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Acquired Tastes

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There were few pleasures in Kingsley Shacklebolt's life that compared to Sunday mornings.

They had always been a rare respite from his demanding job; an oasis of tea and hot buttered toast, the faint sound of bells from the local church, and maybe a bacon sandwich later if he'd remembered to shop. Then there were the Muggle newspapers he favoured on his only real day off. They were a holiday in themselves; a whole world of news and drama that it wasn't his job to sort out.

On this particular Sunday morning, however, waking up with the sun on his back and warm, smooth skin pressed against his hardening erection, it was easy to imagine for a little while that life couldn't get much better.

He burrowed his face further into the soft, clean hair that tickled his nose, letting his hand trail down over a muscled leg. Every soft scratch of hair echoed through his nerve endings and hardened him further, his prick pushing more insistently into the firm flesh in front of it.

No response. He slid his hand higher and felt a nudge against his hand; his fingers closed around the matching stiffness there. A couple of strokes and those buttocks were pushing back against him, pressing his cock from all sides as they manoeuvred to let him inside. He gripped the hips tightly and held them still, letting his cock slide up and down the tight furrow.

"Such a fucking tease." Bill's voice was low, hoarse and sticky with sleep, but it didn't disguise his impatience.

The hips wriggled under Kingsley's grip, and he grunted involuntarily, slipping into the still-slick hollow, so tight and warm around the tip of his cock. They rolled, Kingsley's hands guiding them with practised ease until he knelt behind the upraised buttocks, driving deep between them in a single long, slow thrust.

"Is that all right, do you need—?"

"It's – aaah – fine."

There was a certain fascination in fucking Bill with so little lubrication; one that Kingsley wasn't sure he wanted to examine too closely. It was one extra small pleasure for those mornings after, a few minutes to let himself go, let fantasy blur into reality.

"Fuck, that's—" Bill gasped underneath him, wincing with the extra edge of pain even dulled with sleep, and Kingsley thrust harder still, spreading the pale buttock cheeks wider around his cock. "I'm going to…" Bill's arm jerked once, twice, and stilled, his face dropping down to the rumpled pillows.

Kingsley squeezed his eyes shut tightly and drove deeper, the force of his thrusts, the rock of his hips, the creak of the bed settling into a rhythm that took him closer and closer to the edge, he could taste the sharpness of Bill's come in the air, the sweat and stickiness from the night before, the faint tang of pain—

He groaned, and a rush of warmth accompanied his release. He pulled himself free reluctantly, letting Bill collapse underneath him.

"That's still a hell of a wake up routine," Bill said, and they chuckled together quietly, a warm languor settling over them in the wake of exertion.

"I think we—" Kingsley stopped at the shadow that flickered across the room.

Tap, tap, tap.

Bill's head shot up, his face still flushed under beads of sweat. He wiped his arm across his face.

"That had better not be what I think it is."

Tap, tap, tap.

"Because if it is…"

"Sorry." Kingsley rolled out of bed and stretched. He slipped the latch off the window and the owl hopped onto the sill. "It's a Ministry owl, all right."

"Of course it is."

Kingsley crossed the room to where his clothes lay neatly folded on a chair. He put the robes to one side; they wouldn't do today. Instead he pulled a pair of trousers on before ripping the envelope open with one finger. It was hastily sealed, never a good sign.

"I have to—" he started, but Bill interrupted.

"I know. You have to go to work." He sat up and reached for his clothes.

"There's no need for you to leave."

"Yeah, there is. There really is." Bill pulled his jeans on and tugged them up over his hips.

"I thought we could go out tonight."

Bill paused, one arm in his shirt. "No. I'm going to the Angel." He turned his back, shoved the other arm in his shirt and straightened the collar, shaking his hair back.

"That place is nothing but a meat market."

"Yeah. And you know what? Pick someone up there, and they still stick around longer than you in the morning. I think I'll give it a try."

He brushed past carelessly, and Kingsley found himself staring at an empty door in an empty room.

***

“What’s the problem?”

Kingsley surveyed the area, taking in the scattered debris, a crater from some sort of explosion no doubt, and the Muggles walking up only to wander off again, looking confused. He ignored Dillinger’s pointed glance at his hastily buttoned shirt. He’d probably got it wrong, fastening it on the move, even with all the practice he seemed to be getting lately thanks to his new superior.

“Well, thank you for joining us at last, Mister Shacklebolt.” Chief Auror Dillinger turned his back to him and started walking towards the crater. “You’ve missed all the dangerous work, but if you want to make yourself useful, the Obliviators could do with a hand over there.” He gestured towards a large grey building with two Aurors standing guard outside.

The great emergency that had dragged him out of bed on a Sunday morning was memory charms? Kingsley took a deep breath to ward off the anger that threatened to break his calm composure. And another.

The building was a Bank it seemed, a classic Victorian edifice of grey stone and iron bars. He stopped just in the shade of the building to check his shirt buttons. Yes, he’d missed the third one out when he’d fastened it, and the front was crooked and crumpled now. He carefully unbuttoned them all and smoothed his shirt down.

Before he could start fastening it again, he became aware of eyes on him. It wasn’t an unusual sensation for him; he was no stranger to attracting attention. All the same, the neat, well-dressed gentleman standing on the brightly lit corner opposite him wasn’t exactly the usual type of admirer. He couldn’t make his features out clearly in the glare of the sun, but he seemed to be some years older than himself, not least from the polite tip of his hat the man gave as Kingsley’s eyes fastened on him.

Late morning heat seemed to invade his shady spot with the intensity of the gaze, and he dropped his eyes to concentrate on his buttons. If he pulled his shirt just a little wider than he could have, revealing a little more damp, dark skin than was strictly necessary, that was between him and the stranger.

"Shacklebolt, isn't it? Good man."

Kingsley jumped at the voice, fastening his buttons again quickly. He turned and shook hands with the harassed looking wizard who had emerged from the bank.

"Walters. My team are dealing with the Muggles. What a mess. What a bloody mess." There was blood on his sleeve and what seemed to be a scratch above his eye.

"I'm told you need a hand." He could see a large group of people milling about inside the bank and an Obliviator clearly struggling to keep order.

"We do, we do. Some of them are being difficult." He sighed and rubbed his palms nervously on his robes. "More importantly, we've lost one."

Kingsley's eyes returned to the corner opposite, which was empty. A figure was strolling deceptively fast down the street towards the park. "Older man, long grey coat, hat?" He had no idea why he was so certain.

"Well really, if you had the description already, what are you still doing here?" Walters scowled and disappeared back through the doors. His voice echoed out onto the street. "Right, we're going to start again. Those of you who need to go—"

Kingsley fixed his eyes on the distant back of the stranger and began to walk.

***

The area around the park was full of elegant mews houses. Shiny doorplates and black-painted railings divided one over-priced box that passed for housing from another.

The stranger walked up the steps to one of the identical black and white front doors. He didn't look back, but neither did he bother to shut his front door behind him. His own shiny golden nameplate read 'Dr H. Reed'.

It was either a trap or a pick-up. Wizard vs. Muggle, the first was no problem. The second… he let his feet decide.

The inside of Dr Reed's house was cool, white-walled and softly carpeted. Kingsley stepped cautiously through the doorway into an elegantly decorated drawing room. A figure hovered beyond the far doorway.

"Would you care for tea, Mr…?"

"Shacklebolt. Kingsley Shacklebolt." He'd answered before he'd even considered lying. It was fortunate his name was likely to pass for Muggle; at least if the examples in the Sunday Times were anything to go by these days.

"What a very unusual name, Mr Shacklebolt. Were you named for your father?"

Tea cups rattled next door, and the stranger, presumably Reed and now devoid of coat and hat, appeared in the doorway. Now that his features were visible, the impression of age was much reduced. He was no youngster, but not quite ready to collect his pension. In his fifties, perhaps, and in remarkably good condition for his age at first glance. Well-tailored clothing. Open, friendly expression. Cultured voice, with an odd, though not unpleasant, accent.

"Grandfather." Kingsley relaxed a fraction and stepped forward to take the tray. "May I--?"

"Thank you. I won't be a moment, just warming the pot."

Kingsley looked around at the walls while he waited. Paintings here and there; most looked quite old. An ornate mirror over the marble fireplace revealed bloodshot eyes; he rubbed them roughly and straightened his collar.

"Milk and sugar?"

The man walked like a cat. Kingsley could feel a new warmth creep over the back of his neck as he turned back to sit by the tea table.

"Just milk, please." He watched the man's hands as he poured the tea. Steady, steady, no: there was a shake, right there. Interesting. He looked up to see sharp eyes fixed on his own.

"You're very hospitable," he said in lieu of anything useful to say. "Do you always provide refreshment for complete strangers?"

Reed's laugh was as hard-edged as his eyes.

"Only the good-looking ones." He handed a teacup to Kingsley across the table. "I would have offered you something stronger, but I was afraid you might be on duty."

The cup rattled against its saucer as Kingsley's hand slipped a fraction. The man smiled pleasantly and tipped his own cup to his lip.

"I don't know what you think—"

"What I think, Mr Shacklebolt, is that you are a policeman. In my professional capacity I've met plenty of your type. Do drink your tea, won't you?"

"I like to think I'm more than a type, Doctor Reed." Kingsley sipped gingerly at his Earl Grey.

"Of course you do. Everyone likes to think that." Those eyes bored into him once more. "Almost all of them are wrong."

Kingsley found the chair not quite as comfortable as it had seemed a moment ago. He shifted almost imperceptibly, but Reed's eyes registered the movement anyway. He took another gulp of the strongly-flavoured tea to cover his discomfort.

"So. Are you here in your professional capacity, or are you looking for something else, I wonder?" Reed drained his tea delicately and leaned back in his chair. "It's a Sunday, but that doesn't help with policemen. You're so rarely off duty. Perhaps it's both?"

"I'm in a relationship." Maybe it was just the man's casual confidence, but Kingsley wanted to show him how wrong he was, if nothing else. He should never have taken the tea, or let this Muggle doctor get the upper hand in the conversation.

"Of course you are. Which is why you're wandering the streets – sorry, working – on a beautiful summer's afternoon."

"We're fine." Kingsley's tone was curt now. It was time to get on with what he was here for. He stood, letting his hand trail closer to his wand pocket. "What I'm here about is an incident that took place outside the National Westminster Bank down the road this afternoon."

"Ah, yes. A terrorist bomb, one policeman told me."

Kingsley was uncomfortably aware of the inadequate briefing he'd received, but that seemed a safe enough explanation.

"Or a gas explosion; that was from the policeman who tried to keep all the witnesses locked away."

Damn. Kingsley's hand moved closer to his wand, but those eyes missed nothing. Reed pushed his chair back slowly to get to his feet.

"Why did the police need to keep all the witnesses shut away, Kingsley?" He used the given name as if they were old friends, but any warmth was superficial.

"I have no idea, Doctor. I wasn't on the scene at that point, as you're no doubt aware."

Reed smiled. "Ah yes. Your little show. Interesting." He straightened one of the pictures on the wall, a striking painting of a young man. "Tell me, why does a man in a perfectly happy relationship put on a show like that for the first stranger who looks at him?"

"I was re-buttoning my shirt. There was no show." Kingsley's fingers tightened around the handle of his wand. "Now, if you don't mind…"

"He's a younger man." Reed tapped at his chin, and considered Kingsley. Being the subject of that gaze felt uncomfortably close to how he imagined a lab rat must feel. A trickle of sweat crept down Kingsley's neck and under his collar. "Quite a bit younger, I'd say. Attractive, fashionable, demanding. And just a little too shallow to satisfy you."

Kingsley's hand stilled.

"He's common stock, like you," the doctor flashed a glance at where Kingsley opened his mouth to protest. "Oh yes, you at least have pretensions to class, while he doesn't even realise that his manners leave something to be desired. He doesn't realise his coarseness offends your carefully acquired good taste. He doesn't know that you stay in to fuck his pretty little arse instead of taking him out to the places you like to go because you're afraid he'll use the wrong fork."

There was no way on earth the man could have known who he was or about Bill without some form of Legilimency. Yet there was no sign that this man was anything but a Muggle with his little box house and his tea and his static paintings… Kingsley stepped back as Reed came closer, and found himself pressed against a bookcase.

"You fuck him hard to punish him, then you work too many hours to punish yourself." Reed leaned in closer and breathed in the scent of Kingsley's neck. "I can smell him on you. Will you smell of me when you return to him, Kingsley Shacklebolt?"

Kingsley didn't bother to answer, just pulled the man closer to him. Those deft hands were at his zip without so much as a pause for breath, and once his trousers were out of the way the man's grip was firm and sure on his cock.

Reed's other hand was at the buttons of his shirt, and Kingsley watched him devour his chest with those eyes as he revealed every new inch of skin. A slow tingle ran through him, the attention making his limbs heavy and his head slump back against the shelves.

"Delicious." Reed kept up the rhythm on Kingsley's cock, strong, sure strokes from tip to root ensuring Kingsley was not only ready to come after only a few minutes, but helpless under the onslaught of hand, eyes and now the plump tongue that traced down the side of his neck towards his chest.

"There really is nothing like it, you know."

The tongue dipped once more into the hollow of his neck, teasing and circling. Kingsley could feel sweat pricking his chest, a dampness that attracted that tongue to lap further and further down, across that expanse of gleaming skin. He grunted a non-committal reply and let himself relax. Whatever the man was babbling about he'd forget about it soon enough.

"It's an acquired taste, but acquiring tastes is one of my favourite pastimes."

Kingsley tried to thrust into the fist that enclosed him, unable to prevent his hips from wanting to move with the rhythm of the hand on his cock any longer, but it didn't seem to work. Instead he simply gasped and clutched Reed's shoulder tightly as he spilled his release over that insistent hand.

"And some of them I get so little chance to indulge."

Kingsley could feel his legs giving way beneath him now, his head swimming and his sight blurring. This wasn't the sex, the orgasm, this was--

"The tea," he slurred out.

Reed ignored him and straightened up, licking at his sticky palm with apparent enthusiasm and a new gleam in his eye. As the other hand came into view, Kingsley could see why. His own wand, carelessly allowed to fall to the floor with his trousers, dangled from those fingers, loosely held between his thumb and forefinger.

"But when I do… there's really nothing like the taste of a wizard, Mr Shacklebolt."