Warnings: sex; language; non-explicit references to rape; one scene that is not intended as rape but may read that way, so beware of possible triggering; experimental writing (totally deserves a warning)
Rating: Hard R
Summary: Nate and Eliot. It's always the last time.
A/N: So folks have been posting deep, thoughtful fic in reaction to the season premier. So I thought it would be a good time to churn out some pre-series quasi-porn in some weird new writing style. Whee! Title and inspiration from the song "Hammering in my Head" by Garbage, which got stuck in my head and wouldn't leave until I did something with it. I sort of wasn't expecting to do this. It's kind of dark and twisted, and I seriously doubt Maggie would put up with this shit, but hey, it's AU. ^_^
Nate’s been in the field for two months, four days and eighteen hours, and the last thing he needs right now is Eliot Spencer standing at the door to his hotel room, dripping wet, wearing nothing but a towel and a wicked little smirk.
“Lost my key,” Eliot drawls, one hand playing with the loosely tucked end of his towel like he just might flick it off at any moment. (wouldn’t be the first time)
“In the shower?” Nate snaps incredulously. Nate’s tired and frustrated and misses his wife, and doesn’t need this shit right now. (honestly, Eliot’s not even trying) “And why are you telling me? You’re the thief, break in.”
Eliot’s smirk widens and darkens, and he pushes past Nate and into the hotel room. Nate sighs and doesn’t fight him.
It’s been two months, four days and twelve hours since Nate had sex. That’s about long enough, he thinks, and kicks the door shut before yanking the towel away. (this will be the last time)
Maggie’s parents don’t like him, and Nate can’t really blame them – he doesn’t think anyone’s good enough for Maggie either – but it doesn’t make dinner parties any more fun.
They ask about his work in quietly disapproving tones. (But dear, he’s away so often, and for so long. Aren’t you lonely? They whisper behind closed doors and don’t seem to understand that Nate spends his life tracking down devious, brilliant criminals, and listening at doors is second nature to him. No, she says. He makes up for it when he is here, she says.)
Maggie laughs and talks about the work they’ve done together (not much, he’s out in the field, she’s mostly at headquarters, running her tests for verification and frowning over the occasional new blood stain) and puts her hand on his leg and squeezes.
Eliot squeezed his leg in just that spot two days ago in the dark corner of a bar in Paris. Nate can still feel Eliot’s mouth hot and wet around his cock, roll of tongue and scrape of teeth and stubble burn on his inner thigh that Maggie hasn’t asked him about.
He doesn’t cheat on Maggie. He would never cheat on Maggie. He loves Maggie. Sex is just sex. If it was more than that, he would never do it.
How long are you home for, they ask with cold eyes and fake smiles. (But dear, a man on his own, away for so long. Don’t you worry? Don’t you… wonder? No, she says, and changes the subject.)
Not long enough, he says honestly, because home is Maggie and her bright eyes and sly smile and the way she fits against him. Home is not, could never be, a series of depressingly similar hotel rooms and bars, bruises and blood and the scum of humanity.
(Except that it is his second home. Sometimes being here with Maggie seems like a vacation. A nice place to visit.)
There’s a case coming up in three days, in Berlin. He wouldn’t want to live there, but he’s going to go. He puts his hand on top of Maggie’s (on top of Eliot’s) and thinks, this will be the last time.
Eliot’s not a screamer, but he pants and moans and bites – teeth piercing flesh, sweet salty tang of blood on the tongue and sharp pain tilting into pleasure. He’s all hard muscle and sweat slick skin and he fucks like he fights (fucks like he’s fighting), with power and precision and control and a fierce joy.
Nate grips a handful of shaggy hair and yanks Eliot’s head back so their eyes meet, blue on blue. There’s a trickle of blood running down Eliot’s chin that might have come from either of them, and he smirks (bares his teeth) at Nate, eyes hungry and dilated. He lets Nate hold him back for a moment, then he growls low in his throat and sacrifices a hank of hair to Nate’s grip (Eliot has no problem with pain if it gets him what he wants) as he lunges forward.
Pain and blood and teeth sunk in his skin and a growl in his ear, and Nate feels worn to a thread. (like he might sleep tonight) This will be the last time.
It complicates the case unnecessarily, but Nate just can’t leave Eliot chained to that smug fucker’s ‘throne’ like a dog. Even naked and bruised and drugged there’s something proud and dangerous about Eliot, and it makes Nate sick with rage (and jealousy) to find him like that once he’s worked his way inside. The bastard’s greedy, though, and Nate doubts Eliot makes as pleasant a toy as anyone thought he would (he’s a fighter, he fights, he always always fights) so Nate walks away with someone else’s painting and Eliot Spencer on a leash, on the promise (lie) of payment.
Eliot’s wild (magnificent) when the drugs wear off, pacing the tiny hotel room and growling out promises of blood and agony and death. He puts his fist through the sheetrock and flexes his hand to make the blood flow and smiles (because self-inflicted pain means freedom) and throws the leash out the window. He doesn’t cry or whimper or cringe or hide. (he’s too broken for that)
Nate wants to fuck him, and tastes bile at the thought. (it’s wrong, in so many ways)
Eliot turns to look at him, and Eliot sees (always sees too much), and Eliot smiles with blood on his teeth and kisses Nate. (they don’t kiss) Nate tries to pull away (so wrong) but Eliot’s always been stronger, and Eliot is determined to have his way. He throws Nate down on the bed, shredding his clothes with determined savagery, and snarls triumphantly when he gets to what he wants. Nate lets him have his way. (this thing is getting too twisted (even) for Nate)
Eliot isn’t a screamer, but he throws his head back and howls when he thrusts himself down onto Nate’s cock, straddling Nate’s body, crouched above, powerful thigh muscles sliding under bruised skin as he rides Nate until Nate comes so hard that darkness takes him under. (this will be the last time)
Nate makes a mistake. He makes a mistake, and the guns come out just as Eliot comes through a side door behind the guards' backs. Their eyes meet, and Nate feels relief.
Eliot smirks at him and takes advantage of the goon squad’s distraction to sneak past into the basement vault.. (son of a bitch)
By the time Nate’s just about talked himself into getting out alive, Eliot’s easing his way back out, raising an eyebrow at Nate as he disappears. (lousy, rotten fucker)
Nate tracks him down to a dive bar in the nasty part of town (good place for backstabbing assholes) and sits down at his table, eyeing the girl (probably underage and riddled with disease) polishing Eliot’s tonsils with her tongue with vague distaste. Eliot boots her off after a moment and raises a half-empty bottle of cheap whiskey in salute to Nate. He’s been drinking more since Nate got him out of that hellhole. (he’s not concerned) Nate glares in silent accusation.
“Knew you’d talk your way out. You’re good with your tongue,” Eliot remarks, with a shrug and a leer.
“You could’ve helped me,” Nate points out reasonably. (with unnecessary volume)
Eliot frowns and sits back, smirking. “Now, why would I do that? You were a perfect distraction.” He chuckles and drinks his whiskey like it’s water (there’s something jagged behind his eyes) and Nate wants (him on his knees with that smirking mouth wrapped around Nate’s cock) to hit him.
“You damn well know why. You owe me,” Nate says (yells), and Eliot’s eyes spark and narrow. Nate’s not bothered by Eliot’s anger anymore, but the fear beneath it is a different matter. (when he’s scared, he’s a loose cannon)
“What, just because you decided to play hero and fucking rescue me, you think it’s on me to pay you back?” Eliot snarls, muscles tense. (yes) “I’d’a got out on my own, Ford, and even if I didn’t, it ain’t my fault you decided to stick your nose in.” (ungrateful shit)
“With an attitude like that, it’s shocking I’m the closest thing you’ve got to a friend in the world,” Nate observes. (snidely)
Eliot snorts. “We’re not friends, Nate. You’re just a guy I fuck around with sometimes, and sometimes,” he pauses and grins crookedly, “you’re just a guy I fuck over.” (cocky little bastard)
Yeah, that’s it. Nate may be suicidal, but Eliot’s asking (practically begging) for it. Nate throws the first punch.
Eliot’s drunk and off-guard and the rest of the bar decides a brawl looks like a marvelous idea, which combination of lucky circumstances keeps Nate alive for the first few minutes, and after that it’s just a confusion of fists and splintering wood and breaking glass and screaming, and at some point Eliot drags him by the collar out the back door and down a few alleys as police sirens wail closer in the night. (now who’s playing hero)
Eliot’s leaning against a wall, gasping for breath as much as Nate is, eyes distant and glassy, and it just seems like the perfect time for Nate to drop to his knees and suck Eliot off.
Eliot’s not a screamer, but he whimpers and talks, a low, desperate litany in a cracked whisper Nate can’t quite make out over the rush of blood in his own ears. (You don’t own me, don’t, you don’t, you – nobody – owns me – not – a thing to be – controlled – )
Eliot beats his fist bloody against the rough brick and comes with a harsh shuddering gasp. Nate sits back on his heels, spits onto the pavement (nice people swallow), and watches Eliot slide down the wall, probably scratching his back all to hell. He looks young and small and shattered, and exactly like a ticking time bomb of bloody death.
Nate gets up and walks away. He (wants to) doesn’t look back.
This is the last time.
Maggie smiles in her sleep and Nate brushes the hair away from her face. He wonders what she dreams about. (he doesn’t dream)
Her eyelashes catch the moonlight and she’s so beautiful it makes his heart (break) sing.
She’s perfect and amazing and he loves her. He lays back down beside her and pulls her close. He doesn’t know what woke him up (he doesn’t dream) but he likes waking up beside her. (easy and safe and warm)
He’s leaving in the morning for Belgium. Not because (he’s heard Eliot’s there) he wants to, but because it’s his job, his life (his second home, with the thieves and con artists).
She wants him to stay. He makes promises. (he knows he won’t keep them) This is the last time.
He wakes to find Eliot watching him in the darkness. He doesn’t ask how or why Eliot is in his hotel room. That would be pointless and silly.
“Don’t you ever sleep?” he asks irritably, because how is he supposed to get any rest with Eliot’s (presence taking up every square foot of space and breath of air) eyes on him?
“Not much,” Eliot replies quietly, calmly. (so they’re going to pretend it never happened) “I don’t like to dream.”
Nate considers (understands) that. (he doesn’t dream)
He throws the blankets off the bed at the same time Eliot stands up (bare skin bathed in moonlight and so (beautiful) dangerous it makes his heart (break) stutter) and climbs onto the bed, onto Nate, into Nate.
Nate doesn’t dream. This is the last time.
Running into Sophie makes Nate think of phrases like ‘intellectual affair’ and ‘emotionally unfaithful’ and that makes him (think it would probably be easier if he just fucked her, it worked with Eliot, didn’t it) uneasy and vaguely guilty but no less horny.
So it’s a damn relief (thrill) when he walks into a bar and Eliot looks up at him with surprise (lust) written all over his face.
Chance meetings just don’t happen that often in their globetrotting lives. (chance usually needs a helping hand with the travel planning)
Eliot gives Nate a lookover (checks him out like fresh meat) and smiles, slow and dark and sinful. His eyes burn (into Nate’s skin like branding irons, he can almost hear the sizzle, smell scorched flesh) like spotlights, focused on Nate, and Nate (likes it) supposes it would be rude to ignore him.
Nate sits, and smiles (smirks), and knows (he could have Eliot right now, on this table, if he wanted) that he’s got Eliot’s full attention. No job, no merchandise, no thugs, no distractions. It’s kind of (exhilarating) unnerving. Eliot bites at his lip and lowers his eyelids. (they don’t need words for this)
What the hell, Nate thinks. He wasn’t expecting to (fuck) run into Eliot today, but apparently fate (luck) had other plans. (there are no words for this) And Eliot wants him. (wants him)
He’s starting to worry that Eliot wants too much of him, though. So this is the last time.
Nate has a headache that just won’t go away (he named it Eliot, but he hasn’t seen Eliot for months, so he’s not sure why), but he’s fine with that. It’s not a migraine, not crippling, blinding pain, just a sort of constant dull throbbing ache. (he’s not worried)
He goes about his life, chasing thieves, debunking frauds, flirting with (Sophie) danger. He spends more time at home, and that makes (Maggie) him happy. (really)
Things are good, overall. Maybe not knife-edge (exciting) terrifying, but who wants to live like that, except maybe the adrenalin junkies (like him) he chases. He’s thinking (he is) about retiring from field investigations.
This is the way his life should be. (the way he should want it to be)
When a case (finally) comes up with Eliot’s signature all over it, he thinks (really thinks) about letting someone else take it. But Eliot’s (alive) too much for just anyone to handle. Eliot’s (his) dangerous. And Nate (needs to see) knows him like no one else does. (his headache’s gone)
Maggie just smiles wryly as he goes, as he tells her, this is the last time.
It’s hotter than Hell in Ecuador, and Nate cannot imagine anything on the planet that would be worth coming here to steal. (maybe one thing)
Eliot’s easy to find, mostly because he finds Nate. He’s got Nate’s arm twisted up behind his back and Nate’s gun out of its holster before Nate even knows he’s there, growling in his ear, “Took you long enough.”
“Did you miss me?” Nate asks lightly.
“Shut up. I have a room,” Eliot (snarls) replies, hustling Nate along the crowded street. Nate lets himself be pushed, down the street, up the stairs, onto the bed. Lets Eliot rip his shirt off, buttons flying, lets Eliot maul and manhandle him, as if Nate were fighting him. (he’s not)
“Skin,” Nate (demands) suggests, yanking at Eliot’s sweat-stained tee shirt (that is infuriatingly resistant to tearing) until Eliot pulls back with a growl, leaving behind bloody toothmarks and a blossoming bruise on Nate’s bare shoulder. The shirt is flung into a corner, and Nate maps the bruises and new scars on his torso with fingers and eyes (there is beauty in the geography of Eliot’s pain) before losing his patience and dragging him down into reach of Nate’s tongue.
Skin on skin in the thick, motionless air, barely stirred by the slide and thrust of their bodies. Nate expects fast and hard, but Eliot pins him to the bed, powerful and precise and controlled. (but not joyful) He moves inside Nate, slow and deep, patient, determined. (fucks like Nate hunts) When he finally lets go, he throws his head back and gives a harsh, shuddering gasp (a sob) that Nate hasn’t heard since a night in an alley he pretends not to remember. (you don’t own me – not a thing to be controlled)
Eliot collapses on top of him, solid and heavy (and coming undone), and Nate stares at the water-stained ceiling and strokes Eliot’s sweat slick back as Eliot shivers in the heat. (as he breaks)
Later, Nate buttons up one of Eliot’s shirts as Eliot watches him from the bed with distant (desperate) eyes.
“This is the last time,” Eliot (lies) tells him quietly as he turns to leave.
Nate looks back (salty sweat on his lips, he thinks of Lot’s wife) and smiles.
“Of course,” Nate agrees. “It always is.”