Eggsy had a ridiculous Harry Potter phase when he was a kid. His mum had helpfully stitched together a striped scarf for him to wear borderline religiously for a handful of years, Gryffindor red and gold clashing with everything he wore during the winter.
(He knows now that he’s always been a Hufflepuff at heart, of course. His results from Rowling’s Pottermore only confirmed the realization he had after rereading the series in a week.)
Even now, fully-grown and an agent for one of the most secretive secret agencies, he can recite countless lines and discuss the most meaningful aspects of the series’ themes with ease. It’s a comfortable conversation topic since he has yet to meet someone who hasn’t at minimum seen some of the movies.
That being said, he knows what parts of Potter’s adventures personally resonate with him. The experiences with the Dursleys particularly hit home after his mum’s remarriage--Part of him had hoped for a long, long time that Dean shoving him around meant he had some good luck coming his way in the form of a special owl-delivered letter a year or two or five late.
Specifically however, he knew that had he been friends with Lily and James Potter he would have been the first choice for their Secret Keeper.
Eggsy has a variety of skills, but above all else, he can keep secrets. Back when they still called Jamal Janelle, Eggsy had been the first to hear about how he wanted to be identified. Eggsy’s discretion is the reason why he was able to explain his decision to his family without it already being a rumor around the neighborhood. When Michelle found out she was pregnant with the baby, Eggsy sneaked around for prenatal vitamins and perused online forums for safe pregnancies until she figured out how to tell Dean. He still hasn’t told anyone about the time he saw his old history teacher at a club, dressed like a woman and flirting with the bartender without his wife’s collar adorning his long neck.
It goes without saying that Eggsy has kept his own secrets as well as others’.
Through his generosity, Kingsman has received a lot of what makes Eggsy, Eggsy. He’s given them his gymnastics and fighting skills, given them his body more times than he cares to count, given them his obedience and a good chunk of his loyalty, given them all he can give except the handful of secrets he guards for himself.
Some of them aren’t even that bad. His disgust for any alcohol that isn’t beer is one. That’s a secret he can’t let slip because “wine-and-dine” nights with Roxy are the highlight of his month and if choking down expensive wine and pretending the migraine he gets from it is nonexistent lets him and Roxy have their fun, that’s what he’ll do. His tiny, slightly inappropriate crushes on his bosses—Embarrassing, of course, but nothing that would ruin his life if someone found out. He also might have hit the baby’s head against the wall when he was carrying her to bed once, but he will absolutely not say a word about that until she’s old enough for him to ascertain if he screwed her up or not.
Some are pretty bad, but again: Ultimately, not life-ruining. Stealing Harry’s house keys and making a copy for himself—Bad, completely illegal, but worth it when he found the file that had Merlin’s real name in it at Harry’s desk. Nicking half of Harry’s cologne was superfluous after that victory but extremely worth it to be able to douse his pillow in it.
(He hasn’t slept so well in years.)
Even more selfishly, he lied to Merlin and created three missions out of a fake threat. After all, lying to Merlin about what happened to his second pair of glasses was easier than saying he saw his ex approaching and panicked. He let a petty drug dealer take the fall, saying the bloke caught him and recognized him from a bust a month back. That got him taken out despite not technically being a threat. (Not like the man didn’t deserve it, but it wasn’t really Kingsman business.)
Most, if not all, of these Eggsy will take to his grave. Unless someone directly confronts him about them, he won’t say a word.
His largest, worst secret falls under the “This cannot be unearthed or else my life will be over and I’ll need to move to a remote village in New Zealand if I ever want to regain a speck of my dignity” category. And, obviously, it is one that can be directly confronted much more easily than any of the rest of his secrets. (It’s not like anyone’s going to ask him about that time he babysat the baby when she was just shy of a year old, after all. No one’s going to smell his pillow and say, “This smells oddly like Harry Hart. And is that a whiff of Aaron “Merlin” Chambers I detect?”)
In his defense, he figured he could keep it secret longer than he did. He knew that street drugs were getting more dangerous, especially after V-Day and mind control became a conceivable possibility in more ways than just SIM cards and signals, but that doesn’t mean he really comprehended it. Without Ryan dealing anymore and with Dean mostly out of his life, Eggsy hadn’t kept up with the ebb and flow of drug popularity. He assumed weed had been due for a comeback, what with America considering legalization and bringing it up in the media more and more often.
A drug that forces a Drop though? That’s like a bad fiction cliché, usually only in campy sci-fi and fantasy media. He heard rumors but like a moron Eggsy laughed and thought, “Saw that Star Trek episode when I was ten.” Stupidly, he assumed that Merlin would have added that information into the file for his mission.
Apparently, Kingsman didn’t think mentioning the drug was necessary since doms don’t Drop.
Obviously, all agents are doms. So this shouldn’t have been a problem. The drug being airborne and easy to distribute in enclosed spaces, its popularity at its peak, the owners of the dom-club having a clear partnership with the newest distributor and a clientele that likes their subs easy to maneuver and woo—shouldn’t have affected a Kingsman agent, is the gist of the matter.
Merlin’s voice in his ear, getting less and less clear as Eggsy walks farther into the club, is a sign that it is most definitely a problem now. He hasn’t been Under for ages and never really around anyone else, but he knows how it feels. The lack of panic is a good indicator of how far gone Eggsy already is.
He takes a seat at the bar, as expected of an agent. He mechanically scans over the area, letting the glasses take in everything—from the gaudy gold curtains marking off the private areas, the matching gold “toys” on stage for the night’s performance later, and the purple couches and seating to the group of subs already fallen Under, tied up to the right-hand wall waiting for the VIPs of the night to arrive. One of them catches Eggsy’s eye and gives him a dopey smile, raising a shackled hand to wave kindly. It makes him breathe a little easier to see that they have consented to this, at least. With a group that large, even deep and drugged, they would have fed off of each other’s panic being that close in proximity to each other.
His knees itch and his breathing is slowing even as he holds up a hand to wave the bartender over. Placing an order with a charming smile, he murmurs, “Sorry Merlin, can you repeat that?”
An aggravated sigh is his answer, and /that/ grates along his back like a cat being pet backwards when he’s deep and getting deeper. He tries not to cringe too obviously.
“Do try to keep up, Kay. I said that the mark will most likely be picking a sub from the wall. He’s looking for one to collar and as far as our intel goes, he hasn’t picked someone yet the past three nights he’s been here.” His microphone is covered for a moment, muffling his next words to someone who’s not Eggsy. After Eggsy receives his drink and pretends to take a sip, Merlin continues, “Harry suggests you go in and look like you’re willing to buy for the company you’re ‘representing’, strike up a conversation with him about his preferences and then suggest your ‘father’s’ services with the business card we gave you to use. If you’re lucky, you’ll get a number for us to follow up on later.”
“That’s it?” Eggsy frowns.
“Well obviously if you get more information, that would be splendid. But don’t be too obvious. The primary objective is to get him to take your card so we can track him. Otherwise, keep it simple tonight. This is our only shot—He’s leaving the country after tonight.”
“So he won’t be looking for subs after tonight,” He mutters, swirling his drink around. He scratches at his knees absentmindedly, humming. “And if I don’t get the tracker on him, we got nothin’. But he don’t take pushy well, yeah?”
“Got it in one, Kay.” They don’t say anything to each other for long minutes. Eggsy doesn’t feel inclined to move, content to listen to Merlin’s breathing and nurse his drink. As more and more people start to pile into the room as the “hot hour” approaches, Merlin suddenly says, “We’re not expecting miracles here, but. Well. Do your best, Eggsy.”
That’s a direct, dangerous order.
All at once, Eggsy realizes how deep he is. Because suddenly doing his best seems like the only thing he can do. His face feels hot with anticipation as his mind races. He knows he can think of a better plan than the one Merlin gave him, a better way to get information from the mark and then that will be Eggsy’s best. Because Eggsy is a damn good sub—He knows he is, he’s sweet and can make a great first impression when necessary and if the mark is looking for a pre-trained sub to collar that means he’s looking for competence and obedience.
Eggsy can work with that. Because he is a damn good sub, even if he’s never had a chance to prove it before.
“Kay, your heart rate just spiked. What’s wrong?”
He glances at the mirror behind the bar’s bottles, mostly accidentally but somewhat purposefully. He’s too far gone to understand how wrecked he looks, how wide his pupils must be, but he knows Merlin will put it together in time if he gives him that hint. Probably not right away, doms are dumb like that—can’t tell when a sub is gagging for it and can’t tell when a sub wants them to take a hike because they’re ultimately hopeless morons—but he’ll get it eventually. Eggsy wants him to.
“Eggsy, you have to talk to me. What’s happening?”
With a gentle grin, Eggsy reaches up and flicks off the incoming and visual transmissions for his glasses before he can give directions. Merlin will still be able to hear, but that’ll be it. (“Keep ‘em wantin’, baby. No matter what they say, doms like to be teased a bit.”) He doesn’t need to be distracted, after all.
Having an order to follow grounds Eggsy and lets his movements come naturally. He hasn’t had to pull a man for ages, but he remembers how easy they are. It’ll be a piece of cake.
He wanders over to a couch near the wall of subs, patting their heads in greeting when he wanders by. They lean in freely due to some instinct that tells them he’s not a threat. It makes his chest glow with warmth—Being surrounded by the Kingsman, while fun, is still being surrounded by a large group of doms. It feels good to be close to subs again and to be able to be one of them for the first time in months. One nips at his hand slyly and he laughs, nudging her knee with his foot playfully before retreating.
Humming, he collapses into the couch and stretches out languidly, arm dangling off the side of it. He makes his body language that of a tentative, inexperienced dom. By taking up more space than socially appropriate, he seems overly confident to the point that it makes others perceive him as insecure. Experienced, well-trained doms will be able to see through his posture and note that he’s faking—If the signs of an impending Drop aren’t obvious enough, that is. Good doms would be able to see he’s Under from across the room, but he isn’t expecting any of those here.
Eggsy floats for around a half hour. The mark isn’t there yet, and nothing seems good enough to hold his interest. He almost regrets turning Merlin off—It would have been distracting, but his voice is very nice to listen to. But no—to be good, he has to be focused. Floating and waiting is fine, but being completely distracted would be bad. He gives encouraging thumbs-ups to the subs that get taken away by the VIPs as they pass. Some look thrilled, others look nervous—One went to her knees the second a petite blonde woman grabbed her leash. That dom looked horribly smug as she pulled the lanky sub away.
He barely startles when a hand clasps his shoulder. He knows who it is, after all. Slowly, he turns his eyes to the thick hand, up the hairy arm, to the harsh, square-shaped face staring at him with amusement. Eggsy smiles.
“Can I help you?” He asks. Carefully, he ducks his head—In his faux-dom posture, virtual suicide. Doms, no matter how inexperienced, don’t show their necks. He knows that and the mark knows that—A calculated move to let him know, “Yes, aren’t I interesting? I’m an available sub in a predominantly dom-club. No collar, see?” without having to outright say it.
The mark smiles back. His dark hair falls into his caramel elevator eyes. “Should I be asking you that? You’re not the normal crowd here, darling.”
Eggsy leans into the mark’s touch. The man’s eyes light up and he squeezes his hand tighter. Eggsy tries to look like he bit off a pleased sound. “May I speak freely, sir?” He asks breathlessly.
He can almost see the mark’s blood rush south at that. “You may.” The husky tone? Eggsy knows what that means. (“Doms get riled up so easy. They think they’re observant, but they only see what we let them.”)
“To be honest, I’m here because—This is sort of embarrassing,” Eggsy laughs gently, self-deprecatingly. He scrubs a hand over his face. “Forgive me. But my father works with your company, and he has talked so much about you. I’ve fancied you for quite awhile just through his stories and following you through the media—You’re very charming, Mr. Bennett, without even trying. Your business is remarkable and I’m intrigued by the decisions you’ve made. I’m a computer science major at school, you see, and what you’ve made—It’s what I dream of working with someday. The software your company makes is fascinating, I’m writing a report about it now, actually.”
“Is that so?”
He slams his eyes shut and nods, flushing red. He shakily says, “When Father mentioned that you were in town and were going to be here—so close to my own house!—I figured it wouldn’t hurt to be here tonight and hope to catch your attention.” He laughs again, shaking his head. The mark’s fingers tighten painfully. “It all sounds rather ridiculous now that I’ve said it out loud, you see. But I couldn’t help it.”
There’s a long, tense moment of silence. Eggsy, blatantly desperate, adds, “You’re even more impressive in person, sir. Really, I’ve imagined this for months but seeing you here is—Wow.” He ends, breathlessly and quietly, with, “Just wow, sir.”
Bennett’s hand migrates from his shoulder to his hair, and Eggsy gasps when it tugs on it. “You’re Tyler’s boy, aren’t you? From the construction company, yes?” He urges Eggsy off the couch easily, lets him fall to his knees.
“So well-trained,” Bennett murmurs. “Did Tyler train you himself?”
“No sir.” Eggsy whines when Bennett’s hand trails across his jaw. “Sir, please—“
“Would you like me to take you home, darling?”
(“Doms are easy, baby. If you get them to think that you think they hung the moon, you’re in. They’ll take you home if you look vulnerable and desperate for them and only them. Won’t even need your name as long as you make them think they’re singular. They’re hooked.”
“They love feeling wanted more than anything. It makes them feel powerful.”
“But we got all the power, don’t we?”
“Well that’s the best part, innit?”)