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He knows he will never be enough.

 

He's not sure if he means man enough, or stable enough, or sober enough, or able to focus on his partner enough. They're all things he used to dream of being, but those dreams have been gone for years.

These days, his main goal is just sober enough to fool everyone.

But he's never fooled him.

Mike is good at noticing things. He wouldn't have made it to the FBI if he wasn't. But he's also good at pretending he doesn't see things. Sometimes Ryan thinks Mike is too good for his job. No one else notices, but Mike sees everything.

And if he sees everything, then there's a good chance he knows more than he's letting on.

So Ryan hides in the guise of a booze-fuelled fog. He's still asked questions, but they're, Is that vodka in your water bottle? and not things that he can't actually answer.

They all go out for a couple of drinks one Friday, a reward for making it through an exceptionally exhausting week. Everyone stays for the first round, and then they start filtering out one or two at a time, until only Mike and Ryan remain.

Ryan is a bit drunk. But then, he reasons with himself, when is he not? Mike has had a few beers, not usually enough to have much effect. But he's only recently back from almost dying, and things are off. He looks like he's thinking about heading home.

Ryan gets them one more round before Mike can leave or protest, and they're both maybe more than just a little drunk as they make their way, on foot, back to Ryan's hotel room. Ryan takes off his coat, sets the water bottle on the table, aware of the eyes following his every move.

Mike leans against the wall by the door for a moment too long once they're both sure that Ryan isn't going to pass out and vomit and die, and Ryan doesn't think he can continue to hide in this cocktail of vodka and lies.

Ryan doesn't so much kneel as inelegantly fall to his knees in front of Mike, looking up at him in silent supplication.

Mike's eyes are sharp, even through the alcohol, and he watches Ryan with intent. His breath catches as Ryan fumbles at his belt, fingers shaking at the buckle before he finally pulls it loose.

He looks up again, meets those blue eyes and exhales shakily, wondering vaguely if Mike has ever done this before. He pushes the thought aside and mouths Mike's cock through his underwear before tucking his fingers under the elastic waistband and pulling them aside. Mike sucks in a sharp breath as cool air comes into contact with warm skin, and Ryan spares those few seconds to admire the man in front of him.

He presses his lips to heated skin, swallows around Mike's dick, and the muffled whine he hears gives him pause. But then there are fingers in his hair, and Mike's hips stutter as Ryan sucks his cock. His leg shakes just enough that Ryan presses his hands against his thighs, pushing back and down to still the tremor. The grip in his hair tightens, and Ryan quite suddenly becomes aware of his own need. He shifts on his knees, rolls his hips just enough to cause some friction.

He thinks he can tell when Mike is about to come, and he vaguely wonders what this will change. He swallows, tries not to choke; it's been so long since he's done this, he's almost forgotten how. He holds onto Mike's legs through the aftershocks, carefully tucks him back in his jeans. It's all over before he's quite ready for it to be, but he's getting used to disappointing himself.

Mike stares down at him for a few minutes, pupils blown. He doesn't speak, letting the silence drag out into awkwardness while Ryan shuffles to his feet. Ryan is grateful; no words means he doesn't have to acknowledge his thoughts and desires just yet.

He's about to open his mouth and ask Mike if he wants to stay, which he knows is a terrible idea, when Mike mumbles something like, It's getting late. I—I should be going.

Ryan nods blankly, tells him to get home safely, and leans against the door for a few minutes once he's alone.

 

He knows he will never be enough, not for anything more than what he just had, but if he can get these bits and pieces of it, he'll take them.