Duet
by Killashandra

 

This story (a generous term, in this case) is SLASH, rated NC-17 for m/m sex and language, so if such things offend you or it's illegal for you to read this where you live, please don't read it! You've been warned.

This shameless PWP was brought to you by the letter E (for Ellen), the letter M (for Mairead) and the number 2 (as in, there can be only two.) Not beta'ed, so don't blame them.


October 1995

Pale, late afternoon sunlight slanted down across the old porch. The tip of Duncan's tongue stuck out the tiniest bit as he concentrated on a tricky bit of woodwork... and Methos, fascinated by that glimpse of pink, slowly reached over and freed the paintbrush from his hand, laid it down on a section of unpainted railing.

"Methos?" breathed Duncan, in just that tone, the same as when he'd said it the first time.

And Methos moved, stripping the silver clip out of the other man's hair and sinking his fingers into dark, silken waves in one smooth motion. He advanced, and Duncan went willingly, until the broad shoulders jarred up against a post and he could go no further.

The first taste of his mouth was even hotter and softer than Methos had imagined...

Muffling his groan against the pillow, Methos shifted on the couch, cupping one hand protectively around the heavy heat at his groin. This little obsession of his was really starting to be not funny any more. He was beginning to think he ought to just get on with it, jump the infuriating git, and worry about the fallout afterwards.

It had been obvious from the beginning that they were destined to fuck each other, or kill each other, or both; it was the both that had stopped him thus far. But months of separation hadn't dimmed the slow burn in the least, and the events of the past week had done nothing but feed the flame. The whole unreal span of days had ended rather explosively tonight on the beach, with a Quickening he hadn't sought and would just as soon have done without. Now it was left to him to lie here sweating out Kristin's Quickening in the dark, trying to soothe the insistent erection nudging the cotton folds of his boxer shorts while the Highlander slept the sleep of the innocent ten feet away.

Some part of him had held out the hope, till the very end, that MacLeod would pull it out and kill the psychopathic wench. Well, he supposed it was past time he had some of his illusions about Duncan MacLeod shattered--and as Quickenings went, he'd taken worse. He just really didn't want to think about the implications of what it might cost him, in the long run, to keep hanging out with the Immortal Galahad and his potentially suicidal 'code of honor.'

The really aggravating part of the whole business was the realization that even the unpleasant manifestation of MacLeod's Achilles heel hadn't lessened the craving he felt. Though he'd cursed the Highlander's sentimental foolishness, it had touched him in some curious way to know that the man would trust him enough to let him see that potentially fatal weakness--enough to let go of the responsibility and let Methos do what needed to be done.

Which led him back to that electric, elusive connection they'd made that afternoon on the porch, and the image he couldn't seem to get out of his head.

There had been times when he had been certain that the unspoken hunger in those dark, brooding looks of Mac's existed only in his imagination. If he could have gone on believing it, he might have dealt with his fantasies and left it at that. But the electric charge he'd felt when MacLeod had swiped that paintbrush over his nose had gone both ways, he was sure of it. And what about the pure, raw sex of what had happened in the dojo? Just thinking about it, about the delicate caress of MacLeod's blade on his throat, made him throb gently under his fingers--as if he hadn't just made base and ignoble use of Mac's shower and his own hand not an hour before.

His stiff cock was unimpressed with the reminder.

Methos sighed. For a moment, he debated: the privacy of the bathroom versus the likelihood that a moving body in the darkness would trigger MacLeod's well-honed defense instincts. For now, MacLeod slept on, the sound of his deep, even breathing carrying faintly across the space between the bed and the couch.

Which lent its own stimulus...

The boxers came down without a sound, the leather radiating intimate warmth against his bare ass. His pulse was skipping now, the awareness of MacLeod's nearness a piquant counterpoint to the vitriolic, unsettled energy that found anchor between his thighs and demanded release. Needing no preliminaries, Methos stretched out his legs, took himself in hand and got down to business.

In very short order, the need to stay quiet became almost maddening; the leather couch was demonstrating an unfortunate tendency to squeak. He couldn't manage the rhythm he needed--not and keep silent--and he thought it very likely that he would pass out from holding his breath before he managed to get any relief. Inspired by desperation, Methos brought his hand up and licked the palm, tasting salt, and the faint bittersweetness of his own fluid.

And--yes. Oh, yes, that was better. Much better. Infinitely--fuck... yes... unbidden, the imagined sensations surfaced, of MacLeod's mouth on his, that hard body pressed against his, the heat he would feel pressing his leg between those strong thighs...

Somewhere in the darkness, weight shifted on a bed, barely more than a whisper in the almost-silence.

Methos froze. And waited. When no further noise was forthcoming, he strained to listen for the deep, rhythmic sound of the other man's breathing, but couldn't hear anything past the sudden rushing of his own blood in his ears. His heart was beating so loudly he thought it might have been heard on the next block.

"Mac?" He whispered it very softly, fingers pressed fiercely at the base of his eager, impatient sex. "You awake?" So what if he was? Methos thought defiantly. This should have been his Quickening, his bloody hard-on, and if he was too much of a prude to deal with it, then Methos would just--

--die on the spot of embarrassment. God, please don't be awake. If he was, Methos was going to have to lock himself in the bathroom--no help for it.

The silence stretched out for interminable seconds. And then the answer came out of the darkness, low, rough enough to curl hotly in his belly, and utterly, devastatingly mortifying.

"Yeah."

Fuck.

"I--" Methos didn't know what he was going to say. His too-fast pulse counted out another handful of seconds.

"It's all right."

Fuck.

MacLeod knew.

Had been lying there, in the darkness, knowing. Listening. And here Methos was, lying on the man's couch with his shorts pushed halfway down his thighs, heart racing and face aflame, his rampant cock in his hand, embarrassment not cooling him off in the least. How the hell did he get himself into these situations? He opened his mouth to say something, anything.

"Methos," said the voice from the bed, husky and... just a little... breathless? "It's all right... don't stop."

Oh... god. A surge of pure, molten lust flooded him, a rush of heat that started in his belly and swept over him in an uncontrollable wave. His brain shifted into chaotic overdrive, supplying him with flash images that made his whole body light up, his whole insides dissolve in shivery, achy desire. Duncan, half-naked and mussed on the green satin sheets. Duncan, listening to him in the dark. Duncan, with one broad hand spread against his warm belly, touching himself... Methos shuddered, clamping down hard with his fingers. It was the only thing that saved him from just spilling all over himself right there; his cock was suddenly aching, impossibly hard in his fierce, desperate grip.

"Don't stop," the voice whispered again.

This time, the catch of breath was unmistakable.

"Mac," Methos gasped, the word pulled out of him beyond any stopping it. Helpless to do anything else, he spread his thighs, and began jerking himself off slowly, roughly, slick fluid turning unbearable friction to unbearable pleasure in seconds. Already he was on the brink, eyes closed, whole body tuned to the soft, echoing sounds from the bed.

Stop, stop, you have to stop... make it last... He forced himself to stop, to curl his hands at his sides, trembling with the effort. "Mac?" The soft rustle of sheets reached him, the sound telling him secrets of warm skin and shifting limbs in the darkness. Breathlessly, he dared, "Talk to me."

For a second, he thought he'd made a mistake. Stillness, from the bed, and no answer forthcoming. One thing to do it in silence and in darkness, another to try to bridge the gap, to make it something more--

A low, strained chuckle drifted across the darkened loft. "Been a long time since I did anything like this."

Methos let out the breath he'd been holding. Something warm and sweet bloomed low in his belly, and the awkwardness melted away with disconcerting ease. Before he knew it, he was chuckling, too. "Same here," he admitted. But the shared laughter only stoked his arousal, and he shifted against the cushions, his pulse beating hard now at his throat and other, more demanding places. "Mac... are we really gonna do this?"

One heartbeat. Two. "Yeah. We are." A breath. And then the low purr, utterly untouched by doubt or reluctance. "Take off your clothes, Methos."

Jesus. Heat shivering in waves over his skin, nipples aching they were so hard, Methos managed to sit up, to pull the thin t-shirt over his head. He turned, seeking the other man's shape in the darkness. "You, too," he said hoarsely. Wordless rustles, shifting shadows in the bed told him he was obeyed; he laid back and stripped off the cotton shorts. His hands flexed, and he stirred restlessly, imagination painting him vivid pictures out of the quiet satin whispers of Duncan's maneuvering. He drew a deep breath, his palms itching to touch skin. Better cool it down, old man, or this is gonna be over before it starts.

Then MacLeod's voice shivered over him, intimate and knowing. "Methos?"

"Yeah?"

"What are you doing?"

Going out of my mind, thanks. "Just lying here, at the moment. Waiting for you." Wondering what the hell we're doing. "What about you?"

A soft, indrawn sigh was followed by the unmistakable whisper of skin on skin. "Lying on my back. My eyes are closed." Then the quiet admission, "I'm hard as hell, Methos, from listening to you."

Methos closed his eyes. The kick from that little tidbit of information came as a hot throb of longing, in a place deep inside him. He ran his hands over his stomach, feeling goose bumps chase the caress. Playing with fire, that's what we're doing...

He had to clear his throat. "Just how long were you listening?"

"A few minutes. You were making little noises... "

The heat rose in Methos' face. "You could've pretended you were still asleep, you know."

"I know. I didn't want to." Amusement glinted in the low voice, and something else, something growly, and dangerous, and delicious. Methos knew instantly where he'd heard just that note before. Oh, I dunno... maybe she'll stop to gloat, like you. Unable to resist, he brushed his fingertips along the underside of his cock, touching off a jolt of response.

"Willful child," he murmured, and it was an effort to keep the breathlessness out of his voice. "You're just full of surprises, aren't you?"

"That's right. You want to stop? I can still roll over and pretend I'm asleep."

"No," Methos said huskily. "I don't want to stop." He collected drops of his own slippery fluid on his fingertips, rubbing the moisture across the sensitive crown.

"Good." A small, sharp intake of breath followed the word. "Are you touching yourself, Methos?"

Fresh moisture coated Methos' lightly stroking fingers. Keep saying my name like that and I won't have to. "A little," he admitted, squirming slightly and trying to keep his breathing even. God, who was this demon, this satyr who lost all inhibition in the dark?

"I am. Feels really good." The soft sound, steady and maddening, told Methos just exactly the way Duncan was touching himself, just exactly how tightly, how slowly he was stroking himself in his own encircling hand. "I was thinking about doing this before, when you were in the shower." The deep voice roughened a little. "Were you--?"

"Yeah." Methos swallowed. He brushed his hands lightly over his erect nipples; the shock of pleasure was intense. "I was," he managed. He wrapped one hand around his sex, and had to bite back a groan. "Doesn't seem to have done the trick, though."

"Yeah, I know what it's like, feeling like that. Like you'll go crazy if you don't come. Feels like you could come about a hundred times."

"Jesus, Mac." Methos was breathing hard now, one hand spread against his thigh, stroking himself with a steady rhythm that felt like heaven, like it might kill him to stop.

The voice was kind, the words unbearable cruelty. "Not yet, Methos."

"Please--" The word escaped, and with it a gasp he couldn't hold back.

"Not yet."

Trembling, suddenly aching with the need to come, Methos obeyed. Stilled his hand, pressing hard at the place that would allow him to take the next breath without finishing it right there. "Mac--"

"I want you to wait for me." MacLeod's voice was controlled, but his breathing was audible now, rough and labored; the other, softer sound got harder, faster, and Methos almost moaned in response. "Can you?"

"You're killing me."

"No, you won't die." A soft chuckle followed, earthy and incredibly arousing. Then it broke off, and Methos thought he heard a stifled curse. "Not long now," MacLeod said hoarsely. "You ready?"

"God, yes."

"Come with me, Methos."

He didn't have to be told twice. His cock felt like hot steel, the head slippery with fluid, and when he wrapped his hands around it and began to stroke in earnest, the relief almost made him cry out. Oh, no, not long now, and not far to go--the pleasure seemed to wash over him in waves of heat, and he thought maybe he'd just dissolve, just wash away on the rising tide of a climax that didn't seem to be waiting for anything so ordinary as ejaculation. And Duncan was with him, in the dark, making low sounds deep in his throat, surging to follow him, the awareness of that connection pushing Methos finally, irrevocably, to the very edge of his control--

"You close?" he panted, eyes clenched shut, fighting to hold back the release his body begged for, cried for, just one more second--

"Yeah. M'close." There was a muffled sound, like a groan, and the fierce cadence of skin on skin got even faster--Duncan was panting now, too-- "God, I'm hot... you make me so fucking hot, Methos--"

And that was it, Methos was gone, the orgasm rushing up with merciless power, hitting him in the gut, hot fluid spattering his belly and chin and chest without any further stimulation. Ecstatic release sparked like chain lighting through his lungs and thighs and every place in between, right down to his toes, the raw force of it wrenching a low cry from him as he gave up trying to breathe and just curled around his milking hand to ride it out. The sound Duncan made as he came, deep and vulnerable and eloquent with pleasure, made Methos' body shudder hard, as if trying to come again even in the middle of the shattering release. "God--" he heard himself choke; he didn't know if it was a plea for mercy or a prayer of thanks.

When it was over, he lay there gasping, the room spinning a little from too much oxygen. Already, while his body was still reeling, his mind was leaping ahead, considering possibilities. The man was dangerous, no doubt about it--certainly more dangerous than Methos had ever given him credit for. Playing with fire was a hazardous occupation, but it had been so long since he'd felt this much heat with anyone, the temptation was almost irresistible.

Later for that. For now, he thought he'd just try to remember how to make his brain communicate with his limbs. Methos shifted further up the couch--and realized he was a mess, sweat and come liberally painted on his skin, his face, the leather-- "Shit," he muttered, and started to laugh. "I, uh... think I killed your couch, Mac--"

"I'll buy a new one," said MacLeod, the husky voice much closer than Methos expected.

That was all the warning he got. Before he could finish drawing breath, MacLeod's shadowed form resolved itself out of the darkness near the foot of the couch, and warm hands were closing over his bare feet, sliding gently, possessively over his calves. The sensation was exquisite, torturous, his whole body jumping like a sensitized nerve ending; he tried to think, or to speak, to somehow react, but all he could manage was a low sound, deep in his throat. The callused palms brushed the soft undersides of his knees, then slipped around to warm the insides of his thighs.

There, they stopped.

"If you tell me to stop," the incubus said, "I will."

Methos felt his body go from sated torpor to a low, humming anticipation in about three seconds flat. "Stopping wouldn't be first on my list," he murmured, trying very hard not to tremble under that tender, heavy grip.

There was a gleam, very faint, of the white flash of teeth. "Good answer."

And those warm hands pressed his legs apart, arousing in Methos a fierce, spiraling ache of need, for something he had not known he needed nor ever guessed he would find, certainly not this night, in this place, with this man. Fuck each other, or kill each other, yes, but not this elemental nakedness, this exposure... limbs suddenly heavy and languid, he sank back, surrendering inexorably to the weight that settled between his legs, the cool silk of MacLeod's hair and the shockingly hot, wet caress of lips and tongue on the sensitive skin just below his pelvic bone. Satisfying a months-old craving, he laced his fingers deep into the soft mane as MacLeod's head moved under his hands.

The tender mouth moved to feast on his thighs, drawing another sound of startled pleasure from deep within him, a sound that turned to a groan when the hot tongue found the crease where thigh met hip, then lapped delicately at the small pool of fluid in his navel. MacLeod moaned softly against him. "Christ, you taste good," he murmured, nuzzling appreciatively, and Methos came erect again in a sweet, surprised rush.

"What devil is in you, MacLeod?" he said breathlessly, looking down.

The other man answered with more succulent caresses. "No devil. Just got tired of your teasing, old man. Time to pay up."

Methos struggled for some coherent response.

MacLeod chuckled, never stopping the light patterns he was drawing with his mouth on Methos' belly . "What, did you think I didn't know what it meant, the way you looked at me? You call me a child, but I'm not stupid, you know. I'm not blind."

"I never thought--"

"Don't think," MacLeod said mildly, nipping lightly at his hipbone. The prick of teeth made a wave of delicate shivers wash over Methos' thighs.

All his fantasies, and still he'd never guessed, never known that this Duncan simmered all the time below those moody, thoughtful looks, that stubborn-set jaw and stiff-necked control. Or... maybe some part of him had known, and known the risk...

Licking, tasting, sucking at his skin, MacLeod slowly bathed him clean of his own stickiness, while Methos melted, becoming a malleable creature of pure response as the warm, wet onslaught moved over his hips, his stomach. Had he been drugged? That was it, MacLeod must have drugged him, to make him feel like this, like he was incapable of moving except in slow, blind counterpoint to the assault of that merciless mouth. When MacLeod shifted higher, licking the contour of his collarbone and pressing his tongue hotly into the hollow at Methos' throat, it was the most natural thing in the world for Methos to shift his hands to the other man's broad shoulders, to flow against him like water and rub his cock against the warmth of MacLeod's belly.

A faint shudder ran through the Highlander's body. His breath caught audibly, his hands closing reflexively on Methos' ribs. He lifted his head, and for the first time, Methos could make out his face in the almost-dark; for the first time, their eyes met.

Methos didn't know what silent secrets he told in that moment, what secrets he was given in trade, but the charge of that connection reached straight down through his center, burning away his languid passivity in a hot flare of hunger. He curled one hand against the back of MacLeod's neck. As if in silent accord, MacLeod was already moving, neck and shoulder muscles giving under the pressure of Methos' hand, willing mouth meeting his in hot, gentle welcome.

Purest sin, that mouth, an immediate addiction that had Methos aching before he'd even got past the first satiny caress of softly parted lips, the first earthy taste of his own come on MacLeod's tongue. Instantly he needed more, needed to taste much more of him, feel more of that warm, satin weight pressed against him. He sank his hands into MacLeod's hair. There. Oh, there, yes--MacLeod met the demand of his open-mouthed kisses with a slowly rising fire of his own, opening for Methos' tongue, suckling it greedily and then letting Methos feast on him, yielding to the pressure of Methos' hands.

And Methos had been right about that hair. Having him like this--being able to hold his head still and obsess on his lips, his tongue--was as wonderfully carnal and satisfying as Methos had known it would be, MacLeod's responsiveness every bit as intoxicating as he had imagined. The man had a mouth made for this, and a passion for it that matched Methos' own. Nothing safe, nothing sane--and Methos found he couldn't fight it, could only fall with him into that slow, fierce, almost unbearably intimate rhythm of deep kisses, each hotter and more intense than the one before, until he felt MacLeod moaning softly into his mouth, realized he was pressing his cock against Methos' flank, very close to being unable to stop.

"Mac," he managed, breaking away with effort. "Wait--"

The Highlander made a faint sound of protest, hungrily seeking his mouth again; for long seconds Methos gave in, drowning in the heat of those slow, drugging kisses, all wet, silken heat and gentle seduction. Awash in pure hedonistic sensation, he found himself echoing the rocking motion of MacLeod's hips, rubbing himself against the other man's belly, tasting the salt-sweetness inside his mouth--

It was then that MacLeod gently bit down on his tongue.

Pleasure racked him, a deep, primal shudder of response. Merciless, Duncan sucked his tongue deeper and did it again; before he could even groan out his ecstasy, he felt Duncan's hands slide up his sides, felt the delicious weight shift on top of him, felt Duncan's teeth close on the tender flesh at his throat. The throb of longing pierced so deep inside of him that he thought the emptiness might kill him if it went on much longer, if he didn't get that hot, velvet-tipped sex inside of him soon. As if in answer, Duncan thrust with soft urgency against his belly; Methos gave a ragged, involuntary moan, writhing against the almost unbearable intensity of need.

"Yes," Duncan hissed, so soft it might have been imagination, his own thought. But the hands on his shoulders held tightly, demanding--and they knew him intimately, knew what he needed.

The thrill of danger, undeniable, was aphrodisiac in itself. Oh, no, nothing he had expected, everything he should fear--but it didn't matter any more, wasn't going to matter. Getting his hands between them, he pushed, hard.

"Methos?" MacLeod's hair was wild around his head, his eyes bright and hot in the faint starlight.

"Bed," Methos grated out. "Now."

MacLeod hesitated only a moment. Then he was rising, his hand closing over Methos' forearm. The grip was solid, a simple acceptance, one warrior to another, as if that could make what they were about to do any easier, any less dangerous. Methos let himself be pulled up, blood rushing almost painfully to his cock when he stood.

As before, he could feel Duncan with him. No discussion was needed; everything that needed to be said had been said in the silent, sweaty bower of the leather couch. Methos went to the bed and laid face down among the rumpled bedclothes. He buried his face in the smell, breathing in Duncan's musk in great lungfulls, rubbing himself gently on the cool satin sheets. Then, eyes closed, he turned, spread himself out on his back, and waited. Less than a minute passed before he sensed Duncan near, the rich scent of amber oil heavy in the charged air.

Methos opened his eyes at last, a slow flush heating his skin. Duncan was close in the dark, shadows painting the shape of him in shades of grey, and Methos was caught by a momentary shift of perception in which he understood that he had been right about Duncan MacLeod that first day, in almost everything that mattered; it was his own blind spot he'd missed, his own Achilles heel. Duncan's gaze locked unerringly to his, questioning gently, inexorably. Knowing the answer, but asking anyway--how had Duncan known this, when he hadn't? In that moment, Methos couldn't have spoken to save his neck, but whatever answer his eyes were giving, it must have been enough.

Duncan knelt between his knees. He moved with a surety that made Methos' brain slowly start to short circuit; still the dark eyes held his, merciless now. Desire, and something darker, had whetted the Highlander's regard to a fierce, focused intensity; it promised mayhem, and payment due, and it made Methos want to shift himself down and MacLeod up and take that beautiful oiled cock down his throat, as deep as it would go. Yes. Oh, yes, this was what he needed. This was--

"You knew," MacLeod said softly, with a mildness Methos knew better than to trust. "Didn't you? All this time, you knew."

"Knew?" Methos could feel his pulse beating at his throat. Earlier, he had craved the connection of the other man's voice; now it was too much, made it too real, grounded him solidly when what he wanted was to lose himself. Don't talk, he wanted to say, please, just don't say anything. He didn't know if he could do this if Duncan talked to him.

"What you were doing to me. All this time. All your wide-eyed, innocent looks, while your body was so hot for me I could feel it from three feet away. What a piece of work you are, Methos." The husky voice was warm with something that might have been amusement, or affection. The big hands spread against his hips, slick and warm, dissolving him from the center outward. "Do you know how long I've wanted to have you like this?" The hands slid down Methos' thighs, pressing them gently, inexorably apart, and all Methos could do was lie back, give in, and try to keep some dignity as his cock leapt in eagerness.

MacLeod bent his head, not hurrying. He nuzzled softly against Methos' hard sex with that same, deceptive gentleness, and Methos bit his tongue to hold back something perilously close to a whimper. "Oh, you want this too, don't you?" The warm mouth pressed moist, butterfly caresses at his groin, the tip of Duncan's tongue catching gently against the curls there. "Tell me the truth." The hot tongue licked delicately around the base of his cock, made Methos ache to be inside, to feel that heat surrounding him. "You've wanted this as much as I have. You've been asking for it since you got here." Wet heat flicked the underside of his sex. Automatically, Methos' fingers sank once more into soft waves, feeling the resistance this time, the denial of his urging hands. Duncan lifted his head, his mouth swollen and glistening. "Isn't that right?"

Far too aroused for teasing, Methos felt a surge of frustration, made himself let go of his grip on the other man's hair before the violence could get the better of him. "Damn you," he growled, "what are you waiting for?"

In a smooth, swift motion, Duncan sat back on his heels, snagged Methos' wrists out of the air, encircled them with a light, firm grip and drew them down, pinning them against the bed negligently, as if unaware that he hadn't let go. Gut level arousal coiled tightly in Methos' belly.

"Answer the question," said Duncan.

Methos licked his lips, breathing hard with the effort to keep still, not to betray what it was doing to him to feel those hands at his wrists, how much he wanted them to stay there.

The hands tightened. "Methos." Duncan leaned down. His face was tender with his demand, almost painfully beautiful. His weight bore down on Methos' wrists, and there was nothing negligent in that grip now. It was implacable steel. "Answer the question."

It was the same look Duncan had worn bending over him in the dojo, when the sword rested hot against his neck, a brand of flame that had felt like it licked at pleasure points deep inside him. As before, that look made him want only one thing, made him feel that he would do almost anything to have it. "Yes," Methos whispered, heart beating fiercely against his breastbone. "That's right, MacLeod. I've been asking for it." He made it a dare, wordlessly urging Duncan to stop talking and start taking.

But the Highlander only nodded, solemnly. Then he was leaning forward, pressing Methos' thighs apart with his own, his body skimming Methos' belly and chest as he bent to nuzzle against Methos' throat, the rasp of his cheek prickling gently at delicate skin. Methos shivered, struggling a little against the weight that pinned him, against the urge to just wrap his legs around Duncan's waist and impale himself on the other man's thick cock.

"Shh." Teeth grazed his ear, making him shudder. "Don't rush it."

Methos couldn't answer. He was shocked to feel himself starting to tremble slightly. A hot, soft tongue explored his ear, melting tingles of pleasure through him; MacLeod had his hands pinned near his shoulders now, and... oh god, the man was rubbing himself against Methos' cock, a slow, slick, thorough caress by way of hello.

"Feel me all ready for you, Methos? I'm going to give you what you wanted."

The gentle, slick stroke came again; Duncan's cock felt like oiled, satin-sheathed steel, hot and tender against his own, and Methos closed his eyes, groaning out his pleasure. "God, Mac--"

"Please?" breathed Duncan, biting down gently on his earlobe. He was stretched almost full length against Methos now, the feel of him exquisite as he stroked Methos' wrists thoughtfully, with his thumbs. "Is that the word you're looking for?"

Something in the proprietary tone, the warm, pressing weight... The feeling came again, strong and overwhelming, that spiraling, falling feeling Methos needed so badly--the one that let him be lost, let him forget what they were and all the reasons why this was a very, very bad idea. So long. It had been so long since anyone...

"Please," he gasped, rubbing himself against the silken hardness that nuzzled patiently at his groin. His hands were drawn above his head with a steady pressure that pulled arm and chest muscles taut.

"Please what?" Duncan murmured near his ear, merciless, the warmth in the voice both reassurance and promise. "You've been asking for it... I want you to ask me for it, Methos." Strong hips ground that slick, rigid sex into Methos' belly, a slow, rotating pressure that reduced him swiftly to writhing, panting desire, making him curl in on himself.

"Please, I want--" His breath caught, and he shivered faintly with the depth of his want. "Inside me. Now, Duncan--"

His shiver found an echo in the Highlander's body, and MacLeod stilled against him with a soft, indrawn breath.

"Oh, yes," he whispered, his breath warm against Methos' neck, his face pressing hotly against Methos' cheek for just a moment. "Now." He lifted his hips, shifting effortlessly between Methos' spread thighs, relinquishing his grip on Methos' hands to cup his palms under Methos' knees. The silky-wet tip of his cock probed insistently at Methos' tender opening. "Open up for me, Methos. Let me in."

"Yes--" His body yielded eagerly, hungrily, the formidable pressure easing him open with a smooth, tight, blissful slide of friction that made him shudder uncontrollably, made him choke as his lungs tried to gasp for air and cry out his ecstasy at the same time. Deep, Duncan had sunk so deep in him so quickly, all silk and steel, the penetration stabbing him with vulnerability, with painful rapture. And Duncan didn't move. Didn't do anything but stay like that, his eyes closed, his heartbeat throbbing deep at Methos' center, his skin gleaming and radiant, suffused with pleasure. Sweat sheened the Highlander's upper lip as he held himself so still, so controlled--as his own rapture washed over his face in visible waves.

Then he did move, one slow, gentle retreat, one implacable push inside of Methos, stroking him with slick tenderness.

And oh, sweet, merciful heaven... the pleasure was so intense, so overwhelming, Methos' body almost couldn't contain it. He broke out in goose bumps; they rippled over his skin like dappled sunlight. He couldn't breathe, couldn't move--he felt like if he did either, he would come. All he could do was hold himself still and yield to that intimate invasion as Duncan slid slowly, in minute increments, in and out of him.

Small shudders ran through Duncan now as he moved, the Highlander's breathing uneven, his control holding fast, but not without cost. He was mercy itself, kind as a benediction, no pain at all in the soft, steady stroking of his sex inside Methos. It felt so... good...

...and still it wasn't what Methos wanted, wasn't even close to what he needed.

"Duncan," he whispered, barely able to find breath to voice it. "Look at me."

Duncan stilled. Dark eyes opened. Found his.

Oh, mistake, Methos realized with fatal calm, as the blunt, hot impact of that gaze hit him low in the gut, squeezed fiercely behind his ribs. Wonder was in that gaze. Wonder, and want, and something more dangerous than anything that had gone before--something hot and possessive, a fierceness that promised that whatever happened, this would not be the last time, not by a long shot. Duncan was shaking. The tremors were almost imperceptible, as controlled as everything else about him, but Methos felt them, knew he was not alone.

"I know," Duncan said hoarsely, the effort plain. "But I wanted..." He didn't finish. Instead he pressed into Methos, hips thrusting just a little harder, reaching just a little deeper--

A soft, melting thrum of intense, overwhelming sensation sparked within Methos' body, making him convulse gently in trembling, inchoate pleasure.

"...I wanted to see that look on your face, Methos..."

And Duncan rocked against the place, with more force this time, the little burst of ecstasy throbbing harder, spreading through more of Methos' body. Methos heard himself make a sound, nothing he recognized. Still Duncan didn't withdraw, but rocked his hips again, and again that place within Methos answered him, nerves firing like hot sparklers, and again...

"Oh..." Panting, he reached out, groping blindly; his fingers were caught, laced in Duncan's, the Highlander's forearms locked gently under his knees, holding him open, the grip of those hands hot and steadying as Duncan at last began to thrust in earnest, at last...

Oh... yes. Methos closed his eyes, squeezing them shut with grateful, prayerful assent. He was spread open, wide open by the strong shoulders between his thighs, the strong hands that seized his own and held them tight, locking him immobile and vulnerable in the face of that steady, demanding takeover. Still controlled, still not the fierce, irresistible rhythm he craved, but oh, getting closer, getting him there, yes.

Duncan thrust into him, deeper still, and Methos reached a high, dizzying moment of clarity, a pristine heartbeat of awareness in which he could feel every centimeter of his skin that touched Duncan's, every frisson of shuddery pleasure that was generated in the place where they met, the hot path of Duncan's invasion and his own greedy welcome. A drop of sweat splashed onto his chest, bathing him minutely in that scent, the incredibly arousing scent of the other man's striving. His mouth watered, with the sudden urge to lick every inch of the dusky skin, to taste Duncan as he had been tasted, everywhere. Their bodies slid once more together, hungrily, deeply, perfectly.

He felt it, the moment when the Highlander stopped giving pleasure and began to take it, began to seize hold of it and drag it from Methos' unprotesting body in strong, rocking thrusts. Yes. Yes. And then Methos was there, on the edge of the chasm, eyes squeezed shut and lost in the dark, the beautiful dark as he started to fall, started to let himself go into the rising waves of pleasure. His own hunger closed over him like the sea; he was seized on the tide of it, drowning willingly. His body gasped for air he didn't need, an instinct that wouldn't save him. He didn't care. Duncan held him fiercely, took him, the power in those deep, fast thrusts merciless, irresistible. Heat stabbed him. Pleasure flayed him. The violent rhythm took him over, until he couldn't do anything but hang on and feel it, his hands locked tightly to the only anchor in the vast deep of his own surrender.

At last Duncan groaned, a sound of pure gratification, unselfconscious and utterly beautiful, and Methos looked up in time to see him throw his head back, exposing the strong column of his throat as he closed his eyes and gave himself over to his own need at last. Magnificent as he was in his lust, the sight drove Methos suddenly, perilously close to climax; he had to shut his eyes again to hold back the peak of that last, irrevocable swell. Not yet... not yet... he didn't want it to be over yet... because this, at last, was what he had needed, this unrelenting abandon, this violent, urgent mercy. Yes.

Time spun away for a while, and he was flying, wonderfully free in the pounding, demanding dark.

Finally the ecstasy became too much, wouldn't be denied any more, and he was suddenly, painfully aware of every breath, every searing brand of pleasure on his overloaded nerves. The soft, panting grunts were close now, muffled against him; somewhere along the line, Duncan had let go of his hands. The fierce grip held onto his shoulders now and pressed him close, the Highlander's body curled over him. Methos was being driven helplessly against skin slicked with sweat and his own slippery fluid. His sex throbbed, sang with the stimulation. He clutched at the other man's back, mouth open and gasping and unable to plead, unable to warn him that in another moment he was going to lose it, just one more thrust and it would be all over, he couldn't possibly hold on another--

"Fuck," choked the man who owned his body, who claimed it again and again with the driving force of his possession. "Methos--"

And then Mac was kissing him, melding Methos' lips and tongue to his with flaying, intimate honesty as he went rigid in Methos' arms, sobbed his release into Methos' mouth, and Methos came blindly, ecstatically, breaking free of Duncan's mouth to cry out his own shocked pleasure.

The overwhelming surge of release seemed to go on a long, long time.


The Highlander slept a little, as grey morning began to lighten the shadows in the loft. In the welcome solitude, Methos lay awake and tried to slowly piece together some measure of practicality in the face of the truly unprecedented risk he'd just taken. It was just one of the many reasons he didn't fight any more--being forced to kill made him reckless, made him do crazy things.

His eyes strayed, unwillingly seeking and finding the other man's sleeping face. Yes, this definitely qualified... but even now, knowing what must be, he couldn't find it in himself to regret. Not yet, anyway. For now, this little time was his, to savor--to store away the memory, if necessary. In this holy ground they had made in this place, this night, he was safe.

How long had it been, since he'd trusted like that? Trusted a man who could match him strength for strength to give him what he needed? He could still feel that kiss, at the last, that searing, undeniable answer Duncan had made him in kind.

Long lashes fluttered, a dark crescent against the tawny skin. Methos wondered idly what he dreamed about. Battles, probably. Enemies he'd beaten, fights he'd won--or lost. Or maybe... maybe he dreamed of the other ones, the friends, the good men and women who had died because even Duncan MacLeod of the Clan MacLeod was only one man, with a man's flaws and limitations. Even Kristin had grieved him, damaged and vicious as she had been. This is not about chivalry, MacLeod had insisted. For the first time, it occurred to Methos that maybe that had been the simple truth--that it wasn't Kristin's femaleness MacLeod had seen when he looked at her, but her faith in him, her certainty that Duncan MacLeod wouldn't kill someone he'd cared about.

The thought jolted Methos quietly, and he found that he really didn't want to think about that too closely. Bad enough to think about the more immediate risks, without begging trouble in some grim, unthinkable future.

The immediate risks... chief among them that he couldn't seem to erase the feel of that kiss from his mouth, or the sense memory of strong fingers gripping between his own. He wanted things. Things he knew very well he couldn't have, not being what he was. Not with Duncan being what he was. Their friendship, if one could call it that, had been rocky from the start--the number of times they'd seen eye to eye about anything that mattered, Methos could count on one hand. Then, too, he'd read Duncan's chronicle--knew only too well how few skeletons there were in that distressingly well-swept closet. Maybe Duncan wasn't closed-minded about getting naked with people of his own gender on occasion, but he wasn't exactly hanging up pink triangles, either. The man loved women. Frequently. Usually, monogamously. Methos was reasonably certain that in MacLeod's four hundred years, there'd been precious few exceptions.

Methos sighed, and closed his eyes. In truth, none of that really mattered. He couldn't have what he wanted because he wasn't willing to give what it would take, it was as simple as that. It had been so hard to let himself trust, to put himself into Duncan's hands, even for such a short time... it had taken all of his courage just for that. With someone else, it might have been enough, but Duncan's honesty--his generous heart, freely given, and the trust inherent in the gift--had swept aside Methos' offering in one sweet, destroying kiss. The price? Not much, only everything. But Methos didn't know how to do that--didn't even know how to want it. And even if he did know, how could MacLeod possibly want anything to do with him, if he knew everything? If he knew what Methos had been? It was hopeless. There simply weren't words in any language that could make him understand.

Maybe in a thousand years, they would be able to talk to one another. Maybe in a thousand years, Methos could have what was now so far out of his reach.

A hand stole gently over his, startling him out of his bleak thoughts. He opened his eyes, and turned his head to find dark eyes watching him.

"That bad?" MacLeod asked huskily. His voice was rough, his face soft with sleep, almost criminally appealing. Methos swallowed.

"Thought you were asleep."

"You were thinking too loud. Woke me up."

In spite of himself, Methos had to smile. "Sorry, can't help it. Have to keep the wheels oiled, you know."

"Yeah, I know," MacLeod murmured. "They say it's the mind that goes first." But his eyes were serious, waiting, watching Methos across the distance between their pillows. His hand was warm.

Methos said nothing. He didn't want it to be morning.

He sat up.

MacLeod's face flickered with something that might have been sadness, but it was gone too fast to tell. His hand moved away. It came to rest between them, cupped loosely against the sheet.

Something ached in Methos, the pain more immediate than he'd guessed it would be.

"Mac--"

"Listen," MacLeod said, looking down at the place where his hand rested, precisely halfway between them. "I want to ask you something. Are we still friends?" A crooked smile canted his mouth. "If we were friends before, that is?"

For a moment, Methos found that words had deserted him. At last he managed, "Of course we're friends."

At that MacLeod looked up. His eyes were cool and dark, deep as a forest pool, betraying nothing.

Methos drew a breath, caught suddenly by the certainty that this, at least, he could give freely, without fear that it might cut one of them later. That much trust, that much honesty, wasn't too much to ask--it was nothing compared to what he'd been given. He reached out without thinking. MacLeod's hand had turned to meet him, fingers slipping easily between his. Methos said it again, but this time it was a promise, a covenant. "Of course we're friends, Duncan. Never doubt it."

And MacLeod's eyes smiled, his fingers squeezing once in acknowledgment before gently letting Methos go. He rolled onto his back, arms crossed under his head. "It's enough," he said. "Let the rest worry about itself, okay? We've got plenty of time."

Struck by the mirroring of his own earlier thought, Methos started a little. "You read minds, too?"

Duncan shrugged. "Time's a good answer to all manner of problems, you might have noticed."

Heart suddenly lighter, Methos only looked at him, and smiled.


 The End