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Like a Lily Alive

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The first time Arthur’d met Charles, he’d felt the spark of something deep in his own gut, the same spark of something that had been in Charles’s eyes that day as they’d shaken hands. Charles had placed his left hand on Arthur’s shoulder as their right hands clasped, and Arthur’d felt the circuit between them complete then, begin to heat up like the coil of an incandescent bulb.

 

It’d kept heating up from there, until it’d burned white hot and bright, and had brought them to where they are now, stretched out on Arthur’s little cot and fondling like teenagers.

 

They’d never talked about it none, not before now; had only exchanged knowing glances over quiet cups of coffee, sat a little too close together by the fire at night, thighs just barely brushing. The odd clap on the back or a hand on the knee, inconspicuous and unassuming and invisible to anyone but the two of them. Maybe a sideways glance, once, while they were pissing on the same tree back before Blackwater, when Arthur’d been a little too drunk and a little too desperate to know better.

 

No, they’d never talked about it, but they’d both known it in their bones, had sensed it; just two faggots dressed up in men’s bodies, attuned to each other in the way Arthur assumed all faggots were.  

 

Even if Arthur’d been wrong, if Charles weren’t a filthy invert like him, he hadn’t seemed to mind the way Arthur gravitated towards him like a compass towards North, and that was enough for Arthur. By then, he’d been used to pining.

 

Turned out, he hadn’t needed to worry much.

 

He’d felt a flicker of fear when, round about a week after they’d made camp at Shady Belle, Arthur’d headed to his room for a mid-afternoon nap and had been acutely aware of Charles trailing behind him – he’d felt a little like a young buck then, a prey animal being stalked by a sleek, prowling predator what meant to devour him whole. He’d swallowed thickly around the lump in his throat, equal parts anticipation and anxiety.

 

As soon as the door had swung shut behind Charles, however, fear was forgotten, even as Charles had pushed him bodily against the wall, out of view of the broken window and eyes that meant to pry.

 

He’d held Arthur there for a long, silent moment, eyes flicking between Arthur’s own and his parted, chapped lips, as if looking for something; searching for that spark that’d lit them both up like the Fourth of July that day they’d first met. Seemed to find it soon enough, and had leaned in to brush his lips like a whisper over Arthur’s own.

 

It’d been a downhill tumble for the both of them from there, that gentle brushing of lips the first falling stones in a thundering landslide they could no longer hold back. Gentle at first, and then increasingly eager, until they’d come to rest where they were now; sprawled on Arthur’s cot, altogether too small for their two bulky bodies, pressed up tight against one another as if they were fit to freeze in the hot, damp Lemoyne heat.

 

Arthur is bruisingly hard, can feel every stitch in the seam of his denim trousers, it seems, and the pressure of Charles own erection pressed against his hip only serves to intensify the feeling – Charles’s cock is big, thicker than Arthur’d imagined, and the thought sends a pulse of arousal through him that has his hips lifting minutely.

 

Charles’s lips travel down his stubbled jaw to suck at the rough, reddened skin of his neck, and Arthur groans in their absence, though the noise may be due in part to Charles’s clever fingers having finally unbuttoned Arthur’s flimsy cotton shirt enough to sneak one of his big hands inside to palm at the swell of muscle of Arthur’s chest. The way Charles plays with his nipple and squeezes the flesh reminds Arthur of a schoolboy playing with a girl's tits and even that thought, for reasons he won’t entertain, draws a low groan from him.

 

“Christ, Charles, s'good …”

 

It’s the first thing either of them has said since before their lips had even met, and it seems to break whatever spell of silence had shrouded them. As if by speaking, Arthur’d reminded Charles he could speak, that it’s just the two of them in the relative privacy of Arthur’s run-down room, that they have the time and space for more than a furtive, nervous fumbling.

 

“You like that, honey?” is Charles’s reply, and Arthur can feel the mocking smile pressed into the sensitive skin beneath his ear. Arthur even chuckles quietly; the endearment is ridiculous, but he’s too stupid happy and aching with desire to care.

 

“Sure, sweetie pie.”

 

His laugh becomes a gasp when Charles bites, gentle but fierce, at a spot suckled sore on Arthur’s neck.

 

Charles continues to press long, sucking kisses into the column of Arthur’s neck, even as his hand begins to work; first pulling Arthur’s shirt from where it’s tucked into his trousers, then slowly, methodically undoing his buttons. Arthur can do little more than groan, low in his throat and hungry for it, as Charles spreads a hand over his exposed abdomen and begins to inch his hand, molasses slow, towards the waistband of Arthur’s trousers.

 

His mouth travels, too, from Arthurs neck downwards, towards his freckled shoulders, the smooth curve of his clavicle.

 

“You ever done this before?” he asks the skin there, between gentle applications of tongue and tooth.

 

With Charles’s hand on the soft, pale skin of his stomach, idly tracing the trail of hair that dips below his waistband, it takes Arthur a minute to find the words and string them together – he's too focused on the fact that Charles’s little finger is mere inches from the leaking tip of his cock, still tucked away in his trousers.

 

“Sure, plenty of times,” he manages. “Dutch told you the story 'bout my birthday, the year I turned twenty-three, didn’t he? Found me flat on my back, a tit in each hand, one in my mouth, a girl bouncing on my – “

 

“Not that,” Charles interrupts, and it’s suddenly serious. He’s pulled away and is looking at Arthur with those dark, unreadable eyes; his hand is pressed against Arthur’s belly but unmoving. “I mean, done this with a man before.”

 

It’s the first time Arthur’s ever been embarrassed about not being more of a faggot. He can feel his cheeks grow hot with it, and suddenly he wishes he weren’t so exposed here, with his tits out like a half-cent whore.

 

“Done plenty of other stuff to fellers, before,” he jokes in response, but it feels defensive even to him, and Charles doesn’t laugh – just looks him in the eyes the way Charles does, quiet and patient and searching, looking for the truth he knows he can wait out.

 

“But… no, nothing like this.”

 

Charles’s mouth is a thin, hard line, and his brow is furrowed ever-so-slightly, in a way Arthur would find impossible to read if he hadn’t spent hours sketching those strong, stoic features by the light of the fire. It’s something like concern, like he can’t tell if the ground between them is even anymore.

 

“Think about it a lot, though.”

 

 It’s the truth.

 

Arthur places his hand overtop of Charles’s, still resting on his stomach, and pushes it lower, down to cup him through his denim where he is still stiff and achingly hard.  

 

“Thought about it since I been old enough to know what to do with a hard cock and a minute to spare.”

 

Charles huffs out a quiet laugh at that, and relief unspools the tight coil of tension in Arthur’s chest – relief followed quickly by the familiar pull of arousal as Charles begins to stroke him through his jeans, slow and careful as if Arthur is a horse about to spook.

 

“That so?”

 

His voice is soft in the same way when he leans in to murmur, low and growling, in Arthur’s ear.

 

“Tell me what you think about, then.”

 

Arthur flounders for a moment, head spinning as Charles begins to unfasten his trousers, unhurried but efficient in his motions. He’s taken to worrying Arthur’s earlobe with his teeth, and every time Arthur opens his mouth to speak, a soft moan seems to escape instead.

 

“Do you think about me?”

 

Charles’s hand is on his dick now, Arthur’s trousers pushed down around his thighs, and his work-roughened hand feels good, calloused and as big as Arthur’s own – maybe even a little bigger. The thought of Charles being bigger than him,  stronger, sends a thrill of startling arousal down his spine, and his cock pulses in Charles’s grip.

 

Arthur bites his lip. Nods.

 

Charles is nothing if not patient, and he’s proving it now –  he’s not even stroking Arthur’s cock, just holding it in a grip too loose to be satisfying, as if waiting for Arthur to say something. To ask for it, maybe; at this point, Arthur wouldn’t be above begging, if only he could get his tongue untied.

 

“I … I think about this. 'Bout doing this with, with you.”

 

Charles whispers something that sounds suspiciously like “good boy,” but Arthur can’t be sure, the praise drowned out by the sound of his own relieved groan as Charles begins to stroke him, slow and smooth and firm.

 

“Tell me,” Charles says, as if there’s more to tell. But it’s a demand, not a request.

 

“Think about, ah, gettin’ on my knees for you,” he gasps, and Arthur knows his face is red now, can feel the blush burning in his face and all down his neck. He’s never felt more inverted in his life; he’s never been as hard as he is now, either.

 

“Think about… Jesus, Charles, you know.”

 

Charles just hums low in his throat, his stroking hand stilling as he leans over to take one of Arthur’s nipples into his mouth, rolling if between his teeth, delicate and gentle and patient as ever.

 

Arthur’s never felt more like prey in his life.

 

“Ah, alright, just – just don’t stop, don’t stop. I think about gettin' on my knees and letting you stick your, ah, your cock in my mouth. That what you wanna hear?”

 

Charles chuckles, runs his thumb over the head of Arthur’s leaking cock and gives him a long, firm stroke, too much and not enough all at once.

 

“It’s a start.”

 

It’s then that Arthur realizes Charles means to torture him like this, that watching Arthur squirm like nervous virgin is getting him off; his hips are rolling gently in time with his fluid stroking of Arthur’s cock, rubbing himself languidly against Arthur’s thigh. Made hungry for it from teasing Arthur, but as if he could do this forever. It’s embarrassing; Arthur already feels dangerously close to the edge.

 

The thought that it’s him Charles is hungry for pushes him closer to that edge.

 

“Charles, Christ, Charles, I wanna suck your cock, you know I do. Think about, ah, gagging on it, choking on it. Letting you fuck my mouth 'til you, you shoot your load all over my god damn face.”

 

Charles’s hips stutter.

 

“Would you swallow it?”

 

Yeah,” Arthur groans. He’s thought of that, too, filthy as it is; has no idea how Charles knew. Maybe Charles is as inverted as he is, after all. “Yeah.”

 

Something about the admission – be it the broken, gasping tone of Arthur’s voice, desperate and agreeable, or the simple fact he’d agree to such an act at all – something about it seems to crack through Charles’s ceaseless composure.

 

With a palm on Arthur’s chest, he shoves Arthur flat onto his back on the creaky little bed at the same time as he swings a leg over to straddle Arthur’s hips. Draws his cock from the fly of his trousers, dark and hard and thick and gives it a long, slow stroke, as if he’s showing off, like he knows he’s got something to be proud of. The gesture draws Arthur’s gaze and drops his jaw; the sound he makes when Charles takes them both in one big paw, their cocks hard against one another in his strong  grasp, is an open-mouthed, punched-out sound like he’s been kicked in the gut.

 

The sound makes Charles smile in a way that’s a little too warm, too fond, a stark contrast to the filth they’ve been spilling.

 

“What else?” he asks, free hand still on Arthur’s chest, pinning him to the bed; he begins to run his hand over Arthur’s sternum, rubbing gently, swiping a thumb over his achey, peaked nipple. “What else would you let me do to you?”

 

Arthur’s hands are tangled in the bedsheets now, gripping tight as Charles strokes the two of them, the pressure of it overwhelming, the sight of it; their two cocks peeking out from his dark fist, Arthur’s leaking with desperation, slicking up the both of them. He feels entranced by it, can’t seem to think of anything but the here and now – was there ever even a time before Charles was touching him like this, his cock rubbing slickly against Arthur’s own as Charles fucks into his own fist?

 

“Anything,” he gasps, and he feels like he means it. “Whatever you want, God, don’t stop.”

 

Charles is looking at him with hard, dark eyes, his long hair hanging in his face as he huffs out quiet, hungry gasps – those eyes, searching for something in Arthur’s flushing face, the way he bites his lip to stifle a groan.

 

His voice is low and hungry in a way Arthur’s never heard it before.

 

“Would you let me fuck you?”

 

Arthur’d be lying if he said he’s never thought of it; of the heavy weight of Charles pressed against his back, of Charles’s cock seated deep inside him, of Charles using him the way a desperate john uses a well-worn whore. He didn’t imagine it would feel good, all things considered, but the idea had been no less arousing – he supposed it was the queer in him that made the idea so enticing.

 

“Yeah, yeah, yes, I want you to, I want you to fuck me.”

 

Charles’s hand picks up speed, stroking them in quick, efficient, firm tugs, and Arthur can feel his balls drawing up tight, a hair’s breadth from coming.

 

“Ask me for it. Beg for it,” Charles demands.

 

Some rational part of Arthur’s brain, the part that’s still a man, is startled by how easily the words spill from his lips, easy as breathing, easy in the way that Charles seems to make everything.

 

“Christ Charles, please, please, I want you to fuck me. Just, just stick your cock in me, fuck me, please, please fuck me. Fuck me like a whore, or, or like I’m your god damn wife, God, I don’t care, anything, please, so long as you fuck me.”

 

He’s so close, lost in it, that when Charles pulls away and let’s Arthur’s hard cock drop abandoned on his own belly, Arthur whines like an bitch in heat, grabs for Charles to pull him close; doesn’t realize what’s happening until Charles is coming quiet and hard with just a grunt and a gasp, and jism is spattering over his exposed chest.

 

There’s a moment of silence between them after that, as if another spell has broken. Arthur’s cock lies twitching on his stomach, the hot point from which Arthur feels his entire consciousness must be radiating out from at this point, with how much he just wants to go off. But something about the way Charles, still straddling him, is smiling down at him, dark eyes fond, has Arthur pinned like a butterfly; his hips buck forward when Charles begins to smear his spend over Arthur’s bare chest, as if he could massage it into the skin there.

 

Nîwah,” Charles says, pushes two seed-slick fingers between Arthur’s lips – dutifully, Arthur sucks them clean, and he’d be blushing at the vulgarity of it if he weren’t hard enough to pound nails. “I like that.”

 

Charles seems mellowed, softened by orgasm, and Arthur so desperately wants to be there, too, aches for release. He moans around the thick fingers in his mouth, the taste of semen and soot and gun oil, looks at Charles as pleadingly as he can manage, and Charles smiles at him in that too-fond way, doesn’t say anything as he flops over to lie by Arthur’s side.

 

Pulls his fingers from Arthur’s mouth a wet, obscene popping noises and runs his hand through the spend on Arthur’s chest – uses that same hand to take hold of Arthur’s cock once again, to stroke him quick and slick and filthy.

 

Arthur didn’t know he was capable of making sounds like the ones he makes now. He almost doesn’t hear Charles’s voice, soft and low in his ear again, over the sound of himself.

 

“If you let me fuck you,” he’s saying, even as Arthur fists a hand in Charles’s shirt and grits his teeth, brought back to the edge of orgasm quick as a bullet. “I could make it good for you.

“There’s a place, inside. I could find it, nîwah, could make you feel so good, fuck you so right you’d feel it for days. Would you like that,  pêpîsis?”

 

Arthur can’t even find it in himself to nod, arousal coiled tight as a spring in his belly; he thrusts into the tight circle of Charles’s fist, claps a hand over his own face to muffle the  gasping, whining sounds he can’t hold back and to hide the hot burn of embarrassed blush on his cheeks.

 

“Fuck, fuck Charles, please, please.” He’s never asked permission to shoot off before, but something about Charles makes him feel like he should.

 

Charles doesn’t even respond, just continues with his musings, even as the slide of his fist on Arthur’s cock grows quicker.

 

“I could bring you off on just my fingers, I wouldn’t even need to fuck you to make you crazy for it. I could ruin you for anyone else with just my fingers, sîwanos. With my mouth.” As he speaks, he presses two big, strong fingers into the space behind Arthur’s balls, massages the tender skin there in quick, firm circles as he strokes, and Arthur sees white hot lightning crackle behind his eyelids. “Tell me you want that.”

 

Instead, Arthur just turns, presses his face into Charles’s chest and let’s out a long, loud groan of relief as he finally, finally shoots his release – over Charles clenched fist, over the thick muscles of his thighs, across his own belly where it mixes the with remnants of Charles own spend. It pulses through him again and again, and he can’t remember a time he’s come this hard and this much and Christ if it isn’t the best he’s felt in a long time.

 

Afterwards, still tremulous with it, he loosens his grip from where he’d been white-knuckling Charles’s shirt and flops to lie on the bed; cock lying limp and spent on his filthy stomach where cum is quickly cooling and drying, tucked up against Charles who is still cooing quietly in his ear as he strokes Arthur’s hair and presses little kisses to his eyebrows and temples.

 

Nîwah, nîwah,” Charles is murmuring between kisses, and Arthur doesn’t bother to ask what it means – probably something sweeter than a man like him deserves to be called, anyhow. “Thank you, nîwah. You did so good for me. So good.”

 

“Surprised you ain’t run outta words yet, Charles,” Arthur chuckles, even as he’s still catching his breath. “That’s the most I heard you say at once the whole time I known you.”

 

Charles doesn’t say anything then, just looks at Arthur with a fondness that makes his heart seize up tight; digs around in his pockets for a crumpled pack of cigarettes and a match. Lights one, takes a quick drag before pressing the filter to Arthur’s lips. Arthur wraps a hand around Charles’s, holds his hand there as he pulls a deep lungful of smoke from the cigarette between Charles’s fingers.

 

He is floating in a hazy cloud of post-orgasmic bliss, made loose and untethered by it, and he can’t keep himself from speaking. Even so, he feels the familiar warmth of embarrassment in his cheeks when he asks, “Did you mean it?

 

“'Cause I meant it,” he continues between drags of Charles’s cigarette. “I been thinkin' 'bout men same way I think about women my whole life. Been thinkin' ‘bout you since I met you. What you said, I want it bad, if it’s true, if… if you’ll give it to me.”

 

There’s a long moment where Arthur is afraid; where Charles is stoic and silent and his eyes seem to be boring into Arthur’s very core like he’s searching for something there, and Arthur is irrationally afraid that he’s been wrong. That maybe he’s too much of a faggot, or not enough of one for Charles. That this was a big misunderstanding, that somehow he’s been played for a fool.

 

But whatever Charles is searching for in Arthur, he must see it then, because his face cracks into the kind of smile that makes Arthur feel warm and raw and vulnerable as a newborn lamb.

 

“Of course,” Charles says, stubbing out the cigarette on the bedside table.

“Anything you want, nîwah. Now, ocêmin.

 

And with a firm, gentle hand curled around the back of Arthur’s neck, Charles pulls him in for a soft kiss, barely more than the brushing of lips against one another.