He rolled over, sat up on the edge of the mattress, and reached for the pack of cigarettes on the nightstand. It wasn't working, and he wasn't too sure if he wanted it to by then. She didn't speak until after he'd lit up.
"Hey hon, it happens." The bed shifted, and her long, fake nails glided over the skin on his back, and across his shoulders. "Give it a minute and we'll try again." He thought she smelled of cheap perfume and alcohol.
Taking a drag from the cigarette still burning between his fingers, he shook his head. She didn't get it. Probably never would. For a moment, he wondered why he'd bothered in the first place. She wasn't what he wanted, but she'd been there.
"Let me make you feel good, sugar," she breathed into his ear, her nails lightly scraping down his abdomen.
"Listen," he started, grabbing her wrist. "It's not going to happen, so stop." She backed off immediately.
"It's still going to cost you either way. At least let me try. I've been known to bring the dead to life more than once." Her tone lowered, heated itself into seductive decibels.
Without saying anything, he reached down and snagged his jeans. After pulling his wallet from the back pocket, and digging out a few bills, he silently dropped the twenty she'd asked for on the sheets. Another drag, and he combed his fingers through his hair. His elbows on his knees, cigarette dangling between his fingers, he rested his head on his palm. He didn't understand.
She drew a breath, and he thought for a moment she was going to start yelling. Instead, he felt her move to the other side, felt the mattress dip and bounce when she rose. He could hear her dress, knowing she was mad, knowing it was his fault. He'd only wanted a release, to end the dreams that'd threatened to consume him.
"When you want to go again, you know where to find me," she was saying, now standing at his side. Barely raising his head, he looked up at her. She plucked the cigarette from his fingers, her hand touched his hair. "Just say the word, and I'll stay. Won't charge ya extra, neither."
It'd been her tits that'd decided for him who he brought to his room. Her hair too dark, not long enough, her eyes the wrong shade of blue, her mouth too wide, too hard; it had to have been the tits. Small, but pert. Nipples like dimes in a dark apricot color, he thought they'd keep him hard. But her arms were weak, her hips flared and her thighs just a bit too thick.
He shook his head. "Just need some sleep." Reminding himself that it wasn't everyday a hooker offered freebies, he added, "Thanks, though."
She snorted softly. "Yeah, well, drop by again sometime." He didn't watch as she walked away, the door clicking shut behind her.
Rousing himself somewhat, he pulled the wrinkled, drooping condom off his flaccid cock, and dropped it to the floor. He hadn't been able to maintain an erection long enough for it to get wet. He lay back on the bed, thought about another cigarette and discarded it; he'd already exceeded his daily max.
One hand behind his head, his other ran fingertips over his chest and along his ribs. Though he'd never had trouble before, he wasn't worried about it. It wasn't him, exactly. It wasn't even the hooker. It was who he wanted instead of the hooker.
His eyes closed; fingers moved lower, skimming the hairline, tickling its edges. He inhaled deeply through his nostrils, filling his lungs. Fingers brushed a nipple.
Seemingly patient, his almost girlfriend still waited.
Darkened silhouette on the platform, watching the ocean.
The post graduate job, on-site in Mexico to supervise the drilling, there'd been no time to pursue what she'd hinted.
Average height, average build but lean. Arms raised overhead, muscles bulged in strain.
His cock stirred, lengthened.
She didn't turn him on. Her blue eyes were too kind, too trusting.
Staring, narrowed and suspicious. Cruelly amused. Dark with desire.
Fingers stroked thickening length, fluttered through the wiry bush. He drew a leg up, bent at the knee.
It should have been her long, blond hair - glossy in the sun, like silk in his hands.
Longer, darker, held in constant confinement. Coarse? Wild, free, unbridled.
Hand fisted, slowly pumping.
Her voice melodic, gently persuaded, uplifted in song, unoffensively demanded.
Low toned, harsh in gutter talk and sardonic wit.
He moaned, and bent the other knee.
Kisses sweet, chaste - too innocent, too bland to spark.
Lips full, but not too large. Chapped from exposure and habit. Long to taste.
Hips thrust, levitated off the sheet.
Intelligent, conversant, politically minded, civic bound.
Sharp, caustic, cunning, argumentative, ethical.
Drawing heat coiled.
Fingers on piano keys.
Hands manipulating a pool cue.
Nipple pinched; stroke faster, grip tighter
Lilac in the summertime.
Sweat, heat, dirt and machine oil.
Acidic pungent tang.
His breath raspy, chest heaving, he gave one last pull and relaxed his legs. In the dim light from the bedside lamp, he stared at the water-stained ceiling, vaguely wondering how it happened. The pounding of his heartbeat slowed, became normal. His fingers drew through the sticky pool below his navel, still hot from his body.
It'd never been Relena. And he didn't understand. Too innocent, too trusting, he wasn't sure. Her very nature brought certain instincts out in him, but the thought of fucking her made him ill.
His roommate's girlfriend was Relena's opposite. Never had he thought her innocent, and knew Trowa fucked her every chance they got. But for all of Hilde's boyish looks, crude talk, and natural sensuality, she wasn't what he wanted.
Since coming to Baja, he wondered. If it were males that did it for him, why wasn't it Trowa that caused his cock to stiffen, made him head for the john at least once a day to jack off. If it was a male with long hair and fair features, why hadn't Millardo ever tightened his jeans, caused him to fantasize in the middle of the day.
It came as a shock to him when it happened. On his second day, he was introduced to the project's driller, and felt the pull. He was attracted to a man. And the man was most definitely gay.
Swinging his legs over the edge of the bed, he used a sheet corner to wipe off the come. Suddenly the box-like motel room was too small, the heat too stifling, and he had to get out. He pulled on his jeans, careful to keep naked flesh from the zipper's bite. Leaving the sweat-soaked tee shirt on the floor, he went to the dresser and pulled out a white tank.
It was going to be a long night.
The bar was two blocks south of the motel, both seedy and run-down, but better than most establishments along this stretch of the Pacific coast. Like most towns and villages of Cali, poverty was a way of life and hadn't changed despite the discovery of crude off the shoreline. After crossing the border, it was at once browner, drier but richer and headier for it. The arid heat, even this close to the ocean, pushed at him, baked his skin and caused his blood to pulse in an erratic beat.
In the three weeks he'd been on-site, visiting the bar had become a nightly habit. The work crew was housed by the corporation in three motels scattered throughout the small town, and most regarded Noché as their home away from the motel fleas. Like most of its kind, Noché boasted of a few tables, a long bar, a juke box, and a pool table. And Duo Maxwell as regular a fixture as the mescal behind the counter.
The door swung open with a push from his hand. A quick scan showed the bar nearly empty, though not surprising this late on a Friday night. Most of the crew had families, and they would have headed for the border from quitting time. Somehow, he wasn't surprised to find one of the six occupants to be his driller.
Duo hadn't looked around with his entrance, but continued to line up his next shot. Pausing just inside the door, he took a moment to watch the man bend almost double over the table, cue cocked back, jeans stretched taut and shirt riding high exposing skin. The crack of ceramic meeting ceramic jolted him into moving.
At the bar, he ordered two beers and carried them to the pool table. His eyes swept the area, glanced towards the men's room door, and back to stop on Duo's face. Silently he offered a bottle, noting the darkened color of the man's irises and the slight pucker to his brow. Duo nodded, and clanked the end of the bottle against Heero's before bringing it up, taking a drink.
Letting the cold liquid slide across his tongue, coat his throat, Heero watched Duo tilted his beer up, eyes closed, and drink a long pull. He almost choked seeing the cartilage bob in Duo's neck. Shifting his eyes away, he lowered his bottle and leaned back against the table.
"Where's Quatre?" Heero asked.
The swallowing halted, and eyes opened. A shoulder raised and lowered before the bottle was sat on the table's edge. "Not his keeper, man."
Though Heero was aware the other man moved, he didn't look. He heard one of the balls smack against another, and thought over Duo's answer. From his first night at Noché, he'd seen that the young blond and the longhaired driller were inseparable. And he had to content himself with watching from one of the tables. Too often he'd seen kisses exchanged, looks that passed and touches proclaiming them more than friends.
"He's usually here," he stated before the next shot could be made. "with you."
Duo was at his side, nudging him over with a hip. "Yeah, usually." Heero moved, and Duo angled his torso, dipping his knees low. "Ten in the side pocket," he called out in a low voice. The shot made, the ball rolled into the stated hole.
Taking another swallow, he glanced Duo's way and back. The bar was too warm, the overhead fan circulated the air in a slow lazy pattern. Heero felt the sweat bead at his brow, and roll down the side of his face. With a quick swipe of his hand, he wiped it away. Another look, and Duo had shuffled to the other side of the table, his eyes keen on the angle of his shot. Heero swallowed and gripped his beer.
"So, what's with you two?" He dug a nail under the bottle's label, the condensation making it peel easily.
The question was asked nearly in his ear, and he started, not realizing Duo had come close once again. Heero stared, frowning slightly. A drop of sweat traced a trail down Duo's hairline, in front of his ear, and down his neck, disappearing into the collar of his shirt. Black, even in the heat, the top three bottons undone and sleeves cutoff high on the upper arms, the shirt was loose over shoulders. Never before had he wanted to taste something as badly as he did that trail of sweat. He swallowed again without answering.
A slow smile tipped the edges of Duo's mouth, his eyes dropped lower, and his tongue darted out to wet his lower lip - the habit keeping it permanently chapped. The man's nostrils flared and his eyes widened. "You..." Duo stopped, eyes narrowed and he locked gazes. One of his brows arched, and the color lightened in his eyes. He rested a hip against the table, cue stick still in one hand. "Guess it doesn't matter, but Q and I go way back." He winked, and deliberately leaned forward and inhaled deeply. "But we're friends." His tongue stroked his lip again. "Sharing some benefits without commitments."
Heero nodded and raised his beer absently, his lips suddenly numb. His eyes roamed Duo's face with his skin tanned, a trio of freckles high on the right cheek, a faint scar curved from his lower lip, a shallow dimple in his chin. If Duo's eyes had ever been innocent, Heero would have been surprised. Amusement melded with a hint of something more, darker and not quite so easy to define, deep within them.
"He is..." Heero hesitated on the propriety of his question, but continued, spurred by desires he couldn't acknowledge. "...good to you?"
Duo's brow raised even higher, and he removed the beer bottle from Heero's hand, drank from it, finishing the last. Handing the empty back, he licked his lower lip. "Not that it's any of your business, but yes."
"Then why isn't he here?" He pushed, blood thrumming through his veins as hope wheedled its way in.
A low chuckle. "He has family in San Fransico. He flies up whenever we have a three day." Their eyes met again, Heero's look strong and steady. Duo looked away. "Q and I, we... help each other when we can."
Heero nodded, not quite sure he understood, but willing to accept the explanation. "You're together, but not," he clarified.
"Not," Duo told him, tone hard. Duo's finger stabbed him in the chest. "Listen, college boy. I don't take anyone home with me - got that?"
"Okay." He lifted the beer and remembered it was empty. Tilting it instead, he asked, "Another?"
The bartender had trouble making change, and by the time he'd returned, Duo nearly had the table cleared. Heero went to the ledge lining the back wall behind the pool table, and set both beers down. Wanting a cigarette, wanting to touch the exposed flesh an arm's length away, wanting to feel the firm muscles beneath his hands, he picked at his label instead and attempted to keep his eyes averted.
He almost dropped his bottle. "Play?"
An arm reached around him, brushed across his stomach and a hand picked up the other beer. "Pool. Game's over." Duo was close, bare inches away and Heero realized the man was taller than he, but not by much; that bottom lip would fit between his two without adjusting heads.
Heero's hand touched the hip closest to him and his lids nearly slid shut. "I'd like to play with you," he kept his voice low, and his eyes on the man's face.
It amazed him how many different ways Duo could smile. From a shallow grin, to a wide showing of teeth, from a twist of lips, to a feral twitch, he wondered how Duo would look if he gave in and wrapped his lips around the corded muscle standing out in his neck.
"Then let's make it interesting." Slipping a hand into his pocket, Duo pulled something out and slapped it on the countertop. "Whadda say, college boy?"
The blue, plastic, diamond-shaped key ring glared in a way that should have been impossible. Its naked challenge had blood rushing straight to his groin. The surf pounded in his ears, and he looked from the key to Duo. Without breaking the man's stare, Heero reached for his own key, his fingers felt thick, and clumsy. "You're on."
Another new smile, feral and heated, it ate him alive. "Winner chooses position and location." Heero nodded and went to find a pool cue that wasn't too warped.
"My challenge, I'll rack, you break." Heero turned to find dark eyes watching him, gauging in their intensity. "You do know how to play, doncha?" A small flick of his lips.
Answering the challenge, his own look deepened even as Heero reached for the bluing chalk. "Guess you'll have to wait and find out, won't you?" And he grinned a tight, closed mouthed smile.
Duo leaned his stick against the counter and gathered the balls within the wooden triangle. "You been with the company long?"
Heero shrugged, blowing the dust from the cue's tip. "Long enough to know I don't want to do this for the rest of my life." Duo had finished racking. Tossing the talc bag aside, Heero asked, "How 'bout you? How long have you been drilling?" He approached the table, noting Duo had backed away to lean against the counter.
"Drilling, about two years. Before that, six in the field."
The cue ball lined up, he gave it an easy hit, sending the balls scattering. "You start in junior high?" Three dropped into different pockets, the black eight spun in its spot. "Stripes," he murmured, circling the table.
"Not quite." Heero heard the other man grunt as another ball dropped in a pocket. "Been playing long?"
"College," he answered, judging the cue's trajectory. Heero aligned his stick, an easy glide over the crook in his hand, and the stick recoiled as the marred white ball shot forward. His ball stopped short of the pocket; he hadn't put enough torque behind the hit.
Duo brushed by him as he made his way to the pool table. Fingers drew in a lingering touch just below Heero's belt. "Too bad, sport." Duo threw a grin over his shoulder. "Watch how a driller makes the holes."
Heero grunted with a slight smile. Rig humor. "Careful of your equipment," he tossed out. "Wouldn't want to scratch."
Even as he made his shot, Duo laughed. "I have my tool well in hand, thank you for your concern." He flashed a look, brows lowered, and another new grin added to the list. "You know what makes a good driller, don't you?" he asked turning back to the table. "Preparation, accuracy and depth." Another ball dropped into a pocket. Duo looked at him from his crouched position across the pool table. "Not to mention profession handling of his equipment."
The laugh Heero couldn't help. He'd forgotten for the moment how crude it could get, and he loved it. "I've heard you tend to bend your rods."
Duo lucked out. He should have scratched, but instead knocked a solid in the hole. Straightening, Duo stalked to stand in front of him. The driller leaned close, braid falling heavy to his chest. "My rod. Doesn't. Bend." The words grazed over Heero's skin, hot on his neck. Hand skimming over hand, Duo picked up his beer.
Machine oil, dirt and sweat filled his senses, mixing with his own smell, the pungent tang of his coming. Heero clenched his beer and sought Duo's eyes. Even as one hand slipped into his other pocket, he said, "Up the ante." Five foil squares linked together landed on top of the keys.
The driller's eyes followed Heero's hand, and for a moment he dropped his smile. "I never miss what I aim for, college boy. You're going to lose."
"Heero," he stated. "My name is Heero." His hand closed over the one holding the beer and he pulled it from the man's grip. Their eyes locked for a beat; Heero tilted his head back, and downed the rest of the beer, his tongue slid deliberately out of his mouth to lick the underside of the bottle neck. Setting the empty on the ledge, he challenged, "Your call."
Duo whistled low, his now empty hand dug in his pocket. "You have a set, I'll give you that."
"I wear an S tattooed on my chest," he deadpanned.
"I'll bet." Duo dropped a couple of items next to the condoms, and Heero grunted.
The small purple bottle he understood. "Why the chapstick?"
His tongue wetting his lower lip, Duo grinned. "You're smart, college boy. You figure it out." Duo bent forward, his mouth opening then closing over the beer still in Heero's hand. A gentle tug, and Heero released it, fascinated in watching Duo lift the bottle with his mouth and lips, tilt it back, and swallow - no hands.
Heero licked his own lips, his hand going to his crotch to shift for comfort. When Duo sat the bottle down, Heero croaked, "Still your turn."
As if he were measuring him, Duo hesitated. "You can back out, you know. Nothing will be said," his voice low, his tone tender. Dark eyes watched him, his expression serious.
Already shaking his head, Heero raised his hand and let his fingertips glide over the skin he needed to taste. "Like a knife," he whispered, his eyes remaining on his touch. "You're in too deep."
"Yeah." Duo's voice came from somewhere above.
His lips landed on flesh, his tongue darted to touch; a hint of salt, talc and some cologne filled his mouth. Heero sagged forward, wanting more. Hands caught his shoulders. The sound of their pool cues hitting the floor pulled him back. He took a step away, bent over and picked up the sticks, not looking at Duo. "I'm sorry."
Taking the cue stick handed him, one hand still on his shoulder, Duo commanded, "Don't." When Heero looked at the driller, surprised at the harsh tone, he saw the eyes had narrowed. Fingers dug into his flesh, and suddenly Duo was pressed against him. A stubbled cheek razed on his, lips nibbled at his ear. "If you hadn't come tonight, I would have hunted you down." And then he was gone.
Heero stumbled forward, a hand catching the ledge for balance. Duo was already lining up his next shot. His mouth dry; he reached for his beer, his hand brushed the bottle of lube instead and Heero changed his mind. Alcohol was something he didn't need more of. The steady crack of ceramic hitting ceramic made him focus on the table. Duo nearly had it cleared.
"You know what they call it when the bit's down deep in a hole, drilling, comes up and a bigger one fitted to go down the hole again widening it for more?" Duo asked, voice pitched in a conversational tone. Another crack, another ball in a pocket. Duo turned to look at him. "Rimming." Heero stopped breathing, and Duo's tongue stroked his bottom lip. "Think about it."
All rational thought fled. Images of Duo's tongue, hot, wet plunging deep leant to his breathlessness. Fingers, one after another, widening, stretching, preparing. His hand strayed to his crotch and he ground his palm against the tightening bulge. Heero released a shaky breath between parted lips; his eyes closed. His pool cue was pulled from his hand, and he opened his eyes to watch as Duo scooped up the items off the counter and shoved them into his pockets. He blinked, lost in the depth of an image.
A hand slapped his ass lightly. "Let's go. My car's outside." Duo smiled, honest, wide with promise and a hint of affection. And then he was gone.
Heero turned, and took a step; Duo was half way cross the bar. His eyes dropped to the table, and he saw the lone eight ball still sitting in the middle. He reached out and gave it a spin, his lips twitched.
"Hey Heero. You coming?" Duo called from the door.
Looking up, Heero grinned. "Not before you," he answered and followed his longhaired companion out into the parking lot.
The heat was like jumping into an oven, and he nearly retreated. Duo was a step in front of him, his braid swinging as he walked. Keeping his eyes on the spot where the braid met jeans, the heat in the air wasn't as bad as he originally thought.
"Here," Duo said, unlocking the passenger side. As Heero moved forward, his arms were seized and he was pushed up against the car door. "I've been wanting to do this for a long time." Duo's mouth came down, hot, crushing on his. His hands clutched at Duo's arms, palms and fingers sliding on sweat slick skin. Heero moved his head to the side, parted his lips and Duo's tongue was in. He moaned, and suddenly he could lift his arms.
Heero's hands raised. One cradling Duo's jaw - thumb stretched to his chin, and fingers cupped stroking his neck. The other slid around Duo's waist, fingers dipping between shirt and jeans. Heero felt a hand in his hair, fingers threaded deep and grasping. And one of Duo's arms wrapped around his shoulder, pulling him close even as he was pushed against the car. Duo's thigh worked its way between his legs, and a steady grinding rhythm made his pelvis buck, thrusting in short jerks.
Duo pulled away, his arms embracing his neck, and breath ragged and rough to his ears. "Have to stop or I won't."
Dropping his head to rest on Duo's shoulder, Heero found he liked being held in a pair of arms as strong as his own. He liked the rough feel of callused hands on his skin and the pure male smell he'd come to associate with Duo. He drew in a clearing breath and fought to bring his racing pulse under control.
"Come on," Duo whispered, stepping back and tugging on his belt loop. "Get in the car and let's go."
Heero watched as his soon to be lover went to the other side of the car, and waited until he got in before opening his door. The car started with a quiet roar, and a soft whirl sound was made. Heero looked up and noticed the top rolling back. His long heated night was about to be cooled. A quick glance around showed him Duo was heading for the highway.
"Just where is your place, anyway?" he asked, certain Duo's motel was just down the street from his own.
Duo flashed him a smile, accelerating up to speed, gaining on his own headlights, the wind whipping his bangs around. "About a hundred and fifty miles north, just outside Santa Barbara."
Giving him a nod, Heero settled back in his seat and let Duo take him for a ride.