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It was Wednesday when he decided that he had enough.

Searle was supposed to know what bothers his crew, so it was frustrating that he couldn't quite solve the problem between Capa and Mace. Honestly, he couldn’t even tell what the problem was exactly. It was not simple either.

If it were about anyone else Searle would think that their fights were just a typical power play, to establish who the Alfa male is. It would suit a guy like Mace, but Capa? He was quiet, almost shy, but Searle knew for a fact that it wasn't just Mace initiating their brawls! Capa looking for a scuffle with obviously stronger man was as strange as Mace taunting someone so obviously weaker. Mace wasn’t a jock, Searle knew enough about his past and background to be sure of that. But still, he was going out of his way just to tease their quiet physicist.

Searle’s second guess would be a girl. Cassie was young and attractive, plus, she clearly had a crush on Capa. Of course, this theory was as much out of question as the first one, or even more, since Mace never even talked to the girl unless it was absolutely necessary and it was obvious that he wasn’t very fond of her.

The crew didn’t seem to share Searle’s worries. They quickly accepted the situation and got used to the strange dynamic between the two men. They ignored them completely most of times not even trying to separate them anymore. But Searle was their doctor and psychological officer. It was not only his duty as a soldier but also responsibility as a medic to help people under his care.

He carefully applied more antiseptic on Mace’s split lip.

“So, he started it this time, didn’t he?”

The engineer frowned in surprise. He clearly didn’t like to be surprised by anything.

“How did you know?”

“If he actually managed to lay one on you, it means he surprised you. Also, when I came in it seemed that others ignored your fight. They usually try to separate you two when you’re the one who had started it. I think they fear that you would pummel him.”

“I can pummel him just as well when he starts.”

“Yes. But maybe they figured that if he was looking for trouble and found it, then it’s his problem.”

“You know, he’s actually stronger than he looks…” Searle chuckled but took a mental note of how the other soldier defended the civilian’s abilities. “…and he has this nasty way of distracting me when he wants to surprise me.”

The doctor nodded and started to clean his utensils.

“Still, it doesn’t explain how you are always the one with more bruises. You could probably kill him with your pinkie. “

“That’s the problem, doc. I don’t want to kill him. We need him to deliver the payload.”

It quickly became obvious that there was nothing more important than the mission in Mace’s head. It was on the top of the priority list for them all, but only Mace was so completely single minded about their mission. It was his order and he was a soldier through and through, but Searle believed the reason was much deeper than that. It was more than a duty for him, very much like for Capa. The two young men had probably more in common than they would think. If they only tried to sit and talk instead of pushing and shoving, if they would get to know each other, they would probably become good friends.

And that was it.

It was a revelation. The simplest and the most logical solution.

“So how long do I get this time?” Mace’s low voice brought Searle back to the conversation.

“What?”

“The Earth Room. How long do I get this time? Please make it less than an hour.”

The medic smiled. He knew that Mace hated to waste time in the projection, but every time after leaving the room the engineer was smiling and he seemed undeniably calmer, happier and more willing to apologise.

“I'm not sure. I need to talk to Kaneda. Get in until I'm back.”

It was harder to convince Kaneda than Searle anticipated.

“Are you seriously asking me this? What if they kill each other?”

“I don’t think it’s possible. I’ve never seen more than a scratch on Capa. Mace knows better than to do anything drastic. If he wanted to hurt him he would do it long time ago. He would never risk compromising the mission and you know it.”

“So what’s the purpose? To make him get more bruises?”

“Mace can hold his own. I want them to talk. They will do so, even if just to kill the boredom.”

“The way I see it, talking will only provide more reasons for them to fight. And that is a way to kill time too.”

“But they already fight anyway. They do it for months now. We separate them and it only gets worse. I really believe that doing the opposite may be the key."

For an excruciatingly long moment the doctor almost defiantly held his captain’s doubtful eyes, until the Japanese finally nodded in agreement.

“Don’t make me regret this, Doctor.”

“If this won’t help then I don’t know what else to do. I’m at my wits’ end with these two.”

Kaneda’s face was unreadable in a way that made Searle think that the captain was hiding something. But, as intriguing as it may have been, the doctor had to deal with other things first. He needed to force two troublemakers to make up.

“You’ve got to be kidding me." Capa did his best to look frightened and hoped against all logic that it would be enough to make Searle change his mind. “You can’t lock me up in there with this jerk.” In answer to his whining a familiar hand grabbed the front of his thin loose tank top and pulled.

“Watch your mouth, or I’ll shut you up.” Mace’s face was tight with all the pent up anger he tried not show. And it was only few inches from Capa’s own. The taller man had two days stubble on his sharp cheekbones and his hair was getting way too long again, falling into his angry eyes.

“You two have 24 hours to talk, or beat out of each other, whatever it is that makes you fight. If this won’t help we will have 1 hour therapy sessions every day, with both of you together. If you don’t want to share your childhood traumas in front of each other for one hour a day for the rest of the flight, than please, take this chance seriously.”

“Searle… you’re joking, right?” Mace crossed his muscled arms across his broad chest in defensive gesture.

“Mace, I will do whatever I have to do to ensure that the crew of this ship is safe and comfortable around both of you.”

“You can’t force two people to like each other.” The engineer’s words stung more than Capa thought possible, but he swallowed the lump in throat and forced himself to agree with the soldier.

“I hate to admit it but he’s right for once. Just… give us one last chance.”

“No. This is your last chance. You’ve had plenty of time and many chances since this whole thing had started and it only got worse. We tolerated occasional fights but you just had to make it a regular thing, at least twice a month; then once a week. Are you even aware that you fight every single day now? And that often even this seems not to be enough anymore?!”

Mace met Capa’s eyes for a moment, confirming that neither of them was aware of that particular detail.

"It’s every freaking time you two are in the same room! We all have enough of this. We’re done waiting and giving you chances, so GET INTO THIS ROOM. Now!”

Robert didn’t dare to meet Searle’s eyes and didn’t want to see anger in Mace’s, so he just looked at the floor. “Fine… Let’s get this over with.” He stepped into the room and waited, but of course Mace had no intention of making things the easy way.

“Searle, this is crazy. We’ll be stuck there together, trying not to kill each other. How is this supposed to help?”

“You don’t understand. You go there to fix this. If you don’t, we’ll get there the hard way. We’ll start with one hour every day, then we can make it two, or three if it’s still not enough.”

Mace snorted and moved to walk through the door but paused by the doorframe.

“What if we figure it out and make up sooner? Am I supposed to knock on the door or shout or what? Does the comm in the room work?”

“You still don’t understand. Unless there’s an emergency these door don’t open until tomorrow. There’s food and water to last you even two days and the toilet is to the right.”

The door slid close and the sound of bolts latching sealed their fate.

Robert jumped startled when Mace’s fist hit the metal surface separating them from freedom. Here they were, together… in the same room… or more like an infirmary. There were two beds by the opposite walls but Capa doubted any of them would peacefully go to sleep that night. Almost as if he heard Capa’s thoughts and wanted to immediately prove him wrong, Mace crossed the room and fell onto one of the beds. He laced his hands under his head and closed his eyes.

There wasn’t much Capa could do then but stare, partially in disbelieve and partially in awe. Mace was wearing a worn out T-shirt, slightly tight around his arms and chest. His eyelashes were ridiculously long and his lips too red and too full for a guy, but he was nowhere near girly. He was an epitome of manliness in the physicist eyes and Capa couldn’t help but drink in the view so generously presented in front of him.

“Stop staring at me.”

Capa blinked and blushed, but didn’t look away. Some part of him simply refused to do what Mace was telling him to do. "Mace... You're not seriously going to sleep, are you?"

The engineer's eyes stayed closed this whole time and it made Robert wonder how the other man knew that he was being watched.

"Oh yes, I am. I'm going to sleep through the next twenty-four hours and when we get out of here I'll never step into the same room as you."

The engineer's wrathful words set fire to Capa's blood. "Are you nuts? I'm not going to waste an hour a day for some freaking therapy just because you can't properly talk to people!"

Mace's eyes finally snapped open. "If we stop fighting there will be no therapy. It's as simple as that. Stay away from me and everyone will be happy."

"Searle is not stupid. He will know."

"All Searle wants is for us to stop upsetting the others. And he's right. So it stops here. We don't even have to share meals. I will gladly take mine elsewhere."

Something clenched painfully over Capa's heart. "I refuse to agree to that."

"And do I fucking look like I care what you think? It's all your fault in the first place!"

Adrenalin was already buzzing in Capa when he was getting into the room, but now it started to boil. Searle did say that they were allowed to beat it out of each other, right?

Mace covered his face with his hands and rubbed it, mumbling. "I fucking hate you."

It was enough to make the scrawny scientist snap and a heartbeat later he was straddling Mace trying to punch him. Of course only a second later, when he was being pressed to the bed by the bigger and much stronger man, he suddenly remembered why it was a bad idea in this circumstances.

For starters, there was no one to help him here, but it wasn't the worst problem. They were locked in a room, lying on a bed and Mace was positioned between his spread thighs, holding him down, and glaring at him with almost blinding fury.

...

All his life Robert Capa was a quiet one. He never caused troubles and even when he occasionally got beaten at school he usually remained rather unconcerned about it. There was physical pain which caused some discomfort but aside from that there was nothing. He never cared.

This 'not caring' often worried his parents and teachers who believed that he needed to make friends and have other interests beside his studies. Robert knew better. He made Ph D when he was 17. He had more important things on his mind than friendships or girlfriends. He wanted to save the world!

But no matter how hard he tried to keep to himself, how much he wanted to blend into the background and become invisible, people always noticed him anyway. He was the genius everyone talked about. They always wanted to meet him, talk to him or shake his hand. Disturbingly huge number of girls found him cute and tried to ask him out. All of this made Capa try harder to stay away. He wasn't attracted to women but still avoided men. Getting close to anyone always seemed like too much trouble and he wouldn't have time for a relationship anyway.

After 'Icarus I' went missing and the second team was about to be formed there was only him and Kaneda. The rest of the crew was about to be selected from a group of candidates from all over the world, the best of the best. They all had to complete the four months training and selection was a part of this process.

That's when things started to change for Capa but, unfortunately, back then he didn't even really notice.

It was their first lecture and all the candidates were present. Capa sat with Kaneda in front of the crowd, feeling like an animal in a zoo. After some quick introduction the lecture started and Capa decided it would be best to keep his head down and not make an eye contact with anyone. Still, he couldn't help but notice a group of young pilots in the back. All of them were wearing standard green pilot suits, but some of them had the top part unzipped and hanging around their waist. All of them had clear crew cuts but some more high and tight style. They were also all very handsome. There was no way to distinguish one from the other, except maybe by their hair colour though most of them had brown hair, except two blonds, two brunets and one redhead. There was no particular reason to favour any one above others but for some unfathomable reason Capa's mind did just that.

Even now, almost a year later, Capa still couldn't tell why his eyes stopped on Mace back then. He was neither one of those with unzipped suit nor those with high and tight. His hair was dull brown and honestly Robert wouldn't even choose him as the most attractive from the group though he undeniably was really hot. He was just one pilot among many others but Robert couldn't take his eyes off him. The funny thing was that he didn't realize he was staring until the other man felt his intense look and turned to meet it.  Dropping his head and trying to hide his burning cheeks Robert prayed that the guy would ignore him, but when some higher power did listen to his plea, instead of expected relief all that Robert could feel was regret and something akin to panic.

Later he left to seek shelter in a bathroom.  After splashing some cold water onto his face and taking a few deep breaths he was once again calm and and maybe just mildly disappointed. After all, he was fine and at the time he even hoped that the intriguing man would drop out from training rather sooner than later.

All too soon Kaneda had found him and dragged him back to answer the candidate's questions. They had a lot of them and Capa remembered that Mace didn't ask even a single one but listened carefully and at some point spoke, commenting one of Kaneda's answers. His surprisingly deep voice made Robert's knees go weak. He was glad he was sitting because it almost made him swoon. The physicist was completely overwhelmed and he actually missed the question Kaneda directed at him in response to Mace's comment. He wanted to apologise to both his captain and the handsome engineer but he directed his awkward 'sorry' to his own laps.

It wasn't very smooth. It made him look bad, like he didn't care what others have to say. Any other time other people's opinion wouldn't bother him at all, but then, any other time he would not be distracted.

After that he avoided attending lectures at all cost but there was no way out of the physical training. It was something he sorely needed. Moving in a space suit was a nightmare and even putting the thing on was a science in itself. Dealing with zero gravity was a pain and it was only one of far too many things Capa needed to learn. Needless to say, PE was never among his favourite subjects at school...

And it was a lot like being back at school, with one painful difference. Back then he didn't care if he did well because the World's survival didn't depend on his result, and there was no handsome soldier watching and judging his every move. To his credit, Mace never laughed at him, even when his friends sometimes did. He basically ignored Capa's existence and it was driving the physicist crazy with want to get his attention. It was pure madness.

"Harper! Mace! Help Capa up!" Kaneda was wonderfully patient with Capa's clumsiness and Robert couldn't be more grateful for the man's help and support, but...

There's always a 'but' in Capa's life.

It was obvious from that first lecture that Mace impressed Kaneda with his attitude and surprising accurateness of his judgement regarding potential troublesome situations. He was an upstanding soldier and a brilliant engineer but the Japanese seemed to also simply like him as a man. He was clearly Kaneda's favourite and hence it would always be his name on the captain's lips, even if it was just about picking Capa of the floor. Again.

When Robert was back to his feet and someone finally removed the faceplate of his helmet, he was met with a pair of fierce dark blue eyes, and thick eyebrows drawn together in a scowl. So... someone was not impressed which his performance... Capa cleared his throat bracing himself to say something.

"Um... thank you." It took every ounce of Capa's courage to utter those words and not averting his eyes from Mace.

"What was that? You need to speak louder. I didn't hear you. It's not that I wasn't paying attention to what you're saying..."

The mocking sneer on Mace's face was like a slap in the face.

"I said THANK YOU ASSHOLE!" And the courage, or sheer stupidity, to say that came literally out of nowhere. Robert wanted to catch the words and take them back even before their echo reverberated through the room. But it was too late. The room fell into shocked silence and Robert's face paled seeing Mace's sneer transform into a satisfied smirk, like it was exactly what he wanted to happen; like he waited for Capa to give him a reason to punch his face. But before the engineer could even form a fist Kaneda's voice stopped him.

"Mace! That's enough. 20 minutes break. Come on." The Japanese patted the pilot's shoulder and pulled him away from Capa, who was left alone, disappointed that the situation was already over. Having those eyes focused on him felt strangely pleasant, exciting and satisfying.

And the desire to repeat the once experienced pleasure was natural.

...

Now, almost a year later, pressed into the mattress, Capa finally had Mace's full attention.

The first time he physically attacked the other man was about three weeks into their flight. It was about something completely stupid like breaking into the line to send the first message home. When Mace grabbed him back then and pressed against the wall Capa was hard within seconds. He was hit by the scent of the engineer's skin and body, mixed with the metallic smell of oil and machinery. He was mesmerised by his eyes, seen for the first time from such a close proximity, and seduced by the redness of his scowling lips...

The same lips that were now an inch from his own parted and panting. Robert wanted to twist his hips and bring them up to meet the ones nestled between his spread legs. Mace's dog tags slid from under his shirt and their subtle weight rested on Robert's chest, right over his rapidly pounding heart.

"It's all your fucking fault. You shouldn't be here. Even looking at you makes me angry." Mace's voice sent shivers through the physicist’s body, burying the last traces of hope to bring his hardening member down. He swallowed a whimper and turned his head way. "Wanna talk about it? We can talk but I can assure you that you will not like what you hear one bit."

Capa swallowed a sob. "I don't have to like it. I'll just have to stop it.''

"You can't stop being you."

Those words simply squeezed the tears from Robert's eyes and he didn't even care that Mace would see them.

"No... No don't you dare to fucking cry on me, Capa..." His tone was desperate and pleading, not mocking like Capa would expect. It only made it harder to actually stop crying. In an instant Mace was off him and the sound of the bathroom door shutting close almost made the walls shake.

Robert stayed on the bed trying to cry himself to sleep. Their scuffle was during breakfast so they were locked rather early in the morning. There was a long time between them and freedom and Capa already had enough, but to his dismay it got even worse. About three hours later he felt in his bladder a pressure he couldn’t ignore. For another thirty minutes he tried to find an emergency reason to get out of the room but finally he moved to the bathroom door and knocked.

 A hoarse "fuck you'' was the only answer from the inside.

"I need to use the bathroom." That earned him a chuckle. After another moment the door clicked open and Mace stepped out, letting the physicist in. When his bladder was finally back at ease Capa wondered if it was his cue to stay locked for three hours in a one square meter toilet. In the end he decided to get out and face the music.

The engineer was sitting on a bed, his elbows on his knees, and head dropped in resignation.  To Capa's surprise he didn't have to break the heavy silence because Mace spoke first.

"I figured that I will probably have to say it anyway, either with Searle around or without him, so since I still have a choice I'd rather for the second option. So here's the deal. I tell you what's my problem and then you stay away from me. You don't get into my face, you don't sit behind be during meals, you don't come near me and for the love of God you stop getting into the showers right after me.''

"What?"

"I will even let you punch me now. I always let you anyway. But after this the fights stop too. We stay clear of each other. I can stay in the machine rooms all day if someone brings me food.''

Capa was staring at Mace dumbly and he still didn't know what to say because the other man's phrase about the showers put his mind in a gutter.

"Capa!"

"What?"

"Do you agree?"

"I thought you didn't fucking care what I think."

"I lied."

Capa moved to sit beside his crewmate.

"I can't let you do this. You may not like me but it's not a reason to separate you from the crew. I don't want to isolate you from me.''

"It's alright. You will want to after you hear what I have to say. And you would rather sit on the other bed for that, trust me. So, do we have a deal?"

"No, we don’t. And what, I can't even sit where I want, because you know better?"

"You know, Capa... for a genius you can be incredibly stupid sometimes."

"Fuck you, Mace."

The engineer stood abruptly but instead of punching the brunet, he laughed bitterly and sat on the other bed mumbling "you have no idea..."

"Just say it, Mace. I have something to confess too, so we'll just see what we’ve got and figure out the rest later."

They were sitting on separate beds, facing each other and looking into each other’s eyes, when the soldier finally spoke.

"I want to fuck your brains out."

It took a moment to register in Capa’s mind.

"What?" A rather long moment.

"Now you can hit me.” Mace leaned back and supported his hands somewhere behind his back, exposing himself for a punch. “Twice if you need. Just don't kick me in the balls."

"What?"

"What the fuck do you mean, 'what'? Which part needs more detailed description?" Sitting like that, almost half lying on the bed Mace looked like some sex god.

"Um... the first one, please...."

Capa's lips were turning into a smile. It was impossible. It was too good to be true. There was no chance Mace would really want him, right?

"You want to laugh at me? I guess it's only fair. Fine.” Mace turned his face up, as if looking for an inspiration on the ceiling. His chin, cheek bones and the curve of his neck made Capa salivate. “I want to bend you over that table and pound into your skinny ass until you can't stand, burry myself in you deep enough to touch your soul. I want to fuck you until you can't even walk anymore, hold you down and do you so good you'll forget your own fucking name and will only remember mine.” His eyes dropped back to Capa’s. “How do like that?"

"I... um..."

"Heh... I bet you regret asking. But that's how it is. I haven't gotten any in months and being around you drives me nuts. Even being in the same room drives me crazy because your smell is so freaking intense. So there is nothing you can do about it because it's not about anything you do. It's about you, being you. And me wanting you. If I could stop I would, believe me."

Capa almost hyperventilated. He had just cried for good three hours over something that was nothing more than a misunderstanding.

"I can deal with it when I don't see you but when I leave a shower and you're there I really want to strangle you, you stupid cock tease. And I really fucking hate you for making me feel like that."

All those hateful words Mace directed at Capa so many times before, suddenly gained a different meaning and the physicist couldn’t get his head around it. Not with Mace’s hoarse voice he loved so much saying things he never even dreamed to hear. Not with the man so close, with legs spread invitingly presenting himself for Capa’s eyes.

"So, you see there's no other option. I stay away and you let me, because castrating me is the only other available solution and I'm not letting that happen."

Robert laughed softly at the lame joke. "Mace I... I actually have an alternative solution."

"Yeah, well I bet it sucks."

Capa stood up and took a careful step toward the other man. It was like a dream. This whole situation was crazy and unreal. Mace was in his arms reach and maybe... just maybe Robert would finally be allowed to touch. It was unthinkable. Just a thought about actually laying his hands on the engineer's skin, feeling up his muscles, playing with his hair, tasting him, maybe even kissing his mouth... it was madness. "Well... it doesn't exactly involve you bending me over some hard little table and fucking until I can't walk anymore..."

A bitter laugh escaped the sitting soldier. "Yeah, I figured that much."

Capa took another step and his baggy sweatpants were now brushing softly against Mace's legs.

"But I figured that maybe you could lay back down and I... I would..." Capa paused and knelt down. "...take you into my mouth and pleasure you.... until you finally learn my ‘fucking name’. It's Robert, by the way. Then, after you learn it, I could straddle your hips and ride you... learning yours... How does that sound? After that we could maybe even negotiate bending me over some comfortable flat surface..."

Mace was facing the ceiling again, but his eyes were closed, so Capa waited nervously for his reaction.

“Was that supposed to be funny?”

Capa frowned. “Considering that this is the first time I try to seduce someone, no. I was hoping I wasn’t being funny.”

The brunet looked down at the engineer’s crotch, mere inches from his hands. Jeans around that area was quickly becoming tighter, sporting a small tent. Robert unconsciously licked his lips.

“You don’t have to do this, Capa. I don’t want you to. Why are you even offering?”

”Partially because it would help with the tension…” Mace’s eyes snapped to him. The soldier didn’t like that answer and Robert couldn’t blame him. It sounded like an offer of a pity fuck. It was Capa’s turn to confess or they would end up where they had started. “…but mainly because I hardly can think about anything else since I’ve met you.”

It was worth to be honest, even if just to see Mace with his jaw dropped. His cheeks darkened as the thought settled in his head but he didn’t move, keeping Capa on a verge of panic. He was on his knees in front of the object of his desire and it was not a situation he wanted to be without proper answer.

“Say something, you jerk.” He needed to add the insult, to make himself feel more comfortable, more normal.

“I don’t believe you. You want to complete this mission just as much as I do. You would do anything…”

Capa’s fist collided with Mace’s perfect face before he could think.

“I can’t believe I tormented myself for months pining for a bastard like you.” He was back to his feet and turning away when Mace grabbed his hand and pulled. Suddenly he was flat on his back and the engineer was looking down at him from above, hovering over his body on all fours. Robert didn’t protest. He let his hands fall on both sides of his head in surrender enjoying the view of Mace licking his lips. He shivered when the engineer’s hand softly brushed over his ribcage, traveling lower to the trace of skin between the hem of his shirt and his sweatpants. One finger caressed for a moment his lower belly before the whole hand sank under his tank top and moved boldly up to his nipple, making him gasp and writhe from surprising pleasure.

“Fuck, you’re sensitive…” Mace’s lips were less than an inch from his own.

“Shut up.”

Mace chuckled shortly, but he was clearly too concerned with the situation to actually be amused. His mouth brushed softly over Capa’s lips and quickly moved to attack his neck with hungry, biting kisses. The physicist moaned loudly hoping that the infirmary was at least a bit soundproof.

“Fuck, Capa…”

“My name... is Robert…”

“Robert… I want you so bad.”

“You have me. I’m yours. Just fucking take me already.”

Mace growled like some feral animal, the sound sending shivers through the smaller man’s heated body. Capa’s spine bent, pushing his hips up to seek contact, and Mace lowered himself between his legs, rutting shamelessly, not minding that they were still fully clothed. 

“Fuck… did I mention I haven’t gotten any in a while….?” Mace’s voice was heavy with need.

“I haven’t gotten any ever.”

“What?”

Capa tried to hide his face. He knew it was weird, but he had his studies and his bomb… and there never was anyone worth the hassle.

“Fuck, Robert. You’re killing me.”

The physicist managed to surprise Mace, like he always did, and reversed their positions. Not wasting any second he grabbed the fly of the soldier’s pants and started to free his strained manhood.

“Wait…” Mace stopped Capa from taking him into his mouth.

“Can I…” Robert was looking at him, uncertain and kind of skittish. “Can I… kiss you before you put my cock in your mouth?” The sheer relief on Robert’s face was blinding. He attacked Mace’s lips hungrily, showing with every move of his tongue just how much he craved that very thing to happen.

As they kissed passionately, still enjoying the friction between their bodies. Mace reached up and pulled the hair tie from Robert’s locks, letting them fall like a black veil around his innocent looking face.

Capa couldn’t get enough of this. He loved the taste of Mace’s mouth and the warmth of his bigger and stronger body against his own. He still couldn’t believe that Mace was letting him do all this. His hands wandered over all the muscles he had, on rare occasions, seen before and he whimpered feeling another pair of hands doing the same to his body. He felt his loose pants go down together with his underwear.

“Fuck…!” Capa’s breath hitched when his bared manhood collided with Mace’s hot throbbing erection, both squeezed tightly between their stomachs and leaking precum.

The incredible sensation of Mace touching his buttocks, caressing them for a moment before he started squeezing, and rubbing them more intently, spreading them apart and reaching further down to his entrance, was quickly driving Capa to his undoing.

"Shit..."

"What now?" Capa knew he sounded desperate but he couldn't help it. After waiting for almost a year suddenly every added second seemed unbearable. 

"I've never done a guy... but even I know we need some lube and somehow I doubt that Searle thought we would need it... unless he's a better psyche than I thought."

One nimble finger was lazily circling Capa's hole, rubbing over the pucker and gently pinching it between the middle finger and his thumb.

"Fuck... FUCK!" That made Mace laugh sincerely.

"Easy, babe. We can do it another time."

"Just... use your spit or something." Mace raised his eyebrows, clearly impressed, and shoved two fingers into Robert's mouth. The physicist sucked and licked lubricating the long digits, and already anticipating how they would feel stretching his insides. When one finally slid into him slowly he growled frustrated.

"Come on... more."

"Damn it, you're so tight..." Another finger joined the first and even though it hurt Capa wanted more. With every passing moment, every breath, he was getting more interested in the idea of being bent over and fucked into the mattress.

"More...."

Mace repositioned his hand and jabbed deeper into Capa, burying his fingers completely as far as they would go and tried to wriggle them in the impossibly tight confinement. Capa's eyes bulged out when one finger stabbed dead on into his prostate.

"Ah....! Ah! Yes..."

"Fuck, I want in you. Now."

"Really? I thought we could do it some other time?"

"Fuck it."

......

Meanwhile the rest of the crew was gathering to have dinner and immediately their female pilot noticed a distinct absence of her crush.

"Where's Capa?"

Searle expected to hear the question sooner or later.

"Capa and Mace are not joining us for the meal."

She frowned at the doctor. "Why? And what does it have to do with Mace?"

"They are isolated and cannot leave the room I locked them in until 8:00 am tomorrow."

"WHAT? You locked them somewhere together?"

Corazon dropped her chopsticks. "You didn't."

"I did."

The biologist smiled broadly. "And how long are they already there?"

"Almost four hours."

Cassie jumped from her seat. "Are you crazy? Mace will hurt him. You have to get them out!"

Corazon's laugh silenced the distressed girl.

"Sweetheart, you don't have to worry about them."

"Really? They almost killed each other just this morning. Mace will hurt Capa."

"No. Not if Searle left them some lube."

"What? How dare you? How can you even think that?" Cassie was beyond herself with anger and tears of frustration were gathering in the corners of her eyes.

"Well, I wasn't born yesterday, Cassie, and the sexual tension between these two is suffocating. Don't pretend you don't see this."

"You're wrong. You're so very wrong. Capa's not like that."

"Really?" Corazon put down her chopsticks and gave the girl her full attention. "He never sits at the table. He always hides right there in that corner and stares at Mace. Every day, during every meal. The fly boy is either too stupid to see it or he sees and ignores Capa, though he clearly wants him too."

Searle was listening attentively to every word. How come he never thought of that? "Why would he ignore Capa if he feels the same?"

Kaneda cleared his throat.

"His whole family is military. I wouldn't be surprised if he didn't want to explore this kind of... tastes. And I must say I had similar opinion on the subject as Corazon. That's why I hesitated to give my permission."

"What?" Cassie was crying at this point. "Not you too. No..."

"I don't know for sure, but I suspected it may be the case since the training."

"I don't care what you say. It's not true."

Then the comm on the wall buzzed and Searle quickly pressed the answer button.

"It's Searle. Are you boys alright? Is there an emergency?"

"No! No emergency... well kind of... ouch! I mean, no. No emergency." Mace's voice and heavy breathing were more than slightly concerning. 

"Are you sure, Mace? You can hardly catch a breath. Were you two fighting?"

"Of course not..." Some weird hit was heard in the background with some whispers and then...." I mean yes, we were. Um, can you tell me..."

"Do you need medical care?"

"NO! No, we don't."

"Let me hear it from Capa. Cassie's worried."

"Robert...?" The voices were muffled until Capa's painfully unhappy voice snaped. "I'M FINE!"

And then Mace was back on the line. "So, we were just wondering... um... what's that thing in a green bottle? It says 'aquasonic' on the label..."

Corazon was laughing her ass off. Searle tried to keep his face straight. "Um... it's a gel for ultrasonography."

"Yes! I knew it. Thanks." Instantly the connection went dead.

.......

Properly lubricated fingers felt ten times better than before moving in and out of the still tight passage of Capa's ass. The physicist couldn't remember the last time he felt so excited, so horny and so happy. Mace didn't hate him. This impossibly handsome and strong soldier wanted him and he was eagerly drilling his way to state the claim on Capa's scrawny body.

"Fuck, you're not getting any less tight."

Capa smiled at him and kissed his forehead.

"You just lay back and relax." Then he moved up and positioned himself above the tip of the bigger man's waiting cock. And Mace was bigger in every way, but Capa already loved every inch of him and knew that the other man would never hurt him.

"Mmmmmmm.... Robert..."

Capa pushed himself down taking his lover in, inch by inch, feeling him twitch and leak juices as the heat of his body welcomed him. Blunt head of the soldier's shaft forced its way deep into the other man sliding briefly over the most sensitive bundle of nerves in his rectum.

"Mace...!"

"Damn it, Robert... you're so tight." Capa moved his hips slowly creating a friction and gradually picking up pace until he was riding the engineer fast, driving them both toward completion.

Mace was snapping his hips fucking the skinny scientist and voraciously taking in the view of his cock disappearing in that wonderful heat between Capa's legs. Robert's thighs were sliding over Maces sweat covered sides and even his hands had trouble supporting him and slid over the wet skin of muscled shoulders to the bed.

"Kiss me?" Surprised by the softness and sweet uncertainty of the pilot's question Capa let the assault of his orgasm take him over the edge. Spilling the proof of his overwhelming pleasure on his lover's six pack he moaned pitifully and dropped forward to kiss Mace through the man's peak.

When the engineer was still a shivering and panting mess underneath him Capa pulled the softening member out and stretched, making himself comfortable on the soldier's bigger body, enjoying its warmth with all the hard surfaces and sharp angles. He teased the nipple beside his head and laughed when Mace frowned at him lazily, looking adorably spent and sleepy.

"You're so pretty, Mace..."

This time the frown deepened and seemed more serious.

"I'm not pretty, you twit! You're pretty! Beautiful even. Especially now, all truthfully fucked by me, with your hair loose and this tight, pink little hole still wet from my cum."

The engineer's hand slid over his stomach and under Robert's thigh reaching further down from the front, over the testicles to invade the slick warmth of his lover one more time. With few quick thrusts it woke another wave of pleasure between the physicist’s legs, making him whimper and tremble in Mace's arms.

"See? You're pretty. Gorgeous."

"If you really think so than why you didn't want me to go?"

"Isn't it obvious? We're going to die here. You're a scientist and you're brilliant. Your place is back on Earth where you would be safe. Not here. Soldiers, like me, should fire your bomb and die. Not you. You're too important. You build, we fire. It should never include risking lives of any civilians."

Capa didn't know what to say to that.

"Don't you ever think that we could make it back? Become heroes?"

"No. Do you?"

"Sometimes. But then I only dream about dying, being burned by the Sun."

Capa did think about coming back and it was more than just surprising to hear that the other man didn't. Until then he was sure that Mace was there to save the world and become a hero.

"We have to go back. I want to see if my sister approves of you, and I want you to meet my mum."

"Funny. My parents would probably disown me if they knew...."

"Don't worry. If your family disowns you I'm sure mine will take you in."

Mace laughed and for another hour humoured Capa with making plans for their future. He let the physicist talk about his sister and her kids and promised to accompany Capa every time he takes them to skate. He answered his lover's every question and even asked some himself. Then they both let themselves dream aloud about how the world would look when they get back. They shared their hopes of spring after long years of seemingly never ending winter cold and made plans for early mornings, sunny afternoons, pleasantly warm evenings, passionately hot nights... stopping their musings only to make love and nap.

Remaining hours of their confinement passed way too soon.

"Aren't they just adorable?" Corazon's voice echoed in the room waking Robert from a pleasant slumber. He wasn't planning on sleeping. He wanted to enjoy Mace's closeness for as long as he could, letting the engineer lay with his head in Capa's lap, and patting his hair.

Searle hummed. "I knew it would help."

Kaneda smiled and patted the doctor's shoulder. "And apparently it did. Only now you will have to deal with one very emotional and heartbroken young lady."

The pilot wasn't there to check if Capa was alright. After the dinner she didn't return to her station and spend the night with Harvey. No one noticed that they were passing Mercury and when the distress call from Icarus I suddenly reached Icarus II there was no one there to pick up the signal.

Mercury, the messenger of the gods, failed to deliver his message.

The end.