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let your torrent rest against my shore

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Three hours into the stakeout, Harold is squirming.

A better person than John would not be amused. As it is, John hides his mirth and says, "I won't look."

"You'll still know," Harold mutters darkly.

A few more minutes pass.

"Cherkov isn't coming out any time soon, is she," Harold says with a sigh. John makes an affirmative noise. "Alright. This had better not be some form of hazing."

True to his word, John looks away. He can't help what he hears, though: Harold fumbling with the bottle (wide-necked, for ease of use), a rustle of fabric, and the sound of fluid hitting plastic.

Harold makes a small sigh of relief, a sound John hasn't expected. John drags his palms down the front of his pants and doesn't look at Harold, suddenly grateful to know that Harold is likewise looking straight ahead, gaze fixed onto Cherkov's apartment building.

Later that night (after they located Cherkov's boyfriend and handed him over to Carter) John lies face down in high thread count sheets that Harold bought him and struggles to make himself come.

He shouldn't let himself think of Harold, not that way.

He can't make himself stop. And for once, even yielding to temptation - rerunning images of Harold's hands, his mouth, through his mind, is failing to do any good. John is trapped, frustratingly, just at the edge of climax, needing, squirming--

Before John can stop himself, he gets up. There's plastic cups in his kitchen, leftovers from a party he'd infiltrated for a number ("Waste not, want not," he'd told Finch when the latter squawked at him through the comm). John takes one of them, puts it in his sink, and turns on the tap.

He closes his eyes and touches himself, finally coming to the sound of splashing.


The next morning, John goes out of his way to get Finch's favorite danishes. It's an unthinking move: some sense of fair play, perhaps, something in return for what Finch gave him, even unwittingly.

Harold takes a fraction of a second too long accepting them, and that's all that's required for the inside of John's chest to freeze solid.

He's suddenly convinced that Finch knows. Harold can always hear him, John relies on that: whether Harold is listening at any given moment is a crapshoot. He has a mental image of Harold bent over his fancy audio analysis equipment, frowning, teasing from a recording the clear and precise knowledge of exactly what John got off to last night.

And, more to the point, what John got off on.

But Harold doesn't say anything, and neither does John. They have a job to do, after all.


Due to some unfortunate incidents in John's career, John knows what piss tastes like. It's not a flavor he's fond of.

He finds himself recalling the taste in the shower, his hand slick and soapy around his cock. Mostly he's hoping it'll make him go soft.

No such luck. John can't quite make everything come together. The idea of turning to Harold and saying, "Anything," makes his cock twitch, as it always does; the idea of Harold pissing in his mouth - or making him drink it from the bottle - is ludicrous. Not something John can imagine Harold doing in any situation.

He turns the water punishingly cold and grimly washes the soap away.


"You seem distracted." Harold's voice is tentative.

John hesitates, but it's been weighing on him, so he might as well say it. "It wasn't hazing. It was necessity."

Harold blinks at him before effortlessly slotting the conversation into place. A wave of fondness washes over John at the way Harold puts together John's oblique references like a puzzle. "I see," Harold says. "Thank you for that reassurance."

"You don't sound all that sure," John says.

"Possibly I would if you were a little less amused about it," Harold grumbles.

The man has a point, but John can't help himself. There's just something about poking Harold, getting him off balance without ultimately making him fall, that John enjoys immensely.

It's a kind of trust, the most precious coin either of them has. "Just glad I can teach you helpful skills," John says blandly.

Harold narrows his eyes at John and resumes typing.


He emerges from the dream already humping the sheets, a breath away from coming. He dreamed that there was no bottle, that he'd smirked at Harold and said, "Have to get rid of the evidence," and Harold gulped and opened his fly, looked away from John.

John imagines putting his mouth on Harold, half-hard with needing to piss, imagines Harold squirming under him, Harold's skin mottled red, his breathing quick. Maybe Harold would make that relieved little sound again, embarrassed but not mortified, as he let go and allowed John to take care of him.

Harold's skin would be so, so soft.


When he can, John likes to do little things for Harold. Bring him tea. Take his coat. Carry his umbrella. It feels nice, to be relied on for small, easy tasks.

And he's always loved invading Harold's privacy, as soon as he realized how jealously Harold guarded it: that meant that John could only get in if Harold, on some level, wanted him to - but that nobody but John would, since even the little hints Harold dropped required skill and dedication to follow.

Easy enough to make that translation. Some dark, hidden corner of John wanted Harold to rely on him utterly, to trust him in the most intimate possible way. He liked the idea of Harold needing him, of Harold - the thought was a shivery thrill up his spine - helpless under his hands.

In the ISA they taught him to force captives to piss themselves to break them a little bit, to take that bit of autonomy from them. John doesn't want that with Harold.

He wants Harold's autonomy given to him. Completely different thing. About as likely as snowball fights in Hell, of course, but a man can dream.


If Harold moved an inch in the last three hours, John can't tell.

It's a little worrying, actually. Harold is hunched over his keyboard, muttering darkly under his breath. One after another, command terminals close, until there is only the blue of the desktop image. Finally, Harold leans back with a pitiful groan.

"Asher is handled?" John inquires.

Harold groans again, softly. "And not a moment too soon." He curses, quietly but with feeling.

John looks at where Harold is sitting, rumpled and tired. "Everything okay, Finch?"

"My legs have gone to sleep," Harold says, "my back is killing me, and your little solution with the soft drink bottle is beginning to look attractive."

The image settles itself in John's mind immediately. He can't even dislodge it by focusing on the fact that Harold avoids using the words soda or pop, eliminating another linguistic trick John could have used to place where Harold came from. "I can find you one, probably," John finds himself volunteering.

Harold makes an attempt to get up, then settles back into the chair with a soft thump. John has to bite his cheek, glad he can at least stop himself from offering to carry Harold to the bathroom, hold him upright while he--

There's an iced tea bottle on the side table, left over from lunch. John uncaps it and empties it with a gulp, not tasting the contents. The bottle's neck is wide. It should do well enough. He passes it to Harold.

Probably Harold was just joking, and in a minute he will turn around and give John another one of these mortified looks. That's fine. John'll just play it as one of the things he does, pushing for one more step beyond what Harold wants to take, leaving Harold to glare at him in unmoved disapproval.

Harold takes the bottle.

John just barely has time to register this before Harold says, voice a little shaky, "My hands aren't quite as steady as I'd like, though."

John clears his throat. "I could help."

Blue eyes look up at him. Harold's breathing is noticeably faster, his ears pink. "Would you?"

If John stops to think, this will probably disappear, burst into nothing like a soap bubble. Slowly, he pulls Harold's chair away from the computer. Harold's eyes stay on him as John comes to kneel in front of Harold.

"I'm going to open your fly." John's voice is rusty.

Harold's nod is almost imperceptible.

The buttons come easily undone. Harold's wearing boxers beneath, dark silky fabric, slit in the front so John doesn't need to take them off. He reaches inside, pulls Harold's soft cock out. It's uncut, though John can see the red, wet head peeking underneath the foreskin.

It's getting less soft by the second.

John snaps out of his reverie to hold the bottle to Harold's dick. "Your move, Finch."

Harold's getting harder, though, squirming under John's hand. His eyes are bright, his cheeks flushed. "Oh dear," he says. "I didn't think this through. The, the practical aspects, ah, are somewhat ha-- more difficult than I, oh, anticipated."

John might or might not be running his thumb along the underside of Harold's cock. It's not his fault: the skin there is silky, too, hot in John's hand. "I could help," John says. "If you wanted that."

A sigh stutters out of Harold. "I suppose I might as well," he says, his cock jumping in John's hand.

Slowly, telegraphing his moves, John shifts so that he's holding Harold's cock in the same hand that's holding the bottle - the tip of Harold's cock inside the bottle's wide neck, John's index finger just behind it, cushioning - and with his other hand he rubs Harold's stomach.

Harold makes a startled, raw noise. His legs move, almost dislodging him from the bottle.

"Do you need me to stop?" John's voice is just above a whisper. "Or do you need help to keep still?" He doesn't miss the way Harold hardens yet further at this suggestion.

"I'm fine," Harold says. "I just need-- oh," he says, as John pushes harder, and fluid starts coming out of Harold's dick.

"That's it," John says, coaxing, pushing on Harold's bladder. "Let it all out."

Harold pisses in stops and starts, making anguished sounds. His face is bright red, but he's sitting right there in his desk chair, pissing into a bottle and letting John help, and John might die if he doesn't get to kiss Harold in the next few minutes.

Finally, the stream lessens into a trickle, and that stops. John rubs again at Harold's belly, purposefully, which extracts a few more droplets, but that's all. "I think I'm done," Harold says.

"I think you're not," John says. He puts the bottle away and holds Harold's dick, licks his lips deliberately and looks up at Harold's face.

Harold blinks. "You can't be serious."

Before John can withdraw (and find a ditch to die in), Harold adds, "If you want to, of course," sounding highly dubious, but that's all John needs. He has Harold in his mouth, and if it tastes like piss, well, John's tasted worse.

It doesn't matter. It's Harold, as human and as vulnerable as he gets, in his rawest most private animal self. John can feel Harold's pulse through his dick, hear Harold's faint cries of astonishment turn into urgent pleasure.

(A part of John wonders: if this is how Harold feels about getting blown, John really wants to see him responding to being eaten out. John would make a fucking feast out of him, it would be so fucking good, he'd fuck Harold with his tongue until Harold was sloppy and open and moaning aloud, make him really blush all over.)

Harold comes pretty soon. He doesn't warn John, and John doesn't need him to. John swallows, then licks his lips, and withdraws to grin at Harold with his teeth showing.

"Oh," Harold says, faintly. He leans to the side, opens a desk drawer and rummages in it, offering John a breath mint.

John braces himself against Harold's chair as he laughs, helplessly.

"You don't have to," Harold says. "I just thought you might like...." he trails off, uncertain.

John presses a kiss to Harold's knee. "Thanks," he says, once he's gotten his breath back. "It's very considerate of you." He pops the breath mint in his mouth.

"If you stand up," Harold says, "I could. My hands." His linguistic skills seem not to have quite recovered yet.

The thought of Harold's long, capable fingers is incredibly tempting, but right now John isn't sure he could do properly appreciate them. He rests his cheek on Harold's thigh and shoves a hand down his own pants, unceremoniously, humps his palm a few times and comes with Harold's scent and taste in his mouth.

"Thank goodness for dry cleaning," Harold says.

John grins up at Harold. He feels good, light and mellow, like he could get up for a sprint or curl up into a nap with equal ease. He presses another kiss to Harold's knee. "It's useful," he says, agreeable, and rests his head against Harold's leg.