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Peeping Thomas

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An unfamiliar ringtone startles Tom awake. 

Silken sheets slide over his bare shoulder as he tries to stretch out, only to discover he can’t.  He’s being spooned from behind, a bare chest pressed sweaty against his back, hairy legs tucked up under his thighs, a muscular arm wrapped around him, possessive. 

When the mobile rings again, the mattress shifts in front of him.  "Get the phone."

A hot huff of breath against the nape of Tom’s neck.  "It's your phone.”

“It’s on your table."

Again the mobile rings, and this time, the man behind Tom rolls away.  "What is it?” he demands, sleep-rough but commanding.

Webb, Tom thinks.  That’s got to be Webb.

“I told you not to initiate contact."

“Brother?”

“I’ll handle this.”

“But-“

“Go back to sleep.”

There's footsteps on carpet, and then the bedroom door closes. 

Tom opens his eyes to the dark Sherman bedroom, to shadowy carved furniture and indistinct oil paintings.  Weak light glows around the tall window draperies, either pre-dawn or nighttime security, he can’t tell.

He doesn't think too long upon it, distracted by Keegan laying stretched out on his stomach beside him.  Keegan is naked, the sheets slung low across his muscular back, draped over the rising swell of his arse.  He seems deceptively young in the soft shadow, without the armor of his suit or his arrogance, his hair messy like a child, his cheek squashed into his pillow. 

"Well hello there," Keegan drawls out, filthy and playful.

Tom can't help but smile.  "Hullo Keegan." 

“Well now, there’s a lucky guess.  Though I suppose the odds were fifty-fifty."

"Not a guess."

“Oh? And how exactly could you tell it was me?"

“Webb’s bossier." 

"I can be bossy too, I'll have you know."

"Mm mm.”

“No?”

“No.  You're more passionate.”

It's not the answer that Keegan expects, going on how he studies Tom in the silence. Tom lets it drag on, too tired to speak, too distracted by the fact that he’s laying naked in bed with Keegan Sherman.

This is a dream he’s having, surely. 

This couldn’t possibly be happening.  Not to him.

"It’s fascinating to watch you try and stay awake," Keegan muses.  "The way your dark lashes flutter.  As though sending secret signals."

"Mmm."

"You really are quite tempting like this. But clearly you still need sleep. Although this time, do try not to snore so loudly."

“I snore?” 

”Has no one ever broken the unfortunate news to you?”

“Never had anyone around to tell me."

“Don’t lie."

Tom blinks his eyes open to watch Keegan shove himself up to an elbow. His vulnerability has fled; his jaw tight and his neck muscles flexing.  He looks, in his anger, very much like Webb.

“We investigated you," Keegan informs him haughtily.  "After my brother so intimately put you to bed, we felt it best to run a full background checkYou’re clean, by the way, according to the blood draw prior to your recent shoulder surgery.”

Tom isn’t bothered by Webb sharing what happened between them, and- oddly enough- he’s not even bothered by them investigating him either. “You got access to my medical records?” he asks, strangely impressed.

“We got access to everything.  Your government education, your professional record, even your family associations and social circles, both of which, curiously enough, stand entirely separate from your frequent male and female sexual partners.  So don't tell me there hasn't been anyone.  I know for a fact you've had multiple partners."

“Partners,” Tom sighs out. "Yeah. Sure.”

“Not what you’d call them?"

“Back alley fucks and bathroom blow jobs, more like.”

Keegan wrinkles up his nose.  “Distasteful.”

“Yeah."

“Then why do you do it?"

“It’s all they want.”

“Oh come now.”

“It is. All they want from me, anyway.   It’s all I'm good for, seems like."

It sounds like self-pity, but it’s true.  It hurts to admit, but laying here in the dark with Keegan in this strange art museum of a mansion, it's somehow easier to face than before.  

His entire life he’s tried to get people to want him- not just for what he can do, but for who he is-  and his entire life he's been used and abandoned and forgotten-

Tom startles when Keegan touches his cheek. 

"I'm sorry," Keegan says, and eases his fingers through Tom’s thick black hair.

Tom isn’t sure why Keegan is apologizing, but he doesn’t bother asking.  Not since his childhood has anyone soothed his hair like Keegan is doing, with careful fingers that don’t catch and don’t pull.   It has Tom’s scalp tingling each time Keegan repeats the motion.  The hair on the back of his neck stands up; pleasure washing through him.

“I shouldn't have accused you of lying," Keegan whispers, as if it’s a secret just between the two of them. “You've been nothing but honest, at great risk to yourself."

A shudder tries to work its way through his body.  Tom only barely suppresses it.  

“I’m quite protective of my brother, you know.”

“Mm hmm.”

“It makes me rash.  Overly hasty to take action.”

"Mmm."

"I was always impulsive, even as a child, as Webb is so fond of reminding me.”

When Keegan drags his nails lightly over Tom's scalp, he shivers from head to foot, a pathetic whimper escaping.

"Just look at you,” Keegan murmurs. “Webb told me you’re touch starved... But I had no idea it was this severe. It’s not just sexual touch, is it. It’s everything.”

Is there anything else?  He can’t remember. All he knows is hands slapping his arse while a cock shoves inside; thick fingers pulling at his hair  with each vicious thrust.

Keegan leans close, his stubbled cheek scratching against Tom’s face. “Why don’t you roll onto your stomach.”

Disappointment settles cold and hard into Tom’s gut, dragging humiliation with it.  Of course.  Of course this is what Keegan wants.  

When Keegan pulls the silken sheets away, Tom does what he asks. If this is all that's on offer, he'll take it, and greedily.

Keegan swings a leg over Tom’s hips, and sits heavily upon his thighs.  “Ready?”

Tom braces his hands against the headboard. "Yeah.”

"This may hurt at first. Do try to relax."

“All right.”

“Here we go," Keegan says merrily, and then shoves his hands, hard, into Tom's lower back.

Tom chokes out a breath- and then another- as Keegan kneads and massages the muscles of his back.

“Just look at all this pent up tension!” Keegan scolds.

"Mwuh-?"

"Particularly right here-  In the rhomboid majorus-" 

“Mffff!”

"Your back is a mess,” Keegan says, knuckles digging into a knot of muscle.  “It’s going to take at least a half hour to massage it out.”

Tom raises his head, dazed. "Massage?” 

“No, no, you’re quite right, I’ll need to do the alignment first.”

Before Tom can ask what that means, Keegan slides backward, cock and bollocks dragging over Tom’s skin, warm and heavy but most definitely soft-

“Inhale deeply,” Keegan instructs. “Then blow out your breath. Hard and fast.”

“What?“

Now, Tom.”

When Tom does it, Keegan drives his palm hard into Tom’s spine, shaking the bed and cracking Tom’s back loud enough to be terrifying, if it hadn’t wound up feeling so unspeakably good-

“That's better,” Keegan says.  "Your chiropractor should be ashamed, the state you're in.”

“Chiropractor?” Tom asks, and peers over his shoulder.

“Lay still,” Keegan scolds, and slaps his arse.

Tom flushes and drops his head to the pillow.

”All this squirming... You must drive your regular masseuse to insanity.”

Tom doesn’t reply, weirdly embarrassed that he doesn’t have a regular masseuse, which is ridiculous considering how intimately Keegan's bare bollocks are dragging against Tom's arse cheeks every time he rocks forward.

“You're clearly overdue for a session."

"Session?" 

“A massage session.”  Keegan stops moving.  "You have had one before.”

“Yeah,” Tom says, thinking back to this one girlfriend at university.  She’d massaged his back a couple of times.  Or once, anyway.  After he'd asked. 

“You have?”

"Sure."

“Did it last more than two minutes?”

“Well…”

“Was there sex immediately afterward?”

“Yes?”

Honestly," Keegan says, and shoves his palms along Tom’s spine, only to drag them slowly back down. "There are so many things my brother and I need to teach you.”

Tom doesn’t know what they are, but holy hell does he want to learn, starting with the amazing things Webb and Keegan can do with their hands.

“Massage isn’t just foreplay, you know, Tom.”

“Mmm?”

“Touch is a very primal physical need.  Essential for the calming of the amygdala."

”Mmm.”

"It’s also an excellent way to get to know another person's body."

Tom thinks of the way Keegan is straddling him, and nods. 

"You can appreciate so much through massage,” Keegan says, thoughtful.  “The swooping hollow of the lower back, for example. Or the delicate ladder of the vertebrae.  Even the elegant angle of shoulder blades."

Tom sighs as Keegan’s fingertips drift over every feature he describes, meticulous and careful, as if inspecting one of his beloved statues.

“It’s been quite a number of years, you know.”

“Mmm?”

“Since my brother and I have taken another man to our bed.  Over a decade, in fact.”

Tom wonders why now, why him, but he doesn’t dare ask.  He's already terrified the brothers will change their minds.  

“His name was Renauldo. He was very beautiful, but very jealous.  A fact we didn't discover until the three of us went to bed together. He became possessive of Webb, trying to exclude me completely.”

“Frgn mrrnn,”

“Are you speaking Irish?"

Tom lifts his head from the pillow.  “Fecking moron.”

Keegan’s soft laughter is entirely missing his usual arrogance. “Yes, I rather thought so myself."

Tom scoffs into his pillow, incredulous that anyone would reject being with Webb and Keegan together

“So I assume,” Keegan says, tentative, "that you, yourself, would have no problem if the three of us were to-"

Fuck no." 

"You want both of us.  You’re sure."

When Tom looks over his shoulder, he wants to strangle this Renauldo arsehole, because Keegan’s rounded blue eyes are shining with insecurity. "Very sure,” Tom tells him. 

"And what about just the two of us?"  Keegan's chin tips up, defiant.  "Webb and I?  Without you?”

“What about it?"

"Most people tend to have a problem with the nature of my relationship with my brother."

”Most people wouldn't know real love if it bit them on the arse,” Tom says, so swiftly and so sharp that he shocks himself.

Keegan tilts his head, his blond hair shifting over his curious eyes. “You really believe that, don’t you.”

“Don’t you?”

“Well, yes, but…“

“It’s all that matters,” Tom says. “Finding someone to love you.  All of you.  No matter what you-“ 

He presses his lips together on the words that want to follow, closing his eyes on the memories that come with them. 

When Keegan starts massaging again, his touch is light and tender; a silent thanks that lulls Tom easily back to sleep.

 

*****

 

“What’s this, hmm?”

Tom stirs at the sound, but a warm palm settles upon his back, and he relaxes, sighing.

"See what you’ve done?” a voice whispers harshly.  “And I’d only just got him to sleep!”

“Is that what you were doing, hmm?”

“Yes, it was, because unlike some people with their impatient fingers I’ve actually controlled myself!“

“Shh, Keegan-“

You shh-”

“All right, all right. Just climb off of Thomas so we can all get some sleep. We’ll need to be rested for our unexpected errands tomorrow morning.”

“Errands?  But we-”

“I know, but it’s unavoidable.”

Keegan’s weight vanishes, to resettle along Tom’s side. “I want to be the big spoon this time.”

“Very well.  Just help me-“

“No, do it like this-“

Strong hands roll Tom onto his side, tilting him backward until he leans pleasantly against a bare muscled chest.

“There we are,” Keegan whispers into Tom’s hair, as he curls around his body, arm wrapping tight around his middle, possessive.  “That’s better, hmm?”

Oh yes, Tom thinks sleepily, and then thinks it again as Webb slides close on his other side, leg and hip and shoulder pressing against him.

“You were right," Keegan whispers into the silence.  “It won’t be like before.”

"No, I don’t think so.”

"He’s so beautiful, too, just look at him."

“You’re beautiful together, my love. His dark to your light... A masterwork in chiaroscuro.”

“And he understands us.  Just like you said.”

“Quite unique, our Thomas.”

“Yes, he is.”

As they whisper together, Tom slides into pleasant dreams of wandering into the mystical forest of the blond fairy folk, where he’s captured, and seduced, and kept with them for all his long happy life.

 

*****

 

In the morning, Tom wakes with eyes sticky and thoughts sluggish and muscles stiff from long, heavy sleep.  When he stretches, silk sheets slide over bare skin. 

For a second, he thinks he’s in a posh hotel. 

When he remembers, Tom sits up so fast that he gets dizzy, wincing at the sunlight shining through the tall windows.  It glows upon the white plaster ceilings, and lights up enormous renaissance paintings towering above hand carved furniture.

Never has he woken up in such luxury.

He’s woken up alone on cold mattresses though. 

That's not new.

After gathering the sheets around him, Tom climbs from the bed and pads barefoot to the table by the window.  Breakfast dishes and drinks sit waiting by empty place setting.

Upon his plate, there’s a note.

‘Apologies for our early departure. There is an errand we must attend to, in order to put this unpleasant situation behind us. Please recuperate here until our return. According to our sources, your flat is being watched.’

It’s polite and it’s generous and it has Tom's stomach twisting into a knot. Because it reminds him- quite a lot- of departing alleyway calls of: ‘It’s been fun, mate, have a good life’.

Feeling dizzy, Tom sits heavily in the chair by the table, and stares out the window.

On the manor green he sees his oak tree— tall and beautiful— but all alone.

 

*****

 

Tom does as the brothers ask, because he has no other choice.  So he eats their breakfast, and uses their ensuite, and dresses in his- apparently- freshly laundered clothes.

For an hour, he wanders the mansion like a lost child in a museum, inspecting marble statues and oil paintings and antique furniture.  He's alone except for the occasional kitchen staff preparing lunch, or the odd private security officer outside on a ladder, removing Tom's surveillance devices.

After visiting each room three times over, Tom is so restless that he starts pacing the upstairs hallway.   When voices echo up the stairwell, he hurries down the stairs, heading for the Shermans’ dining room. 

Webb and Keegan are standing by the oval table, sorting paperwork into piles upon it.  They’re distractingly attractive in their black suits and blue shirts, and it’s all Tom can do to keep his thoughts on the case.

Keegan smiles, delighted, as he approaches.  “Well, someone’s looking much better today.”

“What’s all this?” Tom asks, as Webb removes several photos from a folder.

“We’ve been assured that one of these men is your Chief Inspector,” Webb tells him.

Tom takes the photo, and sure enough, it’s of Donal and Justin at the docks, standing amid a group of unsavory persons. “Assured by whom?"

“By business associates of ours.”

“Business associates?”

Legal ones.”

“All given freely, Tom,” Keegan adds.

“This is…” Tom begins, staring down at the feast of incriminating evidence.  There’s purchase orders and bank statements and even handwritten witness accounts, signed by Malone, Delacroix, Heurot and Flannery. 

“Is it enough, Tom?” Keegan asks.

“Aye,” Tom says, accent thick in his surprise.  “Aye, it is that.”

“Lovely,” Webb tells him.  “Then shall we start making calls?”

“No calls.” 

“No?”

“I need to take it from here,” Tom tells them both.  “Trust me,” he adds, when he sees Webb start to protest.

The brothers look at one another, having one of their wordless conversations.

“All right, Thomas,” Webb says finally.  “If that’s what you want.”

“We trust you, Tom,” Keegan assures him. 

Tom can barely speak through his gratitude.

 

*****

 

Chief Inspector Fitzgerald isn’t thrilled to see Tom walk into her office.  

That changes once he starts laying out evidence.

Rain beats down upon the skylight as he gives her details.  It’s damp inside the concrete building, and his shoulder aches, and he’s pretty sure his career is ending. 

But he doesn’t care, because finally- finally- he’s the one making choices about his life.

When he’s done reporting, Fitzgerald glares at the orgy of evidence, face red and lips thin.  Then she pounds her fist on the desk, swears a shocking blue streak, and grabs her phone. 

 

***** 

  

The Director of PSNI Internal Affairs shows up within fifteen minutes; three Chief Inspectors and the Senior Press Affairs Director soon after.  

Tom stays well out of the ensuing strategy discussion, awaiting his fate in a corner by her water cooler.  He hasn’t yet been suspended for misconduct- how he got the evidence from the Sherman brothers hasn't yet been discussed in detail- but he's sure it will, eventually.

“Christ almighty, Tom,” Fitzgerald says, when she leaves the group to grab a cup of water. “They warned me you were Peck’s Bad Boy, but I had no fecking idea.”

Fitzgerald’s informal tone is starling; her use of his first name even more so. “Ma’am?” 

“Don’t ma’am me.”  She yanks loose her collar, then tugs open her police jacket.  “God’s sakes, boy, I send you to Moinahan’s playground precinct to keep you out of trouble, and you go uncovering a scandal. I should have known an officer your caliber couldn’t stay out of trouble. The good ones never know when to stop.”

It takes Tom a minute to realize what she’s saying, and another to radically realign the meaning of the past weeks' events in his head.  “You told me I was broken.

”Were you not?” Fitzgerald challenges, unyielding as always.

Tom nods, not about to deny it.  He’s done lying to himself about how brutalized and traumatized he’d been.  He’s done lying to himself about everything.

“I don’t envy your next few months,” Fitzgerald says, sounding weary.  “Things are going to be tough for you until this settles down.”

He'd suspected as much, but it's still unpleasant to hear.  "And the other officers?  The innocent ones in Operations Support?”

Fitzgerald’s grimace is answer enough.

“There’s a Police Constable,” Tom tells her.  “A woman named Claire Houghton. She’s a good person, and a good officer, with a promising career ahead of her. She doesn’t deserve to be caught up in this scandal. Especially not after how Donal treated her.”

"Claire Houghton," the older woman repeats.  "All right.  I’ll see what I can do.”

When the office door opens, three uniformed officers file in carrying arrest warrants.

"Donal is a coward,” Tom tells Fitzgerald. "When he’s read his rights, he’ll run.”

"Good advice for you to keep in mind when you arrest him.”

“Me?  Am I not suspended?”

"Suspended?  Fecking hell, boy, no!  You’re going to get your hands dirty cleaning up this mess with the rest of us."

 

*****

 

Tom returns to Operational Support that afternoon as the Lead Arresting Officer. Not since Paul Spector has he had that honor, or that responsibility.

Ten Police Constables follow him into the offices, flanked by six more armed Detective Sergeants.  The flood of uniforms captures everyone’s attention- even Claire’s in the conference room.  She moves at once to its doorway, as the startled- or guilty- Operations officers get to their feet.

Donal strides out of his office into the chaos, Justin close on his heels.“The hell is going on here?”

Tom’s heart is pounding, but his emotionless game face is on.  “Chief Inspector Donal Moinahan, I am hereby arresting you for trafficking government intelligence, for falsification of legal records, for illegal surveillance of foreign nationals, and for the coordination of a criminal organization, all within the County Court Division of Belfast.”

For a stunned moment, there is silence.

“You are not obliged to say anything unless you wish to do so,” Tom recites, “but whatever you say-“

Two Police Constables bolt for the exits, triggering chaos, people shoving over desks and falling over one other as they try to escape. 

Amid the frantic cries and crashing laptops Tom sprints after Donal, who is shoving aside his own people to get to the door.

When Tom grabs Donal’s shirt, Donal spins to face him with his arm drawn back and fist clenched. 

Tom’s punch is painful but solid, and knocks Donal flat to the floor.

 

*****

 

When it’s done, Operations Support is in shambles, desks overturned and lamps shattered and laptops broken on the floor.  All the innocent officers have been gathered by the new Chief Constable into Donal’s old office, getting caught up on the situation, and being given new instructions.

Tom pulls Claire aside in the conference room and talks to her there. She deserves more than just a rote PSNI speech, and also needs to know her unique options, arranged by Fitzgerald.

“Transfer to Internal Affairs?” Claire repeats, once again the uncertain young officer Tom remembers from his first day.

“You’ll have to start over,” Tom tells her.  “But it’s a good opportunity.  Talk it over with Chief Inspector Fitzgerald.  She’s agreed to help get you sorted.”

“Thank you so much,” she says, sounding exhausted.  “I can’t begin to-“

“I know,” Tom says, and offers a smile.  “And you’re welcome.”

She leans heavily against the wall, staring bleary eyed at all Sherman case boxes and files. “All this surveillance… Poor Webb and Keegan…”

“Poor Webb and Keegan?” Tom teases, though he has little room to talk.

"Oh shut your gob," Claire says, and swats him with a folder, startling a laugh out of him.  “You know what I mean. And they were always nice to me.  I know they’re not exactly upstanding citizens, but I liked them. They didn’t deserve what happened, and they’re not going to deserve all this stuff being handed over to the…”

“What is it?” Tom asks, because she’s gone pale.

“It’ll go to the press, won’t it.  The files and the notes and the- the- recordings…”

Tom straightens, realizing what she means. “You know, don’t you.”

“Know?”

“About how they are together.  How they really are.”

Claire flushes pink but nods. 

“There are recordings of it?” Tom presses.

“In Evidence Lockup.  In a separate box.  Behind a bunch of old computer monitors.  They’re not listed in the official police inventory.  Justin kept them separate.  Looking back, I think maybe…“

“For blackmail.”

“Or insurance.”

“Fucking Justin.”

“Such a douchebag,” Claire says, vicious.

It’s so unexpected that Tom chokes on his laughter, and can’t seem to stop for long minutes afterward. Claire falls into it too, half crying when she recovers.

"It's all right," Tom assures her, when a Detective Sergeant comes in to get her statement.

"But-" she says, glancing back towards lockup.

"Police Constable," he says, firmly, and that gets her attention.  "It'll be all right."

Relief passes over her expression, then concern, probably because she suspects what he's suggesting. 

"Best be going," Tom says, and urges her towards the waiting officer. 

She hesitates, then gives him a fierce hug, before leaving the room.

Tom waits until she's gone to head for Evidence Lockup.  

 

***** 

 

It’s illegal to remove property from an active investigation.  It doesn’t matter if the missing evidence won’t hurt the case. 

As Tom grabs for the box of recordings, he takes a moment to ponder the ethics of his situation. 

Then he does what feels right, and fills up his backpack.

 

*****

 

After he’s stowed his things into his car, Tom walks among the many PSNI squad cars and trucks lining the narrow streets around the precinct building.

There’s officers everywhere, most of them escorting police constables in handcuffs.  No one spares Tom a glance as he strides toward the officer who is guiding Justin into her squad car’s open door.

“Is he giving you any trouble?” Tom shouts.

When Justin spots him, he does exactly what Tom wants; he yanks away from the woman, and rushes towards him.

The crack of Tom’s left handed punch against Justin’s nose is unspeakably gratifying-- but not as much as the sight of Justin knocked back against the squad car, blood streaming down his face.

“You all right?” the Detective calls to Tom, as she and another man haul Justin roughly to his feet.

“Yeah,” Tom says.  “I am.”

And he means far fucking more than just his throbbing knuckles.

 

*****

 

It’s dinner by the time Tom arrives back at the Sherman mansion.  One of the security staff lets him in, and leads him to the diningroom where the brothers are eating.  They’re both still in their button down shirts and dress slacks but without their jackets, and their eyes are strikingly blue as they look up at his approach.

Keegan nearly knocks over his wine glass in his haste to stand up.  “You’re back,” he says, sounding breathless.

“With gifts,” Tom says, and upturns his backpack over the table. 

Cassettes and hard drives and USB sticks scatter everywhere.  Webb stands to select a hard drive and inspect it.  “And what are these?”

“Recordings,” Tom tells him. 

“Recordings of…”

“Of you and Keegan.  Together.”

Webb’s expression hardens.  “You mean-“

“Yes.”

“These are all…” Webb begins, then trails off, so shocked that Keegan rounds the table to set a hand on his brother’s shoulder, steadying him.  “But this… It’s countless hours.  Days’ worth of hours.  Of our most private moments…”

"How dare they!" Keegan spits out, his face scarlet with anger.  “Who did this? I'm going to punch them in the face!”

"Already done,” Tom says.

Keegan’s gaze snaps to Tom’s uplifted hand. “What?”

“I broke Donal’s jaw and Justin’s nose,” Tom says, showing off his bruised knuckles, far too proud and far too satisfied.

Brutality is wrong, he knows that, he does.

But in this case, he just doesn’t care.

If he’s honest, he enjoyed landing those punches.  Pieces of himself snapped back into place when he’d seen Justin sprawled out bloody on the ground.  Strength had flowed back into Tom’s chest when he’d cuffed Donal like a dog on the floor.  He’d felt good, taking the recordings, and ensuring justice was really served.

He’d liked it all, though not as much he likes what he’s seeing now-- Webb and Keegan staring at him, blue eyes wide and amazed, as if he’s one of their marble statues come to life.

“You… punched them?” Keegan asks, voice shaking.

“Aye,” Tom tells him.  “I did.”

“And you did it-“  Keegan licks his lips.  “For us?”

“Yes," Tom says.  "All three of us.”

Keegan whimpers and surges forward.

Webb catches his arm.  “No.”

“Webb-!”

“Thomas has broken the law for us, brother.“

“It was legal,” Tom says.  “They were resisting arrest.  I did what was needed.”

“And what about stealing all this police evidence?”

“I’ve already stolen evidence before.“

“Evidence which you’ve given back.“

“Evidence which I shared with both of you.“

“We've already told you," Webb interrupts, "that we’re going to testify that we contacted you first with our own information.  No, Thomas.  Giving us these recordings will cross a line.  We cannot let-”

“It’s not your choice, Webb,” Tom says sharply.

Webb is stunned into silence, which is a beautiful fucking sight.

“It’s my choice,” Tom insists, and oh god do those words feel good. “My choice, my career, and my life.”  He heaves in a deep breath, feeling dizzy, feeling lighter, feeling like himself.  “My decision,” he says, softer, and nods.

“Thomas...“

“I’m not changing my mind.”

“It’s against the law.”

“You said yourself that sometimes you have to break the law to do what’s right.”

Webb crosses his arms, his blue eyes narrowing. “Stubborn.”

Tom tips up his chin. “You have no fucking idea."

“And more defiant than I suspected, apparently.”

That knocks the breath from him, fear stabbing through him that he’s gone too far, pushed too hard-

“Interesting,” Webb murmurs, studying Tom’s reactions.  “You’ll be an interesting challenge.  Won’t he brother.”

"Oh my yes," Keegan agrees.

Tom looks from one of them to the other.  “Then you both still-“ he begins, but stops when he sees Keegan roll his eyes.

“Ugh, these self-esteem issues of his,” Keegan says.

“Indeed, brother.  We should set to work on them at once.”

“Mmm, yes.  And I can think of a perfectly good bed that would suit the purpose.”

“Yes, able to fit three, if I recall.”

“Unless Tom would like some dinner first?” Keegan asks, playful.

“I’m good,” Tom says, breathless, as the brothers approach.  And he is good, he is so very good, though he suspects- very soon- he’ll be even better.

 

*****

 

Tom can’t stop shaking as he stands by the Shermans' bedside, and though he's still fully dressed, he feels nervous as a virgin.

“Breathe, Thomas,” Keegan tells him, as he guides Tom’s leather jacket off his shoulders.

Webb catches it, and drapes it over a nearby chair. “You haven’t changed your mind, have you, my sweet?”

“Fuck no,” Tom says, breathless.

“What a filthy mouth you have,” Keegan murmurs, hands sliding up under Tom’s shirt.  “I wonder how it tastes.”

When Keegan kisses Tom, it’s open-mouthed and playful, his tongue flicking and teasing, though not enough to distract Tom from Webb’s hands sliding around his waist from behind, to work open the zip of his jeans.

Tom moans into Keegan’s mouth, one arm wrapped  around Keegan’s shoulders, the other grabbing at Webb's hips.  He can’t believe how good it feels to be sandwiched between their bodies- Webb so hard along his back and Keegan against his front, Webb's hand working into his pants.  Tom's legs are shaking, as Keegan sucks on his tongue and Webb noses against his ear, and- oh god- he’s- they're- the three of them are really going to do this-

“Feel how hard you are,” Webb murmurs, once he pulls Tom’s cock free.

Tom remembers those moments in the tree, longing for this, yearning for it, and now it's his-

“Let me feel too,” Keegan says, and Tom feels a second hand wrapping around him, identical fingers stroking him tightly, making him shudder, as he grinds his hips back and forth against both their bodies.

"Fuck," Tom chokes out, "Oh- oh fuck-"

“He’s not going to last if you keep doing that,” Webb murmurs, his voice rumbling next to Tom’s ear.

“Of course he's not," Keegan says, and Tom blinks his eyes open, flushed and dizzy and a little offended.

"I just want to take the edge off, for later," Keegan says, and smiles, playful.   

“An excellent idea, brother,” Webb says.  "Though is this really the way you'd prefer to do it?"

“You know me too well, brother," Keegan says happily, and drops to his knees.

 

*****

 

“Take your time, Thomas,” Webb says later, as Tom lays naked on the bed between the two brothers.  They've removed their clothes, and are gloriously naked, their skin shining with sweat and their cocks hard against his hips, because neither of them have come yet.

It's all Tom can do to recover from his most recent orgasm.  He can still feel the echo of Keegan’s mouth on his cock, and Webb’s clever fingers inside his body.

“A promising beginning,” Keegan says, and when he shifts to soothe Tom’s hair, his erection drags, hard and eager, against Tom’s skin.

“Very promising,” Webb agrees, and presses a tender kiss to Tom’s shoulder, clearly in a similar state of arousal.

“Oh, before I forget, brother, do remind me to have the kitchen staff order more pineapple juice.”

Tom lifts his head, blinking blearily, wondering if he missed something.

Webb’s nose is wrinkled up.  "A trifle bitter, was it?”

“Just a tad.”

“Mmm, how unfortunate.”

"It wasn't a hardship, I assure you."

“Oi,” Tom chokes out, realizing the bad taste they’re discussing is him.

“Don’t worry, Tom,” Keegan tells him. “A glass of pineapple juice every day will set things right.”

“I drink mine with breakfast every day," Webb says.

Tom chokes on a laugh and drops his head back to the mattress.

“But now,” Webb drawls out, fingertips trailing down Tom’s body, "what to do with you next. Quite a difficult decision, isn't it."

“Quite difficult, brother. Rather like being faced with a gourmet desert table.”

“Perhaps we should start with the eclaire," Keegan says, and slides his hand down between Tom’s legs.

Tom arches under Keegan's playful touch, twitching at the teasing of his fingertips.  It has his body thinking thoughts that are far too ambitious- although- maybe not, because- holy hell- is that Webb's hand too-?

“Just look at that,” Keegan says.

“Well.  Isn't that just lovely.”

“A very impressive refractory period."

"Yes,” Webb says, and guides his hand lower between thighs Tom parts eagerly for him.  "He’s a man of many hidden wonders.  Like this one, here..."

Tom whimpers and clutches the sheets.

“He's so beautiful when he’s desperate, isn’t he just?” Webb asks.

“Yes, our very own irish work of art.“

“Fit for a very special collection.”

"Mmm, yes, a very special private collection."

“Shall we give our new acquisition a proper review, brother?"

“Absolutely," Keegan says.  "We mustn't forget our initial inspection."

“A very thorough inspection is called for, with this rare work of art."

"Would you like that, Tom?” 

"Yes," Tom says, voice breaking.  "Fuck- yes.”

"Really?" Keegan asks. "Without even knowing the rules of the game?"

“That doesn't matter, brother,” Webb says.  “Do you know why?”

“Why is that?”

“It's because our Thomas wants everything that we have to offer.”

“Is that true, Tom?  Is that what you want?”

"God, yes," Tom says, and reaches for them both.

 

*****

 

It’s midnight before they settle down to sleep. 

Tom lays on his back between the brothers, wearing one of Webb’s silk pajama tops, and one of Keegan’s silk pajama bottoms.  For five minutes the brothers had bickered before they’d come upon this compromise of whose clothing he was going to wear and in what way, Tom smiling as they fought over him, feeling like the most desired man in the world.

Webb is stretched out along his left side, and Keegan lays at his right, both men too heavy and too warm and just perfect against Tom’s body.  Tom’s arms are draped around them, fingers playing at their golden hair.  It feels like the silk of their sheets; of their clothes, and of the skin Tom has tasted between their thighs.

“Rest, Thomas,” Webb murmurs against Tom’s shoulder.  “You’ll need your strength for tomorrow.” 

“What’s tomorrow?” Tom asks.

“More of this,” Keegan murmurs, wriggling closer.

After we tend to business,” Webb points out.

“Ah yes, the reorganizing of-“

“No details,” Tom reminds them. He knows the brothers are changing their business structure to move anything illegal off of his island.  But he doesn’t want to know more than that.

“My mistake,” Keegan says.  “I’ll be more careful.”

“Should I-“  It pains Tom to ask it.  “I could leave for a few days, until you’re done.”

“Do you want to leave?” Webb asks.

“God, no.”

“Then stay.”

“Yes, please stay,” Keegan says. “You said we can keep you.  So let us keep you.”

“How long?” Tom asks, lingering doubts forcing out the words.

Keegan slaps his chest. 

“Right,” Tom laughs, and brushes his fingers through Keegan’s hair.  “Sorry.”

“You’re going to be so much work,” Keegan informs him.

“Several years,” Webb agrees.  “At the very least.”

Tom can’t speak through the tightness of his throat, and has to blink to clear his blurry vision.  He presses a kiss to the top of Webb’s golden hair, and then another to Keegan’s. 

It's unnatural and it's wrong and they should all probably be in therapy.  But Tom doesn't give a fuck.  He's happy, and he thinks this might just work, for all their dysfunction.

"Much better than sitting in our oak tree, isn't it," Keegan murmurs, sounding half asleep.

"Mmm, yes," Webb sighs out.  "Our very own Peeping Thomas."

Tom laughs so hard that he nearly jostles them both out of his arms.  Keegan pokes him and Webb lectures him but that only makes it worse. 

Finally the brothers figure out more creative ways to silence his chuckles. 

It's a while, after that, before any of them get any sleep.

 

 

*******

The adventures of Tom Anderson continue in Doubting Thomas