Lewis wasn’t quite sure when he’d first started noticing his detective sergeant’s hands. They were nice enough hands: slender and clever, like the man himself. Competent, steady, guitar-playing, crime-solving hands. He liked the way that Hathaway often seemed to think with them, handling objects at murder scenes as if absorbing information through his fingertips.
He wasn’t sure when he’d first looked down at Hathaway offering him a coffee cup and thought, lovely.
And then there was a day when they were in the parked car, watching for a suspect, and his gaze happened to fall on Hathaway’s hands on the steering wheel--drawn by their stillness, perhaps, for they weren’t drumming or fidgeting at all. His nails were often bitten well down past the quick, a fact Lewis had noted before, but on this day they looked particularly raw; there was an edge of bright red down the left index finger where a hangnail had been torn away. Lewis made a disapproving tsch sound right out loud when he saw it, reacting before he could think, and reached out to pick up Hathaway’s hand, angling it so he could better see the damage.
Hathaway let him do it, looking over at him with mild surprise changing over to an almost-smile when he realised what Lewis was clucking over. “Trying to cut back on cigarettes again,” he explained. “Transference of the oral fixation.”
“Well, chew some gum next time,” Lewis scolded. “Not yourself.” He found himself suddenly drawn up short by the mental image of Hathaway with an index finger in his mouth, worrying at himself, a long-standing habit in which Lewis had never actually seen him indulge. He was still holding Hathaway’s hand, relaxed and warm and unprotesting, in his own. He wanted to enfold it, protect it. He let it fall back to the steering wheel again instead.
“Yes, sir,” Hathaway said, sounding amused. The suspect emerged, and the matter dropped.
Hands at his mouth: Lewis could see him that way so clearly, with his palms pressed together and brought up to his lips in deep thought. As if praying. Which he must also do, when Lewis wasn’t there to see.
The thrill of desire that twisted through his lower belly at this thought made him turn cold, then hot, then cold. What sort of perversion was this? He didn’t want-- He only wanted to watch James touch things, he told himself, helplessly. Bite his nails. Strum his guitar. Do the washing-up.
His mind nudged curiously at the next thought: watch James touch himself?
Blasphemous. Ridiculous. He couldn’t think that. How could he go on working with the man if he’d thought about that?
But at night, in the dark, when Lewis’s mind went softer with tiredness and let its guards down for sleep, the images would intrude. Surely James had done...that, did do it, former aspiring celibate or no. And, God, it would be a sight. He might hesitate at first (as Lewis hesitated), hand on his bare stomach, fingers splayed and tense while he weighed the relative merits of sleep and desire. He might hook his thumbs into the waistband of his pyjama trousers slowly, reluctantly almost, before sliding them down to his thighs.
Finally, though, he wouldn’t be able to deny himself any longer. He’d be hard now (as Lewis was hard), so it wouldn’t take long, and then he could put the idea to rest. Lewis shut his eyes and saw it play out in his head like a film. The elegant repetitive motion of Hathaway's wrist, the fine bones flexing and muscles shifting beneath the surface of his skin as he stroked and stroked, the easy circling rub of his thumb--
And if James were to use his other hand as well? The long fingers would press lower, perhaps a bit unsteady as his careful control began to unravel. Spreading himself open, giving himself gentle circling touches with the pad of his fingertip before finally dipping--yes, right there, in, piercing deep, touching himself inside and out.
Lewis’s own hand moved fast and then faster, squeezing roughly, and he winced and made a sharp pained sound as he came.
Time to take that holiday he’d been meaning to get to, no doubt. Lyn would be well pleased.