly thinking, Freed grabbed onto Laxus and clutched to him as he cried. To his amazement, Laxus stroked down his long, green hair.

A low but protective rumble purred out of that large chest. "It's over. It's safe."

"It … hurt," Freed sobbed.

"Of course it did." The words were quiet, not mocking, not hurtful, just stating a fact. "Should we stop now?"

The trembling slowly faded, and with its passing, Freed felt something more, something warm and gentle, like pure liquid happiness flowing through his veins, filling him up from the inside. He raised his eyes into a gaze as warm and blue as a summer sky.

"No. More."

Laxus had a surprisingly gentle smile. "Not many ask for more the first day."

Freed's brow creased distastefully. "Can you not talk about others when you're with me?"

"Fine. Same goes for you, though. No more talking about frat parties and flirty college girls."

"Agreed."

"It's just us when we're in this room. Nothing else exists."

Freed felt that liquid happiness gushing outward from his heart. "That's what I want," he whispered, closing his eyes and surrendering to the emotions. "Nothing else. Just this."

Laxus gazed at the young man's thin lips. "Just you and me." His eyes softened as he watched the parted lips and the way Freed's gasps and slowing sobs passed over his mouth. Laxus began to lean in, but suddenly he pulled back. Freed's eyes were shut, so he did not see the shock and confusion in the burly man's face. Laxus looked aside, scowling at himself. Then he glanced back over, and his eyes went tender again.

"You're already panting a lot. Your throat must be dry. Would you like a drink?"

"Yes, please."

"Hmm … nope, I don't like that."

Freed dared to look up, shocked that Laxus disapproved.

"How about this? I read it in a book once. You like books, yes?"

"Y-yes, sir."

"When I ask if you want something, you have two ways to answer. If the answer is yes, say 'Only if it pleases you, sir.' If the answer is no, say 'Not unless it pleases you, sir.' So … would you like a drink?"

"Only if it pleases you, sir."

"Lovely," Laxus smiled. He rose and walked over to the glasses set on a dresser. Laxus grabbed the tumbler, took a sip for himself, and walked back to the bed with the glass in his hand. "Get ready for it."

Freed sat up, expecting to take the glass. Instead, Laxus took another drink and held the liquid in his cheeks. He tipped Freed's head up, leaned over him, and placed his lips over Freed's. The green-haired man gasped, and just then Laxus let the alcohol flow down into the waiting mouth. The potency of the spiced rum was nothing compared to the firmness of Laxus' lips. Freed had pretty much surrendered any hopes that romance could be involved, but this … it was sweet, in its own way.

Laxus pulled back and smiled down at the complaisant face. "Was that good?"

"Y-yes, sir," he said in a daze.

"Do you want more?"

"Um, not unless it pleases you, sir."

"Very good." He lightly slid his thumb over Freed's lip to wipe away a drop. He paused at the action, and with another scowl he drew his hand back. "Damn you," he whispered.

Freed jolted out of his haziness. Was Laxus angry? Why?

Laxus set the tumbler on the nightstand and rose again to walk over to the gifts he had bought. "Are you ready to try this?"

Freed choked up. He tried to find words, but his mind was too scrambled.

"Hey. We don't have to."

"No, just … I … I've never…" He blushed heavily and looked away. "I've never put something like that up there." He cringed and pulled into a ball. "Does it hurt?"

"It can," Laxus said honestly. "No more than taking a really constipated dump. If it hurts too much, tell me. It shouldn't be truly painful. If it is, something could be the matter, and we'd need to stop."

"The matter?" he asked sharply. "Why? What could happen? Is it safe? Has anything bad ever happened?"

"We promised not to talk about others. Do you really wanna know?"

"Tell me! Um, please, sir?"

Laxus folded his arms and spoke with little emotion besides disgust. "I had a client who apparently had a polyp in his colon. He had me use a plug on him, didn't tell me it was hurting, bastard never did use a safeword, until suddenly I saw blood and pus pouring out of his asshole. I had to call an ambulance and hurry out of there. I left him with the plug still up him so he wouldn't bleed out. I bet he had a hell of a time explaining that to the paramedics."

"What happened to him?"

"Dunno, don't care. He lived, still wanted more. I refused to take him back. I was vomiting off and on for a week by just the memory of it. I don't ever want to see something like that again. That's when I decided any clients need to know how the hell to use a safeword, and if they get hurt beyond repair, I'm outta there. I won't stick around to face police questioning."

"Sheesh! Has anyone ever actually tried to sue you?"

"I've heard that one called the South Pole Club, but Jellal doesn't give out our names, and I'm usually careful about not letting anyone know me. Even my coworkers don't know my last name, only Jellal, and only because it's on my employee forms. Besides, a lawsuit with a stripper who you hired from a gay strip club to be your personal sadist? Not exactly the type of publicity these sorts of men want."

"I … I wouldn't do that!" Freed shouted loyally.

"You better as hell not! I know your full name. One phone call from me to your parents, and I can guarantee you'll not receive a penny of your inheritance."

"Like I even care about that," Freed muttered. "Still, I wouldn't. I know what I'm getting into. So long as you stop when I say so, so long as you don't do anything I don't actually want, I won't complain."

"Good. Right now, I'm asking if you want this." He held up the butt plug again.

Freed stared at it with trepidation, but when he looked into Laxus' blue eyes, he knew he could trust this man.

"Only if it pleases you, sir!"

Laxus smirked and began to open the box.

Freed kept his gaze averted, hoping that if he did not look, he would not get too scared. He had used his fingers before, but never a sex toy. It was scary, but also there was a thrill to it. Laxus had purchased this just for him. He wanted to use this special gift bought by a man he had secretly lusted over for months.

When something touched his shoulder, Freed jolted and gulped down a shriek.

"Easy there," Laxus said softly. "I won't let it hurt, okay? I figured this might be an issue, since you're completely inexperienced. I'll do something I normally never do; I'll prep you myself."

"Prep?" Freed suddenly realized Laxus was wearing latex gloves. "What…?"

"We'll take it slow."

Freed was still confused, until Laxus pulled forward the bottle of lubricant and drizzled it onto his gloved hand.

"Oh! Prep," he gasped softly as it dawned on him. "Yeah, that … maybe that will help."

"Of course it will," Laxus said flatly. "Face up or face down?"

"I … um … c-can I look up? If I see you, I'll be calmer." He was surprised to hear Laxus chuckle. "What?"

"Most people feel too ashamed to show their face to me. They want it face-down. You think seeing me will calm you? You're a weird one."

"Your eyes are … calming," Freed muttered, pouting at being called weird.

"Then look up at me."

Freed gazed up into that face. The scar running down one eye caught his attention for a moment, as it always did, but then the intense color of his irises sucked him in. He felt Laxus touch his asshole. He flinched in a moment of embarrassment and panic, yet when he looked up again, those electric blue eyes calmed him.

"You really are something, Greenie."

"Freed," he breathed faintly, waiting for more.

Laxus gave a silent chuckle. "Freed," he whispered, and slowly his finger pressed in.

Freed moaned loudly.

"Don't clench."

He panted as he tried to calm down.

"Better. Stay loose and it won't hurt."

Once as a child, Freed had such a horrible fever, he needed a suppository. He would not say that was when he realized he was gay, he was too young to know things like that, but it was definitely the first time he realized he liked the feel of something up his ass. He had hazy memories of being scolded harshly as a tiny child for poking himself in the butt. His parents said it was dirty, disgusting, and Freed figured they were right. Poop came out of there, and even a six-year-old knew that poop was dirty. As he reached puberty, he did research online, innocent searches for what these things were he heard about in school, or desires he had that made no sense to his naïve mind. Somewhere along the way, he accidentally discovered a gay porn site.

Freed had seen boys at school with naughty magazines, or internet ads for hot ladies looking for a good time. He was never interested in girls, but when he saw those two men together, he was so aroused, he came without even touching himself.

He felt guilty. He knew what people said about homosexuals, and at least once a month there was news of a gay person coming under attack, or other countries oppressing homosexuals. He did not want to be hated. At one of his parents' numerous parties, he overheard gossip about one of the other upper class families who disowned a son when he came out as being gay. Freed did not want trouble with his family. He was indifferent about his parents at that point, but he did not want Evergreen and Bickslow to suffer public humiliation just because of him.

He visited gay sites covertly and kept his orientation a close secret. His late-night wanking sessions had to be done quickly, before anyone suspected. Maybe it was years of jerking off as fast as possible that led him to have issues with premature ejaculation. He also read it could be emotional, a feeling of shame and guilt. He had no clue, but as a teen, being able to come in just a few minutes was an advantage. It was not until college, an incident of coming in his pants when two girls at a party were watching yaoi anime, that Freed realized this was a real issue.

And then earlier tonight … again…

"Laxus!"

A hand choked his penis, and the finger that had been wiggling inside came to a stop.

"I won't let you come," Laxus said forcefully.

Freed felt almost on the brink, but the grip, almost painful but not quite, stopped him.

"You're just really sensitive," Laxus realized. "I bet almost anything can affect you."

He leaned over and merely blew across Freed's nipple. The lithe body arched up with a quivering cry.

"Yep, like I thought. You've never really been touched, have you?"

Freed looked away with humiliation. "I've done … stuff. Not like this, though."

"Heh! That innocent side of you is cute."

Freed looked up in shock. "Cute?"

A second later, Laxus looked stunned as he realized what he had just said.

"Laxus," Freed whispered. "Will you train my body?"

"Oh shit, do not say it like that!"

"Like what?"

"Sexy!" he snapped. "Like you want me to devour you."

"I do," he answered honestly.

Laxus looked away with a bright blush. "What is it about you?" he grumbled. "I'm not even fuckin' gay, but you…" His voice trailed off.

"Maybe you're bisexual and just never knew it."

"Nah, I've watched plenty of porn. Only thing that ever did it for me was hardcore BDSM."

"Then maybe it's mental. Maybe because you know you're going to do stuff to me."

"I do this shit all the time," he snapped.

"To old men who repulse you," Freed pointed out. "When was the last time you were ever intimate with someone your age?"

Laxus grumbled something.

"What?"

"I said not since high school, all right!" he barked.

"Really?"

"What's it to you?" he said angrily to cover his embarrassment.

"They were probably all girls, right?"

"Thinking back, yeah."

"So, you've never been with a young man."

"Guess not."

"I'm your first."

Laxus looked petulant and said nothing.

"Laxus, put two fingers in."

"What? But, you're ready to come from just this."

"Even if I do, it's okay."

"No, it's not! I said I wouldn't let you until sunrise."

"Please, Laxus," he begged. "If it pleases you, sir, I need more."

"Fuck you," he whispered, but Laxus slid a second finger in anyway.

The pain did just what Freed figured it would. It withered him just a little, just enough, so he no longer felt the need to come.

"P-pain," he shuddered.

"If it hurts too much—"

"No!" he shouted. "Pain … makes it better. Takes it away."

"What away?"

"The need … to hurry." His eyes looked up with tears moistening the corners. "Make it hurt more, please, sir."

"Fuck," Laxus hissed. He pressed the fingers in harder, and Freed cried out. "Pain makes it better, huh? Do you have any clue how much pain I can give you?" He pumped the fingers in rapidly, then slowly spread his fingers until Freed moaned louder. "I could ram that butt plug in right now and make you sob like a child."

"Please…"

"Shut up! I could really hurt you bad, black and blue and bleeding. Do you want that, too?"

"Nnngh!"

"Don't moan in such a sexy way. Shit, I should have had you facing down."

"No! Wanna … wanna see you."

"Yeah, but then I have to see these faces you're making." He pulled his fingers out, rose off the bed, and walked away. "It's not fair."

Freed was panting and shocked that Laxus moved away so suddenly. "Wh-what? What i-isn't … f-fair?" he huffed through a dry throat.

"That with you, I can do this!" Laxus grabbed the glass of rum, took a drink, and pressed his lips against Freed's.

As the liquid poured into his mouth, Freed obediently swallowed. Then something else passed his lips, something soft that sent jolts through his whole mouth. His eyes opened wide as he realized Laxus was kissing him and using his tongue with such aggression, Freed could hardly even moan. His mouth was being assaulted by Laxus' tongue.

He remembered what Laxus said. He never kissed clients. He wondered if this thunder god had ever kissed at all before. By the firmness of the kiss and the powerful stroking of his tongue, he guessed Laxus at least had some experience with this much.

Laxus pulled up with flushed cheeks. "It's not fair that if I do just that much with you, it affects me."

Freed's eyes widened. "Affects you?"

"You have a horrible habit of repeating everything I say." He wiped the rum from Freed's lower lip. "Yeah, it affects me. Just feel."

At that, Freed felt those leather pants rub against him. He could feel the massiveness of something hard in there. He gasped and looked up into those blue eyes.

"You're…"

"Hard as a fucking rock," Laxus nodded with a sly smile. "Congrats, Greenie. You've made me insanely aroused."

"I have?"

"Yep. Sometimes, rarely, I've felt a little bit of arousal when I'm with a client, really hurting them, listening to them sob and scream. It's not really sexual arousal, though. More like an adrenalin rush."

"And this is?" Freed asked in astonishment.

"Hell if I know," Laxus mumbled. "I just have a feeling, if you keep this up, I'll be the one who can't make it until morning."

Freed remembered what Laxus had said earlier that night. Men and women normally did not make Laxus aroused. He did, though. He smiled weakly. It was like the ultimate compliment, to know he was pleasuring this thunder god.

"Do you want to keep going?" Freed asked him.

"Huh?" Laxus was not sure how Freed would react to this news, but he did not expect him to just brush it aside and continue. "Uh, only if you want it."

"I … y-yes. Can it be the butt plug now?"

"It can be anything you want, other than my tongue. I don't do that shit."

"I want to feel what you bought for me."

"Hey! I just happened to get it, understand."

Freed smiled at that gruffness. "Understood, master!"

"Oh?" Laxus asked drolly. "Is it master now?"

"Oh! Should it be sir?"

"It can be whatever the hell you want."

"I think … um … maybe I like master."

Laxus took the riding crop and lifted Freed's chin with it. "Is that what my little slave wants?" he asked softly, sadistically, but those electric blue eyes were gentle with amusement.

"If it pleases you, master."

Laxus chuckled, and pink colored his cheeks. "Not fucking fair!"

Next Chapter: "Sparks Inside"

Chapter Text

Freed watched with interest as Laxus connected cords to the black butt plug, as well as attaching metal clasps to six disk-shaped pads. It looked complicated, with clamps and cords all over the bed like a sci-fi experiment.

"Have you ever done this before?" he asked worriedly.

"Yes," was all Laxus said.

"I … I see," he muttered. He guessed it was a client, so he did not want to ask more.

"If you really don't like it, we can stop," Laxus assured him. Then he looked up with a sparkle in his eyes. "But I think you'll love it."

Freed was happy that Laxus wanted to please him, but he still felt worried about this strange form of sexual pleasure. "Is it safe?"

"Even if I turn it to the highest setting, it won't kill you. Remember, these things were originally designed for medicinal use. Now, lie back. It took longer to set up than I thought, so I'm going to prep you again." He walked over to where he had removed the latex gloves and pulled them back on.

"Why gloves?" Freed asked.

"I'm touching your ass. Do you think I want your shit under my fingernails?"

"O-oh," he stuttered, feeling embarrassed for asking.

"It's just a safety precaution," Laxus explained as he drizzled lube onto the glove's fingers. "If I were to accidentally scratch you inside, it could get infected. If I have a hangnail—which I do right now—it could get germs in the wound, and my whole finger would swell up. This is just safer and cleaner."

"I get it," he whispered. Again, Laxus knew so much, whereas he had never had someone else touch his genitals before.

Laxus' free hand stroked back Freed's hair. "Relax," he said gently.

Freed felt a finger squeeze in. Again, he flinched at first, but the stroking on his head and the soothing gaze in Laxus' eyes calmed him.

"Very good," Laxus praised. "More?"

"Yes … um, if it pleases you, master."

"It does," he said. "More than I like to admit."

Freed looked up in surprise, but just then a second finger wiggled in, stretching with just a little pain.

"Relax into it. Loosen up. Just relax and let me do the work."

Freed leaned back, breathing through the discomfort. He felt cold liquid as Laxus applied more lube. Then slowly, being gentle, Laxus began to slide his fingers back and forth.

"Ah … ahhhhhh!" Freed cried out, arching at the pleasure.

"Yes, you're gonna love this," Laxus chuckled.

"I'm … oh God … hurt me. Somehow. Please!" Freed screamed as he felt the beginnings of a surging sensation.

Laxus yanked Freed's legs apart with his free hand and bit deeply into the inner thigh. Freed screamed at the pain, and the sensation of needing to ejaculate faded.

Laxus looked down at the teeth marks in Freed's pale thigh. "Ooh, that's gonna leave a bruise. Sorry about that."

"No," Freed panted. "It worked."

"Pain helps, huh?" Laxus asked with intense amusement.

Freed nodded. "It stops it."

"Normally for masochists, pain makes it more intense."

"It is intense. Too intense. It backfires and makes me stop feeling like I have to come fast."

"Masturbated a lot as a kid, huh?"

Freed blushed, looked aside, and mumbled, "Probably no more than normal boys."

"I bet you whacked off three times a day."

"N-no! Well, not every day."

"Once a day?"

"Um … maybe … once or twice?"

"Every fucking day? Damn! Do you know how often I jerked off? Take a guess."

"I … I dunno."

"Guess!" he barked.

Freed gulped hard. "Every other day?"

"You wish! In high school, probably once a week, if even that often. After high school, way less than that. I once went a year and didn't need it. It's been a lot more lately, though," he said casually as he added a third finger. Freed jolted under him with a shuddering cry. "Maybe three months ago, the need really began to increase. I started to watch a lot more porn to take care of things. Now, maybe twice a week I'm stroking off to BondageBox and Wasteland-dot-com. I'm not sure why it's increasing. After tonight, I might end up as horny as you. Twice a day! Shit! You really are one perverted rich boy."

Freed felt ashamed by the humiliation of his insults … and he loved it! "I … I don't do it that often nowadays," he protested.

"When was your last time?"

Freed hesitated on telling him, blushing fiercely and looking aside.

"Tell me!" Laxus twisted his fingers inside, getting Freed to cry out.

"I-I did before … before coming to the sh-show," he confessed.

"Really now? Do you always do that?"

"I … y-yes."

"And I bet you would have whacked off after the show tonight, too. Am I right?"

"I … I don't come to the club all the time."

"I know how often you come, Greenie. I see you in the audience."

Freed gasped softly. "You do? You've seen me?"

"You're avoiding the issue." Laxus leaned in close, almost nose to nose. "How often do you masturbate?"

Freed shuddered as he felt like he was being interrogated. "N-normally … I don't know. Mornings, in the shower. Sometimes, if my roommate is watching porn, we'll watch together, although he likes stuff I don't. Or if he's out, I watch my stuff on the internet."

"Gay porn?"

"Y-yes."

"BDSM?"

Freed cringed down in shame. "Y-yes."

"Every night?"

"Not every. Well, it's been more since I … I…" His words faded away.

"Since when?"

He bit his lower lip. "Since … since I saw you. At the club. I went just to see what it was like. I was gonna leave after the first dancer, but then … then you came out."

"Did you fantasize over me?"

Freed choked on a word.

"Tell me!" Laxus shouted, and he thrust his fingers in harder.

"Y-yes!" he cried out.

Laxus backed his fingers away to ease off the pain, and he stroked gently, soothing away the punishment with rewarding pleasure. "What did you think about?" He watched with amusement as Freed squirmed and looked ashamed. "Tell me. What did I do to you in your fantasies?"

"Th-this."

"Fingering you?"

"Y-yes."

"What else? What did you dream about while you stroked off to me?"

Freed choked on his words. "I … I wanted … t-to … s-s-suck … y-you."

"Tell me clearly."

Freed sniffled at the humiliation of admitting this to the man who had dominated his most arousing fantasies. "I want … to suck on … y-you."

Laxus licked his lips. "Do you really want that?"

"Yes," he whimpered.

Laxus rubbed up against Freed's body, letting the bulge in his pants press against the man's thigh. "Do you want this in your mouth?"

"Yes!" he groaned hungrily.

Laxus laughed and shook his head. "Damn, I'm almost tempted to let you."

"Please!"

"How many blow jobs have you given?"

Freed opened his mouth, squawked out something, and then looked aside in shame. "None," he sighed. He was horrifically unprepared for any of this, no experience at all.

"Good." Laxus leaned over and kissed Freed's forehead. "I want to save at least one first for next time."

"Next time?" Freed gasped, looking up hopefully. Did Laxus want this again?

"Unless you don't like this."

"I … I do so far."

"We've hardly begun. So, in your prolific masturbation sessions, did you ever finger yourself back here?" Laxus gave another deep thrust of his fingers.

"I … y-yes. Sometimes."

"Do you know how to reach … here?"

The fingers curled, and Freed felt a touch that sent his whole body jumping. "No! Oh God!"

Again, Laxus grabbed his cock, and at the same time he leaned over and bit Freed hard on the nipple. The pain soothed away the neediness, forcing his focus away from the trembling in his cock.

"Pain to calm you down, and you want this until sunrise. Shit, you really are something," Laxus chuckled slyly. "How about we give this thing a shot?"

He removed his fingers and pulled the glove off inside-out. He tossed it to the side and took up the black butt plug, slathering the whole plug with copious lube. It already had electrodes attached to it.

"Tell me if it's okay."

Laxus pressed the narrow tip against Freed's asshole, and slowly he eased it in. Freed went through all the relaxing and breathing he had just done as he was slowly spread open. The plug filled him, and just as he began to really hurt, suddenly it slipped into a divot.

"Very good. That's the worst of it. Congrats on your first time being penetrated by an inanimate object."

Freed blushed and looked away with a bashful pout.

"Now, let me put these on while you adjust to the size."

He placed the round pads onto Freed's nipples, then two more on his inner thighs, and two on the base of his penis. He then used the cock ring to hold the pads in place, wrapping the stretchy ring around the penis and balls.

"We'll start low." Laxus took the controller box and sat back to watch the show. He turned the power onto the absolute lowest setting.

Freed jolted as something tingled. His nipples, his inner thighs, his cock, and deep inside were all stimulated at the same time. Once the surprise faded, he let out a long, groaning moan of pleasure.

"I knew you'd like it," Laxus smirked. "But, I don't think I like your freedom. You could pull those off."

He turned to power back off, walked away to fetch Freed's belt, and brought it back over to the bed. He took the thin wrists trained for fencing and yanked them over Freed's head. He wrapped both wrists with the belt and tied him up to the headboard.

"Much better." Laxus gazed down at his bound and helpless victim. "Mmm, yes. Shit, you really do somehow make me aroused. Looking like this, I could fuck you."

Freed squirmed at the thought of it. To be taken and ravaged by this man … God, he wanted that!

"Ready for more?"

Freed was ready for anything!

Laxus took the controller and turned it on again. Electricity flowed into Freed's body in wavering pulses. They jolted him slowly at first, and inside, it truly felt like something was moving within, pounding, rippling through his innards. His cock was getting waves of pleasure, and his nipples almost stung with the sharp tingles.

"More," Freed shuddered.

"Say please," Laxus taunted.

"Please, master."

He increased the voltage just a little and watched with fascination. Freed pulled at the belt around his wrists and groaned in pleasurable discomfort. He began to squirm, and he almost closed up his legs. Laxus pressed the pale, slender thighs back apart.

"Don't do that. If you press the connectors together, that's not good."

"But it's … it's … nnnngh!"

"Intense, I know," Laxus said coolly. "Do you need to be tied down more?" Laxus glanced around the room. "Damn. Just my belt. You need some good rope for next time."

"N-Next time?" Freed panted. He said it again. Next time!

"Shut up." Laxus yanked his belt out from his pant loops and wrapped just one thigh, threading the belt through the buckle. He then knelt by the bed frame and tied the belt to the metal bar as good as he could. It was not the best way to bind someone, but it would work for a while. "Is that comfortable?"

"No, but it's not painful."

"Then it's perfect. Now, beg for more. Beg, bitch!" he smiled in amusement.

Freed shuddered at the harshness that somehow sounded so gentle. "If it pleases you, master, I want more. Please! Please, master! May I have more? It's so good. Master makes me feel so good."

Laxus flinched as those words sent a shock right down his own arousal. He turned up the knobs on the controller, and as Freed moaned without any restraint, Laxus reached down and deftly rubbed himself through his leather pants.

This was such a different experience for a man like Laxus. Growing up, he had never really found pleasure in things he knew should be erotic. Normal online pornography looked boring, nothing but repetitiously thrusting anatomy, and the gasps from the ladies were obviously fake. It annoyed him more than aroused him. Finding a girlfriend was not easy for a boy with a scar on his face. Still, he somehow managed to date a few girls in school. Although they were fun, and he got plenty of pleasure with them, he constantly worried that his strength might hurt them. Maybe it was due to what he saw his mother go through with his bastard father, but Laxus strongly felt he should not hurt a girl.

One day, when he was a senior in high school, he got an offer. A teacher named Mr. Jose Porla took notice of this large, fierce student with a dominant gaze. He negotiated to raise Laxus' grade for a favor. Laxus saw the aging instructor as purely disgusting, but he needed to pass the class. He agreed to hit the man, right there in the classroom, after school, the door shut and locked, with Jose spread on top of his own wide desk, pants dropped to his ankles. The only trick was, Jose had to honestly say he never had a student to touch him. Instead, Laxus used a wooden ruler to spank the teacher's ass until he came, right there, cum splattered on his desk. Laxus worried that he might have honestly hurt his own teacher, but Jose kept insisting, a student could not touch him. He took care of the cleanup himself and let Laxus go with a warning not to tell anyone about what happened, or he would flunk the class for sure. Laxus got a higher grade, and he realized something that day.

He liked to hurt people.

He got a similar offer during his first job, working as an electrician. The foreman cautiously flirted for weeks, and finally Laxus cut to the chase by asking directly what this man wanted. It was a simple arrangement. Once a month, while the man's wife was away at a church meeting, young Laxus would come over and punish the foreman using this same technique as now: erotic electrostimulation. He did not have to touch the man at all, just stand there, look dominating, insult him, humiliate him, and crank up the controller box until the man reached an orgasm. This arrangement lasted a year, making him quite a bit of money. The foreman introduced him to other like-minded men, each who had a masochistic need that Laxus blandly fulfilled.

He somehow moved up in the world of BDSM, learning tricks and techniques with each new client. He realized he could use his skill in dancing to make way more money than as an electrician. The South Pole Club opened a whole new clientèle. He hated all of them. He used them, abused them, left them, and despised each one of them. However, he felt himself needing that sense of dominance, and he found pleasure in imagining his bastard father, how much he wanted to torment that asshole, and discovering the depth of pain he could inflict with men who paid him to go further and deeper into the abyss of painplay.

Someone once scolded him about the proper duties of a Dominant. Fuck that, he thought. He had no emotional attachment to any of these clients. They paid him, and he did what they paid for. No more. He did not bring the supplies, he did not deal with aftercare, and he did not care if the men refused to call back on him after being used and discarded so heartlessly. On the contrary, many of those old geezers liked the fact that Laxus treated them like disgusting shit.

He eventually realized that he simply did not care about sex. He hated those men, and he had not really enjoyed dating women, always feeling like he had to be careful around them. He figured he was the sort of person who just did not like or want sex.

Until now.

He briefly wondered, if he had messed around with boys as a teen, rather than ruining himself with old men, would this have happened? Would he have realized his sexuality earlier? What even was this? Bisexual? Demisexual? He hated labeling himself as anything. He just knew one thing:

He was seriously aroused around this green-haired man.

He turned the controller up a little more, and as the taut body arched with the added shocking pleasure, Laxus felt his cock aching.

Suddenly, he turned the power completely off. Freed sank a bit, panting rapidly, and opened his eyes in confusion.

"Don't you fucking move," Laxus said sharply. "I need to piss."

He set the controller down on the mattress and left to the restroom, slamming the door shut behind him. Immediately, he yanked his leather pants to his knees, grabbed his cock, and began to pump it into his hand.

This young man, someone still in university, a pretty rich boy with green hair and impeccable taste in clothes, this man was driving Laxus insane. He slammed a hand against the wall as he stared down at his cock and stroked faster, needing this pressure to be relieved.

How was it that this man he had never spoken to before tonight could mess him up this potently? Was it because of his age? His looks? Was it mental, not thinking of Freed as a client, but as a…

As what?

What was he? Not a client. Not a boyfriend. Sure as hell not a lover. He was not even a friend. So what was he?

Laxus closed his eyes in frustration by all these random questions, yet all he could see in his imagination was Freed naked on the bed, his long and vibrantly green hair tussled, eyes moist and mouth parted as he breathed hard, his slender but muscular body twisting with pleasure. He had never fantasized about men before. Or about women, for that matter. Why did that man's body come to mind so easily now? What was it with Freed that messed up Laxus' mind so much?

"Will you train my body?"

"If it pleases you, sir, I need more."

"I'm … oh God … hurt me. Somehow. Please!"

"It's so good. Master makes me feel so good."

"Fuck!"

Laxus growled and gritted his teeth as he came, catching it with toilet paper. It was definitely the fastest masturbation he had ever experienced, because he had someone he could actually visualize. That never happened before. He had concepts he would think about, or videos of people being tormented erotically, but never a fantasy about someone specifically.

"What the hell is going on?" he whispered, wiping up his cock and tossing the wad of messy tissues into the toilet. "What's wrong with me? What is this?"

His mind provided answers, but he refused to think about it earnestly. In love? Fucking ridiculous! Discovering his inner gayness? If his brain was a person, he would have smacked the shit out of it for thinking something as stupid as that. So, what was this intense lust? He wanted this man, a feeling he never got with the men he beat up. The truly weird part was, he did not want to hurt this man, not to the point of being cruel, at least. He wanted to help him, and that happened to involve letting Freed experience pain.

"L-Laxus!" Freed cried out frantically.

He yanked his pants back up and ran out without even flushing the toilet. Freed was squirming on the bed.

"What the hell?" grumbled Laxus. He found the controller with the dial cranked up high. He quickly turned it down. "How the hell did that happen? You're still tied up!"

"I … wanted more," Freed panted, slowly recovering. "You were taking a while."

Laxus blushed. Even if he came quickly, it had still taken a couple of minutes. "How did you turn it on?"

Freed looked ashamed. "Um … my foot."

"You used your foot?" Laxus cried out, looking at the leg that he had not been able to tie down.

"I wanted it, but then I couldn't turn it off, and when I tried, my thigh jolted, and my toes slipped, and it turned up even higher."

A hand suddenly came at Freed, and he cringed. Instead of a strike to the face, his hair was yanked, pulling him up by the neck.

"Do you think that's funny? I told you not to move. Apparently, I have a little slave who can't obey one goddamn simple order."

"I … I'm sorry," Freed shivered. He cringed and looked up, awaiting punishment, secretly eager for it.

"You think you want to be punished, don't you?" Laxus said in wry amusement.

"I … No! No, I … I wasn't thinking that."

"You're lying to your master now."

Laxus yanked the belts off Freed's thigh and wrists. They were a little pink, but not marked up. He ordered Freed to flip, and he helped him to lie down with the electrodes under his body. He squirmed uncomfortably, especially with his erection so stiff but being smashed down into the bed.

"Disobeying, lying: you really do need to be trained."

He heard Laxus pick something up. A few seconds later, his ass was smacked by the riding crop. Freed gave a soft cry that was muted into the pillows.

"Did you like it?" asked Laxus. When Freed said nothing, the blond whipped the crop across his ass again, eliciting another high yelp. "Be honest now."

"I … um…"

Laxus yanked Freed's long hair, pulling his face off the pillows. "Enunciate, bitch!"

"Y-yes," he cried out, cringing from the hair pulling. "I did, master. A lot. But it was too much and you weren't here, and I wanted you to be here. I want you … t-to watch me."

"Why?"

"B-because … I want to … to please m-master."

"Dammit," he whispered, releasing Freed's hair and letting his face flop back down into the soft pillows. He wondered how long his little relief session would last him before this man made him painfully aroused again. "How about this?"

He turned on only the power for the butt plug. Freed tensed up, and his hips lifted at the pleasure. Laxus reached down and palmed the plug in tighter.

"Ahhhhh!" Freed shuddered at the intensity.

"Is that good? You want to please me, right?" Laxus suddenly gave him an open-handed spank right over the butt plug, and Freed screamed into the pillow.

"No! Please, don't do that!"

"I don't obey you, little slave. You obey me. You follow my orders. You don't do something when I tell you not to. If I say don't move, you don't move. If I say don't come, you sure as hell are not allowed to come."

"No … I'm … L-Laxus!"

"I'm master now, got it?"

"G-gonna—"

Before he could shout, all the electrodes went to full power. Lying on his chest meant more pressure against his skin, and the round pads pulsed through his nerves far stronger than when he was facing up. His body was jolted. Intensely painful yet pleasurable tingles burned his nerves and made his muscles contract so tightly, the need to come was crushed. Then, as quickly as it started, the jolting vanished, and Freed felt like he had fallen into a hole of dark, sinful pleasures.

"That seems to work well," Laxus said in amusement.

"Oh God, that was wonderful," Freed shivered sensually.

Laxus took his shoulder and helped Freed to turn back around. He readjusted some of the electrodes that shifted, and he untangled some wires. Freed still trembled, but he leaned into Laxus for moral support. Normally, when a client made a move of comfort like this, Laxus shoved them aside in disgust. This time, he cradled Freed and stroked back the sweaty green hair.

"We'll play slowly," he promised. "We have until morning. Just little bits at a time. I wanna see you last another—" He glanced at the clock. "—three hours to go. Think you can hold out that long?"

"I … want to." Those weary but lustful eyes turned up to him. "If it pleases you, master."

Laxus shifted his thighs again. This was going to be a torturous night for them both.

Next Chapter: Thunderstorm Fading

Chapter Text

Freed lost track of time. It was like the electricity that coursed through him, and the touches that prickled his skin, warped time and space, making the night last an eternity, and yet suddenly those hours were coming to an end.

"Hold out. Endure it."

"I can't!"

"You will. Tighten your abdominal muscles. Hold back the need."

"Please, let me come."

"No."

"Please … master."

"Not yet, my slave. We'll wait until sunrise. This is training. Just endure it."

Minutes and hours blended with a glaze of pleasure and fatigue. During one of their many breaks, Freed panted and gazed up at the ceiling, enjoying a respite from the electrical pleasure. Laxus had left his side once more, striding over to the window, and those huge hands threw open the heavy curtains. Freed's eyes squinted. The real world was out there, and he did not want to face that yet. He wanted this fantasy night to last forever.

"Dawn is coming," Laxus said, sounding melancholy. He watched the glow outside getting brighter and brighter.

Freed felt exhausted, aching, and desperate. "Laxus," he moaned. "Please."

"A little longer."

There were only a few more minutes until sunrise. Freed felt like giving up already, but Laxus was right there, holding him again. His hand reached down, stroking, but never enough. Freed craved to end this torture. Suddenly, Laxus yanked all of the electrodes off of Freed's sweaty body and took off the cock ring.

"Wait!" Freed cried out.

"On your feet. Come here."

He forced the weary man to the massive window overlooking the city and pressed him up against the cold pane of glass. It was bright now. Squinting, Freed could see cars below. Morning traffic had begun.

"Maybe they can see you," Laxus whispered into his ear. "Naked, sweaty, a total mess."

Freed shuddered. He was slammed up against the window. They might see! They might know he was up there, a perverted masochist with his strip dancing lover.

Softly, tenderly, Laxus gave a different sort of order. "Watch the sunrise with me, Freed."

Having his name whispered in such a tender way made Freed tremble. He put his hands on the glass to hold himself up as Laxus continued to fondle his balls, giving occasional strokes up the shaft, then back down. Freed tensed, and he felt the plug still in his ass.

"Please," he begged in a shiver.

"Tell me when you see the sun come up."

"It's bright already," Freed groaned. The horizon was burning, but the sun had not yet peaked over.

Laxus nipped along his ear as his hand kept stroking placidly. "As soon as the sun is up, I'll let you come. You're not allowed to before then."

Freed clawed at the glass. Laxus' hand began to stroke him faster. He glanced down and saw his precum streaking the glass in wet smears.

"Oh God," Freed groaned, shuddering with pleasure.

"You're so close," Laxus breathed, and he lapped his tongue around the shell of Freed's ear. "Four hours! You're really amazing."

"Please," Freed huffed in exhaustion. "Please." It was all he could say.

Laxus laid his head on Freed's shoulder so their faces were together as they gazed out the window. Finally, "Sun's up," he noted as the first stream of gold crested the distant horizon. "Ready?"

Although Freed was panting and shaking with fatigue, he looked over to Laxus. "You first."

Laxus raised an eyebrow.

"You've been hard all night." Freed arched his ass back to rub against Laxus' arousal hidden away in those tight leather pants. "I … I want you to come first. I want it on my face. I … I want to jerk myself off while you spray it on my face."

"Shit," Laxus whispered breathlessly, but then his eyes glared hard. "No!"

Freed gasped, shocked at being denied his one earnest request.

"I don't like the idea of you finishing yourself off. It'd be like I couldn't finish my job. I'll do it. Now, lie down."

Freed walked back to the bed and obediently reclined on the pillows. Laxus undid the top button of his leather pants and yanked his zipper down. Freed had seen him do this much for the audience in his finale dance move, teasing by showing only the root of his cock. This time, he pulled out the whole thing, thick and flushed with arousal, finally springing free after being confined for so long. Freed caught his breath. Something that huge would really hurt … and Freed liked the idea of that!

Laxus straddled over Freed's torso. One hand reached back and stroked Freed's erection. The other hand wrapped around that massive cock and gave himself a full stroke. Freed clenched up like Laxus had instructed just to keep from coming at the mere sight of Laxus stroking himself.

"Good boy," Laxus smiled. "But you can come at any time."

"I want t- … to hold off," Freed said between gasps. "I want … s-same time."

"I can't guarantee that. I have no clue when I'll come, and you're damn close."

"I wanna hold back," he insisted. "I'll … I'll try to hold myself back. Just don't stop. Keep touching me. Please! Like this. Both. Together. Like … nnngh … this!"

Laxus hissed at the moaning demands. "I won't bother taking my time, then. I've been hard for a while. I jerked off in the bathroom once already," he admitted. "Seeing you like this, I need to again. Desperately!"

Freed smiled with intense happiness. Then that meant Laxus really had enjoyed this night.

Laxus stroked himself without delicacy, letting his wrist fly to bring himself close as quickly as possible. Watching that, Freed felt something like a surge, but he tightened up, holding back.

"L-Laxus," he cried out.

"Moan for me. Cry out. Scream!" Laxus reached over, plugged a cord back into the butt plug, and turned the e-stim up to the level where he had noticed that Freed enjoyed the most, without it being up so high as to numb him from coming.

Freed arched up, feeling himself burning up and tingling inside, pulsing waves flowing through him, and suddenly everything was rushing forward.

"L-Laxus! Oh … God … oh!"

"Ffffuck!" Laxus groaned. "I wanna hear you, Freed."

His body twisted, part of him wanting to finally come after four hours of teasing, part dreading that coming meant this fantasy would end. That fear was a far bigger incentive not to come at all.

"Do you want my hand more?" Laxus panted, and he grabbed Freed's dripping cock. "You've been leaking so much all night, I wonder if you have anything left in your balls."

Freed tensed at the sweetly dirty talk.

"You're not too numb, are you?"

"Please," he whispered.

"Too quiet. Moan for me."

"L-Laxus!"

"Shit … so close. More! Be louder."

"No! Gonna … I'm gonna…"

"Scream, bitch!" Laxus suddenly slapped Freed on the thigh.

At the painful strike, Freed cried out and felt himself go. That pumping hand gave no mercy at the end, breaking his will and making him come apart completely. Just before Freed had a chance to feel disappointed that he came first, Laxus' face changed, his teeth bared tensely, and Freed heard him chanting.

"Shit, fuck, shit, shit, fuuuuck!"

He watched the first white arc of liquid shoot out with such power, it flew past his face, landing on his forehead and green hair. Then Laxus changed his angle a little, watching and letting the next jolt cover Freed, streaking his cheek and across his mouth. Freed tasted the bitterness drip past his lips.

Laxus grinned tensely as he held his cock over Freed's face, letting more spill out until it covered the swordsman's skin. He smiled down at the mess, milking out everything, slathering it onto the flushed cheeks. He playfully slapped Freed's cheeks with his cock, and the green-haired man moaned to feel that. Then Laxus held his shrinking cock to wipe himself clean on Freed's face. Freed felt that soft skin, the wetness, and he savored the taste dripping into his mouth.

"Not bad," Laxus said in praise as he turned off the electrical stimulator. He climbed off and knelt beside Freed. "You actually held back. I'm honestly impressed." Then he took one finger and drew a pattern in the milky fluid covering Freed's face. "I've … I've never done this with someone who wasn't a client. Hell, I've never let myself come for a client at all, or … or for anyone."

Freed arched an eyebrow. "I'm your first?"

Laxus laughed brusquely but still had a faint blush. "Shit, I guess so. Same with you?"

"Yeah," Freed said faintly. "I … I mean, I've dated, but … not this. Never something like this."

Laxus stroked back the green hair. "Were you ever kissed before tonight?"

Freed blushed and looked aside. "A few times."

"Good. I don't want to feel like I'm stealing everything away from you all at once."

Laxus suddenly leaned over. Freed's eyes widened as he felt rough lips meet his in a domineering kiss. There was no pretext of giving him a drink this time. It was a pure kiss, and it was … messy!

Laxus pulled back and chuckled softly. "You taste like shitty cum."

"It's your cum," Freed shot back. "Not my fault if it's shitty."

Laxus laughed that this man, a raging masochist, was still witty and could talk back. He brought forward the hand he had used to stroke off Freed. "Here, taste this."

He thrust a moist finger into Freed's mouth. Those teary eyes widened, then tensed up, trying to shake his head at the bitterness. Laxus chuckled sadistically, grabbed a handful of hair, and gave it just enough of a yank to show he was serious.

"Clean it up, Greenie."

Freed's gazed up, but he obeyed, sucking on the finger, then licking the other fingers, cleaning up the mess.

"Good job," Laxus praised softly, stroking the hair to ease the pain. "Damn. Why do you have to be a hot, young guy?"

Freed looked up, wondering why he would say something like that. Then he saw the wistfulness in Laxus' face. "Would it be easier if I was a woman?"

"Not really. Same problem, just different plumbing."

"Problem?" he asked worriedly.

"Strippers aren't supposed to get attached."

"That's to clients," Freed pointed out.

Laxus froze in surprise, and then laughed silently to himself. "I guess that's true. You're not a client."

"What am I?"

Laxus took the edge of the bed sheet and wiped up Freed's messy face. "A friend?" he guessed.

"With benefits?" Freed teased.

Laxus chuckled at that cockiness. "Maybe more."

Freed's playfulness turned to shock. "W-wait. More … than friends?"

"Maybe," he emphasized sternly, but Laxus began to blush again. "I … wouldn't mind."

"T-to have … more?"

Electric blue eyes gazed down at him. "To have you."

Freed caught his breath. "Laxus!" he whispered in awe.

"Do you mind?"

"No!"

"I'm a stripper," Laxus warned. "It's my job. I'm not quitting it. It's the only way I can get new clients, men I can beat up, do things that I wouldn't want to do with you."

"Wouldn't want?"

"Seriously, do you repeat everything I say?" he snapped in irritation.

"What don't you want to do with me?" Freed demanded.

Laxus stroked back the green hair. "Hurt you. Treat you like shit. Beat you up. I don't want that."

Freed's eyes softened. "What do you want?" he asked hopefully.

Laxus smiled, and he showed a little bit of hidden tenderness deep down inside. "Who knows?" he whispered, refusing to give in to that soft side, although his fingers still stroked through Freed's lengthy hair, playing with it, watching the green shifting colors in the light. "Do you feel like showering? I like to shower right afterward. I hate the way cum feels when it dries."

"To be honest, I'm not sure if I can stand on my own yet."

"I'll help to hold you up."

Freed caught his breath. "You mean, shower together?"

"That's what I meant. You can scrub my back." He looked aside gruffly. "Unless you don't wanna."

"I do!" Freed cried out. "That is … if it pleases you, master."

Laxus chuckled and stroked his hair. "Master/slave time is over. I'm just Laxus now."

He may say that, but to Freed, this man would always be part thunder god!


After a soothing shower, they returned to the bed. Laxus laid down, and at a silent gesture, Freed laid next to him, curling into that large, tattooed body. He looked at the skin marked with scars, and the ink that tried to hide the scars from view. He lightly touched one, but then worried if perhaps the skin was sensitive. Laxus did not move, though. Freed glanced down at the puckered skin and wondered if, instead of sensitive, Laxus had lost some sensation in the areas with all the scars. The idea that it was Laxus' father who did this to his own son saddened Freed, and he kissed one of the scars.

"I can't feel directly on top of them," Laxus said quietly. "Just to the side, it's super sensitive. Not painful, just easy to feel." He glanced down with a small smile. "I can't feel your lips when you do that, but your nose tickles."

"Sorry," he whispered.

"I didn't say to stop. I meant to kiss beside the scar, not on top. That way I can feel it. I like to feel your lips."

Freed smiled coyly, leaned over, and placed his lips beside one of the scars. He felt a ripple through Laxus' muscles and guessed it must have tickled also.

"Do you need to sleep?" asked Laxus.

"It's morning. When do we need to check out?"

"Eleven o'clock. It's already seven. Either we leave now, or we sleep for a few hours."

Freed curled closer into the large body. "I don't want to leave yet."

A large hand stroked his head. "Yeah, me neither. I'll set the alarm for ten."

Laxus messed with the hotel's clock alarm, then rolled back into the bed and wrapped his body around Freed's.

"If I snore, hit my nose," Laxus muttered. In under a minute, his body slumped, and his breathing went heavy.

Freed felt those breaths on the back of his neck. A few light snores came out, but they made him smile. It seemed the thunder god had a cute side.


Freed was unsure when he fell asleep, but he jolted out of a dream when the alarm clock clicked on. Laxus' arms clutched tightly around him. He tried to move away, hoping to turn off the alarm, but Laxus squeezed tighter.

"Don't go yet," he mumbled.

Freed glanced around, but it looked like Laxus was still asleep.

"Stay here. Don't go," he muttered.

Was he talking in his sleep? It was rather cute.

However, less than a minute later, Laxus woke and blinked out his sleepy eyes. He saw Freed gazing at him, and he jolted back.

"What the … oh. Last night. Right."

"Good morning," Freed smiled.

"Heh! I've never slept with someone, not since I was a child sleeping with my mother. Did I snore?"

"Not really. We, um … we should turn off that alarm."

Laxus rolled over and hit the alarm clock with a fist. Then he stayed on his back staring at the ceiling.

"Are you feeling all right?" he finally asked Freed.

Freed sat up and stretched out his arms. "Seems so." He began to stand, but his legs almost gave out. "Ooooor maybe not."

"Thighs?"

"Yeah. They burn."

"That's to be expected. Hey, you slept naked."

"So did you," Freed pointed out.

"I'm used to it. Weren't you cold?"

Freed blushed. "No." He had actually felt a little too warm with Laxus wrapped around him.

"Look, about your clothes, I'll need to return the jeans to work. They're costume clothes. I … um … I got you this to wear." Laxus got out of bed and walked over to the bag he had bought the night before.

Freed watched with a prurient smile at the way the morning sunlight slanted through the window and lit up Laxus' naked body, from muscular shoulders, firm buttocks that had dimples on the cheeks, a cock hanging soft but still impressive even flaccid, and those thighs that looked like they could crush something. That body had been right up against him all night. He almost wished he had not slept for a single minute so he could have felt Laxus holding him these past three hours.

"I know it's not your thing, but it's all they had at the sex shop." He pulled out a pair of leather pants and a male thong. Freed covered his mouth and laughed. "Hey! I said it was all they had," Laxus snapped.

"It's fine, just … leather pants … like yours." He grinned with excitement, feeling warm to have an article of clothing picked out by the man he liked.

"Well, when I gave them to you last night, I had thought maybe you could just drop them off on your next visit, but you said you weren't returning to the South Pole Club, so I realized I needed to get you something else to wear. It was my fault for not paying attention to you during that lap dance. We didn't have time to have the maids do your laundry, so you need to wear something to drive home."

"Home," Freed said softly. He had to leave this world of fantasy and return to his dorm room, to university and fencing matches, his roommate, his annoying siblings, the family who only barely tolerated the fact that their eldest son was gay, back to real life! It was a depressing thought.

Laxus saw the look on his face. He pulled Freed over in bed and wrapped him up into a warm embrace. "It'll be okay. We can have more nights like this, if you want."

"Promise?" Freed asked uncertainly.

Laxus liked the silkiness of this man's green hair on his cheek. "Promise. Get your phone."

Freed got his cellphone, and Laxus got his number.

"Can't I have yours?" Freed asked.

"I warned you, I'm really careful about letting other people know stuff about me. Something like my cellphone, you don't get info like that until the third date."

Freed's eyes sparkled. Date?

"I have your number. I'll give you a call. It won't be right away, though. Don't be some idiot pining away waiting for the phone to ring. I have work, ya know. And you have school. When is your next fencing tournament?"

Freed felt his heart race with excitement. Could they make that into another date? Dating? Dating Laxus? Were they dating now? "I-it's a week before Halloween. But … that isn't for a month!"

"That's plenty of time for you to recover from this. But no one else touches you, got it?"

"N-No! Of course not!"

"You can look, but don't touch."

"I only look at you," he swore. "Even at the club, you were the only one I really watched. No one else compared."

Laxus chuckled and ruffled up his hair. "Then a week before Halloween, I'll give you a call. I wanna see you fight."

"It's a competition, not a fight."

"If you win your tournament, I'll use the e-stim plug again. Now are ya gonna fight to win?"

"Hell yes!" Freed moaned, already wanting that pulsing pleasuring inside of him.

"Good boy. Get into the shower, let the hot water hit your muscles. It'll help."

Freed left to the restroom. The hot water really did feel good on his aching muscles, and he began to understand why Laxus said a month would be enough recovery time. He was going to hurt for the next few days! However, his depression was gone. Already, he looked forward to training extra hard on his swordsmanship so he could show Laxus his strength.

When he stepped out toweling his hair, the hotel was quiet. He looked around, but there was no sign of Laxus. He wondered if maybe he left to get more ice, but the black bag was missing, too. Freed felt his heart racing. He was gone! Like the briefness of a passing thunderstorm, this man had struck him, ravaged him, and rolled on.

"Laxus!" he cried out, just in case he was hiding. Then he saw a note written on hotel parchment and placed on the rumpled blankets.


Greenie … Freed,

I'm still a man who likes his privacy. There are depths to me I don't like to show to anyone, but especially not to someone I care for. Dammit, but somehow you made a man like me give a shit for a little whelp like you. So, it's best if we leave things like this. I can find my way home by bus.

I left the butt plug and cock ring for you. Those are yours. Don't you dare use them unless I'm with you, got it? It's part of your "supplies" now, so when I see you again, you better bring them with you or I'll be really upset. I don't buy gifts for my own family on Hanukkah, let alone someone I don't even know. You better take care of them!

If you ever really need to see me, no matter what's the issue, you know where to find me: at the South Pole. Otherwise, await my phone call, but don't you dare act like some damn princess, sighing and moping and shit. You're in university, so study your ass off and work hard on swordfighting. Or competition. Whatever you call it. I don't even know what the hell I'm writing anymore, so…

Bye.

Your thunder god


"My thunder god," Freed whispered, seeing how he had addressed it.

He walked over to the window. The sun was bright in the sky. It looked like any other day, and tomorrow Freed had to go back to classes and studying. Maybe not much had changed, but Freed felt like his life was just dawning, like the morning star rising in the east.

Then a sight caught his eye. In front of the hotel was a bus stop. A city bus had just pulled over to pick up a passenger, and Freed saw a broad built man with blond hair. As the person began to walk up the bus steps, he paused and glanced back. Freed saw Laxus gazing up at him. He placed his hand up against the window pane, wondering if Laxus could even see him way up here. Maybe it was only his imagination when Laxus' clear blue eyes met his, and he nodded faintly, as if telling Freed he would be all right on his own now.

And then he was gone. The bus pulled away. The thunderstorm had rolled over the horizon, leaving Freed refreshed, renewed, and filled with revitalization.

 

Next Chapter: Always Greener on the Other Side

Chapter Text

Laxus had a leather flogger in his hand. In front of him, stretched out with hands and neck bound in stocks, was some fat piece of flesh. He didn't know the name, and he didn't care. The man was familiar, likely some politician or maybe even an actor. Laxus had no clue, only that he had seen this man's face on TV. Now he was just another client, some sick fuck who wanted the God of Thunder to crash apart his world.

Music blared through the room. Rather than the dance tunes at the club, when Laxus worked a client his music was darker, ominous, meant to make the person's heart race and instill fear. Fear of him! Obedience! Right then, Metallica's Ride the Lightning was blaring, guitars shredding.

Flash before my eyes.
Now it's time to die.
Burning in my brain.
I can feel the flames.

Normally, this put Laxus in the mood to dole out pain, remembering the past, the pain, the terror, all trust sliced into pieces as his own father hurt him, cut into him with surgical precision, did things to him, experiments that were excruciating, things young Laxus did not understand. Maybe his father's experiments worked. He had been a feeble child, almost died many times from fevers and easily getting injured. His mother had constantly fretted over his health. Now, he never got sick, he was large, muscular, taller than almost everyone else he knew. People around him whispered about steroids. Likely, that was part of it. Maybe more. Laxus had no clue.

Sometimes, he wished it had not worked. If he was still weak and sick all the time, maybe he would have stayed indoors, studied more, focused on school and friends, instead of being an outcast, everyone terrified of him, roaming the streets just to escape his family life, so consumed by anger that things like an education were secondary to his lust for revenge.

He slapped the flogger over the flesh. Lumpy fat jiggled, and the skin darkened with serpentine red marks.

"Sickening!" he muttered.

Just seeing this man was disgusting. No wonder he never got aroused before. He used to think that just the act of hurting someone should be enough to arouse him, so he thought maybe he was asexual, since none of his clients, nor the women he had dated, stirred him. Nobody aroused him!

Now, he had come to know an athletic body, thin and taut muscles, firm flesh toned with youth and hard work, not saggy and wrinkled like this man. There had never been pleasure in his job before, but now Laxus was intensely revolted.

"Master!" the man groaned.

"You're repulsive," he sneered.

"Yes! Yes, I am, master."

"Shut up!" Laxus cracked the flogger over the flesh. The man groaned in masochistic pleasure, and the sound turned Laxus' stomach.

When Freed had called him master, that desperate whimper had shocked Laxus. Freed said the title as if nobody else in his life would ever be master, only Laxus. Only him! He liked that. He liked knowing there was a man who wanted that sort of exclusiveness.

This fat bastard had probably had dozens of doms before hiring Laxus. He certainly had a wide variety of devices, his own sado-maso playroom in his mansion's basement, designed to look like a dungeon, so he was experienced in this sort of perverted play.

"The butt plug, master. You promised. Twenty lashes and I can have it."

Gross. Laxus wanted to vomit. This man's flabby ass stuck out, stripped red from the lashes he had been getting all night. Laxus had made the requirement of twenty lashes because he sincerely hoped the man would not make it that far. Either his arm was swinging too gently, or this man's pain tolerance was incredible.

Laxus set the flogger aside and pulled on latex gloves.

He remembered Freed had asked about using gloves. They were because Laxus never knew if these men has diseases. Of course, they all claimed they were perfectly loyal husbands, and they only needed this pain-play once in a while, a breather from the mundane world, the stress of constantly striving for perfection in their aristocratic empyrean. Under the Thunder God's dominance, they could be reduced to a mere mortal, gross flesh, carnal cravings, and escape from all that pressure. Still, Laxus never knew how many whores these men might have on the side. At least three of his former clients had been reported in the news for scandals with prostitutes, interns, or secretaries.

If only the news knew about the male strip dancer those same men had hired to whip and paddle their asses into submission. More than once, Laxus chuckled about how he could write a tell-all story one day and humiliate a third of the politicians in his jurisdiction.

"Master, you're quiet tonight. Are you okay?"

"Shut up," Laxus grumbled.

"You're not insulting me as much, master."

Laxus had the gloves on, but he suddenly grabbed the old man by his graying hair, yanking his head up harshly. "Are you ordering me, bitch?"

"N-no, master."

"Good. Then do me a favor and never call me master again. You are a disgusting, fat, motherfucking sonuvabitch and unworthy of having me as your master."

The man moaned pleasurably at the insult. "Uh, then what should I call you?"

Laxus wondered about that. He only wanted Freed to call him master, and he knew that Freed was the only one he wanted as a slave. These sick fucks were too disgusting to be his slaves. They were pigs, mere fodder, pieces of meat he could hit. However, today he could not keep his mind on the act of taking revenge on his father. His mind kept slipping to green hair.

"Call me son."

The man raised his head and looked back in confusion. "Son?"

"No, never mind." Although that would definitely remind him of his father, if this bastard started to beg for more, then calling him son would be awkward as hell. "Call me Lexus."

"Oh! Like the car? Is that your name?"

"No, idiot," he said coldly.

Laxus grabbed up a butt plug and a bottle of lube. Disgusting cow! He wanted this to be over with already. He wanted to go home, put the whole day out of his mind, and think about that lithe body squirming over twisted sheets. Now, every time he watched porn, Laxus pictured long, green hair sprawled across the bed. Almost every night, Freed haunted him with the memories of him begging weakly and arching up in pleasure.

Laxus looked down. The sweet memories were stirring his pants, but seeing this client, this rich pervert who had to pay money to get this sort of treatment, killed his boner in an instant.

He sneered, "You really are pathetic."

"Yes!" the man groaned.

"Disgusting! Putrid pile of flesh! You couldn't get a nymphomaniac to suck you off."

"Nnnngh! Mas-…"

"Don't fucking call me that! You're not worthy of calling me that. Who would want you as a slave?" Laxus slicked up the plug and rammed it in without any attempt at being gentle.

"Ahhhhh! Mas-… Lexus!"

The name was too close. Shit.

"The vibrator, please, Lexus."

"You are ordering me way the hell too much! Disgusting, greedy fucker!"

Laxus reached to a table with an array of sex toys and picked up a heavy paddle with the word BITCH imprinted on it. He weighed it in his hand, took aim, and slapped it hard over the man's ass. BITCH was left behind amidst bright pink skin.

"You're way below me." Slap! "You're just some needy, pitiful slug." Smack, smack!

"Oh God, yes!"

"Fuck your vibrator! I will beat the shit out of you. That shitty cum of yours. Just shit! Disgusting pimple! Pop your white shit out. Sick fucker!"

Laxus was honestly furious. This was not about his father anymore, though. As he paddled the man over and over, he realized he was angry at himself, at this lifestyle, at the sort of man he had grown to become.

Still, he needed this. He needed to hurt these men. It was like needing food or oxygen. As repulsed as he was by them, they were the only ones he could hurt, because he really did not want to hurt Freed like this. He wanted to give him the sort of pain that tingled all through him. He wanted to hear those desperate moans and watch his face as he struggled to hold back from coming. He wanted that man so much, it drove him crazy.

It scared Laxus, and so he held back on giving Freed a call. Just one phone call and he could have that man!

But if he met Freed while feeling this way, he would want more than just doling out pain and watching the effects. He had loved touching Freed, and then at the end, touching himself, both of them together, taking pleasure in feeling that body writhing between his thighs … something amazing had sparked between them, something sensual, a shared euphoria.

He wanted more!

And part of him feared that desire.

He was still swinging the paddle over and over when he realized the client had cum dripping on the floor. Laxus did not feel any sort of fulfillment. He did his job. He would get a ridiculous amount of money, funds he was saving up so he could search for his father. One day, he might need to pay off police or find one hell of a lawyer when he finally tortured and murdered that bastard.

He had no clue what he would do after that. He wouldn't need these men. He wouldn't need to imagine torturing his father. His quest for revenge would be over. Would he still even be a sadist? Probably, but he doubted the anger issues would still be around.

Maybe he and Freed could settle down somewhere, live a normal life. The guy was apparently wealthy. Laxus could live in luxury. He would not have to work at the strip club anymore. He could read more, listen to music, maybe attend opera concerts with Freed. It was a nice thought.

'What the hell am I even thinking about?'

These sorts of daydreams scared him. He had never known a normal life. How could he possibly expect to fit in with polite society?

Freed was way above him, a fortunate eldest son born into plutocratic privilege. That was why Laxus liked to bring him down, make this green-haired angel just another mortal. Although he pompously claimed the title of thunder god, Laxus knew how simple and miserable his life really was. He wanted Freed to be at his level, to break those wings and bring him down, make him suffer the pain of mortals, if just for a little while, just enough so Laxus could finally touch this emerald angel.

He focused back on the client. He set the paddle down, pulled the plug out, and put it in a dish to be sterilized later. He never dealt with cleanup. When he unlocked the stocks, the man collapsed to the floor, wincing in pain and panting in sexual exhaustion.

"Money," Laxus demanded curtly.

"The butler will have it, as usual, plus a little extra for your silence."

Laxus never asked for hush money, but most of his highest profile clients, particularly politicians, added that in.

The man wiped sweat off his forehead. He was dripping all over his obese body. "Can you help me up, Lexus?" He reached a hand out.

The blond pulled away. Touch that sweat-drenched hand? Sick! "I don't help you. You are an ant before a god, and I don't give a shit about what happens to an insect like you. I'm only here to make you understand: all of your money doesn't change what you are."

"I know," the man groaned, smiling to hear the insults. "Tell me what I am. Tell me!"

"You're a fucking sick bastard who still thinks he can order me around." Laxus put his boot lightly on top of the man's penis. "I could crush you easily, like a cockroach, and not even all the money in the world could buy back what I could steal from you."

The slight pain, humiliation, and degradation made the man shudder erotically. Laxus bet this idiot had no clue that what he really meant was that, with one well-placed call, he could end this man's perfect outward appearance, shatter his happy family life, ruin his reputation, and socially end him.

Laxus turned and strode out of the room, ripping off the latex gloves and throwing them over his shoulders. He knew already, he would never agree to see this man again, not since he knew a name that was too damn close to Laxus' real name. He was rich, he obviously had years of collecting BDSM gear, he would find another dom in no time and hopefully forget all about Lexus.

At least it was not master anymore. Laxus never wanted these filthy pigs to call him master again.

Right now, he just wanted to go home, put on some porn, lean back in bed, and stroke off to thoughts of creamy limbs bound with his belt and verdant hair sprawled across the pillows.


Freed was sitting in his dorm room trying to study a business model, comparing the class project instructions to what he had written up, and cross-referencing that with three textbooks and something he found online. Flute music played over his iTunes. He now had a large collection of classical flute music pirated off websites. If he ever got to go driving with Laxus again, he wanted a whole soundtrack to ease the man's motion sickness.

He paused. Just thinking about Laxus made him want to reach down and stroke himself, but he really did not feel like dealing with that, not when his roommate could come home at any time. Not for the first time, Freed wondered if he should look into off-campus housing before his graduation. He could easily afford an apartment, and he had a car to drive to school. Living in a dorm with a roommate was supposed to be part of the whole "college experience." Instead, it was annoying and distracting, especially when he wanted to quickly jerk off so he could focus back on school work.

He sighed, shoving Laxus out of his head. The man had not called or texted him, and he wondered if maybe he would never hear back. Was he just another person in the prolific escapades of the strip dancer? Was it all just some incredibly elaborate dream? No … he had the butt plug, cock ring, leather pants, and male thong to prove that their night together really happened. Those were hidden away so his roommate would not see them.

Freed focused back on his homework. He wrote in a few notes to adjust the statistics, when suddenly his door was kicked open, followed by laughter.

A man with orange hair swaggered in, obviously drunk, with two ladies on either arm. They were young and incredibly gorgeous, but the sight of them made Freed immediately on guard. He felt this had to be some sort of karma, feeling wary of women yet winding up as the roommate of the campus's biggest playboy, Loke.

"Freed, dude, whatcha doin', roomie?" Loke asked. The two ladies had their hands all over him. One was already trying to unthread his belt, eager for the fun to start.

"I live here," Freed said blandly.

"It's Saturday. I thought you hit up one of your twink clubs on Saturdays."

Freed flinched. Loke was usually really cool about Freed's homosexuality. "More chicks for me" was what he said laughingly when they were first put together as dorm-mates. However, Freed could smell the booze from his desk. Loke was drunk, and he often did not realize what he said when intoxicated.

"Gay, huh?" one of the ladies purred, eying Freed, making him feel even more on edge. "Care for a foursome? I wouldn't mind watching two hot guys going at it together."

Freed coldly stared at her. "Are you serious?" he said bitterly.

"Whoa, easy there, kitten," Loke laughed to the buxomly blonde. "Freed is one hundred percent all boys club, no girls allowed."

"Do you two ever…?" she began to ask.

Freed slammed his folder shut, turned off the music, and tapped a few keys to screen-lock his computer so no one would tamper with it. "You have until two AM when the bars close, Loke. Either they're gone, or all three of you are asleep." As he began to walk past, he leaned over to his roommate. "And just so we're clear after last time, I do not make breakfast for your girls."

"I know, dude, I get it. You're a pal. Go out, have fun, live while you're young or you're gonna end up as some old geezer paying dudes to blow you."

The girls laughed at that, but Freed stormed out. For some reason, that comment made him remember Laxus. Was he out there somewhere with one of his clients?

He kept trying to assure himself, Loke meant well, and he did not know about Laxus yet. Freed had no clue how to even begin explaining how he had hooked up with a stripper, and he was not even sure if he and Laxus were really together. Freed knew that Loke meant nothing by the comment. He just made a really bad drunk, and when it came to ladies, the man was an animal.

Just after he shut the door, Freed heard Loke say, "Nope, sorry kitten, but that's Freed's bed. Don't touch his stuff. He's a good friend."

Hearing Loke respect his privacy made Freed smile, reassuring him that, indeed, Loke was a fairly decent roommate…

"The fun is over on this bed. So, which one wants eaten and which one wants to ride the lion?"

… An insatiable male pig, but a decent roommate.

Freed yanked his coat on. It was drizzling outside, so he took one of the umbrellas the dorm provided. It was dark at 8PM now, and he was not really sure where he could go this late at night. All around Magnolia University, weekend parties were going on. There was some sort of sports game out by the stadium. Was it football season? Freed had little interest in sports besides fencing. He thought about heading to the 24-hour gym and getting in some workout time, but eventually he began to wander a route he knew well.


Laxus was late to work yet again. It wasn't like he had to put on any special clothes or have makeup done before his dance like some of the people in the club. Still, when he entered the backstage of the South Pole Club, he already heard Talking Heads' Popsicle playing, which meant Gray had begun his show.

"Dreyar!" a voice boomed. Only one man called Laxus that. He slowly turned and glared at Jellal. "Do you have any idea what time it is?"

"Not time for my dancing," Laxus said softly.

"Your shift began an hour ago."

"I don't need to primp myself like some of these whores," Laxus said, not caring if other dancers heard him and took offense. Most were already too drunk or high to care anyway. "I don't start making you money until the light on that stage turns yellow."

"You don't make me money period," Jellal shouted. "That's the problem. I gave you a second chance when I saw that green-haired mouse. He was a regular with lots of cash, but he hasn't been back since that day. Did you scare him off? You didn't hurt him, did you?"

"No!" Laxus shouted, angry he would even accuse him of that.

"I don't want another one of your clients calling up here because you left him beaten half to death."

"I didn't do that to him," Laxus insisted furiously.

"You drove away a regular. You're not making this club money. Do you know what you're doing? Wasting my goddamn time! Using my reputable stage to prostitute yourself in the hopes that you'll get another filthy rich masochist. Do you really want me to threaten to blackmail one of your mewling submissives for money just to pay for the goddamn medical insurance I have to buy for you?"

"Threaten the wrong one, and you'll end up with this club repossessed and your license to sell alcohol revoked permanently." Laxus leaned into Jellal. "I can do that with just one snap of my belt. You don't threaten my clients, got it? Some of those bastards are more powerful than you can imagine."

"The fact remains," Jellal said coldly, "you're not making the club money. You're a waste of show time. There are lots of pretty little boys out there happy to take up an offer to dance at this club, pleasure a few men, and get paid to do what's enjoyable to them. I know for a fact, you take no pleasure in men. Or women, for that matter." Jellal leaned in close and threatened, "I could replace you like that," and he snapped his fingers.

"Only with the street whores you bribe with weed, or people who your bastard twin brother manages to get out of a prison term and have them work here as fucking indentured servants. I know that's how you snagged your claws into Gray. Lyon, too. You bribe them or blackmail them. Not many come here willingly. I did!" he said, thumbing his chest. "You ain't got shit on me."

"I can still fire you. Work your ass on that stage, and I want you circling the floor. I'll even make an announcement: they can take you for a free spin tonight, but all tips are mine today."

"What?" Laxus roared. "You bastard…"

"Then hope someone buys a lap dance. Manage to get that, and you can keep the tips. Until that happens, you work the floor for free. See if that tames you some, and if they see you aren't as scary as you try to seem, maybe they'll buy more dances with you in the future."

"Fuck you!"

"Watch it," Jellal warned sternly. "Just because you came to this club on your own terms, just because you're not gay, just because you don't actually have sex with your clients, realize this, Laxus Dreyar: you are just as much a whore as the kids in this club who started off blowing old men in back alleys for a twenty. Right now, you're my whore. Now get out there, dance like Bob will give you a blow job if you don't perform like fucking Fred Astaire, and then get your ass onto the floor. Now, I have an announcement to make before your song starts. I get to tell those gentlemen that the Thunder God is free to play."

Laxus had half a mind to walk right back out of that club and go home. However, nothing waited for him there. He hardly had anything to convince him to keep waking up in the morning. Especially since Freed had not been back to the South Pole Club, coming to work was no longer enjoyable.

He had noticed long before that fateful night that there were a set of eyes on him in the audience. He thought of the man as simply "Greenie." Hardly realizing it, he had begun to dance for Greenie. He danced knowing that someone was enjoying it. He aimed most of his pelvic thrusts in the direction of those eyes in the dark that gawked with arousal. He did not even notice this until those eyes were gone, the dark was empty, and no one cared if he gyrated in time to the music or not.

He heard Jellal make his announcement. Fucker! Knowing it was free, he would probably have to keep giving lap dances all night long. He hated that part of the work. He did not mind the dancing, but getting right up close to people … he wanted to beat the crap out of most of those men, and it was hard to hold back.

Gray came backstage, shirt missing, only boxers on, using a towel to wipe away the sweat from his hard performance. He went straight over to Laxus.

"Did you piss in Jellal's bourbon? He's never been this livid just because you show up two minutes before showtime, so long as you're on the stage when the music starts."

Laxus glared at the bright stage and the darkness beyond. "Why do you work here, Gray?"

"Eh?" He paused his wiping as he thought about that question. "I like it here. I like to dance, the money is good, and Pinkie isn't so bad. He's here again tonight."

"Do you love him?"

Gray's eyes widened. "What? Nats- … I mean, Pinkie?"

"Does he know your name?"

"W-why would you ask that? You know Jellal's rules." He realized he was sounding desperate.

"Gray, you're here because you broke some rules, Siegrain got you out of jail on a technicality, and he told you to work off your lawyer fees by dancing here. You've paid Siegrain back, yet you're still here. You're a damn good dancer. You could dance professionally. And that pink brat, he seems devoted. You two could make a life together."

Gray looked aside just as Lyon passed by down the corridor. "It's more complicated than that," he muttered, watching the white-haired fellow stripper.

"He seems like a good guy. You've had him as a client five times this month alone. Do you ever do it for free?"

"F-free?" Gray echoed fearfully.

"Do you ever feel attachment? Fondness? Love?"

"Laxus, what the hell?" Gray shouted, fisting up his hands to keep from shaking. These were taboo things to ask. The club's rules for strippers were absolute, and Jellal had fired people for forming a relationship with a person and becoming exclusive.

Laxus looked down with uncertainty in his face. "If Pinkie stopped coming, would you quit?"

Gray's mouth dropped in shock. "Wait, is this about that greenie kid? You and him … are you two…?"

Before he could ask, and before Laxus could decide what to tell him, the stage went dark. Jellal walked down some stairs and into the wings. He glared at the two dancers.

"Ice Prince, your dragon is waiting. Thor, I want sparks to ignite that stage! Fucking Mjolnir sparks, got it?"

"Whatever," Laxus grumbled.

"Oh, and Bob caught me just before I went on stage. Apparently, whatever god a thunder god prays to, it worked. You have a client request. You're still working the floor for free, but go to that client first. He ordered a VIP room, too."

"How long?" Laxus asked laconically. If it was a VIP room, it was likely one of his old geezers who he beat up sadistically. Right now, he could really use the stress relief.

"Believe it or not, a whole hour. You're still working the rest of the time on the floor, got it?"

"Whatever," he muttered again, and he walked out.

The lights were off, the club was pitch black, but Laxus knew this club well. He did not need lights to know where center stage was, where the pole was, and where was the edge of the stage. He took his usual stance and readied his mind. It was time to be the thunder god.

The flashing strobe light and roll of thunder over the speakers helped to set his mood. When the music started and the lights blinded everyone in a sudden flash of yellow, Laxus had his eyes already gazing out fiercely. He could not see anything at all in the seconds following the flash of all the stage lights. That was fine. There was nothing to look at in the crowd anyway.

As he began the first set of dance moves and his eyes slowly adjusted, he thought he saw a piercing gaze in the crowd. He tried to look out. Sure, there were many people vying for him, especially since it had just been announced that he would be free later on. He saw nothing in particular, but he distinctly felt a solid stare from somewhere in the darkness.

He was in the middle of the chorus when those eyes caught his attention again. It was his imagination, right? He almost forgot to dance, but now his attention was to a side booth … the same booth as always. The stage lights flashed to another cymbal crash in the song synced with a thrust of his pelvis, and in the light he saw the gleam of green hair.

He was here!

Despite himself, Laxus smiled in the middle of the song. His eyes would not leave Freed's. He danced for Freed. He spoke to him through his body. He showed off, hoping Freed would like what he saw. All of his mediocre dancing was gone. He had a real audience now, someone who gazed at all of him, not just the bulging muscles and thick lump in the leather pants. He had a reason to look sexy now.

As the finale came up and Laxus began to unzip his pants, sliding that zipper lower and lower, he turned his body away from center stage. Maybe people on the other side of the room got a worse view, but Laxus didn't give a shit about them! He was showing that hidden treasure to just one man in that room, because only one man in the whole world had made him feel a stirring down there.

He added one little maneuver to his dance. He stroked sensually down the root that the leather pants just barely kept tucked away, and he nodded with a wag of the eyebrow to Freed.

'This is yours. Yours alone. You want it? Here it is. Beg for it!'

Then the lights went off, and Laxus rushed off the stage. He zipped his pants back up while backstage and yanked his shirt on in a rush.

As he began to walk by, another dancer, Lyon, was coming forward for his show. "Hey, Laxus, I saw you talking to Gray earlier and—"

"Be jealous another day," Laxus said dismissively.

He rushed into the audience. Plenty of hands reached out to him. Some flat out propositioned him.

"I've got someone first. Keep hot and ready for me," he said to these men, wishing he could beat the shit out of every one of them.

He walked up to Freed. The man smiled enigmatically, and it made Laxus uncomfortable.

"Ya wanted a VIP room, right?" he asked gruffly.

"Yes. I'm not sure where they are," Freed answered, sipping his martini, looking perfectly calm on the outside, but Laxus noticed the way a vein that ran up his pale, slender neck throbbed rapidly.

"Follow me." Laxus turned and walked away, struggling his hardest not to break out into a massive grin.

Next Chapter: VIP Room

Chapter Text

Once they were out of the main club room, Laxus could hear Freed's light footsteps. "I said I'd call you," he spoke quietly.

"You also said I could come here if I really needed you."

Laxus looked back in dread. "Did something happen? Are you all right?"

He pouted. "I want to be in the room first."

Laxus increased his speed, and soon they entered one of the side rooms where customers with plenty of money could have their own private show, generally with as much touching and contact as they wanted.

Freed entered a darkened room lit in low red lights. It had a couch stretching across the entirety of one wall, a mirror against the other wall so the person could watch the stripper from all angles through the mirror, and a round table in the center with a brass pole for dancing.

"Are there cameras in here?" Freed asked, looking around at the place.

"Yes. It's for safety reasons. No audio, only video, but we might be watched."

"I see," Freed muttered, and he took a seat on a couch. "How much can I do to you?"

"Touch, fondle…"

Freed's eyes gazed up swiftly. "Suck you?"

Laxus gulped hard.

"I wanted to last time." Freed's eyes turned coy. "Would that please you, master?"

The way he phrased it made Laxus smile. Suddenly, inside this room, he was a god again. Jellal, club finances, all that bullshit did not exist in this room. "To tell you the truth, I ain't never had someone suck me before."

"O-oh," Freed muttered, casting his eyes down in disappointment.

"But it's allowed. Pretty much anything but penetration is allowed in here. But what's wrong with you? Why'd you come here?"

"Later," Freed said. "If it pleases you, I want you now, master."

He loved that voice calling him master again. Laxus walked up and patted him on the head. "My good little slave can touch all he wants. I won't restrain you … this time. Take a seat."

Laxus started up some music while Freed sat on the sprawling leather couch, long enough to hold half a dozen people. Something pounding and erotic suddenly pulsed through the sound system. Laxus stepped up onto the round table, his back to the brass pole, and began to dance while the green-haired man watched with rapt interest.

"You're already hard. Touch yourself," Laxus ordered.

Freed blushed, but he reached down. Bashfully, he stroked the length through his pants.

"Damn," Laxus smiled, watching his adorable slave overwhelmed with lust, all attention, all thoughts, all desires, focused solely on him.

Freed stroked slowly, not wanting to rush this just yet. Then he suddenly scooted to the edge of the couch. He reached out and held Laxus' undulating hips. Seeing the silent desire, Laxus stepped off the table and let those needy hands bring him closer, closer, right up to the couch. Laxus straddled over Freed's lap and kept dancing, thrusting up against him in time to the music.

"Oh God," Freed shuddered as the leather stroked over his cotton slacks. "La- … uh … Thor?"

"Best to call me Thor here, Greenie."

"I put a condom on while I was waiting for you after the dance."

Laxus' dancing froze. "Are you saying…?"

"I don't want to hold back this time. I … I wanna be … humiliated. I wanna … c-cum in my clothes. From you. I wanna cum because of you dancing on my lap."

Laxus chuckled slyly. "My little masochistic," he said with adoration, and he stroked down Freed's hair. "Do you wanna cum in your clothes or suck me off first?"

"Could … I … uh," he muttered. "That is … can you still dance for me even if I suck you off first?"

"Dunno. Afterward, I'm usually too sensitive for anything to touch me down there."

"Then … dance first?" He looked aside uncertainly. "I bought an hour, right?"

"That must have cost you. Most people buy per song, not in block time."

"I figured you might be having issues at work again. Bob mentioned you've gotten into trouble. Seems I came at a good time. Is Jellal really having you give free lap dances?" Freed asked indignantly.

"Just today. I sorta bitched on him."

"Well, I don't like it. How do I extend my time with you?"

Laxus' eyes widened. "What? Freed!"

"Greenie, right?" he smirked playfully.

"You already paid for an hour. Do you realize how much that costs?"

"It's on my credit card; obviously I'm aware of the amount. Don't worry, I have the money."

"I work a four-hour shift."

"Then I'll buy another three hours."

"No!" Laxus stood up and walked away. "Why are you doing that? If you're fucking jealous, I told you, I'm a stripper. This is my work. I ain't changing that. If Jellal fires me, I'll go to another strip club. It's not like this city is lacking in them. If not there, then another, and another, any place where I can get what I need."

"Someone to beat up, right?" Freed asked with a level gaze.

"I told you, I'm not going to do that to you," Laxus shouted. "I won't … I don't want … shit!" he sneered, turning away sharply.

"You don't want to hurt me beyond what I can bear, and what I can handle isn't at the level of what you need. I get it," Freed said calmly. "That's not the issue. I'm not jealous at all. I'm angry." When he saw Laxus' jaw drop, Freed clarified, "Not with you. With Jellal. Your draw is in your aloofness. He's profaning that image by passing you around like a free whore at a frat party. He's lowering the standard we masochists have, the expectations we alone keep. If we see you being a slut to anyone … that's not what we want to imagine!" he shouted furiously.

Laxus stared in amazement. "You're worried about … about my image? As a strip dancer?"

"As this club's one and only true sadist," he said firmly. "When Jellal said that you would be free … sure, I bet there are plenty of people horny enough to want you tonight, but they won't want you on any normal night. If they did, they would have bought a dance with you already. But me and the others who sit in our booths shivering because we want someone like you to dominate us … I glanced around. I know the regulars in this club. All of the people like me who admire your image as Thor were all really upset to hear Jellal announce that. We don't want to see you passed around. We don't want you to be just another dancer. You're our thunder god. You stand above the others who would do anything for money."

"I do do anything for money," Laxus said bitterly.

"You don't give blow jobs, or have sex with people. You said you … you're still a … a vir-…"

"Hey!"

"I saw the looks in their eyes. If not me, then one of the others will buy up your time, anything so we don't have to see our thunder god humiliated. We're that sort of crowd," Freed said, dropping his head and looking bashful. "I've chatted to a few others. I know they would feel the same as me. They wouldn't want to see this. Not at all!"

Laxus placed a large hand on Freed's shoulder. "I get it," he said gently. "Still, you don't have to do this alone. If one of them wants to protect that image you speak of, they'll do something about it. If they don't care, then that's fine, too. I'll know if I really do have that impact with more than just you. Maybe if I know there are others in the crowd, I can keep dancing when you're not here."

Freed pouted and looked away. "I'm sorry I didn't come back."

"You said you wouldn't. I expected it. So why did you return? Something happen?"

"I got booted out of my dorm."

"Trouble?"

"Horny roommate, two girls at the same time, I didn't want to stick around to make it a foursome."

"Good!"

Freed smiled at hearing that slightly jealous growl again. "Also … um…" Freed reached into his pocket and yanked out a slightly crumpled envelope.

"Court summons?"

"What? N-No! Opera tickets."

"Opera?" Laxus asked, peeking inside the envelop. Sure enough, there were two tickets for the Magnolia Opera House.

"I told you about my friend who sings opera. Well, Mira gave me these tickets. They're second tier and a Monday matinée, but I was hoping … maybe … um…"

Laxus' eyebrow arched high as he read the ticket, and he glanced up at Freed in shock. "The Marriage of Figaro?"

Freed shrank down bashfully. "Is that okay?"

Laxus remembered his little daydream about living a life of peace with Freed and going to the opera together. It was now happening, and it made his hands shiver. Laxus suddenly thrust the envelop back.

Freed's expression shattered. "No?" he asked sadly.

"I can meet you at ten but no earlier, since I work until midnight."

Freed grinned excitedly. "Then you'll go?"

"I don't have a tuxedo."

"It's a matinée. You can come in anything. Well, maybe not leather pants, but just slacks and a button up shirt will be fine."

"Don't dress all fancy and make me look like an idiot."

"I'll probably wear something like what I'm wearing now. Really, people don't often dress in tuxedos and ball gowns these days," he chuckled, but then he stopped short, worried he might be offending Laxus. "Have … have you ever been to the opera?"

Laxus looked aside petulantly. "No," he muttered. "Not like I never wanted to. Just couldn't afford it. I like opera, though."

Knowing he could treat Laxus to something unique warmed Freed's heart. "It'll be fun. Keep your ticket."

"Idiot! Do you know how goddamn tight these pants are? Plus I'll be having lechers grope me all night. Tickets like this, I'll lose them for sure, and I don't want to miss The Marriage of Figaro. I happen to really like that opera, one of my favorites to listen to. I'm glad you didn't pick something depressing for our second date."

"D-d-date?" Freed stuttered. "Second?"

"Don't you consider drinks and a night in a hotel as our first date?"

"Oh! I didn't realize … that is…" He lowered his head. "I didn't know what to consider all of that, to be honest. I also wasn't sure if you wanted to count this as a date or just more getting to be friends outing type of thing."

"I thought I made myself clear before. More than friends. Unless you don't want to be boyfriends with a stripper."

"N-No! That's fine. I don't mind, really. It's something you like to do, right? Strip dancing, that is."

"I dunno if I particularly like it, but it's something I need to do."

"For … clients. Right," Freed muttered.

Laxus eyed him cautiously. "Is that a problem? If it is, we need to clear it up right now."

"It'll take some getting used to," Freed admitted honestly, "but I don't think it'll be a problem."

"You have no reason to be jealous. You know that those old men I beat up, and even those lechers out there, none of them turn me on. Only you do."

Freed smiled to hear him say so, but he still looked uncertain. "You may have to tell me that once in a while."

"Then I'll tell you." Laxus walked up to Freed and straddled his lap. "And I'll show you," he whispered sensually, thrusting his body up against the lithe man. "Over and over," he purred gruffly, "until it's etched into your body—"

"Nnngh!"

"Until not a single nerve questions me when I tell you that no one else in this world can turn me on like you can." He rotated his hips, rubbing playfully over the shaft sticking up through the loose slacks.

"L-Laxus!"

"Use the other name, Greenie." A single fingernail scrapped over Freed's lips, encircling them with light scratches.

"A-ah! Tickles."

"Oh?" he smirked. "Should I soothe away the tickle?"

Laxus dived in and devoured those lips. He felt Freed's body stiffen, and the lump in his trousers hardened even more, straining against the fabric.

"Still got that condom on your dick, or did you shrink out of it?"

"I … I need to check."

"No." Laxus leaned in and kissed him harder. "I'll check."

His hand slipped under Freed's belt and wiggled through his underwear until finally he felt the arousal.

"Feels like it slipped a little." He thrust his hand down, and Freed jolted at the hard stroke.

"Aaaaah!"

"God, I love that voice of yours." Laxus pulled his hand out and palmed him through the trousers. "But you wanted this done as a dance, right?"

"If it pleases you, master," he begged breathlessly.

"Damn, you are hot," Laxus sneered as his groin thrust up against Freed's body. He began a slow rocking, taking his time. "Ya wanna come in your pants, huh?"

Freed could not answer. It felt so dirty, so perverted … and he wanted it so much.

"Did you secretly like that one time?" He thrust quicker as the music playing in the room changed to another, faster song.

"Not in front of everyone, but … but I did. I … I liked … being overwhelmed."

"Not in front of others, though, eh?" Laxus slowed and leaned down into Freed's ear. "Someone is watching us, ya know."

Freed's eyes snapped open.

"I told you, this room has a camera."

"No one actually watches it though, right?" he asked frantically.

"Who knows?" Laxus chuckled slyly. "Erza sometimes gets her kicks watching the videos. Did you see her in the audience today?"

"I … uh … no."

"Bob lets her know if someone bought a VIP room," Laxus explained as his hips swiveled, and Freed let out a high moan. "She'll go into the security hub and watch the videos, sometimes with Jellal there to help her get off. She can't hear us, but she can watch. Maybe she'll zoom the camera in on your face right … as … you … come!"

Freed groaned deeply and clutched Laxus' shoulders as he felt himself becoming overly aroused. It was the same problem he usually had, he just could not last long, but this time he decided not to hold back.

"Let me see what face you'll make for her," Laxus said seductively. "Eyes up!"

Freed raised his head, flushed cheeks, teary eyes, and all.

"Yes. That face. It makes me…" He pressed up firmly, and Freed felt a stiffness in the leather pants.

"Lax- … Thor!"

"Don't make that mistake again. I'm serious."

"Got it. But … you're…"

Laxus slid against him slowly. "Hard as a fucking rock."

"Oh God!" His hips moved on their own, wanting more friction.

"You're the only person who does this to me, the only one who excites me," Laxus said sensually. "Now I'm gonna etch into your body that you, and no one else, turns me on."

Freed twitched between Laxus' thighs, desperately thrusting up into him. "Th-Thor! Master! I'm … I'm really about to…"

"I know. Feel this," he said, frotting up against him, not even in time to the music anymore, "and remember that even if I give a lap dance to another man, they'll never feel this rubbing against them. Only you. Only … you!"

Freed's body tensed and bowed backward on the couch. "Oh God! Master!" he cried out.

Laxus watched that face with amusement. He felt Freed's fingers grasp tightly, almost tearing the fabric of his shirt. Under him, that body convulsed, and he felt the jerks of Freed's hips. This was something magical. He could make men cum with ease, but somehow, this was more than just bodily fluid being released. It was a view of heaven. His angel was most glorious when succumbing to sin. Laxus slowed down to a soft undulation, until even that made Freed shiver.

"Heh! So, did you do it?" Laxus asked cunningly, wanting to keep his little green angel trapped earth-bound for a while longer.

Freed just panted, staring up at the ceiling.

"Tell me. Tell me what you just did," he ordered.

"I … did."

"Did what? Tell me exactly."

Freed shuddered at the sense of humiliation. "I … came … in my pants."

Laxus ran a finger down Freed's throat. "And who made you feel that good?"

"Y-you did, master."

"That's right. I like to make my slave tremble. I like to make you feel ashamed, and wonderful, and make you suffer the most intense pleasure. That's what I want to do to my precious slave."

Precious! Freed liked to feel beloved, and although slave was a demeaning post for a wealthy son like him, he wanted this thunder god to lord over him. He felt like being the slave of this man was the most cherished role of all.

Laxus finally pulled back and straightened his clothes. "Now, let's get you cleaned up before that condom slips off and you really do make a mess."

"But the room!"

"You reserved it for an hour. It'll still be here. If you're lucky, I may give you more dances."

Laxus led him out of the room and down the hallway. As they came to the bathroom, they heard noises inside.

"Quiet, Sting. They'll hear you."

"Then don't … ahhhn!"

Freed blushed at the sounds. "Oh!"

"It's fine," Laxus grumbled. "It's those twin dragons again. They'll shut up real quick. Or … would you like to give them a show?"

"What?" Freed exclaimed.

"Let them know they're not the only ones."

"But … but I…" His head dropped. "I just came. I can't go again this quickly." He felt a hand suddenly drop on his head and ruffle his hair.

"I was joking, idiot."

Laxus banged the door open, and instantly the two others in the restroom fell silent. Freed was amazed they could go from gasping to dead silence like that. He saw no one around, but he noticed that the furthest stall was closed.

"Clean yourself up. Meet me back in the VIP room," Laxus ordered.

Freed was shocked he was leaving. "R-right!" he yelped. He rushed into a stall and disposed of the condom. He urinated, cleaned up, and left. However, he hesitated curiously outside the restroom door.

"Are they gone?"

"Yeah."

"God, that was close."

"Only because you're so loud. Now, where were we?"

"Ahh! Rogue, wait!"

"No. I need it. Now!"

"Nnngh! Slow down. Oh f- … Rogue! I'm … ah! Ahhh!"

"Sting. Oh God, Sting."

Freed laughed silently. He supposed he could hardly blame those two. Plenty of times, he had sneaked off to the strip club's restroom to quickly jerk off. If he came to a club like this with Laxus, he would much rather have his thunder god screw him in a restroom stall rather than take care of it himself.

Next Chapter: Master and Slave

Chapter Text

When Freed entered the VIP room again, Laxus stood by what appeared to be an MP3 player built into the wall.

"What sort of music do you like?" the large man asked.

"Wh-what?" Freed stuttered in confusion.

"It's your turn, so you get to pick the music."

"My turn?" Then Freed remembered, he had offered to suck off Laxus. "O-oh!" His cheeks began to turn pink as he thought about it. He had blurted it out earlier, but the truth was that he had never given a blow job, he was afraid he would do it badly, and the VIP room of a strip club was not the most romantic place to have such a monumental first.

"Classical won't cut it," Laxus muttered. "Anyone who hears Mozart is gonna wonder what the hell is going on and peek in."

"Wait, people can peek in?" Freed cried out.

"The bouncers do if they think anything might be a problem. Screams, arguments, weird sounds. Classical music would be weird."

"What about … a love ballad?"

"Aw, ain't you just a fucking romantic," Laxus teased. He changed music selections, and Barry White began to croon over the sound system. "Next best thing. I personally added this song into the mix when I saw that they didn't have any Barry White. I mean, what the hell! Barry White is pure vocal sex."

"I … I like this song," Freed muttered nervously.

Laxus smirked around his shoulder at him. "Yeah? Does it make you hot?"

"It … does, yes."

"You have a good taste in music."

Laxus turned back around and continued to fiddle with the volume. Freed glanced around, found a glass of water, and took a drink. His nervousness was making his throat dry.

"How the hell do you lower the bass on this stupid thing?" muttered Laxus.

Freed walked up behind him and looked over Laxus' shoulder at the wall-mounted player. Then his eyes drifted to Laxus' face. He looked so serious as he tried to fix the balance of treble and bass. It was such a minor thing, it would not change the enjoyment of the song that much, yet he looked so focused. Freed began to wonder if Laxus was doing this because he was also nervous and trying to put off the inevitable a bit longer. Laxus had said that no one had ever given him a blow job before. Maybe he was anxious and trying to hide it. Freed wanted to help break the ice, so he stood on tiptoes and licked the back of that brawny neck.

Laxus shivered at the hot wetness. "What the hell?"

Freed wrapped his arms around Laxus' wide body and licked again, from the tight muscles near the base of the neck, gliding his tongue up slowly along the spine, and up to the hairline, licking the first few strands of blond hair, moistening them and making them stand up. He felt Laxus' body jolting, and it made Freed smile that he could give back to the thunder god some of the pleasure he received.

"S-stop," whispered Laxus.

Freed was stunned by the whimpering sound. Was this a weakness? He wanted more! He licked along the edge of the neck, and then he kissed right at the hairline, softly sucking the neck with his lips, letting his mouth drag over the skin.

"Stop!" Laxus shouted, twirling around and pushing Freed away. One hand flew to the back of his neck to feel the wetness left behind. "Fuck, what the hell was that?" He leaned over as a burning sensation tingled his groin. Somehow, just that tiny bit had almost made him lose it.

"Did you like that, master?"

Laxus sharply looked up into those eager eyes. He felt lost, overwhelmed, slightly scared by these intense emotions that burned his chest. Freed truly was a client right now, and there were strict rules of conduct within the strip club. Right at that moment: fuck the rules! He had been fantasizing over Freed for weeks, and now that he was here, Laxus was being conquered so easily.

He needed to somehow reestablish control over himself and the scenario.

"Sit," he ordered, although his voice still sounded faint from the shock of almost coming from a mere lick.

Freed sat on the couch again, and Laxus straddled him.

"W-wait!" Freed cried out.

"This is for me, not you," Laxus insisted, thrusting up against Freed. "Just feeling you under me—" He leaned over and licked Freed's neck, giving back the same sensual tenderness. "—just this much is all I need."

"L- … Thor."

"Just call me master. Here or somewhere else, that word is safe."

"If it pleases you, master."

"It does. You do. My cute little slave pleases me very much. And I want to please my slave. You're mine. Mine alone. A slave can't have two masters, so you're only mine. My beloved slave."

Freed bit his lip in happiness to hear that.

"I want you to suck me, Greenie," he whispered into the flushed ear. "I wanna show that bastard Jellal, I do more than dance. Show him what I do to you. Make it so loud, the bouncers hear you."

He sucked on Freed's neck, making him writhe with a shuddering cry. He clutched tightly to Laxus as he felt erotic pain in his neck and the scrape of teeth.

"Yes, like that," moaned Laxus. "Shit, I'm ready to come just feeling you squirming. How can you do this to me so quickly? Sexy ladies, hot guys, a room full of people who want me to pleasure them, old men who would pay me a small fortune if they could just suck me off, and I can't get hard for any of them. You barely moan a little and…" He thrust up against Freed to show him the engorged results. "You do this to me, Greenie. No one else. I ain't ever let a person suck me, not because I'm chaste and shit, but because nobody gets me hard. Ya wanna be the first to taste me?"

"God, yes! I mean, if it pleases you, master," he moaned as he thought about this ultimate chance to show Laxus how much he would do to pleasure him.

Laxus stood and yanked off his loose shirt. "Don't do it so much that it hurts you, okay?"

"I won't. Not here, at least."

Laxus laughed wryly as he unthreaded his belt. Freed's heart began to race, and he caught himself licking his lips.

"That hungry?" Laxus asked, smirking at the eager face. He unzipped his leather pants and pulled out a cock already enlarged and wet on the tip. "Does my angelic slave want to eat from the fruit of sin?"

"Please," Freed whispered as the erection got closer. His mouth opened, and he began to lean forward with his tongue out to lick. Suddenly, a hand grabbed his hair and yanked his head up, tongue still lolling out. Laxus glared down at him with a playful twinkle in his blue eyes.

"Please … what?"

Freed cringed under the hair pulling. "Please, master, let me suck you."

The fingers released, and Laxus stroked the lengthy green hair in praise. "Good boy. Since you asked so nicely, I'll let you. But only you, got it." Laxus stroked down his scalp. "Only you get to do this."

That exclusive privilege shivered in Freed's nerves. He felt even more potently how much of an honor this was, to be Laxus' pet, his slave … his first and only. He felt unworthy of the honor, and he wanted to show that he would try to live up to such high expectations.

He looked at Laxus' cock sticking out from the leather pants. The audience out there in the hall blaring with music that he could just barely hear under Barry White crooning Can't Get Enough of Your Love, Babe, those people would never see this sight. Laxus would show them only the root of a limp, unaffected penis. None of them could make Laxus rise to attention like this. Nothing they did, even if they touched and groped him with their lecherous hands, nothing would cause this to happen.

Only him.

Freed reverently kissed that arousal. He lifted his eyes and met Laxus' gaze. It was a silent look of permission. He took the head of the cock past his lips, cradling it with his tongue. Slowly, he pressed his face closer, smelling the sweat of Laxus' skin, fresh from his dance both on stage and in this room, and a muskiness wafted around his nose. Sweat, leather, sexual musk: it all blended as his face pressed closer into the sculpted lower abdomen and his nose felt the tickle of dark blond pubic hairs. He could hardly stop the hedonistic groan that vibrated around that girth.

Laxus was silent as he watched his cock vanish into those thin, pale lips. His hand came down onto the green hair, stroking it, feeling the softness of that hair tumbling past Freed's shoulders. Girls in high school had offered to suck him, but he never got aroused enough. Old buggers had offered to pay him for the privilege, but he felt disgusted by the mere thought of their tongues on his skin. Freed, though … Freed was different. Laxus still was not sure what it was about this man—maybe he would never figure it out—but he knew he could finally experience this sort of indulgence with only one person.

Freed pulled back and looked up, worried about the silence. "Is it okay?"

"Don't you dare stop again," Laxus said, his voice hoarse as the intense pleasure betrayed him.

When Freed took Laxus' cock back inside his mouth and started to suck with more vigor, Laxus could no longer hold back a long and low moan.

"Damn, you're a talented cocksucker."

Freed groaned at the insulting praise.

"Do you like being called that? Maybe instead of calling you my slave, I should call you Cocksucker."

The feel and taste of it was excruciatingly good. Freed took it deeper into his mouth, until it hit the back of his throat. Then he prolonged the suck back to the head, making an obscene slurping noise around it as he kept it tight in his mouth, sucking hard. The hand on his head clenched, tugging at his hair. Freed pulled off to catch his breath and wipe his chin.

Laxus growled. "I told you, don't you fucking stop."

"I'll drool on you."

"Then drool. Make it wet. Make my whole damn crotch wet. I want your spit in my pants, got it?"

Freed nodded and dived back down on the whole thing. Laxus could hardly help but grunt and thrust deeper, wanting more of that moist heat.

A part of Freed realized that his spit would be on Laxus' pants. Even if Jellal made him dance on the laps of a hundred men, they would never feel him hard, and his own spit would be rubbing on them. Laxus would only let them feel that much. His spit! This was his way to claim Laxus, coating him in saliva, shielding him with his mouth. It was like he was spitting in the faces of all those men, lechers who did not care about the individual, only about their own gluttonous desires.

"You're damn good," groaned Laxus.

Freed bobbed his head on Laxus' cock in earnest, closing his eyes, relaxing his throat, and sensing his returning arousal. Instead of focusing on his needs, he wanted to fulfill Laxus' desires. Last time, he had done almost nothing to show Laxus his deep appreciation. Now, he wanted to pleasure his thunder god, his lover, his … whatever they were.

"Freed…" Laxus whispered urgently.

He looked up, the cock still in his mouth. He saw Laxus' cheeks flushed and his teeth clenched. He was ready, but he was not ordering Freed to take it. He could have. Freed had partly expect him to grab his hair and demand "Swallow it all, bitch!" Instead, Laxus was showing a small bit of sensitivity. This was something truly intimate, and he was letting Freed make the call, whether to continue to suck, or to finish off with his hand. Freed smiled around the cock at the gentleness Laxus expressed only to him. To show his determination, Freed took hold of Laxus' muscular butt cheeks, pulled him closer, and kept sucking.

Laxus wanted to pound that throat, but he feared his strength. If this was some bastard client, he would not have thought twice about possibly hurting the person, but this was no client. Freed may have paid for his time in this room, but he was different. He was special. Laxus wanted to be rough and never hold back, but he did not want to actually hurt this slender man. Instead of slamming into Freed's throat, he let Freed take it at the speed he wanted…

Which was too damn slow!

"Greenie," he snapped. "Speed up and make me come, bitch."

Laxus swore he felt a purr of lust in that throat. The rapid back-and-forth of tight lips, now with extra suction, pulled him over the brink. His fingers clenched in Freed's hair, but somehow the man did not cry out and lose the grip of his lips. Laxus gasped three times, hips barely thrusting, as he came.

Hot, bitter semen flooded Freed's mouth. He groaned, swallowing it as best he could, but some overflowed his mouth, dripping from his lips and down his chin. Swallowing was hard. The cum was thick and stringy, sticking to the back of his throat. Suddenly, not meaning to, he pulled back and coughed.

"Greenie!" Laxus cried out, kneeling in front of him with worry.

"I'm fine." He pounded on his chest as he coughed. "Swallowed wrong."

"You didn't need to swallow it, idiot." Laxus grabbed up a towel and a drink from a table beside the couch and handed both to Freed.

"Wanted to." Freed wiped his face with the towel, but he did not spit anything out. He instead swallowed some liquid from the cup, only enough to get the thickness out of his throat. Finally, the choking stopped, and he looked up with tear-moistened eyes. "Did it please you, master?"

Laxus' face softened, and he placed a hand on Freed's thigh. "It did. Incredibly." As his hand slid up, he felt that the bulge had returned. "You're hard again. Did sucking me get you aroused?"

Freed looked aside with embarrassment. "Sucking my master is … pleasurable."

"Greenie."

The gentle voice made Freed stare in amazement at those tender blue eyes.

"Stand up."

Thighs shaking, Freed rose to his feet.

"Drop your pants."

He undid his belt, bashfully lowering his pants and underwear. Laxus sat on the couch and pulled Freed closer to him.

"I ain't never done this, so you gotta tell me if it's wrong," he said sternly.

"Master!"

"You've got talent, as I'd expect from a man I want as my slave."

"Your … slave?" It was both demeaning and absolutely heartwarming, being the slave of the thunder god.

"You should be proud, but not arrogant," Laxus warned him, and Freed nodded in agreement. "So, since you're a natural-born cocksucker, you have to teach me your trick. That's my order."

"Y-yes, master."

Laxus smirked, then nuzzled the erection, kissing him, and gave a peck to Freed's balls. "I want to pleasure my slave. That's what makes me happy."

Freed silently sighed, deeply touched, yet he had no clue what to say.

"But I ain't never done this. I don't like doing stuff I haven't tried. It makes me feel like I'm stupid. So don't tease me, or I'm outta here."

"Anything you do will pleasure me."

"I'm not joking," Laxus said harshly. "Tell me how you like it done, but don't laugh if I do it wrong."

"I understand," he solemnly swore.

Laxus nodded sternly, and then he faced the penis in front of him. This was definitely intimidating. Hurting others was his specialty, but giving pleasure was something new. Still, he tried to think about what Freed had just done. He mimicked as best as he could, licking softly up the shaft. Freed gasped and his body tensed. Laxus instantly pulled back in worry.

"That felt good," Freed quickly told him. "Like that."

Laxus relaxed and took just the head into his mouth, wrapping his lips just under the glans. Freed bit back a whimper.

"They can't hear you," Laxus muttered, lips flickering over the turgid arousal.

They! Freed finally remembered that there was a camera somewhere in this room. There was a possibility that they were being watched, right now, filmed and broadcast onto a small monitor in some dark security room. The thought intimidated him, but then he remembered what Laxus had said. He wanted to show Jellal that he was more than just a dancer. Laxus wanted to prove himself. Freed decided, he would do anything to help.

He stroked the spiky blond hair. "More," he whispered gently.

Laxus obeyed the request, mouth working down the shaft an inch at a time before pulling back up to the tip to swirl his tongue.

"Oh God, that! Just like that," Freed cried out in a shudder.

There was a good reason Laxus had never sucked off any of his clients. Oh, plenty had offered outrageous sums of money to have that done, but Laxus only ever used his hands. Never his mouth. There was something about the mouth, the intimacy of it, a portal into the rest of his body. Hands were external. Even his cock was external. But his mouth? He did not want people to get inside of him like that.

He did not trust putting something inside his body. He always figured it had to do with his father.

So as Laxus felt that cock enter, he cringed just a little. The taste was bitter but bearable, yet something flashed through his mind, some memory he did not fully recall as belonging to him, but he supposed it must have happened for it to be this vivid. Being tied down, straps over his chest and limbs, and something shoved in his mouth, a gag of some sort, shoved deep in his mouth so he would not bite his tongue. He briefly saw his father's cold eyes, but the rest of his face was hidden by a surgical mask. Then pain. His mind blanked out as soon as the pain began. Maybe he had passed out back then.

"Thor?"

That name, one that was not his own but somehow belonged to him, snapped him out. Whatever had been in his mouth was out now, and sad eyes were looking at him. Freed had knelt down, his pants still dropped, but he held Laxus' face, gazing worriedly.

"We can stop," he whispered.

Laxus only then felt moistness on his cheeks. He reached up in confusion. Were these tears? Why the fucking hell was he crying?

"Just … a memory," he muttered, lost between fantasy and reality, past and present.

The sadness deepened, and Freed combed his fingers through the short, blond hair.

"No, stand up," Laxus ordered. "Let me finish."

"If this is bad…"

"I don't like not finishing what I start, no matter what," he insisted. "Now stand up!"

"Laxus," he whispered tenderly.

"Please, Freed," he said just as quietly. Those blue eyes flicked to a corner of the room. In a secretive whisper, he explained, "Dammit, but they likely are watching me. Especially Jellal, after I bitched on him earlier. He thought I had hurt you, drove you away from the club."

"You didn't hurt me," Freed insisted.

"That's what I told him. Now that you're back, he's probably eying me like a hawk to make sure I behave. Right now, he's probably wondering what the hell is going on. I need to finish this, and … and I want to."

Freed nodded in solemn understanding. "Where's the camera?"

"Southeast corner." His eyes motioned to the direction.

"Master, forgive me." Then Freed stepped aside, twisting his body just a little to be in profile with the camera. With wild gesticulations, he pointed to his crotch. "Suck it!" he shouted. "Hard, you bitch!"

Laxus arched an eyebrow high. What the literal-fuck?

"I don't care if you don't want to. You're gonna swallow it, you whore!"

"Greenie?"

Freed suddenly grabbed Laxus' head and practically smashed his face into his crotch. "Choke on it," he shouted outrageously loud, pulling Laxus' hair harshly.

"Ow, you fucker! What the hell?" Laxus roared in pain-driven rage.

The door to the VIP room suddenly opened, and one of the bouncers entered. "Problem?"

Laxus yanked back, and Freed turned away from the door, which just so happened to angle him closer to the camera. Laxus rubbed out the pain in his scalp, but a second later he finally understood what Freed was getting at. He held back a smile, scowled instead, and lashed out at the green-haired man.

"Don't you ever fucking pull my hair again. I told you, this is on my terms!" Then he looked back to the large bouncer. "It's fine, Jura. He's never been in a VIP room. I guess I didn't explain the limits clearly enough."

"Does he need a lesson?" Jura asked, cracking his knuckles.

"No, it's fine. It won't happen again."

"I'm right down the hall," the bald man said, and he left.

Laxus glared over at Freed. "You little bitch," he said, his face terse but his voice inflecting amusement.

"You were crying. I had to make it seem legit," he explained.

"You're damn brilliant, that's what you are." Laxus stalked over to Freed and glared down at him. "Must be that rich boy schooling, eh?"

He tried not to look cocky, but his voice betrayed him. "You could say that planning ahead in battle is a specialty of mine."

"I really do wanna see you swordfight." Laxus reached down and stroked him. "But right now, I want more of this sword."

"You really don't have to. No one would question if you didn't, not after that."

Those large fingers squeezed Freed's cock, painful but only enough to be pleasurable. "I said I want more, so shut the hell up. Now, I assume you're standing precisely here to be at a good angle."

"They'll see you swallow me."

"Good. Let them watch you. Make it a good show, Greenie."

"If it pleases you, master."

Laxus dropped to his knees and licked up the shaft. He was half conscious of where the camera was, and he tilted his head just a little to show off his lapping tongue. If Jellal and Erza really were watching—and since Jura arrived so swiftly, he guessed they must have sent a warning down to the bouncer at the first signs of trouble—then he wanted that bastard and his way-too-good-for-him wife to see just how much pleasure he could give to a client.

Laxus' fingers racked over the skin of Freed's hips, nails scraping lightly against his pale flanks, relishing the full-body tremor as he flattened his tongue to lick at the frenulum. Freed moaned loudly—far too loudly and erotically—as Laxus eased into a steady pace, lips wrapped around the erection. The wet sucking noises of saliva being dragged up and down made a secondary tempo as the music changed from Barry White to Marvin Gaye singing Let's Get It On.

Freed briefly wondered what sort of soundtrack this was. Seventies Sex-To-Music Soul?

Laxus bobbed his head, taking as much of Freed into his mouth as possible. The high moan struck deep within him, but he felt well-sated for the moment. It was just a tenseness in his gut, as if his brain was asking his cock if it should respond, but his libido answered instead. His dick never did listen to his brain anyway. He felt Freed's cock grow thicker, firmer against his tongue.

Fingers tightened in Laxus' hair. "Oh God, Thor," Freed's voice trembled. "Don't stop, just … don't…" Suddenly, he began to gasp, air spiraling up his chest, higher and higher, louder and quicker. His thighs quivered, his fingers curled, flexed, and curled again within the sweat-stiffened blond hair.

Laxus felt those thin hips thrust erratically. There were no more nightmares now. Just Freed. Just this. Just them.

"Lax- … Tho- … Master!" Freed panted, unable to articulate. "I'm going to—"

His breath suddenly hitched and his body went rigid for three seconds, everything still, aside from his fingernails scraping through the blond hair. Then suddenly, a grunt that sounded more like a sob punched out from deep within Freed's chest, and it felt as if his muscles all snapped at once. His head threw back, only faintly aware that he was probably giving one hell of a show. All he cared about was this feeling, stronger than his first orgasm, perhaps because he realized he was not merely coming into a condom. A jolt, another, then a powerful third rocked him. He felt the tongue on him, moving the cum spilling out over to the back of Laxus' mouth. Then he felt swallows around his sensitive cock.

Laxus' eyes closed as the bitter tang pulsed across his tongue. He was letting something into his body again. However, there were no weird flashbacks anymore. Nothing in his past was like this. Nothing compared! The taste, the smell, the feel of this body responding to him, nothing in the universe compared.

He opened his eyes to watch Freed gasp and twitch in aftershocks. It was probably the most beautiful sight Laxus had ever seen, this thinly muscular body reacting to something that was not at all painful, but pure pleasure. He held Freed in his mouth until his breathing evened out and he softened on Laxus' tongue. When Laxus finally let his mouth slip away, Freed trembled.

"You're a good teacher."

Freed was flushed and still breathing raspily. "I hardly instructed you at all."

"On the contrary, I think I learned a lot." Laxus stood and towered over Freed. He tipped the narrow jaw up. "I wouldn't mind more lessons, though."

Freed gazed up. He saw the shininess on Laxus' lips. His shininess. "Kiss me?" he requested softly, as if fearing this was taboo.

Laxus' eyes showed, it was. "I can give you a lap dance, a blow job, even kiss you as foreplay, but kissing afterward … that's probably pushing it. Kissing … it's not necessary. Not in this job."

Freed's eyes drifted down in disappointment.

"Help me clean up," Laxus ordered.

Freed looked up in shock.

"Restroom. No cameras. We can kiss in there."

"Right," he said.

They both pulled on their clothes, but Laxus left his shirt open. They left the VIP room to the restroom. Sure enough, as they began to approach, there were sounds again inside, but different voices.

"Gray!"

"I'm serious, don't call me that in this place."

"But your hands … so good!"

Laxus chuckled to himself. "I knew they were on a first-name basis." He paused and looked down at Freed. "I'm gonna ask a favor of you. Be vocal, and don't you dare call me anything but master."

"Y-yes, master."

"I'm fuckin' serious."

"Understood."

Laxus burst through the doors, and the sounds inside stopped. These two were less skilled at going silent, though. A higher sound kept breathing hard, struggling. Freed wondered for only a second before recalling Laxus accidentally slipping that Ice Prince's real name was Gray. He wondered if the other was Pinkie.

They both went into a toilet stall together, and Laxus suddenly thrust Freed hard against the divider wall, making it shake. He kissed fervently and loudly, sloppy sounds of making out.

"M-Master!" Freed cried out.

"Insatiable," Laxus scolded, grinning as he realized Gray would definitely recognize his voice.

"You … you taste like me," Freed moaned.

"Well, that's your cum on my tongue." Laxus thrust his tongue back into Freed's mouth, and the man gagged at the forcefulness of the kiss. "This is how good your cock tastes, you sexy little bitch."

There was a low groan down the way.

Laxus raised up, grinning, trying so hard not to laugh. Freed also thought this was amusing. Laxus was obviously trying to show off to a coworker.

"Please, master," purred Freed.

"You have a VIP room waiting for you, y'know."

"But here … please! We can't do that in one of those rooms, right?" he reasoned, stroking his hands over the back of Laxus' neck and up into the hairline.

"Oh shit," Laxus shivered, and it was not at all make-believe. Freed's hands were enticing him all over again.

Freed groaned noisily. "Please, do me, master."

"Not in the club."

"Master knows I don't like to wait."

"Little bitch. Master is getting angry."

"Oh, please punish me again. You know how much I love it."

Across the restroom, they heard Gray and that pink-haired kid groaning together. Laxus had to pull back and cover his mouth to stifle laughs. He swore, Freed should take up acting classes.

"Please, master." This time, Freed did not look like he was playing along. His eyes were heavy with desire. His hands ran up Laxus' barrel chest. "Please," he begged softly. "I need you. I need the way you make me feel. Please."

Shit, this little masochist was tempting as hell! "I get off work at midnight," he said.

"I don't want to wait."

"You have to. Did you bring your supplies?"

"I … um … n-no," he admitted.

"Then after your time in the VIP room is done, I suggest you hurry home and get them. Meet me back here."

"Will you … use that thing on me again?"

"I left it at home. Maybe I could buy something else for you."

"Like what?"

"I'll think of something. A new toy for being a good slave."

"Master!" mewled Freed.

Laxus kissed him deeply again. His hand drifted down, but there was no hardness in Freed. Not surprising, considering the man had come twice already.

"Are you sure you're good for a third time tonight?"

"Third?" he heard someone whisper down the way. That was not Gray's voice. Was Pinkie impressed with Greenie after all?

"I'm always ready for you, master."

"Let me wash up. Wait in the room like a good little slave."

"Will master hurry?"

"Master will take his own goddamn time," said Laxus.

"If it pleases you, master."

Laxus leaned into Freed's ear and whispered hotly, "You please me." He kissed Freed's ear, then his neck, on down, and finally latched his lips onto Freed's collar, sucking hard.

"Ahhhhhn!" Freed moaned loudly, quivering in his arms.

"Oh fuck," he heard down the stalls. Gray's voice, definitely. Laxus wondered if Pinkie had reacted in some way to Freed's moaning.

Laxus pulled back to see Freed's eyes glazed. A pink oval was coming up on the side of his neck. "That's my mark of ownership. You're mine tonight. No one else can touch you, got it?"

"Y-yes, master," Freed moaned, really loving the thought of being marked by this thunder god.

"Good boy. Wait for me in the room."

Freed left, and Laxus peed. He washed up, hearing low but distinct sounds down the way. He thought about tormenting Gray for being such a goddamn good dancer, but he decided not to make him and Pinkie wait longer. He left, and as soon as the restroom door closed, he heard their moaning voices start up loudly.

"Fuck, give the person time to walk away from the door," Laxus muttered to himself. He saw Jura down the hall. Although the bouncer was technically supposed to stop people from having sex in the restroom, that never happened. It was just a threat to keep too many from trying.

"Everything cool, man?" asked Jura.

"We've worked things out. Thanks."

"Only time I see you in a VIP room is with one of those rich old men you like."

"I don't like them."

"Well, whatever. That young guy isn't bad looking, I guess. Not like I swing that way. It's a first for you, though, someone your age."

"Yeah, plenty of firsts tonight," he muttered to himself. "What's the time?"

Jura checked his watch. "Quarter to nine. I'll knock when time is up."

"Take your time, Jura," Laxus said with a private smile.

The bald man gave him an understanding wink. "I might forget to check my watch."

"You deserve a raise."

"Tell that to the boss-man."

Inside the room, Freed was waiting for Laxus on his knees, head bowed. Laxus froze at the posture of a slave in submission. He only briefly realized, anyone bothering to still watch the video would also see this.

"Master was away for so long." Freed kept his eyes down.

"Don't complain," he said sternly.

"It's not a complaint. What does master want?"

"To get rid of that damn camera so I can know if you're doing this for real or just for show," he grumbled.

Freed glanced up finally. "I'm probably taking this master/slave thing too far, aren't I?"

Laxus strode up and put a hand on his head. "I don't mind one bit. Only do it as far as you like, though. If it's too weird, too submissive, then don't do it. We'll figure out what we both like."

Freed nodded, and at the offer, he stood up. Being on his knees like he had seen in dom/sub pornos was too uncomfortable.

"We still have half an hour. What do you want to do?" asked Laxus.

"Can we do nothing?"

"We can do anything."

"Cuddle on the couch?"

Laxus chuckled and pulled Freed in close, clutching the lean body against him. "You're a damn romantic," he whispered.

"Do you mind?"

"Not one bit."

They sat together on the massive couch, and Freed curled up into him. Laxus glanced once to the camera. If anyone was still watching … oh hell, like he even cared what they thought anymore. He ignored any potential audience and gazed down to Freed. The poor man looked exhausted. Laxus began to stroke back the long hair, and Freed smiled at being petted.

"Tell me about your roommate," Laxus said softly.

Freed glanced up in surprise at the question.

"I want to know more about you. Your roommate: is he gay?"

"Oh, hell no! A lady's man to the core. Prolific, at that. The dorm nicknamed him The Lion because we joke that he can mate forty times a day. He's actually the reason I began to come here on Saturdays. I'd leave until midnight, so he could have his fun with the ladies."

"Good looking?"

"He's straight. I don't hit on straight guys."

Laxus scowled. "So he's handsome."

"Drop-dead," Freed confessed with a shrug.

"What would he think if I came over to your dorm for a night?"

Freed gasped. "R-Really?" Bringing someone home and kicking Loke out: what a change that would be from the norm.

"Just curious," Laxus said gruffly.

"Knowing Loke, he'd say All's fair and leave to flirt with a girl at a bar or something. He's a cool guy. He doesn't mind that I'm gay, and he tries to accommodate."

"What the hell does that mean?" Laxus asked jealously.

"He got a porn vid once of a foursome: tattooed chick, straight guy, bisexual guy, and a gay guy. I have to admit, other than an obscenely large amount of screen time for the woman, the video was hot, although it was in French."

"Have you and your roommate ever masturbated together?"

"At the same time while watching porn together, yes. Touching one another, hell no. We're friends, and we keep it to that."

"Would you like to watch porn with me?"

Freed smirked up at him. "I wouldn't want to just watch it."

"It could be fun. Watch, get inspiration, tease one another, try to mimic the insane contortions of the actors."

"So long as there are no women in the videos. Sorry, but naked ladies just really turn me off."

"When you go home, pick one of your videos. We'll watch it at the hotel tonight."

"It's a date!"

Freed leaned into the large chest again. He felt safe with Laxus, like this strong man could always protect him from anything. He felt devoted already. He would love to have this man all to himself, but he knew, he was like lightning, a flash of glory, but too much for one person.

"I'll leave right after time is up," Freed said softly. "I don't want to watch you dance for others."

Laxus stroked down his hair. "I told you, you don't have to be jealous."

"I know, but it'll take some getting used to."

Laxus pulled him in closer and gave a clandestine kiss to Freed's forehead. "You're marked as mine, Greenie. No one else gets my mark."

Freed smiled to himself and touched his neck. The mark of the thunder god! "They say lightning never strikes twice."

"Thor can strike his lightning anywhere he damn well pleases," Laxus said, not caring if it sounded like a corny boast.

They both laughed, and their noses rubbed together. They gazed into one another's eyes, so close that they could see the details of the irises, the streaks of colors, and the dilation of the pupils. They could feel the breathes from their nostrils mingling, and they felt like their hearts had begun to beat at the same rapid pace.

"Laxus," he whispered, "I don't care about the cameras. Kiss me. Please."

Laxus stroked the blushing cheek and gazed down at the waiting mouth. "If they don't like this, screw them!"

Tenderly holding Freed's face, Laxus leaned in and gave him a firm, lingering kiss on the lips.

Let them watch! Fuck Jellal! Fuck the club rules against exclusive relationships with clients! Fuck his own insecurity! He wanted this man. He wanted him!

With a tremble, Laxus realized he had fallen in love.

Next Chapter: Opera Date

Chapter Text

Laxus felt awkward as hell standing outside the Magnolia Opera House. He had on the nicest clothes he owned, a red button-up dress shirt and black slacks he used rarely, but with faded and scuffed black riding boots that he knew were a horrible mismatch. He had tried to tame down his hair, but the gel broke free and the blond strands stuck out even wilder than usual. Patrons arriving stared warily at him, and he knew it was because of the scar running down his eye.

"Where the hell are you, Greenie?" he grumbled and checked his watch again.

After their night in a hotel, they had curled together in bed and talked about their upcoming date. Laxus began to realize that Freed saw this as a first "real" date, whereas he counted their two hotel nights as dates. He supposed their interpretations of what a date was were different.

Laxus had to be honest with himself: he had not been on a proper "date" since high school when he took a girl to Prom. He had to look up online for advice on what to do. He hated going into a situation unprepared.

"You're here!"

He jolted. He had been looking south, where most of the people were arriving, but Freed appeared out of nowhere from the north, surprising him. The green-haired man had a bright smile. Although he always dressed nice, this was the first time Laxus had seen him properly in full daylight. Both times in the hotels, Laxus slipped away in the early morning, not wanting their time together to be ruined by an awkward goodbye.

Now, he saw just how much that green hair gleamed in the sunlight. Freed's face nearly glowed with radiant joy. For a moment, Laxus could not speak.

"You're late." He realized he said it gruffly, but he was struggling not to exclaim something stupid, like 'Wow, you look amazing!'

"Sorry. I hate the south parking lot. It's crowded and takes forever to get back out with all the cars exiting. The north lot costs slightly more, but it's better, more spaces, easier to exit."

Laxus was reminded that Freed had gone to this opera house—a place Laxus used to dream about visiting some day—enough times to even know where the good parking spots were. It was intimidating to get into a situation where he was the inexperienced one and his partner was the one who knew all the tricks.

"You look really great," Freed said quietly, discreetly eying him up and down.

"You too," Laxus said softly.

"Should we go inside?"

Laxus nodded and followed Freed, joining the flow of patrons entering the opera house.

Since it was a matinée, most of the people around him were older, retired couples who were free in the middle of a weekday. That made Laxus feel like they stuck out even more.

"The seats are upstairs," said Freed.

Laxus realized he was gazing around at the architecture like an idiot. Maybe Freed was used to the building, but Laxus had never been inside a structure quite like it. The ceiling soared, with a crystal chandelier lighting the grand foyer, frescoes painted on the walls, marble columns evoking a Roman feel, and gilded filigree on the doors of every entryway. He really saw the difference between their two worlds in the opulence of this building.

Freed watched how Laxus gazed around. "Um … we still have some time. Do you just want to walk around the foyer?"

Laxus jolted, caught gawking. "N-nah, it's fine."

Freed shrugged. "It's your first time here. Let's look around. Oh, I know! Gift shop, this way. I want to look through it. You can wait for me outside, look around while I browse."

Laxus knew Freed was saying this just for him, but he was slightly glad. "Don't you dare buy me a fucking concert teeshirt or shit— uh…" He realized that his profanity had caused a few old ladies to scowl at him. "I mean, I don't think wearing a Marriage of Figaro shirt really fits my image."

Freed chuckled. "Not really. Don't worry, I just want to see if they have a CD of the music. I don't have a recording of this opera."

"I do. Don't buy me one."

"I won't. Hey!" He reached into his wallet and pulled out some money. "I want a glass of wine before the show. There should be enough money for you, as well. The drink vendor is down the corridor to the left. Make mine a riesling, okay?"

Laxus took the money, surprised Freed was giving him this much. Was wine truly that expensive around here? He drifted off while Freed went into the gift shop. He saw the line for the drink vendor. There was not much of a selection, and the elitist aura permeated even what beverages were sold. There was club soda and tea for those who did not drink, mimosas for the brunch crowd, martinis, champagne, and a wine list that sounded like something out of his high school French class textbook. No beer, no whiskey, nothing hard and strong.

When he got to the vendor, he still had no clue what these wines were, so he just said "Two rieslings." When in doubt, order the same thing. That way if he did not like it, Freed could drink it.

The money Freed gave him was way more than he needed, and Laxus pocketed the change to give back to Freed. He did not want to take money from him. Laxus was fine taking money from clients, but … Freed was not a client. He wanted to do this date properly. Still, he realized there was no way he would have bought a glass of wine at those prices, and he likely could not afford anything in the gift shop. This was Freed's world, and under the soaring expanse of the vaulted ceiling, with soft carpeting under his scuffed boots and posh benches where ladies wearing pearls gossiped, Laxus realized he was an alien in this strange world where money flowed with ease.

Freed bounded out of the gift shop with a bag. "I got just a little something. Hey, thanks for the wine." He took the glass, swirled the wine around, sniffed it, and took a sip. It was such a refined way of drinking.

Laxus dug into his pocket and yanked out the bills, now slightly crumpled. "Your change," he said roughly.

"Oh, you can keep it," he said lightly.

"No," he said, and his voice was adamant.

"Then use it to go buy something in the—"

"No!"

Freed looked distraught, but he still did not take the money back. "Let's not start off this way, Laxus. Today is my treat. I can't do for you what you do for me," he said carefully, blushing slightly. "Let me do at least this much. Keep the money. Be glad I didn't use it to buy you flowers."

"Oh, fuck you," he muttered, but he made sure it was quiet enough not to upset more patrons.

Freed laughed softly. "I saw something you might like." He waved Laxus to come inside the gift shop. "A DVD of the opera, filmed right here in Magnolia, same cast as today. This way, you can watch it at home whenever you don't want me to treat you like this."

"I … don't really mind you doing this," Laxus grumbled, picking up the DVD. "It's not like I hate it. It just makes me feel awkward."

Freed thought this timid side to Laxus was adorable, but he would never tell him that. "Then let me make you feel even more awkward and buy the damn DVD."

Laxus scowled at him, but it cracked into a smile. "Fine!" He took it up to the cashier and smoothed out the bills he had crumpled to pay for it. There was still just a little money left over, enough for bus fare back home.

Freed walked out to let Laxus do his purchase without having someone there to embarrass him more. Just as he was gazing around the foyer with his wine, a tiny elderly woman approached him, glaring up at Freed.

"You and that blond brute: are you two gay?"

Freed gulped the wine hard, stunned by such a direct question. "I am. He's…" Freed glanced back to the gift shop with a tiny smile. "…undefinable."

"You faggots make me sick," she said, loud enough to attract some attention. "You should be ashamed of yourself, having sex with a man, especially one like that. He's obviously way below the status of a refined gentleman like you."

Freed steeled back his initial emotions and put on a mask of civil amiability. "Ma'am, for one, he and I are not having sex. We are dating, and although it's none of your business, I am a virgin, so please do not make assumptions about my virtue. Two, my boyfriend's father is a world-renown scientist. He is also closely acquainted with many politicians and CEOs. You should not judge him by his looks." He left off that Laxus' father was infamous for his crimes against humanity, and his close acquaintances were masochistic clients. "If you dislike my sexual orientation for religious reasons, you are free to follow your religion; however, if you insult me and my boyfriend with homophobic verbal abuse, I know the prima donna and the general director very well, and my family has been benefactors of this opera house for three generations. I can have you escorted off the premises for badgering a patron." His fake smile never slipped.

The tiny lady glared scathingly. "Sinners going to hell, that's what you are." Her eyes drifted behind him, and Freed heard those riding boots walking up to him. "I'll pray for your souls." Then she turned away in a huff.

Freed waved with a stiff smile. "Your prayers are appreciated, ma'am. Please enjoy the show." Under his breath, Freed muttered in annoyance, "Bitch."

Laxus came up right against Freed and whispered into his ear. "Was she saying what I think she was saying?"

Freed sighed. "I'm used to it."

"You shouldn't have to be used to it. If someone dared talk that way to me, I'd punch 'em."

Freed glanced up with a worried but amused expression. "Laxus, she's a little old lady."

"Shouldn't matter. Okay, maybe I'd just slap her, but only because she'd probably fall and break a hip if I used my fist."

"Sheesh!" Freed laughed, but he felt happy that Laxus was acting defensively in his behalf. "So, did you buy that DVD?"

Laxus shook his little bag. "Are you happy now?"

"Very," he said with a beaming grin. "Let's find our seats."

They went inside the main theater and up to the second tier, where Freed double checked his ticket to get into the correct seats. They sat with the house lights low, sipping wine.

"Ain't half bad," Laxus decided, looking at his wineglass. "A bit fruity, but not totally crap."

Freed chuckled. "It better not be crap. My family procures the wines that are sold here. Father is an amateur sommelier."

"The hell's that?"

"Wine expert."

"Your family makes wine?"

"No, we buy the wine and donate it to the opera house. My grandfather started it, and it's a family tradition now. It's also a nice tax write-off."

"You live in a totally different world," Laxus muttered.

Freed shrugged. "It's not such a bad world. At least we have not-totally-crap wine."

"Smart ass," Laxus grumbled with a smirk.

The lights dimmed, and the overture began to play. Laxus watched the stage as Figaro and Susanna—played by Mira—sang Cinque, dieci, venti. As the story played out, sung in Italian but with subtitles broadcast above the stage, Laxus lost himself in the music and theatrics. He laughed at Cherubino, and he admired the sweet voice of Susanna.

Freed glanced over at Laxus many times. Seeing this joy warmed his heart. Discreetly, he reached over and put his hand over Laxus' thigh. Laxus was pulled out of the story by the touch. He looked down at the lithe fingers, and then took them into his own. They squeezed one another's hands in the dark theater while the audience was focused on the opera.

When the fourth act was done, Laxus was left in awe. Then, while others left the opera house, Freed pulled Laxus backstage.

"Freed!" Laxus exclaimed softly, looking around at the props and stagehands. "Freed, we shouldn't be back here."

"It's fine," he said, and he pulled Laxus on by the hand. He came to a door with the name "Mirajane Strauss" on the front and gave a knock. "Mira, it's me."

The door opened. Still in the costume of Susanna but with her wig removed, the white-haired lady greeted Freed with a hug.

"I'm so glad you made it," she cried out. "So, did you like the show?"

"Amazing, as always," said Freed. "When you and the Countess switched roles, that was just brilliant."

"Lyra is an amazing singer. I think sometimes, she should have been Susanna, but her voice fits the Countess."

"You will always be the prima donna of this theater, Mira." Then he looked back and saw Laxus standing stoically in the doorway. "Oh, this is my … friend," he said, tripping over the word awkwardly. "Laxus, Mirajane Strauss. Mira, this is Laxus … um … just Laxus." Freed cringed as he realized that Laxus still had not given him his last name.

Laxus stuck out his hand. "Charmed," he said, figuring it was a proper enough greeting.

"My!" Mira whispered, eying him up and down as they shook hands. "Just Laxus, eh? Interesting name. So, what do you do?"

Freed's mouth dropped that she would immediately ask something personal like his employment.

"Dancer," Laxus said curtly.

"Oh! We could use someone for the ballet corps. None of our men are strong enough to lift the ladies high enough for Swan Lake."

Laxus smirked ironically. "Not really my forte. I'm more into … modern dance."

"Too bad. I would love to see you perform." Her eyes drifted up and down his muscular body.

Freed sounded like he was choking. "Ah, we … we should let you finish getting changed. I just wanted to let you know I came to see the show. Uh … Laxus, let's go."

Mira called out as Freed tried to hurry Laxus out. "I'll be done in a few minutes. We should catch up, Freed. Luncheon, my treat. There's no way you're saying no," she said with a playful wink. However, her eyes shift to Laxus. "You can stay for lunch, right?"

"I planned on hanging out with Freed all day," Laxus told her.

"Good," she said, eying him again. "Well, boys, excuse me for just a moment. There are pastries in the east wing. Go help yourselves and wait for me there." Then she shut her dressing room door.

Freed groaned as they walked away. "Oh God, I can't believe she was flirting with you." He looked up at Laxus timidly. "Sorry about that. She's never like that around me."

"Because she knows you're gay, Freed," Laxus stated, keeping his eyes straight ahead as he walked. "All she knows about me is that I'm your friend." It came across far more bitter than he had intended.

Freed cringed. "S-sorry. I … I wasn't sure if it was okay to introduce you as a … as … well, whatever we are."

Laxus suddenly shoved Freed behind some background scenery, into a space between the framed cloth drop and the brick wall barely wide enough for two people. He slammed Freed up against the wall and kissed him roughly, thrusting his tongue in and biting Freed's lip. Then his mouth went down, just under the collar to be out of public view, and sucked up a love bite.

"L-Laxus!" Freed trembled. "N-not here."

Laxus pulled back and glared at him. "Don't make me repeat myself again. You are my boyfriend. You're mine! If you're ashamed of that, tell me outright and I'll leave your posh little world."

"I'm not ashamed," Freed insisted. "I feel like … like it's too good to be true. Like this is just a play, the curtain will fall, and I'll be alone in the dark again." His eyes dropped to the side. "I don't want to scare you away, or claim you if you don't feel the same way."

"I don't scare easily, but I do get mad. Introduce me as just a friend again, and I'll palm your dick in front of whoever you say that to."

"I got it," he breathed heavily, flushing as he thought about Laxus doing precisely that.

Laxus smirked with amusement. "Got you excited?"

"Y-yeah."

"Well, I could suck you off right here." He lightly touched the stiffness in Freed's pants. "You really are hard, you horny cocksucker. I bet you'd love it." He leaned in closer. "Right here, with your little opera buddies all around us, all this high society bullshit, and I'd suck you off until you completely fall apart. Maybe I'll wash it down with some of your family's fancy wine. Wine and cum. Sounds delectable."

"Nngh!" He trembled, trying to stay quiet, but Laxus' words were making the stiffness harden more, despite the fact that Laxus was barely touching him. "N-no. Not here."

He retreated. "I won't. I'm mad now, so you get punished. You have to wait until tonight. Oh, and clear up with your Barbie Doll friend that I'm off-limits, or else I really will thrust my tongue into your mouth while she watches."

Freed did not dare admit that part of him wanted Laxus to do that anyway. "Laxus?"

"What?" he snapped.

"Your name. I know you value your privacy, but how can you really expect me to understand that we're dating when I don't even know your last name, or your phone number, or where you live, or anything personal about you?"

Laxus hesitated. He really did prefer to keep his private life hidden, yet he also felt that if there was anyone he could open up to and allow them to enter into his dark hell of a world, it was this green angel who was showing him a glimpse of gilded heaven.

"Dreyar," he said softly. "Laxus Dreyar." He reached to Freed's belt and yanked his cellphone out of its carrying case. He tapped in some information, and then thrust it back at him. "Now you can call me." Laxus walked off, but not before Freed saw the blush creeping up toward his ears.

Freed slipped out from behind the scenery while gazing down at his phone. There was the name: Laxus Dreyar, and after it was the number that could connect them at any time. He pressed SEND and held the phone up to his ear. Down the wing, he saw Laxus pause and pull out his cellphone.

"Yo," he said gruffly.

"I just wanted to make sure you gave me the right number."

"You're an idiot." Immediately, Laxus hung up and kept walking away.

While he was stowing his cellphone away, Mira suddenly bounced up beside Freed, holding onto his arm. She wore all Stella McCartney, from her casual and girlie blouse, to the skinny jeans that probably cost more that the average person's monthly rent. She had her hair done up, her makeup perfect, and Freed smelled a little touch of perfume wafting around her. It was far too obvious that she was dressed to impress and ready to flirt.

"Ready to go? Where's your hot friend?" she asked, looking around eagerly.

"Um, Mira," Freed said awkwardly. "Um … well, what makes you interested in Laxus?"

She looked surprised, but she thought about it. "He looks like the wild boy sort. He's got amazing muscles. He's quiet, that's easy to tell. Maybe I like the stoic-and-strong type," she guessed.

"Then you're not the only one," he said, hoping she would take a hint.

She pouted. "Aww, does he have a girlfriend?"

"N-no!"

"Oh, good. Then that means he's available."

"No!"

"But you said he's not dating anyone."

"Us," he said in an embarrassed fluster. "W-we. Him, me. We're on a date," Freed blurted out.

She blinked in confusion. "Huh? You two? Wait, are you trying to woo him? Freed, I thought you always say you don't hit on straight guys, and someone like him, he's totally straight."

"Well, he's not," Freed snapped. "Laxus is my boyfriend. This is our third date already."

"Oh poo!" she huffed. "All the cute ones are gay."

Freed chuckled. "That means you think I'm cute."

She grabbed him and rubbed her cheek against his arm. "You're definitely cute, Freed. You're the cutest, sweetest guy I know."

Suddenly, the body she was holding was yanked from her grasp. Laxus had Freed in a possessive hold, shielding him from her.

"No offense, lady," he said, trying to sound polite, yet his jealousy crackled like thunder, "but back the hell off." He looked down to Freed. "Does she need to be shown?"

"N-no!" Freed squeaked. "It's fine. Mira and I are just good friends, and she's the touchy-feely sort, that's all. It's okay, really."

"Shown what?" Mira asked curiously, smiling at the two. They had to be the most oddly matched gay couple she had ever seen.

"This," said Laxus.

He grabbed Freed, tipped him back low, and kissed him hard, tongue plunging in, hands clutching that lean body in a lewd way. Mira covered her mouth as her face went red. Stage crews going back and forth paused and looked over in shock. Someone whistled a catcall. Just as fast, Laxus raised back up and lifted Freed onto his feet. He swayed a bit, his green hair tussled and his lips swollen.

"Got it," Mira said, blushing brightly now. Scratch that thought of them being oddly matched. These two were the hottest, most passionate gay couple she had ever seen.

Freed whispered in a daze. "Don't do that again."

"You like it," Laxus said, and he walked away. "Let's go. I'm hungry. The lady said she's buying."

Freed straightened his clothes. "Forgive him. He's … crude at times."

"You're such a studious guy, Freed. Do you really like this wild sort?"

Freed glanced to Laxus' retreating body. "Definitely!"

Next Chapter: "Can't Be Caught"

Chapter Text

Once again, Freed was in the South Pole Club on a Saturday night. Even after he and Laxus began dating, he returned here again and again, maybe more frequently than before, when he came only to be teased and aroused. Now he watched the show.

Or at least, he watched one man.

"Thor is on second again," Bob told him before he even had to ask.

Second. Always, he was after the club's darling prince. Yet Freed realized, that was fine. Laxus was not a stripper at heart. This was a job, not an enjoyment. He was good because he had to be to get what he wanted: clients to beat so he could get out his sadistic tendencies.

"I saw your fencing match last week. Was that Thor in the crowd?"

Freed said nothing and only sipped his chartreuse. Laxus had come to the fencing tournament, and it was just bad luck that the camera had shown a closeup of his face, watching the match with those intense blue eyes and the unique scar running down his face. Luckily, despite the fact that Bob had played it on the club's television screens, no one yet had mentioned it. He doubted if anyone was even in the club at that time of the day. Only Bob. Bob seemed to always be there, and he liked to watch his regular customer on the television.

"I won't tell," Bob said quietly. "Still, if you two are together in public … Jellal is strict about these things."

"Jellal can go to hell," Freed grumbled.

Bob sighed as he watched Freed's gaze. "You requested Thor again. I don't think you really need to do that."

"I like to," Freed said. "It's nice, having him dance for me."

"Doesn't he dance for you in private?"

Freed again said nothing. He knew the club had rules about how close the dancers could get with their customers.

"Every time you come here now, you're requesting him."

"It's managing to keep his job," Freed pointed out.

"True, but you're practically his exclusive client."

Exclusive! Freed liked the sound of that.

"And now you're out with him in public. If Jellal gets a hint that Thor is becoming exclusive to a customer, he'll fire Thor."

"Thor will keep dancing; it doesn't matter which club."

"Isn't that … troubling for you? Seeing him with other men?"

Freed said nothing and took another silent sip. He knew it was Laxus' job, he knew those men meant nothing to Laxus, but still…

Sometimes…

Bob glanced around to make sure no one could hear, and he dropped his voice to a confidential whisper. "Now, I like that guy, he's talented, but … why don't you tell him to leave all of this, stay with you? You've got money. You could support him."

"Support Thor?" Freed had to laugh at the idea. "A man like him would never agree to someone else supporting him." Freed knew that was just the way Laxus was: stubborn, independent, determined to make it through life by his own strength.

"Most of these dancers aren't in relationships. You and Thor are. You're even going out on dates. You should hold onto him, now that you've caught him."

Freed shook his head with a passive smile. "You can't catch someone like him. Perhaps by chance he'll strike in front of you, land in your lap, but no one can hold onto him forever. In a flash, he's gone, and all that's left is the sound of that electrical presence. A crackle. A rumble. The ominous and fading roll of thunder." He smiled up to Bob with a hint of sadness in his eyes. "You can't catch the thunder."

He looked back down to his pale green drink. Laxus was right. He hated chartreuse and only ordered it to appear sophisticate. In a gulp, he swallowed all of it down and set it aside. Bob moved to the green bottle.

"No," Freed called out. "Let me try … Blue Label, neat, with a water back."

Bob's eyes widened. "That's a hell of an order. You're not into the hard stuff."

"Maybe he's changing me," Freed mused.

Bob poured the drink with the small glass of water to the side. Freed carried both glasses to his usual booth. He watched the show start, Ice Prince wowing and wooing the crowd, stripping in an instant, and finishing up only to leave the stage and go straight to Pinkie, giving him a too-affectionate dance on the lap. Freed smiled at the two. They appeared to know one another well. He wondered if Ice Prince had done a lot of private sessions for that pink-haired kid. He had heard for himself that they knew one another's real names. Were they as close as he was to the man this club knew as Thor? Were they also dating secretly?

The change of lights from blue to yellow took his mind off of those two. They could have their fun. Pinkie always missed Thor's dance, too distracted by his frosty stripper. That was one less pair of eyes on the burly man and his dance of seduction.

Freed realized, he had every right to be jealous. The crowd hooted and groaned at various times of Thor's stripping. He could still hammer at their groins. Instead, Freed watched his dancer and the men who ogled him with a sense of smugness. They knew only the thunder, something ephemeral. Once the song was over, like a storm cloud passing, the thunder was gone, faded from the stage and from the minds of the men in this club, who were eager for the next dancer.

Not Freed. That tempestuous dance meant a new storm was brewing, and the lightning was coming soon.

He was there in a flash, golden spiky hair, eyes that looked orange in the light of the club, a devious smile as he approached Freed, straddled him, and gazed down hard. This time, his scarred eyes glanced at the glass.

"Not your usual," he commented.

"I … I thought … maybe you could show me how to drink scotch."

Laxus chuckled. "I'm supposed to dance on your lap, bitch."

"I do believe I'm the one who purchased a full song and two-way contact."

That sly gleam in the green-haired man's eyes always amused Laxus. It made Freed different from the assholes who normally bought Laxus' time, wishing to be purely dominated. He picked up the tumbler of scotch and took a drink. Then, holding the liquid in his mouth, he kissed Freed. The liquid passed from Laxus' mouth into the waiting one. He felt Freed tense up at the burning feel of the whiskey, but Laxus trapped the swordsman's wrists down. Freed was forced to swallow, and that sense of helplessness made him stiffen up erect already.

"Very good," Laxus praised.

Freed felt like he could melt from those approving words.

"Now, chase it with water. Open your mouth."

Freed opened, tilting his head up, and Laxus poured water onto his tongue. A little dribbled down Freed's chin, slithering over his neck to his shirt.

"Bad boy. You're messy," Laxus said with a sadistic smirk. He grabbed Freed's wrists and pinned them above his head against the booth. "You get punished."

His lap dance finally began, torturing Freed's groin, arousing him with sparks of electric thrills. Freed groaned and panted as the music and the movements pounded into him. He gazed up helplessly into those eyes he now knew were blue.

"Tonight?" he asked softly.

Laxus smiled gently and touched Freed's cheek, something fleeting, unseen by the crowd, but enough to show Freed that this thunder god honestly cared for a mere mortal like him. "Sure," Laxus said in a low, gravelly whisper. "Don't get drunk on the scotch."

"Not a chance," Freed chuckled. He would rather waste the alcohol than waste a night with his thunder god. "Oh God, like that," he moaned, arching back into the booth as his hips thrust on their own.

Laxus released his bound wrists. "Grab my ass, bitch. Show me how you like to feel it."

He blushed in humiliation, but he reached around those leather pants to pull Laxus close against him. Laxus stopped moving, forcing Freed to shift his butt, pulling and moving Laxus to where he wanted to feel it. He liked to feel that thick length slide up over him, especially as he felt Laxus slowly hardening. Then he liked a little side-to-side, like two swords battling one another. Then a tight thrust up against him. It was embarrassing to be this assertive in the middle of the strip club, with others watching them, and that shamed feeling made his heart race.

"The song's too fast," Laxus complained.

"Would you rather have Barry White?" Freed teased.

"Considering you only bought one song, I'd rather have In A Gadda Da Vida."

"That would be an awesome song to make out to."

"I could probably make you come twice before the drum solo finishes," Laxus teased.

"Nnngh, probably could. Sh-shit!"

Just when Freed thought he could not take more, Laxus backed off. He was in tune with his swordsman now. They had done this many times, and Laxus was good at judging how much Freed could withstand.

"You're still too much," Freed groaned, knowing his issue meant these dances always were brief.

"You're getting better. Maybe you're used to me already," he teased with a sarcastic smile.

"A thousand dances couldn't make me used to you," Freed smiled in adoration. "I just might have to buy another dance tonight."

"Oh?" Laxus chuckled. "Feeling that generous."

"Jealous," he corrected. "There's a man to the side who has been staring at you this whole time."

Laxus glanced over briefly. "Damn. A client," he explained. "He probably wants me to beat the shit out of him again."

"Do you … need that?" Freed asked hesitantly.

Laxus' brow wrinkled. "Who knows?" he muttered.

Freed sighed and looked aside with a pinched forehead. This was just part of being with the thunder god. Everyone saw the brilliant flash of lightning, and he could not stop that dangerous roll of thunder from rumbling over the landscape. "Deal with him first. Meet me tomorrow. You're off work, right? We could spend the day together."

"Hey now! You asked first. That bastard can wait."

"That old man probably doesn't have much free time to come here. If you need it, I'd rather you get the worst of it out of your system first."

Laxus barked a laugh. "Why? So I can be gentle with you?"

Freed felt his face flush and dropped his head. "I don't know if I'd want gentle."

Laxus softly touched his cheek again. "We could try it."

His eyes swung up in shock. "Wh-what?"

"We could try gentle. Try more."

"M-more?" he gasped. "You mean…"

Was Laxus offering … that? Actual sex? Not just bondage and toys and blow jobs, but actually … doing … that?

The blond gave a mild shrug, but by the way his jaw tensed and relaxed in a slight tick, Freed knew Laxus felt nervous about taking this huge step. "It's an offer. Would you wanna?"

"Yes!" he cried out eagerly.

"Easy there," Laxus smiled, petting down the green hair. "For our first time, I don't want some random hotel. I want a place where you'll always remember it."

"Your flat…"

"Your dorm," Laxus said at the precise same time.

"W-w-wait! My dorm?" Freed shouted.

"Shh," he hushed with a stern look. They could not let others in the club know about this. "If we do it, I want it to be in your own bed."

"But it's a college dormitory, La- … uh, Thor. Dorms are not the most private locations. The walls are paper thin. I can hear my upstairs neighbor taking a leak!"

"Oh really?" Laxus chuckled slyly. "Even better." He scratched a fingernail across Freed's lip. "A building full of your frat buddies, and all of them will get to listen in as I break that virgin ass of yours in your own goddamn bed!"

Freed jolted and reached down, really feeling like he might come from just the thought of how erotic and humiliating that would be. As curious as he was about what sort of place Laxus lived in, maybe it was really a crummy apartment in a dangerous neighborhood. The dorm was safe, people in it were generally non-intrusive, and it really would be fun to kick Loke out for a change.

"I'll probably be late with this bastard," Laxus said, using his eyes to point over to the old man staring at them. "He does things slowly, tends to take until morning before he finally…"

"I told you before, never tell me about your clients."

Laxus froze at the angered snap and the jealousy in those normally fawning eyes. "Sorry," he conceded. "Just sayin', don't call me in the morning. I'll probably sleep in past noon. Chase that roommate of yours out before five o'clock." Then he climbed off Freed's lap as the song ended. "I'll see you then, Greenie. Try not to jizz as you think about it. Oh, and don't fap tonight. I want you built up for tomorrow."

"Shit," he cringed. He was so hard, he had been prepared to rush off to the restrooms to rub one out.

"Don't!" Laxus said with a final order. Then he turned and walked away backstage.

Freed was left with his mouth hanging open and his dick throbbing. He rubbed out his head and took another drink of the scotch, trying to calm himself down.

As Lyon began to dance, Freed stood, took his drink, and left the seating area. He walked back to the bar, away from the hooting oglers and pounding music. He sat in front of Bob, numbed and staring at the glass of whiskey.

Blue Label. Blue like Laxus' eyes. Blue eyes no one in this club saw, not with the lights that turned those eyes predatory orange. It was a blue that only Freed saw.

Freed stared at the golden drink. Gold like lightning, like blond hair. Yellow hair, blue eyes. It was a strong, hard drink, much like that tattooed body. As he sipped the drink, it burned, tingled, electrified like lightning. Yet as he chased it with the water, the flavor suddenly burst open, the harshness soothed away, and a truly wonderful experience tingled on his tongue, complex, powerful, overwhelming him.

No wonder Laxus liked this drink.

"Something wrong?" Bob asked in concern.

Freed laughed to himself as he held the scotch whiskey at eye level and swirled it. "Bob, I may have just managed to catch the thunder."

Next Chapter: First and Only

Chapter Text

"Loke," Freed griped, "I really do need you to leave."

"And I said I wanna meet your boyfriend," the ginger roommate insisted. "You meet most of my girlfriends."

"Never by choice," Freed grumbled.

Loke leaned back in his bed with a smirk. "So, are you two gonna do it?"

Freed blushed brightly. That had been the plan. Just that morning, he had called Laxus, warning him again that a university dormitory was not the most private location. Laxus seemed even more insistent as he heard the panic in Freed's voice.

Loke sighed when he saw the red face. "Just keep your jizz to your side of the room, got it?"

Freed swirled around at him. "Like you're one to talk!"

There was a thumping knock, and Freed squeaked. Loke leaped out of the bed with the grace of a wild cat, and before Freed could protest, he opened the door…

… and looked way up.

"Tall," Loke muttered.

Crystalline eyes glared down. "You must be the roomie."

"Loke," the ginger grinned, thrusting a hand out. "I wanted to see who got my roomie all smitten." He glanced back to Freed. "Are you sure he's okay? He looks like he needs a rabies shot."

"Out!" Freed shouted.

Loke looked up to Laxus again. "Freed's a good friend. Don't you dare hurt him, got it? Now, I'll leave you two. Beer's in the fridge, extra condoms are in my top drawer, in case you need one for a second go."

"Shoo! Shoo!" Freed snapped.

"I'm not a cat, sheesh." Loke yanked on a coat with a fur-lined hood. "Two A.M. when the bars close, Freed. He's gone or you're both asleep. No boinking each other while I'm sleeping, either." With a wave, he left.

"Well, ain't he just a load of fucking sunshine," Laxus grumbled.

"At least you've met now," Freed sighed. "I'm sorry, I've been trying to shove him out for an hour."

"It's fine. He's not drop-dead handsome, though."

"Huh? Oh! Well, he's not bad looking," Freed said in Loke's defense, but Laxus glared down. "But he's not gay, so … totally not interested. I don't even fantasize over guys who aren't gay or bi."

Laxus glanced around the dorm room. It was smaller than he imagined, even smaller than his apartment. He wondered how two college boys could live in such confined quarters.

"I figured a spoiled rich boy like you would be used to something more … spacious," he muttered.

"Well, it took a lot of adjusting when I first moved in," Freed admitted. "That's Loke's side. Don't touch his stuff. He's really good at giving me my privacy, so I wouldn't want to be a bad roommate in return."

"Not interested in his crap," Laxus muttered. "Nice computer. That's the latest, right? I've only seen TV commercials about it."

"Yeah, um … so, I got supplies. Ah, here!" He pulled a box out from under his bed. Inside was a collection of things they had bought together, included the electro-stim butt plug from their first night. "Uh, lube, condoms … I don't know what else you'd want. How did you want to…?"

"Don't question it," Laxus warned him. "We'll warm up to it. I want to be here with you first." He walked up to Freed and held his cheek. "I want to make this feel natural. In a hotel, it's a fantasy, not part of the real world. Here, in the bed where you sleep every night, it'll be real for you. It'll be more special. You'll remember it every night before falling asleep."

"I'd remember anyway," Freed sighed, cradling his face down into Laxus' large, warm hand.

Laxus leaned over and kissed him. He was partly hoping that Freed's low moans would affect him like they always did, but Laxus really was nervous about this. That fear was making it a challenge to get aroused.

"So, how's school?" he asked, stepping away and looking around some more. He needed to calm himself.

"Uh, it's good," Freed said awkwardly.

He put the box of supplies away, leaving out only the lube and a condom to sit on his nightstand. Why was Laxus putting this off? The blond walked over to Freed's desk, and he began to drum his fingers nervously. Freed watched, surprised to see agitation in the usually implacable man.

"I'm passing all of my classes," he said, hoping that if he kept talking maybe Laxus would feel more at ease. "Midterms are coming up for the fall semester. I've been studying, mostly."

"That's good," Laxus said. He looked down at the books piled on the desk. Economic Aspects and Ethics of Business. Sounded boring as hell. His eyes drifted over the desk and eventually landed on a framed photograph sitting on the edge. "Is this your family?"

"Yep! My parents, me, the tall one with his tongue out is Bickslow, and that's my sister, Evergreen."

"You guys look like a normal family."

"I think we mostly are, when my parents aren't being assholes."

He glanced aside, barely looking at the photo, and sought out the next thing he could talk about.

Freed twisted his hands together. "So … um … you mentioned once that you lived with your grandfather while growing up. Is he still alive?"

"Somehow he manages to keep kicking."

"That's good. I've lost all of my grandparents, Mother's side to a car accident before I was born, Dad's side … well, it made the news," he said wryly. "She offed him for the money, got caught, killed herself before police could take her."

"Damn!" Laxus exclaimed. "Your family's as fucked up as mine."

"My parents are cool. They kinda do the whole rich-person thing, though: parties, charity balls, always flying around the world for conventions in their fields."

"What do they do?" Laxus asked.


They spent ten minutes talking about Freed's family while Laxus helped himself to a beer to calm his nerves. Freed told him stories about his childhood, especially the trouble he got into with his two siblings.

"And so, there we were," Freed laughed, "Evergreen pretending she's Tinkerbell and swinging from the chandeliers with fairy wings on her back, I was Peter Pan brandishing a sword—a real one I pulled off the wall, mind you—while Bickslow suddenly went sliding down the staircase on a serving platter with his arms ahead like he's the tic-toc crocodile, screaming at the top of his lungs, 'Baaaabies!' He went skidding right past the buffet table and crashed into the cake. It went splattering everywhere, and he broke his arm. We totally ruined their dinner party, but it was the craziest thing anyone had ever seen." He laughed, and Laxus smiled as he tried to imagine it.

"You three must have been an unholy terror on your parents."

"Probably," he admitted with a sheepish shrug.

"It's cute." Laxus guzzled back the last of his beer and set the bottle aside. "You had a fun childhood. I'm envious."

"Oh! Uh, sorry."

"No." Laxus leaned in close. "I can lose myself in thoughts of your past." He gave Freed a kiss. "And I keep dreaming of our future." He kissed him harder, threading his fingers through the long, green hair and giving it an erotic pull. "But what I want," he said, and he slowly pressed Freed backwards, "is right now in the present."

"Laxus," Freed said in awe.

"Sorry if I was nervous."

"I was, too."

"Better now?"

Freed nodded.

"Good. Now … make me hard."

He kissed him fiercely and pressed his body against Freed. The bed was narrow, but Laxus stayed right above him, feeling the pale skin and shifting to get limbs sorted out. Freed spread both legs around Laxus' body, leaving himself wide open to him.

"Nnngh! Laxus," Freed suddenly groaned as the thunder god brushed up against his groin.

"Oh?" Laxus smirked. "You're just raring to go, aren't you, you little slut?" He let his groin rub up against the arousal. "You're totally rock hard." Laxus thrust up against him again, and a long, drawling moan shivered out. "Damn, you really do something to me."

Laxus threw his shirt off, and Freed scrambled out of his clothes. They were breathing hard already, nervous with the anticipation of what they were about to do.

"Gentle the first time," Laxus said softly. "I don't want it to hurt … yet."

Freed chuckled at the threat at the end.

"Besides…" Laxus leaned over and whispered hotly into his ear while his fingers toyed with Freed's nipples. "If you're too loud, someone will hear you." He suddenly pinched hard.

Freed cried out and arched up, trembling at the touch.

"There are people all around this dormitory," Laxus teased sensually. "Do you want them to hear your sexy voice?"

"Nnngh … n-no," he whimpered.

"That's why I'll be gentle." Laxus leaned over and lapped at the stiffening nipple, right over where he pinched. "Gentle, so you had better be quiet."

"Y-yes, master."

"No!" Laxus loomed up instantly. "No master and slave here. Not in the real world. In the club, or in a hotel, fine, but not here." He leaned over and kissed Freed. "Here, you're not my slave." His mouth worked down his neck. "I don't want to fuck a slave. I want to make love to my boyfriend. Got it?"

"Y-yeah," Freed gasped. He suddenly felt pain on the side of his neck. "Ahhh!" The love bite was high up. There would be no way to cover it. Laxus was marking him for the whole world to see.

"Did you prepare yourself beforehand?"

"Yes, how you taught me."

"Good." Laxus licked his finger and lowered it to Freed's hole. "Keep quiet," he whispered, and he nudged the finger in.

Freed's mouth tightened, and his body arched up at the feel.

"You're so smooth inside." Laxus kissed Freed's chest and began to move down lower. "So smooth and tight."

Freed heard a rowdy group of college boys moving down the hall. He covered his mouth with both hands, trying to mute the whimpers. Of course, if anyone heard just him, they would assume he merely had a hot night with some girl. Still, it was humiliating, having sex in a place where his classmates could overhear him.

"Such restraint," Laxus chuckled. He suddenly dived down and swallowed Freed's arousal, pounding it to the back of his throat hard and fast.

Freed arched up with a loud cry. "Oh God, your mouth!"

Outside, he heard one guy laughing. "She must be a pro. Damn lucky guy!"

Laxus pulled back and gazed down. Freed looked utterly mortified, and that expression was sweet to the sadist. "Noisy bitch," he whispered playfully. "I'll have to silence you." He pulled back off of Freed's body. "Stand!"

Shaking, Freed unsteadily rose to his feet.

"Undo my pants," he ordered.

His hands were trembling, but he unthreaded the belt, lowered the zipper, and tugged the pants down to Laxus' ankles. He stepped out of them and sat on the bed.

"Kneel."

Freed practically collapsed to his knees before his thunder god. Laxus spread his legs and stroked up his arousal with a sly gleam in his eyes.

"Lick it, you cocksucker."

Freed hesitantly leaned forward. He realized, he forgot to lock the door. If someone burst in now, it would be completely obvious: two naked men, one sucking off the other. Still, he lapped up the shaft, twirled his tongue about, and lowered down, taking Laxus into his mouth.

"Yes, like that," Laxus whispered, stroking the green hair. "Oh God, you're so good. You get me so aroused, you and your slutty mouth."

Freed groaned as he sucked more, bobbing up and down.

"You're the only person in the world who does this to me," Laxus told him. "No one else. I only want or need you, Freed. I … need you. So much. Fuck you, but you made me addicted."

Freed smiled around the cock. Only him! All those clients, but none of them mattered to Laxus. They were contracts, customers, holding no emotional attachment to him. Only him!

"Shit, I need you!" He yanked Freed's head up, making his mouth pop off. "Now! Lie down."

Freed obediently laid on the bed and gazed up. Laxus reached over to the condom.

"You don't need that," Freed said quickly. "If … if you don't want to, that is."

Laxus looked down in shock. "But…"

"You're tested all the time by the club, right?" he reasoned. "You're careful with clients, and we're both virgins. If you want … y-you don't need to use it. Um, only if you want, though. If you'd rather use it, that's fine, too."

Laxus' eyes softened. "Is that what you want?"

Freed bit his lip and looked aside bashfully. He nodded as his face turned red.

Laxus set the condom packet back down. "It'll be a messy cleanup."

"That's fine," he whispered. "At least the first time, I want to feel you. Just you."

Laxus stroked back the green hair. "If that's what you want. Like this, or dog style?"

"Facing you," Freed requested. "I … wanna watch your face."

"You're always a romantic," Laxus sighed. "Hold on. Don't you dare move." He climbed off the bed, walked over to the desk, and woke up Freed's computer. "Password?"

"Uh … Raijinshuu."

"What the hell?"

"Japanese."

"Your safe word is French and your computer's password is Japanese? Are you aiming for a job with the fucking United Nations?" He typed the word in, with Freed spelling it. Laxus quickly opened up iTunes and smiled. "Awesome, you have it." He clicked on a song, and Freed heard an organ starting up. Laxus cranked the volume up.

"Oh God," Freed laughed.

Laxus turned around as drums and rocking guitars kicked in, and he began a small dance. As the lyrics began to play, he sang along to them.

"In a gadda da vida, honey. Don't you know that I love you? In a gadda da vida, baby. Don't you know that I'll always be true?"

Freed was laughing at the dance and gruff singing. Getting serenaded by In A Gadda Da Vida would probably top his list of silliest things to do during sex.

"Twice before the drum solo, right?" Laxus smirked.

"No." Freed gazed up at him adoringly. "Put it on repeat. Make it last until the song plays twice."

"That's over half an hour."

"I want it to last that long," he whispered.

"Then … one second."

Laxus went back and clicked a button to put the song on repeat. Then he went back and pounced on the bed. He grinned ferally and stroked back Freed's hair. He leaned over, kissed him firmly, and smiled.

"Gentle," he assured. "Half an hour."

"Thirty-four minutes," Freed corrected. "It's a seventeen minute song."

"Now you're being a brat." Laxus had to chuckle, though. The longer it lasted, the better. He took the bottle of lube and drizzled it copiously onto his arousal. "Ready?"

He nodded breathlessly.

"Do you need more stretching?"

"Just do it, please," Freed shuddered. They were really about to do this, and his heart was racing with fear and desire.

"Knees up."

Freed pulled his knees to his chest, exposing himself.

"Oh, won't you come with me," Laxus whispered, while Doug Ingle sang the same line. "And take my hand," he sang gently while the song rocked out the lyrics. He threaded his fingers into Freed's. He gazed down with worry and tenderness. "Oh, won't you come with me, and walk this land? Please take my hand."

"Seriously, stop singing," Freed chuckled.

"Hey, I'm tryin' to be romantic here."

"Be Laxus," Freed encouraged. "That's who I love."

Laxus' mouth dropped. "Say that again."

"I haven't yet, have I?"

"No, you haven't."

Freed caressed Laxus' cheek. "I love you."

Tears gathered in his eyes, and suddenly Laxus dived down to kiss him, hiding his overwhelmed face. His mouth stayed right over Freed's as he shifted his hips forward, slowly pressing in.

"Mmh … mmmnnngh!" Freed's hands clenched in pain, but Laxus' large fingers were there to accept the struggle. Freed felt that thick arousal opening him, slowly, patiently. Laxus refused to uncover his mouth, muting the cries. Freed trembled. He was used to the butt plug they had used, but this was wider. There was no divot that allowed him to shrink back and relax. Instead, as Laxus pressed in, it only got thicker.

"Wait, wait," he cried out.

Laxus froze. He felt like he was barely in, but he could feel those lithe hands trembling. "I'm sorry," he whispered, stroking back the green hair. "A big oaf like me as your first is probably not best."

"It's fine," Freed insisted. "Just … need to get used to it. Kiss me."

Laxus kissed his lips, his cheeks, and licked away the tears dripping from his eyes. He kissed his forehead, his hair, his ears, and back to his lips. He wanted to kiss him everywhere, if it would ease this initial pain.

"Freed?"

"A moment," he said, breathing too regularly as he tried to relax.

Out in the hallway, they heard a shout. "Awesome song, dude!"

Freed jolted. Shit, there were people all around him! "Uh, thanks," he yelled back awkwardly.

Laxus chuckled. "That's just fucking hilarious."

"What?"

"Your face. Shit, you're a comical guy." He leaned down until their noses touched. "How about we give them a better song?" He pressed more into Freed's ass, and the smaller man moaned out loudly.

Outside the door, they heard the same guy laughing. "So that's why the music is so loud. Lucky bastard."

"Yeah." Laxus' eyes glinted down to Freed with sadistic satisfaction. "Lucky bastard."

"Laxus," Freed whispered. "More."

He eased in deeper, deeper, and it was like Freed was just sucking him in now. The soft mewls under him drove him on as he gritted his teeth and pressed until he was flush up against him.

"Holy shit, that feels amazing," Laxus exclaimed softly.

"Do you … like it?" Freed asked, sweaty already.

Laxus stroked his cheek. "It's you. Of course I like it."

"I'm serious."

"So am I. You're so tight, I really don't think I can last thirty minutes. Fuck, I feel like I'd be lucky to last through the drum solo."

"Try," Freed pleaded. "Try to make it last."

Laxus was shocked, but then he chuckled with a tender smile. "Seriously, how can I resist you when you beg like that?"

He pulled back and slowly pressed in again. There was still a little pain in Freed's face, but nowhere near as bad. Then back out, and the third time thrusting in, Freed's mouth gaped with pure pleasure.

"Oh God!"

"You are seriously loud for a college dorm room."

"I don't even care anymore," he shouted.

"Heh! Fine."

Laxus thrust hard, and Freed trembled with an echoing shout.

"Okay, you are seriously loud. If some fucker knocks on that door and demands to be let in to see why you're screaming, I might kill a bitch for interrupting me."

"No! God, don't stop," he shouted even louder.

That was definitely unnaturally loud. "Freed?"

"Fuck my ass harder."

Laxus heard outside the door. "Whoa, totally gay! Must be that homo Senior with the green hair."

He smirked down at Freed. "You brilliant little pervert." Now the whole dorm would know Freed was getting some gay sex. They would definitely leave the two alone.

"They already know about me," he reasoned. "I'll let them know how good it can feel."

"Same as me and the strip club."

"Yeah, but you don't have to live with these assholes making gay jokes about you all the time."

"Fine. Then let them be jealous." Laxus slammed in fully.

"Aaaah!"

Laxus thrust in harder, again and again. "I wanna make them so hard listening to you squeal like a pig in heat…"

"Nngh … ahh … oh God!"

"… that every one of the bastards in this dorm will be fapping to your cries. Make them horny, Freed," he ordered. "Show them how good I make you feel."

"Nnngh! Oh God, so good. So … aaahn!"

"Shit, you really are a slut."

"Laxus!"

"Don't yell my name like that. I doubt these frat boys would know me, but I don't like it."

"Master!"

"Oh fuck," Laxus shuddered. He had figured it would be more romantic to do this as boyfriends, not as slave and master. However, hearing Freed call him that while thrusting into him was too much. His hips slammed in hard, suddenly pounding with urgency.

"Fuck, fuck, no, fuck!"

Despite his shouts, Laxus suddenly came. As he pulsed out, he gritted his teeth and lowered his head in deep shame.

"Laxus?" Freed took the tense face in his hands. "Laxus, turn your head up."

Laxus shuddered and shook his head. "Goddammit, I didn't want to come this soon."

"Please, look at me, master."

Laxus looked into those eyes with sorrow. Suddenly, Freed's lips were on his with eagerness and the arms squeezed him close. The blue eyes widened in surprise. He was afraid Freed might be disappointed that it ended so soon, or tease him for coming for such a silly reason. Instead, he felt Freed trembling in jolts. He realized there was something hot and wet on his stomach, and as he pulled back, he saw that Freed had cum dripping from his cock.

Freed looked exhausted but happy. "I … I never would have made it past the drum solo," he admitted, shuddering wearily.

Laxus laughed and rubbed his nose against Freed's. "You idiot."

They suddenly heard a knock on the side wall. "Is that all? Dude, I was just getting some major fap time with you two."

Freed and Laxus laughed, and both blushed slightly. "Next show is in thirty minutes," Laxus shouted over to the neighbor.

"Damn. It better be worth my blue balls."

"Che! Who the hell is that?" Laxus asked.

"Neighbor named Toby Horhorta. Maybe we should wash up before we do more."

Laxus collapsed on top of him. "Nope. Tired. I'm sleeping like this."

Freed squirmed under the weight. "Laxus, you will seriously suffocate me."

"Don't wanna pull out."

"You sound like a kid."

"Fuck you."

"A potty-mouthed kid."

"Poopy head."

Immediately, they both burst into laughs. Laxus pushed himself up and sleepily gazed down at him.

"We're both idiots, aren't we?"

Freed sighed as he looked up at the eyes that were still a little sorrowful. "It was our first time. It's not that surprising that it didn't last long. Next time, though."

"Next time," Laxus repeated, happy to think that they could share this as often as they wanted now. "Nap first."

"Cleanup first. Your cum will leak out of my ass."

"Mmmm. Let it."

"Not on these sheets, I won't! They're satin."

"You sound like a spoiled rich boy."

"I am one," Freed smirked, "but you're the one spoiling me."

"Damn you for being this romantic." He gave Freed another kiss. "My first." He sensually kissed him again. "My only." He leaned down and kissed longer, letting his tongue play around Freed's mouth.

"Mmmnnh!" Freed moaned happily at the kiss. Suddenly, his eyes widened. Laxus was still inside him, and he was quickly getting hard.

"Are you okay for more?" Laxus asked in a low whisper.

"I might not come again this soon."

"Even better." Laxus pressed in. "Damn, I can feel my cum lubing you up inside. Sorry about your sheets, but they're gonna get fucking messy." He slammed in.

"Aaaah!"

The neighbor shouted through the wall. "Hell of a recovery, bro! Fuck yeah!"

"Damn horny dog," Laxus laughed. He grinned down at Freed. "Let's give him a good encore."

Next Chapter: You Really Don't Want to Know

Chapter Text

Laxus woke up to see it was dark outside. He glanced over at the clock. Only nine. They had done it not just through two replays of In A Gadda Da Vida, but through three, with their third time being the slow, sensual, gentle lovemaking Laxus had initially wanted. Neither came the third time. They made love until they tired out.

Curled up tightly beside him on the narrow bed was Freed, practically smashed against the wall but looking happy to be by Laxus' side. The blond smiled down at his lover and stroked back his hair.

"You really are something, Greenie," he whispered.

Gently, to not disturb Freed too much, Laxus shifted out of the bed and walked to the bathroom. He relieved himself, then pulled on his clothes. He wanted to let Freed rest as much as he needed, especially after such an experience. He sincerely hoped it had not hurt too badly.

"I wonder how you do this to me," he sighed.

Laxus looked around the dorm room some more. How might it have been if he had gone to a university? It was not like his family was too poor to afford tuition. He just never had an interest in education. He supposed it was not too late to learn. Still, what sort of field could he study? He doubted if there was a major in professional sadism. Maybe he could do something with what he had learned as an electrician, before he discovered that he made more money stripping.

Loke's desk was slightly messy, while Freed's was impeccably tidy. Of course, he might have straightened up before Laxus arrived. He wondered how it looked on a normal day. Was he always tidy? Did his desk get all cluttered up with reports and class notes?

He saw the family photo on the desk again. Freed looked younger in the picture, his hair shorter. He had an enigmatic smile. His sister looked like she was trying too hard to be a model, posing with her lips out in a duck face. The brother looked like a total idiot with his tongue lolling and hair spiked out. There was also something about his eyes…

"A family. Siblings. Two parents— Wait." He snatched the frame up to take a closer look. "Is that your father?" Laxus cried out, gawking at the photo.

Freed sleepily opened his eyes. "Huh?"

"The guy in this picture. Is he your father?"

"Uh, yeah. Why?"

Laxus set the frame down so hard, it fell over, hiding the picture. He turned away from the desk with a disturbed face. "Nothing. It's … it's nothing." His hand went up, covering his mouth as his brow tightened. "Shit. Not him. Anyone but him."

"Laxus?" Freed woke up more and raised stiffly, slightly pained. He shifted his hips as he felt the lingering ache. "What is it? Do you know my father?"

His eyes hardened. "Yeah, I do."

"How?"

His lips curled in disgust. "You really don't want to know."

"Why not? How could you…? Oh," Freed whispered, and he collapsed back onto the bed in shock. "Oh … oh God. You don't mean…" He could not bring himself to say it.

"Yeah," Laxus muttered, looking disturbed and angry.

"He's one of your … no way! That's a sick joke. My father, a client of yours? That's not even funny." He waited, hoping Laxus would smile and say sorry for joking about something so inappropriate. Instead, the blond looked nervous. "Laxus? You … you're joking, right? There's no way you could know him. My father … he … he isn't…" Still, Laxus was not denying it. His back was to Freed, and his fists were clenched to keep them from shaking. Something surged up in Freed's stomach, and he choked it back down. "You're wrong!" he screamed.

"I hope to God I'm wrong. Please tell me he has a twin brother, lookalike cousin … something!" he shouted desperately.

"N-no. None that look like him. This can't … you…" He whispered in disbelief, "No way. Could you just be wrong? Turn on the light. Maybe it's too dark."

Laxus sighed, flipped the main lights on, and walked back to the fallen frame. Reluctantly, he picked it up and took a close look at the happy family, the man with brown hair, the lady with her green hair up in a prim bun, and the three children. It was obviously taken some years ago, but although Freed looked different in the photo, the man was exactly the same.

"Dammit. It's definitely him."

"No!" Freed cried out, shivering and struggling not to cry. "My father's not like that. He's not! He's so serious all the time. He runs the company, and he's always there for family dinners. He and my mother go to church every Sunday. Hell, when I came out as being gay, he was furious. There's no way he … no … no way. That's just not him. He's not like that." Freed blinked away tears and shook his head, cringing down as acid churned in his stomach. "Not him. Not Father."

"Justine," Laxus muttered. "That's your surname, right? Mister Justine. Dammit, I never pieced it together."

"How could you not?" Freed shouted. "It's not like we have a common last name."

"I don't give a fuck who I beat up," he yelled back. "Half the time, I don't know their names, don't care. They give me cash, I do what they say, and I go. I barely look at their faces. But … Justine. Shit. Of all the goddamn people."

Furiously, Freed yelled, "You fucked my father?"

"I did not fuck him. I don't fuck clients."

"You … did that … did stuff … on my dad?"

Laxus folded his arms and looked at the door. "I shouldn't have said anything. This is not how I wanted this night to end."

"You've seen … it. My father's … you and my dad … oh God, I'm gonna be sick." He covered his mouth as acid bubbled up.

Laxus suddenly grabbed his coat and bolted out the door. Freed looked up in shock at the man's rapid departure.

"Laxus!" He forced his stomach back down. "Wait."

He rose from the bed but realized he was naked. Hurriedly, he wrapped a robe around him, then he ran out of the room and down the hall where Laxus was stomping as fast as he could without blatantly running. Just before he reached the elevator, Freed grabbed him.

"Don't you dare run away! We … we should … talk," he said, panting from the shock and racing after Laxus. His ass hurt too badly to be running. "We need to talk about this."

"What's to talk about?" Laxus growled. "Things are gonna be too weird now, right? You're gonna wanna break up with me anyway, so why stick around and punish myself?"

"No one said anything about breaking up," Freed yelled. Someone else from the dormitory walked by and muttered to himself, "Gaaaaay!" Freed growled at the student, but he dropped his voice to be polite. "We really do need to talk."

"Why? If I talk, you'll find out the truth and break up with me. If I leave now, you can keep thinking your dad is the perfect father you imagined him to be. You can convince yourself that maybe the man I know is a cousin, or a distant relative. Hell, it might be, for all I know."

"If I don't hear the truth directly from you, I'll never be able to trust my father again. I could never bring it up to him, so I'd be left with doubts, maybe even hatred. I don't want that! I want to know the truth. I … I need to know."

Laxus glared down at him and hissed out a whisper. "His name's Llewellyn, right?" He saw Freed's mouth drop. "I was afraid so. You want the truth? Your father hires me to be his Dom. There. You can hate him, curse me, whatever. Do you really want to know more? Can you even look me in the eye when you realize that I've spanked your father into submission, that I've done to him some of the same things I do to you?"

Freed dropped his head and gulped down a surge in his stomach. "It makes the issue more personal, but … but I already knew you do this sort of thing. I knew that, and I thought I could accept it. Maybe I still can, although it's gonna be hell come Christmas."

Laxus had to snort out a laugh. "Yeah, good thing I realized this now. It would have been awkward as hell if I went to your house for the holidays and met your dad there."

"Laxus," Freed whispered, "I don't want you to leave. I want to talk. Then I'll make my decision."

"Decision?" Laxus asked softly.

"If I can handle this, or if I need to kick you out of my life before we … go any further with this."

His ass hurt, and it reminded him of how sweet their time together had been. The pain smoldered and forged into love, making him not want to give up on this man, even if his mind was having a hard time coming to grips with this revelation.

"I need to know what I'm dealing with," Freed stated. "At the very least, I deserve your honesty, and a dorm hallway is not the best location to be discussing this. Please, come back to the room."

Laxus looked again to the elevator door. Every nerve in him said to bolt now before his heart got broken. However, if there was absolutely any hope of staying with Freed and making this relationship work, he wanted to bet on it.

"Fine, we'll talk."

"Thank you," Freed sighed. He turned and walked back to his room, but he realized already that he could not look Laxus in the eyes. Even while begging him to stay, he could not look right at him, and his stomach still felt nauseous.

They went to the room, and Freed locked the door. He slowly sat on his bed, still aching a bit, and Laxus took the computer desk chair. They sat in silence with a party down the hall thumping away music.

"So … my father," Freed said timidly. "Um, how long has he been a … a … a client?"

"I honestly don't know. Over four years."

Freed gulped hard and cringed. That was a lot longer than he ever imagined. "How often?"

"Once a month. It's a fixed date."

"And … what does he make you do?"

"Let me clear up one thing. No one makes me do anything. They list requests, I pick which ones I'm willing to grant. I'm not forced. I am nobody's sex slave."

"Got it, sorry. So, what does he request?"

"Do you really wanna know the details?"

"How about generalizations?" Freed decided, not sure if he really wanted to know graphic depictions of his father's debauchery.

"Restraints, paddling, flogging, he has a thing for wax play."

"Do you … jerk him off?"

"I don't need to."

"What do you mean?"

Laxus folded his arms. "If I tell you, you're green little head is gonna explode."

Freed arched an eyebrow.

Seeing that he still wanted to know, Laxus shrugged. "Your father is a special case. I'm not the means to an end. I'm a setup."

"What the hell does that mean?"

"Llewellyn is a masochist. Your mother—what's her name again?"

"Mother? Liberty."

"Right, I knew it was a weird name like yours. I feel like shit calling her your mother, so I'll use her name. Liberty hasn't got a sadistic bone in her body. She was actually the one who contacted me. I have no fucking clue how she heard about me, but trust me, I was shocked as hell to get propositioned by a woman for her husband."

"Mother!" Freed bellowed. "My mother … asked you … to do that for Father?"

"I never asked for details. I honestly don't wanna know the drama bullshit. However, it seems the issue with Llewellyn is one that led to … problems."

"Prob- …" Freed cut off sharply, and his face flinched with a memory. "Those rumors back in high school that Father was having an affair. Us kids never believed it, of course. I mean, it's Father! The guy's too busy for his own family sometimes, let alone having an affair on the side. The rumors never even went anywhere because Mother said she hired a private investigator and found out he was loyal."

"More like he was forced to be loyal after she hired a P.I. to tail him, then struck a deal with him not to hit up fetish clubs if she'd hire a professional to take care of his needs. She was willing to work with him on one condition: Llewellyn's dominant absolutely had to be male. That's where I came in. Llewellyn agreed to the deal, Liberty probably cleaned up any loose ends, no one had to know the truth, their marriage didn't have to crumble."

"So, you go to my house?" Freed asked incredulously.

"I get picked up in a car with blacked-out windows. I get that a lot, actually. I'm taken to an underground garage and led through some halls to a playroom."

"Playroom?" Freed asked sharply.

"Like sex play."

"There's nothing like that in my parents' house," he protested.

"Might not be their house. I honestly don't know. I go there, Llewellyn is waiting, and Liberty is usually in the room."

"Mother … watches?" Freed gawked.

"At first, I assumed she was a voyeur and liked that sort of thing. However, it became apparent that she was only there to make sure Llewellyn obeyed their rules. He is allowed only certain things. He can be restrained pretty much in any way he desires—and he's a creative guy—and he can be touched with inanimate objects. However, Liberty is a harridan at making sure I do not physically touch him. To be honest, it's the best setup out of all of my clients. I go, I beat him, I take the money, I leave. He's left aroused as hell, and that's when Liberty takes over. Llewellyn apparently can't get hard unless he's beaten into submission first. I take off, leave them to do whatever the hell they want, and that's it."

Freed stared down in shock. "They've been doing this for over four years?"

"Llewellyn Justine is one of my oldest and most steady clients."

"I was still in high school. You were in my house—maybe my house—when I was still living at home. I never saw you there."

"Of course not! I normally never meet anyone besides my client and maybe one trusted servant. Llewellyn is unique since his wife is in the room, too. Kids? Fuck no! I don't deal with kids. Had a client once who wanted to have his teenage daughter watch. I called off the deal. If they're underage, I'm outta there. I'm a sadist, not a pedophile."

"Out of curiosity: you said it's a fixed date. What day?"

"Second Tuesday of the month."

"What?" Freed yelled. "They said those were charity balls."

"Huh! I always wondered why she insisted on calling me Charity. I thought it was an inside joke."

"The joke was on us!" Freed shouted. "Lying to their own kids."

"Oh please! Like they could tell you the truth. What are they even supposed to tell you? Are you going to tell them about you, what sort of things you like? You do realize, if by some miracle I'm ever invited to a family dinner, your parents are going to recognize me in a heartbeat. They'll probably guess what we do together. Would you bring it up? Compare kinks with your father? Debate handcuffs to rope, paddles to belts, sounding to e-stim?"

"Oh fuck," Freed groaned, collapsing his head down into his hands.

"The other option is you pretend we're a happy, normal, totally-not-into-BDSM couple, your parents pretend like we're meeting for the first time, we all lie to one another, and your family sweeps the whole thing under the rug."

"That might be for the best," Freed grumbled. "Is there any way you can maybe not have my father as one of your clients?"

"Yeah, I could drop him. I've dropped many clients. I have no reason to do so, though, and no longer seeing Llewellyn after four years would be way too suspicious. It also wouldn't erase the fact that they know me. I wouldn't drop him, anyway."

"Why the hell not?" Freed screamed. "He's my father!"

"He's also one of the best clients I have. He's not a pervert, he has never propositioned me for sex, mostly because he wouldn't dare with his wife in the room, and he pays damn good."

"Laxus," Freed whined.

"You knew I do this," he sharply reminded. "Whether if it's your father, your brother, an uncle, who I hit shouldn't matter. It's not sexually appealing to me. Especially with Llewellyn and Liberty, I know I'm just the warm-up. I'm honestly a bit touched that she spoils him and accommodates him enough to get a professional sadist for him, rather than insisting he not get hit at all, or even worse, divorcing him just because he happens to be a masochist."

Laxus looked aside gruffly. He never, ever, in all the millions of worries he had when it came to him and Freed, thought that maybe Freed knew one of his clients, let alone is own father.

"You beat my father … while … while thinking about how to kill your own father," Freed said softly, and he suddenly screamed again, "Don't you see how fucked up that is to me?"

Laxus just stared at him. He had no clue what he could even say, besides facts. "I hit a lot of people's fathers. They pay me to do it. They call the shots, not me. I agree to what they want, but the thing with being a sadist is you have to stop when they say stop. Otherwise, it's just torture and abuse, and that's illegal. I don't torture. I'll torture the living shit out of my father when the time comes, but these men … I don't torture them. I beat them because they want it. I never do more than what they pay me to do."

"Laxus, this is not helping." Freed buried his face down into his hands as the emotions overflowed and drenched his eyes.

"It's not meant to help. I don't know if I can help you." He put a hand on Freed's shoulder. "I really like you, Freed. I do. But I'm not changing who I am just for you. I hate the sorts of people who change themselves to meet the expectations of others. You knew I did this to rich old men. Your father is in that category. You knew I do this sort of thing, and you said it was okay. If it's not okay, if this isn't going to work, then even if I drop your father as a client, it'll never fully work out between us. You'll always be thinking about your dad, what I do, and hating me for it."

"So is that it?" Freed asked scathingly. "Is this over?" He sniffled and shook his head in disbelief. This was supposed to be a wonderful night. Instead, it was a living nightmare.

Laxus hated seeing the tears gathering on his eyelids. It pained him deep inside, but he knew that giving in was not ever going to make this issue go away. If it was a problem now, it would always be a problem, no matter who his clients were.

"That's your call," Laxus said softly. "I don't hate you for being the son of a man I hit. Do you hate me for being the man who hits your father?"

Freed pulled at his green hair in anguish. "Hell if I know," he whispered. Then he suddenly glared up. "Did you ever jerk my father off?"

"I already told you, no," Laxus said firmly.

"Did he ever … ever … come while you were hitting him?"

"No. Liberty never lets it get that far."

"Oh God, my mother!" Freed groaned, flopping backward on his bed in surrender. "This is seriously the most fucked up thing I have ever learned about my family, and that's saying something. Literally fucked up!"

Laxus shouted at him, "I do not fuck clients."

"No, you just prepare him for my mother."

"That's right, I do. I hit him for about half an hour once a month, that way he and Liberty—"

"I don't want to know!" Freed screamed.

Laxus leaned back in his chair and scratched his head. Once, early on in this sort of career, his client was sloppy, the wife came home, and she went ballistic. Laxus simply left. He walked out with the client still handcuffed to the bed, plug in his ass, and let the woman rage however she wanted. He was not paid to be a bodyguard to these men. If they were sloppy, he was out of there.

Part of him nagged that this was the same sort of thing. He should walk out, get away from this place, escape before things turned explosive, and never return.

Then he looked at Freed, at the green hair splayed across the bed, love bites on his neck and chest, and those thin limbs taut with muscles shining pale through the robe that had split slightly apart. He heard soft snuffles, and Laxus' heart ached to know that this was so painful to the man he cared for so much, the first man he had ever made love to.

Instead of the instinct to leave a volatile situation, he instead stood up and walked over to the bed. He gently sat down, trying not to disturb the mattress too much. He looked uncertain what to do. His hand raised, but he stared at it, as if that hand had a mind of its own. The hand moved, the fingers rested on Freed's head, and still not fully sure what he was doing, Laxus began to pet Freed's head consolingly.

He had never done something like this before. Even as a child, when he found his mother crying about his father, he never tried to comfort her, because he had no clue how to help. Now, he felt like his body was acting on its own.

"Think of it this way," he said softly. "Your mother loves your father very much. Even I can tell that. She's spoiling him. She loves him enough to put up with the man he is. She's not trying to change him. She goes so far to help him find happiness in their relationship that she brings in professional help. It must be hard on her, knowing she can't do it all herself, knowing she could never fully please him on her own, and accepting that she can't give him what he needs. She admits her weakness, and she's willing to do anything—anything at all—to make him happy. I'm sure she realizes the consequences; I make sure all of my clients do. If it's discovered that they hire a stripper for BDSM play, their social and political life is over." He stroked down the soft hair. "Don't make this harder on your parents. Don't think badly of them. Your mother loves your father very much, and he is lucky as hell to have a woman like her. Frankly, I feel a bit honored that, instead of helping some fat bastard get his kicks behind his wife's back, for the Justines I'm helping a husband and wife stay together and keep being happy in their marriage. That makes them unique, and it makes me damn respectful of your mother. She's a hell of a lady. So don't hate your father for being a masochist, and don't hate your mother for trying to give him what he needs."

"I'll … try," he whispered. "Have you ever kissed my father?"

"No. I don't kiss clients, plus your mother has a no-physical-touching clause in her contract with me. That includes with my lips."

"Have you ever … y'know … stayed around and watched them?"

Laxus sneered. "Oh God no! The most I've seen is them hugging one another."

"So it's … it's really nothing more than a contract to you, huh?"

Laxus gave a shrug. "They're a client. I have many. I have no emotional attachment to any of my clients. Some I like more than others simply because they're polite and not perverted. Your parents are probably my second favorite."

Freed peeked out the side of his eyes and managed to smirk. "Only second?"

Laxus sighed silently in relief to see him smile again. "I've got one client who sends me home with not only the money we agree upon, but a bottle of Blue Label and a voucher for a free dinner at the restaurant his company owns, and I can drink all the booze I want on the ride to his place and the ride back home. He's my favorite. Free food and all-you-can-drink booze: total win! Your parents aren't half bad, though. They pick me up in a limo with an acupressure specialist riding along in the back who does this massage thing on my wrist that makes me totally not sick on the whole ride there. It's a pretty sweet deal."

"Maybe I should learn acupressure for you," Freed teased. "I want to spoil my boyfriend."

Laxus' mouth dropped, shocked to hear him so accepting. "You … you still want to be boyfriends?"

Freed's face looked agonized. "I really don't want to lose you."

Impulsively, Laxus leaned down over Freed and kissed him hard. Lithe hands threaded up Laxus' muscular neck and tickled the back of his blond hair, sending shivers through his spine and straight down to his groin.

"You look like your mother, you know," he said between kisses.

"Are you saying I look feminine?" Freed teased, leaning his chin up as Laxus nibbled down his throat.

"Nope, just the hair and your eyes. She's a nice looking lady, and you've got all the best parts of her. But this?" He stroked where the robe had split open and showed off a penis quickly rising to attention. "This part here? This is all unique. I may have seen lots of cocks, but none as amazing as this. You should be proud of this pecker and let me admire it."

Freed cried out as Laxus stroked down hard.

"And your voice, too. Sexy as fuck. I love hearing all the noises I can get you to make."

"Nnnngh … so good," Freed whimpered, fisting up his sheets already as Laxus stroked him. "Ahhhhn!"

"You're getting wet from just this much. Horny bastard. You can't get enough, can you?" he teased, and Laxus lightly bit Freed's nipple. A sharp cry shuddered out as Freed's spine arched up. "Damn, you're already making me hard again, you sexy little slut."

"Laxus?" Freed moaned, writhing as those broad hands caressed him in all the ways he loved. "Maybe … can we … again?"

"Heh! Do you want another go?"

"I want to know you're mine."

"Only yours," Laxus whispered, kissing Freed as he grew harder. "Only you."


When Loke came in, the lights were out except for a lamp left on by his bed so he could see. It was the same arrangement he usually had with Freed, a desk lamp left on so he was not blind and fumbling in the dark. In the shadows, he saw that massive blond with Freed curled up on his chest. Loke was not gay, but even he thought it was a sweet scene.

Grinning mischievously, he pulled out his cellphone. He wanted to show Freed how cute he was. He was sure Freed would love a picture to commemorate this night, too. He tilted the lamp just a little to light up the two, made sure the camera flash was off so he would not startle them, and snapped a picture.

"I want a copy," came a deep murmur.

Loke jolted, shocked Laxus was awake, but then he grinned. "I'll send it to your phone in the morning. Is he okay?"

"Amazing," Laxus muttered, and immediately he was back to sleep.

"Lucky guy," Loke said with a smirk, and he silently went to his bed.

Next Chapter: The Justines

Chapter Text

Laxus stood on a street corner, the same spot he always stood at this time on this particular day.

As punctual as a Timex, a limousine pulled up, and the driver stepped out.

"Mister Thor," he greeted, and he opened the car door, allowing Laxus to climb in. Flute music played in the limo, and there was an elderly lady with powder-pink hair in the backseat.

"Nice to see you again, Mister Thor," she greeted. "A drink first, or your arm?"

"Not thirsty, Porlyusica," he grumbled, and he handed his arm over to her, palm up. She began to massage his wrist as the driver took off. Then she reached up and rubbed a spot just behind his ear.

"You're tense," she commented.

"It's been a rough week," he said sullenly.

"Well, try not to inconvenience the Justines."

Laxus said nothing as he rode along in the limo with blacked-out windows.

After a bit of a drive, the car stopped, and the driver opened the door. A butler stood waiting, dressed primly, face gaunt and serious. Silently, he led Laxus through an underground parking garage, into an elevator, and through some halls. Laxus walked behind, but when they came to the door which the butler held open, Laxus hesitated.

'It means nothing. Freed knows it means nothing. He's fine with this. It's all fine. Just because it's his father, Freed knows it means nothing. He's just a client. It doesn't matter who he is.'

"Sir?" the butler asked quietly.

Laxus jolted only a little before striding through the door. It shut and locked behind him.

Inside were two people, a husband and wife. The man had brown hair and wore glasses. Laxus had to admit, he saw the similarity between this man and Freed's sister, Evergreen. The woman was thin with flowing green hair. Seriously, how could he have not realized it was the same shade as Freed's hair? He just never really looked at clients, and especially not at Liberty Justine, since she was not a person he worked on. She was just a spectator.

This time, however, Llewellyn was not already naked. Both husband and wife wore nice clothes, something tailor-made and probably a classy brand, although Laxus hardly cared about that sort of thing. They also stood a bit apart from one another.

Liberty spoke with a chime-like voice. "Thor, sorry for making you come all the way here, but we had no clue how to contact you besides returning to that … club." She tried to make it not sound distasteful, she really did. She totally failed. "We regret to inform you that your services are no longer required."

It was the most formal dismissal he had ever received, and Laxus' mouth dropped. "What?"

"I know, you've been very indulgent with our … unique arrangement," she said stiffly. "However, this will no longer be an issue. Llewellyn and I are getting a divorce."

"Divorce?" he asked in shock. Normally, he would have just said "Oh," and demanded some sort of payment for wasting his time. Now, knowing who these two were, he was worried. Freed thought the world of his parents—his reaction to the news about his father showed just how much he thought they were a perfect, happy family. He was going to be devastated.

Llewellyn cleared his throat and explained, "You've been instrumental in keeping us together for the past four years. However, now that our youngest child has gone off to college, it's time for Liberty and I to stop fooling ourselves. Even with this arrangement, it just won't work."

"We do sincerely appreciate your … indulgence," she said, again picking her words carefully. "We will of course pay you for the full amount today, and a severance pay for breaking our contract with you without warning. If there are any … hidden fees … hush money … we will pay that as well."

"I don't snitch on clients," Laxus told her. "You two have been good to me. Want me to promise not to rat on you? Toss in a bottle of Blue Label and we'll call it even."

"Of course," she smiled. "It's nice to know that some men are easy to please."

Oh, that wasn't bitter or anything!

"So," Laxus said awkwardly, "I know it's none of my damn business but … why the sudden change? Do you need it more often? Is that it? I'm willing to negotiate."

"That's partly the problem," Llewellyn admitted, eying his wife hesitantly.

Liberty coldly replied to her husband, "I thought if it was a man, you'd behave. Obviously, that was a false assumption." She bristled and looked over to Laxus. "Be honest, Thor: if I hadn't been in this room every time, would you have … touched him?"

Laxus stared at her stoically. "I do what I'm paid to do, ma'am, so long as it's something I agree to do."

"Then you would have?"

"If there's a restriction in the contract I signed—which there is, in this case—then no, I wouldn't. I don't break my contracts."

"You're an honest man." She glared over scathingly to Llewellyn. "Better than my husband." She walked past them. "If you'll excuse me, I must check with the kitchen staff to procure a bottle of Blue Label. Thor, consider your contract still in effect until you leave this house."

"Yes, ma'am," he said, respectfully moving out of her way as she stormed through the entryway. The butler shut the door again on the two men. "Spitfire of a wife you've got there, Mister Justine."

"Frankly, I'm glad it'll soon be ex-wife." Llewellyn let out a long sigh. "It's been hell living with her all these years. Do you like cigars?"

"Love 'em," Laxus said, following the man over to a desk. He opened the drawer and pulled out a sterling silver container lined with Cuban cigars. Llewellyn sniffed one, cut the end, lit it, and handed it to Laxus.

"You never asked about how we got into this situation."

"It wasn't my place to question," Laxus admitted. "I normally don't care."

"Smart man," Llewellyn said, puffing on his own cigar. "Getting between a man and his wife is dangerous. You managed with professionalism that surprised both of us, given your young age. Hell, you're not much older than my eldest son."

Laxus froze and looked up sharply.

"This will be hard to break to the children," he sighed regretfully. "It'll be the worst Christmas ever, but there's no point in keeping up the façade." He glanced over. "How about you? Doing anything for the holidays?"

"Not sure," Laxus muttered. He wondered if coming with Freed was a good idea after all. It would be awkward as hell no matter what happened with this rich family.

"You know," Llewellyn said quietly, sounding hesitant, "once the paperwork is finalized, I won't be under Liberty's thumb."

He rubbed his hand up Laxus' arm. The blond gawked at him. It was the first time Llewellyn had ever actually touched him in the four years he had known the Justines.

"Sir," Laxus said stiffly, "Liberty said my contract is still in effect until I leave this house."

"Yes, which says that you are not allowed to physically touch me. She never wrote in that contract that I was not allowed to touch you. I deal with contracts every day, Thor. I know damn well how to manipulate one." His hand stroked over Laxus hair, down the back of his neck, and across the broad shoulders. "I've wanted to touch you for so long. You've been amazing. Simply enthralling. I'm sure you hear this all the time, but … I often fantasize about you. I used to sneak out and go to that club where you dance."

Laxus jolted at that piece of news. "You go to the South Pole Club?"

"I haven't been there in months, not since I once saw my son go into that club. I knew he was gay, but … strippers! I guess he really does take after me," Llewellyn laughed, but Laxus felt his stomach twist. "Tell me, what's the usual frequency of your clients?"

"It varies vastly," Laxus said cautiously, not liking where this was going.

"The most frequent?" he asked eagerly.

"I had one a while back who wanted it weekly."

"That's not enough." Llewellyn's hand went down to Laxus' thigh and rubbed up slowly. "I want you every day, exclusively."

Laxus pushed Llewellyn's hand away with the edge of the cigar, making sure not to touch him but also not to burn him. "I can't do that, sir."

"I'll pay you twice whatever you make at that club, and all of your other clients combined." Llewellyn grinned with a bit of haughtiness. "I'm a very wealthy man. I can match any price. Tell me how much they pay you, and I'll pay double, even triple."

Laxus cringed. "Sir…"

"I'll handle any debts, any legal issues. And money to your family, if that's the trouble."

"I'm in a relationship," Laxus blurted out. "I can't be exclusively yours."

"Well, obviously it's not a serious one if you're still doing this sort of work."

Laxus' eyes glared. "Excuse me?" he sneered quietly.

"I don't mean that badly."

"You're questioning my devotion to the man I love. I don't see how that is anything but an insult."

"Oh, then you are gay? I was never sure, to be honest."

Laxus just glared at him.

"You're truly incredible, Thor. You're the best dominant I have ever had." His hand stroked through the blond hair again, fascinated by the shine. "I have touched myself while thinking about you for the past four years. Once a month wasn't enough. I asked Liberty to increase it, but she only wanted to make love once a month. Frankly, half the time we … didn't after you left. She treated these days as just a burden, a nuptial requirement. Forgive me, Thor," he said, bowing his head, "but I sought out someone else. I desperately needed something more. He just wasn't as good as you. Even though he would touch me, even bang me, it wasn't you."

"Bang you?" Laxus asked. "I guess that's why Liberty got mad, huh?"

"Yes, she hired a private investigator and caught on … again," he said, rolling his eyes.

Laxus was reminded that he was brought in to save their marriage after Llewellyn had been caught in fetish clubs.

"Thus, the divorce," he said lightly with a guilty but playful shrug.

"I really can't blame her," Laxus sneered.

"Well, what else is a man supposed to do when his wife no longer wants to give him pleasure? She humored me, but I need someone who actually wants it, not just does it because it keeps her husband tamed. I need someone who wants me, wants to dominate me, scold me, humiliate me … and that's just not Liberty."

His fingers touched Laxus' lightning bolt shaped scar, but the blond pulled back before those fingers could stroke down his cheek.

"She's a dear woman, don't get me wrong," he added wholeheartedly. "We had fifteen wonderful years together. This … need … requirement … it began shortly after my youngest was born. I managed to ignore it for a few years, then I tried to ease Liberty into it, but when it became obvious that she had no desire whatsoever to do what I needed, we stopped having sex. I couldn't get hard even if she was in the mood, since she would never do the things I needed to find arousal. Rather than pills or sex therapy, we just decided to abstain, or so we told one another. We slept in separate rooms, which is common enough. Meanwhile, I went to places where I knew I could get what I craved."

His hand raced up Laxus' thigh again. Laxus almost slapped it away, but his contract forbade physical touching. He cringed as those fingers reached his groin and groped. Lots of men in the strip club had felt him there, but this time it was worse. This was Freed's father! It made the touches more disgusting, and Laxus looked aside with sickness, straining to hold himself back from lashing out.

"After ten years, I got sloppy, she grew suspicious, I got caught…" Llewellyn gave a wide shrug. "The rest is my world with you, four years of incredible bliss, a life-shattering shift from wanting women to suddenly desiring a man." His hand stroked the crotch, and his eyebrows drooped in disappointment. "Nothing?"

"It's not easy to get me aroused," Laxus said stolidly, not looking at his face.

"I want to know how. I want to feel it!" His other hand went through Laxus' hair some more. "Your hair is much softer than I imagined. But here…" He stroked persistently through the leather pants. "I want to feel how hard you can get. I want to be the one to make you hard."

Laxus cringed but did not pull back. "Sir."

"Please, Thor," he begged, clinging desperately onto the bulky biceps. "I need someone like you, someone who can really make me aroused. I'll cater to everything you could ever want. Money, cars, a house, or you can live with me, together, so that every night you can dominate me. Will that make you hard?" he asked hopefully. "Are you like me? Can you only get hard when you're punishing me?" Both hands caressed Laxus' cheeks, and he began to lean in, breathing fast with arousal. "God, I want you to punish me."

Laxus yanked his head aside. "Don't you dare kiss me!"

"Of course not. I'll obey anything you say," he smiled with eagerness. "Anything you want of me, or want to deny me. Just tell me what to do," he moaned sensually.

"Stop petting my goddamn hair," he growled.

"Of course." His hand pulled away. "I can be obedient. I can give you anything. I will spoil you to my dying day, and even after I'm gone, you won't want for money." He rubbed his cheek against Laxus' arm. "Think about it. No more dancing. No more perverted clients. Just you and me."

"I told you, I have someone."

"Then leave him. I'll even provide him with funds."

"You mean you'd buy him off," Laxus sneered.

Llewellyn chuckled slyly. "I bet for enough money, he would leave us alone. You'll see how fickle that other person is." He took hold of Laxus' cheek. "He doesn't love you like I do. Four years, Thor! That's how long I've loved you. He could never spoil you like I can." Slowly, he leaned in closer, eyes lowering, lips trembling. "I want to indulge you, like you've indulged me all these years. Please let me … master."

Laxus rose up in a flash and punched Llewellyn across the face, knocking him to the ground. He glared down with hard eyes and seethed, "Don't you ever fucking call me that."

He turned and strode out of the room. Just then, Liberty was coming up with the butler. She saw her husband on the floor holding a bleeding nose.

"What … what's going on here?" she cried out.

"Thor!" Llewellyn called out in misery. "Please, master."

Laxus spun around. "I said don't! I said don't kiss me, you tried anyway. I said don't call me master, and you did it anyway! What sort of submissive are you?"

"I'll obey! I will! Please," he cried out, crawling on the floor.

"Fuck you. You say you're in love? You love Thor. I am not Thor!" he bellowed. "I have my own life and a man I love. I don't care how much money you give me, you would still be nothing more than a client, and I have never—ever—fucked a client. If you think something as stupid as money could bribe my boyfriend, you obviously have forgotten what real love is truly like." He then looked over to Liberty. "Sorry, ma'am. I broke our contract. I touched him."

"What?" Liberty asked, aghast.

"Yeah, my fist accidentally touched his cheek," he smirked wryly. "Forget your damn severance pay. Just pay for my time here and gimme the booze. I need the booze now," he growled.

"No, take the whole amount. Bas," she said to the butler, and the diligent man whipped out a money clip to count out the cash. "Whatever my idiot husband said, please try to forget it."

"I plan to." He snatched away the wad of money and the box containing the high-end scotch whiskey. He began to walk away, but he suddenly paused and looked back around. "About Christmas … don't tell Freed about the divorce then. He's really looking forward to spending the holiday as a nice normal family."

Liberty gasped, and Llewellyn rose to his feet with a stern glare.

"How do you know that name?" the man asked, none of the whimpering from earlier in his voice.

Laxus saw now the cutthroat businessman that Mister Llewellyn Justine had grown up to become. "I told you, I'm in a serious relationship. It's with a young man by the name of Freed Justine."

Liberty's hand flew up to her mouth. "You … and our son?"

"Did you hurt my boy?" Llewellyn growled.

"I've never hurt him beyond what he wants," Laxus swore. "I treat him gently, far more gently than I've ever treated you or anyone else. He's a good kid, and he's very precious to me."

Liberty looked pale. "My son … and a stripper?"

Laxus looked at her earnestly. "I swear, I didn't know he was your son before I fucked him."

Liberty's eyes began to roll back, and she sank faintly. The butler rushed forward to catch her.

Laxus waved behind his back as he walked away. "No need to escort me; I know the way out. Oh, and don't say anything about this to Freed on Christmas, either. I want him to have a good time while he's at home. If he ends up having a shitty Christmas holiday, I'll beat you, and not in a way to make you aroused. See ya."

He kept walking and entered the elevator alone.

Next Chapter: Compromises

Chapter Text

It was a typical college Tuesday at Magnolia University. Freed was busy typing a report while Loke played Skyrim with his headset on to not bother his roommate. Suddenly, there was a knock on the door.

"You get it," Loke said in distraction. "I'm busy fighting a Dragon Priest. Aaaargh, dammit!"

Freed sighed as he rose stiffly from his chair. "How did you get addicted to this game?"

"My friend Natsu gave it to me."

"Natsu? Do I know him?"

"Dunno. Maybe not. Now quiet, I'm fighting."

Freed shrugged and walked forward. Just as the fist had begun to knock again, Freed opened the door to see a giant blond standing on the threshold.

"Laxus!" he cried out.

Laxus collapsed into his arms. "I need you," he whispered wearily.

"What the hell happened?" He then noticed Laxus' knuckles were bruised. "Were you in a fight?"

"Need you," he sighed.

Freed dragged him inside. "Loke, maybe you should go."

"Told you, busy," he said, slamming his control keys hard and focused on the game. "Unless you two start humping each other's asses, I'm not leaving until this damn Dragon Priest is dead."

Laxus collapsed onto the bed, staring straight up. Freed sat beside him and stroked his hair.

"What happened? What can I do?"

"Just touch me," Laxus said weakly. "Just keep touching me."

Freed blushed at the request. "Can it be like this?"

"Yes. My hair, my cheeks, my neck, my shoulders, my arm, and my thigh. Where he touched me, I want you to touch."

"Laxus," Freed whispered in dread. "Who hurt you?"

"Didn't hurt me," he said in a mumble. "I hurt him, though. I have never punched a client. I've come across some sick motherfuckers, but I've never punched one."

Loke suddenly laughed. "I did that when I worked at that lamp store, socked a customer right in the face when he started hitting on me and pinched my butt. What part of 'I'm not gay' don't people get?"

Freed glared over, but he ignored Loke for now.

"Freed…"

He stroked through Laxus' hair with questioning eyes.

"Call me … that."

Freed looked sharply over to Loke. His headphones were on, and he was growling at the game. Still, Freed leaned down into Laxus' ear to whisper, "Master."

Laxus smiled and sighed in relief. "Yours alone. Only you can call me that."

Freed's expression went mournful as he heard the slight shake in Laxus' words. "Loke," he said levelly and firmly. "As soon as it's convenient … leave."

Loke took his eyes off the game for just a moment and saw the stern look in Freed's gaze. "Got it," he nodded. He immediately shut down the game and turned it off. "It's just a game, after all." He yanked his coat on and stepped out. "See ya. Hope everything's okay. Call me if you need me, especially if you need to kick someone's ass." He shut the door firmly behind him.

Laxus chuckled softly. "He really is a good roomie."

Freed's eyes were hard with seriousness. "Laxus, what the hell happened?"

"Got propositioned," he said dismissively. "It happens from time to time, but … but this time … he made me realize something. If it was the other way around and you were the one going off to other men, I'd be insanely jealous. I'd always worry. What if one wanted to take it too far?"

Freed's eyes narrowed. "Is that what happened today?" he shouted. "Did some asshole … molest you?"

"I can take care of myself," Laxus assured him. "That man just made me realize … how can I claim to be in a serious relationship when I'm still working like this?"

Freed cringed slightly, terrified that Laxus was going to break up with him. "People do. You hear stories about strippers that have serious relationships, or they're even married, and … and it's fine, so long as both understand, and … and … I understand!"

Laxus' eyes closed in self-loathing. "I'm more than just a strip dancer. I take clients on the side. I might not feel anything emotionally toward them but … they do." He sneered in disgust. "They do! How can I say I'm in a serious, monogamous, committed relationship when I'm nothing more than a glorified prostitute?"

"You're not!" yelled Freed.

"Do you know what the definition of a prostitute even is?" Laxus shouted back. "You could probably look it up in one of these fancy college books of yours. It's a person who engages in sexual activity for payment. Textbook definition, and that is precisely what I do. I might sugarcoat it by calling them clients and saying I'm a professional dominant and sadist, but what it boils down to is I perform sexual acts on those goddamn rich-as-fuck bastards, I restrain them, I beat their asses, I do all sorts of shit to them, I even jerk some of them off, and they give me a shitload of money in return for a night of kinky pleasure. I'm a fucking prostitute. A handsome, brilliant heir to a fortune like you shouldn't have a damn prostitute as a boyfriend."

"No!" Freed cried out. "It's fine with me, really. Whatever you are, whatever you do, I love you. I don't care about the rest."

Laxus peered up into Freed's face with sad eyes. "I can't keep doing this to you."

Freed's breathing went erratic. "Can't … keep doing what?" No, I'm not going to cry! I can't cry! This can't be happening!

"Everything," Laxus sighed with heavy sadness. "Dancing at the club, taking clients. Everything. This isn't fair to you."

Freed's heart raced in a panic. "I told you, I'm fine with it. Laxus, please—"

"No, you're not," Laxus said with a regretful smile at such stubbornness. "You never liked it. You kept quiet, but I could always tell, you didn't like it."

"No! Laxus—"

"I'm giving them up," he said right over Freed's protests.

Freed jolted up in shock. "Wh-what? Them?" Did I hear that right? Them? Not me? He's not giving me up? Them who?

"All the clients. The South Pole Club, too. I called them all up, canceled all contracts. I didn't even bother with a two-week notice. I told Jellal to go fuck himself and that I quit." Those electric blue eyes looked up into Freed's astonished face. "I don't want you to have a stripper and a prostitute as a boyfriend. I don't want to do something that makes you sad. Those bastards will need their Christmas fix without the Thunder God. I don't want to do it anymore. I don't need any of it." He grabbed Freed and squeezed him tightly down into his chest. The green-haired man was still in shock. "This is all I need," Laxus whispered into his ear, "and I don't want to lose you. I don't want you to get so frustrated with my job, you leave me. I don't want you to walk out, or feel like you're second to anyone else. I don't want you to regret having me around. And I never, ever again want some bastard to call me master without my permission, or offer me a fortune to have sex with him, or say I can't be in a truly serious relationship if I still hire myself out as a professional sadist." He seethed in loathing. "No goddamn motherfucking elitist prick will ever tell me that again!"

Hearing this banished Freed's dread, but he felt guilty that Laxus was giving up something just for his sake. "But … you need it," he said softly. "You're a sadist. You … you need … more than I can give you."

"Then not this way. If I really do need to take it that far, it'll be something consensual for both of us, not clients who hire me for a night." Laxus held Freed's cheeks with both of his hands. "I'm never going to do something that makes you sad again."

Freed sputtered, unable to hold back the happiness any longer. "Laxus!"

"Is that okay?" he asked.

"Mmh!" he nodded firmly.

"You never liked it, did you?"

Freed sniffled with joy. "Can't say I did," he admitted through tears.

"Don't ever suffer silently. If I make you suffer at all, I want it to be the type that makes you moan and makes me hard, not the type where you bury your heart and I feel like vomiting with guilt."

"Got it." He wiped clear his eyes. "That client must have really given you hell, huh?"

"Probably one of the biggest shocks of my life," he admitted. "I've hit plenty of clients, but rarely out of anger."

"Well, I'm glad. Sucks for the guy, though. I bet you broke his jaw."

"I might've broken his nose," he admitted in a grumble. "There's one problem. I'm now out of a job."

Freed teased lightly, "Maybe you should take up Mira's suggestion about dancing for the ballet."

"Oh, shut the hell up!" Laxus laughed and began to tickle Freed as punishment. The green-haired man cackled with uncontrollable laughs and fell back onto the bed. Laxus kept tickling him, loving the sound of that laugh and seeing that smile. All the darkness in his heart melted away with this man's blushing cheeks and cackles of laughter.

"I give, I give," Freed cried out, shielding his ribs from those tickling fingers. "Stop! Mercy! Écriture!"

Only then did Laxus stop, and he smiled down at the residual giggles still shaking Freed's chest.

"God, I love you!"

Freed's laugh froze, and he looked up in amazement. It was the first time Laxus had ever directly told him that.

"But I'm serious, I'm out of a job now. I feel like shit for asking this, but … I'll need you to support me for a while, just until I can find work."

"That's fine," Freed insisted, still stunned by the love confession.

"It's hell finding any job in this sucky economy, especially since I don't have a college degree."

"Say that again," Freed said in a total daze.

Laxus arched an eyebrow. "What, that I didn't go to college?"

"Before that."

"You need to support me?"

"No, before."

Laxus arched up an eyebrow. "Huh?"

"You … you said … you love me."

"Well, yeah," he shrugged. "Haven't I said it before?"

Freed shook his head, looking ready to cry in happiness.

"Sure I have," he grinned, and he softly sang. "In a gadda da vida, honey. Don't you know that I love you?"

"That doesn't count. It's singing song lyrics."

Laxus stroked through the green hair. "You wanna hear me say it directly, huh?"

He nodded timidly.

Laxus leaned in close and let his lips flutter over that trembling mouth. "Je t'aime."

Freed gasped. "French!"

"You like French, right? And Japanese?" He leaned into Freed's ear and softly whispered, "Aishiteru."

Freed shuddered at the warm air tickling his skin.

"I'll sing it, I'll shout it, I'll say it in any language you want. I love you." He leaned over and kissed Freed's lips. "I love you," he breathed softly, and kissed him again, letting his lips linger before pulling up with a pop. "But don't expect me to say it too often."

Freed chuckled in happiness and shook his head. He liked the idea that Laxus would only tell him those words when he really felt compelled to confess it.

Laxus collapsed onto the bed, and Freed curled up on his chest. "Can I stay for a bit, or are you busy with homework?"

"The report isn't due until Friday," Freed said in a hum.

"I'm gonna lose my apartment if I can't find a job. I doubt I can crash here."

"No. Students only."

"Figures," he grumbled. "Maybe I should go back to school. Not sure I'd fit in with the Freshman class, though. Not sure if I remember a damn thing from high school, either."

"There's … a club," Freed said softly.

"What, for older students?"

"I mean a job. A … a job at a club. A fetish club. I was browsing Craigslist for jobs for Loke and came across an ad for them. They're looking for someone trained in whipping techniques to work there. It's regulated, and I can be there to watch you. I … m-m-might like … watching you work, seeing you really go all out. At least then, it's in a public area, and … and I can say if it's too much for me."

Laxus stared over in shock. He really did love this man! "Are you sure?"

"You're still going to need it, right? You're a … a sadist. And yeah, I'm a masochist, but what I can handle … it isn't at the level you need."

"I'm willing to give it up. I can adjust."

"You once said that you hate the sorts of people who change themselves to meet the expectations of others. I don't want you to change, but … but I don't like being left out. I want more of a say in who you do this to. And no jerking men off. No physical touching. A whip, though, or a paddle … that's fine. That's not touching them."

Laxus was amazed that this was practically the exact same conditions Freed's mother had laid out while compromising with Llewellyn's need to be dominated. He really was a lot like Liberty. "That'd work perfectly. We'll give it a shot. If you don't like it, you tell me right away."

Freed nodded eagerly.

"I'm serious," Laxus said sternly. "If at any time it's not okay, you let me know. I don't ever want you to feel like I'm betraying your trust." He wondered how painful it must have been for Liberty when she found out her husband had been sneaking out behind her back. "I won't do anything you don't feel comfortable with, and from now on, if I use bondage on anyone other than you, you'll know about it. You can watch, or you can even be my assistant."

Freed jolted up with massive eyes. "As-ass-assistant?"

"That's a horrible word to stutter over, y'know."

"I can't do those sorts of things."

"No, but you'd be something like my nurse. If I want to switch from a flogger to a paddle, I call for Nurse Freed. Maybe I'll force you to dress up in a sexy nurse outfit, humiliate the hell out of you." Laxus began to smirk. "Actually, I like the sound of that. Mini skirt, high heels, parade you around as my sexy nurse and watch you blush in shame."

Freed thought about it too, how horribly embarrassing it would be to dress in women's clothing. "L-Laxus," he whimpered.

"Ya like it?"

"M-maybe."

"Of course you do." He caressed the flushed cheeks. "I'll beat others, but I'll only touch you from now on," he swore. "First … I want you to touch me everywhere he did."

Freed sat up and gazed down at the blond. "Just tell me where, master."

Laxus put a warm hand on the top of the green head. "Everywhere."

Freed's eyes narrowed. "He touched you everywhere?"

"No," Laxus chuckled, amused by that jealousy. "I want you to touch every part of me, every single inch of my body: my toes, my knees, my armpits … inside."

Freed's mouth dropped. "In- … inside?"

"Is that okay?"

Freed tried to talk, but his throat would not work.

"Everywhere," Laxus said sensually. "I want to be able to tell anyone else that the only place they can touch me is wherever you haven't, and so I want you to touch me absolutely everywhere. Every fucking place on my body."

Freed nodded in consent. "If it pleases you, master."

Laxus sighed with relieved happiness. "You please me. Only you. From now on," he swore, stroking Freed's cheek. "Only you!"

"But not here."

Laxus jolted at the demand. "Huh?"

"Not here," Freed insisted again. "I … I don't want to hold back. I wanna lose myself in it. I want it to be just us, no one else listening in."

Laxus grinned. "Hotel?"

"There's one near the campus. We can walk there."

"Bring all of your supplies. Everything."

Freed nodded and yanked out the box where he had been collecting goodies.

Next Chapter: "Everywhere, Everything"



Fan Art by Infinite-atmosphere and posted on AskFraxus blog

Chapter Text

Freed and Laxus stepped into a hotel room. Laxus glanced around the room. It was small, cheap, something close to the campus and probably meant for visiting guest speakers or parents of students wanting to visit their children. Laxus doubted that the walls were thick, but he equally doubted that the hotel had more than a dozen people. At least Freed requested a top-floor room. There was even less chance of someone being up here.

"Get yourself ready," he ordered.

Freed made a small gasp, but he nodded. "R-right." He set a satchel down with the things he brought. It was not a lot, but he had the basics, including some suppositories to clean himself inside. He blushed as he took those and scrambled off to the restroom. He rested his hands on the sink and lowered his head to calm himself. Freed wondered if he would ever stop feeling his heart race like this just at the thought of having sex with Laxus. He already felt hard just anticipating it.

He raised his face and looked in the mirror. 'What does Laxus see in me? Why would someone so amazing give up his entire livelihood just for a guy like me?'

In the main room, Laxus walked over to the window and stared out at the city. He let out a deep breath and watched it fog the icy, wintry window. Outside, the campus spread out like a miniature city of its own, the leaves all gone from the trees, the sky overhead gray and threatening snow, while students rushed to classes, preparing for winter finals. He closed his eyes on the world and focused inward. He needed to psych himself up. He had a hard day, but this was time to let everything go. To let it all fade.

To be the Thunder God again!

"Master?"

He turned around sharply and saw Freed already naked, kneeling on the ground, with his head down in submissive position. It made his heart race just seeing that, with the green hair draping down to the floor.

Laxus closed the curtains, shutting out the world of wintry chill, cram studying, lost jobs, crazy clients, fucked up families, all the shit that was out there in that place called the real world. Here in this room was something far more real: him as master, Freed as slave. Fantasy play? Hardly! This was far more real than anything else in his life. These feelings, this desire, the bonds between them, were all real. His life as a dancer, as a sadist-for-hire, and the sculpted grounds of the university: that was fake. That was playing a role: the good son, the perfect student, the hardhearted stripper, the professional Dom. Just roles. This connection between him and Freed was more real than any of that.

"Are you ready?" he asked in a low, sensual tone.

That voice shot through Freed and straight down to his groin. "Ah … yes, master."

Laxus walked over to the bag of goodies, searching for something good to use. He felt something strange and pulled it out. In his hands was a collar. He held it by the metal buckle and eyed the black leather dangling down, then he looked sharply over to Freed.

"What's this?"

Freed glanced up and saw it. His face suddenly went pale. Shit! He had toss everything into the bag without looking. That including some things Laxus did not yet know about. "Ah, um, I…" He cringed down and whispered, "I bought it."

"On your own?"

Freed chewed his lower lip. "Is that bad?"

"No," Laxus said quietly in amusement. He looked from the leather strap and then down to Freed again. "You want to be collared, huh?"

"I thought … maybe … sometime."

Laxus walked back over to where Freed was knelt. His green head lowered deeper, not daring even to look at Laxus' shoes. Still, he heard them stop right in front of him, and he crouched down, wondering if he would get punished.

"Do you know what happens when you get collared?"

Freed jolted and opened his eyes, looking up in confusion. "What … happens?"

Laxus' blue eyes sparked with desire. "It's more than just a piece of material wrapped around your neck. It means a lot more than that."

"Y-yeah. It's…" Freed gulped hard and steadily gazed up at him. "…ownership."

"That's right," he whispered gently.

Laxus knelt in front of Freed. Immediately, the green head dropped again, and his breathing quickened. His heart was racing with both fear and need, a deep desire to be accepted and wanted. Laxus glanced between the collar and Freed. His brow was tight, and he nervously licked his lips.

"Does this mean … you want me?" Laxus asked cautiously, and he pointed out, "You bought it yourself."

Freed wanted to scream his answer and tell the whole world. Did he want Laxus? Oh God, yes! Fucking hell, yes! With every fiber of his being, he wanted this man! Instead, a weak wisp of air managed to escape his clenched throat, and a single syllable eked out. "…Yes."

A smile came to Laxus' lips, but he forced it aside. He needed to stay in control. It would not do to show his slave how happy he was, not yet at least. "Head up."

Freed obediently raised his face. He had wondered how Laxus might look. Giddy would not suit him, so when he saw sharp eyes and a delving gaze, it sent a shiver through Freed. Those were eyes that said they wanted to claim a soul, and Freed was willing to give his over to this thunder god.

Laxus held the collar in front of Freed's face, so close that the man's turquoise eyes crossed slightly as he looked at the strip of leather. "If I put this on you, then this collar never goes on another neck. Only your neck, and only I can put it on you."

"I know."

"It's something exclusive."

He gulped and nodded. "I … I know."

"Do you want that?"

Freed's eyes lowered humbly. "Only if—"

"Do you want that?" Laxus asked louder.

Freed moaned faintly at the sheer dominance in that voice. He shivered at being questioned by this god amongst men. How could he dare want something exclusive with a man like Laxus? Yet still … if he could be that greedy…

He looked up firmly and answered clearly, "Yes."

This time, Laxus could not hold back his smile. He glanced aside and laughed slightly as he felt his cheeks growing hot. "I wasn't sure."

Freed's mouth dropped. "Huh?"

"I wanted to buy you one. Damn brat. Beat me to it."

His eyes gleamed. "R-really? You wanted … this?"

"Heh, yeah," Laxus reticently confessed.

Those thick fingers stroked through the long, green hair. Freed relaxed and smiled at the gentle petting. Laxus wanted him! He felt pure happiness at hearing that. Then suddenly, Laxus grabbed Freed's hair and yanked his head back. Lightning flashed in those electric blue eyes.

"Don't ever buy something like this without my permission again."

"N-no! Sorry!" he cried out.

"No, it's okay." Again, the hand petted his hair, but just that little bit had made Freed's heart pound harder with masochistic excitement. "I like that you took some initiative. As expected of my slave."

A moan shivered up out of his lungs. Laxus' slave! His alone! This collar would show his ownership, his claim over Freed's body, heart, and soul. Freed was ready to surrender everything to Laxus, even his freedom. To be a slave, to be wanted, used for pleasure, cherished as a slave by his master! It was all he ever wanted.

Laxus laughed at the emotions playing so clearly over Freed's face. He was so easy to read. Then suddenly he pulled his hand away and raised back to his feet. "Okay, move your hair out of the way. We'll put this on."

Freed eagerly pulled his long hair to the side, but Laxus glared down at him.

"Stand up," he said in annoyance, as if that should have been obvious from the rest of his instructions.

"R-Right…" Freed whispered, ashamed that he did not realize that Laxus would have to stoop to fit the collar on. Of course, the Thunder God should never stoop! He scrambled to his feet.

Laxus slid the collar around Freed's neck and slipped the end through the buckle. It was a high quality collar, from the look of it, although it was simple in design and not custom-made. Still, the leather was soft, the stitching was superb, and knowing Freed, money was not an issue. (Stupid rich boy! He probably bought the most expensive one in the store!) The band was narrow, which complemented Freed's thin features, and it came with a small padlock with the key still inside. Likely, Freed had tried it on once, bought it, and never put it on again. Many times, Laxus had thought about getting a collar for Freed, but he was never confident enough that this was something his lover wanted. He could have just asked, but that was awkward.

To Laxus, collaring came in two forms: decorative and meaningful. Some of his clients liked to wear a collar for any number of reasons. Some had collars that forced their chin up to look at their master, or with sharp edges that would cause pain if they moved too much. Others just saw the collar as part of the whole BDSM scene, a necessity to get into their alter-ego. A few had liked pet play, and the collar was just part of that. Laxus rarely put collars on. If they wanted to wear one, they could put it on themselves. If they wanted the thrill of having it placed on, he charged them, because it was so repulsive, listening to them whimper as he wrapped it around their neck. Because of the charge, most did it themselves. Many already had the collar, and any other items like cock rings or ball gags, already on when Laxus arrived so they would not waste his precious—and expensive—time.

Such decorative reasons for collaring were plain to Laxus. If they wanted to decorate themselves, they could wrap their fucking cock in Christmas wrapping for all he cared. (One client had done just that!)

What mattered far more was a collar that had meaning. A collar could be just a piece of material, or it could mean something very deep between a slave and master. Ownership! It was a deeper ownership than just calling one another boyfriends. He never collared a client if he realized they held a deeper meaning to it.

As his fingers caressed the pale throat, he saw Freed shiver. Obviously, this collar had that sort of deep meaning to him. Laxus briefly wondered what it was like, to have a collar put on by the man you love. As Freed's eyes gazed up, he saw curiosity in them and realized Freed was thinking the same thing: What was it like to collar someone you love? For Laxus, the feeling was … indescribable! Shivers kept running down his spine, and although he remained stoic on the outside, inside his heart was racing.

"Is this a good fit?"

Freed moved his head around. "Mm-hmm."

Laxus smirked sadistically. "How about here?" He yanked the collar tighter until Freed began to choke slightly. Seeing that discomfort amused Laxus.

"It-It's a little tight."

"Can you breathe?"

Freed felt like he was choking, but air was still passing through. "Y-yeah."

Laxus' fingers stroked along the pinched skin, watching Freed's Adam's apple struggling just to swallow some saliva. His face was turning red from the tightness. Oh, how he would love to truly torture his little slave some day! "Does it hurt?" he asked, utterly enthralled.

Freed wanted to say no, but he had to admit, this was too much. "A little."

"Good."

Freed gasped in a struggle as he realized Laxus was serious about keeping it this tight. Maybe he was used to half-choking his clients, but … it was too much for Freed. He hated to tell Laxus what to do, but this was not erotic for him, just painful and annoying, so he firmly requested: "Looser."

"All right." Laxus had wondered if Freed really would tell him to loosen it, and he was glad Freed could speak up on his own. He loosened it to where he could still put a finger's space between the collar and the neck. "You need to let me know, okay?"

Freed's eyes dropped. "Sorry."

"No, let me know. Don't be afraid to tell me."

"Okay. Have…?" He cringed to ask, but he knew he needed to. It was already bothering his conscience. "Have you ever put a collar on someone?"

Laxus looked at him sternly. "Their own collar. Not one of mine."

"This is mine," he muttered. "I bought it."

Laxus saw sadness in Freed's face. He had a point. Freed had done the exact same thing as his clients, buying a collar and wanting to wear it. Even if this collar had meaning between them, it was still Freed's collar.

"That's true," he whispered, frowning and regretting now that he had not gone ahead and bought a collar of his own. Then he glared at Freed. "Can I steal it?"

Freed's eyes bolted up. "What?"

"I want it to be mine," he said possessively. "I want it to be my collar." He stroked along the edge of the leather. "My collar that I only use on you."

"O-oh." Laxus' own collar! Laxus had never used his own collar. He never bought supplies, so that meant he had never owned one. This would be a first for him. His first collar. Their first collar! "Um … Merry Christmas," he grinned awkwardly.

Laxus barked out a joyful laugh. "You're a brat."

"Sorry," he smiled meekly.

"I accept."

Freed's eyes lit up. "Really?"

"Yeah." Laxus took the tiny padlock and secured it with the key. Locked in, it was now his. Freed, the collar … all his! "So, this collar is your gift to me?"

"Y-yeah. I mean," he admitted bashfully, "I did buy you an actual Christmas pres—"

"Shut up."

Freed's words squeaked to a halt. "Okay!"

"It's a Hanukkah gift."

"Huh?"

"Shut up. My mother was Jewish."

"O-oh." Freed glanced around in shock. Well, that explained why Laxus' penis was circumcised. Jewish! Wow! They never discussed religion before. To find out Laxus was raised as a Jew … Freed wondered if he had a yarmulke, spun the dreidel, ate matzo ball soup, maybe he had a bar mitzvah as a kid…

"Shut up."

"I didn't say anything!" he cried out.

Laxus did not have to hear it. He saw all the stereotypes running over that face. "People teased me about it," he grumbled, hoping that was enough to let Freed know not to discuss religion with him.

"O-…-kay." He wanted to ask questions, but maybe that was a bad idea. "I think it's fine," he insisted, but he still felt shocked by the news. Jewish? Laxus Dreyar was Jewish? He muttered awkwardly, "Happy Hanukkah?"

Laxus had to chuckle as his attempt to always be the good boy, even now, naked and collared and about to be fucked. "You know," he said with a predatory purr, "for Hanukkah, we're supposed to get a present every night."

Freed blinked. He knew this, he had heard about that tradition, about the eight days of Hanukkah and presents every day, but the way Laxus said it sounded erotic. "E-every night?"

"Yeah." Laxus glanced briefly down to Freed's groin, then back up with a lecherous grin. "Every night."

Freed moaned slightly. Every night! Eight days of fucking!

"Of course, Hanukkah started last night, so this is a belated gift."

"O-okay."

Laxus ran a finger around Freed's lips until his whole body shuddered. "So what are you gonna give me tonight?"

Give him? He would give his soul over to the thunder god! "Whatever you want."

"I still want you to touch me everywhere."

"Y-yeah." That was right. The reason they came here… "Yeah. I can do that."

"Everywhere!"

Freed choked up a bit. Everywhere meant there, too. He was going to do that, to touch Laxus everywhere, even there. He nervously agreed with a nod and a whisper of simply, "Yeah."

"Freed, look at me."

His eyes jolted up. "What?"

Laxus held those sallow cheeks and looked down at him firmly. "Is this really okay?"

"Yes." His touch felt so warm, so comforting and protective. He would agree to anything!

"You've never done it."

Freed gulped hard. "I know." He was so inexperienced. Before Laxus, he had only kissed a few guys, nothing like this. "There's a lot of stuff I haven't done that I think I would like to."

Laxus laughed a little. Lots of stuff he wanted to do, huh? Although they had been dating for a few months now, they really had not done many intimate things. It was usually the same BDSM as always, tying Freed up, whipping him with the riding crop, sometimes using the e-stim plug. They had penetrative sex for the first time only two weeks ago, and they had not had a chance to get together like this since then. He wondered what sort of things Freed wanted to try. There was a world of pleasure they could explore together!

"I'd like to feel your hands all over me," Laxus said in a low, lusty voice. "Everywhere! You haven't touched me in so many places. It's always me touching you." He took Freed's hands and placed them on his chest. "I want you to touch me," he demanded. "I want you to spoil me. You're my slave now. This collar shows that I own you, and you're mine. I haven't demanded much of you so far."

Freed lowered his gaze obediently. "You're a good master—"

"Shut up."

Freed choked back his praise nervously.

"I don't want you to talk." As soon as he said it, Freed's mouth slammed shut. "Good. I want you to use your mouth in other ways. I want you to touch me everywhere, and kiss me everywhere. I want to be drenched from head to toe with your tongue!"

He grabbed Freed's shoulders, pinned him against the wall, and kissed him forcefully, seeking out that tongue he wanted. Freed moaned as he tasted Laxus and the flavor of whiskey still lingering in his mouth. He could get drunk on this man's kisses!

With a growl, Laxus pressed his arms out, forcing his body away from Freed before he completely lost control.

"And I want you to do all that…" He left his words hanging as he walked over to the bag of goodies and pulled out the butt plug. "…while having this in you."

Freed looked at it, then nervously back to him. "Laxus, I'll get too aroused."

"No. Just this. It won't be buzzing; it won't be doing anything. It'll just be right in your ass, and it'll remind you constantly that I want to be in there. Once you're done with me, you get that taken out…" His eyes narrowed dangerously. "…and I'm gonna fuck you so hard."

Freed moaned with shivering pleasure at the sensual threat. Laxus held a finger up, and Freed looked at that single finger as it lightly landed on his nose.

"But not if you come first," Laxus teased, and he licked his lips with amusement as Freed strained to calm himself back down. What an incredible man! Just a few months ago, he could not withstand a two-minute lap dance without coming in his pants. Now, he had learned some restraint. "Come here." Laxus walked over to the bed, but turned around when he did not hear feet following him. "Come on," he encouraged, as if calling a dog.

Freed began to walk, but his thighs refused to move. Hardly realizing it, he had gotten intensely aroused. Moving his legs hurt.

Laxus laughed at his shame and discomfort. "What? Are you so aroused you can't walk?"

"I … I can walk. It's just … um…" It hurt! He was so erect, it hurt.

"You're so hard already." His hand reached down and lightly stroked the turgid shaft.

Freed shuddered at the spike of pleasure burning from his groin and straight up his spine. "D-d-don't, I … I'm already ready to come."

Laxus held his finger up and ordered sternly, "Don't!"

"I know. I don't want to."

Laxus saw this truly was an issue. "Lie down."

"Yes, master." He laid on the mattress and flipped his long hair around the pillow.

Laxus sat on the end of the bed cross-legged and relaxed. "Okay. I'm gonna do something." He frowned. "Maybe it's a little weird."

Freed arched an eyebrow. "Weird?" Kinky stuff, he was used to, but … weird? What on Earth could Laxus consider to be weird?

"I want you to relax. Whatever it takes, I don't want you to come yet."

"Okay."

"Give me your foot."

His … foot? Was this something kinky after all? A foot fetish maybe? He was pretty sure he did not have a foot fetish, but maybe Laxus did.

Laxus took one foot, set it in his lap, curled his fingers around it, and began to rub. As his thumbs dug in, Freed stiffened, only to instantly drop bonelessly limp with a moan of pleasure.

"Rubbing your feet. Heh, never thought I'd do this to someone."

"You … you're pretty good," he had to admit. His family's private masseuse, Porlyusica, was good at massages, but Freed usually felt weird when the old lady messed with his feet. Suddenly, Laxus' thumbs hit a spot, and Freed flopped in heavenly delight. "Oh, right there."

Laxus smiled to himself as he focused on the arch. "I used to give my mother foot rubs."

Freed looked down at the blond and saw a wistful mien in his faint smile. "You never talk about her."

Laxus' brow tensed as blue eyes and luscious blond hair came to mind, along with a laugh that was so distinct and musical, he would never forget it. "I don't like to," he said softly.

"Oh…"

"No," he cut in before Freed could apologize. "She was a great woman. She was a hell of a woman!" He sighed sadly. "She deserved better in life. She deserved a hell of a lot better than my father. And she sure as hell didn't deserve to get cancer."

"Oh my God," Freed whispered. He often wondered what happened to her. Laxus always sounded like he loved his mother, so he was curious what became of her but was afraid to ask, just in case it was like this. "I'm sorry." He had no idea what else to say.

Laxus gave a weak shrug. "It's fine."

He never talked about her, because he always remembered the end, and that was a painful thing. He and his grandfather were forced to watch, helpless to stop the disease's vile progression. While she was in the hospital, they got news of Ivan Dreyar's whereabouts. Makarov was instrumental in getting Ivan put on INTERPOL's list of wanted international criminals, although it was his own son. That meant Laxus was losing his father for good, at the same time that his mother was dying. He felt betrayed by his grandfather, and it caused a permanent schism between them.

"She was a good woman, though," Laxus said proudly as he remembered good times together, just the two of them. "A great mother. I always wanted to give back to her somehow. I mean, I was a teenager, you'd think I'd be wild and hating my parents and everything. Hated the hell out of my dad, but I realized my mom, she was cool. So I'd give her foot rubs. It was about the only thing I could do." He had been too weak as a kid, and too strong when whatever his father did to him kicked in. Somehow, his fingers, when on his mother's feet, were just strong and gentle enough for her. "When she got cancer, she'd ask me every time." He sniffed past the pain of those memories. "Every time I'd come into the hospital, she'd ask, 'Can you give me a foot rub?' The day she died, she wanted her feet rubbed. I did, and then she asked me to go wash my hands like a good boy, being a typical mother." His eyes saddened. "I think she just wanted me out of the room. When I came back, she had a smile on her face. She was buried with that smile."

Freed's mouth dropped open. This was the most Laxus had ever spoken about his past, and the only time he ever talked about his mother. What an awful thing to experience! And he had been only a teen!

"Laxus…" He wanted to hug him, hold him, and comfort the deep sadness that the blond was struggling not to show.

"So I don't mind giving foot rubs, but only to a person that I love." He smiled up to Freed. "Very much." His thumbs rubbed over his toes and over the top of the foot, and he focused back down on the feet with a faint blush.

Tears beaded up in Freed's eyes, and he whispered with heartfelt bliss, "Laxus!"

The blond laughed it off and shook his head. Shit! Getting so emotional over a little memory. "Only two people in the world ever got a foot rub from me. Her … and now you."

Freed wished he knew what to say to that, to be put on the same level as Laxus' own mother. It was definitely too great of an honor, and a tear slipped down his cheek. "Thank you. Th-that … it really means a lot."

"It should." He patted Freed's feet. "I see my little sob story softened you up."

"O-oh," he muttered, realizing he had completely forgotten about being turned on. "Well, it's a nice story. Though, it is sad."

"Yeah, it happens." He knew his story was hardly unique. Plenty of people lost loved ones to cancer. Still, it was a pain that would never fully leave him. "How about … you just hold me?" Was he really muttering a request? Not demanding it? What was wrong with him? He laughed at his own weakness. "Damn! Today's been a hell of a day," he said lightly, but memories from earlier—Freed's parents, quitting Jellal, calling every single client to tell them he was cutting out of their contract—it all came rushing back into his mind. Softly, he repeated, "Hell of a day."

Freed saw the weariness. "Laxus," he called, holding his arms out. The blond collapsed into that embrace, then curled onto his side and hugged Freed to him.

"Just start touching me. Start from the head and work down." With slow movements, he pulled off his clothes, leaving only the leather pants on. He caressed Freed's cheek and asked tenderly, "Do you really not want the butt plug in?"

"Wait a little bit. I just wanna … I wanna touch you for now. Just gently."

Laxus ran his fingers through the long hair. "I'm never gentle with anyone but you. Damn it, why are you like this?" He always felt strange around Freed, not quite weaker, but … like no matter how much he tried, he could never stay stoic and aloof. He gazed into that face, the long eyelashes, the gleaming hair, a cute beauty mark just under his turquoise eye, and Laxus wondered what it was about him. What made this man different from everyone else he had ever known? "You really mess me up."

Messed him up? "Is that okay?" Freed asked worriedly.

Laxus closed his eyes and smiled to himself. "Yeah, I don't mind, if it's you." If he had to lose control to anyone, he would rather collapse into Freed's arms, since he knew the swordsman would hold him up.

Freed stroked through the blond hair, then down, raking his fingers gently over his brow, getting the tension to ease out. Laxus hummed with pleasure as the stress melted. Those fingers caressed his cheeks, along his nose, and down to his neck.

"Mmmm. Touch me on my cheeks some more."

Freed brought his hands back up, stroking the chiseled features. "Did that asshole who bothered you touch your cheeks?"

"Che! Bastard tried to kiss me."

Freed jolted and screamed, "What?"

"Yeah, that's when he got punched."

"Good!"

Laxus kept his eyes shut, but he laughed to himself. "Man, if only you knew," he muttered.

"Knew what?"

"Oh, nothing," he said in amusement. There was no way he could tell Freed who that asshole was. "I talked about you."

Freed's eyes widened. "To a client?"

"He wanted me exclusively. Told him I couldn't." He opened his eyes and gazed at Freed. "Told him I had someone who I cared for very deeply."

Freed's face went warm, and he looked away with a soft, "Oh."

"Does that make you happy?"

"Uh … kinda."

"It should."

"It does!" he cried out, but he blushed more. "I-it … it does."

"Of course it does."

Freed wanted to laugh. Laxus often said things like Of course it does or Of course you do, as if he already knew how everything he did would affect Freed's heart. "Did he touch your shoulders here?"

"Yeah, he seemed to be quite fascinated with my muscles," he said with a sneer. "Some people are."

"I am," he mumbled. "Is that bad?"

"No. You're fascinated by a lot more than my muscles, right?"

"Mmm." Freed glanced to the leather pants.

Laxus laughed at his blatant horniness. "Don't eye down there yet," he scolded playfully, then he leaned back and sighed. "I'm … not aroused yet." He tried to slip back into a sense of relaxation. "Too stressed out to be aroused."

"Sorry." He rubbed the back of Laxus' neck, then down to his shoulders, massaging them. "Is this helping?"

"Yeah. Man, what is it with your fingers? Shit…" He could enjoy this all day. "I've seen you fight, seen how you hold a sword. Somehow your fingers are just … incredible." He snorted a soft laugh, then as those nimble hands touched him all along his arms, he sighed peacefully.

Freed moved back to the neck, down the collar, and to the upper chest, over the tattoos on the pectorals. "Here too?"

"Yeah. Just … everywhere," he whispered in bliss, feeling like he could lie there with his eyes closed and drift off to sleep.

Freed bit his lip to hold back a teasing laugh. "What about here?" Suddenly, his fingers twisted Laxus' nipples.

"Shit!" Laxus bolted straight up and covered his chest with his hands. "What…? No, he did not touch my nipple." Damn brat! Damn, smirking, too-sexy-for-his-own-good brat! Laxus flopped back down and grumbled curses under his breath. Then, reluctant to admit he liked it, he muttered awkwardly. "Um … do that some more." He heard a giggle from Freed and barked, "What?"

"You're blushing," Freed pointed out in lighthearted amusement.

Laxus turned his face away in humiliation. "Shut up."

"Did it feel good?"

"Shut up," he muttered petulantly.

Freed traced his fingers around the nipples again, round and around, until they hardened. "Right here?" Softly, he twisted the nipples between his fingers, not teasing and aiming to shock him, but softly, sensually, sending jolts through Laxus' nerves that shot straight down to his groin.

"Oh … ffff- … fuck," he whispered, ashamed at making noises like this, but, damn it all, that felt incredible!

Freed was fascinated that Laxus was reacting so strongly. Normally, he kept himself under control. Now, it was like every touch surprised him. "Um, has anyone ever touched you here?"

"Not like that." He moaned slightly. "Shit."

Freed was shocked. He figured Laxus must have experienced almost everything. Then again, he never let people get close to him. Touching nipples was not the only first the two of them had discovered.

"They never touched you here? Or licked here?" He leaned his mouth over. "Like this?" Softly, Freed pulled at the nipple with his lips.

Laxus gasped and suddenly slammed Freed's face away, shocked by how good it felt. "Freed!" He was panting hard now. "Oh fuck…"

Freed had a devious grin. He glanced swiftly down to the trousers and saw the lump pressing hard against the leather. Playfully, he teased, "I think you're aroused."

"Go to hell."

Freed laughed happily. The grouchier Laxus acted, the stronger he felt internally about something. This must have really rocked him. "I can't," he replied, and he leaned up into Laxus' face. "Because I'm in heaven." He dipped down and stole a swift kiss.

"Damn green angel," Laxus muttered, but he smirked. This guy! Freed had hedonistic lust simmering in his eyes as he slithered down Laxus' body and back to his chest. Slowly, wetly, he laved over the nipple. "Oh man!" Laxus snatched the back of the green hair, not sure if he wanted more or wanted it to stop. Softly, Freed scraped his teeth over the nipple. "Enough, enough! Damn!"

Laxus yanked Freed's head up by the hair, but the college student was playfully licking his upper lip. Damn bitch! Laxus moaned and collapsed backwards. As he lay there, he began to pout. Damn, stupid, sexy bitch!

Rolling his eyes in surrender, he grumbled, "Other … one … too."

"Oh?" Freed mused lightly. "You liked it?"

"Shut up." As he felt that mouth work the other side, Laxus pursed his lips tightly. Like hell he'd moan again like a tomcat in heat!

Freed glanced up from where he was suckling and saw Laxus' face turn crimson. He raised up and rested an elbow on the barrel chest. "I don't see this side of you too often: the side that can accept pleasure."

"Not many people want to give me pleasure." He sighed and confessed, "Not many people can."

"I like to."

Laxus stroked his fingers over the soft cheeks. "You're the only one who can." He looked aside in frustration. "That bastard couldn't."

"Did he try?"

"He was groping me like a … like … I don't know. Like a five-year-old to a monkey or something."

Freed's eyebrow arched up. "That makes absolutely no sense."

"Shut up! I can't … can't think when you're doing that."

He chortled slyly. "You mean touching you … here?" Again, both hands tweaked his nipples at the same time.

Laxus only barely held back a cry of pleasure. "Y-yeah."

"I bet a lot of people want to."

"I don't want to think about that! I gave up that. No more. No more clubs, no more clients." He grabbed those distracting fingers and gripped both of Freed's hands tightly in his. He gazed seriously at the young man. "I'm sorry I put you through that."

"I knew what I was getting into."

"I'm still sorry."

"It's okay, really." He shrugged lightly. "It was part of the package."

Laxus glanced up worriedly. "Is it okay if it's not?"

"Yeah, I don't mind."

So much had happened today. As Laxus left the Justines' home, he knew he had to get rid of every single client, but he had no clue at first how Freed would react to this sudden decision, especially that he felt he should quit the South Pole Club, as well. After all, that was where they met. Laxus sighed to hear that he was fine with having a boyfriend who was not a strip dancer—some exotic profession—and instead having an unemployed bum with no marketable skills.

"Keep touching," he whispered, needing this reaffirmation. "Everywhere!"

Freed ran his fingers over Laxus' hard abdomen. "Do people touch around here a lot?"

"I told you, I don't want to think about others."

"Okay," he whispered sadly, hoping to soothe away the stress.

"Just us." He stroked the back of his fingers over Freed's arm. "From now on, just us."

Freed smiled to hear that, but he felt slightly uneasy. "I still can't give you everything you need, though." He had suggested that fetish club, a more open area, monitored and structured. They talked only briefly about it on the walk here. It was an alternative, but Freed wondered if it would be okay for both of them. Would Laxus be allowed to get as rough as he was used to doing in the private homes of rich old men? Would Freed be able to stomach seeing Laxus do those sorts of things to another person? It was scary, venturing into the unknown together.

Laxus saw the worry in that pinched brow. "If that's ever a problem, you let me know. I don't ever want to force you."

A problem … if ever that was a problem, if Laxus' need as a sadist could never be sated any other way … then what? Would that be the end of them? That was what Freed feared.

"But that would mean, I won't to be able to have you. I like that idea even less."

He needed Laxus, needed him like he had never needed another person in his life. He had been raised by loving but stoic parents, trained to be proper and never express emotions too freely, expected to live in a world that was a bubble away from normal people, to hide his loneliness as he perched on the top of the corporate ladder. He was taught never to depend on anyone but his own skills and wits.

Now, he realized he could never go through life that way. He needed someone to hold him and shelter him from time to time. He needed Laxus to give him that dose of raw reality in a world of plastic perfection. He needed love and warmth and strong arms that shielded him from the harshness outside. To lose this was unthinkable! If he had to pick: sharing Laxus with some submissive person who wanted more masochistic pain than Freed could withstand, or losing Laxus completely…

"Sharing you with someone else … isn't so bad," he said sadly, "but the thought of not having you … I just…" He shook his head, refusing to accept that possibility.

Laxus saw tears beading on his thick lashes, and he pulled Freed down into his chest. "Shhhh. That's not gonna happen. Like I said, if I do need this, and I need more, I want you there. It's your turn to protect me."

Freed laughed a little. A mouse like him, protecting a god?

"I'm serious," Laxus insisted.

He still chuckled. "It's just ironic." Wasn't it supposed to be the dominant's job to protect the submissive?

Laxus pouted and looked away. "Well, that's what I want."

"Okay. So I get to protect you, huh?"

"After that bastard, yeah," he grumbled.

"I really want to kick that guy's ass, whoever he was."

Laxus laughed softly again.

"What?"

"Nothing, nothing." He hummed that this was his own private joke now. He looked up at Freed's confused tilt of the head and could hardly help himself. He grabbed both of those pale cheeks and stated firmly, "I really do love you."

Freed could hardly believe this. "Really, what's gotten into you?"

"An epiphany. Heh! Him of all people to give it to me."

"Laxus?" Him? Him who? The client? "What do you mean?"

Laxus sighed. Freed's own father had showed him how deeply he had fallen in love. "It means I only want you. Is that okay?"

"Yeah."

"It means … I want you to give me a foot rub now."

Freed had to laugh at just how seriously he said that, ordering, demanding, the same old Laxus once again. "Okay," he smirked.

"I want you to touch me everywhere." He smiled at the slight timidity in that blushing face. "Keep touching, come on," he urged.

"Yeah, yeah!" Freed chuckled as he ran his hands over that muscular body.

"All of my leg, everything," he ordered. "I don't want an Achilles' heel. I want your hands all over me."

"Well, here's your Achilles' heel."

He laughed at thinking that Laxus knew about that myth, that Achilles was invincible due to being dipped in the river Styx as a baby, but his mother had held him by the heel, the only place where the water did not touch, so that was the only vulnerable spot on his body, and ultimately an arrow to the heel was the cause of Achilles' downfall. Freed wanted to completely cover Laxus' body, everywhere, no spot left void and vulnerable.

"Stroke along there," Freed said soothingly as he tried to touch every single bit of flesh. "All along your foot. Between your toes." However, as he touched the webbing between those large toes, he made a face. "They're sweaty!"

Laxus glared. "Shut up."

"Well, they are sweaty. My goodness, you have sweaty feet."

"Shut up!"

He sounded so petulant, like a sulking child, and it amused Freed. Today, Laxus was so different, almost vulnerable. It was sad to see, but Freed also liked caring for him in this moment of weakness. Whatever happened, however that perverted client must have harassed him, it obviously gave Laxus a hell of a shock. It was time for someone else to assuage the thunder god.

"Flip around. I want to get your back now. You should always protect your back," Freed schooled, being the fencing champion he was.

"Yeah…" he sighed.

Laxus decided to remove his pants now. They were tight, and his belt buckle would dig into his stomach if he laid on top of it. So as he flipped around, he removed the last of his clothes, then flopped his face down onto the pillows.

Laxus never turned his back on people. Even while dancing, Gray had told him many times that he should turn around and show off his ass more, since the audience loved booty shakes. Laxus did not trust them, though. He preferred to face people or be behind them, not expose his back. However, he felt that with Freed, he was safe. Freed would protect his back. If anyone in this world could fight back-to-back with Laxus, it was this swordsman-scholar.

Freed began at the lower calves and slowly worked up. "I've never really looked at your back—" He cut off sharply, and his hands stopped at the knees.

"What?"

Freed's eyes drew up to what awaited him. He had seen it a few times already, but now, with Laxus' back to him, he saw it up close and could hardly help but laud this grand view. "You have a sexy ass!"

Laxus' face instantly went bright red. "Shut up!"

Freed had to laugh at his adorable embarrassment. "Well, you do. And your legs." He continued to run his hands up the legs sensually. "Mmmm. Right along here." He groped those two globes, massaging Laxus' butt, even between the crack, until Laxus grunted with hidden pleasure. "And up your back." Freed wanted to stay at the butt cheeks longer, but his hands went on their journey, rubbing all around to cover every bit of flesh.

Suddenly, Laxus felt a jolt of pleasure in his nerves. "Ooh! Right there."

Freed focused on the back muscles. "You're stiff."

"Yeah, I've been told that," he muttered. Porlyusica noted his tension last time.

"Huh?"

"Nothing." He really did not want to talk about his visit to the Justines, not now.

Freed massaged those bulging deltoids and trapezius muscles. He looked at the swirling pattern of the black tattoos. He felt that there were scars back here as well, covered up by the odd patterns of the tattoos. Laxus' back was strong, impressive, and yet somehow Freed sensed that it was vulnerable. As he gave Laxus a massage, he could not shake off that feeling.

"Ah, that feels good," Laxus groaned. "You know massage?"

Freed gave a humble shrug. "Sometimes in fencing, you pull a muscle, so the students would rub each other's shoulders out."

"Mmmh. Well, that's good. Damn."

Suddenly, Freed's hands yanked away, and he gasped sharply.

"What? You stopped, what?"

"N- … Nothing," he said in a startled whisper.

"What?"

Freed gulped hard, staring down at the scars. "Have you ever looked at your back?"

"No," he said in confusion.

"It's covered by the tattoo but … there's a number etched into your skin. Oh my God," he breathed. A number! A number carved right into the flesh!

Laxus' brow tensed up, and coldly he answered, "My dad."

"He numbered his own son?" Freed cried out in horror. "Like…?" He could not dare say it.

"Yeah. Like I was just one more science experiment," he said bitterly. Laxus took a slow breath in and said aloud. "Subject number 4-6-2."

Freed gawked in dread. Subject number? His stomach felt ready to hurl.

Laxus shook his head sadly. "Makes me wonder who the other four hundred and sixty-one were before he decided to turn to me."

"Oh God…" He gulped hard. Over four hundred people had experiments done to them. Over four hundred! Were they all children as well? Did they all have scars? Were they even still alive?

Laxus began to turn around. "Are you okay?" he asked softly.

"Yeah, I just … th-that's … that's worse than awful. That's…" A tear dripped down. Laxus had been just a subject, a test experiment. Number 462.

Laxus began to turn and reached his hand out. "Hey…"

"No!" Freed forced him down with surprising strength. He might be a scholar, but he was still a champion fencer. He had power when he wanted it. "Just stay down. I don't want you to worry."

Laxus heard the tears choking his throat. "Hey, Freed…"

"No!" he cried out, pushing Laxus hard against the mattress. "No … no, I'll just keep massaging. Like this." His hands worked forcefully.

"You're doing it too hard now." Laxus forced himself up, not letting Freed get control again. He sat up, but Freed's head was down. "Hey…" Was he crying? Then Laxus felt a wet drop hit his skin, and an inhale from Freed snorted with snot. "Come here," he encouraged, but Freed stubbornly shook his head. Laxus yanked him forward forcefully and embraced him. "Come here."

"I don't want to worry you," he whispered.

"I'm not worried. You are."

"Laxus…" His heart ached for what must have been a childhood of fear and suffering.

"It's all right," Laxus said soothingly. "It happened when I was a kid."

That only made it worse! Freed burrowed his face down into Laxus' shoulder. Those strong arms wrapped around him in comfort. Laxus had honestly forgotten about the number branded into his shoulder. He did not think much about it, just one more thing he suffered through during that dark time, but as he saw Freed's horror to it, he realized just how inhumane that action really was: reducing one's own son to a test subject!

He gently stroked down Freed's hair. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah," he said numbly. "Still…" He blinked the tears away. "It's still just … a shame."

"Yeah, it is." Laxus kissed the top of Freed's head. "Thanks … for caring," he said awkwardly.

"Of course I do!"

Laxus smiled happily to himself. Of course! He often said that. "Of course it feels good. Of course it hurts." It was a way to belittle one person's opinion. When Freed said it, it was different. It was like he was pleading with Laxus to believe in his sincerity. All Laxus could do was hug him and sigh with happiness.

Laxus sat up sharply and ordered, "Come on. I wanna put that plug in you."

Freed felt stunned by the sudden change. "Um … now?"

"Yeah, 'cause I don't want to remember the past. I want to be focused right here with you. Okay?" he asked, hoping this was fine with him.

Freed saw the need in those eyes. It was not just about kinks. This was to keep Laxus from losing himself in the sadness of childhood trauma. So he gave his consent and began to undress while Laxus walked over to the bag of sex toys. He pulled out the butt plug and walked to the restroom to give it a thorough washing before using it.

Laxus watched the water flow over the silicone and cleaned it with methodical precision. He was escaping, true, and that sucked! It was running away, and he hated doing that. Still, he just really needed to stop thinking about that time before he got lost in the hatred and needed to hurt Freed just to feel better. He preferred being gentle.

Which was not normal for him! He was never gentle. He even treated his grandfather gruffly. His mother had been the only one to see his tender side, and now it was Freed who reeled in that gentle beast hidden within the scarred and tattooed body.

When he walked back into the main area of the hotel room, Freed was laid out on the sheets, naked and glorious. Laxus paused just to look down at him, and Freed bashfully turned his face away. Those taut muscles, firm from swordfighting, but a thinness to him, like he did not eat enough while studying all the time. Perhaps they should go out for dinner later. Laxus made a note of that. They had the hotel all night. There was no rule that they had to stay inside the hotel room the whole time. A date out to some student café would be nice.

Later, though. Right now, he wanted this man to spoil him, and he wanted to see pleasure color those sallow cheeks. He grabbed up a bottle of lube from the bag of goodies and drizzled it copiously over the plug, spreading it around with his fingers until the whole thing was slick. Then he settled down on the bed and pulled Freed's legs apart forcefully.

"Here we go."

"Not your fingers?" he asked in surprise as he already felt the tip of the plug press against his hole.

"Nah, you should be stretched out by now. Here." He lined up the plug to the precise angle he knew he would need. Then he stared down sadistically at Freed. "And I wanna hear you scream!"

He rammed the plug in, fast and hard. It made it halfway in before Freed tensed up too much from the shock, and Laxus could not go further without tearing him. Freed's cry of pain was musical, and Laxus felt himself getting hard just from that much.

"Good way to stay in the moment, right?" he teased lightly. Laxus began to pull the plug out, only to press in more.

Freed moaned wantonly, "Laxus…"

Yes! That was what he wanted to hear! "Does it hurt?"

"A bit."

"Good!"

He pressed more, and Freed clutched tightly to the pillow, straining against the pain of the slow stretching. He tried so hard not to outright scream.

"Safe words, remember?" Laxus warned.

"I know. I know." It hurt! And it felt wonderful! The pleasure made him want to come, and the pain killed that need, leaving him intensely aroused without the trouble of prematurely ending this. Still … it really did hurt. He clenched his teeth as the plug went even deeper. "Dammit…" He began to shudder from the sensation that was so good, yet so uncomfortable.

"You okay?" Laxus asked, pausing to watch him and see if it was too much.

"Yeah. Keep going," he demanded, wanting it all, everything, all of it at once. Now!

"All right."

Laxus palmed the end of the plug hard, getting over the thickest part, until the divot slid into place. The half second of agony ended suddenly, and Freed's whole body arched up at the relief that instantly followed. Any pain vanished. All that was left was an amazing feeling of something inside him, filling him, and those blue eyes gazing down, utterly enthralled.

"God, you're hot," Laxus whispered, barely able to contain himself.

Freed panted now that it was over and glanced up at him, softly moaning his name, "Laxus."

"That was so good," he praised, still amazed at how seeing this man's reactions could tingle his nerves, affecting not just his groin, but all of his body. Everything sparked like a live wire at the sound of Freed's pleasured moans. "Shit, when was the last time I really made you cry out like that?" he wondered.

They had done it a few times in the dorm, but they had to be quiet there. They had not come to a hotel in a long time. Laxus could barely help himself; he reached down, needing something to touch his cock. It was so hard, just hearing Freed panting for air. If he was not careful, he might come before they even had fun.

"Oh, fuck." Suddenly, he collapsed on top of Freed, clutching him possessively.

Freed squirmed under him. "Laxus, you're heavy."

"I know, sorry." He pressed his arms up, holding his upper torso off of that thin body. "Like that?"

"Yeah."

Although Laxus held himself up, he still nuzzled into Freed's neck, smelling him, his nose rubbing up into the green hair to enjoy the scent of shampoo. He lightly licked Freed's neck, wanting this man so much.

"Just need to feel you," he whispered into Freed's ear, then licked around the rim. "I need to know I'm in control still."

Freed wrapped his arms around and pulled Laxus in a little closer. "Master!"

"Fuck…"

That word! That title! Hearing Freed call him that always did something, like a heavenly jolt zapping Laxus' nerves. If he was called Thor, this incredible man was his Mjölnir, hammering at his heart and sending sparks to his groin. He gulped down intense excitement and tried to get his cock to listen to him that now was not the time to fuck him.

"All right…" Nope, his cock still felt stiff and needy. Laxus forcefully ignored it and flopped onto his back. That forced Freed to sit up despite the plug putting pressure inside of him. He grinned up at the green-haired man and playfully told him, "Time for you to touch where you've never touched before."

Freed laughed nervously. Touch … there! "Um, how do you want me to do that?"

"However you want. How about face up? You can watch me."

"Is that okay?"

"Yeah. I want to watch you. I want to see how you look as you feel inside me."

Freed shivered. Feeling him … in there! Everywhere!

"And this way," Laxus smirked slyly, "I can keep an eye on … this."

He suddenly grabbed Freed's erection, and a sharp moan jolted out.

"Should we put the cock ring on now?"

"Um … no, not yet." He remembered Laxus saying that cock rings could only be worn for a short period of time, and he had no clue how long he would be touching his body.

Laxus spread his legs and lifted his knees up, exposing himself fully. Freed looked down at his fingers, then at the tiny puckered hole that he was supposed to enter. He began to reach forward.

"Hey, get the lube."

"Oh! Right, right." Lube! Yes! Lube for his fingers. He was going … in there! And he needed to make it feel good. Lube helped. Lube … yes! His mind fluttered wildly as he poured probably too much lube onto his fingers and returned to the entrance in front of him. "Um … okay. Um, like this?" He lightly began to trace the puckering. His heart was pounding so fast, all he could hear was the rushing in his ears.

"Your fingers aren't sharp, right?"

Freed yanked back. "What?"

"Your fingernails?"

Freed glanced down at his hand. "Um … N-no."

Laxus grabbed the lubed hand and inspected it. The last thing he wanted was a fingernail cutting up his colon. "Damn, your hands look manicured."

"They don't!" he snapped, blushing. "I just keep them cleaned."

Laxus looked at him deadpan. "They look manicured."

"Shut up!"

"They're manicured, aren't they?"

"No!" he cried out, then hesitantly admitted, "…Maybe."

Laxus rolled his eyes. "Damn rich boy."

He stuttered out denials, but then decided to just explain it. "My fencing instructor wanted to take a picture, and I knew they were gonna be focusing on my hand, a-and I—"

"Shut up."

"Okay!" he said, snapping his lips closed immediately.

Laxus laughed at how quickly he obeyed. He stroked Freed's hair. What a good slave, and what an amazing man. "It's fine," he assured Freed, but suddenly something dawned on him. "Wait, does that mean you were modeling?"

"Well, they were taking pictures and—"

"You were modeling," he said bluntly.

He muttered bashfully, "M-maybe." Was he mad?

"I want a picture," Laxus demanded.

Freed jolted, surprised he was not jealous. "Uh, sure! Yeah."

Laxus nodded firmly in satisfaction. "Okay."

Freed still felt awkward. "It's okay that I did that?"

He scoffed softly. "It's for your fencing thing. Of course it's okay." He might be a dominant, but dominants could not control their submissive's personal life.

"O-okay."

"What, ya thinking of becoming a model?" he teased.

"No!" he insisted, then bashfully muttered, "I just wasn't sure if it would be okay?"

"Well, you weren't nude, right?"

"Of course not!"

"Then it's fine. They're just taking pictures of you, and I want a copy."

A copy. A picture. Of him! Freed realized that he had no pictures of Laxus at all. They had not even snapped a selfie of themselves together. "Do you have pictures of me at home?"

"I have one on my cellphone."

Freed smiled bashfully. "You took a picture of me?" How sweet!

"Loke did."

Freed jolted out of his daydream of Laxus secretly photographing him. "Loke?" he said with a sneer.

"Yeah." Laxus had gazed at the picture so many times while masturbating at home. He really should take a descent picture of Freed, something he could show to others, but that was just awkward. Then, realizing he could tease Freed with this, he got a devious smile. "It's a sexy picture."

Sure enough, Freed went instantly red and tried to shout, only to choke up. "Agh … geh … whuh … wh-when did he take this?"

Laxus licked his lips at how humiliated Freed looked. What a lovely shade of red to his cheeks! He teased him mischievously, "Not telling."

"I want to see that," Freed insisted.

"Shut up…" Laxus grabbed the slave collar and yanked Freed down nose-to-nose, reminding him of who was master. "…and touch me."

The financial magnate he had been born and raised to become rippled away as he felt the collar and shivered as he faced those demanding eyes. Still, he had his pride as an upper class socialite. Too many families like the Justines had been brought down by a single cellphone picture being leaked out into the public.

"It's not like a scandalous picture, is it?"

"Nah … although you're naked."

Freed cried out in horror. Naked? There was a naked picture of him on someone's cellphone?

"And so am I," Laxus told him.

Freed's horror shifted to curiosity. "Wait, the two of us?" Both of them? Naked? And Loke took it? When the hell did this happen?

"Heh, he took it when we were asleep."

"Oh." That day! Their first time … and they had fallen asleep together. Laxus had stayed the night. Now it made sense. Still, Loke—of all people—had taken it! "Can you see anything?"

"Oh hell no! I would have punched him if he did that."

"Okay, good," he said in relief. "I don't want Loke to see that."

"Heh! What, are you afraid he might want me?" he asked playfully, but he realized that Freed was scowling. It was rather cute. "Look, your friend is straight. He's not gonna want me."

"I can still feel jealous," he grumbled with a pout. "He takes up all the nice girls. What if he takes up the guys?"

"Che, be jealous about the right things." Like your father, that bastard!

"Huh?"

"You're clueless."

"Sorry."

"Touch me already."

"Oh! Right." Touching! He was supposed to touch Laxus … in … there. "Um, so, like this?" Slowly, being as gentle as possible, he slipped his finger inside. He felt the tight clench of muscles and warmth inside. Freed had never touched someone else this way. It squeezed between flesh and slowly sank within.

"Ah!" Laxus said with a soft hiss. "That is weird."

"Is it okay?"

"Just keep touching." Everywhere! Everything! He wanted to be touched all over. He wanted Freed to claim his body, so that no one else could. However, as the finger pressed in more, there was a sharp jolt of pain mixed with pleasure. "Ahh! Okay, stop."

"I'm barely in."

"Shut up, okay?" he snapped. "It's my first time." He tried to think about what his submissives did. Relax, right? Relax those anal muscles and it was supposed to feel better. He struggled to, but it was not easy.

Freed eased his finger back to take an edge off the pain. As he did, he saw just a tiny bit of something brown. Oh shit! Literally! Of course, he was touching there, so it should not be too surprising to get a little dirty.

He teased in a singsong voice, "You didn't use a suppository."

Laxus went pink as he realized why Freed must have brought that up. He must be dirty! "You're just touching it, though."

"Yeah, but you make me."

That was true. He wanted Freed to be clean inside, and here he was making him stick his finger in his ass, and he was not even sure how well he had wiped the last time he took a shit. "Uh, do you want me to?" he asked, reluctantly offering. If it was dirty and sickening to Freed, that was no good at all. He wanted to make things enjoyable for both of them.

"Nah, this is okay." With a playful glint in his eyes, Freed slid deeper inside.

Laxus moaned as pleasure and weirdness mixed in some bizarre yet amazing way. It was … strange. And incredible. Maybe a little discomforting, but not truly painful. No wonder Freed reacted so intensely. Freed felt this sort of pleasure each time Laxus touched him down here. Freed got this weird but wonderful sensation every single time.

"Freed…" he groaned.

He cocked his head to the side as he gazed down at his finger sliding inside and back out. In a trance, he whispered, "I do like watching this."

Laxus' scarred eyebrow raised. "What?"

"Your face." His face, his ass, his whole body reacting to his touches. He loved it all! "Heh, this is actually pretty nice: giving you pleasure for a change."

"The hell you talkin' about? You always give me pleasure."

"Yeah, but … not like this." He slid back, almost out, but when he pressed in again, a second finger joined him, stretching wider. Laxus cried out, struggling not to moan, and failing dramatically.

"Ah fuck! You know just what you're doing, don't you?"

"Well, you do it to me so much, I have an idea of … where … to … hit."

With an impish smirk, Freed pressed as deep as he could and let his fingers curl up until he felt the lump inside.

Laxus' eyes popped open, and a gasp of pleasure sputtered out so suddenly, there was no way he could hold himself back from the noise. "God, what was that?" He heard chuckling and glared up at Freed. He had done something amazing, and Laxus wanted to know, "What the hell did you just do?"

"Prostate," he explained simply with an imperious smile.

"Aw, fuck. So that's how it feels."

"You've never done it? Like, even on your own?"

"No!"

"Not even, y'know, just curious? With your own finger."

"No," he sneered. "I've never thought about it." He realized Freed was staring hard now. "…What?"

He shook his head out of his shocked daze. "I just thought it was weird. I mean, you know exactly where to hit on me. I figured maybe you—you know—practiced on your own."

"Well I don't, okay?" He hated to admit that he knew what felt good only due to years as a professional sadist and touching other men. He hated to think about those years now. "Do that again," he whispered.

"You mean … here?"

He curled his fingers again, stroking that spot, aiming for it. Laxus' fists clenched the sheets, and his body arched up on its own. "Fuck! Argh!" He strained not to make sounds like that, but … holy shit, it felt amazing! "Touch me everywhere."

"Even here?" His other hand reached down, and he softly stroked Laxus' balls.

"Oh God, yes. Oh God," he shuddered deeply.

Those were the hands of a fucking angel! Laxus felt ashamed at his wanton moans, but no amount of clenching his teeth could hold him back. He was ready to roar like a dragon. When he looked up, he saw Freed with what had to be the sexiest, most fuckable face, a tiny smile that showed pure and utter enthrallment, while intense desire smoldered in his eyes.

"Don't look at me like that," Laxus grumbled. "You're gonna make me come."

"Wouldn't want that, would we?" he smirked, but then uncertainty twisted in. "Um, can I try something?"

"What?"

"Um, it … it might be a little weird."

Weird? Oh, he had to hear this! "Okay, tell me."

He wanted this. He had wanted to do it since their first time together, but it was awkward to ask, and he knew it would be embarrassing for him personally. That was partly why Freed wanted to ask. It was daring and humiliating and … oh God, so delicious!

"Can I … um … uh … be … on top?"

Laxus stared at him blankly and muttered, "What the hell?"

Oh crap, that came out totally wrong! "I mean riding on top. Not … not that," he said bashfully. "Just … sitting … on top."

Laxus still stared at him, but a dark fire burned his blue eyes. In a low and commanding voice, he snarled, "Get that damn plug out of your ass right now."

"Right." Breathlessly, with his heart fluttering with excitement, Freed reached behind him … and yanked. It came out so fast, so sudden, he cried out and collapsed on top of Laxus' chest, gasping in pain.

"Okay, you went way too fast."

"Shut up," he snapped, wanting to get over the pain quickly.

"Oh, you're telling me to shut up now?" Laxus asked in a challenge.

Freed gulped down the shocking pain. Lesson learned: never yank a butt plug out forcefully. It burned down there, but that hardly diminished his desire. If anything, it made him want to be filled up again, and quickly. The pain eased away, and he slowly climbed up, straddling Laxus across the hips.

"C-can I?"

"You better now that you've said it."

"Okay." He began to pull back his other hand.

"Keep your finger in my ass."

"What?"

"Keep…" He grabbed Freed's wrist. "…that damn finger up my ass when you do this."

"Oh, right."

Laxus snatched the lube off the nightstand and thrust it at Freed, silently ordering him to prep him. Freed drizzled the viscous fluid on, then handed the bottle back. He held Laxus' cock with one hand, with the other twisted behind him and down between the butt cheeks. Holding the twitching erection steady, he lowered himself down. He was already slick and stretched from the plug, so Laxus glided in with hardly any resistance. Freed moaned as pressure returned to his ass, thicker this time, way more intense.

"Oh God, yes." Laxus closed his eyes as he felt Freed slip down onto him. It was incredible to feel, and as his eyes peeked open, he saw Freed's flushed face as he gave himself a moment to adjust. "Damn, you're so hot."

Freed felt the ache ebb away, and when he looked down, he saw his thunder god laid out before him. Like this, being on top and looking down, was incredible. "Laxus…"

"You okay?" he asked in amazement.

"It feels good like this." That was an understatement! "Really good." Dammit, his eloquence went right out the window when he was being pierced by that cock.

Laxus saw the intense pleasure. Maybe reclining like this and watching his little slave do all the work wasn't such a bad thing! With a playful laugh, he ordered, "Ride me, cowboy."

Freed chuckled. "That's stupid." Seriously, what a cliché thing to say!

"Yeah, it is," he admitted, but then he stared hard and ordered, "But ride me anyway."

Damn, that was the sort of dominating look that made Freed turn to putty. He tried to adjust his position, but his other hand was twisted strangely. He began to pull it out again.

"Keep your finger there."

"It's a little awkward—"

"I don't care," Laxus cut in. "I want you to keep touching me inside."

"O-okay. Maybe if I angle it like— Oh God!" he suddenly screamed with a high yelp. "That felt good. Ooooh!"

Laxus grabbed his hips. "Stay like that." Freed moaned and shook his head. It was too intense! "Stay … like that." Such an order could not be disobeyed. "You okay?"

"Yeah." He answered, but it was more like a question. Was he really okay? He felt like if he shifted even a little, his whole body would shatter in pleasure.

"Try moving."

Freed just barely pulled back up. He cried, almost cursed as lightning flashed through all of his nerves. It was so intense, it was painful, yet that made it feel so much more wonderful.

"It's hitting right in your sweet spot, ain't it?"

He shivered and whimpered, "Mm-hmm."

"Angle yourself how you want it."

Freed shifted just a little to ease off the intensity.

"Here's your order, bitch," Laxus said roguishly, and he tugged on the collar ring again, reminding Freed that even if he was on top, he was the slave here. "Entertain me."

"Nngh!" Freed felt ashamed. Entertain him? How?

"Come on! I'm always dancing for you. Your turn to give the lap dance."

Laxus grabbed Freed's shoulders and hefted himself up into a sitting position. Without pulling out, he readjusted Freed to be sitting on his lap.

Freed flinched as a bone shifted in his wrist. "Laxus!"

"Oh, you can get your hand out now."

"Thanks." He pulled the fingers out and shook loose his aching hand.

"I don't want to break your wrist. You have a fencing match coming up after January, right?" Freed nodded, happy that Laxus remembered. "So I have to take care of these hands." He grabbed the hand into his own and massaged the strain. "Nice long fingers." He saw lube covering them, as well as that tiny bit of brown from earlier. "Dirty fingers, now."

Freed moaned with embarrassment. He was dirty! And it felt good!

Laxus reached over to the nightstand, yanked a tissue out of a box, and wiped the fingers clean. He smiled at Freed as he cleaned the filth he made him touch. Freed's eyes turned aside bashfully, feeling giddy that Laxus was caring for him. The tissue was dropped to the floor, then Laxus raised Freed's hand and kissed the underside of his wrist, right where it was most sensitive. He could feel the flinch in Freed's body tighten around his cock, and his blue eyes gleamed up mischievously. Softly, he nipped the wrist with his teeth, giving Freed a possessive love bite, right there on the wrist. Freed's mouth dropped open like he wanted to speak, but nothing except a soft moan came out.

What an incredible man!

"Come on, lap dance." Laxus traced his finger around the edge of the slave collar. "Dance for me."

Dance… Dance? Freed had been raised to attend grand balls and galas, taught the waltz, tango, and ballroom dancing, years of dancing lessons so he would not humiliate the Justine family at parties. Oh, he could certainly dance! But he never thought he would give someone a lap dance. Not even his private fantasies were that daring.

"I, um," and he laughed nervously. "I don't know what to do."

"Move your damn hips!" Laxus snapped, too horny to be patient.

"Um, like this?" He slowly swiveled left and right. How did Laxus do this?

"Come on, do I have to put on some music? Hold on a sec." He leaned back, shifting Freed with the cock still inside of him. Laxus reached over to the nightstand and got his cellphone. He flipped through songs, then paused. "Heh, can't believe I've got this song on here. This is probably a weird song but, uh … maybe you'll like it."

A soft arpeggio of notes started up, just guitars, a light and airy feel, and Laxus set his cellphone back down, letting the music play.

Freed was not familiar with the tune right away. "Um, do I know this song?"

"Probably not," Laxus shrugged as a female began to sing soft, breathy lyrics. "Just sway."

"Okay … um, like this?" In time to the slow song, Freed swiveled his hips, swaying on top and feeling that cock move inside.

"Yeah. Sway." He saw Freed shudder from the movement within, and he felt those hips moving him, swiveling and driving his cock in just a little deeper as Freed began to relax. "Just like that."

As Freed swayed to the music, Laxus gazed up at him and sang to him.

"Oh your face when you laugh.
All my worries fade.
You can grab me by my jeans.
Pull and take what you want of me."

Truly, when he was with Freed, all of his worries melted. He would give this man every bit of pleasure he wanted, anything at all. Everything! Because Freed had given him a true meaning to his dismal life. He had broken into a heart that had never known sensual love, roused a desire that he thought he did not even possess, and now Freed had changed him fully.

Gone was Thor the Stripper. Now he was just Laxus Dreyar.

For the first time in years, perhaps the first time since his mother died, he could be fully himself in front of someone, and he did not have to worry about being scolded, laughed at, or anything. It was just him and Freed, and Freed accepted everything about him, even the tenderness that hid deep inside.

"That's good. Just like that," Laxus encouraged as the song soared louder, a cymbal crashed, and Freed began to get into the music, caressing Laxus' shoulders with his hands and swaying with his whole body, truly giving a lap dance. Granted, it was a slow song, but it somehow fit Freed.

"It's kinda fun," he admitted awkwardly.

Laxus grinned at that adorable blush. "It should be."

Freed found himself really swaying to the music, swiveling his hips, rising up a little just to slide back down, far deeper than he could earlier when he was tense and nervous. It surprised him how this simple thing banished his apprehension. Like this, they were equals. Well, almost. He was still wearing a collar and being ordered to dance, but face to face, noses sometimes touching, lips occasionally brushing together, he felt like Laxus was less thunder god and more mortal human. He was not Thor, just Laxus. Although Freed liked when Laxus was rough with him and humiliated him, like this was rather nice once in a while, too.

"Laxus?" he asked, since he felt confidence returning, and something had been bothering him all afternoon. "Um, about the strip club. Are you sure about that? I mean, are you gonna miss it?"

"Hell no," he whispered. "I only dance for you—" He grabbed Freed's hips. "—and you only dance like this for me."

Exclusiveness! It made Freed smile happily, and he whispered, "Okay."

Laxus saw the hidden joy. Really, he should have quit that damn club ages ago, as soon as he realized how precious Freed was to him. Bob had been telling him since the Halloween fencing match, when the television camera had broadcast the image of Laxus watching Freed fight. That bald bartender with too much makeup kept urging Laxus to quit strip dancing and grab hold of Freed, never let him go, and to stop putting this special bond they had in danger. Bob was seriously a romantic! However, stubbornness and a lack of confidence—unsure if Freed felt as strongly about this relationship as he did—kept Laxus chained to the stage and blinding spotlight. Now, his world was softer, less isolated, and the light was only the gleam in those long-lashed turquoise-green eyes.

Laxus felt flustered as he suddenly realized, this was the first time someone else had given him a lap dance.

"It's not the best song to dance by, is it?" he muttered.

"Just slow like this is nice, though," Freed smiled, swaying more.

Laxus suddenly flopped backwards and landed on the pillows. "Are you ready?"

Freed felt calm and confident. He wanted to pleasure Laxus with the same sort of intense pleasure as he had received many times now. He nodded firmly. "Yeah."

"Okay, just keep touching inside. Slip it in again."

"All right." With Laxus lying back, Freed could reach behind him, and Laxus spread his thighs for him to reach far enough. "Like this?" He slid one finger inside, still slick within, and Laxus was less tight this time.

"Nnngh!" Seriously, he would never get used to this pleasure! "Okay. And just go for it."

Gazing down into those blue eyes, Freed lifted his hips, then slid down. The depth he could reach at this angle was shocking, and he moaned instantly.

"Like that," Laxus said in approval. As he bit his lip, Freed turned his head aside, but Laxus yanked it back. "Let me watch you."

Freed slowly undulated his hips, riding on top, letting himself glide down onto that cock. Having that bit of control, showing Laxus how he liked it, taking pleasure … pleasuring himself … it was incredible, and it was making him desperate. He reached for himself, but before he could give a stroke to his own painful erection, Laxus snatched away his hand.

"Don't touch yourself."

Freed gasped and wanted to protest.

"Not yet. I'll do it when I see it's time."

"Laxus…"

He smirked arrogantly. "What?"

"I need it," he begged. His cock was burning with the desire to be touched.

"Not yet. I know how you are. You'd come in two seconds." He relaxed back onto the fluffy pillows and smiled up at Freed. "Keep riding me."

Freed obeyed, sliding down, pulling back up, feeling himself getting impaled over and over again. He could barely stand looking down and seeing the hazy pleasure in Laxus' eyes. He whimpered, "It feels good."

"Of course it does," he said arrogantly. "It's my cock you're bouncing on."

Freed thrust down and felt that length filling him more and more, all the way in, until his butt was flush against Laxus' crotch. "It's … deeper. It gets in deeper."

Damn, those whimpers were driving him crazy! "You really like this, huh?"

"Mm-hmm," he nodded vigorously.

"Good." Suddenly, Laxus let out a moan. He was trying to hold back, but having Freed do the work and watching him—oh God, just watching him—was too much. He hissed as the pleasure shivered down to his toes. His balls were already drawing up. "You're making me come undone."

Freed felt the need to grab himself again, just some friction, enough to ease the burning tingle, but that massive hand grabbed his wrist again. "Laxus, please. Please!"

"No, not yet. Almost. Come on. You got to dance more for me if you want it."

Whining, Freed sped up, bobbing up and down, hoping that if he went faster, maybe Laxus would finally touch him.

"Almost," Laxus whispered, but he felt shivering deep inside him. "Shit, almost! Come on. The faster you do it for me, the faster you get it."

Desperate for touching, Freed thrust himself up and down quicker, until his green hair was flipping down into his face, curtaining the flushed cheeks.

"That's it. That's … it. Oh God, yes," he hissed, trembling as Freed's ass tightened. "Squeeze like that."

"Like this?" Freed tightened in twitching pulses.

That completely pushed Laxus over the brink of keeping aloof. "Oh God!" he roared. He released Freed's wrist and grabbed that needy cock, stroking it rapidly. Freed's spine arched backwards with the pleasure of finally getting touched. "See? You do good, you get touched."

"Nnngh!" It was almost too much, and Freed shook his head, straining to hold back.

Laxus felt a bubble of pleasure growing within him, swelling, surging, aching to explode. "Keep going and don't you dare stop."

Freed thrust on him, rocking his hips, feeling that cock gliding in quicker. Then suddenly those powerful hips began to thrust up, meeting him, driving in harder. "Laxus…" he cried out, beginning to blank out to the pleasure.

"I'm gonna claim you." He sneered, wanting this man so much, nothing could be enough. Biting, sucking, marking his skin… "Claim you," he hissed. How could he claim him strongly enough? There was no way. "Claim … you…" There was only this, and hopefully this was enough, because he was at his limits. "Ahh! F-fuck!"

Laxus slammed his hips up hard, shivering and grunting tensely as that bubble of pleasure burst and everything rushed out, all at once, an eruption of ecstasy. Freed gasped in surprise as he felt the pressure filling him, dripping out, and running back down his spread thighs. He looked down and saw the intense euphoria on Laxus' face.

"Keep touching, please!" he screamed, so ready and wanting to share in this.

Laxus was still on his high, but he blindly grabbed Freed's cock and pumped it. "Like that?"

Freed felt spasms squeezing, tighter and tighter, and a rushing feeling, like his whole soul was stampeding over a cliff and ready to plummet him into Hell. A spiraling moan jolted up and out of his throat until everything vanished, he could not hear anything but his racing heart thrumming through his ears, and he felt only pleasure, so intense, so wonderful, nothing else in the world mattered.

Laxus watched with amazement as Freed's spine bowed backwards and his mouth opened wide in a cry as he came. He shot out onto Laxus' chest and dripped thickly down his wrist, moaning loudly with jolt after jolt of pleasure. Laxus stroked him slowly, watching Freed panting, shuddering, and milking that pleasure for as long as he could, until Freed shook his head when the sensitivity became too much.

Slowly, he sank, an angel with broken wings, given flight for a few minutes only to drift delicately back to earth. Laxus watched it all, how seraphic Freed looked when he was like this. It was the closest thing to a religious experience as he had ever personally witnessed.

"Goddammit, I love you," he whispered in awe.

Those weary eyes slowly opened, drained and mutely thankful. Laxus gazed at him, stunned that this green angel somehow blessed a sinner like him. He looked aside, realizing he was thinking weird things again, and laughed at his own strange thoughts. He was crazy, for certain. Crazy and in love. And it was all Freed's fault!

"I really do love you," he repeated with a soft, exhausted sigh. "You okay?"

"Mm-hmm," Freed hummed sleepily.

"You made a real mess on me."

Freed gazed down and saw the splattered cum dripping thickly along Laxus' torso. He blushed at seeing the mess. "O-oh. Sorry."

Even after making love, Freed could act so cutely bashful, and that amused Laxus to no end. "Come on. Up." He helped Freed by picking up his hips and shifting him up off the defeated cock.

As the flared head slipped out, Freed flinched. "Ah, ouch!"

Laxus saw that was more than just sensual pain. Freed looked like it truly hurt. "You okay?" he again asked.

"Yeah, it's just kinda … uh, deeper than I'm used to." He was also still sore from pulling the butt plug out so quickly. It burned slightly now that his hormones were not masking the pain, and Freed wondered if perhaps he accidentally tore himself a little. He looked down, but he saw no blood on Laxus' penis, only lube and a little bit of cum that came out. "W-was that okay?" he asked timidly.

Laxus arched his eyebrows up. "What do you think?" he exclaimed. Shit, was it okay? It was a hell of a lot more than merely okay. It was fucking awesome!

Freed laughed softly to himself. "I just want to know if you liked it."

"Of course I did. I want to do it again."

He choked up in shock and cried out in a panic, "Now?"

"No! Not now. Another time."

Laxus was way too exhausted for the moment. Maybe he was not doing the work this time, but that was incredibly intense on an emotional level. He felt uttered sated. He closed his eyes in exhaustion and yanked Freed down into his arms, having him curl up beside him.

Laxus chuckled with sleepy happiness. "You were so sexy, riding on top of me. I mean seriously, I just wanted to grab your hair and say giddy up."

Freed propped up on an elbow and gazed down playfully at him. "Isn't that my line?"

Brat! "Shut up."

He lightly bit on the tip of his tongue and purred, "You're my pony."

Laxus burst out in laughter. Seriously, this little mouse had a mouth on him! "Shut up," he chuckled. He yanked Freed back up to ride him and snarled lustfully, "I'm gonna buck you like a wild bronco." His hips snapped up.

"Ow!" Freed cried out, bruised down there. "Okay don't, don't." He climbed off slowly and settled back down beside Laxus.

"Sorry." He stroked through the messy green hair that now stood out everywhere. "Sore?" he asked in concern.

Freed wanted to assure him he was fine, but just then Laxus' hand drifted to his ass to feel. "Nngh!" It hurt! He was glad he had also packed away some medicine.

"Sorry," Laxus whispered. He kissed him on the forehead in apology. "Let's get cleaned up. But," he smirked, "we got this hotel all night, and by the end of this night, I don't want you to be able to walk." He grinned slyly at the ideas he had forming in his head already. First, dinner. Then, one fuckingly delicious dessert! He wanted Freed to limp. He wanted him to scream and shiver and whimper for his master. Oh God, he wanted this man! "I'll have to carry you back."

Freed made a weak noise. Carried back? Across the university? A man of his age, a business major and son of a wealthy family, carried like a princess across the campus? The humiliation tingled his nerves, and the pain eased away.

"That would be embarrassing, wouldn't it?" Laxus egged on, knowing Freed's imagination must be raging right now.

"Mm-hmm," he whimpered. It would be utterly mortifying. Carried back, and the whole dorm would see. No, the whole campus! Laxus probably would do it, too, just to shame him publicly. That made his heart race even faster, knowing the threat very likely would be carried out.

"Good." Laxus grabbed the collar ring with one finger and yanked Freed up against him. "I'm gonna make sure you can't walk."

He blushed and protested bashfully, "I have classes tomorrow."

"I'll carry you to class."

Even worse! His classmates, his group partners, his professors! "Laxus…" he whispered. That was going way too far.

"You think I'm joking?" he said with an edge of seriousness to his voice. "I'll carry you, and I'll take care of you." He stroked back his messy hair. "But you gotta take care of me," he demanded.

Taking care of each other. Maybe Laxus liked to tease him—he sure hoped this was just teasing—but being there for one another, caring for each other, having one another's backs … that was sweet. Freed nodded at the promise. "Right."

"Good." Laxus leaned over to give Freed a gentle kiss. Turquoise eyes met electric blue, and for a moment that was all that existed, just them and this love. Then Laxus blushed and looked aside. He tried to act gruff again. "Okay, your cum is drying on my chest. It feels gross. Let's go." He yanked away and began to walk toward the restroom.

Freed laughed as he saw both sides to Laxus, the sadist and the romantic. He decided that he loved everything about him, no matter which way he acted. Everything!

As he watched his lover leave to the restroom, Freed had to admit again, this time silently to himself … Laxus really did have one damn sexy ass!

Next Chapter: An Awkward Family Reunion

Chapter Text

Laxus looked up at a house with marble columns, sculpted hedges, where limousines were pulling up behind him and the music from a string quartet played somewhere within. The door he faced had what was easily the largest wreath he had ever seen outside of mall displays. The whole house had been decked out, nothing gaudy, but gleaming Christmas lights lit up each tree along the poplar-lined drive all the way up the private road to the mansion, with a circular driveway and a fountain in the center glowing with red and green lights.

He looked down at his suit. Freed had bought it for him, claiming it was merely another "Hanukkah gift." Laxus regretted telling him about that, because it gave Freed eight days of excuses to buy things for Laxus, things he had always wanted to get but felt too awkward to give as presents without a good reason.

So here he was, wearing some over-priced, tailor-made suit with patent leather shoes that probably cost as much as his rent. Laxus had slicked his hair back, but it still spiked out no matter how he tried to comb it. He felt ridiculous wearing clothes like this, but as he faced this house that loomed like some giant monster ready to swallow him, he was glad he at least was dressed in the right "armor."

Freed looked completely stunning, of course. He wore a burgundy suit coat buttoned up, his white dress shirt showing underneath, and a bow tie knotted perfectly. He had tied his long green hair back, with only the bangs draping down, covering one side of his face like usual. Maybe it was the Christmas lights, but his turquoise eyes gleamed brighter tonight. His face showed a complex mix of happiness at coming back home for the holidays as well as hesitancy about facing his parents with his boyfriend.

Deep down inside, Freed was aware that his parents already knew Laxus, and in one of the most intimate ways. That made this meeting even more awkward. It had to be done on Christmas, when his parents hosted a massive party for coworkers, clients, and contributors to their various charities. They would be restrained by social rules, forced through propriety to keep smiling, and greet their guest with politeness. Any other day and it would almost assuredly lead to an argument. He was gambling on his parents' steep sense of keeping up public appearances. For any other family, this sort of sudden reveal would utterly ruin the holiday.

Although he fully believed that his parents would behave themselves around Laxus, despite knowing who he was and what he used to do, his heart was still racing. He had been sweating all day, terrified at the prospect of an all-out fight with his parents.

Best case scenario: his parents accepted that Laxus had left behind his old life in order to make Freed truly happy and warmly accepted him.

Worst case scenario: either flat out disowning Freed, telling him he was no longer their son, cutting off from all funds, financial abandonment, and they would be escorted off the property with an order never to come home again; or they had security drag Laxus away while locking Freed up in a room to separate the two of them, pull Freed out of college, possibly dig up enough dirt on Laxus to have him arrested while safeguarding their own involvement with him, all so they could guarantee the two never met again.

That was a hell of a worst case scenario, and it scared the crap out of Freed.

Laxus glanced down quietly. He had seen Freed's nervousness in the car, tapping his fingers on the wheel, driving extra slow, and not just to appeal to Laxus' carsickness. He had frequently asked Laxus if he just wanted to skip the party. Laxus knew it was Freed himself chickening out, so he kept saying he wanted to go. They needed to get this over with, no matter the outcome. They both agreed, Christmas was the ideal time. If it worked out, the party would be great. If there was trouble, they could slip away from his parents and go to another part of the house, schmoozing with friends, and hopefully escape an all-out altercation. If things truly exploded, they could leave, simple as that.

And if it utterly went to hell … Laxus had brass knuckles hidden in an inner jacket pocket. He was prepared to fight for his lover.

Laxus was not about to leave this mansion without Freed. He already warned Freed, if his parents did something stupid, like hit Freed or demand he stay home while sending Laxus away, he was ready to fight any lame security guards, anything at all, to make sure Freed went home with him. The blush of happiness when he declared that showed that Freed wanted to spend this whole night with Laxus, no matter what happened with his parents.

For now, Freed was nervous, staring at the door, clenching his hand and releasing it over and over. Laxus was getting impatient just standing there.

"What's the matter?" he snapped.

Freed licked his lip. "I've never been nervous coming back home," he admitted.

Laxus eyed the door, the Romanesque columns, the massive fountain, and the limos of the many distinguished guests. "With a house like this, I'd be nervous every day."

Freed had to smile at that reminder of the difference between their worlds. "I grew up here, so I'm used to it, I guess."

"Well, if you don't knock, I will."

Freed jolted out of his trance. "N-no, I will." It was his own house, after all. He could at least knock. He lifted his hand and looked at the lion-headed door knocker. He took a deep breath and let it out. "Here we go." He lifted to brass knocker and tapped it to the door softly.

Laxus rolled his eyes. "Oh, fuck that!" His heavy fist pounded into the door, reverberating through the whole entryway.

Freed jolted and looked over in horror. "Laxus!"

Those blue eyes gazed down scathingly. "What?" he growled.

Freed cringed and looked away. "Nothing." Maybe that was how people knocked on doors in the city, but he knew his soft knock would have been more than enough. The butler had likely already seen them on the video feed coming from the security camera overlooking the entryway.

Sure enough, the door opened immediately with a heavy creak of solid oak. A tall, stiff man in a dutiful tuxedo stood at the ready.

"Master Freed," he greeted with a bow.

Laxus hissed under his breath, "Master?"

Freed tapped his arm to get him to be quiet. "It's just a title," he explained in a whisper.

Laxus grumbled back, "Yeah, whatever."

Freed hoped he could behave before they even entered the house. "Um … Hi, Bas. Merry Christmas."

The servant smiled and tipped his head cordially. "Of course, Master." He eyed the blond with a stern gaze. "And this is?"

"O-oh! Um … this is … uh…" Freed looked to Laxus for help. He remembered when they first met, Laxus hated giving out his real name. He had made Freed wait until their third date before even giving him his last name. He had no clue how Laxus felt about his private information leaking out now, especially since his father had once been a client.

Laxus seemed to understand the hesitation, and he was happy that Freed did not just blurt it out. However, he was here to meet his boyfriend's family. They should meet him for who he really was. Besides, it wasn't like he could go by Thor in this situation.

"Laxus," he told the butler.

The butler's eyes widened. "L-Laxus?" However, his duty was not to question this shocking revelation. "Of course … ahem … I shall introduce you."

They stepped through the door and into a vestibule where their thick winter outercoats and scarves were removed by maids in a feminine style of tuxedo. Laxus was slightly disappointed to see that the Justines did not use French maid outfits. He would have loved to steal one and make Freed wear it.

"Are Mother and Father here?" Freed asked as he followed the butler through a corridor where a few guests had slipped out to get fresh air away from the main party.

"They've already arrived," Bas informed him.

Laxus leaned into Freed's ear. "Arrived? Don't they live here?"

Freed gave a slight shrug. "Sometimes."

"What do you mean, sometimes?" Laxus decided not to pursue it. "Weird family," he muttered to himself.

Bas opened two doors, and they stepped out onto a balcony. The room was massive, soaring two floors of the house, the dancing down below in a ballroom, then the upper floor encircling in a mezzanine lined by a gleaming white marble balustrade.

Laxus leaned over to Freed. "Weren't we on the ground floor?"

He leaned over as well and whispered, "The land slopes here. The west side of the house is one story deeper than the east side. Look at the windows," he said, nodding to the floor-to-ceiling windows lining the western wall. "It's dark out, you can't see it, but those sparkling lights are the city below."

"The houses on the hill," Laxus muttered. As a child, he used to gaze up at the hill above Magnolia and admire those mansions. Now, he was standing in one.

Bas intoned in a deep and resonating voice, "Master Freed has arrived." Then he bowed and stepped aside.

"Master," Laxus grumbled again.

"Laxus, quiet!" Freed warned, sounding serious.

"It's just weird hearing him call you master."

Freed smirked. "What? Are you the only one who gets to be called master?" He leaned forward deviously. "Or are you afraid that I'm going to make you call me master some day?"

Laxus knew he was joking. Still … "Fuck you," he grumbled.

"Quiet," Freed softly warned.

"Go to hell," Laxus said with a glare.

Freed chuckled, and he stepped toward the stairs, giving a bow to the crowd.

People down in the ballroom gazed up as the heir to the mansion strode with graceful steps, alighting down the sweeping staircase with such a genteel gait, it was like he was floating. Behind him plodded someone who most assumed was merely a bodyguard, given the sheer size of the man. They turned and resumed their conversations.

Suddenly, a graceful woman in a green gown that matched her emerald hair came forward and gave Freed a warm hug. "Oh, honey!" she said with motherly affection. "I … o-oh!" Her eyes widened in a moment of horror as she saw the man behind her son. She stared, face twitching, but she forced herself to smile. "Who's your … friend?"

Freed realized right away, his mother had recognized the former sadist-for-hire. This introduction had to be pulled off as naturally as possible. "Mom, this is Laxus Dreyar."

She tried hard to smile, but her lips kept twitching. "L-Laxus? W-well." She laughed awkwardly. "Uh … um … well, my name is Liberty." Delayed by shock, she thrust her hand out, took his in a delicate hold, and curtsied with utmost propriety.

"Nice to meet you, ma'am," Laxus said in as polite of a tone as he could muster.

"Uh … y-yes." She looked around at the crowd with a flustered nervousness, as if anyone might also recognize him and wonder why this man was in her house. Instead, she snagged the true master of the house and yanked him over like a shield. "This is my husband, Llewellyn. Dear, this is our son's friend, Laxus Dreyar." She quickly whispered something into his ear just as the man's eyes widened at seeing his former dominant standing in front of him. Whatever she said, he calmed down, or at least he put up a mask of civility.

"Ah. Welcome … Mister Dreyar, was it?" he asked, much better at keeping up appearances than his frittering wife.

"Yes, sir." Laxus' face gave away nothing at all.

"Nice to meet you … Mr. Dreyar." He stretched his hand out to shake, but when Laxus took the palm, those fingers were trembling. He was good at keeping things under control, but Llewellyn Justine was obviously overwhelmed by a chance to touch him again.

Laxus just barely managed to keep his eyes from rolling as he quietly intoned, "Same here, sir."

Freed broke the tension by exclaiming, "Father! What happened to your nose?"

The businessman lightly touched the bruising that copious amounts of makeup only slightly hid. "Oh, you know how it is. Playing a hard game, took a chance swing…" His eyes drifted up to Laxus. "Backfired and got hit."

Laxus just stared at him. Most of the bruising was gone by now. The makeup did a good job at covering some of the damage, but anyone who knew Llewellyn well would see that his nose was slightly crooked.

"Wow, looks pretty bad," Freed said in concern. "Did it break?"

Llewellyn waved it off. "I know a good plastic surgeon. He'll fix it right up after the new year."

Laxus kept his face impassive. "That's too bad, sir."

Llewellyn gazed up, mournful but hiding his emotions with professional composure. "Yes … it is."

Freed glanced between the two. The atmosphere was thick. If this continued, someone was going to notice and wonder. He scanned the party and suddenly caught sight of a good distraction. "Oh! There she is." With a nod to his parents, he yanked Laxus aside. "Here's my sister, Everg- … who the hell is that?" he whispered in astonishment at the behemoth beside his brunette sister.

"What?" she asked with her mouth full of hors d'oeuvre. "Oh, it's just you, Freed." She realized he was staring at the huge man. "Hehe, yep! This is my boyfriend," she said in a chirpy tone. She yanked the massive man away from the shrimp cocktails. "Get over here, Elfman. Stop pigging out."

His mouth was full as he stated, "This is good food."

She gave a sigh and let him go back to eating. "He's a bit of a brute but…" She grabbed Freed's sleeve and yanked him in excitedly. "Look at his muscles!" she quietly squealed. "Oh my goodness, he's so … oh!" She suddenly caught sight of Laxus. She grinned, cocking an eyebrow up with interest. "Hello, who's this?"

"Hey! Mine!" Freed snapped possessively. "Back off, sis."

"Oh darn," she mumbled. The cute ones were always gay! However, a perfect smile was instantly on her lips. "Hello," she greeted with a high-society titter that was precisely like her mother's. "I'm Evergreen." She presented her hand out, wrist limp, a feminine gesture she had learned.

The blond took the hand, dipped over it, but did not kiss the fingers. "Laxus," he greeted.

Freed was amazed that Laxus knew these little tricks people did at parties like this. Maybe he had seen enough movies to get the gist of proper behavior. Or could it be his mother taught him some rules of etiquette in his youth?

"Laxus," she said, considering his name as well as his physique and finding both to be unique and pleasant. "Nice. Oh, uh, and this is Elfman Strauss."

Elfman waved again, his mouth full of shrimp and sauce. Laxus drifted over to the food table to eat some of what this large man was having. If it was good enough for him, it should be edible for anyone. While the two brawny men talked, Evergreen leaned over to her big brother and said in a playful singsong.

"Mine has bigger muscles than yours does!"

Freed rolled his eyes. "Oh, come on! This is not a competition."

"Of course it is," she smirked. "Yours isn't half bad, though."

"Yeah, yours looks … better than the last one," Freed said hesitantly.

She waved that off. "Oh, shush."

Freed scanned the crowd. "Where's Bickslow?"

She scoffed softly. "Like I know! He's off playing with his dolls or something."

Freed rubbed out tension between his brow. "Oh God, not those!"

Just then Laxus came up to the siblings holding a cracker with some unnameable mixture on it. "Dolls?"

Freed shook his head. "You don't want to know."

For once, Evergreen fulled agreed with him. "No, you don't want to know," she said with a high, grating voice, stiffening at the embarrassment of having a brother like him. She gave out a sigh, just glad that Bickslow was not totally ruining the party this time.

Laxus ate his cracker in one bite and folded his arms. "Oh, gimme a break. What is it, sex dolls?

Evergreen almost screamed but choke up. Freed turned aside with a blush.

Laxus realized, he stepped on a land mine. "Oh great…" he moaned.

Evergreen struggled to speak, but finally she gave up, grinning to overcompensate for her blathering. "Ah … E-Elfman, um … let's … uh … well … Oh! I … I see someone over here." She laughed and waved a cute farewell. "Bye!" Then she yanked Elfman with her over to some younger members of the crowd.

Laxus and Freed stood by one another with the guests all around, chatting and oblivious to what just happened.

Laxus quietly realized, "I really walked into that one."

"Y-yeah," Freed admitted. It was less of walking into it and more like crashing through with a spiked bludgeon.

"Ooookay," he whispered, looking around at all the hobnobbing. "Your family is officially weird."

Freed shrugged faintly. "Yeah." Despite their status, they had their issues.

"They're not bad, though," Laxus decided. "Your sister seems friendly."

Freed's eyes narrowed. "Yeah, she's friendly … too friendly." He saw that Laxus did not catch what he was implying, so he leaned up to his ear and covered his mouth with his hand. "She was staring at you."

"Yeah, so? I'm a lot to look at."

"Oh, don't get cocky!"

Laxus chuckled at his jealousy and possessiveness.

They walked around, Freed waved to a few people, but no one came directly up to him. Frankly, he was glad. He never felt fully comfortable amongst his parents' friends, colleagues, and business partners, as well as people hoping to win favors from the Justine family. Finally, they were alone again, watching dancers but standing to the side.

"So, meeting my folks," Freed whispered, easily spotting his mother dancing with a well-known venture capitalist while his father chatted up an elderly local politician. "Was that just weird?"

Laxus had hoped not to say anything yet. "Che! I'll be honest. Yeah," he confessed. Awkward … as … hell! Still, the meeting went as smoothly as he could hope for.

"At least they behaved themselves." He spared a look up and saw Laxus staring in the direction of Llewellyn. "Um … what did you say to them … you know, when…?" He could not think of any delicate way to say it. "I mean, they know you're no longer … taking … clients. Right?"

Laxus patted his shoulder. "Freed, they were the first ones to know."

"Really!" he cried out. Laxus called up his parents first? He supposed that showed how much honor Laxus felt toward his mother and father. "So they know?"

"Yep."

"Maybe that's why Father gave you that look. I'm sure he was disappointed."

Laxus peered back over toward Llewellyn. "Yeah … he was," he muttered, thinking of the irony.

Freed heard more than Laxus was willing to say. "What, did he make you an offer? Stay on and I'll pay you triple?" As he chuckled, he saw Laxus' eyes dart to the side. His heart immediately sank. "Oh God, he did." He felt his stomach turn sour as he realized an offer like that showed just how much his father had wanted him … wanted his boyfriend!

"Hey." Behind his back, out of sight of everyone, his large hand slipped over and rubbed up Freed's spine, hoping to soothe his worries. "It's over, okay?" he whispered with sweet tenderness. Those low rumbles made Freed smile immediately, and Laxus loved to see the relief in his face. "Only you now." Only this man! Only him! His fingers traced along Freed's spine, sending jolts along his nerve. "That life, it's all over, so—"

"BABIES!"

Laxus jolted and almost grabbed Freed to protect him. "What the hell?"

A tall man ran forward, flying down the stairs and weaving through the crowd, barreling toward them. He grabbed Freed into his arms and crushed him into a hug. The man squeezed and shook Freed back and forth in happiness.

"B-Bickslow! Settle down." Freed could barely breathe as his brother smothered him.

"Babiiiiiiiies!" the man yelled.

Freed finally pried the arms off. "Yes, babies," he chuckled awkwardly, hoping not too many people were staring. Unfortunately, they all were. As Bickslow stepped back, Freed waved his hand across his nose and whispered, "Oh God, you reek of marijuana!"

He cleared his throat and snapped a finger to Bas with a sharp point toward his younger brother. The butler nodded. They were prepared for situations like this. Bickslow had to be aired out and sobered up. While Bas hurried off, Freed decided he absolutely had to keep his brother away from the guests. Introductions!

"L-Laxus, this is my brother, Bickslow. Bickslow, this—"

Without waiting, the man turned and grinned with his tongue lolling out. "Hi!" he cried out loudly. "Are you my brother's boy-toy?"

Freed slapped his palm to his face. Oh, he just had to put it that way!

Laxus merely looked amused. "Other way around. He's mine to play with."

"Laxus!" Freed moaned under his breath. These two together were instant disaster.

"Cool!" smiled Bickslow.

Freed looked at Bickslow, who had the glazed look and widened pupils of being high in his eyes; then he glanced to Laxus, who was holding back a smile. "Riiiiight," he muttered. He saw Evergreen completely ignoring the scene, pretending she was not at all aware of the situation. Bratty sister! "Hey, uh … Evergreen's got some candy for you."

"Candy? Gimme!"

Bickslow rushed off and collided into his sister, hanging onto her and almost slobbering with his tongue hanging out, demanding candy. Evergreen had a moment of panic. The glare she shot at Freed could have turned any normal person to stone, but Freed was used to her scathing annoyance.

Laxus eyed the siblings for a moment longer. "Okay, he is stoned, drunk, and totally sexed up."

Freed gave an apologetic shrug. "That's about right for Bickslow."

Laxus nodded slowly. "I like him."

That made Freed laugh. "Yeah, you would," he muttered. "So, you just met the entire family."

"Not bad." It was refreshing to know there was a weirdo in every household. It made the Justines more down-to-earth than his worries had built them up to be. "So, what else do we do at this party?"

Freed shrugged. "We eat."

They were standing by a table, so Laxus eyed the numerous dishes. "I don't even know what this crap is."

Freed sympathized, but it was still amusing. Laxus really did look out of place here. "How about I get you a drink?"

He groaned. Yes! Alcohol! "I could really use it."

"Be right back." He walked over to a table where a bartender was attending to the many guests seeking out the Justine's famous wine collection. However, they had a whole wet bar full of different spirits. Freed hoped they had something Laxus would like.

The blond listened to the music. At least that was pleasant, a string quartet playing Dmitri Shostakovich's The Second Waltz, something uplifting and playful, not as stodgy as other composers. Laxus thought it might be nice to stand by them, let the musicians know they were appreciated. However, before he could take more than two steps, someone came up beside him.

"Thor?"

Without turning around, Laxus' voice dropped to a growl. "I'm not Thor." He glared around and stared hard at Llewellyn Justine. Of course this man waited until he was alone to confront him.

Llewellyn gave a tiny pout. "Laxus, was it?"

He gazed cautiously. "That's right … Mister Justine."

His words were always cold, but this time there was harshness to his voice. Llewellyn raised his head, keeping a dignified visage that Laxus almost never saw in their sadomasochistic playtime. "Look, about that day. I apologize," he said formally.

"Good," Laxus said curtly.

Llewellyn's composure was being put to the test. He glanced around. Although no one was watching him directly, he knew parties like this. No one stared, but everyone was passively watching. He dropped his voice as low as possible without being drowned out by the buzz. "I just need to know that you're not hurting my boy."

Laxus gave a closed-lip chuckle. "Definitely not, sir." He glanced at the alcohol table, where Freed was trying to place his order and apparently having issues.

Llewellyn followed his gaze. His son truly had grown up. "He looks well."

"He should. I've been taking care of him, making sure he eats. You should have seen the crap in his dorm fridge. I demanded that he get real food." Laxus watched as the man's eyes dropped in conflicted emotions. How must this be, for a father to lose a wanted male lover to the son he never fully accepted as being gay?

"It must have been awkward, finding out who he was." It was certainly awkward for Llewellyn to find out his dominant was also his son's boyfriend.

Laxus rolled his eyes. "That's an understatement." Awkward? He still had a sick feeling in his stomach when he remembered how he almost lost Freed that day.

"He … knows?"

Laxus hesitated. It might be easier to lie, but this man deserved the truth. For being one of his best clients, for behaving himself up until the very last day, for years of good pay and good drinks, he deserved the truth.

"Yeah, he knows. We kind of figured it out together."

Llewellyn's body stiffened ever so slightly. "So he knows about me, hmm?"

Laxus saw the fear and sadness twitching the man's face, but never breaking through to the surface. What must this be like as a father, to find out that your son knows your darkest, kinkiest secret? Laxus was not close to his family anymore; his grandfather rarely spoke to him, his father was missing and on the run, his mother was dead, and he had no siblings. He tried to imagine it, though. What if his mother was alive? What if she suddenly found out what Laxus did for a living? How embarrassing would it be for him? Llewellyn was keeping his emotions under control, but just barely.

"He's a lot like you, sir," Laxus said in a casual tone, but he realized the sudden surge in music as the string players crescendoed to a forte gave them some more privacy. He leaned into Llewellyn's ear. "Very much like you, actually: a masochist, submissive, likes some of the same kinks as you—"

"Not here," he snapped quietly, and anger flared in the man's eyes.

"Yet unlike you," Laxus pressed on, lowering his voice as the surge in music sank back down, "Freed is a perfect slave. He's the only person in the world allowed to call me master."

"I … I don't want to know about that!" Jealousy. Definitely this was jealousy! It had been Llewellyn's pleading and beseeching Laxus by calling him master that led to his broken nose.

As a sadist, Laxus was fascinated by pushing his former submissive into such a tight corner. He would have loved to push harder, really drive this man to desperation, but he had to be kind for Freed's sake. This was Freed's family, after all. He wanted Freed to enjoy this party, not regret coming here.

"I'm saying it how it is, sir." Laxus leaned down over Llewellyn and glared at him. "So don't you dare get on his case, because morally, you're not the slightest bit above him."

Llewellyn stared hard. If this hulk of a man was into business, he would be a truly intimidating opponent. Luckily, this was not a business meeting, no stocks and bonds were in jeopardy, but something far more was in danger. Here, at this party, this sadistic man could easily bring down Llewellyn Justine in front of everyone who held him in admiration. As the magnate stared up at the former strip dancer, he realized what sort of hold this blond brute had over him. One word, or merely the wrong gesture, and his social standing would crumble in an instant.

Laxus smiled as he saw the pride in this man's face trembling and cracking. "Now, let's pretend like we don't know one another, you're a cutthroat businessman, and I … am a humble electrician."

Llewellyn jolted. "You're a what?"

"Well, I am now."

"I thought you…" He glanced around cautiously. "…danced."

"Not anymore," Laxus shrugged lightly. "I have to thank you, sir. You taught me a good lesson. I couldn't keep doing what I was doing and still be the type of man that Freed deserves." He gave a casual shrug. "I gave it all up. For him," he emphasized. "That's how much I love him." His blue eyes narrowed. "So don't you dare get in our way. Got it?"

Llewellyn swallowed back any feelings he might have. "Understood," he said quietly.

"Good." Laxus smiled in a condescending way. Just then, he saw the green-haired man approaching. "Hey Freed," he grinned, eagerly taking a cup from him and drinking. Instead, he made a face. "Oh God, do they water this shit down?"

"Watch your language," Freed warned.

"Yeah, I forgot," Laxus grumbled. He tried to drink more and made another face. Too much tonic, not enough gin. This was a weak drink for people with weak stomachs.

Freed eyed the two with worries. It was obvious these two were in the midst of a heavy discussion. He had heard people around the room whispering about it, wondering who the handsome tall man with a scar was, why Mister Justine was so interested in him, and why the business tycoon looked so intimidated. He had heard everything from guesses that the large man was a soldier and son of some powerful politician, to worried whispers that maybe he was in the mafia and threatening extortion.

"Hey, Father," Freed greeted, his voice mumbling as he wondered what he could say.

"Hello, son," the father said stiffly. He forced an amiable smile. "How's school?"

School? Ah, of course! They had to make the appearance of normality. Of course a father would ask his son about the progress of his education. That was only natural.

"Um … good. Aced everything. I made the Dean's List for the Fall semester," he smiled, hoping that would make his father proud. "I'm still in that honor society." Nothing was working. His father still had a harsh face. "Next semester is my last, so I've already arranged which classes I need to take. Everything seems to be … going well." Was there really no way to please this man?

"That's good," Llewellyn said placidly, still keeping his emotions suppressed. "Don't slack on your studies in your final semester. You wouldn't want to get distracted by too much … entertainment."

Freed's eyes flitted between his father and his lover. Was this a hint? Did his father not approve?

Laxus stood to the side. They were garnering attention, and he knew that was bad. "Oh fuck this. You both know the truth," he whispered.

Freed jolted. Was he acting strangely? Glancing around, he saw the cliques whispering and glancing over. "Laxus," he sighed.

"I'm not going to say anything out loud, but obviously you two … you need…" Why the hell was he mediating? This was most awkward for him, after all. He was the stranger here. "Ya know what? Fuck this. I'm gonna go talk to your mom. You two go somewhere else and work this out. That's an order … to both of you!" He stomped away, and at least half of the eyes in the crowd—especially women—followed him rather than stare at the father and son.

Freed gulped hard. He had felt protected by Laxus' mere presence. Now that was gone. He had to face his father directly. "M-maybe we could … um … talk in the parlor."

Llewellyn's face never lost its severity. "Yes, perhaps we should." He turned sharply and marched out in a stride that let others know not to come up to him and try to start small talk.

Freed sank in anguish. This was the dire moment, a confrontation between father and son over a man both had known intimately. Dragging his feet, he followed his father out of the ballroom.


Laxus weaved around the party. He knew eyes lingered on him, yet no one actually came up to him. He was glad, too. One of his fears for this party was that he might meet up with yet another rich bastard who also knew the thrill of the Thunder God's sadistic ways. Luckily, not a single person was familiar, except for a couple of people he thought he had seen on television. Were they actors? Politicians? Media moguls? He didn't know, didn't care, so long as they didn't know him.

Luckily, Liberty was in a moment of lull. She had just finished speaking to Bas about the best way to get Bickslow out of the party without attracting attention. Before she could return to gossiping with high society ladies, she found a mountain of muscles in front of her.

"Hello, ma'am," Laxus greeted.

"Uh, Thor … um, I mean … uh, what was it again?" she asked.

"Laxus," he said. After four years of knowing him as Thor, it was not all that surprising that she got his name wrong.

She nodded, trying to commit it to memory. However, the oddity of the name stunned her. "Is that your real name?"

"Yes, Laxus Dreyar. I couldn't give you my real name. I'm sure you understand."

"Um, yes. Circumstance being what they were," she said with a plastered smile as she realized those curious about this tough-looking stranger were now staring at the two of them. "Um … look, uh … sorry if I might have said something inappropriate that day about you being a…" She paused to find the right word. "…a dancer."

He rolled his eyes. That life was behind him now, but he figured it would haunt him for a while longer. "I'm not anymore, if that's of any consideration for me being accepted at this wonderful party of yours." His words were tight, feeling anything but accepted amidst the posh surroundings.

Liberty looked stunned. "Wait, you quit?" she asked a little too loudly.

"Yes. Freed didn't like it, and I like Freed."

"Oh," she said, considering this carefully. "It must have been a lucrative job, though … considering what we paid," she added quietly. She had been the one who handled paying Laxus for his services. She knew just how expensive his time was.

"I won't lie. Yeah, it was," he had to admit. His new job paid him weekly, but it was only a fraction of what he used to make in a single night with a client.

Liberty smiled faintly. "And you gave that all up … for Freed?"

Laxus shrugged and took a sip of the weak swill that passed for a drink. "Pretty much, yeah. He's a hell of a guy. I didn't want to lose him."

"Wow," she muttered, and she laughed softly. "You're quite devoted."

Laxus lowered his cup, and his face was utterly serious. "I want to be."

She blushed, feeling happy for her boy. Laxus might be intimidating, but she heard the honesty and ardor in his words. "I'm glad my son has someone like you, instead of someone like his fath-…"

"Hey," Laxus cut in. "No badmouthing him. Not at this party. I told you two, right? Let Freed have his happy family moment. It's bad enough that he knows what Llewellyn and I were up to."

Her equanimity utterly shattered. "H-h-he knows?" she cried out.

"How do you think I found out who his parents are?"

"How did he find out? How did you find out?"

"We kinda—" He paused in frustration. "Shit, I'm repeating myself to both of you." He let out a sigh. Although ideally, he would tell both of them everything at the same time, perhaps it was best to tackle one at a time. There was nothing else to do but explain all over again. "He had a family picture in his dorm room, I freaked out because I recognized you two, he immediately questioned: why would I know his parents? It all just kind of came together. I figured out whose son he was; he figured out who one of my clients were."

Liberty stared at him, but suddenly she placed a hand down on a table, her face paling, knees shaking. "Oh God," she whispered, feeling faint. "So my son knows about his father." She realized she had to calm herself. A maid walked up and offered her a glass of water, which she waved off. She did not want anyone nearby as she talked to Laxus. "Does he know I had a hand in this?"

Laxus tried to look supportive, or as best as he could pull off. "Ma'am, he loves you very much."

She nodded stiffly. "Then, he knows."

"Yes, he does," Laxus admitted. "And he still loves you. Like I said, he's a hell of a guy. You should be proud of him. I don't think many sons would be that…" This time, it was Laxus pausing, searching for the right word. "…understanding about their parents, realizing adults do these sorts of things." He lightly patted her on the arm. "He's a smart kid."

She smiled with her eyes cast down and a light blush. "Yes, he is."

Laxus smirked at her motherly expression. She could be cold one minute, skittish the next, but right at that moment… "You have this look that says 'He's my little pride and joy.'"

She chuckled and shrugged awkwardly. "His father might be cold, but Freed and I were always close. The … resemblance between him and me … um … it's been noted," she said awkwardly. "Perhaps that's why he turned out to be homose-…"

"Hey!" Laxus snapped, jolting her into silence.

"I … I didn't mean it badly," she assured him. "I do have to wonder, though. I mean, he looks like his mother. Maybe that's why he … ah … ahem … picked up a bit of my … femininity … um…"

"Ma'am," Laxus said with a scolding glare.

"Yes?"

His eyes narrowed and his voice dropped to a private whisper. "Shut up right now."

She croaked out a protest at being ordered in her own house, yet that gaze was overpowering even to a proud woman like her. She pursed her lips together and did not say more.

"Thank you," Laxus said with an ever-polite smile. He was utterly sick of niceties. He glanced around the room, wishing Freed was with him again. "I need something stronger than this goddamn piss-water."

"Blue Label?" Liberty offered. She met eyes with the butler standing against the wall, present yet unseen. Was it sign language she gave him? In any case, Bas nodded and left to obey.

Oh God, he could have hugged her! "You know my taste, ma'am."

"Please, call me Liberty. Having you call me ma'am reminds me of … those times," she said with scorn blazing in her eyes.

Laxus smirked playfully. "How about I call you Mom?"

She rolled her eyes. "Oh God, no!"

He could hardly help but laugh at her reaction. Liberty was so much worse at hiding her emotions than Llewellyn was. Talking with her, edging out her emotions, was loads more fun.

Her face suddenly pale in horror. "Wait … that … that wasn't some sort of hint, was it? Y-you and … and my boy?"

Laxus shrugged. "We're not engaged, if that's what you mean."

"Oh, thank God," she sighed in relief.

Too easy! He had to tease her some more. "Maybe in the future," he mused softly.

"Ahh! Uh … mmmh…" She instantly choked back her loud cry and pretended it was all a cough. "You're joking, right?" she hissed in a panicking whisper.

He stared down at her hard. "Who says I am?"

She stared, eyes wide, but her mind a blank. On one hand, this was the man she had known for four years as the professional dominant—not much more than a male prostitute in her mind—who she was forced to watch with jealousy and even a bit of revilement as he pleasured a husband she realized she could no longer fully satisfy. She had every right in the world to hate Laxus, especially when she found out that Llewellyn had wanted his dominant over his wife, had offered to pay him, keep him around, pamper this prostitute, when he could not even be loyal to her, the woman who had shared his bed for over twenty years and bore him three children. However, on the other hand, she realized that Laxus had given up quite a lot merely because Freed did not like it. He had reformed himself, all because of his love for her son. With the bitterness of Llewellyn's infidelity still painful in her heart, seeing this sort of devotion was reassuring. There were still good men out in the world, and her son had been lucky enough to find one.

"For the moment, no," Laxus assured her. "But … I really do like him." A smile came to his lips, only to fade. "I think he deserves better, though."

That surprised her. "You think so?"

For a while, she had thought this man was simply an interloper, a gold-digger, there for the family money. However, the sadness in his blue eyes as Laxus glanced around at the ballroom showed her the truth. He knew this was a level of haut monde that surpassed his own social upbringing, and instead of a covetous gleam she had seen in plenty of suitors going after some upper class bachelor to get at the money, Laxus looked almost repulsed by this level of wealth.

"Look at me, amidst all this," he scoffed. "I don't belong here."

She had to agree; rather than trying to fit in, Laxus was fighting against the smothering miasma of high society.

Laxus nodded over to a food table. "That guy, Elfman. Know anything about him?"

"Um … not really. He has two sisters, a famous opera singer whom our family knows through our connections with the opera house, and a young student at a community college interning somewhere, I can't recall exactly."

"Rich?"

"Not particularly," she shrugged. She knew that Elfman himself was not wealthy, but his sister Mira was the prima donna of the opera house the Justines supported with their patronage, so the family was not destitute either.

"So he's like me," Laxus realized. "Cool. I'm gonna go talk to him. And get that Blue Label. Bring it to the table with us. Maybe I'll make friends with this big guy," he smiled, walking off.

"Um … yes … right away," Liberty said awkwardly, not used to be ordered around in her own home.

It truly was strange that her daughter brought home this massive man, hardly refined but not the worst she had dated, on the same day that her son brought home his intimidating boyfriend. Two men, both huge, both with scars on their faces and shoulders twice as broad as her. Truly, their family was going to be the talk of all the high society parties this winter.


"So Father, that's how it is."

To the best of his ability, Freed had just explained how he met Laxus, a highly condensed version of how they hooked up—no mention made that Laxus had assumed Freed was buying sexual favors—and their current situation: dating exclusively, Laxus quitting his clients, and his new job as an electrician.

"I see." Llewellyn knew there was probably a whole novel's worth of lewd details involved in this tale, but he did not press for more. He had once seen his son at the South Pole Club, so he knew that must have been where he met Laxus. Their relationship began near the beginning of the past university semester, so around August or September. The point Freed mostly stressed was that Laxus was loyal and their relationship was serious, not frivolous.

Freed was normally good at reading the faces of others, but his father had trained not to give away his inner thoughts through a perfect poker face mask. He had no clue what his father thought of this relationship, but at least no harsh words had been spoken yet, no demands to break up, no threats to pull him out of school and lock him away.

"And … um … I'd really appreciate it if you let me and Laxus be the way we are." That was the most important part. He did not want his parents butting in. Freed did not care if they disapproved, so long as they did not attempt to separate him from Laxus.

After having listened to his son talk about the man he had known for four years as Thor, the man he had been infatuated with before Freed was even a legal adult, the man he had thought was truly the destined mate he had been searching for all his life … he needed a drink!

He walked through the parlor to an oak cabinet. Inside was a carafe of brandy. He poured two glasses, one for himself and one for his son, guessing that if his nerves were this frazzled, and he had trained to keep his emotions bottled tightly, then his son who had a far more delicate emotional level, just like his mother, was probably a powder keg ready to explode. Sure enough, Freed took the brandy glass, and the liquid trembled with the nervous shaking of his hands. He gladly drank it down and hissed at the strength.

Llewellyn sipped his in a more refined manner. "Well, you're apparently aware of how I know him."

"Yes," Freed said with a pain in his chest. It was still hard to imagine that Laxus had done those sorts of things to his own father.

Llewellyn nodded and sipped some more. As a father, there were many negative things he wanted to say, scolding Freed for hooking up with a strip dancer who he knew nothing about—at least Laxus had come recommended to the Justines—let alone the issue of how easily any of their associates could recognize Laxus. Anyone who knew him as a client would know precisely what this young man used to do as a living. It was easy to blackmail their family if they threatened to let it spill that the eldest son and heir to the Justine fortune was intimate with a strip dancer who prostituted himself for sexual favors.

However, for every argument he had, he turned it back around onto himself. If Laxus had agreed to his proposed deal, given up Freed, accepted the money, lived with him, then all of his worries would have applied to himself just as much as they now applied to Freed.

"I probably shouldn't judge you," he admitted quietly.

Freed looked up in shock. "Huh?"

Llewellyn gave his son a sympathetic smile. "How can I?"

Truly, his son was doing only what Llewellyn himself had wanted to do. It was Laxus who picked Freed over him, and he could not bring himself to hate Laxus for making that choice. If anything, now realizing what the dominant sadist must have been going through, the mental anguish of wanting to remain faithful to Freed while hearing his boyfriend's own father fawning over him obsessively … he probably got off lucky just getting punched in the nose.

Llewellyn stared at the burgundy liquid in the glass. Slowly, sagely, he told his son, "Let him do what he wants, but always warn him if he's going too far. Obey him, but don't smother him. If it doesn't work out, there are many dominants out there."

Freed blinked, staring silently. It took him almost a solid minute to figure out what his father just said. When it fully sank in, he began to laugh. "Oh my God, I'm getting BDSM advice from my father!" It was so outrageous, he set the glass down to laugh. "We never even had a sex talk."

Llewellyn shrugged blithely, "I figured you were smart enough not to need the sex talk. Bicklow was another issue."

Freed laughed, and Llewellyn finally joined in. They had not really bonding in this sort of way since … well, maybe never. Freed had always been closer to his mother, very few traits of his stern and business-savvy father. This was the first time they had something similar between them, and it was ironic that it was the one trait Llewellyn had hoped his children would never find out about.

He looked at his grown son. He saw Liberty in him, an inherent beauty, the flowing hair and long eyelashes, even her same beauty mark, traits that were strange for a man, but he could understand how Laxus fell so easily for him. Freed was likable from the moment you met him, passionate in everything he did yet often skittish, which made people want to shelter him. Definitely, he and Liberty had sheltered Freed, although he had often gone down his own path at their disapproval. Competition fencing, for example, and being openly gay when he was still a teen.

Now he had truly struck out on his own, a relationship he must have known would be met with disapproval long before he found out about Laxus and Llewellyn's connection. As much as he wanted to oppose their love, Llewellyn also found it charming that a stern character like Laxus was there to bolster his son.

"I'm glad he's good to you."

Freed smiled at the gentleness in his father's tone. "He is." Freed felt his cheeks warm up as he thought about those moments when Laxus was tender and attentive. That was a side he probably never showed to clients. "He … um…" He wanted to say something, but speaking about this to his father was definitely awkward. "What I need is … more gentle than what he's used to." He saw his father nod in understanding. "I'm not into the hard stuff and … and sometimes that's what he needs."

That confession surprised Llewellyn. "How do you deal with that?"

"There's a club. He works there as an electrician now, sometimes as a bouncer, and sometimes … as a … um…" How could he put it politely? "…as a demonstration expert." The slight tip of his father's head showed that was too generic. "Flogging, paddling, showing interested club members how to do it right."

"Ah," nodded Llewellyn. He had been to clubs like that. It was how he got caught cheating the first time.

"When he has those days, I go and watch. That way, I'm there, I can see everything he does. He's only done it three times since starting there." This new arrangement, Laxus working in public instead of private, was still new to both of them.

"And that's okay with you? Watching him?" Llewellyn asked in concern. This was a lot like how Liberty had to sit and watch as Laxus' sadistic treatment got Llewellyn in the right mood. He knew she never completely liked their arrangement, but it had saved their marriage for a time.

"It's … awkward," Freed confessed. "I mean, I see what his potential is, and I know … that's … it's way more than I can give him," he whispered. Knowing that truly was depressing at times. "But then, he turns to me." A small smile flitted onto his face. "He just gives me this look, like he's saying, 'Yeah, I need this, but … it's just a need. No emotion.' There's no love in it. His love is … here," Freed chuckled, pressing his hand to his chest. "In my heart."

That was what kept this arrangement working. Whenever Freed felt miserable, seeing the power of Laxus' paddling, knowing he would have screamed safewords long before then, and especially seeing other people getting aroused due to his treatment and demonstrations, those looks Laxus gave him banished away all doubts.

"He'll keep looking at me while paddling someone else. I don't want to say it's vicarious—that's kind of weird—but I like to know that he can get what he needs and still be loyal to me. I was always worried before. I'd worry … what if he found someone better? What if he had more fun with one of his clients?"

Llewellyn dropped his head. He was just one of many clients. Laxus probably thought little of him. Just another ass to beat! Yet their arrangement, and the other arrangements Laxus had, must have truly burdened his son.

"Now, I can watch what he does, and I see … I see for myself, it just doesn't affect him. He needs it mentally, but physically?" He shook his head. "It … doesn't affect him. But then, what I do…"

He smiled bashfully at memories. Even when the submissive before Laxus cried out in utter bliss, Laxus never got hard, not even once. Not until he could grab Freed and hear his moans, feel his body, and only then did something stir in his leather pants.

"This is weird, talking about this with my father," Freed admitted, "but … even just a little bit of what I can give to him, even that small amount, is enough. It's enough for him, and somehow that's just amazing to me."

Llewellyn had to admit, it was hard to hear this truth. Never once had Thor—Laxus, he had to remind himself—gotten aroused. Even that last day, when Llewellyn tried so hard to stir him up, forcefully caressing him, whispering sweetly, moaning heatedly, palming him with urgency, the sadist showed no signs of physical pleasure. His son could effortlessly give to Laxus what Llewellyn could never provide. Laxus' words echoed in his ears.

'I have my own life and a man I love. I don't care how much money you give me, you would still be nothing more than a client, and I have never—ever—fucked a client. If you think something as stupid as money could bribe my boyfriend, you obviously have forgotten what real love is truly like.'

Laxus had turned down a life of luxury and pleasure for Freed. He had given up an incredibly lucrative career all because Freed did not like it. As much as Llewellyn had been enamored with his dominant, Laxus was never his master. Only Freed could call him master.

"You've got something special, son."

Hearing those words from his father made Freed smile. "I like to think so," he said with hope. "I got lucky. Maybe we both got lucky, finding each other."

"I'm sorry if … if how I knew him … if it was a cause for anguish."

"You didn't know," Freed said, not a single bit of blame in his voice. "I mean, he said he knew you guys for four years."

"Something like that, yes." Four wonderful years! Or at least, that had been his opinion. For Laxus, he was nothing more than a long-term contract.

"So, that was long before I knew him." Freed placed a hand on his father's arm. "It's fine, really."

Llewellyn was not sure how to feel about being forgiven by his own son. "I'm happy for both of you," he said. It was the closest he could give to approval with his heart still broken by Laxus' rejection. That room, those memories, the connection he thought had existed between him and the thunder god, had been just a fantasy. It was time to accept the harshness of reality. He gulped the last of his brandy and slammed the glass down. "How about I take you both somewhere? Come on, let's find your boyfriend."

"Oh! R-right."

Hearing his father call Laxus your boyfriend felt amazing. All of his fears about this meeting were gone. They left the parlor and returned to the ballroom. As they strode into the room filled with music and chatting, it was easy to pick out the two who had not been raised in this lifestyle.

Freed cringed. "Oh wow, those two totally stand out."

"Yeah, they do," frowned Llewellyn.

Laxus and Elfman must have shared plenty of drinks together, sharing a bottle of Blue Label between them, not even bothering with cups. They were telling a bawdy joke and laughing loudly, while the other guests kept their distance and stared.

"My God, they're terrifying the guests. Okay! We're definitely going to do this." He stepped forward swiftly. "Come, son."

"Ah! Y-yes, Father." Freed rushed to catch up. They walked over to the two burly men.

In his most civil voice, Llewellyn greeted them. "Mister Dreyar, Mister … Strauss, was it?"

"Yo!"

"Sup!"

Llewellyn could smell the alcohol on Elfman's breath, and their informality really stuck out. "Riiiiight … um … Laxus, would you come with me and Freed?"

He set down the scotch bottle. "Oooh God." This was what he had dreaded.

"It's not bad. Come on, both of you. Evergreen?"

She was in the middle of a gaggle of girls, but she scurried off from their gossip at her father's call. "Hmm?"

"Has your boyfriend seen…" He tried to think of a good place. "…the backyard?"

Her eyes narrowed behind her glasses. "You're trying to get him out of here."

"Yes," he said bluntly.

She stomped her foot and rolled her eyes. "Daaaaad!"

"Just until the guests settle down again." He leaned into her ear. "And try to sober him up. You brought him; he's your responsibility."

Evergreen looked over at her drunk boyfriend, then glared at her father. "I hate this family," she whispered scathingly. She grabbed Elfman just before he could pick up the Blue Label bottle, and she tugged him toward an exit.

Llewellyn's face never changed from its pleasant mask, but he let out a soft sigh of frustration. "It's like raising them through teenage puberty all over again. Seven years of parenting hell," he whispered so no one would hear. Then Llewellyn gave a genteel smile all around, silently assuring his guests that it was safe now; the scary large man was gone. "All right! You two, come with me." He turned sharply and marched away.

Freed and Laxus followed his stride and heard the party behind them liven up again.

Freed leaned over to Laxus. "Where are we going?"

"Hell if I know!" he whispered back. He stared at the back of Llewellyn's head. What did this man have planned for them?

Next Chapter: "A Very Merry Christmas"

Chapter Text

Laxus, Freed, and Llewellyn walked through halls until they reached an elevator. Laxus thought it was bizarre, having a house so big you needed an elevator. They entered, Llewellyn pulled out a key, and he used it in a slot just below the number pad. Then he pushed for 2B, the second basement.

Laxus' eyes narrowed as he did this. 2B, and a key. This was familiar. He stared hard at Llewellyn, but the man never gave away any hint about his intentions. He stared straight ahead, the sort of stance people took in crowded corporate elevators, listening to the dings as they passed floors.

At last, there was a final ding, and the door slid open. Llewellyn stepped out into a well-lit but plain hallway.

"Here we are," he called out cheerfully.

Laxus stepped out into a hallway that was all too familiar. "Oh God." He looked around, but there was no doubt about it. The lighting, the wallpaper, a stain on the carpet: it was all the same. "Wait." He came to a dead stop, shaking his head warily. "Woah, woah, woah. Wait!"

Freed paused and looked around at him. "What? Where are we?" He glanced around. No windows, no sunlight, just a hallway lit up by overhead lighting. "Are we underground? This doesn't look like either of the basements."

Laxus glared at Llewellyn and growled in a barely-polite warning, "Sir."

"It's all right," he assured both of them. The businessman placed a hand on his son's shoulders. "Freed, you've never been down here. The elevator takes a key to active this floor."

It took Freed a moment to register what his father was saying. This was like something out of a spy movie. "Wow, we've got a secret floor?"

"Pretty much," he said with a smile, glancing at the vaulted hall and all of its locked doors. "Lots of old family secrets down here." He kept walking to a certain door. "This is where I want to take you two."

Laxus sneered. "Sir, no!"

Llewellyn raised a hand in peace. "It's all right—"

"No!"

Llewellyn came up to a door and pulled out another key. Twisting it in the lock, he opened the door and motioned for the two to enter. "Go on in, both of you."

Laxus firmly stood his ground, arms folded, eyes almost sparking with anger. "I don't think so, sir."

Freed glanced between his father's calm visage and Laxus' angry glare. What was this odd exchange between them?

Between … them…

Suddenly, it dawned on him. He looked into the room as his father flipped a light on. He had seen rooms like this at the fetish club where Laxus now worked. It was a BDSM dungeon! When his eyes shot over in shock to his father, Llewellyn's face was down-turned in shame. Then Freed looked sharply over to Laxus, who was glaring hard at the older gentleman. He was being faced with his old lifestyle and stuck right between a former submissive and his boyfriend. Freed placed a hand on the wall as he felt dizzy.

"Oh God, is this the playroom?"

Neither of them answered him, but it was obvious. The room where his father … and Laxus … where they…

"Father! No!" He took a step in front of Laxus, standing his ground and laying claim. He was not about to give up Laxus or share him, not even with his own father. He would rather be disowned than do that.

"No, I'm not coming in with you." Llewellyn handed his keyring to Freed. "This is the key to the elevator. Put the key in, turn it, hit the bottom floor, and it'll take you one level below the bottom." He glanced around the hallway with a mournful expression. "I'm not coming down here again."

There was such a mournful tone of finality in his voice, it made Freed worry for a moment. "Father…"

Llewellyn spoke quicker to get it over with. "When you want to come back upstairs, any of the buttons will do. When you want to come down here, have some time alone, you use the key."

Freed realized precisely what this was. Inheritance was something he learned about, being the eldest son of a wealthy man. Handing over property, a business, estate and heirlooms: these were all part of generational wealth. This time, his father was bequeathing to him something far more precious. He was completely giving up on Laxus, even this room that held all of the memories between them.

"Father," he whispered, unsure what to say.

Llewellyn smiled and nodded with determination. From father to son, things were never meant to remain in one person's possession. In this case, he might have known the pleasures of this godlike blond sadist first, but he had to give him up to his son. This was ensuring his son's future happiness in a way money and land never could.

His eyes shifted over to the blond, who was witnessing this exchange with wariness. "Consider it my Christmas present to you, Thor. Uh … Laxus."

With a gentleman's smile, he shoved his hand out to shake. Laxus glanced at those fingers, hands that for years had been off-limits. The one and only time those hands had touching him, it had been unwanted. This time, Laxus had to accept touching Llewellyn of his own free will. Hesitantly, he took the offered hand and shook it, sealing the deal of exchange.

"Thank you for everything," Llewellyn said, firmly squeezing the hand that had once pleasured him. "You kept my marriage together for four years. Might have been hell, but I'm thankful. I'm glad my children could grow up with a mother and a father. So you have my thanks." He let go of the hand but still stared up into that firm face. "Take care of my boy."

Laxus gave a nod. "I plan to, sir."

Llewellyn squared his shoulders, turned sharply, and strode back to the elevator. They watched until he stepped inside and the door slid closed. Then Laxus let out a sigh as his shoulders unclenched. He really had dreaded the worst for a moment.

"I need a drink," he whispered gruffly, and he rushed into the opened room. It had a bar stocked, since the Justines knew Laxus liked to drink when he worked. He grabbed some brandy and poured out an extra splash, gulping it down as his nerves tingled from being on edge all night.

Cautiously, Freed went past the threshold and looked around. The walls were black with red highlights. A massive bed with red satin sheets sat against one wall that could be curtained off, blocking the view of the kinks around the room, such as a sex swing, stocks, Saint Andrew's Cross, suspension bars of many types, a whipping bench, a spanking horse, and a worship seat. On the walls were an array of whips, floggers, crops, canes, and rods. There were numerous types of handcuffs and restraints, from leather cuffs to iron chains, spreader bars, and fist mitts. There was a low table, and on it were an assortment of collars, from classic leather collars, deep rubber collars, posture collars, spiked, slotted, metal, a collar with fetters attached, and one that went along with a head harness.

Freed gulped hard as he saw all of this, right here, in his own house, buried deep within the bowels of a home where he had played as a child.

"Well, so … uh … this is … this is the room, huh?" Freed looked around again, daring to take a few steps in.

"Don't worry, it's been cleaned, I'm sure."

"Yeah," he muttered, not liking the idea that this room had ever been in use. "Still … still, it's weird. This is the room where you and … my father…"

His words died out. He tried to picture it: his father, strapped to that Saint Andrew's Cross, chained to the X-shaped boards, wearing nothing but a collar and a cockring, or maybe a chastity belt. Yes, probably that, a demand from Liberty to make sure her husband did not get too naughty. She would supervise, probably sitting in a corner—yes, he saw the chair now, a simple but elegant chair, where she would sit, watching her husband getting his thrills. Freed knew the feeling. He sat and watched Laxus whip and paddle others. Sometimes it was exciting, and sometimes it was painful to know he could not please his lover that way.

However, as much as he could imagine a husband's submissive posture and his wife's cold acceptance of this carnal need that she could not supply, his brain completely refused to picture that married couple as his parents, let alone add Laxus into that scene.

It had been Laxus wielding those paddles.

It was Laxus who swung that riding crop.

It was Laxus who made his father cry out in painful ecstasy.

He knew this deep in his mind, but still he could not picture it. Not here. Not with his father!

Laxus saw the anxiousness in Freed's face and slowly set down his drink. "I take it you don't want to make out down here?"

Freed yanked himself out of those disturbing images and tried to laugh it off like he would at any family party, yet he knew he could not brush off issues so easily with Laxus. Those blue eyes could seek out the truth. His head dropped to the side, but he saw the bed. He could not bring himself to look at it yet. He knew Laxus insisted that he never fucked clients, and Liberty had always been in this room to make sure the no-touching rule remained in place, but still…

Still…

He forced himself to smile anyway. "I guess it's a nice retreat to get away from the crowd."

There was no tricking Laxus. With a plaintive sigh, he pulled out another glass, poured some brandy into it, and handed it over to Freed. The green-haired man walked over to the small bar and took the drink. The alcoholic burn calmed him and took away the shiver of dread. Then Laxus' large hand began to rub Freed's back, soothing him.

"A-Are you all right?" Freed stuttered. If this was bad on him, it must be worse for Laxus.

"Yeah," he replied, surprised by how easily he could accept and ignore what this room had been for. That was in the past. It was over. This was no long that room. "Your dad's not bad." He was not so uncouth as to not realize what Llewellyn's passing of the key meant. He had given up his last hold on Laxus and fully supported their relationship. It was better than either of them had hoped for. "Your mom's skittish as hell," he added. He looked down to how Freed's hands clutched the brandy glass. "You take after her."

Freed had heard that all of his life, and he smiled reluctantly that even Laxus thought he and his mother were a lot alike. "I guess I take after both, huh?"

Laxus chuckled softly but said nothing. Definitely, Freed had qualities of both of his parents. "Are you okay with your folks?"

Freed took another sip of alcohol and shrugged lightly. "Father and I talked. It seems we … well, came to an understanding, at least." He looked around at the room. "I might have even gotten his blessing." Definitely, this room was Llewellyn's way of saying he was okay with them and what he knew they did in private. "What about you and my mom?" Freed asked, taking another sip of brandy.

Laxus sighed and shrugged. "She doesn't want me to marry you."

Freed sputtered out the drink, choking and pounding his chest as he gagged in shock. "W-Wait, what?"

Laughing, Laxus patted his back to help him cough up the drink. "Nah, I was joking with her."

"O-oh…" Freed calmed down, but now he felt a slight sting. Only joking? Of course he was just joking. Something like that, it was ridiculous, crazy … too good to be true.

Laxus cautiously eyed the disappointment. "Maybe," he whispered.

Freed's head jolted up, and their eyes met, one wide and stunned, the other calculating and thoughtful. Then Laxus laughed and ruffled up Freed's hair.

"Hey, down the road, kid. Down the road." No matter how he looked at it, it was too early for them to be seriously considering this. Freed was still in college.

"Right," Freed said awkwardly, dropping his gaze. It was way too soon, but still … still… "Um, I guess down here we can at least kiss. Can't quite do that at a party."

"I could kiss you," he teased. "Grab you—" He yanked Freed up against him by the hips. "—dance with you, show these rich fuckers what a real dance is like, bend you over—" He dipped Freed back slightly, holding him in his arms and leaning over him possessively. "—thrust my tongue right down your throat…"

"Don't!" Freed whined, putting his hands forward to push away from Laxus' temptations. He took a step back, looking ashamed.

Laxus glanced down at the bulge pressing against the dressy slacks. "What, did just that get you aroused?" He chuckled deviously as Freed looked uncomfortable and fought the urge to reach down. "You horny little bastard."

Freed spun around and walked away to hide his shame. "When I get embarrassed, I get like this."

Laxus licked his lip hungrily. He came up behind Freed, leaned into his ear, and whispered, "I bet if I were to do that, you'd cum in your pants right in front of everybody."

"Nngh … Laxus!" He walked away from that hot breath and the sibilant, sweet threats. Maybe it was due to all the stress of that night, fearing the possibility of being forced to pick between his family and his lover, but now he was painfully aroused. Twisting his hands together, he muttered, "If we were to do something in this room, would that make it our room and no longer the room … that my father had?"

Laxus smiled at the hesitant yet obvious desire. "He gave you the key. It's your room."

"Oh. Right." That was how things worked with inheritance. Hand over the car keys, and the new car was his. Hand over the key to a vault, and the bank account was his. Hand over the keys to this hidden floor, and the playroom was now his.

"Come on." Gently, Laxus tugged on Freed's hand. "Come over here, on the bed."

Slowly, Freed sat down, like approaching a trigger pad that would set off an explosion. The bed was firm, the sheets slithery, nothing strange about it except the thought deep in his head that this was the bed where it all happened.

"I've never actually sat on this bed," Laxus admitted, feeling the firmness of the mattress.

Freed looked over in shock. "You haven't?"

"Nah. This was the bed your parents used."

Freed bolted right up. "Oh God!" he groaned. Here was where playtime ended and his parents … eww! Just eww!

"No, it's all right." Laxus laughed, finding Freed's reaction so typical for a child suddenly forced to think about their parents having sex together. "It's okay. It was their room, their bed. I just happened to have walked in for a few minutes. Come on, lie down." He pulled Freed back onto the mattress and grabbed him up into his arms, holding him on his chest while squeezing him possessively. "Just like this," he sighed, happy to be holding him again.

Freed realized, as a child he had climbed into his parents' bed during storms or after having a nightmare. Before his father's need came about, that had been the bed they used. He had most likely been conceived on that bed, and he never thought anything of it.

Not like a seven-year-old thought about his parents having sex.

So in a sense, this was no different. It was his parents' bed. Just a bed. It was clean, there was no smell. Actually, the entire room seemed a little too sterile.

They laid together, each quietly gazing around at the black and red interior with its assorted supplies. Freed eventually glanced around, really taking it in finally. Laxus also gazed around. Sure, he had been coming to this room once a month for four years, but he rarely really looked at one of his clients' playrooms. After a while, they all looked the same.

"This is surreal," Freed muttered.

"Tell me about it!" scoffed Laxus.

Laxus knew right away, if this was going to be their playroom, these items all had to go. He would never reuse a sex toy on someone else, which was precisely why he insisted his submissives all brought their own items. The collection was impressive, sure, but … this was not the sort of legacy a father should give to his son. This was the sort of collection they would have to build for themselves, buying what worked for them, getting their own custom-made items, maybe designing the room differently to be less opposing and more…

More what? Freed was such a romantic. How would he want his playroom? Laxus wanted to create a little slice of heaven for his green angel.

"It's quiet," Freed whispered.

"Damn quiet," Laxus agreed. "Damn, too quiet. You really can't hear anything in here. My ears are ringing."

Freed nuzzled into Laxus' armpit, smelling the scent of his body. It was more than the soap and deodorant that he used to clean himself up for the part. It was the manly musk, that scent that was faint now with all the cleaning, but that really came out when Laxus was sweaty. He rolled toward that scent.

Laxus glanced down as Freed curled in closer. "What, you wanna cuddle?"

"Maybe," he whispered, feeling secure in those arms.

Too cute, dammit! "Come here." He pulled Freed up onto his chest and hugged him tightly. They shifted around until both were comfortable. "This is good." He loved hugging Freed and how his long hair fell around him. Even though he had pulled his hair back and tried to keep it tamed for tonight, those long strands were everywhere.

"Are you really okay?" Freed asked, glancing down at Laxus.

His blue eyes focused on the mirror above the bed. Kinky, Llewellyn! Real kinky! "Family gatherings are going to be hell for a while." Then he smiled at Freed and brushed back a long strand of green hair that had slipped loose. "But I think we're good."

He smiled to hear Laxus feeling at ease, something he had deeply worried about for weeks. "Yeah," he said, settling back down into that broad chest. All of his fears were gone. His parents had accepted them. More than that, his father gave them this room. He really had welcomed Laxus into the family already.

"Hey." Laxus took Freed's cheek and pulled it over. "I wanna do this."

He grabbed the back of Freed's scalp and pulled him down for a domineering kiss. Freed moaned at the erotic hair-pulling. Then a tongue came, filling his mouth, the taste of brandy still coating it. Freed's tongue met his, twirling, sliding over those chapped lips, and his lips sucked on that tongue until Laxus groaned. His strong fingers loosened, letting Freed go, and he smiled up at the turquoise eyes that gazed down at him, lowered with dizzy lust. Laxus did not want to push him, though. Today must have been hell on Freed, and he just wanted his boyfriend to know that he would still be here for him, no matter what happened with family, friends, or society in general. Fuck all that! So long as he had this man, that was enough for him.

Freed saw the gentle gaze that Laxus so rarely showed. He loved that look, craved that protection, and wanted … more. Just more! He dived down, taking control for once, and thrust his tongue passed those firm lips.

Laxus grunted in surprise. Freed was holding him down, kissing aggressively, while the heady flavor of his tongue danced a tango through his mouth.

"Freed?" he muttered, but more kisses rained down on him. "Mmh, not that I mind," he added. He liked to feel just how much Freed truly loved him.

Another kiss silenced him, and the tongue invaded again. He licked back, twirling his tongue around. Freed suddenly rolled over, straddling Laxus. His fingers clenched onto the broad shoulders as he kissed firmer, pressing Laxus' head down into the pillow.

"Damn, you're aggressive tonight," he mumbled between kisses.

"I can't help it," Freed moaned, kissing harder, wanting more. He slowly pulled back and gazed at his lover. "My father gave you up," he said, feeling only a little guilty for robbing his father of someone who had been special to him. However, that was also Laxus' choice. He willingly chose Freed over Llewellyn. "So, it's my turn to claim you," he said with a sly smile.

Laxus chuckled deep in his chest. "Oh?" he asked in amusement. Claiming, eh? He leaned up and smirked right into Freed's face. "How do you plan to do that?"

Freed sat back with his finger pressed to his chin in mock consideration, humming as he glanced around. Then a devious gleam twinkled in his eyes and a devilish smile possessed his lips as he stated, "Like this."

In a flash, his swift hands grabbed Laxus' right wrist, another hand reached to the post on the headboard, and he pulled forth handcuffs already attached. With deft fingers, he clasped the cuff around Laxus' wrist. While Laxus laid stunned in confusion, he was wide open for Freed to snatch the other hand.

"Shit! Ah! H-hey!" yelled Laxus.

Before his body had a chance to fight back, cold steel surrounded his wrist, chaining him to the opposite bedpost. Then Freed sat straight up, a posture of confidence, like a jockey sitting atop his race horse. Laxus yanked on the cuffs, but they were completely secure. In astonishment, he gawked up at Freed, who had a smug look on his aristocratic face.

That … little … bitch! Laxus was not sure whether to be mad that he was caught so easily, or proud that it was his slave who had bested him. In either case, he was trapped, and Freed looked arrogant.

"Oooh, you did it this time, you bastard," he chuckled, glaring with a smile and a shake of his head.

"What?" Freed asked with feigned innocence. "I noticed the handcuffs on the bed." He leaned in close and whispered down at Laxus, "Why not use them?"

Laxus growled, yanked on the cuffs, but fell back. He laid there, captured, and he began to laugh. "Okay, you got me," he conceded. "So, what are you gonna do with me?"

Freed stroked his chin and glanced over the large body. "Maybe … down here."

Freed slithered over the rippled muscles, slowly slid down the zipper to the tailor-made pants, reached in, and eased out the erection that was twitching to be released. It was already firming up, and two strokes were all it took to bring it fully to attention.

Laxus flinched from a pulse throbbing in his groin as blood rushed down there. He knew Freed sensed the change, the sudden stiffness, when he glanced back down at the member he was cradling in his fingers, and one eyebrow arched up in surprise and pleasure. Damn him, but he stroked even harder just to feel how he had affected Laxus.

"I did like licking you," whispered Freed. He gave a tiny cat-like lick to the tip of the head.

Laxus yanked on the handcuffs at just that small lick. Being out of control was against his nature. It made his heart race, but there was a thrill to it. This was not someone there to hurt him like in his childhood, but his lover who had trapped him with promises of pleasure.

Freed tilted his head in amusement. "For someone who's a sadist, just getting a little tied up makes you so hard." He stroked down the arousal.

"Shut up! You know it's you that makes me hard, not anything I do."

That answer seemed to please Freed.

Laxus knew it was not the handcuffs, nor Freed's hands, that made him stiffen. True, his hands were incredible, lithe and dexterous, able to hold firmly but handle delicately, talents he must have learned as a swordsman.

No, it wasn't the hands. It was his eyes!

When those turquoise eyes glanced from his groin up to his face, with those long lashes framing them and the tongue out ready to taste, that was when Laxus knew he had been defeated.

Freed dragged his tongue from the zipper to the tip, swirled around the head, and then back down the other side. He kissed the erection reverently before using his whole mouth to take in his dessert.

Laxus stiffened and pulled on the handcuffs again. He wanted to stroke through that green hair, caress Freed as he did this, just touch him. He was used to getting what he wanted. Just sitting there, with nothing else to do but lie back and enjoy the pleasure, made it too intense. Shit, if this kept up, he was not going to last long at all!

Freed pulled off looking satisfied at the moans he was eliciting out of Laxus. He only lightly caressed the erection, rubbing his saliva around it, as he rested atop the barrel chest and gazed down at his lover.

"So," he said, rubbing lazy strokes up and down Laxus' length, "how about some role-reversal in this room? In the hotel, it's you dominating over me. In my dorm room, it's all tender and loving. But down here?"

Freed gave a sly chuckle. His fingers firmed just a little tighter, enough to make Laxus groan his name.

"I'm the master here," he said sternly, gazing down with eyes tattling that, although he was a masochist, he had been born as the son of a tycoon, trained to be savvy in business, and raised to take a leadership role in the capitalist world.

"Little bastard," Laxus growled in defiance.

"Come on. I wanna hear you say it this time."

"Hell no!"

"Come on," he grinned, biting his lip with salacious anticipation. "Like a butler."

Laxus turned his face away defiantly.

"Come ooooon," Freed goaded playfully. "You know I'm used to having servants call me Master Freed. I may be your slave, but you could be my butler when I'm here." He laughed softly, trying to coax over Laxus' face.

Those electric blue eyes glared up. "You're enjoying this, aren't you?"

"Mm-hmm," Freed nodded, trying to hold back a laugh.

Seriously, he was way too sexy for his own good. Fine! He could rumor his little slave in his game. "So," he said, as haughty as he could with a fake accent, "what shall I do to serve you, Master Freed?"

Freed blinked, shocked he did it. Laxus … calling him master! He cock burned, and he backed off, gasping and grabbing himself. He croaked out a noise of desperation as he felt a surging sensation already tingling him.

"Hey, no coming in your pants, I'm serious," Laxus warned.

"R-Right." He climbed off the bed and turned away, trying to calm himself. A few breaths did it, but he cringed slightly. "I think I need to change out of my underwear."

"You came?"

"No … but it's dripping." He sounded mortified, and that shame clicked something on in Laxus' brain.

His eyes narrowed slightly, and he ordered, "Get out of those clothes."

"Right," Freed said with a nod.

He quickly took off the pants before the pre-cum soaked through and showed. His underwear was not so fortunate. As he peeled off his briefs, he saw a moist spot darkening the fabric. He put the underwear aside so the pre-cum would not get on his suit pants. When he turned around wearing just his shirt, Laxus looked down and saw the arousal with a trickle leaking from the head down the shaft.

"Oh God, you are dripping." He gulped hard at the sight of it. He was ready to drip as well just seeing Freed messing himself. "So, what do you want me to do about it?"

Freed bit his lip, not in desire this time, but out of uncertainty. He had not planned this at all. "Um … m-maybe … uh…"

"Come on!"

Freed tensed up at the snapped order. Slowly, he took off the rest of his clothes and laid them over a chair so they would not get wrinkled. Then he walked naked back to the bed and climbed on. Chained up, all Laxus could do was watch as those thin, graceful limbs crawled over the satin sheets. Freed looked over the bed, calculating what he could do. Timidly, he crawled closer to Laxus' face. Then he twisted and straddled over his face while leaning down toward Laxus' groin.

"Like … this?"

Laxus got a glorious face full of Freed's ass, balls, with that cock near his mouth. "You little freak."

"Is that okay?"

"Sixty-nine? Yeah!" He tried to reach his lips up, but the cock was pointing the wrong way. "Come on, I can't grab your hips when I'm like this." Sensually, he ordered, "Slide it into my mouth."

Freed took hold of himself and guided his erection over to those lips.

"You better suck me off good," Laxus demanded just before that deliciously dripping cock filled his mouth and forced him into silence.

With Laxus' lips around him and his mouth already working, Freed leaned over his groin. He widened his mouth and bore down onto him. Laxus had a little pre-cum that intensified his taste, and Freed groaned at the flavor. He pressed all the way down, then wrapped one hand around what his mouth could not reach. His hand and mouth worked together. As he stroked, his other hand fiddled with the belt, unthreading it, unsnapping the button, and he spent a couple of seconds to shove the pants down, just in case he drooled or dripped. That would protect the fabric from getting messy. Laxus' hips lifted to help him shove the trousers down his thighs, and then Freed's hands were all over him again, stroking while he sucked eagerly.

Laxus lost hold of the cock in his mouth. He wanted it back, but he could not grasp it and guide it toward him.

"You know, being tied up is annoying."

Freed kept right on sucking. "Mm-hmm," he hummed, as if to say Told you so!

"I can't touch you."

"Mmh," Freed agreed, slurping up him.

Laxus flinched at how good it felt. "I wanna touch you."

"Nngh-nh," Freed hummed in denial. He reached around to himself and angled his cock back toward that argumentative mouth.

"Bastard," Laxus whispered just before being gagged again into silence.

They licked, sucked, and Laxus began to pant as Freed's mouth and hand pleasured him. Soft groans, heady hums, and the moist sounds of hungry pleasure filled the room. Laxus finally had to pull back and catch his breath. He was drooling and ready to choke on the amount of pre-cum dripping from Freed's cock. Seriously, this guy had a lot built up in him.

Just as he was about to ask Freed to help him again with pulling the erection into such an awkward angle, Freed instead leaned forward more, lifting his body away from Laxus' face so he could move lower and go deep-throat.

The blond cried out in pleasure from that tight space and the small bobs Freed gave to him before pulling back and catching his breath.

"Do you like that?" Freed asked, glancing around his shoulder and seeing the blush on Laxus' face. He took the hand that had been stroking Laxus, now drenched in saliva and pre-cum, and dragged it down his perineum. "Do you like me touching … inside you?" He slid a finger in.

Laxus yanked hard on the handcuffs as his whole body arched from the intrusion. Freed grinned mischievously to see that chiseled face flush.

"No fair," Laxus panted.

"What?" Freed chuckled as he carefully fingered him.

He huffed through the strange feeling that was not quite pain, but not yet fully pleasure yet. "I wanna touch you."

"Aww, but you always get to touch me," Freed teased. "How often do I get to touch you?" His finger purposely pressed deeper until he felt the small lump inside.

Laxus jolted and struggled to hold back a moan. "Freed … come on!"

Instead, Freed reached back, took hold of himself, and nudged the flared head up against Laxus' mouth. "Suck it," he ordered with a smirk.

Laxus glared at him. Stupid slave, getting too full of himself, acting all arrogant! He would show him! "Fuck you." Laxus slammed his face up, taking that erection and vigorously sucking on it.

Freed shivered out a moan of hedonistic pleasure. "Y-yeah, like that!" He dived down, sucking Laxus, while his finger kept moving. His mouth, his hand, and that finger inside all sought out to pleasure his thunder god. That was what a master did, after all. He took care of servants … especially butlers.

Laxus' mouth was full. He could barely talk, but he felt himself ready to come. "Freed," he began to warn. As if sensing it and wanting everything, Freed's finger found the prostate again and rubbed it. Laxus cried out and yanked hard on the handcuffs. He tried to fight it, struggling to hold back, but he was trapped, a prisoner to the pleasure, unable even to shout a proper warning with the cock in his mouth nearly choking him. "Freed!"

He gushed out into that mouth, and Freed whined at the surge. He forcefully gulped down the salty dessert just to keep from choking on it all. He could feel the tenseness in Laxus' ass, his thighs, and the convulsing muscles in his stomach, where Freed laid sprawled across. He gulped as more poured out, and more. It had been a while since they last made love, and Laxus had a reservoir built up that Freed was more than happy to swallow.

Finally, Laxus sank under him, and Freed pulled back with a soft cough from the thickness. He pulled his finger out, wiped it on the sheet, and cradled the softening cock so it would not get on Laxus' dress shirt. He tenderly licked an oozing drip as it shrank. Then, happy to pleasure him, he gave the obedient cock a kiss and turned around.

Laxus was flushed and sweaty. That scent Freed had noticed earlier was more potent, utterly intoxicating! Yet that look of surrender and exhaustion, sprawled out, chained up, giving in to the pleasure, made Freed giggle naughtily.

"Once again, you came before me," he pointed out, feeling proud at holding himself back.

Laxus panted and slowly opened his eyes. "Damn you … for being this good."

Freed just smiled proudly.

"Now seriously, unhandcuff me."

"Mmm … nope," he decided flippantly. Freed turned around and showed the curved erection that still rose to meet the thunder god. "Because you're not done." He stroked his fingers through Laxus' hair. "This way now."

Laxus groaned, tired but not wanting his naughty vixen of a slave to be denied.

"Come on, sit up," he encouraged. He stuck a pillow under Laxus' head until he was at a good angle.

Laxus scooted his hips up to a half-sitting recline. "You're enjoying this, aren't you?"

Freed leaned over and kissed him. "I will soon," he said with a erotic smirk.

Laxus swore he saw that slightly dominating—or maybe just aristocratic—gleam in his eyes again. He loved how meek and needy Freed could be, but he felt a spike of pride knowing that his precious slave was so confident that his master would be able to pleasure him, no matter how much this naughty slave tried to wear him out first … and Laxus had to admit, Freed was damn good at overwhelming him to exhaustion.

"Lemme suck on that," Laxus snarled hungrily.

Freed stroked a finger down his nose. "Say please master."

"Fuck you."

"Say it."

Laxus leered at him. Their eyes battled, a harsh glare used to ordering others, versus an arrogant smile, spoiled and used to getting his way. It was a contest of dominance. Who was truly in charge: the dominant sadist or the young master and heir to this whole damn mansion?

Laxus knew that socially and economically, Freed was way above him, a destined leader currently straddled atop the lowest scum of society, someone who prostituted himself for money. He had grown up under the shadow of hilltop mansions like this, scurrying under the rule of people like the Justines, men who ran businesses, who could hire and fire at the slightest whim, men like Jellal Fernandes, except that bastard just ran some sleazy club. Freed was destined to rule an empire of corporations, a young prince of blue blood. Someone like Laxus should have felt privileged to change the light bulbs in this man's bathroom, let alone stand by their side at some posh party.

Still, he would not dare admit defeat. His eyes hardened, and he ordered simply, "Gimme!"

Freed broke into laughs. "You can't say it, can you?"

"No," he said sharply. However, it was more than just the bourgeoisie rising against the aristocracy. This went much deeper. It was a matter of pride, being a sadist, not wanting to be tamed, not in this sort of way. "Don't make me," he requested softly.

Freed saw the heartfelt request, the pride in his blue eyes, and he bowed his head, surrendering to his sweet but stubborn thunder god. "Okay," he said, and he leaned over, letting his lips hover right by Laxus' lips. "Master," he breathed.

Laxus let out a groan. Normally, being addressed by that title was empowering, but now, seeing Freed give up that imbued pride, not coming to him already a slave, but choosing to lower himself from his golden pedestal, all for Laxus' sake … somehow, that made hearing Freed call him that title of ultimate domination even more intense.

Freed pressed forward, pushing his mouth against those tense lips. Laxus kissed back. He pulled forward against the handcuffs, wanting to grab Freed and cling to him possessively, yet he was still at the mercy of his naughty angel.

Freed leaned back, and although he had surrendered, he still looked coldly calculating, knowing that he was in control for a little longer. Laxus' eyes turned from him, down to the arousal, and back up to Freed's face, silently letting him know what he wanted.

"Please, master," Freed begged. "Suck on me."

He crawled closer, resting his hands against the headboard as he brought his hips up to Laxus' face. Laxus licked the stiff erection, tasting that leakage, swirling his tongue around, and when he had his fun, he opened wide to let Freed slide in.

Freed had received blow jobs before, but this was different. Instead of Laxus bobbing down onto him, he had to thrust into that mouth, being in control, setting the pace, fucking his lover's mouth. He glanced down and watched himself humping into Laxus' lips.

He suddenly gasped and pulled back. He just realized that he had chained Laxus up without permission. How greedy and demanding could he get! Was he forcing this? Was it unwanted? Laxus looked up, worried about why Freed had backed away, and he saw the look of intimidation and dread.

"It's all right," Laxus whispered, trying to smile in a way to show that this was something he wanted. Freed was not forcing him against his will. "Trust me, if I didn't want this, I'd break these handcuffs and stop you."

Somehow, Freed felt that if anyone could break handcuffs, Laxus could. He nodded timidly and leaned forward again. To show him that he wanted to do this, Laxus lurched forward and took that cock, even though it meant pulling tautly against the metal chains.

"I'm totally ready to come, though," Freed warned him.

"Yeah?" Laxus lapped up the thick vein and sucked on just the head. "I'm thirsty," he growled. He sucked harder on the cock until Freed cried out from the roughness. "That food up there's crap." Laxus looked up, his lips swollen and drool running down his chin to his throat. He grinned, and Freed gulped hard at the carnivorous look in his face. "I want you to feed me."

"Nnngh!" Freed whined. He suddenly grabbed Laxus' head and slammed in hard, taking the pleasure his master was willing to provide.

This was incredible! Laxus was used to giving pain, but to give pleasure like this, to feel Freed's lust, his desperation, and take care of his little slave in everything he wanted…

"Oh, yes," he moaned, loving the feel of Freed's fingers tensing and his hips speeding up.

"Nngh … L-Laxus!" He began to shake, losing himself, unable to feel or hear anything as his heart pounded, blood rushed through his ears, and everything concentrated inside of him to one point, a nexus of pleasure growing, surging. He slammed in harder, faster, needing more.

Laxus' eyes widened at the pain of that cock crashing into the back of his throat. He choked as his tonsils were assaulted over and over, rapidly and without mercy. He tried to talk around the penis in his mouth, warning Freed, "Unf … back … off!"

Only garbled noises got out between thrusts. It was beginning to seriously hurt, and Freed's fingers were ripping out hairs. Just before making true of his promise to break the handcuffs, Freed cried out, his hips stiffened to a halt, and his whole body shuddered.

Laxus was blasted with cum, so suddenly and so hard, he coughed and thought he felt some blow up his nose. He yanked on the chains, thrashing around that cock, not cruel enough to bite Freed just to warn him to pull back, but he could no longer breathe. The cock was pressed all the way back, blocking his air pipe. All he could do was look up through teary eyes and see that expression of bliss.

Oh fuck! He could drown in jizz for all he cared. Freed was breathtaking!

A few seconds later, the moment of glory was over, and his angel sank back to earth. Freed's hearing finally returned, muffled at first, but then he finally heard the gagging. He yanked back, and Laxus coughed with force, expelling saliva and cum.

"Oh God, I'm so sorry!" he cried out in dread. He grabbed a corner of the sheet and quickly wiped Laxus' face. He was an utter mess, but the moistness at least had not gotten onto his dress shirt.

Laxus coughed harder. "Damn, you've got some hips!" he exclaimed in a hoarse voice before more coughing wracked his body. Death by cum-drowning was probably not the best way to go. It would be hell to explain to the coroner, anyway.

"Are you okay?"

"I think my—cough—uvula's bruised."

"I'm so sorry." He looked around in a panic. "Let me uncuff you. Here." He clicked an emergency release latch on the handcuffs and pulled them off.

Laxus immediately leaned over and pounded his chest, coughing more. Freed handed him the sheet, and Laxus expatiated some cum out into it. Then, with a moan of pain, he rubbed out his wrists. They had pink lines on them, but nothing that would not fade with a little rest. Freed lightly touched the bruising.

"Sorry," he cringed.

"No, it's fine." He gulped hard, but he still had to cough from the pain in his throat. Finally, he glanced up and saw Freed looking fretful. It just made Laxus laugh. "Damn, you're aggressive!" he said playfully.

Freed dropped his head, trying to come up with something better than 'I'm sorry.' Laxus reached forward and cupped his face to raise his chin.

"The master of the house shouldn't bow his head like that."

"The master of the house wouldn't treat his butler so roughly," Freed countered, still looking upset.

"You're a noob. You're still learning." He gave a sigh and gazed up. Master of the house, huh? Master of his heart, at the very least. "I love you."

He suddenly grabbed Freed and kissed him. The young man grunted at the taste in that mouth, but Laxus' tongue thrust in anyway, giving a rough and needy kiss while his hands clutched tightly, crushing that thin body to make up for denying him. He rubbed up and down Freed's spine, around his rump, over his shoulders, and clung to him in desperation. Suddenly, he flipped Freed, slamming him down onto the bed, and pulled the back of his hair, yanking his head up to expose his throat. He wanted to claim this man, so hard and so violently that the bruise would stay with him until the New Year. A quick shake of Freed's head reminded him, there was still a party going on upstairs. His mouth pulled back with sneering teeth.

"No," Laxus whispered defiantly. "You're getting marked!"

"Laxus, no!"

Instead of the throat, Laxus yanked himself down the bed, glared up at him from just above Freed's firm belly, and then leaned over to bite deeply into Freed's hip. Freed cried out from the pain and the pleasure of realizing Laxus was accommodating him so as to not make a social embarrassment. He shuddered as those lips sucked on the bite, pulling up a painful bruise, so painful he tried to pull away. Laxus clawed at those hips to hold him down until he had a hickey that would ache all night long. Finally, with a loud pop of his lips, he raised back up and stared at his slave in satisfaction.

"That'll do it." He caressed the purple bruise, and Freed flinched in pain. "I like to see you like that, how your brow tenses up, that whine you get in the back of your throat. Fuck, if I wasn't ready to fall asleep in exhaustion, I'd fuck you all over again, rough and brutal, until you scream for me to stop."

"Laxus," he sighed, and he looked up in apology. "Too tired."

"I know," he said, and he flopped down beside him on the bed. "Me, too."

Freed curled up in his chest and kissed the rough, sharp jawline.

"Tell you what," Laxus said with utter arrogance. "When you're master of this house, we'll have one day a month: role reversal." He grinned and stroked through the green hair. "I'll be your butler. I'll call you master. Hell, I'll let you fuck me."

Freed's eyes went more massive than Laxus had ever seen them. "Wh-What!" he cried out, and his voice cracked from the shock.

"But…" Laxus laid a finger on Freed's nose to calm him down like a bad pet. "…not until you're master of this house. You're still a little brat." He chuckled and scratched the top of his head. "Which means you need an adult…" He yanked Freed in even closer, until their bodies were pressed together. "…to take care of you." He kissed him on the nose, chuckled at the cute blushing, and then let both of them lie back. Laxus sighed as his muscles loosened. He really could fall asleep down here.

Freed watched him with yearning eyes. "Laxus?"

He grunted sleepily.

He bit his lip, but boldly blurted out, "I always want you to take care of me."

Laxus looked at the ceiling. Always was a long time. Still…

"Yeah," he said quietly. "I wouldn't mind." He smiled to himself. Thoughtfully, he repeated, "I really wouldn't mind."

Seriously, what had happened to him over these past few months? He was not the same man as before, thinking love was elusive, lust was immature, forced to believe that he would never find someone who could interest him, let alone arouse him. Now, this green-haired gay man had turned someone who thought love was a myth and made him want something … always!

How arrogant could he get, thinking that! He hardly even belonged in this house, let alone as a permanent fixture in Freed's life. Laxus shook his head, wanting to shove aside that desire, that little daydream of lifelong bliss, but it kept coming back to him, sweet and heavenly. He hesitantly glanced over. There was something he wanted to say, but he couldn't. Not yet. It was too soon, way too soon.

"We should head up," he said, crushing down that dream for the moment. "People might start questioning. Wouldn't wanna have these elitists start badmouthing you. It's bad enough that you brought someone like me."

"I think that with Evergreen and her boyfriend around, you don't stand out quite so much. That guy is huge."

"He's a nice guy, that Elfman. If she decides to marry him, we'll be good brothers-in-law."

Freed cringed at the idea of his sister and that brute together, and what their children might look like. "That's a disturbing thought."

Laxus sighed silently. He thought that was one hell of a hint, mentioning being brothers-in-law, but maybe it was too subtle. He rolled over and looked straight into Freed's face over the pillows. He wanted this man … so much it burned his heart. Words failed. Actions only lasted briefly. What more was there?

Cupping Freed's cheek, hoping the emotions got through, he whispered, "Aishiteru."

Freed's mouth dropped as he blushed. "Wh-what?"

"You heard me."

Freed averted his eyes. "You know, you shouldn't say that."

Laxus' brow furrowed. "Why the hell not? Am I saying it wrong? I know it looks like 'I shitty roo' but I watched a YouTube video to hear precisely how you say it."

"No, you're pronouncing it right." Freed could hardly help but laugh. I shitty roo? And did he really go so far as to look up a video to get the pronunciation correct? That was rather sweet. "It's just, in Japanese, there are different ways to say you love someone. Normally, you should say suki desu."

"That sounds weirder than I shitty roo."

"Aishiteru … it's … it's something people normally don't say," Freed explained bashfully. "It's a really strong I love you. It's not something you say lightly."

"I never say any romantic shit lightly."

"Yeah, but…"

"Don't you think I already knew that?"

Freed jolted up. "Knew … that?"

"You're repeating me again," he scolded. Laxus looked away with a flush on his cheeks. "When I knew I wanted to tell you that I loved you, I thought to myself, love is fucked up."

"Huh?"

"Like, English has totally fucked up the word love. It's just like with fuck. In our grandparents' days, it was called 'The F-bomb.' It was something you never said unless you were pissed as hell. Now, people say fuck so much, it's more like 'The F-firecracker.' Who fucking cares if you say fuck? Same with love. I love pizza, I love horror movies, I love fast cars, you might say 'I love you' to your parents, or to old friends, or to a whole room of people when you're drunk. Love isn't strong enough. I wanted something stronger than what I say to a goddamn bartender after my tenth drink. So I looked up how to say it in French and Japanese, since you like those languages. I thought, if I said it that way, it's different, it means more. Then I read about how Japanese has two ways to say it. Well hell!" he said in frustration. "I didn't want to remember two foreign phrases. Suki desu sounded easier to say, less likely to fuck it up, but … but then I read about why there are two, that the other phrase is something stronger, deeper, something you don't say to just anyone, something you might not even say to your spouse. I thought, 'That's it! That's what English needs! Something stronger than plain old I love you.' So although it was hard as hell to remember how to say it right, I knew that was the word I wanted, because what I feel for you, Freed…" He furrowed his brow and kept his eyes down as he tried to find the right words. "…it's stronger than anything I've ever felt in my life. I've dated girls before, but I never felt like this with them. This … it's different. So, I don't think I'm wrong when I tell you…" He finally looked Freed in the eyes, and his voice dropped to a low, sensual, ardent whisper as he told him with all of his heart, "…aishiteru."

A single tear dripped down Freed's cheek as he heard Laxus' bumbling but honest words. He opened his mouth, wanting to say something back. What? I love you, too? Laxus was right. Love—the word love—was so overused, it had lost its power and impact.

Laxus smiled with understanding as he saw the hesitation and confusion on Freed's face. "I'm not good with words. For me, actions speak louder. If you can't say it the right way, show me." He reached forward and cupped Freed's cheek. "Show me, Freed."

"That's the problem," Freed whispered. "I don't think I could ever show you how much you mean to me. Sex? Kinks? BDSM? None of it is enough. I can't get enough, and can't give enough with just my body. Words, actions, gifts … nothing is enough!"

"Maybe not all at once," Laxus said with a smile. Going out on a limb, he hesitantly asked, "So how about a long-term payment?"

Freed blushed brightly. "Long … term?"

Those blue eyes gleamed at him. Laxus' hand slipped over those thin fingers and held his hand with tenderness. "Freed—"

Just then, Freed's cellphone rang. They both jumped at the tune playing.

"That's Bas' ring!" Freed exclaimed. "He rarely calls me. Oh God, don't tell me Bickslow sent one of his sex dolls flying around on helium again."

He scrambled to his pants to pull out his cellphone. Laxus put a fist to his mouth to hold back a growl of frustration.

"Bas, what is it? Huh? Oh! Um … yes, we can be up there."

Laxus was frustrated, and seeing Freed flopped sideways across the bed, lying on his stomach and talking on the phone, gave him a perfect chance to punish Freed for interrupting what he had to say. He suddenly spanked Freed hard, and the crack of his hand hitting soft flesh rang through the air. A split second later—

"Ahhhhhhh!" Freed cried out. "Dammit, Laxus! No, Bas, I … I'm f-fine." He cursed under his breath as Laxus rubbed out the sting, yet it only made the burning worse. "W-we'll be there. Yes. Yes, tell Father I'll—nnngh—I'll be right up soon. Th-thank you." He hung up the phone and spun around in anger. "What the hell was that for?"

"For choosing a phone call over me," Laxus muttered. "The butler?"

"Yes." He rubbed out tension in his forehead and calmed himself. Laxus was just punishing him, and he should be thankful it was in private, not in the middle of the party. "Dinner is ready. We should head up."

Laxus climbed off of the bed and yanked on his pants. "Good. I'm starving."

Freed slowly got dressed, but he kept wondering about what Laxus had said. A long-term payment? He watched Laxus struggle back into his suit. Freed opened his mouth to ask about it, but he figured that now was a bad time. The mood had pretty much been ruined. In the end, he kept quiet.

"Hurry up," Laxus ordered.

Freed shoved down his curiosity. If Laxus wanted to talk about it, he would when he was ready. That was just the way he was.

"Can you get dressed?"

Freed fumbled through the clothes he had peeled off so quickly. "I think I need to leave my underwear here."

"Mmm, commando, huh?" He chuckled naughtily. "I like that idea."

"Uh … I was thinking of calling Bas and having him—"

"No, like this. It'd be humiliating." His eyes hardened, and he ordered sharply, "Do it."

His breath caught in his throat. "Yes, master." He pulled his slacks on without anything underneath, slowly zipped up the pants, and tightened his belt. Freed felt the rub of the fabric right against his scrotum, and the friction made him blush.

A sadistic grin slid onto Laxus' mouth. "Good boy."

They left the room and went back up the elevator, saying nothing. Upstairs, the crowd was still milling into a massive dining hall. There were round tables for the guests, but the family sat together at a rectangular table in the center. As they entered, a maid showed them over to their seats.

Liberty was chatting with Llewellyn when they came forward. "Oh! There you two are. The main course is about to be served. Um…" She looked at Laxus with trepidation. She was no fool, she knew where Llewellyn had taken them, and especially considering how long the two were away from the party, she could guess what they must have been up to. Freed at least looked fine, although a little flushed. He was not walking weird or had any visible marks. The motherly woman laughed nervously, pushing aside her worries. "Please, have a seat."

"Thank you, Ma'am … Liberty."

She smiled awkwardly and took her seat.

Freed leaned over to whisper into Laxus' ear. "Since when do you call her by her first name?"

"She wants me to call her Liberty. Anything wrong with that?"

"N-No," he muttered. "I just thought calling her ma'am sounded kind of … nice and formal."

"Well, she doesn't want it." He smirked as Freed began to sip a glass of water. "I offered to call her Mom."

Freed choked again on liquid. "Laxus!" All he got was a hearty laugh and bemused smile. In front of all these guests, Freed had to hide his cough with a napkin. "So, that's what you meant earlier about marriage."

"Yeah, I teased her about that. She didn't too much like the sound of it."

Freed glanced to where his mother was giving some directions to the waiters. "Oh," he said sadly. So, his father gave them his blessing, but his mother was not completely accepting of this, at least not to that degree.

"Like I give a fuc- … ngh, care…" he said louder, trying to choke back the profanity. "Oh fucking hell, if I wanna fucking cuss, I'll fucking cuss."

Elfman overheard his grumbles and declared, "Manly!"

Laxus grinned up at the hulking man. "Go to hell."

Elfman just laughed raucously, glad someone else around here was not all stuck up about social appearances.

"You and Elfman are getting along," Freed noted, and Laxus just shrugged. "So, um…" He leaned over close and whispered while glancing across the table to his sister and her massive boyfriend. "Have you noticed?"

"Huh?"

"About Elfman."

"What?"

Freed looked left and right, then cupped both hands to make sure no one heard him. "He used to go to the club."

Laxus' eyes widened, he pulled back, and he barely refrained from bellowing, "What?"

"Yeah, I think he was a guy in the club. His name … well, what I called him was 'Beast Man' but … that's him."

Laxus gawked over at Evergreen and Elfman. "Oh God, your sister is dating a gay man."

"Well, he might be bisexual."

"Probably is." Just like him, huh? Then something horrible dawned on Laxus. "Oh shit, does he recognize me?"

"You're probably going to go through life wondering that, aren't you?"

"Yeah, probably." It would be a curse, wondering if he would meet up with any club members or, even worse, more clients. "I don't think he remembers," he decided. "Maybe he was watching someone else." Laxus gave a slight shrug. "Maybe he just wanted to be a dancer."

Freed turned quickly at him in horror. "Okay, that's even more disturbing."

Laxus cringed. "Yeah, okay, we're not gonna think that."

"Nope."

"All right … ugh, he's staring at me." Elfman gave Laxus a tip of his glass in salute, and the thunder god awkwardly nodded back. "Oh God, he's gonna remember me, isn't he?"

Elfman's face twisted up in thought. "Hey, do I know you?"

Laxus inwardly groaned, but he casually replied for everyone else, "I'm an electrician. Maybe I worked on your … lights, or something."

"Ah, okay." Elfman turned back to a conversation down the table.

Laxus let out a quiet sigh. "He's an idiot, that's good."

Elfman suddenly choked on his drink and cried out. While Evergreen patted his back, cooing like he was an overgrown child, Elfman gazed up in horror at Laxus. His scarred face dropped many shades.

Freed rubbed out his forehead. "And he just figured it out," he whispered to himself.

"You—!"

Laxus' eyes narrowed. The two large men gazed at one another, a whole world of secrets passing between them. Silently, they understood one another. They had their secret kinks, but they also had their personal lives.

"Manly," Elfman said cautiously.

Laxus gave him an affirmative nod. "Ditto."

Elfman looked aside as he repeated, "Manly." Then both he and Laxus grabbed for their wineglasses at the same time, as if to toast the secret both hid.

"Oh God," Freed groaned. "Okay, this is just way too bizarre—"

"BABIES!"

"And there goes Bickslow…"

"The babies are flying!" he cried out, staring around the room.

Laxus laughed at the good break in tension. "That must be a hell of an acid trip."

Although between sitting next to a stripper, sitting across from a guy dating his sister but also moonlighting at a gay bar, and his little brother doped on something strong might have made this the worst Christmas ever, Freed could only laugh.

"Oh God, I've got the most screwed up family."

Laxus reached over to place his hand on Freed's leg, worried about the chaos, but instead he saw his angelic green lover smiling as if this was the best Christmas party ever.

"You know, between everything else, you and I … we're not that weird in this family."

Laxus scoffed at that. "What? Just because we're gay? I think your brother is the weird one."

They both watched as the butler stabbed a syringe into Bickslow. Slowly, he stopped insisting that tiki dolls were flying around, and the tiki dolls were his babies. Instead, he stared off into space silently.

"My brother needs some serious detox," Freed muttered, knowing it was back into rehab for his wild brother.

Once Bickslow's maniacal laughter had stopped and he appeared to be sedated enough, the staff hurried forward with food and wine. A platter was set in front of Laxus with ham, green beans, and roasted potatoes. On smaller plates were a dinner roll and some brown lump he did not recognize, but it smelled like nutmeg and raisins.

"Well, the food looks normal … mostly." He frowned at the nutmeg lump. Seriously, what the hell was that? Why did it have a plate all to itself? That seemed dubious to Laxus.

"It's a Christmas dinner. What'd you expect?"

"How the fuck should I know?" He cringed as Liberty glared at him for cursing. "Hell … dammit … How should I know?" Under his breath, he grumbled, "Shit." He really could not hold back his mouth sometimes.

"Shall we all say grace?" Liberty asked as if she had heard nothing from him.

Everyone else bowed their heads, so Laxus did too, noticing that Elfman looked equally confused about this formality.

Llewellyn said a prayer over the food, blessing it and all who ate it. Meanwhile, Laxus poked the mysterious blob and sucked on his finger, wondering what it was. It was sweet, and he thought he tasted rum, so it had to be good. Freed elbowed him, and Laxus saw his eyes partly open, glaring over and shaking his head. Laxus pouted and sulked through the prayer that lasted way too long for his likes.

Like that man had any right to pray to a god that forbade adultery! Still, it was nice to see a glimpse into Freed's upbringing. Family dinners, saying grace: no wonder he was such a good kid.

"Amen!" the gathering said, and Laxus jolted that finally it had ended. Then came clattering silverware and the sounds of eating. Laxus kept looking down at his plate, but he did not touch anything.

Freed looked over in worry. "Are you going to eat?"

Laxus gazed back and forth around his place-setting. "Which fork do I use?" he asked quietly with determination not to shame himself anymore.

Freed laughed at such a simple problem. "Pick one. Like anyone cares."

"No, there's like a way you do this, right? I've seen this in movies. You start on the inside and work out, or the outside and work in. Something like that."

Freed reached over and picked up a utensil. "Try this one."

"Okay, cool. What's that called?"

"It's called a fork."

Laxus slid a glare over at him and whispered, "Fuck you."

Freed laughed and reached under the table to squeeze Laxus' thigh. "It doesn't matter. Maybe if we were entertaining the President, yeah, but for a family dinner, no one cares."

"What?" Laxus gawked. "You guys have dined with the President?"

"No, I'm just saying."

"Oh God, don't scare me like that." It was bad enough knowing he was dining with some of the richest men in the region. Laxus took his fork and poked the brown lump. "Seriously, what the hell is this?"

Freed looked over in confusion. "Christmas pudding."

"Okay, but what's in it?"

He chuckled softly. "You've never had Christmas pudding?"

Laxus glared over. "I'm Jewish."

Freed's eyes widened. "Oh shoot! Do we need to get you something other than ham? Bas! Turkey over here instead of ham!"

"No, it's fine. I'm not that Jewish."

"No, it's not a problem. Trust me, there are lots Jews at parties like this. I just forgot to warn Mom."

Liberty perked up. "Something the matter, dear?"

Freed clasped his hands together to apologize. "I forgot to mention that Laxus is Jewish."

"Oh dear!" she exclaimed quietly. "The ham. I'm so sorry."

Laxus cringed. "Really, it's not that big of a deal."

Bas came forward with a plate made almost exactly the same way, but with turkey instead of ham. He swiftly took away the offending plate.

"That food had better not go to waste," Laxus grumbled with a glare at the retreating servant.

"Don't worry," Liberty assured him. "We give all extra food to the shelter. That meal will go to a needy child."

"Oh. Okay," he said awkwardly. "I guess that's good." He looked down at the plate. "So again, what the hell is this pudding?"

"Raisins, suet, treacle, rum, bunch of spices. It's really good."

Laxus took a bite and tested it. "Yeah, not bad."

"Honestly," Freed confessed softly, "it's the only thing my mom made herself. She insists upon it every year. It's an old tradition going back generations. All of us kids help, too. We each take turns stirring, and we make a wish as we stir. It's silly, I know, but it's tradition."

"You helped out? But you haven't been back home in months."

Freed nodded down to the pudding. "That was made six months ago."

Laxus coughed and almost vomited into his napkin.

"No, seriously, it's fine," Freed chuckled, passing him some water. "That's how it's made. It has so much alcohol in it, the pudding can last up to a year."

"That's sick!"

"It's good. It's like cheese or wine; it has to age."

"I'm not eating it," he sneered in disgust.

"…Oh." Freed frowned and looked down at his plate.

Laxus saw the sadness. He had hurt Freed's feelings. "You … you helped, huh?" he muttered.

Freed muttered, "I just tossed in some raisins and stirred."

"While making a wish?"

Quietly, Freed nodded.

"What'd you wish for?"

He glanced up, and under the table, his foot rubbed against Laxus' ankle. "That I would find someone to love."

Laxus' mouth opened slightly, stunned at the wish. Six months ago, Freed was still a bashful audience member hiding in the shadows of a strip club, watching but too nervous to speak. Now, here they were, sharing the holidays together.

Hesitantly, Laxus tried another bite. "It's really good."

Freed blushed with joy. "That's great. Although, you're eating it with the dinner fork and not the dessert spoon."

Laxus set the fork down. "Oh for fuck's sake!"

"No, it's fine."

"Seriously, which one do I use for this?"

"Small spoon on the top."

"Sheesh, there's silverware everywhere: left side, right side, top of the plate. This is screwed up."

"It's not a big deal."

"It is! I don't want to look like an idiot here." He grumbled under his breath. "I feel intimidated as hell, just so you know."

"Relax. It's just Christmas dinner with the family."

Laxus paused and looked around. Llewellyn was smiling to Liberty, wearing the mask of a perfectly loving husband. Liberty took dainty bites of the ham and graciously accepted any compliments, as if she had been the one who prepared the entire feast. Evergreen was apparently also explaining utensils to Elfman, and the poor guy looked like he might accidentally bend the dessert spoon. Bickslow was licking the raisin and nutmeg mush off of his spoon.

"With the family," Laxus repeated softly, glancing around as he realized he had just been accepted into the Justine family. "Heh," he laughed, blinking his eyes before tears gathered. "Crazy."

Freed squeezed his knee again. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah." He smiled down to Freed. "Your family is pretty cool."

Freed looked around at his parents and siblings. "Yeah. I guess I got lucky."

Laxus kept looking at Freed. A family! One day, Freed would be master of this mansion. One day, it would be him saying grace. An hour ago, Laxus felt like there was no way in the world that he could live this sort of life.

Now … maybe he could.

Maybe it would be nice to host a party, chat with Freed's coworkers, and stir the Christmas pudding together six months ahead of time. It would be nice to exchange gifts, Hanukkah and Christmas together, take strolls through the snow, and sit by the fire while watching old black-and-white Christmas movies.

Hell … it would be nice to be part of a real family again.

"Laxus?"

He jolted at Liberty's voice and looked to the head of the table, worried that maybe he grabbed the wrong fork again, or dabbed his napkin to his lips improperly, or held his wineglass without his pinkie raised, or who knows what sorts of issues it could be. Instead, she had a gentle smile.

"Are you enjoying your time here?"

He glanced around the room, then down at Freed, who was in a conversation about French politics with Evergreen, sounding as sophisticated as a gentleman should. Maybe he was not born into this lifestyle, but Laxus wanted to be part of this family.

"Yes, ma'am," he smiled back at Liberty. "I'm enjoying it. You have a lovely home and a great family."

She smiled genteelly and told him, "You're welcome to come back any time, but only if you call me Liberty and not ma'am." She grinned sweetly at him.

Maybe it was just standard politeness, but those words struck deeply into Laxus' heart. Here was a home where he was welcomed. "Thank you." He had to blink his eyes dry again. "Thank you very much."

She lifted her glass to him. "Happy holidays."

Laxus tipped his wineglass and replied, "And a prosperous New Year!"

He smiled reflectively as he remembered his own mother and how she would toast at special dinners. Now here was a woman who—maybe—could be a second mother to him. Laxus clinked his glass against hers, then with Llewellyn, and finally with Freed. Those turquoise eyes turned up to his and twinkled, as if Freed fully understood what this all meant. The family had accepted Laxus.

"Merry Christmas, Laxus," he said joyfully.

He reached over and boldly laid his hand over those thin fingers. "I'm glad I can spend it with you."

Freed blushed and dropped his gaze.

Laxus leaned into his ear. "You have no idea how tempted I am to kiss you."

Freed coyly glanced up. "You have no idea how tempted I am to accept it."

Laxus laughed quietly and squeezed Freed's hand. What an incredible end to the year!

Next Chapter: "Passing Storm"

Chapter Text

It was a gentle Spring day, flowered and breezy. Gone were the snows and cold rain, yet students looked graver in the sunshine as finals and graduation approached. Freed had gone grocery shopping, and he picked up an apartment rental magazine from the store. As he walked, instead of reading Nietzsche or Machiavelli, he browsed for a place to live once he was done with school.

He could always move back into his old home, but his mother had moved to Paris shortly after announcing their divorce to the rest of the family, and his father … Freed could not be around his father for long anymore. It was too awkward. Besides, he wanted more independence before taking over that large house and the family business. He had insisted that he would start working after graduation in a junior level, the same as anyone else. He needed the rest of the company to know that he was worthy when one day the business landed in his hands.

So he looked at apartments close to the company's headquarters. He had discussed this with Laxus, of course. Freed finally did go over to Laxus' apartment, and he demanded that he get out of that tenement as soon as possible. Maybe he was a little forceful, even whiny and sounded scared just to be there. He was not used to a place that looked dirty and felt dangerous, with graffiti outside and rats inside. He was getting used to it after he realized that, despite the building's poor condition, Laxus lived in a clean room and was respected by his neighbors. Still, they had talked about it and decided to move in together whenever Freed found a place to live that suited them both.

He crossed a few streets, walked into Laxus' dingy tenement, up a flight of stairs with flickering neon lights, and pulled out a spare key to Laxus' place. Freed felt the hallways were too narrow, the walls were bare cement, and the water pressure was weak. It was home to Laxus though, and he thought it was an improvement. If this was a step up from his last apartment, Freed dreaded to know just how bad that one had been.

He walked into the room and grinned at the blond hunched over the dining table big enough for only two.

"Hey!" he cried out. "Happy Passover, or whatever you're supposed to say," he chuckled. "I got potatoes for that kugel recipe I found online. I thought we could make that for the holiday."

"Passover was yesterday," Laxus muttered.

"It's not an eight-day thing like Hanukkah? Oh. Well, the meal yesterday was pretty weird. Traditional foods, I get it," he quickly added, not wanting to seem rude and culturally derisive, "but I really don't think I like horseradish. It didn't agree with my stomach. What was that meal called again?" He set the grocery bags down and looked over when Laxus said nothing nor got up to help him like he normally did. "Hello? Helloooo! Earth calling Laxus," he teased, but still no response. "Do you have your headphones on again? You'll go deaf, y'know."

Freed walked over to the dining table. Laxus had a glass out and a bottle of Blue Label half empty. His headphones were off, cast aside haphazardly, as if thrown in anger. Freed's brow furrowed at the tense silence.

"Hey," he tried again, softer and starting to worry. "Are you okay?"

All he got was a grunt.

Freed left the groceries on the counter and sat next to Laxus. "What's wrong? Did something happen? Something at work?" He glared jealously. "Did some jerk hit on you again?"

"N-no," Laxus muttered. He stared solemnly at the glass and its amber liquid.

Freed placed a hand on his back. "Come on, Laxus. What happened?"

After a long and heavy silence, Laxus gulped the scotch and set the glass aside. "Freed, you know I love you, right?"

"Yeah…" he said hesitantly. "Uh, w-why?"

He waited nervously for more, for bad news, some horrible thing that was about to happen. Instead, after a long and worrisome silence, Laxus suddenly looked up and smiled as if nothing was wrong.

"How about we go out tonight?"

"Out?"

"Yeah, like out to dinner. It'll make up for the whole Passover seder. You obviously weren't too thrilled with the food," he laughed tensely.

"O-okay," he muttered. "Laxus…"

The blond stood and stormed off. "I've gotta get ready," he said brusquely.

"Lax-…" In a flash, he was gone. Freed's heart sank. Something horrible was up, and he wanted to know just how bad it would be. "Laxus," he whispered, shaking as he feared that maybe…

Maybe this was it.


It was a nice restaurant, chandeliers in a vaulted ceiling, candles on the tables, waiters in tuxedos, a prodigy cello player accompanied by a man on a grand piano, the sort of place that had a menu just for the wines. Laxus wore the same suit he donned at Christmas, the only truly formal clothes he owned. Freed did not really dress up, but his usual outfit was good enough for this place. He gazed around, taking in the ambiance and idle chatter of society's well-off.

"Nice place," he said. "A rather big step up from our usual." Laxus' idea of fine dining was a Denny's, or a really fancy restaurant for him was when they ate at whatever local Italian restaurant had a coupon. It was the first time they had come to a place like this. Laxus usually scoffed at these sorts of restaurants.

"I figured I could treat you once in a while," Laxus said casually. "This is more of the type of restaurant you were used to growing up, right? Good family, good food." He sliced into the filet mignon he had ordered and ate a forkful.

Freed looked down at his salmon and rice pilaf, then up to Laxus. He had kept quiet and nervous all through deciding the food, appetizers, the first courses, and now the main meal. He could barely stomach anything with his insides all in knots. Freed set his fork down and look up with firm, turquoise eyes.

"Are you going to tell me what's going on?" he asked sternly.

Laxus looked up. Once in a while, the aristocrat came out, and Freed showed he was a man you did not want to mess with. Laxus chewed slowly, swallowed, sipped down some wine—a little too much to be proper—and braced himself for the inevitable conversation. Just as he began to open his mouth, something changed and he bit his lip in anguish. Suddenly, he laughed to himself.

"Y'know … Christmas … I told your mom something. I was … t-teasing her," he said, and his words stumbled. His Adam's apple suddenly jolted as he swallowed back emotions and blinked his eyes rapidly. "Goddammit!" he hissed as the emotions deluged him.

Freed reached across the table and laid his hands over shaking fingers. "Laxus," he whispered.

"I … n-no…" He yanked his hand away, wiped an eye, and continued with a more steady voice. "I was teasing her. I said I could call her mom. I assured her I was just yankin' her chain." He laughed awkwardly. His eyes saddened, and thoughtfully he went on. "I … I told her … you deserved better. Better than me." He smiled in anguish and shook his head as he thought about the ridiculousness of it all. Why was he even here, in a restaurant like this, with a man whose family made more money in one month than Laxus would make in his lifetime? "God, Freed! You're an heir to a fortune. You could hook up with anyone."

"But I'm not…"

"I don't mean marry some chick," he assured quickly. "I mean, seriously! There's gotta be some rich guy who would want you. Someone good. Someone kind." He dropped his head and a tear slipped out. Almost too quiet to hear, he muttered, "Not me."

"Laxus!" Freed exclaimed, barely holding back from shouting. "Laxus, don't say that."

Those electric blue eyes gazed up mournfully. "I told her you deserve someone better, and you really do."

Tears dripped down Freed's face, yet when he spoke, his voice was somehow firm, demanding an honest answer. "Are you breaking up with me?"

Laxus held his gaze and replied quietly, "That depends."

"On what?" Freed yelled, but he quickly dropped his voice. "Just tell me. Is this some test? Do I have to do something? Pick my family or you?"

"No! No, I would never make you pick like that."

"Then tell me. Just … just tell me." His voice faded in frailness. "How do I keep you?"

Laxus firmed up. "It'll be your call."

Freed's brow crunched. "What do you mean?"

"I'm leaving," he explained curtly. Horror filled Freed's gaze, so Laxus quickly corrected himself. "I'm not leaving you." His fist tensed up as he pursed his lips. "Look, Freed…" A long pause followed, with only the cello music and clamor of silverware on plates. Darkly, Laxus told him the truth. "They found my dad."

The tears stopped, his heart seemed to freeze for a few seconds, and Freed felt a bone-aching chill. The words "Oh my God" slipped out while a shiver tingled down his spine.

"He's in Greece. I'm heading out there. I got a call from INTERPOL of all places, telling me … don't! They know I've been independently hunting after him. The guy on the phone said not to go, don't make it worse, don't get involved, it's not my fight. But I'm going out there. I don't care what I have to do, fake passport or what, but I'm going." His teeth clenched. "I need to find that bastard before anyone else does. I'm close to him. Real close! My P.I. knows the exact hotel he's staying in." His eyes sparked with rage. "I wanna get there first."

Freed listened, but it felt like a horrific dream. He knew Laxus was still funding a private investigator. He rarely truly thought about it, what this obsessive years-long manhunt meant. Now he understood.

"You're going to kill him," he whispered, just a wisp of fear that never reached anyone but Laxus.

The blond gave a slow nod. "You can't be my boyfriend when I do that." He snuffed up emotions. "You can't be…" His fist tensed again, and his throat tightened until veins stood out. "You can't be tied to me in any way. Not when I do that."

Freed felt his world spinning. He suddenly understood how Laxus felt on transportation, sick and dizzy and wanting it all to end. But this was not ending. It was just beginning.

"You might not get caught," he said desperately. "You could make it back. No one would know. No one but me."

Laxus' lips quivered as he looked up with bloodshot eyes. "Would you want me back, knowing what I did?"

Freed smiled and reached over again to squeeze that shaking fist. "I knew from the beginning that you wanted to do this. I'll admit, it kept me up some nights, especially at the beginning, wondering if … if you did this … could I still love you?" He let out a sadly emotional laugh and shrugged. "That's a hell of a question," he confessed. "Still, you told me from the very start what your plans were, and … and I fell for you anyway."

He pulled back, took his napkin, and dabbed his eyes. Laxus watched in silence, waiting for Freed's decision. He may be the master, but anything he did was only at the consent of his beloved slave. Even this, he wanted to know what Freed's opinion was. Laxus knew for some time now, the next step in their relationship, getting through this inevitable moment, was in part up to Freed.

Like a switch, the aristocrat was back, and Freed raised his head firmly. His eyes were red, his face blotched from wiping aside tears, but those eyes held determination.

"Go do what you have to do," he stated, his voice still trembling, but no hesitancy in his demeanor. "Promise me this, though. If anyone comes, and they're about to catch you, get the hell out of there! Don't be stubborn about it. Don't let them catch you. Don't … d-don't…"

The strength of that emotional dam broke. For a second, all the ugly pain showed on his face before he covered it with the napkin. His sobs brought over some attention, but people only looked briefly before politely turning away.

Laxus ached to hear the sobs. He reached over and squeezed Freed's shoulder while whispering his name. He wished there was some other way, but he had been waiting for this opportunity half of his life.

"Don't … let them … catch you … in the act," Freed said through the napkin. "Come back to me. I know you have this deep desire … r-revenge … on your father," Freed sobbed out. He yanked the cloth away and glared up. "But if you get there and you don't have time for all the … the torture you have planned for him," he struggled, "you do what you have to do, and get the hell out of there. Okay?"

"Yeah," Laxus promised seriously.

"Promise me!"

"I promise. If things get bad, I'll end it."

Freed nodded, knowing Laxus was a man who kept his promises. He would come back. He was sure of it. "How long will you be gone?"

"That depends on him."

Laxus' words were cryptic at first, but Freed quickly realized what he meant. It depended on how long Ivan Dreyar could survive Laxus' slow torture. Freed shivered at the mental image haunting his brain, a faceless man, someone he had never personally met, tied up, bloody, with Laxus covered in splattered blood, rage in his eyes. It all came down to how long Ivan could last, and how slowly Laxus tortured him.

Emotionlessly, Laxus said, "My estimate: two months. If I'm really good at it: a year. I won't do it for more than a year," he promised. "Is that okay?"

This was like any torture scene between them. Laxus said what he wanted to do, but he always asked Freed, "Is that okay?" And just like always, Freed braced himself for the pain and nodded in consent.

"Yeah. That's okay."

Laxus nodded firmly. It was a pact between them now. "Tell everyone you know that we broke up. Everyone! Your roommate, all of your friends, your parents, anyone who knew you and I were together. Tell them all."

"But—"

"This is just in case," Laxus said sternly. "Just in case … if the worst happens, I don't want you tied to me. You can't be. It'd ruin your whole family."

"I understand," Freed nodded calmly. He knew too well, someone in his position had to think about social standing. If it became known that the son of a powerful business magnate was the gay lover to a patricidal murderer, it would destroy their corporation.

"This is just temporary," Laxus insisted. "If you want me back…" Laxus sneered as his throat clenched again. Dammit, he hated the burning in his eyes! "I don't want to leave you, really, but I've gotta do this. I've been waiting my whole life."

"No, I get it," Freed said. He gave Laxus a nod, then picked up his fork and ate a bite of salmon.

Laxus gazed down at his beef, but he felt too sickened to eat. "Dammit," he growled softly. He picked up the bottle of wine, poured more, and drank the whole glass.

"Laxus," Freed said softly. Stern eyes blazed up, and in that voice that held command, he laid down one stipulation. "Don't change!"

Laxus was confused. "Huh?

"When you do that, and when you come back, don't be a different person. That's what scares me the most. Up until now, it's just been planning what you want. Just plans! When you carry it out … they say something like that—killing a man—can change a person."

He took a calming breath as the fears rippled through him. It really was his biggest fear. Laxus was a sadist, but up until now he had never been cruel. He did only what other people wanted. This would be different. When he faced Ivan, there would be no safewords, no asking if he was okay, no sympathy at all. Just murderous hatred.

Freed had to brace himself to say more. "So, when you come back, don't be different. Don't let it change you. If you think it's changing you … stop it! Just stop. Don't take it too far. Don't turn into something you're not." His voice quieted, but his smile was hopeful. "I want my master, not a monster."

Laxus held those strong but lithe fingers in his massive, rough hands. "I promise that, and I promise I'll come back to you as soon as this is over."

Freed squeezed his hand back with happiness chasing away the fears. "Okay," he nodded.

"I might miss your graduation."

"I … I know." He had been hoping Laxus could be there, but if he was going to be gone even just two months, the Spring semester would be over.

"Keep looking for a place to live," Laxus went on. "Make sure it's big enough for two people."

Freed smiled sadly. "I … was going to tell you. I found a place."

"Already? But you've been looking at those renter magazines every day."

"I didn't want you to know yet. I wanted to surprise you, so I pretended like I was still searching. It's near my dad's company, it has a hot tub in the apartment, a balcony, the walls are thick—I made sure to ask, and the manager said they're nearly soundproof—they even allow pets in case you want to get a cat someday. I signed it, and I move in on the first."

"Before graduation?" he asked in concern.

"To be honest, I can't study with Loke bringing girls over every weekend. I need my own place away from him. I'll be all moved in by the time you come back." He sniffled sadly. "I'll make sure I have a spare key waiting for you."

He had wanted to move in first and surprise Laxus. He wanted to spend his first night in that apartment with Laxus making love to him. Now, the place would be empty. He would live by himself. Freed had never lived alone in his life, and the thought of it was scary. That large apartment, all alone, always thinking about him … it would be so lonely.

"Laxus," he whispered in tears, but he did not know what to say. He could not ask him to give up a lifelong pursuit that he had worked awful jobs and endured old men groping him to pay for the investigator, all for this moment, to beat INTERPOL and nab his father first, to get his revenge and release years of hatred onto that man who used his own son as a science experiment. Freed knew he could not ask Laxus not to go…

Because if he did, Laxus would stay, and then Freed would feel guilty for the rest of his life.

Laxus saw the loneliness and knew what Freed must be thinking. However, like with BDSM, he waited for the safeword. This time, the words to say to make it all stop were simple: Don't go!

And Freed never said it. Laxus waited, but Freed knew he could endure the pain. He could let go so long as he knew Laxus would come back.

"Let's finish eating," Laxus said quietly. "Then I'm going to take you home. I'm going to show you how much I love you," he whispered ardently, quiet enough so no one else could hear. "Nothing kinky this time. Just you and me."

Nothing kinky. They would make love like normal people, gently and filled with tenderness. The tears spilled over Freed's eyelids, but he nodded happily. Before leaving, he wanted to show Laxus just how much he loved him, an intensity so vast, kinks and words and actions could never encompass it all … but it could come close.


Kisses lingered, electrifying and moist, while hands touched so tenderly that he had to hold himself back from begging for more. He knew more would not come. Roughness was forbidden. Laxus had insisted upon that much.

Instead, his body was caressed as if those hands were mapping out every detail, and the tongue that sometimes slid into his mouth savored the tastes with low hums.

"Laxus," Freed moaned. A kiss fell softly upon his lips. "You've never been this gentle."

"Of course I have," he said, kissing Freed's mouth from every angle.

"No you haven't," he insisted with a chuckle. Laxus had the same dominant voice as always despite the tenderness.

"Sure I have," Laxus said between kisses. "Our first time."

Freed hummed in pleasure. "Not like this."

Laxus smirked as he kissed him some more. "Shut up, Greenie."

Freed chuckled at the old nickname and wrapped his arms around the broad shoulders. If Laxus was going to touch him everywhere, he wanted to touch back.

They clung to one another, just kissing and touching, nothing wild or urgent. They were savoring every second. One of the kisses lasted longer, a sense of shared emotional pain that usurped any physical pain of the past. Minutes lingered with just their lips pressed together, no tongue, no groping, just a simple kiss that never wanted to stop. When finally Laxus pulled up, he looked stunned. He honestly had never kissed a person that long before. Freed also looked surprised. Laxus had never kissed him quite like that. It took his breath away.

"Freed?" He wanted to speak, but his throat was dry. Even after gulping, he felt his words stick. "You're incredible," Laxus sighed, and he dived down, a rougher kiss now with a moist tongue, as if giving Freed the liquid to speak again.

Instead, the green-haired man only moaned.

"I want to make love to you now," Laxus whispered passionately. "I wanna do it like normal people."

Freed scoffed softly. "Who says I want to be normal?"

"Shut up and let me do it how I want," Laxus snapped. "Before it all goes to hell, I … I just wanna try normal."

Freed understood the unspoken words. Before he became a killer, Laxus wanted a taste of what his life might have been like if he had never set on this path.

"Okay," he agreed, willing to give up kinks for a night if that was what Laxus wanted.

Laxus kissed him with a thankful smile, pulled up, and yanked off his shirt.

"C-can I ask something?" Freed questioned nervously as he fumbled with his shirt buttons.

"Sure," Laxus said, undoing his belt and pulling down the zipper on his pants.

Freed watched. No strip show. No wild ripping off each other's clothes. Just casually getting naked. Was this how normal people did it?

"Well?"

Freed jolted before speaking. "I know that, up to this point, you've been using BDSM mostly to train yourself. Consensual torture to prepare yourself for real torture," he muttered. "For … revenge."

Laxus stood to pull off his pants and looked down with wary eyes. Freed's hands had forgotten about the clothes and were twisting together nervously.

"Will you still … um … want stuff like that?"

Want BDSM? At the moment, he told himself that of course he wanted it. A part of him wanted to hogtie Freed to his bed and ravage him until he screamed so loud, he got evicted from the tenement and maybe someone would call the cops on him. One last huzzah before leaving this dump. However, Freed asked a good question.

"I don't know," he answered truthfully.

Freed lowered his head. "Oh," he whispered.

"I've been like this for so long, but I don't know if I'll necessarily still need it. I'm not even sure if, after it's over … maybe I won't even want it."

Freed jolted and looked up. Not want it? Then again, after going to that extreme, there was the possibility that Laxus would not be able to stand the sound of someone screaming in pain.

"I honestly don't know," he admitted. "After I deal with him, I may not ever want to touch a whip again. Or it might be, after it's over, I can enjoy it more. I can finally stop thinking 'How would I do this to my dad?' Maybe I won't need it as much, or maybe I'll crave it more than ever before. I honestly have no idea how this is going to affect me."

"I understand. I mean, I guess this is pretty serious."

Laxus looked down sternly. "Do you have any idea what I'm about to do?"

"You're about to kill a man. I know that," he cringed. "I'm not saying I like it, but I know you need to. For your own sanity, you need to get over this. It's eaten away at you for too long. This revenge, it's what you've lived for all these years. It's what's kept you alive, kept you going forward. It's the most important thing for you, and I get that."

Laxus gave him a soulful gaze of sadness. The most important thing? He wanted to protest that, except…

… except, he was leaving Freed to chase after that bastard, breaking his boyfriend's heart, all for his desire for revenge. He wanted to tell himself that Freed was the most important thing, yet all it took was one email. He had not even questioned whether or not he would fly off to Greece and do this. He knew, and nothing, not even Freed begging and crying for him to stay, would have stopped him in the end.

Laxus dropped his gaze soberly. "Yeah," he muttered, feeling awful deep inside.

He wished he was a better man than this, but … he wasn't! The fact that he had bought a plane ticket before even telling Freed showed that he wasn't worthy of calling Freed the most important thing in his life. Not yet. Not until the years of anger finally left his heart and set free his soul from all the anguish. It was the only way Freed could fully own his heart.

"Undress," he commanded softly.

He continued with pulling down his boxers. He was not erect yet. Would he even be able to get hard? He had not thought about that, but up until now it was only hearing Freed crying out in lusty need and in pain that made him rise to attention. Could he even make love normally? He wanted to think that some part of him did not have to rely on delivering pain all the time. Some part of him had to be gentle, tender, and not sadistic.

He watched as Freed pulled off his shirt. Laxus reached down and rubbed his biceps, feeling the sinewy muscles move as Freed continued with his pants and underwear. When he tugged off his socks as well, Freed gazed up. He was stiff, ready to go. Knowing him, he had probably been erect from the first kiss. Laxus wondered if he would find pleasure that easily after this was over.

"Lie back," he ordered. Freed dropped backwards onto the pillows, and Laxus slowly followed him down. "I just want to touch you for now," he said, and he reached down, stroking that eager length. Freed seemed to brace himself for more, but the hand on him stroked slowly. "Just like this," Laxus whispered. "Just gentle."

Freed looked up into those deep blue eyes, seeing such intensity in them, as if Laxus could peer into his thoughts and read every desire. He felt more than naked under those electric eyes. Suddenly, he shivered.

"What?" Laxus teased. "Do you actually like it gentle?"

Freed blushed. "M-maybe sometimes."

Laxus chuckled deviously. "Maybe you just like me touching you no matter what I do."

Freed moaned as the fingers stroked down. "Can't deny that." Laxus' hand squeezed just a little tighter, but that subtle change made Freed groan.

"Going slow like this, I can figure out exactly what you like." He stroked up and gave a faint twist right as the foreskin covered the head. Freed whimpered and his fists gripped the sheets. "Like that," Laxus chuckled slyly. "I'll have to remember that maneuver." He did it again, a firm stroke down, then pulling up with a twist at the end.

Freed felt heat pooling deep inside him, but Laxus went so slowly, it just built, more and more, hotter and deeper, sinking into him. He whimpered Laxus' name over and over, and each time the blond caught his breath a little.

"Laxus … La- … ahhh … -axus! Laxus!"

"Quiet," he ordered in a low voice. "Say my name gently."

Freed opened his eyes in confusion, but he realized that he had been vocally tensing up. He let out a sigh and gazed straight into those pale eyes. Warmly and with all the love he could convey, he spoke two syllables: "Laxus."

That hardened face looked like it could melt. "Freed," he murmured. Laxus leaned over and kissed the beauty mark on Freed's cheek. "I don't want to go." His other hand stroked over Freed's cheek in anguish. "I really don't want to leave you."

Freed gave an understanding smile. "But you need to," he replied.

"Yeah," Laxus whispered brusquely. "I've gotta do this."

He needed to. He had waited his whole life for this day. He had chased that bastard for so long. But now…

Now…

He used to look at his future and thought no further than getting revenge and doling out pain to that bastard who donated half of his DNA to bring him to life, a man unworthy of being called a father. He figured he could spend years slowly slicing and whipping and just watching him suffer the same torment Laxus had endured as a child.

Now when Laxus looked at his future, he saw these eyes under him gazing back, a smile, the green hair that always fell over one eye, a home together, happiness. These were things he never thought he could have. Just a few months ago, Laxus lived for training himself to be the perfect torturer. Now, he wanted to learn how to be a perfect lover.

Emotions swelled. His scar tensed as his face strained to hold back tears. He used to never cry. Never! This green-haired angel changed him so much.

"I love you!" he declared hastily as he forced his lips down, kissing Freed roughly, desperately, craving all he could get before his life changed again.

Freed groaned as his lips were bitten, sucked, and bruised with fierce passion that could no longer be kept at bay. Like a storm, it all broke and poured out. Those muscular hips thrust up against him, and he could feel Laxus beginning to get harder.

"Love you so much!" Laxus growled. His hands went up, clawing into Freed's chest, claiming him with scratches right over the nipples.

Freed moaned in pain, then suddenly cried out as Laxus' fingertips pinched, tugged, and teased his nipples. "N-no … ahhhn … L-Laxus!"

That cry was what he needed. It hit his groin with a spark of pleasure. Laxus ached. He needed this man. He needed to show him how precious he was, how rare and wonderful and utterly perfect. So many emotions clambered in his heart, and Laxus needed to express them somehow.

"Need you! Now!" he sneered.

Laxus snatched a bottle of lube and slathered it onto his length. Freed saw and eagerly spread his legs. He had prepped himself beforehand in the bathroom, and he was ready. Laxus gripped himself and looked down into Freed's face. His blue eyes silently asked, and Freed gave a nod.

Laxus pressed, and Freed whimpered without restraint. He was used to it now, but it still felt incredible to be filled up, spread in a way that was pleasurable and painful at the same time. He felt that shaft slide slowly, just a little, and Laxus paused. Freed panted with flushed cheeks.

"Are you okay?" Laxus asked tenderly.

He nodded tensely until he could swallow and regain his voice. "More. Keep going."

Laxus leaned over and kissed Freed until he moaned. Slowly, his hips slid forward. Each centimeter made Freed groan a little louder and louder, until his mouth was wide open and his neck arched back. Deprived of lips, Laxus dipped down and kissed along Freed's neck, not too gently either, until tiny pink marks dotted that aristocratic throat.

Once he was fully in, Laxus paused. He gazed down again, committing every gasp and facial expression to memory. Finally, Freed looked up.

"Please," he begged. He needed more. Just sitting there was not enough.

Laxus chuckled softly with a smirk curling the corner of his lips. He eased back, then slowly slid forward again, listening to the shuddering moan. Each stroke went so slowly, so tenderly, while he watched Freed's body react.

"Wait," Freed flinched.

"Did it hurt?" Laxus asked in concern.

"W-what? No! Hell no. Just … this isn't like you at all," he pouted.

Laxus realized he was right. "What, would you rather have me spank you a few times, slap you around a bit, bite you and pull your hair?"

Freed laughed as he realized that was how they normally did it. "No, this is okay," he assured. "Just … you have such a sad look in your eyes."

"Of course I do!" he snapped. "I'm missing the hell out of you already." Never had sex been so bittersweet, knowing it was their last night to share in this. "I want to savor this," he explained, stroking his fingers down Freed's torso and gazing at the pale gleam of his skin in the moonlight. "I want to enjoy it so that even if it takes me a year, I'll remember it. And I want you to enjoy it."

His hand trailed down to the erection, and he caressed just his fingertips over the inflamed skin.

"Every night when you stroke off, I want it to be me you're imagining, my hands touching you. I want you to remember these hands and how they feel." He gripped Freed's cock and gave him a firm stroke. "Remember these fingers, got it!" His eyes drooped sadly again. "Don't go to strip clubs and start imagining other men. Only me, understood. Remember my body!"

Freed looked up with yearning at hearing the desperate edge in that tense voice. "Laxus," he whispered wistfully.

"Be true to me for one year," Laxus demanded sternly. "If I'm not back by then, maybe the bastard got loose and got revenge on me, or maybe INTERPOL showed up and … and shot me in the head or something."

Freed cried out, "Don't say that!"

"Shh," Laxus hushed, pressing him down and stroking through his hair. "I'm just sayin'. Be loyal to me for one year. We can't be dating, I can't be connected to you … but don't you dare cheat," he said angrily.

Freed gasped, shocked and a little hurt that he would even think that. "No, of course not."

"Even if you're lonely—"

"No!" He grabbed one of Laxus' palms and squeezed it with both of his hands. "Just you," he promised. He pulled the large hand toward him and reverently kissed Laxus' knuckles. "Only you," he swore.

The fidelity in those words overwhelmed Laxus again. "God, I love you!"

He dived down, kissing him hard, and suddenly his hips thrust in with a powerful drive. When Freed's mouth opened to moan, Laxus forced his tongue in, attacking that mouth, claiming it, just as he was claiming this body. He felt Freed's hands clutching, clawing, leaving scratches in his skin, and Laxus groaned at the possessiveness in those hands.

Their bodies moved together, a gentle rhythmic pulsing punctuated with soft, deep grunts and Freed's higher, breathy, whimpering moans. They whispered to each other.

"I love you so much. I need you. Don't forget me. Be loyal. Remember me every night! I love you! Always. Always!"

Ardent expressions of love, fidelity, sadness, hope, expressed through bodies, words, silent gazes, and a blending of spirits unwilling to be torn asunder. Over and over, Laxus told him.

"I love you. Love you so much. Want you so much!"

Freed began to pant faster, crying out Laxus' name with quivering desperation building inside. Laxus grabbed him possessively, sat up, and placed Freed on his lap, piercing up into him. Needing more, Freed used his thighs, bouncing up and down while Laxus' hands caressed everywhere, through his hair, down his spine, over shoulders, chest, legs, ass.

He suddenly pulled Freed's hair until he cried out, head forced up. Laxus snarled as he nipped hard on Freed's throat.

"L-Laxus! Oh God!"

Laxus suddenly yanked Freed off completely and sat him back down on the mattress. The green-haired man looked up in wide-eyed surprise and carnal desperation.

"Not yet," Laxus whispered. "I want this night to last."

The desperate need to be fulfilled slowly subsided, and Freed gradually smiled, remembered something from the past. "Until sunrise," he requested.

Laxus laughed, and his cheeks tinted a faint pink. "You remember that?"

"Yeah," Freed said with a light grin. Their first night together! "You kept me going until sunrise. I didn't think I could."

Laxus picked him up again, sat Freed on his lap, but this time their cocks only rubbed gently against one another. "Let's do it again," he decided. "Until sunrise."

In happiness, Freed softly kissed Laxus and gazed deeply into his eyes. Then he hungrily lurched forward, frotting up against Laxus as they urgently kissed one another. Freed's hand reached down and began to stroke both of them together, but Laxus pulled it away.

"Gently," he warned. "I want us to last."

"Yeah." He bashfully laughed at how eager he was. Slowly, Laxus began to lean him backwards onto the pillows. Freed hummed as that warmth followed him down. Breathlessly, he sighed, "Until sunrise."


Slowly, Freed opened his eyes. Blankets were pulled up to his chin, and a large arm draped over him. Against his bare back, he felt the slow rise and fall of a chest.

"Laxus?" he murmured.

A sleepy hum answered.

Freed lifted his head only enough to see a clock. "It's almost noon."

He got only a grunt in response.

When Freed began to pull away, Laxus let him go. Slowly, he sat up in bed and stretched out his limbs. Maybe they made love gently this time, but it still left him stiff. As he stretched his leg, a thigh muscle cramped up, and Freed hissed in pain.

"Y'okay?" Laxus asked, finally rousing himself.

"Stiff," he muttered, rubbing out the leg. "Doing it for that long, it's not surprising that every muscle in my body aches."

Laxus gave a soft chortle. "You were the one who said until sunrise," he shrugged as if to claim innocence.

He had, and they did. Slowly, sometimes making their bodies one, sometimes pulling apart and only kissing, but in one way or another they did not stop touching, moaning, whispering, and loving until the sun turned the sky pink. Then it was over, a messy and needed conclusion, still tender and filled with words of love, but Freed could have gone without it if it meant they could keep going and never stop.

"I … I didn't want it to end," he admitted.

Laxus sat up and shifted over to sit beside him. "Sex always has to end at some point, but love doesn't have to. I can make love to you until sunrise, but I'll keep loving you long after. Sex is corporeal. Love can be eternal."

Freed looked over in surprise. When the hell had Laxus become poetic? "Who are you and what have you done with my boyfriend?"

"Fuck you!" laughed Laxus.

He pinched Freed's arm in punishment for ruining the moment. Playfully, Freed slapped his hand away and aimed a tickling finger to Laxus' ribs. He grabbed the hand before it could reach its destination, and for just a few seconds they wrestled, one muscular and strong, the other lean and quick. They both laughed and leaned into one another, wrapped up in each other's arms and resting their noses together. Outside, the clouds hid the midday sun, and the day looked like it would be wet again: April showers that brought May flowers.

"When did we become such lovesick idiots?" Laxus asked, gazing into Freed's eyes.

"Maybe we always were, in one way or another."

"Not like this." He nuzzled against Freed's nose. "This is new."

"I like it."

"Yeah … yeah, somehow … this is good, too."

Plain, normal sex, love, fidelity … things he never thought he would find!

"I'll keep loving you," he swore softly. "After this day is over, and until I get back. Just you!" He gently stroked his fingers through Freed's hair. "When I get back, we'll do this again. I'll make love to you all night, until we watch the sunrise together." A tear dripped down, and Laxus reached up, stunned by the wetness. When had his eyes begun to water?

Freed saw those emotions he tried to suppress and control now leaking out. They were so powerful, even this dominant sadist could not hold back a few tears. As for Freed, that one tear burst his emotions apart. His lips began to quiver, and his eyes went watery and bloodshot.

"Laxus," he whimpered, snuffling as his heart ached already.

"I know!" Laxus grabbed Freed into his arms, letting him crying into his chest and kissing his hair over and over. "I don't want to go," he sneered.

"You have to," Freed shouted. "You … you need this. I know that."

This level of understanding and acceptance was something Laxus felt he did not deserve. "You have every right to be mad at me," he muttered.

"I'm … not. I'm sad, but … but I'm not angry. Deep down, I know. This is your goal, your life's pursuit. You need to do this." He nodded to himself and wiped the tears. "You go. I'll wait." He looked up firmly into Laxus' eyes. "I'll keep waiting for you. When you come home, I'll have a place for you to live. We'll live together."

"Heh! Yeah." Laxus loved that such a sweet dream was about to come true, although there was a slight darkness to his dream of happiness. "You'll take care of things here, right? I already hired movers. They'll get the junk out."

"You told me. I'll be here to let them in."

"I'm leaving the key to the storage room with you. It's on your keyring already. Everything gets donated, dumped, or tossed into storage. I don't care about the clothes."

"I'll handle it," Freed assured. "Just think, you won't have to live here anymore."

He glanced around at the torn wallpaper and stained carpet. "Gonna miss the old dump," he admitted. "Well, I entrust you with my life's fortune, penurious as it is." Laxus nervously tapped his hand on his thigh. "One last thing."

He got up, walked over to a sock drawer, dug down to the bottom, and slowly pulled out a small box. He cupped the box in his hand and gazed down nervously at it. Hiding it from view, he hesitantly walked back to the bed and sat down.

"I want you to have this. It isn't much, but … well, you can take it as a sorry for running off gift."

He pulled the box forth and opened it. Freed's mouth instantly dropped when he saw a silver ring inside. He looked up into Laxus' face utterly speechless.

"It's not an engagement ring!" Laxus said quickly, realizing he was too nervous for something this simple, and Freed might get the wrong idea. "It's a promise ring. It means you won't date or have sex with anyone else. For this, what I'm about to do, we need to be broken up. Legally! I could seriously fuck up my life, and I don't want you to be brought down with me."

"I know," he assured. He understood just how serious this was.

"Still, I want you to stay loyal. Maybe that's greedy, but I don't fucking care!" Laxus snapped. "There is no way in hell I'm giving you up for that bastard, and all this—us breaking up—it's just a legal thing, an alibi for you. That's all."

"I'm not mad, really. I get it," Freed assured him.

Laxus took the ring out of its padded slot. "I want you to wear this and promise. Promise that you'll wait for me." He looked down at the ring, and as he felt a tear escape unwillingly, he looked into Freed's eyes with worry. "Is that asking too much?"

"No!" Freed exclaimed. "Of course not."

Freed took the ring and looked at it. It was simple, just a plain silver band, but as he turned it in his hand, he realized there was one decoration to it, a lightning bolt of gold etched into the band. He looked down at that golden design and laughed moistly through tears. His thunder god! Then he saw inside the band were words etched into the silver: ONLY YOU, and GREENIE.

"I'll wear it all the time," he declared, clutching the ring to his chest.

Laxus felt his heart leap in a jolt, as if Freed's happiness was the lightning to his thunder, the flash of brilliance that made his whole body rumble and roar. "I … uh…" He swallowed hard so he could speak through a throat that kept tightening as he tried to keep from crying. "I have … um … this." He went back to the same dresser and pulled out another box. That ring was also silver, but instead of a gold thunderbolt, it had etched in its band a rapier sword. The inside read ONLY YOU also, but then the word THOR.

"Matching rings!" Freed cried out. It was so cutely cliché, but it also made him incredibly happy.

Laxus wanted to protest. They weren't matching! He picked those etched designs himself, as well as the engraved words (they were a free option when you bought two rings). However, he blushed and looked away to hide his embarrassment.

"Y-yeah," he muttered. "I wanted you to know, when I'm gone, when I'm out there in Greece, I'm not going to be disloyal to you. This ring is my promise," he said, slipping the silver band onto his right hand. "I promise that I'll come back to you."

Freed sniffled and let the tears flow down his cheeks. He nodded with lonely pain already building in his heart. "I promise, too."

That oath made Laxus sigh in relief. He took the ring, picked up Freed's right hand, and slipped the silver band over his knuckles.

"It's a little tight," Freed frowned as the ring made a snug fit.

"I always thought your fingers were so small," Laxus admitted. "Is it okay?"

"Yeah, it fits," he assured, flexing his fingers to make certain. "I'm not sure I can take it off again without vasoline."

"Good! I hope it's a little painful, just a little snug … like your cock ring," he smirked.

The comparison made Freed instantly blush. Now he would never be able to think about his promise ring being tight without remembering that.

"Even when I come back, I want to keep on wearing these." Laxus placed his hand over Freed's so that their rings clinked together in a metallic chime. "Or … maybe something else," he muttered.

Freed jolted and looked up. Something else? Something more?

"Maybe," Laxus stressed.

Still, that possibility made Freed grin and hide a laugh of joy. More! More than this. Different rings! Rings that held a deeper meaning.

Laxus saw that happiness, and he impulsively began to speak. "Will y-…?" However, the question clenched in his throat. He couldn't ask! Not now. Not when he had to leave. It was not fair to Freed.

"What?" the green-haired man asked when Laxus said nothing more.

"Nothing," he grumbled. "Something for another time. For now—" He picked up Freed's hand and kissed his knuckles right over the silver band. "—wear my ring, and don't you dare forget me."

"Never!" Freed declared, squeezing those massive hands that had given him intense pain and tingling pleasure. "I could never forget you." He leaned over and kissed Laxus' rough hand over the promise ring. "I'll wait for you, for as long as it takes. I'll be here, and I'll be waiting."

Another tear broke free and slipped down Laxus' cheek. "Dammit, I really don't deserve someone like you."

"Too bad," Freed grinned brashly. "You're stuck with me now. I really won't be able to get this ring off, so you're trapped. Your fault for getting a ring that's too small."

"Bitch," Laxus chuckled, ruffling up the green hair. "Now, lie down again. Close your eyes. I don't want this goodbye to be more awkward than it already is, so … obey me this one last time and pretend you're asleep."

"Wha-…? No!" Freed cried out. "We can have breakfast together, I'll drive you to the airport, I can—"

"Freed," he said sternly, and the young man's words dried up. "It needs to be like this."

Sadly, he realized this was just like their first night together. Laxus had simply slipped away while Freed wasn't looking.

"It'll be okay," he smiled confidently. "Just pretend you're asleep. When you open your eyes, I won't be here, but my heart … it'll always be here with yours."

Freed took comfort in that and braced himself. He stiffly laid down, struggling to stay brave and keep his emotions under control.

"All right. Close your eyes."

Freed did. He heard Laxus rummaging around, pulling on clothes, peeing in the toilet, and dragging out a suitcase he had already packed.

The last thing Laxus grabbed were his plane tickets. He looked down at the information detailing a flight from Magnolia to New York City, and then on to Athens, with a final destination in Kalamata. It was under another name; his ID, passport, and Visa were all under a fake name. If he got caught…

He gazed back down to Freed. This was the sort of trip he would have loved to take as a vacation with Freed, explore the old Grecian ruins, taste the savory foods, cruise around the archipelago, maybe climb a mountain just for the hell of it, and kiss on a Mediterranean beach at sunset. Instead, he was leaving, and he had no clue what sort of man he would be when he returned.

He walked over to the bed, leaned over, and softly kissed Freed's cheek. "Good night," he whispered. "See ya around, Greenie." Then he grabbed his bags and left his old tenement, knowing he would never step foot in that building again.

Freed heard the door shut. Still he waited, listening to the footsteps fading down the corridor. Sobs began to shake him, but he wanted to hold back. Tears moistened the pillow under him, but he wanted to obey Laxus' last order, to pretend he was asleep.

Despite his pride, he began to sob. He grabbed Laxus' pillow and buried his face into it. He inhaled the musky scent, felt that familiar warmth in the blankets, and the ache in his body, so many marks where Laxus had claimed him, reminded him of last night.

It was disappearing. Like those footsteps, the smell and warmth and ache were all fading away.

He sobbed harder, hiding his head with the pillow as he began to wail. It was over. Laxus would be gone, months, maybe a year. He had to tell everyone that they broke up. At the same time, he had to watch over clearing out this old tenement and storing everything that belonged to the man he loved.

"Laxus!" he cried out.

He already wanted him back. He wanted his help, his direction, to be ordered around, punished, teased, humiliated, loved, cuddled, kissed with passion that lasted for ages. He cried his name over and over as he shuddered with sobs.

He was gone.

The thunder faded.

The storm had passed.

Next Chapter: " The Lonely Angel"

Chapter Text

"Freed Justine."

Freed wore the traditional academic regalia, a cap and gown, with a stole, cords, and medallion for various honors and for graduating magna cum laude. As he came forward and walked across a stage, he heard Loke roaring wildly while his family applauded politely. He shook hands with the university dean and accepted his diploma. There were a few more dignitaries to shake hands with, a photo to take, and then he walked down some steps with the next graduating student already being called up.

Just like that, he transformed from college student to a graduate with his bachelor's degree in business. However, as he returned to his seat in a sea of square caps and long robes reminiscent of ancient European universities, he did not look as happy as he probably should have been.

There was one person missing that day. He looked down at the silver band with the gold lightning bolt etched into it and offered a silent prayer that Laxus was safe.

Like they had planned, he had told his friends and family that he and Laxus broke up. His mother called from Paris and said he would be better off with someone of his own social standing; she then listed off many available people, females and males. His father gave condolences and told him to be cautious while finding another dominant. Bickslow and Evergreen seemed truly heartbroken. Apparently, they both had really liked Laxus. Loke offered to hook him up with someone, but when he saw that Freed was not interested in dating yet, he took Freed out to get drunk instead.

No one seemed to notice the ring on his right hand, or if they did, they said nothing about it.

The graduation itself was a haze of speeches, names, applauding, more speeches, and finally a roaring cheer as they were dismissed. Freed was dragged into pictures with classmates, his fencing club teammates, and his family who were proud that he was now a real adult. Both of his parents had come, putting aside their marital issues for the sake of their son. It was nice to see them together, but Freed sympathized with his mother. If something like that happened between him and Laxus…

If he found out Laxus had cheated on him…

Freed jolted and shook his head as soon as the thought entered his mind. It seemed ridiculous. Laxus was deeply loyal. It was his idea to get the promise rings.

Was he worried that Freed would cheat? Was that why he bought the rings? Was he afraid that the same thing that happened to Llewellyn, the same craving to be dominated and humiliated, would flow through Freed's veins like some sort of family curse?

"Freed!"

He jolted and looked over. It was the man who graduated top in their class, a man who, so it was rumored, could memorize absolutely anything by seeing it just once: Rufus Lore. Freed had admired him for some time, a legend in the school with his perfect grades and mysterious aura. This man came up to Freed and, instead of shaking hands, gave a courteous old-fashion bow.

"Congratulations to you, Freed. You definitely deserve the magna cum laude. I had the honor of reading your thesis on business paradigms in sixteenth century Japan and its application in modern day pan-Pacific import and export. Fascinating historic detail!"

"That means a lot coming from you, Rufus," Freed said, feeling truly honored that this legendary scholar was pleased with his hard work and in-depth research. That thesis had taken months to write.

"I see a lot of potential in you. I would love to sit down and discuss economic theory with you. Perhaps—" His hand lightly brushed over Freed's wrist. "—lunch some time."

Freed looked at those delicate hands. He dared not offend this man from the powerful Sabertooth Enterprises. A business arrangement between him and the Justines could be beneficial to their corporation, but Freed cringed at the touch of this man's cold hand.

"S-sure, lunch," he said awkwardly.

A devious smirk curled into Rufus' lips. "Come now, don't feel intimidated by me. Not yet, at least," he added cryptically.

For some reason, Freed's stomach twisted. Was this man actually flirting, or was it his imagination?

"Perhaps next week," Rufus offered. "I have family affairs to attend to this weekend."

"R-right. Same here, Mother's in town and … um … anyway," he muttered, not wanting to babble like an idiot. "Whenever is good for you."

Rufus had an amused gleam in his eyes. "You're quite a complaisant one, aren't you?"

Freed jolted. "Huh?" He was not expecting something like that. Was that a compliment? An insult? Why was Rufus smiling that way?

Rufus pulled out a card and handed it to Freed. "Email me. We'll set up a date."

Freed felt his stomach twist again. Date? "Just lunch, right?" he asked warily.

"Of course! Just lunch and talking. I look forward to seeing you again." Then he turned and was lost in the throng of graduates and families.

Freed held the card in his hand and stared at it. Softly, he muttered, "What the hell just happened?"

Liberty slipped up beside her son. "Rufus Lore of Sabertooth. Quite a fine gentleman. I hear his … ahem … preference is for men of a more … delicate frame. Just like you."

"Mother!" Freed snapped.

"I'm just trying to be supportive. Rufus is a man of the highest calibre. I would not disagree with a … umm … partnership between his family and ours." She laughed tensely. "He was one of the fine gentlemen I suggested, if you recall. A powerful family, a handsome young man with a bright future ahead of him. Really, what more could you ask for?" She looked at him, but Freed's jaw was tense. "My dear, you can't wallow in sadness. Believe me on this: it's best to move on, no matter how deep the love once was. Once it's over, it's gone. It's best to keep moving forward and upward."

"Upward?" he sneered. Was that all she thought about: finding a person of higher status, like climbing some corporate ladder of relationships?

"It happens in relationships as well. It sure did for me. You start at the bottom sometimes—a young and awkward boyfriend with puberty issues, a fling with a tramp, a man who is godlike in appearance but has no manners—and you work your way up until you find that perfect gentleman. I just wish I could say your father was perfect. The man I'm courting in France is—let's just say—a large step up for me." She smiled proudly of moving upward, although Freed hated to think that his parents had already found new partners, as if those years of marriage meant nothing. "Laxus left you—God knows why he would be that stupid—but this just shows how much he didn't comprehend your true value. You were the best he could ever hope to obtain, and he left you in tears out of his own selfishness. I'm sorry if that was a painful shock, I'm sure it was, but now…"

"Mother, stop it," Freed warned softly to avoid attention. "Seriously, stop. Right now. Never speak of him again if you're going to say things like that."

She gave him a hug. "Oh, my poor boy! There's no shame in finding someone better. That's what dating is all about: figuring out what you like, what you don't like, making mistakes before there are legal complications, and eventually finding that person you can love and who loves you even when you're not hiding your true self behind the mask of social propriety."

Freed yanked himself away from her. He knew she meant well, but he hated that she thought so little of Laxus. If he had been rich, grew up attending prep schools and gotten a Harvard degree, would she be this callous?

She was missing a big point, too. With Rufus, Freed would have to hide his true self, that inner masochist who wanted to be spanked and called a bitch and made into a slave. He could never admit things like that to a gentleman like Rufus. Laxus was the only one who not only accepted that side of him, but thrived upon it.

He could never cheat on Laxus. It did not matter how long he was away. He loved Laxus, and he would wait for him. Rufus or any other fine gentlemen were not what Freed wanted. He wanted his thunder god!


After it was all over, they had a gathering with the family in the same restaurant where Laxus had taken him that one night. Freed politely listened to his mother tell him about a clinic she had opened in Paris, while his father told him all about the job Freed would be starting in two weeks. That gave Freed two weeks to vacation and enjoy his hard-earned freedom before starting his adult life as a working man.

He had wanted to start truly at the bottom, working in the mail room or as a secretary. Instead, his father placed him in a junior managerial position. Llewellyn swore it was a legitimate opening; a man had left their company for a better job and the position needed to be filled anyway. Freed actually did have to compete with two other applicants, but his magna cum laude degree was what gave him the edge. Being the son of the CEO was not the only highlight to his job application.

Freed listened quietly, ate obediently, and acted as a proper son should. It was an act he had perfected over twenty-three years. At the end of the night he said farewell to his estranged parents and two siblings. As he walked to his car, he got a text from Loke along with a picture of the ginger playboy wearing a sombrero with three ladies clambering over him.

Come join the fun, the text read. Freed shook his head in amusement and wrote back, Going home. Don't forget protection.

He drove home listening to a classical music station. Mozart's Flute Concerto Number 1 came on. Freed glanced down to the radio. He remembered, this was the song playing that first night when he had taken Laxus with him for some after-work private time. The flute music had helped to calm down Laxus' stomach. After that, Freed had bought many CDs of flute music to play while driving so Laxus could rest at ease. He wondered how that carsick man handled flying on a plane all the way to Greece. Did he remember his headphones? Did he bring some flute music along?

A tear beaded up in Freed's eye, and he blinked it away. There had been no phone calls, no texts, no emails. Laxus truly had cut off everything that tied them together.

Freed pulled into an apartment complex. He had moved in a while ago, needing privacy as he finished his thesis and studied for finals. Now, there was no need to spend the night studying until he passed out. There was nothing to busy his mind. The place felt empty.

Freed walked into the bedroom and changed out of the suit he had worn for graduation. He collapsed naked onto the bed and pulled up his phone.

He had gotten a call from Bob a few weeks ago. He had no idea how that old, bald, cross-dressing bartender found out that Laxus left the country, but Bob wanted to see Freed. He went to the South Pole Club after hours, not wanting to watch the show. He had promised Laxus, no strip clubs. Once the crowd left, Freed entered to find just Bob cleaning things up. The astute bartender instantly noticed the promise ring, encouraged him to wait for Laxus, and gave him a flash drive. He said, "Don't ask how I got it, just enjoy it."

There were pictures of Laxus on it and a video of his show, just him. Freed held up his phone while lying naked in bed. The pictures were of Laxus. In most of them, he was shirtless, just wearing those leather pants, either flexing his muscles or reaching down to his crotch. They were photos for a website promotion, it seemed. Freed gazed at a closeup of his face, that scar, those vivid blue eyes, and he kissed the screen.

"I miss you," he whispered to the picture.

Then he pulled up the video. It started off shaky, but it stabilized as soon as the yellow lights flashed. AC/DC's Thunderstruck blared, and Laxus was on stage. He danced, stripped slowly, and thrust his pelvis in time to the music. Freed's hand drifted down to stroke himself as the song played and Laxus used the brass pole to slide down. The move showcased his large leg muscles and tempted the audience, his knees spread apart, giving a view of the prize wrapped in leather. Freed's fingers squeezed himself and gave him pleasure as he watched the show he had seen dozens of times.

Then, it seemed like Laxus' attention was diverted for just a second. Suddenly, his dancing became more erotic. He did maneuvers Freed knew he normally did not do, like stroking himself through those leather pants, all the time his attention drawn to the side.

It was that day, the first time Freed had returned to the club after his night with Laxus. He had startled the dancer, but that night Laxus had danced for him alone. As the finale came on, Laxus turned to the side. The camera shifted, and Freed saw himself in the video, sitting in his normal booth and staring with a martini in his hand and a gleam of pure lust in his eyes. Whoever was shooting the video—it had to be Bob himself—knew there was something going on between these two. As Laxus lowered his zipper more and more, that bulge was aimed for one man.

"Laxus," Freed groaned, feeling the music and those movements hammer into his groin, just like it always did when he went to the club.

That was the end of the song, but not of the video. The other half of the video was in black and white, a security camera that had captured that night in the VIP room. Everything. Absolutely everything. From Laxus dancing on top of Freed until he came in his pants while wearing a condom, then a bad skip while they had left so Freed could clean up, and then they were back.

Freed watched it all while stroking himself. It was weird, getting off to a video of himself, but he remembered everything about that night. It had been Laxus' first blow job. He watched it play out, every hair pull, every sneer of pleasure, and the soundless conversation that his memory filled in.

"I told you, don't you fucking stop!"

"I'll drool on you."

"Then drool. Make it wet. Make my whole damn crotch wet. I want your spit in my pants, got it?"

Freed tensed as he watched Laxus' face and all of the expressions of pleasure that showed. He heard in his mind that low voice and the groans Laxus gave as he built up to a climax.

"You're damn good. Freed … Greenie! Speed up and make me come, bitch!"

Freed watched Laxus' face, the opened mouth, and the silent moans of pleasure trembling through him. He could see that critical moment when Laxus lost control, when lust won, and he saw his own face as he gulped down the dessert he worked so hard to get. He watched and fondly remembered the bitter taste as it poured over his tongue.

He had swallowed wrong that day. He saw in the video, he had to cough, but that action, swallowing his cum down, had pleased Laxus.

Then he watched some more. Laxus had given back. He had been uncertain since it was his first time sucking off a man. As he recalled, Laxus had issues with it, some sort of a flashback to childhood that made him panic. Laxus later explained how, after the issues with his nefarious father, Laxus could not easily allow something large to enter his mouth. It made him remember the gag his father had used to keep Laxus from biting his tongue as he administered medicines that caused excruciating agony throughout his body. Even after that day, it took a few times before Laxus could give a blow job without flinching from those awful memories.

That day in the VIP room, they had acted out a scene to cover up Laxus' brief freak-out. Eventually, he had calmed down and acted more forceful, wanting to do this, to overcome his fears and give back the pleasure Freed had given to him. Freed had purposely angled himself for the camera, just in case they were being watched. Laxus wanted to show Jellal that he could do more than strip, and obviously someone had saved this video. It made for an amazing display, too. Freed watched himself, how Laxus' mouth worked on his arousal, and he imagined that incredible sensation.

"Laxus!" he cried out into the silent bedroom. "L-Laxus!"

He watched and vicariously recalled how good it felt: that wet mouth, his tongue, how he sucked so hard on the head, and how Laxus liked to reach down and tug lightly on Freed's balls. Freed did the same action now, but it wasn't the same, not quite as good as those massive, rough hands.

His body started to tense up, and he stroked faster. He began to feel lightheaded as his breathing became erratic and his toes curled up, but he held back. The video was almost at that spot. He wanted to wait for it, to hold back until Laxus finished with him … at least in the video. His cock was dripping, but he steeled his stomach muscles to keep from coming too soon.

He saw Laxus grab his ass, pulling Freed in closer, swallowing him down hungrily, just as the video showed Freed tense up and cry out. At the same time, Freed moaned loudly and released his reserve. He came into his hand with a moan. Milky spurts arced out and splattered on his naked torso as he shivered and remembered his thunder god.

"Laxus," he groaned softly in lingering pleasure. "Mmmh … Laxus."

His body buzzed, and the video kept playing. There was not much more to it, though. They had kissed and cuddled for half an hour after that, touching each other, teasing one another, but not much more. It was nice to watch them being sweet together, but the real show was at the beginning.

Freed turned off his phone and set it aside. He stared up at the ceiling while the afterglow still buzzed through him.

Somehow, he would get through this. He did not need a man like Rufus. He did not need another dominant to be his master. That day in the VIP room, Laxus told him, "You're mine. Mine alone. A slave can't have two masters, so you're only mine. My beloved slave."

Freed touched the promise ring, now coated with cum, and smiled to himself. He had his memories, and they would last a lifetime. What were two months, or even two years, with the promise of a lifetime together to look forward to?

Next Chapter: To Guys

Chapter Text

Loke dropped a heavy box and straightened up with a groan as he rubbed out his back.

"Well, this is the last of the stuff," he said.

Freed set a box down beside him. "Thank you so much, Loke."

"It's no problem," he smiled at the green-haired man. "Although I don't get why you'd take all of this out of storage now. It's not like you can't afford the monthly fees, and this new apartment was really clean. It's like moving in all over again, except without the professional movers."

"Yeah, I … I couldn't use them," Freed muttered, looking around at the mounds of boxes. "If my father checked my credit account and saw that I hired movers again, he'd ask."

"So? Tell him you were moving Laxus' stuff in."

Freed glanced down at his ring. "I … can't. I can't mention Laxus, not to my father."

"I see," Loke said awkwardly. "Daddy disapproves, huh?"

"Daddy actually gave his blessing," Freed smiled, thinking about the key to the playroom that he still had. "What Daddy doesn't know is … is that I'm … um…"

"That you're waiting for him?"

Freed looked up sharply.

"Hey, it's me," Loke said with a friendly smile, holding his arms out nonchalantly. "I've been your roomie for almost four years. I knew right away. I also know the real reason you moved away before finals. Staying in the dorm with me was too much. You lost your V-card on that bed."

Freed blushed. "Shut up. That wasn't the reason, either. I had already signed the lease before Laxus said he was leaving."

"So then it really was all the late nights with chicks and smell of condoms, eh?" Loke laughed.

Freed knew he was joking, so he decided not to tell Loke that all the distractions with Loke's prolific sexual activity really was the reason he moved out early. Then again, knowing Loke, he knew that was the true reason from the very beginning.

Loke went to the kitchen and grabbed two sodas. "Even crammed full of crap, this place is huge. It's big enough for two people." He handed one soda to Freed and straddled the arm of a couch. "Hell, maybe I'll move in, keep you company, liven things up around here."

Freed shuddered. "I don't think so, Loke," he said softly.

The ginger laughed good-heartedly as he cracked open the soda. "Kidding! I need my own place, strike out, build a love-nest for the ladies," he said with a wink. "We're working men now, you and me. Thanks a bunch for getting me that job, too. Sheesh, I was turned down everywhere. A diploma means jack-squat these days."

"I'm glad I could help you out," Freed said, and he took a drink of the soda to cool off the summer sweat.

"Like they say: it's not what you know, it's who you know. Being college roommates with the CEO's son has some perks," Loke grinned. Suddenly, he jolted as he realized what he had just said. He raised his hands up defensively. "Not that I'd abuse that. Hell, I just wanna pay off the student loans. If I can work my way up the corporate ladder, all the best, even if that means leaving you for a competitor one day."

"No company loyalty?" Freed chuckled with a joking scowl.

Loke stood, walked over, and clasped a hand on Freed's shoulder. "I'm loyal to friends, not to corporations. I've got your back, Freed. Being thrust into the role of a junior manager must suck, so if you need time to chill out, forget your duties, I'm always up for a night of drinking and debauchery."

Freed just smiled, which was enough for Loke. He knew that sometimes Freed just did not know what to say, and that was fine.

Loke clicked his soda can against Freed's. "You were a good roomie."

"Yeah, you too."

"We had some wild times in that university, huh?"

Freed hummed in agreement and looked down to his hand. He twisted the ring as he remembered some of those wild times.

Loke eyed that silver band. He noticed it right away, before Freed said he and Laxus had broken up. He had politely kept quiet about it until now. "Is that his ring?"

Freed suddenly hid his hand behind his back.

"I think everyone has seen it. Only the idiots don't realize what it means. You can tell all the lies you need to; I know you're waiting for him, and he gave you that ring, so he's waiting for you." He wrapped a friendly arm around Freed. "That huge lug loves a scrawny wallflower like you. He'll come back some day."

Freed struggled with a smile. He glanced around at the boxes, all of Laxus' stuff, everything that had been in storage. He needed something to keep his mind busy while on these two weeks of holiday, so he had decided to move Laxus' stuff in and sort through it, find places for everything, maybe buy some extra furniture, and decorate his room. Sorting boxes would help to pass these sorrowful days. It hadn't even been two months, but he felt lonely.

Loke pouted at seeing the longing in that sallow face. "Hey!" he shouted. "Come with me. A night of drinking and dancing. I'll introduce you to some friends, just hang out, all guys."

"I … I dunno…"

"Come on! We never had a let's-get-drunk-off-our-asses celebration for both of us getting new jobs. Besides, after moving all this crap, you owe me a beer."

Freed laughed and said, "Fine."

"Awesome. I'll call up some guys. No girls allowed. Hell, maybe you'll even have some fun," he grinned, and Loke whipped out his cellphone. He dialed a number and chatted on the phone. "Natsu? Yo, it's me. Are you free for drinks? Cool, and bring that guy. Yeah, the pub on Main Street, that one with the not-crappy bands. Awesome, see you at seven." He smiled at Freed. "I'll support my new junior manager. Booze and babes! Or booze and brawny boys for you, I guess. A night for just us, celebrate, hang out, be crazy idiots once again. Not like you were ever that way to begin with."

"What do you mean?"

"You were the straight arrow, bullet path to graduation, no detours, no binge drinking, no hookers or strip clubs…"

Freed suddenly choked on his soda.

"No wonder you're the junior manager now. I couldn't corrupt you during college, it wouldn't have been ethical, so maybe that's my duty now. Someone has to show you how to have a good time. Besides, you still owe me a beer!" he pointed out.

Freed laughed while shaking his head and grabbed a light coat. He looked around at the boxes piled around. He could sort through Laxus' stuff another time.


Freed had to squeeze just to get past the door to the pub. Music blasted, and Loke nodded in approval. Freed wondered if this was his definition of not-crappy bands. The music was so loud Freed's ears hurt, and he felt his heart start to fall in tempo to the thumping bass. He could not understand a single word of the lyrics being shouted into a microphone, and he was pretty certain he was the only person there who realized the guitarist's E-string was out of tune.

"Sure is crowded," Freed muttered, feeling out of place at a pub like this.

"Yeah! It's great, ain't it?" Loke shouted over the music. "Hot chicks here. Not like you care, but … haaawt chicks!" He ogled a passing lady in fishnet stockings and a revealing blouse that left little for the imagination. Loke pushed a little further in. "There they are. Yo! Natsu, Gray!"

Freed edged his way over to some stools by the bar and saw two young men, one with pink hair and a scarf despite the summer heat and all these bodies crammed together, the other with black hair and a cold gaze to his gray-blue eyes. Freed instantly recognized the two. Ice Prince and Pinkie!

"Oh my God," he whispered, shaking slightly at the reminder of those days in the South Pole Club.

"Hey, Natsu, you squirmy salamander," Loke greeted, bumping fists with the pink-haired guy.

"Good to see ya, Lion. How's Karen?"

"Karen? Oh! Ugh, God no! She turned out to be a real psycho-bitch. She found out I was cheating on her with … with … crap, I can't remember her name anymore, I just remember that she was an Aries and was a really sweet little heavenly lamb. Too innocent for my tastes. Anyway, Karen found out and went all yandere on her ass, nearly slaughtered her. I broke them apart. Haven't seen that little Aries girl since. Shortly before graduation, I met a really nice cheerleader, cute blonde named Lucy. I've been monogamous almost two whole weeks," he said proudly.

"Wait, Lucy?" asked Natsu. "The Heartfilia girl?"

Freed jolted over. "Did you say Heartfilia?"

"Yeah, you know her?" Loke asked both of them.

Natsu nodded. "We worked together on some projects in literature class. She's a brilliant writer."

"My family knows her family," Freed explained. "Justine Corporation and the Heartfilia Konzern are partners. I first met Lucy at her débutante ball, and she was over at my house just last December for a Christmas party. I don't really know her that well, though."

"You mean she's rich? Dang," Loke muttered. "She sure doesn't act rich. She's always worrying about paying her rent. Anyway! Guys, this is Freed. Freed, Natsu and Gray."

"Hiya!" Natsu grinned, enthusiastically shaking Freed's hand.

Gray just casually saluted. "Hey," he greeted laconically, yet his eyes lingered on Freed. "I know you, don't I?"

"U-umm," Freed stuttered. "I … th-think so." He gave an awkward shrug. "The club." That was all he said.

Gray froze with a shocked expression, then he shrank down in shame. "Oh … right."

"Y-yeah," Freed muttered awkwardly. He smiled and shrugged, showing that he would say nothing if the stripper said nothing.

Natsu tugged on the sleeve of the Ice Prince. "Gray?"

"He's … friends with a former workmate … from that place. Like you," he explained cryptically.

Friends. He had been a client at one point. That place. The gay strippers club. Like you. Part of the audience who used to watch Gray strip out of his clothes and dance around a brass pole.

The younger one looked Freed over head to toe, and slowly it seemed like his memory was jogged. They had not known one another's real names: Pinkie and Greenie, regulars at the South Pole Club. Freed smiled in familiarity and gave a silent shrug, letting Natsu know he was just as surprised and cautious as these two. Few people wanted it to be publicly known that they frequented strip clubs.

Loke suddenly slapped the smaller boy on the back. "Natsu is an old friend of mine. He's the one who got me into that game."

"Oh, yeah!" Freed recalled. "Loke was playing Skyrim until three o'clock in the morning for weeks."

Natsu gave another massive grin. "Yeah, cool game. Lots of dragons!" He suddenly took the raven-haired man's hand. "This is my boyfriend, Gray."

"… Gray." Freed remembered, that was the name of the stripper Loke had been friends with. He politely said, "Nice to meet you."

Loke leaned over into Freed's ear. "Gray's not a bad-looking guy. Too bad he's taken. You and him might be…"

"No!" Freed snapped.

"Right, right. Sorry." He motioned to the bartender. "Whiskeys all around to start. Then we get some beer. We're here to celebrate many things. Graduating, new jobs, and Freed being a bachelor again!" he said, slapping Freed's back. He quickly leaned into Freed's ear. "I'll keep up your little lie about Laxus."

Freed wasn't sure if he should thank Loke or tell him to just shut up about it.

Gray looked over in a jolt. "What happened to Tho- … uh … to … umm…"

Freed hardly blamed him for stumbling over the name. He remembered how cautious the thunder god had been about letting others know his real name. That was no longer an issue though, and it had not been for months.

"To Laxus," Freed said, smiling in a way to let Gray know it was okay to say his name aloud.

"R-right," Gray muttered. "You and him were…" He cut off, not sure what to say without bringing up old emotions.

"Yeah," Freed whispered sadly.

"Sorry. I haven't even seen him in months."

"Right," Freed said softly. He remembered the day Laxus told him he quit his job at the strip club and canceled all of his clients. "Are you still working … there?"

"Nah, I quit that job. Too much drama." Gray stared ahead as if thinking about something particularly troublesome. Then he shrugged it off. "Natsu didn't like it after a while, so I quit."

Freed smiled at the two of them. "Yeah, same here. I mean, I liked going to the club. Just … it was awkward after a while. It became too difficult."

"Yeah, that's what Natsu said," Gray said softly while Natsu was busy chatting with Loke.

"So you quit dancing … for him?"

Gray laughed softly. "Yeah. Same thing as Thor … uh, Laxus." He looked awkward. "Sorry, I still think of him as Thor. We rarely used each others' real names. I don't think most of the workers there even knew Thor's real name. He was really cautious about his privacy."

"Yeah, I know. It took me weeks before he told me his surname. I used to think of him as Thor first and have to remind myself what his name really was." Memories of those awkward first few weeks came back to him, and with it was a stabbing pain in his chest.

"So, you broke up, huh?"

"Something like that," Freed muttered.

"What do you mean?"

Freed saw that Gray was reading him as clear as day. There was no hiding emotions from him, and he used to be friends with Laxus, so Freed felt he deserved at least some of the truth. "He left on a trip to Europe. Some pretty serious business. He wasn't sure when he'll be back … or if. So he decided it was best to … to let me go."

Gray shook his head. "That's harsh, even for him. Nah," he said, refusing to believe it. "No way. I know about you and Laxus. He talked about you a lot. Hell, you were on his mind all the time, drove him crazy. Just before he quit, he and I talked. He was … obsessed, I'd say, which is really saying something considering how aloof that guy was. No, he wouldn't do that to you. He must have had some damn good reasons."

"Yeah," Freed admitted, and he shrugged while looking at his silver ring. "It's complicated."

Gray nodded, knowing this perfectly well. "Complicated is how all of our relationships are, trust me. I supposed you can't talk about it, right?"

"No," Freed admitted.

"That guy had issues," Gray said softly. "Lots of secrets. He had a really dark past. We all did at that club, every single one of us, even Jellal. Laxus was the most secretive, though. If you met him, you'd think he was the most normal out of all of us, but he just hid from that darkness, just like the tattoos that hid his scars. You know about those, right?"

"Yeah," Freed pouted sadly. Their first night together, Laxus had told him how it was his own father who gave him those scars. Now he was somewhere in Greece, dealing with that barbarous man.

"Something bad happened to him," Gray sighed. "I never did drag it out of him. Probably don't want to know," he frowned, knowing he had issues in his past that he would have never told to Laxus either.

As Loke began to tell Natsu about moving boxes all day, Freed realized he and Gray were stuck talking together purely because the pub was too loud to hear anyone except the person at your elbow.

"So, you and Natsu, huh? You're official now?"

"Yeah." Gray smiled as he squeezed Natsu's hand, briefly pulling him out of Loke's conversation. "It's great, actually finding love after years of … well, something that wasn't healthy," he said, cautiously holding back from saying too much.

"Did it start in the club?"

"Actually, yeah. First time I saw him was in that club. I was annoyed as hell, dancing for him all the time, but somewhere along the way I fell for him. Funny how that worked out."

Freed glanced down to the lightning bolt on his ring again. "Yeah … funny," he smiled passively.

Their whiskeys finally arrived, and Loke raised his shot glass.

"Here's to guys!" he called out.

They all had to laugh.

"What sort of toast is that?" asked Natsu.

"Who the hell cares! To guys!"

"To guys!" they cheered back, and they tipped back their whiskeys.

Freed swallowed and grimaced at the taste. "Ugh! This stuff is crap."

"Too strong for ya?" Loke grinned.

"Too weak."

"What would you rather have?"

"Blue Label." Instantly, Freed realized what he had said. He stared forward as he remembered when Laxus had given him a drink of Blue Label through a kiss during a lap dance at the club. That had been the night they decided to have sex…

"Well, I could order it," Loke grumbled. "That's a damn expensive whiskey, though. Maybe…" He paused as he saw the pain in Freed's face. "Oh," he whispered, recalling a time when he found a bottle of the pricey Johnnie Walker Blue Label in the dorm. Freed had explained back then, it was Laxus' favorite drink. "Um, how about something else? We could get some Wild Turkey, Jack Daniel's, Knob Creek, Bushmills, Maker's Mark, maybe the Red Label, much cheaper."

Gray scoffed. "Red Label is crap good only for mixed drinks. Go for Glenfiddich."

Loke glared over. "I'm trying to make this cheaper. You know, like affordable to guys still paying off student loans."

Freed frowned as he realized these guys probably could not drink truly good alcohol purely because money was a serious issue. He spoke up brashly. "All drinks on me tonight. Top shelf only."

Gray's mouth dropped. "What?"

"I can afford it. I … um … I didn't need student loans."

Loke whispered over to him and Natsu, "His daddy's my CEO. He's filthy rich."

Freed nodded awkwardly. "Seriously, the tab is mine tonight." With determination, he flagged down the bartender. "Blue Label, and top shelf for them, anything they want."

"Whoa, seriously?" Natsu gawked.

Freed grinned at him. "Drink until you feel like you can breathe fire."

They each ordered something different, something they had always wanted to try but could never justify the price.

"I feel bad," Gray admitted. "I mean, I don't even know you."

"A friend of Laxus is a friend of mine," Freed declared.

"I'm not sure if I can count him as a friend, per say."

"He talked about you. That's close enough to being a best friend for a guy like him," Freed chuckled. "So, Natsu, tell me what you do."

He watched in fascination as the bartender prepared a fiery Blue Blazer. "Oh! I'm training to be a firefighter."

Freed recalled Laxus saying that "Pinkie" preferred flaming drinks, and as they all watched the fiery spectacle, it was obvious that this guy who looked barely old enough to drink had a pyromaniac side to him. "Firefighter? At a university? Don't you normally go to a technical school for that?"

"Well, it's a bit more than that. I'm aiming to be a fire marshal someday, and they have to know all sorts of extra stuff. Fire sciences, prevention techniques, environmental science, HAZMAT, and … h-hey, do you know that guy?"

Freed glanced around, but the pub was packed with people. "Where?"

"There's a guy by the entrance. He's staring this way. He's … familiar," Natsu said, screwing up his brows as he tried to place the face.

Gray looked as well, and his eyes widened. "Oh my God," he whispered. "Freed, turn around."

"I don't see…" A person moved aside, and suddenly he had a clear view of the entrance. Electric blue eyes met his. Freed gasped and his heart jolted. "Laxus…"

Their eyes lingered for what seemed like minutes of silence, just the two of them wrapped in a world of their own, the music a buzz, the lights dimmed, the crowd a blur. Yet only a few seconds passed, and someone walked in front of them, blocking Freed's view and breaking that magical moment. When the person passed, Laxus was still there, not some mirage of wishful thinking.

Without taking his eyes off, Laxus pushed his way inside, shoving anyone who did not step aside. Freed trembled as emotions swelled inside him. Was this real? A dream? Was he already drunk and hallucinating?

Laxus stepped up in front of Freed and gazed down silently. Then his eyes shifted to Freed's hand. He reached forward and took the shot glass out of Freed's trembling fingers. "I'll have to punish you if you spill that." He drank half of it and smiled. "Blue Label. Bitch, you're copying me."

Freed still stared in disbelief. At last, he laughed softly. "That was a quick trip."

Laxus glared. Quick? It felt like ages! "Yeah. I got there and the bastard was gone. I stayed around since the P.I. was sure he could pick up the trail, but then authorities came. They were just as stumped as us. Trail was cold. By the time we heard anything at all, the bastard was in the Middle East. I'm not gonna go globe-trotting after his ass, so I came on home. Seems I wasted a plane ticket and a whole month, all for jack shit. I picked up some nice souvenirs for you, though. Can't make heads or tails of it. It's all Greek to me … literally." He stopped acting as if nothing had happened and gazed down in regret to Freed. "I'm so sorry I put you through that, and all for nothing."

The tears spilled over and streamed down Freed's cheeks. "I'm just glad you're home!" He flung himself into Laxus' arms, not caring if the whole pub saw them and made any stupid gay comments.

Laxus squeezed him back and buried his face down into the green hair to hide the happiness that brought tears to his eyes. "Yeah … me too," he whispered gruffly. He clutched Freed tight against him. "Me too."

Loke grinned at seeing them. "Hey, it's the big guy!"

"Shh!" Gray hushed.

"What?"

"Let them have a moment."

Loke saw Laxus kiss the top of Freed's head and heard the soft sobs of joy from his old roommate. He smiled, happy to see Freed got his boyfriend back. He looked down at his drink, then over to Gray and Natsu.

"To guys!" he cheered.

Gray lifted his glass and saluted. "I'll drink to that," he said as he tipped his glass back.

Next Chapter: Master's Return

Chapter Text

Freed barely remembered slipping away from the crowd. He had no idea how Laxus knew there was a broom closet in the back, precisely where it was located, and how to slip past security to get back there in the first place; he figured he probably did not want to know. Laxus once said he had visited every bar in town at least once. Perhaps he had learned the layouts of each place … for clients.

Freed did not even bother thinking about that now. He was shoved against a metal shelving unit, having the sanity kissed right out of him. The cold lines of steel shelves pressed against his spine, the pungency of cleansers burned his lungs, and hands that were still cold from being outside were sliding up under his shirt, chilling his torso as they groped at him. None of these discomforts bothered him, not when Laxus was kissing him so fiercely.

Those massive hands suddenly reached down, grabbed his ass, and hoisted him up. Freed grabbed around Laxus' neck, his thin legs wrapped around the muscular waist, and he was effortlessly lifted. He felt Laxus thrust up against him, hard and in need of friction. They clung to one another in a desperate passion they had never yet experienced, not like this. It was a wild craving, a need that outweighed everything, even the nagging voice in the back of Freed's mind that warned him they could get arrested for having sex in public.

None of that mattered. He needed Laxus! He needed to be filled up and claimed. He wanted to be ravaged so hard, he would feel the lingering ache for days. He wanted to be taken, right here, right now!

Laxus snarled between violent kisses, "I am so ready to fuck you."

"Yes," Freed groaned with a shiver. He missed this! He missed the tempestuous passion and thundering growls.

Laxus chuckled. "Do you want it? Public sex? It's illegal, y'know."

"I don't care," he moaned. Freed wiggled his body against the taut muscles, needing the ache rubbed out. "Please!" He was so desperate, he was willing to beg, to obey, to do whatever was ordered of him.

"Idiot." Laxus began to pull Freed off of him.

"No!" he protested, leeching himself even tighter to that sculpted body.

"Get off of me. That's an order."

With a reluctant whine, Freed placed his feet back down onto the ground. He looked up with disappointment.

"Are you stupid?" Laxus scolded softly. "As if I'd do something that could actually get you arrested. You've got a reputation to uphold, and there's no way I'm gonna screw that up."

"I don't care," Freed said needfully.

Laxus put a finger on his nose, holding him back playfully. "I do. I just fuckin' left you because I didn't want to drag your family's name into the mud. I ain't screwing up now that I'm back. You can wait until we get home."

Freed moaned in disappointment and dropped his head down onto Laxus' chest. "But I'm … really turned on."

"Of course you are."

Freed chuckled. It was the same arrogant tone Laxus always used. How he missed it!

Laxus leaned into his ear. "So am I. Feel this." He took Freed's hand and placed it against his crotch. Immediately, Freed grabbed that thick arousal and began to stroke it. "Whoa, easy there!" He yanked the hand off. "Who gave you permission to do that?"

"Please," he begged. He missed the feel of that cock. He wanted to touch it, taste it, let it take him and fill him. His mouth, his ass, he didn't care where, he just wanted that large member to pierce him and join Laxus to him, their bodies becoming one.

Laxus shook his head in awe. "Damn, I really did miss you."

Hearing that made Freed smile, although his groin was seriously aching with need. "Do you want to go home? The new place is set up. I just moved your boxes in from the storage shed today, so … so it's really our place now."

"Our home, huh?" Laxus said with a light smile. "That sounds nice." Nice? It was a dream come true! "Don't you think you should stay with your friends, though? I know someone like you didn't drag them out here. They're going out of their way to cheer you up."

"I'm happy now," he said, hugging Laxus and rubbing his cheek against his chest.

Laxus felt like melting at how adorable Freed could be, like a little cat ready to purr. "Yeah, but considering that's top-shelf shit you're drinking, I would bet money that you're buying their drinks tonight. If you offer to take the tab, you should at least finish the first round."

"I…" Freed felt stumped. Laxus had a point. It was rude to leave after he had offered to buy drinks all night for the guys, but he really wanted to get home and reunite with Laxus. "I want you."

Laxus looked pleased, but he shook his head. "That'd be shitty of me. We have time, and if I start up too soon, you'll never last."

"Last?" he asked in confusion.

Those blue eyes gleamed in the broom closet's low light. "I told you, the next time I see you, I'm gonna make love to you until sunrise."

"But … but that was when we thought you'd be gone for—"

"I've been gone long enough," Laxus said over his words. His hands ran up and down Freed's body. "Long enough to want you all night."

Freed trembled under the gentle touches. Laxus looked like he was starving, and when he kissed Freed, he bit on his lip, as if ready to devour him right there.

"You want me, right?" Laxus asked as he slowly kissed along Freed's jawbone and up toward his ear.

"O-of course!" he stuttered out.

Laxus suddenly grabbed his chin and lifted it. "Tell me!" he demanded.

Freed shivered from the aggressive dominance that he had missed so much. "I want you," he moaned. "Please!"

"Then you wait," he teased, pulling back and leaving Freed desperate for more. Laxus smirked at how easily he could mess up this son of a rich man. "You brought all of my stuff, right?"

"Everything I didn't donate. That was just clothes and some furniture."

"You didn't toss any of my … personal supplies, right?"

Freed blushed, knowing what he meant. "N-no. I packed all of that." It had been the first time he had seen all of Laxus' supplies, and he had diligently kept every item, from sex toys to old porn mags.

"Good," Laxus chuckled deviously. "There are a few things I wanna try on you. I said I would make love to you until sunrise." He grabbed Freed's cheeks hard with one hand until his jaw was forced open and he moaned in pain. "I didn't say it would be gentle."

Freed could not shut his mouth to hold back the groan, and the sound of it shamed him. "Y-you mean…"

Laxus leaned in close to his face. "You are going to hurt," he promised. "I couldn't take it out on that bastard father of mine, so you'll have to do. Just warning you," he whispered in a threat that made Freed's skin crawl and his heart race. "It might hurt worse than you're used to. Tell me when it's too much. I'm gonna push you to your limits. To the very edge of what you can withstand! I wanna see you unable to walk, unable to speak from all the screaming, my hand print on your lily-white ass, my teeth engraved into your skin, my marks all over you until not an inch of your body forgets who your master is. Then, I'm gonna pound that ass of yours so hard, so many times, fill you with so much of my cum, you won't be able to take a shit for a week without feeling the burn."

"Laxus," he keened, getting erect all over again from the sweet promises of sadistic pain.

"I said I'd make love to you until sunrise, but I never said you'd only come once." Laxus pressed himself up against Freed again, and the green-haired man felt the stiffness in those leather pants. "I wanna see how many times it takes to completely drain you. What's your record, Freed? How many times in one day have you made yourself come?"

Freed moaned at the humiliating question and looked away with a blush.

Laxus suddenly pulled his hair and growled. "Answer me, you little slave. What's your record for coming?"

Freed hissed at the hair-pulling. "S-seven! But that was a whole day."

"You mean you once spent a whole day jacking off?"

"Not the whole day," he mumbled in shame. "I just mean, that was from morning wood until evening finale. In one sitting … um … three? Three times, I guess?"

"Three?" Laxus hummed. "Not enough. We'll aim for seven. I wanna make you come seven fucking times. I wanna keep you going until you're shooting dry. And when you can't come anymore, I'm gonna keep going until you pass out. Don't even think about begging me to stop. I won't! I won't until sunrise. I'll fill your ass with every toy I have, and I'll make you ride me in every position in the book. Even if you pass out, I'll fuck you unconscious."

Freed whined and reached down as his cock pulsed to those dirty, sensual words.

"Hey," Laxus warned.

"No, I … I won't come in my pants," he said, fighting the need. "You taught me control."

"Damn right I did! And I wanna see you lose control."

Freed whimpered.

His hand drifted down as his mouth nibbled Freed's neck. "I wanna see you begging me! I wanna hear you moan, see you writhing all over the bed." He nipped Freed's earlobe. "I want to make you scream." He suddenly squeezed Freed's erection painfully tight.

"Laxus!" he cried out, giving a small push. If he kept that up, he might really come in his clothes. "Come on. I'm trying not to embarrass myself."

"Maybe I wanna see that, too," Laxus smirked. "Do you want to know what I fantasized about out there in Greece? Our first night, that lap dance. I was staring at how sexy you looked under me, but I wasn't paying attention to you, to your needs. I was too enthralled," he whispered, tucking a strand of hair behind Freed's ear. "You looked incredible that night. I was lost, staring at your eyes, watching your body twist with need. I wasn't paying attention. Still, I felt when you came in your pants. I felt it twitch and throb. I could smell it shoot out."

Freed gasped as he remembered that night and the shame of it.

"So much humiliation!" Laxus hummed hungrily. "Wanna know a secret?" He leaned into Freed's ear. "I almost came right there along with you."

Freed looked up in amazement. "W-what?"

"Yeah," Laxus shrugged, wondering why he was confessing this now. "I wasn't about to admit it before, but … my God, you were hot," he sneered. "So that's what I kept imagining: that face you had in that moment. Fuck!" he exclaimed, remembering the total and utter humiliation he had witnessed, made more incredible because it had not been something consensual. It had been accidental, not something a client wanted. It was honest humiliation, forced shaming, and that had made it incredible. "I'm glad you didn't totally hate me for that."

"I admit, I was mad," Freed confessed. "It was embarrassing."

"Oh, I bet!" Laxus' voice dropped to a whisper. "I would love to see you do that again. I won't have sex with you in public, but … something like that, coming in your pants in public, in front of a crowd. Damn, I wanna see that."

Freed felt a cold sweat as the predatory gleam focused on him. "N-no! Not here!"

Laxus just smiled.

"No!" Freed shivered. "My friends are here."

"Exactly. It's perfect. Loud music so whimpers won't be overheard, crowded enough so no one will be looking directly at us yet you'll realize just how many people are witnessing you jizz your pants, and people you know sitting right in front of you."

"N-no," he whined. "I don't have a change of clothes. I … I couldn't go around a crowd like that with cum in my pants. That's just … it's … not right. It could get on someone."

That was an honest possibility, and Laxus realized it would be bad if some lady accidentally brushed against Freed in the crowd and got semen on her. Not only was it unsanitary, it was Freed's cum. The idea of even a single drop ending up on someone else pissed off Laxus. He didn't want anyone to have Freed's cum on them, no one else, only him. He was the only person who could feel that milky fluid on his skin. He wanted to publicly claim dominance over Freed, but he didn't want to share a single drop.

"Then into a condom you go."

Freed thought his argument would end this, but he saw the way Laxus looked at him. He gasped in terror. "You're serious."

"Dead serious," Laxus said coldly.

Freed gulped and began to pant. Oh damn, it sounded amazing, but … wrong. So wrong! And that made it incredible.

"It'll count as your first time coming tonight. First of seven. The apartment can wait. I wanna have fun now." He caged Freed in against the broom closet shelf and hissed into his ear. "I wanna see this. I wanna make you do things you'll never forget, things that will make you feel downright dirty tomorrow morning. I want everyone here to see how my slave looks after he's been pleasured by me. You'll show them," he said with cruel amusement. "You're gonna show them all that face. The face I jacked off to in Greece. I wanna see it again." He leaned back, reached into a back pocket, and pulled something out. "Here, take this." He grabbed Freed's hand and thrust it into his palm.

Freed looked down and saw the small square wrapper with a distinct circle bulging around. "Wh-what?" he cried out in shock. "Where'd you get that?"

"I brought it with me," Laxus shrugged. "I knew I wanted you, and I wasn't sure if I could wait."

Freed quickly hid the condom into his pocket.

"Go into the restroom. Put it on," Laxus ordered. "And to make sure it doesn't get filled before I finish my drink…" He reached into the other pocket and pulled out a cock ring.

"Wait a minute!" Freed yelled. "There is no way you got my cock ring from my apartment." He felt a sudden bolt of jealousy. "Whose is it?"

Why would Laxus have a cock ring in his pocket? Had he bought it in Greece? Had he used it in Greece? On someone else? The idea both angered him and made him want to cry. What if Laxus had slipped back into his old habits? What if he needed money and took some clients for quick funds? He always insisted that they meant nothing, he had no emotional attachment to those people, but now…

Things were different. Now, they were both wearing those silver rings. Laxus did not need clients for money, not when he had Freed. Of course, Laxus had promised not to call Freed while on that trip. Still, Freed didn't want to share him, not with a client, not with anyone. He had never been greedy in his life, taught that a man of his station was meant to share the wealth, donate to charity, and give away freely. However, he wanted to be greedy with Laxus. He wanted to be the only man for him. If Laxus absolutely needed a person with a higher pain tolerance to get some sadistic cravings out of his system, then Freed wanted to be the one who allowed it, to watch, to see everything Laxus did and know that he could stop all of it if he didn't like it.

The idea that Laxus might have taken someone while in Greece made Freed's heart turn dark.

"Idiot," Laxus scoffed. "I bought it just now, on my way here." He had a smug smile.

Freed's eyes narrowed. Bought it? Tonight? That was a relief! However, that meant… "You've been planning this all along," he accused.

"Maybe," Laxus admitted. "I figured, if you were out in public, why not? Then I tracked the GPS on your phone to the pub. Perfect! In front of your friends, in front of that roommate you once called drop-dead handsome—"

"I didn't—"

"You did," he shouted, "and I've been pissed at Loke ever since. I wanna show him. I wanna humiliate you right in front of him, and … seriously, how the hell do you know Gray?" he exclaimed. "Have you been watching him strip? I said no strip clubs, bitch!"

"No!" Freed cried out. "He's out. He quit the South Pole Club. Loke knows Pinkie—I mean, Natsu—and Gray is dating Natsu. That's all. Honestly, this is the first time I've met either one of them outside of the club. And I haven't been back to there, I swear. Well, except to go talk to Bob, but that was after hours. I was good," he swore.

"I'm still punishing you."

"Why?" he yelled.

"Do I need a reason? Because you're in a pub with hot ladies all over the place who could put their hands on your ass. Because you're with three young men, and two of them are gay and thus potentially could be interested in you. Because you smell sexy and I don't want others to smell you."

"Smell?" he asked. He had not put on any cologne. If anything, he should smell a bit sweaty from moving boxes. How was that sexy?

"Because I missed you until it hurt but you just said 'That was a quick trip,' and that pissed me off. Because I wanna punish you, and I don't need a goddamn excuse, but I have so many right now, I could spend the night listing them." He slammed Freed into the concrete wall and towered over him. "I want to punish you, and that starts now. You'll put on that condom, wear that cock ring, and your gonna sit in this pub until I make you come in your goddamn clothes. You're not gonna run off, or hide your face, and I won't distract your friends from watching. I'll make them watch you. You'll show them, and you're gonna shoot that cum out into my condom knowing you're doing it right in front of everyone."

"N-no," he shivered. With tears, Freed hugged himself and shrank away. "No. I … no." He sobbed softly, shaking his head and looking overwhelmed by it all.

Laxus stepped back, wondering if he was being too harsh. He had spent over a month plotting some of the worst torture he knew, only to have those plans put on hold. He did not want to take out his frustration and disappointment on Freed. He only wanted to pleasure him, to hear his arousing gasps and whimpers. He pouted at the shaking in those slender limbs and the tears dripping down his flushed cheeks.

"Is it really too much?"

Freed gulped hard and shook his lowered head.

"If it truly is, I won't—"

"No!" he yelled, looking up and seeing the gentle concern in those eyes.

For all his foul language and harsh treatment, Laxus cared deeply for him. He might make threats, but Freed knew that, when it came down to the truth, he was in charge here. He called the shots. He always had. If he truly did not want this, Laxus would stop. He was sadistic but not evil. He was tender and worried about Freed all the time, even when whispering sweet promises of pain and humiliation.

"I … I…" The words caught in Freed's throat, but the blush showed what his brain could not articulate.

"Ooooh?" Laxus smiled in amusement. "Do you really want it after all? Does a pervert like you want to come in front of his friends?"

Freed felt tiny and shameful because the truth was, he did want it. "I don't," he insisted. "It's green, and I don't!"

"Green?" Green! Green light to go, but Freed would act like it was against his will. He chuckled at the devious little vixen. "You horny bastard," he said softly. His adorable slave was playing hard-to-get. Fine, he would get forceful, if that was what Freed really wanted. He raised his voice, "You'll put that condom and cock ring on."

"No!" Freed said in stubbornness.

Laxus grabbed his hair again and yanked it hard. Instead of pain, the shout from Freed trembled with ecstasy. "You listen to me, you little bitch. You're my slave. You obey me. Master was away, but now Master is home, and you will obey."

"No!" he yelled back, summoning up all the pride and hubris he had been born into. "I am a working adult and junior manager at the Justine Corporation. I don't have to—"

Laxus suddenly slammed his foot into the metal shelf, making a boom so loud, Freed jumped in fear. Someone had to have heard that! Keeping his leg popped up, Laxus grabbed Freed by the hips, yanked him with bruising force, and threw him over his raised knee. Freed was thrown so hard, his hair fell into his face. His head was upside down and looking backward at his own ankles

"What the…?"

Freed's words were cut off by three cracks as Laxus' open palm spanked his ass. Those turquoise eyes opened huge. Freed honestly had not expected to be spanked right here, and he could not even cry out, it was so fast and so shocking. Then those sweaty fingers grabbed his hair and yanked him upright. Laxus leaned into his face and glared coldly while Freed gazed with massive eyes.

"You … will … obey … me … bitch!"

Freed's racing heart made him breathless. If this was just the beginning, tonight was going to be the best night of his life.

"Do you need to be convinced more?"

"No," he whispered in awe. He had almost forgotten how enthralling Laxus could be when he stopped trying to be gentle and went fully sadistic and dominant.

"Are you going to obey?"

"Yes," he said so softly, it was barely a hiss. He wanted this blond god to dominate him more!

"Put that damn cock ring on, shove your dick into the condom, and then come directly to me. I'll get a booth for our group. That way my hand can be under the table as I touch you. I want to stroke your cock in front of everybody. If it wasn't illegal, I would throw you over a table and pound that ass of yours in front of the whole group, for everyone to see. Hell, I'd ask Gray to give me a hand and have him suck your dick while I bury myself deep inside you."

Freed's eyes widened and his cheeks went crimson as he imagined both former strip dancers working on him.

"Do you like that idea?"

"I … I don't … I'm not sure," he said uncomfortably.

"Ever been in a threesome?"

Freed looked hurt by the question. "I've only been with you."

Laxus smiled and stroked his head tenderly. "Good answer. Now, go on. You should be thankful I'm letting you use a condom."

Freed nodded, but he looked up with sadness still lingering. "Do you really want Gray to do that?"

"Fuck no!" Laxus glared. "I'm too jealous and greedy. I don't like the idea of guys even shaking your hand, let alone touching you there."

Freed sighed with relief. He had almost been afraid that this was a fantasy of Laxus', if maybe he wasn't enough now, maybe Laxus wanted two lovers to order around.

"Freed." Laxus picked up his thin hand, kissed the inside of his palm, and then held his knuckles to let the silver promise ring gleam in the dim closet light. "What does the inside of this ring say?"

Freed's cheeks blushed. "Only you, Greenie."

"And what does my ring say?"

Freed gazed up lovingly into those electric eyes. "Only you, Thor."

He nodded and kissed Freed's knuckles. "Only you, and don't you fucking forget it!"

All of his fears vanished in that moment. His worries about Laxus' loyalty while in Greece, his guilt at being so greedy, his desire to covet this man, were all justified, because Laxus felt the exact same way. He didn't want men to touch Freed. He was angry just because Freed was hanging out with other gay men. He had bought these silver promise rings as a way to lay claim on Freed, even if it was greedy doing so. He had been just as worried, just as jealous, and just as happy to be together again.

Laxus leaned over and planted a soft kiss onto Freed's forehead. His eyes said it all. They were both greedy bastards who wanted it all, but there was nothing wrong with that, not when they were both rich enough in love to keep giving freely.

"Now go," Laxus told him with a firm tone but a tender smile.

"Yes, Master," he said, and he turned around to the closet door. He began to twist the handle.

Hearing Freed call him Master once again overwhelmed Laxus. Although the door was cracked open, he slammed a hand against it, shutting it with a bang. He pinned Freed against the door, grabbed his shirt collar, yanked it aside, and kissed him hard on the top of his shoulder. Freed cried out in surprise. He stuttered protests, but Laxus ignored them.

He suddenly bit into that pale skin and latched on hard with his lips. He needed to mark Freed as his, now! He did not dare let him walk around this crowd looking as sexy as he was and not be marked as his. He sucked as hard as he could, as if he could siphon the very soul out of him. Then he looked down. Sure enough, it was bruised with blood speckling just under the surface of the skin. Laxus liked seeing that. He kissed it gently as an apology for hurting him, but his skin smelled so good, sweaty and musky and not scented with soaps or body sprays. It smelled of sweat, sex, and lust.

He licked the skin, tasting it, then kissed, kissed, kissed! So delicious! More!

"L-Laxus!" he cried out. "Stop, really." Freed didn't know whether to expect pain or pleasure, but he knew that if Laxus continued, both of them would be too weak to stop themselves.

Laxus pulled away, satisfied that Freed at least had a decent mark there. He straightened up the shirt and made sure the hickey did not show.

Damn, Laxus wanted him! His desire was so potent, it was probably unhealthy, but he blamed it on the long separation. He wanted everything about Freed, wanted to make him feel everything, from the sweetest tenderness to the most violent passion. He wanted to claim everything, protect everything, to enslave him and worship him and hoard him and never let him be touched by another person. He was an angel, and no mortal should dare touch such perfection. Only a god could.

Only the thunder god could claim this green angel!

His fist tensed and shook at how much he had to hold back the desire to rip Freed's clothes off and take him, right here, right now, as roughly and thoroughly as possible. That lust clashed with the desire to just hold him, cling to him, caress every part of his body, cover him in gentle kisses, beg him for forgiveness, and crawl around on all fours if it could make up for making Freed cry. He wanted to cherish him, and he wanted to use him up as roughly as possible. He wanted to protect him from harm, and he wanted to make him tremble with erotic pain.

The emotions swirled, clashed, battled each other, and left Laxus frustrated with a storm of paradoxical passions.

"Mine," he growled, and that was all. He opened the closet door and stomped out, knowing that if he stayed there any longer, he really would do something illegal.

Freed stood in the dim room, panting and in shock from suddenly having Laxus gone. He looked down at the cock ring still in his hand and pulled out the condom that accompanied it.

"I guess it starts now," he said to himself. He firmed his shoulders. He had been given orders by his master. "I'll obey," he declared to himself.

No matter how shaming it was, he would obey his master, please his master, and throw all of his trust onto his master to protect him from truly doing too much. He would show Laxus how much he loved and trusted him, not just in private, but out here, in the open, in front of everyone. He would publicly prove his loyalty and obedience.

Finally, he walked out of the broom closet, determined to make this night incredible by obeying Laxus' wishes.

Next Chapter: In Front of Everyone

 

Next Chapter: In Front of Everyone

Chapter Text

Laxus stepped out from the back and glanced around. He saw Loke, Gray, and Natsu still sitting by the bar. The crowd had thinned only a little since the band was done and some new band was setting up.

Gray noticed Laxus first and gave a brief wave. Laxus headed straight over to them.

"'Sup Gray. Been a while."

"Sure has," his former coworker smiled, bumping a fist against Laxus' massive knuckles. "You guys are staying?"

Laxus gave a casual shrug. "Yeah, I decided I should join you guys for at least one or two rounds."

"Oh," Gray said in confusion. "I figured you two would want to … head off." His arched eyebrow showed precisely what he meant.

Laxus smirked at the lewd assumption. "We've got time. Loke," he nodded in greeting. "I hope Freed wasn't too annoying for you."

The ginger pushed his glasses up his nose and glared slightly. "He was a mess after you left. You have some balls coming back just as he's sorting out his life."

Laxus' mouth opened in shock at the attack, but he had no clue what to say. He probably should have realized that there would be people who felt mad at him for breaking Freed's heart.

"Or … that's what I should say," Loke chuckled, playfully amused to have stumped a man like Laxus. "Freed kept real hush about it, but I could tell that you must've left for some damn good reasons. So long as whatever shit you're in doesn't get him arrested or hurt, I'm just glad to see him smiling again."

Laxus sighed in relief. He was afraid the awkwardness might have ruined everything he had planned. "Well, thanks. Who's the pinkie here?"

Gray wrapped an arm around him, and the smaller boy wearing a scarf instantly snuggled into him. "This is Natsu."

"You worked with Gray, right?" the youngest of them all asked suspiciously. "You're not here to drag him back, are you? I won't let you!" he shouted protectively.

Gray pressed a hand onto Natsu's chest. "I told you, no one can make me go back anymore."

"Don't worry," Laxus said in understanding. "I quit that hellhole back in December." He wondered if Freed ever felt this strongly against Laxus returning to the South Pole Club. Not like he had any desire to return … ever! Natsu looked like the possessive type, considering the way he clutched at Gray and glared at Laxus as if to say Back off, he's mine!

"Workmates?" Loke asked. "You know Gray?"

"Yeah, we worked together for the past … what, two years? Three?"

Gray rolled his eyes. "Felt like forever."

"What sort of job did you—?"

"Hey," Laxus blurted out over Loke's question. "Let's get a booth. Five is enough to request one in this joint. Kinana!"

A waitress came up to him. "Well, well! Look who showed his face after half a year."

"A hell of a year. I'll have to tell you about it later. Get us a booth."

"You're still bossy," she scoffed.

"But I ain't your boss no more."

"That's a shame, too. The boss now," she admitted quietly, "is a middle-aged lecher. I don't dare wear the blouses I used to because he stares at my breasts all the time."

Another waitress slipped up beside her. "Talking about my dad?"

Kinana yelped. "Cana!"

"He's a jerk, but he's harmless." She turned to the four men, and her dark eyes lingered on the blond. "You, I remember. Laxus, right?" She eyed him up and down. "I thought that was your sexy ass that walked through the door."

"Cana," he said coldly. "Still trying to drink your daddy out of business?"

"Fuck him. What can I get you? The usual?"

"I don't aim on getting drunk tonight. Only a pint of Newcastle and a booth."

"Gotta have five in a party for…"

"My boyfriend is powdering his pecker. Get me a fucking booth," he glared.

"Damn," she frowned. "So that's how you swing. I always wondered why you never took up my offers."

"It sure wasn't because I have too much respect for you," he teased lightly.

She slammed a finger into his chest and leaned in at him. "You ain't my boss anymore, Laxus. So I can say fuck you and spit in your drink if I want."

"Do that, and I'll tell your daddy about that time with Bacchus."

Her eyes narrowed, and she swept away in a fury.

"You used to work here?" Gray asked.

"My grandfather used to run the Fairy Tail Pub," Laxus told him. "I was supposed to take over for him, but … things happened. Gildarts runs it now." They saw a wave from Cana, and their group shifted through the crowd to a booth where they settled in.

"So, what do you do now?" Gray asked curiously.

Laxus chuckled at how his life had changed, once the son of a man who ran a pub as a family business, then odd jobs, drifting from place to place, then as a strip dancer and professional Dom, and now … "I'm an electrician."

Gray stared, waiting for some sort of punchline, and when none came he exclaimed, "Get out!"

"And part time bouncer," Laxus confessed, "and part time … other stuff."

Loke took his eyes off of Cana's round rump long enough to look over. "Other stuff? That sounds shady."

Oh, if only he knew! "You could say I found my calling … if I still have that job," he muttered.

"Because you took off, huh?" Gray asked.

"Unavoidable," Laxus said curtly. Cana set his beer down and he muttered thanks. "I'm just glad my business in Europe didn't last as long as I was afraid it would."

"What was that about anyway?" asked Gray. "Or can you not say?"

"Family issues. That's as much as I can tell you." As if he could confess that he had left with every intention of murdering his nefarious father!

Natsu looked around. "Where'd Freed go? It sure is taking him a while just to use the bathroom. Maybe he's sick."

"He's not sick," Laxus said sharply.

Gray's eyes gleamed, and he smirked silently. Laxus saw the look.

"You got something to say, Gray?"

"Nah," he said passively.

Just then, the new band started up, and Loke and Natsu's attention shifted as the singer with piercings all over his face introduced themselves. Iron Dragon Slayer? It sounded like a really bizarre crossover between Iron Maiden, Imagine Dragons, and Slayer. Gray took that opportunity to lean across the table to Laxus.

"I just have an idea of what you and that Greenie kid are planning to do."

Laxus stared with a completely passive poker face. "I don't know what you're—"

"I've made Natsu do it," he interrupted.

Laxus arched an eyebrow. "Oh really?" he said in amusement.

"Crowded bar, loud music. Perfect setting. I was never into hardcore shit like you, not until I met him," Gray said softly, glancing at the boy with bright pink hair. "You're really sadistic, making Freed do it in front of us."

"He wants it."

"They always do," Gray mused.

"Do you want to as well, with Natsu?"

"Nah. We learned the hard way, he's … pretty damn vocal. Let's just say there are a few bars in town that we can't enter anymore."

Natsu's attention was pulled back. He leaned up into Gray's ear. "You're not telling him about … that, are you?"

"Of course not," Gray assured him. "Get us some beer nuts and pretzels, okay?"

"Sure," he grinned, and Natsu slid out of the booth.

Loke was chatting with Cana and trying to get her phone number—so much for being monogamous for two weeks—so Laxus and Gray could talk more.

"How do you silence Freed?" Gray asked in professional curiosity.

"I don't even own a ball gag, to be honest. He's not loud to begin with … unless he wants to be." He remembered how Freed had moaned with earnestness in the dorm their first time, wanting his neighbors to hear how good gay sex could be as a way to get back at them for teasing him about his homosexuality.

"But I mean, in public."

"We've never done this."

Gray looked stunned. "Tonight's a first for you two?" he asked, and Laxus nodded. "Now I feel like I have to do something to Natsu just to celebrate. Tell ya what? Don't pay attention to my boyfriend and I won't pay attention to yours."

Laxus' devious smile widened. "I want you to pay attention."

Gray laughed softly and shook his head. "Damn, I don't think I could do what you do." He looked up just as both Natsu and Freed were heading back at about the same time. The two submissive boyfriends met and chatted together. "Look at them. Pinkie and Greenie. Remember when we used to complain about them?"

"I never complained."

"I guess not. You complained about the club lifestyle, but never about Greenie. Look at him! Blushing already. What do you have him wearing?"

"Rubber and a ring," Laxus said laconically.

"That's it?"

"Hey, I just got off a plane from Greece. Like I had time to plan this!"

"Well, good luck with him."

"Yeah…" Laxus pouted. "I really hope this isn't a bad idea, me just getting back and all."

"If he agreed to this, you're definitely good. He probably wants it way more than you do, so don't disappoint him." Just then, Natsu arrived with bowls of sweet-glazed peanuts and mini pretzels, happy to show Gray that he fetched them. Gray gave a pat on the pink head that looked a little too much like pet-play to go unnoticed by Laxus. He wondered what Natsu was hiding under that white scarf. A collar?

Slower, Freed followed, twisting his hands in front of him. Laxus gazed hard at him with a pleased smile. Those nervous hands were positioned right there to hide the erection growing from the tightness of the cock ring, yet Laxus still noticed the tenting in the trousers.

"I'm … back," Freed said timidly.

Laxus stood and motioned for Freed to slide into the inside of the booth, that way he was closer to the wall and less visible to the crowd. Freed moved his long hair aside and slid over. Across the way from him was Natsu, who had just crawled under the table to pop up beside Gray, looking happy to return to his drink and snacks. (And to his master, thought Laxus.) Gray was in the middle, and Freed wondered why he was smiling at him that way, as if he knew a secret. Loke was on the end so he could chat with passing waitresses.

Laxus sat back down, so large that he took up the rest of their side of the booth. He placed a hand on Freed's knee, and the smaller man yelped in surprise.

"Are you all right?" Laxus asked softly.

"Y-yeah," Freed breathlessly whispered back. He leaned up into Laxus' ear to whisper for the music of the new singer. "It's … hard already."

"Of course it is," Laxus said in amusement. He knew how Freed was. The man could get erect with just kissing. Knowing what they were about to do, it was a miracle the guy had not shot out his cum before making it to the booth. "If it's really too much, say … falafel."

That made Freed laugh to himself. A new safeword? Then again, Gray might speak French and question his normal safeword of Écriture, and saying Red in public was out of the question. "Did you pick that up in Greece?"

"About the only thing I did there was walk around ass-old buildings and eat food. Now drink, and try not to moan."

Freed tugged Laxus' sleeve urgently, and he leaned over to listen. "Order me," he whispered. Freed just needed to hear it, to feel like he had to obey. Not a request to try, but a command.

Laxus chuckled to himself. Across the way, he saw Gray already sharing a smile with him. The raven-haired man probably guessed they were still setting up their scene, and that was why he was letting Natsu pig out on pretzels and not bothering Loke and his failing attempts at flirting with Cana. He was keeping quiet so these two could set themselves up.

Laxus leaned into Freed's ear and hissed in the most domineering voice he could muster and still keep quiet, "Don't you fucking moan, bitch."

Freed felt that order shiver through him. Yes! He had to obey now. He could not make a sound. Master gave an order. He had to sit there and be a good slave.

Laxus slid his hand up a little higher, coming to rest tucked between Freed's thighs. That position, the anticipation of being touched without the actual pleasure, that denial of touching, made Freed shiver. Only by sheer force of will, wanting to follow Laxus' order, did he hold still and not thrust toward that hand.

"So Loke," Laxus called over. It was time for this show to begin. "Freed tells me you helped him move in my boxes. I owe you a beer."

"He owes me, not you," Loke said.

"That was my crap. So long as you didn't break anything—" Dramatically, for all three to see, he patted Freed on the leg. "—I have to thank you for helping Freed. Someone has to watch out for this mouse when I'm gone."

Freed gulped hard. That blatant touch made everyone else briefly look down … down to the hand now resting on his upper thigh, fingers tucked between his legs, with Laxus' pinkie finger stroking up, just a very soft and discreet touch to the sensitive manhood. Although it was hidden by the table, when Freed glanced down to Laxus' hand, he also saw the engorged arousal pressing needfully against his trousers.

Someone could see that.

Only the table blocked it from view, but Freed realized, someone walking by, a waitress or just some customer, could glance over and see what the table hid from the three young men across from them. He was erect in public, and not like the strip club where hard-ons were common. This was just some local pub filled with average people. He would be publicly humiliated if these normal people saw him with an erection. The fear of that disgrace made all of his nerves come alive, suddenly hyper-aware of every noise and light and smell, as well as those clandestine touches from Laxus' pinkie. One finger was making him shiver.

Laxus lifted his other hand and flagged a waitress. "Cana!" he shouted. "Get me and my friend here another pint on my tab, and get my boyfriend a Sapphire martini. His own tab. He can afford it, damn brat," he scolded playfully. He glanced down to Freed, who had a delightful blush on his sallow cheeks. "You still like Sapphire martinis, right?"

"Y-yes," he choked. The waitress would come over. She might see! She might see him like this!

The pitch to Laxus' voice dropped a bit. "Then you'll drink it."

It was an order. Although Freed feared that his hands were shaking too hard, he would keep calm just enough to obey and swallow whatever Laxus told him to drink. And that was really the wrong way for him to think about it!

"So I heard you were in Europe, right?" Loke asked Laxus as the waitress left to get the drinks. "Where about?"

"Greece."

"Sweet! Hot babes in Greece."

"I wouldn't know," Laxus chuckled. "It was nice, though. I'd love to go back and actually enjoy it."

"All business, huh?"

A shadow passed briefly over Laxus' face. "That was the plan," he muttered, but he knew he could say nothing more. "Gray, Freed said you have a new job. What do you do now?"

The raven-haired man shook his head. "You'll laugh."

"Only if you say you're dancing ballet."

"Fuck you!"

"He is, he is," Natsu cried out in hyper glee.

Gray glared down at him. "It's not ballet. It's more like … like modern dance with a classic flair."

"You still danced in that one ballet."

"I … th-that…" Gray's face went red, and he vehemently argued, "Their male principal sprained an ankle. I was just filling in."

"He's good," Natsu bragged. "You should see him do modern dance. He does the best Michael Jackson impersonation…"

Gray did something under the table, and Natsu cut off his words.

"Shut up," Gray glared.

"So how did a guy like you get a job like that?" Laxus asked. It wasn't like exotic dancer looked good on a resume.

"I know a lady at the opera house," said Gray. "Mira's been bugging me to work for her since just after high school."

Freed jolted up. "You know Mira?"

Gray looked confused. "Yeah, we were in the same same high school and same orphanage for a while until she got a job modeling, and then that opera gig, and I … well … I had some troubles with the law and my life has been hell … until now," he added, smiling at Natsu.

Freed wanted to ask more about his acquaintance with Mira, but Laxus' hand suddenly slid upward, stroking over the erection in his pants. His words choked before they could be uttered, and Laxus hid his smirk. He still did not like how that opera singer had hugged Freed with such familiarity, or the fact that when she had so obviously flirted with Laxus, Freed had referred to him as just a friend. Laxus was slow at forgiving things like that, so he would punish Freed now for the slip way back then.

"So, anything life-altering happen in the country while I was away?" the blond asked.

"We graduated," Loke grinned. "Freed got magna cum laude."

"Cum … loud-eh … huh?" Laxus smirked, stroking Freed again and seeing the blush in his cheeks.

"It means with high honors," Loke explained.

"I know what it means," Laxus said coldly. Oh, he would tease his brilliant little slave about that and make him cum loud-eh, all right! Over and over, all night. His precious pet shouldn't get cocky, after all. "And I'm guessing you got jobs now?"

"I'm already working," Loke nodded. "Freed was given a junior manager job and starts in a week. His dad said to take a vacation first, but of course he's spent it sitting alone at home, brooding."

"Better not be over me," Laxus chuckled, stroking Freed more.

Loke smirked slyly. "Probably watching a bunch of porn while you're gone."

Freed squawked out, "Loke!"

"Porn is fine," Laxus shrugged. "You should see the porn in cheap Greek motels." The gawking face from Freed was so worth mentioning that. "I don't care what you smack off to, so long as you didn't cheat on me," he said, glaring down.

"Of course not!" Freed cried out, shocked he would ask, especially in public.

"Well, there was that one guy," Loke said deviously. "Rufus, right? You had some sort of lunch date with him."

Freed paled in horror that Loke would dare bring that up. "Rufus was not a date!"

Laxus' stroking hand paused, tensed, and pulled back away from Freed. His knuckles popped as he fisted his hand, while those electric blue eyes crackled in jealousy. "Who's Rufus?"

The frigid tone in Laxus' low voice sent a sickly shiver down Freed's spine. Oh shit, he was jealous as hell!

Loke answered with a shrewd smile, "Hot, rich, genius bachelor who's apparently interested in a merger with Freed's family."

"It was business," Freed cried out in a panic. "I swear, it was only about business. Laxus!" He looked up in dread. Why would Loke bring up him, of all people? Was he purposely trying to incite Laxus to anger?

"Hot and rich, huh?" Laxus said, sipping his beer with glaring suspicion. "Is he the sort of gentleman your mother would approve of?"

Freed croaked out noises, but he could not protest without lying.

"Did you two go out for drinks?"

"I only had one martini, I swear!"

"What did he order to drink?"

"To … drink?"

"Don't repeat me! What drink did he buy?"

Freed was confused, but then he remembered that Laxus had an ability to tell things about people by what they ordered to drink. "He ordered a gimlet and specifically asked for Cîroc."

Laxus suddenly snorted out a laugh. "Yeah, I've got nothing to worry about." He knocked back the last of his beer and flagged Cana for another.

Loke sulked and whined, "Awww, how can you tell?"

Freed swung him a glare. "Why do you sound disappointed?"

The wily Lion shrugged. "I wanted to see how he looks when he's jealous, that's all."

"That's all?" yelled Freed.

Laxus explained, "A gentleman knows that a real gimlet is made with gin and Rose's Lime Juice, not vodka. Only pretentious pussies and arrogant assholes order it with vodka and still dare call it a gimlet. I would normally assume he was some arrogant brown-noser trying to show off in front of Freed and doing a piss-poor job of it, except he asked for Cîroc, one of the priciest of the top-shelf vodkas. That means he knows his brands, and he knows what's good. If he just wanted Cîroc, there are a lot of drinks better than a gimlet for enjoying the taste of that particular vodka. The act of ordering a gimlet with vodka rather than gin leaves two possibilities: either he's poorly versed in buying drinks and only knows two or three good ones, or he was trying to act down for Freed's sake. Considering he asked for Cîroc and not Smirnoff or Absolut or some other more popular vodka, and the fact that he'd even bother to specify the brand, leaves me to assume he definitely knows how to order a drink, and thus should know what a gimlet is. Then there's Freed's mother."

"My mother?" he asked in confusion.

"If this douchebag is an upper class elite who can meet the approval of Freed's mother, it means he is of a higher social standing than the Justines. I don't see that woman approving of anyone even a little lower in wealth than themselves. This means he knows what the hell a gimlet is and definitely knows it's a gin drink. Gin is called the drink of the upper class for a reason, and things like martinis and gimlets and negronis are standard at gatherings."

"How would you know?" Gray laughed.

Laxus' eyes were cold for a moment. "Let's just say I'm … familiar with plenty of fat, rich bastards." Just thinking about his days taking wealthy masochistic clients turned his stomach. "This douchebag is rich as fuck, and he knows it. However, he likely knows who Freed's friends are, and we poor saps are not as affluent as his one-percenter frat buddies. He wanted to woo Freed, so first thing is to make him feel at ease, as if he's hanging out with just another classmate. College kids are notorious for taking gin drinks and asking for them to be made with vodka, since it's cheaper and something they're used to. It's why college towns sell vodka martinis more than real martinis. Nearly every college kid of drinking age—and most under-aged—has had at least a Screwdriver and knows that vodka can be mixed with anything. Gin is a whole different level, and it's not a taste everyone likes."

"I honestly can't stand gin," Natsu confessed with his mouth full of pretzels.

"What Douchebag doesn't realize—and what he should have been able to tell right away—is that Freed has a refined palate for gin. Sapphire martini is his favorite drink, after all. Assuming Douchebag is a well-bred gentleman, he let Freed order first."

"How'd you know that?" Freed asked.

Laxus smiled down at him. "No offense, but you like when people take the lead, and it takes a whole five seconds of talking to you to figure that out."

Gray coughed to cover over a laugh. He also knew about submissive partners. Loke politely kept quiet, but he hid his smile with his drinking glass.

"Freed just said he had only one martini. That would definitely have been ordered with Sapphire gin. After ordering that, this douchebag ordered a gimlet yet changed it to vodka to appeal to what he assumes are Freed's standard of friends—which is plain shitty of him—and yet he can't put aside the part of him that still wants the top-shelf quality. If you're going to fuck over a gin drink with vodka to look less intimidating and more playful, at least make it a vodka that won't taste like shit."

"You could tell all that by what he ordered?" asked Loke.

Freed nodded with a quiet chuckle. "It's like a savant talent. Don't ask him to do it to you, trust me. You'll be second-guessing your drink orders for months."

"That still doesn't explain why you think Rufus isn't trouble," Loke pointed out. "He really seemed to be interested in Freed."

"Of course he was," Laxus said with the same arrogant tone he used in the bedroom. "Have you seen my boyfriend? He's hot as fuck!"

"Laxus!" Freed cried out, blushing fiercely with embarrassment.

"The issue there was the fact that Mrs. Justine approves of this douchebag. Now, if she approved purely due to money and this guy ordered a beer or a margarita, I'd be worried as hell and have to punch him out of principle alone for flirting with what's mine. The fact that he's some ass-cock screwing up drinks to appear less pretentious yet doesn't have a fucking clue how to stop being an elite douchebag shows that he's precisely the sort of man Liberty Justine would give honest consent to as a life-partner for her gay eldest son. I just can't imagine Freed ever hooking up with anyone his mother would actually like." His hand returned to Freed's leg. "He's a guy who wants a man who drinks whiskey and beer, not gin and champaign."

Gray looked at the two with pity. "So Freed's mother doesn't approve of you?"

The blond guffawed loudly. "She's about as close to hating my guts as she can allow herself to feel without breaking social propriety."

"And you're okay with that?" Gray asked Freed.

"She's not that bad," Freed argued. "She was civil during Christmas."

"'Cuz I scared the shit out of her threatening to marry you."

"You did what?" Loke and Gray both shouted.

Natsu belatedly looked up. "Huh? Marriage? Wedding cake?"

Freed shrank down. "Y-you didn't have to mention that."

Laxus smiled smugly and let his hand drift under Freed's belt. "Of course I did." He reached down and felt the stiff arousal sheathed in latex. "Purely because I know it embarrasses you." He stroked down until he felt the cock ring, then carefully stroked back up, making sure the condom stayed in place. "You're cute when you're embarrassed."

Freed froze and gulped hard in dread. They were all looking at the two … and Loke was laughing softly at what Laxus had said. Laxus … was touching him! Not just through the fabric of his pants, but directly. His cold fingers were inside his underwear, and although a condom covered him, he felt the rough hands every time Laxus stroked down. His groin, thighs, and lower belly felt his callused skin, and those fingers … they gripped … so firmly! He wanted to moan and melt and surrender himself to these touches, but those pale eyes stared hard. Without words, Laxus was warning him not to make a sound, or to move, or do anything that gave away what he was doing.

Laxus broke the stare and looked back over to the others. "So, are you all the same age?"

Gray thumbed over to Natsu. "The brat here is a year younger."

"I'm only a few months younger than you," Natsu shouted.

"Are you working, Natsu?" Laxus asked.

He nodded excitedly at finally finding a chance to join the conversation. "I work at the fire station while going to college so I can become a fire marshal." His chest puffed out proudly as he said it.

"A small guy like you, a firefighter?"

Gray laughed as Natsu slumped crestfallen. "That's the same thing I said to him."

"Hey, I'm strong!" Natsu shouted. He put his elbow up on the table. "I'll arm-wrestle ya!"

Laxus would have normally taken up a challenge, but that meant letting go of Freed's cock, and the man beside him was just starting to really squirm now. "Another time, when we don't have drinks on the table."

"Come on! I challenge you, Laxus!"

Laxus arched an eyebrow at the cocky boy and glanced over to Gray. "You need a leash on this kid."

Natsu jolted hard and pulled back with terror on his face. His hand went up, touching the scarf as if to reassure himself it was still in place. Just then, Freed glanced up out of his erotic reverie and saw that startled expression and the telltale blush. He guessed that, like himself, Natsu was used to a collar. Was that what his scarf was concealing? Who else was idiotic enough to wear a scarf in summer?

Freed smiled to himself. Maybe Laxus would like to get him a leash as well someday. He could wear his collar, Laxus could hook on the leash, and he could be paraded around … of course, only in the fetish club. He liked that idea, going to that club where all kinks were safe and accepted, wearing his collar, and leashed! Being Laxus' bitch, with a leash…

Laxus took a drink of his beer and then leaned into Freed's ear. "Do you want one?"

He looked up, surprised that he had guessed.

"There's one in my suitcase, brought all the way from Greece. I saw it and thought of you." His voice lowered even more. "I want to see you wear it!"

Freed felt a surge of happiness, but the idea of wearing Laxus' leash, and with Laxus' collar—a Hanukkah present, he recalled—made his arousal ache more.

Loke looked over in concern. "Freed, you all right?"

"Y-yeah!" he cried out, his voice a bit high.

Gray had another enigmatic expression. Slowly, his hand drifted down under the table as well. A second later, Natsu jolted and looked up to him in shock. Gray hushed him with a devious smile.

"So, Loke," Gray said to the ginger sitting beside him. "What sort of job did you get? I heard it's working for Freed's company—or his dad's company—but what sort of job is it?"

Loke happily told them all the details of the job, and then went ahead to also tell them about Freed's position in the company, although he had not started working yet. Meanwhile, Laxus noticed how Gray's left hand had disappeared under the table, and Natsu had fallen quiet, no longer noisily munching on snacks. His cheeks were as pink as his hair, his fist pressed against his mouth to hold back noises, and he was already shaking from pleasure. He kept shifting in his seat, and Gray's face looked too focused for drivel about after-college employment.

Laxus felt proud that the obedient slave next to him was much better at hiding his reactions. Although Freed occasionally sniffed a bit hard to hide gasps and no longer picked up his martini glass after his last attempt at drinking showed the trembling of his hands, he still sat upright and seemed to be listening, although Laxus was fairly certain he heard not a single word Loke was saying.

Suddenly, Freed's fingers clutched Laxus' knee with the same grip he probably used with his fencing sword.

Laxus leaned over to Freed's ear again. "Are you okay?"

It took a while to speak, but Freed finally eked out. "I'm almost there."

"Are you really all right with this?"

He nodded stiffly, and Laxus felt a tremble.

"Don't let it show," he ordered.

"I'm … trying," he whined softly enough so no one else could hear over the blaring music.

"You're doing good."

Laxus pulled his hand out and used it to pick up his beer glass. That caught Gray's attention. He realized, that was the hand Laxus had been using, and a questioning look passed over his face. Were they done? So quietly?

Instead, Laxus let the glass cool his hand off and used a paper napkin to wipe off any condensation. Then his now-cold hand went back under. He touched Freed through his clothes, and the chill made Freed tremble.

Gray's hand now also reappeared, but Natsu looked pale and in anticipation for something, wary of Gray and scared of the people in this crowded booth. Gray pulled out his cellphone and tapped a few buttons.

"Sorry, gotta check something."

Gray clicked one last thing and immediately close down a program before anyone could see it. In the corner, Natsu made an audible gasp. This time, it was Laxus who gave the other couple a weird look. What was Gray even doing to Natsu when both hands were visible?

"Hey, I want all of your emails." He pulled up the address book of his cellphone. "We should get together sometime."

"Sounds good," Laxus said. "Freed, you go ahead and put my email in there as well," he ordered, so his hand did not have to leave off of stroking.

Freed obediently reached out to accept the phone, and Gray saw how his fingers were shaking. Laxus truly was cruel, making him work while suffering so pleasurably.

"Hey Laxus," Loke said, eying the brunette waitress. "You know that Cana girl. Do you know her email?"

"No," he answered curtly.

"What about Lucy?" Natsu yelled at Loke. He appeared to be trembling in rage, but Laxus had a good feeling he was shaking for another reason.

"Whoa, I'm not talking about being disloyal to Lucy," Loke swore. "I just meant … you know, the lady might know when good deals are happening at this pub."

Natsu glared irritably. "Yeah, right."

Freed suddenly gave a soft noise, almost like a cough trying to be passed off as a suppressed sneeze.

"Are you okay, Freed?" Gray asked.

"Sorry … I … I'm fine," he said, quickly passing the cellphone over to Loke, but all eyes were on him now.

In sadistic amusement, Laxus squeezed just a little harder and rubbed him more through the straining trousers. Freed made another cough sound and covered his mouth. He was so close … so ready to come … except now everyone was looking. Loke, Gray, Natsu, they were all looking right at him, and he was about to come, right here, in his clothes, in public. He coughed again and choked down a moan.

"Just … swallowed wrong," he gagged.

He could not hide it anymore. He pressed his lips together and hid behind a cough, then another, pretending like he was gasping and choking, while under the table…

It was humiliating! He was having an orgasm in front of his friends. Even when he had been a roommate with Loke and they watched porn, they were strict about one rule: finish off in the bathroom, not in front of one another! So for the first time in the four years he lived with Loke, he was breaking that solemn man's rule.

He was coming! He was coming from a hand job in public, coming in a crowded pub, coming in front of Laxus, because of Laxus. He wanted to please his master, to fulfill his fantasy of making Freed come in his pants in public again, a wish to see utter humiliation.

And God, this was the worst! He was filling up a condom while others watched. It protected him, his clothes would not be ruined, but it was still a public orgasm. In front of all these people…

"Freed?"

"Fine!" he coughed. "Just … tickle in the throat. Wrong pipe. Choking … a little, but … I'm f-fine."

Finally, it was over. The last spasm passed, but he was fairly certain he could not speak, or think, or move. Sweat dripped down the back of his neck, his penis tingled as the pressure built up from the cock ring relaxed, and blood rushed deafeningly through his ears.

All of these people. All of them! He had just had an orgasm, in public, in front of over a hundred people!

"Freed."

That low voice startled him, and he looked up to Laxus with tears in his eyes. Had it been okay? Had he pleased his master?

"Here."

Suddenly, that huge fist pounded on his back. Freed was shocked. Was it punishment for a bad job? No, Laxus was playing along now. He had done good, and now Laxus had to cover over the truth of what they just did.

He had just given his boyfriend a public hand job!

They could get into trouble for this, so Laxus was taking responsibility. He rubbed Freed's shoulders as the fits subsided.

"Are you better now?"

Freed raised his gaze to Laxus, eyes watering, cheeks flushed, pupils massive with desire, making his turquoise eyes look even bigger. "Yes," he said breathlessly. "Much better!"

He felt incredible, both shamed and proud, humiliated and deeply relieved that he had done this and did not get caught.

Laxus had a proud face. Maybe Loke was clueless, and maybe no one else in this pub even realized what was happening besides someone choking on a drink, but he knew Gray had a clue, and considering the agony Natsu seemed to be in, he might have also figured out what Freed had just suffered through and was experiencing something similar. Freed just showed these two what he could do: sit there like a properly trained slave and accept his torment to the highest level with just a few coughs.

And that face! That goddamn deliciously submissive face! Laxus etched that face into his memories. He knew he was going to fap in the shower many times to this erotic expression for years to come.

Laxus leaned into his ear. "That was incredible. You did so good. I'm proud."

Freed felt like he could collapse right there. That praise was what he craved.

"That was a good hide, coughing like that. Brilliant! No wonder you graduated with that magna cum laude distinction. You're amazing."

All of his life, people told Freed how to be good. Obedience was unquestionable. His family rarely praised him for doing what was already expected of him. Good grades, prestigious university, magna cum laude, junior manager now: it was all expected, nothing less would be tolerated, even more expectations and loftier ambitions lied ahead of him. There was no praise for meeting base-minimum goals.

Laxus was proud, though. Laxus told him he was good, incredible, amazing! It was the appreciation and recognition Freed had craved all of his life. He did not get it from his family, but he got it from his master!

"Damn, we gotta do this more often," Laxus said quietly. He heard something like a grunt from Freed. "Did you like it?"

"Yeah," he exclaimed, and he laughed softly. "It … it was…"

"Crap!"

Natsu suddenly bolted up, leaped right over the table, and ran to the restroom. Freed and Laxus flattened back against the booth in surprise as he rushed by like a fiery comet.

"What's up with him?" Loke muttered.

Gray had an arrogant smile as he tucked away his phone. "Must be something in the drinks tonight." He lifted up his glass and took a smug gulp.

Laxus shared a smile with him and arched an eyebrow. What the hell had Gray done to him? Gray held up the phone at an angle Loke could not see, and Freed was too lost in the afterglow to focus.

"Welcome to the digital age of WiFi and apps," he said secretively.

A wireless … something? Butt plug? Too bulky. A love egg? Yes! It had to be a wireless vibrating love egg slipped up the ass, and Gray was controlling it with his phone. That must have been why his hand went down and Natsu was shifting around. They were fitting the tiny vibrator up into the rectum. Once inside, Gray had control from his phone, and Natsu was left to deal with the purring pleasure on his own, suffering as quietly as possible, while Gray kept the conversation going so no one paid much attention.

"I want the name of that app," Laxus insisted.

"I'll email you," Gray grinned. He looked over with concern to Freed. "How do you feel, Greenie?"

"Greenie?" he asked. Only one person had ever called him that. Freed wondered if everyone who worked at the South Pole Club knew him by that name. "I'm … fine. Perfectly fine. That's a nice phone," he said, knowing that it was the socially proper thing to say.

Gray smiled at the device. "Got it a month ago, anniversary gift from Natsu."

"Anniversary?" asked Freed.

"Yeah. Six months. Seven now. What did you two do for your six-month anniversary?"

Freed wondered about that. When did their anniversary even count? That first night? When had that even been? It was sometime after the Fall semester of college started, but before Halloween.

"February was our six-month," Laxus answered. "I asked him out on August 30th, and February doesn't have thirty days, so we actually skipped that landmark. Our one-year anniversary is in three more months. I definitely have something planned for then."

"Oh?" Loke smiled. "A vacation? Maybe another trip to Europe?"

"Now, do you really think I can say in front of Freed?" Laxus scolded playfully. "It'd ruin the surprise."

Freed looked up at him in astonishment. Laxus remembered the exact day! If it was in August, that must mean he considered their very first time together as when they started dating. All the way from that first night? Did he really consider them to be a couple from that moment on? That was really sweet.

And … he was planning something? Freed had not even thought about their anniversary, it was months away, yet Laxus had something planned already.

Laxus noticed the shocked stare. "What?" he snapped gruffly. "I can be romantic when I wanna be."

Freed said nothing against that. He had seen how Laxus had his moments of romance. They were rare, but that made them sweeter.

Natsu dragged his feet back, pale and sweaty.

"Gray," he said, his voice raspy now.

Gray pulled out his phone and clicked something, and Natsu visibly relaxed. Then Gray pulled on a jacket he had stripped out of.

"Guess I need to take the kid home."

"Yeah, I gotta get to bed as well," Laxus said in excuse. "I think I'm still on European time. Jet lag is a bitch. Good time to call it a night."

"The night is young!" Loke protested. "You guys aren't heading off for a gay foursome, are you?"

"No!" both Laxus and Gray snapped possessively.

Freed reached into his wallet and pulled out two hundred dollar bills. "Pay the tab for me. Use the rest of the money to take Lucy to a nice restaurant. She'd like that. I'll make sure she's invited to my parents' next party. I'd love to meet both of you at my family's estate."

"You are the best junior manager in the world, Freed. I'll see you Monday after next."

"Don't be late for work. Thanks again for moving the boxes."

"Hey, it's what friends are for." As they all climbed out of the booth, Loke shook Laxus' hand. "Take care of my old roomie, ya huge lug."

"I definitely will," he promised.

"I hope to see you around."

Laxus wrapped an arm around his boyfriend. "If you see Freed around, you'll see me around."

"Oooh!" chuckled Loke. "That's right, those were your boxes we carried all day. So, you two will be living together, huh? Cohabitation?"

"That's right," Laxus said with a supercilious tone. He squeezed Freed a little tighter.

The smaller man looked up in confusion. Was Laxus maybe a bit jealous, since Loke had been the last person to live in the same room as Freed?

"Gray," Laxus said, turning away from the ginger. "Tell me when's your next dance. I wanna see it. Especially if you're in ballet tights."

"Screw you!" Gray laughed.

Freed shook hands with the other couple. "Nice to finally meet you, Natsu. Take it easy. Gray, you too." His voice lowered. "Be easy with him."

Gray raised an eyebrow. Did Freed know all along what he and Natsu had secretively been doing?

"Say hello to Mira for me. Loke," Freed called over just as Kinana walked by and the ginger's eyes strayed to her hips. "No flirting and cheating on Lucy. She's a friend of the family. If I hear you hurt her, I'll personally put out to have you blacklisted from every bar, club, pub, and strip joint in the county."

Loke paled a little. "You're joking, right? You can't really do that."

"He probably couldn't," Laxus answered, "but I happen to have some blackmail on a very powerful politician who could."

Loke gulped hard, and when Cana walked by again, he did not even let his eyes linger on her.

Laxus leaned down into Freed's ear. "Do you need a restroom trip? You know, to slip out of that rubber?"

Freed's eyes had that imperious gaze he sometimes got, the proud aristocrat who had been raised to lead a corporation. "No," he decided, and boldly he whispered right into Laxus' ear, "I'll take it off in the car."

Laxus felt his heart pound against his ribcage. The damn little vixen! "Have I ever told you that you're incredible?"

"Not frequently enough. You need to tell me every day."

"Greedy rich brat!"

Freed simpered to himself, but before the others could wonder what they were whispering about, he turned to the rest of their group and yelled over the blaring music. "We'll get together again. Thanks for inviting me, Loke." Freed then pulled on Laxus' elbow, showing that he needed to leave, and soon. "See you around, guys."

They called out goodbyes to each other. Loke went to the bar to pay the tab and get another drink. Gray wrapped an arm around Natsu and whispered worriedly to him, asking over and over if he was okay, while they left to his truck. Laxus took Freed's hand and squeezed it.

"It's good to be home," he said as they stepped out into the clear summer night.

"I'm glad," Freed sighed. "I can't even tell you how glad I am to have you home so soon."

"Not soon enough. Let's go." Clutching tightly to his fingers, he pulled Freed along through the parking lot, eager to get home and to more fun.

Next Chapter: Corvette Kinks

Chapter Text

Hand in hand, Freed and Laxus left the Fairy Tail Pub. The night was warm and dark with a tiny crescent of a moon in the sky. Simply walking beside the blond giant, Freed felt safe. He feared nothing at all with Laxus around. Timidity, humiliation, the possibility of thugs trying to rob a wealthy man like him, none of those fears surfaced with his master protecting him. Happy to the point of giddiness, Freed walked over to a silver Corvette.

"New car?" Laxus asked.

"A graduation present from my father," he explained.

"Sweet! Wanna know what my grandfather got me for graduating high school? A steak dinner. That's it."

"It's the thought that counts."

"Yeah, but his thoughts cost thirty dollars, not thirty grand."

Freed unlocked the car and carefully sat down. The condom was starting to slip, and the cock ring felt oddly loose now. He would probably have to take them both off before attempting to drive.

He saw Laxus standing at the passenger door, not even grabbing the handle to open it. Freed had to fight the instinct to open the door for him—he remembered that Laxus hated that—however, he wondered why Laxus was not entering. He double-checked the doors to make sure they were unlocked.

Was he worried about ruining the moment by getting carsick?

Suddenly, Laxus yanked open the door and sat down hard. He stared ahead grimly, but something looked off. It almost appeared like he was already sick, but that wasn't quite it.

"Do you have tissues in here?" he asked peevishly.

"Um … sorry, no. Is something wrong?"

"Not wrong, just … I … I hate to ask this, after what I promised earlier," he mumbled.

Freed tensed up. Laxus sounded like something was really wrong. Was he sick? Drunk? Dead tired and unable to have sex tonight? Freed pitied Laxus and placed a hand on his forearm.

"Whatever it is, it's okay," he said.

Laxus sneered, looking ill again. Then suddenly he yanked his zipper down and pulled out a fully firm arousal.

"Whoa!" Freed cried out, leaping back over to the driver's side. That was unexpected. He looked around sharply, wondering if anyone could see them.

"I need you to suck my cock," he said breathlessly.

Freed's eyes grew massive. "What?" he cried out. He looked around again. On the other side of the parking lot, he could see Natsu getting into Gray's truck.

"You heard me," Laxus snapped. He grabbed his erection. "I'm ready to blow. I was in the pub. Damn near came five times already." He gulped hard, obviously struggling to keep himself under control. "Come on, please! I'd do it myself, but you don't have tissues, I don't have another condom handy, and I already know I'm built up. It'll be messy as hell. So please. You gotta do this or else I'm shooting cum onto your upholstery! One way or another, this thing's gonna blow, and soon! Shit," he hissed. "My hand or your mouth, Freed. Come on!" he shouted.

"Uh … Ye- … o-of course," he said. He looked around again. Gray's truck was just leaving. He saw no one else in the parking lot. Freed quickly moved his long hair aside and leaned right over to Laxus' seat. He twisted around, trying to get a good angle. It was horribly awkward, but somehow he laid half on his side, half bent over, and at least his mouth was near the leaking arousal.

Laxus sat straight up, staring forward and looking angry that he was this weak against Freed's sensuality. "Just go for it," he whispered. "I'll keep a lookout."

Freed eyed the flushed shaft and circumcised head. He had wanted this cock so much earlier. Now … it was his!

He dived down, thrusting it into his mouth. Immediately, Laxus shuddered out a deep, primeval groan. The sounds of slurping, lips slicking, and soft suctions filled the narrow space of the car. Laxus yanked at Freed's hair, keeping it up off the floorboard and also pulling his head to a better angle, comfort be damned!

"Shit," he hissed. Freed's mouth worked fast and heated him. "Wait. No."

Freed pulled up with a string of moisture thinning out from his lower lip. "What? What's wrong?"

"I don't want it like this."

Freed wiped his mouth and looked hurt. "Is it bad?"

"No! Hell no! But…" Petulantly, he confessed, "I want my first load to be in your ass."

"Uh … we're in a car," Freed pointed out awkwardly.

"I know, and I said we wouldn't do it in public, but we are anyway, so…"

Dammit! He did not want to do anything that could honestly get Freed into trouble, and even this much, just sucking him in the car, could do it. At that moment, he didn't care! He was close, so damn painfully close, but he wanted to do this his way.

"Get up here!" he sneered.

He yanked Freed up with rough force, twirled him to sit facing outward, and placed him on his lap. Yes! This might actually work like in porno movies. He reached around, yanked Freed's belt off, and almost broke the zipper pulling it down. Then he shimmied Freed's pants and underwear down to his knees. He reached into the glove compartment, where he knew Freed normally kept a tiny bottle of lotion for chapped skin when riding around with the convertible top down. It was in there, and he pulled it out. Laxus squeezed lotion onto his hand and rubbed a copious amount onto his arousal. That was the best he could do. Not the best position, in the parking lot of a crowded pub, hand lotion, and no condom, but that made this more dangerous, primal … erotic!

He massaged Freed's butt cheeks and rubbed some lotion onto the pucker waiting for him. He did not really give time to prep him. He stuck a finger in, then almost immediately added another, stretching him as fast as he dared. Freed grabbed the dashboard, and his head crashed down as he strained not to make too much noise. Then quickly, the fingers yanked out, and Freed's thighs were bruised with gripping hands pulling him closer, lining themselves up.

"Laxus?" Freed shivered. He could feel the tip poking at him.

"Are you okay?" he asked worriedly.

He stuttered something that wasn't quite a yes, but also not a no.

Laxus kissed the back of his neck. "This is going to hurt," he warned.

Freed took a few breaths, calming himself and relaxing everything below the waist. If he could be totally relaxed, it would stretch easier.

"Do it," he whispered.

Laxus cringed in regret. "Sorry."

"No!" He glanced back around and looked Laxus firmly in the eyes. "Do it."

Freed sat up at the best angle, pulled his own butt cheeks apart, and began to lower himself. Right away, there was discomfort, and he ignored it. As Laxus' cock drilled him open, it turned into pain, burning, and a sensation of being filled in a way that never happened except when a cock that large pierced him.

Freed slapped a hand over his mouth as cries shivered out. It had been a long time, and he almost forgot how Laxus got wider, wider, filling him with pain and heat.

Pleasure was coming. Soon.

Real soon.

Dear God, he hoped it was soon! He hurt.

"I'm sorry. I'm so sorry," Laxus kept repeating, yet he did not stop. He was seriously ready to shoot out at any moment. He wanted all of his seed to be inside Freed. All of it! It was greedy, and now his greed was making Freed cry again. He kept waiting for Freed to pull off, or to shout Écriture, but he never did. He kept lowering himself out of his own choice, although Laxus could tell it was painful.

Finally, he was all the way inside, and Freed sat there on top of his lap, breathing fast and hard, with the streetlight gleaming off his tears. It burned, but he wanted to be brave. He had been so good in the pub. He wanted to please Laxus more, and that meant keeping quiet so they would not get caught.

"Are you okay?" Laxus asked again, hugging Freed and holding still.

Freed panted through pain as it slowly changed, softened, and the pleasure was almost there. "Y-you're bigger than I remember."

Laxus gave a weary laugh. "You mean bigger than your butt plug."

Freed sheepishly admitted, "I guess, yeah."

"Have you been using that?" Laxus slowly pulled out.

Freed cried a little at just that much. Laxus pulled until only the head was inside. "Y-yeah," he replied, shaking at the expectation. "Sometimes."

Laxus thrust in deep, and Freed's head bowed back with a shout.

"Yeah?" Laxus pulled Freed up again and then slammed him down onto his lap. Freed bit his hand to hold back the cries. "How often…" Thrust! "…do you u-use it? Oh, fuck…" Thrust!

Freed forgot about being in public. This was like any other place for sex, like the hotels they used to rent, or like the VIP room, where someone might be watching.

"M-maybe … nnngh … once a … ahhn … week." The pain was already fading, and he began to slide his ass on his own, rubbing the best way for him.

"And … arrgh … the rest of the time? Shhhit!"

"Hands," he cried out with a shiver. "Just … ahhn … my hands. L-Laxus!"

"Are you okay?"

"Yeah." It felt so good now. It was a feeling he still remembered with sweetness, and as he stretched, he allowed himself to rock into the thrusts until Laxus was slamming right where he needed it most.

Laxus wrapped his arms around Freed and felt the erection revived. "You're hard again."

He whimpered in pleasure. "Can't help it."

Laxus grabbed him and began to stroke, not just light touches and through clothes like earlier, but fully, quickly, pleasuring him in thanks for giving into one of his selfish whims. Freed panted, and the windows of the car began to fog with the rising heat.

"You've still got this condom on, and you're this hard. Little slut," Laxus teased, and Freed whined shamelessly at the crude words. "Well, if you've gotta go … unnnf … let it blow."

The hand stroking his sheathed cock gave no mercy. Freed wanted to just please Laxus. He worried that if he came twice in a row, he would wear out long before sunrise. His fingers clenched into those muscular thighs, but he knew he was quickly going past the point of no return.

Laxus urged him on. "Seriously, don't hold yourself back."

"But … but I…"

"I want it. Here, in your goddamn car. I want it! Both of us. I wanna fuck you in the toy your daddy gave you."

"Laaaaaxus!" he screamed.

"God, I love when you scream my name." He gave a tense laugh as he realized how weak he was around Freed. "I'm … ready to go … now!"

He unsnapped the cock ring, freeing his lover to come at any time. The rush of blood made Freed scream and convulse in a pleasure he could not control. Laxus gave a few more piercing thrusts while stroking Freed hard and fast. Laxus grunted and let out a low roar like a dragon as he came, bursting into Freed.

"L-Laxus! Lax- … aaaah … -us!"

"Shit, Freed. Shit." He felt himself filling Freed, and then his hand felt throbs as Freed wailed with no restraint at all. "That's … God, you're incredible."

He felt Freed pulsing out and the way his body tensed as he spasmed inside. Laxus glanced over the thin shoulder and down. Already, there was milky cum in the tip of the condom, but now more shot out, ballooning the latex barrier.

"Freed." He grabbed around him, crushing him into a hug. "Freed," he sighed in a shiver. "I've been needing you. So much! Too long. Too damn long. Freed," he sighed. "Love you. Dammit, I love you. So much. Freed … so much," he whispered as weariness washed over the pleasure and tingled him like an electric shock.

Freed felt shaking in those arms and Laxus' voice growing thicker. Was he crying? In any case, Laxus was holding him so tightly, there was no way he could turn around.

"I love you so much," he whispered ardently. "How do you overwhelm me like this? I still don't get it. Damn! Miss you. Missed everything. I don't ever want to leave you again."

Freed smiled, but part of him knew deep down, this would happen again. Laxus would find his father and take off. And he would wait. He would wait like he did this time, without flirting or even feeling compelled to fantasize about anyone else. And maybe the next time, their love would be even greater when they got back together.

That was an unknowable future, though. Right now, Laxus was resting his sweaty head on Freed's shoulder and breathing onto his skin in exhausted puffs.

"Love you," he said so softly, it was just a wisp of air. "Sorry about that."

"No need to be sorry," Freed said in amusement. Finally the arms loosened enough so he could at least look backward. "I missed you too."

Laxus laughed and finally looked up. His eyelashes were wet from tears, but he had a smile. He grabbed Freed's cheeks, pulled him closer, and kissed him hard.

"Freed," he said, lost in love.

He looked like he was about to say more, but just then they heard the music from inside the pub get louder, then softer as a door opened and closed. Laxus looked up sharply and saw a group leaving. They needed to get out of this position before anyone noticed.

"Can you hold it inside?"

Freed blushed. Hold Laxus' cum … inside. Keep it in there. Keep it safe inside of him, let it sit inside.

"Yeah," he said. He would take care of things this time. He would clench up and not let it out.

"Go slow. Don't let it spill out."

Freed nodded and started to lift his hips. Laxus held onto him, slowly hoisting him up. He felt Freed tensing around him already, ready to pull off without spilling any of the cum. Freed began to whimper again. As they got to the tip, he carefully slid off. Freed gave a soft cry as he shrank back down, and instantly, despite the pain, he clenched his ass tightly.

It was inside him. Cum … held inside!

"Pull my pants up," he said tensely, keeping clenched.

"Right." Laxus was now in a rush as the group of revelers came their way. He yanked Freed's pants back up, zipped them, ignored the top button, and just pulled the belt on loosely.

As the group came nearer, Freed shifted over to the driver's seat. As soon as he sat down, pain shot through him. He slapped a hand over his mouth.

"Are you okay?" Laxus asked in dread.

Freed shook his head in honesty. It seriously hurt! However, the group was only three cars down from them. He had to keep quiet.

Laxus saw the restraint in his sweet lover, and he felt miserable, putting him through this after he said he would keep him safe. "I'm so sorry," he said, cringing. "I would offer to drive, but…" He had never driven a car in his life due to his motion sickness issue.

"No, I … I just need … I'll be fine." Slowly, his ass adjusted to the idea of sitting. It probably would not have hurt this much, except he needed to stay clenched. Still, he tried to grin. "Now I've got cum in a condom on my cock and up my ass." He chuckled, but then pain cut off his forced attempts to play this off. "Laxus, I … I'm gonna drive really fast, and I'm not going to wait for you if you get sick."

"I don't expect you to," Laxus said, tucking his cock away. He pulled his seatbelt on.

"All right," Freed sighed, steeling himself for the discomfort of driving with his ass on fire. He needed to get home as quickly as possible. "We're peeling out of here."

The ignition rumbled, the Corvette's engine roared, and he pulled out of the parking lot as fast as he dared. Once on the main street, tires smoked as he squealed off in a rush.

Laxus grabbed at his seatbelt as he was slammed back into his seat from the speed. "Whoa! You weren't kidding."

Freed's eyes were focused on the evening road. "We're getting home fast."

"Uuurk!" Laxus felt nauseated, but he realized his discomfort was nothing compared to Freed's. "I won't complain," he decided, even as acid shot up into his mouth.

They drove down the road at speeds that were probably illegal. Freed raced to miss yellow lights, and Laxus was pretty sure at least two were technically red. Even as his stomach churned, the unsteady breathing from Freed told him that his temporary sickness was nothing in comparison to what he just did to his lover.

Finally, they had to stop at a light, and Laxus heard ragged breaths.

"I'm really sorry," he said again.

"You needed it," Freed shouted, his voice grating as he struggled with keeping his body clenched, "and … I wanted it!" Freed took his focus off the street light. "Your cum is inside me, Laxus. This is what I wanted. It's what you promised: to fill me with your cum until I burn for a week."

"I could have just had you swallow."

Freed chuckled as the light turned green and he was forced to follow traffic. "Don't go all softy on me right at the start. I don't want that." He glanced over briefly. "I want to ache for you."

Pride surged within Laxus. His slave was willing to withstand anything to pleasure him. In return, he would pleasure Freed as thoroughly as possible.

"You'll never forget tonight," he growled. Then another shot of acid burped up, and the beastly sadist looked ready to turn green with sickness.

In just a few minutes, they were at a nice apartment complex that looked more like a resort hotel.

"You live here?" Laxus exclaimed as Freed eased into a designated parking spot. "Aren't these expensive?"

Freed smirked haughtily. "Who are you talking to?"

Laxus glared over. "A damn rich boy, that's who!"

Freed chuckled. He could hardly wait to spoil Laxus in luxuries. Maybe this apartment was more than he needed on his own, but he wanted to build a home with Laxus, to give him everything he never had as a child. That started with undying love, a soft bed, and a home that wasn't infested with cockroaches.

Freed opened his door and began to shift, but the pain shot through him again. Like a flash, Laxus was out of the car and by his side.

"Just relax."

Suddenly, Freed felt himself being lifted. He gasped as Laxus easily pulled him out of the car and up into his arms.

"I'm taking my lover home for the first time," Laxus explained. "Of course I'm carrying you over the threshold."

"Not all the way up!" he cried out in embarrassment.

"I love that face you make," Laxus growled hungrily. "Don't forget to lock your car."

He slammed the door shut with his foot and began to haul Freed away while the green-haired man fumbled with his key fob to hit the button that locked the doors. By the time the car beeped to show the alarm was activated, Laxus and Freed were out of sight.

Next Chapter: "Wash Away the Sins"


A/N: There's audio again for people who like to hear me act the scene out. http://chir.bit/K6c1H7

Chapter Text

Freed wanted to hide his face as Laxus carried him bridal-style into the apartment building, through a lobby where people stopped to stare, up an elevator ride alone where he was showered in kisses, through a hall, and finally to a door. Freed pulled his key out, Laxus unlocked it, and he kicked the door open with a bang, carrying Freed over like a newlywed.

"We're home," Laxus declared.

Finally! They were out of view of others. That had been humiliating! Carried like that, in public, in the new apartment where he was just starting to get to know his neighbors!

"Freed, look at me."

He turned his eyes up. Lips were instantly on him. Laxus gave him a powerful kiss, then pulled back smiling with a sort of joy Freed had never seen in him before.

"We're home," he repeated, but this time his voice trembled.

Freed stared in awe and saw Laxus getting emotionally overwhelmed as the truth sank in. From this day forward, they would be living together. They were now officially domestic partners. Although Freed had been living in this apartment for over a month, the sheer weight of it finally dropped onto him, and his eyes began to water as well.

They were home!

Their home!

Together!

Laxus clutched his lover into his arms and rested their foreheads together. "I love you," he whispered with all of his heart.

A tear dripped from Freed's eye as their noses rubbed together. "I love you too."

Their home! Laxus realized, Freed loved him so much he got a place big enough for both of them. He had picked it out before Laxus left. He had wanted this place to be a surprise. Laxus ruined his plans by taking off.

A normal person would be furious at someone who suddenly up and left them, hardly giving a warning, and abandoned them for almost two months. A normal person would feel slighted and might not want that person back. Not Freed! Despite Laxus taking off and abandoning him just before college finals, graduation, and moving into a new home, he still got this place. A spacious apartment, big enough for two … hell, big enough to be a small house!

"Do you know what I want first?" asked Laxus.

Freed looked up in confusion. "Um … a drink?"

He shook his head and kissed Freed's cheek. "A shower. With you."

Still holding him, Laxus turned into the bathroom. Once inside, he finally set Freed down.

"Toilet," he ordered, and he turned away, stripping off his jacket and shoes while facing the wall to give Freed privacy.

Freed thought that bit of courtesy was sweet. They would be living together, things like toilets would become commonplace—it had eventually been that way with him and Loke in the dorm—but for now, Laxus had never lived with someone else who was not immediate family, and he was showing a bit of tenderness, giving Freed some privacy.

Freed yanked off his disheveled pants and sat to finally relieve the pressure in his ass. With it came a hiss of pain.

"Is it bad?"

"Hold on." He peed as well while still seated—he lost track of how many drinks he had—and then Freed wiped his ass, only to see bloody red streaks. "It's bleeding a little."

Laxus cringed. "Shit. I'm so sorry."

"Really, stop saying sorry. It's making me feel like we did something horrible."

"We just had sex in public, in a goddamn Corvette you got for graduation, in front of the pub my grandfather used to run."

Freed was distracted, staring at those bulging back muscles and firm deltoids. He watched the way Laxus' shoulder blades moved as he stripped out of his shirt, not in the way he used to do on the stage under yellow lights, but casually, relaxed, unhurried. Freed felt lightheaded as he realized he would get to watch Laxus remove his clothes every day now. So the words jolted him out of staring.

"W-Wait, the Fairy Tail Pub belonged to your grandfather?"

"Well, yeah! Oh … you weren't there when I explained that to the others." He began to tug off his leather pants, and Freed gulped as that firm ass was exposed. "Yeah, Gramps owned it until not too long ago. His father was one of the original founders, like way back over a hundred years ago. Then Gramps owned it. You could almost say it's a family-run business, except there were other owners before Gramps, some lady and a really old guy I only met once. He wanted me to take over one day. As a kid, that was all I thought about, one day being in charge of Fairy Tail, making it the best pub in the city … no, the best pub ever." He laughed lightly with old memories of those idealistic days. "I even ran a few aspects of the business in my teens, like hiring new workers and punishing anyone who was lazy. However, by the time Gramps was ready to retire, I was in a bad place personally. I was busy with the South Pole Club, everything I did back then, and … well … I had issues," he muttered sadly. "I caused a bit of a ruckus within Fairy Tail, a helluva huge fight broke out, and people got hurt. Gramps kicked me out, told me to never set foot in Fairy Tail again. Eventually, Gildarts took over. He let me return, but I didn't hang around like I used to. It's just … too weird now. I'm glad it's doing well, though. From the crowd tonight, it looks like business is booming."

Freed dropped his gaze away from devouring that muscular body. This was something he never knew about Laxus. He had not even met any of the Dreyar family yet. "Would you want to take over? Running your own establishment is quite prestigious."

"Who knows?" he said with an unconcerned shrug. "Maybe someday. I wasn't ready back then."

"When was that?"

"Before I met you." Laxus finally turned around and looked down at Freed seated on the toilet. "You changed me, made me better, made me give a damn. I didn't really care about the future back then, or much about myself. I just wanted revenge. Now, there's a light in my future, bright and beautiful." He stepped forward and stroked his fingers along Freed's cheeks until he cupped his face with tenderness. "I want to build a future. Here. With you."

Freed stared, mouth dropped, not sure what he could possibly even say to that. He gazed up in awe and felt a tear slip down his cheek.

"Are you done?"

Freed nodded silently.

Laxus took his hand and pulled him up to his feet. "This is the one time I'll be gentle tonight. The only time! I just…" He sniffed hard as he firmed up his resolve. "I need to show you."

Freed waited in confusion and anticipation, but when Laxus said nothing else, he finally asked, "Show me what?"

Laxus stumbled over his words as he tried to think of how to express himself. "I … I don't just want your body. I don't purely want you as someone I can … um … do things to. Horrible things," he admitted quietly. "I need to show you how much I love you, and that I want you in every way. Maybe I'll be cruel sometimes, maybe I'll do things that will make you cry…"

Like leaving him! Leaving him just before finals and moving, with no warning, just a farewell, some sex, and walking away the next morning. Laxus deeply regretted doing that.

"… but I love you so much," he declared. "Sometimes, I'm confused. I don't even know what I want. Part of me wants to see you screaming, striped red, unable to take anymore; and part of me just wants to hold you and be as goddamn tender as I can be. But … but that's just not me," he said with a wry laugh. "Or … it wasn't. I don't even know anymore. I just know, I need you, and I need to show you how much you mean to me."

Freed trembled in awe. Maybe he wasn't a man of erudite words, but when Laxus said things like this, it was Freed who was left speechless.

"Y-You don't have to show me." He took Laxus' hand and traced a finger over the silver ring. "I already know."

Laxus shook his head. "I need to show you. I need you to understand, because I don't even get it sometimes. I don't get how I feel so … so … so damn much in love with you!" he blurted out. "So much, I can't even say it. I don't get it at all. So I need to show it. My brain is too stupid I guess, but my body knows. No," he whispered, shaking his head. "My soul knows. My soul understands, and I need your soul to feel it."

His hands ran up and down Freed's naked body.

"I want it to sink in, all through you, deeper and deeper, until it reaches your soul. That's how I feel when I do those cruel things to you. Until I met you, I just liked hurting people, but it's not that way with you. Maybe it started off that way, but it's different now. I feel like I just can't reach your soul. Telling you isn't enough; even sex isn't enough. I'm just telling your brain when I say it, and telling your body when I take you. I'm not reaching your soul. I need to yank and beat and ravage this body so that I can dig deep enough to expose everything.

"But sometimes," he said quietly, "I see it without all of that. I hate the idea of just using sex all the time, and I figured there's gotta be a way to see your soul, to touch it, to communicate with it, without beating the fleshy bits away. When I'm gentle—really gentle—I see it too. It's harder to see that way, like a small flash instead of nakedly exposed, but it's pure. Our last time together, I saw it. Brighter than ever! It's not a soul that's been torn to the surface, but a soul you allow me to see, even if just a flash. And in that moment, I know you're letting me see your soul. I'm not ripping it out. Somehow, that's a nicer view. I feel like I can truly communicate with that soul. That's the only time I can tell you that I love you, and I know—I know—it's reaching you: mind, body, and soul."

Laxus saw the blank look in Freed's face, and he began to blush.

"Shit, I don't even know what I'm saying anymore," he grumbled. "That was all stupid nonsense."

"It wasn't," Freed whispered. He reached up and took Laxus' cheeks into his hands. "That was the single most poetic thing anyone has ever told me in my entire life."

"Shut up," he muttered petulantly as his face turned red. "I just wish there was some better way to show you. I wish I could buy you a car, or … or give you a house. Give you something, anything, that could show you."

"You gave me this." Freed held up his hand and showed the promise ring.

Laxus looked at the ring and smiled, happy to see that Freed was still wearing it. "Yeah," he sighed. He held Freed's hand, brought it up to his lips, and kissed his fingers. "And someday…"

He let the thought hang, dreaming of a day when it would be a different ring, and on the other hand. Gold, maybe a diamond in the center.

"Someday … more," he muttered. He laughed gently to himself. He was getting overwhelmed again, and his eyes were stinging. "Shower," he said curtly, and he pulled away from Freed before he shamed himself by crying in happiness.

Freed stood there, a statue trapped within dreams of the future. With every step they took, there was more road to travel. They began dating. Then it was sex. Then meeting the family. Now, living together. Yet there was more. So much more! Even if they reached that matrimonial goal, there would be more beyond that, and in twenty years, still more goals, more adventures, more growth for their love.

Love does not culminate with a wedding, as if that is the final destination on a journey between two people. It is not a road that ends in some far off, obscure, anticlimactic way. It is more like the sea, no set path, no guidance, no maps, danger lurking deep below, but utter freedom to sail anywhere and never stop. A sailor never runs out of ocean.

Freed was beginning to understand, their journey never ended. They would always have another goal, another port-town to reach, but the voyage kept going, and where the Winds of Fate blew them, no one could guess.

"Hey, feel the water. Is this warm enough?"

Freed yanked out of his thoughts, went over to the shower, and stuck his hand into the cascading water. "Yeah, it's fine."

"Good. We need to wash you up. You're sweaty."

"I was moving your boxes all day," he told him as Freed eased into the shower.

Another thing he checked when searching for apartments was the bathroom. He wanted a shower big enough for them to share. There was plenty of room for him, although much of the water was blocked when Laxus stepped inside.

"Why did you bring them in?" the blond asked as he closed the shower door,. "Kinda piles up the place."

"I … I wanted to set everything up and surprise you."

Laxus let out a sigh and muttered a curse. "I just keep ruining your surprises."

"Well, you always end up surprising me."

"In a bad way," he grumbled, thinking about the bombshell he dropped when he left Freed to fly to Greece.

"Tonight wasn't bad," Freed protested. "I never thought I'd see you at that pub. That was a huge surprise, and in a good way."

He smiled down at his slender lover. "Yeah, tonight's surprise was good."

He pressed Freed up against the shower wall with a powerful kiss, letting the water drip on their faces as steam began to fog up the room. When Laxus parted his lips to slide his tongue inside, the hot shower water dripped into his mouth. Freed's sensual hum echoed through the tiled stall as his slender body slid up against Laxus' bulky muscles, making both of them ravenous.

"I never should have left you," Laxus muttered between starving kisses.

Freed pulled back and looked up. "You're going to keep saying that all night, aren't you?"

"And into next week," he admitted in regret.

"You needed to leave," Freed stated. "It was the opportunity you had been waiting years for."

"That's what I keep telling myself," Laxus grumbled, "but still … I shouldn't have!"

"Laxus." Freed sighed and cupped his anguished face. "Laxus, you needed to go, and I knew it would happen someday."

Laxus gazed ahead with dark, pensive eyes. "That's what kills me."

Freed knew. From the very first day, he knew what Laxus was planning. He still remembered the conversation that night. It was maybe only the third time Laxus had ever bothered to explain why he took old, rich men as submissives when he was not gay. Freed accepted the sordid tale with ease.


"Hey, if you ever find that father of yours, let me know. I'd like to get in a few punches as well."

"You … you're not … sickened by me?"

"I'm sickened by him, not by you."

"I'm the one beating up old men."

"They're masochists. They like it, and it's how you deal with your emotions."

"I thought you'd vomit and run away."

"I don't run out on friends."

"We're not friends!"

"Not yet, but I care about you."

"You care about Thor, some asshole slut who prances around on a stage."

"I care for whatever man is standing in front of me right now."

"… Laxus. My name is Laxus."

"Nice to meet you, Laxus. My name is Freed."


Before Freed even knew his real name, he knew about Laxus' plans to torture and murder his father. Instead of the logical thing, which would be to run away from such a patricidal maniac, Freed accepted that darkness and even offered to help.

Of course, it had not always been so easy.


"Is there any way you can maybe not have my father as one of your clients?"

"Yeah, I could drop him. I've dropped many clients. I have no reason to do so, though, and no longer seeing Llewellyn after four years would be way too suspicious. It also wouldn't erase the fact that they know me. I wouldn't drop him, anyway."

"Why the hell not? He's my father! … You beat my father … while thinking about how to kill your own father. Don't you see how fucked up that is to me?"

"I hit a lot of people's fathers. They pay me to do it."


Laxus had avoided talking about his family all this time, and even avoided having Freed meet anyone related to him, because he feared what his boyfriend would think. Yet Freed stayed with him. He accepted Laxus just as he was. Even the darkness was okay to him. His feelings were that deep, and Laxus felt someone as horrible as himself—someone who premeditated the torture and murder of his own father—did not deserve unconditional love like that.

"Laxus?" Freed asked quietly, looking up into his face with worry.

He sniffed back his emotions. "Nothing. Just let me wash you."

Laxus grabbed a loofah sponge and drizzled on soap that smelled like peppermint. The perfumed scent made Laxus' nose twitch. Well, rule number one of living together: no weird-scented bath products!

He rubbed circles around Freed's chest, working up a lather, then moved the sponge up to his shoulders, circular strokes, while Freed stood straight and tall, accepting the tender attention. His hands trailed down the slender arms with their thin but well-toned muscles, not bulging like Laxus' arms, but as his hand rubbed the soap suds up and down, he felt how firm those muscles were from years of fencing. He lifted the limp arm and made sure to wash the armpit as well, getting a small giggle from Freed that made Laxus smile. Such a sweet and innocent sound, considering the sensuality of this moment.

The sponge then went down the bony sides of Freed's ribs and over the softer flesh of his stomach, caressing gently until he reached the patch of curly hair below. That, he skipped. He went back up, turned Freed around to face the wall, moved his hair out of the way, and attended to his back. Now, he put aside the sponge, got plenty of suds on his hands, and slowly massaged the tension in Freed's shoulders.

The moan that shivered out was purely pornographic, and Laxus sneered silently as it shot down to his groin. He was still too tired, but like his cock ever listened to him! He worked out the muscles in Freed's back, slowly making his way down.

Freed simply closed his eyes and braced himself on the wall, head cradled in his arms, not caring about the groans he was making. He remembered the day Laxus gave him a foot massage, the evening after he quit the South Pole Club and all of his old clients. Laxus' fingers were magical, and any strain from lifting boxes all morning and afternoon was now gone. The water ran in rivulets down Laxus' face and over Freed's body, washing soap and sweat alike down the drain.

Laxus turned Freed around. The hazy lust in those lowered eyes was almost too much. He gave Freed a single, passionate kiss, but that was all he would allow himself for now. He grabbed the sponge and continued with the wash. He knelt to clean Freed's legs, working from the hips down. He popped his knee out, lifted Freed's foot, and rested the heel down so he could wash the underside, working his fingers between the toes and pressing his thumbs into the arch. At that, Freed clutched into the short blond strands of hair, and his low groan made Laxus sneer at the restraint it took to hold himself back. Then the next leg got the same gentle consideration, with a slight foot massage as well, and more groans, more sneers, more struggling to remain gentle.

After that, he turned Freed around yet again, and Laxus began to wash the back of his legs, nudging his thighs apart so he could wash the inside of them, up the ass, rubbing circles around those taut globes. He used his sudsy hand to nudge between the cheeks. Freed let out a slight hiss of pain. It was still sore there.

Laxus muttered half to himself, "I'll need to take care of you down there, put some medicine on it."

"I'm fine."

"You're torn. I'll try to be gentle."

"I don't want you to be," Freed said, starting to get sick of the guilt he kept hearing. He turned around to face Laxus with anger in his eyes. "Will you stop acting like I'm some fragile girl? I'm not going to break that easily, dammit!" He wanted his cold sadist back to normal, even if he had to rile him up.

"Idiot," Laxus scolded. "Do you really think I'm treating you like a chick? I'm worried about your ass, and I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be worried like this if you had a pussy that could fit my cock without tearing and shitting blood. I'm worried for you as my lover, and I'm worried about your ass because I want to slam my dick back up there so badly, it's taking all of my energy just to stop myself. If you think that just because I don't want you to end up in a hospital with colon cancer or some shit means I'm treating you like a girl, then fuck you! Just let me do what needs to be done. Let me do it the way I want to!"

That was precisely what Freed wanted, to be scolded and ordered, not coddled. He had been catered to all of his life, and he was sick of people fretting over him every time he hurt a little. His cheeks flushed at hearing Laxus taking control again, and he lowered his eyes submissively.

"If that pleases you, master."

"Shit!" Laxus hissed. "Don't say that. I'll fuck you right here."

When his eyes lifted, they had a wily gleam. "Who says I don't want it?"

Laxus really had wanted to be good, to be gentle and not use sex to reach Freed's soul. He was almost done with the shower, and this slutty bitch couldn't keep a lid on his sexiness for ten fucking minutes!

"Damn you." He slid down onto his knees. "Then I'll do this."

He still wanted to be gentle, and Freed's ass was out of commission until he could get some medicine on it and make sure the damage was not significant. So instead, Laxus wrapped his mouth around Freed's cock and pressed down until it hit the back of his throat.

"Oh!" Freed cried out, shocked by the sensation.

Water dripped into Laxus' eyes, but he ignored it as his mouth worked, lips tight to get the most suction, tongue running up and down and pressing that growing erection up against the roof of his mouth.

"Laxus!" keened Freed.

Laxus leaned back and stroked Freed as he talked. "Feels good, doesn't it? You can come if you want. It'll be your third time, and I wanna taste you."

As good as that sounded, Freed had just come twice in under half an hour. "I'm really tired."

"I bet!" Laxus chuckled smugly. "I still want to taste you." His mouth went back to work.

"I … I don't think I … aaahn!" he cried out as Laxus pressed so hard, Freed felt the tip of his cock smash against the soft, fleshy wall of his throat.

Laxus pulled back again to catch his breath. "You say you're too tired, but your cock doesn't agree. You're getting so hard."

"Because … you're good," Freed whimpered.

Laxus made a smug grunt of satisfaction and returned to sucking.

Freed clutched at Laxus' scalp and leaned back against the wall in surrender. "Oh God, so good!"

Laxus loved the way those fingers clutched at his scalp, nails sometimes scratching, but his hair was short, no real pulling could happen, not the way he could grab handfuls of Freed's luscious green hair and yank him. Freed's cock was perfect for sucking: not so thick that it hurt the corners of his mouth, yet thick enough so that he would feel it in his jaw for an hour. It was long enough to hit the back of his throat, but small enough so he could fit the whole thing in his mouth without some inventive deep-throating techniques.

Doing this, pleasuring Freed in such an intimate way, was hardly shaming. It was arousing! It was bliss to suck on his green angel. He wondered sometimes, who got more pleasure: Freed who got to thrust into his mouth, or himself for getting the chance to taste the salty bitterness and feel the glory of giving pleasure.

Suddenly, Laxus stopped and pulled back. It was not a one-sided unselfish act at all, not like he had wanted. He was getting pleasure from this, aroused just from the feel of that cock sliding in his mouth. It was pleasure he felt he should not be receiving!

"I'm sorry." He dropped his head and crunched up his brow.

"Wait, what?" Freed yelled breathlessly. "Don't stop."

"No, really, I'm…"

"Again, no sorries. Just … oh God, please don't stop!"

"I need to say this, okay?" Laxus snapped. "I'm sorry for leaving you. Sorry for making you cry. Sorry for not being here, for not helping you move in, for ruining the surprise you planned, for always ruining your plans. Dammit!" he seethed. The guilt was really eating at him more and more as he took pleasure in his ever-forgiving boyfriend.

Freed gazed down and stroked his fingers through wet, blond hair. "Laxus…"

He glared up with pink lining his eyelids and tears mixing with the shower. "Why do you still want me?"

"Because I love you," Freed declared loyally.

"Why would you love an asshole like me?"

"Because you're you. You're precisely who I want to love."

Why? Why did Freed love him so unconditionally? This wasn't fair. It couldn't be right. Someone like him … he didn't deserve this! Laxus used to think he would never find love. He had even begun to think he must simply be asexual since no matter what he did, nothing his partners did aroused him.

Then Freed came along, and the softest whimper made Laxus so overwhelmed with passion, he could lose all control. He was so in love, it terrified him. This relationship was so perfect, he just knew that one morning sunlight would shine in his eyes, he would awaken to the smell of an empty bottle of cheap whiskey and the mildew stench of his apartment, and the whole thing would have been nothing more than a dream.

Until that horrific wake-up happened, he wanted to indulge in this. He wanted to drown in love, except he feared that he might really change and no longer be someone he recognized.

Not like he acted anything like how he had been nine months ago.

"I say I love you," Laxus said softly, "but that's not quite it."

"Huh?" Freed asked in confusion and worry.

"I love everything about you," he declared ardently. "I love your voice. I love your hair." He dropped his gaze. "I love the way your toes look." He leaned over and kissed Freed's foot.

"Laxus," he gasped airily. To see his thunder god kissing his feet was so … wrong!

Laxus caressed the arousal in front of him, just touching it, admiring it, worshiping that incredible phallic organ. "I love the shape of this cock. Just love it."

Freed moaned as those thick fingers touched him so reverently.

"I love its size, how it curves." His fingers followed the full length, arced like a scimitar, all the way up to the head. "I love how it darkens when you're excited." He softly kissed right over to slit, letting his lips suck away a little viscous pearl.

"Nngh!"

"I like to play with the foreskin." Laxus watched in amusement as his hands brought the skin up over the head, then stroked it back down into wrinkled folds. "I'm Jewish, I don't have this, so I like to play with it."

Freed let out a shivering wail and shouted in frustration, "Come on!" This was too gentle. He might really come if Laxus kept this up.

"Sometimes I'm a little jealous," Laxus told him, slowly toying with the loose skin. "I wonder how much more sensitive I'd be if I had foreskin. It's something I think about once in a while. Weird, I know."

"L-Laxus!" He gazed down at the brawny blond on his knees before him. "I like you how you are, precisely how you are." Seeing Laxus kneeling was somehow wrong. What sort of master knelt before his slave? "Stand up."

Laxus rose to his feet and towered over him. Yes! This is what Freed wanted, to feel small, to feel like he had no choice but to give up and surrender everything to this man. It made his heart race just being in the presence of this Norse god. He reached down and took hold of the thick shaft.

Laxus groaned deeply. Damn, those fingers were incredible! "What are you doing?"

"Giving back," Freed said happily, using both hands to cover his whole girth. "I like how you're so big, I can barely wrap my hands around it. You scared me the first time you pulled it out."

Laxus arched an eyebrow. "Scared you?"

"I had never seen one that size."

Laxus blushed at the compliment and laughed. "Kind of a monster, isn't it?"

Freed licked his lips hungrily. "It's my monster." He stroked down firmly all the way to the blond curls and got a grunting moan from Laxus. "I like it. I like to touch it. I like…" He suddenly dropped to his knees. "…to kiss it." His lips drew closer, kissed the fuzzy balls, and then began to move up toward the head, mouth opened and ready.

"Nngh! No!" Laxus reached down quickly and pressed Freed's forehead back. "You shouldn't."

His eyes drooped sadly. "Why not?"

Dammit, those pleading eyes were almost too much for him. "It was up your ass. I need to wash it still."

"Then let me." He grabbed the bottle of liquid soap and squirted some into his palm. "I'll handwash it." Freed continued his reverent stroking, this time sudsing the erection. A loud groan of pleasure bubbled up from Laxus' throat. "I'll make sure the soap gets everywhere, clean up all of it," he said like some happy housewife in a horrible cleaning product commercial. He stroked the full length rapidly.

Laxus slammed a fist into the wall. "N- … don't." Again, he pushed Freed back and retreated a step.

"W-What?" Freed asked, worried about all these rejections. He knew they had been apart for a while, but he figured he could at least give a decent hand job still.

"I … really will … c-come," Laxus panted weakly, "and I want it either in your mouth or up your ass."

Freed tilted his head and smirked. "What about on my face?"

Laxus gazed down in shock. On his … face? His cum, all over Freed, messing him up, dirtying his perfect, porcelain skin.

"Oh … shit. Oh shit!"

He had to take a few breaths just to calm himself, but as he looked down again, Freed was waiting and more than willing. Laxus smirked at how incredible he looked, so eager to please. How could he possibly deny his slave from something he wanted so badly?

"Then, go ahead."

Eagerly and with a seductive smirk at getting his way, Freed stroked Laxus fully, using both hands again since just one wasn't enough to fully encircle him. He squeezed just a little tighter, giving more friction.

"Oh yes!" moaned Laxus.

Then Freed used one hand to stroke while letting his cheek get in with the action, nuzzling the cock, soap, and pre-cum while feeling the fleshy hardness press against his jaw and cheekbone.

Laxus seriously worried about Freed sucking him while he was dirty. After all, he had just thrust up into Freed's ass, no enemas, no condoms, no warnings. He yanked Freed up and slammed him against the shower wall, scrubbing the cheek and any filth that might have touched it.

"Let me touch you too." He reached down and rubbed the curved cock in tempo with Freed's hand. "Don't come yet," he ordered. "I want to suck you off, so don't come yet."

Freed trembled, but he forcefully held back. "Okay. Together, like this?"

He took Laxus' large hand, used his own, and together they rubbed both of their cocks, sharing heat and friction. A low and primitive groan quaked through both of them, and Laxus found himself humping up against Freed, practically impaling his lower stomach over and over.

Freed panted at the friction, although the pain of Laxus' penis slamming into his gut kept him from reaching his climax. "I like rubbing against your cock," he said softly, purely aimed to drive Laxus crazy. "So big!" he groaned like an animal in heat. "I can use it to rub myself off."

"Freed!" Laxus cried out. Oh shit, if he kept talking dirty like that…

"Feels so good." His moan shuddered through the showering water and billows of steam.

"Oh … shit! F-Freed!" he trembled. Laxus grabbed himself harder, not bothering to touch Freed as well now, not with how fast he needed this.

Freed watched him, licking his lips deviously as Laxus sneered and lost the last of his control. He leaned into his lover's ear and moaned as crudely as he could. "It feels really good!"

Laxus' fist hit the wall, his mouth dropped open as he gasped at the hot, damp air, and he felt it all gush, all of the need and lust draining out against Freed's skin, splattering those alabaster abs, while Freed's fingers drifted up to play with the cum. He drew patterns of whiteness around on his skin, finger-painting artwork that the shower quickly washed away.

Laxus gasped, swallowed more groans, and struggled to regain his senses so he could take control again; however, all of the nerves in his body tingled until the shower drizzles felt like fluttering tongues all over his skin, and the rush of blood in his ears deafened him like a flooding rainstorm.

Slowly, his eyes drifted open, and what he saw was Freed looking deliciously fuckable, self-pleased, almost smug that a tiny David like him had defeated this blond Goliath.

"You little bitch! I didn't hit your face," he scolded.

"No," Freed acknowledged, not looking the least bit guilty that he had gone against what they agreed upon. "Now I want you to suck on me … with your cum on my cock." Freed smirked in a way Laxus rarely saw, eyes narrow and commanding. "Lick it up. Taste it."

Holy … shit. Laxus was not about to confess how incredibly hot that was. "You little freak!" He laughed at the role-reversal Freed had suddenly shifted them into. "Are you trying to act like a dominant?"

Freed shrugged. "Maybe a little." Not really asking for permission, he said, "Is that okay?"

"Fuck yes!" He dropped to his knees again, devouring that divine staff with zealous adoration. Dear God, he wanted this angel to be all his! He wanted to glorify him, venerate him, prostrate before his prostate.

Okay, he was really going off on some bizarre mental tangent, but Laxus could hardly help it. He might have been raised attending Jewish temple, but he had never truly believed in something divine until he met his sexy seraph.

Laxus suddenly pulled his mouth back and looked up at Freed. "Order me," he requested, begging for once in his life.

Freed was stunned. Order? Him? "What?"

"Tell me what you want me to do," Laxus said, his eyes so narrow that Freed swore there were golden sparks in them. "Command me how I should please you."

Laxus was … was … being submissive! It was too bizarre, and it took Freed's brain a while to process this. He muttered in mental shutdown. "I … I…"

"It's okay," Laxus assured him, caressing up the slender thighs. "I deserve it." He kissed along the edge of Freed's groin, right where the hip met the curly patch of hair. "I need to atone for my sins." He kissed up the arousal, small kisses all the way to the tip.

Freed said nothing, still in mental reboot. Laxus glared up that his slave was not obeying.

"Look, I'm serious," he snapped. "Give me some fucking orders! I need to make up for making you cry."

"Um … y-you don't—"

"Yes, I do!" he shouted. "Look, I need to atone for all that shit or else I'll keep feeling like an asshole all night, and … fuck it, I don't want that. I want to focus on you, not on the mistakes I've made. So make me do something as punishment."

Freed still stared as his brain continued to reboot, as if some hourglass was twirling in his eyes.

"Goddammit, I need this," Laxus pleaded.

That jolted him like an electric shock, and his capacity to think suddenly jump-started, although still sluggish. "Y-Yeah. Sorry. Just … I … I don't know how…"

"Just give me an order. Anything," Laxus pleaded. "Do it!"

Freed thought about it. What did he want? What did he really, truly desire right now, at this moment?

He looked down at those waiting blue eyes and ordered softly, "Suck on me." As soon as the words were out of his mouth, Laxus was on him, starving and groaning.

Freed gazed up at the shower head raining down on their bodies, and his hand blindly grabbed at the short, blond hairs, pulling and urging Laxus on while his hips made small thrusts. He felt the sharpness of teeth against him for a mere second and bit his lip hard to hold back the groan of pain. Immediately, Laxus' tongue soothed away the ache, and only his firm lips worked now.

The feeling of his cock being slowly, rigorously, and oh-so-desperately worshiped made Freed lightheaded, as if he was ascending a Jacob's ladder right up to heaven. Seeing Laxus getting completely drugged on the feel, smell, and taste of his cock was the most arousing thing Freed had ever seen. When those electric blue eyes looked up and that lightning-shaped scar quirked in amusement, it took all of Freed's energy not to shoot his load inside that perfect, hot mouth.

Laxus pulled back, slurping the whole way, siphoning spirals of cries from Freed, louder, higher, more desperate as his lips came to the flared head. It all popped out, and Laxus added in a few fleeting kitten licks to the sensitive slit. Freed heard garbled chants of his name mixed with something along the lines of 'you're amazing' and 'tastes so good.'

Eagerly, Laxus looked up at him and asked, "What else?"

What else? He had needed nothing more in his entire life! "Just like this is good."

Laxus shook his head firmly, showing that this was not acceptable. "Nope, something else. A real punishment. Come on, I need to atone and shit."

"Um … then…" He reached for a bottle of hair wash and held it out to Laxus. "You didn't finish washing me. Shampoo my hair." He sounded truly in charge now, like he was ordering a secretary to type up a report.

"What?" Laxus asked, chuckling softly in amusement.

"You heard me. Give me a shampooing."

Laxus took the bottle and looked down at it. "I don't think I've ever washed someone else's hair, and you've got a hell of a lot of hair."

"It's a bit of a hassle sometimes," he admitted, then imperiously demanded, "so you have to wash my hair."

Laxus smiled at his sternness. "You make an adorable dominant."

"Shut up!" he shouted, but he still blushed a little. "What are you waiting for…" The corner of his mouth curled up. "…bitch?"

Now Laxus laughed loudly, and the musical guffaws rang through the shower. He gazed up at the green-haired man, feeling so much pride and amazement in him. He would never stop being in awe of this angel.

"I love you," Laxus sighed, warm with happiness.

Freed gave him a soft but still imperious smile. "Of course you do."

The same damn words! Laxus never realized how hot it could sound to hear someone else talk that way. "Okay…" He stood up and leaned into Freed's ear. "…master."

Freed gasped at the wisp of hot air calling him that.

Laxus let his eyes linger on Freed's face. "Do you like that? Do you actually like being Master?" he asked shrewdly.

Did he? Freed felt how that title surged through him, almost the same way as how he felt when Laxus called him his slave, except it was slightly different. "I … don't know." It was so different.

"It's okay if you do … once in a while," he added strictly. Freed's face softened, the uncertainty melted, and Laxus got a glimpse of that aristocrat once again. He poured some shampoo into his cupped hand. "Let me know if I pull."

He started at the top, scrubbing through the scalp. Freed moaned, Laxus kept asking if it was okay, if it felt good, if he was doing it right, and every time he was answered by such sensual moans, he could hardly stand it. He tried to focus as he worked the shampoo lower. Somewhere past the shoulder, he had to get more shampoo. Seriously, washing this much hair was a pain in the ass!

"Don't forget to get all the way to the tips."

"Bossy, bossy," muttered the blond.

Freed shook a finger at him in scolding. "Don't complain."

That got a small laugh from Laxus.

"The scalp some more."

Laxus went back up and scratched his fingers through Freed's scalp.

"Ahhh," he moaned, tipping his head back to wash some suds away before they slipped into his eyes. "That actually feels really good."

"What, just washing your hair?"

"Mmm-hmmmm!" Freed replied.

That wanton moan made Laxus' worn out cock tingle, but there was no way it was rising now, leaving him dissatisfied.

"Ohhhhh!"

"Stop moaning," Laxus grumbled.

"But it feels so good," Freed said in utter ecstasy.

"Shit," he whispered under his breath, but another hum echoed through the shower. Sharper, he told Freed, "Stop moaning!"

"But it's so, soooo good."

"Freed!" he snarled. Weariness be damned, he wanted to pleasure this man until he screamed.

Freed easily pushed Laxus back, showing the strength in his slender arms. "Nuh-uh. Punishment." He smirked, but then his eyes suddenly went cold. "You left me, so you have to take care of me now."

Punishment! He needed to atone, to wash away his sins, make up to Freed so he would stop feeling this dark guilt. He needed the purity that came with punishment.

"Yes, master." He took a deep breath to regain control of himself. "You really know how to torture me, though."

Freed shook his head. "I'm the one being tortured, making me feel so good."

"Now you know how I feel. Hearing you moan drives me crazy."

He pulled off the shower head and held it to wash all the shampoo suds away. Freed stood there as if he was used to someone else bathing him. Had that been a tradition in his family, to have a servant wash their hair, maybe scrub their backs?

"Mmmmmh!"

Shit, shit, shit! Freed sounded so fuckable, it was almost too much. "You're doing that on purpose now."

"No, it really does feel incredible. Don't forget to get underneath."

"Yes, master." Laxus tugged the hair up off of Freed's neck and held it out to be sprayed with the shower head right in his hair. Another shivering moan trembled out.

"Is that good?" Laxus asked, smoothing down the hair.

"Mm-hmm."

Laxus hung the shower head back up, and Freed turned around to face him. Laxus' eyes instant drifted down.

"You are seriously erect."

"I told you it felt good. Now," Freed smirked, "you're allowed to suck on it."

His sweet slave made an incredible dominant. "If it pleases you."

Freed gasped at those words, and Laxus chuckled. He was going to show Freed how incredible it was to have a servant cater to him. Maybe he had maids and butlers in his childhood, but he never had someone like Laxus Dreyar!

He took the wonderful hardness slowly into his mouth, torturing Freed by not gulping it down, but slowly pressing in deeper … deeper! Then just as slowly, he worked back up to the tip. He was methodical with his sucking for a minute, but then Freed must have dripped some pre-cum, something that increased the taste and made Laxus utterly lose himself. Without restraint, he bobbed his head along the length. It was like vigorous and zealous worship rather than languid prayers. He groaned whenever the tip brushed the back of his throat, and those slight vibrations sent jolts through Freed.

"Nngh … Laxus? Can you…?"

"What?" he asked, eager to please him more, to get more moans and to give more pleasure. He had never desired something as fervently as now.

Freed was so close to losing control, but he needed something, just a little more! "P-Put a finger in."

Laxus looked truly worried. He had not attended to Freed's ass yet, and he said earlier that he was bleeding. "Are you okay for that?"

"I think so."

"Let me put some medicine on it first." Laxus raised to his feet and smirked roguishly. "I'll rub it around … inside."

At the sensual suggestion, Freed collapsed against the shower wall to hold himself up.

Laxus got out of the shower, dripping water everywhere to fetch some medicine. He had to look through a few drawers, unsure where anything was in this apartment, but finally he found something that would work for now. He brought the whole tube of medicinal cream over to the shower, where the heat made the shivers in his wet skin ease away.

"Here." He squeezed a generous amount onto his finger. "Like this."

Laxus dropped his hand down behind Freed and slipped the finger within. He felt around and slowly rubbed the medicine within the tight constrains of his ass.

Freed moaned as Laxus' thick finger swiveled around within. "Yeah … ow!" He suddenly trembled with a face that belied the pain he did not want to show.

Laxus picked up on it right away. "Are you all right?" he asked, using his free hand to hold onto Freed's shoulder.

"Yeah. Feels so good," he moaned with a whimper hidden in the words.

Laxus chuckled softly as he gently slipped his finger in and out. "Bitch. Getting me turned on again."

"Suck on me," he mewled breathlessly, "and don't stop." He leaned back against the shower wall and softly sighed in surrender, "Don't stop."

Laxus knelt and nuzzled Freed's cock. Then he glanced up with feral eyes. "What should I do?" he asked sensually.

"Huh?" Freed asked, totally lost in the anticipation. What should he do? He just said what! Suck it!

"At the end. How should I end this?"

"O-Oh. Um." His eyes flickered one way and another.

Ending it! Spit or swallow? Of course, it was Laxus' choice … normally. Tonight was not normal. Tonight, Laxus was handing over the power to control things.

Could he really demand something like that?

It felt weird, wrong. Although Freed had been ordered to do things plenty of times, doing the same to Laxus was strange. So many times, Laxus had proudly declared that absolutely no one forced him to do anything erotic. That was part of his glamor as the Thunder God. Freed was a mere mortal. How could a person who was nothing more than an average man dare give commands to a god?

"D-Do you want…?"

Laxus cut in sharply, "Don't ask me what I want! Order me!"

Freed gulped back the politeness in his request. Order him! Make him obey! Something flipped in Freed's brain. Lessons he had learned for handling servants at home, scoldings as his father brought him up to take over the company, training to be a proud man and in charge, a natural leader: they all clicked on.

Freed took the chiseled jaw into his hands, rubbing over stubble and sharp cheek bones. Gazing like a prince looking down on a serf, he commanded, "I want—um, no." He needed to be stern and give the order properly. "You're going to swallow it."

Laxus hummed, glad to finally be getting his slave to obey his little whim. "Would that please you?"

"Yes!" he whispered, and a tremble went from his spine to his toes. He tilted Laxus' face up a little higher, just enough to put a strain on the thick shoulder muscles, and ordered as firmly as he could, "Swallow it!"

Laxus let that dominance roll over him, purifying him of his sins. "Yes, master."

Then the hands let go of his face, and his head naturally dropped. He felt the ache in his neck, but somehow that only reinforced that he had to obey.

Since it was an order, and Freed was already fully aroused, Laxus wasted no extra time with foreplay. He took it into his mouth, as much as he could in one go. It slid easily all the way to the back of his throat, and Freed's hips hitched in surprise. He felt fingers in his hair, tugs of encouragement, and listened to soft-spoken words, whispers of passion that blended with the hiss of the shower water.

"Yes. Suck there. A little more. That's good. Oh God, Laxus. Your mouth is incredible."

Laxus remembered when it was a mental struggle for him to give a blow job. He had bad memories of things being rammed into his mouth, gags to bite down upon as he suffered agony at the hands of his father. Once in a while, those memories surfaced.

It did now, just briefly, probably because of his failed trip. How old had he been? Events that happen in childhood tend to last longest in one's memories. He was already forgetting about the clients he used to take, all the filthy things they said to him, all the depraved remarks Jellal used to say about his harem of pain-whores. He was forgetting that, but those childhood horrors never fully went away.

It was different now, though. He was never good enough for his father. He had been born weak and sickly, such a disappointment as a son that his father used his nefarious experiments on him, hoping to make him into a worthy heir.

"Oh Laxus, you're so good. So … nngh … so good! I love you so much."

He was good enough for Freed. He got love from Freed, love his father never once showed.

Fuck his father. Fuck him! Fuck his past, and the pain, and all those years of living in darkness. Fuck it all!

He had Freed now. He was loved, he was appreciated, and he could please Freed. He had a purpose to life, and it was not to kill the bastard who tortured him. It was to show this man in front of him all the pleasures he could, to adore him, worship him, protect him, to be the best partner he could be, and to be as attentive as possible. His purpose in life now was to love Freed with all of his energy.

He had suffered with the mouth guard in his youth because his father wanted to create a worthy son. Now he was willingly being choked by Freed's cock because this green angel found within Laxus a worthy lover.

Laxus rested his hands on the shower wall to brace himself as his mouth bobbed faster. He loved the noises Freed made, little hitches of breath and half-stifled groans. He loved when those delicate but strong fingers suddenly pulled, belying the pleasure that was wracking his body. He loved how the taste began to change, and even if it was bitter, it was powerful, masculine, evidence that Laxus was not someone who disappointed everyone—a father who saw him as a failure, a grandfather angered when Laxus refused to take on the family business, a boss who thought of him as merely a sadistic slut—no, with Freed he was more. He pleased this holy angel, and this was the only way to seek atonement. He needed this green angel's blessing.

"La- … Lax- …"

Freed's hips began to thrust more, snapping forward. Laxus groaned in shock. He remembered the Christmas party and how Freed had bruised the back of his throat with those powerful hips. It was happening again, a pain in his uvula as the cock pounded, hammering in. He might have moved away, but Freed had his skull in a vise-like grip, fucking his face without mercy. Instead of protesting, Laxus let his jaw go slack, loosened his throat, and allowed Freed to use him.

Pain! Punishment! Laxus put up with it. He had made Freed hurt, made him cry, and broke his heart. He deserved this. Freed would never spank him like a bad boy, but he could do this. He could ravage him, fuck his face, take him by force, use Laxus up in whatever way he wanted.

Not even words were coming now, just suppressed grunts, clenched growls, hisses of fast breaths seething through a face drawn up in agonizing pleasure. Laxus gazed up and saw that glorious ecstasy. He hummed, feeling the darkness leave him, knowing he was being chastised and purified. And now, like Holy Communion, he would partake of Freed's body.

The green head swung up, the tension in his jaws and neck snapped, and a howl like some demon roared out. There was a grunt of discomfort from Laxus as the blond was almost choked. Then Freed felt it. He felt that throat working, the tightness around his cock at each swallow, heard the gulps and the snorts of air as Laxus tried to drink it all down. Forcing him like this felt … good. Knowing Laxus loved him enough to allow Freed to use his body for pleasure made him so happy, he just melted.

Freed sank in relief, and Laxus yanked back as soon as his scalp was released. He coughed and rubbed out his throat.

"Goddammit, I forgot how strong your hips are!" He laughed to himself as he massaged the pain. He underestimated Freed sometimes, saw him as being a delicate rich boy, but in moments like this he saw the real strength: a champion swordsman who sculpted his body for his sport. "Freed, you're a sexy bitch when you get a chance to call the shots."

A sexy bitch? Hearing Laxus praise him like that made Freed's cheeks hot.

"Do you know what else I like about your cock?" Laxus whispered, kissing away some cum about to drip off. "I like that you're not that big."

Freed jolted right out of his afterglow. "Hey!" he protested.

"No, I'm serious. You would honestly kill me if your cock was any longer. You'd stab through the back of my throat. Shit, you and your piston hips!" He coughed and rub out throat. He needed a drink to numb the pain now.

Laxus opened his mouth to the shower raining down to get a little water to wash down the cum. Then he rested his head on Freed's thigh and felt the flushed skin on his cheek. The shrinking cock was right in front of him, and he watched its slow decline, still flushed, but twitching as it lowered. The shower was beginning to cool off, so he twisted the knob to bring on more heat.

"Well, that's three," he finally said.

Freed blindly reached down and caressed Laxus' hair in weariness. "I really need a rest," he murmured, eyes closed and face slack.

Laxus lifted his head and smiled at the utter exhaustion. Slyly, he said, "No."

"No, seriously," Freed moaned sleepily. "I'm ready … to pass out." The steam was getting to him, and he could barely stay on his feet.

Laxus shook his head with a devious smile.

"Laxus…" Freed protested.

"No. I'm gonna…"

"Don't make me say Écriture!" he warned sharply. "Seriously, I'm not joking. I need a rest."

Laxus backed down. He did not want to make this night bad by pushing Freed past his limits. "All right. We'll finish washing up. I need a drink. Then you can give me the grand tour of this new place. We'll make our way to the bedroom."

"That sounds good, but … it'll be a slow tour," he warned.

Laxus rose back up to his feet and stroked the messy wet hair sticking to Freed's drenched face. "We could always tour the couch and cuddle."

Freed could hardly help himself. Cuddling? Laxus Dreyar, professional dom and sadist, was suggesting that they cuddle on a couch? He simply had to giggle. "Sounds good."

He gazed up, and the tenderness in Laxus' eyes made him melt. Freed could see for himself, the darkness was gone, the guilt had been purged, and Laxus looked like his old self again: confident, sexy, powerful, a blond god who could send jolts of pleasure crackling through his nerves.

Laxus leaned over, but he gave Freed only a soft kiss. "I'll finish washing you. No kinks."

He took the loofah. Freed was pretty much all clean, but Laxus did an overall quick scrub just to clean the sweat from all that passion. He grabbed a bottle of conditioner, and he let the creamy hair-wash cover the green locks.

"I love you, Freed," he whispered, nibbling the side of his neck as he stroked his fingers through the conditioner to wash it out.

Freed turned around to face him, letting the shower strike his head and clean away everything. He gently stroked Laxus' chest, up his neck, to his face, caressing up to his ear and cradling his sharp jaw.

"I love you too," he sighed in heartfelt happiness. "We're going to keep saying that, aren't we?"

"All night!" he whispered ardently. "And tomorrow. And into next week." He wrapped Freed into his arms and kissed the top of his head. "Hopefully, much longer."

That sighed prayer was one wish Freed wanted to grant. "I hope so."

Laxus closed his eyes, leaned over, and let his lips linger against Freed's mouth. His arms wrapped around, not clutching possessively, but holding him tenderly. The shower rained upon them both, slowly losing its heat again, while Laxus embraced Freed and kissed him gently, wanting this blessed union to be eternal.

He had his angel, and he was not about to let go!

Next Chapter: "Couch Cuddles"

Chapter Text

Laxus had to say this much about Freed's apartment. The couch was incredibly comfortable. If he had been just a friend coming to visit, he could have comfortably slept on the spacious couch. Instead, he knew he had a bed waiting for him. A bed with Freed!

On their tour of the apartment, Freed had bashfully shown him the bedroom. He had not made the bed that morning, and he scurried to yank the covers into place now, but seeing that lived-in look just made Laxus more relaxed. After the scummy tenements he had slept in since leaving home, this upscale apartment almost felt too nice to live in. It was spotless, the carpets had no stains, the furniture was all new, it smelled like vanilla, and it was so spacious! At least, compared to his bachelor apartments that were pretty much just a space to sleep and shit.

So that messy bed, the robe tossed over a chair, the hamper with Freed's dirty underwear on top, and a wastebasket with wadded tissues (oh, Laxus knew why he had so many tissues in there!) were all proof that he too would be living here. It was not some museum gallery. It was a home. Their home!

And that bed! Freed stuttered as he apologized if the bed was too small, and Laxus just had to laugh. It was a fucking king-size bed! All Laxus did was sit on the bed to test out the mattress: firm but not stiff, just how he liked it. It was like this brat had bought all of this stuff instinctively knowing precisely what Laxus had always wanted.

Then they popped open a bottle of wine—rule number two of living together: they needed more alcohol, and there should always be rum, brandy, or whiskey—and they had a quiet celebration. They toasted, they kissed, they curled up together on the couch to watch some TV, and here they were now, Laxus sprawled on the couch, Freed lying on top of him, their eyes half closed at the television screen, not really watching the rerun of Full House.

"You know," Freed muttered, "when I was a kid, I totally had a crush on Jesse."

Laxus hummed at that little confession.

"John Stamos was the hottest thing on TV."

Another hum.

"Of course, it's Danny and Joey who are in a homosexual relationship. It's pretty obvious, too. Dude married, had three kids, his wife died, and that freed his gay tendencies toward his childhood best friend."

A sleepy grunt.

"And Joey … well, you can't tell me Joey isn't gay."

"I agree with you there," Laxus murmured. "Dunno about Danny. Dude married a lady."

"Bisexual."

Laxus hummed as he considered that. After all, he still jerked off to ladies in porn flicks. "But Jesse, no way was he gay."

"I dunno. He seems to be overcompensating with the testosterone."

"Dude, Becky! The guy loved her, married her, and they had kids and shit."

"Let me have my childhood fantasies," Freed pouted.

"Not when they involve John Stamos."

Freed chuckled at Laxus' covetousness. "It's cute that you're jealous of an actor from the 1980s."

"Shut up. I'd be jealous if you told me Charleston Heston was sexy."

Freed hummed at that. "Nah, I'm more of a Humphrey Bogart man."

"Bitch."

They watched until the episode ended with everyone happy, a perfect TV comedy ending of course. Freed muted some hair-loss commercial and rolled around to look down at the half-asleep blond.

"Laxus?" He shifted some more, and an elbow poked down into Laxus' ribs, jarring him awake.

"Hey, I was comfortable," he grumbled crankily.

"You mentioned at the pub about a one-year anniversary. Can you give me a hint? I'm curious now."

Laxus gazed up into those turquoise eyes with their long lashes and beauty mark. "Heh, you wanna know what I got planned, huh?"

Freed looked like an eager child the day before Christmas. "Yeah!"

Laxus began to sit up, and Freed moved off of his stomach. Laxus took his wineglass, sipped the pinot noir, and wrapped his arm around Freed, pulling him in close.

"We'll get dressed up real fancy, go somewhere … special. We'll eat good food. I'll feed you."

That made Freed laugh. So romantic and silly, the idea of feeding each other.

"We'll have a picture taken."

"Aww, a photo shoot to commemorate it? That's sweet." Freed snuggled in to listen to his voice resonating in that large chest. "But where will we go? I always liked those romantic beach shots."

"A beach, then. It'll be at a beach, right at sunset. Then, I'm going to dance with you."

"Dancing?" Freed asked sceptically.

"Not like my dances. A slow dance. A special one." Laxus looked like he was really holding back his emotions as he pictured it. "We'll have a party. All of our friends and family will be there."

"Aww, not just us?"

"We'll have time for us. This will be a special party," Laxus said, staring off as he imagined it. "Music, dancing, cake."

Freed giggled as he listened to these ideas.

"Then we'll have a vacation, a long one, somewhere romantic, exotic."

"Where?" Freed asked eagerly.

"I'm actually not sure yet. I have the rest worked out, but I'm still planning that part." He glanced down and stroked Freed's hair. "Where would you like to go? Anywhere in the world."

"Italy! I went there as a kid with the family, but I really couldn't enjoy it. I've always wanted to go back, eat at romantic restaurants, drink wine at an ancient vineyard, take one of those boat rides down the canals, and see the sunset over the Mediterranean."

"Then I'll get that booked," Laxus declared. "Write down all of it, everything you want to do and see and eat. We'll do it all, and we'll stay as long as we need."

"Hmm…" Freed felt happy imagining it. A party! An anniversary party, and a vacation, just the two of them. He began to drift off to sleep, and his dream changed things. It was still a party, but he and Laxus wore tuxedos, and the car they drove off in said JUST MARRIED in the back window.

Laxus looked down at Freed, and his eyes drifted to the promise ring. Someday … someday…

He heard a soft snore and realized Freed was beginning to drool on him.

"Hey, come on. Don't fall asleep."

"Grmmm." Freed's grumble was petulant and adorable.

"Hey!" Laxus laughed. Oh God, he was way too cute when he was sleepy! "If you fall asleep, then I'll fall asleep."

"Sounds good," Freed muttered.

"I said I'd make love to you all night."

"Still need rest," he grumbled.

Laxus had to admit, he was really tired too, and Freed was up one on him for how many times he had come that night. He supposed a little longer break was okay. After all, they had eight hours until sunrise and four more times to go. He stroked his fingers through Freed's hair and rubbed the thin shoulders through the silk robe. Laxus had some robe he had stolen from a hotel in Tripoli. It was stiff and stained, but it was all he had. Sometime this week, he would have to go buy new clothes. They had talked about that while touring the apartment. Freed sounded way too happy about clothes shopping. Seriously, he could not have acted any more stereotypically gay!

Laxus had a feeling that stolen hotel robes and ratty shirts from secondhand stores were not going to fill their shared closet. Knowing Freed, he would doll Laxus up in custom suits, designer jeans, fur coats, and satin pajamas.

"Freed," he whispered, mindlessly stroking through his hair. "Thank you for taking me back."

"Of course I would," Freed muttered, his face smashed up against Laxus' chest and his mouth opened, almost drooling again.

"I'm serious. Thank you." Laxus sighed as he thought about his misgivings on the long airplane flight from Athens to New York City, and then down to Magnolia. When he wasn't vomiting from motion sickness, he had thought long and hard about how this reunion might turn out. "When I walked into that pub, half of me was expecting you to slap my face."

Freed jolted awake and looked up at Laxus with shocked and hurt eyes. "I'd never do that!"

"You had every right to, and I knew that." His fingers clenched around his wineglass. "I knew when I walked out the door that day, you might not take me back. I knew the moment the P.I. emailed me, I could fuck up everything I had, and all for something greedy. I just … I…" He gulped down the last of the wine and set his glass down as his hand began to tremble. "I didn't know what else to do. I had been telling myself for years that if I ever managed to catch him, I'd fly out there in a heartbeat. Hell, if I had caught a plane the minute I got that email, I would have caught him, too. I just … couldn't, though. I couldn't go without telling you."

Freed dropped his head in guilt and whispered, "You lost your chance because of me."

"No!" Laxus shouted. "I wasn't about to take off like an asshole. I had half a mind to ignore him altogether, or to lie to the P.I. and say I was sick like some lazy-ass trying to get out of work. I didn't want to go at all! But … but I didn't know what I wanted. I wanted to go, and I wanted to stay, and I was waffling between the two. I could have called you up, told you directly, and left that night on a red-eye flight, but I chose to buy the plane tickets for the next day. It was my choice, got it?" he shouted. "It wasn't because of you, and it wasn't like I lost my one and only chance. I've come close to catching him before, so don't you dare go thinking you're the one at fault."

He still saw guilt in Freed's face, and Laxus squeezed him close.

"I'm actually a bit glad he got away."

Freed looked up in shock. "You're glad?"

"I was outright relieved when I arrived and found out he was gone. I mean, I want to catch him, but I also hoped I could get back to you as soon as possible. The idea of being away from you for a whole year killed me inside. I knew I potentially fucked up everything, but I wanted it to be less bad, and if I came home early, maybe you would still want me. Maybe you wouldn't have had enough time to change your mind, or be seduced by some rich asshole. I could have left back to Magnolia the moment the P.I. told me my dad escaped, but I felt … well, shitty! Plain shitty. Like, if I put you through all that crap just to be gone for a single day and come back, that was even worse."

"It probably would have been," Freed confessed. He had needed time to get over his emotions.

"This whole time, I've been hoping and … and … damn me, I've been praying that you'd take me back despite everything. I really didn't think you would." He held Freed's face and planted a solid kiss on his forehead. "I'm so glad you did!"

"Laxus…" Freed held onto him protectively, shielding him from those dark fears. "Don't say things like that. No matter what happens, I know you, and I know what you need. I know, sometimes what you need isn't me."

Laxus instantly felt the need to protest. "No! I…"

"It'd be psychotic if I was the only thing you wanted, so it's fine if you need something else once in a while. I understand it, okay? Sometimes, you need something that's just for you, something that doesn't involve me. Sometimes, I might need something that's just for me." His eyes darkened, and he added softly, "Especially in the future."

"What do you mean?"

Freed looked over at a desk with his computer and some paperwork he still had to fill out before starting his new job as junior manager of the Justine Corporation. "My father is setting me up to take over the company, probably within ten to fifteen years. It sounds like he wants to retire early." He sighed deeply. "I don't know if I'm ready for that."

"You'll kick ass," Laxus said, full of confidence.

That made Freed smile, knowing someone fully supported him. "Sometimes I'll need to do things that are just for the company. I saw it with him and my mother, and I saw how she handled it."

"Then I'll handle it," Laxus stated firmly. Hell, if a shy violet like Liberty could handle a partner who ran a large corporate firm, he sure could! "Freed, this is your family's business, so … I have an investment in it," he declared.

Freed turned his head up in confusion. "You have an investment in stocks?"

Laxus scoffed and knuckled Freed on the top of his head. "Idiot. I invested in you."

Freed rubbed out the pain, but then he realized what Laxus just said. "O-oh." He felt his cheeks heat up in happiness.

"It's all right if you need to do stuff. I mean, you'll be working next week."

Freed nodded passively. "Sometimes, we just need time alone."

That was the truth about relationships. In the heat of romance, it was easy to think things like 'We'll never sleep apart' and 'I'll wake up seeing this face every morning.' The truth was, real life often got between couples. Things happened, commitments came before selfish desires, and maturity forced lovers to make hard choices. Not always could they share a night of sleep together. Not always could they have a party for one another's birthdays. They might even miss an anniversary because of unavoidable duties at work.

A weak couple could let those daily necessities get in the way and supersede the love between them, being jealous of each other's time and growing angry whenever responsibility battled with romance. A strong couple realized that there were future birthdays, future anniversaries, a lifetime of love together, and they supported one another in all ways, even if it meant sitting alone at home while the other worked. They did not need to be attached by the hip just to feel strong in their love.

There was a good chance Laxus would be working night shifts at the fetish club, and Freed would need to leave early in the morning to beat rush hour traffic. They likely would not always be sleeping in that bed at the same time. They likely would not get to share breakfast together, or get weekends together, or have sex as often as they wanted.

"You'll probably be doing business trips, conferences, and shit like that," Laxus realized.

"Exactly," Freed muttered.

"Yeah, I get it."

That was also part of being in love: letting the other person live their life, not stifling them with selfish neediness. Freed saw it with his father, how Llewellyn frequently had to fly all over the globe, sometimes for many weeks. Every year, his father went to a conference in Los Angeles and was gone over Evergreen's birthday, although sometimes he took the whole family along to visit Disneyland and go to the beach. When the Justine Corporation opened a new building in India, he had been gone for three months as he personally oversaw the last stages and the opening ceremony.

The same might happen to Freed, and he knew it. It was partly why he dreaded the duty as eldest son, and also why he solemnly accepted it. Bickslow could not be expected to carry out those sorts of tasks, although when he was off the drugs he was a brilliant people-person who could manipulate others like a marionette playing with puppets. Evergreen was shrewd, but Freed wanted his sister to settle into a happy family life. He had rather liked that new boyfriend of hers, Elfman.

Laxus stretched his arms above his head until his shoulder popped. "Sometimes, it'll be something where you can't take me along, and sometimes … I … I'll need to go … alone."

"Yeah…" Freed muttered thoughtfully. "That's kind of how I imagined this whole thing, as a business trip. An extended one."

Laxus peered down in surprise. "You thought of it that way?"

"It helped me to … to not … miss you so much." He almost lost control over his emotions as those two months without Laxus around crashed down on him.

"Freed!" Instantly, his arms were around the smaller man, cradling him tenderly.

"N-no, I'm … I won't cry," he said stubbornly, and the aristocrat in him won over against the lonely wallflower who had pined away at home for weeks. "You're back. You'll always come back. That's how Mother dealt with it. You'll always return."

Laxus smiled at such confidence Freed had in him. Seriously, he felt like he did not deserve a boyfriend this perfect.

Freed shifted around on the couch, but as he put his foot down, pins and needles shot through his heel.

"Ow! Leg's asleep."

He reached down to massage the numbness. Laxus grabbed Freed's leg, twisted it to be on his lap, and began to massage from the thigh down, avoiding where the tingling hurt on his foot. Freed laid there, his leg nabbed, his thighs now spread, the robe yanked apart, exposing him. He blushed as Laxus diligently rubbed down his bare thigh, over his knobby knee, and massaged where it had gone numb in the calf muscle.

"We were sitting for too long," Laxus muttered.

Freed got over his embarrassment and laid back to enjoy the massage. "It was comfy," he said. He realized his leg muscles were really sore after three rounds of sex. "Other leg?"

Wordlessly, Laxus patted his lap, and Freed placed that leg up as well. Now his feet were on Laxus' legs, and his head was back against some throw pillows piled against the couch's armrest. He hummed in pleasure and began to drift off.

He was not really sure what he dream was about. It was sunny, the light flashed through everything, and it shined on blue and gold.

A blue bottle of Sapphire Gin and the gold liquid of Blue Label scotch.

Blue waves and golden beaches.

Blue eyes and gold hair.

He felt warm and safe, free and alive. A smile kept shining at him, large hands kept holding him, and Freed knew he was in the safest place in the world. It didn't matter if this was a beach, a lake, in Italy or at their own home; with those blue eyes and gold hair, he was safe.

"Come on, time to get up."

No, the dream was too good, and if he woke up it might all have been a dream. He wanted this to be real.

"Get up!"

The order snapped him awake, only to see the blue and gold were still there, not on a blindingly bright beach, but dressed in a stolen hotel robe in a room lit by a television. Still reluctant, he looked over at some muted commercial showing college students partying on a beach. It was not nearly as bright as his dream had been.

"Laxus, I know you said all that stuff about making love to me until sunrise, but … it's been a long day," he admitted. "I hurt from moving all those boxes. I'm seriously not up to it." He sighed and felt a tear forming in his eye. "Sorry."

What a disappointment he must be! His boyfriend was back, and he couldn't even stay awake. He wondered if Laxus would want someone wild, like the boys in that commercial, leaping around on the sandy coastline.

A warm and gentle hand stroked over his cheek just as the tear slipped, wiping it away immediately. "No, it was selfish of me. I didn't realize how tired you must be. Listen up," Laxus said sternly. "I might make unreasonable demands of you. You don't have to follow them. You're in charge in this relationship. Submissives are always in charge. But we're not just a dominant and submissive anymore. Look at me!"

Freed forced his gaze to meet those stern, blue eyes.

"We're a couple," Laxus said gently. "If you're too tired, or if you hurt, or if you have a busy day the next morning, anything at all that means I have to tone it down, tell me. That's an order. Tell me clearly. Don't pussyfoot around with me or I'll keep nudging you."

Freed nodded with a pout. "Can we cuddle for tonight?"

Laxus smiled, trying to be understanding and not disappointed. "Can I make love to you when I wake up?"

Freed giggled softly. "Absolutely!"

"Then we'll cuddle." He grabbed Freed and pulled him straight up into his lap, holding him and cradling him like a child. "We'll sleep in, snuggle into the afternoon, just stay naked in bed. We'll make love when we feel like it, but no urgency. Just when we feel like more. We'll order Chinese food and stay in, maybe watch that anime shit you like."

Freed laughed. Laxus had hated Naruto, but he was willing now to put up with it.

"But I'm punishing you for not getting to seven times."

Freed jolted and looked up in shock and maybe a little excitement. "P-punishing?"

"Yeah." Laxus rested his nose against Freed's. "I'm not leaving your side for the rest of the week. I'll be right here … until I annoy you," he snarled playfully.

Both laughed and nuzzled each other. Laxus wrapped his arms around Freed and caressed his fingers through his hair.

"I just don't … I don't want this to be a dream, Freed!" he said in quiet anguish.

"No, it's not." He cuddled down until he could listen to Laxus' heart. "Definitely, it's not."

"Sometimes, I wonder if the whole thing is one big, goddamn dream," Laxus confessed. "I fall asleep every night and wonder, 'Is today the day I'm going to wake up?' and within ten minutes I'll forget the dream, forget you and how happy I am to be like this. That scares the shit out of me. I don't want this to be a dream, but it's too good! You're just incredible, and I'm scared…" He gulped hard as his grip around Freed tightened. "…scared that it's too good to be true. And that sounds shitty as hell!" He laughed at his sappiness. "But, it's true," he said, totally serious.

"I feel the same way," Freed admitted, tracing his fingers over part of the tattoo that showed through the split in the old robe. "Sometimes, when you were gone, I would wake up and wonder if you never existed. Maybe I made it all up in my head. Maybe college became too stressful and I just cracked, and all of that was one big sleep-deprived hallucination. I would go by the South Pole Club and wonder if you were in there. Maybe you never left. Maybe you never existed in the first place, and the people in there wouldn't even know of a dancer named Thor. Maybe it was just me wanting it so much, wanting someone just like you, fantasizing about it so strongly, I made the whole thing up."

"Wait, you went to the club?" Laxus asked sharply.

"I never went inside. Bob saw me one night, just standing out there. I had walked, so I was just standing in the parking lot. He recognized me and called out to me, saying to come by the next day. Here, I'll show you. Hold on." Freed scrambled off of Laxus' lap and found his foot was still tingling, but not badly.

"Hey, don't get up," Laxus whined. It felt cold without Freed sitting on top of him.

"I just need to get my phone." Freed padded off to the bedroom, and his bare feet squeaked over the wooden floor.

Laxus collapsed backward to stare at the ceiling, but sleepiness was winning over him. He decided to close his eyes for just a moment.

When Freed returned, Laxus was passed out on the couch, face up, mouth open, snoring loudly. It was too precious! He secretively snapped a picture, emailed it to himself, and instantly deleted it off of his phone before Laxus could see that he had done that. Then he walked up close, and Laxus jolted awake with a choking gargle.

"Aww, look who's getting all sleepy!" teased Freed. "And here you were bugging me about that."

Laxus wiped the corner of his mouth. Dammit, he really fell asleep! "This couch is comfortable," he grumbled.

Freed chuckled at his surly tone amidst sleepy rumbles. "Anyway, Bob gave me some things. I went after closing, I didn't go in when there were people around," he quickly assured Laxus before he had a chance to question. "He gave me these."

He pulled up the photo album on his phone and showed a subfolder to Laxus while blushing, wondering what his lover might think. Laxus looked at the photos and flipped through a few. They were all of him, most of them shirtless and in provocative poses.

"Oh … God!" he groaned, recognizing them instantly. "I remember that photo shoot. Damn that Jellal!" he sneered.

"They're good!" chuckled Freed. "This is what I used when I was … um, lonely. I didn't watch porn, and I didn't go to strip clubs, or anything like that. I would look at these, and this video."

He pulled up the video, and the music began to play.

"Heh! My dance." It was weird for Laxus to see himself dancing from the audience's perspective. "So you … you were getting off to me the whole time I was gone?"

Freed smiled up to him and nodded. "Only you."

Laxus gazed down at him, then at the pictures, utterly stunned. "Damn. Now I feel like an asshole for renting all that Greek porn."

Freed giggled and curled up against Laxus. "Maybe I need to take pictures of myself," he teased.

Laxus jolted and looked down with huge eyes. He blurted out breathlessly, "Oh my God, let's do that."

Freed flinched. "Wh-what?" He had been joking!

"I'm totally serious. Now I want pictures of you."

Freed let out a wordless protest. How could he possibly want pictures of a skinny thing like him?

Laxus scraped his nails softly up Freed's thigh. "I want them to be as sexy as possible." He began to push the robe apart, exposing the pale leg. Freed jolted and yanked the robe back together, so Laxus softly scratched down his slender neck instead. "I want pictures of you crawling around on the bed, naked…"

His hands were enticing Freed, after he had said he was too tired.

"And dressed up," Laxus whispered, nipping Freed's ear. "With your collar on!" His hand stroked Freed's throat. Suddenly, his fingers gave that thin neck a soft squeeze, just enough to force him into remembering the feel of that collar. He leaned in close and whispered right into Freed's ear. "I've got that leash."

Freed could not help it. An erotic gasp shivered in his lungs. If it was just dressing up … and his collar … his new leash! Oh, he wanted that leash. Maybe he could do this much. It was just posing for Laxus, giving him pictures, photos no one else in the world would see, only himself and Laxus, photos Laxus could use to masturbate, pictures that would please his master…

"Yes!" the blond whispered, licking his lips. "I want pictures of your cock. I love this cock, and I wanna photograph it like a fucking model of male perfection. And your ass. Damn, your ass is sexy as hell. I love to look at it before piercing in there."

Freed tensed up, almost as if he could feel that thick cock thrusting up into him.

Laxus' hand slowly shifted the robe aside, and his lips kissed along Freed's collarbone, right along a nerve he knew drove the young swordsman crazy. "Mmh, maybe really dress you up, take a few pictures with your cock ring on … and a plug shoved up your ass."

Freed was breathless. Laxus' voice was pure sex, and it was tingling him everywhere.

"I'm gonna take so many pictures. You said you did modeling for your fencing team. Now, you'll be my sexy model. I may even take some video." Laxus smirked at the aghast face Freed made. "Would you like that?" he asked quietly, his voice ripe with sensuality. "A video of yourself, maybe showing your face as I spank your ass red. Maybe a homemade porn video of you riding on top of me. Oooh yeah! I could smack off to that anytime!"

Freed groaned with a deep ache, and he knew he was aroused just from that low, rumbling voice.

"We're gonna commemorate tonight." Laxus' fingers scratched up Freed's thigh, and the green-haired man shivered at the tingling touch. "My sweet slave is going to be a porn star!"

"I … I'm not … s-sexy."

Laxus roared out, "What the fuck are you talking about?" He grabbed Freed's jaw with one hand and forced his face up. "Don't you ever say those words again or I will beat your ass so hard you'll feel it after you're dead!"

"But I'm not—"

Roughly, Laxus grabbed Freed, flipped him over his knee, yanked his robe up, and gave him a single hard smack to his bare ass. Freed yelped, but instantly he was yanked up by the hair and thrust back down onto the couch cushions with his butt cheek smarting from the hit.

"Don't you dare think that I would fall for anyone less than perfect. You—are—sexy! Now, say it."

Say it? He didn't even feel that way.

Laxus flicked him on the forehead and bellowed, "Say it!"

Freed cringed down, rubbed out the sting to his brow, and began to blush. "I'm … um … s-sexy?"

Laxus flicked him again.

"Ow!"

"Louder!"

"I'm … sexy."

Again, Laxus gave him a flick, irritating Freed this time. "Like you fucking mean it!"

He shouted back in anger from the childish punishment that seemed to only mock him. "I'm sexy, dammit!" Instantly, Freed's lungs hitched. He felt mortified that he would even say something like that.

"That's right," Laxus smiled smugly. "You're my sexy bitch. I'm going to take pictures to prove it to you. I'll show you how sexy you are and why you drive me so utterly insane."

Freed put his hand to his mouth and looked away with a red face.

"What?" Laxus grumbled.

"That … was embarrassing."

"Of course it was," Laxus smirked. He leaned over and kissed where his flicks left a faint pink mark on Freed's forehead. "The next time you say you're not sexy, I will spank you for lying, and then I will drag you out to the nearest karaoke bar and make you sing I'm Sexy and I Know It. In a speedo!"

"Laxus!" Freed cried out in horror.

"Don't think for one second that I'm joking."

That was the worst part. Freed knew that Laxus was more than eager to humiliate him in public. He really would make him do it, speedo and all.

The blond chuckled slyly. "Bitch. Now you've got me turned on again."

"I didn't do anything," Freed hissed, breathing hard.

"Yes you did. You're provoking me with your moans and your sexy body. You're teasing me with your words. You're the one seducing me, showing off this." His hand reached down and palmed Freed's arousal through the robe. A shuddering cry ripped out of that ivory throat. "You've got sexy pictures of me. I'm jealous! I want some of you. That way when you're away at work, being a busy little office bee buzzing around your daddy's company, I'm gonna be bored out of my fucking skull, but I'll have those sexy pictures of you. I'll flip through them, stroking myself as I look at you. Maybe I'll call you up at work on your lunch break and tell you how I'm touching myself."

He laughed at how red Freed's face was getting as he imagined getting sex calls at work. Oh yes, that was definitely something he had to do! Laxus filed that threat away in the MUST DO IT category of his mind.

"Come on."

Freed squeaked when he looked up, confused as he battled humiliation and arousal.

Laxus stood and held out an inviting hand. Gently, he urged, "Come on. I want you to model for me. I want to take pictures of you that no one else will ever see, pictures that are mine alone—" He stroked down Freed's face and gazed into those wide eyes. "—pictures of how erotic you are. I don't want to watch cheap porn ever again. I want to use you! I wanna stroke myself to naked pictures of you. I want video of you moaning like the bitch you are! Your voice turns me on, and just listening to you whimpering in pleasure makes me wanna come. So obey me and make these pictures and video so damn sexy, I can whack off to them whenever you're not home." He caressed Freed's cheek. "Tonight, you're my stripper. Give me a good show."

Freed gulped down his protests. His master had a job for him, and he desperately wanted to obey Laxus. He took the large hand and bowed his head. "If it pleases you, master."

"Heh!" Laxus yanked him to his feet and tilted Freed's head up. He smiled seductively down at his angelic slave. "Oh, it will!"

Next Chapter: Bright Flashes of Lightning

Chapter Text

Freed felt like he was in another world. This was a world of flashes and thundering murmurs.

Flash! "Look at me." Flash! "Drop your head down, only look up with your eyes." Flash! "Stay on your knees, but put your head on the pillow." Flash!

He did not have to think or worry about anything. He just had to obey. He did not move unless ordered, and those orders were ripe with sensuality.

"Lift your body up, but stay on your knees. Yes." Flash! "Yes, like that." Flash! "Now touch yourself. Your chest, too. Yes." Flash! Flash! "Stroke it while pinching your tit, bitch." Flash! "Fuck yes, that's it. Just like that." Flash! "Look at the camera." Flash!

The collar reminded him that he was a bitch now. He was an obedient pet, and this … this was just learning a new trick.

"Hey, I said look at me!"

With that shout came a tug. Laxus had put the leash on, and Freed groaned whenever he used it. He pulled the leash to yank the collar, forcing his head to turn up.

"Look at the camera. Look at it like you're making love to it. Fuck this camera, Freed. Fuck it like a whore!"

He shivered. These were pictures Laxus would use. These were images Laxus wanted to see. These poses would please his master even when he could not be around. He had to make them as erotic as possible. It was utter humiliation, though! Touching himself, posing himself, staring at that black eye. This was no cellphone camera. Laxus had pulled out Freed's good camera. He was taking so many pictures, the flashes began to blind him.

"Not enough. More."

Laxus kept saying that. The first time he said it, he nearly ripped Freed's robe off of him. The slow and bashful strip show was over, and it was on to nudes. Then he said it again, and the collar went on, with the leash being attached soon after. Then he had said those three words again, and he put on Freed's cock ring. Every time he said "not enough, more," Freed was taken to a new plateau of sensuality. He shivered, wondering what would be next.

Laxus marched over to a box where Freed had packed away all of their sex toys. Most of them looked like they had not been touched in weeks. Realizing his little slave had gone without punishment for that long made Laxus want to remind him of that sweet pain.

He set the camera down, pulled out a rattling pair of handcuffs, marched back to the bed, and yanked Freed's arms back, tugging him up and backwards a bit until he bowed into Laxus' chest.

"You're sexy when I make you touch yourself, but sometimes I don't like to think that you're capable of doing that much. I like to think you can't do a damn thing without me." One hand held the wrists together while another hand roamed Freed's thin chest. "Trapped! Helpless!" He stroked over a nipple, and Freed could do nothing. He could not pull away or grab his cock that leaped at the touch. He truly was helpless. Laxus sneered a smile as he felt the shiver through his lover. "That's sexy, too."

He put on the handcuffs, clamping them down tight. Freed hissed as the metal bit into his tender wrists. Then, before he could get used to it, he was practically thrown down. He could not stop himself from falling, and that feeling of being defenseless made his pulse spike. Instead of falling and hurting himself, his face landed on pillows. His hair was everywhere, and he could not flip it out of his mouth or from under his shoulder. Strands pulled, but he was trapped.

"Helpless," Laxus growled, and although Freed's face was smothered in downy softness, he heard the clicks of the camera. "All mine. Waiting for me to pleasure you."

Then, much to his shock, he felt something nudging at his ass. He tried to look back, but his hair was so tangled, it trapped him. He felt wet slickness of lube on something smooth, and slowly something pressed, entered, and widened him. He began to shout into the pillow. His ass was still sore from the roughness in the car. This time, the sex toy really did hurt, but not to the point where he wanted it to stop. He needed this. As if he had not realized it all night until now, he needed this emptiness filled. Just like in the car, when Laxus had lost control and thrust into him right there, in public, inside his brand new Corvette, this emptiness had to be filled. Pain no longer mattered. Only feeling this!

"Your cock is dripping. Oh fuck, I need a picture of this."

The plug was not even all the way in, but Freed heard those click noises again. He wondered how Laxus had this much self-control. If it was him, he probably would have burst untouched. At the moment, the only thing keeping Freed from coming apart was the cock ring and the edge of pain burning in his ass.

"This goddamn sexy cock," Laxus said softly, almost reverently. He stroked between Freed's thighs, admiring how that cock with its own miniature collar hung heavily with a clear drip shining on the tip. Oh, the things he wanted to do to that cock! But not yet. Not now. "How about a closeup of your ass being opened?" He began to take pictures again, macro-closeups of that ass with a silicone toy stretching the rim. He played around with widths, pulling the plug a little out to shrink the stretching hole, then pressing it in more, but not all the way, until the skin became shiny from stretched tautness.

Freed had tears in his eyes. He wanted that plug inside of him. He desperately needed it. This teasing was more torment than any pain.

"Laxus!" he finally yelled.

There was a low laugh. "I was wondering when you'd start to break. Beg for it!"

"Please!" He tried to pull at his hands but was trapped. He needed to be touched. He needed something, anything! His ass, his cock, his chest, it didn't matter where. All he could do was lean back into Laxus, hoping for a little more.

"Now this is sexy, you thrusting up against my butt plug. Shit, if this was my cock, I'd lose it right now. I'd blow my load, fill you up inside, pour my cum into you, pour it in until it drips back out."

Those words were stabbing Freed. "Please!" he sobbed. "Please…" All dignity was surrendered. He was a sexual mess, and he knew it. He said he could not come a fourth time, and yet here he was, trembling with the need.

"I'll take care of it."

Yes! Laxus would care for him. Laxus would give him everything. All the happiness money could not buy, he had right here with Laxus' arm wrapped around him and fingers planted on his ass as that plug was slowly pressed in more, deeper, stretching him until Freed thought he would split apart.

"Arrrrrgh!"

It hurt. It felt wonderful. It burned. It tingled his soul. Then, as he shrank around the divot and could finally relax, filled and aching, Freed knew he was Laxus' bitch. He would do anything to give pleasure back to this man.

The fullness, the pleasure that flowed in after the pain, and the powerful feelings deep in his heart boiled and coiled and began to surge.

"La- … No!" He shook his head and struggled to fight it. "Laxus, I … I'm about to…"

"Shhh!" he hushed, stroking back Freed's forehead. "It's fine if you do."

Freed shouted, but there was no way to stop it now. He came, weak but enough for a little fluid to drip out of his cock. It was intense but brief, pleasure surging just to sink like a lake falling back into calmness. He began to shrink, but then suddenly, before he could recover, lips were on his mouth.

"My God, I want you," came a soft snarl, and then a tongue gagged him with need.

Probably, this was a bad idea. He was already torn. However, he didn't care. He wanted this … so much!

"You … you're incredible," Laxus whispered in awe. He sneered to force himself away from the intense emotions sizzling inside him. If he gave in, he would end this scene right now, right like this, and Freed would be denied the full pleasure Laxus had hoped to give him. He had to stay in control, although seeing Freed bound up, tossed around, dripping cum onto his expensive bedsheets, with his ass wide open and still twitching … it was almost too much!

Laxus carefully helped him up, being cautious of that long, luxurious, green hair. He did not want a single strand of that beautiful hair to be hurt. Flesh healed from bruises, but a single hair could take years to grow back to the length Freed had it. He caressed the hair off of Freed's face and out of his mouth. He smoothed it down as best as he could with his clumsy fingers, and then he kept touching, savoring the softness of this body, the sweat glistening on his pale skin, the corded muscles in those arms, small but powerful.

His eyes softened as he heard Freed panting through the pain in his ass, especially now that he was forced to be on his knees on the bed mattress again. Freed would endure so much for him. This sacrifice for the sake of love was a deep honor to Laxus. He wished he knew the words to explain how this made him feel.

Turquoise eyes turned up to him, wet and happy, filled with indescribable love. Laxus gasped softly. He had told Freed earlier about needing to reach his soul. Laxus was not even sure what he had meant with all that nonsense. He felt it, but he could not articulate it.

Right now, as Freed looked up at him, Laxus saw that soul!

Slowly, in a trance, he picked up the camera, aimed the lens, and took a picture. Dear God, he hoped he captured it! He set the camera back down, never breaking eye contact.

"I love you," he whispered with a tremble to his voice. When Freed showed this pure side to himself, it truly was like speaking to some divine creature. It was almost scary, confessing his love directly to such a beautiful soul.

Freed could not reach up with his bound hands, so he lifted his head and rubbed his cheek against Laxus' chest, up his neck and face, and caressed up to his earlobe, giving a small kiss. "I love you, too," he whispered warmly right into Laxus' ear.

Laxus suddenly grabbed Freed's face with both hands. He wanted to hold onto this soul, possess it, not let it slip back away into flesh and sweatiness. He wanted to say so much to him like this, but the words froze up. He only managed to stutter and feel flustered.

"I know," Freed smiled.

Laxus swore, he probably really did know everything, every thought and desire and dream of the future. Freed probably knew it all. Or at least, his soul did.

Laxus saw when the moment passed. He wondered if Freed was even consciously aware of when he did that. Probably not. Those eyes went from holy to devious, twinkling with playfulness, and Freed bit his lip coyly. It was the same old Freed as always, but a man, not a soul.

"Pick that camera back up." He smiled with smug authority to his words. "I want to make love to it!"

It took Laxus a moment to move. When he finally unfroze, he smiled and pulled back. "Bitch," he muttered, just because he had no clue what else he could say.

After that, Freed was incredible. He still blushed, he still looked ashamed at some of the poses, but those eyes were starving. Laxus knew by the way his erection was smashing against his boxers, when he flipped through these photos he would definitely enjoy them.

"Can I pick a pose?"

Laxus almost dropped the camera. Freed really was an unpredictable little submissive. "Of course," he said, dying to know what he wanted to do.

"Stand up with the camera."

Laxus had been on the bed to get good angles, but he stood, robe discarded, only his boxers on. He snapped candid pictures as Freed struggled to roll around and get off the bed while still handcuffed.

"Can … can you cuff me up front?"

Laxus hit a quick-release button on the cuffs—he knew he did not need to actually lock them since Freed never tried to escape—and reattached them in front. Then Freed stood, his hands covered his privates with the chains dangling, and his face went bright red.

"L-like … this."

Laxus saw through the viewfinder what Freed must have imagined in his head. Sometimes, hiding himself was far more provocative than showing it all off. He looked embarrassed, submissive, shy, and yet starving. Laxus began to snap pictures as Freed stood awkwardly, twisting away as if too bashful to show off. Laxus' breathing got faster as he saw the timidity. The sadist in him loved the idea of humiliating his slave.

"Now…"

Freed walked up to him. Laxus could hardly help but take a picture up close of that face—that goddamn fuckable face, with pupils blown wide with lust and lips swollen and wet.

Suddenly, Freed dropped to his knees right in front of Laxus. His handcuffed wrists raised up, and he stroked the bulge pressing against the boxers.

"Photograph me," he whispered.

Laxus swore those two words in another language must mean Fuck me.

He kept mindlessly taking pictures straight down as Freed rubbed and licked through the fabric.

If this was Thor, the god of thunder, then Freed knew he was pleasuring his god. The flashes that blinded him like an electrical storm showed him how much this pleased his divine lover. However, he knew he could do better. He wanted to give Laxus something special, something he would never forget.

Laxus' breath hitched as those bound hands tugged the boxers down, and suddenly it was his own cock in the viewfinder. His cock, and Freed's mouth.

"You wanted to make a homemade porn video, right?" Freed smiled, licking around the flared head. "Videotape this."

"Oh fuck," Laxus gasped weakly.

He struggled to change the setting on the camera to video mode. Freed was not waiting for him. He slid his lips down the veined shaft, and the sucking yanked Laxus away from the task at hand.

Video setting! Video? Where the fucking hell was the video setting?

Finally he got it, and just as he hit start, Freed slammed down hard, all the way to the back of his throat, and Laxus cried out. The camera almost slipped out of his hands. He steadied it and focused down onto Freed. Through the tiny screen, Laxus saw Freed devouring his dick. Those wide, turquoise eyes kept glancing up, straight at the camera, as he slurped and bobbed up and down.

"Freed, you're…" No word worked. Laxus could only groan and strain to keep the camera on that face.

Freed pulled off and rubbed the erection with his chained hands, letting them rattle. "You taste incredible," he said softly. "I want to suck this cock … every day!"

Laxus almost lost it. When Freed talked dirty, it was like he was destroying this angel, yanking him into Perdition. He was the pagan god tarnishing a holy Angel of the Lord.

"Laxus," he groaned wantonly, stroking the cock with his cheek and letting his tongue hang out to lick it. "Tell me what to do."

Shit! Shit, shit, shit!

Sinful eyes gazed up. "Tell me, master."

Laxus sneered and gulped hard. This was going to be the video he used for masturbating. What did he like best?

"Let me come on your face, bitch."

Freed looked like he melted a little. He shivered, the camera definitely picked that up, and he began to suck on Laxus again, faster now, grunting when the cockhead slammed into the back of his throat.

Laxus held the camera as still as possible with one hand while the other went down, running through the long hair, pulling and guiding his head. He would have fucked that mouth hard, except that would jolt the camera, so he let Freed do the work while those cuffed hands stroked Laxus' balls, giving small tugs, pulling him closer … closer…

"Fuck, Freed!"

The camera jolted, but Laxus steadied it. Holding it still as his whole body coiled into one tiny ball of tension was almost impossible.

"Ah … arrrgh!"

Right at that moment, what the porn industry calls The Money Shot, Freed pulled back. He reached up, realizing the camera was shaking, and steadied it himself. Laxus did not see him do that. His eyes were squeezed tight.

A stream of pale liquid shot onto Freed's face. He closed his eyes as some of it hit his eyelid, then opened his mouth to let it drip within.

Another shot landed right across his cheek and into his parted lips.

Just a dribble after that, and Freed let it smear over his chin, oozing thick and white onto his lower lip. He gazed up at the camera again, imagining what Laxus will be seeing, imagining all the times Laxus would come into a tissue in the future while watching this, and he smiled seductively, knowing it would be his face that makes Laxus do this.

Laxus opened his eyes, momentarily angry that he probably screwed up the best part of the video, until he saw Freed holding the camera, looking up into it, sexy as fuck with Laxus' cum splattered all over his flushed face.

"Master," he mewled. "Master, I really need it now."

Oh … fuck.

Oh fuck!

Laxus stopped the video and saved it before he messed it up. He wiped Freed's face clean with his own ratty robe. The stolen thing was good for something at least. Then he yanked Freed up, threw him onto the bed until his thin body bounced, and he pounced on top. Laxus grabbed the chained hands and slammed them to the headboard.

"You said you were too tired," he snarled, kicking the lowered boxers off.

"I was, but … but you—"

"I did something?" he bellowed. "You're the one at fault. You're too damn sexy for your own good. And … it's been too long."

He reached down to the butt plug and twisted it to turn on the vibrations. Freed gasped, and instantly there was a flash. He looked up; Laxus still had the camera.

"It's been way the hell too long," Laxus said, palming the plug in.

It kept rubbing and buzzing against Freed's prostate. He was losing control, losing his mind. He cried at the pleasure building inside, and there were more flashes.

This was worse! Rather than just posing in sexy ways, he was being photographed in the midst of experiencing pleasure. That camera was another set of eyes, watching him, voyeuristically observing him, and recording these faces he was making. Freed became far more conscious of his expressions. He wanted to make it sexy like the porn pictures he had seen late at night in the dorm room, yet when Laxus slammed the plug in again and massaged it around with his palm while his fingers caressed Freed's sack, the idea of making the perfect porn face was gone. His mouth opened wide, howling in pleasure, and behind close eyelids he saw more flashes.

"I've been needing this," Laxus growled, not stopping with the camera, sometimes capturing Freed's face, sometimes his erection, and sometimes taking a picture of the plug in his ass. "Needing you!" He palmed the plug in again and snapped a shot of Freed as his body arched up. "I need to please you and make you scream!"

He turned the vibrations up higher and grabbed Freed's erection. He pumped him steadily, wanting to pull out another orgasm from him.

"L-Lax- … La- … I…"

"I can tell you're close," Laxus whispered deeply. "I know your body now. I can feel it. I can smell it. You're so close, aren't you?"

"Mm-hmm," he whimpered, biting his lip to hold back the howls of pleasure.

Laxus breathed right into his ear. "Do it! For me."

For him! For his master. Master wanted him to accept this bestowed pleasure to its fullest. Master was giving him permission. Master wanted it.

Freed's head flew back, and his spine arched in a glorious curve. Laxus felt those sharp hips giving the final thrusts directly into his hand. He snapped picture after picture, capturing the whole thing, the spurts, the face lost in pleasure, Freed's body splattered white, the mess on his own large hand holding the swollen cock, the look of surprise as the rush faded…

More pictures! More!

… how the mess dripped down across the toned stomach, Freed's body gradually sinking, his half-opened eyes, so sleepy and seductive, and then a smile, so sweet and happy, knowing confidently that he gave a good show.

"Damn, you're incredible," Laxus whispered in awe. He set the camera aside and smiled down at Freed while petting his head. "I think we captured some great pictures."

Tired eyes streaked with tears gazed up, and a faint smile struggled to his lips. Then Freed sank back, ready for sleep.

Laxus turned the vibrator off and used the old robe again to wipe up the mess. Being as gentle as possible now, he pulled the butt plug out and set it on top of the robe that was now covered in the essence of both men. He removed the cock ring and set it aside. As he gazed down at Freed, a thought came into his mind: they were making love in their own bed. Theirs! A bed they would share from now on. Although, these bedsheets were utterly ruined!

"Freed, I know you're tired but … can you go one more?"

With a grunt of weariness, Freed looked up in silent protest. One more? Seriously? No way!

Laxus looked apologetic. "I am hard as a rock again."

Freed glanced down. Although he had just had an orgasm a few minutes ago, Laxus was already erect.

"If it's too much—"

"Shut up—" Freed cut in, and he spread his thighs. "—and take me."

So many protests raged in Laxus' mind about this. Freed had torn earlier. He now had five orgasms that night. There was probably no way he could go a sixth. This would just be him fucking Freed for the sake of his own pleasure. Laxus was so used to delivering pain and pleasure, not taking it.

"Laxus," came a gentle voice, and the blond looked down with worry. Freed's smile was placid and understanding. "I want this night to end with your cum inside me. Please."

His face tensed, but he nodded. So long as he had permission, it was okay, even this, just using Freed's worn out body for his own pleasure. He grabbed the bottle of lube and was generous with it, hoping that a little extra would make this easier, quicker, just enough to finish him off without hurting Freed too horribly.

That tired face was still smiling, wanting him, although Laxus was pretty sure Freed was way past his limit.

With one hand, he wrapped Freed's legs over his shoulders, and with the other he gripped himself, nudging at the entrance. Slowly, carefully, he pressed in, sinking inside easily. Freed was loose, and unlike the tight, almost painful forcefulness in the car earlier that night, this time he entered his lover smoothly, tenderly, gliding inside. Welcoming arms wrapped around his neck, and Freed pulled him down into a kiss.

"Take me," Freed whispered against his lips.

Laxus pulled back a little, and he saw it again. The body was exhausted, defeated, far past worn out, and here was the soul, that shining brightness that made him swear Freed was an angel in disguise. This was a chance to not only tell this soul how much he loved him, but to show it, to love it, to make love to it, to pour his own soul into Freed's.

Laxus pulled back and slowly burrowed himself back inside. Although drained, Freed arched and moaned at the feeling of being full, the emptiness in his life filled up with love, with passion, with Laxus. Another thrust, and he felt like Laxus was already pouring in something, not liquid cum, but something else, something spiritual. It filled him in a way fleshly bodies never could.

"I love you so much," Laxus whispered, setting up a slow and easy motion, in and out, tensing and releasing, recoil and flex. Freed was limp in his arms, panting and moaning, utterly surrendering body and soul to pleasure. "Missed you so much!" he said, aching as all those weeks of loneliness flowed out, being filled up with Freed's love.

Laxus suddenly grabbed Freed into his arms and sat up. He placed Freed on his lap, lifting him, pressing him back down, so Freed did not have to do anything. He hugged him tight as he thrust inside.

Then suddenly Laxus looked ahead. He was sitting on the edge of the bed, his feet down on the floor, with Freed as limp as a rag doll in his arms. Straight ahead was the closet, with mirrors as the sliding doors. In those full-length mirrors, Laxus could watch himself, see the sweat on his skin, the flush in his face, and his shaft piercing into Freed's body. Laxus gasped when he saw it, and quickly he looked away. It was almost too much, seeing himself doing this. Curious though, he peeked again. His grip on Freed must have changed, and he stroked somewhere good inside. Right then, Freed arched back, shuddering out a moan, and Laxus saw it all in the mirror.

"Oh fuck," he gasped.

He pulled out, lifting Freed off his lap, turned around, and placed the smaller man on the bed on his hands and knees, facing away from the mirror and those erotic images. He entered from behind and began to thrust with more urgency.

Now he was getting dizzy, exhaustion taking its toll, yet he was drunk on lust. He rammed into that ass, and Freed strained, quivering as his limbs tried to hold himself up. His throat was parched, he was quiet as the feeling tingling on the edge of sleepiness, like this was a dream and he was already unconscious. He was so exhausted, Freed almost wished it would be over soon. It felt so good, but he could not even moan, he was so worn out.

Suddenly, Laxus bent over with a growl and bit sharply into Freed's shoulder. It was a jump-start. The tiredness burned away, and his body sparked alive, electrocuted into motion once more.

"Sorry. Oh shit, I bit hard. You're bleeding a little. I'm just … fuck, so close. I need to hear you, though. Moan for me, Freed. For fuck's sake, moan!"

A rending cry filled the room, and Laxus felt the body under him coming back to life. Freed began to thrust his hips back into him, letting Laxus pound in even deeper. His hands clutched at the bedsheets. He was reanimated and moaning loudly.

"Mmmm, do you maybe like when I make you bleed? Is that something you like?"

"I … I don't…"

Laxus leaned over and licked the blood beading on the small pierce. "It's a nice taste. But you know what the problem is? A slutty little masochist like you wants the pain so you won't come as fast. The more I hurt you, the longer you last. That's sinfully delicious when I'm edging you all night, but that's not today. Today, I'm aiming to make you come seven times."

Freed gasped in shock. This again? Seven! Even at the beginning of the night, he was sure he could never make it to seven. Now… "No, we agreed—"

"Seven!" he sneered. Then Laxus smirked arrogantly. "We only have two more to go."

Freed shook his head as his thighs quivered. "I … can't. I can't." Coming again was a joke.

"You can!" Laxus said sternly. "But being rough isn't the answer with you." Laxus curled around Freed's trembling body and reached around the narrow ribs to grasp his erection. As he figured, Freed was hard again. This whole time, he had been limp and simply accepting Laxus' love. Now he was needy again, just how Laxus liked him. "No, you come strongest when I'm gentle." He gave a slow stroke while kissing up Freed's spine, to the neck, and leaned over, smothering his body, so he could nip the back of Freed's neck.

"Aaaaahn!" he whined, arching at the bite.

"Yes, this is what you like," Laxus purred. He licked behind Freed's ear. "Gentle. You're a raging masochist, but deep down you're a romantic. You like when I fuck you hard, but you go wild when I make love to you. Fine! I can do both. I can do whatever you want. Anything you want!" He nuzzled into Freed's long hair. "I'll do whatever it is you want, Freed. Whatever will bring you the most pleasure."

Freed figured he must have died. Sometime earlier today, he died. Maybe it was when lifting boxes. He must have had a heart attack, he was dead, and this was his heaven, eternity with Laxus, pain and pleasure never-ending. Because nothing—nothing at all—was this perfect. There was no humanly possible way to feel this happy.

Laxus heard a cry like a soul being reborn, the cock in his hand throbbed, and under Freed's body he could see the weak drips, everything used up, but in his ass … oh yes, Freed's ass clenched in the dry orgasm. Laxus felt those clenches on his cock, and Freed moaned, no longer angelic, but demonic, a creature of pure lust now.

"Oh shit. Freed, you … oh … oh shit!"

Laxus lost control again. He thrust fast, hard, and all noises went silent. He thought he heard a cry of pain under him, but he was already coming, a rush of need, his soul gushing into Freed's body, filling this fallen angel, this perfect creature he had corrupted, filling him and being utterly and fully complete in this single moment. He clutched Freed to him, still giving small thrusts with each spurt, yet fearing his angel would fly away.

"Freed."

The name was a prayer and a plea. 'Don't leave me. Don't vanish. Don't let this be a dream.'

Tears flowed down, and Laxus did not even try to stop them. He cried for the loneliness he had suffered through. He cried for the joy of Freed taking him back. He cried for getting all of his wishes, for finding a man who was perfect for him, for finding love in just the right messed up way he needed it. Who else would do this? Who else was willing to let him have his kinks, but also show him how to give tenderness?

Laxus was not really religious, but he sobbed as he prayed in thanks to whatever sort of Cupid was out there that matched him with this green-haired angel.

Freed felt ready to pass out. Suddenly, that fullness slipped out, and cum dripped down between his thighs. Still, he felt like he could not move on his own. He had no power, no energy, drained of everything. With carefulness, he was turned around, and arms were right there to guide him to the mattress. Blue eyes looked at him in worship, and reverently his body was lowered to the pillows.

He heard a rattle of chains, the handcuffs came off, and Freed immediately wrapped his arms around Laxus, clinging to him to assure him that he would not leave or turn into wisps of grace, and he was no figment of a wet dream. He was here, this was real, and they were together now.

"Another rest?"

Freed wished he could keep going, but this wasn't a dream or even Heaven. It was real, and he was just a mortal who needed recovery time.

Laxus laid beside him. Sometimes he just lightly caressed Freed's skin or stroked his fingers through his hair; then he would scratch his chest or yank his hair to pull his head up for a lusty kiss. However, when he reached down, Freed flinched and shook his head. He was completely at his limit, utterly dried up.

"Save the last one for in the morning," he muttered. Freed looked up with disappointment. "I honestly can't again. I'm sorry."

"The hell you talkin' about, being sorry." Laxus kissed him and rested their foreheads together. "You were beyond incredible tonight. Six times! Shit … we've never done it this much. New record," he teased. "I am fucking exhausted. Six … shit. You know, in Jewish tradition, six is the number of sin, and seven is perfection. I'll leave you in sin tonight." Then he gave Freed a kiss on the brow. "I'll restore you to perfection in the morning. My little angel," he sighed, resting his forehead on Freed's chest to listen to his heart.

"My thunder god," he replied, smiling weakly as he stroked the spiky blond hair. Being left in sin … it sounded good.

After a moment of rest, Laxus removed the leash and collar, stood, and helped Freed up. He needed to rub out his legs before he could walk, but he managed to limp away to the bathroom on his own. Laxus watched him, that sore limp in his step, and he felt smug. He was the one who left his green angel weak and mortal. And he could rise him up from Perdition again.

Tomorrow. In the morning. Right now, Laxus was so exhausted, he could barely move.

While Freed was in the bathroom to shower off cum, lube, and sweat, Laxus hurriedly changed the sheets and washed the sex toys. He cleaned himself up with just a wet washcloth and a bit of disinfectant. Then he turned on a lamp by the bed and turned off the main light. Freed dragged his feet back, limping and pale from exhaustion. Laxus thought he looked like a perfect example of a fallen angel.

Freed laid down in bed and groaned. He was so sore, but it was worth it. Laxus turned off the lamp, wrapped his arms around the thin body, and spooned into him.

"You were amazing tonight," Laxus whispered to him. "Hey, I was thinking something. Come morning, our seventh time, that perfect time … I want you to fuck me."

Freed's sleepy eyes popped open. "Wait, what?"

"Isn't it about time?" Laxus reasoned. "I mean seriously, you've only stuck your fingers up there." He scoffed softly. "Don't you think I want more than just that?"

Freed was stunned. Did Laxus really want … that?

Lips nibbled on Freed's ear. "I wanna lose my ass virginity here, in our bed."

Freed knew his face was bright red, but Laxus merely nuzzled the back of his neck while humming in happiness.

"Yeah, it's a good place for that. We'll have breakfast, some coffee, and then you're going to top. I don't mean just riding on top. I want you in my ass. And I wanna videotape it."

"L-Laxus!" That was so much worse. His first time topping, his first time entering another man like that, and … and it would be … videotaped?

"Mmmmmh … all yours," Laxus muttered. "My ass … all yours. Only yours." In under a minute he was breathing heavily right into Freed's ear.

Although he was exhausted, Freed stayed awake a while longer, now nervous—and excited—at the two of them taking yet another major step in their relationship. Come morning, he would be the giver for the first time.

Next Chapter: Angel of the Morning

Chapter Text

Morning came too early for Freed. It was one of those mornings when he would have told his mother "Five more minutes" and slept in another twenty. This time there was no alarm, just the sun streaming through. He forgot to shut the curtains.

Wait. He never opened the curtains at night normally. Who pulled aside the curtains?

That was when he realized there was an arm draped around his waist and breathing in his hair.

Laxus! He was home!

He rolled around and saw the blond god, here, in his bed. The sight was glorious. His face was smashed down into Freed's pillow until his cheek and lips puckered out. His naked shoulders swelled and sank with deep, steady breaths. Freed looked at the ink just under the skin, those swirl-patterned tattoos. He remembered washing this body last night, scrubbing every inch of it, and more. So much more! Freed blushed as he thought about waking up to this sight every morning from now on, feeling these arms around him, spending every day with Laxus. It would no longer be a matter of scheduling in one another between work, school, studying, and family. They were living together now. They obviously could not spend every moment together, but they could at least see one another in the morning, just like this.

As Freed moved, a beam of sunlight hit Laxus in the eyes. He snorted, his face squinted up, and the heavy breaths stopped. One eye cracked open. He saw a green glow. Mornings were not supposed to be green, but this verdant sunrise made him smile faintly. The room smelled of lube, sweat, and Old Spice. Laxus didn't use Old Spice. Freed did.

He closed his eye again, and his arms squeezed around Freed a little tighter.

He was home!

Laxus had a moment when he realized, from now on, his sunrises would be green. He would wake up with his arms around Freed, this soft bed and satin pillows, this smell until it blended into his own, greeting the dawn with his angel of the morning.

"Hey there," Freed said softly, his voice scratchy from last night's moans. "You awake?"

"No." Laxus did not want to wake and find this morning to be normal and bland, or worse, all a dream and he was still in some cheap hotel in Greece. He wanted to stay like this for as long as possible, wrapping his arms around Freed.

Long, delicate fingers raked through his scalp. "Your hair is … shining in the sunlight."

It felt so good. Smells swirled: the Old Spice, morning breath, some sort of air freshener that smelled like fresh laundry. "Don't talk. Still sleeping."

Freed chuckled and continued to run his fingers through the golden glow of Laxus' hair in the sunlight. "You have really bad breath in the morning."

"Fuck you," Laxus grumbled. His breath was bad? The brat should smell his own!

Freed laughed and stretched, feeling his muscles pull against the stiffness. He had a cramp in his thigh and ached absolutely everywhere. It was an amazing feeling, the muscle burn and the small bruises, all of it. The masochist in him loved waking up with pain in all of his most sensitive spots.

Laxus opened his eyes again and watched Freed secretively. Seriously, was this brat trying to look like an angel? The way he stretched his arms above his head, how the sunlight framed a halo around him, the sweet music of his morning moan, the way his face looked in ecstasy with his eyes close and his mouth open in a yawn … Laxus swore, if he was just a little more awake, he would have ravaged Freed again just as punishment for looking this damn sexy first thing in the morning.

Laxus wanted more sleep, his body was utterly worn out, his brain was still in jet lag, but there was no way he wanted to miss seeing the way Freed's muscles tensed and corded as he stretched. He was too thin, though. He had been eating poorly, probably more focused on studying than on his own health. Laxus felt compelled to change that. He would take Freed out to eat. Or maybe he should cook for him. They could sit on the couch together watching television and feed him popcorn or grapes or something he could slide into that mouth and feel the lips lightly suck his fingers. He would have to make sure his sweet angel did not wither away.

"You wake up too early," he grumbled.

Freed glanced at his alarm clock. It was nine in the morning. "If you think this is early, you wake up way too late."

Laxus finally shifted, feeling the stiffness of his own muscles. He could only imagine how much worse this was for Freed. "I'm used to working until two in the morning, getting home around three, eat some dinner, watch the sunrise, watch some crap TV," he chuckled, realizing how pathetic this all sounded, "and go to bed with the windows blocked to keep the sunlight out." This was normally his bedtime, not wakeup time.

"So you're a night owl."

Laxus barked a brief laugh. "Yeah, that's putting it one way."

He had not adapted to a nocturnal lifestyle by choice, but by necessity. The strip club closed at two, and if he had a client that night it was common to not come back home until late morning, then crash out for any sleep he could get. 'Like a dragon that hunts by night' one of his former neighbors had put it. He felt that more appropriate than saying he was an owl, filled with wisdom. He had felt more like a fierce dragon, out hunting for the next rich bastard he could tie up and beat.

His mind thought about it: a dragon and an angel of the morning!

He seriously needed to listen to some heavy metal just to get Juice Newton out of his fucking head.

"No clue how I'd sleep now," he shrugged. "I don't have to worry about all that." Those days were over. The days of working at the strip club, allowing himself to be put on display, touched and ogled, acting like a dominant thunder god for a roomful of perverts, the loud music, lap dances, masochistic clients, even the fetish club that had sated him for a time. All of it was over. He was starting fresh.

"Uh, yeah," Freed whispered, and he laid back down. Although he did not mind the fetish club, the shadow of those early days, the darkness of what Laxus had been, would always be there, somewhere in the background.

"I'm glad," Laxus smiled, seeing the pensive look in Freed's face. He rolled over, popped up onto an elbow, and stroked his fingers over the sallow cheeks. "I just wanna be yours."

When his words made Freed smile, that little gleam of happiness melted Laxus' heart. All his! All Freed's! He did not hate his time as a strip dancer since it was what worked best at the time, and he never regretted it since that was what led him to finding Freed. The South Pole Club was a place where heaven and hell met, where a dragon of the dark could change into an Aesirian god, and where an angel could alight for a moment and rescue him from the pit.

He realized Freed's eyes had closed again. Laxus let his fingers drag over the warm skin. There were bruises, small marks from where his thumbs had dug in or where his lips sucked a little too hard. Although Laxus felt a twinge of guilt for hurting him, he also felt proud of each mar on his skin. They showed that Freed was his again.

"Are you still tired?"

Freed moaned softly, enjoying the touches, so tender after last night.

"I don't blame you," Laxus smiled softly. He had pushed Freed far beyond his limits, enough sex to make up for those weeks of loneliness. "How 'bout I make us some coffee while you rest a little more?"

"Mmh … Sounds good." Freed's voice trailed off, and his shoulder sank into the mattress.

Laxus laughed softly as he sensed him drifting off to sleep. "All right." He kissed Freed's hair and shifted out of the bed.

Freed dreamed of something, but he could not remember the details, only that Laxus had been there. They were on a beach, or maybe an island, their own island far from everything, from families, from deadbeat fathers, from homophobic assholes, just them sitting on the beach, sand in his toes, Laxus' chest behind him like a solid rock, and lumbering arms wrapped around him as the sea breeze brought the smell of bacon and coffee.

Wait, what?

He stirred, the sand and sea gone, but the savory aromas of breakfast became reality. Something smelled good! Freed finally pulled himself out of bed and ran to the bathroom. Laxus had really filled his ass the night before.

He did his business, washed his face, put on boxers and a faded teeshirt from some fencing tournament he won five years ago, and draped his robe around him. Barefoot, he padded out, following the scent like a dog being beckoned.

In the kitchen, he saw him. His master!

Only this morning, Laxus was in yellow boxers and a skintight black tank top with Freed's apron tied around him to protect him from the splashes of bacon grease. Freed paused, taking in the scene. He wanted to remember this: waking up, their first morning as a couple living together, and Laxus fixing him breakfast. For the rest of his life, he wanted to remember this scene of domestic bliss.

"Hey!" he called out. He wanted to see Laxus' face. He wanted his blue eyes in this memorable moment. When he turned around, Freed blinked, like a camera lens snapping a picture. He would remember this when he was old, remember the sunlight on the yellow boxers and yellow hair, the blue apron and blue eyes, and his mind would label it: First Morning Together.

Laxus paused when he turned around. Freed was standing in the doorway, just casual Freed, not an angel or succubus, not the sex fiend from last night sucking his cock like a damn porno star. Just Freed, wearing a robe and comfortable old clothes with messy hair and cheeks blotched from scrubbing away the sleep. Laxus loved this sight. Freed Justine. His Freed!

"Hey, s'up?" he called out, trying to sound casual.

Freed stepped in, wrapped himself around Laxus' back, and looked over his shoulder to see the stove. "Is that … is that bacon? I thought you're Jewish."

Laxus scoffed softly as he watched the meat sizzle. "Everyone loves bacon."

"Right," Freed muttered, thinking about the ham dinner at Christmas. "You're not really that Jewish, right?"

"Yeah, not really," he muttered, more focused on the food. "Not into all that Jewish stuff. A lot of it … eh." He gave a shrug to show he was not all that interested in his heritage. "I mean seriously, have you ever read all the rules and stuff and the Bible? I mean, you can't mix your clothes, like silk boxers and your cotton robe, that's wrong. Eating bacon, that's wrong." He frowned and muttered, "Hell, what we do is wrong!" He heard about it too much on the news, religious groups going after gays, reports of people getting attacked, even killed, just because they were homosexual. It sickened him. "So you know, fuck all that stuff. Some of it's good, though," he insisted. "Do unto others, that thing."

Freed chuckled softly and rested his cheek on Laxus' back. "I think you're quoting the wrong part of the Bible." He remembered his Sunday school lessons and those words from Jesus.

"Yeah, whatever," Laxus grumbled, not all that interested in New versus Old Testament quotes. "So, you like bacon, right?"

"Of course."

"All right," he smiled, glad he got that right, but then instantly realizing it was a stupid question. This was Freed's apartment. He had bought the groceries himself. Freed would not have bought bacon if he did not like it. It was still hard to realize that this was Freed's own place, not a dorm with Loke, but his own. Theirs! It would take a while to sink in. "There's bacon, but I have no idea how you like your eggs, so I just scrambled them."

"O-oh." Freed laughed nervously, stepping aside so Laxus could cook. "I like them over-easy, but scrambled's fine!" he assured.

"Right, over-easy. I'll remember that for next time." Laxus filed that away. He wanted to make awesome breakfasts for Freed, so he needed to learn how he liked to eat. "Oh, some toast. I just used whatever you had."

Freed roamed around and saw bits of breakfast already prepared. Laxus had been busy. He saw the brown bread with toasted bits, a little too dark for his taste, but he could adjust to what Laxus liked, or at least learn how he liked to eat things. Freed prided himself in his cooking, and he was determined to fix Laxus a good meal one of these days. Then he realized he had bought wheat bread. Gluten! Did Laxus have celiac?

"Is wheat all right with you?" he asked in worry.

"Yeah." Laxus took the bacon out, turned off the stove, and brought the plate of fried meat over to the table. He laughed softly as he set it down by the toast and the eggs getting cold.

Freed saw the humor in Laxus' face and arched an eyebrow. "What?"

"We're figuring out all sorts of crazy stuff about each other, aren't we? How we like our eggs, what we like with toast…"

He shook his head. Simple domestic things, so every-day and banal, yet it was amazing how much they still did not know about each other. Something as simple as breakfast showed how far they still had to go, how big their future was, discovering everything about one another.

There were days when Laxus felt like Freed had always been in his life, and whatever came before him was just a dream, a fantasy, no more real than the spectacle he put on the stage with a brass pole and tricks of lighting. And then there were days when he realized he and Freed had so far to go, so much to see, so many things to learn about one another. Life would never be boring. Thirty years could pass, and he would still be discovering things about Freed.

"How do you like your coffee by the way?" He moved off to get two mugs he had found earlier. "It might be a bit strong but, uh … I like it strong." Not knowing what else to do, he simply made it the way he liked it.

"If it's too strong, I can just add creamer."

"Yeah, all right. I saw the creamer somewhere."

Freed rested his cheek on his hand as he sat at the table and watched Laxus moving around. Seeing his ass sticking out of the apron was so sexy, Freed's mind whirled. Only this discussion about food kept him grounded.

"You don't take creamer?

Laxus shook his head. "No, just some sugar. Where's your sugar?"

"U-um, third cabinet over."

"All right." Laxus shifted over to the cabinets and opened one. "Oh, okay."

Freed chuckled to himself, gazing at him with hazy eyes. Laxus, here in his kitchen, making breakfast! "I gotta show you where everything is, huh?"

"I figured out most of it," Laxus said, slightly defensive. "I'll just look around and see where things are. I've got time."

Time! He had plenty of time, but how long really? Months? Years? Would they still be a couple ten years from now? Did he want that? Fuck, hell yes he wanted it! He wanted a lifetime with Freed. Thinking about it made Laxus fumble, and he almost spilled coffee as he brought the cups over.

"Well, here you go: bacon, eggs, with toast. Coffee." He set the coffee mugs down. Then he bolted to the refrigerator and pulled out some orange juice. "And a little cup of juice."

Freed looked around at the setting. Laxus had actually put a lot of effort into this. Freed was stunned that he even put the fork, knife, and spoon in the right order. "That's quite a breakfast." He never ate this much in the morning.

"Most important meal of the day, right?" Laxus said sagely.

Freed hummed in agreement. He gingerly tasted the eggs. They were plain, no salt or pepper. Laxus left seasoning to Freed, which was considerate. He fixed up his eggs was munching on a strip of bacon.

After sipping some coffee, Laxus picked up his headphones and put them on. He seriously needed to get away from Juice Newton and any sappy love songs. Classical would be good. Something with no lyrics to bother him as he ate.

Freed frowned. "H-hey, um, why're you putting on headphones?" He had wanted to talk, although he had no clue what they could say.

"Well, to listen to music, of course," Laxus shrugged.

"Oh, um, I-I thought we could talk … or something."

"About what?

"I don't know. Just … I guess there's nothing really to talk about," he admitted quietly.

Laxus gave a shrug and buttered his toast. "I like to listen to music when I eat."

Freed glanced up dubiously. "You've never done that."

"'Cuz every time we eat, it's out somewhere, at a restaurant or your parents' place. I can't listen to music then. If you're on a date, you don't put on your headphones; it's kind of a standard rule, you know. This isn't a date. This is just…" He shrugged and took a bite out of the toasted bread. "…breakfast."

"Just breakfast," Freed repeated in amusement.

He thought about that. Just breakfast. He knew Laxus was right. Every meal they shared so far had either been in a restaurant, café, a shop around the campus, or one of his family's parties. They had never just sat around the dorm or the tenement and ate a meal together. Now, they were just … eating. They were sitting together casually, a couple having breakfast at home … in their home!

"H-hey, what do you … what do you listen to?" Freed asked eagerly.

Laxus looked up and lowered the volume. "Huh?"

"Uh, well, when you eat. Maybe I wanna hear it."

"Get your own headphones!" he snapped. He saw the hurt expression and laughed at how cute Freed could be when he pouted. "Here, take a listen."

Freed instantly snapped back into a happy-puppy mode. Laxus plopped the headphones over his ears, startling him slightly, but he immediately heard something he was not expecting. Maybe it was due to his days as a dancer, but Freed expected something powerful, percussive, and maybe a little racy. Instead, there were soaring French horns and fluttering clarinets as timpani pattered and thundered behind.

"It's rather nice. I don't recognize it, though."

"Modern composer. Frank Ticheli."

"It's pretty." He handed the headphones back.

Laxus placed them over his ears again. The sound of flutes calmed him. "Yeah."

Freed let a soft giggle slip out. "I still don't picture you as the classical type."

"Screw you! Of course I like classical music. I mean, I like classics—AC/DC, some Metallica sometimes—but," he smiled, sipping his coffee, "nothing beats the classics."

Freed hummed happily to himself. Laxus was a man filled with surprises. When he first saw him, there were plenty of stereotypes Freed had assumed. When he got to know Thor as Laxus, he thought he knew everything. Then he surprised Freed. Just when he thought he knew everything, something else popped up.

Like this food! As Freed and Laxus ate in silence, Freed was truly impressed. He had been skipping breakfast many times, opting to grab a granola bar or just buying a muffin from the coffee stand at the university. He almost forgot the taste of eggs, especially scrambled like this. He still thought the toast was too dark, but it was not bad, and the coffee was strong but not bitter.

Laxus finished first, and he refilled his coffee cup, sitting back in the chair, sipping steaming black coffee as he watched Freed. Cooking for someone else … he probably had not done that since his mother was alive. There were times as a child when he would make dinner for both of them, since she had to work late. It felt good, seeing someone enjoy the meal he made.

At last, Freed lifted his napkin and dabbed his mouth, the plate scraped clean. "Thanks for the meal."

"Yeah, no problem," Laxus smiled. Under the table, his foot tapped Freed's. He watched as the sallow cheeks flushed.

Freed remembered what Laxus said the night before.

"Hey, I was thinking something. Come morning, our seventh time, that perfect time … I want you to fuck me."

Freed gulped now. Was this foot-tapping a signal? Was Laxus ready for … for that?

"Don't you think I want more than just that?"

He wanted more! More than BDSM, more than blow jobs and taking Freed's ass all the time. He wanted more! That!

"I want you in my ass. And I wanna videotape it."

Oh God, he wasn't serious, was he? Freed was pretty sure he could make Laxus feel good, he had thought about asking if Laxus was ready to try it that way, but … videotaped? His first time topping? All the awkwardness? Hell no!

"I'll do dishes."

Freed jolted at the words. "Uh, okay."

Laxus got up, collected the plates, and washed them quickly. Meanwhile, Freed squirmed in his chair.

"We'll have breakfast, some coffee, and then you're going to top."

The time was coming. He would do it, since Laxus wanted it. His body still ached, but he would do it. He would fight against the videotaping, and he would lose against Laxus' stubbornness. Then he would give Laxus a show worth rewatching. Still, it made him nervous. He had never entered someone. What if he totally screwed it all up?

Laxus dried his hands and turned to Freed, smiling as he walked back to the table. Freed's eyes dropped, bashful that maybe Laxus could see the lewd things he was thinking about.

"So, um … um, what do you wanna do next?" he asked breathlessly.

Where would he want to do it? The bedroom like normal? On the couch? Right here, spread out on the table?

Laxus looked around casually and hummed to himself. "It's morning still. Let's watch the news."

Freed jolted. "T-the news?"

"Well, yeah! You know: TV, news anchors, crazy weathermen."

"Oh uh … um, okay. I mean, is that something you do?" he stuttered out. Was he setting this up to have sex on the couch?

"Of course," Laxus said firmly. "Gotta keep up with what's going on."

"Oh." Freed laughed nervously.

Once again, Laxus surprised him. He thought a man like him didn't give a shit about politics, government scandals, Hollywood gossip, foreign travesties, and local miscellaneous. He stuttered nonsense again before agreeing. He heard Laxus moan, saw him stretch out some stiff muscles that reminded him of his own weary aches, before the blond took his mug back to the coffee pot.

"Another cup of coffee?"

The blond looked down at his cup, then up to Freed as if wondering what the problem was. "That's only my second."

"Only?" Freed drank coffee, but one cup had him buzzing all day. "You drink a lot of coffee, huh?"

"Hell yeah. Bad habit. Don't get into it."

Freed laughed, remembering how his mother used to warn him about drinking coffee every morning.

"No seriously." Laxus poured the coffee and stirred in a little more sugar. "I'm, like, addicted to this crap and get a headache."

He marched over to the living room, and Freed scrambled to follow him. They walked together to the couch, sat with their thighs touching, and Laxus turned on the news. He sighed as he settled in to the weatherman cracking jokes about the heat. It then cut to sports, something about golf, and Freed waited in boredom. Unless it was fencing, he had no interest in sports. Entertainment was slightly better. At least Freed knew the actors, although he thought it was sad when they mentioned about possible scandals. Maybe these weren't scandals at all. Maybe that photo of a chaste kiss was totally out of context. Freed could hardly help but think 'What if that happened to us?' What if he and Laxus were the ones everyone wanted a scoop on? He was not famous like Brad Pitt or Benedict Cumberbatch, but his father was a powerhouse in his own right. On a bored week without political rants or Hollywood sex tapes or a natural disaster in some remote part of the planet, the news might latch on to the gay heir to a fortune and his former-strip-dancer BDSM master-slash-boyfriend.

Freed turned his attention away from some report about an actress adopting a new cat—really, who cared—and looked at Laxus. His eyes were unfocused as he sipped his coffee, one leg crossed over his knee, an arm draped over the back of the couch, looking surprisingly comfortable in these new surroundings.

"You don't really seem to be watching the news," Freed pointed out.

Laxus took another sip as the news changed to some protests in Russia. "It's the relaxation in the morning."

"Oh." Freed was not sure what to say about that, but if this was part of Laxus' routine, he wanted to let him do it. They would slowly learn what each other's routines were and fit into the ebb and flow of normal life together.

"I watch it," he insisted. "I like to know what's going on. Especially if it seems like it's my dad."

Freed tensed up at that. "O-oh … yeah, I guess so."

His dad! Laxus had just come back from hunting down his father. He failed, but he had not given up, not yet. What if that man's face showed up on the television screen? Would Laxus race off again? Would he leave, just like that, quicker this time, no chance to lose him, fly away and maybe be gone for weeks, months, a year?

Laxus slid his eyes over and saw the pinch between Freed's brow. "Hey, don't worry about it." Still, Laxus wondered as well. What if he had another chance? Would he leave? He wanted to stay here forever, but he wanted that sonuvabitch to pay. Revenge now battled against love, and both were powerful forces. "Oh! Stocks report." Not like he followed the stock market, but it was a distraction, it was domestic, it was not going to mention people wanted by Interpol. "Hey, that's your company, huh?"

Freed snapped his head up and saw the logo for Justine Corporation. "Y-yeah. Man, we went down." He muttered to himself, "I wonder what happened."

"Is that bad for you?"

"Uh, well, overall it usually balances out." He knew a drop in stocks was nothing to panic over. If stocks went down, they were bound to come up. Unless, of course, something major happened in the company. If that was the case, the news would be all over it. Freed shrugged, not paying the issue much mind. "Something might have happened, who knows." It would be his problem one day, but not yet.

"Hey, um." Laxus frowned as he ignored the rest of the Wall Street news. "If people found out about … us, would that make your company's stocks go down?"

Freed gawked over at him. "Laxus!"

"What? I'm a little worried now. I mean," and he scoffed softly, "what is there to me? You know, I don't really have anything, my grandpa's retired, parents are out of the picture. If people find out about me being with you, who cares? But you! I mean, your family's kinda famous."

"We're not famous," Freed laughed wryly.

"Your dad runs a freaking corporation!"

That was true, and he hated that he had just been thinking about something similar. "Well, we're not famous," he said stubbornly, mostly to convince himself that the news would never give him a hard time.

"You're rich!" Laxus cried out. "You have a lot to lose."

Freed looked hurt and worried by his arguments. "Laxus?"

"Look, I'm not leaving you," he assured. "I don't care if your whole company goes bankrupt because of me, I'm keeping you!"

Hearing that felt nice. It made Freed smile and lean in a little closer. "Well, you know, I don't think it would actually go down. I think … y'know, there's so much support lately for homosexual couples, I think the stocks might actually go up."

Laxus glanced down in surprise. "Really?" He could not imagine that.

"Sure! I mean, I don't wanna go onto the evening news and say, 'Hey, guess what, I'm sleeping with this guy,' y'know, but if it happened to come out…"

He gave a shrug, playing it off as not really being a concern, although there were moments when it really was for him. Not the business aspect of their relationship, if it would help or hurt the company. He heard plenty of that when he first came out as being gay as a teen. His father was in a rage that he was the eldest son, he had duties to carry on the company, have children, be respectable to the outside world. If people found out he was gay, stocks would go down, investors would pull out, and people would stop doing business with them. Surprisingly, it had been Liberty to calm Llewellyn. She was not happy about it either, but he was still her son. She had to respect who he was. The world could change.

And the world did change. Over the years, people became more tolerant. Being homosexual was no longer the taboo it once was. Now, some liberal business professor in Freed's university had the audacity to say "being pro-gay can boost business." Freed did not want to flaunt his sexuality either. It was no one's business if he liked women or men or anything in between. Orientation should affect business no more than race or gender. (It was just a shame that pretty much anything really did affect the prosperity of companies.)

"I'm not going to make it public," he assured Laxus. "It's my own private life. It's my business."

Laxus smiled proudly down at him. Freed was used to this; he had to remind himself of that sometimes. He had grown up with bodyguards, security cameras in every room, being announced at grand galas and débutante balls, maybe news cameras and reporters shouting questions at his father. Laxus had hidden his name as much as possible; Freed did not have that luxury, but he was used to it. He could take care of himself. Those moments when it was blatant that he was no quivering mouse made Laxus so proud.

"That's right," he praised with a soft laugh, patting down Freed's hair. A few strands were still frizzy from the morning. They had not even showered yet. Freed's hair felt a little stiff in the back from sweating, and two parts on the top kept breaking free and sticking out like alien antennas. "And if they do say anything, screw them all. Besides," Laxus smirked slyly, "I'm still able to blackmail a few people."

His past! Freed hated that past. "Laxus, don't!"

"Nah, I won't use them as blackmail," he promised. "That's shitty. But if anything ever happened—anything to you or to your family—I'd be willing to."

"… Thank you." It really did mean a lot, knowing Laxus would take care of not just him, but his family. Family was everything to Freed.

Freed focused on the television again, but his eyes saw little. His biggest concern was the privacy issue. His family was used to it. He had some vague memory of hiding behind his mother's skirts as cameras flashed and his father spoke with boisterous strength about opening a new building for the company. He grew to be used to it, to face those cameras, when to answer and when to keep quiet even when you wanted to answer their questions. Laxus knew nothing of that. Freed did not want Laxus to be smothered by paparazzi. Knowing him, he might punch a reporter if they moved in too close toward Freed. That would definitely hurt business. If they both lived a quiet, normal enough life and kept the Justine Corporation running smoothly, there was no need for the media to dig into his personal life. If, behind closed doors, he liked being spanked and tied up to the bed, that was certainly none of their business.

Mmm … spanked! His ass still hurt, and he shifted positions on the couch.

Freed hummed softly, growing nervous. Sitting here and watching television was not calming him down. What Laxus wanted kept running through his mind.

"Um, about … l-later, when we … you know." He tucked his chin down, although Laxus was focused on the television screen. "You … a-and me … and…"

"Hey!" Laxus shouted without warned.

Freed jolted up. "What?"

"That's Bickslow!"

"Wh-what?" Freed swiveled back around on the couch. "Oh!" Sure enough, his younger brother was grinning at a camera with his tongue hanging out so far, you could see the tattoo he got there not long ago. "Oh my God!" he muttered, amazed to see his brother's face on TV. He glanced around the screen for clues about the report. "I didn't see it. What was it about?"

"He got busted."

"Drugs again?"

Laxus looked over in amazement. "Again?"

"Eh, yeah, it's a thing," Freed shrugged, not all too happy at Bickslow's horrible hobby. "What happened?"

"Something about heroin?"

"Oh God," Freed groaned. Not the first time. "Idiot! Is he okay?"

Laxus turned the volume up. "They just said he's in the hospital."

"Wh-what…?" The news then showed a shot of the hospital building. "Oh! I know that hospital." Magnolia General Hospital. There was no way anyone could miss it.

Freed watched, but that was the end of the clip. It was now discussing a house fire across town. Laxus turned the volume back down and looked over to this boyfriend with concern. Freed looked pale and lost, and Laxus had no clue what to do for him.

Freed's ears buzzed. Bickslow was in the hospital. Overdose. Heroin.

"I … I need to tell … my family … and … and…"

Family. The family had to stick together. Something his mother once said ran through his mind, drowning out something Laxus was saying to comfort him. 'If anything bad ever happens in this family, just stay by them. No matter how bad, the Justine family sticks together. We never abandon one another. Our strength is in our family.'

Family. He needed to contact the family. Maybe they didn't see the report. Maybe they didn't know. The family had to come together now. All differences had to be placed aside. Bickslow needed to see that his family was there for him. Whatever drove him to overdose, he had to see that he still at least had his family. The family stuck together!

The shrill ring of his phone, a tone he used only for family members, made Freed jolt. He ran to the bedroom where he left the cellphone last night and picked it up, seeing his sister's profile picture on the front.

"Evergreen!"

"Did you see it?" she asked, her voice filled with dread.

"Yeah, I just saw it right now." He glanced to the living room where Laxus was turning off the television.

"Where's Dad?"

Freed jolted at the question. "Uh, I don't know." He had not spoken to his father since graduation.

"I tried calling him, but he's not answering." Her voice was climbing with panic.

"It's fine," he said, trying to use his older brother voice, something he had not needed to do since they were children and Evergreen would get scared of the dark. "I mean, maybe he's in the bathroom."

"I called the house." He heard her breathing going erratic. "They said he's been missing for three days!"

Three days? The report, stocks going down, now Bickslow had overdosed, and his father was missing. Freed had been ignoring the drama in the family as much as possible, putting all focus on school, but there had always been clashes between his brother and his father. What the hell was going on?

"Oh God." He rubbed his face and spun around, looking for something to anchor him. Here he was, getting fucked until he nearly passed out, and something dreadful was happening in the family. It made him feel guilty for abandoning them all. He had to take control now. It was one of those moments he knew would come, the day he had to step up and be in charge of the family. He had to guide them through this. Until their father was found, he was in charge.

"Okay, you stay calm," he said to Evergreen, keeping his voice level. "Go to the hospital and see how Bickslow's doing. I'll meet you there. Okay?"

"But what about Dad?" she shrieked.

"I'll … I'll look for Dad." He had to be in charge until Father was found. "Just make sure that Bickslow's okay." He wished she would understand. Their mother was in France. Their father was missing. It was up to the two of them to show solidarity.

She let out a breath, and Freed could practically see her coming to the same conclusion. "Right, okay."

"All right," he smiled, proud his little sister could also rise to the occasion when needed. "I'll see you there."

"Freed," she called out before he could hang up. "Um … how are you doing?"

"Uh, I'm fine," he said with a shrug. He had calmed down now. He had a duty.

"I heard from that roommate of yours, that guy is back."

"Laxus, yeah." Just then, Laxus walked into the bedroom still holding his coffee cup. "Yeah, he's back." Seeing the blond made Freed smile. He could do this if he had Laxus with him.

"Did you two make up?

Freed laughed and looked at the messy bed. "Uh, yeah." Made up, and then some!

"That's good." She sounded genuinely relieved, as if she now had confidence Freed really could take charge since he had such a solid rock to support him. "I rather like him. He's good for you."

Freed's mouth dropped and his eyes softened. "…Thank you."

He had only vague approvals from his parents, mere acceptance out of propriety, never thinking Laxus was a truly good match, never really wanting such an uncouth man for their son. Knowing his sister saw how good Laxus was, how needed he was in Freed's life, deeply touched him. He would have hugged her and cried if they were together.

He felt a touch on his shoulder and jolted. Laxus had a soft smile, probably guessing what was being said.

Freed focused back onto the phone. "Uh, I'll see you…"

"…R-right, at the hospital," she finished, both of them jolting out of the moment. "I'll see you there!"

"All right, take care"

"You too."

Freed ended the call and set the phone down. He felt the tenseness between his brows, and when Laxus stepped up, all Freed could do was look up at him, lost and struggling to stay strong, stay in control. This was about the world outside, and out there he was Freed Justine, heir to a corporation, a man in control of his destiny, a son who would control the fate of all of his employees.

"Your sister?" Laxus asked.

"Yeah, she must have seen it."

"What was that about your dad?"

His father. Shit! His father! "Uh … he … he's been missing for three days." The stability was cracking. He knew he could crumble. Here, in this safe room that was theirs alone, he did not need to stay strong. He still tried out of a sense of pride, but it was a struggle. "She tried calling his phone and he's not answering, and the house, they don't know where he is." Dread turned to anger, and Freed burst in outrage. "Dammit, Bickslow! Why did you do this again?"

He kicked the edge of the bed and collapsed with his face buried in his hands. He had to be strong. The family had to stick together. His father was missing. He was in charge. He had to be strong!

Laxus sat beside him, but he did not touch Freed. He knew this was one of those moments. There would be many, he supposed. He could break Freed's pride and crumble him at any moment, but today was one of the times when Laxus had to be the foundation, rock hard, lifting Freed from shame, and fixing his broken wings. His angel had to fly, had to be perfect, a pure being for the world to gaze upon in awe; Laxus had to be the shadow in the background, the wind beneath his wings—'Fuck, I just went from Juice Newton to Bette Midler!'—supporting him without being seen. Freed needed to be the perfect son today, the proud plutocrat, a symbol of strength. Laxus was prepared to give him all the strength he could spare.

"Look, you go be with your brother."

Freed raised his head, and there were tears on his cheeks. "B-b-but … my dad! He needs to know."

"I'll deal with that," Laxus promised.

Freed stared in confusion. "What?"

"I'll search for him."

"You'll search for him?" he repeated blankly.

"Oh c'mon! I've been searching for my dad for years! I can find your dad."

Find Father. Find Dad. Find him. Laxus could find him. Laxus knew people. Be with the family. Leave the searching to Laxus. "Um … y-yeah, I guess so," he muttered, his mind still in chaos. "You'd do that?"

"Of course," Laxus said with a tender smile. He leaned over, wiped away the tears, and kissed Freed on the forehead. "He's your family."

Freed let out a soft hum. "Thank you."

Laxus rubbed his arms, hoping to instill confidence back into him. It seemed to work. Freed's back straightened and his chest filled up. Laxus could see the aristocrat returning.

"Now, go be with your brother. Give him a smack on the head for me."

Freed laughed softly and nodded. "Yeah, I will."

He got up and took a shower. Laxus straightened up the room and pulled out some clothes for Freed. It was a businessman's attire, good brands, a simple but nice tie, nothing overly formal or dreary. It would look like Freed rushed there from a business meeting, not that he saw the news while sitting in boxers and bathrobes with his boyfriend.

Freed came out and dressed mechanically, not all too surprised to see his clothes picked for him. He was used to it while living at home, a maid choosing the best combination. He did pause and picked different shoes. Laxus had made a small error, but it was understandable. The difference was subtle.

Laxus straightened down his hair, which still tried to stick up. "Are you okay to drive?" he asked, smoothing the hair and tucking the collar a little tighter.

Freed nodded. "Yeah. I'll be okay."

"Are you sure?"

He sniffed up some of the dread and pressed it back down. "Yeah." Still, he trembled as he tried to smile with reassurance. "Not the first time this has happened." He nearly broke down right there. Bickslow needed help, serious help. The press were all over this already. The family could not hide his addiction this time. He would get rehab and counseling; Freed would see to it. Finally! Finally, he would get real help.

Why had they never helped him before. The family knew he had a problem. They knew he was about to cross some border and fall off the edge. Why? Why had they done nothing? Months! Years! How long had this been going on, and never … to keep up appearances, to hide the family's secrets … never … they never helped him. Why?

Laxus finally hugged him and crushed away all those feelings of guilt. "Hey. It'll be all right," he whispered, kissing Freed's hair.

"Yeah," he said with a soft sigh. He wanted so badly to be strong, but he still had to turn to Laxus. It had always been his mother or father to deal with these issues, not him. He had always closed his eyes and simply wished it was not this way, dreamed it would get better, things would change. This time, Bisckslow would clean up for good. Father would deal with everything, Bickslow would come back, and things would be normal again.

This time, he was in charge. He had to be strong. He kept repeating that as a mantra to give him strength. He pulled himself out of the hug and squared his shoulders. Laxus could not be there, not this time. He had to face this on his own, and he could not break down, not even a little. He had to be strong and represent the family. Laxus would find his father. Father would come and deal with things. Until then, he was in charge. He had to be strong. For the family!

Laxus saw the stiffness, how Freed was already bottling down his emotions and fears. He wished he could be the strong one this time, but it was a family matter. He could only be the draconian shadow beneath his angel.

Freed laughed sadly and shook his head. "We had plans." What they talked about last night, all of that anticipation building, the sexual tension growing, and then real life dashed away all of it. In an instant, he had to abandon fantasy for cold reality.

"Plans can wait," Laxus assured him, rubbing his arms again, wishing he could cast a magic spell that would give Freed strength and fortitude. "Go be with your family. It's most important."

"Right," he nodded. The family needed him. The family stuck together. Our strength is in our family. Perhaps that was the ancient family motto of the Justines; he didn't know, but Freed knew that was his motto for the day. "I'll see you later."

"Yeah." Laxus leaned over and gave Freed a peck on the lips. "Be careful driving. Don't spaz out. Keep your speed down. You'll get to the hospital in time."

"All right," he smiled, happy to hear all of this fretting for his safety. He began to walk to the door. "I hope you can find Dad. And let me know!"

"Yeah," Laxus nodded, following him.

Freed paused at the doorway, turned back around to Laxus, and sighed as he tweaked his lips up in gratitude. "Thanks."

"Sure." He kissed Freed again on the forehead. "Bye."

"Bye," he whispered.

Laxus gazed down, and Juice Newton played through his head again.

Just call me angel of the morning, angel.
Just touch my cheek before you leave me, baby.

Maybe the same song was in Freed's mind, or maybe he saw the need in those blue eyes. They both reached out to each other at the same time. Laxus gripped Freed's cheek, desperately wanting him to know how much he loved him. Freed reached up and placed a hand on Laxus' gruff jaw, letting him know that he felt the same. The gentle action made Laxus smile in relief. He leaned into those slender fingers. Then Freed tiptoed up and gave Laxus a kiss on the mouth, smiling with thanks, apology, love, everything he felt in that moment. He looked like he really did not want to go, but knew he could not stay any longer than this.

If morning's echoes say we've sinned,
Well, it was what I wanted now.

Laxus opened the door for him and watched Freed walk out. Before he had a chance to turn around and second-guess himself, Laxus closed the door. Freed was on his own for this one.

Laxus leaned against the door and stared out at the condo. His new home, living together with Freed, and already he had to help out the family. It would have been fine if Freed had his whole family with him. Instead, it was up to him and Evergreen. They had to help support Bickslow alone.

He seethed in anger. "Goddammit, Llewellyn! What the hell did you do?"

That bastard! Disappearing! For three days!

Laxus marched through the pristine condo, eyes sparking with frustration. Freed … his Freed … had to go out there alone. He had to rise to the occasion, because someone wasn't there. Family was supposed to be there. That bastard! Abandoning his kids!

Laxus picked up the phone. He had a few names he could call, but he had a suspicious feeling. He scrolled down and picked someone. The phone rang against his ear, and then a voice was on the other end.

"Hey. Yeah. Ye- … Yes, it's me. Yes!" he said in annoyance. "I know." He suddenly pulled the phone away from his ear and cringed at the screaming voice on the other end. Then he bellowed back at the person. "Will you shut up!" The voice went quiet. "Sorry. Look, I'm looking for someone; kinda average height, a little paunchy, turquoise colored eyes, kinda moosey-colored hair, and… Yeah! Yeah, Llewellyn. He's there?" he cried out in shock. "Are you kiddin' me?" he sneered. "Uh, no! No, don't get him. I'm coming down there." Then whatever the person said made him smile. "No, I'm not gonna start a fight. Actually, his son is looking for him." He scowled at the voice on the other end. "I said I'd be down there, okay? Don't tell him I'm coming." He groaned in annoyance. "No! I'm not gonna cause a fight. I told you, his son is looking for him, okay?" He glared at whatever was being said. "I'm fucking his son! Is that good enough?" He smirked at the shock on the other end. "Yeah, thought so. All right." He smiled as the voice went smoother. "Heh, yeah. Good to be back. See ya soon."

He hung up the phone and stared ahead. The thunder god was crackling with anger now.

Next Chapter: Blessing

Chapter Text

Laxus walked into what appeared to be a normal inner city club, except for the blacked-out windows and a wall separating the rest of the club from the entrance. The person at the entry desk nodded to him in familiarity, and Laxus walked down the short hall. He rounded the corner of the wall and saw the club spread out. This was no normal establishment: the red walls, the black leather couches, a massive steal structure on the ceiling with chains hanging down ready to be used, and two cages, one cramped and so low the person would have to be on all fours to fit, the other narrow, upright, and hanging from the ceiling.

Not many people were in the fetish club this early in the morning. Laxus saw only one, a man in a rumpled white business suit, tie so loose it was almost off, hair a mess, eyes glazed from alcohol. The lady on the phone said Llewellyn hardly left. For three days, he stayed there from opening until they kicked him out. Where he went, no one knew, but he was smelling worse by the day and drinking heavier each time.

Laxus strode up quickly and slapped Llewellyn's back so hard, the ring cracked through the room. "Hey there!" he said with a jovial grin.

Llewellyn choked and coughed out spittle and beer, then looked up and nearly gagged again. "Thor!" He caught himself and shook out his head. "Uh-um…?" There was another name, a real name. His ethanol-addled brain tried to remember it.

"Laxus," the blond said.

"Right. La-Lax-Laxus." He looked up again, and his eyes saddened. "I thought you'd left the country."

"Yeah. I'm back," he said, spreading his arms out, his grand return. He smiled and settled down in a nearby chair. "So!" he said like greeting an old friend. Then Laxus' face went stone cold and he sneered out, "What the hell are you doing here?"

Llewellyn stiffened in dread at that face that threatened extreme punishment. "I-I'm allowed t-to go wherever I want!" he protested, shaking already in both fear and thrill.

"You knew this is the place I used to work."

"Uh … n- … I … No! Uh … Y-you worked here?" he stammered, ending in a tense grin of feigned innocence.

Laxus shook his head at the horrific lying. "You knew."

Llewellyn sank and dropped his head submissively before the dominant. "Who told you?"

"No one. I know you. You're rich, and you can figure this out: where did I go to work."

Llewellyn dared to raise his eyes, looking hurt because he had been deceived. "You're not an electrician," he stated with a pout.

Laxus laughed. That was what he told everyone these days. "Well, sometimes I am. I did fix the lights." He pointed to the ceiling and saw they still worked. Then his eyes narrowed at the middle-aged man in front of him. "You were here to see me."

Llewellyn gave him his most appealing smile. "I was hopeful." His hand crept forward, wanting to touch him again. Laxus saw and pulled back, folding his arms. Llewellyn's fingers curled back, and his head dropped in silent apology.

"Goddammit," Laxus sighed. He really thought this was over. He had hoped there would be no more awkwardness. Fuck his life! Fuck his past!

Llewellyn muttered awkwardly, "Look, if you're here, somewhere in public, and you … you happen to be working at a club…" Llewellyn stiffened stubbornly. "I'm allowed to go into that club!" He nodded firmly and stated in slow articulation, "I have the right to go where I want."

Laxus eyed him and saw the same proud expression as he had just seen on Freed. He knew now where Freed got that trait: those stiff and squared shoulders, the unsmiling face, the gleam in his eyes, even the way his thumb pressed down his other fingers until a knuckle cracked. All the same traits!

"You're right," Laxus said softly. He leaned back in his chair and nodded. "You have the right," he acceded, and Llewellyn grinned at his victory. Laxus drummed his fingers on the table, snapped his eyes over to Llewellyn, and said in a direly soft voice, "But don't ever come in here again. Do I make myself clear?"

The hissed word stung worse than a shout. Llewellyn stuttered as he felt imprisoned by those electric blue eyes. "Uh … b-but … Thor—"

"Laxus!" he snapped.

"L-Laxus," he whispered. Saying that name was saying the name of the man who loved his son, not the dominant who had fulfilled every kinky desire he ever wanted. His Thor! "I just really needed to see you again. That was all! Just to see you," he sighed, aching for those days of being the slave and this blond god lording over him.

Laxus turned his eyes away, sickened by the neediness he was witnessing. "Goddammit," he whispered. Would that past never stop haunting him? Coldly, he stated, "Three fucking days."

Llewellyn looked stunned. Not acceptance, not a rejection, just a statement from out of nowhere. "Wh-what?"

Frustration turned to outrage. "You've been gone for three … fucking … days!" Laxus bellowed. "And your family has no clue where you are."

"I have my cel– … um." He glanced down at his phone and frowned. "Okay, it's dead." He stubbornly grabbed his drink. "I … I just needed to get away." He gulped down the amber liquid. "You don't know the type of stress I'm going through, okay!" he screamed. "Stocks are down, and … and Bickslow—"

"Bickslow's in the hospital," he cut in.

Llewellyn's drunken rant stopped as his face paled. "W-What?"

"Yeah. Overdosed. Almost died." Laxus slapped the glass out of Llewellyn's hand, and it smashed to the floor. "It was on the fucking news!" he screamed.

Llewellyn blinked numbly. "B-b-but he said…" His breath caught as his brain focused and remembered. "Oh God. I was yelling at him." His lower lip trembled, recalling harsh words, things he said, things he did not mean. He shook his head in despair and gasped for air as thoughts of his family, his precious children, tormented his conscience. His face collapsed into his hands. "Oh God!" He looked sick, ready to vomit it all back up. He began to cry with guilt.

Laxus sighed and looked away. How could he stay mad when this man was still a father and cared for his children? He made mistakes; he was human, an adult, and under intense stress. Still, even when he fucked up, he loved his children. That much was apparent by the devastation at hearing his younger son had almost died. Rather than the enraged lecture Laxus had prepared, the blond sighed and spoke calmly.

"Look, he's in the Magnolia General Hospital. Evergreen and Freed are already there."

"Okay," he nodded, straightening up.

Again, Laxus saw pride and dignity. It had taken Freed a long time to slip into the role society expected of him. Llewellyn seemed to be a pro at putting on the mask. One minute he was a mewling masochist begging to return to his former master, the next he was a shattered father racked with guilt, and as soon as he realized he had to face the world, as swift as a sword strike, he was a gentleman again.

"Wait, how do you know this?" Llewellyn asked belatedly.

"Freed and I are together."

Llewellyn stared for a long time. Together. He was Laxus. Laxus belonged to Freed. Thor had been his master, but that was another man, a fantasy.

"Oh," he whispered. His eyes drifted. What sort of father was envious of his children? It was pathetic, undignified. He smiled against the pain. "Oh." His son had a man like this. He wanted the best for his children, and seriously this man was the best he had ever known. "I guess … yeah, he would take you back." Of course he would. Anyone would want this dominating god.

"I'm glad he did," Laxus nodded.

The faintest moan of disappointment slipped out as Llewellyn looked away. This man … his Thor … was now with his son … fucking his son … those things they had shared together, moments of pain, pleasure, hours together … things like that … now with his son…

"Get it through your skull, Llewellyn. We're in love."

He jolted out of the past and looked up in shock. In love! He had shared so much with Thor, but never love. Never had Thor shown him love. What was it like to receive not just pleasure from this man, but his love? What was a god's love even like? How powerful it must be!

"What you and I had was a business arrangement," Laxus said coldly. "I know it meant a lot to you, and you were good people, but you were a client. That's all. One … of many … clients."

Llewellyn dropped his head. It really did hurt to hear that. All those fantasies, all those nights dreaming of this man, having him do wonderful, sensual, kinky things to him, and Laxus had merely been there to collect a paycheck. A client! One of many!

"I wasn't very special, huh?" he whispered sadly.

Laxus despised how similar their voices were. Closing his eyes, it would be like talking to Freed. If things had been different, if Freed had remained a mere client, would he have had a conversation like this with him? Would those turquoise eyes had looked so miserable? Laxus gulped before he could continue. He had to be cold now. This issue could never come up again. Never! Here and now, it had to end. With just the two of them, together, more or less alone, it had to stop.

"The only thing that made you special was the fact that you weren't a raging pervert. So please." Laxus paused for a moment and looked at Llewellyn with earnestness. "Don't act that way." It was a heartfelt plea. This had to end. He wanted it to end good. For Freed's sake, this had to end good!

Llewellyn fisted up both hands. He knew the same thing. It would never go back to how it was. Thor was dead. This was Laxus, and Laxus belonged to Freed. Still … if this was not right … if this was fickle as love so often is … if there was any hope…

Struggling to say the words, he asked, "How serious … are you and … m-my son?"

Laxus' eyes narrowed fractionally. "Fucking serious."

Lewellyn took a slow breath. He needed to know. To move on … no, this was not just about him and his worn out desires. To accept this, to accept them, to protect his son, to protect the whole family, he had to know. He had to!

His eyes flashed up, the glare of a father protecting his child. "How … serious?"

Laxus was momentarily frozen by that paternal stare, but he faced this challenge without flinching. "Let me put it this way." He firmed up, and with the strongest, most somber expression he could give, Laxus asked, "Do I have permission to have him?"

The request stunned the older man. "W-wait, you mean—?"

"Do I have your permission? Your blessing?" Laxus did not flinch, blush, or show the anxiety racing frantically in his heart. He stared unblinking, waiting as Llewellyn slowly processed what was being asked.

"Uh!" he cried out in anguish. He had hoped it was something fleeting. They were both young, it was summer love, nothing more. Hearing this … he never expected it from any of his children so soon. He gulped hard and tried to regain his composure. "Uh … a-are you two…?"

"Not yet," Laxus said, skipping past all the stutters of surprise, "but I'd like to know I at least have your blessing for when I'm ready."

Laxus shifted his hand forward on the table, and Llewellyn glanced down to it. The light caught a gleam on the silver promise ring with an etched sword. Freed's sword! Llewellyn looked up in astonishment and silent questioning. Laxus gave a wordless nod. Yes, that was Freed's ring. Llewellyn's happiness won over, and he blinked away tears.

"You're that serious, huh?"

"Yeah," Laxus answered, but he still gulped, waiting and worrying. If he did not have permission, then fuck them all. Still, family was everything to Freed. For his sake, Laxus wanted this. He needed it. He had to know