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Twisted Fate

 

This man was his own kind of mystery, not showing much but just enough not to seem suspicious to Graves. It's been almost 4 months that they started this thing they called partnership, which looked more like a funny adventure between money, robbing and drinks. And he still couldn't understand fully the card master. A real snake. So far, they had a lot of chance or as he may say « Lady Luck is smiling to us », tucking his hat with a cunning smile. This damned hat. This was one of the things he learned, at least.

 

The more frustrating for the outlaw was the almost continuous presence of Twisted Fate in his mind. Even when absent, he wouldn't let him at peace, though there was no particular reason to think about the man. Annoying. He supposed that was because he didn't trust him yet, after all, 'betrayals' weren't a rare thing in Bilgewater. Maybe one day, even if this thought left a light bitter taste.

 

And yet, here he was, not able to avoid this kind of thoughts about a man he wanted to know and not at the same time. It was just something to get a headache.

 

~

 

He found himself watching more often the card master, his habits, trying to get the man and sometimes he wasn't even aware of the staring. It caught the latter's attention several times and after the first, he would play with him a little, to the point of flirting openly. This particularly got Graves's nerves, who just wanted to yank his collar and wip that smirk with a crushing kiss. Wait, what ?? No, nonono.

 

It was unnerving to see the way his thoughts turned into something more involved as time passed.

 

And it took another sense for the outlaw when his partner disapeared then showed up 3 days later, like nothing happened.

 

« Where the fuck were you ? » his voice got an angry tone, not even trying to hide it.

 

« Chill, I wasn't really far. » the reply sounded like it was quite ordinary, with a hint of sass.

 

« And yet you went missing without telling me ! What were you doing ?? »

 

« Just fucking my heat out. No need to get mad at me for this kind of crap. »

 

This answer cut Graves before he could reply something sharp, now speechless. Twisted Fate didn't expect at all this silence.

 

« A heat ?? You're an omega ? » even his tone showed his disbelief.

 

« Yes ? And it changes something ? » that was it. Twisted Fate was taken aback by the fact that the latter didn't know this yet. He grew a little defensive, it wouldn't be the first time that an alpha had looked down on him after learning his 'condition'. Fucking stereotypes and all the bullshit that comes with it. As if being an omega meant not being skilled, or at least, not as much as a beta or an alpha.

It made the cardmaster roll his eyes, bracing himself for a mocking comment he would brush away without showing the light effect upon him.

 

But again, the outlaw took some time to answer, as if aware that he shouldn't mess up. « No, it doesn't. It's just.... I didn't know. » his phrasing was cautious, looking with attention TF's possible reaction but this man had indeed a good poker face. « I'll will not bother you, as long as you mind your own business concerning your heats. »

 

The conversation went less awkward, enough for Twisted Fate to relax again. « What do you mean ? » He knew what the other meant by this complicated sentence but he wanted to have a bit of fun.

 

He saw Graves get a slight fluster, a good reward that reminded him how much he liked to play with his patience. « You already know, idiot ! »

 

« No, tell me. » oh he got a hint of red on his cheek. Lovely.

 

« I don't give a shit about who you fuck. Just don't come here to brag. » and once it was said, he went out grumbling his anger.

 

TF watched him go, smirking for the sweet torment he inflicted to his partner. A shame he doesn't even see the offer. Thinking of it, bedding this particular alpha sounded indeed appealing, but the reasons why were a mystery. I wonder if he is as 'dominant' in the bedroom.

 

~

 

An omega. He is a fucking omega.

He said the truth when he admitted that it didn't change things at all. But he still couldn't get over that fact. His body couldn't get over that fact. Because all this time he questionned this peculiar attraction for the cardmaster, he never really thought of this relationship perspective. What he took for suspicion turned into something more personnal.

 

And now that he had learned that Twisted Fate was an omega, it made things only more difficult. At night, his thoughts would wander again, always about this man, and it started to stir his interest for him.

 

A few lonely release were found the night Graves allowed his mind to explore further the possibilities, just out of curiosity for the first time.

 

One thing scared him, maybe more than being found out by his partner : that he started getting fond of him just because he was an omega. Then it would mean that all this mess of feelings was due to their biology. Anything but that, please.

Plus their partnership was not supposed to go so well and succesful, part of the outlaw expected it to be stopped a few months latter. It seemed too easy the way they worked together, like a really rare combination of their own skills.

The more it last, the less he was sure of being able to get over the possible end.

 

What a dumbass. For the long hours he remained awake debating his feelings, it sorted out that he was hopeless. Ok, I may have a thing for this bastard. Deep inside he knew what was truly up, that it was more deep than this but he didn't want to explore this.

 

~

 

Between heists and lively nights in the bars, Twisted Fate indeed noticed the changing behaviour of the outlaw toward him. Not that he was more distant but he started acting strange when flirted with, seeming put off and not knowing how to react. He came to think that maybe he didn't like men after all and just showed his discomfort now. But Graves said nothing about it, not complaining or anything.

One time though, an evening they got a good round of alcohol, he answered to the teasing, seeking his touch and his scent, in the corner of the bar they were sitting. But nothing went further, they were too drunk and he had to carry the burly man to his bed because he had fallen asleep leaning on his shoulder. Too bad.

 

~

 

All this took another direction when they had to share a room, in a far too small inn. What a great idea.

 

In itself, it wasn't a real matter : each one had his own bed – small but one anyway. The problem came later, once the light was out and sleep needed. Graves tried indeed to get some rest but he was kept in a troubled state of mind because of the proximity with the cardmaster. His body craved something he was too afraid to find out and to ask, something almost in his grasp but that he would refuse.

 

Focusing on everything but the quiet noises from TF, he drifted away in a dreamless sleep.

 

The second night in the same inn brought the answer to why he was so restless : his rut started, though it was supposed to happen a lot later.

 

It was the least pleasant feeling he experienced, an icy shudder running his frame, quickly replaced by a sudden warmth. Graves rose in an instant, trying to process what was happening but it was like each of his senses wanted to make his situation worse.

 

Getting out of the bed, he took off without care his shirt, the fabric leaving an uncomfortable sensation on his skin. The temperature was the same yet he felt like burning from the inside, with a growing need impossible to misinterpret. He wanted, so much but couldn't find how to appease this craving.

 

« Graves ? »

 

Shit. During all this time he hadn't registered the presence of an omega in the room but now it was difficult to ignore.

 

Twisted Fate was awake, sitting on his own bed, watching the man standing in the middle of the darkened room. With such low light, the outlaw couldn't see his expression but anyway it was the least of his problems.

 

I have to get out. Now.

 

It was the last rational thought and he knew it. If he was indeed in rut then he had to get away from TF before he could make something he would regret. He heard his name said a second time, with more concern in it as he went to the door.

 

But he couldn't go out, a hand grabbing his arm in an attempt to keep him in. The cardmaster was here, just in his reach and he made him turn to face him. As reflex, Graves took a step back to the door, as afraid of the other.

 

In this instant Twisted Fate understood, as sharp as the scent that assaulted his senses, so much he brought a hand to his mouth to keep himself from making a noise.

But the sight in itself was enough to get the situation, the rut leaving the outlaw flushed from head to shoulders, heavy breathing. Even in the dark he could see lust spark his eyes and this got right to his heart. Never he had seen his partner in such disarray and it turned him on more than he would admit. It's at this moment he decided he wanted Graves, no matter what would happen next. He would die happy, if it meant being the one targetted by such passion.

 

« Malcolm ? » he purred the name as he reduced the distance between them. The latter hadn't made a move, looking entranced by the man before him.

 

Now or never.

 

Twisted Fate took his chance and caught his partner in a heated kiss.

Chapter Text

The response wasn’t long to wait, quite sloppy, a step in this first contact. In a great paradox, his body craved the touch even if his own skin grew hotter so he embraced Twisted Fate. This was the closer they got till then and it already was too much for Graves, his last bit of mind thrown by the window with his inhibitions.

 

For a few seconds he pulled off and stared with wide eyes at the card master, who saw the inner conflict. « It’s okay » visibly he wasn’t sure about the choice to make so the latter encouraged him « You can take me » then he dived to renew the kiss.

 

This seemed to work, Graves getting more involved in the exchange as they pawed at each other. He grew impatient, his body pressing a more urgent matter so he lifted his partner to bring him to his bed with hurried steps. The card master couldn’t even have the time to think of another way to turn on the latter before he found himself pressed to the mattress by a bigger frame radiating warmth. The handling wasn’t rough, just not really coordinated but the gods be damned, he was here for the strenght the outlaw could display.

 

During this, Graves had moved his attention to the other's neck, leaving marks without care if it would last. The scent of Twisted Fate wasn’t like the one expected from a typical omega, sweet like honey but instead a mix of his usual cologne and something salty like sea water. It made his head spin nevertheless, wondering how he could smell so good and yet not have half of the city’s alphas to his feet.

 

The worship adorning little by little his skin distracted completely Twisted Fate, getting more aroused as time passed while the latter merely grinded against him. « Malcolm. Too much clothes. » he nearly choked on his words at the delicious friction over his cock when the other bucked more fiercely.

 

Graves got the message anyway and let enough distance to take off his partner’s pants, leaving him exposed and spread under his ardent gaze. The appreciative look was also shared by Twisted Fate, quite happy to be right there, sprawled on the bed with a direct sight on the bothered alpha. Time to see what he got. Playing on the unabashed look roaming his smoother skin, Twisted Fate made sure he had the latter’s attention as his hand went to his entrance. In a breath he swore at the already present slick, result of the making out, then he slipped in one finger to prepare himself.

 

The effect was even more effective than desired as Graves undressed quickly to watch the show and later stroke his neglected cock. Twisted Fate took it as a go to continue and added another digit, then a third to accomodate the better at what was coming next. He would feel ashamed of his own body reaction but to imagine that cock stretching him was enough not to care.

The outlaw forced him to pull out his fingers, only to replace it by his, looking for more noises from the cardmaster. The suddenness of his act made the latter arc his back slightly off the bed, hands gripping the sheets as a surprised cry pierced through him. Putting his need aside for a small moment to relish in the uncontrolled moans of the latter, Graves went back at it with a shaky pace, trying to aim at this switch deep inside him.

 

Twisted Fate felt the telltale of orgasm so he reluctanly refrained him : « Enough. Fuck me already- » despite himself he sounded debauched, ready to snap at the lightest caress and as feverished as the other.

 

And it worked, in an instant Graves was back over him, grabbing him by the hips to position himself. For a split second, he paused and Twisted Fate could have cried if he didn’t at last pushed into his willing body. He want all the way in with no resistance, leaning closer to his partner’s face in his battle for air. TF whined low at the fullness and proximity with the other, looking up to cup gently his face and give a kiss.

 

Graves stayed close as he started a slow pace, already feeling the edge coming too fast. But Twisted Fate wanted none of it and rocked back to meet his thrusts, groaning when he hit his prostate. Not able to resist, the outlaw complied and fucked him thoroughly, seeking the release his body craved. So the cardmaster took it, clinging to the burning body without a thought for the possible marks as he screamed his pleasure to the ceiling. He loved every instant of it, to be pounded into the mattress in a rough display not without its own kindness, like afraid to hurt.

 

« Fate... » his voice was strained, a breathless whisper next to the other man ear.

 

He felt the alpha spill his semence deep inside of him as the knot took place and stretched him even more. Graves slowed the rhythm as he rode his climax, caging in his arms the other man. Coming down his high, he moved his attention to the latter writhing in the embrace.

The desperate gaze was enough to understand that he hadn’t come yet : « Please…. »

 

Like sobered up, Graves was lightly shook by such vulnerability but did as asked and stroked hard and fast his bedmate. Twisted Fate found his release with a sob, splattering between the two of them as he fell back on the bed. His hair was a mess but Graves liked the way he looked right now, spent and relaxed.

 

« Fuck yes ! Thanks. » he had this contented grin, more genuine than the usual and it took the outlaw a bit by surprise.

 

For now, he had some peace and sadly for him, his reason came back too while he registered all that happened. We fucked. We fucked……… Oh the drowned god be damned.

 

Not noticing – or caring – for the realisation readable on Graves’s face, Twisted Fate leaned to burry his in the neck of the alpha to scent him. He gave a satisfied purr while the other stiffened under the intimate move and they ended up locking gazes – one full of disbelief against an happy one.

 

« What ? You’re already having regrets ? » he sounded indeed amused but the cardmaster really wanted his answer, it would change some things if he had been mistaken.

 

« No ! Not at all ! » Graves face kept the same shade of red.

 

« Then why are you doing that face ? I wasn’t good enough ? » his tone was quite cheerful, playing with him like he always liked to do.

 

« You already know you were, damnit ! Just shut up. » it was incredible how this man could get his nerves and yet here he was, cock deep in this sassy shit talker.

It only made Twisted Fate laugh, something rare then he pulled the outlaw in a kiss, with just a hint of tongue before he parted : « By the way, my name is Tobias. »

 

« What ? » this time Graves was lost.

 

« Tobias. My real name. You really thought TF wasn’t an alias ? »

 

« No, of course no. It’s just…. Why do you tell me now ?? » he was at loss of words, looking for a way to voice his questions.

 

« Because we fucked. I give my name only to the one I bed. » he got this stupid grin again.

 

Just for that, Graves wanted to hit him but another urge came along, some feelings coiling in his chest and pushing to keep the man close. And among all this mess, his rut gave a reminder, making his cock twitch in the velvet warmth surrounding him. A groan slipped, loud enough to get Twisted Fate’s attention.

 

« Oh, you’re still hard ? » to make sure, he clenched down on the member then smiled at the tightening of the embrace around him. He rolled both of them over so Graves was on his back, straddled by the cardmaster.

 

Though he had come not long ago, Twisted Fate rolled his hips, setting a steady pace that earned him a dranw-out moan from the latter. Graves hands came to rest on his waist and as things got heated, he bore him down in his erratic thrusts. Playing on the edge of overstimulation, Twisted Fate rocked back with all he had and successfuly it was enough to rip another climax out the alpha. Graves trembled and came in a silent cry, hands surely leaving a few bruises to the omega.

 

The latter collapsed on the outlaw’s chest, exhausted but not regretting this. They stayed like this till the knot pull off and TF could move, though he didn’t came back to his own bed and prefered to bother Graves in his already too small one.

 

For now, Graves couldn’t care less, just wanting to have some rest as he coaxed closer Twisted Fate.

Chapter Text

Hell

 

He just woke up and felt like shit, sighing at the sticky mess which once was his bed. Graves got up, wincing from the headache that welcomed him. Memories of the night came along, with the familiar blur as after a drunken night or – eh – a rut and soon enough his thought went back to Twisted Fate. The truth hit him hard like a stab, with a greater impact than he had expected. Fuck. Partnership wasn’t supposed to go this way, not in this intimate perspective. What does he want ? Till now, he had learned that Twisted Fate never did something without taking a benefit, this too helpful hand seemed suspicious.

 

Lost in these difficult thoughts, he was still sitting on the edge of the bed, trying to sort this out. Graves noticed two things : first, the cardmaster wasn’t here, the room was oddly quiet. Second, there was some food left at his attention on the only table, with a glass of water. Considering the offer, he chose instead to take a shower, grumbling about Twisted Fate being nice for once.

 

The cold water felt like a blessing upon his heated skin, a way to make sure he didn’t forget his rut. He knew he still had to wait till the end of the day then he would be at peace for some time. Graves leaned to rest against the wall, his body catching up with his situation to make it even worse, a new spark of arousal that wouldn’t be faded. Already done with this, he took his hardening cock in a grip firm enough to let out a groan. In comparison to the night, it was less than good and it made him wish for another intercourse with Twisted Fate, as futile as it sounded to him. To lay with an omega was rare enough, even more if it wasn’t against a good amount of money – one could still get it in some specific places. But to this omega in particular, it made the release one of the best he had for reasons he still had to accept.

The good point was that it didn’t take long for him to come, already overwhelmed by his own ministrations and the memories of the night. A last stroke, a precise touch were all it took to release in his hand, energy drained by the rut. Not wanting to think of the other man in such moment, Graves finished to clean up.

 

Back in the room, he remembered about the food and his thoughts lingered a bit on it. Now dressed, he decided to take it and go out looking for his partner. Just to make sure he didn’t run away. Though he didn’t meant it, it was usual in their routine that TF got up earlier than him. Relief came when he spotted Twisted Fate at one of the tables of the inn and visibly, his arrival was noticed too.

 

The latter flashed him a smirk, almost a grin as Graves took a sit next to him. « Good morning princess. » this was enough to break the almost calm mood of the outlaw.

 

« Ok, you know what ? Fuck off. » with a tone slipping to anger. Though, he stayed here anyway and ate what was kept for him.

 

The harsh reply didn’t faze Twisted Fate as he smiled to the man by his side : « You know, I didn’t think you’d be out there so soon. Your rut is over ? »

 

« Not yet. » he wasn’t ready for his mocking banter.

 

« Oh really ? Then I guess you’re looking for another round. Already missing me ? »

 

« Keep talking, you enjoyed it too. Plus, you’re the one that asked for it. »

 

« You can’t blame me. Only a fool would turn down such a good occasion » he leaned closer into Graves personal space, taking a lungful of the strong scent.

 

The latter didn’t pushed him away, not considering him as a threat. But he tensed up when Twisted Fate put his hand on his thigh, sliding closer to his crotch. He had hoped for a break but now it was difficult to keep this locked down as the cardmaster decided to get more involved. It would get urgent to take this back to their room, his sanity reminding where they were at the moment.

 

Twisted Fate gave a light peck on his lips, a promise before he got up and went to the stairs, glancing to see the outlaw following him in a restrained eagerness.

 

The clink of the bolted door acted like a pavlovian turn on for Twisted Fate, feeling again the same anticipation for what had been one of his best nights with someone. Without further teasing or smart remark, he yanked Graves into a kiss, keeping him distracted as he threw off his own clothes. There was no complain from the latter, as he responded without shame while his hands roamed the newly uncovered skin.

 

In this languid exchange, it would be easy to let go and relish in the instant but Twisted Fate craved for more so he pushed Graves on the bed, breaking suddenly the embrace. With the mild surprise from this move, there was raw desire in the gaze directed to him, waiting for what was coming next in a badly hidden haste.

 

The cardmaster didn’t disappoint, lowering himself to nuzzle at the bulging erection through the tight pants. The mere idea suggested by the latter sent a new wave of heat rolling in his body. Twisted Fate took off the other’s pants, making his cock stand at full attention and he couldn’t wait more to get his mouth on it. A long stripe with the flat of his tongue from root to head was quickly rewarded by an impatient groan and it convinced him to do the best he could to get a louder reaction. Graves gripped the sheets when he went down on him a practiced ease, remembering how good it was to be on the receiving end : « Tobias... » the name slipped in a breath and it sounded so natural to use it by now.

 

Upon hearing it, Twisted Fate’s blood boiled as he set a quite intense rhythm, a bit of drool trailing down the corner of his abused mouth. He made eye contact with the outlaw, communicating his approval then grabbed one of his hands to bring him to his head, a silent invitation. Graves went with it, briefly appreciating the silky-like of the latter’s hair before thrusting in the warmth enclosing his cock. At first careful despite his desperate need, he went rapidly to a more urgent pace since the cardmaster didn’t seem to mind, allowing him to get rougher.

Maybe it was some kind of omega instinct that made him so aroused just by being handled but it didn’t mean that he was the one submissive right now, from the noises that spilled freely from the outlaw. It got the best of Twisted Fate composure, definitly failing him when the latter merely fucked his mouth. To keep thing going, he probbed at his hole and this time wasn’t surprised to find wetness here, pushing without worry 3 fingers in his already pliant body. The moan he ripped from himself was reverberated to the other man, in this dance over the edge.

 

But Graves wouldn’t finish like this, hoping for more, so he pulled the cardmaster by the hair away of his thick hard-on. A wanton whimper resonnated and it took both men aback as they registered it in silence. Ah. Didn’t know a bout this one. Twisted Fate felt a darker shade of red color his face under the equally shocked gaze of his partner, turning more amused. « You liked that ? » by the glare he received, he got his answer and it made him smile. The sight was a rare thing of sinful beauty, the cardmaster blushing in shame, his mouth pink from the attention he offered.

 

Twisted Fate was short of sharp reply so he choose instead to assault the other man with a devouring kiss, taking advantage of his fallen attention to straddle him then sink down without effort on his cock. This time, Graves was the one responsible for the filthy cry that forced him to part. It wasn’t enough to Twisted fate liking so he rocked back on him with a determined pace, relishing in the moans he couldn’t hold back now. In no time, the outlaw was teetering at the limit of climax, giving himself with abandon to the other man as he bucked to meet his thrusts.

 

This time he took himself in hand, hoping to finish with his partner as he jerked his neglected cock. It was too much, their scents mixing and clinging to each other, this mess of rutting that got Twisted Fate wailing. At last, he found release with a choked keen, struggling to keep upright in this sense overload as he clamped down on Graves erection. This got him off, milking him through climax as he knotted in the cardmaster.

 

When he felt the last remains of bliss fade away, his hands left Twisted fate waist, revealing more bruises on the paler skin though he latter didn’t seem to complain yet. Graves moved both of them so it would be more comfortable while TF just followed without any issue and shifted closer to cuddle, face hidden against his shoulder.

 

Since none had tried to break the silence, Graves got time to collect his thoughts. First, it was the second time they fucked and it didn’t freaked him out anymore, as strange as he found it. Well, nothing changed. It was a new kind of temporary peace in his mind.

Second, he observed that Twisted Fate was quite clingy after a good fucking and again it surprised him to see that it didn’t matter. Even more, he rolled with it and caressed the latter’s hair, only to be answered by a chuckle.

 

They wouldn’t stay like this all morning, they had things to do but both appreciated the moment as much as the embrace.

 

All this fuss for nothing, Graves sighed. And yet he didn’t know what was going to happen next in their relation. Does it still count as ‘partners’ ?

Chapter Text

Had Graves known, he was even closer to the truth that expected but no idea to which point. Nothing had changed. That same day his rut was over, leaving him some well deserved rest and questions to be answered. Each one revolved around Twisted Fate, just as before but in some nuances. What were they going to do ? What did TF thought of all this ? What did he want ?

 

Offering relief to an alpha in rut wasn’t some kind gesture. People would pay for that, a lot. Graves didn’t know what the latter got out of this favor and it was worrying. Not to know what he gave to Twisted Fate, just like a deal with the devil.

Fuck. Better not think about that. Maybe one day the other man would come back to him asking for equal favor, fair payment. And Graves would never be ready for that, never have something as valuable.

 

If right now he was still thinking about it on his own, it was because the topic never came back. Twisted Fate was as cryptic as ever. Not that he avoided talking about it but when Graves made an attempt, asked about what was going on ‘between them’ - he hated phrasing it this way – the latter answered shortly. Not enough to go far. « Who knows ? We shall see later. » Yeah, yeah. Asshole. It didn’t seem that it was taboo, both acklowledged having slept together. But Twisted Fate didn’t really answer.

Even if he did, Graves wouldn’t truly believe him. By now he was far too aware that anything that came from the cardmaster was potentially a lie, or a modified truth. Even liars can be honest in their way but now it sounded just like plain bullshit. He doesn’t want to give an answer.

 

So since everything was back to normal, his damned instincts catered to for a long time, the routine went on. Interactions in business like before, some snark, a bit of flirt, nothing unusual. Like it never happened. Part of Graves was disappointed ? Maybe sad ? A window of possibilities had been opened then slammed close as soon, rather frustrating to be honest. Himself wasn’t sure how he had to feel about it. Being sad meant he missed something of this short lived experience. Do I ? Graves refused this and yet it wasn’t so wrong to admit.

Peculiar, to lay with Twisted Fate. Known from the start for being rather open, outgoing toward anyone. But still he seemed to be picky. Another reason for Graves to question this mess. How could the man deem him worthy of his precious time ?

 

Not once he had expected to fuck his partner. This could happen sometimes, it wasn’t uncommon. But in his very case, he never went to that point. Keep business separate from private life was better. Then why didn’t it bother him this time ? Each thoughts raised new questions, the matter would never end.

 

There was something about Twisted Fate and he had given up worrying about this. Calm was back, his partner wouldn’t give a proper answer and himself didn’t care that much. No. Not at all.

If Graves kept thinking about it, he would get mad. Better let the topic down, forget about all this and just hope this partnership would stay longer.

Not like something would happen to change that.

 

Several days passed, nothing happened and Graves considered the incident over. Just some help between partners. Nothing to worry about.

Innerly, he mourned the glimpse he got of Twisted Fate. Seeing such vulnerability from a man so composed everyday, it was dizzying. For once the mask was down. Graves was almost sure the latter was genuine during it, a small opening. Maybe that was why he let it happen. Because it would never happen again.

 

~

 

So to say, Graves expected nothing to happen again. Yet, he was awaken in the middle of the night without ceremonies. Senses alert, ready to jump into action even though sleep numbed his moves a little.

This was some ungodly hour, no one would never do something at such time. Unless being a sadistic bastard. Or in the present case, someone with little care to boundaries.

 

At first Graves struggled as he registered the presence over him, threatening. Especially when they tried to keep his arms down. Using more strenght would reduce the restrains to nothing but Graves stopped as soon as silence was broken.

 

« Shhhh Malcolm… » A whisper, so close to him. No doubt who it was.

 

« What the fuck are you doing here ? » Angry grumbling, though he relaxed a little back on his bed. Twisted Fate wasn’t a real threat except for his sleep, no need to fight. « Get out. »

 

For a fleeting instant Graves wondered how the latter managed to break into his room, even more without waking him before. Sure he can go wherever he wants. But it wasn’t relevant. He prefered to have this intruder out of the room as quick not to lose some sleep.

 

But no answer came from above. It was a bit infuriating for Graves. He felt the man was here, maybe straddling him, for the weigh over him but in such time of the night he couldn’t see. Can’t see shit.

 

« C’mon ! Go. Some people need sleep. Do you even know about the concept ? Go away. » Still annoyed but exhaustion caught up. It happened sometimes that Twisted Fate got on his nerves but this was different.

 

This time, there was a reaction. Graves felt the weigh shifting on the mattress, the latter was moving but how ? Then lips silenced any potential remark, pressed to his with some determination. Yes, that was definitely Twisted Fate. Being the one beneath, Graves couldn’t part of this, stunned by the move. What ?

It was over too soon though, to his taste. And right after Twisted Fate came back to it, equal passion, urging to open up. So he let him do what he pleased. For Graves this was as unsuspected than enjoyable, for a so short instant he let go in the contact. After having given up, this development gave him some hopes, yearning awoken again.

 

When the latter parted for good, putting some small but respectable distance, Graves took the occasion to ask : « What you want ? I don’t even know what time it is but it’s fucking early. » He wasn’t even betting on an answer from the man.

 

But sometimes it was good to be wrong.

 

« I need something from you. » Soft words, a murmur not far.

Chapter Text

Not a lot to detect in the tone, Twisted Fate was very good at masking everything.

 

The impact was great on Graves, a bit confused, a bit annoyed for having been awaken at such time. This sounded like a request. Twisted Fate wanted something from him. As it sank in, it left Graves mildly surprised to be asked something.

 

« What ? What do you need ? Not that I care, it’s shitty to bother me right now. »

 

Again, Twisted Fate didn’t give an answer. This was tiring, Graves tried to keep focused but it wasn’t the right time. In fact, the answer came later, under another form : one of his hands was grabbed then brought to the latter’s body. Couldn’t easily guess where, probably Twisted Fate hip. But what truly shook Graves was to register the latter wasn’t wearing anything. His hand found hot skin, no fabric as barrier, maybe a light shiver under his palm at the contact.

 

Thoughts ran wild. At the same time, this wasn’t really straightfoward. Knowing Twisted Fate, he could have been far more better and direct to voice such request. That’s it, no ? He wants to fuck ? There wasn’t a lot of reasons to join one’s partner during the night, naked on top of that. Now that Graves noticed it, he was too aware of the radiating heat above him. Clothes felt a bit stiffling, just like the room. Or maybe that was him turning bothered by all this ?

 

To check – and indulge a little – he let his hands roam Twisted Fate’s body freely. Since he seemed to let him do, this was the right guess. The drowned god be damned, the latter really wasn’t wearing anything. Graves still enjoyed the touch, nto able to see but feeling so much skin was nice. He just avoided to wander in certain areas, not sure yet.

 

« You want me to fuck you ? » Quiet question, strange that he didn’t dare to speak louder.

 

A sigh answered him, something soft, like relaxing but it was as good as silence. Graves had enough of all this, he wanted some proper answer.

 

« Damnit ! Yes or no ? It’s simple. » How uselessly exhausting it was to ask anything, talk with a mute person. Kicking the latter’s out and going back to sleep would be less effort. « I just want to know if you sure about that. »

 

« Yes. »

 

Aye, he can talk. At last he got consent. And to emphasize that single word, Twisted Fate moved oh so slightly, rocking back against the body he straddled. This sent one vicious jolt up Graves’s spine, getting on the mood. So we’re doing it. It wasn’t so shocking, he realized. Not as much as the first time. Right now it was some quiet contemplation of what they were going to do, on Twisted Fate demand. That’s a bit fucked up but we did worse.

Then a hand cupped his crotch, firm pressure that definitely awoke Graves’s need. Short groan slipped as he felt the buidling heat of arousal, going lower. Twisted Fate wanted something, did his best and it worked, the latter growing hard under the touch.

 

Since they were really going to fuck, there was no reason for Graves to struggle nor lay down watching. Without waiting, he went to grab the latter’s butt, kneading before he coaxed Twisted Fate to rock back vigorously. It seemed there was no need to ask further, the latter took the hint and set a rather demanding pace. In the dark room, small noises started to echo, breath coming shorter. He couldn’t see but every other senses could detect and enjoy the slightest reactions from Twisted Fate.

 

For a time, it was just that, some steady grinding, growing smoother as precum eased the friction. Graves let the man have his fun. Though he trailed curiously his hand lower, to the latter’s erection. Rough grasp over Twisted Fate, the man let out a moan, bucking urgently.

 

« Liked that ? I can give you something better. Just let me prepare you. »

 

Graves thought one instant he had hallucinated that but the latter truly chuckled, fleeting noise in the darkness. A bit strange to have Twisted Fate so quiet, like it wasn’t him right now rutting against the other man but these details like his laugh made it real. Not my imagination.

A light smack to his ass then a more outraged gasp made its way out of him. It left Graves wanting for more reaction but this was some gold nonetheless.

 

Not so deflty, he went to Twisted Fate’s entrance, circling his rim in hope to relax him for later. But Graves wasn’t expecting such advanced state of arousal, the latter was almost dripping slick, so ready for this. Holy… Pushing a finger inside, it only proved him right as it went in without resistance. He still felt Twisted Fate clutching at him, light tremor in his frame as the latter made sure they could move on.

 

« Yer really wet. Been needy for more or you just prepared yourself before coming ? » Whatever the man would reply, it didn’t change how Graves wanted this too. Nothing better than feeling the other’s desperation for such act. Let’s give it good. And it wasn’t like Twisted Fate would deem this kind of crude asks worth an answer.

 

Really, why do I even bother ? The latter said nothing, except breathy noises in reaction to the intimate stimulation. Graves wondered what would get the latter to talk. He seemed resolute not to say more than required, how unusual from Twisted Fate. Then a idea. Let’s see. The man came here for relief, without a doubt he wanted to be taken. The question was if teased, when would he snap ? Would he beg ?

So he resumed his ministrations, thrusting two fingers into Twisted Fate though he was already stretched enough for more. Graves busied his other hand stroking the latter’s cock, trying to match the paces with one another.

 

At first there was no new reaction, maybe breath growing heavy. But sure did the grasp over Twisted Fate’s hard on became slick, gliding with ease, a bit more fiercely than before. Not easy to discern but the man was a little louder, in some reserves. Supporting himself on Graves, the light twitching betrayed his need. Just another reason to continue, he added another digit inside. A whimper broke free, a bit long.

 

For Graves himself, this sure was distracting. Couldn’t sleep anymore, too turned on for that but he didn’t feel too helpless yet. Not as much than Twisted Fate, now holding him strongly. He could still enjoy teasing more the man before his own need would hit him back.

 

« Doing fine ? » Light, maybe not so innocent question. Anyway, as long as Twisted Fate could keep it quiet, it meant he wasn’t so close. Graves just asked to change that. C’mon, admit it. Talk. Funny, how he could wish ardently for this man to talk, while all day he would prefer him to shut up.

 

Besides the wet sounds of sex, some others came up too. A bit louder, more frequent, tiny moans from the back of his throat. Graves would feel him clench down on his fingers, another clue. He’s getting close. The grasp on his shoulder turned to iron, difficult to miss. Brushing that spot deep in Twisted Fate, he earned a true moan, not even muffled, followed by more precum leaking.

He could go on for an hour, if that could drive the latter crazy.

 

Then Graves’s breath was caught, a hungry kiss pressed to his mouth that he returned right away. Ah, here we go. Twisted Fate had a hand to the nape of his neck, taking him to deepen the contact, tongue asking to enter. Some moans died muffled in the kiss but the desperation was clear. By now the latter was merely fucking himself on Graves hand, fast rocking seeking proper relief but it wasn’t given yet.

 

« It’s not enough ? Ya need something ? » Asked just after they parted to breathe. This one was just for the fun, smirking a little at what he was putting Twisted Fate through.

 

At such distance, Graves swore he saw a light gleam in the latter’s eyes, staring straight at him. Twisted Fate would surrend soon. This was a last warning.

He felt Twisted Fate burry his face in his neck, pausing an instant before at last he spoke again.

 

« Malcolm… » So quiet, almost strangled. A whisper against skin as Twisted Fate clung to him as to his composure.

 

Okay, close enough. This would do, Graves wasn’t in condition to keep the man up all night. And please, to hear his name whimpered to his ear was a damn prize.

 

Kicking his pants off, he used his slicked hand to stroke his cock, getting ready for what both craved. This was a good hint for Twisted Fate, suddenly rising to get on with his need. A bit more of chuffling, moves on the mattres in helpless hurry then he positioned himself to take Graves.

 

Gentle pressure leading to incredible warmth welcomed his cock, little by little as the latter sank down. Till he was fully sheathed into Twisted Fate, still tight despite the whole teasing and previous whatever that happened. Sure this was a lot for the man, as he released a drawn-out moan till it died on his tongue. Graves’s hands returned to the latter’s hips, urging him to move. What he did without further ask, the shortly forgotten need coming back as quick.

This time it got even faster, Twisted Fate grinding down the harder he could, body jerking each time his prostate was touched. Return to clutching at Graves, hands on his chest, shoulder as he rode him with abandon.

 

« Fuck… » Graves couldn’t help that, it had been entertaining to tease the other man but himself had some basic needs to tend. Of course feeling Twisted Fate clenching on his cock each time he reached deep, it got him closer to the edge.

 

Little by little, step by step, both lost count of anything and focused on that burning warmth. Bodies covered in sweat, gasping for air, hands on each other, the end was near. Couldn’t see but the noises would be enough to feel ashamed, surely people could hear them.

 

A sob managed to get out, so high, vulnerable, Graves felt personnally compelled to please the latter, give all he had in this last instant. Amisdt all this, Twisted Fate got a hand over his own need, jerking himself to chase this much needed release. It also made him more open, more broken moans escaping.

Then it was enough. Graves heard the latter cry out and almost at the same time he clenched down hard on him. Wet feeling over his chest, no need to think about that right now. Because that incredibly tight fit got him too over the edge, knot catching. Hands clasped on Twisted Fate’s hips, he didn’t let go, a low groan making its way out anyway. Graves kept bucking into the latter, till the blinding pleasure faded to leave comfortable soreness instead.

 

Relaxing back on the mattress, he tried to even his breathing, idly stroking Twisted Fate’s body.

 

« Good ? » Graves prefered to ask, who knows ?

 

Of course there was no clear answer. But after staying upright all this time, Twisted Fate at last gave in and lay down with him, limbs tangled. Not even asking, without pressure, he went to cuddle with Graves – though he refused to use such term for that. The man was just snuggled up to him, nothing unusual, nothing to say about that. …. maybe cute. But he had no right to think like that, Graves shut it right away. Since they were to stay like this for a while, he returned the hug, strong arms laced around the slender frame of the cardmaster. Guess he will stay the night. Then leave before I wake up.

This was the most logical reasoning, how it happened before. Sleep was getting back, slowly numbing his mind so Graves let go and drifted away. Casual hand burried in the latter’s hair, just that. Twisted Fate would have told him if it wasn’t appropriate. But after all, it was nothing compared to sneaking at night to fuck.

 

Next day would be another day, no need to busy his mind yet.

Chapter Text

I was right.

 

Graves knew it would be coming and yet it hurt. Just lightly but it hurt nonetheless to wake up alone after such ‘heated’ night. Blinking slowly in this quiet morning, sleep having left for good, memories came back little by little. So of course his first move was to look around for Twisted Fate. Then he flopped back on the mattress, once it was clear the latter was gone for some time.

If he tried hard enough, Graves would guess that the other man had left maybe about an hour ago or two. Early bird.

 

No reason to be mad about it, or even sad, from the beginning Twisted Fate was the first awake and ready to go. It wouldn’t change just for one night. Still, Graves was disappointed but at the same time not so much. He would get over it.

And anyway it gave him some quiet time before meeting the man.

 

After stretching, he went to take a shower, getting ready for the day. During all this time Graves’s thoughts didn’t stop rummaging the latest events, in that same room except in a darker setting. First of all, he knew he should be more distressed about it, that yes partnership meant giving an helpful hand to each other but not to that point. Compared to the time of his rut, Graves wasn’t freaking out. Maybe I should. Twisted Fate just broke into his room and asked to have sex. Hmmm… I don’t know what to do.

 

Deep sigh at this strange situation. The latter behavior was another reason why he didn’t know how to approach this. Usually, Twisted Fate was loud, the kind of guy talking too much even if it could get him into trouble – that he managed to dodge every time. Smart, cunning one. All the opposite of this night. That was new. At first Graves paid no mind to such detail but now that time had passed, it seemed to stand out. The latter’s quietness, even while they fucked. That was odd. A very few words, kept to the minimum.

A poker face. Stupid thought that came up, it made Graves laugh innerly but thinking again there was some sense. Twisted Fate relied a lot on that, control of what he said, let to be seen in order to gain something. Just like in a game of cards. It was rather amusing to see that applied in the bedroom, nothing betraying his thoughts, perfect composure. At some nuance, it still was some crude relief, couldn’t really hide how good it felt but it was still very muffled.

 

Thinking of his rut, Twisted Fate showed to be as annoying and full of himself than he was outside. But last night wasn’t the same. Graves could tell, with some difficulty though. Hard to put the right word on the feeling. It was like a more… private side of his partner. This time it was Twisted Fate asking a favor, opposite of the rut incident. For once he owes me. But again, he didn’t know what all this meant. Graves gave a favor, maybe things were good now. Strange, strange, strange.

 

Dressed and ready to go outside, he paused, in the middle of the room. What will we do ? He wondered how this would go. Without a doubt he was overthinking but after such night, anything could happen. Most likely, Twisted Fate would say nothing, sass him like usual and they would go for the day. Although Graves expected it to go this way, it left him kinda disappointed.

 

Curiosity won, he went to join Twisted Fate.

 

~

 

This was some unsatisfying situation. Not that it would stop Graves from getting sleep at night – well not like that – but it was unnerving.

Just like before, there was no change. Twisted Fate carrying himself like the smartass he was, clever comments aimed at his patience. After what could be called a greeting – which was rather a playful remark – Graves managed to put the topic on the carpet. A shame, Twisted Fate replied as if it was completely normal to barge into a room and fuck, not seemed bothered at all. Something about « a man needing to blow off some steam ». Then the conversation slipped to another topic naturally.

 

Graves refused to talk about that again, it would get the attention of the latter. Bringing it up was like giving it too much importance and Twisted Fate could possibly tease him about it. Not that he didn’t already. That was among the first things Graves learned, never give the man a reason to laugh, he was really capable of finding one by himself.

 

~

 

That was when he was going to bed that it hit Graves. That potentially the latter would come back another night for his own need. Not that he minded, not at all. But this was enough trouble to be woken up during the night. I need sleep, for fuck sake. So it had him stress a little about another surprise waking. It wasn’t pleasant at all, even though Twisted Fate's reason for visit made it up for him.

 

Here he was, ready to sleep but his thoughts wouldn’t shut up. Always following a certain cardmaster. Damn him. What if Twisted Fate showed up this night too ? There was no way to know, to be ready for that. Would be a pain no matter what.

 

Graves grumbled as he waited for sleep to take him, changing side as it seemed to take forever. He wasn’t at peace even though he knew worrying was useless. Cursed the man for bothering him even when he wasn’t here.

 

By now he didn’t question it, to think about Twisted Fate all the time. Maybe wasn’t aware of it anymore. Since when a partner had taken over his thoughts like this ? No answer. Never. What a hell, Graves just had more and more questions but not once it was answered. Especially by Twisted Fate but this man liked having knowledge over him, a kind of advantage.

 

At last he fell asleep, after a lot of meaningless anticipation.

 

For a reason. Morning came without any disturbance. Twisted Fate didn’t come.

Graves was glad, he held dear his minimum sleep but at the same time there was this feeling. Kind of emptiness. Why feel like that ? Bothered ? Hurt ? He didn’t know.

 

I miss him… ?

Chapter Text

This strange feeling didn’t stay long. Maybe a few days later, Graves got another late visit. The exact same circumstances than the first time : sudden waking, hands grabbing him, a deep kiss quickly returned.

Graves wasn’t so confused though the time made it difficult to focus immediately. Some grumbling, a few curse words to the man bothering him but he finished by giving in. Then it went on, hurried grinding initiated by Twisted Fate that escalated to the proper fucking.

 

Still in the dark. Always.

 

Graves tried to have the latter talk, putting him on edge to see if he would truly beg. It never went far, Twisted Fate would make an helpless noise, moan a debauched version of his name and he couldn’t resist longer. For this Graves blamed himself, if he really wanted some results he would have to try harder. Hearing his name one or two times would do for now.

 

Intense embrace, a lot of clinging and jerky moves till they got their releases. Despite the terrible time chosen for this type of activity, both enjoyed the rush of pleasure, as much as the gentle warmth that never failed to follow. The after-glow left Twisted Fate sated, lying down at the latter’s side to rest.

 

Not even the time to think about it, Graves fell asleep holding the other man close.

 

~

 

Following morning was just as nice than the first. Not at all. Graves would almost think he had dreamed this visit, for the lack of evidencies afterward. Alone in bed, sheets a bit messed up but that would say much.

And it didn’t help that Twisted Fate just smiled when he asked about the night. Cryptic, to say the least. A bit of teasing then Graves knew it was a bad idea of mention it. Shouldn’t have even tried, what a mistake. So silence it would be.

 

Though it was hard to stand by that. He had so much questions and it increased greatly when these nightly intercourses became more frequent. Little by little, without Graves could even say something about it, the latter came back more often.

Always the same process, Twisted Fate taking the reins while the latter woke up and got on the plan.

 

Till it became almost a dayly thing. Almost. It took some time but Twisted Fate seemed to have settled in a kind of habit, every two days he broke in seeking relief.

 

Graves didn’t complain. At first because he swore for his own sake not to mention it ever again, no need to be mocked. But also because he liked it, as irregular as it was at the beginning. For sure it wasn’t a good idea to get attached to his partner but it had been happening for long by now. As stupid as it sounded, knowing Twisted Fate would come back to him gave a curious feeling. Graves didn’t like turning emotional about the partnership but this was going so well.

 

Not a lot of words exchanged, darkness around them. It came to his mind several time to turn the light on, just to see Twisted Fate writhing in their embraces. But he didn’t. Graves couldn’t understand why but he didn’t. Maybe he would give it a try some night.

 

~

 

One time Graves tried not to go to sleep right on, just to see the latter come in for their secret meeting. Maybe in hope to catch something meant never to be seen, before Twisted Fate would wake him up.

 

Fighting sleep was difficult, even more when in the dark. Graves almost gave up to get some rest. Dumb idea. He didn’t know when Twisted Fate used to come, at what time of the night.

Could have missed the small noises announcing Twisted Fate, just the creaking of wood due to someone walking in the room, even as quietly.

 

At last. A lie to say he wasn’t eager for this moment. Graves kept his position in bed, no moving as if he was asleep.

The other man paused after reaching the bed, motionless. Graves even questionned this, unsure. What is he doing ?

 

Then muffled chuffling, something like fabric. He guessed Twisted Fate was undressing, wishing he could see but no need to try. Slowly anticipation built up, too tempting to yank the man in bed already. Graves kept himself from doing so.

 

After something close to eternity – for him at least – the latter moved to bed. The mattress dipped a little as another person joined. Graves was far too aware of the warm presence looming near, a bit threatening if in another context but right now it was rather alluring.

For an instant he froze as a hand stroked his cheek, beard. Not a harsh touch but Graves wasn’t expecting that. In return, he grabbed the incriminated hand, not sure if to put it away or something else. He just held it and that alone made Twisted Fate gasp quietly.

 

« You took your time. » Graves prefered to break the silence, a bit uneasy after that.

 

Of course Twisted Fate was surprised to find him awake but he recovered quickly. He pushed the latter to lie back so he could straddle him and the feeling of hot skin right against him had Graves weak. Not even conciously his hands roamed freely, mapping the body he already knew too well. By now he knew that Twisted Fate would come in an advanced state of need. He was the first night and every other that followed. Dripping a little, hard cock standing at attention, just for Graves to give, stroke slowly.

 

The first night had been shy, now he realized. The second too. But after that Twisted Fate never lost time and came directly to cater to his need. Smooth motion as he sank down on Graves’s cock, sighing from the union. The glide was plainly filthy, each time he wondered what the latter had been doing to be so ready, stretched enough. Must have been preparing himself. It just made everything better, he could go wild into the embrace without fear. For all the strenght used, bucking into the latter, Graves earned some muffled but pretty expressive noises. Like always, Twisted Fate rocked back fiercely, grabbing the other man till the end, seizing fully his opportunity for release. Graves was never disappointed, this was entertaining to hear, feel so much craving from a man usually impossible to get. He fucked him deep, held him strongly, hands clasped on his waist and this was the closest to peace he could find.

 

Swap. Graves got them to exchange position, pressing the latter into the mattress. For once Twisted Fate cried out openly, surely he didn’t expect the move, the depth reached. This seemed to work too well, the man opened up, all pliant under him as he rutted inside. Hand burried in the latter’s hair, leaning close to hear his breath get stuck when that sweet spot was touched. Mmmmh better. Graves wans’t making an effort to keep talking, the other man wouldn’t reply most of the time. But if he felt like teasing he would.

 

« Feels good ? Is that even enough for you ? » Sharp thrusts as punctuation, each one making Twisted Fate cling to him with more strenght.

 

Then Graves was grabbed by the neck, yanked into a kiss. Hot mess of tongues, a little sloppy on Twisted Fate part but this wasn’t surprising. It meant he was close, very close if he couldn’t keep a certain composure or self control. He’s losing himself.

So Graves gave all he could too, pounding into the latter to finish both of them. In this rush to climax, Twisted Fate managed to get a hand over his cock, stroking himself to completion as the tension threatened to break.

 

A sob. Last warning before he came all over his chest. Graves made sure not to kiss him as orgasm took the latter, maybe a chance to hear more noises without restrain.

Since his attention was focused on Twisted Fate, he wasn't so ready for the sudden wave of tingling pleasure, finding his release in the latter’s end. A few last shaky thrusts, giving what he could then he allowed a small groan of relief. Under him, the man’s chest rose and feel quickly, fighting his breath back. Otherwise it seemed to have been good. Graves laid a hand over the latter, soothing the soreness a little then by curiosity he went to his face. Yes, damp cheek under his touch, a few tears escaped.

 

« You enjoyed yourself ? I can go to sleep now ? » He wanted to sound annoyed but failed a little, he was just exhausted.

 

But Graves still made sure not to crush the latter when he lied down, unable to resist the call of sleep anymore. Twisted Fate said nothing but crawled closer, making himself comfortable under the blanket pulled.

 

« Thanks. » Murmured against skin, quiet word that Graves almost missed.

 

In return, he pressed Twisted Fate to his front, hand stroking his hair. Idiot. Talking just when I’m too tired.

 

Chapter Text

What Graves didn’t know wouldn’t hurt him. That was Twisted Fate’s principle about this strange relationship they shared. If we call that a relationship. Not sure if there was a right word to describe it. Thinking of his past relations, it never happened that he broke in his partner’s room to have sex.

 

Or just to come back. That was the reason of his worry. Twisted Fate was used to one night-stand, some fun for an evening then goodbye. All that he asked, unattached, free to get away as soon as it got risky, unwelcome. For his own sake. Can’t trust anyone. This was a rule in Bilgewater, this was a rule he was taught harshly in his teenager years.

 

Graves was… well he was. He passed as a typical man, gruff and strong but it took some time for Twisted Fate to see beyond that. First of all, he liked how easily readable the man was and in a way it appeased him. There was little Graves could hide to him and any kind of knowledge was welcome. Not that the latter was stupid – rather the opposite – but he left all to see.

As surprising for the place, Graves was the loyal kind. It didn’t show at all but after working by his side, Twisted Fate learned that the man would rather go back into troubles to get him out. Of course, he didn’t know Twisted Fate always had a way out just in case but the gesture was appreciated.

Sweet. He didn’t question this growing fondness, refused to. Trust no one. But maybe Graves, a little.

 

He laughed a bit a this, far too aware any link could be broken like glass. But it was tempting to give in for once, to let one person – this outlaw – a bit closer. Who knows ?

 

Twisted Fate didn’t know what to do. Each time he came back to Graves room, it left him more nervous, though he enjoyed really these times. No, not fear. I’m not scared. But he never did this, returning to someone. For someone living close to danger, flirting with it dayly, these visits were something else. What am I thinking ? This question came back each time he returned to Graves.

Because that was the matter : yes he came seeking relief but he could very well go outside, search someone willing. Then why Graves ? I don’t know. It left if annoyed to have no answer but at the same time it would require him to delve deeper in the problem, in his own feelings.

 

But he didn’t stop. It felt too good. Each time he came in, undressed, felt Graves waking up slowly then he would take what he needed. So easy to do, the latter never said no. Maybe that was why he came back, because Graves let him do. Even seemed to take his part of pleasure in it.

So enjoyable, that man knew how to fuck and Twisted Fate benefited from his experience. Not going to lie, Graves had some charm, in the powerful, raw meaning. He could pin him down without even forcing. Twisted Fate had no problem acknowledging this, it was just facts. Maybe the omega part talking, anyway.

 

By now he visited every two nights. Always in the dark. This was on purpose, Twisted Fate didn’t want this business to be seen. I shouldn’t come back. It wasn’t safe for him. Yet he yearned it, the embrace, rough hands pawing at him, the scratch of a beard against his cheek when they kissed. Never it felt so good to be held. It shouldn’t. Loved every seconds of it but it left him vulnerable to do so. Asking Graves a favor. A chance the latter didn’t mock him, asked something in return. If he played it well enough, Twisted Fate could get away saying he owed him for the rut. Half true but it hid how himself relied on the latter.

 

So new to have a partner in such meaning of the term though it wasn’t nothing official. We’re just fucking. Nothing more. Twisted Fate would joke about it, tease the latter to minimize the impact over himself. It’s not serious. So why was he freaking out about it ?

He hated this, not being in control, of his feelings, reactions, needs. Still a slave to basic urges. Somehow his condition always caught up with him, cruel reminder that some things were out of his control. Weak. Omega. Normal to lust after this alpha, he was available and inclined to help and handsome and-- Stop. This was already shitty to have to sate his cravings, no need to add some salt.

 

What to do ? Except surrender to panick, there was nothing. Better not say anything, Graves would dismiss it anyway. Twisted Fate couldn’t afford to stay alone at night, now that he had a regular source of relief. A bit maddening to depend on the latter but he put himself in that mess. And for now there was no real problem except his worry about what-if’s. Let’s wait and see. Not so relaxed for such method but there was little choice.

 

~

 

Darkness, always. Twisted Fate prefered it this way. Maybe he could pretend that the person he fucked had no importance for him, much convenient lie. But as soon as he went in bed, his attention never left Graves. Impressive, imposing man, at his mercy for a short time. Almost cute when all sleepy. Just my opinion. In these instants before waking, Twisted Fate was free to stare, trying to imagine how the latter would look under normal light.

This time he bent to kiss him slow and deep, pulling him out of his sleep with a small exchange. Though Graves had some hard time focusing, he kept him down in the kiss, responding equally.

 

But Twisted Fate was here for a reason, kisses could wait. He yanked down Graves pants, looking for what he craved. What a shudder when he stroked the latter to full hardness, anticipation in his veins. I want… Each time it did the trick, growing slick as reaction. To be honest, Twisted Fate always took some time before the visit, stretching himself so they wouldn’t lose too much time. But it never last long, his body craved these occasions.

 

In no time, he took Graves’s cock inside, a moan threatening to slip before he caught himself. Mouth slightly open, panting softly, he relished the fullness. Twisted Fate set a steady pace, always thankful that the latter let him do on the beginning. Still, he remembered this particular time, whe Graves rolled them over to pound him in the mattress. Had a lot of difficulties holding back his noises, it was even better than usual. But Twisted Fate held dear his control, being on top even if he let the other man some liberties. Strangely soothing to have Graves’s hands all over him, warm contact against his skin. On the end it would leave bruises but no care for this.

 

Fucking himself on the latter’s cock, chasing release like a starved man, Twisted Fate surrended. Though he still kept noises to a minimum, breathy moans and deep sigh. Not a word. He refused to talk during his visits. Graves would take advantage and ask more questions, maybe why he was still here, how much he owed him. Like this, in the dark, he wouldn’t be seen at his lowest. Not like Graves would care anyway, he seemed far too into this to notice anything.

 

A spot reached inside and Twisted Fate lost his train of thoughts, supporting himself on the other man in this crude union. A lot of thrusting and rocking, little to do but letting go. Building warmth in his lower regions, burning. When it seemed to close to the end, he jerked himself off, a tiny whimper escaping. Then climax hit him hard, shaking his frame as he arched his back, grabbing Graves with all his strenght. Oh fuck. The latter was never far behind, just the clenching sufficed to knot him for good.

 

Too much at once then all tension fell in one go. Blissed out, Twisted Fate let himself lean into the latter, head resting to his shoulder as he basically lay down on him. Too comfortable to move, too lazy. Good… Some weak grumbling answered his choice of position but Graves was also too exhausted to argue. Though he chuffled a little, to prevent useless ache in the morning and settled down to sleep.

 

Before he let himself relax, Twisted Fate waited, aware it was childish. It happened, hand stroking his hair idly. Then he could rest in peace.

 

When morning came, he knew it was time to move. And quick. I would rather not. But he had to or Graves would get mad. Twisted Fate dragged himself out of the now tight embrace they shared, annoyed to already miss it. No, I’m not that desperate. He collected his clothes, put it back on then lay a last gaze on the sleepy form of his partner. Small sigh.

 

Better not adress this lingering ache, deep in his chest. This was already a lot more than he should take. Never supposed to go back to someone.

 

I don’t know.

Chapter Text

So to say, this peculiar situation didn’t change much. While blessedly unaware of the equally troubled state of mind of each other, they said nothing and the routine went on. Because it really was a routine. Though it wasn’t planned out loud, both knew they would meet again at night, in a more quiet setting.

 

To Twisted Fate chagrin. He worried about this as much as Graves let it slide but again, never said a word on this. If the first was getting increasingly anxious about his need to return, the latter got less preoccupied. Sure it hurt a bit to wake up alone each time and he wasn’t keen on admitting this kind of feelings but Graves just… didn’t feel like he had to be concerned. It was just Twisted Fate being his usual mysterious self. He was used to be the least informed of the pair, information revealed when the latter deemed right so no difference.

In fact, the man was too far of his comfort zone and all this would soon lead to some disaster if they kept going. But not a word. He was never supposed to lose control over his life like that, even less by such ‘innocent’ development. Maybe seeking relief was all he needed and it wouldn’t hurt to continue this deal.

 

For now, their partnership worked. The gods knew how because neither would have bet on that. Like two separate times, private and outside. These two levels never met, just a parallel. And what happened in one was never heard of in the other one.

 

~

 

There was still some good news and change in this cycle of silence then banter. After a rather long time spent in the same place for an important job, it was a success and they would at last move somewhere else. So yes Twisted Fate was more than pleased with the outcome, for other reasons that the latter. Graves never liked to settle down for too long.

 

It gave them a reason to celebrate on the evening, before the last night in this inn. Naturally, alcohol was part of it, more than every other days.

 

So everything led to this tranquil situation, both of them chatting in their corner of the bar. Alcohol helping, the general mood was more quite merry. Twisted Fate let himself relish the moment, guard slipping down though he didn’t care that much.

By now he was basically sitting on Graves’s lap, after a lot of chuffling and uncouncious need to close the distance. He didn’t pay it attention, it felt nice how the latter got an hand idly staying on his thigh. Just contact, so soothing. Leaning a little, Twisted Fate took advantage and inhaled the heady scent. Good… Mind going blurry, like his inhibitions and semblance of control. They could have been in private, it would be the same. Warmth in his chest, short distance and the deep rumble of Graves voice as he laughed. Why resist ? He didn’t know, too far to understand why he hadn’t surrended yet. Why not take all this, available for him.

 

Gently, like still a bit unsure though Twisted Fate couldn’t explain why, he closed the distance and kissed the latter. Nothing mattered except Graves. Muffled surprise then some relaxing, even a sort of reciprocation. This was perfect. He clung to the latter, ready to take more of that filling comfort.

Still, some struggle under the touch. Graves broke the lasting kiss and gazed at him. Strangely soft and surprised and lucid. Twisted Fate wished to return to the kiss but the latter stopped him from it. Didn’t understand why. His body screamed for more, insidious ache coming up so slowly.

 

« You’re already drunk ? » This was meant to be a remark but in the tone used, it was a bit too fond instead. Graves could keep talking, he wasn’t so far of the latter’s state.

 

Unnerving. In any case Twisted Fate got the message and just wanted to yank him back into another kiss. When short on sharp reply, nothing better to shut him up. So he did, feeling more laughing from Graves after such behavior.

 

So ready to keep going but the latter stopped him again and this time got him to sit back on his previous spot.

 

« Okay, enough. I’m not complaining but there are people around. Just so you know. » His speech was slurred too, alcohol to blame here but he sounded still enough reasonable. Anyway, Twisted Fate glared at him for being interrupted again. « But if ya want, we can go back to my room… »

 

So low and deep, Twisted Fate felt that spark of arousal. « Move. Now. » Fuck all of this, himself and the other people around. He needed so much and all in Graves made him weak in the knee. Needless to say this was far of his usual composure, restrained and clever comments. Words couldn’t express how much he craved. Inhibitions down, turned on and ready for anything.

 

Hurry, as he practically dragged Graves upstairs, to his room. Door opened then closed as soon as they got in. Then Twisted Fate pinned him to the door, claiming his mouth once more with thirst. So. Good. Almost mad with how much he wanted that man, why he was convinced he couldn’t do this before. He was free, no ? And righ now, he craved anything that Graves would give. Never been so sure about something.

 

As he kissed him breathless, Graves already got on the plan and started to remove his clothes. Carelessly left on the floor. Twisted Fate was peeled off his clothing but not once contact was broken. Chilly air against skin, no care since against him Graves felt so warm, inviting.

 

« Fuck me…. » He broke the kiss to whisper that to the latter, no filter to his train of thoughts.

 

« Like I would say no. » A bit of tease but at least he acted on his words, picking Twisted Fate up to bring him to his bed.

 

Let down – though with some care – he crawled back to the center of the bed, watching hungrily Graves taking off his own clothes.

 

« Hot. » Really said out loud, the direct result of his admiration. And it even had the latter pausing for an instant.

 

« Fuck, blind drunk. I didn’t even notice you had so much booze. » A bit of reverence in his words, a bit of amusement.

 

« Mmmmh not that bad. Come here… ? »

 

Before anything, Twisted Fate needed to resume their contact. So just to have Graves joining him on the mttress, broad frame just above him, it felt like heaven. Maybe a bit of deception to see the latter wasn’t as aroused than him yet but he chased friction anyway. He grinded against Graves, urging him to actually do something. Move, move, move…

Then Twisted Fate felt a rough hand circling his entrance and on instinct he relaxed for what came. Quite slick for all the craving, the first digits stretching him didn’t even feel uncomfortable. Already he rocked back eagerly on Graves’s fingers, moaning openly the pleasure found.

 

« Malcolm… not there, deeper… Ah— ! » Loud cry when electricity coursed his nerves, that specific spot touched.

 

« Right here ? » Even Graves’s breathing seemed to heavier, impacted by the intimate attention he provided.

 

« Yes ! D-Don’t stop… »

 

So much noises, the opposite of what their usual nights knew. Graves went on, doing his best to get the latter ready but it seemed it was already the case.

 

« Can you feel that ? So wet. You want my cock so bad ? » Easy to tease now, Graves enjoyed it a lot as the latter unraveled under his touch.

 

This time it was some debauched moan that answered this attempt at dirty talk. Twisted Fate was losing it, little by little, overwhelmed by the deep stimulation.

 

But it wouldn’t satisfy Graves. He completely stopped in his tracks, waiting for a proper answer. As reaction Twisted Fate whined low, voice slightly higher as he bucked weakly for relief.

 

« So ? »

 

« No no no… don’t… fuck me please, I’ll be good… » So breathless, a hint of tears in this rush of despair.

 

« Good. »

 

Then Twisted Fate felt empty, source of relief gone. He whimpered needily, pawing at Graves.

 

« Now, roll over. » As he asked this, the latter coaxed him to follow the move. « On your hands and knees. »

 

This seemed clear enough for Twisted Fate, even through the haze and alcohol blur. He supported himself, a shiver running his spine as he waited. A hand over his shoulder, trailing lower down his back, appreciative. Then Graves’s cock nudged his rim, a warning before he would at last push in.

 

« Please— ! » The word turned into another whimper while the latter eased himseld inside, steady thrust in welcoming heat.

 

Twisted Fate’s head swam a bit once he was sheathed in, a lot at once. Always so good to be filled, to feel someone holding him close. His eyes watered, some tears broke free and poured. A shy groan from behind, Graves relishing this instant of union like a rare thing, grasp over the other man a bit strong. Then he pulled out and rammed back in quickly, earning a broken cry from Twisted Fate and shattered version of his name. Arms embracing the latter from behind, holding him in place, he let go and rocked deep inside.

Each thrust, how his cock dragged against his walls, delightful friction. Twisted Fate surrended, not able anymore to keep upright as he fell face into the pillow. Of course Graves bent to follow, sucking a few bruises on his shoulders and neck. So much efforts to make the latter scream, no rest.

 

Because he had nothing to do but take it, Twisted Fate gripped the sheets, not even muffling his pleasure in fabric. It didn’t matter. It felt too good and the whole world meant nothing. Crude display of care and yet he yearned for it.

 

« Harder… I-I need… » At the brink of madness, so close and yet so far.

 

Frame shaken by each thrust, flash of pleasure while Graves redoubled his efforts to get him off.

 

« Need what ? » Even him was starting to lose it, panting heavily.

 

« You….. » Twisted Fate was drained of his energy, lying down and taking all.

 

A hand managed to sneak under him, enough to get to his cock. He cried out when Graves stroked him fast and steady, he was determined to get him off quick. Too much… Fleetingly Twisted Fate felt the need to kiss him but the position was a bit too difficult, not possible as they neared the edge.

 

« I-I’m gonna cum… » Last rushed words before it indeed happened. White flashing in his vision, sudden rush in his veins as he stiffened.

 

That noise could be described pretty well as a howl, let out to be heard. And right after Graves came too, giving his last thrusts, so tight around him. Then a small moan, tension going down as he spilled into the latter. Twisted Fate took all till the last drop, just like the knot and whimpered lowly once it was over.

So so tired, shattered by the intense fucking, mind more than foggy from the alcohol. He didn’t move at all from his position, catching his breath. Graves hadn’t flopped down on him despite the urge but he needed to lie down too. So he moved them in spooning position, holding close the latter after pulling the blanket.

 

No words in these last instants before sleep, too exhausted to care. Twisted Fate – though already very numb – registered the kiss pressed to his neck, shoulder, scratch of a beard tickling a little. It brought him peace anyway.

Chapter Text

When Graves woke up, he could already tell it was later than when he used to get up. Not that they were really busy and had to go fast. Slowly sleep abandonned him and left instead a heavy sensation, mind a bit foggy.

Grumbling innerly – though some of it was let outloud – he shifted in bed, trying to get ride of the small pain. It wouldn’t go away and he knew it. Drank too much.

 

It was only when he found some difficulties to move that he registered the presence in bed. Wait. Graves’s eyes blinked open. Indeed, Twisted Fate was here, snuggled up to him in his sleep. More than invading his personnal space, arm slung without care over the other man.

Considering the night and previous drinking, it was to be expected but it still surprised Graves to have the latter still in bed. Opposite of all these mornings waking up alone after a wild encounter.

 

Shit.

 

Really, he didn’t know what to think, his gaze never leaving his partner. From this point of view, he couldn’t fully see Twisted Fate’s face, the angle and the way he was resting against his shoulder made it difficult. But he was right there, in his arms. Somehow his heart ached a little. Because from all they had done together, nightly intercourses, Twisted Fate had always made sure it didn’t go beyond the night. Morning was another day, it meant it was over. Then the cycle could start again the day after.

But right now there was an error. He stayed. Well, it was logical. Graves saw that the latter had more alcohol than him, without a doubt it would be difficult to wake up. There it led them. To a sleepy cardmaster pressed to him like he belonged here.

 

Stop. Don’t think too much. The more he let his thoughts running, the less it felt unusual. He shouldn’t get used to this. And Graves feared how it impacted him to see the latter under normal light though in this private setting. By now his headache was forgotten, too shaken by the sight.

 

Although he refused to move again for now – not to disturb the man’s rest – Graves took some time to appreciate the details hidden from him at night. The blanket covered most of them but there was still things to see. His gaze fell immediately on Twisted Fate’s tattoo, Bilgewater’s mark. Ah yes. Not really new, he already saw it before but couldn’t remember exactly when. Idly he traced the ink, gently. Lost himself in the pattern as his thoughts wandered.

 

At some point the other man moved a little before settling down again, quiet mumbling against skin. He didn’t wake up yet. If that was possible, Twisted Fate managed to come closer, hugging his partner.

All this gave Graves more regrets for when this would be over. Precious was a good word to describe the instant but it was rather embarrassing to admit. Okay, yes, he’s cute like that. But he refused to search how much it meant.

 

This strange urge pushed him to burry a hand in Twisted Fate’s hair, tucking a few strands behind his ear. And this time it caused the latter to wake up.

 

Ah, crap.

 

Of course Graves should have seen that coming but he may have been less careful than wanted. Anyway, it was done. Twisted Fate shifted a little, eyes opening for a short instant before he shut it back right after. He brought a hand to his face just as he whimpered lowly, sounding in quite a sad state. The reflex was to curl up in pain.

Then he completely froze. Graves understood that if the latter wasn’t really aware of his surroundings, now he did, registering the contact with another warm body. Muffled curse came up, before Twisted Fate dared to look up.

 

Graves wasn’t a man to back off, he gazed back at the latter. Also, he could see increasing confusion painted on his face. A bit taken aback to see Twisted Fate so expressive, he wasn’t even masking himself. Just plain surprise.

 

« M-Malcolm ?? » Unusual tone for this man used to control everything he showed. « What… ? »

 

Before he could freak out more, the man shut up, still a hand to his face as he tried to get his mind clear. But hangovers were painful and made the morning after feel like hell. He was trapped between surrending to panick and searching any way to make the headache go. By the end, it resulted in a pathetic noise.

 

Well shit, he’s going through a lot. Serves him right. Everyone knew that too much alcohol made a lot of people regret it later. Twisted Fate knew and let this go. So he had it coming. But Graves felt a bit of compassion for him, times like these were hard.

Resumed carressing the latter’s hair, massaging his head even if he wasn’t sure if it would help.

 

« Relax. It’s gonna be okay. » Tried to soothe as he could but he was short on ideas.

 

« What the fuck are you doing here ? » The question came suddenly, as Twisted Fate struggled to focus on the man.

 

« What do you mean ? This is my room. You’re the one breaking into my room every time ! » Some effort to express how annoying it had been but in fact he just wanted to calm the latter down.

 

« Ah… » Never something so genuine came from Twisted Fate, as far as he knew. Just lost and very confused. He looked around and it dawned on him. Another reason that made him stiff, sitting up on the bed.

 

This move wasn’t to Graves’s taste, he would rather they didn’t move for some time. There was no urgency or job to do. But thirst came up too, giving him a reason to get out of bed.

With some grumbling he stood and went to the bathroom. Then he came back with a glass of water, at the intention of Twisted Fate. The latter hadn’t stopped gazing around the room, seeming deep in thoughts despite how painful it was. Registering the latest events, for sure. This loss of control over himself would be quite an issue for him.

Graves didn’t question his behavior, mornings after could be complex. He handed the glass, earning another strange gaze.

 

« Hey, I’m not trying to poison you. It’s just water. You need it. » This would get tiring if Twisted Fate kept staring at him like a spooked animal. And also worrying. The man was supposed not to show many emotions, this was getting almost scary.

 

Graves didn’t know what was worse, when the latter was too quiet or too open like right now.

 

Small victory, Twisted Fate took the glass of water without any remark and downed it. Then he returned it and seemed to move on, getting out of bed too.

Though it must cost him, the latter looked after his clothes then dressed in silence. No attention payed to Graves, still standing there with the glass, unsure about anything.

 

Okay, he’s leaving now. Didn’t like it at all but what could he say ? Twisted Fate was free to do whatever he wanted.

Glass put aside, sitting back in bed, he kept watching the man as he got ready to go. Really awkward silence. Graves didn’t know what to do or say. This was just strange and devoid of any comment. No words from the latter, resolutely looking away during all this.

 

When Twisted Fate was done, he made a bee line to the door, not a glance behind. Just as he was about to reach it, Graves felt the urge to talk. Maybe stop him.

 

« So what ? You will be fine ? »

 

At first Twisted Fate didn’t answer though he stopped in his tracks. Turning so slightly, he spoke up : « Not a word about this night. » Then he left. As simple as that.

 

It wasn’t much the fact that the man just got dressed then left like nothing that hit Graves. Fine, maybe a little. But the tone used was very cold. Not sure how to react. A real jab. Clearly an order to follow or there would be consequences.

Graves was put off. The latter rarely used such tone, cruel and icy. This whole morning went from surprise to weird distance to sharp goodbye. Twisted Fate hadn’t even tried to play it smooth, a bit joking like he would do every day.

 

The latter was getting far too emotional around him, it scared Graves a little. Not used at this whole vulnerable then harsh façade.

 

Guess I’ll shut up for now.

 

~

 

This showed to be the best advice for the day. Even as they met up again, after packing their things to go, there was this unusual distance. Better stay quiet. Graves wouldn’t make the conversation if the latter didn’t want it.

What started to get on his nerve was how Twisted Fate almost avoided any kind of contact. No words after the minimum, very little interaction.

 

Rude.

 

Graves didn’t understand why the man was reacting like that. Like he had made a mistake. Not even trying to humor him, casually flirt or be a smartass. I did nothing wrong. I think. Then why Twisted Fate was acting like that ?

He never had answers and the man didn’t want to talk. Why bother then ? They kept business talk but anything else was tiring. Just wanted to give up understanding the latter, it was useless.

 

And as he partially expected, two days after their incident, Twisted Fate didn’t show up like his routine demanded. More nights alone, it would seem.

This got Graves a bit sad but again the reason was to avoid. No, I don’t miss him.

 

This was a pure mess but it got better, little by little. Like warming up again. Days passed and Twisted Fate returned to what the outlaw knew of him, the annoying bastard. A relief, in a way. At least now he wasn’t acting like he was mad at Graves.

 

The real clue that they were back on tracks was when after two – very long, agonizing – weeks, Twisted Fate returned to his nightly visits. For both this was some happy time, having missed these occasions.

But again, there was still this silent side of the latter. Graves wasn’t really fond of it, prefered to have the other man express how much he enjoyed each second. Twisted Fate made more effort to stay quiet during sex, keeping it down even if it was getting difficult when one certain outlaw did his best to make him scream.

 

In any case, Graves was glad to have the latter back to him. He would leave in the morning but it came nonetheless.

Enough to calm down his worry and focus on something else than his confused feelings.

 

But one day, Twisted Fate disappeared. Again.

Chapter Text

This was an error. I have to be more careful.

 

Thinking of this drunken evening, Twisted Fate was reminded every time of his own weakness. He let that happen. Too careless. Didn’t know that his own yearning would resurface once his inhibitions were down. I’m not desperate. No. Never. So it would seem that his first reflex was to get his hands on Graves and drag him to his room to fuck.

 

I hate this.

 

The loss of control. Already it was getting difficult with his peculiar attraction to Graves but now it was unbearable. And it was his own fault. He broke a rule he set himself, stayed the night.

Of course it wasn’t planned. Until he woke up, he believed to be at peace in his own room. On the contrary, he found himself in Graves’s bed, his arms wrapped around him.

 

What shocked him was as much the overall confusion of being in the wrong setting than not noticing any problem till it was too late. He left as fast as he could but it felt like ripping a part of himself. Wanted to stay. I shouldn’t. This wasn’t right. It wasn’t supposed to feel good to stay with Graves.

Didn’t know why he felt like that. Why it was comfortable to wake up with someone else. Why his whole body and instinct asked the opposite of his reason. I don’t need to stay. I’m free. I owe him nothing.

 

Every new thought was a lie. Twisted Fate was far too smart to ignore it. There was something about Graves but he refused to search what exactly.

 

It was this need to get back control that prompted him to flee the room. Because yes, he fled. Or rather, a tactical retreat. Anyway, he had to get in a safer place, to regain some composure and seem like everything was fine. Safe. He had been safe in Graves's bed but why ?

 

No, it’s wrong. I would never be safe with someone else. Yet he wanted to trust Graves. Not to worry for once.

 

Even as the door was shut, he felt the gap, distance piercing his heart. Craved to be held. Maybe I’m a little bit on edge. Just need to relax.

 

~

 

Returning as soon was impossible. Couldn’t afford another mistake. Twisted Fate wanted to stop all this, to stay by himself. It would be easy, he had been doing this for a very long time. Just let go, not come back to Graves at night. I don’t have to go see him, I’ll be fine.

 

This was one big lie. Time passed and he counted each night he hadn’t spent with the latter. It hurt, little by little but he didn’t know what could cause such insidious pain. An ache, deeply rooted.

When the day was over and Twisted Fate could get some rest, his thoughts ran back after the other man. A reminder of how good it was to be welcomed no matter what, to feel rough hands over his skin.

 

I can’t do that. He rolled over, wished for sleep to take him quick but couldn’t. Several nights he only found rest after indulging a little, seeking an easy release. Not once without thinking of Graves, he realized.

 

That’s it ? I’m just horny ? Part of him didn’t like this statement but at least it gave an excuse for his problems of craving. It wasn’t his fault, nor Graves’s, he just needed some relief. It doesn’t matter who. Graves is just the closest person around.

 

So he endured these lonely nights, hoping it would end soon and he would be free of this hell. Wait a little longer.

But it became even harder to resist. To the point of short madness, questionning why he couldn’t go. Graves never said no, he let him come and take what he needed. Why not go see him ?

 

A bit ridiculous, Twisted Fate barely held two weeks before pathetically returning to his partner. It really killed him innerly to come back, fearing any possible joke from Graves but at least he stayed quiet on the topic.

It hit him deep, to realize he couldn’t stay away from Graves too long. Or it would drive him crazy just like then. Always taken back to his need. When did it mattered so much ?

 

~

 

All this took another turn when his heat arrived too. Not yet but Twisted Fate knew it was coming. Control everything, just to be sure. So it was planned, it was to happen though he never missed these times. Let’s suffer… It left him wondering if this mess with Graves was because deeply he knew the heat was near.

 

Twisted Fate played it just like the first one he got during their partnership : he disappeared without a word, sure that Graves would understand why.

This wouldn’t take long, three days if it went as usual. Just need to find someone. He prefered it this way, it felt rather secure to be taken by a nameless person, never to be met again. Better for him, no risk to get attached.

 

Also, a good way to put some distance with Graves, to think about what they meant. After all, his problems were surely caused by some strong need for human contact. Maybe anyone would do. It always did before.

 

Sadly, just like his life at the moment, it didn’t go exactly as he wanted it. Not so bad. Twisted Fate found an alpha ready to give and they settled for it. Not so difficult, to help an omega in heat was the guaranty of a really good time so it didn’t take a lot of reasons to accept.

 

The thing was, it felt different. Of course, each person was different, and he made sure never to lie with someone known. But right now, Twisted Fate could tell something was missing.

Sex was good, always. Rules were clear then he let the alpha have his fun as long as he did his part.

 

What’s wrong ? Why… does it feel like that ?

 

It was just the first day, plenty of time to get fully satisfied yet it seemed empty. Lying back on the mattress, clutching the sheets, he closed his eyes and tried to focus just on pleasure. Everything burned, body aching. Twisted Fate pushed away this feeling and let go. Stop thinking, stop thinking, stop thinking.

 

A small slap took him out of this. « W-What ? » He didn’t expect the alpha to pay attention but surely he seemed out of it.

 

« You’re quiet. I prefer them to squeal. »

 

« Maybe try harder. Give me a reason to do it. » Twisted Fate put aside the fact he specifically asked no useless talk in these occasions. Didn’t like people trying to annoy him, play alpha just because he was the one in need.

 

Bait an alpha’s ego and they would do everything to go dominant. Twisted Fate played on that most of the time to get it harder. This time it worked too, rendering him only able to moan his pleasure.

Made him forget temporarily his problems. As tough as a heat was, it still had a delightful part.

 

Till he cried out a name, lost in this haze. He didn’t even realize it, how easily it rolled on his tongue. The alpha didn’t give this importance, just focused on fucking him through the mattress.

 

~

 

If the beginning of the heat went rather smoothly, the rest wasn’t exactly what Twisted Fate would call some fun time. After his first release, enough mind came back to think again. Then his thoughts returned after Graves. Why ? He’s not here. I don’t have to think about him. He didn’t understand, once more. He was sated for now but couldn’t get the outlaw out of his mind. Why doesn’t he leave me at peace ? I don’t need more troubles.

 

All he asked was a tranquil heat, the whole process was awful enough to go through. He had someone right here, available and yet he thought about Graves. It didn’t make sense. So Twisted Fate kept his mind resolutely close to anything related to the man. Not here.

 

The matter was else where. As his heat went on, the alpha just showed to be more annoying than planned. Twisted Fate would let this slide, most of times. But when the guy started to mark him up, it didn’t sit well. No idea why, this wasn’t usually a matter. This time it was. Just feeling the alpha grabbing him as he sucked another hickey, too close to the area on the neck used for bonding marks. It made him sick.

 

« No marks. » Tried to push him away, just enough to convey the message.

 

« What ? It wasn’t in your rules. » He sounded plainly like a child being forbidden something. Not in the positive way.

 

« I forgot about it. Don’t do it again. »

 

« Why ? You have someone home ? This Malcolm you’re talking about, I guess. »

 

The fuck ??

 

« What the fuck you’re saying ?? I never— Ah ! »

 

This was exhausting to talk during sex, partly a reason he didn’t want them to talk. But right now Twisted fate was at loss. How does he knows ???

 

« Ya keep calling for him like a slut. Funny. Why are you here, if you already have someone ? Can’t be satisfied by just one person ? He’s a beta, I’m sure. That’s why you go outside search some real alpha to fuck you. »

 

Exactly what Twisted Fate didn’t want to hear, not right now in such weak state, when he couldn’t call this over or fight back. Bastard. Never liked to be reminded of the typical alpha bullshit, even less to be insulted.

 

« Shut up. » He was in no condition to reply, slave to his needs and so close already.

 

« Whatever. » The alpha returned to marking him up, as if he hadn’t been asked not to do that.

 

The kind of situation that made Twisted Fate regret deeply being an omega, having needs to satisfy. He had to stay, endure the heat, the comments and maybe it would end quickly. Easy to cry on his condition but he refused to give that satisfaction to the alpha. No need to boost his ego.

 

So he stayed quiet, wishing to be somewhere else. Memories of a dark room, hands blindly pawing at him with need, hushed moans. Sad that it came to his mind that he missed Graves. Took him to be held down, helpless, in one of the worst time of the year, to realize it. Miss him ? Despite himself, his body reacted to the memories, the comfort found there.

In such tiring situation Twisted Fate was, anything else seemed better. Think of another alpha, tickling sensation of a beard when they kissed, the care never voiced but showed in small details.

 

Malcolm…

 

All this came back to him. For trying so much to keep him out of his mind, it resulted in nothing. He wasn’t desperate for anyone. He was desperate for Graves, for all he could give. Safety. Why does he matter so much ? It would hurt too much to search for this answer.

 

~

 

It was over. Twisted Fate was free again, left at peace till next time. These three days passed excruciatingly slowly, even cried on the third though he made sure to hide this. It had been satisfying but only in the carnal meaning. For the rest, it had been hell. Good thing he wasn’t going to meet again that alpha.

 

Heart lightened, he felt almost glad to see Graves again. The latter didn’t need to know anything about how it went but he was happy to find his partner.

 

Twisted Fate came back to him, pain gone and ready to return to their routine. No questions about what he felt though. It was over, just felt desperate in this harsh time.

 

Yes, Graves was mad at him. It was clear when they met up, before they even exchanged a word. It’s not the end of the world, come on. The man stared at him with a scowl but at least he hadn’t yelled at him yet.

 

« Please, don’t make such a face. We both know this kind of business isn’t worth the fuss. »

 

« Could have told me you were leaving. You know, communication. Like people do in partnership. » Graves didn’t sound as mad as he looked, this was some recomfort. Just a show of how it gnawed at his patience.

 

« I prefer not to, it’s strictly personal. But I apologize. » Sometimes it was better to play cards on the table, everything said. Maybe it would get Graves to relax.

 

« Mmmh fine. But don’t expect me to act like nothing. Honestly, it’s exhausting to find out you just left without a word. »

 

« Awwwwww you worry about me. » Back to his favorite game, teasing Graves. It felt good, just like going home. Even more to see the latter look annoyed.

 

« You wish. »

 

There, it was clear the point of possible tension was no more. They could resume their activities.

 

Yet, in the middle of some shared laugh, Graves paused. So it caught Twisted Fate’s attention too. Suddenly, the latter’s hand on his collar, another lifting his chin. At first he didn’t understand the move, stopping dead in whatever they were doing. What ?

Then it hit him. Graves had noticed the marks. Himself didn’t check it before going back but of course it had to be expected. Exactly what he didn’t want.

 

Oh no.

Chapter Text

Not this. Not now.

 

Another mistake yet Twisted Fate should have seen that coming. Most of the marks were already faded but a lot remained anyway, not gone yet. He hated each one of them, right now.

 

Suddenly fear took him, cruel and cold as it ran his spine. He didn’t know why exactly he was scared, there was no valid reason. Why would he feel like that just because Graves saw some marks ?

But Twisted Fate followed his instinct. And revealed to be right.

 

They hadn’t moved but Graves expression turned angry. No, please. Why was he scared of Graves reaction ?

Bitterness, fury so easily readable on the latter’s face, his hands still on Twisted Fate. The grasp turned tight.

 

Danger.

 

He didn’t like that glare. The way Graves looked at him like he was a mistake, furious against him. It’s not my fault. I asked nothing.

 

Why was he afraid ? Terrible question. Twisted Fate always trusted his instinct, when it screamed at him to flee. Right now he should.

 

Another feeling came up, sickening. Like when he was looked down on. Omega. Graves was furious at him, for marks left. It’s not his business. Twisted Fate grew defensive, no one had rights to be angry at him. Refused to be someone’s property. And Graves just stared at him like he had reasons to. Cheated on. Robbed. No. Not him. He wasn’t supposed to be like this. Small hopes broken.

 

Twisted Fate started to hate that glare. How he wasn’t a person anymore but a mere object to desires. An omega. Life could be so cruel sometimes, what a joke to be born this way and suddenly anyone could pretend have rights on him. I belong to no one.

 

The grip over his collar felt too restrictive, dangerous. After what seemed like an eternity of silent staring, Twisted Fate yanked the latter’s hands away. Enough strenght to make it clear it wasn’t wanted at all, inappropriate.

 

« Get off me. » Venom seeping in the tone to be sure the message went through.

 

Don’t look at me like this. This was never supposed to happen. For once they made some short contact outside the bedroom, it was harsh, angry.

Reminding himself it was Graves and not some mere alpha was both a slap ot his face and a comfort. Always felt disgust for alphas stepping toward him, pushing his own personal space. But this was Graves, he wasn’t the type to do that. He thought he was safe.

 

For all the effort in confronting Graves, he didn’t receive the reaction expected. Usually, once baited or provoked, an alpha would systematically make a show of domination.

Not now.

 

To Twisted Fate’s surprise – and small relief – the latter clenched his fist, stood and stomped away. During all this he seemed ready to yell, insult, whatever on a not so nice tone but it didn’t come. Graves left.

 

So he was alone, gazing at the direction the latter’s took. Thoughts getting loud, uncertain. That’s it ? He just left ?

Twisted Fate could relax slightly, they came so close to a possible fight of any kind. Wouldn’t have been ready mentally for this. Even now, he was still a bit hurt by Graves’s gesture. And so so deeply scared, in his core.

 

This wasn’t good at all but at least it didn’t finish on a bad note. So shitty, he was genuinely happy to come back but now their situation got worse. No idea how it would work out from there.

 

What now ?

 

~

 

 

The rest of that same day, Twisted Fate didn’t see his partner. Since his return, it seemed that Graves avoided him. A bit tricky, they were supposed to work together. But after the incident, he was sure about nothing.

The anger showed left a pretty painful mark on him. First because Twisted Fate got a big scare – worse than his usual stress – and because the latter got all furious for something that wasn’t his fault to begin with. I never asked those marks.

 

If before he was rather chill about his heat partners leaving these, now he just felt aversion for this behavior. Both because of the latest unsavory alpha and his terrible manners but also because of this incident.

Twisted Fate didn’t want another reason to fight on. Sad, a new matter to take care of.

 

Anyway, there was a more optimistic touch on the evening. Usually they would settle down somewhere and eat together but Twisted Fate feared it would go differently. For obvious reasons.

 

Sometimes it was good to be wrong. Graves showed up, visibly looking for him. If at first Twisted Fate worried a little for his own sake, there was no need.

 

Facing each other after the latest confrontation, an awkward silence filled the place. What does he want ? For all he could read in Graves’s stance, there was no real danger but rather bothered agitation.

 

« Can we talk ? Not here. » This was quite peculiar to hear Graves like this, at the limit of nervous.

 

« Of course. » Right now he didn’t feel like teasing or joking. The latter sounded dead serious and he wouldn't risk messing this up just to seem unconcerned.

 

So they walked outside a little, till there wasn’t too much noise, secluded enough for a talk.

It was strange, to see Graves like this but it wasn’t really out of character. This man prefered to address problems not too long after. Leaning to a wall of the small alley, he looked for his words.

 

Twisted Fate watched him do, curious yet careful about all this. It wasn’t easy to forget when one was roughly treated. But it made him smile to see Graves struggle like that. He’s sorry. Easy to understand, for all the nervosity. In a way it reassured Twisted Fate though he repressed this surge of fondness as soon as it came up.

 

A sigh then Graves spoke, new determination : « I apologize. For last time. Ya know what. » He did sound sorry yet responsible. « I get it, wasn’t nice to get my hands on you. Never meant to harm you, I swear. »

 

For all Twisted Fate could see, the latter tried to keep eye contact but this didn’t seem his strongest suit. To recognize his errors and feel sorry. Sweet. It was interesting to see him doing his best.

 

Quiet noise as he acknowledged Graves words : « I forgive you. »

 

The other man looked almost shocked, disbelieving : « What ? Just like this ? Fine, fine. As you want. »

 

He expected the worst. Small realization. In any case, Twisted Fate was a bit surprised that he would apologize just for the sake of saying it, not seeking forgiveness. And it made him feel a bit better about the agression, knowing Graves regretted it. Couldn’t possibly eraze the pain inflicted and the fear but it made it more bearable.

 

« Yes, just like this. But don’t ever do that again. I have no need for another alpha patronizing me. » He hoped that was clear enough, wouldn’t tolerate more remarks.

 

« Huh ? » Confusion in Graves’s tone. « Of course not. I know I’m not always polite but I have some respect. Just… » Hand rubbing his neck. « You felt like I was patronizing you ? »

 

Head tilted on the side, Twisted Fate lay a curious gaze on the man. So he didn’t mean to ? Then he must have apologized for being rough on him. Maybe Graves wasn’t even aware of the threat he represented at that moment.

 

« I don’t know ? Maybe because you held me by the collar and got angry just because of a few marks I never asked. I wonder why I would take this bad. » A bit annoying to have to explain this but he had to. Sometimes people weren’t aware of their effect over the others.

 

« Okay okay, I’m sorry ! …. I didn’t mean to. But like, you disappear again then you show up as it was perfectly normal. It’s annoying like hell, so I was mad at you— »

 

« That’s not a reason to treat me like a fucking object. You can’t have your hands on me, you can’t judge whatever I do for my own well-being. »

 

« I don’t consider you like that ! I… I guess I just lost it for a moment. And I’ll try to prevent that again. You do your life, I do mine, now we’re good. »

 

This was getting long and tiring. Twisted Fate didn’t like having to talk this further but they needed to make things clear.

 

« Fine. Now it’s settled. I’d appreciate you give me some peace. And we’re not talking about this again. »

 

Sounding a bit angrier than he intended but the exhaustion was here. He just wanted this to be over, forget about this.

 

« This works in the two ways. Stop bothering me at night, since you can very well get fucked elsewhere. »

 

Graves walked away, considering the conversation finished. But that last sentence really hit Twisted Fate right where it hurt. No, really ? Again, fear sneaked its way in his heart, against all his contradictions.

 

« Wait, are you joking ? »

 

« No. Are you ? You said you didn’t want my hands near you. And seems that you do pretty well on your own. » For once he couldn’t tell what Graves was thinking, if he was serious about all this. Another reason to worry, as he followed his partner to the inn. « Remember, you do your life, we’re good. That’s what you want, no ? »

 

True but it hurt. Twisted Fate didn’t know how. And to what extent in the near future.

Chapter Text

Not my business. Not my business at all.

 

Even as he got away from Twisted Fate after that incident, burning fury guiding his steps anywhere else, he knew he was wrong. He shouldn’t feel like this. Also the reason why he left, before he would do something irreversible.

 

Just the tone Twisted Fate used to push him away, it was enough to sober him up. So cold, words spat to his face. Graves felt the urge shut the latter up, use force because he was getting on his nerves.

But it wasn’t Twisted Fate’s fault. Deeply he knew it.

 

Why am I even mad at him ?

 

Not against him, not really. But seeing all kinds of marks on the latter’s neck, without any trouble guessing the origin, it sparked something in Graves. Violent, raging urge. Against what ? Who ? It felt like against Twisted Fate but thinking again it didn’t make sense.

 

At first he had acted on this instinct, seizing roughly the latter to check if he was mistaken. But no, he wasn’t. Anger burned under his skin.

Then Twisted Fate slapped his hands away.

 

It struck him, really, the virulent order. It also made Graves reconsider his actions. I shouldn’t have done that. Going to grab directly the latter, that was quite unwelcome. Of course that was an agression in itself so Twisted Fate was in his rights to snap at him.

 

Still, it didn’t sit well. Alpha instinct and these useless stuff made him feel strange in all this incident. It almost took over his own reason. Stepping in Twisted Fate’s space although it wasn’t a clever idea at all. He would never have done such gesture under normal circumstances.

 

Why did I react like this ?? I know he fucks, he disappeared for his heat. Graves didn’t understand really why it made him angry in the first place. Yes he wasn’t specially in a good mood because of the latter’s habit of not telling him his plans. But shit, this was new.

 

I need to calm down. Or it would put their partnership at risk, no doubt.

 

Cooling off, he could think this through with more insight, after some time passed. But still no real reason to get so mad at Twisted Fate. I don’t know.

It still came to his mind that it wasn’t correct to reach for the latter. He owed him some proper apologies.

 

So it left Graves with one big question, no answer yet. Why did it matter to know Twisted Fate had some fun outside ? Graves was annoyed at himself, for overreacting. I don’t care, he does what he wants. His sex life doesn’t concern me. Then why was he still thinking about it ? Arg.

His thoughts drifted a little, focusing instead on what the marks meant. Twisted Fate got laid, that was clear. Again the urge to hit something came up, building anger in chest. Maybe the guy in question. It would feel good just to beat that one.

 

Holy fuck what ? No. Graves didn’t get it. This animosity against the ‘other guy’. Why would he think something of the sort ? Well yes it seemed relieving to find him and make things clear but why ?

 

Graves didn’t like that in the slightest. A kind of possessiveness over Twisted Fate, that he never asked for. That’s it ? I’m jealous of the idiot that got to fuck him ?

Nothing would explain the matter better. But he was reluctant to even consider this possibility. Why get jealous ? It’s just TF. Annoying bastard.

 

Refused to fully acknowledge what he felt toward his partner. Indeed there was something, different of friendship or respect between outlaws. In the personal kind. Graves was aware of it but wouldn’t search to which depth it went. Just because he’s a good looking shit talker.

But to get possessive on him, this was new and hateful. I’m not like that. I don’t want. Also because again it returned to alphas and omegas stuff. It was said to be normal to get attached, biology to blame. If it was true, then this wave of possessiveness was just a natural reaction.

 

No, not mine. We’re both free. And knowing Twisted Fate, he would get defensive if he considered him by his sole status of omega.

 

This would give Graves a headache. Too many things to take in count, too much shit happening at once. He tried to empty his mind a little.

Thoughts wandered a little, curious. This was the second heat Twisted Fate got since they met. Must be hell for him. Just a rut was enough to wish for the end but a heat could be worse.

 

Why didn’t he come to me ? After all, the latter had a fucked up routine, coming every two night in his room. Why wouldn’t he do the same for his heat ? Despite all the show of annoyance he put on and the growing carelessness about it, Graves didn’t mind.

Made his sleep shorter but it wasn’t a real problem. Appreciated the late night company, even so.

A heat wouldn’t have been a matter for him.

 

Deep sigh. Okay, maybe I’d rather he spent it with me. This was enough confession for the day. And he still had to apologize to the latter.

 

Would he say something about it ? No. It seemed clear that Twisted Fate didn’t feel the need to go with him for a reason. So Graves would just sit in his situation, appreciating the few nights shared. Even if nothing more was to be expected. Wouldn’t interfere.

 

This wasn’t really happy to take this decision but what could he do ? He feared that his deep yearning – if explored – would be worse than he thought, that he would need more.

Better lay down, not make more problems. And go see Twisted Fate, to excuse himself.

 

~

 

It almost went well. Almost, because if they solved the urgent tension, it did worsen a little their situation. Let’s say there was some positive and negative stuff at the same time.

 

Honestly, Graves didn’t really expect the latter to forgive him so quickly. Quite a surprise, for what he did to Twisted Fate. Anyway, the man made it clear he wouldn’t tolerate another similar attack. And he understood that, why it was to be avoided.

 

On the other hand it became complicated. Twisted Fate mentionning how he had looked down on him. I didn’t know. What overtook Graves’s thoughts in this exact instant was rather the other alpha. Nothing against Twisted Fate.

So to say, he was preaching at the wrong door. Graves wasn’t one to judge the latter’s choice. Maybe yes a little but he knew better than voicing it. Not my business.

 

So they made things clear. Graves would do his best and keep his hands for himself. It hurt anyway to hear Twisted Fate wanted nothing to do with him for some time but he would stick with that.

Turning the sentence around, it meant the latter didn’t have a real use for Graves. Nightly encounters meant nothing, he could get his pleasure elsewhere. Guess this is how it’s gonna be.

 

To be sure and hurt back a little, he said that Twisted Fate could count him out from now. No need to see him if there was better in other places. Now I’ll get my sleep.

This was fairly empty threat. Not certain his partner would listen anyway, it looked like he never gave a fuck about boundaries. He already mourned the end of the late visits. But Graves was resolute to close this way, not to torture himself and possible feelings.

 

Not close to stop living just because of Twisted Fate.

 

~

 

At first this seemed to be effective. They never talked again of the incident, Graves made sure not to push the latter too much. But after all the teasing and sass Twisted Fate gave him, he was allowed some payback.

 

On another point, the man didn’t bother him at night again, on his previous routine. Graves sighed, a bit sad anyway. Couldn’t be mad at Twisted Fate, he put an end to it himself. And if would seem that the latter found his relief with someone else.

 

In fact, not at all. Ten days. He couldn’t manage to hold as much than the last time. And so he returned to Graves, in the silence of the early hours.

Chapter Text

Don’t return. He doesn’t want anymore.

 

Even as they returned to a semblance of cheer peace between heists and other drunken nights, Twisted Fate felt that gap. Still the same, he could annoy Graves as much as he wanted and the man just insulted back without meaning it. But there was something between them, different from what himself felt toward the latter. Different from that warmth invading his chest in some occasions, small details that touched him.

 

It was his fault, in a way. They settled on a common understanding, would never do this or that again. Graves would try not to aggress him like in the incident.

But in exchange – if that could be considered a deal – Twisted Fate was to let him at peace.

 

That was his actual matter. Because till now, he thought it was fine to go bother Graves at an ungodly hour. He never said no. Did he really want at some point or was he just letting him do what he pleased by lack of fuck to give ?

Something in Twisted Fate broke a little at that order. And he didn’t know why exactly. Just felt it, this peculiar emptiness. It hurts.

 

For the first days after, he followed it. Wasn’t planning any time soon to go in direct confrontation with Graves. Not after he asked him to keep his hands for himself. This wasn’t really clever to say. Should have thought about it. In a way, Twisted Fate trapped himself with that because in their previous routine he was the one getting handsy on the latter.

 

So he stayed quiet about it and searched for another source of relief. Going out, find another willing person and it would be good. But sadly, Twisted Fate didn’t feel like it. What he used to do several times when in need, it sounded useless. And after his recent heat and the last alpha, strangely he didn’t want to risk meeting another asshole.

Waited, hoped that for once he wouldn’t yearn for contact. This really made his life difficult. Wish I could be free of that.

 

When it was the time he used to visit Graves, he let it pass without moving. But his mind couldn’t really change focus. Just lying down in bed, desperately seeking sleep but it refused to come. I could be somewhere else. No no no, bad idea.

 

That night, this emptiness came back and kept him awake late. Till his body couldn’t bear.

 

And the rest of the week happened in a similar fashion. Just impossible wait for sleep, restless in his sheets but unable to find exactly the matter. Twisted Fate could tell it was linked to his need to go back to the latter but so hard to determine.

Little by little his patience grew thin, giving in seemed so easy and inviting.

 

Yes but he will be mad. And it meant passing as an hypocrite, expecting his partner to follow an order while himself wouldn’t. But I need…

 

Why can’t I just find someone else ? For that particular trick, he was pissed. There was no reason why it wouldn’t work yet he didn’t want to. Even if he knew it would be a solution.

 

On the tenth night, Twisted Fate surrended. Nervous but glad anyway, he reduced the distance to Graves’s room. Yes, the stress. He refused to admit his increasing hearbeat was for another potential reason. He will be so so angry. But he had to go or his own body would give up.

 

No light, as usual. Small hurry though he still made an effort at not waking the latter too early. Strangely it brought some comfort to hear Graves snoring lightly, so unguarded. The man was always himself, never tried to hide or mask a part of his personality. For this Twisted Fate was maybe a little envious, he would love to be so careless, let it in the open. But it was too dangerous to let everything to see. And it would make him a poor poker player.

 

This was basically a bet. Or Graves would kick him out or they would go on for another heated night. Everything or nothing. It scared him a little, just to imagine the worst option. If Graves really wanted him gone, it would break this opportunity forever. But he was a gambler and life was a game, nothing worth without a little risk.

 

Undressed, clothes folded and left on a nearby chair, Twisted Fate reached the only bed of the room. Stood there, briefly considering his chances on this. But he was so close to his need and wouldn’t coward now. Let’s do this.

 

Had he just got on the bed that it woke up Graves, startled. It seemed that this night he had a very light sleep but whatever. For being nearly attacked in his rest, he started to fight back so Twisted Fate panicked a little. Hey hey hey no. But couldn’t talk, refused to, again the same block.

 

It didn’t last long. After some short struggling, hands grabbing at each other, Graves seemed to recognize the situation and flopped back on the mattress : « Motherfucker… »

 

Just the time to calm down, collect his thoughts. Then no chill, he started to snarl at Twisted Fate, very annoyed : « The fuck you’re doing here ? You can’t come back. » So much exhaustion in the tone.

 

There was pause but surely Graves waited for an answer before remembering the man never talked much. It made him more angry : « Get out. I have nothing for you here. Remember ? I don’t give you crap for your choices and you let me sleep. It’s easy, no ? »

 

As Twisted Fate expected, it hurt to hear that. Anyway he stood his ground, straddling the latter as to prove he wouldn’t go away. I can’t go. He didn’t move and kept his hands on Graves, stroking gently what he could reach.

 

« Okay, I’m done. » Just that sentence then Graves actually went to dislodge him. A lot more strenght used, wrestling Twisted Fate off him.

 

No no no ! Unlucky, Graves was stronger than him, nothing to do against that.

 

« Stop ! Please, Malcolm. » Urgency so he spoke up against his need for safety.

 

And it worked. Graves stopped as the words echoed into darkness.

 

Some grumbling : « And now you can talk. Why don’t you leave me alone ? I thought you didn’t want my hands near you ever again. »

 

It was true, his own words but Twisted Fate regretted it. This was so difficult to express, not even sure why his heart was aching right now. « I… I don’t know… Fine, I shouldn’t have said that. »

 

« Idiot. Don’t ask for something you won’t be able to stand by. Your concept of boundaries is full of shit. » Was it him or Graves sounded less mad at him ? Just tired. But the time explained that.

 

« I’m sorry but I need… »

 

Twisted Fate hated being like that, having to voice what he really wanted but if he did maybe the latter would let him stay. Not often he apologized to Graves.

 

« Then go outside, find a guy ready to give and have fun. Why do you have to come here if there is easier ? »

 

« Malcolm… » Difficult to think straight, being on top of the latter reminded him of his craving. So so close to potential relief.

 

« Answer that. »

 

Not fair. Twisted Fate himself didn’t know the answer and seeked it. It’s not that simple.

 

« I don’t know. »

 

« And I don’t know why I would care about this. It’s not my business. »

 

Desperation running under his skin. It looked like Graves was ready to throw him out.

 

So he made a last attempt at justification : « Please, I need you… » Went for it with all his heart, blindly grabbed the latter’s face to earn a kiss.

 

A certain non reaction answered the urge. Twisted Fate would have sobbed if it wasn’t muffled, but the latter returned the kiss eventually.

 

Short contact but one nonetheless. Graves pulled him off the kiss by the hair then sat up on the bed with the man on his lap.

 

« You really don’t know when to quit. Fine, I’ll do what I can. But on my rules. »

 

Despite the annoyance showed, relief flooded Twisted Fate, so glad to have this. The second after, he was pushed down on the mattress, back to the rough sheets. What a turn on, to feel Graves towering him. Not able to see him but the threat coupled to the promise were alluring. Breath near his face, not nearly as heavy than his.

 

A large hand rested over his chest, warm presence, while the other went directly to his entrance. At first Twisted Fate tensed in surprise then relaxed, letting him in. The conversation had him less aroused but his need came back full blast. Graves pushed a finger inside, it didn’t hurt and soon his body got on the plan, rocking back. And so he grew slick, panting softly as he was stretched further.

 

Yes… What he seeked in this room, with this man. Twisted Fate let his guard down, gripping the sheets as pleasure built up. Couldn’t wait to be ready for the best part.

Moans were let out without any restrain, for having already broken silence earlier. It became easier to be noisy, as Graves worked him open.

 

By now three fingers deep inside him, grazing that tender spot and rewarded by another sudden jolt. Smooth glide, no resistance opposed. Twisted Fate still felt a bit ashamed for the debauched state he was in.

 

« Malcolm. Please. » He needed him inside. And quick. Just to feel again, be held closer. He reached for the man, whatever part of him, just communicate the desperation.

 

Graves paused in his task, contemplating the ask then pulled out. The following emptiness left Twisted Fate weak but he bit back that whimper. So ready to take it.

 

But instead of the characteristic chuffling of clothes being taken off, Graves moved on the mattress. Himself couldn’t see much but he felt the man going away. Panick surged in his nerves.

 

« W-What ? »

 

Then his legs were spread open, Graves keeping him like this as he settled down. Twisted Fate could barely think about the next move than he felt the altter go down on him. Sudden wetness welcoming his cock, making him release a honest cry. Couldn’t wrap his mind around that, how good it felt to have Graves directly tending to him.

Slicked fingers came back to his rim, circling before sinking inside without an hitch.

 

What else could he do ? Twisted Fate groaned low in his throat, barely holding together in the several intimate touches. His hand went on instinct to Graves’s head, burried in his hair without further intent. Maybe tried to coax him but he would take whatever the man gave him.

 

Already the end seemed near, spasms shaking his frame. No… We didn’t got to it yet… Tried to push Graves a little, to prompt him to move on.

 

« Malcolm— ! Fuck me… »

 

The latter paid no mind to his plea and redoubled his efforts. Fingers crooked, right on Twisted Fate’s prostate, making him writhe on the bed like nothing could be as good than this. To finish him, he took him down his throat and the world seemed to vanish in blinding light.

 

Back arched taut, voice cracking on the end, Twisted Fate felt electricity course his veins in the instants of climax. And Graves took him without a remark, just keeping him down to prevent any damage. He spilled into that sweet warmth, bucking weakly though it was repressed.

 

For some time, it was just him trying to regain his breath and composure, still very impacted by Graves’s attention. Would have prefered him to fuck me…

With his mind cleared a little, Twisted Fate rose and crawled to the latter, ready to offer relief in return. So fuzzy feeling right now, so pleased to be in this comfortable bubble.

 

Graves stopped him before he could press a soft kiss to his lips : « I gave you what you asked. Now get out. »

Chapter Text

No, please…

 

Another stab. It became far too frequent these days, each time a new reason for Twisted Fate to feel hurt.

Completely frozen on the spot, Graves’s hand against his shoulder to keep him away.

 

I have…to go ?

 

« What ? » More than confused, voice cracking just a little after the intensity of climax not so long ago.

 

« You’re getting deaf. » The man sounded tired, making sure to articulate the message. « You got what you wanted so leave. No reason to stay. » And pushed him a little, showing the intent.

 

Speechless. Twisted Fate was at loss, no words able to describe that unbearable feeling tearing his heart. So much cold, a shudder down his frame.

 

But I don’t want to leave… Horrible, Graves had a point yet he wanted to stay here. Why ? He got his relief, why did it hurt to have to go ? There was no logic here.

 

« But… » He couldn’t manage a proper reason, any argument.

 

« Tobias. Just go. »

 

A punch to the gut would have been less painful. How… ? For once his name was spoken it was against him. Despite himself, Twisted Fate couldn’t pretend there was no problem, composure gone for a while. There, sting of tears in his eyes. No, not now. Not for this.

To prevent any damage to his reputation, keep a façade, he just got out of bed and looked blindly for his clothes.

 

Not a word spoken, too busy ignoring the large wound to his heart. The only noise was when Graves moved on his bed, getting back to sleep without a doubt and attention to the cardmaster. It bled a little more, urging him to go away. Quite straining, it was too soon after some heated action, really sore. Don’t break, don’t break.

 

And most important, don’t look back.

 

~

 

This had been a hell of a night. Even considering the pleasure taken, it didn’t balance at all how bad Twisted Fate felt afterward. Needless to say sleep was a liberation though it took its time to come. In his bed, holding himself to soothe the pain. And always that confusion, as he tried to find reasons.

 

When morning came, the light on the matter didn’t change. It felt like a betrayal though there was no valid reason to it.

 

Why, why, why ?

 

Graves was right, he gave him what he asked. Why didn’t it feel right ? It wasn’t enough ? What he thought he needed was a lie or maybe he had been wrong all this time. Sexual satisfaction didn’t left him at peace.

And why did it matter so much ? Before in his routine he left in the night, just like that. Why was it different ?

 

It became clear that it was about Graves and how he kinda kicked him out. All this time Twisted Fate feared the refusal, the moment the latter would say no and let him on his own. It didn’t happen quite like he expected but it hurt like a bitch anyway.

 

There was too much questions and nothing to answer it. He could only blame himself, for making everything difficult, trying to understand things beyond him. Sometimes it was easier to read Graves’s emotions right on his face than delving in his own feelings, to make some sense. A pure mess.

 

Why does all come back to him ? Why can’t I just go see someone else ? It was exhausting, bordering madness.

 

And during the day there was still this sort of gap between them. Twisted Fate hated it slowly but surely. The concept of distance between him and Graves, not even that big but the impact on his thoughts was certain.

He always took a bit of consideration for his partner’s feelings, what he might think or say. But righ now he was pretty sure they were coming apart. Not necessarely cold, his damned usual self. Or maybe he hadn’t been really paying attention all this time.

 

Little by little, Twisted Fate caught himself leaning into the man, in several occasions. Unconciously closing distance, staying near. When he realized that he stopped at once. But it seemed easy just to linger a second longer, brush faintly.

Not taking in count the scent. One time he stopped a little too long to appreciate it and nearly got found out.

 

Twisted Fate couldn’t explain all this, why he felt the urge to stay closer. It was rather easy, as partners they rarely left each other alone but it was at the limit of incorrect. Was it because of the night, when he was told to leave ?

 

Why all this happen to me ?

 

For a man living on his luck, it seemed to have abandonned him for a while. This whole situation was so difficult, it involved too much Graves in his life. Yet it was the principle of partnership. Or maybe not, it was also his fault for asking to be fucked during the rut.

No control over his emotions, his few motivated actions.

 

~

 

It drove him crazy, to see things getting out of control like that. Not even sure what he needed, what his body required. Anyone wasn’t good enough anymore but having sex with Graves wasn’t neither.

 

Twisted Fate couldn’t even wait, he came back to the other man’s room on the following night. Not sure if this time it was carnal desire that led him to Graves or something else. The need to be held.

Why do I keep trying ? He’s gonna throw me out once more. But the night made him restless, far too aware of his loneliness.

 

Innerly he hoped that Graves wouldn’t fight back like the latest time, he would be no match. Exactly the same moves, clothes left not far. Wonder why, because he wasn’t really sure he wanted to fuck. A bit too scared but drawn to his partner anyway. When did the general mood change to this ?

 

This night, the latter didn’t stir when he climbed in bed, straddled him and hovered near. Wished it was always that easy.

 

It was time. Twisted Fate brought a hand to entwine with his partner, red coming to his cheek when that gesture was returned. He questionned how soothing it felt, to be able to hold someone. Then he leaned down to kiss Graves, something tender.

 

There came the waking, the latter stiffened under him. The kiss was broken to let him breathe.

 

« Fuck you. » Only reaction after a few seconds.

 

Ah really ? It put him at ease to hear Graves curse, as strange as it sounded. Didn’t seem too mad at him.

 

A deep sigh from beneath, surely every time he forgot Twisted Fate refused to talk. In the beginning. Silence except some curious noise not far.

 

Then piercing light in the room. He shielded himself on reflex, a bit too confused. During that short time of recovery, Graves moved off him to sit up on the mattress, facing him.

Even once he got rather used to the luminosity, Twisted Fate cast his gaze away from the man. Reminded why each time he chose the darkness, for the safety. Now he was in the open, for Graves to see. It hit him to remember he was actually naked, on top of the man.

 

« Why are you here ? It’s not even in your routine. » Not a hint of anger or bitterness, just tired confusion. « Hey, look at me. »

 

Strange, how in presence of his partner any power of rhetoric and ways with langage left him. Nothing to describe that feeling in his chest, vibrant, ready to burst now that they were close.

The least he could do was to return the gaze though he struggled a little.

 

Indeed, in Graves’s expression there was no real threat, just an exhausted man, woken up too early for him.

 

« Again, what are you doing here ? I guess you want to fuck ? »

 

Just hearing him say it sparked arousal in him, just enough for now. Twisted Fate nodded.

 

Another sigh, a bit longer : « It’s so damn early…Why do you even come to bother me ? »

 

It gave Twisted Fate some regrets to hear the latter’s state. Indeed it wasn’t really nice to wake him up but it wasn’t the first time.

 

« I need… » Why was his voice coming out strangled, weakened ?

 

« Then go outside, find yourself some sweet guy for the night. Or even this alpha that got you all marked up. I shouldn’t be the one explaining you how to get laid. »

 

« No, I need you. » Said in a breath yet the words felt heavy. It held too much meaning for his taste.

 

« Why me ? »

 

« I… I don’t know. »

 

« Of course you know. Or you wouldn’t be making so much effort to bother me late. Is that in exchange of the rut ? »

 

« What ? No. »

 

« Then give a reason. Why does it have to be me ? Please just…stop playing with me. »

 

« But I am not playing. »

 

Quiet conversation but Twisted Fate felt panick at the corner, not yet but near. This was bordering topics he didn’t really like. Nothing better to kill a sexy mood.

 

« You are. Telling me to keep my hands for myself but then you come in my own bed to fuck. And following me all day. You think I haven’t noticed ? »

 

Oh shit.

 

« It’s not intentional. Please, I don’t want to talk about that. »

 

« I’m not dropping it till you give a proper reason for all this shit show. I’m just trying to do my best but you keep pushing. Or I will just drag you back to your room. Choice’s yours. »

 

« No ! » Twisted Fate couldn’t help that outburst, not able to take another blow so soon. « I-I have no idea why, stop asking. » Left bare, nothing to hide. He wasn’t ready to let everything to see. « It doesn’t make sense, why I have to come back to you. No logic, nothing. I just…need. »

 

Words ripped from his chest, it hurt a lot. Too personal to be said out loud, even less when under plain light.

 

Silence came back as Graves seemed to contemplate that last answer. Then he brought a hand to Twisted Fate, resting against his chest, over the heart.

 

« So you really have no idea why. »

 

Was he getting crazy ? His heartbeat went wild, more than it already was. Twisted Fate started to panick, getting flustered. No no no, keep it down. Shook his head at the negative.

 

« Not at all? » Nothing to deduce in Graves's tone, a hint of curiosity maybe. « You feel like you have to bother me everytime, you wait for the cuddles after sex, you…take any occasion to lean closer. Sure you have no idea ? »

 

For once Graves sounded like he knew more, could guess his thoughts.

 

« Please it’s not because of my heat. Nothing to do with my condition. »

 

A rumbling chuckle answered this attempt at justification : « I wasn’t suggesting that. I have another idea. »

 

« What— ? »

 

About to ask but Graves’s move literally shut him up. A kiss, pressed to his lips with as much gentleness the latter was able to show. A kiss and Twisted Fate just froze for it was so different of the many they already shared before. Mind gone, opening up to his partner without any question, too shaken for it.

He could feel a rough hand craddling his cheek though care wasn’t something Graves was known for. Just tried and it went well.

 

AH ?

 

When they parted Twisted Fate couldn’t yet form a proper thought, hands urging the latter to stay close. His mind was a mess.

 

Graves kept eye contact and without a doubt he saw him blush fiercely. Himself looked a bit touched by that too but fairly calmer than Twisted Fate.

 

What was that ?? He didn’t understand that panick, they already kissed several times before. Why was this time different ?

 

« You’re fucking dense, ya know ? » Graves paused then resumed, hand still pressed to the latter’s chest. « I think…that you love me. Just like I love you. »

 

No, he didn’t want to acknowledge this. Twisted Fate felt it but refused to name that. It can’t be. Sour taste coming up, some fear too now that everything seemed so clear.

 

« No no no, that’s not true. It can’t possibly be true. You know nothing about this. »

 

« Hey, a bit of consideration for my own feelings, thank you. Also, I can be wrong about you but I’m pretty sure you’ve just been pinning for a while. »

 

« No I’m not ! » That was it, the loss of control. No more composure in this hard talk. At the same time he registered Graves’s feelings, a lot of fuzzy butterflies in his chest but also a searing fear, of his own reality.

 

What’s wrong with me ?

 

« Calm down, don’t yell. It’s fine. »

 

« It’s not fine ! This is wrong, can’t possibly be…love. » That last word was so difficult to say, it stung.

 

« I’m not lying on things like that. Why does it scare you so much ? »

 

« Because it means nothing ! » Twisted Fate went quiet just after that, realizing how loud it came out. « You talk about love but you’ll leave me anyway. Everyone does. »

 

And now the breaking. Words so raw, straight from his heart it, it cost him so much just to voice that pain. His vision blurred a little, result of tears. But he was too tired to hide it, hold it back.

 

« Woah wait ! The fuck ?? It’s O.K, don’t worry. » All in sudden panick, Graves took him in his arms, hand restless in the latter’s hair. « You got a lot to unpack, huh ? Stop fighting back, I’m not letting you go. »

 

So Twisted Fate surrended to the contact and pressed closer to the other man. The scent itself was comforting, it surprised him to feel so peaceful once in Graves’s arms. The latter was so awkward at trying to soothe him but it turned sweet. He didn’t know what else to think of that.

 

« Ya think I’m gonna what ? Abandon you ? I don’t know yet, if you keep bothering me in my sleep maybe I’ll think about it. » Even as he knew Graves was joking, he tensed a little, batting away some bad memories. « For real, I don’t do that. Prefer to have a real talk than running away without a word. »

 

Then there was no more words. Twisted Fate had nothing more to say, worry and fears shut down for now. All this let him time to consider Graves’s confession. He loves me… ? He was truly tempted to believe him, just trust one person. The fact that they were already partners made it easier. But that certain safety was beyond this, a deeper attraction.

 

Do I…return it ?

 

It may be true but Twisted Fate wasn’t ready to admit it yet.

 

After some quiet time, Graves spoke up : « Do you want something tonight ? You came all this way for my cock, no ? » Yes he sounded a bit smug but there was also this rare care too.

 

« No, I don’t need. » Though he still wanted something else. « Malcolm, can I stay the night ? »

 

« Yeah, yeah. It’s no problem. Come here. »

 

They lied down, making themselves comfortable under the blanket. Twisted Fate still felt somehow held back but he gave in and went to cuddle with the latter.

 

His thoughts were still scattered but at least he found some peace as sleep claimed them both. Just registered the strong arm keeping him pressed to Graves, to be held again.

 

Love ?

Chapter Text

This was a hell of a development. A lot happened in a short span of time, from Twisted Fate’s heat to the latest breaking in the sheets. So to say, Graves still had some difficulties to process it, for the impact on both their lives.

 

Here he was, in bed, quietly dozing with his partner. In itself it wasn’t new, they had done it before, to literally sleep together. Fine, once it was an accident, Twisted Fate was too drunk to remember leaving before morning.

The magic in the situation is that this time, it wasn’t a mistake. The latter stayed willingly.

 

Why isn’t he up yet ? Usually Twisted Fate was the first awake and first ready to go. So it left him wondering why he was still sleeping. The possibility that all this time he woke up earlier on purpose. Whatever. It didn’t matter, right now his partner was snuggled up to him in peace.

 

No sleep for Graves though, he couldn’t find it again. But he still lied down in the embrace, holding the man close.

 

Really, how things could quickly happen, it left him both amazed and scared. A few days ago he was still questionning this peculiar attraction to Twisted Fate, why it bothered him and not so much to be his source of relief. Yes it was shitty to be used like this but it still gave him a rare glimpse of the man beneath the mask. But it hurt too.

His partner would come back every two night, take what he needed – what Graves couldn’t refuse – and leave later on. This changed after Twisted Fate’s heat and his return, the confrontation. There it was clear that the latter didn’t want him but later he came back anyway.

 

Or the man was an hypocrite or he wasn’t himself aware of the matter. It made Graves very tired of all this. He tried his best, prevent upsetting Twisted Fate but on the end he was still used. For knowing now that he was indeed jealous of another guy that managed to see his partner so low, he grew restless about it. About feelings. Graves knew he wouldn’t feel such envy for no reason. Plus how much the latter meant to him. There was just a step to cross, acknowledging this.

He enjoyed their nights but having to give while receiving so little was harsh. This had to stop or it would drain little by little this start of affection toward the other man. So he would just smother it and move on. Because in no way he would get hopes for something equally returned.

 

The night Twisted Fate gave in and joined him, even when he wasn’t supposed to, it changed his opinion. Even if in the end he still ordered the man to get out – against what himself wanted. He learned some interesting things. Twisted Fate wanted to stay, even after he was given what he asked. In this precise case, some crude relief. Graves was rather puzzled, what else could the latter want from him ? Want to annoy me as much as he can ?

His heart ached, to see his partner losing his composure, confused. He didn’t want to go. But he made him anyway. Couldn’t bear more psychological torture, to see this man he liked asking for more when himself would be too ready to give. A limit was needed or there would be nothing left in the end.

 

Not my business. As he waited for sleep to take him to a new day, soothe the pain. Almost regretted having these feelings for Twisted Fate, it made his life a bit harder. Would make a joke about how it felt to have fallen for the worst one.

 

In any case, Graves found all this suspicious. He wondered how Twisted Fate considered this whole mess that was their relationship, as partners and not so official fuckbuddies. Bastard. But there was so little he could guess, the latter was pretty skilled at hidding his emotions.

Not so much recently. At night he seemed more vulnerable. His actions made less sense, coming back while he was told not to. Twisted Fate said he needed something but refused to go search outside. Kept bothering Graves, even when he made it clear he wouldn’t give anymore.

 

Then he refused to leave after sex. This was the detail that made Graves reconsider the situation. What if ? The man had some serious problems. And he would start to think about a specific reason. Well, maybe.

 

As to confirm a little what he thought, Twisted Fate grew…clingy. Like even during day time. Despite the coldness when their ways parted at night, the distance was reduced. Graves did notice, casual touches, lingering a little before it would get too obvious. But no words from the latter. It nearly broke his resolve to prevent anything with his partner

 

Maybe it would be worth a shot. Graves wasn’t one to stay quiet too long. And if there was even the slightest opportunity to have something with the other man, he would seize it.

 

Or he would be wrong on all the line.

 

Of course he wasn’t ready for Twisted Fate to barge into his room once more, out of his habit. Told how much things were wrong.

It got him a little defensive, too exhausted for this shit. Since they were breaking some rules, could at least make himself at ease. It was really changing to have some light, to see Twisted Fate in this peculiar setting.

 

And everything went down. Not once Graves would have expected that. To see so much panick from this man, on a topic too sensitive. He really didn’t know why. It sounded strange yet it could be possible. Twisted Fate didn’t seem the type to run long love stories, this was maybe too far of his comfort zone.

The confession escaped him so easily, in a way it helped in establishing his hypothesis. But it was true, at least for his part.

In the end it resulted in tears. That was definitely the last thing he wanted to see from Twisted Fate. It didn’t look normal at all. Should never happen. To have this man relying on control overwhelmed to such point.

 

Twisted Fate didn’t confirm. Nor said no anyway. But from what he expressed in his stance and body langage, there was some reciprocation. Wouldn’t have asked to stay the night if he didn’t want to.

 

So Graves let him do, rather happy to keep him there. Even now, delving in latest memories, it stung to hear the latter’s emotions. Twisted Fate talked about leaving him.

He considered this quietly, careful hand over his partner, carressing his hair. Someone hurt him before. Graves seriously wanted just to punch that person. The fear of being rejected could do so much damages, he would have to deal with that. It also explained how clingy Twisted Fate was, seeking contact.

 

He trusts no one. But got so confused because he actually likes me. Fine, maybe it was love, maybe it was something else. Graves would wait for him to confirm. But there was some high chances that they really loved each other in the same way. I hope.

 

Ugh, I need to smoke. Yet he wouldn’t move from this, it was quite enjoyable to cuddle with Twisted Fate. There was nothing to fear for now.

 

~

 

Waking up rarely felt this good. Twisted Fate didn’t really know why but he felt at peace like that. Then he registered the contact with a warm body, sturdy frame pressed to him. Oh.

 

Memories of the night, all went back. Part of him shattered thinking again about his deepest fears but another joyful part took over. Graves. He loves me. Once more his heart jumped. Wait wait wait, calm down. He didn’t know why he felt the urge to repress that, like it wouldn’t last. Both really scared and extremely glad to have this at least. Safety.

 

Twisted Fate hadn’t made a move yet that betrayed his waking, face resting against the latter’s chest. He allowed himself to relish the instant, the scent, the presence. Everything was fine.

At the same time, he didn’t know what to do. Graves had confessed. But himself was too lost in his feelings to be sure. What would be alright ?

Of course he wanted things but couldn’t tell exactly what.

 

I’m overthinking…

 

Against him, Graves shifted a little and a yawn was heard. Ah he’s awake. He didn’t know what to do so he would follow what seemed right.

Rose a little, enough to meet the latter’s gaze. Then he was stuck there. No idea why he stopped but he couldn’t do more. It was strange, really, how Graves looked at him. Like affection, almost concealed. His heartbeat went a little faster.

 

« Hey. Slept well ? »

 

Words abandonned him once more. Twisted Fate just stared back at him, feeling that shudder under his skin. Just wanted. No idea exactly what but he wanted.

His hands flew to either side of Graves’s face and pulled him into a kiss. This seemed the right thing to do, urge sated a little. Kissed him deep, pouring maybe a bit too much of himself in it, of his emotions.

The latter returned it as quick, large hand resting on the back of his head.

 

So breathless, perfect. Like he would never let go.

Chapter Text

Truly exhilarating to be able to kiss someone like that. Knowing that these feelings – whatever their kind – were returned. Twisted Fate didn’t want to let go. Just stay here forever, strong arms holding him tight, hungry mouth responding in the exchange.

Kissing in itself was already something he appreciated but he couldn’t really know how good it was at communicating attraction. Yes, he had something for Graves. Would never be ready to voice it without his voice breaking but it was here.

 

Little by little, the making out had the latter to completely lie back on the mattress, Twisted Fate pushing him without even meaning to. He ended up crawling on top of Graves, covering him with his body, enjoying the closeness.

Till oxygen lacked and they needed to breathe again.

 

So they parted, gazing back at each other in this short distance. Twisted Fate kept his hands around the man’s face, thumb brushing gently his cheek. Didn’t know why but the sight was both alluring and so so soothing. Feelings bubbled up in his chest, an urge to avert his gaze for getting so emotional but he resisted and stood Graves’s gaze.

It was nice, to feel important to someone. He prefered not to question too much the extent of the love given but enjoyed each drop.

 

« You missed your early waking. » For this was still morning, Graves’s voice was still heavy with sleep, so low and deep.

 

« What, already tired of me ? Shall I leave ? » Slightest tease in return though Twisted Fate refused to break the spell.

 

« Of course no. Just, usually you get up much earlier. But I like keeping you here. »

 

« Really ? How sweet. Mmmh indeed I’m a bit late but I wanted to stay. » Tried not to show how true it was, vulnerable. A part of him wasn’t keen on telling too much.

 

« You’re free to do whatever you like. »

 

They lied here, Twisted Fate sprawled on top of him though there was no complain yet. He even relaxed further when warm hands trailed lower, one settling in the small of his back and the other against his thigh. Just contact, nothing more. It was strange to discover this intimacy, different from the sexual one when they had sex before. Now there was no real intent except feel the other. Make sure Graves was really here, under his grasp. This need for comfort wasn’t new but the gods knew how much it was bothering sometimes.

 

« Tell me, are you comfortable with what we’re doing now ? » This sounded a bit out of the blue but Graves always took care of topics before it could become a matter.

 

It left Twisted Fate without words for a time, searching for an answer. In this domain he would never be really sure of what himself wanted. Could just trust his heart.

 

« Yes. I know I have been a jerk at bothering you at night but…would it be fine if I joined you for the night ? » He hoped, maybe Graves was getting tired of all his crap.

 

« Twistes Fate ? Admitting his faults ? I must be hallucinating. »

 

Two could play on sass and irony, it was so easy to bicker when the mood was light. Also it made Twisted Fate at ease, there was no real change from their partnership.

 

« Don’t get used to it. »

 

« Wouldn’t dream about it. » He laughed before turning a little more serious. « Honestly ? We can sleep together, I’d prefer that than having a heart attack around 2 am because you can’t decide where to sleep. »

 

« I already apologized ! And thank you, for letting me stay. It means a lot. »

 

Upon hearing that Graves paused his small ministrations, gazing back at him with unreadable expression. Then his hand went to Twisted Fate’s hair, gentle gesture.

 

« You’re really warming up, kinda cute. Never heard you so emotional. »

 

At that Twisted Fate tensed a little, fear flashing in his mind before he shut it as quick. No reason to feel bad right now, everything was getting better.

 

« Aye, exactly like that. Geez, calm down, it’s not a remark. » Maybe the latter sensed this spike of anxiety so he ruffled his hair with vigor, to bring some comfort in his own way.

 

« Ehhh, stop this. It’s already a mess. »

 

« It’s just, I like it. Seeing you like you really are. Not that shitty poker face of yours. »

 

Oh.

 

« Did you mean to say excellent poker face ? You’re just pissed because you lose everytime. » Here, payback. But the topic remained sensitive, his voice lowered to a whisper : « You weren’t meant to see that. But seems that you know some things about me that I don’t know myself. »

 

« Don’t hide from me. Please. »

 

This came out rather sweet and needy, making Twisted Fate’s heart flutter. This was exactly how Graves managed to break past his mask, to reach for him without even trying to. But it didn’t hurt too much to reveal himself right now. Safety.

 

« I’ll try not to. »

 

Then they kissed fervently, hands flying to paw at each other. Funny, to be equally touched by words. Graves took over the kiss and so he didn’t try to resist him, letting go. Surrending to these eager hands roaming his skin. So he rocked down on him, spurred by the sudden affection.

 

It was quite different from the other times, more emotionally invested. Twisted Fate purred of delight when it was clear the latter got on the plan too, unmistakable hardness under him. No space between their bodies, grinding at a slow pace to fully relish the instant.

 

« Malcolm, I need you. Now. » Just for the show, make the man as aroused than him.

 

Between them, the glide was plainly crude and satisfying, eased by precum. A few breathy noises escaped him but he didn’t care now. This was too good and no more reason to worry.

Graves's reaction arrived, large hand on his rear, coaxing him harder into the pace. He could feel him everywhere, possessive hands over him, sloppy pecks pressed to his cheek, rubbing against him as they seeked friction.

Could go on for hours maybe, losing themselves little by little in the ardent contact.

 

« Okay, ready for the real deal ? » A hint of laugh in it, it just made Twisted Fate more needy.

 

« Start instead of talking. » Rile him up, let him go wild.

 

No rest, Graves swapped their positions to pin him down, though making sure to reduce any contact beyond necessary. « You better enjoy it too, before you can’t form a proper sentence anymore. »

As he spoke, his hand travelled lower, probbing at Twisted Fate’s rim and acknowledging the present slick.

 

« Is that a promise ? » Just to keep going. Then indeed Graves shut him up, going directly for two fingers working his insides.

 

A bit of tensing then he relaxed, enjoying some attention at last. Each time the latter made sure to prepare him and it made his heart ache to feel that peculiar concern. Some people didn’t even give that a thought, going for the fucking without preamble. So Twisted Fate was thankful, although the teasing was driving him mad everytime. Staying quiet was difficult too, when Graves made sure to stretch him good, scissoring, pressing deeper. In no time he was clutching the sheets, moaning softly a name over and over.

 

« Not so talkative now. Feels good ? » Yeah, the man was proud of himself, how he brought Twisted Fate to a needy mess with a lot of dedication.

 

« F-Fuck me already…. » Difficult indeed, rational thoughts running away. Each time Graves aimed for his sweet spot, he lost a little more his control. Soon he would be able to do nothing except holding him till climax.

 

« Mmmmh yer lucky I don’t feel like making you beg. Maybe another time. »

 

The moment that hand was taken out of him, he mourned the emptiness even if it was to receive something better. Impatient, Twisted Fate wrapped his legs around the latter, forcing him to get closer, give it. As to answer these voiceless pleas, Graves rested a hand over his chest, soothing touch to distract shortly. Then he felt the other man’s cock nudging him, pushing inside just enough for the head.

 

« Move, damn you… » So little reservations, not when he was already so close to the end.

 

Graves at last rocked inside, hilting himself in. A lot for Twisted Fate’s thin patience but himself was brought closer by that welcoming heat around his cock. Sure gave a kick to his arousal to hear the latter’s moans, tiny noises ripped off him at each thrust. By now he just held Graves tightly, nuzzling his neck for the gentle comfort provided by the scent. Never let go, always rocking back to meet him half-way.

Sometimes Twisted Fate lied down completely while keeping his grasp. This way he could enjoy the sight, things that he forbid himself in all these late nights. Before safety had a price, not being to watch Graves taking pleasure of his body. He’s hot… From under, he could appreciate many details, as long as his mind could focus. The latter’s face wasn’t as closed, cold than usual, some color getting to his cheeks too.

What truly made Twisted Fate weak was when the man glanced down, their gazes meeting. A rare kind of wonder, care left to be seen, before a more vigorous thrust sent rocked him on the mattress. A keen not even muffled, from the suddenness.

 

« Ahhh— ! Am…close…really close... » It turned into a sob, to his inner embarrassment

 

So shaken, moved to his core by that crude display of affection. He didn’t want it too stop but he was so close to the edge. And Graves decided to bring him to it by himself, jerking him off with quick strokes. Another desperate noise escaped him.

 

« Come, Tobias. You’ve been so good for me…. » Voice slightly slurred, Graves wasn’t far behind.

 

Always a small shock to hear his given name, something so intimate he wanted to cry and curl against the latter. But climax arrived before that, electrifying feeling up his spine, stars dancing in his vision till he gave all he could. Graves kept pounding into him even as he calmed down, bliss turning everything into pleasure. Could feel his end coming too, how unconciously he grabbed Twisted Fate closer to him. Till he wasn’t even thinking anymore.

Then everything crashed down, tension and release washing over them. All he could feel was the latter holding his hips to keep him in place as he knotted him, earning a whimper at the occasion. Graves joined him in this soft haze, panting heavily against his shoulder. He gave him peace, the after glow leaving a pleasant memory.

 

Then he slumped to Twisted Fate’s side, seeming still very affected by their orgasm. Turned a little his head, their gazes locked. Urge to reach for him, he brought a hand to Graves’s cheek, shy carress. Good ? A silent ask.

 

A need came up too, shiver just at the idea of asking. « Malcolm ? » Emotions meddled in his voice, making it a little harder.

 

« Yeah ? » He got Graves’s attention, the tone must have alerted him.

 

« Can you…call me that again ? » Hated how it sounded trembling but he wanted this. A lot.

 

« Tobias ? Sure. » While he answered, Twisted Fate took the latter’s hand to his own face, nuzzling the palm. Graves let him do, sharp intake of breath at the gesture. « Didn’t you say you gave your name to people you fuck ? Must not be so rare for you to be called. »

 

He still could keep eye contact with Graves but he prefered to avert his gaze : « I don’t see them again. So I never get called this way. »

 

Graves let him do with his hand, taking the occasion to stroke his face gently. Said nothing then spoke up again : « You like it ? »

 

« Yes…It’s a part of me. Even if for a time I came to despise it. »

 

« Can ask why ? »

 

No, it hurts. Still felt a bit hollow even after almost a decade. It wouldn’t go so easily.

 

« Family business. Can’t say more. »

 

« Fine. »

 

Twisted Fate wanted to cuddle, this wasn’t the happiest topic of all. Distance was closed, very glad to see Graves opening his arms to welcome him.

 

« ‘Kay. Guess I’ll call you that more often. »

 

Burried his face in the latter’s chest, too much emotions at once. « Thanks. »

 

« No problem. Love ya, Tobias. »

 

Though he made a little effort at sounding casual, not really concerned, Twisted Fate felt the sincerity. Made his heart beat fast, just like Graves’s, right when he could feel it.

Chapter Text

So things were going for the better. Graves himself hadn’t been betting on something of the sort to happen yet here they were, having a goddamn pillow talk. Wow, can’t believe it. There had always been something with Twisted Fate, from his own confusion to their angry clash. But now they came to an understanding, whatever the clauses.

 

Even as they were back to peace his thoughts rummaged the latest statements. To see Twisted Fate cry was really difficult to believe. Made him more human, like anyone. His own heart ached at the memory, there was many things he didn’t know about the latter. Past, childhood, all that stuff. From what Graves heard, it didn’t seem to have been happy. Mmmh family drama, I guess. Could only share his compassion on this topic, this was something in common.

 

 

Really, it was peculiar to hear his partner so honest, genuine. At least it sounded like it. Twisted Fate was known to lie as he breathed but right then it seemed heartfelt, true. Graves wanted to trust him, with all his heart. It wasn’t easy to give his trust but from the start he knew how the latter tended to hide every little things about himself.

Not the reason he fell for him but he hoped he came to a point where detecting Twisted Fate’s bullshit was easier.

 

Tobias… It was true he didn’t pay this enough attention. Why the man hid his identity wasn’t a matter, who is he to judge ? But to discover how much it meant to him, it was both sweet and sad. Something Twisted Fate kept for himself and gave only to a few people. In a way, Graves felt privileged, surprised how deep it touched him to see the latter react when he called him with this name.

 

As they were still in bed, Graves held him closer at the thought. Twisted Fate was sometimes a little shit, but the gods knew how he grew fond of him. And he would do anything for him right now.

Though a reaction came from the latter, tightening the embrace even more if that was possible. Complete silence, still a bit embarrassed to show so much care for each other.

 

There was no need for words when actions were enough.

 

~

 

It wouldn’t be fair to say everything changed. Of course, there was whole new perspective, another explaination for each single touch. The intent now was clear.

But it surprised Twisted Fate to see no much drastic changes. They were still partners, they still worked well together. They still annoyed each other and after that night it sounded too much like an old couple. Fuck.

 

Something was to come but Twisted Fate didn’t want it. The panick, slow fear paralysing his body. He knew it would happen sooner or later but it hadn’t yet. Scared of a potential backlash, that this wasn’t what he wanted. That it wasn’t meant for him.

But for now everything was fine. It almost gave him a feeling of safety, something so rare. Graves said nothing on the topic since that night, didn’t ask him if he loved him too, didn’t press too much in sensitive questions.

 

That didn’t mean the latter was idle. He just let Twisted Fate come to him by himself. To see that small distance of security offered just in case, it was far too generous to what he expected.

In public Graves didn’t reach for him but let him take the first step if he wished. On the other hand, once it was late and they went to sleep, he was sure to be quickly grabbed and hugged in the privacy of the room.

 

Because yes, from that moment, they decided to get only one room. Why would they take two separate ones, if Twisted Fate was going to join him anyway ? Practical and cheaper.

 

Cute, to see Graves so careful around him though it wasn’t what he was best at. It also made Twisted Fate more at ease, seeing he wouldn’t be threatened by the latter. He trusted him and in return he was trusted back.

 

The dynamic didn’t change though but now he new he could fully count on Graves to have his back. When playing cards and doing some bets, it happened that few guys got angry at him – for obvious reasons – and it was part of the thrill. In these occasions, Twisted Fate would just feel the latter’s hands resting on his shoulders, squeezing lightly as he clearly indicated he wouldn’t mind a fistfight. Of course as mighty as these poor guys felt, Graves could look very intimidating if he wanted and sent them away just with a glare.

Maybe afterward he complained about Twisted Fate needing his help again but all this was bluff. Both enjoyed having his integrity respected. And he would add that he was far too handsome to be into troubles anyway.

 

Time passed and little by little the fear faded. There was no risk coming from Graves. They slept together and it was all he wanted, the best thing in the world after sex. To hear the latter snoring lightly sometimes was supposed to be bothering but in the end Twisted Fate couldn’t complain. It was a reminder he wasn’t alone, he had someone holding him tight even in the darkest hours.

Fine, once he kicked Graves out of the bed in their sleep and the man hadn’t stop talking about it since. Never meant to do that but fighting over useless matters was fun for both of them.

 

The thing about affection was that neither minded it. Leaned into each other, though Graves was the one with some reservations to let him breathe. So Twisted Fate obliged with as much enthusiasm, letting hands linger longer than necessary. Steal a kiss from time to time, rest against the man when they had some time to wait. Graves let him do, never said no. Strangely, it was in these soft occasions that the latter stopped to grumble after him, not to break it.

 

~

 

There was still one thing not to forget. And Twisted Fate nearly did.

One day, biology caught up and Graves’s rut happened. This wasn’t very often, at best twice a year but he never really took care of planning this.

 

It just happened, like many things in their lifes. The worse side, it was Twisted Fate who picked that first. They were happily spending the evening at a bar when he caught a taste of his scent.

 

No really ?

 

« Malcolm ? » Did his best to sound normal, not too alerted. This wasn’t the right place for this.

 

« Yeah ? » The man didn’t seem aware of it yet, just quietly enjoying their time together and his drink.

 

« When is your rut coming ? »

 

« Dunno when. » Graves paused, quick glance to the other man. « Ah shit, last one was long ago. You think it’s soon ? »

 

There was a lot happening at once, Twisted Fate couldn’t resist much the sudden urge to sit on the latter’s lap, seek the scent. It was already getting to him. Oh please I’m not desperate to fuck.

 

With a lot of control over his voice and body, he tried to make Graves understand the situation : « I think it’s already there. Please pay attention. »

 

« What ?? But I would have— » Something like a shudder took the latter, interrupting him. Once it was calmed down he gazed urgently at Twisted Fate : « Okay okay, yeah maybe. We should go, fast. »

 

No need to tell him twice, he stood up and went out with Graves, growing restless. On their way back to their place, the latter looked still very lucid but a bit antsy. To be sure he wouldn’t do something stupid and to soothe him, Twisted Fate held his arm all this time.

 

Quicks steps led them to their room, barging in then locking it with haste. After looking for some light, he noticed how Graves was more flushed, trying to busy himself but there was nothing to do right now except feel the tempest coming. He sat at the end of the bed and started taking off his clothes, boots.

 

It was really something to witness, how his partner looked greatly affected yet hadn’t made a move toward him. This must be so bothering. Twisted Fate wanted to help. In the man’s interest and for his own too, this reminded so much of their first night.

A bit curious to see if Graves wouldn’t ask for anything or if at some point he would break and make a request. Very tempting but Twisted Fate himself was getting more aroused by the sight, the scent. In such closed, small room, to confine someone in rut made the air like saturated, impossible to miss.

 

So intoxicating, to have such power over his partner. But he would do nothing of it, just craved to satisfy him. Having Graves in such vulnerable situation already was a prize in itself. So he did the same, undressed while he gazed at the man. Got a bit impatient, this wasn’t going fast enough. But Graves just watched him do, ardent eyes locked on him, wandering over revealed skin. Twisted Fate would make a show out of this if there wasn’t such urgency.

 

How alluring, to feel the latter’s gaze on him. Distance easy to close yet Graves hadn’t talked yet, nothing. By now completely naked, sitting at the end of the bed, hungry gaze on Twisted Fate. Would he beg ? In another time maybe. They would never know.

 

Twisted Fate couldn’t suppress his need any longer, stepped toward the latter, spread open his legs and sank to his knees. Of course at such non distance, he couldn’t avoid eyeing Graves’s cock, tip red and already some precum trailing down. He took hold of it, firm touch to relieve, thumb just on the underside. All this under the latter’s gaze, utterly moved and helpless. The first contact had him refrain a whimper.

 

« Need a hand ? » Hint of a smile, making eye contact to enjoy his reaction.

 

« Tobias, please… »

Chapter Text

Really interesting to see, Graves’s conflicted stance. Like, he leaned into the touch, body reacting to Twisted Fate’s ministrations, not even able to suppress this. But he hadn’t voiced it in any proper way. Just this, « please ». A bit surprising, when one knew him enough, for a man without care to express any complain or else.

It warmed Twisted Fate’s heart, to realize the latter kept his instinct low for his sake, prevent things from going too fast. Very changing, compared to his several experiences with alphas. Even not under rut, some could be awful and merely take what they needed. Right there he was the one in power to give relief and it made him shiver to know Graves gave control deliberately. No doubt he would be perfectly able to pick him up and drop him on the mattress, fuck him senseless.

 

But he doesn’t. This was exactly what Twisted Fate prefered, to be the one in position of power. Though he was well aware that later on he would be so sated, ready to pass out. Standing on a cliff and ready to jump. Air stifling, he wondered how he was still able to stay lucid. A real test. Everything from his own body to omega instinct screamed to let go, come closer, beg to be taken. Twisted Fate wouldn’t surrend to all these but sure he wanted to please.

 

Had he just his tongue over Graves’s heated skin, the man released another moan through clenched teeth. Not the first time he provided such direct attention, Twisted Fate was getting used to it. Just a exercise, take more of the latter, drag his tongue slowly to earn more praise. Always made some effort to keep this rather clean, stay careful but be damned his urges coaxed him to do more. Be filled, satisfy him, feel him jerking so shyly in the contact, almost on accident.

Graves didn’t have his hands on him, just kept it aside, tightening as reaction for the growing pressure.

 

A bit debauched, ashamed for the sight he must present but Twisted Fate couldn’t really care about this. The series of moans and other soft noises from above made it up for him. He won’t last long. Still impatient to see Graves go wild on him, fuck him in any senses.

 

Then a shaky hand came into his hair, pulling to make him part of this worship but not so strong. The grasp wasn’t meant to hurt, just push him away gently.

Twisted Fate complied, looking up to meet the latter’s gaze. There must have been a lot of arousal seeping in Graves’s blood, for how he lifted his chin to share a kiss. It stunned him, to be asked with such need. Could do nothing more than returning it, warm contact soon to become a fire.

 

Last time he was on the floor before the latter urged him on his lap, having him sit there and pressed to his body. Front to front, skin to skin and nothing to equal that shudder running his spine to such intimate situation. Graves’s hands were all over him, begging to rock back, chase relief.

 

« Can’t take more…Need you… »

 

Just like the first night. Twisted Fate couldn’t believe this hadn’t changed at all, how the man managed to look disheveled though worried. His mouth ran dry. All this was different. Already helped some alphas through a rut but this was amazing to share one with someone he trusted. Ruts and heats were said to be the best thing in the world, only when shared with one mate or close enough. It may be true. Beyond the simple need to satisfy, there was also this strange joy to bring more than just sexual relief.

 

When did it mean more ? He would never know but this slow change happened in any case. Maybe why he felt to compelled to satisfy this one alpha. Not anyone. His partner.

 

A particularly hard thrust made him moan too, Graves’s state growing on him. Soon he wouldn’t be able to think. But the latter still had some self-control, not yet getting on the proper fucking.

They moved at a hurried pace, grinding to each other and Twisted Fate relished how he was held. Could feel the latter so restless, grabbing him before letting go again, never found the best distraction.

 

« Prepare yourself, please… ? » Basically mumbled in his neck, breathy.

 

« I don’t need that, take me already. » Not as gone but their fall would be together.

 

« No. » This came out rather firm and direct compared to the whole struggling Graves was showing. « But please hurry… »

 

This was full of contradictions but Twisted Fate understood the man. He was being careful and prefered to do things one by one despite the rush.

 

« Fine. You're really letting me do all the work, how nice. » A small attempt at sass to distract the latter but he merely lowered his face, tightening the embrace around Twisted Fate.

 

Wow, okay. Better get moving.

 

In fact Twisted Fate wasn’t lying, he didn’t really need the thorough preparation. Just some light teasing, fingering himself to reassure the latter. In some occasion he came to brush that spot by accident and whimpered, only to increase Graves’s urgency. He was always reminded of the man’s state, their cocks trapped between them, precum making a mess of their stomachs but whatever.

 

« All good, hot shot. Do what you need. » There was that anticipation in the tone, thrilled to see the latter take him without ceremonies.

 

A deep growl and Graves slammed him down on his cock, just as what he expected. Twisted Fate knew it was coming, craved it even more and without a doubt his cry had been heard outside. So loud, for being filled efficiently in a second. And the latter barely left him any time to compose himself, ramming back inside in short, steady thrusts.

 

And it was visibly enough for one to join the edge. Twisted Fate almost missed it, but as the latter clung to him with a lot of his strenght, he realized. Hadn’t really expected an end so quick but who was he to judge ? Graves bucked inside, locking him into place as he spilled deep inside. Not a sound during all of it except when it was over, a whimper breaking free.

 

Already ? It seemed that his partner was closer than he thought but in case of rut, nothing was easy to plan. It just happened. Though already quite far, Twisted Fate hadn’t the occasion to come yet. So he waited patiently his turn, soothing the latter in this new silence. Sweet, to feel Graves holding him so close, like they would become one. The man wasn’t looking at him, nuzzling his neck quietly as the tension faded little by little.

 

Sure Twisted Fate wasn’t all so pleased with the interruption but he was hoping a lot for a returned favor. As long as the latter didn’t leave him too long.

 

« You had your fun but now it’s my turn. Help me… ? » Trying to sound helpless, urge Graves to move.

 

It worked, he pulled out with a small grunt but kept the same embrace. That was in this instant that Twisted Fate noticed the latter was still up for more, hard cock rubbing against him.

 

« Oh, you still want me ? » Prefered to be sure. His partner seemed rather calmer than minutes ago but if he needed more help, it would be better to provide.

 

« Always. » Soft word, next to his ear.

 

For a moment Twisted Fate froze, the implicit making him feel things again. It didn’t help that Graves left a trail of pecks down his neck, to his collarbone. Tried to relax under that overly private display of care, skin feeling like set on fire.

 

« Stop that ! You’re tickling me. » An excuse to put an end to this, still not used to this type of affection.

 

« Prefered when you sucked me, at least ya were silent… » Graves grumbled as he coaxed him to move further on the bed.

 

« You’re talking a lot for someone in rut. Come here and shut me up. »

 

As Twisted Fate crawled to the center of the mattress, the latter came over him and rolled him over. Not a single word but the short show of strenght got him weak in the knee. So here he was, lying down front to the bed and some light rutting to calm the need consuming him.

Then Graves was over him again, pushing him pressed to the mattress without a question. The rut was to blame here, for the rough edge becoming frequent. Twisted Fate didn’t mind, it was a real turn on. But he did yelp when the latter was back inside, sudden instrusion to be accepted in no time.

 

« Oh fuck— » Words slipped but he had to muffle part of his noises, it would become too much soon.

 

Graves held him down, pounding into him with new vigor, sharp and deep. After the pause for breath, this return was exhausting in the good sense. Twisted Fate was back to his previous state, arousal singing in all his reactions, squirming against the mattress. Gripping the sheets, unable to hold himself together in that incredible show of need. Rocked back, with that minimal leverage he had but Graves was doing most of the job.

 

« H-Harder ! Feel so good….So perfect…. » He ran his mouth, for the latter seemed too focused to even indulge his babbling. Innerly Twisted Fate wanted to drive him mad, take the alpha in all it meant. Rough, hard, fast.

 

A bit sad though, not being able to see Graves letting go. The man wasn’t very expressive right now, taking their pleasure at heart but he deeply relished the embrace.

Till he couldn’t think straight. Twisted Fate felt tears welling up, touched everywhere, so open for his partner. It burned, burned, burned.

 

« Malcolm…. » Last cry before it overcame his senses. Full body shiver as he tensed and his release stained the sheets. He choke a little during this, breath heavy while he struggled. Could feel Graves’s hand joining his on the mattress, laced together.

 

But it wasn’t over. He kept going, each thrust shaking Twisted Fate’s frame. Overstimulation came along bliss, discomfort for being still used after his own orgasm. Tears fell. A few sobs let out, hand coming to his mouth to stop it.

 

Graves stopped, surely alerted by the cries. No no no…

 

« Don’t stop ! I-It’s fine…keep going, keep going…. » Almost didn’t recognize his own voice, too impacted by their lovemaking and this not much end.

 

Twisted Fate wanted this done properly, so they would be both satisfied. Even if it meant enduring some pain. At least the latter complied and went back to that intense pace. It grew less even, somehow uncordinated as clue for his near end.

 

In his last instant, Graves held him to his body, a tight hug as he rocked him deeply. Pressure snapped, the knot took and Twisted Fate bit back a scream at the suddenness. There was still recomfort in this, how the latter clung to him dearly, a weak noise falling from his lips when climax hit him.

 

At last…

 

Now it was over, Twisted Fate could lie limp in bed without any pain. It left him warm to feel Graves on top of him, not having moved yet after the fun.

 

Though the latter took the initiative to move them both, lie on their side to cuddle. Just nice and soft, very good. Graves had his arms around him, murmuring a few words to him.

 

« Did very good. Perfect. Sorry for hurting ya but you took it so well. »

 

The sweetness wasn’t new but it left him all weird, face heating up despite the already hard activities. Even more when Graves’s hand came to his face, stroking gently were tears had trailed down.

 

It wasn’t bad at all. So touching, to receive this attention. As he expected, Twisted Fate felt sleep numbing his thoughts little by little. Just enough mind to whisper a few words back.

 

« Thank you. Liked it. »

 

~

 

Things kept happening, as it was never enough to bother them anyway. Maybe it was an hour later, maybe five. It didn’t matter, the result was the same.

Twisted Fate woke up in a jolt, feeling like someone just threw him a bucket of icy water.

 

Confusion was the first thing to come to his mind, looking around the dim room though he couldn’t see crap in here. Then realization. His heat had begun.

Chapter Text

No

 

Oh please no, I don’t need that now !

 

Shudder shaking his body like it was nothing. So so horrible, a wave of warmth rolling from the inside. Sweat over his skin, feverish. This sensation never felt good, the exact opposite. An hitch to make go away.

 

On reflex, Twisted Fate kicked the blanket off, even the contact to fabric seemed unbearable. Breath coming shorter already and it wasn't nearly as steady as his pulse. Then it became impossible to avoid the presence of someone else pressed to him. In his sleep, Graves's always kept at least an arm around his partner, some kind of contact. Now it felt like too much and not enough.

Because each single touch was overwhelming but he obviously needed relief. The man was just there, available.

 

Whatever he had thought before, he couldn't pass this occasion. Couldn't afford to wander outside in the middle of the night, searching for an alpha ready to give. Twisted Fate already had an alpha here. And wasn't it what he wanted before ? To spend a heat with the latter ? Regrets would wait three days then he shall worry or not. Now there was an emergency.

 

Despicable, really, the burn under his skin. He wanted to end this quick, find satisfaction. Just make it stop.... Fumbled even just to find some light, hoping it would wake up Graves. Of course it didn't work, things never went according to plan these days.

 

Already so hard, desperate to find release. Twisted Fate crawled to straddle the latter and just seek friction. This was indecent at best, something he wouldn't make a show of but his need came before anything else. Rutting, grinding against the latter till he mess of them both, riding this electric shock in his nerves. Several times he choked on his breath, a name repeated in vain hope it would get Graves to do something. Trembling hand on the latter's shoulder, shaking him out of sleep.

 

« Malcolm— ! Please please please.... »

 

There was a start of stirring from Graves but this would never be fast enough. Another wave of heat hit him, breath punched out of him as he let out a pathetic whine. So worked up, slick beyond what was needed, twitching at the smallest move. Twisted Fate gave up and jerked himself off, tight grasp on his aching cock.

 

Maybe this helpless squirming at last resulted in the latter's waking. The man brought a hand to his face, trying to roll on his side to find sleep again but was in fact kept in place. So it caught Graves's attention, eyes blinking open to be met by this particular sight.

 

« ….the fuck ? » So low and deep, for this early hour.

 

First reaction was to cover his mouth in surprise, assaulted by the scent flooding the room. Indeed it would have been difficult to be prepared to see this. A needy omega in heat, basically taking his relief off him without any visible shame. It immediately attacked his own instincts, urging to provide.

 

« Malcolm.... » A soft gasp, calling for him.

 

Twisted Fate was increasingly bothered by this slow reaction, at the brink of climax. Took Graves's hand to his own cock, trying to get him to understand the urgence. Bucked a few more times then orgasm shook his frame violently, making him tense at once abover the latter. This sudden bliss wasn't even meant to last, blurring the pain for a short time but soon it was over. All that remained was his release all over his and Graves's hand and the damned fire in his being.

 

A sob escaped, for having so much going on at the same time. And as quick the latter rose to take him in his arms, hand running his back soothingly.

 

« Shhhh.... »

 

Not really expected but appreciated nonetheless. Twisted Fate returned the hug, face burried in his partner's neck. More sobs broke free, shiver running down his spine even if there was some effort to reduce the pain.

 

« You're in heat, I guess ? » Nothing mocking nor annoyed in the tone, maybe just exhaustion but that was normal.

 

« Ha, always so smart, aren't you ? » Weak answer, he still tried to do as though he wasn't at his lowest level.

 

« Fuck off, I'm checking. Had never seen you like that. » A short pause before he sighed and resumed : « Why didn't you warn me about it ? It's already a pain to have a rut. »

 

« I didn't know. This crap was supposed to be in three weeks, I swear it was planned. »

 

Debating this wasn't easy, arousal sneaking again within him as to make his life hell. No... Back arching against contact, tension building up. Graves noticed and gingerly returned to calm him, offer some friction as he grew hard under him.

 

« Do...do you think it's my fault ? Because of my rut... ? » Small, almost scared of this eventuality.

 

« I have no idea... Maybe, maybe... »

 

It wouldn't change nothing for Twisted Fate, it was too late and thoughts didn't help. He registered how the latter was ready to for more and to completely rely on someone else without even having to voice his need was incredible.

 

Focusing really hard, his hands went on either sides of Graves's face to get his attention, convey his last rational words before it was too late : « Fuck. Me. Don't try to keep it down or other bullshit 'cause you think I can't take it. Just...don't hold back... »

 

Crystal clear. A hard kiss was pressed to his lips, something strong and demanding. Over as quick then Twisted Fate found himself flipped over, back to the mattress with a heavily aroused alpha above. Anticitpation froze him on the spot, spreading himself for Graves without question. Yes...

No other words, just the feeling of rough hands going lower, flat against heated flesh. Another jolt, when two fingers opened him, just steady enough beofre it could possibly hurt.

 

« I-I said....fuck me. Don't make me wait.... » More tears stained his cheeks, trailing down.

 

Graves looked at him, something gleaming in his eyes while he worked a third digit inside his partner. Noises poured without filter, pleasure thrumming in his veins at each flick, brush of this specific spot. Anything to make him squeal, so hard it hurt. The latter's other hand roamed his body, playing shortly with his chest before prefering to relish the touch.

Even though he wanted and asked for this to go fast, Twisted Fate enjoyed it. In no way it was like his heats with nameless guys, methodic relief and short joy. He could trust. More than any other person he had laid with before.

 

No condescending comments, just what he asked and allowed to happen. Even if now he would allow a lot of things, too overwhelmed to care. Graves wouldn't hurt him. Knew that and the thought crossed his scattered mind before getting faded by their need.

 

« Mal— » Another cry as he tried to catch the man's attention.

 

Sweet to see Graves had indeed a cautious eye on him, leaning closer though he kept fingering him as fast : « Yeah ? »

 

« Hold me.... ? »

 

Heat making him writhe in the sheets, Twisted Fate managed to get this request out. Jumped a little at the feeling of a slightly trembling had over his face, brushing tears away. The gesture was gentle, as clumsy in this hell of arousal and warmth. Almost forgot Graves himself wasn't over his rut, still trying his damnest not to be too harsh.

A laugh broke out amidst moans, for this request not really filled but the attention was really welcome. Showed how the latter cared despite everything.

 

« No...not like this. » Laughed a bit more to see Graves so offended in a dramatic way.

 

« Then what the fuck do you want ? »

 

Gathered himself not to stutter or anything, fist clenching in the sheets under the relentless stimulation. His mouth fell open to let out another shaky noise before he could talk : « Your cock, among other things....but could you hold me ? Like a cuddle... ? » It broke on the end, emotions mixing in the tone for this too vulnerable ask.

 

This seemed to be clear enough, at least for Graves since he made no more remarks. Sudden emptiness, a reason for Twisted Fate to whine low, head turned in the pillow. I need.... At least it was going for the better. Half wondering if his partner would do what he asked, blushing so dark for this.

He felt the latter coming closer, so they were skin to skin. It had him searching back eye contact. One of his hands formerly busy gripping the sheets was now taken, fingers entwined with Graves's. Arms around him like soothing cage, distance so short and easy to close. Not even questioning he spread his legs to welcome him, always a little ashamed by this instinct. Would almost hope for this instant to last forever, if it wasn't for the unforgiving flames consuming them.

Then the latter pushed inside and all seemed to click together. On reflex Twisted Fate clutched in their shared grasp, trying so hard not to scream after that initial thrust. Immediately lips left a few pecks on his cheek, followed by the tickling of a beard. And so they kissed, till breath would be required but in fact Twisted Fate broke it first to cry out after the ram back.

 

« Oh gods—please do that again.... »

 

Rut and heat turned this into a quick embrace, deep thrusts answered by eager rocking. So little to do except hold dearly his partner, head tipped back in the pillow as they chased climax. And Graves was so good at this, he could just cry of relief for spending this hard time with him. Didn't let him down. This was getting noisy, besides both their reactions. Thumping against the wall, surely this would be heard outside. Don't care....

 

All he wanted. To be held, filled and safe. Could indeed feel how Graves was overwhelmed too, grasp turning stronger on him, face now resting against his neck. It awoke an urge within Twisted Fate, from the short distance. Sliding his other hand up the latter's back, he kept him close while he nuzzled under his jaw. The source of scent and others promises bound in that specific spot. Himself wasn't planning to do any of that crap but lingering there felt like being important. The potential.

So he indulged a little, sucked a few bruises on Graves's neck to sate the urge but also for the petty sense of property. It wasn't nearly as definitive, it would fade away. But his heart and body liked this, to leave marks.

 

It caught his partner's breath too, stiffening before he let go again. Twisted Fate could feel him pound harder, like trying to go through him and it resulted in a wail and nails digging in his back.

 

« Marks are fine ? » A grumble against his own flesh.

 

« Yes.... » Soft sigh, breathed out as the truth.

 

Twisted Fate sometimes minded the marks but this time it felt right. Innerly he wanted to drown for giving it such meaning when there was none required. Graves's marks wouldn't be heavy to bear. The opposite, a proof he was important for someone. Teeth played gently around his neck and he gasped.

All of sudden, the forgotten tension building up came back to blow up when the latter's unbusied hand stroked his neglected cock. Feared he would break, spine arching to the max, pressed to Graves. Several cries fell then he came. During all of it he clung to him, eyes shut closed in this rush of pleasure. Too much, too much... Never let go.

 

The good thing was that his partner joined him in no time, kinda pinning him down in the last instant. Felt everything at once, his own release wet between them, Graves's attempt at finishing properly, the start of a knot, his tears always present. Just as the latter came, he moved Twisted Fate to kiss him breathless through it. Like trying to silence himself. In any case he appreciated it, his man going all rough, jerking inside with desperation, craving some contact.

 

Indeed a loud moan ended up muffled, when the knot took. Both reacted to it, for the tightness. Then it was done, tension snapped and they could breathe. Again Graves reached for the man's face, stroking gently his cheek as question.

When their gazes met, Twisted Fate found there this very softness under exhaustion. He didn't want to move at all, this was the perfect place to be. Cheek craddled, he leaned into the touch and another kiss was exchanged. More chaste, tired and spent.

 

« Need sleep... » Small explanation for the latter. Not even ready to move in a better position.

 

So that was all it took to drift back to a decent rest. It was really good to feel Graves settling at his side though it made him curse lowly to figure out a good position to cuddle after that. In the end he gave up and merely half slept on Twisted Fate.

If there was to be complaint, then shall be it.

 

Chapter Text

Not the worst morning of Graves's life but it sure felt tiring. Hours seemed to have ran after they passed out but the rest it was supposed to bring wasn't there. Ugh... It was day time, could guess it from the light out there.

Not exactly like the morning after a hangover, it was more insidious. Energy drained, rather sluggish and very tempted just to stay in bed till afternoon. Ruts had this effect, after spending everything to relief. At least that part was done. No longer feverish but his mind wasn't very clear. Graves just hoped there wouldn't be too much thinking during the day. Hurts a bit.

 

Rolled on his side and found nothing to hold. Uh ? Eyes open, he looked for his partner, expecting him to be here after the night. He left ?? That was still a possibility since Twisted Fate was the early bird here. Even if Graves wasn't really happy with that. Prefered to wake up with his partner, a rare time to enjoy.

Difficult but after focusing a little on his surroundings, he realized the man wasn't really gone. Clothes were neatly folded and left on the chair. So he's still here. Worry calmed down as fast, he relaxed back in bed.

 

At the same time memories came back too and it dawned on him that Twisted Fate wouldn't be in shape to go outside. Oh fuck, the heat. The least thing they needed and expected, even less since himself had his rut. Just thinking of the night awoke his arousal too, for the desperation found. Not the most ideal time to fuck but there was indeed a strange awe at being indispensable.

Sudden cold feeling, for the unlucky circumstances. He was ready for it but it came sooner. So what if his partner was planning to disappear again ? After their latest clash and cuddly talks under the blanket, it would be rather unlikely. But what did he know about Twisted Fate ? Never confirmed. Still that small fear of an illusion, a bluff.

 

Things happened and now his partner was stuck here. Obviously he wouldn't risk going outside now that the heat was started. Again Graves looked around, worried as long as he hadn't seen him. If there was still Twisted Fate's clothes here but he wasn't in the room then a simple deduction would indicate the bathroom. In fact there was a faint noise of water running but it could come from another room near.

 

Would be a pain to get up, it felt greatly better just to go back to sleep but responsability was part of partnership. Just checking on him. And maybe he could take a shower too, the night left some not so comfortable memories on skin and he just wanted to clean up. So he went to the bathroom with heavy steps, no care for his lack of clothing. This was private and wouldn't shock the latter anyway.

 

Just before he made it there, a low noise echoed. As he recognized the voice, Graves hurried to the door. It wasn't even fully closed. But no question for this.

The sight was pathetic, really. First thing he thought when he found Twisted Fate leaning against the tile, sitting under the shower, soaked. A pang of compassion for his partner, reduced to this. Not pleasant at all, without a doubt.

 

To be sure, he stopped the water and joined the latter's level. A bit scary not to see a reaction yet to his presence. « Hey, still alive ? » His hand went to his partner's face, turn it so he could meet his gaze.

 

The mere touch resulted in a short flinching but he succeed anyway. Under his fingertips Twisted Fate felt too hot, in a way that reminded him of his own ruts. The fever. Burning under skin, screaming for it to stop. The latter was panting softly but it was faster than a normal rhythm.

And his eyes. Exhaustion was the easiest to notice but under there was also that helpless hint so vocal during the night. Need, in several ways. A trail of tears down his cheeks.

For a man always in control, this was too vulnerable, even in such intimate situation.

 

Since he got no proper answer, Graves asked again : « Just tell me if you understand. Want to be sure yer not dying or anything. »

 

This time Twisted Fate nodded, gesture difficult to discern but he spoke too : « 'Am not fine, idiot. » It broke at the end of the sentence, too weak. Some struggling then he tried again : « This shit hurt like hell but I'm not planning to die soon. Bet you would miss me too much. »

 

« Of fucking course. » This was plain honesty because he couldn't really be mean right now. As normal as Twisted Fate tried to sound, he was in pain.

 

Silence came along a wide gaze directed to him. The latter shifted so he could rest back to the tile, facing Graves. Now he could see more of his sad state. The heat left him flushed, very restless and of course aroused like it wasn't allowed. Hard cock lying against his pelvis, darker color and a mess of precum or possibly previous release. The only positive thought was how nice his marks looked on him, bruised flesh.

 

At last Twisted Fate managed a few words : « Yeah ? Not even joking ? » Breathless, from deep in his chest.

 

« No, not a joke. »

 

It wasn't really calming to see his partner like this, just able to stay down and endure. Kicking someone already so low wasn't fun nor worth. He pushed a few strands off the latter's face after he sat in front of him. « Let me help. »

 

Floor was cold, like really really but under rut every little semblance of coolness was welcome. Graves took care not to press too hard against his skin, too sensitive. Hands ran down the latter's sides, soothing, stroking gently. What should I do ? No idea what would be good at the moment. Maybe Twisted Fate was too overwhelmed, it could hurt to make a mistake.

 

« Erm, what do you need ? To rub one off ? »

 

By himself Twisted Fate came closer, reaching for him with trembling hands. It traveled up Graves's arms before tightening the grasp, like under another wave of pain. He saw the man tense, hold harder. Once it was over, the latter rested his face over his shoulder, relishing the proximity.

 

A soft exhale then he spoke : « One. I think it will be enough. » Good effort made to climb on Graves's lap and curl into the contact.

 

This wasn't new that his partner would turn rather clingy sometimes. A few occasions, when the situation was safe and each time Graves enjoyed it. Welcomed Twisted Fate against him, shock of heated skin against even hotter one. For being a slave to that concentrated scent, invading his lungs as much as the room, it overtook his senses with arousal. Instinct, ready to act, to protect and satisfy. Strange, how his urges now dicted to take care of the latter while before it merely ordered to claim. A change of priorities, it would seem.

Now that Twisted Fate was leaning on him for support, he could feel his hard on too. Basic needs, not a surprise. They started to grind against each other, pace at first careful but it turned out to be insufficient.

 

Cocks brushing, friction so electrifying, they let go. Pawed at each other, held close. All sorts of noises came out of the latter, already gripping Graves to chase climax. He must be close. Several times his name resonnated, with a turn which left him emotional. Twisted Fate wouldn't meet his gaze, merely seeking relief out of him, face burried in his neck.

 

« How many... ? » He was curious. A heat could be terrible but the way it pushed someone to such debauched state was both frightening and arousing. Wondered since when the man was at it, if he fled to the bathroom to sate his urges or if he was just taken aback during a shower.

 

A confused noise was the only answer he got.

 

« Came how many times already ? Looks like you were quite busy alone, sure you needed my help ? »

 

There, understanding. And a choked whine when it hit Twisted Fate how vulgar the sight has been. The heat and rut took away inhibitions but sometimes reason came back for a few seconds, enough to burn of shame.

 

« T-Twice....Just that, I swear... » Quickly said before he keened, clinging to Graves. « Please touch me.... »

 

« Got you, Tobias. Don't worry. »

 

Since he was to give it fast and good, it was easy to include himself in it. He wrapped his hand around their cocks, earning at the occasion another weak moan as praise. This would be short for Twisted Fate and without a doubt he would follow right after. So he stroke both of them tightly, swearing lowly at the already smooth glide result of precum. Fuck. Not the best way to satisfy someone else nor even just to relieve himself but it would do. Hoped that after that his partner could just go to sleep again.

 

A more fierce bucking then Twisted Fate came, again and again. This time his release wasn't as important, barely a trickle of fluid. But orgasm wrecked him with the same intensity than each time, devastation. It rendered him speechless, just able to slump forward against Graves.

The gasp was always sweet to hear, reward for this. Made him forget how sometimes the latter could be a pain in the ass.

 

The end was near for him too. Graves had let go of the other man's cock and focused on hiw own need for an instant. Nice, to feel that solid weigh abover him, continual presence to his side. Not alone. He jerked into the tight grip, bitting a few moans off and tried not to hurt Twisted Fate. At last it was enough, spilling his load between them with a groan.

 

No real reaction from the latter, he merely stayed pressed to him despite how dirty they were.

 

« Hey, don't fall asleep on me. Not yet. Got to clean us up. »

 

Incoherent mumbling next to him but at least that was a sign of life. Using a bit of strenght, he had Twisted Fate stand up, though he kept leaning to him for support. Loose embrace, hands lingering as comfort allowed. Even if he had to take it in charge, it was good to feel the other pressing sloppy kisses wherever he could, lips trailing on fresh bruises. At least it was a distraction.

The shower wasn't quick but it was done. Now Graves felt better and thought it was the same for the latter. Grabbed a towel to dry them fast then he took Twisted Fate back to bed. And he followed, without any question nor complaint. Just clung to him in silence.

 

Sheets weren't as clean but they wouldn't die from this. Carefully Graves put the latter to bed, still a bit surprised to see him so tired. Always have to do everything for him. Short sigh. Immediately Twisted Fate crawled back to his spot and curled up to sleep more. And pulled his partner with him at the same time. Fine.

 

Graves wasn't planning to go outside soon so he lie down too. Not even a second later the latter was snuggled up to him, arms around him and a promise to never let go. Guess I'll stay here. On his part, the rut was fairly diminished, just a warm reminder but not nearly as bothering than at the beginning. It took a ridiculously short time for Twisted Fate to fall asleep, surely calmed down and sated for long.

 

So he kept an eye on him before himself could rest again. Always touched to be able to see him like that, vulnerable yet allowing this kind of contact. His own alpha instinct was glad, contented.

 

Not over but at least it will get better.

Chapter Text

So went this double trouble time, a very hard one but it could have been a lot worse. That same day, Graves could tell his rut was over. Good thing, since it gave him time to focus on the latter's heat. That one was harsh and it last three days as usual.

 

Basically they stayed to this place till it was over. Twisted Fate himself couldn't go outside, far too impacted. Alternated between naps, quiet time and rush of need. Graves didn't go outside any longer, just enough to get food or smoke. Got kicked out at some point.

Not exactly how he imagined a heat to go but he could manage. When Twisted Fate was in a calmer mood, he always put some distance but that wasn't so drastic. He took it as a small attempt at keeping control. In any case, it didn't help that later he would just yank Graves by the collar and cup his crotch as not so implicit message to get moving. If really he was desperate, he could ask, while still trying to seem unbothered.

 

Then he would just oblige and fuck Twisted Fate, hard and deep. All that he asked. One time though he had been a really little shit so Graves took his revenge in giving it as slow as he could. By the end the latter could just beg, that helpless spark in his eyes. If that was possible, it did take him longer after climax to recover his ability to speak. They lay down and he appreciated Twisted Fate at his clingy mood. The softest instant, not so usual.

 

Their first heat together and the second rut. Graves wondered how far they would go. By now it felt like an habit too strong to be around his partner. A lot of time ran since the beginning and it brought many things. Would never have expected to last that much, even less with someone who passed as a real snake. It just took him to know Twisted Fate to actually consider where they were going. But did he really know him ? The man he called patner by default of a better word, the man he shared bed at night and more under the silent hours. Easy to fall in a routine, it looked like they could go on forever. Just needed to stay together and watch after each other.

 

No question asked about what Twisted Fate thought of what was going on between them. He hoped that one day the latter would maybe open his heart, admit some feelings or anything. Graves himself didn't press about it. In a few occasions, after sex in the peaceful times, it burned just to say it again. Remind the man that he was loved. But he was worried this would scare away Twisted Fate. Guy already had a lot of things to bear, no need to pressure him. And did that even matter, after all ? Each night they would sleep together, some of it they would share pleasure. It had everything of lovemaking except the proper name. Wished he could call that what it was but since there was no words from the latter, he stayed quiet on this.

 

Only certitude, his own feelings. About what future reserved them, no idea but Graves truly hoped it would include the other man as long as they could.

 

~

 

For a man used to seek knowledge over everything, there was little Twisted Fate knew about what was going on in his life recently. Last time it had been that difficult to guess future events was during his lonely years of teenager. Now it was hard to go beyond short term. Mainly because it involved a new variable, Graves.

 

Before it was rather easy to plan his next moves, where he would be in a few years if he managed not to die till then. His sole survival. But now they were two and despite himself he counted his partner in the plans. This was a first. Not once he stayed around someone for so long, even less to share that much. The shorter the partnership, the less bothering it was, no risk to grow attached.

So it was overwhelming new to rely on a partner to that point. To intimacy. To....more. Still no words for that one feeling but it kept warming his heart as time passed.

 

Love. They never mentionned it ever again, Twisted Fate was sure of it. Yet in some moments, gestures, it came up. He refused to say it, too scared it would be true. For him, love wasn't necessarily a weakness but in his own case it had done too much damage to allow it soon. It meant opening up, it meant allowing someone else close enough. It meant pain if he made a mistake.

 

Couldn't tell yet if trusting Graves was a mistake. The man was genuine in his rough ways, still able to show a secret soft side. This was one of the reasons Twisted Fate let him come. As they learned about each other – and after that terrible confession night – his partner always let him control. Attention appreciated at its true value. Control, safety. He could stay around Graves and he let him around without pressure. Even now that he knew the latter's feelings toward him. Touching.

A proof there was still a few correct people in Bilgewater.

 

Freedom and control, all that he needed to stay safe. Graves let him keep it, no questions. Yet it didn't stop their dayly insults, banter and useless remarks. They really got along but it couldn't helpt the small confrontations from time to time.

It always brought a smile to Twisted Fate's face, bickering had its own safety. Something that wouldn't change, oddly soothing.

 

In these instants he surprised himself, to hope that tiny details would stay forever. Reminded him partnership was never meant to last, he and Graves were a rare exception. The opportunity of a lifetime. For his usually flourishing imagination, it was impossible to know how life would be if he hadn't tried to steal from this particular gruff outlaw. Things would definitely have gone another way, lonely life. Between short partnerships and tactful retreats, fortune and quiet times. Without a reliable person to seek relief.

This would have been hell just to find a new alpha – or even a beta – each time he needed. Twisted Fate enjoyed company of new people, for the charm of being seduced or just to sate his need. So it was strange to feel like settling down with someone. No no no, not settling down. But now all his needs and request were fulfilled by Graves and it dawned on him there was no real reason to search outside.

 

Had he been looking for this all this time, without even knowing it ? No idea. But like his first mistakes and nightly routine, it seemed that all he seeked was just in one place. This attraction, urge to come back had been hell to realize and even to admit. When it was clear Graves was enough and nothing came as close.

Innerly Twisted Fate feared for a time that he would get used to this, tired and novelty would require him to return outside. Both a relief for his dear freedom but also an icy feeling, to let Graves behind. No, don't want that.

 

Despite himself this peculiar loyalty got stronger. A concept he never really cared about before. Had been loyal to his folks and family and it payed him poorly.

Speaking of it, he was almost tempted to tell his story to Graves. The man had been a bit curious about it, greatly because he tried to understand how bad it was. How much it hurt. Twisted Fate considered it but thinking of that night, when he spoke freely and cried, it was too much trouble. Not that he distrusted Graves but talking of his past was painful. Being vulnerable wasn't pleasant.

At least that was something he could allow with his partner.

 

Be as he was, even if he still masked a few dark parts of himself. A smirk could hide so much. His past was the most secret of it. What he allowed to show was his body, in all it meant in urges and reactions. Being born an omega was seen as a curse in some places, Twisted Fate sure understood why. He didn't have the worst life but it always came back to bite in dangerous moments. Good thing he had Graves. Not the best at helping but he tried, taking at heart to satisfy him.

The first heat they shared was as painful as the others but for once he could enjoy it without the fear of showing too much. It was safe.

 

To see so much care for him was nice. His heart ached a little, reminded again and again that love indeed guided these rough hands over his feverish body. It was so obvious yet Twisted Fate didn't mind. Leaned into it because it felt right to do so. It happened sometimes that the limit to breaking was about to be crossed. But as it went, he couldn't care less, he was safe to show.

Graves saw him at his lowest and said nothing degrading nor took advantage of him. Not everyone that would respect so much. His heart bled, to be able to tell such difference compared to some hateful persons he met before.

 

Safety found in the least expected place in this world, one he started to believe in. As time passed he grew attached to Graves beyond repair. It was never meant to happen yet it was so good. Heats and ruts were shared, exclusive help to each other. And despite his own principles, Twisted Fate gave it a meaning.

In these nights, pressed to his sleeping partner, it felt right. At his place. If he could actually trust someone it would be Graves. Throbbing pain within him, as he refused to surrend and give this feeling its rightful word. Imagine, just to say it back. But he choke on this confession and hope next day it would be easier.

 

Until there wasn't a next day. All it took was an heist, something gone wrong and many regrets.

 

How horrible, not to know there wouldn't be another day, another kiss, another touch before it was too late.

Crushed without mercy, like this faith in destiny that just got one sent to the Locker.

 

Chapter Text

Where is he ?

 

First question hitting Twisted Fate at the return to their safe plase, after an express retreat. Breathless, back to the door, he felt a return of panick.

 

Alone.

 

This wasn’t supposed to go wrong, far from it. Indeed that heist wasn’t the easiest of their life but they were prepared for it. Were we ? Now it was clearly not the case.

Twisted Fate clutched at the wound, vicious pain in his shoulder. Some blood managed to go through, staining red over his fingers. Fuck…. He hated it. Pain was a constant in life but he couldn’t stand to see his own blood. It wasn’t normal. It hurt.

 

Shaky steps to the chair in the room, vest thrown with less care than he would under quiet times. Yanked open his clothing, to have access to the wound and see how bad it was. The bullet was still here, throbbing pain reverberated in his whole body. It wasn’t even in the worst place it would have landed, he knew it. Had he been less lucky, he would be dead on the floor. He looked around for a clean fabric to press to it, maybe stop the bleeding as weak as it was already.

 

Reality came back to slap him in the face, slumping on the chair to calm down. Where is he ??

 

Graves wasn’t here yet, this was the place they were meant to join once it was done or whatever. Part of him grew worried for the latter, hoping he didn’t meet the same troubles than him. That he would be back soon.

 

Too many things escaped Twisted Fate, still very distressed by the change of plan. This wasn’t meant to happen. There shouldn’t have been as much hired guards than it. The plan was rather simple, sneak in while Graves made a hell of a distraction. In no case he would have been very quiet.

But as soon as he went in, he found some company and not the savory type. Anyone would have died in here, for he had Lady Luck on his side. But he did took a bullet amidst this chaos. Cruel reminder of his failure to plan everything.

 

Again that same pain, blurring his thoughts when he was trying to understand the latest events. Would have to take the bullet out and seek some medical help, for sure. But he wanted to wait for Graves. He shouldn’t take too long. Still some worry at the back of his mind,frightened at the idea of anything of the sort happening to the latter.

 

Cold feeling creeping slowly, from the loss of control. Twisted Fate couldn’t understand why there was so many people, while he was sure nothing would bother them more than usual. For a man proud of guessing everything, considering each outcome, this was a bad move. And they failed, unless Graves managed to get something.

 

Scared, why wasn’t everything going like they planned ? And pain, always here to make him mad.

 

Come back…

 

~

 

He never did. Even once night had fallen, that Bilgewater lightened for its late activities, Graves wasn’t here.

Each hour made Twisted Fate more anxious, fear like ice in his chest. Between that and the reminding pain, he was getting closer to his limit. He hoped that it was just a coincidence, maybe the latter was too tired and stopped somewhere. Or had to treat a wound, or anything.

 

But his partner didn’t come. He realized it following morning, when he woke up alone. Fully clothed, dried blood on his hand. It was too much, his body screamed from the pain. So he went outside to find someone who would help him. This wasn’t something he’d be able to do by himself, to risky to take a bullet out.

 

When he came back, still no sign of Graves. Fear turned into plain desperation. Too tempted to give up and go search for his partner, though he wanted to trust him.

 

So he waited. And waited. And waited.

 

Another night passed and his thoughts stayed focused on Graves. Sleep avoided him too, unable to rest properly. Even less now that he was used to sleep with someone. In the darkest of the night, struggling to find sleep, he felt so vulnerable. Cold. Couldn’t even sleep on his wrong shoulder, remaining pain. Ready to jump at the smallest noise of someone coming in, knocking at the door.

But it never happened.

 

The day he gave in, it felt like already too late. Twisted Fate returned to the place of the heist, staying in the area. Rumors and information weren’t hard to find when one knew to listen. He searched, again and again. Maybe he would just run into Graves by accident and all would be alright.

 

Sadly, no. And it was even worse than he thought. Words ran around about an heist gone south, in a very guarded place. One captured, one evaporated into thin air. Of course it caught people’s attention after all the shamble caused. No doubt, everything matched.

If for a short time he was glad to hear that Graves was certainly alive, his hopes turned to ashes at the mention of the Locker.

 

No…

 

There wasn’t a lot of people out there in Bilgewater who hadn’t heard of the Locker, a jail where you rarely got out. The few that managed to escape never really came back whole, even in soul. The worst place to be sent, for the worst kind of people. Maybe it helped some to sleep peacefully in Piltover or any rich city but its tales always frightened kids of the harbour and all that dared to live beyond the law.

Equal punishment for equal crime. They knew it could possibly come one day but thought themselves too smart to actually finish in it. But like everything bad in life, you just hoped it fell on the least lucky.

 

Never meant to end up here.

 

That night, when he came back to their safe place, Twisted Fate broke. Not just because of solitude but also for Graves. There was no one to hide from anyway.

 

I should have stayed with him. Now every regrets came to plague his mind and sleep. His partner got caught but not him. He was safe, free but not Graves. Responsibility fell on both but had he been smarter it wouldn’t have happened.

 

I must find him. Desperate thought, an evidence yet from the start he knew it was doomed. The Locker wasn’t far but for decades it was well kept. Nothing compared to a small business or a bank. And for what was said about it, there was no chance for a stay without aftereffects. If he escaped on day.

Another stab. That potentially he would never see Graves again. Despite how short was their time spent together – if not considering the fact of partnership – they were close. He trusted him. No one else could ever pretend the same.

 

Alone again. A few years ago it would have been easy for him and maybe even his favorite way to live his life. No attach, no need to rely on other persons. No….intimacy. His younger self would be truly disappointed to see himself grow fond of someone else, to the point of sharing dayly life. After a decade spent at avoiding people while learning all their secrets to better play them, the fall was harsh. Here was the exact reason he shouldn’t have trusted another person, for the pain that followed after separation.

 

Back to the beginning, without anyone. But still that spark, thoughts for Graves. Out of reach but what did he really know about it ? Better give it a try before giving up, at least for his guilt. What else did he have, except that small hope, ready to be muffled ?

 

Maybe there is a way. I will find it. Find him.

Chapter Text

Fate, you fucking bastard.

 

There must have been a lot of swearing since the whole mess that resulted in his capture. That was all Graves could do, thoughts cast on his partner. Easier that way, to forget how terrible he was feeling at the moment.

The Locker was bad, in every sense of the word. The worst place he ever ‘visited’ and the gods knew how far he went in Bilgewater before. Thrown in a cell without care, at least he had no direct company in this shit hole.

 

A hell of a ride. Graves was confident about the heist at the beginning, there was no reason for this to go wrong yet life liked to play him a trick. A really nasty one. He had a bad feeling as soon as he stepped into what became the end of the line. Too many guards, where they had been expecting something rather quiet. But he wasn’t one to back off at the first sign, he had a part to play in that. Or Twisted Fate would get found out and maybe worse. He was the distraction.

 

That role led him there. Outnumbered, put down only after some rough fight. Graves refused at the moment to let go, he was ready to fight back as long as it could save time. Knocked down, last thought as hope for his partner, anger in his veins for not being able to do more. Being caught was never fun, even less to be uncertain about one’s survival.

 

Awoke beaten up, bruised and the unforgiving burn of ropes that tied him down. Fury coming up again, violent urge to struggle. So he did, for a while. Then he was once more knocked unconcious till his destination. At the moment, he was too restless to think about what was going to happen, where they were sending him. Where was Twisted Fate ? Was he safe ?

 

Not once he really considered ending up in the Locker. That was the ultimate nightmare, from what everyone said. Graves never paid a lot of attention for tales and old’s warnings but he still innerly feared that damned jail. A place you never really left. There had been some escapes but these ‘lucky’ fools would never truly find peace again.

It looked bad, it smelt bad – even worse than the sewers of Bilgewater – it just gave further reasons to leave. Almost no light, dirt everywhere and the rare sound of abandon breaking silence.

It was only after some time that he noticed how the place was made to confine magic itself. Protection against any threats, use of that specific stone able to nullify magic. A prison for everyone. In his very case, it wouldn’t change anything.

 

Difficult to find the worse thing in all this but one stood out of the rest. The mark. An abominable idea these wicked fucks had. Each prisonner received it at their arrival in the sinister walls. A mark, burning iron leaving its imprint engraved in flesh. Agonizing. The shape of a ‘L’, surely the day they chose it they weren’t inspired. Graves had his share of painful scars and other wounds before but there was something torturious in the mark itself. A sign of possession, property, meant to follow its victim till death when body would return to the sea.

It hurt impossibly on the instant, white-hot pain fairly reduced later but it was too late. A mark, terrible symbolism close to the one shared between mates. A show of domination then, for the souls claimed would never leave the Locker. Not whole.

 

The more time he spent in here, the less he was sure about making it out alive. Didn’t know how but the place, the walls, everything was suffocating. Needless to say some must have gone mad for staying too long.

Of course before being thrown here he was sure to hate it but now it was beyond his imagination. Cruel, cold place. Alone.

 

In these moments he thought about Twisted Fate. Idiot must have been running free after the disaster. Both a relief and an annoyance, by pure habit to get mad at his partner. Graves was so angry at himself, for getting sent here. He hadn’t heard about the latter so he guessed he was alright. Asshole. At least glad to know he was the only one having to endure this crap. He wouldn’t last long here.

 

In the dim light of his cell, thoughts followed the latter. A way to ignore pain, still fresh scar on his back. Avoid it at all cost. Focus instead on Twisted Fate, knowing he was probably safe, in a better place than him. Though a slow and cold feeling, creeping up sometimes at the thought. He was in the Locker ; Twisted Fate was free. They never had the occasion to speak again since their ways parted for the heist but what if ? Icy pain in his heart, for being the only one captured. No, it’s not his fault. Was it ?

So Graves did his best to push back these cruel thoughts, not sure if it would make him feel better anyway. Remembered anything he could, from the latter. From them. It was only in the dark hours that it hit the worst, solitude. Life conditions were far from perfect but nothing could harm as much as the absence of a loved one. Not after this sudden separation. His instinct stirred, revolted to be so far from Twisted Fate. Made him consider for a while his own feelings but in fact it had been this way for a long time. But still some surprise to see that it was so deep, this yearning for the latter.

 

Maybe because of distance, who knew ? Graves didn’t know where he was. The Locker was known to be not far from Bilgewater, greatest chances on an isle nearby. It wasn’t the kind of place you really tried to find, anyway. Rather the opposite. The less you knew, the better you lived.

A strange feeling, to be so far yet so close. Could faintly hear the roar of the tide when it got violent outside, waves crashing against rock. A clue yet it led nowhere. To taste salt in the air was typical of the whole damned region around Guardian’s sea.

Lost.

 

~

 

Time went on and little changed except his mood and physical condition. Everything was made difficult and painful, basic needs barely met. In a pit of dispair he wondered about how heats and ruts went in here. How life must have been hating him personnally to inflict such torment. Graves wished it wouldn’t happen.

But among all this, worse damage was to the mind. His thoughts for only company. Slow poison left by solitude. What if ? Nothing happened since he arrived here, not a single change. No possibility to escape. Graves started to reconsider, despite himself. Twisted Fate had never been innocent, they were both outlaws for their lifestyle and choices. But sure he was a liar, good at keep information and mislead. It was clear this man was used to manipulate to get away.

 

So the more Graves thought, more it seemed realistic there was something wrong in their partnership. An incident would be too convinient to describe the crappy heist. Twisted Fate was the one seeking information, making sure it was safe yet they met some troubles. Or he had been sloppy, or it was on purpose.

Burning idea, Graves was so hurt by the possibility. No, it can’t be that. He knew Twisted Fate, the man under the mask. Did he ? Was it the truth ?

 

Refused it at once, shutting his mind for a while and even prefering to focus on physical pain instead. The Locker was getting on his nerve, desperation and sadness filling the place so much it weeped on its walls. Going mad for no reason.

Twisted Fate maybe was a bastard but himself managed to reach beyond that. To actually touch him. Was it a lie ? Were tears a lie ? At the moment it sounded so true it teared his heart but now, was it ?

 

No.

Chapter Text

Day after day, week after week, month by month. It was already extremely painful to register time going without Graves but now it seemed to flee without rest. Nothing to stop it yet it was the most precious thing he had. Time. Putting more and more distance with the actual separation, that terrible day.

Twisted Fate couldn’t help but count. No way to distract himself from the fact that his own partner was in the Locker. Hell in the form of a closed jail. Everything felt useless, not good enough since he wasn’t getting far.

 

Search wasn’t easy. Most people prefered not to know where the Locker was and truly, he couldn’t blame them. No one wanted to live near it, aware of the atrocity of this place. And also because of its special ‘guests’. You never arrived here without reason, usually you deserved it. Sometimes not, though. Getting a rival, enemy in the Locker was a guaranty not to see them again.

Information was even more rare, Twisted Fate learned. People weren’t really talkative about it and the others never had solid proof of their says. Just legends, possible words or not.

 

Little by little he lost hope. No one knew exactly where it was. And that was the easiest part : what would he do once he found out ? It would take some balls to get willingly in the Locker, just to give an escape. People weren’t that crazy. Even against money. Of course ! They wouldn’t be sure to actually succeed and make it out alive. So why take the risk.

To be defeatist wasn’t his habit. An attempt was always important to give but now it seemed doomed the more he learned about it.

 

With all this going on, search for information, Twisted Fate had his own matters to take care of. Biology never gave a break and it reminded him oh so often how lonely he was. How long it had been since the latest ‘action’. He wanted to focus on Graves and do what he could but in return it involved thinking about what he was missing. Not just care, attention and contact. From now he missed banter, even their small fights. Anything from it.

At night he had never felt that lonely since his young years, silence as gloomy envelop.

 

And so came this harsh reminder. The heat happened so fast and he had been too caught up looking for Graves that he forgot about it. Completely. Hard, cruel, unforgiving. Left him choking for air, locked up in some place for the night. Not even the strenght to get help outside. It didn’t even cross his mind, for he stayed in that time he had a partner. Clung to Graves even in thoughts, not ready to let go the possible loss. Why would he go outside and find someone when he already had him ? Problem, his partner wasn’t here and his heat had begun anyway. Hated so much the rest of the world during that time, helpless as he endured it. Alone. No release could make it better, physical need not even met. Life was a bitch, sometimes.

 

The tiny good thing about it was how desperate it made him to find the latter. More effort given to find clues, anything to help. Get him back, keep him safe, close distance. Twisted Fate had lost his calm a long time ago, when the heist happpened. Now the usual façade was more difficult to keep, too much worry for Graves.

Talked to so many persons, visited so much points in Bilgewater – for this city was incredibly large once you looked in. But so thin result.

 

~

 

Lost in the bay, somewhere. Not a real surprise but Twisted Fate winced all the same just at the thought. What a genius idea. Of course they would build a prison on a rock in the middle of the sea. Prey to the rough wind and whims of the tide. No way to approach discreetly.

He found information but it was worse. Still that lingering fear of the waters, for he would never trust it again. Looking at the sea, now aware Graves was somewhere out there. Out of reach but so close.

A perfect jail, impossible to get in except under the wrong circumstances. The one you’d never wish to see.

 

Ice at the back of his mind, memories not so gentle of the river. Not the same waters but the damage was done. Twisted Fate couldn’t get it out of his head. Crippling fear, stuck in the past. Not to the point of avoiding the sea – it would be difficult at Bilgewater – but enough to make him reconsider his chances.

Flashback. The sea as obstacle. But this time he wasn’t the one left behind. It burn so much to realize that but it was his fault. Graves was the one left behind. Even if it never was his intention, it was too late. Abandon… It hurt.

 

That night, alone like so many before, Twisted Fate broke again. Gave up. There was no way he could get Graves back to him. Too many obstacles, too difficult. It ripped his heart in two, to let the man go though they never wished that to happen. They were happy. But he failed them both, left his partner behind.

Inflicted the same thing he endured. Not meaning to, needless to say. But it was too late. Time had ran away like a thief, stealing the chance to make it up.

 

Never he would give up but now it was painful to keep hopes. Dark thoughts plaguing his rest. Why did it hurt so much ? Just because he held someone too close. In the dead silence of the night, struggling to sleep, it slapped him in the face. Had been so close before to give into his feelings but it was so scary at the time. Didn’t want to allow something so vulnerable. But now that he was alone, he could just see how big the opportunity was before it disappeared.

 

Love. What a shitty life, to admit feelings once it was too late. How twisted, to turn it down waiting for a better time except it was already the best time possible. Too late, everything was over, no second chance. Twisted Fate wanted to scream, fury for his own cowardice. It had been stated over and over that Graves loved him but not once he voiced it in return. Now he was alone. They were alone, sea between them and nothing to be done.

To love was horrible, in that very case. He missed his partner so much, doing everything he could to find him but now it was useless.

 

Hadn’t life already done enough to wound him ?

Chapter Text

Cold stone under him, always a chill at new contact. Always. Impossible to get used to it. Like the Locker itself creeped to seize one’s heart through the cool floor. It was better not to keep that kind of contact but at some point sleep was needed.

At least in this living nightmare, it wouldn’t bother too much prisonner’s rest. They had enough problems with each hateful sensations coming from that shit place. Humidity heavy, a breeze no one would guess the origin, stale smell.

 

However. Graves still tried to sleep, despite how difficult everything was here. Sometimes rest would only happen if he waited enough to pass out from exhaustion. It happened, to be too troubled to find sleep. Not like these horrible conditions helped in the slightest.

 

If that wasn’t enough, his mind made it worse. Never shutting up the more it became clear. Betrayal. Whispered lowly at the back of his mind, doubt, treason. At first he didn’t want to give into that, it would do no good for his mental health. But that one was already too impacted, cracked by this hell. So in this pit of despair, thoughts became louder. Vicious venom.

That he was left behind on purpose.

 

No, he wouldn’t do that to me.

 

How long did it make ? One year ? More like two ? So long partnership, going so well. It would have been a shame that a sad ‘incident’ happened right when it was doing good. No, an accident. Nothing to do with him. Graves struggled to push that away, it hurt too much to even consider that because he trusted him. Maybe he shouldn’t have.

What did he know ? Twisted Fate and him went on their ways for the heist, like planned. But shit happened. And now he was in the Locker. Dark thoughts, suggesting it wasn’t an accident. The latter knew everything, he wouldn’t have missed something as obvious as dozens of unheard guards. He would have known…

 

They were separated willingly, because they had different part to play. Maybe it was on purpose ? An occasion for Twisted Fate to run away. He was good at it, disappear in a flourish. Gone. Because after that he never saw him again. Maybe he was near, doing his best or maybe he was already far, laughing at this ‘misfortune’. No. It hurt how realist it sounded yet his mind kept on providing more evidencies.

The latter was a snake, from the start he knew it. Sure he must have dropped his guard during these years or grew fond of him to the point of forgetting what kind of man Twisted Fate really was. A liar, cheater. No idea when but that made him so dangerous. That was the worst part. Graves knew about all this. He was aware since they first got into partnership, he payed so much attention not to be manipulated yet it happened.

 

Because I trusted him.

 

Why wouldn’t he ? Twisted Fate’s flaws were known but he managed to go beyond. It wasn’t by some random luck that they worked well together, there was something. Or was he sure about it ? All this time, spent bickering and fighting over non sense. All this time fucking at first in the dark then under light and feelings. Was it nothing ? Did it mean anything ?

It squeezed his heart, steel grasp. They had been close. Not that he would cry like a teenager getting dumped after believing in true love but there was something. He thought.

 

Like, it was a kind of confession, no ? Twisted Fate always came back to him though it was clear at first he wouldn’t give anymore. He returned to Graves specifically. And he cried, for fuck sake. Now that he remembered this rare instant, it felt so genuine. Like he had indeed seen something meant to stay hidden. It looked true. Twisted Fate reacted with panick at the mere mention of possible love, rejecting the concept yet it proved how right it was. Was that a lie ? An act ? Painful, because Graves was sure he discovered something secret. Truth, from a man relying on lies and tricks. A name. He gave me his name. It meant everything.

 

Lies… ? What did a name mean after all. It could be false, just like everything else. Because all he knew came from Twisted Fate and all this could potentially be lies. Always. That was the man’s habit. Keep information, give it only when it was useful to do so. Manipulative. An act.

 

Oh the torment, solitude. Making reconsider the smallest details in their partnership. Things once he saw as genuine now looked wicked. All a question of point of view. Could trust blind someone so much ?

Seem vulnerable and try to hide it. Come back everytime. Denying feelings. Leaving him behind….

 

He never said it back. Because it wasn’t true, of course. How stupid, to believe that. Twisted Fate never admitted having these feelings, why wouldn’t he ? Because he was afraid, never trusted someone like that ? Bullshit, it was just because he never felt that way. Logic.

Then why continue to share bed and everything ? Maybe he earned something from it. Protection, else. This would explain all the strange confusion, tense seconds when affection was showed. Maybe that was because he wasn’t used to it and it left him flustered. Or simply he didn’t return it so it felt weird.

 

See ? Everything proved how wrong the relationship was. One-sided though an illusion of returned feelings. Then why even bother making this ? This was an horrible feeling, bitter taste. To be betrayed on emotional level. For Graves it meant shit to see partnership broken but not like that. Not with Twisted Fate.

 

Played. A pawn. Being used never felt that horrible. He thought he knew but it was rather the opposite. In complete ignorance.

 

Treason, like a knife tearing through flesh. When it was said that emotional pain could be worse than physical, that was the right description of these days in jail. Running to insanity. The darkness of the place grew on everyone, even the ones who tried to cling at the smallest hope. There was none for him. Twisted Fate left him behind to rot in a cell. Alone, when he had so good company for years.

 

He sold me out. Something so frequent in Bilgewater, he even thought about a few times at the beginning. Possible outcomes. Yet he put it aside when it seemed safe enough to pour himself in this partnership.

 

Why ?

 

Why would a man sell out his partner ? Oh there was many reasons, most of times it was for gold. Opportunities. Power. Or get ride of someone gone useless, bothersome.

They had done so much trouble, no doubt the bounty over their heads wasn’t cheap.

 

It made sense. Why refuse it ? Abandonned, betrayed. Why cling to pathetic possibilities ? Trust had nothing to do in Bilgewater, it led nowhere. Trust and love were the first to fade out in this place.

 

Lies. Always. It never changed. Why think one, just one guy would be different ?

 

Lies, lies, lies.

 

Here it came. Anger. Hurt of the betrayal. Seeping low in boiling blood. More time and it would turn into hatred. Sweet hatred, to prevent falling into despair. Last thing before the cliff. Since all gave up on him.

That was all he had left.

 

Bitterness. Sorrow.

 

A mark on the back and a wound to the heart.

 

How long did it take to make one’s love turn into hatred ? It depended on the place. In the Locker, it took a year to get him.

 

Last resort to stay alive. For revenge.

Chapter Text

Despite trying so hard to forget, he remembered. Counted. Years coming by, each one looking at Twisted Fate with unmasked sadness. Time passed to fast when one didn’t want it to. And it was too short when it was needed.

He wanted to go blind at the passage of time, to stay oblivious. For it burned low his heart to witness it. A reminder that he gave up. There was no options left to find his partner so he carried on. Mourning a partnership longer than usual but still too short for his taste. Wished it last forever.

 

On his part, moving on meant returning to heists, small thefts or more audacious ones. Their previous life, before everything fell down. Except he was on his own again. For the first years, he completely left Bilgewater and travelled else where. Not putting this dear city in his past but rather going away for a while. Fleeing his own regrets, ghosts of an older time. Lying to himself about his reasons, pretending to seek some fresh air and new opportunities.

So Piltover it would be, for a time.

 

Memories were never gentle, as soft and sweet it could be on occasions. Now it only reminded him of what he had lost that sad day. It still plagued his nights, sometimes. Dreams or nightmares. Of what could have been, possibilities.

When he left Bilgewater, he left also a part of his life. Oh he would come back, once it stop stinging wherever he wandered in the maze of streets and alleys.

 

Life was unfair.

 

For so long he had luck, after a rather dark time of plain survival. It always went and came back, depending on periods. At the moment this must have been a low time, meant to be difficult. Considering this, he had been pretty happy in his time with Graves, since now everything sucked.

 

Ruined his own life a little, not as much as his partner’s. Sometimes it hit him, when he was alone at night. Which wasn’t so rare. He had nice things, valuable beyond what he could guess. Now that it was gone, he couldn’t miss the loss.

Oh he tried to fill that emptiness, seek some company for evenings. Couldn’t bear his own thoughts. So he found a few people, slept in unknown places to leave when morning came. Comfort was only physical. Because emotionally, that wasn’t it. Nothing came as close, thought Twisted Fate made so much effort just to forget.

 

It was over. Done. Past. Nothing to do about it. Why did he still think about him after years ? Why did it hurt as the first nights ? To forget would maybe give him some peace and let him enjoy the wealth found in his jobs. It wasn’t enough. No matter how much alcohol or whatever distraction, he couldn’t avoid his regrets. It even brought it up a few times and he swore not to drink again in such way but eh.

 

Since this time was closed – at least he acted like it was – Twisted Fate went back to what he deemed a better stance. More strict. Cold. It would be a shame to end up with someone else by accident. So he grew more distant emotionally. Well, he was already but times ago a certain Malcolm Graves managed to get him to drop his guard so now he wouldn’t take the risk. Craft a better mask, act and play around. The former wasn’t good enough, it would seem.

Somehow this kinda persona always managed to attract people, a certain relief for him. It meant he hadn’t lost his touch in this peculiar art of deceiving. Also gave some occasions to distract his mind, forget for a night.

 

What a deception though. It never worked to see other people. Always came back to Graves, no matter what. Unnerving, he didn’t know how the man could leave such an impact without even meaning to. Stupid, stuborn Graves. Even gone for good he occupied his thoughts.

Not even for heated things, lingering on sweeter times. He couldn’t. Twisted Fate was always brought back to what he did and where exactly his previous partner was.

 

How was he doing ? Was he still alive ? Does he hate me ? Useless last question. Of course he did. There was no way not to hate the person responsible for one’s capture. For once Twisted Fate was shaken by what someone thought of him. He never really cared, people judged and gossiped. Their opinions never mattered to him. But Graves’s meant everything. Even as he was gone. Ridiculous, to fear his anger when he would surely never hear of him again.

 

It was impossible.

 

Yet he couldn’t let go. The only thing he wished in this world. To forget, for once. Only one person. Only one day. And maybe he would get better.

 

Time passed not as fast but always that excruciating pull. Like he was missing something important. Someone.

The only good thing was that now he was settled on a rather stable life. Well, it was without taking in count how dangerous his way of living was but it its terms, it was rather even. Sometimes returning to Bilgewater, for the best offers where here. Indeed plenty of money in Piltover but there was something soothing in the salted air, noisy nights that never stopped and lively streets.

Still too empty for him, for it would always lack the presence of his former partner.

 

It still hurt. That would never change, no matter how long he waited. But at least the wound was scarring little by little. He could stand running from bar to bar of the merry city. Regrets would wait for the night, once he got to bed.

 

On his sexual life, he had to make do. Not the most happy way but a man had needs so it had to be done. Truly, if he could find a safe and definitive way to get rid of heats, he would take it. But life was a bitch.

When heats happened, he seeked again nameless persons to spend it quietly. Nothing new, he was used to it before Graves. But just a taste of shared life and shared help and everything lesser was shit. Another reason to miss the man. Would never admit it aloud but a same name was always at the tip of his tongue on the brink of climax. Body never forgot. Sad reflex he regretted later.

 

So everything was almost good. As much as he could call it since he wasn’t over the separation. Twisted Fate could keep going, pretending to have moved on but it was another lie to himself.

He would never find someone else to feel so safe around. As result, he chose never to seek someone else. No one would get as close to this cheer peace he got.

No partner since that day. Never again.

 

Happiness depended on many things. Twisted Fate would say that at the moment he was rather happy. On a physical basis. Alive, free, able to afford his pricy train of life. Alone. All he asked, though that last one was full of bitterness.

People out there were happy from shared love. He couldn’t. Would never find that again. Envy, for these idiots that could stay with a loved one, share life. Not the same than faceless lovers, just for a night. It meant nothing. But he saw those happy ones.

 

Sorrow. Loathing.

 

How could people be happy while himself couldn’t ? It was unfair. He got what he seeked, he had what many wanted in such a world.

Alone.

Life was a sadist, for taking from him exactly what he needed to go on. What he deeply yearned.

 

Years went through and he grew cruel. To himself, other people. Not openly, he had a part to play, a mask to wear. But he resented little by little these innocent, carefree ones. How dared they seem joyful while he felt down ?

Sometimes the mask was heavy, he wanted to be allowed to take it off. Only alone. There was no safety for people like him, he chose which path to live on.

Memories, of a time when he could trust someone enough to be himself around. It was over.

 

~

 

Destiny was strange, always. Life played him many tricks since these fools attacked his family at the age of innocence. Tricks, like abandonning his partner without meaning to.

Each day could potentially give another trick for him to endure or watch amused.

 

Today’s wasn’t the worst of his life. But certainly something he wouldn’t repeat in the near future if he managed to get out alive of that one.

 

After all, it wasn’t always that you got to steal from the reaver king, Gangplank himself.

Chapter Text

Imagine, a day in the Locker. Barely a taste but distasteful enough never to stay here. At the mere point that no one actually stayed one day. If they did, it meant they enjoyed a quick death after giving up. Words ran that a particular poor soul lost life after the marking, unable to stand that peak of pain.

 

Now, imagine a month in the Locker. Already madness creeping up one’s back, lurking in the darkness of the cells. It was enough to impact someone physically. The weakest wouldn’t bear the minimal amount of food and slowly die in a corner. Truly, a month wasn’t that long. At least, outside. Because in this hell, it felt like the double and each day hurt a little more.

 

The next step. A year in the Locker. Hateful, really. Most prisonners here at least held a year but it grew heavy on them. Not the worst yet but close. Sadly, no medal for lasting that long. They could just hope. At that point, some tried several times an escape, others already gave up and tried to forget the misery.

 

Multiply this by each new year. Suffering was already getting worse and worse by the day but imagine what it took to stay alive. A few people managed to make it to the decade. Imagine. A decade lost in a cell, crying for mercy or already dead inside. Even for the innocents – and culprits – running free outside, this was incredibly long. So much could happen in that span of time.

In the Locker, nothing happened except in one’s head. Always the same routine but thoughts shifted, took new forms. Sometimes there was no thoughts anymore, mental death.

 

All it took was to surrender. Lose hope. The Locker did everything for that, render its prisonners helpless. In these times, they were just humans, nothing more. Waiting for death or mercy.

So the key was to endure, for the few strong-willed. Never give up.

 

For Graves, it was a peculiar mix of hate and stubborness that kept him alive. Get out for revenge. All that mattered now that he had nothing left. Flame consuming his heart over the years, dedicated to escape and find one man. Just one.

 

Twisted Fate.

 

In a jail, there was no change. Only one’s thoughts as company. And it did a great job at motivating Graves. Slow shift from love to hatred. Only such a corrupted place could make this.

This was a new step of anger, bitterness. All he had or it would kill him slowly. Solitude and abandon, cruel. Not as painful as the backstab of betrayal but it always came back to cut him. Each day a new wound, deepened by time.

 

Either it meant his death or it gave an opportunity to last. Graves was stubborn. His first quality and damned flaw. Oh it could be useful sometimes and during this sad time it kicked his survival instinct. Spite worked too, to piss off someone who wanted him gone.

He would get out, however he could, no matter what.

 

Just to make him pay.

 

~

 

He made it. Got out just to spit at the face of life or destiny, for all the trouble given. Nothing would repair what he had to go through. Nothing.

But sure was he gonna beat Twisted Fate up for what he did.

 

~

 

All led to this particular moment. A time he had been waiting for. Hiding in a corner of a warehouse, clutching his shotgun. The end of the line.

 

Thoughts focused on that man. Both his downfall and partner of a better time.

 

Twisted Fate.

 

Would never forget what he did, where he sent him. A decade lost to nothing. This woudl require a proper explanation before he shot him down. Payback. For this stay in hell never asked for. But most importantly, for the betrayal.

 

It really was something, to wait in some lost warehouse for an ex-lover and ex-partner, weapon in hand, ready to get revenge. This was only fair.

As much as he gave to the man, it payed him poorly. Taught him a harsh lesson about trust but he would never forget it. Intimacy meant shit. Tears meant shit. And tonight Bilgewater would lose its most famous cheater.

 

The search had been long and difficult. With reasons. Twisted Fate was specialized in staying impossible to seize. Just like the tide. Gone in a second, always on the run. But Graves knew him, despite all the anger and hatred seeping through him at the thought of his ex-partner. It took some time but he managed to find him. Intel about an artifact or something of the sort asked to be stolen by this fancy thief. Good thing he heard about it.

 

So here he waited, reminding himself all the crap he went through not to lose the point of this ‘visit’. It would be stupid to have feelings at the worst instant. Never forget. The pain, solitude. Betrayal. Gave and received nothing in return.Never he would forgive him.

 

A noise nearby. Someone stepped into the warehouse though Graves was clsoe to the only door. So he was right. Only one person could sneak in like that.

Silently he armed his shotgun, in the direction of the muffled steps.

 

Would face him and look in his eyes before anything.

 

~

 

Something was wrong the second he appeared in that warehouse. Coming there was rather difficult but nothing impossible for a thief used to the job like Twisted Fate. Relied on his information and observation of the place. At night, nothing better. The gang guarding that warehouse was rather important, sure he would prefer not to get caught or things would get ugly soon.

 

This was a high-risk job but nothing came without danger. And it payed well, if he came back with that specific dagger storred in the place. One of so many treasures, he realized once in it.

But he got a bad feeling at the same time. Had to be quick or anything else wouldn’t mean anything.

 

It proved to be true, as always. But not once he imagined running into Graves in the middle of the worst pirate’s warehouse. Odds were rather creative tonight.

 

He wasn’t ready. Would never have been ready for this. There was a major point at predicting any outcomes but his ex-partner supposed to be in the Locker wasn’t one of these.

 

Emotions came up as fast, even as he was clearly aimed at with that shotgun. Imagine the relief, to see the man.

How long since then ? How many nights, days, years since he saw that gruff man. The one he tried so hard to forget but never could.

 

It hurt. But nothing as much as dodging a shot meant to kill him. Here was the intention.

 

Graves was free. Graves was here. Here to kill him.

 

There was no time for questions, glad words or anything, he ran from the bullets. Or he would die. Not planning on it that day though.

But nevertheless it hurt. His partner was alive, so close yet there was nothing left of their previous life. Nothing of that comfort, safety found. Just rage and stubborness, chasing him in the warehouse.

 

Of course it caught the attention of the gang, barging in to find the fools trying to steal one of the goods.

 

Twisted Fate ran. There was no more plan, since he saw Graves in there. At least he got the dagger he had been looking for. Now he could just hope to escape the fury of the latter.

 

Why that day ? Why did it have to happen ? He was going so well – but not really – so why life tried to screw him again and again ?

After years of attemps at denying, of solitude and bitter nights, the man was back in his life. To put an end to it. It was painful indeed to see and hear but Twisted Fate should have seen that coming. Graves was in his rights to be angry at him, for not trying hard enough to get him out. For not being here when he needed help.

 

Confusion and adrenalin guided his steps in the docks, the latter still close enough to curse him. Soon they were outnumbered, thugs and even less kind lads coming to get them for breaking into the warehouse.

 

To the point where they had no way out. Then Twisted Fate had to negotiate with an murderous Graves.

 

Difficult, to say the least. The latter refused to believe him in the slightest. No way to calm him down, even if they would get caught. Knowing Graves, he would rather see both of them thrown in a cell together than letting him go. Or at least have him hung.

This wouldn’t do in any case, for Twisted Fate.

 

A lot of wounding words. Twisted Fate had more problems actually staying blank, put the usual façade. Graves had reasons to be hurt but nothing hit as hard than hearing hatred in his tone. For a man he grew to love. A pity, truly. Too many things at once.

 

After a lot of struggling and fight, the gang managed to knock them out and brought them to Gangplank, the authority around. The worst thing to happen, after the Locker. Gangplank was cruel. A simple statement, made a day he was feeling rather well. So the gods knew what he was capable of when angry.

Twisted Fate resolved himself for a quick death. This would be the best thing so far, now that they had been cpatured. But the reaver king would want some glory, make it loud, painful to bear.

 

This was the end, truly. As they were brought to be executed, hope left. Again, too many things in a short time. A rollercoaster of emotions. Was it relief to die with Graves ? Maybe. Maybe not, since the latter resumed insulting him, hating him all he could as they were about to be killed.

 

Gangplank was kind sometimes. This day, he would drown his prisonners.

 

Imagine, going so far in life. Fleeing the river after exile. Only to be killed by the sea.

Chapter Text

Hope.

 

Impossible in their desperate situation at the brink of death yet it remained. Lady Luck never really abandoned him, even in the worst moments. This time it took the shape of one of his own cards, discretly put in his tied hand by that same Malcolm Graves that called for revenge. Looked like neither of them wanted to give Gangplank the pleasure of their deaths.

A last chance.

 

Twisted Fate seized it, for a last crucial attempt. When they were both pushed to the sea, he vanished into thin air. A surprise for the crowd, really. Because they had specifically searched for his cards, prevent any funny tricks. Gangplank was smart but didn’t count on the second outlaw to keep another card.

 

A memory of youth, in a way. Always got each other’s back. Even as now when Graves still cursed him and family till he would be sent to drown.

 

Maybe all wasn’t lost, after all. Twisted Fate could still hope. At least to get them out of this potential end. For his own survival first then Graves too. Despite all that happened, he never wished for bad things happening to his ex-partner. Life was cruel but if he could make it up he would.

 

Managed to snatch the dagger from the reaver king but it was at tad too late for Graves, already thrown in the dark waters. So he ran and slid down the ship, after the latter.

 

Fear caught him before the waters. Always so sharp, cold as the sea. It never left since his childhood. Was it because of this fear that he couldn’t swim or was he scared of the sea because he never learned ? Not the time for this question, as panick overtook him.

But he had to. To help Graves. Or maybe his guilt would never leave. He knew it, as he lost little by little his strenght and control in this icy hell. Something had to be done. Even now he couldn’t let go.

 

Tricky, wasn’t it ? Twisted Fate could have just gone away, vanishing into a safer, drier place. Flee again his past, for it came back to him with fury. But in the critical instant, he couldn’t. That thing made him follow Graves, even if it meant sharing the same gruesome end. Feelings. It never left, it would seem. Always tormenting in a rather quiet life. Regrets, looking back to someone he left behind. Life was a bitch indeed but at least it gave an opportunity to be together in its last instants. Wouldn’t abandon him a second time.

 

This wasn’t bearable, at all. Oxygen was so fast to disappear and this blurry environment too hostile. His instinct screamed to go away, be safe, flee, whatever as long as it meant living. By luck, he found Graves but he still counted on more when he had to open the lock sealing his chains. A lot of struggle, in a time where anything was rare, too precious. Darkness closing bit by bit around him, lack of air.

 

The lock gave in a few seconds before he passed out, sudden light from above coloring the waters like in mid day. Wondering if that was what death looked like, when it came to pull you in the abyss.

 

Then oblivion.

 

~

 

This made no fucking sense. He wouldn’t be fooled again, no way. Still very furious against Twisted fate but that was all he had left. Graves couldn’t understand at all what they just went through. All began with the awaited occasion to corner this snake of a thief after a long research. Then all went south. The gang, the run then gods damned Gangplank.

 

Couldn’t believe they got both caught and ready to be killed. Well, it wasn’t surprising knowing how much troubles they created back in the day, it got a lot of attention. But why that day ?

And if that wasn’t enough, the whole bay went on fire. Yes, on fire. Burned, all of Gangplank fleat, the Dead Pool. Everything.

 

Here was Graves, fuming as they got away of the deadly area. A real mess. Many many corpses floating around, burned smell and smoke in the air. Tonight Bilgewater got a real show to behold.

Yes, he was angry, and terribly confused by this unlucky series of events. Who the hell would try to blow up the fleat of the authority around ?

Gangplank got to be dead, for sure.

 

But this wasn’t what he was angry at. Back on land. How did he make it out alive ? Twisted Fate. Why was it an answer ? No idea.

The man actually managed to get them out of their chains and helped as he could. Enough for Graves to be free. In that short time, at the brink of drowning, he got a choice.

Leaving Twisted Fate to his death in cold waters or drag him back to surface.

 

So right now he faced the consequences of his choice. It had been hard to carry him too but in the end he made it to some large part of wood floating to keep them out of water.

After all this time chasing Twisted Fate, all this time hoping to see him dead, he saved him.

 

What is wrong with me ?

 

Immediate thought was to convince himself he had no use for a dead ex-partner. He wanted to hear his reasons and then actually kill him. To know. What pushed him to betray. Just to see if Twisted Fate would confess or would keep on his lies till the very end.

During all the run and since the warehouse, there was already a few attempts from the latter to brush off his responsibility. Say it wasn’t true. That he was wrong. The man had no honor but no one had in Bilgewater. Why would he expect him to be honest for once ?

 

Yes, that was just to hear his last pleas that he ‘saved’ him. A delayed death.

But something troubled Graves, more and more since the warehouse. Since he saw Twisted Fate. Memories, feelings mixing where it wasn’t needed at all. This shit could be gone as quick, he couldn’t care less.

 

Carried him till the coast, safe enough for now. Put Twisted Fate’s unconcious form down, slapped him a few times to get him moving. Guy had too much water in his lungs, quick to solve this. No care for strenght, he got it coming.

 

Annoying, to have memories. He couldn’t help to remember, when watching Twisted Fate. A younger time. Bastard was still handsome, he couldn’t believe. Even all soaked and beaten up as he was at the moment. A shame, truly. For he would have to make him pay anyway.

Graves never wanted to remember, only to keep in mind the reasons of his revenge. Not forget what he had to go through, because of that same man under him, between life and death. But if he tried not to forget, it meant holding the happy memories too.

 

When did love turn to hatred ? This was losing its meaning as he watched Twisted Fate, at last coughing water and breathing again. Alive.

 

He was so close to his vengeance but also so close to Twisted Fate. Pinning him down, ready to listen to whatever made up excuses he had before giving justice. Remember the Locker, remember pain, remember solitude. Never forget. But now it seemed reduced, inhibited.

Graves was angry at himself, for going soft at the worst moment. Why wasn’t it so easy ? To choke the air out of an ex-partner, same one that sold him out. Why wasn’t it appealing now ?

 

No, I hate him. He ruined my life.

 

Twisted Fate got the glazed look of someone having nearly hugged death and ran this way. Still recovering, taking as much breath as he could for it seemed like learning to live again. Not even focused on the threatening presence of his former partner above, looking at him narrowly.

 

So it was time, before the latter could find some senses and ideas to flee. Graves grabbed his wrists, held down firmly to the ground. Twisted Fate never was able to match his strenght, never. He wouldn’t escape from this. Ineluctable.

Another slap to actually have him pay attention, in this difficult time. This did shake the latter, gaze focusing on him now, before it filled with a strange emotion.

 

Fuck.

 

Never as good than Twisted Fate to read others but right now it would be useful. Graves couldn’t understand what he found there. Fear, indeed. This asshole couldn’t swim so of course he got a serious scare. But it was something else that left him unsure. A soft edge, almost. Rare relief, of someone finding another long lost soul.

He could see Twisted Fate. Not the mask but him. No, he’s just acting. Even after such a horrendous ‘bath’ in the bay ? The man was pale like he saw death itself, barely back to an even rhythm. How could he lie in such situation ? And there was no words yet.

 

The latter tried to speak but got to make several attempts before his voice accepted to sound. But even before he voiced it, Graves knew what he tried to say.

 

« Malcolm. » So low, voice impacted by this harshly accepted dive.

 

How could a name hurt so much to be said and to be heard. Graves felt his resolve declining little by little. A name spoke so often before, from that same mouth. In more quiet, intimate settings.

 

« Fuck you. » Quick reaction, he wouldn’t fall for that again. It manipulated him once, not twice. Never again.

 

Let fury flow again, take control. Remember everything, his reasons. Just at the memories, his grasp tightened on the latter. Maybe some control or he would break too soon.

 

« You won’t escape me now. It’s over. »

 

Already imagined what Twisted Fate would look like, beaten and caught. When he had no longer ways to get out. Just the man remained. No fancy tricks, no sweet lies, nothing to save him.

But right now, he looked like nothing of it. Maybe he already accepted death, the moment they got sent to be drowned. When he jumped to join him in the waters.

 

Why would he do that ? They both knew he couldn’t swim at all. But he followed nonetheless and saved him. This made no sense, to the point of annoying Graves. Why save someone you sent to jail ? Why risk something as stupid ? There was no possible good reasons to do that, for Twisted Fate’s own benefit. Why save someone trying to kill you ?

 

Selfish, arrogant, liar. Why do that ? Trying to find some logic was the promise to lose his mind, while he had the man to his mercy.

Enough for a headache, after all the damage taken after the gang caught them.

 

No words from under. Exasperated, he changed his grasp to shake him by the collar. Violently. Twisted Fate winced but stood his gaze. Bastard.

 

« Why ? Why did you sell me out ? » The only question that mattered. Then he would be free to get this done and dealt forever. No longer having to see that pretty face.

 

Surprise tinted the latter’s gaze and it reflected in his voice : « I didn’t. Never. »

 

Always lying. He knew it would happen. No matter what, Twisted Fate carried on his habits.

 

« Bullshit. You fucking left me to be captured in that damned heist. At least admit one thing before you die. » Grasp trembling, clutching at that latter as to his belief.

 

« I…I know I lie most of times. But I never sold you out. We were partners. »

 

« And you left me behind ! Partners my ass. At least find a proper reason to get rid of me. »

 

Not fun at all, to have this conversation waited for years. The moment he could understand why he had to endure all this. Give a meaning to this mess, waste of ten years. Tempting to use force to make him talk.

 

« Never wanted to get rid of you. That heist was just bad luck. I made a mistake, okay ? »

 

Lies till the end. His patience had ran out for a long time.

 

« A mistake that got me in the Locker, is that what you mean ?! You’re shit at excusing your mess. »

 

« I’m sorry ! » Almost a shout, as their exchanges got louder.

 

Direct gaze, no lies to see. Graves couldn’t believe. If that was true then all these years spent at hating were for nothing. Again, it was just words but he had been asking for truth in the latter’s last moments. When was the last time Twisted Fate admitted his faults ? An old time. But he saw it.

Remember that time when he could trust the man, thinking he was honest only with him. Sadly the whole crappy heist put an end to it. But what if ?

 

Not once he could tell if Twisted Fate was lying. A few rare times he was certain it was indeed the truth, talks in bed. How to be sure now ? Was he telling the truth all along ? He feared that possibility so much. It would break his evidencies. Hatred. What kept him alive for so long. Why he managed to get out.

 

No. He wouldn’t fall for this again.

 

« Like hell you’re sorry. Do you even know how it feels, to go in that fucking Locker ? Can you even get that ? Ten years ! And you didn’t do shit to help. You just ran away and left me behind. Can you even imagine how it feels to be left behind ?! »

Chapter Text

All that he had on his heart. Anger, sorrow, pain. All that let him scarred for life. Abandon was the worst. To have no one left. Alone.

 

Against all odds, this made Twisted Fate react, more than he thought : « Shut up ! You don’t know shit either so fuck off. Yeah, I couldn’t get you out. Guess what ?? I couldn’t ! I tried, I swear. Did all I could but you were too far. I know that was horrible for you but you’re not the only one that got hurt. »

 

The outburst was further than expected. Everything screamed truth but Graves was not sure anymore. Wanted so much to hate, put any of these lies down and get on with this. But what if it was true ?

A part still wanted to believe. That same part that loved, before it was forcefully muted for his own survival.

 

« Shut up. You can’t understand. » Slightly weaker than before but he tried to hide it.

 

« Malcolm, please. I’m not lying. Not now, not to you. I never wanted this to happen and I wished I could have done something to help you. »

 

« You always lied. No once it was the truth. How do you want me to trust you ? »

 

Silence from Twisted Fate, a very human emotion showing in his features. Like searching the right thing to say but also impacted by the latest words. It was the truth, both knew it. Lies were something he learned to master along with the cards. For Graves, this was as good as confessing.

 

« I guess you can’t ever guess if that is the truth or not. But that’s the principle of trust. »

 

Light words yet it struck Graves to see the latter’s expression. No mask. Or at least, not this stupid poker face of most times. Instead, a hint of sadness yet mixed with that soft tone. He couldn’t bear to have Twisted Fate look so genuine, not now. Not when he wanted to get revenge. It wouldn’t hold as much meaning.

All this reminded him of the last time he saw the man so open. If that was true. Impossible to catch except when he allows it. Right now Twisted Fate had no way out so he seemed to let the mask down.

 

« My trust in you is dead and burried. Worst idea ever. » Still clutching his control, not ready to flinch.

 

« So you did trust me. »

 

This. The ghost of a smile. For Graves, it just gave him the need to slap the latter again. Though maybe he didn’t mean to mock. It sounded dreamy, like a memory. A sort of relief for hearing this.

 

« Never again. »

 

« Why ? Why can’t you even try to trust me when I say I never sold you out? It’s the truth. »

 

Why couldn’t he consider this as potentially true ? His mind blocked this possibility. It became clear that he couldn’t let this be true. Or it would question his whole motivation. Revenge. What if Twisted Fate wasn’t lying for once ? These last words would make sense from someone seeking to make truth known.

 

« I can’t. » Too many thoughts at once, many things that would be explained if he admitted that he trusted him. « …It would change too many things. »

 

« Like what ? I mean, you still have plenty of reasons to be angry at me but not that ‘betrayal’. » A sigh came from Twisted Fate, exhaustion taking over with all the horrible condition they were in at the moment. « Malcolm, I just want you to believe me. »

 

« You’re just trying to get away as always. I won’t let you go. »

 

« As if I was in condition to run away. I know when I’m trapped. But since I am to pay for what I did to you, might at least make sure you know the truth. »

 

Again, a reminder. Twisted Fate had no illusions about what he wanted from him. Blood. His life. But now that craving for vengeance was weakened by the minute. The conversation already got him deep. Even near death, the latter was rather lucid, realist.

 

« What are you, suicidal ? »

 

Part was true. By now he wasn’t truly making an effort at holding Twisted Fate down. Graves stopped when it was clear he wouldn’t struggle uselessly. Cornered. Had he really wanted to run away, he could have made it. He gave up.

 

« Maybe so ? I don’t know. Life was going so well but still felt like I lost something for more than a decade. Oh I tried to forget you but you’re always a pain, even when you’re not here. »

 

More to think about. How could he say things like this ? To lose something. Graves knew that but surely not in the same circumstances. Lost a lot in the Locker.

 

« Fuck off. I don’t believe you. »

 

« Because you don’t want to. Is that so bad to even consider me telling the truth ? To hear me say how I missed you ? That I am sorry ? »

 

No answer to that. Twisted Fate pointed out the exact matter. Anger, against him. Against himself for relying so much on that hatred. Even if it became clear it wasn’t so legitimate anymore. Violence rushed at once, slamming his fist on the ground next to Twisted Fate’s head. Why ? Wanted so much to believe , for old time’s sake but at the same time it took him his will. Because revenge kept him alive. Made him endure the Locker, years spent without nothing but pure fury.

 

There would be no reason to carry on anymore, if Twisted Fate was saying the truth. Which was almost certified. What was best ? To deny truth to protect one’s peace of mind or to accept it ?

It joined the question of what would he do after getting revenge. Return to his previous life, before partnership and Locker ? If he did what he had been planning for years in that jail, it would follow him to his death to even imagine that the latter was telling the truth. Ready to have this on his conscience ?

 

Graves gave in. Let doubt do its work : « Tell me. How went the heist on your part ? »

 

Maybe this would help. To hear how the latter got out of this. It could still be a lie but Graves wanted to hear whatever the man had to say about that damned day.

 

The latter looked away for time, searching memories. It was still very vulnerable how he was under him.

 

« You see the moment we got on our ways. I sneaked into the place but as you probably saw, there was far too many guards. The escape was one of the most difficult I had to do. Got a bullet as souvenir so I went back fast to our room. ». He grew silent, gaze in the far, sorrows visible. « Then I waited for you. »

 

Last sentence that broke his resolve a bit more. Twisted Fate’s voice cracked on it, foreign emotion too voiced.

Here was the latter’s truth. It was up to Graves to trust him on it or not. But that sad edge sounded too genuine, heartfelt. He already heard the latter go emotional before, when they were together and it gave him a strange ache. Was everything true ?

 

« You got shot ? Where ? » Maybe some instinct coming up for that part, a bit of concern yet he resented feeling this right now.

 

« Left shoulder. But I guess it’s nothing as painful as whatever they did to you in the Locker. » An attempt at a smile, the kind filled of regrets.

 

Grave’s hand went to to the latter’s shoulder. Something meaningless, of course. But like a reflex to check or to reassure.

 

He got hurt. This wasn’t something he expected. On the other hand, Graves was convinced he just ran away after selling him out so there was a difference. It was a valid reason. An injury.

 

« So it’s true ? »

 

Surely it got really tempting for Twisted Fate to sass on that but he refrained : « Yeah. Want to check the scar ? It’s still here. Taking the bullet out wasn’t really the cleanest job ever. »

 

« I don’t want to see that. »

 

Where was the anger ? The hatred ? Now Graves felt just exhausted, drained of whatever emotions he had on the last hours. It was true. Little by little he came to trust Twisted Fate, despite himself. Still very impacted, memories of the Locker burning at the back of his mind but he couldn’t act on it. Not anymore.

Was it worth it ? To end a man that tried his best ? Just for a temporary feeling of satisfaction ? It would follow him forever. Here was Twisted Fate, at his mercy and all left to be seen in his darkest secrets.

 

I want to be sure.

 

« Your past. Tell me. If you’re really being honest. »

 

A test. Maybe the last resistance he could give. By principle. For trying so hard not to be manipulated, he did all he could to be sure. But as Twisted Fate said, there was no perfect way to know if he was lying. Could just trust.

Since it was about the latter’s past, something he refused to tell before, then it couldn’t be invented in a second. If he told him, it had to be true.

 

The request seemed to touch Twisted Fate worse than he wanted but there was no place for reserves now. They all endured pain at some point, now it seemed fair to have him speak.

 

Some hesitation but the way Graves looked at him was to make him understand there was no way around. Twisted Fate sighed again, defeated.

 

« Fine. To put it simply, I was born from the riverfolks of the Serpentine. Grew up there, learned my tricks till I got sent into exile for protecting my family. Never saw them again. Survived during my teenager years. Last notable thing was finding you. »

 

Exile. It joined that idea of abandon. Something both knew, it would seem. Graves couldn’t believe yet he actually heard his past. Something he had always been curious about.

 

« A riverman unable to swim. Good job. » That part seemed still quite ridiculous though.

 

« Shut up. Not my choice. »

 

For once it was new to hear Twisted Fate like that. Annoyed though wounded. This mustn’t have been peaceful to live.

 

Now he knew. Maybe one last thing yet.

 

« So Tobias was your real name ? »

 

For trying even to question a name, Graves wanted to ask. Be sure.

 

Twisted Fate averted his gaze again. This looked quite personal too.

 

« Tobias Foxtrot. » At last he spoke, almost a whisper between them. « Satisfied ? »

 

The tone of someone having showed too much. Too relatable for Graves. Almost compassion for the latter, despite this mess of feelings happening at once.

In a few minutes, he learned more about Twisted Fate than he ever managed to get from him during partnership.

 

Not a question of truth anymore. This sounded too real, too painful for such a man. After literally running to kill him, this was far from what he would have expected the day to go. What would he do now ?

 

The need for revenge was gone. Epiphany. What would it give him anyway ? It would just be breaking a man, for nothing.

And now he knew more Twisted Fate.

 

When did hatred disappear ? There was still this resentment but where was that anger guiding each of his moves and shots ? He only found truth, when he had been waiting for more reasons to hate. Graves had no more reasons. Maybe a new one, though.

It didn’t eraze the years of suffering but it evened the balance a little. He would never forget but at the same time he couldn’t neither. Happy memories were still there too, not so tainted after forcibly pushing it aside. The threat of lies was no longer. If he trusted Twisted Fate again.

 

One question.

 

Coming back where they stopped, he remembered to speak : « Okay, last one. And you better not lie. Did you love me, back when we were partners ? »

Chapter Text

A decade ago, Twisted Fate wouldn’t have found the answer to it so quickly. Not accepting yet his feelings, still fumbling with the limit of affection. It wasn’t clear yet if he could trust.

Now, for all the time spent waiting for someone that would never come back and the solitude, the answer was an evidency. Immediate. But it hurt to hear that question. Because it took him so long to realize, before he could fully appreciate it with Graves. Now it was too late, the wrong had been done and confession kept beyond the allowed time.

 

Why would it matter anyway ? No doubt Graves hated him now. All that run from the warehouse had been enough to get that. But at the same time, he learned the latter was convinced he betrayed. Maybe it was the reason for such hatred or maybe it was something else.

 

Anyway, he wouldn’t lie now. There was no use. Caught, pinned down, no cards, no escape. Had given up when they were captured. It really was a surprise to still be alive though. After that glimpse of Graves’s anger, he wouldn’t have bet on being rescued like that. At the same time, it was truly stupid from him to jump into the bay to help. But again, feelings and regrets.

 

The question was clear. The answer was there too but it hurt. Had he figured this out sooner, maybe Graves wouldn’t have been in such fury against him. We would never know how events happened anyway.

 

It burned, because his answer was still very correct in their present situation. Love never really left, despite all his effort to forget and carry on. Twisted Fate lived in the past and it came to pin him down.

 

Shaken, surely this wasn’t fast enough for Graves. Though he wasn’t as rough as the beginning. Something in his gaze, under the clear anger. Something he knew before.

 

« Answer. Now. »

 

He had to answer. Not to save his own life, he had given up on this. But because he owed him the truth, including this. It wasn’t the most pleasant thing for him to reveal such information but necessity. Plus, knowing it was Graves, it made it slightly better.

 

« I did. » Quiet words, just loud enough to be heard. « And I still do. »

 

Reality. From the instant he saw Graves in that warehouse, he couldn’t stay calm. The man he tried so hard to forget, keep out of his life now that he was gone for good. But he came back. What no one did before for him. Thinking about it, it was obvious these feelings never left. Or he would have been happy since then.

To make him suffer for so long, it must have been strong.

 

For once, not a word escaped Graves as he registered this. Plain shock, more or less hidden but Twisted Fate could read right through him. He was so determined to hate me. Either not expecting this or too blinded by anger. A bit normal, if he was honest. These years in the Locker mustn’t have been nice to his peace of mind. Even more if he convinced himself I sold him out.

Himself wasn’t specially hoping for this tricky situation to be unlocked. Either Graves would take his revenge or not but he would never let go. He was too stubborn for that. Maybe didn’t think that till end neither. But Twisted Fate wanted to correct lies, like not to be accused of something he would ever imagine.

 

Liar ? Yes, of course. But not a traitor to someone he trusted. There was priorities.

 

Several times Graves looked like he wanted to say something but he didn’t. Obviously thinking about what this meant, anything. Anyway, Twisted Fate wouldn’t go anywhere.

 

« You loved me too, Malcolm. Though I can safely suppose this isn’t the case anymore. »

 

Bittersweet, to know how it was. There had been a time where they loved each other. Over, burried under a decade. But wouldn’t it bee sweet to hear it was returned, even for a time long gone ?

 

Anger was still here but this softer edge too. Poor guy was trying so hard but all this was complex, for both of them. A lot to unpack, for these lost years.

That statement was a bit unfair. His fault for making it more difficult to get through.

 

Looking down, the latter spoke on a similar tone : « I did. But I don’t know anymore. If I believe you… »

 

« You don’t want to kill me. » He realized.

 

Of course this was a struggle for Graves. He came here with one purpose and now he couldn’t even do it.

 

« I will. You ruined everything. » Still trying to keep control, show he wasn’t actually impacted by the conversation.

 

« Then do it. If you think all these are lies and that my death will make everything better. »

 

This would be a harsh punishment for giving up on a partner but it was somehow deserved. Neither were innocents. Twisted Fate could still accept death from this man. Not like he had been particularly happy these last years.

 

Just a small gesture, reaching for Graves gently. Not even meaning to be so slow. His hand joined the latter’s, on the ground. Eye contact kept during all of it.

 

« What’s the matter ? You waited for this. Do it. »

 

Honestly, Twisted Fate couldn’t really tell if he was really going to do it. Take his revenge. Death or life ?

 

An annoyed sigh then Graves withdrew from their position, to sit up. Though he held the latter’s arm to be sure he wouldn’t run away at the occasion. No longer trapped under him.

 

« I can’t. »

 

Despite his certain acceptance, Twisted Fate sighed too. From relief. It was still quite bothersome to be right under the latter and not always in the good sense. Graves could be very threatening if he wanted too. A real danger. Maybe one of the reasons he liked him, after all.

 

« Why ? » Curious. About what excuses Graves would find for this choice. Twisted Fate sat up too, wincing at the pain accumulated in their busy run since the warehouse. At lot to take.

 

« You’re a real pain. Shut the fuck up. » Always came back to the usual remarks.

 

Strangely, Twisted Fate missed that. To bicker. There was so many things he enjoyed in Graves company, that disappeared before but now he couldn’t even realize how he missed it.

 

« You know this won’t happen. What do you plan to do now, if you’re letting me alive ? »

 

« I have no idea. Just wanted to see you dead but even that I managed to fuck up. » Hand to his own face, like under a serious headache. Sure it was difficult.

 

« So I’m free ? » Quick to ask, let him figure this out.

 

« Hell no. You’re not going anywhere. » The grasp tightened a little as show of his words. But his expression wasn’t so angry, more thoughtful. « I didn’t go that far to let you go away. »

 

It turned out soft. Neither expected it but it was genuine. Somehow, Twisted Fate got to hope again. Graves wouldn’t let him, couldn’t take his revenge after they talked. Maybe they could still have something. Really ?

 

Faced him though the latter made it difficult by lookign away. « So what ? You’re gonna keep me with you ? To be honest, I wouldn’t say no. »

 

Graves said nothing, gaze fixated on the bay. It was still burning, like everything kept happening while they ‘talked’. The man was exhausted, wounded and without a doubt lost all his reasons. Would need a new goal now.

 

So maybe it would take some convincing. This wasn’t very safe but Twisted Fate had to try. Came closer, to get Graves attention.

 

« Malcolm ? What about getting back together ? »

 

More conflicted silence. Then he spoke up : « I don’t know. I…I spent too much time hating you. Don’t know if I can go back to before. »

 

« I meant as partners, not partners-partners. But however you want. I understand, it’s not easy. »

 

« Ah. » Words from a man mistaken by himself. If that was possible to find embarassment from him.

 

« But partnership, wouldn’t it be nice ? Personally, I enjoyed that time. And this way, I won’t run away, I swear. »

 

This sounded more like convincing Graves than anything. The latter wanted things but he couldn’t point out exactly what.

 

« As if I could trust you again. »

 

« I told you the truth, gave my past and feelings. And I trust you. It will take time but I want to try this. »

 

Slowly he came to hold Graves, just shy enough of a grasp not to alarm him. It was almost a reflex, to reach for him. And it didn’t seem to bother him too much. Barely noticed it, going instead to meet his gaze.

 

« If you lie to me ever again, I’m gonna shoot you myself. »

 

« Just answer. Do you want to try or not ? You know I won’t lie to you on serious matters, like these. »

 

After thinking hard enough to be hear, the answer came : « I want it. To be partners again. »

 

« There, that was easy, no ? Now you’re stuck with me forever. » Light tone but still craving to hear him accept this.

 

A bit unhoped for. After such a long night, Twisted Fate was a little disbelieving to have found him back and that they hadn’t actually killed each other. They would be alright for now. His own heart was going crazy, not ready for such stress then the possibility of returning together. After so long alone, this was going to be wild.

 

« Lucky me… » There, the grumbling man he missed so much. Already regretting his decision but both knew it would go better. « By the way, take this. It’s yours. »

 

No way…. Just as he was handed his own hat. No idea how it managed to come back to him but it seemed that Lady Luck was rather generous after all the crap he went through.

 

« How ?? »

 

« Found it floating while I was carrying your stupid ass to land. Can’t believe I lost Destiny while you got your fucking hat back. »

 

« Ah shit. I’m sorry for that. »

 

Graves stared at him for a second : « Stop apologizing, it’s getting scary. » Another sad sigh followed. « Guess I’ll have to get a new one. »

 

« Then we have a destination. I suppose you’d find one at Piltover, no ? »

 

« Yeah, yeah. But first I’m going back to the inn. Maybe you don’t remember but we just escaped death and got a bath in the damned bay. »

 

Both looked at the lightened scene, fire still making it look like day time. Impressive, to know this happened but at the same time they got a lot going on. Gangplank was dead or seriously wounded. Oh Bilgewater was going to go crazy after that.

 

« Can I come with you ? »

 

« Hmm ? Yeah. But take your own fucking room. »

 

It was strange to get back in these habits. Like time hadn’t passed at all. In the end, it felt like a long lost time. Back on tracks, together.

Chapter Text

Fuck.

 

Not once Graves would have guessed the end of this peculiar day – or rather night. While he had woken up with the clear motivation to make Twisted Fate pay, it was so far from the actual path taken. At first, no one would have guessed Gangplank would be targeted by such massive attack. A show no one missed in Bilgewater. Second, all the run and gang involved in what was supposed to be a mere business between two ex-partners.

And now, here they were, getting back on partnership.

 

Life had its way, sometimes. And he would become mad if he tried to keep up and understand it. Could just consider what he got out of it. Many bruises and cuts, easy to heal at least. A shotgun less. That was sad though, he really took care of Destiny and now gone. Instead, he got an annoying cardmaster to keep with him again, after all these years.

 

From trying to get his revenge to getting back to the inn with Twisted Fate, that was a huge run.

 

Why ? What am I doing ?

 

Well, he knew why. A little. It seemed right to do so. After all, what else would he do ? Revenge tasted sour, it wouldn’t bring any good except maybe have Twisted Fate to shut up. It was no longer useful, for his aim was just a lie he told himself. The latter never betrayed. Still a hint of doubt but after all the talk, he couldn’t deny it.

So he hadn’t killed him and wished never to do that. But at the thought of Twisted Fate running free, he realized he couldn’t let him go. Literally and emotionally. His reason to survive in the Locker. If he didn’t want anymore to take his life, he still wanted to keep him close.

 

A bit of incomprehension for this. But it wasn’t so strange. They lived together for some time already. If he was so reluctant to see Twisted Fate go away, it meant he wished to keep him in his life. Maybe for better reasons.

Feelings waiting at the corner. It was well known, he remembered it. How love guided him a decade ago, to care about another outlaw. A long forgotten part of him but it would come back easily, it would seem. Already made him keep the latter close despite how futile this was. But the appeal was still here.

 

Awaken.

 

The return to his rented room was peculiar, for sure. Like, Graves didn’t expect to have company on the way. And also because of their state. Clothes still soaked despite the time already out of the waters.

A lot less weigh to carry, for his own sadness. The loss of Destiny would follow him for some time, at least till he got a new one.

 

Behind, Twisted Fate didn’t talk much, unlike what he was used to in their younger time. Not dead silent but rather more cautious. The gap of a decade without each other. Not to be fooled, he would get back to chatting too soon.

 

Partners. A part of him wasn’t really ready to believe that. But he would roll with it. Hadn’t been in a partnership since – well – their last one, ending on that agonising note.

Twisted Fate was right, it would take time but in the end, this choice was the best. At least now he had an excuse to look after him.

 

They made it to the inn and directly he went to his own room. Grumbling good night at the latter, though a lingering gaze before he headed upstairs. How could he trust him ? Twisted Fate could just go away and put as much distance as he wanted. But innerly, Graves scowled for seeing that trust. Oh, there was still a possibility that came morning, the latter would be gone for a while. That wouldn’t happen. At least, he hoped so. Or this would just open an occasion to hunt him down through Bilgewater again.

 

Barely heard his name called behind before he left. Now he was alone again but not so alone. Not anymore. Twisted Fate would do his business or whatever, now he could relax a little. If that was possible. The aches of the day caught up the instant he sat down on a chair.

Silence at last. But he heard it too much these years, so more noises was welcome.

 

Clothes down, to be dealt with later. The smell of the bay clung to it, salt and the remains of smoke. It was time for a shower.

 

At last some peace. And more room to think about what happened, about this mess. Warm water was like a blessing after all the night, though it stung a little on the few cuts.

 

Many questions at once, some he already got the answer but it was hard to acknowledge it. Why get back with Twisted Fate ?

A bit complex to explain. It had a certain sense of safety. Of known territory. Because they already did that part before so it wasn’t starting from nothing. He knew him and all around. A kind of double edge, he knew what he was signing up for. Both in bad and good things. But after what they went through, it seemed unlikely to happen again.

 

Why did it seem natural to come back to Twisted Fate ? He would blame his old feelings. Something he thought was dead along his trust. But again, it was coming back. At first discreet but sneaking its way till he couldn’t ignore it. The instant he saw the latter again, after more than a decade, his heart gave a reminder. That nothing was forgotten.

No idea how they were going to act for now but Graves doubted he would remain in that state of ‘don’t-know-what-to-feel’. He knew himself. He knew Twisted Fate. If they were to partner up again, then without a doubt he would fall again for him. Did once, never recovered.

 

But would it be a bad thing ? His mind raced. Why was he still hesitating ? Twisted Fate confessed he loved him, back in their days. And he still did.

 

Too fast ? Hell if he knew. Still trying to get over the fact that he spent years convinced his partner betrayed though he just did his best. And got injured. Again that old instinct coming up. Protective. So ancient, like from another life. Could remember the time all that mattered what Twisted Fate and their happy going life.

 

Now it didn’t seem so foreign, to imagine. Just took to trust again. Maybe he would. A bit of annoyance against himself, for still having this soft side for the latter. Oh it depended of the time – these deserved slaps proved it – but overall he couldn’t wish anymore real harm upon him.

 

All this was too complicated. His head hurt after the night events and all his body screamed for some proper rest. Finished his shower, dried and went looking for cleaner trousers. At the limit of no giving a fuck anymore but he still took care of the damp clothes left on the floor, to dry in the night. Maybe get it clean, when they got time. Whatever.

 

It was damn late in the night. Still some noise outside, for the city never slept. Next day would be used for rest and only that. Aw fuck. Almost forgot Twisted Fate got up early. Well maybe for once he wouldn’t do that. Anyway, Piltover wouldn’t disappear overnight. They had time.

 

So Graves went to bed, ready to at last rest. But his thoughts became too loud again. Following the latter, as always. Did he ever left his mind ? Why now ? I need sleep. He would have this inner talk about his feelings in the morning, or afternoon. However, at long as it waited next day.

 

Solitude had changed. Not as cruel than before. Because he found him again. And if he trusted Twisted fate, he was actually staying at the inn too. Not alone.

A contrast to his life in cell. It wasn’t even visible, he really was alone but the thought of being reunited was enough, it would seem.

 

In any case, after turning again and again in bed, sleep finally came for him. For his own peace.

 

~

 

Not again…

 

It was getting late, Twisted Fate was exhausted but his thoughts still ran from the night. At least he got time to get cleaned up, wipe away the memories of that damned bath. Not fun at all, to remember. His own fears coming up at once then lingering a little for the night. Icy.

Hoped he wouldn’t have a nightmare about drowning again, it would be horrible.

 

All this was the least of his problems, at the instant. Instead, thoughts came back to Graves. Like, now they were partners again. The most impossible thing in this world yet here he was, pacing in his room and too restless to even sit.

 

Return to old urges. Why did he have to endure this again ? The old call at night, to sleep with someone. It never really left though these years it was never satisfied. Seemed that the person mattered. Difficult, to miss Graves like that, at the time he was gone for good.

But now he was back. So the urge returned, to burn him slowly. Never really found peace in sleep since then.

 

Questioning their whole relationship. They were partners again but what did it mean ? Just in the formal sense of partners ? From what he saw of Graves, he wasn’t sure neither. Nor gave a proper answer about feelings.

 

So this was unnerving. Graves was nearby, he knew it. But would it be alright ? There was only one way to know.

 

Twisted Fate went out of his room, in the dead hours of the night. Light steps, quiet. But the noise in his mind was too much. Mistake or not ? Would Graves refuse or let him ? Wanted so much to believe this meant nothing, he would accept a no. But he couldn’t sleep, many fears going around. It would hurt to be refused.

Many memories came up too. Of these nights, when nothing was sure yet. When he fled his own doubt and needs, to return to the latter. Steal some sweet time, under the cover of darkness. So much happened since then, would it still be possible ?

 

Facing the door, like facing his own problems. What if ? Was it too fast ? Could never deny his own heart, when it meant reaching for Graves.

 

This time, instead of simply appearing inside, he knocked. Loud enough to be heard inside, just that. A call.

 

He’s gonna be mad at me again.

 

Well, this wouldn’t change from their young days. Always managed to annoy Graves. But still feared that he would truly turn his back on him.

 

Silence. For a time. All that he heard was his own heart, beating rather fast for what was going on. Maybe not.

 

Then there was heavy steps from the other side of the door. Part of him was almost surprised to find a sort of answer.

 

Door opened, enough for the latter to glare at him with all his soul, in this despicable hour. Bingo, he’s angry.

 

« The fuck you want ? Go to sleep already. » Grumbling low, surely he was about to sleep or was already.

 

No turning back allowed.

 

« Can I ? » Not fully voicing the request but a clear gesture toward Graves, stepping closer.

 

There was a pause while he seemed to consider this, making a face. Enough to make Twisted Fate scared at eventualities. The walk to his own room would be painful, indeed.

But the answer came, door opened wide to let him in.

 

So this was a yes. Good news. On this, Graves merely stomped back to his bed, leaving him the charge to lock the door behind.

 

« Can’t believe it took you ten years to learn how to knock. » Some mumbling as he lied down as quick, like there wasn’t another person in his room.

 

For a time, Twisted Fate just watched him do, as much as the dim room allowed it. Okay then. It wasn’t so hard, it would seem. Just needed to ask.

Guided by reflex, he reached the bed and proceeded to undress. So old habit, to do this in the dark. Nearby, the bed creaked as Graves tried to find a good position to sleep.

 

It was a bit surprising. No question about all this. Like long before. Always used to it. Merely knocked at his door to sleep together but not a word. A word came to his mind and it hurt. Domesticity. So far from what he could hope but they already had it, years ago.

 

« Not done yet ? Fucking move on. » Hushed, but that took Twisted Fate out of his thoughts.

 

The urge was strong now. So he hurried and lied down in bed. Already memories came to slap him. The feeling of another person in bed. Buely enough, it wasn’t so easy for two to fit in bed but it was a good excuse to come closer.

For an instant it seemed that neither knew what to do. Contact would be the best but after all they went through, there was a certain awkwardness. This debate was shut down easily, Graves taking the initiative to pull him to him. Now he was pressed to the latter, an arm slung over to keep him here.

 

Couldn’t really calm down his own heartbeat but maybe do as if everything was normal. It was the contrary, both knew it. But at the same time, they questioned everything. Feelings, limits, contact. This felt right, so it was allowed.

 

Right as he was about to let go and get some sleep, silence was broken.

 

A whisper, from so close : « Why didn’t you tell me, at the time ? »

 

« Tell you what ? »

 

Curious time for a pillow talk but he wasn’t sure about anything anymore. Twisted Fate experienced too many extreme things that day, nothing could faze him as much now.

 

« That you loved me too. »

 

« I… » Words got stuck. Not something he was ready to talk about, not so soon. Took him so long just to figure out, so talking about it heart open was painful. « I was scared, okay ? Never held so much to someone else so I was afraid you’d just go away at some point. But I really wish I said it back. »

 

« Then say it. » A little louder, an order.

 

Even in the dark he could feel Graves’s gaze, at their non-distance.

 

« I love you. » Words that waited for so long. Never thought he would ever say it one day.

 

And he hadn’t the time to feel the weigh of such words, as he was caught into a kiss. Barely saw it coming but now it didn’t matter.

Not the most gentle move Graves ever did but he wasn’t usually good at this sort of thing. The kiss was deep from the start, hungry. Something within Twisted Fate broke at the feeling, and blooming at the same time. Like going back home.

Not even a second to return it with equal passion, clinging to the latter with all he could. Starved, seeking what he thought he would never find again. Funny, how kisses never changed. Still tickled by Graves’s bear, still that bite result of the man’s ways of showing.

 

For the second time that day, his breath was caught and taken from him. Nothing to fight it. At least this time it wouldn’t hurt to drown.

Chapter Text

Morning came, without a move. Then afternoon came merrily, ray of sunlight from the unique window. Mostly silence in there, except a few noises of sleep, some snoring. They really needed that rest, after this terrible day or reunion.

 

As he always did a long time ago, Twisted Fate was the first of the two to wake up. Though it was greatly later than what he usually did. But again, they had a rough time.

Eyes blinking open, meeting light. Right away he closed it again. Shit. A bit harsh but he would get used to it. Instead, he stretched a little and settled back in bed. Snuggled to Graves. Oh, yes. Could have forgotten, if it wasn’t for the too small space in bed for the two of them. And it wasn’t only the fact that he was pressed to the latter in their sleep. It was the reciprocity of such cuddling.

 

Not new, far from it. But after years of sleeping alone, Twisted Fate could just appreciate it like the best thing in the world. Memories returned, before they fell asleep and his head swam a little at it. One fucking good kiss. No way to forget about it.

There was always a peculiar relief, each time he had to confess or at least say things he meant to keep for himself. Each time, it was because Graves asked for it. And now it was said. A weigh lifted.

 

The kiss was still in his mind though, burning whatever expectations he had for them. Didn’t mind at all but this was really surprising. Graves initiated it. And in one move, hope was sparked again.

 

Now, the real question was, did Graves still love him ? Despite all that happened, the imagined betrayal and the talk after near-death ? Himself couldn’t be sure of someone else feelings. Already too much work just understanding his own. But that kiss changed many things. More than the fact that Graves allowed him in his bed to sleep. Besides falling back into their old habit.

That particular thing was complex. They slept together since they were what could be called a couple. No stated nor voiced but they were together. So this sleeping habit wasn’t weird.

 

Would it mean they really got back to their situation before the damned heist ? Good question.

 

It would take time, he said it before. But right now, looking at his sleepy partner, Twisted Fate wasn’t sure how all this was going to happen. Seemed that an important step was taken without any of them realizing the consequences and the importance.

Slowly, he supported himself on an elbow, gaze on Graves. Here we are. From a very long way, between solitude and almost hatred.

 

Strange, to be back to the exact place he yearned all these years. Now, he couldn’t realize yet. All the luck in this world couldn’t give him such a thing. His partner. Maybe the only man he ever trusted, and loved. Really, he would never blame him for surrending to hatred for a time. Never went in the Locker but it was known to be the worst place in the world. Surely it did things to Graves, that couldn’t be described. Even more if he was in love at the time.

Loss was terrible.

 

Gaze wandering a little, seeking differences from the past. Now he could look without fear of being found out. First thing that hit him, back then, was how he immediately recognized Graves. The man did change but nothing too drastic. Rougher edges, a bit stronger. Wondered for a time since when he had escaped. Conditions of survival in this hell mustn’t have been kind, so risk that he hadn’t eaten enough there.

Some scars too, from where he was. Couldn’t see all of him, from this angle and closeness. But there was many places hurt and badly healed. Some sadness followed him. Twisted Fate wanted to see them all, to count and linger. Graves was always the one who got most of scars, for he was the one running into fights and/or pulling him out of troubles. But nothing as dangerous than a stay in the Locker.

 

It hurt, to think about it. His partner was so close all this time but he couldn’t go find him. Regrets would follow him till the end but at least he knew that the latter made it out alive.

 

He came back. At first with the intention to spill blood but he came back indeed. Surge of sorrow, bitterness. The first to come back to him. All the others never bothered turning back to him nor made sure he was still alive. Bastards. What family even meant, when it chose to leave him behind ? Twisted Fate would never forget nor forgive.

The river in front of him, his own people going away. Exile, was it ? It implied he was the one walking away. But they did leave him. The river between them, obstacle he could never avoid. Just water yet it filled the space between him and people supposed to love him.

 

They never returned. But Graves returned to him. Here was the difference. And it meant everything.

 

Barely registered how his vision got blurry in a few seconds. Tears, trailing down his cheek for all the pain of a decade alone. For the pain inflicted and received. But also for the joy of finding again his partner.

 

Too much. Emotion spilled without a chance to take it back. Here was the aftershock, of the whole thing between them. Never expected it to hit that hard.

Effort to muffle it but it was getting stronger. Twisted Fate gave up holding back, embracing the latter as he broke little by little.

 

Not longer after, as he was still crying the feeling away, came some shifting from Graves. Probably awaken by all this. At first some confused grumbling, before he stilled in the embrace.

 

« ….The fuck ? » Low and sleepy.

 

No matter what he would have said, it made Twisted Fate more overwhelmed, new emotion washing over.

 

And now Graves was registering the situation, hands on his partner wihtout any idea of what to do.

 

« Tobias… ? » A bit disbelieving, for what he was witnessing. Couldn’t see but from the noises it was pretty clear.

 

After muffling a sob, Twisted Fate tried to speak, explain, anything.

 

« You came back to me…Even after all that happened. I’m so sorry… » It turned out weaker than he wished, a bit mortified to break this way. But it was his truth, so glad in this instant yet so sad for all that happened to them. « I thought I’d never see you again… »

 

For such a waking, Graves wasn’t ready. His hands went still on him, over the trembling. A breath was caught.

 

« No no no. Fuck you, asshole. Fuck you…. » It broke too on the end, equal emotion mixing in the tone.

 

Twisted Fate couldn’t believe that neither. How the embrace grew tight around him, strong arms keeping him there. He heard it too. Tears in that voice. Something never heard before yet it seemed that they got too much to unpack.

Per usual, Graves tried to play tough but it wasn’t helping much. Not like they cared at the moment. At least they broke together, the aftereffect of such cruel time that put an end to their first partnership.

 

It didn’t last too long. After some time, both grew calm, soothed by the mutual presence. Though neither dared to exchange a gaze, a little too embarrassed for that.

But at least the peak of emotion was gone for good. They stayed like this, Twisted Fate almost on top of the latter, face burried against his neck. That way they didn’t have to look at each other. And it made a good excuse to relish the scent. Of course it changed too, not as strong, maybe a little impacted by the Locker. But it was still Graves.

 

They would never forget, sharing a same wound.

Chapter Text

That same day, around mid afternoon they managed to get out of bed, after some quiet time half napping, half gently annoying each other. Though it was mostly Twisted Fate that annoyed Graves than the other way. It was peculiar, to get back to some kind of routine. Because they knew how it would go already. But that day was also quite specific. From their steps outside both could tell.

 

The reaver king was dead. Long may he reign. Well, he was supposed to be dead. Words ran saying so but as anything in Bilgewater, one had to be cautious. Twisted Fate wasn’t really sure but after what they saw – and nearly died in – there was so small chance that Gangplank survived. But the bastard was tough, everyone new it.

 

Till then, Bilgewater was in chaos. Most than usual. The semblance of authority was gone and already many came lurking for the occasion to take some glory and power. Words about Captain Fortune, having seized the occasion to step into the game. But the path would be long. Now each gang had its potential.

 

Anyway, this wasn’t exactly their business. Sure, many offers would arive soon but this would also mean that many heads would fall. Better stay low while it was going.

Also, they had to go to Piltover, for Graves to find a new weapon. So double benefit. They would dodge this troubled time and have some fun in the fancy city.

 

So they left for Piltover, not a glance back since they already got each other.

 

On another topic, it was calm between them. Warming up to each other, after that cruel separation. Twisted Fate was fast to return to chat and sass but for the latter it took a little more time. Not really cold but more reserved. Like in that short time when he wasn’t sure what to feel about his new partner. Though Graves let a lot of things to happen. Didn’t seem to mind contact, since Twisted Fate started to come closer as he could. Kinda sweet. In quiet places, it wasn’t rare to see him coming to Graves’s side, an arm sneaking under that heavy cloak, to reach.

 

Learning each other’s boundaries. Twisted Fate was good at this, playing at the limit and pushing a little to see where he wasn’t supposed to go. The thing was, he didn’t really expect Graves to allow so much. Basically, where they left before the Locker and else. So he carried on, maybe hoping that at one point he would say no. It never came.

 

~

 

Sharing a room was one of these old habits first taken back. Since the night after the reunion, it was silently stated that a second room wasn’t useful. Twisted Fate would just break in anyway, or maybe knock at the door for once. In any case, Graves didn’t really mind. It was curious, really. To let so close, so fast someone he spent years to hate. Without the good reason, he learned later.

But closeness came back fast, like the urge never really left.

 

Of course, it meant having to endure all the noise Twisted Fate made, comments and clever remarks. But compared to life in a cell, there was a curious kind of warmth, from hearing someone chat. He wasn’t alone anymore. And like hell the latter would make him forget that.

If that was possible, he was less irritated by that constant noise. But he woudl never tell him or his life would be more difficult.

 

Waking up with someone else was an old but appreciated time. Even more since it was Twisted Fate. The man he took time to convince of love. To stay in the morning. In these instants, Graves could believe they were going to be fine. That indeed love was coming back. Need to reach, touch, kiss. Almost a surprise to feel this again. Oh he liked that fucker. Despite everything, his own down and their terrible reunion. A little spark of regrets, for harming him even in a minimal amount compared to the rest of that night.

 

Words, resonating in his mind. Coming back to Twisted Fate. Really, he never expected to cry for that. But since both did, he wasn’t too ashamed. Truly, it was a stab, to sense such honest regrets from Twisted Fate. Holding tight, never letting go. A proof they were both sadly impacted by the consequences of the heist. Both mourned the loss.

Cautious hand over his sleepy partner, pressed to his chest, trying not to disturb. But words were loud in his mind. Need to reach. No question about that urge, it would be useless. It was strange to seek that safety. Now they could go on, return to their previous life. Together. Metaphorical peace.

 

« Malcolm. I was sleeping. » It came up without warning, low words.

 

Ah, shit.

 

Though Twisted Fate didn’t seem too upset, moving into the embrace to look at him. Like asking silently.

 

« Sorry. Didn’t want to wake ya. » As form of apology, he bent slightly and gave a kiss. Returned without hesitation.

 

« I know. Doing fine ? » Whisper after parting, showing how Twisted Fate was in his privacy. Just a man.

 

Since the latter was awake, Graves was free to move without guilt. Sat up in bed, stretching.

 

They weren’t to Piltover yet but they would make it soon. For now, they stayed at an inn, like many they visited before. Jsut the best place to have a proper bed.

 

Then he felt a hand against his back, soft touch. Tensing as reflex, for a reason. Ah. Right now he had his back to Twisted Fate, so he noticed. The mark. Not exactly at the center of his back but there nonetheless. Graves tensed a little, for the pain it always brought. Not even physical, but more psychological.

But he didn’t move nor tried to hide it. There was no use. Just a very bad reminder of this time in the Locker. Merely let this held breath out.

 

« Don’t touch it. »

 

« …Yes, of course. I imagine this still hurt ? »

 

So both acknowledged it. Graves turned his head, when the heard the latter moving to sit up too. Now two hands on his back. Never going around the mark but without a doubt registering any details. Lingering on skin, with care. He wasn’t really used to that. To gentleness, even less coming from Twisted Fate. But both knew what the mark meant. The latter would never experience it but he could imagine how horrible it was to have flesh engraved for a tasteless reminder.

 

« Yeah. » Couldn’t let emotion meddle in this right now, or it would break free. Anyway, this was around a decade old. Scarred enough, almsot used to it. No use in dwelling on that.

 

Quiet shuffling from behind then Twisted Fate joined his side, an arm pulling him by the waist so they could hug. Again, something very soft that left Graves a little confused but he would get used to it. The latter then moved on his lap and took him in his arms, holding closer to him.

 

Okay. Nice.

 

Here was exactly all it took for Graves to return in that couple thing. Small details, slow reaching, silent embraces. Everything told Twisted Fate’s honesty. That well-versed liar, used to games and tricks. Graves came to understand that as much as he lied, there wasn’t a lot he could hide in his actions. Love wasn’t something so easy to fake for him.

Now, each display was more intimate than what they used to do before. Not really voiced, maybe for shyness or mere need to give this meaning. After all, Twisted Fate himself took some time to come in term with his feelings. Now it was clear for him and he could show it more than before.

 

Graves returned the hug, holding the latter pressed to him as show of acceptance. Because it was all that mattered. To let him come closer again.

Chapter Text

Now getting to bed was almost the best part of the day – or rather the night – for Twisted Fate. For several reasons, beyond the human need to lie down and have some well deserved rest. Especially after that long trip to Piltover. They had arrived to the glorious city, looking at once for a not too expensive place to sleep. They eventually did, in the level blurred between Piltover and Zaun. Busy level but at least it felt a little more at home than going up there. Though Twisted Fate always enjoyed wandering at the rich levels.

 

Another reason for this warm peace once night came, it was because he could cuddle with Graves without having to justify himself. Not his fault if the bed was small. In any case, he purred into the embrace, so glad to be right there. The latter usually bickered like any day, grumbling under his breath about how they could for once take a double room and maybe not risk waking up pushed out of bed. Yes he still remembered that time. No Twisted Fate wasn’t really sorry for it. In my sleep, can’t control that.

 

Light down, room quiet except for the occasional noises while both tried to settle down in a good position. In a last resort, Twisted Fate came to full contact with his partner, from chest to their tangled limbs. Stilled for a moment, waiting for potential remark but it would seem that Graves wasn’t complaining.

 

Well, perfect.

 

So it was good, he could maybe hope for sleep to be fast and swift to take him. Relishing the scent found, a rare comfort.

Only one thing made him reconsider the situation, though. Indeed, difficult to ignore a boner. He was sure, hardness pressed against him. Ohoh. So it would seem that closeness caught up with Graves. No way he would let that pass, it had been a long time.

 

Suddenly, Twisted Fate couldn’t really think. It was strange, no ? To ignore the sexual part till a certain point. Something they already shared so much before. Why didn’t they came back to fucking before ? He still craved that but put it aside, not sure they would even get back there.

 

So he let enough space to sneak a hand between them, feeling the latter up. At that specific move, Graves reacted, curling a little into him on reflex.

 

« Malcolm ? Need a hand there ? »

 

« ….No, fuck you. » Then next second, Graves had changed sides, his back turned to his partner.

 

He’s angry ? Possibly the latter didn’t want to, it would be a mere accident. But Twisted Fate wanted to try, interest awaken.

 

Rose to go on top of Graves, hoping to catch his attention even in the dark. Difficult to miss someone breathing close.

 

« Hey, you sure you don’t want to ? I’d be ready for anything. » Light tone but he made sure not to push to hard. Who knew what Graves thought at that exact instant ?

 

« … I don’t know. » The latter wasn’t even looking at him, lying on his side.

 

« What’s wrong ? »

 

So Twisted Fate got worried, because this wasn’t so normal between them. Even considering how they grew closer as time went. Maybe Graves didn’t want that anymore.

 

No answer from under but he was certain he wasn’t getting asleep. More like overthinking, like he did sometimes.

 

« You can tell, you know. »

 

Twisted Fate literally lied down on top of his partner, both to keep his attention and relish contact. Probably this wouldn’t be too comfortable for Graves so complaints were to be expected. But he liked it, to have his attention and hold him.

 

« You’re heavy, idiot. » At last an answer, useless grumbling. But then the tone turned more serious, thoughtful. « I— Is it too fast ? »

 

Oh, that kind of thoughts. It wasn’t the best time to adress this question but at the same time, talking in bed was somehow the best occasion to be honest.

 

« Us ? » Quiet too, before he left an open-mouth kiss to Graves’s cheek. Always that tickle.

 

« Yeah. » A whisper, as he was uncertain about the whole thing.

 

« Don’t know neither. I couldn’t really believe I got a second chance. For us both. But for now it feels right, normal. »

 

« I hated you. How can it feel right to be back together ? Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy with how it’s going now but again, I don’t know. »

 

« Hey, if you just don’t want to fuck me anymore, that’s fine. I’m not gonna die. Though it would be hard to hold on. » Came to laugh, lightening the mood because despite everything, this was an important matter.

 

« I want to. It was always good. »

 

How sweet, to hear Graves admit this openly. So this wasn’t the real question.

 

« So why not ? »

 

Not that Twisted Fate was getting tired but he still yearned a proper ‘reunion’, after all they went through. Something he never kept hopes for but tonight it was brought up.

 

« No idea. I just feel like…we shouldn’t. It wouldn’t be right to do like nothing happened. »

 

« What kinda bullshit is that ? » Long sigh, for this was getting exhausting.

 

To be sure to make himself clear, Twisted Fate pushed him to lie on his back then straddled him properly when he complied. Leaning, just above, as trying to find his gaze in the dark.

 

« It happened. The heist, the Locker, the warehouse, everything happened. It won’t go away but it doesn’t mean we have to stay stuck on that. Nothing is holding us back. No reason to resist and say this shouldn’t be so fast. »

 

Graves was still pretty silent but he was sure he heard it and understood. Sudden thought, crossing Twisted Fate’s mind.

 

« A betrayal. You feel like you’re betraying yourself. » Just a supposition but it could explain all this. Graves never cared a lot except for serious matters, of course he would talk genuinely.

 

« Yup, maybe. You must be right. » After a short pause, like trying to make sense out of this.

 

Slowly, Twisted Fate registered the latter’s hands on him, merely keeping contact but still traveled where it could find skin.

 

« Don’t think like this. We talked and now we both know the truth. There is no use staying in the past. »

 

This was as much for Graves than himself. Words that applied to him too much, unforgiving. For all these years trying to ignore past but staying in it despite everything.

 

« Now, tell me. What do you want ? »

 

« To fuck you. I thought it was clear enough. » That came so fast and blunt, enough to make Twisted fate laugh, face resting against the latter.

 

« Holy shit, of course. But seriously, what do you want for us ? » So he returned serious, holding him close.

 

That time, it took Graves a little more to find his answer : « To be together. Like before. But that time you better stay honest. »

 

« So you got a deal, partner. » Bright smile then he took care to add on a more quiet note : « I’ll try to, I promise. »

 

Distance closed in a second, to whisper these words before he caught Graves into a kiss : « I love you. »

Chapter Text

It was a bit unfair for Graves, to hear the latter say that kind of thing like it was an evidency. Love. A concept Twisted Fate had tried so hard to deny back in their days, by fear. But now he was the one confessing again and again, with his usual confidence.

But what could he say ? Graves specially wanted him to be as honest than possible and the bastard was exactly doing it. So a light fluster would follow.

 

Curious, to at last hear awaited words but it came several times, to the point of maybe shutting him up. No, he wouldn't do that. It took them already so long to find a sort of mutual understanding of their feelings, no need to put Twisted Fate down each time he said it back. So a sort of inner conflict but it wouldn't hurt Graves too much. Just cause some overthinking and frozen time when soft words were spoken.

 

Right now, he merely silenced the latter with the same kiss he initiated. Not too deep but enough to satisfy a small urge. Always good to come back to this. And since Twisted Fate was bent for that kiss, he pulled him lower till he was lying on top of him. Hands wandered a little, all in innocence, under fabric. To go up then, burried in the latter's hair, pulling enough to be noticed.

 

There it came, a small moan lost in the kiss. As they parted, Graves wasn't so happy for the lack of light, he wanted to see the exact expression of his partner. To be sure. He's needy.

Oh he was too but it was a rare relief to see one's desperation for this awaited reunion was shared. Always mortified for being found out craving but since it helped clear their relationship, it wasn't so bad. Now they knew and it lightened his conscience. Less resistances opposed.

 

As if it wasn't obvious, Twisted Fate rocked against him, communicating his own need. Even with the barrier of clothes, there was no mistake to be made about the hard cock pressed to his. Couldn't be more clear on his motivations.

 

It's alright. We can.

 

Since it was going to happen, Graves decided to move, taking off the latter's shirt. Hardly met any complaint, Twisted Fate just busy with making out till he couldn't breathe. One by one, clothes were thrown in the room without care. A matter for morning them. To see such need while taking off someone's trousers was indeed dsitracting, leaving Graves with thoughts running wild. How long since the last time ? Laying with someone else, taking pleasure from another warm body ? Too long. In a sort of sad pang of reality, he remembered how Twisted Fate was actually the last one he fucked. At the time it was so happy.

 

Maybe this time they could call it lovemaking. Mmmh maybe not yet. This word wasn't used so careless. It held a lot of meaning, importance. But he was ready to give it tonight. Despite his own doubts and possible fears. They both cared. And Twisted Fate seemed so genuine in his affection.

 

« Wait. » He had to, for this time. Already an idea of how he wanted to do this.

 

It was heard, the latter parting enough and waiting for more. Could feel that gaze despite the darkness, demanding like always in a fashion too breathtaking to refuse.

 

Graves fumbled a little, reaching out of bed though having his man on top of him made any extended move rather difficult. But he made it and light flooded the room.

It took them a little time to get used to it but he wanted to see Twisted Fate. After shielding himself from the sudden burst of light, he settled back on his partner.

 

I was right. The gaze directed to him sure was hot, still struggling a little to focus but it was clear Twisted Fate wanted him. Right now. If that wasn't clear with how his hands lingered on Graves's hairy chest, lingering on flesh with that typical restlessness of lust.

 

Followed how that tongue appeared a short time, licking his lips before Twisted Fate spoke : « So, lights on ? Wanted to see me more than you already do in a day ? »

 

That man was aware he was handsome and enjoyed being reminded. Sighing innerly, Graves could just nod. He liked seeing his partner losing it during sex. It never changed and it struck him how despite the decade, this reflex came back. To enjoy the sight. Compared to all these nights surrounded by darkness. And after the Locker, how he could appreciate to see again.

 

So little to say except admitting Twisted Fate was still gorgeous : « Yeah. I like to see you. Always. »

 

In an older time the latter would have lightly brushed this off, trying not to show how touching it was but now he smirked instead, like the fucker he was. It softened quickly after, for the mood couldn't hide feelings too long.

 

« When you're done staring, would you be so kind to get moving ? » Always trying to be a smart ass, but this remained an ask for more, as implicit as it was.

 

« Hush. » Spoken low, but he got the message anyway. « Fine, lie down. »

 

« Please ? »

 

Oh he really was getting on his nerve. At least Twisted Fate did as he asked and swapped their positions.

 

« If you really wanna play, I can leave you here and do nothing till you ask politely. Your choice. »

 

Now Graves had a good sight on the latter, hands running down his side with some relief. Despite how Twisted Fate could be annoying, it couldn't damage the mood under.

 

« Hey, I lied down. What else do you want ? Shall I stay quiet ? » Sounded like he was upset but in fact he was smiling so no hurt here.

 

« That would be a good idea for once. » So easy to fall back in their bickering but he had to remind himself this wasn't useful at the moment. « But don't. It's fine. »

 

In a strange paradox, Twisted Fate turned quiet after that one. Since he was right under Graves, he missed nothing of that gentle shift in expression. In the end, they always came back to a sort of intimate mood. As to acknowledge it, the latter reached for Graves, urging him closer to possibly resume their activities.

 

A request for a kiss, accepted at once. If that's all it takes to shut him up... Twisted Fate seemed a little restless again, trying to keep him into the embrace or at least to have his hands on him. The need speaking.

Naked as they were, there was no barrier between them and this was taken advantage of, grinding against each other.

 

There was a reason he wanted to be on top, at least for now. Graves parted even as both craved contact, laying a gaze all over his partner. An old urge. So he gave into it, now that Twisted Fate was right where he wanted him.

 

Attention focused on his body, what he missed after all this time. A sort of protective urge to check on anything Twisted Fate had to endure, despite seeing very well he was healthy. Scars. First instinct was to see the one on his left shoulder. Indeed, he believed the latter when he said having been injured during the heist. But to know it was real, it hurt a little. Heist weren't supposed to go wrong but risk was present.

As Twisted Fate said, it wasn't a clean one, far from it. A bit butchered. At least it scarred. Graves lingered around it, with some effort to remain careful. Then moved on, gaze trailing over skin, to sometimes stop on a few scars. His partner didn't have a lot, compared to him, it was in their different methods. So each wound and nicks counted when he found some on Twisted Fate. Fails, for a man so quick to disappear. Life was rough sometimes.

 

This sort of pause was noticed by the man, still trying to get some friction out of their situation but he seemed to realize Graves wasn't much focused on that. No words yet but sure to complain soon if he didn't went on their need.

It must have felt a bit curious to have someone paying attention from so close yet not for relief. The mood stayed too, strange but not uncomfortable.

 

Once he had his share, Graves stopped this and took this in a whole new direction as he stroked the latter's cock. Sure it was a bit sudden compared to the slow worship before. As reward, a moan escaped Twisted Fate, since he didn't see that coming.

A clue on the change requested.

 

« Oh fuck... » Breathy and glad in a way.

 

Any reactions from Twisted Fate were good, so he put a sort of pace, not too fast. Too long since last time but everything came back when it came to this topic. Feel, how the latter jerked into his grasp, how he wasn't ashamed of seeking his own pleasure. Graves never minded, they would both be satisfied at the end.

Nothing changed, always the same man under him, holding a little too tight as soft noises were let out. With some questions too, for himself. About how he could still feel that urge to please, how it seemed as fresh to lay with Twisted Fate. Time couldn't eraze everything.

 

Enough to feel need burning in his veins again. Clouding his mind, heavy. Like the scent he could catch if paying attention. This was what he missed.

 

While keeping up his attention on the latter, Graves went lower, where they wanted. Almost took his breath to actually feel how much arousal could do on Twisted Fate. Already so slick, as he pressed against his rim to be noticed.

Immediate reaction, the latter looked at him with increasing desperation. Not even trying to voice it but it was so obvious, like struggling to at least control it. He will break soon. Graves would be right there to watch it happen.

 

« It's fine ? » Just to be sure. That was all they asked, to make one step after the other. He couldn't ignore how his own voice sounded raw with need.

 

Fast nod, a hand moving to hold his arm tightly, chest heaving : « Yes yes, please... »

 

The shift from a Twisted Fate sassy as ever to a more needy state was something he could have forgotten. But be damned, it was entertaining and truly moving to be responsible for this. Graves wouldn't make him beg in these vulnerable instants, it would be despicable. Not the right mood.

So he pressed a finger inside, relishing the tight warmth as much than the broken keen that followed.

 

Distracting. But Graves wouldn't make them wait for too long. Given how his partner rocked back against his hand the best he could, this was a sign to do more. A second finger then the stretch seemed to have an effect. Clinging to him, Twisted Fate could hardly stay quiet longer. A slave to any shift and push inside, delightful touch as Graves found again what exactly made him squirm on the mattress. Here. This time, a name was shouted, as the same time than a good old jolt up his spine.

 

Still tried to be patient, not to hurt him but Twisted Fate looked like he couldn't last too long. Would have to be fast. After stretching him good, Graves allowed himself some short relief, before spreading his partner.

The signal was clear, even in this state, as the latter let him closer. Lifted Twisted Fate's hips, to make it easier then he nudged his rim. No reason to wait except for resisting a little, Graves pushed inside. Not too fast, he prefered to take his time for something he thought he'd never have again. But Twisted Fate wanted and pulled him to speed up. Sheathed inside, light headed with the old sensations of someone truly clinging to him, with everything he had.

 

Contact was too important. Graves followed the latter and returned the embrace, completely pressed to him. No space between them. Urgent hands changing hold every few seconds, as afraid it wouldn't be enough. Open kiss pressed to his lips, clumsy for the intimate touch but returned as he could. There was such a distant feeling right then, looking at Twisted Fate like a long gone soul. But he was right there, trying to get used to the stretch.

 

All this brought him to him, to this. A bit useless to have some thoughts in such urgent context but Graves was hit by feelings again. It wasn't wrong. It didn't feel like this. Just a far too long pause between them, that didn't even manage to break everything. Now they were one again.

 

Instinct kicked in and Graves had to move into this long spiral of longing. Pleasure mixed with feelings made everything more difficult to understand but also better. Every single move meant something. In his arms, Twisted Fate was at the limit of letting go, hugged and rocked. Constant pull on each other. It would be just this. Graves thrusting in, his man clinging to the last second like he would drown without him. Steady pace, rolling waves of pleasure. This wasn't truly gentle but for them it was so close, not a word but low noises instead. Because there was no need for words.

Far from the crude fucking of some days. It wasn't so soft but rather the comfort of finding one another.

 

Like anything in this world, it had to come to an end. Edge so close, as Twisted Fate was literaly snuggled to him, face hidden as he could just fight for his breath. Graves maybe would rather he saw him in this rare instant but not mad at him. At least it seemed good for both. The latter shook in his arms, a sob breaking free and nothing else to announce his climax. Oh, difficult to miss since he grasped at him so hard, at the limit of pain. But Graves had to go with it, breath punched out at the sudden tightness. Like even after all these years that man always got him on the end. He came, a surprised moan slipping when the knot took. A cry from the latter, muffled against skin as he tried to stop trembling in the afterglow.

 

More than usual, they stayed in this same position. Sweaty, utterly exhausted and a start of this typical ache after intense activities. Graves didn't dare to move from this, even if that wasn't the most comfortable since he tensed not to crush the latter under him. Not a noise anymore from Twisted Fate but hands changed place at last, going instead to lace around Graves's shoulders.

 

It would be better for now to rest a little, so Graves shifted their position on their side so he could at last lie down and relax. In this move, some short distance was put and he could feel the wet mess between them. Sigh for this but it would wait morning.

Still pretty silent, Twisted Fate followed the move and returned to cuddle as soon as he could.

 

Now that they were settled for the night, Graves took the freedom to have the latter look up, small gesture to check on him. And Twisted Fate let him do, merely gazing back. Soft, maybe too much if that was possible. Only in such a setting he would allow to show that much.

 

« You alright ? » Yet to get used again to this private side of the latter.

 

« Fine, fine... » Hazy, even in tone. But a smile could be heard : « Ya know, I remembered you were a good fuck but damn it was even better than that. »

 

That was some compliment, precious thing when it came from Twisted Fate. He wouldn't forget it and maybe remind it later.

 

« Eh ? Couldn't find better out there ? » This was a topic to laugh of, quite sure the later would have had to seek new people for his needs. In a way, it was nice to hear he was missed.

 

« Mock all you want, it's true. I lost a lot after that heist. » Same light tone then it turned more neutral, almost hinted to sadness : « Not just my partner, my man... My love, I guess. »

 

Such a drastic change of mood, it left Graves speechless for a time. By now, the latter had returned to his place, nuzzling his collarbone. Not possible to see him.

There was no words to fully explain how he felt. Never been so good with words. So instead, Graves held him tightly, hand burried in his hair.

 

Funny, wasn't it ? This time he was the one struggling even so slightly to say it back. It consumed him, kept him alive and followed him everywhere. Love. It would have to wait a little before he could say it. Oh but saying lovemaking wasn't such a matter, suddenly ? It was so complex.

 

All that mattered was to hold him right there after the light was off, wait a little till Twisted Fate found sleep. Hope they would be alright.

 

It couldn't be an error. It felt too right for this.

 

Chapter Text

It would take time, no ? To get used to this, to voice his own love. Twisted Fate could now and it seemed almost too easy. A new start but with their previous experience. Strange, to see Graves struggling to admit it. Understandable, of course.

Himself remembered, when the latter accepted him no matter if he said it back or not. It looked like their positions were swapped. He would have to wait for Graves, patiently. Just like he did for him.

 

Peculiar, bittersweet. If he had to wait, it was because the latter got hurt. The Locker did a lot of damage, he witnessed that even on Graves’s skin. Sickening, really. There were words about how the Locker never left its prisonners but not once he expected this level of cruelty. A mark. Twisted Fate had lingered on this, on the concept itself. Wicked, to engrave skin like this. A forced bond.

 

To bond… This whole thing screamed of forbiddance, old instinct. Bonds were links impossible to destroy once made, sometimes made out of selfishness. Never a mere matter. For someone as free as Twisted Fate, the idea of a bond was full of shit. Especially as omega. To know someone could ruin his life by a small mark at the wrong spot, it scared him in his youth then kept a threatening shadow at the back of his mind.

Marks were on thin ice, depending how he felt around the persons he let himself be with. Especially when he was under heat. Then it was a sensitive matter.

 

Around Graves, no. It didn’t scare him and at first he didn’t know why. Because he felt safe, the latter would never be a prick and mark him for a bond. So he let him have his way with hickeys and other small marks. It didn’t mean a lot anyway.

But could it even be possible ? To bond ? Despite himself and his urge for safety, Twisted Fate wondered.

 

A bit stupid indeed, really uncertain too. So repulsed by the concept of belonging to someone else yet a bond with a person in particular didn’t sound so bad. When did all this happen ? Had solitude hurt him that deep ? Now he had no fear for the future. No matter what happened, they would be together in it. So why think about a bond now. Ridiculous. Yet he thought about it several times.

 

Mind running on this, finding good reasons to. They knew each other, they helped each other in several ways, more or less private. A ten years separation couldn’t break them completely. They trusted each other. Tumbling on the last thing. I love him. The very first he fell for and only one to answer equally. But there still was this blurry part. Graves hadn’t said it back yet.

Again, it would take time.

 

Really…Thinking about bonds… Sometimes he exhausted himself with useless topics. In any case, it was far too early for them, even if there was a tiny possibility. This wasn’t worth a nightly headache so Twisted Fate let go.

 

So went this first night after their ‘reunion’. Another step in the right direction to full understanding of what they wanted. Physical intimacy to the point of sexual activities, that was good news. Now there would see next step.

 

~

 

Perks of sleeping again with someone, being awaken by snoring. Not what Twisted Fate missed about his partner but it came with their reunion, he couldn’t complain too much. At least they were together.

The noise itself wouldn’t have woke him up unless his sleep was light. Probably morning already started and he was late on his habit. Which changed since they got back in partnership. But sleep abandonned him anyway around the same time.

 

Still, it wasn't bad. Far from it. He woke up pressed to a strong chest, held there by equally strong arms. No doubt it would be difficult to get out of this but hopefully he would never wish to. Right there, it was perfect. In his sleep Graves could be really protective, keeping him closer as the night went and ending up utterly hugged. And of course, himself returned in without even giving it a thought. Because it was nice, to be held and hold tightly. Not like he would hurt the latter anyway.

 

Irony came and gave him a pat on the shoulder. To see how Graves reacted and did around him while struggling to voice his love. It was so obvious yet he couldn’t say it. Was I like this too ? Did he saw me be such an idiot ? Chances he did. But it wasn’t exactly for the same reason he had troubles saying it back. Graves had to learn to trust again. Himself had to even allow and admit someone else could love him genuinely. Yes in a way it was linked.

Besides, everything in his partner’s moves and words translated his love. The matter – if it could be called as such – was that he hadn’t admitted it yet.

 

Right then, in the embrace of a man maybe scared to mention love again. Twisted Fate knew it wasn’t specifically against him. Some time was needed for Graves to come in terms with his own feelings and sort of guilt for having these. Again, it would pass little by little. And Twisted Fate would be glad to convince him further.

 

Snuggled up to him and happy to be right there, he thought about how long it would take. Maybe not so much but who knew ? Only time would tell them. At least they could fuck again. For this Twisted Fate was very happy. Because yes, he missed sex with Graves. No specific idea why though, it would require him too much thoughts for something that didn’t need to be explored anyway. Maybe his partner merely was a very good fuck. And the reason of his own sexual sadness for a decade too.

Now he could quietly hope to have more in the near future. Even right now ? He doubted it, Graves needed his sleep and this would tire him a little.

 

So rest it would be. Good anyway. Twisted Fate stayed right there, cuddling with his partner in the peaceful hours. Guess I won’t sleep.

Didn’t really need to, it would seem. Instead, he let his thoughts wander.

 

To come back as fast on bonding and this kind of business. Really ? Nothing better ? Yet there was little he could find on another topic. Would it be so bad, to bond ? It’s too soon. And that meant even considering this could happen one day. This was a serious matter. Not sure Graves even cared about that. Well, himself didn’t care yet here he was, overthinking.

 

Would it be so bad ? Or good ?

 

Twisted Fate gave it a few thoughts. If it was to happen, what would change ? Nothing and everything. If done in the right time and between the right persons, it could be incredible yet so discreet, in the smallest details. They would be exclusively for each other. This made him pause a little. The idea of belonging to someone was despicable yet it didn’t seem to hurt so much in the possibility of Graves. Because it would be mutual. Graves would be his too.

Was it all it meant to trust ?

 

All this was interrupted by one of the latter’s moves, in his sleep. Lied down on his back and with it, he took Twisted Fate as to keep him close. Oww… No choice but come, given the strenght Graves could use even when asleep. So now he was almost lying on top of him, trapped in his arms. Well, fullbody contact was far from uncomfortable, he would deal with it gladly.

Still in this same mood, Twisted Fate let his gaze wander a little over the other man. Shifted slightly, crawling up then he could nuzzled Graves’s neck. Perfect place to nap.

 

Also, it returned to the topic of bonding. Innocently or not, Twisted Fate stayed right there, mouth giving easy affection over skin. It was easy and sweet to offer. And the thought remained. What if he could mark him ? For real ? To give a proper mark, enough to make him forget that damned thing engraved over his back. Maybe a little to sentimental to want to create happy memories for him but what else could he do ? They had been apart for too long.

So Twisted Fate went on his small worship, leaving a few hickeys not meant to last. If only he could give his mark. He wished, despite not being so sure. They would have to talk about it.

 

Under his mouth, he could feel Graves’s heartbeat. Chest rising and falling with each breath. It was nice, to have him back. Suddenly he couldn't keep his hands off him. Almost an urge, necessity. To hold him till the end.

 

Little by little the snoring came to stop and Twisted Fate was far too smart to ignore this was his doing. Ah, woke him up. Payback, in a way. Graves kept him awake too. Under him, the latter shifted but the embrace remained. Going a little tight as he wasn’t really aware of the situation though it was familiar. Right in this position, Graves wouldn’t be able to directly look at him.

Then a large hand moved to Twisted Fate’s shoulder, acknowledging him.

 

Sigh, then Graves spoke : « Tobias ? The fuck you’re doing ? » Heavy with sleep but that hint of annoyance could be heard.

 

« Relax. Plus, you’re the one waking me up this morning. »

 

Then he returned to suck a few marks there and there, over tender flesh. Could literally feel the deep breath taken and the exhale but Graves said nothing. Merely accepted him and kept his hands over him.

 

Silence last a few more minutes before it was broken again : « Guess this is my punishment though it’s not too bad. Should think of a better one. »

 

Actually this made Twisted Fate laugh, so light and honest.

 

« It wasn’t supposed to be a punishment. But if you want, I have an idea. »

 

Rose just enough and there they gazes could meet. It was nice indeed, to see Graves at the waking. Even more gruff, deshiveled and a softer turn Twisted Fate guessed was their newly found safety. This wouldn’t be punishment, both would enjoy it greatly. But he was just human, he needed this till the very end.

A hand to the side of Graves’s face, he leaned closer and kissed him. Poured a little of his soul in it, his affection so rare once they got outside. Now he could.

Chapter Text

A kiss, then another one. Many shared, wherever the place. In their room, outside, in dark alleys. It was easy to give, easy to receive and it showed as much affection as they felt. At least, this was what Twisted Fate hoped. It was nice, it felt genuine and days went on as to show it was good to continue this.

 

After the first night in Piltover, they went looking for the place Graves would get his new Destiny. A special order, indeed. When it was done, all they had to do was waiting. And truly, it didn’t bother them, there was plenty of things to do in this beautiful city. Or just below, some interesting stuff to find in the highest levels of Zaun. So to say, they weren’t idle and a sort of routine settled. Nothing unfamiliar for them and these years of troubles.

 

For this, Twisted Fate was quite happy by how things were going. Falling back in their habits of banter and else, some heated nights and shared sleep. But there was one matter. Well, not so much but he noticed it more and more as time fled. He didn’t say it back. Not once. Oh he knew it would take time. To hear Graves admit openly his love hidden in gestures for now.

Patience was important, Twisted Fate maybe wasn’t the most patient of this city but he was aware of his reasons. Hard to trust again, all this.

 

Yet he noticed each silence after he said it. Maybe one day it would happen and then all would be fine. But for now he waited. No need to ask and tell, it would be soon. I hope. Everything was for the best, this was kind of the worst. No reason at all to feel bad about it. Or sad. Graves was like usual, just as if the Locker and else were forgotten. Bickering, complaining when he woke him up too early, quietly cuddling on the evening. Like usual except for these words.

 

Why not say it ?

 

Again, Twisted Fate knew it was a difficult topic. The latter needed time not to guilt himself with their relationship. But for this time of silence, he merely stayed there and watched him, wary. For him, it started to feel strange to say it as much times as he wanted while Graves couldn’t, simply as that. While he could display this affection so well, in his own ways indeed but it was showed. All this led to another question. When would he say it ?

 

Time passed and Twisted Fate felt like it wouldn’t happen. Don’t think like that. He could tell in everyday gestures that it was mutual, that when they fucked it was more than pure relief. Yet no words confirmed it.

 

Just once, please… Only one time, it would be enough for him. To know he was loved too, despite the Locker and all that crap. Why feel like this ? Love was conveyed in everything else but words. Why couldn’t he settle for this and be satisfied ? He questionned himself all day.

Not a word said to Graves, it wasn’t so important. And maybe he would feel forced and else. No need to rush.

 

It’s not important. It was but he refused to even acknowledge this. To admit that potentially he was insecure about feelings unvoiced. No, don’t need to be reassured. Was that just the matter ? To be unsure ? This sounded too childish, he didn’t want to explore that thought. Maybe all he seeked was confirmation that they loved each other. That everything was for the best indeed.

 

These thoughts didn’t go away. It followed him, always. Getting stronger in their private time. It killed him slowly, to see Graves so open in his affection, sometimes pressing a kiss to his skin. Twisted Fate felt empty during some of it, too aware of what himself craved to hear in such sweet times. It never came. Even when he said it, softly. The latter would say nothing.

 

Why… ? Annoyance against himself, increasing sadness with Graves. Why words mattered so much ? When for a time he heard it so often. He missed it. When it was clear and loud. Now he had to search in small details. Why get so invested in all this ? Graves meant everything, he said it, he just couldn’t admit it out loud yet.

 

Memories of that first heated night, their reunion. When his partner took time to look at him. Search his scars, explore his body. When he made sure he was fine. None of his gestures were hollow, he knew it but as time passed it started to hurt. Really.

 

Couldn’t he be happy ? This was the best he could hope yet it didn’t feel like it. Why words mattered so much ? They were fine, Graves was alive, by his side. Why…does it hurt ? He showed nothing of this confusion. It wasn’t worth it.

 

One night, these thoughts became too loud, keeping him awake while the latter slept. It was cruel, to feel like this when held so close. Irrational train of thought, finding only darkness. Just a down side.

To imagine the worst. What if these feelings were gone ? What if he simply didn’t love him like before ? What if ? The Locker had been so awful, it could have killed love itself. Then why continue like this ? Why would Graves keep him by his side if he couldn’t mean it ?

 

So many question, for a tortured mind. The embrace grew heavy over him, where it felt so good before. What about affection given without the intention behind ? Maybe Graves thought they could go back on their relationship but realized it wouldn’t be the same. Stop thinking, stop thinking… It was killing him from the inside.

 

Next morning was better but he couldn’t forget. As he gazed at his love, thinking that maybe it went only in one way now. No longer two. No, he would have said it so. Twisted Fate believed him, trusted him but this fear was too strong, controling. Something quite old, from his youth. The fear to be left behind. Again. He wished he could cling to him till the very end, so he wouldn’t leave him.

 

Question : was it worse to be loved only in words and abandoned or to be loved in actions yet never voiced ? Some would say it was better, anyway. At least Graves was with him. But what if he was holding him back ?

 

Hour per hour, day per day. It weighed over his mind. Never his mask had been so useful, to pretend everything was fine. Part of Twisted Fate felt worse for hidding this, they weren’t supposed to lie to each other anymore. But it would break them if he said this too soon.

 

Just wait… It will happen. Just like he waited for his folk to come back. Be patient.

 

It wasn’t fair for both of them. Graves needed time and he owed him for all the trouble back in their first days. So he kissed back, pouring all he could of his own love. Cuddled, till they found sleep. Made love yet it didn’t deserve this name yet. It was good, always. Since it was with Graves.

Little by little, this emptiness spread to his soul. And he merely could witness it. So when he repeated it, repeated his love again and again, it was also for himself. Remember he loved him, all wasn’t lost. And once more, he found only silence.

 

The change didn’t happen. Despite how hard he wished for it, to hear words whispered to him in the darkness of the night, after love. Each day seemed to hurt more. Like a blade, coming back each time to cut his heart. It won’t happen… ?

 

All these lost thoughts about bonding when it wasn’t even sure Graves loved him back. Useless.

 

Drowning in this negativity, nothing to forget it, find some peace. Till one night, just as they settled to sleep, it became too much. The need to ask, be sure, whatever the answer would be. No, it was a lie. It would hurt a lot to hear nothing or a no.

But Twisted Fate couldn’t bear more. He had to.

 

Pressed to Graves’s front, returning the embrace, he spoke and not once he needed more to shut up than right now :

 

« Why won’t you say it ? »

Chapter Text

« What ? »

 

Even repeating this hurt yet Twisted Fate had to ask. For himself.

 

« Why won’t you say it back ? That you love me ? »

 

And there came silence. Graves seemed to shift a little in their embrace before settling down again. No answer yet he was sure he heard. No way he missed that. As seconds followed, Twisted Fate’s heart sank. He won’t answer…

 

Sometimes it was good to be wrong, though.

 

« Ya know what I feel. Now go to sleep. »

 

The tone was far too controlled, blank to be casual. This wasn’t a topic Graves expected, not now. The embrace remained but he could feel how the latter tensed a little.

 

« No. Say it. »

 

Darkness kept them from fully gauging each other’s reactions, at a time so critical. No doubt Graves would want to see him for this talk if it was to happen.

 

« It’s too damn late for this crap. Sleep, now. »

 

It was coming, Twisted Fate knew it. Tearing little by little. But he had to. Each attempt was to be pushed away, it was too soon. Of course Graves wouldn’t want to answer. Maybe from the time but mainly because he simply wasn’t ready for this.

 

Don’t push me away…. Why did it hurt so much ? It felt like a refusal of his own love. Under such wreck of thoughts, Twisted Fate came even closer, face to the latter’s chest. Strong grasp, arms around Graves to hold him tight. Despair became physical.

 

« Say it, please… Just once. »

 

Like cheating, to force him like this. But he had no option left. His heart wouldn’t bear to be denied nor lying to Graves. So he asked, till it was clear.

 

Again, silence. No real move except his partner’s hand moving gently over him, till his shoulder.

 

« Does it even matter ? Like fuck…why you asking me this now ? » A touch of annoyance slipped in a the tone, probably very genuine.

 

« It matters ! For me… » At the limit of breaking if he had to ask again. Twisted Fate tried to compose himself. « If it’s so trivial, why don’t you say it ? I have, for days and you just…refuse. »

 

« Because it’s not easy ! Why the fuck do you have to bother me with that ? You took your damn time and I’m not allowed to ? I had to wait more than a decade. And you said fucking nothing till then. »

 

All this was said in a breath. Like an accumulation, frustration building up for a long time. It left Twisted Fate shocked, frozen in that embrace almost broken. A new fury unleashed. Thing was, he didn’t know, couldn’t imagine this. As much as he was in pain these days for the lack of answer, he hadn’t really focused on Graves’s mood. Sure it wasn’t easy, he needed time and it was hard for him to convince himself to let go for once. To live in present and not the past.

How he said this, deep anger in these words, almost spat to his face, it wasn’t something new.

 

I… A line was crossed and he was too scared and hurt to realize it. Twisted Fate was aware it would do no good to ask and bring this up too soon but it backfired.

Not always he managed to piss Graves off to that point. It was a serious topic and so was the injury caused.

 

Why dig into problems if he wasn’t ready for the truth ? It came back and slapped him in the face, the way Graves would never dare to physically. But didn’t mean he would slow the venom in his words. To the point of anger.

It was true, wasn’t it ? That he couldn’t confess his love once before the Locker, all of it. And his partner had to do with it, wait in silence. What Twisted Fate couldn’t now. What brought them there. He was so unfair to Graves, just because of his own feelings.

 

Sick feeling. Not only he wouldn’t hear confirmation but it could mean the opposite. What really hold Graves back ? For now he couldn’t bear more damage. It was far enough. Distance needed. How could he stay right here, in the latter’s arms after that ? Not that Graves would start to hate but it sounded annoyed enough. Wouldn’t risk more tonight.

 

I can’t stay.

 

So the quick decision for Twisted Fate was to get out of bed. Fast. To think and maybe pick up the pieces till he was calm for this. The embrace didn’t even held him back, too weak or resentful. Next second he stood and dressed. Easy, no? He did that plenty of times before. Bitterness came up suddenly, at the memory. He hurried, wanting to put as much between them before Graves could keep him there. Would he, anyway ?

 

It didn’t seem so. Painful silence in the room. No doubt Graves was paying attention but in such poor light, there was nothing to see. Just pay attention to noises.

Then there was some shuffling in the sheets, noises from the mattress like when someone moved over it. Twisted Fate remained hyper aware of it. Mind frozen, still blocking anything else not to break. It would have to wait, just a little. As soon as he was alone.

 

« Wait. » This tone said nothing, greatly calm compared to the previous outburst but no emotion given to it.

 

No. A hand reached for him, short contact over shoulder before he slapped it away. No ! If he stayed even a little longer, no idea if he would be able to bear it.

At last found his hat then he seized one of his cards, hoping to be far away. Not the best condition to go out but he thought he had no choice. Focused on a specific place to be then he was gone.

 

~

 

This night wasn’t a nice one from the instant Twisted Fate asked him this. Before, it was some good time but right at this question, Graves wanted the night to be over and to fall asleep.

 

No fucking way. And now his partner was gone, in the middle of the night. Just this and he was alone in this room.

 

Why did he had to ask ?! Really he couldn’t get over this. They were doing so fine and Twisted Fate had to break it. He thought it was fine, to take his time. That he would be patient. The second he registered the ask, his heart ached.

All this was a mess. Graves knew his feelings, too well. The real question was when he would stop feeling bad over this. But the latter had to ask him.

 

Alone, he paced in their room. No doubt Twisted Fate had gone really far, somewhere in the city. And he wouldn’t come back, not after such shitshow. As much as he came to push him away for bringing this up, Graves felt bad. I shouldn’t have said that. Well, he was in his rights. It was true and it weighed over his heart for so long. But it was equally sensitive for both of them. They shared the same thing, just on different times. But it also meant Twisted Fate may understand what he felt too. That rushing wasn’t good. That it hurt.

 

Time fled a little, still turning the problem in his mind. Sometimes his partner was a mystery. Couldn’t understand how he thought and reacted. Nothing at first about this urge to ask. Graves lingered on that as his peace of mind seemed to come back. Not fully, since Twisted Fate was outside, no idea if he would return. But he saw how stupidly blunt he got.

Hard enough for the latter to go away.

 

What’s wrong with him ? With us ?

 

Twisted Fate said it mattered to him, to hear this. Something himself couldn’t grasp properly. Why would he ask for this ? Graves believed he made it clear, in any other ways than words. It wasn’t enough ? It wasn’t nice to understand this, that probably Twisted Fate couldn’t trust him to that point. That he prefered to hear him confirm.

He had been there, he had to wait too. So he got why the latter would want to hear him say.

 

Yet it would be petty, no ? To make him wait as long as he had to. It was difficult to hold a grudge against Twisted Fate for this, he had to learn to trust. But a part of him wanted to see him wait too, have a taste of his own medecine.

No. Graves was rather sure at some point he would just lose the point of all this, why he wouldn’t have confessed once again. Just the time he made peace with himself.

 

Sigh, in the icy silence. He would have to search the latter, he knew it. Maybe he would find him but he couldn’t be sure. Twisted Fate was skilled at running away, hidding for a time. Even though this wasn’t their usual city. Graves would look for him anyway. Not able to stay calm as long as the latter was outside. Because of him. He shouldn’t have talked about that. But what if it was meant to happen ?

 

Unless it was important, Twisted Fate would have let this slide. And waited patiently. But he didn’t so there must be a reason. He’s hurt too. This seemed the most likely. Insecure ? A man confessing his love again and again, maybe it got him to hear nothing in return. Considering that angle, Graves understood. Still, it wasn’t really smart to ask him now.

Small epiphany. All this time his partner struggled to even admit his feelings, it was by fear of abandon. What if it was at it again ? Maybe. He wasn’t happy to see that Twisted Fate had so little faith in him but turning the matter around, it meant he wanted him near. Now, it sounded cruel to say nothing.

 

What should I do ? No idea but he would go outside anyway. At least to try and find him. Maybe have this talk he hated by advance but necessary. As if he could sleep right now, aware that Twisted Fate was out and potentially feeling bad after his words.

 

Always clean up before it got ugly. Graves prefered to get this done, despite that small fear. Searching for his clothes, dressing up and as soon as he was ready, going outside.

 

Where is he ?

Chapter Text

Sometimes Twisted Fate wished it was possible to eraze a day, an hour, a moment. To make one time disappear and maybe do it again cautiously or not at all. This would have been useful the day of the heist, but it was too late. And now it would have been useful too, as he ran away.

 

Not that fast, he was far enough from their place. Walking in the market level, blurred boundary between Zaun and Piltover. Even at that hour there was some people here, going on their business. If he was to go up there, on the rich levels, it would be quite dead, everyone home and maybe police in the clean streets. Here, in a similar way than Bilgewater – yet not that extravagant – there was some life in the streets. Enough for Twisted Fate not to stand out too much.

 

Innerly, he was shattered.

 

That retreat forward wasn’t his best move but he had no choice. At least he didn’t have to face Graves any longer. To say the latter was mad at him would be an understatement. Hurt too. But like hell he would stay to ask him.

It was painful for him too. As time went on and so their partnership, Graves wasn’t so biting about personal matters. And now he took everything face first. My fault.

 

Really, there was no other immediate solution for him. Aware that he couldn’t stay away for too long. Himself wouldn’t bear it, not after more than a decade alone. Not for a matter like this. But what if indeed it wasn’t love anymore ? Then truly he would be broken. No way back.

His steps led him to a more quiet place, overlooking the lower levels of Zaun, some fog down there. Not a dead end but he didn’t know where to go. Maybe just stop there and wait for Graves. He would always find him, no matter how long it took him. And Twisted Fate was sure he actually went after him. He knew the man, after all.

 

Leaning to the railing, gaze lost in the peculiar sight of chemical smoke and curious lights down there. Even at night the city below lived, restless machine.

 

He will find me. Yet he didn’t want to move. Also, he supposed he needed for this to end, to go back to before he messed up and asked. Thoughts running as time went on. Despite the pain, he still felt that longing, to come back. Swearing he wouldn’t mention this again, they were good and he would wait. Even if it hurt. Sad resolve. It was only fair, to wait as much.

 

It would be hard but he had to, so they could go on and hope one day. Patience. Graves would find him and he would play it smooth so both could forget. As if nothing happened. Twisted Fate doubted his heart would stay intact on the long run but still it would be better than being alone again. Not sure if that was healthy though.

 

At least this time was good for him to think at peace, recover from what he caused. Another wish for the rest of the night to go better. Maybe they could even go back to bed together if he did well.

 

Malcolm. I’m here.

 

~

 

Looking for Twisted Fate wasn’t easy, that man could slip away without a noise and appear in a completely different place. But Graves knew that, this man was his partner. And he spent already some time to find him after the Locker.

First checking in the level where they stayed, then he would have to check else where and this could be shitty. Up there or the opposite ? For a moment Graves walked in the market, not so surprised to see people still up at that time.

 

Searching would get less easy if he had to change level. In Piltover, no doubt the streets would be watched, for the safety of its upper class. And in Zaun, streets would soon become a maze, difficult to explore and get out if unknown.

 

But he had some luck tonight. After being almost done on the market level, he found Twisted fate, at some remote place. A kind of balcony, giving a certain sight on the core of Zaun. Well, it was probably better to see during day time.

 

There he is. Graves’s first thought at spotting his partner was a sort of pause. Realization that indeed he managed to find Twisted Fate, in an hour or more. The man that could disappear in a second. He doesn’t go away ? Maybe the latter hadn’t heard him yet.

Though as he came closer, no doubt he heard. They were only two here and the constant noise from below weren’t enough to muffle everything. Not someone stepping closer. So it confirmed his thought. He wanted to be found. Last clue would be to see his reaction but Graves was almost sure.

 

The fury was gone since he left their room, mind a little more calm but no whe was anxious about how to handle this. Yes he needed time but Twisted Fate wasn’t doing so fine. None of this would have happened if everything was alright.

Deep breath taken then he came to the latter, in reach. All this time Twisted fate had his back turned to him but he would bet he was paying attention. Damn too clever for this.

 

« Tobias. » As he went to his side against the railing, careful gaze.

 

No error allowed.

 

« Hey hotshot. Took you long enough. »

 

Not exactly what Graves expected though. Even less that smile, when the latter turned to him. What ? Almost questioned himself if he missed something. Yet he was sure he hurt Twisted Fate. Then why… ?

 

If his partner noticed his confusion, he showed nothing of it and stepped away from the railing, putting his hat back to place.

 

« Not gonna lie, this place is a bit stiffling. Ya know, atmosphere, smoke, all that. Let’s go back to bed. »

 

The fuck ? When Graves had been expecting some rough conversation, it wasn’t that at all. Not this…playful, happy banter. Only on one side though. Already Twisted Fate walked away, in direction of their place, usual confident steps.

Something was off and these years of partnership taught him well. It would be too convinient. As if nothing happened. Just go back to bed and done.

 

A choice offered. Let this slide and maybe it would get better. But Graves couldn’t, it burned him to ask, talk. Staying silent over painful matters never helped and he couldn’t bear that any longer. Also he was a bit mad to see Twisted Fate pretend nothing happened. That they just hadn’t hurt each other. That they didn’t argue. That it was fine. Lies.

 

« Cut the bullshit, Tobias. » Not so calm as he closed the distance taken and directly grabbed the latter’s arm, to face him.

 

Worse than he thought, to see that seemingly serene expression turn into something else. A bit of pain, a bit of sadness and most of all it was the man. Not the mask. Had it always been so fast for him to unmask Twisted Fate ? He could have put up a fight and act as if all was alright. But he gave up as soon. At the same time, it was oddly heartwarming to see that he was trusted enough to see him truly. See his partner’s emotions. A thing usually kept in a bedroom.

 

« Hey… » Unsure and sobered up as quick, he joined Twisted Fate till they could hold each other. But not now. Just to know it was possible.

 

« I’m sorry. »

Chapter Text

This was to be expected but Graves let him speak. To hear him say this and that foreign look in his gaze was more than enough to render him speechless. Sometimes gazing back at him, sometimes looking away, Twisted Fate’s emotions could even be felt by staying close.

So he let him go on, since the latter was looking for his words.

 

He’s sorry. A good step but far from solving everything. Years ago he would have sarcastically pointed out Twisted Fate admitting his faults. But this was too serious and over time, he grew more honest. No need to punish attempts at honesty.

 

It seemed Twisted Fate found some words or at least gathered enough to explain, sighing low.

 

« I knew this wouldn’t be fair for you but still, I asked. Sorry for that. » That man didn’t look very at ease talking about that, so strong contrast to a few minutes ago when he tried to sneak his way out of it. « You’re right, anyway. I said nothing of my feelings, for years. »

 

It wasn’t a surprise, both knew it. Graves was aware his partner understood the situation just as him. Thinking of, it must have been rough for Twisted Fate, making a decision to ask such thing even since he knew the possible outcome. A clue that he wasn’t alright these times.

 

« Yeah, same. Sorry for talking like this. Should have thought a bit. » His part of apologies owed. Neither would dare to turn the mood to mock so it was rather safe to be truthful. « But why now ? I didn’t know it was a matter. »

 

For this Twisted Fate actually got out of that close distance and returned to the railing, watching in silence. Now he could just see the latter’s back but he could tell this wasn’t over. It was difficult for both and answers weren’t easy to give.

 

Some time passed, a few minutes without nothing troubling silence except the noises around. Having not moved, Graves was about to join his partner when he spoke, still not facing him.

 

« I don’t know. I can’t explain this but it hurt as days went. I know it’s stupid but I can’t help feeling this way. »

 

An effort to seem a bit casual was made but Graves could see through this. Twisted Fate wasn’t so calm on this and he tried as he could to keep some control, at leat over himself and his composure. So he decided to join him indeed, going next to him, leaning on the railing.

 

« Why say nothing ? Thought we were being honest now. »

 

A bit sad to hear his partner got some problems but said nothing. Or even showed anything. Yeah it would stung to hear but shit…

 

« As if I could. » A chuckle but nothing happy in it. Rather sadness. « Why say something when you didn’t for years ? Plus, I’m not a kid anymore, no need to be reassured. »

 

Yes you need to. But it would be mean to throw that in the conversation, already hard enough. Twisted Fate still had some matters to confront, just like himself. Not now though.

 

« I mean, yes. But still, basis in partnership is to talk. Communication, all that crap. Better say when something is wrong rather than bother me before sleep time. »

 

It was strange for Graves to be that chill during this. Like, he didn’t feel like get pissed by the latter, not like one hour ago. Odd but he seized the occasion. Maybe they could have a quiet talk without fighting over this.

 

« Yup but still. I just hoped…it would get better. But it didn’t and here we are. » Not once the latter turned to face him.

 

At least in that spot he could see part of Twisted Fate’s face. Just he wouldn’t gaze back.

 

« You’re shit at managing your feelings. » He had to get it out, for once.

 

In reaction, this made his partner laugh again, a bit more genuine.

 

« I know, I know. But that’s so hard, how can we feel all this ? It’s exhausting, awful… » Slipping into sadness again. « I swear, I know it’s bullshit to feel empty like this, and I know I can’t be mad at you for not saying it. It’s just so…complicated… »

 

The need for safety, reassurance. It was obvious for Graves, maybe not exactly seizing this concept but he understood a little. To hear the latter in pain like this. In fact, it was a bit different from his own time of waiting. Because he knew it would happen some day, that Twisted Fate was far too telling in his gestures and sort of affection.

That’s the matter ? Was it because he didn’t make it clear ? But I tried…

 

« Ah. I thought it was clear enough. It wasn’t ? »

 

And right now Twisted Fate looked at him, face turned to reveal great pain. Hoping. Anything.

 

« It was, don’t busy your head over this. Just, it messed me so much. That maybe it wasn’t possible anymore. That we tried but you didn’t love me like before. »

 

This sounded so much like his own thoughts, the poisonous ones when he was in the Locker. Too smart to forget what was before but it got him convinced of his greatest fear. The absence of feelings.

 

« That’s some bullshit and you know it. Wouldn’t carry your dumb ass to Piltover without reasons. »

 

« Yeah, I guess. Thanks for trying, though it won’t change a lot to what I feel. » Twisted Fate sounded like resigned to wait, a bit heartbreaking.

 

Their situation wouldn’t go better unless this stopped. Which got Graves thinking. Would it help if I said it back ? It seemed obvious. In their younger years, himself would have been so happy if the latter admitted, no matter when before the Locker. Maybe he wouldn’t have hated him for a time.

All it took. A first step and possibly it would hurt less. Not that he felt less guilty but time would ease this. To accept it, them.

 

Yes ?

 

Return of that block, when he was so tempted to give in. It would hurt his old self but it was to be done, to move on. Yet words got stuck again, like so many times before. Go on, it will make things better. And maybe it would even feel good to admit. That the Locker couldn’t destroy.

Life was unfair sometimes but so he was holding this back. It will be fine. Graves hoped, for his conscience and guilt.

 

Since his words wouldn’t work for now, he did what seemed best in a not so calm decision. In that case, yanking Twisted Fate by the collar and kissing him hard.

 

Fuck. This wouldn’t be enough though but a sort of panick hit, for not knowing how to deal with that. It was simple in theory but in practice Graves had no idea how to proceed, not when he couldn’t voice that. But that was the point, no ?

 

In any case, confused as the latter was, he returned the kiss. Not without a soft sound of surprise. Very soon he reciprocated, chasing the contact and hands over his partner.

 

I have to tell him.

 

In that weird rush of uncertainty, Graves parted again and stared at his man. Trying so hard to get this out. Say it. It would be good for them, no matter his guilt.

 

Say it, damnit  !

 

So close, Twisted Fate wasn’t nearly as aware of his inner turmoil. Slightly enraptured by the passionnate kiss, a change to what they just discussed and melancholia. He still held Graves close in something that was probably a reflex, not even concious.

 

Fuck this. Fuck everything. Graves snapped and said the only thing he wanted : « I love you, asshole. I didn’t make it to that damned city with your smart ass just to be bothered. We’re in this together and next time talk to me before I make you ! »

 

There, it was done. In the end, his tone got almost angry but this was the rush of emotion against himself and all going on. Hands trembling so lightly.

But no care for this. In front of him, Twisted Fate hadn’t moved since he shouted all his truth. Ah too much ? Slow realization, sort of shock in the latter’s expression.

 

Arms took him closer and there he was, hugged. Just this, tight embrace around him. Couldn’t see his partner’s face but from what he got, this was good. It was nice, even. All strenght used in that embrace then following second it was broken shortly, desperate kiss pressed to his lips and urgent hands keeping him right there.

 

Nothing last longer than a few seconds. As if Twisted Fate couldn’t properly ride that rush of happiness, so glad about this. Wow, okay.

Graves himself wasn’t doing better. A bit liberating, a bit painful yet it didn’t stung for long. Maybe later. For now he was glad to see these words brought such relief to the latter.

 

Yeah, it was right to do. A comfort for himself too. Confirming their relationship wasn’t a mistake, despite everything.

 

And then a few words whispered against his neck, killing him softly : « Thank you. »

Chapter Text

Hard to believe and yet it was true. Words repeated over and over his mind, convincing him little by little. Twisted Fate feared he wouldn’t be able to bear that for long.

The conviction of these words, affirming what he had been waiting for. Despite the swearing and obvious emotion in Graves’s tone, as if angry. It was so him. Not the best with his words but in these instants, neither was.

 

Just truth, so difficult to express but now it was done.

 

Twisted Fate could die happier now, if it was to happen. Yet they had so much to enjoy. A new step reached.

Holding his partner in his arms, never letting go physically and emotionally. He loves me too. Nothing new except now it was voiced, loud and clear. All he asked, at the risk of losing everything. In the end, he caused them some pain but it solved the matter.

 

He couldn’t help that, to cling to Graves, seeking and returning any kind of affection he could. Exhilarating, to be loved and know it. That this wasn’t vain, they still could. That the Locker couldn’t break everything.

No doubt this genuine joy was shared too by Graves, gradually sharing contact and welcoming him closer. Kissing back, possessive hands over Twisted Fate.

 

At some point he just couldn’t stay still and kiss, hugging his partner, face nuzzling his neck. That taste of scent was delightful, as much as each minutes since these liberating words. Not a single fuck given to the late hour, time spent outside fleeing and chasing. No care, they were to stay together till the end.

They just stayed there, in a lost place withing the market level, far from anyone else. Just two partners.

 

Till the rush calmed down, at least enough for them. Merely holding each other. This was the time Twisted Fate dared to speak, tell what he had over his heart.

 

« I’m sorry, for forcing you like this. But I’m not completely sorry, it felt too good to hear. That you don’t hate me. »

 

« I mean, if it was the case I’d have left you to drown in the bay. » Blunt, direct, exactly the man he loved.

 

« Geez, how can you be so romantic. »

 

« Yeah, sorry. I’m glad you’re still here. » Quite low now, truthful. Then he added quickly : « But don’t use that as excuse to annoy me. »

 

« Me ? I wouldn’t dream of it. »

 

Playful, that kind of banter he missed so much these years. Graves could act tough sometimes and do as if he didn’t care that much but in the end he was the one holding him close. An arm around Twisted Fate’s waist, keeping him near as he always did since their reunion.

 

« Alright. This is nice to hear but I’m tired. Thanks to someone that decided to run away. Now let’s go. »

 

« I already apologized and I mean it. Forgive me Malcolm ? » Not so innocent gaze to the latter, hoping he would for that time. Innerly, Twisted Fate still berated himself for this night. The result was good but the pain on both sides wasn’t appreciated.

 

As uncaring as he tried to seem, Graves couldn’t do much to resist that. Sigh then he spoke : « Yeah, forgive you. Come here. »

 

Then Twisted Fate was taken into a kiss, nothing too deep nor passionnate. Merely the urge to have him and relish this freedom. This would leave him light-headed anyway, touched to find this lingering affection Graves didn’t know how to convey.

Not too long though, the time to give this then the latter stepped away.

 

Still moved by the latest confession and many kisses, Twisted Fate had yet to registed his partner going away, back to their place. He noticed when Graves called him, looking back.

 

« Hey. Don’t know how you’re holding but I’m not gonna stay up for long. Hurry. » Not so annoyed, just asking him to come fast.

 

« To be honest, I need to sleep too. Tomorrow gonna be fun. » A chuckle as he joined Graves.

 

So they made their way to the place they stayed, Twisted Fate prefering to be close to his partner. The walk wasn’t too long, contrary to that search some time ago. A relief for both of them, to be able to sleep at peace.

 

~

 

Quiet time, as both went to undress and go to bed. Graves wouldn’t fight this need for silence, it was good. Not the heavy kind, when everything was unsure and close to explode. No tension.

Now, like many nights before, he got to bed and soon enough Twisted Fate joined him there. Lifting the blanket for the latter to come under, light down and the same urge to keep him close.

 

It was strange on several points. Thinking of all these nights when he thought it was fine, that they were good. This one night proved it was the opposite, Twisted Fate was in pain and it caused some clash. So Graves was confused, sad to realize he saw nothing. Still some progress to honesty but they had time to work on it.

 

Lying down in bed, his partner snuggled to him for the night, he just couldn’t stop thinking. I said it. Yet it didn’t hurt. A bit of fear, for when the aftershock would come. When his old guilt would stab back. For now he was almost peaceful, their matter was revealed and solved in one night. It felt right.

And most important, he was glad to see Twisted Fate’s reaction. If not for his own joy to admit feelings again, it was unexpectedly touching to see the latter react that way. Happiness in every move, tightening the embrace, kissing him again and again.

 

It couldn’t be a mistake. Probably his guilt would hurt soon but for now he could enjoy to have his partner. A breath held for so long.

 

Something interrupted his thoughts, a move nearby. In fact, Twisted Fate supported himself a little, enough to give him a look. It was so dark in there but he could tell, since he felt his breath and saw that light gleam due to magic.

 

« What ? » Not that it was annoying but he still wanted to ask if they were going for another run outside at some ungodly hour.

 

« I can hear you thinking. Proof, you’re so busy you didn’t even kiss me goodnight. »

 

A groan for that one, rolling his eyes. Of course sir. Before he could even give him some sass, Twisted Fate asked softly :

 

« Already have regrets ? »

 

« Fuck no. Just thinking, that’s all. Nothing against you. »

 

Blindly he tried to find the latter’s head, have him lean down for a kiss. Nothing rushed, gentle push of tongues but all too satisfying. Twisted Fate gave into the exchange, a small noise lost in it. Once it was over he still stayed there, half lying over Graves.

But he couldn’t care less. As long as he didn’t fall asleep completely on him.

 

« What’s wrong ? You said it was important to talk. »

 

From the way his partner asked and the tone, probably he thought this worse than what it was in reality.

 

« I know. It’s not so serious. Just, I don’t feel too guilty for now. Might come later. »

 

« You’re scared ? »

 

Bingo. Twisted Fate never missed.

 

« Not really but this shit gonna hurt. But don’t freak out about regrets. Just need time. » To explain this feeling would maybe help. In any case, he had his partner with him, if anything happened.

 

Small block for a time then he breathed deeply : « After all, I love you. »

 

Maybe it would be better to repeat it. Till he could come at peace with himself.

The answer was a tightening of the embrace around him, choked breath nearby.

 

« I love you too. » Equal emotion in the latter’s voice, close to break.

 

All they would need for now. Mutually admit this and stay strong. Together.

 

Sleep wasn’t so nice to him but it still took him, after some time in that quiet embrace.

Chapter Text

Mmmmh not yet…

 

Twisted Fate felt sleep leaving him, slowly. Getting awake by the second, from the light in the room. Sun was up, for a long time it would seem and so it decided it was time for him to rise. Though their difficult night still weighed over him, probably the reason he felt like having slept for years.

 

Past noon, or maybe not long before. Difficult to know exactly. Well, this was to be expected, after spending more than an hour running around the market. Also on the emotional side. Quite a rollercoaster.

Here he was, sleeping with Graves like many nights before, nothing new yet a part of their relationship had changed overnight.

 

Long sigh, as it became clear he wouldn’t find more rest. Already had his share. After all, it was in his habits to get up rather early. Now he wouldn’t, part of him yearning to stay close to his partner. Even in his sleep Graves had his arms around him, sort of barrier or protection. Lot of strenght at rest yet seeking contact. Not once he would complain, he liked that too.

Soothed, Twisted Fate shifted slightly in the embrace and returned it as he could. Perfect. If he was to stay awake, at least he could enjoy this moment and the warm body he was snuggled to.

 

Nothing happened for some time, lulled by the snoring nearby and few moves Graves did in his sleep. For his, it changed nothing. Twisted Fate stayed awake, quietly basking in that peace. So he let his thoughts wander.

 

A memory before they fell asleep, the small talk with the latter. He’s worried. Himself was too, despite the colorful confession and all affection exchanged. Twisted Fate was aware it wasn’t easy for his partner, to come in term with this. But now he trusted him, it would be alright. Both of them were so glad to hear that said and stated. Love.

 

Some vicious shame, for pushing Graves around to that point but it still got a positive result in the end. Maybe all they needed. Now that he was reassured, he would do his best not to bother the latter with that. His heart was filled with love again, enough to wait and give it back. It was still something he had to work on, the consideration of Graves’s feelings, opinions. Communication. If over the decade he made some effort and learned, there was still a few things he could change. So a sort of resolution, he would be by his side, no matter how tough it could get.

 

Just like Graves did for him.

 

New emotion tied his throat, powerful and he could just bear this. Better to focus on growth, attention to his partner. So they could stay together. Once more the topic of bonds came back, lurking but he brushed it off fast. Not that kind. Maybe one day but this was too soon. They just figured out and solved a problem.

 

For more time Twisted Fate lingered on that feeling, safety to be so honest around one specific person. To be himself. Not a sad nor happy note, just acknowledging that he found someone special. Whatever the sense given. And he would do anything to be as important for Graves, in return. Maybe a little petty, selfish but he wanted to be there for him, as much as the latter ruined and saved him. Decades ago he would have hated himself for ‘settling’ with someone. To trust. Had he gone soft or had he lost his vigilance ? Or just had he found the right person to be around ?

Everything told it was that last one. And he wished to believe.

 

Noises from outside, happy life from this busy city. With the light coming from the window, he wondered how Graves could still rest. Maybe he was really tired.

 

Since it had been some time on the same side, Twisted Fate rolled over, back turned to his partner. For comfort, he still took Graves’s arm with him, hugging close.

Such a move could just make the latter stir and indeed he came closer, embracing him from behind. Some quality spooning.

 

« Fucking come back… » So low, raspy, maybe a little annoyed.

 

Ah. It would be logical that this woke up Graves or maybe he was already and played dead for the sake of having some calm.

 

« Hello princess. Sorry if I woke you. » Yet he was glad to be hugged like this, embrace resumed and back pressed to the latter’s front. It was nice, especially from the lack of clothing and skin to skin feeling.

 

More grumbling, heavy with sleep but Graves didn’t sound so angry. Merely enduring the time between sleep and reality. Once he settled, his hand stayed over Twisted Fate.

 

« Maybe you. Dunno. Feel like shit anyway. »

 

Laughter shook him lightly : « Told you morning would be funny. »

 

« Fuck off. »

 

It was a bit rude but in character, knowing Graves, especially at waking. No worry at all. Twisted Fate even registered a few peck, pressed to his shoulders, nape. Always tickling a little, it touched him to be given such intimate display. Nothing sexual or anything but he liked this.

Thinking of, maybe he could make it up for last night, a lost occasion to fuck. Since morning was potentially over, at least they could get some relief from it.

 

Acting on this new objective, Twisted Fate took one of the latter’s hands over his chest to go lower, purposely having him trail down his body. Till he brought him to his crotch, another clue. Another attempt at getting Graves on the plan was to press back to him, sure he would rock against his cock too.

 

Reaction wasn’t late to come and far from disappointment. As on reflex, Graves held him closer and his hand brought down finished by squeezing, not too much but enough to acknowledge the need showed.

 

« Can’t believe you woke me to fuck… » Always playing annoyed but that was what it was. A game. And Twisted Fate was winning.

 

Rewarded by these words and tightening, he deemed this a yes to continue. Even more when he indeed felt Graves getting hard behind him, so faint rocking back.

 

« Aha, looks like I’m not the only one desperate. » Not nearly breathless but it got to him slowly. So proud of himself for earning such a reaction.

 

« Ya really think I’d say no ? I’m not stupid. »

 

This was the point Graves stopped giving a fuck about what nots and his sleep. With new motivation he felt Twisted Fate up, stroking him through fabric. A few low noises broke out, from this surge. Trapped against his aroused partner, the only place he wanted to be. And now Graves fully grinded back, strong hand over him to be sure he wouldn’t dare to tease and go away. He could, really.

 

And it got even better when Graves seemed to be done with that, yanking the latter’s pants to get on next step. Which was fast though cautious preparation. This rough yet caring display of need didn’t leave Twisted Fate unbothered, the heat of the mood coming up under the form of a blush. For this his partner had to put some short distance between them, so he could access to his entrance but the other hand stroking his cock was a good enough reason not to care. A finger went inside, rather easily thanks to his slick and a new moan escaped, lasting.

 

It would be hard to stay still, trapped between two intense stimulations, each making him jerk into contact. Maddening rhythm, even questionning if he would come before Graves actually pushed inside. So he prefered to speak up, at least for himself.

 

« Malcolm…If you keep up I’ll be done very soon… » Desperation even in his tone, as if it was years since his last time.

 

« Careful with that praise, might think I’m good at this. » Yet it was obvious, happy to hear Twisted fate confess right now.

 

« Damn you. Move ! » Patience had run out.

 

Even after that order Graves was complying so fast. Thrusting leisurly, drawing more noises out of him as he returned over and over to his sweet spot. Twisted Fate had to grab the pillow, fighting his own body not to let out everything.

But it didn’t last long, that hand leaving him stretched good to then welcome the latter’s cock. Slicked fast with his own fluid, teasing a little more before Graves deemed he was close enough to snap. No need to push further or it would be over too soon.

 

Their position remained the same, sort of spooning as Graves sheathed himself in welcoming heat. Just tensing enough for this to be pleasurable, Twisted Fate took him with ease. Yet he still shivered from the fullness, back into his partner’s arms. Merely a time to get used to it then that cock ram back inside of him, shaking his frame over the mattress.

 

« Oh— »

 

« There ? Good enough ? » Still some reason in that tone yet Graves couldn’t be so composed. Arousal ran low in his veins and soon he wouldn’t be able to hide it.

 

« You know it is… » Heavy breathing, losing control by the second as rocking went on.

 

This would be quick, not a real rush but he could feel Graves wasn’t here to joke around. An arm around his chest, keeping him close, the other hand stroking his cock. Already a mess, precum coating his digits, at least it made it easier.

Then that mouth returned and this time left hickeys over flesh instead of chaste pecks. Adorning skin with that peculiar affection, just as he fucked him deep. Soon Twisted Fate would lose his footing and abandon the idea of registering each sensation.

 

Though he could still think a little, realizing of close Graves was to that specific area over his neck. Avoiding it with care but it still made the urge throb. Bonds… ? It burned him to ask, even in such intimate situation. But maybe it would be the best. For now his reason was partially gone, he couldn’t really keep himself from asking.

 

« Malcolm… ? »

 

Being so thorough also meant Graves took more time to pay attention though it wasn’t too long.

 

« Yeah… ? » There, a clue of his own need, a bit raw.

 

« Would like that… ? To bond ? » It was hard to focus when one was rocked like this, as caring as it was.

 

« What ?….like mates ? »

 

Since this caught Graves attention, the rhythm slowed down a little but still enough to earn pretty noises from his partner. Also, he stopped stroking Twisted Fate. No doubt he was paying attention to this topic.

 

« Yes… ya know, marking…all that stuff. » Words came a back a little but no doubt he would fall again if Graves decided to go in fast.

 

Some silence followed, except for the slap of skin against skin and short breathing. Twisted Fate didn’t know what to think of this, a little beyond his inhibitions to be hurt or not. At least it kept him from overthinking.

 

« I would. » Low yet at their distance it was clear.

 

Huh ? Was he really expecting a no ? Maybe, it surprised him to hear his partner’s answer. Twisted Fate couldn’t fully grasp all the meaning with this but it still made a new warmth bloom in his chest. Happiness.

 

« You sure… ? » Maybe it was just him that didn’t hear well. Maybe. Yet he wanted to believe.

 

« Yeah, why not ? But let’s talk about it later. Mustn’t be doing a great job if you can speak properly. »

 

Fine. He would wait. Plus, it was logical to ask discuss this later.

 

« Bring it on, Malc— »

 

Immediately cut off by his own moan, loud and debauched. The pace came back so fast to what they had earlier, Graves taking as mission to get him off. So he would let him do, held and fucked, clinging all he could to his partner. This would be the perfect moment for a kiss but in that position, he couldn’t really unless making some effort. Which he couldn’t. All energy taken, leaving him helpless in bed, gasping his pleasure.

Again and again, that deep spot was touched and it yanked him to climax without mercy. Comfort found in the way Graves clung to him too, thrusts going even harder as he seemed near the edge. Sucking a few last marks before he surrended and gave his last strenghts to bring them to climax.

 

Sudden shock, warmth spilling inside of him and the knot took. So Graves was the first shaken by orgasm, taking him hard to ride the feeling. All this brought Twisted Fate to completion too, many senses overwhelmed by pleasure and touch and it felt so good to be right there. His release stained the sheets though he paid no mind to it, hit by his peak. It slowed eventually, till he remembered to breathe and completely lied down, pliant.

 

No way he would move now, tired on this start of day. Nearby, Graves trailed a hand up his stomach, chest, till he brushed his face in a gesture meant to be gentle. Still a bit rough but the message was given. With some effort and despite his ruined state, Twisted Fate turned enough to ask a kiss. Promptly answered and given, no rush but that lingering affection after love.

 

Oh wait, the talk…

Chapter Text

What a good day. Maybe not the best way to be woken up but Graves enjoyed what followed. Similar to what they got most days but fulfilling nonetheless.

 

Silence, at last. After the kiss, Twisted Fate returned to lie low, probably exhausted by this youthful display. Or well fucked. Anyway, this was some quiet time for Graves to relish. His partner was calm, all too nice and pliant in his arms, best thing. Later he would probably get noisy again, talking too much.

Which brought him to their start of conversation, put to later since they weren’t able to have it with sober mind. Ah yes.

 

At first, Graves thought he heard wrong. Or maybe he did and the latter meant something else. After asking more, it seemed that they thought the same thing. Bonding. Mates. A real surprise coming from Twisted Fate. Himself didn’t bother as much. Like, he knew some people seeked a mate, other prefered to never be bound. They were from Bilgewater, sure he shared the same idea about bonds. Not everyone considered it as sacred and marks could be given and received from several people, no care.

But always that concept of a link, no matter how strong or eternal it could be.

 

So really ? He wants to ? Himself would, if Twisted Fate was sure about this. Not that he didn’t care, of course he did but for his partner, maybe it was a good idea. A little too fast though. We still have time. But also they had been apart for a decade, that counted too.

 

« Ya know, you didn’t strike me as the type to bond. » Getting back on the topic, so he could make some sense out of it.

 

No immediate reaction but a small move, Twisted Fate making himself at ease in this partner’s arms. Then he gazed back, as difficult as it was to turn and shift their embrace.

 

« Oh ? And why is that ? » Curiosity in the tone, as he held Graves close.

 

« You like your freedom. Not that a bond means jail but for you it might be scary as fuck. »

 

Truthful, deep in the topic to a point neither expected. It was true, he knew it. Over the years he saw how Twisted Fate reacted, pissed off like the time he got handsy on him. Well, not against him, it was an accident. But Graves understood that the latter didn’t like to grow attached, at the risk of belonging to someone. For the first, he did grow fond of someone but it didn’t mean there was property in that.

He stayed mindful not to mention the omega part. Not something smart to remind to Twisted Fate. A bit touchy.

 

Indeed silence followed but he already found a sort of answer in the latter’s gaze. It hit so close. Maybe he didn’t even know he could understand that far so it came out as a surprise. Twisted Fate looked at him with a mix of emotion, nothing too worrying but enough to catch his attention. Genuine, vulnerable.

 

« Yeah, it is. » Simple, as he looked away. Thoughtful.

 

This sounded like a possible end of the discussion, taking him aback. I thought he wanted to talk. Or possibly Twisted Fate would elaborate on this.

Indeed, now they could change position and so he did, turning to face Graves while they stayed on their side. The latter came closer, quietly urging to hold him again then he settled against his chest. Silent.

 

For a time though. Broken soon enough.

 

« I want to anyway. With you. »

 

Words heavy with honesty. It was nice to hear, after these years. Also to note that Twisted Fate wanted a bond with him, even if the concept potentially scared him.

But again, this kind of matter was to be discussed before even acting on it. It would be some shit if Twisted Fate regretted that later. Graves would get over it more or less but it could be harmful for the latter.

 

So he welcomed his partner closer, hand in his hair, idly. « We gotta talk about it, before that. To be honest, I would bond if you asked and else but I want to know that you’re sure. »

 

« I know, I know. Too soon, all that crap. »

 

« Yes, also. But it’s important that you don’t do something stupid that you end up hating. »

 

For this Twisted Fate looked up, meeting his gaze.

 

« I won’t hate it. I love you and…I think you’d be the only one I’d ask this. »

 

Some days it was sweet to hear him say this so easily, contrary of years of silence. Now it hurt a little, very lightly. Such a long way. Not on a bad note, just Graves saw that what he took of betrayal was the strongest kind of love. It couldn’t be broken.

 

« That damn nice to hear. But I— »

 

« Would do it ? Mark me ? Bond ? » Cut by the latter, suddenly speaking in a sort of rush. « I can’t force you to do this and it…sounds like you don’t want to. »

 

« I don’t care. » A bit blunt, direct as some of his patience went. If only they could express easily what they thought.

 

From the pause and hurt look in Twisted Fate’s eyes, this wasn’t the thing to say, though. He realized it could be taken another way.

 

« No no no, that’s not like this. » Shit. Really sometimes it was difficult not to fuck up. « I mean, it’s cool if we can bond. And be mates. If that makes you happy ‘cause honestly it would be nice to have you near. »

 

Why was he talking so much to say nothing ? No idea. As if trying to get an answer for a question he didn’t even know. Truly a mess, to explain these topics. At leas the hoped it didn’t scare the latter.

 

« I’d hate to bond. With anyone except you. I think I see where you’re coming to. Yes, it scares me so much…But I know you. I trust you. »

 

Relaxing, to hear that. To know he was trusted to that point. Twisted Fate may hold dearly his freedom, he loved him as much.

 

« Ya know, it’s not supposed to be a sacrifice. It won’t change a lot to what we are and do together. »

 

The embrace grew tight around him.

 

« I know. You won’t be a dick, that’s why I want to do it with you. Just to know that…that I matter for you. »

 

Oh. Another reason too. All would return to that fear of abandon, it would seem. Sadness came back but Graves pushed it away fast.

 

« You already matter, idiot. »

 

Some soft words, causing a sudden move. A kiss, asked hungrily and urgent hands to be sure he would stay here. Really, this kind of reaction was getting common and it warmed his heart to see Twisted Fate happy for any of it. So far of the cold cardmaster of their young days, aiming to deceive and play. All it took was to take the mask away.

Graves wouldn’t point out these moments. It was sweet to have.

 

Even more in such topic. Mates. A chance for them to stay together till the end. He wasn’t lying on this, he wanted to bond with Twisted Fate if he asked. If that could bring him some peace.

 

This was the idea of bonds in Bilgewater. It was always good to share but it never bound someone forever. Everyone was free to seek a new life and mate if something was to happen. So, a mark wasn’t the end of the world if it was under wrong reasons and many could be shared till death. This was what Graves wanted to tell him, that he didn’t have to feel trapped in this, if they ever reached that step. Twisted Fate always had a way out and this could scare him if it was meant to stay till death.

But so difficult to explain without passing as uncaring for the bond. He knew himself, the wrong word could hurt. So it was important to think before talking.

 

« You’ll still have a way out, if that doesn’t work out. A mark will never hold you back. » A bit out of the blue after such a kiss and short pause but he had to try.

 

That gaze over him went soft, affection clear in it : « It won’t be necessary. This is not a mistake. »

Chapter Text

Even if something happened, Twisted Fate was sure about this. He wouldn’t regret it, unless he deeply changed. But not planned. All these years convinced he wouldn’t find Graves again made it clear, impossible to forget and let go.

This would be for the best and as the latter say, in itself, nothing would truly change. ‘Just’ a mark and link. Yet part of him purred to have this in reach.

 

Shivering once more, at the memory of words a few minutes ago. I « already matter ». In the same vein than Graves saying his love aloud. Exactly the same rush of joy, having him so close. Such a long way and here they were, cuddling like youngsters. Since that feeling hadn’t left despite the years, it only showed how right this was.

Hard path to know each other, fall for each other and even more to admit it but now it resulted in such a good partnership, no way they could break it.

 

It would work out because he knew it would. Everything was said and clear, no lies on the most serious topics.

 

So that’s it ? We’re gonna bond ?

 

A bit of a lost idea turned into a burning question, till it became a real possibility. Still, it wasn’t done yet but they could. Not now though.

 

Getting back on the topic despite the natural pause, Twisted Fate gazed at his partner : « Hey. When do we go for it ? Before you ask, I think it’s too soon to do it right now. » He had to be realist, so much happened in such a short span of time.

 

It was important to take their time, be sure of everything. It seemed clear that Graves was fine with that but after all they just went through, maybe it was for the best to wait. Not too long but enough to think calmly.

 

« Yeah same. A bit too early, we just fucked already. » Followed by a deep laugh, rumbling in his chest.

 

Nice to feel that laugh. Twisted Fate returned to snuggle against him, glad for this comfortable spot in strong arms. Oh, why not. An idea came.

 

« Why not during my next heat ? It’s in a month. »

 

Plenty of time to think and still not too long to wait. For him, it wouldn’t be so easy to be patient but it seemed reasonable. And Graves wouldn’t be too worried about going too fast.

 

The answer came rather fast : « Mmmh yes. Works for me. »

 

« Good, one thing done. » Slowly it dawned on him, that they were really doing this. This truly would take all his anticipation for the following month.

 

Chuckle half muffled against the latter’s chest, hit by reality. So Graves noticed, hand moving over him questionningly.

 

« What ? » Typical reaction when something would start to annoy him, most of times when Twisted Fate made some useless comment or else.

 

« Oh, don’t get mad. It’s just, we’re really planning to bond, I can’t realize. Imagine, all these years like fools and now we’re so close to that step. »

 

If at first the tone was still shaken by laughter and amusement, it turned little by little to wonder, sort of nostalgia. Then he moved further, arms around Graves’s shoulders. Holding with strenght, sharing a gaze.

 

« Not my fault if a certain idiot took his time. » Not so amused but he seemed to think about his latest words and added : « But we both needed that. Got a lot to unpack and understand. »

 

Twisted Fate saw that effort to avoid useless harm. Anyway, Graves was saying the truth. He had been an ass for a time and no doubt it still helped them to reach that point. Maybe except the Locker, that one was completely unasked for and both would have prefered it never happened.

 

Again the Locker in his mind, dark thought. Twisted Fate resented that place and time with all his heart. It took them so much, almost managed to break them apart. In no way he could be grateful for the possible growth it could have given to their relationship. Nothing could justify a decade lost in that jail or alone far away.

Emotion stirred, getting close to a sensitive topic. This time was over but its consequences would never end. It was only theirs to move on and make better memories. What he was planning with that bond.

 

Coming even closer, he nuzzled Graves’s neck and relished the scent for a time. Soon. Here he would leave his mark.

 

« You know, I can’t wait to give you my own mark. Make you forget the one on your back. »

 

All too soft, serious for the previous light mood. He couldn’t help it, he wanted the intent to be clear. Acknowledge and distract at the same time. Just like his own future mark, what the Locker left over Graves’s skin would never go away. But he could give a new meaning.

 

For this sudden rise of emotion, the latter said nothing at first. Holding Twisted Fate tightly, conveying part of what he felt.

 

« For this one I’ll be glad. » Very controlled tone, it showed this wasn’t so fine for Graves to let out.

 

Marks always held some meaning, not once it was given carelessly. Establish a bond, sometimes love, sometimes domination. In the case of the Locker and its prisonners, it was plainly cruel and sadistic. Killed some in the process.

 

Again struck by feelings, that he caused himself. Really Twisted Fate should get used to this but he hadn’t yet. Squeezing his heart, to hear such shy – somehow tinted – joy for a future bond. All this happened so fast but he could get the latter emotional over a mark.

No way his next heat would go quietly, more raw emotions to come in that time. And then they’d be one.

 

~

 

Indeed Twisted Fate was right for one thing, as short as a month could be, he still felt it like a year. Really, it fucked with him to see time pass fast or slow depending on how much he appreciated life at this period.

 

For once he was waiting for his heat, truly a paradox. But it would bring good things too, not just pain for several days and the uncomfort of this shitty time.

 

Between him and Graves it went well, even more than that. Now there was no real matter, no question of feelings and other craps. Ah yes, just one thing. One time he threatened to take him another bedroom if he was to push him out of bed in his sleep. Again, empty words, Twisted Fate let him be angry then when evening came, he was welcomed all the same in his arms. Nothing to be worried about. Also because truly he couldn’t much about it.

 

Good news of these days, the new Destiny was ready and now his partner was all too happy to have again his dear weapon. Still cried over the old one lost in the bay but now he could move on. Now their job in Piltover was done, they could go. But the heat coming soon, they prefered to stay here while it was possible. At least it was comfortable.

 

Counting the remaining days despite himself, Twisted Fate was more than sure. Several conversations at night, just before sleeping and sometimes after love. It was nice, it was peaceful and they could speak without fear. Graves made it really clear for him, the bond would never put an end to his freedom. As long as they spoke about any matter in the future. Honestly he didn’t care much, no need of a way out if it was to last in harmony.

Also learned more about the latter’s thoughts on it. Not opposed to, far from it. Just he could live with or without. But now that the offer was made, it was difficult to imagine refuse this. Even more when Twisted Fate gave this such sentimental meaning. It couldn’t go wrong.

 

The sweetest thing about these days was that this decision was right. They could do it and all would be fine afterward. Time just made it worth the wait.

 

But anyway it still felt horrible for Twisted Fate when the heat started, both terribly glad and in an awful state. At least there was love to find in this time of pain.

Chapter Text

Only thing that never changed, a heat would always try to make it the worst day of his life. That title was impossible to be earned this way, the worst was already behind him thanks to the heist and the Locker. But still, Twisted Fate hated how wicked a heat could be.

 

All was going alright, they were waiting in a strange mix of anticipation and boredom. It was long to wait sometimes, especially for something as irregular. No way to know it would strike early in the morning or later that day. Or even next day. That one case though had no chances to happen, unless it got triggered by another even, Graves’s rut. Which was still pretty far for now.

So it was fine, just waiting. Fuck this.

 

Again, peace of mind wasn’t what he expected in such time. Since nothing happened till afternoon, both were done with that crap. It would probably bother them at night, as it did several times. So after common agreement, Graves went outside, quite annoyed to sit around all day. Also because he wanted to find them some food for when it was too difficult to go. Truly needed for survival later.

 

Twisted Fate should have seen it coming. Of course the heat would be a bitch and his partner was gone for a time. Vicious, really. That terrible shudder, alone in that room. The first sign of hell. And it had to happen just now, after Graves left.

 

Here he was at the moment, enduring that enthusiastic start. Not completely naked but enough to reduce the hitch of fabric over skin. Truly unbearable. Alone, in bed, trying to even his breathing but just this task was difficult. Fuck, fuck, fuck… It had to bother him right now, without any source of relief but himself.

Solitude still hit him in the least expected way. No help at the moment and most of all, a memory of all these years and heats spent alone. It hurt, his body started to ache and now he got overwhelmed by the flames. Another memory, waiting for Graves in their room. But he never did. Why did it have to bother him right now ? He was aware the latter was gone just for a little time, would come back soon and yet his mind raced and brought back useless memories. Painful. Maybe because this was indeed his first heat with Graves since the Locker and everything.

 

Resolute, he brushed this away, trying so hard not to think about it. His years had already done so much damage before, no need to get worried over this. Not now. Hopefully, soon he wouldn’t be able to think straight anymore, plainly reduced to his need. Both a curse and a sweet promise. For now it burned, and burned. Nothing would really help unless he took care of it and even that wasn’t so effective without Graves.

Lying down over the mattress, pushing the blanket away, Twisted Fate felt the fever settle. Despicable, suffocating and it was just the beginning.

 

Malcolm, come back…

 

This would never be soon enough, his body craved to a very far point. No doubt he was already slick but he refused to acknowledge even that fact. Heat sure knew how to turn him into a mess. Giving up, he kicked off his underwear and took himself in hand. Aching, desperate for the single touch yet it was too much. Hungry for more and too shaken to even take. Rolling over his back, trying to breathe low but it became too difficult. Hand around his cock, quick pace he couldn’t even stop. Pleasure was the only thing that mattered, as if it would stop any other signal, calm down the sickness. Why always me ? Stupid question, he knew it. This was his condition since birth, no way to escape it. And each time he remembered why he hated this so much.

 

Keeping these negative thoughts for later, he focused again on pleasure, just that. How good it felt, even if it would never be enough by his sole hands. Rutting into his grasp, everything seemed to fade away and climax so close. In reach.

A few seconds later, furiously seeking that end, it happened. But as he innerly feared, it wouldn’t nearly bring him satisfaction. So faint peace, quickly smothered by this fire. Running under his skin, consuming him, it wouldn’t go. Even as he bucked and rode this orgasm, it made him forget just for a few seconds.

 

Then everything came back, memories, solitude, the feeling of his release over him. Pain. And a fall into darkness, unsure where that blur came from. Nothing really made sense and the concept of time was no more. Twisted Fate held the sheets, trembling to his core and could do nothing else. Just endure as oblivion took him.

 

~

 

An eternity or a few less minutes later, there was a change even him could register. Nothing really drastic, difficult to understand in his condition. Twisted Fate heard some noises, moves nearby but couldn’t pay more attention. Already so impacted by the heat, impossible for him to move a lot. These noises only could come from Graves but right now his ability to think was completely shut down.

 

It was only when contact was made that some of his mind returned, the part not to easily smashed by the heat. His face was slightly turned and then he met a gaze. Difficult to read right now but that mere sight made him sigh of relief.

 

« You’re back… » Not even filtering whatever he thought. Because it was rather limited at the moment. Just happy that his partner came back to him.

 

Now maybe the heat would go better for him.

 

« Fuck, Tobias. Thought it would happen much later. » That man sounded equally annoyed for whatever reasons – maybe himself and poor choice for leaving – and worried.

 

« Uhuh, no…Looks like it had to let me suffer earlier. » A bit weakened but what a nice surprise to hear his voice wasn’t broken. Yet.

 

Before his partner could grumble more about it, Twisted Fate made a big effort and took him lower into a kiss. Effort, because his strenghts seemed to have gone for good. But it was still possible, since Graves was staying near while checking on him.

Relief flooded and for a time he almost forgot the pain. Everything would be alright, Graves was here. But exhaustion and fever struck back, making him abandon that kiss to whimper lowly. It never stopped, aches rolling through him and reminding of his need.

 

Contact disappeared suddenly. Another reason to whine despite himself, it was horrible to have no one near, no touch, nothing. Awareness slipping, Twisted Fate still registered hands roaming his body again, warm against warmer skin, free to be explored. Each single touch felt like doubled, too much yet his body arched into it.

 

« Please… »

 

So difficult to pay attention but really he couldn’t ignore the rush of pleasure when warmth enveloped his cock. Outrageous, to scream like this but with all happening at once, he couldn’t hold back. Slowly his mind realized that this overly delightful attention was Graves, going down on him. This would explain the lack of contact for a time.

 

« Ho— ! » Nothing elaborate would come out of him. Only wanton sounds as praise, not even able to stop this.

 

And it never stopped, just like his craving. Wetness, strong pressure, accurate touch. Twisted Fate was in no condition to say if that was actually a good blow job or a sloppy one but he wouldn’t complain. It was good, given to him at his most needy time for a while and it felt like a benediction. Rocking shakily, chasing a second orgasm that seemed so near already. Still, something held him down, to prevent him from going too far but all he was given was sufficent.

On reflex his hands stayed over Graves’s head, urging him for more but he was far too weak to force him. And the edge grew closer, closer.

 

Mind gone, for an instant. Gaze stuck on the ceiling till he couldn’t even keep his eyes open, under a new wave of pleasure. Strong enough to fear for himself. A sob broke out as he jerked into the latter’s mouth, spilling his load and so many cries.

And oxygen came back as fast, filling his lungs as if he was drowning. Swimming in this soft haze, glad.

 

Still not able to really think, he merely beckoned Graves closer, when he crawled up to him after such nice offering. Kiss easily asked then again the latter parted for good. From the moves over the mattress, he got out of bed and Twisted Fate shifted his position so he could try to watch his actions. A bit difficult to focus but it would be enough.

In fact, Graves was still in his usual clothes for when he went outside, cloak and all. So now he was taking all this off, left without care on a chair nearby. He watched, mind empty but still rocked by the echoes of pleasure found. It was nice, till pain would come back.

 

So went the undressing, a sort of show even him could appreciate. Also it surprised him to see Graves take to the very last piece of clothing, entirely naked. This was the instant need slapped him, from seeing the latter in such state of arousal. He rose as much as he could, sitting and not once he looked away. Just here, his partner ready to give more. That staring was noticed and Graves came closer, joining him over the mattress casually.

Such a stark difference between the heat burning low in his being and the latter, coming to his side with slow moves. Almost gentle, if that was a word they could use.

 

« Hey, still with me ? » Nothing angry in that tone, just taking care.

 

On reflex Twisted Fate embraced him, relishing the contact as much as it overwhelmed him. Really, no break allowed even after two orgasms. How was he supposed to survive ? Graves welcomed him, till he was in his lap and happy to cuddle. Between them, a reminder neither was out of the wood, they still craved. Just the difference of level that changed.

 

« This shit is already too much…Gonna need the real stuff. » If that wasn’t a good hint, he didn’t what to do.

 

« Aye, I’m on it. »

 

Indeed new stimulation down there, making him gasp without meaning to. Just this and he would cry under his breath. A finger probbed him before directly going as two inside. So much slick, so ready it didn’t even hurt.

 

« Damn, you’re really needy. How it’s been ? When I wasn’t here ? »

 

Already his thoughts returned to its confused state, shattered by a mere fingering. Too good, too soon yet at no time this would be the perfect timing. So it was difficult to answer properly, while Graves kept thrusting inside, teasing that damned spot.

 

A few times Twisted Fate had to restart his sentence, cut off by his own desperate moans.

 

« Hell…You weren’t here and it’s just…too much… »

 

A sigh nearby, as fingers left him more than stretched. Craving to be filled, find that sweetness, make it stop at all cost. Twisted fate could barely move so the latter had to coax him as he could, lifting him just enough to fuck him. There, sinking on his cock, another cry ripped of his throat. I can’t….

Staying upright was too demanding, he merely ended up pressed against Graves, supported as he rocked inside. Each time he couldn’t help but moan, held tightly so he wouldn’t fall. Right now Twisted Fate wasn’t able to look at him, face resting to his shoulder and hands desperately clinging to him.

 

There he remembered, the whole reason he waited for this heat. Really a bit dumb to forget about it, even for a short time but sometimes it got too strong. Leaning to his partner, the pull returned. The bond…

Actually they hadn’t talked about how to do it, if it was better at the end of the heat or at the beginning. But now it burned him so much just to give in, mark him and claim him as his. It was there, just in reach and he waited for so long.

 

« Malcolm… »

 

« Yeah ? »

 

Unfair, how the latter could sound so composed while himself was almost crying of need. The fault of his condition again but not the time to lament on this. He tried to breathe deeply before asking, hopes that he would be clear enough as deep thrusts shook his world.

 

« The mark…now ? It’s fine… ? »

 

« Better not. See yourself ? Barely able to hold. »

 

« Why… ? I want to… » So honest, he craved this bond but his mind couldn’t understand the reason behind this.

 

« And I want to be sure you feel it. » There was a start of need in his voice, getting into their lovemaking. Pounding, giving as much. But Graves seemed to change a bit his mind : « Mark me if you want, I’ll just give mine later. Today, I swear, but later. »

 

No doubt Graves was right but his heat-addled mind couldn’t grasp that. At least that compromise seemed fair, just delaying a little the completion of the bond. He would have it anyway and by the end, they’d be one.

 

Not even waiting, his mouth lingered over Graves’s neck. Not really shy but as if considering what he was about to do. To claim. At the moment, everything pushed him to do so, fulfill this need. Under the touch, the latter stilled so slightly, a hand staying in his hair in a soft gesture to say fine.

Acceptance.

 

Following instinct and heart, Twisted Fate claimed him, right then and there. Holding him close, as if they could indeed be one. So dearly. And right away joy seized him, colorful feeling. A taste of blood quickly forgotten for the lasting rush of whatever that was.

A noise nearby, soft. That could only come from Graves, now marked. He parted so slightly to witness his work, trail a careful hand over this soon to be complete bond. My mark… And a mere sight got him over the edge.

 

Climax caused as much by the intense fucking than the vibrant happiness from having someone. Meaning was given. He tensed and cried, tightened the embrace and gave all he had. Resting against Graves, drained of his energy and bliss settled in his bones. Heavy, impossible to move. Not even able to voice that pleasure.

 

All that mattered was this new fact. He gave his mark, he mattered enough to leave his imprint.

 

From this point, Graves was free to do whatever he wanted to find this same bliss, holding him tight as he slammed him down. Jerking inside, slowly consumed by these same flames, till he could barely hold his composure and gasp lowly. Twisted Fate was far too satisfied and soothed to even be bothered by the rocking. Moving, indeed but he was held and loved and that was all he asked.

 

Just at the end, when the latter knotted him, a last spike of pleasure coursed him but it wasn’t nearly as great as the affection he craved to give now. Graves thrust in erratically, till he was done and spent for this round.

Tension dropped and he merely held his lover closer, no care to the semence between them. Some peace, that Twisted Fate appreciated. The fire burned low, fairly reduced for now.

 

Mmmmh. Nice… And now came exhaustion, replacing the fever for some time.

 

There was still some shifting in their embrace, enough for him to notice. And realize his thoughts were a bit more coherent, not too foggy. Graves was moving, bringing a hand to his neck. Just above the mark. Oh. New warmth blooming, this one due to feelings. Truly proud of himself, to have claimed his tough partner for the best and the worst.

 

« So ? » Glad, almost a purr as he asked what the latter thought of it.

 

« Didn’t hurt as much as I thought. » Simple thought let aloud, truthful. Graves said nothing else for a time, lingering on that mark he couldn’t see. Only feel. « Though it’s nice. »

 

No regrets, never.

 

« Hey, I can still talk and else. Mark me… ? » Turned the tone sweet, he really wanted him to hurry. No care if he wasn’t high on heat, begging to be taken, he still craved to complete the bond.

 

« Okay okay, I shouldn’t have doubted you. But it’s as important for you than for me. Now it’s fine ? »

 

« Idiot, I may get carried away, I still know wh— nnngh ! » A moan coming up, just as Graves rocked back to elicit such reaction. « Asshole. Mark me already, I gave you mine. »

 

Now it was almost composed as he spoke, back on his habits. Surely this was the break in the heat, appreciated while he could. Tired, maybe but at least he didn’t have to cry in the sheets. Shifting his position, it remained a bit sensitive given their latest lovemaking but he managed. Gazing back at Graves, hint of faked annoyance to have him move.

 

« Fine, since you asked so nicely. »

 

All this was an act, both knew it and seeked that bond. Once it was fully returned, who knew how much it would touch them ? Graves leaned closer, enough to be chest to chest and nuzzled his neck the same way he did sometimes, in safety.

Took his time relishing the scent, hands moving slowly over Twisted Fate. To the point he got a bit impatient.

 

« Please. » It turned out soft, while he wanted this blank. But in such contaxt, difficult to seem uncaring. Anticipation increased his heartbeat, holding the latter as lips and beard lingered over that spot.

 

The answer came fast, teeth engraving their bond and then his breath was caught. Again. A bit of a rush, things clicking in place and he couldn’t help but gasping at the feeling.

 

So it was done.

 

Emotions came up as fast, tying his voice for a time. When Graves pulled off, to look at him, that same kind of emotion appeared. Impossible to dodge. So it was time to follow his instinct. Yanking him closer, kissing his breath away till all he could feel and taste was his now mate.

 

Mates…

 

Oh that answer was equally sweet, pushing back in that kiss till they were merely trying to kiss their love into each other. Relentless.

Passion had them topple over, ending up on the mattress with Graves on top of him. While they recovered their breath, he left tiny affection all over his neck and jaw, tingling effect from the heat but all so welcomed. A laugh bubbled up and Twisted Fate couldn’t repress that. It was too good, too gentle and his heart would give up if they went through this every following night.

 

« Thank you Malcolm. Now I’m really stuck with you till the end. » So much happiness in the tone

 

Still, it made the latter look up with a sort of worried glare – if that could be described this way : « Hell no. I’m not binding you forever. » Going low, he trailed a rough hand over warmer skin. « This is no jail, don’t be scared of me. You’re still free. »

 

In this mess of words and not really asked depth of feelings, Twisted Fate still found this endearing to find such cautiousness for him. To be known to that point.

 

« I know, but what if I want to stay stuck with you ? This is exactly where I want to be. »

 

Pulling Graves down, giving a soft kiss to show his thoughts on all this. It would be alright, no need to worry.

Very stubborn, the latter got out of the kiss after returning it, careful hands over him.

 

« Fine, your choice. But seriously, talk to me if there is a matter. »

 

If that was possible, Graves looked a little flustered, for the overly sweet mood. That was what being cautious earned him, a tender mood he couldn’t even keep up with without some red to his cheek. Truly, Twisted Fate was glad to have him, this would be so much fun and love in the future.

 

For now he could put the heat aside, they got what they craved. A bond. And the following instant only showed this was the best outcome, caring. On the other hand, it meant now he had to go through this whole heat without the initial rush of waiting the bond. Anyway, Graves was here, it would still be better than these poor years alone.

 

In bed, held close, for once there was nothing scary or bad on his mind. Nothing really changed but it was still very clear, sweet to feel. To know he had a special someone, to hold dear and to go through life. After years surviving outside, he could trust and finally find back that same feeling. Home.

They weren’t perfect but the closest possible. Nothing to fear in the future, they got each other. What he never thought to find one day but sometimes it was good to be surprised.

 

Chaotic path till then but it resulted in a strong bond. One that would never be broken.