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Of Green and Gold

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Lamplights overhead came to life, casting the street in an orange glow as Eggsy walked down it, worn down sneakers slipping over the slicked stone walkways. A car drove by, headlights illuminating the walls of the buildings in front of him. Some were dilapidated and crumbling, while others stood newly painted, with windows darkened, it being well after normal hours of operation. The car rolled past him, tire digging into the gutter, splashing his shoes and calfs with dirty runoff from the street. Eggsy grimaced, shaking some of the water off, but he couldn’t get rid of the chill settling into his bones. Winter had set in over london, and everything was wet and cold as usual, the cold never leaving those who dared to set foot out of their warm homes. This time of night, it was especially bad, and despite the hoodie he wore over his jumper, the night’s frigid temperature seeped into his lungs with every breath he took.

 

He shoved his hands in the front pockets and tried to forget the scene he had left behind at home: Dean threatening to punch his lights out once again, his mother too scared to say a thing, Daisy, crying and red faced. He had left in a hurry, his reaction to their little ‘announcement’ proving too difficult for him to stomach. His mum, he knew, would say he had overreacted, but the pressure of the headache he felt building at his temples at the time had told him it was a perfectly rational and okay thing to punch Dean in the face when the words “We’re getting married,” had poured out of his stupid, crooked-looking mouth. He had managed to push Dean off and run out before he had caused any more damage, to either himself or, more importantly, to Daisy or his mum. As he walked now, he could still feel his ribs aching from Dean’s heavy-handed blows.

 

Eggsy crossed the street and rounded the corner, not keeping track of where his feet led him. He checked the watch on his wrist. 11:30pm. Two more hours and Dean would be sound asleep, and Eggsy could sneak in the window and curl up in the warmth of his bed. He just needed to find something to distract himself until then, something to take his mind of the disaster of his life and the heat of the bruises currently rising on his torso. It was unlikely he’s find something like that around here, considering the lateness of the hour and that it was a commercial area. But the world seemed to love proving him wrong, because when he looked up from his watch he saw a bright light ahead to the right: a shop with its lights still bright and inviting, casting the shadow of window-panes on the cobblestone walk. As he approached, golden lettering on the front window greeted him, along with the most posh-looking suits he’d seen in his entire life, their rich fabrics screaming expensive and do not touch with your grubby hands, dirty mortal. Eggsy smirked. A perfect distraction.

 

He approached the door, pushing at it, still slightly surprised that it was open. The door gave effortlessly though, and he stepped inside, greeted with the ticking of a grandfather clock that he spotted behind the main desk, and the warmth of a fire-heated room lit by a chandelier and lamps placed on mahogany side tables. Everything looked polished and well kept, with materials laid out on long tables in the centre of the room, placed over an intricate-looking carpet. Eggsy whistled low, reaching out and touching a few of the materials as he walked in, spotting the neckties laid out on another table to his left.

 

“I’d appreciate if you didn’t drip on my carpet, young man.”

 

Eggsy looked up, startling at the sudden voice. An older man had appeared from practically nowhere, looking at him with an uneasy frown, his brow knit in with dark eyes hidden behind square, black framed glasses. The suit he was wearing, a light grey with a faint pinstripe, matched the quality of the ones in the front window. Eggsy guessed he must be the owner.

 

“Sorry, guv.” Eggsy exaggeratedly wiped his feet on the carpet, feeling a grin tug at his lips when Mr. Posh huffed. Eggsy walked further into the shop, letting his fingers drag along the table to his left. “Kinda late to be open, innit?”

 

The man came to stand beside him. Eggsy couldn’t help but notice that his eyes never wavered from Eggsy. He felt a flash of anger. Uptight, posh git, probably thought Eggsy was some kind of hoodlum, coming into his shop meaning to lift something or rob him blind .

 

Eggsy stopped himself from smirking. Well, that hadn’t been exactly the plan when he walked in, but he was just pissed off enough to do it now. Might as well live up to this arsehole’s expectations right?

 

“We are closing shortly, actually. But one never knows when a gentleman may be in need of some good tailoring.”

 

Eggsy snorted. “I wouldn’t know about that.” He gestured down at himself, which drew the man’s eyes down to his white shoes (fucking stained now, stupid cabbie) and wet jeans which were starting to cling a little. Eggsy didn’t miss the way the man’s eyes lingered on his thighs, although whether it was in judgement for the quality of his jeans or appreciation of their shape Eggsy couldn’t tell.

 

Didn’t matter much anyway. The man’s momentary distraction was enough for Eggsy to slip one of the sinfully smooth ties from the table into his pocket. By the time the man met his eyes again, the tie was safe in Eggsy’s left pocket.

 

Eggsy slipped past the man, further into the shop, stuffing his hands into his pockets to hide any tell-tale bulge caused by tie. He poked around for a few more minutes, enjoying the way the other man stiffened whenever he approached something that had to be expensive, probably costing more money than Eggsy would ever see in his life. Finally, the other man cleared his throat.

 

“I’m afraid we’re closing,” he said again. Eggsy turned. Mr. Posh hadn’t moved from the table with the ties, his eyes boring into Eggsy. To be honest, it was a little disturbing. Maybe he should be Mr. Creepy, not Mr. Posh.

 

“Alright. Sorry to be a bother, just thought I’d take a look ‘round.” Eggsy started sauntering towards the entrance. Maybe he’d grab some chips on the way home, kill some more time. And figure out what the fuck he was gonna do with this tie.

 

As he walked past, the man’s arm snapped out and grabbed Eggsy by the elbow. “Before you left, I was wondering if I’d be able to have your name. Just so that I may give it to the police when I inform them you’ve stolen from me, you understand.”

 

Eggsy swallowed, debating how quickly he could dash out the door. Giving the man a quick appraisal, he decided against it. The way his grip closed iron-tight on Eggsy’s elbow and his entire body seemed coiled, ready to strike, gave Eggsy the impression he wasn’t one to run from. Instead, he shook off his hand, putting his own back in his pockets.

 

“Come offit, ‘guv. You wanna close up, I wanna go get some chips. Lets call it a night, yeah?” Eggsy said, turning on the charm his mother scolded him over when he nicked bills from Dean’s pockets. Still in close proximity, he reached out and smoothed the man’s already immaculate tie, giving him a crooked grin and a raised eyebrow. The man’s face twisted up in an expression of combined annoyance and horror at his casual touch. “I ain’t got nuthin. You can pat me down if ya like, though.” He said with a wink, infusing his words with as much innuendo as he could. The man blinked, then recoiled, taking a step back and smoothing his jacket down. Eggsy’s fingers left the man’s chest, but his smirk stayed plastered on his lips.

 

“You can return the tie, or you can be arrested. It’s as simple as that, and I’d hope you have the brains to make the right decision.” The man said, narrowing his dark eyes at him. Eggsy rolled his eyes, but reached into the pocket of his jeans, approaching him as he pulled the striped silk out. He gave it a few spins, looking the man up and down again. He was alright looking, he noted, taller than him for sure, and as he approached, he could see that his hair had only a few streaks of grey, most of it brown and combed neatly from his squared, handsome features.

 

“Here ya are, safe n’ sound, yeah? Ya gotta calm down man, or you’ll give yourself a heart attack.” Eggsy said, reaching out again and unbuttoning the man's jacket. Eggsy noted him tense up, but he kept eyes locked with him, leaning in as he stuffed the tie in his inner jacket pocket. He felt the man’s wallet there, and couldn’t help but practice his sleight of hand, pulling it out with ease as he stuffed the tie in. The man raised an eyebrow at him as he let go, Eggsy distracting him with his right hand, adjusting the man’s blue pocket square, as he pocketed the wallet with his left.

 

“Well then, sir, have a good evenin.” Eggsy mocked. The man rolled his eyes, and when Eggsy went to open the door, he found it locked. He tried again, but it didn't budge. He looked over his shoulder, and in the man’s hand, he could see a small black device. An automatic lock, he assumed. More than that, however, he could see the smug, satisfied smile on the man’s face.

 

“What was your name again?” the man asked. Eggsy sighed.

 

“You tell me yours, I’ll tell you mine.” Eggsy mocked. The man, however, conceded willingly.

 

“My name is Harry Hart. You’d have known that within the hour, I suppose, if I’d have let you go. It’s on my driver’s license in my wallet, which is currently residing in your right pocket, after all.” He said, crossing the small shop floor to the main counter. He reached under, and Eggsy tensed, half expecting a gun after all of his bad run-ins. Instead, Harry pulled out a crystal decanter with a golden looking liquid, setting it on the counter, along with two glasses. He poured two fingers of it into each glass, and loomed over them a moment, taking a sip of one. Eggsy knew when he was beat--a locked door, a man becoming more fueled by liquor by the second, and unfamiliar terrain did not bode well for him. The street outside the shop too was dead, he noted. No one to hear him scream, he thought with dark amusement.

 

“As I see it, you have three options. First, you could run. The window is really the only way out, as I’m sure you’ve noticed. I don’t fancy a trip to the hospital this evening, so I do not suggest it. Second, I pick up the phone and call the police. Third, you can give me my wallet back, and in compensation, you will firstly tell me your name, and starting tomorrow, come here every day and work away your pick pocketing habits, since you obviously have nothing better to do than pick on shopkeepers.” Harry said.

 

Eggsy took a breath, sitting down on one of the free chairs, deliberately putting his still-wet shoes on the luxurious carpet.

 

“...I get that other glass there if I give it back?” Eggsy asked, nodding to the other glass of golden liquid.

 

Harry smiled a smile that didn’t quite reach his eyes. “Name first,” he said, his strong voice unwavering. He held the other glass up though, the liquid in it moving easily about.

 

“Eggsy. Eggsy Unwin.”

 

 

Chapter Text

Of course, he hadn’t planned to actually come back. He wasn’t even sure if he would be able to remember the way back to the shop. But the next night when he had slipped out his window, avoiding Dean and his mum watching telly, his feet seemed to have a mind of their own. He had arrived at the shop at 10 PM sharp, exactly the time Harry had specified (he refused to call him Mr. Hart or any of that nonsense. Yes, he was engaging in a form of indentured servitude to avoid prison, but he had limits).

 

He hadn’t known what to expect, but the storefront being locked had not been it. Eggsy had stood there for a good twenty minutes, pacing and avoiding the stares of occasional passerby. Finally, when he was just about to leave, kicking himself for coming in the first place, Harry showed up.

 

He was hustling down the street, as much as someone like Harry would ever hustle. He was carrying a paper bag in one hand and an umbrella in the other. Just like the night before, he was impeccably well dressed, a charcoal checked suit just peaking out from beneath a navy overcoat. Eggsy couldn’t help but feel a little awkward in his second hand slacks and too large sweater, even though they were the best clothes he owned.

 

Harry quickly let Eggsy in, apologizing for his tardiness. He flicked the lights on and placed the bag on counter in front of the stairs.

 

“I wasn’t sure if you would have eaten, so I thought some food might be called for.” Then he brought out a small selection of pastries, as well as two takeaway cups of tea. He gestured Eggsy over when he hesitated.

 

“Please, Eggsy. I would be a poor host if I didn’t provide for my guests.”

 

So apparently attempting to rob Harry Hart made you his guest. Not quite able to believe it, Eggsy snatched a muffin and one of the cups, before seating himself in the plush leather chair in the corner. He picked at the muffin, stomach churning as he watched Harry busy himself with his own food. He hadn’t eaten all day, Dean having taken the last of the cereal and there only being jars of baby food in the cupboards. He’d tried it once when he was really desperate, and promptly spat it out. The muffin that he began to eat perhaps a bit too fast seemed to melt on his tongue, still warm from the shop. Where he had gotten fresh pastries at that time of night, Eggsy didn’t know, but he was damn appreciative.

 

“Thanks for this.” Eggsy said, swallowing a piece of the muffin, peeling back the wrapper as he made himself comfortable in the chair, his back curving to its frame. He watched Harry put a single sugar in his tea before taking the seat opposite in a blue, french-looking chair with ornate arm rests, a croissant perched on top of the cup.

 

“Please, don’t mention it.” He replied politely, nodding his head and looking over at him before picking at his pastry. Eggsy quietly ate the muffin, unsure of what to say to fill the silence between them, unsure if he even wanted to say anything. Harry was being nice. Far too nice for Eggsy’s standards, and that was either suspicious or in expectation of reward. Taking a sip of his tea, however, Eggsy couldn’t really detect how either were applicable. He had picked up food for the two of them, a completely foreign concept to Eggsy. Usually when someone picked up a meal around his place, they all demanded equal payment. Harry, however, had been apologetic at his tardiness and kind. It wasn’t really the sort of behaviour Eggsy expected from a man from whom he’d tried to steal, a little over 24 hours ago.

 

“Why’re you bein’ so nice to me?” Eggsy finally asked, picking a piece of blueberry from his muffin and popping it in his mouth. Harry looked up from his croissant, now perched atop his knee under a napkin. He gave a small, knowing smile, one that this time actually reached his eyes, the corners scrunching up pleasantly. It only served to make him more attractive, Eggsy noted.

 

“Manners maketh man,” Harry said, crossing one leg over the other. “Gentleman's first lesson, Eggsy. Manners are an absolute necessity for civility. Mind your manners, and only then will you truly be a man.”

 

“‘Manners maketh man,’?” Eggsy scoffed, quoting him with an imitated accent. “There ain’t been no such thing as manners since I was ‘bout this high. Don’t know if ya caught onto that whole internet thing or not…Peoples pretty rude out there, ya get me?”

 

“It doesn’t mean you have to be.” Harry argued, giving him a look that made Eggsy’s heart skip a beat. It was the sort of look that looked past you, into something deeper that Eggsy wasn’t sure he was ready to acknowledge. The moment lingered perhaps a bit too long, Eggsy admiring the small smile on Harry’s lips and his too-well-dressed form. He shifted in his chair, lowering his gaze, feeling every bit the pervert he knew himself to be.

 

“Yeah...yeah, suppose you’re right.” He said, finishing the muffin in his hand. He eyed the other bits of the various pastries Harry had brought, sipping at his tea, playing with the wrapper absentmindedly.

 

“You can have another. I certainly won’t eat them all.” Harry said, gesturing to the food there. Eggsy’s stomach growled in reply and he practically ran for them. He ate a second and a third, tidying as directed in between bites and questions. It was nearing midnight when he began to feel tiredness creep up on him, yawning.

 

“So how longs this place been ‘round anyways?” He asked, leaning on the table, picking at a croissant as Harry answered.

 

“1849.” He replied simply.

 

“So just a bit older than you.” Eggsy mocked. He saw Harry roll his eyes.

 

“Ha-ha.” he said sarcastically, wiping his fingers on the napkin, finishing his second muffin. Eggsy smiled, setting his croissant down and picking up the broom again.

 

“How long you been runnin this place then?” He asked. It seemed he was full of questions tonight, not an unusual occurrence for him. His mouth was always running, and he knew it could get him in trouble at times. This time though, the air between them was as comfortable as it could be, with them two being strangers and all.

 

“Oh, I don’t run the shop. No no.” Harry said, sipping at the now cold tea as he stood up, striding to the fireplace and throwing a log in. He set his tea down and began to build a fire in the empty hearth.

 

“No shit. Thought you was the boss of the place or somethin.” Eggsy mused. Harry chuckled.

 

“No...I’m somewhat of a manager, I suppose. We don’t really use typical titles around here.” He said, his back to him. Eggsy just gave a small scoff, bending down to sweep up a miniscule amount of dirt into the pan.

 

“So do you usually hire delinquents, then? Or did you just like my charm?” Eggsy asked, leaning on the broom handle, giving Harry a toothy smile. Harry gave him a sharp look over his shoulder, finishing the fire and pulling a box of matches from his pocket, striking one up. It roared to life and as it caught on the kindling and logs, Eggsy could already feel the warmth of it from here.

 

“First time, actually, and frankly I’m amazed you showed up.” Harry said, eyes going from him back to the fire. Eggsy put the tiny bit of dirt in the garbage by the counter.

 

“Not like there’s much to do on a Sunday night anyways.” Eggsy said, shrugging in his oversized sweater. At least he had made it there without being drenched by a passing car, he thought. Harry said nothing in reply, the only sound between them the fire crackling. Eggsy huffed and picked up the dusting rag as he looked out the window of the shop. Another damp night, rain drizzling half-heartedly, the street lamps illuminating the faces of the other shops that were all closed. Only this shop, which Eggsy had never seen anyone else enter besides himself, stood open.

 

He still wasn’t sure exactly why he’d come back. The night this strange deal was struck he was only thinking of escape when he agreed. After downing the surprisingly awful alcohol (Harry had called it “an acquired taste”), he had agreed to come in the next morning and run out the freshly unlocked door. He had run straight home, braving Dean’s possible wrath and fists. Breathless, he had slipped into the flat and into his room before Dean could lay a hand on him, thinking only of how close he’d come to sleeping in a jail cell. Well, it wasn’t the only thing. The dark eyes and squared jaw of Harry Hart had seemed to nestle themselves into Eggsy’s mind. Looking at him now as he stood up from the fireplace, admiring his handiwork, Eggsy couldn’t help but notice how the flames melted his brown eyes into a chocolate colour that matched his hair. When he looked over his shoulder at Eggsy, Eggsy quickly averted his eyes, hoping he hadn’t been caught staring like a fucking freak.

 

“Sorry if it seems rude to pry, but ‘Eggsy’ can’t possibly be your real name…” Harry said, breaking the silence between them. Eggsy laughed lightly, brushing down the leg of a chair with the dusting cloth.

 

“It’s Gary.” Eggsy said. He had never felt comfortable with that name. Always thought it had too posh of a tone to it. He had slipped into the name Eggsy like a worn coat, comfortable and familiar, the nickname his father had called him.

 

“Gary. Hm. I can’t say it suits you, exactly.” Harry said, finishing the last of his tea as he watched Eggsy work, perhaps a bit too closely. Eggsy could feel his eyes on him still as he reached to a top shelf, finishing the last of the meager dusting. Eggsy wondered if he was waiting for Eggsy to try stealing something again, if that was why he wouldn’t take his eyes off him for very long. He felt the urge to defend himself, to explain that he had only done it on impulse and out of anger. He wasn’t some criminal; he only took what he had to to survive, whether to put food on the table or to soothe his wounded pride. He figured saying something like that to Harry, who looked like he had never wanted for anything a day in his life, was too pathetic, so he shrugged it off.

 

“Well, take it up with me mum then. Though I don’t know if she’d like some posh bloke questionin’ her.” Eggsy laughed, imagining his mother drooling at the image of Harry Hart. She’d probably like it quite a bit, actually. He saw Harry smile as he put the rag over his shoulder. “Anythin’ else tonight, boss man?”

 

“No, I think that’s all for tonight, Eggsy,” Harry said, taking a seat on the plush leather couch in front of the fireplace, picking up the daily paper from the other end of it. “Same time tomorrow.”

 

Eggsy wasn’t particularly looking forward to leaving, having only Dean’s fists to look forward to at home, and possibly worse. He looked at Harry, who seemed comfortable in front of the fire, reading his paper. Eggsy wanted nothing more than to steal the comics section and sit on the other end of the couch till dawn, never going home.  

But he had responsibilities at home. It wasn’t like he could leave his mum and Daisy alone forever; he felt guilty enough taking this much time away. He had to go home, do what he could to divert as much of Dean’s rage as he could. No matter how tempting Harry looked lit by firelight.

 

Instead, he grabbed his cap he’d hung on the pegs near the door and shoved his hands in his pockets.

 

“Later, guv.”

 

---

 

The next two months fell into a similar pattern. Eggsy would fuck around during the day, hanging out with his mates or at the pub until evening rolled around. Then, he would head over to the shop, making sure to arrive just slightly before 10. At the third week he began to question exactly why he bothered as Harry never arrived until at least ten minutes after he was supposed to. He figured it was one of Harry’s quirks, which Harry himself confirmed when Eggsy teased him about it one night. Harry had looked at him sternly, a look that was ruined by the mirth dancing in his eyes, before telling Eggsy that he had been reliably informed that he would be late to his own funeral.

 

Truthfully, Eggsy found Harry’s lateness to be both endearing and reassuring. It was just another part of the routine that they had established together, a routine that made Eggsy feel the safest he had felt since he was a child.

 

Their evenings always passed in the same way: Harry would arrive late and laden with food. They would eat together before Eggsy started his chores, and Harry would read the paper or the occasional book while Eggsy cleaned. They would often talk, Harry patiently answering Eggsy’s questions or trying to pretend he wasn’t laughing at Eggsy’s inappropriate jokes. Eggsy was delighted to discover that Harry had a particularly dirty sense of humour and could dish it out just as well as he could take it.

 

Eggsy’s duties were quite simple in the end, consisting of light cleaning and polishing. Harry’s eyes still followed him around the room, but whenever Eggsy caught him staring it wasn’t wariness he saw there anymore.

 

Actually, Eggsy couldn’t quite understand why Harry set him the tasks he did. The place was always immaculate when Eggsy arrived, so much so that Eggsy often finished before midnight. On those nights Harry would show him around the shop, take him into the different fitting rooms and guide him through the job of a tailor. Some nights Harry would decide to forego the chores altogether in order to “further Eggsy’s education” as he called it.

 

It didn’t escape Eggsy’s notice that those nights were the ones when he showed up walking stiffly, dreading the lancing pain that simple activities like bending and sweeping would cause. Harry never mentioned it, not even the night when Eggsy arrived with a split lip and bruised cheek. Eggsy couldn’t help but feel pathetically grateful for Harry’s tact.

 

That time spent with Harry was often the highlight of Eggsy’s day, which might not have been saying much considering it usually followed a spectacularly shitty day. But there were higher prices Eggsy would pay for the privilege of Harry’s undivided attention.

 

First, Harry taught him how to tie approximately fifty different tie knots until Eggsy felt like he could do them in his sleep. Next, Harry began teaching him patterns, showing him which colors were acceptable together and which were not. Eggsy learned things like the importance of making sure one’s socks matched one’s trousers, and that one’s belt should match one’s shoes in both colour and finish. Eggsy wasn’t sure exactly when he would need this kind of information considering he would never be able to afford anything that the shop sold, but he filed it away anyway.

 

Finally, Harry must have deemed Eggsy educated enough because he gave him a new task: change the suits on the mannequins in the window.

 

“You want me to what?”

 

“Really Eggsy, it’s not that difficult. Use your knowledge of what looks good together and make a few outfits for the display. I’d appreciate a new touch and I’m sure you’ll do admirably.” Harry gestured to a rack of clothing beside fitting room two. “Use something from there, we often recycle them for the window.”

 

At first, Eggsy wasn’t sure exactly where to start. The three mannequins were all so pristine that Eggsy felt just touching them might ruin them. But Harry just sat there looking expectant. No, more than that; he looked confident. He looked at Eggsy with a quiet surety that Eggsy could do what he asked, that there was no doubt in his mind that Eggsy would succeed at anything he put his mind to. It wasn’t a look that Eggsy could remember ever being aimed at him.

 

Eggsy carefully undressed the mannequins, placing the discarded outfits to the side. By the time he actually went over to the rack, Harry had returned to his newspaper. Which meant that Eggsy could do whatever he liked, he thought, grinning.

 

Eggsy was finished about twenty minutes later. He stepped back and nodded to himself in satisfaction. Then he turned to present his masterpiece to Harry with a wave of his arm and a proud “Tadaaaaa!”

 

Harry looked up from his paper and immediately burst into laughter.

 

They were all quite hideous, Eggsy mused. He had done his best to pick the most ostentatious patterns and colours and combine them in ways that really should not see the light of day. He was very pleased with himself.

 

“What? I think they look very nice. I think I’d even wear this one.” Eggsy pointed at the mannequin on the left, which sported a blue and white striped shirt, a tartan waistcoat, and a brown checked blazer.

 

“No, Eggsy.” Harry shook his head and covered his eyes with his hand. His attempt to appear disapproving was ruined by the fact that he was still laughing, and would start up again whenever he looked at the mannequins.

 

It was far too charming, really. Eggsy couldn’t help the surge of fondness he could feel spreading throughout his body like an oil spill. Maybe it was a good thing that Harry didn’t laugh like this that often. He was already so handsome when he was composed, but a smiling, happy Harry was almost too much to take.

 

Harry finally managed to stop laughing and stood to examine the mannequins more closely. He chuckled again, placing a hand on Eggsy’s shoulder. Eggsy did his best not to lean into the touch.

 

“These are actually very impressive, assuming your goal is to make something as eye searingly awful as possible. Well done.”

 

Eggsy couldn’t help but grin. “Yeah, I thought it’d be a bit of a laugh. I can change ‘em back though.”

 

Harry shook his head. “Nonsense. Such genius should be acknowledged.”

 

Eggsy gaped at him. “Really? You want to leave this mess up for all your mates to see?”

 

“Of course.” When Eggsy didn’t say anything, Harry glanced down at him, looking him straight in the eye. “I don’t think you’ve been told this enough, but you really are very talented Eggsy, with a great deal of potential. I believe you could do anything you set your mind to.” He smiled, looking back at the mannequins. “Even if it is being a little shit.”

 

Eggsy barked a laugh, hoping it would disguise the gaping hole he could feel yawn open at Harry’s words. He nudged his elbow into Harry’s side, making Harry chuckle again.

 

“Besides -” he shot Eggsy a naughty smirk that hit him right in the gut, “we could use with a little shaking up in Kingsman.”

 

Eggsy raised his eyebrows in mock surprise, knowing his wide grin gave him away. “Harry Hart, you rebel. Stickin’ it to the man, are we?”

 

Harry just smiled serenely. “Something like that.” He slid his hand down Eggsy’s back, nudging him gently toward the door. “Come. There should be a chip place still open nearby. My treat.”

 

Eggsy allowed himself to be guided out the door. He watched Harry lock up and did his best to not let the adoration leaping in his heart climb up his throat and slip out his lips.

 

It was so obvious that Harry didn’t actually need to be doing any of this; he didn’t need someone to clean the shop and he certainly didn’t need to bring Eggsy food, or teach him anything, or laugh at his stupid jokes, or quietly but firmly refute Eggsy whenever he said anything too disparaging about himself. He was a kind person who was reaching out to someone he didn’t even know due to nothing but the goodness of his heart. Eggsy had never experienced anything quite like it before. All he could do was count his blessings and hope he hadn’t used up all his good luck meeting Harry Hart.  

 

 

Chapter Text

 

A month later, Harry was the one waiting outside the shop. Glancing at his watch, it was quarter to eleven, and the streets were beginning to quiet. It was a wet evening again, as it always seemed to be in spring in London, and bitter cold. Harry hurried inside the shop, nearly dropping the tray of takeaway as he did. Swearing, he set it on the couch, closing the shop door with his foot, looking around the quiet shop, the only sound that of a dying fire in the hearth. Well, he mused, Eggsy hadn’t broken in. The question still remained, however: where was the boy? In the months that Eggsy had continued to come, he had always seen Eggsy waiting outside faithfully on time, and even had a good report of the same when Harry was out on missions and Charles, the regular shopkeep/Kingsman front agent, supervised Eggsy.

 

Settling in, Harry took off his coat, hanging it up, pushing his slightly disheveled hair from his face. He picked one of the teas out of the tray and sipped at it gingerly, careful not to burn his tongue. Looking out the window into the inky black, past the orange streetlights, he could see figures in flats above shops across the street moving about, readying themselves for bed, he supposed. He sighed, willing himself to not think about how nice it would be to lie down next to someone warm for an evening, someone just under his own height, with a cologne that smelled like spices and pine, with blonde-brown hair and green eyes, and instead went to throw another log on the fire. He glanced at the grandfather clock behind the counter. 11pm. Eggsy was never this late.

 

It was 11:15 when Eggsy finally showed up and when he did, it was not in the manner which Harry was used to. Usually, when they would enter together, it would be at the sound of the shop bell, Eggsy grinning like an idiot, hands shoved in the too-large pockets of whatever ridiculous sweater he wore at the time. This time, Harry, hearing a small ‘thunk’ outside the door, saw Eggsy’s hand first at the corner of the window, gripping the wrought iron rail just outside, and his frame leaning down, heaving on the streetside. Putting his paper to the side, he jumped to his feet when he saw the blood.

 

Throwing the door open, he hurried down the few steps to Eggsy, reaching out and putting a reassuring hand on the boy’s shoulder.

 

“Eggsy! Eggsy, what the hell happened?” Harry said, stress in his voice as he watched Eggsy spit out a glob of blood, coughing. It was then that Eggsy finally looked up at him, and Harry felt his stomach drop at the sight. Eggsy was a wreck. A black eye, a swollen lip, and a cut on his cheek. He didn’t want to know how many other injuries he had past his face, but by the way he groaned when he stood up, he estimated a bruised rib or two. He’d seen the boy walk in with bruised arms and a limping gait at times, but this was a new level of damage that Harry hadn’t seen before.

 

“S’alright Harry. S’alright.” Eggsy said, waving him off. Harry’s hand left his back, but fluttered momentarily before returning to his sides. He wasn’t quite sure of what to do with himself, watching the boy suffer as he leaned against the brick part of the building, breathing heavily. “Let’s get inside before your suit gets all wet.” Eggsy coughed.

 

Harry went before him, opening the door, noticing the limp he had as he took the steps slowly, one hand on his ribs, the other on the handle. He pulled himself into the shop and sat down on the leather couch in front of the fireplace, groaning in pain. Harry looked down at him with a sigh.

 

“I knew there were problems, but oh, Eggsy…” He said, crossing the room to the work table, grabbing the first aid kit that was kept beneath it. After momentary consideration, he also poured two fingers of brandy for the boy before walking over with it and the kit in hand. He handed him the glass and Eggsy pounded it back in one gulp as Harry sat down next to him.

 

“Fuckin’ Dean…Just as I was leavin’, too...sorry I’m late.” Eggsy mumbled, coughing a bit on a mix of blood and brandy. He coughed again as Harry opened a packet of cleansing cloths to wipe up the bloody mess on Eggsy’s face.

 

“Stop apologizing. You’re a mess...God, did he break your nose?” Harry asked, reaching out and touching the cloth to his cheek, cleaning the blood away gently. Harry tried his hardest to stare at the injuries, and not into the boy’s eyes, one of which was bloodshot. He didn’t know what he felt then, wiping away blood and dirt, watching as he leaned back a bit into the couch and sighed. It was a mostly guilt, but with hints of lust that made him want to reach out and touch Eggsy’s swollen lips ever so lightly.

 

Harry shook the thought from his mind. Too young. Too pure for this old murdering bastard. He thought to himself, trying to quiet the way his mouth went dry when he looked at him, the way he was worried to hell and back about the mess of a young man in front of him.

 

“Here. I need another before you set my nose.” Eggsy said, handing him the glass and taking the cloth from him. Harry raised an eyebrow but didn’t object, giving him two fingers of the golden liquor this time.

 

“I would tell you to say ‘Please’, but seeing as you’ve got a worse looking nose than a goblin at the moment, I’ll give you a pass.” He joked. He heard Eggsy chuckle as he poured another finger of the golden liquid. By time he was across the room, his cuts were still bleeding, but considerably less now that most of the blood had been wiped away. He held the cloth to his cheek.

 

“Let me see that again.” He said, handing Eggsy the glass. Eggsy traded him for the cloth. Harry winced, seeing how wide the gash was.

 

“He likes to wear rings, doesn’t he?” Harry asked. Eggsy groaned.

 

“How could you tell?” Eggsy asked wryly.

 

“Drink your brandy. You’re going to need it.” He said, reaching for the kit. He pulled out a needle and thread and Eggsy winced at it, knowing how much it hurt. He’d done it before, Harry observed by his reaction. That simple truth, unsaid between them, made Harry’s heart drop. Harry pushed something akin to rage down; he wanted nothing more than to go find this Dean character and have a good chat. And by chat he really did mean beat the everloving shit out of him. Harry let himself daydream briefly about the way Dean’s bones would snap beneath his carefully landed blows, imagining the sound like a piece of choral music.

 

Eggsy drank the brandy in one go once again, and Harry took his chance once he’d swallowed, his hand moving quickly to his nose. Pinching the bridge of it, he moved it back into place with a snap and Eggsy let out a colourful string of curses at him, batting his hand away.

 

“Coulda warned me! Fuck!” He exclaimed loudly, hissing through his teeth.

 

“Shut up. It’s easier when you’ve got the burn to distract you.” Harry said, prepping the needle and thread with sanitizer, looming over him.

 

“Well I’m right done now so you just do your thing with that bugger then.” Eggsy said. He leaned back on the sofa, his neck hanging over the edge this time as he gestured to the gash on his cheek. He had his eyes closed, his face tinged with a liquored blush. Harry began the stitches with a practiced accuracy but as he did, he saw Eggsy’s brows furrow and watched as he bit his lower lip. The urge to do more than kiss him was growing stronger, and Harry desperately needed a distraction, not just quietly sewing his cheek up, his eyes and thoughts free to wander.

 

“What happened?” He asked, starting on the second stitch. Eggsy sighed, but kept his eyes closed. He could see his nervous tics--hands in his pockets fiddling with his nails, tapping his foot...it gave him away, but told Harry nothing.

 

“Like I said. Dean had a go at me.” Eggsy said eventually, trying to be nonchalant.

 

“Over?” Harry pressed, finishing up the second stitch and reaching for the scissors, cutting it close. Eggsy opened his eyes and sat up. Eggsy, he’d noticed, had gotten the hang of Harry’s speech--he would ask a question one time, clearly, and then no more after that if given an uninviting answer. Eggsy had been picking up on it more in recent weeks and he saw Eggsy debate over his answer as he threw the needle and thread out.

 

“...I told him I didn’t wanna do his dirty work no more. Told him to fuck off, n’ to take his shit mates with him. Told him to leave Daisy and mum alone. ‘Course that didn’t go over well when his mates are sittin’ right with him at the dinner table.” Eggsy said, reaching into the kit and pulling out an instant ice pack, cracking it and pressing it to his swollen eye. Harry took the boy’s glass, pouring another finger, and two for himself in another glass.

 

“Drugs? Fighting? Sex?” Harry asked, wondering what the nature of Dean’s dirty work was, just so he’d have an idea of how far he’d need to destroy him when given the chance. He strode over again, offering the glass to him.

 

“C’mon Harry, don’t ask me that…” Eggsy pleaded, putting a hand on his ribs again, the other taking the glass from Harry. He sipped at this one, but didn’t look at Harry directly.

 

“Sex, then,” Harry concluded. It made a sick sort of sense. Eggsy’s bruises, the days when he came in limping, how he used to shy away from Harry and look at him warily, like a cornered and wounded animal. And, Harry thought with bile rising in his throat, he could even understand it from Dean’s point of view. Eggsy was a beautiful young man, who possessed an alluring vulnerability despite his standoffishness. Many would find him irresistible, a boy to be pampered or a challenge to be conquered. He could make a fortune, if he really wanted to. Which was, of course, the crux of the matter. “...why didn’t you say anything?”

 

“Maybe ‘cous it’s embarrassing as fuck? Who goes around tellin’ people they’re a goddamn rentboy? God...” Eggsy said, pounding back the rest of his drink again. He hissed, and Harry felt guilty at having asked, noticing the way he avoided his gaze.

 

“Eggsy, say the word and he’s gone.” Harry said suddenly, unsure of what he was saying. He rubbed his forehead, trying to find a reason other than the thought protect him, that repeated over and over in his mind. His blood felt afire with rage and he couldn’t stop kicking himself for not putting a stop to it sooner. When he looked over at Eggsy, the boy looked unsure, his good eye seeming to search him in the way he did when he was thinking, considering, weighing his options.

 

“You mean it, don’t you.” Eggsy said in a low, quiet tone.

 

“I do.” Harry confirmed. He had the means and will to make it happen, regardless of the unlawfulness of it all. The law had obviously failed here though, and that was where Kingsmen stepped in. This was his job, he tried to convince himself, and not something that made him want to apologize for all the times he’d ignored Eggsy’s bruises or cuts, justifying that Eggsy would be angered by his concern.

 

Eggsy sighed, but let out a small laugh with it.

 

“You’re insane, Harry. What’re ya gonna do, go in there and beat him with your goddamn umbrella?” Eggsy laughed. Harry chuckled along with him, despite in his mind agreeing completely. He would use the umbrella, maybe using the shotgun round on Dean’s face. That might make it be over too quick though. The laughter stopped when Eggsy winced again, clutching at his ribs. Instead, Harry gave him a reassuring smile and leaned back on the chair. He could go find Dean right now, and he could have him in a body bag within the hour, but Eggsy would know, or at least be suspicious, and Harry, selfish as he was, wasn’t willing to give up what they had. He wanted Eggsy to stay in the dark, wanted to protect the way he looked at him with wide, green eyes and comforting smile.

 

“Come on then, stand up. I need to take a look at that.” Harry said, motioning to his ribs and putting his own drink aside.

 

“It’s not bad--” Eggsy insisted, but Harry cut him off, tapping his elbow impatiently.

 

“Just let me win this one, won’t you?” Harry said. “Up.”

 

Eggsy groaned and stood up, lifting his shirt. Sure enough, the first thing Harry noticed were the blooming purple bruises on his left side, larger than his hand. The second thing Harry noticed was how fit he fucking was. Mental images of kisses pressed gently over bruises invaded before he let his small amount of medical training take over, feeling his ribcage and back with all the authority of a doctor, but with the mind of the lecherous old man he was. Just fucking count the ribs and check for breaks for fuck’s sake. He said to himself, keeping his mind on track as much as he could despite wanting to drag his tongue over his hip bones.

 

“You’re fine. Just don’t strain yourself for a while. Relax.” Harry said, removing his hands reluctantly from Eggsy’s torso. Eggsy did just that, sprawling out on the couch. Harry took one of the chairs without complaint, stoking the fire a bit.

 

“So, you a doctor or somethin’ on the side then? Sewing me up, checkin’ for breaks…Colour me impressed Dr. Hart.” Eggsy winked. Harry nearly choked on his brandy.

 

“My mother was a nurse.” He offered. Eggsy raised an eyebrow, realizing at the same moment he did that it was the first time he had ever mentioned his own family between the two of them.

 

“No shit. My mom was in trainin’ for that till...yeah. Dean and shit.” Eggsy said, putting a pillow beneath his head, closing his eyes. Harry gripped his glass tighter.  

 

“Never went back, hm? You talk highly about her though.” Harry offered, trying to push the conversation to lighter things.

 

“Yeah...she’s great. Just in a bad place. I just wanna be there for her, ya know. She begged me to come back from the Marines.” He said. Harry had seen it on his file, but he still clung to the information like it was new and fresh to him.

 

“Marines? You’ve never mentioned that.” Harry offered. Eggsy shrugged lightly.

 

“No reason. Quit. Came home.” Eggsy said, his voice now with a raw edge. He saw Eggsy reach up and wipe a tear from the corner of his eye. He let his hand fall off the sofa after, sighing, defeated. Harry eyed it. It was close enough to simply reach out and hold. The liquor humming in his veins now screamed at him to take the leap, but his mind battled with him, screaming at the obvious vulnerability of the situation.

 

“...I’m terribly sorry, my dear boy,” Harry said. “Just...rest. Sleep here tonight.”

 

“I’m right drunk...you gave me too much brandy s’all.” Eggsy said. “Fuck. Just do me one thing, Harry. Just...hold my hand. Just till I fall asleep, I swear--”

 

Harry cut off his embarrassed ramblings by taking Eggsy’s hand more than willingly, scooting his own chair closer so he could rest their fingers on his knee. He let his thumb make small circles on his smooth skin. Eggsy looked at him with large green eyes, expression shocked. He knew his own was one of relief, a calm serenity overtaking him at the simplest contact. Eggsy’s expression softened as he looked up at him, and Harry ran a soothing thumb over the back of his hand.

 

“Go to sleep, Eggsy.”

 

And for once, Eggsy actually listened to a direct order.

 

---

 

Eggsy woke slowly the next morning. He could tell that it was getting light beyond his eyelids, and he could hear the birds starting to sing outside. He felt like he was wrapped in a warm fog, floating above all his cares and worries. He felt safe, he realized, like he didn’t have to look over his shoulder and protect himself. Like someone else would do that for him, he thought, remembering the warm weight of Harry’s hand from the night before, the blanket Harry tucked around him.

 

He drowsed for a little while longer, enjoying the warm weight of the blanket and the softness of the cushions below him. At one point he thought he heard quiet footsteps, the cadence not a match for Harry’s. It was followed by soft voices murmuring together, what sounded like a whispered argument and a Scottish brogue. But when Eggsy finally opened his eyes the shop was empty aside from Harry, and the door was still locked with curtains drawn.

 

Eggsy let his eyes linger on Harry, thoughts of the imagined argument forgotten. Harry was sprawled in the chair near the couch, a newspaper strewn across his lap. His head was slumped forward, his neck at an awkward angle and his glasses sliding down his nose. Eggsy let himself stare for a little, doing his best to burn the image into his mind. He wanted to remember Harry like this, years from now when they no longer knew each other, when Harry had moved on to bigger things and left behind his latest charity case. He needed to remember this, to bring out the warmth and comfort of this moment when he was alone and hurting, when he needed a refuge from the hell of his life.

 

He didn’t want to disturb Harry, but he knew that he would be suffering today if he stayed in that position much longer. Eggsy quietly extricated himself from the blanket (he had somehow managed to trap him legs in it and he almost fell off the couch. Grace, thy name was not Eggsy Unwin). He folded it carefully, doing his best to fluff the cushions and pillows so they stopped looking so crushed and sad. It didn’t work very well, but at least the blanket looked nice. He had learned to fold at least, a skill his mum very much appreciated, judging by how much more laundry he had been forced to do since she had found out.

 

Finally, he turned back to Harry, who hadn’t moved at all since Eggsy woke. Eggsy sighed, then placed his hand on Harry’s shoulder, giving it a little shake. “Harry?”

 

He felt Harry stiffen beneath his hand, holding tense for a second before relaxing. Eggsy recognized that method of waking from his own life, how he stiffened when he woke as if bracing for a blow. It was something that was markedly absent from this morning. At least for him, he realized, feeling a little hollow that he couldn’t provide Harry with the same feeling of safety Harry gave him.

 

It also made Eggsy realize how little he knew Harry. What reason could a tailor possibly have to wake like that, as if tensed for battle? And even the night before, when Harry had spoken with such calmness and surety about making Dean disappear, as if it would be something simply done with no consequences.

 

Maybe Harry was some kind of hitman, and the tailor shop was just a front for the mob. Eggsy smirked to himself. Yeah, and maybe Eggsy was secretly a prince and soon his fairy godmother would come along and eventually he’d screw a princess.

 

Eggsy’s musings were interrupted by Harry opening his eyes. He just studied Eggsy’s face for a moment, his body relaxing further beneath Eggsy’s hand. A soft smile spread across his face, crinkling his eyes. Eggsy swallowed. God, this man was far too beautiful. It was dangerous to Eggsy’s health really.

 

Harry seemed to wake up a little more, his smile disappearing beneath a frown. His hand came up to Eggsy’s face, gentle fingertips brushing Eggsy’s bruised eye and stitched cut. Eggsy couldn’t help but melt into the touch, as much as he tried not too. Fuck it, he’d had a horrible night, he could allow himself this one indulgence.

 

“How are you feeling, darling?” Harry’s voice upon waking was hoarse and rough, sending a shiver up Eggsy’s spine. He couldn’t help but wonder what he would sound like the morning after a wild night of fucking, if he’d sound even rougher. How he’d sound during, moaning Eggsy’s name, throat rough from being wrapped around Eggsy’s cock.

 

Eventually, Eggsy realized that he had been asked a question, but for the life of him he couldn’t remember what it was. “S-sorry?”

 

Harry smiled again, although the concern marring his features remained. “Your face, dear boy. How much does it hurt?”

 

Eggsy grinned, ignoring the smarting pain from the gash on his face. “Harry, you ol’ worrier. It barely hurts at all, I had lots worst. It’s no problem, really.”

 

Harry didn’t seem very reassured by this, but he opted not to say anything. Instead, he stood from the chair. The hand on Eggsy’s face prevented him from stepping back, meaning that he was pretty much standing on top of Harry, they were so close. Eggsy swallowed and tried to ignore the heat emanating from Harry’s body, the gentle fingers which lingered at the corner of his mouth before cupping his jaw.

 

“I need you to promise me,” Harry said, very quietly. They were close enough that his breath brushed Eggsy’s skin. “Promise me, that if I send you home, that you’ll be safe.” Harry’s other hand came up to cup his other cheek, stroking the thumb over the bruise below his eye. “I couldn’t bare it, you see, if anything happened to you. I need you to be safe, Eggsy. Please, promise you will be.”

 

And how could Eggsy do otherwise, with Harry begging him so sweetly? It didn’t matter that it was a lie, that he could never guarantee his safety as long as Dean was around. It didn’t even matter how much Eggsy wanted to just stay here in Harry’s arms, ignore the rest of the world, just lean forward and finally find out how Harry’s lips felt against his.

 

Eggsy pasted a reassuring smile on his face, patting on of Harry’s hands. “It’ll be fine Harry. Promise. ‘Sides, don’t you got a shop to run?”

 

Harry looked at him a moment longer, keeping his eyes focussed on Eggsy’s. Finally, he let go, masking the soft desperation on his face.

 

“Of course. You’ll come by tonight, won’t you?”

 

Eggsy nodded. “Yeah Harry, course. I’ll see you at ten, yeah?” He grinned. “Well, a little after.”

 

He turned on his heel, leaving the shop quickly. He blinked in the morning light outside, shoving his hands into his pockets. He hesitated, then looked through the window back into the shop, just in time to see Harry disappearing into Fitting Room 1. He must have taken out his mobile immediately after Eggsy left, because he was holding a hand up to his ear. He seemed to be arguing with whoever he was talking with, probably because they were calling so obscenely early, Eggsy figured.

 

Eggsy turned himself toward home, ignoring the twinge of pain from his side with every step.

 

It wasn’t Harry’s responsibility, in the end. It wasn’t his job to make Eggsy’s life better, to swoop in like some kind of knight in shining armour and carry Eggsy off to his happily ever after. Eggsy would resent him if he tried. He appreciated everything Harry had done for him, felt more grateful than he could say that he hadn’t brought up the...extracurricular activities he did for Dean this morning. But in the end, Eggsy was an adult, a full grown man, and he wouldn’t let Harry be responsible for him, couldn’t let him feel guilty for Eggsy’s hurts. And he certainly couldn’t allow him to intervene with Dean. He could already see how that would end, the bruises and broken bones Harry would suffer. Harry would try so hard to be brave, but Eggsy couldn’t bear to see his blood spilled on Eggsy’s behalf.

 

Eggsy straightened up, deliberately huffing to feel the pain in his side. He would go home, sneak in through the window, make sure his room was locked and grab some more sleep. He’d check on Daisy and mum before sneaking back out. He’d fuck around with his mates, and then he’d head back here. He figured tonight would be an easy night, and he looked forward to shooting the shit with Harry. Maybe he’d see if he could grab some food for them this time.


It was his life, his responsibility. Gallant knights didn’t exist, certainly not for Eggsy.

Chapter Text

 

It had been a week since his bruises had healed, but it had been an even shorter time since Harry had last touched him. Unfortunately, it hadn’t been as tender as Harry those weeks ago, eyes still heavy from sleep, when Harry had brushed his thumb lightly over the cut on his cheek, looking down at him with a caring expression. Since then, he’d even seemed a bit more careful, Eggsy would say; keeping his distance and the like. When Harry had removed his stitches, he’d simply moved his chin and cut them away with as seemingly little contact as possible. Eggsy didn’t want to admit it, but he’d spent weeks thinking of that moment in much more explicit detail than he’d been left with when it happened. A bit miffed, he’d carried on the evening, left to his own thoughts.

 

Three days later, after Harry had gotten back from some call for the shop, Eggsy was straightening the materials on the front desk when he heard Harry sigh from his usual spot on the couch near the fire. He tossed his paper into the flames and gave a sad look at his tea that made Eggsy scoff.

 

“What’re you laughing about now then, hm?” Harry asked him, looking over his shoulder.

 

“Never seen someone look at their tea so sadly before.” Eggsy shrugged. To be honest, it was the little things like that that made coming here every night worth it. Made dodging Dean worth it, made skipping meals to avoid his demands and questions worth it, made slugging it through the rain and cold to the little warm shop worth it. Eggsy had been growing increasingly fond of Harry and the little things he did in the last few months, and when he had woken up last month still bruised and beaten, to daylight in his eyes and Harry Hart sleeping in the chair next to him, Eggsy knew he was done for.

 

Except that Harry hadn’t showed a hint of care since then. He’d been himself, sure, but he hadn’t held Eggsy’s hand, hadn’t given him the long, hard looks he couldn’t have imagined through all the liquor that night last month. His thoughts were interrupted by Harry’s voice, calm and serene as always.

 

“Well, the tea simply isn’t doing it for me tonight.” Harry said, standing up from the couch. “Grab your coat. We’re going to the pub.”

 

“Alright, Harry!” Eggsy exclaimed, tossing the dusting rag at Harry, leaping over to the coat rack. He smirked at Harry who tossed the rag aside and grabbed his own coat, shrugging on the dark blue material, checking his pockets. Eggsy shrugged his own sweater on and flipped up the hood over his hat, bracing for the chill of the evening.

 

--

 

They made it to the pub just fine, considering it was only two minutes from the doorstep of Kingsman. It was the amount of liquor which Harry drank that made Eggsy think perhaps it wasn’t, in fact, at all fine. Eggsy was taking it a bit slower, but Harry certainly wasn’t, already three glasses of top shelf scotch in and another two pints of beer downed, he had loosened his green and silver striped tie, and undone his jacket. He looked quite comfortable there, Eggsy mused, taking a swig of his third pint. Harry had begun to make himself comfortable in the booth seat, and when he leaned forward, Eggsy could smell a combination of his cologne and alcohol that made him dizzy. Harry motioned to the bartender for another round, and Eggsy hurriedly finished up his beer.

 

“You alright, Harry?” He asked finally, eyeing the older man across from him. Harry sighed, looking at him with dark brown eyes.

 

“You know, not everything goes according to plan, Eggsy.” Harry said, his words slurred. Eggsy, watching his lips, raised an eyebrow before turning his gaze back to the man’s eyes.

 

“Ya wanna explain that, mate?” He chuckled, thanking the bartender when he set down another two glasses of scotch. Harry seemed to hesitate, running a hand through his dishevelled hair in a way that made Eggsy want to do the same. He wanted to feel the texture, press his lips to the grey spots at his temples, and take away whatever hurt he seemed to be feeling.

 

Harry looked at him seriously, sipping at the scotch in front of him. “They just...don’t.”

 

--

 

Harry looked at Eggsy with a pained expression, admiring the boy’s full lip and the drunken blush that had spread over his cheeks. He certainly couldn’t tell him that he wasn’t just a tailor. Even if it wasn’t against the rules, which Harry had broken more than once, that wasn’t the issue. It was that he didn’t want to ruin the look of joy he found in Eggsy’s eyes whenever he looked at him. He wanted to hold onto that wonderment and source of joy that came in the form of this 23 year old, poorly dressed fool across from him with everything he had. Protect him.

 

“I really mucked up yesterday.” Harry said, giving in, within borders of course. “Out on a call, we do quite a few of those, you know. I couldn’t concentrate, had to ask for measurements more than once, and I’m fairly certain I lost us a customer.”

 

What Harry didn’t tell him was the way his mission target, a lovely little blonde girl no more than twelve, had dropped to the ground and bled out from a bullet wound in Greece no more than 20 hours ago. How he’d tried to stop the bleeding, and she’d just asked for her mother. He’d held her hand until she died.

 

Harry downed the rest of the glass.

 

“Christ, Harry, slow down. You mighta fucked up but ya ain’t gonna be any use to ‘em tomorrow or the next if you drink yourself to death here.” Eggsy said. Harry looked at the boy and let out a small sigh. Eggsy was right, but he said it with such a simplicity because he didn’t understand what it felt like to be taking gunfire behind a church and having to leave the body of that little girl behind in the rubble of it all. To Eggsy, that reality didn’t exist, and Harry adored him for it. He wanted to pretend he didn’t care anymore, not about the age gap between them or the way he’d been indulging his ego, using calculated touches and words to encourage the infatuated look in Eggsy’s eyes. What could it hurt, for one night? He knew he shouldn’t, he knew that Eggsy deserved better than someone who could never be there for him the way he needed. But the way he was looking at him now - so earnestly worried, as if he would give anything to make Harry feel better - was too much to resist.

 

“You’re gorgeous.” Harry said, unrestrained, looking at Eggsy with depth and a fire in the pit of his stomach. Harry watched as Eggsy’s expression turned from concern, to shock, then to discomfort as he choked on his scotch. He coughed.

 

“What’d you say, Harry?” Eggsy asked. Harry smiled, lopsidedly he was sure, considering the way his vision of Eggsy swam before him.

 

“I said, you’re gorgeous.” He repeated, with no hesitation. Eggsy seemed to believe it this time, a warm blush on his face and neck appearing as he averted his gaze.

 

“What’re you talkin’ about, Harry, don’t be--” Eggsy began, but Harry cut him off.

 

“Eggsy, please. You’ve been staring at me for weeks. If you don’t want to leave here with me tonight, all you have to do it say so.” Harry said. He may be drunk, but he wasn’t a monster. Gentlemen’s rules still applied. Eggsy looked at him with a mixture of disbelief and sheepishness still, his face still a lovely shade of pink, the blush still on him. Instead of answering Harry directly, he turned to the bartender.

 

“Cheque, please!”

 

--

 

Eggsy hadn’t pictured it like this, but as Harry pressed himself into Eggsy in the back of the taxi, Eggsy thanked God or whoever was up there that it was going like this. He could smell Harry’s breath, just as bad as his own, as he pressed kisses to his lips, cupping his face with an intensity he hadn’t expected from such a posh git. Eggsy let out a small sigh into his lips, which only seemed to drive him madder, Harry’s hands dragging down his chest. Eggsy’s world swam as the taxi driver took a turn, dizzied by the alcohol in his veins and the passion of Harry’s kisses, which were beginning to trail down his neck. Eggsy absolutely melted into Harry’s hands, tilting his head to allow Harry the length of his sensitive neck, gasping when Harry bit a bruise into his skin.

 

“Sorry gents, we’re here.”

 

Eggsy cursed the cabbie, and Harry threw the man far too much money, pulling Eggsy from the car with force. The taxi pulled away and Harry fumbled with his keys, leaving Eggsy laughing at him, leaning on his back, arms wrapped around his middle. Eggsy let his hands move down Harry’s chest to his hips, his lips pressing to the back of his neck, sucking the skin lightly while watching Harry fail at opening the door. Cursing, Harry finally got the lock, and Eggsy pushed him in through the dark threshold. He couldn’t see a thing in the house, between all the lights being off and his own drunkenness, but Harry knew his way around enough that he closed the door quickly and pushed Eggsy against it with his entire body, his lips on him again. Harry had a surprising strength to him that held him against the door, looming over him as he moaned into Eggsy’s lips. Eggsy responded with a roll of his hips and a small “Yes” between kisses.

 

Harry took his hand, and pulled lightly at him, directing him through the dark house between hurried kisses and loosening of buttons. Harry’s tie and jacket were discarded, and Eggsy’s sweater shrugged off as they ascended the stairs. They kissed all the way down the hall, Harry pushing him in the right direction, a few things knocking off god knows what, but neither seemed to care. Eggsy fumbled with the buttons of Harry’s shirt, but got the hang of it as his lips left Harry’s and began to kiss his neck as they nearly tripped over one another, still moving down the hall. Harry’s hands flew to the boy’s hair, encouraging him with a light tug and a deep moan.

 

“God, Eggsy…” He sighed, Eggsy’s breath hot as they both kicked off their shoes. Eggsy’s hands moved to Harry’s trousers, fingers dancing above the waistline, teasing him as he kissed his neck, sucking at the skin just enough to leave marks that he knew would darken by morning. Suddenly, he felt Harry’s hands on his chest, pushing him backwards, and he landed on the bed, vision spinning as he landed on the plush surface. At some point, they had made it into Harry’s bedroom, and Eggsy laughed lightly, feeling giddy as he watched Harry’s figure above him shrug off his dress shirt. Even in the dark, Eggsy could tell he was all muscle and lean form, staring at him with hungry eyes, his hair pleasantly disheveled by Eggsy’s own hands. Eggsy reached up, putting his hands past the waistline of his trousers, feeling his hip bones before going for the button of his trousers, the fabric of his pants stretched tight over the hard length obvious beneath Eggsy’s hand. He pressed his palm against his cock through the fabric, rubbing with a light pressure, watching Harry’s eyelids flutter with the pressure, before he felt Harry’s hands on his wrist.

 

“Let me wash up.” Harry said, bringing Eggsy’s hand up to his mouth, kissing his palm and fingers, his voice breathless.

 

“Alright.” Eggsy smiled, pushing him away gently. Harry stumbled a bit, causing him to chuckle, before making his way to the left of the room to an en suite bathroom, where he flicked on the light and disappeared inside. Eggsy collapsed backwards on the bed with a sigh, his entire body tingling with the sensation of want as he stared up at the top of the four poster bed. Of course he has a fuckin’ four poster. Eggsy thought to himself, hearing the tap water running behind the closed door of the washroom. He let himself get lost in the lust zinging through his veins, the affection soaring through him from the sight of Harry’s sex-ruffled hair and lust-stupid smile. It was only when he heard the coughing from the bathroom that Eggsy’s eyes went wide and he sat up.

 

“Harry, y’alright?” Eggsy called, launching himself off the bed towards the washroom. He was greeted by more coughing, wetter, as he caught himself on the doorframe, looking at his feet illuminated in the light that came through the crack at the bottom.

 

“Yes...yes. Fine.” Harry said. He seemed to quiet, and Eggsy waited there for him until he emerged, looking pale, holding his head, a red bathrobe over his bare shoulders. Eggsy reached out and grabbed his elbow, understanding the feeling of being far too drunk.

 

“C’mere, guv. Lie down.” Eggsy said soothingly, guiding him to the bed where he sat down, noticing how he kept his eyes closed the entire time. Likely an attempt to stop the world from spinning. Harry followed his instructions meekly and laid down on the bed with an agonized groan.

 

“I’m quite drunk, Eggsy.” Harry slurred, dark eyes opening to peer at him through the darkness of the room. Eggsy just laughed, looking down at him.

 

“I know, Harry,” Eggsy replied with a laugh, tenderly brushing the older man’s hair from his face. “I’m pretty sloshed myself.”

 

“Lie down with me.” Harry said quietly, looking up at him with handsome bedroom eyes, illuminated by the washroom light that had been left on. There was something there that even Eggsy could recognize in the dim light - loneliness. He’d seen it in his own reflection before enough to recognize it at the drop of a hat. It made his stomach drop, and want to take Harry in his arms again. Their passionate evening might have been put on hold, but it held no less care than it had before.

 

“Ya gonna puke on me?” He teased. He saw Harry give him a disapproving look that only made him laugh aloud as he climbed into bed behind Harry, wrapping his arm around his chest, pressing his body into the curves of his. He felt Harry sigh, all the tension going out of his body.

 

“You okay, Harry?” Eggsy asked, whispering in his ear, not meaning physically. He had never seen Harry like he had been earlier, eyes haunted and sad. He couldn’t understand it. It was just a client, wasn’t it? Just one measly rich bastard, who shouldn’t have the power to make Harry look like that. Nothing should have the power to make Harry look like that, not if Eggsy had anything to say about it. He tightened his arms around Harry, nosing into the space behind his ear and breathing deeply.

 

“Yes, sweet boy. I’m quite alright.” Harry replied, grabbing Eggsy’s hand and holding it with his own close to his chest, pressing a kiss to his knuckles. Eggsy pressed small, short kisses to the back of his neck in response.


“Alright.” He mumbled. Harry said a throaty ‘hmm’ in agreement. Eggsy felt like there was something left unsaid, but didn’t press him for it. They fell into an easy silence, and it wasn’t long before Eggsy felt Harry’s breathing deepen, falling into a lulling sleep with Eggsy wrapped around him. Eggsy shifted slightly, pulling the covers over them both, before letting himself fall into sleep, his arms still around Harry, breathing in the scent of his aftershave.

Chapter Text

 

Harry woke up to a pounding headache and the smell of pancakes. As he opened his eyes, he saw a glass of water and a bottle of Tylenol on the oak bedside table, and he groaned, holding his head. He hadn’t gotten that drunk in a while, he thought to himself, willing the world to stop spinning. He sat up slowly, debating if he was going to go back to sleep or not, but when he heard the faint clattering of dishes downstairs, he took two Tylenol from the bottle, downed them with the entire glass of water, and grabbed his robe. Trying to recount his actions from the night previous as he washed his face in the en suite bathroom, he remembered being at the shop, then going for drinks, then…

 

Eggsy’s lips on him, warm and wet as he kissed up his neck. Gripping handfuls of hair as Eggsy found his collarbone, pushing his clothes off eagerly. He remembered Eggsy pulling his tie in the confined space of the taxi, willing Harry to deepen each and every kiss until they were both left breathless.

 

Harry splashed cold water on his face, blinking as he looked in the mirror at his tired form, dark eyes staring back at him. He knew two things for certain now after the previous evening: he had not slept with Eggsy, but god did he want to. What he was not too certain on was the moralities of the issue. Harry was fifty, and Eggsy, according to his file, was twenty three. That left a twenty seven year difference between them, which made Harry, frankly, feel quite like a cradle robber. It left a sour taste in his mouth, despite the burning desire to enjoy Eggsy’s perfectly pleasant company. Besides the age difference, there was the tiny issue of him being a Kingsman, and not in the sense of him being a tailor. Being a Kingsman agent was the entire reason why he hadn’t kept up any sort of relationship thus far; on too many missions and with too few questions answered, most partners hadn’t stayed longer than a few months. But Eggsy seemed to have fallen right into his life, well-meaning and kind, despite their initial encounter, with a cheeky personality but one that knew when to stop asking questions. Eggsy was far too good for him, and it weighed on his chest like an anchor.

 

Descending the stairs as he tied his robe, he tried to mentally play the scene in his head on how to exactly let Eggsy down. When he hit the last stair and looked into the kitchen, he could see Eggy’s form flipping a pancake with a spatula, grinning when it landed safely in the pan. The grin brought back memories of Eggsy smiling into his kisses, his breath warm as their lips moved together. He almost moved back into the hall and up the stairs, a right coward, but Eggsy looked over his shoulder, seeming to spot him out of the corner of his eye.

 

“‘Mornin’, Harry.” Eggsy said with a welcoming smile. Harry moved into the room, attempting to keep his composure and not stare in a besotted manner.

 

“Good morning. Did you sleep well?” he asked in reply, feeling awkward even though he was standing in his own home.

 

“Oh, yeah! Your bed is gigantic,” Eggsy said enthusiastically, putting the pancake onto a plate with others already there. “I hope you don’t mind this...I was starvin’, and thought I might as well make you some, yeah?”

 

The sweet boy put the plate at the head of the table before rummaging around for silverware. Harry hesitated, feeling guilt pile on him. Here he was, still hungover, while an attractive, kind young man making him breakfast, and Harry couldn’t help but think that he was using the boy to simply make himself feel better after a particularly bad mission. He’d done it before, taken someone to bed with the intent of gratification, and it only served to make him trust himself less in the romantic feelings he was only beginning to really know he had for Eggsy. Instead of moving to the head of the table and taking a seat, enjoying his morning, Harry sighed.

 

“Eggsy, come sit down.”

 

“Yeah, just a sec Harry.” Eggsy shot him a wink over his shoulder, cheeky grin lighting his features. Harry felt his stomach roil as he sat, and wished he could put it down to his hangover and nothing else.

 

Eggsy bustled over with the table settings, before returning to the kitchen to take the whistling kettle off the stove. Harry studied him while he poured the water into a teapot. The sun was shining through the kitchen window, catching the blond in Eggsy’s hair and limning his features. He was wearing pyjama bottoms which were slightly too large for him, obviously pilfered from Harry’s wardrobe. They hung fetchingly low on his hips, just catching the crest of his ass when he leaned up to grab teacups from the cupboard. He was also not wearing a shirt, and Harry couldn’t help but let his eyes linger on Eggsy’s chest, trailing across his pecs and down his taut stomach in a path his fingers ached to follow.

 

It was just Harry’s luck that Eggsy caught him staring. He smirked and sauntered over with the tea tray. He deliberately leaned against Harry as he put the tray down, standing behind him to slide his hands up Harry’s arms to his shoulders. Harry’s eyes closed involuntarily when Eggsy nuzzled into his hair, his breath hot against his ear. By some god-like feat of self control, Harry managed not to turn into Eggsy, claim his lips and drag him upstairs to finish what they had started the night before.

 

Eggsy finally released Harry, taking the seat to his left. Harry took a breath before opening his eyes and looking at him. He kept hoping that the boy would become less beautiful, that the next time he looked at Eggsy the sight of him wouldn’t steal his breath away. But it never happened; instead, Eggsy seemed to grow more luminous each passing day. He had risen in Harry’s esteem from a young man who was attractive enough despite his insolence to a young man with great potential, who was kind and sweet and caring, who would give his all for those he cared for. And Harry dearly desired to count himself as one of those special few.

 

Indeed, Eggsy had never seemed as beautiful as he did in this moment. Half bare, flicking glances at Harry before smiling shyly down at his pancakes. It felt like his heart was seizing in Harry’s chest. He didn’t know if he had ever seen Eggsy so unselfconsciously happy. Harry wanted to see more of it, make that grin grow, make the joy of this moment a permanent fixture of Eggsy’s life.

 

But that was an impossibility, at least in relation to Harry. It was more than the age difference, although that was jarring enough. Harry enjoyed Eggsy’s company, more than was proper for a man of his age. There was also the fact that Harry was a Kingsman agent, and lived a life full of all the dangers that came with such a title. There was no way he could justify putting Eggsy into such danger without his knowledge or consent, nor could he tell Eggsy of his true career. That on its own could be enough to end any relationship they had, Eggsy believing that Harry was in Milan observing a fashion show while he was really in Kyoto assassinating yakuza. And how could Harry come home to Eggsy afterward and put his blood stained hands on Eggsy, taint his freckled skin with traces of gunpowder and violence, wash away the screams of pain echoing in his ears with cries of pleasure?

 

And, Harry had to admit even if only to himself, his motives were not entirely altruistic. It was obvious that Eggsy was infatuated with him. It was also obvious that Eggsy would not be opposed to some kind of physical relationship between them, going by his enthusiasm the night before. But infatuation and lust in no way guaranteed a lasting relationship. It didn’t guarantee that Eggsy would care for Harry in the same way that Harry was beginning to care for him. It certainly didn’t guarantee that Eggsy wouldn’t tire of him when the infatuation passed while Harry remained trapped in his love for a much younger man who was no longer interested.

 

Even if they were together for years, Harry couldn’t see a happy ending. He saw himself growing old while Eggsy passed into the prime of his life. Eventually, Eggsy’s love and devotion would sour into anger and resentment until Harry found himself looking at a man with cold eyes and his lover’s face, sick with the knowledge that he had stolen the best years of Eggsy’s life from him and given nothing in return.

 

He couldn’t do that to Eggsy. It might hurt him now (and Harry knew that this blow would wound him too, that he would spend many nights nursing the hurt alone in his empty house) but it was better in the long run. It was an act of self preservation as much as anything else.

 

He cleared his throat. “Eggsy.”

 

“Hm?” Eggsy turned to look at him, eyes crinkling with pleasure as he continued to chew.

 

Harry forced himself to look him in the eye. Whatever else Harry was, he was not a coward. “We need to talk. About what happened last night.”

 

Eggsy swallowed, nodding wide eyed and putting his fork down. “Yeah, o’ course.”

 

“I...wanted to apologize for my behaviour last night. It was quite reprehensible of me, really, to take advantage of you in such a way. I had a truly rotten day, but that is no excuse to treat you the way I did. You have my deepest apologies.”

 

Eggsy was already shaking his head before Harry finished speaking. “No, Harry, you didn’t take advantage of me. I mean,” he cracked a grin, “did it seem like I was unwilling?”

 

“That’s beside the point Eggsy. The point is that my actions last night may have led to you drawing an...incorrect conclusion.”

 

Eggsy’s grin faded, his brow wrinkling in a frown. “What?”

 

Harry drew himself up, bracing himself. “I’m very sorry Eggsy, but I don’t think this is a good idea.”

 

It was worse than he could have expected. Eggsy’s face went completely blank, as if shutters had been snapped closed. All traces of happiness disappeared in an instant, the only thing betraying his stress being his clenched jaw.

 

Harry forced himself to continue. “I realize that this may be hard to hear, but I don’t believe that either of us are in the proper position to take this step in our relationship. We’re both very busy people with very busy lives, and I wouldn’t want us to become a burden to each other.”

 

Harry leaned toward Eggsy, wanting to make sure that his next words were understood. “I value your company greatly Eggsy. More than I can express. Please know that I’m not doing this through any fault of your own.”

 

You deserve better, Harry willed him to understand. Better than an old man with bloodstained hands.

 

He cleared his throat again. “Be that as it may, I completely understand if you don’t want to continue coming by the shop. I won’t hold it against you, and I certainly won’t contact any authorities regarding your original indiscretion. Any debt you may have had to me has been more than repaid.”

 

Eggsy huffed bitterly. His blank expression melted into a look of resignation that was hard to look at. He didn’t seem disappointed or angry, simply sadly accepting, as if he had hoped for better but wasn’t surprised by reality.

 

“I get it Harry. You don’t have to keep banging on about it.” He chuckled, and Harry noticed that his eyes were a overly shiny. “I don’t know what I was expecting, really. That someone like you could be into someone like me. What a fucking joke.”

 

Harry couldn’t breathe. “Eggsy, no, that’s not-”

 

Eggsy stood abruptly, swiping a hand angrily across his face. “I’m gonna go now. Just let me grab my stuff and I’ll, um -” he trailed off and headed quickly upstairs.

 

Harry sat frozen, listening to Eggsy rustling around upstairs, gathering his things, before his footsteps came back down the stairs. The front door opened and shut softly, with barely a click.


And just like that Eggsy was gone from Harry’s life, leaving behind only a stack of quickly cooling pancakes and an ache in Harry’s heart.

Chapter Text

The evening was warm as Eggsy flipped up his hoodie, a sign of spring to come, but Eggsy only felt the coldness of Harry’s words, striking him again and again as he shuffled down the posh neighbourhood street. Shoving his hands in his pockets, he let out a small sigh, some of the choice words Harry had used swimming in his mind. They had not been terms he’d heard for the first time, of course. Too busy, my fault not yours, I like you but I don’t like you. Classic excuses, Eggsy thought. Why he’d thought it would be different this time around with a posh, older guy like Harry, he didn’t know. A guy like that, with that perfect smile and laugh whose rarity made it all the more sweet, and built to hell to boot, didn’t fall for guys like Eggsy, who was all hand-me-downs and awkward gait. It seemed to him that he’d been falling in that same trap all his life; expecting good things to come, only to be let down, mostly by himself. It was no fault of Harry’s, he rationalized as he made his way into downtown on foot, only his own that he’d had the naiveté to believe he could be with someone like Harry for even a day.

 

Fishing out his phone from his pocket, Eggsy dialed the number for Jamal. Between the thought of going home to Deans pressures forcing him literally on his knees that left him sore in more ways than one, and Harry’s home behind him, the only thing he truly wanted to do was get wasted and forget the letdowns he’d brought on himself. Eggsy wanted to be drunk enough to forget the way Harry had tasted and how he’d moved beneath his fingers.

 

By evening, he was in the warm pub down from his moms flat, on his fourth beer, his mates unable to keep up with him.

 

“Eggsy, are you gonna keep poundin’ those back man? Don’t you gotta work tonight?” Ryan asked, nodding towards the beer that Eggsy was drinking from. Jamal too gave him a worried look. They knew he’d been ‘working’, perse, at Kingsman for the last few months, but what they didn’t know was the heartache that Eggsy was drowning in cheap brews.

 

Eggsy shrugged and finished half the beer in one go, his head feeling heavy. Neither of them pried further into the issue, and instead just ordered food, likely hoping to stave off any sickness Eggsy would inevitably feel later. It was when the sun had finally come up and Eggsy had spent the last half hour in the bathroom with his face in the toilet that the bartender finally kicked them out. Jamal and Ryan went on their path home, staggering, and Eggsy headed to his mother's flat.

 

When he stood outside the door though, looking at the chipping stone walls and untended garden boxes, Eggsy turned on his heel. The sickness he felt wasn’t solely from the drink. It was from thinking of the look on his mothers face, all disappointment at her son coming home drunk yet again. It was from the thought of Dean’s greasy fingers, prying the life from his hands with every day he worked for him. The only saving grace would have been Daisy, sweet Daisy with blonde curls and rosy cheeks, but only for so long until the dirtiness of the tiny apartment would seem to sink into his own skin. Eggsy let his feet carry him elsewhere, and when he looked up, it was the Kingsman name he saw, lettered in gold on the large window. Regret curled in his stomach at the thought of Harry having waited all night for him to show up, and here he was, still drunk, blonde-brown hair a mess with dark circles under his eyes. He’d spent the day and night avoiding Harry, but all he wanted now was the man’s reassuring tone, his quiet demeanor and lips on his, taking his breath away. Eggsy pushed the door to Kingsman open with one thing on his mind: Harry Hart.

 

When he stepped in the shop though, despite the drunken haze, he could cut the tension in the air with a knife. Three people were there, more than he’d ever seen in the shop at once, all discussing around the main workbench in low tones that stopped when he entered. He surveyed them all quickly--one elderly man with white hair and dressed in a comfortable looking sweatervest and tie with matching slacks, another taller man, balded, with thick, black-rimmed glasses perched on his distinguished nose, holding a clipboard, and a short female, blonde hair tied tightly into a high ponytail with the same styled glasses as the bald man. All three of them looked at him as one.

 

“Can I help you?” The elderly man asked, approaching Eggsy from the work-bench. Eggsy put his hands in his pockets, shifting uncomfortably despite being in such a familiar space. His green eyes darted to the two others, who peered at him, but continued their conversation in hushed tones, the bald one indicating to the clipboard.

 

“Oh, uh, no, I mean, Yeah. Uhm. Harry Hart. Is he here? I need to see him. It’s really important, I just need to talk with him--” Eggsy gushed, stopping himself mid-sentence when he realized he was rambling. He swallowed hard, looking at the man, feeling a deep need to see Harry’s face settling in his mind. “I just--I fucked up and I need to talk to him.”

 

“...Merlin, you want to handle this one?” the elderly gentleman said, looking over his shoulder at the pair by the counter who had gone silent. The bald man straightened up, trying to hide what seemed like a laugh.

 

“I’ll go get him. Who should I tell him is here for him?” Merlin asked in a thick scottish accent.

 

“Uh, Eggsy.” Eggsy replied. Merlin smiled, shot the girl a knowing smile, then turned to the stairs that Eggsy had never been up before. Eggsy had a moment of drunken awkwardness, not quite knowing what to do with himself, before the girl approached, handing him a glass of water. She was a pretty little thing, lithe and graceful on her feet, her blonde ponytail swinging with each step. She wore a grey suit with a tartan pattern in complimentary blues and greys, paired with a white undershirt that left the top two buttons undone. Her smile seemed to be understanding as he took the water from her.

 

“Thanks.” He mumbled, draining the glass.

 

She extended a hand towards him. “Roxy Morton.”

--

 

Harry hated that look Merlin wore. He had seen it only a few times before, the worst one being when his mother had called the shop looking for him to scold him about having left the stove on. Merlin had been asking him about his stove ever since, whenever he felt like being particularly annoying. The look though was a twinkle in his eyes, and a childish, mocking smirk on his lips, his nimble fingers tapping a happy rhythm against his clipboard. Harry groaned.

 

“What is it now, Merlin?” Arthur asked, the grey haired man at the head of the table adjusting his glasses as he looked away from the screen Harry and him had been briefing on. The case surrounding the recent death of Lancelot was becoming more and more shrouded in mystery, with their most recent clue pointing to Imperial College to the professor James Arnold, whom he’d have to pay a visit to later no doubt. Paired with the sleepless night he’d endured at having waited for Eggsy all evening in the shop front, Harry really did not feel like hearing Merlin’s jabs.

 

“Sorry, sir, but Galahad, you have a visitor downstairs.” Merlin said, raising an eyebrow and giving him a wink. “Interesting choice this time, really. Very young. Not your usual heartbreak, Harry.”

 

Harry looked at him, confused for a moment. He could feel Arthur's eyes on him, judgemental and very likely annoyed.

 

“He said his name was Eggsy, if that’ll get you moving.” Merlin finally conceded, rolling his eyes.

 

“Oh, fuck.” Harry said, standing up.

 

“Oh, yes, by all means, run to your little boy-toy, Galahad. Not like we were doing some important investigation here.” Arthur said, Harry already halfway across the room. Harry could practically feel the older mans glare on his back.

 

“I’ll visit Professor Arnold after i’ve finished up downstairs, Arthur.” Harry said with a wave of his hand before he left the room, not even bothering to glance at the elder man, his mind set on the young man downstairs. Merlin followed after him, walking in snyc with his own long strides.

 

“He’s quite drunk. What in gods name did you do to him?” Merlin pried, almost laughing. Harry shot him a dark look, stopping in the hall. Merlin stopped with him, but kept his smirk.

 

“Oh, please, Harry. I’m head of security. I’ve seen the tapes. You’ve looked at his ass more times than a priest at a boys choir rehearsal.” Merlin joked. Harry sighed, rubbing his temples.

 

“How did he look? What did he say?” Harry asked, feeling the guilt build in the pit of his stomach knowing Eggsy was just down the stairs from them. As he looked up at Merlin, he saw his expression change from joking to something like genuine surprise.

 

“...You actually care about that little drunk kid down there? Jesus, Harry...Alright then. He’s a right mess. Came in practically begging to see you, saying he, quote unquote, fucked up. You know though if you don’t stop dragging your heartthrobs through here, Arthurs gonna catch on and be right pissed. I’ve kept it a secret till now, the little nighttime cleanups, but Arthur isn’t exactly stupid...” Merlin said, laying the truth on him.

 

“Please, Arthur’s too blinded by his own goddamn self importance to see anything beyond his reflection.” Harry snuffed. Merlin scoffed.

 

“Whose down there with him now?” Harry asked, wondering if he should go down and see Eggsy at all.

 

“Lancelot. Why?” Merlin asked with a shrug. Harry looked slightly horrified.

 

“She’ll eat that boy alive.”

--

 

Eggsy looked over his shoulder from the couch that he and Roxy now saw on when he heard footsteps, interrupting the apparently enthralling tale to Roxy of the time Harry had spilled coffee all over one of the shop suits. Eggsy was suddenly very aware of the way his head pounded, and how his vision swam.

 

“I’m...I’m gonna go. It was nice meeting you, Roxy.” Eggsy said, standing hurriedly and heading for the door, his head spinning, hoping to make it before Harry hit the shop floor. He didn’t want to see him, suddenly aware of how pathetic it was to be standing drunk here, waiting for a much better man than he deserved. Harry had let him down for a reason, and it was not for Eggsy to turn back up here. Halfway out the door, Eggsy felt an arm on his elbow, and knew that firm grip from the first time in the shop, only this time when he looked up at the man holding him there, it was not with eyes of suspicion, but ones of exhaustion and need.

 

“Eggsy…” Harry said gently. Eggsy was aware of the others in the room, but they seemed to blend in with the furniture as he looked up at Harry’s gentle features, brown eyes soft and welcoming. Eggsy swallowed the lump in his throat.

 

“Harry...I should go.” Eggsy said, looking towards his feet. He was an embarrassment and felt like a child in the luxury of the shop. He didn’t belong, and the truth of it crushed him, feeling inadequate in his hand-me-downs and dirty shoes.

 

“Nonsense. Come along, we’re having tea.” Harry said, moving his hand to Eggsy’s shoulder. Eggsy, still feeling out of place, nodded, if only to have another few moments alone with Harry Hart.

 

--

 

“Drink up.” Harry said, watching Eggsy slouch in the chair, balancing his teacup on his knee, his long legs extended outwards comfortably. Harry watched his eyes wander around the sitting area, the fireplace crackling nicely in the hearth, illuminating the paintings set against the burgundy painted walls in the small room. It was Galahad’s work office, truth be told, but signs of work had been hidden by the faux painting near his desk, china plates above the fireplace concealing speakers, and his work laptop(his own safely tucked away in his own home) neatly hidden beneath a flip-top on his desk. It looked, to the civilian eye, a managers room, albeit a posh one. Looking at Eggsy now, he could see he was still uncomfortable despite being pulled away from the others, and when Eggsy glanced at him, he looked away just as quickly.

 

“I shouldn’t be here, Harry. It was stupid to come, ‘n i’m pretty sure I just embarassed the fuck outta myself in front of Roxy down there.” Eggsy said, slurring his words slightly, fingers running over the delicate handle of the china teacup. Harry felt the guilt settle in again, a lump in his throat and a desire to reach out to Eggsy and take his hand in his own. He didn’t want the distance, but his mind, rationalizing the situation, thought it knew better--knew that the distance was necessary, was healthy for Eggsy. He deserved someone who could be around, who wouldn’t disappear, who wouldn’t come home with blood on his hands and jacket.

 

“It wasn’t. I’m glad to see you.” Harry said gently, crossing one leg over the other. He took a sip from his tea, the earl grey soothing his nerves.

 

“...what the hell's that supposed to mean?” Eggsy sighed, putting his tea aside, ruffling his hair. His eyebrows knit in frustration and he seemed to glare a bit when he looked up at Harry, a fire there that Harry appreciated. He wanted Eggsy to be angry at him. He wanted Eggsy to hate him. It would be so much easier that way.

 

“It means I would like to be friends with you, Eggsy. I enjoy your company. I’m glad you came back today, because I felt...wrong, about the way we left things. Although you could have shown up considerably less drunk.” Harry said, trying to give him a joking smile. Eggsy seemed to just recoil into himself further, frowning as he looked away.

 

“Went out with my mates…” he grumbled. “I wanted to forget you, Harry. I wanted to forget me. I fucked up a lotta shit in my time, but I really fucked up being with you. How could I think you’d actually go for someone like me? It was stupid. A lotta things I do are stupid but that was one of the worse ones, yea?”

 

Harry felt his heart go out to Eggsy as he trailed off, the lost boy just trying to do good, and here Harry was, having guided him off the path. It was Harry’s fault Eggsy sat in front of him now in his current state, and Harry had nothing to say that could reassure him. What he wanted to say he knew would only get the boy into more trouble--the further you went in with Kingsman, the harder it was to get out, and Harry didn’t want to be the one to limit his options. Years of good manners and being a Kingsman couldn’t prepare him for the guilt and heartbreak he felt looking at Eggsy now.

 

Eggsy stood up suddenly, breaking the silence. Harry set aside his tea and stood up as Eggsy headed to the door.

 

“I’m shite, Harry, for both of us. I just keep fucking up and I just...need to figure things out.” Eggsy said, hand on the door handle, looking at him with the saddest expression Harry had ever seen on him. Harry took a step towards him, wanting to kiss away the dark circles under his eyes, but remembered the distance, and stopped himself. For the better, he told himself.

 

“Eggsy...I don’t think you’re a fuck up, if it’s any consolation. I think you’re trying your best and ended up with a confusing old fucker like me, which just made things worse,” Harry sighed, running a hand through his dark hair. “Just...come back sometime. To visit, I mean.”

 

Eggsy hesitated, biting his lower lip for a moment, seeming to deliberate. He nodded eventually, and Harry felt a small sigh of relief escape his lips.

 

“Yeah. I’ll see you later, Harry.” Eggsy said, pulling the door open.

 

“Goodbye, Eggsy.”

 

 

Chapter Text

The first thing Harry did when he heard Eggsy’s footsteps disappear was pour himself a glass of scotch, sighing miserably to himself. Before he could even sit down and take a sip though, Merlin was in the room again, wearing that same smirk. Just behind him was Lancelot, arms folded over her chest, wearing a smirk that was frighteningly similar to Merlin’s. They’d clearly been spending too much time together.

 

“Oh, fuck off, both of you.” Harry said, taking a large sip from his glass as he sat down.

 

“I didn’t think he was your type, Galahad.” Merlin quipped, leaning on the wall near the door as Roxy took the extra chair.

 

“I think he’s sweet,” Roxy chimed, giving an approving nod. “Very drunk, but sweet. Where in god’s name did you find him?”

 

“He tried to lift a tie from the shop.” Merlin offered before Harry could say anything. Harry downed the rest of his glass, feeling miserable as he replayed Eggsy’s footsteps growing fainter in his mind.

 

“A thief! Quick fingers then, eh, Harry?” Roxy asked, giving him a wink. Harry rolled his eyes.

 

“If both of you don’t cease your little commentary, I might just toss myself off a bridge.” Harry grumbled, sinking into his comfortable chair a bit more.

 

“No doing that now. You’ve still got to go visit Professor Arnold.” Merlin said, giving Harry a look that said ‘pull yourself together’, before tapping his clipboard. A video feed of Imperial College appeared on his screen that had been disguised as a painting above the fireplace. Professor Arnold could be seen crossing the campus, briefcase in hand. Harry stood up, rolling his eyes at Merlin for show but secretly agreeing with him. If anything, going now would help him focus and get his mind off of Eggsy. He put his empty glass on Merlin’s clipboard, just to piss him off. Merlin made a small ‘tch’ in protest.

 

“Alright alright, I’m going. I’ll be back in an hour or so.” Harry said, still feeling raw about Eggsy leaving. His head wasn’t in the right place, and Harry was halfway stuck between wanting to hop into a glass of brandy, or punch someone. Or both. Both sounded good.

 

“Want me to come with?” Roxy asked. Harry waved a hand.

 

“Don’t trouble yourself. He probably won’t have much on the previous Lancelot, and if he does, I’m sure I can handle him myself.” Harry said, standing in the doorway.

 

“Don’t go overboard, Galahad. We’d like him alive, if possible.” Merlin said, half joking, half not, having worked with Harry long enough to know his bad mood when he saw it. Harry left his office and the smirking smug duo behind.

 

---



Harry had always gone into missions with expectations--the first and foremost, largely from experience, was that he would walk out of it a bit beaten or bruised, but ultimately fine. He expected to get the information or target at a success rate of 95% (higher than any other Kingsman, he might add). He also usually expected some kind of fight, although Merlin claimed this was primarily due to Harry’s impatience with non-violent tactics than anything else.

 

Whatever expectations Harry had gone in with today, however, had been drastically altered with the explosion of Professor Arnold’s head. He had also not been expecting the immediate disorientation and nauseous feeling in his stomach, his face hot with something other than gore on it.

 

Stumbling backwards, he gripped the podium, feeling the need to vomit as his vision swam before him, the entire room dancing in circles and doubles. He could already see his vision darkening around the edges, a tell-tale sign that he was going to faint soon. He could hear Merlin in his ear, shouting at him about something or other, but couldn’t focus on his words as if they were too far out of reach or in some language he didn’t quite understand.

 

Looking up, he saw two tall, menacing looking figures enter the room. He had not been expecting them either, and certainly hadn’t seen them when he’d been walking into the classroom. As soon as their hands went for their hips, Harry’s went for his lighter. Stumbling to the bright light on his left he hoped to god was a window, he put the last of his strength into the jump just as the room behind him was set aflame, debris following him as he rolled onto the cement below.

 

He was aware of some things, such as the searing pain in his shoulder as he rolled, looking up at the sky, and the smell of smoke as he laid there, watching black clouds unfurl out of the window. He could hear sirens and Merlin’s voice, but he couldn’t hang onto any of it. He felt a pain in his lower back and leg, but they began to fade as he stared upwards. As he closed his eyes, head relaxing, all he could make out were the sounds of weakening footsteps and the sight of Eggsy’s back, walking out his office door.

 

Harry had always been one to hold a lot of expectations; for missions, his life, the quality of a good scotch. But dying here, lying on the ground covered in wood chips, glass, and god knows what else, thanks to his own hand-grenade, had not been one of them.

 

--

 

It was finally nice enough that Eggsy could take Daisy out without bundling her up in three or four layers, and so when he’d suggested a walk, she’d jumped at the chance as much as a barely-one year old could. She sat in her stroller now, happy as a peach, staring at the birds that sat on the wrought-iron fence in front of the shop. He hadn’t meant to end up here, but after three weeks of moping in the last days of winter, he’d felt ready to face Harry Hart again. The shop didn’t intimidate him anymore like it had every time he passed by it on his way to Jamal’s favourite pub, remembering the last time he’d gone in drunk and practically pleading for Harry to stay with him. Eggsy had finally accepted in his own mind that the older gentleman was too good for him, but that didn’t negate the way he had felt around him--he had felt good about himself, most importantly. He had felt useful and wanted, and Eggsy would give anything to feel like that again, if just for a few minutes. He hesitated from entering though--something in the pit of his stomach stopping him from moving forward.

 

“Eggsy?”

 

Eggsy looked up at the door that had swung open. A familiar face looked at him with a smile.

 

“Roxy, yeah?” He asked. She nodded, blonde ponytail bobbing. They’d only met the once, but Eggsy felt genuinely good about her--wit as sharp as a tack but with an easygoing nature that Eggsy felt kin to. She wore a sharp, dark blue and grey pinstripe suit today with a lighter blue undershirt, unbuttoned to show her angular collarbones. Her shoes complimented the look, a pair of grey oxfords that had a slight heel to them, making her appear taller.  

 

“Whose that?” She asked, nodding towards Daisy, giving her a wave.

 

“Daisy, meet Roxy. Say hi,” Eggsy said. Daisy waved, smiling. “‘s my sister, Daisy.”

 

“Why don’t you two come in for some tea? I have some cookies too.” Roxy said, aiming the last bit at Daisy. Daisy didn’t understand a lot, but she understood ‘cookie’ well enough.

 

Daisy stared up at Eggsy, making small “ah” sounds as she sucked on her plastic toy. She couldn’t say much yet, but she could say enough to melt his heart and any resistance he might have had.

 

“Don’t tell mum I’m giving you cookies. She’d kill me.” Eggsy said, giving in, moving around the stroller to unbuckle Daisy. He hoisted her up and her tiny hands gripped onto his collar. They were in the shop a moment later, relaxed on the couch as Roxy grabbed the tea. He felt odd, being back here, but Roxy’s presence served to give him an outlet.

 

“Harry’s out on a long call, by the way.” Roxy said. Eggsy looked over his shoulder as she approached, balancing a tray of tea and cookies, setting it on the side table. Eggsy smiled, playing hand games with Daisy on the couch.

 

“How’d you know I’d ask?” Eggsy asked sarcastically. Roxy peered over her glasses, and Eggsy wondered if she just needed them for reading.

 

“Something about the last time you were here, drunk as a skunk, practically ranting about Harry, tipped me off.” She said. Eggsy felt himself blush, embarrassed. Roxy smirked, and handed Daisy a cookie from the tray. “Here, Daisy.”

 

Daisy took it from her with a happy giggle and promptly put it in her drooling mouth. Eggsy smiled at her, ruffling her blonde hair. Roxy smiled at her and handed a cup of tea to Eggsy.

 

“So, uhm, did Harry say how long he’d be gone for?” Eggsy asked, trying to sound nonchalant. Roxy smirked, but shrugged her shoulders.

 

“No idea. Said it was a big name family in Sweden,” Roxy said, looking truly apologetic this time. “That’s all I know. Sorry Eggsy.”

 

“S’alright. Thanks for the tea, yeah?” Eggsy said, relaxing into the couch. It was nice, chatting with Roxy, but the scene felt incomplete without Harry sitting there, reading his paper, making dry comments. He had expected Harry to be there, to dump Daisy in his arms and enjoy the shocked expression on his face. He had been bracing himself for a few pitying looks, maybe for a stunted conversation before Eggsy made it clear that he didn’t expect anything, only wanted things to go back to how they were. All that preparation had clearly been for nothing, though, because Harry wasn’t even fucking here for him to apologize to.

 

Eggsy found he didn’t mind overly, in the end. Roxy was good people; she was sweet with Daisy, who eventually fell asleep on her and drooled all over her blazer. Eggsy enjoyed her company a lot, and it was no trial to while away the afternoon with her. He couldn’t help but miss Harry, but that was alright. He’d be back, and then Eggsy would fix things, and everything would be okay again.

 

--

 

Eggsy passed every few days in the same way--he’d walk by the shop, and Roxy, in a different suit but looking just as smart every time he saw her, would wave him in for tea. The afternoon would start in the same way, Roxy stating that Harry being still out, and Eggsy beginning to get the sinking feeling he was being avoided. It was a feeling that stuck with him, making him feel like a bother for showing up at all. All that seemed to relieve it was helping Charles, who seemed to be the main shopkeeper, around the shop when it had seemed busy. Charles, at first surprised at the usefulness of him and apprehensive of accepting Eggsy’s offer, quickly warmed to him and was pleasant enough that it took his mind off Harry. It was one such afternoon when the shop was winding down, and Eggsy had been helping Charles for the last few hours, that he handed him an envelope.

 

“What’s this, then?” Eggsy asked, looking at the unmarked envelope, his mind instantly jumping to all of the unmarked packages that Eggsy had dropped off for Dean.

 

“Wages. It’s not much, but we appreciate the hand you’ve been giving around here. We’ve been a bit understaffed with Harry being out. He taught you well.” Charles said, looking a bit sad through the smile he gave Eggsy. Eggsy looked at him in disbelief, his eyes darting to the envelope in his hand then back at Charles’ small form. He looked at Roxy, who sat with Daisy on her lap, playing paddy-cake. She gave him a wink.

 

“You’ve gotta be shittin’ me. I wasn’t workin’ for wages, Charles. You don’t have to, really.” Eggsy said, still dumbfounded. The weight in his hand felt substantial enough that he didn’t have to open the envelope to tell it was a lot of money.

 

“Eggsy, please. Don’t embarrass me. Pocket it, and go buy your sister some new trainers,” Charles laughed before heading to the back. “I’ll see you tomorrow! And wear something nicer!”

 

Eggsy stood there a moment as Charles disappeared into the stock-room. It wasn’t the money in his hand that made him feel like he’d finally done something right, or the laughter that emitted across the room from Daisy. It was the look Charles had given him, so similar to Harry’s, that made him feel like he was worth something. Like he had contributed to something good. He hadn’t made a drug drop, hadn’t sucked some bloke off in a corner motel, hadn’t been smacked around or beat someone up or jacked a car. He’d been himself, he’d been helpful, and he’d been rewarded for it. He’d been a good person, all on his own.

 

Instead of crying like his tear ducts were telling him to, he pocketed the money and smiled larger than he had in a long time, looking in the mirror. In that moment, he didn’t think about Harry Hart at all, didn’t think about Dean or Daisy or his mates. He looked in the mirror and saw himself, and was happy.

 

“Come on, Daze! We’re goin’ to get you some new shoes.”



--

 

Eight weeks. Two months. It was too long since he’d seen Harry, despite coming around the shop at any chance he got, despite working with Charles for long shifts every other day, despite asking Roxy and Merlin whenever he saw them. He was apparently on one trip or another, and Eggsy’s mood had been on a steady decline every day Harry wasn’t there. And it wasn’t the only odd thing he’d noticed: He’d seen employees run upstairs, but not come down. He’d hear what sounded like muted voices from a tv, but knew no one was up there. When he’d ask Charles or Roxy, when she was around, about it, they’d call him crazy or too tired. He didn’t dare ask Merlin whenever he saw him (which was rarely.) Merlin scared the shit outta him, to be frank.

 

Regardless, he knew he couldn’t keep folding shirts and ties when the ghost of Harry floated in every corner of the familiar shop. It punched him in the gut every time he looked at the sofa, expecting Harry to be sitting there, turning the pages of The Sun with a bored expression.

 

It was him and Merlin in the shop, closing it up for the evening, Charles already gone home to his wife and kids. Eggsy had felt raw all day, having gotten into it with his mum about Dean the night before. Charles had set him to quietly cleaning and folding with nary a word, able to tell in the same way as Harry did when Eggsy didn’t want to talk. He was glad he didn’t have to talk to anyone as he felt a second away from shattering, a feeling that stayed with him throughout the day. The last straw finally came when Eggsy, cleaning out the cushions of the sofa, found a handkerchief stuffed in the pillows there, with initials in the corner. H.H.

 

Fucking pretentious bastard, of course he’d have a kerchief with his initials fucking monogrammed on it. Eggsy threw it on the sofa, exhausted, running a hand through his hair, not knowing if the handkerchief was lost there recently, or weeks ago. For all he knew, it had been fucking yesterday, Harry misplacing it while having a right laugh with his posh bastard friends about the stupid chav who was pining after him.

 

“Don’t break the couch now.” Merlin said sarcastically from across the room, pushing his glasses up on his distinguished nose as he leaned on the workbench, probably looking over his clipboard like he always seemed to be doing, Eggsy thought.

 

“I’m tired, Merlin. I’m tired of this bullshit. Harry’s not coming back! What am I even doing here?” Eggsy said, almost shouting in frustration.

 

“We told you, Eggsy. He’s out on--” Merlin began, but Eggsy cut him off.

 

“Fucking bullshit, Merlin.” Eggsy said. Merlin pursed his lips, raising an eyebrow.

 

“Say what you’ve got to say, then.” Merlin said, crossing his arms over his chest. Eggsy sized him up with a glare.

 

“I think y’all are hidin’ somethin’. I think there’s something you’re all not tellin’ me, or that Harry’s just avoiding me. Or both! Either way, I can’t help but feel like my employment is some sort of charity, and that just...I’m not doing that shit.” Eggsy said, brow furrowed.

 

“So, what do you want then?” Merlin asked with a shrug. It was a loaded question that made Eggsy speak before thinking, a chronic problem of his.

 

“I want Harry Hart,” He blurted out, tossing his arms in the air, giving up. “I want Harry. I want to tell Harry I’m so grateful, that I was happy every time I was around him, that I think of him every time I fuckin’ wake up. I want to tell him he turned my shite life around, that he fucking made me want to do better, not just for Daisy or me mum, but for me. I want to tell him how fucking beautiful he is and how much I fucking miss him.”

 

Merlin was silent, and Eggsy could feel his eyes on him as Eggsy gripped at the clothes over his own heart, looking at his feet. Eggsy sighed, letting go, pocketing his hands.

 

“I’m tired of seeing his ghost everywhere, Merlin. I’m exhausted of lookin’ at the door every time the shop bell rings, thinkin’ its him coming in. I want a man whose avoidin’ me, and I can’t be here anymore because of it. Just...just tell Harry I appreciate everythin’ he’s done for me. Tell him I loved him.” Eggsy said, finally looking up at Merlin. The silence lingered between them a minute before Merlin sighed and crossed the room to him. He held out his hand to Eggsy.

 

“If you want to work here again, just come back. Kingsman’s doors will always be open to you.” Merlin said. It was the nicest thing Merlin had ever said to him, and Eggsy felt its sincerity. He was still wary of the bastard, but just a bit less so now. Eggsy took his hand and shook it politely.


“Thanks, Merlin.” He said, releasing his hand. He grabbed his sweater from the hook by the door, and left the shop, stepping into the spring air. He didn’t even look back at the gleaming golden letters on the shop window as he shuffled along down the street, away from Kingsman and the ghost of Harry Hart.

Chapter Text

 

Harry awoke to and obscenely dry throat, the sound of tapping, and the smell of Bvlgari cologne, a familiar scent that he’d grown accustomed to over the years. Keeping his eyes closed, he mumbled hoarsely.

 

“Merlin...water, if you’d please…”

 

He heard Merlin fumble briefly, swearing. Harry gave a weak smile as he opened his eyes to look over at him in time to see Merlin fixing his glasses on the bridge of his nose.

 

“Fucking Christ, Harry! Give me some warning, won’t you?” Merlin grumbled, standing up and putting his clipboard on his leather seat, pouring a glass of water from a pitcher on a side table. Harry, still dazed but gaining consciousness, pulled himself up on the bed, his body feeling weak, hand heavy when he lifted it to take the glass from Merlin.

 

“How long have I been out?” Harry asked, hesitating before drinking from the glass, suddenly aware of the amount of facial hair he had. He rubbed the stubble, cursing, before downing the entire glass of water.

 

“Too long, to be fucking honest. We’ve been buried in this Valentine shit.” Merlin said as a nurse came into the room, no doubt alerted by Merlin, and proceeded to check Harry over.

 

“How long, Merlin?” Harry asked more firmly, glaring at him. The middle aged brunette nurse was the one to answer, giving a coy smile and a wink with her brown eyes.

 

“70 days. Would have been 71 in three hours, and I would have lost my bet, so thank you, Mr. Hart,” she smiled, holding her hand to Merlin. Merlin rolled his eyes, and fished a fifty pound note from his pocket, placing it in the nurse’s hand who put it in her pocket and proceeded to pull out a small flashlight, turning it on. “Watch the light please, Mr. Hart.”

 

Harry, feeling his stomach sink at this information, did as he was told silently, running through the motions with her. He gave her a small thank you before she cleared him and told him to wait for the doctor, exiting the room with a happy gait in her step. Merlin glared at her as she left.

 

“So, do you want me to tell you what happened, or do you want to fill yourself in?” Merlin asked. Harry groaned, sitting back on the bed again, running a hand through his beard that had actually filled in quite nicely from what he could tell.

 

“I remember the important bits.” Harry said, his mind turning to Eggsy rather than the mission, looking broken and defeated as he’d left Harry’s office. The sound of his footsteps echoing and fading as he walked down the hall played in his mind, trapped there for eternity it seemed. Merlin was tapping his clipboard, and seemed preoccupied for the moment as the doctor, a taller, older woman with half-moon glasses around her neck and greying blonde hair, came in to run more tests. Leaving them be, Merlin left the room, and Harry, moving through the motions, followed the doctor’s instructions, having been in the medical ward a few times. His mind, however, was elsewhere, focused on his last words to Eggsy rather than the reactionary time and strength tests the doctor did with him. He wanted to punch himself in the face for having the audacity to say that, and then disappear off the face of the planet for two and a half months. Quietly, he ran through the scenarios where he attempted to go see Eggsy, and all of them either ended with the door being slammed in his face, or sustaining further body damage, mostly to his face.

 

At the same time, with feelings of guilt and regret consuming him, he knew it was the nature of the job. He could die any day, without a single word to anyone he cared for (which were few, to be truthful, and mostly other agents, not civilians). He wasn’t the ordinary tailor that Eggsy believed him to be. He was part of an international spy organization for fuck’s sake--he had saved the world more times than he could count, and yet here he was, stomach in knots over if a young man would ever want to see him again. Shooting a man point blank in the face? No problem. Overcoming the gap that time and their last words beforehand had likely put between them? Harry wasn’t so sure.

 

After the doctor had given him the all-clear, and he’d taken a shower and scraped the months of hair growth from his face, he sat on the edge of his bed, cleaning the glasses that Merlin had handed him, brand new from the tech department since his others had been damaged in the explosion. The doctor had mandated an extra day in the ward to wear off the drugs in his system, which quite frankly he was grateful for, as his head felt as heavy as a rock. Merlin had left, only after firmly stating he was to be off work for two weeks and to take his physio seriously, and he was finally alone, only the sound of his heart monitor, the daily paper, and thoughts of Eggsy to keep him company.

 

--

 

They’d gone through the Valentine case (Merlin griping all the time about Harry’s controlling tendencies and trust issues preventing any access to his video feeds while he was unconscious), and Merlin was comfortably seated in the bedside chair, closing windows on his tablet that broadcast to the television. Harry himself leaned on the edge of the bed, finally dressed in one of his suits, letting him feel like a normal human being yet again. Investigations into the Valentine Corporation had yielded hardly anything yet, unfortunately, but Merlin had just sent the files to his own computer. Something to look forward to when he got home, at least, instead of the empty walls that he wished were filled with the smell of pancakes and the sound of an easygoing whistle.

 

“Since the doctor gave you the all clear, I thought it’d be best for you to just get this over with and watch it before you found it snooping on the company hard drives--which I have noticed, don’t think I haven’t,” Merlin said, passing him the clipboard. Harry raised an eyebrow, noting the odd gesture of Merlin willingly handing over his tablet. Merlin pushed it at him pointedly, and Harry took it with some reluctance. “Just watch it. And for god’s sakes, don’t balls it up again. He’s a good lad.” Merlin stood, placidly ignorant to how his words made Harry’s stomach drop. “I’ll be upstairs.”

 

Harry looked down at the tablet, eyes widening. It was a video clip of Eggsy, wearing a dress shirt and slacks of all things, a blue tie around his neck. He wasn’t exactly Kingsman material, but he looked proper, and it was a look that Harry could certainly get behind, judging by the heat in his gut. The expression he wore on his face though...it was one that Harry had seen too many times, and always caused by him. He could feel the ache in his chest as he pressed play.

 

It was Merlin who spoke first, the point of view of the camera making it clear that it was recorded from his glasses.

 

“Don’t break the couch now.” Merlin said, sarcasm dripping from his voice. Harry watched Eggsy’s expression shift from broken, to angry. His mouth was downturned, and his brow was furrowed. Eggsy rubbed his temple.

 

“I’m tired, Merlin. I’m tired of this bullshit. Harry’s not coming back! What am I even doing here?” Eggsy said. Harry was holding his breath by now, watching the video play on the small tablet.

 

“We told you, Eggsy. He’s out on--” Merlin started, gentling his tone in the face of Eggsy’s upset.

 

“Fucking bullshit, Merlin.” Eggsy cut him off.

 

“Say what you’ve gotta say, then.” Merlin said, hands shifting to rest over his chest.

 

“I think y’all are hidin’ somethin’. I think there’s something you’re all not tellin’ me, or that Harry’s just avoiding me. Either way, I can’t help but feel like my employment is some sort of charity, and that just...I’m not doing that shit.” That was news to Harry--He’d been working in the front shop? A sudden swell of pride at Eggsy’s ability bubbled in his chest, but the words falling bitter from Eggsy’s lips cut through it. Harry had abandoned him, willingly or not, and had cut him deeply in the process.

 

“So, what do you want then?” Merlin asked. Harry ran a hand through his hair, bracing himself.

 

“I want Harry Hart,” Harry’s hand dropped, covering his mouth as he listened to the words pour from Eggsy like a waterfall on the small screen. “I want Harry. I want to tell Harry I’m so grateful, that I was happy every time I was around him, that I think of him every time I fuckin’ wake up. I want to tell him he turned my shite life around, that he fucking made me want to do better, not just for Daisy or me mum, but for me. I want to tell him how fucking beautiful he is and how much I fucking miss him.”

 

Harry watched, his stomach in knots, as Eggsy’s shoulders fell, watching him pocket his hands in that nervous way he did. It was a look of defeat that crossed his young, handsome features now as he looked at his feet.

 

“I’m tired of seeing his ghost everywhere, Merlin. I’m exhausted of lookin’ at the door every time the shop bell rings, thinkin’ its him coming in. I want a man whose avoidin’ me, and I can’t be here anymore because of it. Just...just tell Harry I appreciate everythin’ he’s done for me. Tell him I loved him.”

 

The video ended abruptly, clearly having been edited by Merlin for maximum impact. He always had been a devious busybody.

 

Harry let out a breath before tapping the screen again, eyes fixated on the glowing screen.

 

“Tell him I loved him.”

 

Harry’s fingers brushed against the image of Eggsy’s face on the screen. He missed the boy with all his heart. It hadn’t felt like he’d been out for long at all, but gaining a better sense of time was helped by the expression he saw on Eggsy’s face there. Broken, exhausted, lonely. He played the video again, embedding every second into his mind.

 

“Tell him I loved him.” Those same words, sending sparks through Harry’s body.

 

Harry left Merlin’s tablet on the bed(which would of course earn him a telling off later) and grabbed his suit jacket from the bed post, knowing that at least if Eggsy had truly put his feelings for him behind him and moved on, then Harry should have at least the courtesy to apologize.

 

--

 

Eggsy sat alone in the pub at the bar, this time at a bit more of an upscale establishment. The ceiling was painted an inky black, with a parquet wood floor beneath his feet, polished and gleaming. The walls were tiled in white and black, shined and reflecting the track lighting in the booths and the pendant lights above the bar in a way that made the bar seem intimate, but large. Couples and friends, all dressed sharply, chatted in the booths along the far wall, light indie music playing to soften the buzz of talking and the clatter of pool balls opposite the basement entrance. It was certainly a step up from the Black Prince.

 

The nature of his attending this bar was one that made the Guinness in his mouth taste acrid and bitter, and certainly hindered the enjoyment of the easy atmosphere. When he’d come up short for rent though, Dean had made it perfectly clear where he was supposed to be and when, and even dictated to an extent what he wore. He felt good in the black dress pants and white button shirt, a matching black single-button jacket (obviously a hand-me-down seeing as it was just a bit too large for him) and a black skinny tie around his neck, but it didn’t mean he was comfortable knowing that Dean had chosen the clothes at the request of someone or another. Frankly, it made Eggsy want to go crawling back to Kingsman, but his pride wouldn’t let him. He wouldn’t live off someone else’s charity, content to be lied to day in and day out. At least Dean was honest about what he wanted from Eggsy.

 

“From the gentleman over there.” The bartender suddenly said to Eggsy, pushing a brandy towards him. He raised an eyebrow like he was surprised, and looked over his shoulder to see an older man, just as Dean had described. Balding, short, and looking every bit the politician he understood him to be, sitting alone in one of the booths. Eggsy lifted the drink towards the man, who nodded with a disgusting sort of smirk, and downed it in one go. He was going to need it if he was going to be fucking that tonight.

 

Eggsy pulled himself from the bar, leaving the empty glass and his half-finished beer behind. He sauntered up to the older gentleman’s spot, tilting his head with a cocky smile that was every bit as fake as it felt to him.

 

“John, yeah?” Eggsy purred. In the interest of getting this over with quickly, he had decided to pull out all his best moves. Get the guy out of the pub and to whatever sordid location he chose as soon as possible so that Eggsy could move on with his evening and forget it ever happened. The man nodded, licking his chapped, frog-like lips as he looked Eggsy up and down. Eggsy slipped into the opposite side of the booth, the leather making a pleasant sound as he made himself comfortable. He deliberately rubbed his calf against the other man’s leg, stroking slow and suggestive while biting his bottom lip. Right on cue, “John” started blushing. Eggsy managed not to roll his eyes, instead pasting on his best come-hither expression.

 

“Yeah. What’s your name?” the guy asked, voice slightly strangled. Eggsy always gave the same answer to that question, always in a cheeky sort of tone that got bastards like him sweating.

 

“Gary, but you can call me whatever you want, baby.” He said, giving John a quick wink.

“You wanna get outta here?” Eggsy husked, going through the motions as he reached over the table to the man's hand, playing with the gold ring on his wedding finger. The man watched him as Eggsy’s fingers slid over his hand, and Eggsy laid on the charm thick, tilting his head as if he were actually interested in his answer. He knew it already.

 

“Yes, he does want to get out of here.”


Eggsy looked up at the unexpected third voice, his stomach dropping, knowing exactly who it was.

Chapter Text

Harry looked down at Eggsy, their eyes locking with an electricity that sent a chill up his spine. He could see the surprise in his green eyes, and the softness that came with it, the way his mouth dropped. His expression quickly turned though, his eyes narrowing and his lips pursing, visibly pissed off.

 

“Gregory Thompson, yes? Aren’t you part of the Conservative party? I’m sure your constituency of Beckenham would be interested to know that their member of parliament is spending his evenings with a young gentleman, while his wife and children sit at home…” Harry said smoothly, looking at the older gentleman with a friendly smile that he hoped exuded the aura of ‘get the fuck out’ enough for him to take the hint.

 

Thompson stared up at Harry, looked over at Eggsy, who stayed silent but seemed more than a bit angry, then back at Harry before huffing and shuffling out of the booth. He left the bar in a hurry, and thankfully without a scene.

 

“Harry, what the fuck’re you doing?” Eggsy said, on the defensive. He sat upright now, his fists clenched. Harry drank him in for a moment, enjoying how the light played tricks on his hair, one moment seeming light brown, and the next a dirty blonde. His green eyes, brilliant as ever, stared up at him, and he bit his lower lip, executing that nervous habit so unintentionally it made him want to kiss him then and there. And the clothes he wore didn’t help, even if the jacket was a big large--it helped bring out the long lines of his legs and torso, and gave him a clean cut look that Harry, while not used to, could certainly enjoy.

 

“I hoped I could visit with a friend.” Harry said, his voice softening. He watched as Eggsy’s guarded expression seemed to fall away and he gestured with his hands to the  seat opposite.

 

“Fine then, fuck. My evenin’s better with him gone anyways.” He muttered, nodding to the door where Thompson had just left through. Harry nodded, feeling guilty as he slid into the booth.

 

“Working again? You could have stayed at Kingsman…” Harry said. He’d watched the video, and tried to understand, but the thought of Eggsy out with men like Thompson made him feel oddly possessive of the boy. Eggsy just shook his head.

 

“I couldn’t. I’m not some charity case. Why the fuck’d you leave like that, anyway? It was a dick fuckin’ move, Harry. Tellin me to come back, then avoiding me? I thought you were a bigger man than that.” Eggsy said, brow furrowed, staring at him. He was fearless, unrelenting in his gaze. Harry let out a small sigh before nodding.

 

“I had...business to take care of.” He said. Before he could get another word out, Eggsy began shuffling out of the booth.

 

“I heard that same fuckin’ excuse outta Merlin and Rox for months, Harry, and frankly I’m real tired of it. Hit me up when you get your head outta your ass and actually feel like sharing your life with me.” Eggsy said before tearing off for the door. Harry stared dumbfounded for a moment, then followed at his heels.

 

“Eggsy, please.” Harry said, catching up to him as he crossed the street, thanking god silently for his long legs that were able to keep up with Eggsy’s quick pace.

“I was out working. I swear.” Harry said. While it wasn’t technically the truth, it was preferable to him knowing he was stuck in the hospital wing of the Kingsman agency, half dead for two and a half months.

 

Eggsy looked over at him as he kept up the pace, weaving through the streets. He was quiet a moment, biting his lip again, thinking, before he stopped suddenly in the middle of a quiet sidewalk. The streetlight illuminated his features with a softness that agreed with him, the curve of his bottom lip looking particularly enticing.

 

“Alright. You couldn’t send an email? A phone call? You can obviously find me anytime you want, apparently, since you showed up here tonight.” Eggsy said, his voice stressed and laden with anger. Harry wanted to reach out to him, but he kept his hands firmly by his side.

 

“I actually went to your mother's home looking for you. Dean is every bit the piece of work you painted him to be,” Harry said, and he saw Eggsy’s mouth pull ever so slightly into a smile for just a moment. It had taken everything in him to leave the man physically unharmed, he mused, although he had certainly put the fear of god into him. Hopefully the next time he thought of laying a hand on his family he would remember how it felt when Harry slammed him into a wall and told him in excruciating detail exactly how he wanted to eviscerate him. “I should have though, truly. Leaving the message with Merlin wasn’t enough. I should have called. It was unfair, and I apologize.”

 

Eggsy was quiet a minute before running a hand through his combed hair, ruffling it ever so slightly.

 

“Well, what now then? I still feel right pissed at you.” Eggsy said, looking him up and down, but his hands unclenched, a sign of progress.

 

“Would it be a good time to say I received your message from Merlin?” Harry offered tentatively, giving him a small smile. He felt like he was treading on the thinnest of ice, liable to shatter at any second and send him plunging into Eggsy’s bottomless resentment. Eggsy wore that surprised expression again, which quickly turned to an embarrassed blush, eyes flicking away from Harry’s.

 

“Jesus, what’d he tell you?” Eggsy asked.

 

“Oh, everything, in vivid detail, I assure you.” Harry said, giving him a smile as he reached out and took Eggsy’s hand in his. Eggsy let his fingers curl gently around his hand. Harry used the tender touch to bolster his courage. Could this whole thing go up in a spectacular ball of flame? Certainly, but the risk of utter devastation had never stopped Harry from doing anything. True, those leaps of faith usually had more to do with saving the world than Harry’s heart, but he figured if he could do it to stop the known world from devolving into bloody chaos, he should be able to do it now too. If he truly wanted to keep Eggsy, now was the time to commit.

 

“I love you, Eggsy.” Harry said softly, looking down at him. Eggsy looked up with wide eyes as Harry lifted his hand, pressing a kiss to his knuckles.

 

“Don’t fuck with me Harry because if you’re lyin’ and you don’t really love me and you leave again without tellin’ me it’ll fuckin’ ruin me, Harry. I can’t take that no more, I can’t. Don’t tell me you love me when you can’t, look at you, you’re so fucking perfect and I’m--” Eggsy began, his voice cracking, but Harry cut him off, stepping closer as he moved Eggsy’s hand to his face, feeling the cool skin against his warm cheek. Eggsy went quiet, his green eyes searching his own brown ones, mouth slightly ajar as if he was dumbfounded Harry was touching him.

 

“I love you. You are perfect. I would like to be with you if you’ll have me.” Harry said, leaning into Eggsy’s hand. Eggsy looked at him with the expression he’d been wanting to see since he’d woken up. It was admiration, awe, and a soft sort of calm. Love.

 

“Just fucking kiss me and shut up.” Eggsy finally said, placing his other hand on the back of Harry’s neck and pulling him down. Harry obliged, pressing his lips to Eggsy’s with a roughness that made him sigh, his own hands cupping Eggsy’s cheeks as he felt Eggsy’s fingers curl around his suit collar. Eggsy was as eager as he had been those months ago under an alcohol-fueled haze, if not more so, pulling himself closer to Harry with every breath. When he heard Eggsy moan into his lips though, a hand running through Harry’s hair, Harry felt a chill down his spine. By some will of God, he pulled away from Eggsy, still holding his handsome face in his hands. Eggsy looked up at him, breathless.

 

“Why’d you stop?” Eggsy asked, an achingly innocent tone to his voice.

 

“Eggsy, would you stay the night with me?” Harry asked, every bit the gentleman as he asked, save for the thumb he dragged over Eggsy’s lips, enjoying the way Eggsy’s breath caught. He nipped at Harry’s thumb, causing him to smile up at him as he smoothed out Harry’s collar with his hands.

 

“Lead the way, sir.” Eggsy winked.

 

--

 

They had held hands all the way back to Harry’s car, just a block back near the bar they had left, but that brief time had made Harry feel normal--he was aware of his surroundings, a habit he could never shake thanks to his training, but he was much more acutely aware of the way Eggsy’s hand was warm but not clammy. He enjoyed the way his fingers wove in easily with his own, and the looks he gave Harry every few seconds, biting his lower lip with hungry eyes. And to think he’d once been worried about Roxy eating this boy alive; Eggsy looked like he was ready for a five course meal, and Harry was the main piece.

 

Attempting to keep up some semblance of gentlemanly manner while in public at least, Harry remotely unlocked a conspicuous 1950s Nash-Healey, painted in a dark, rich burgundy with the white top up, shielded from any potential spring rains, and held the passenger side door open for Eggsy. Eggsy, looking stunned at the car, nodded towards it.

 

“Really, Harry? Bit much, innit?” Eggsy mocked. Harry rolled his eyes and pressed a quick kiss to Eggsy’s lips before nudging him with his body. Eggsy laughed into his lips.

 

“Alright alright.” He mumbled. Harry stole one last quick kiss before Eggsy lowered himself into the confines of the small vehicle and Harry closed the door, practically running to the drivers side. He climbed in and let the engine purr to life, pulling out of the parking spot and heading northwards, an oldies rock station humming through the speakers.

 

“...how long till your place?” Eggsy asked, placing a hand on Harry’s leg as he drove. Harry raised a brow as his fingers raked against the fabric of his dress pants.

 

“About fifteen minutes.” Harry said, looking quickly from the road to Eggsy’s face before realizing, keeping his eyes on the road with surprise as Eggsy did exactly what he thought he was going to do. He scooted over in his seat and kissed Harry’s neck, his hand travelling up his thigh.

 

“Fifteen minutes is too long.” Eggsy mumbled into his neck. Harry sighed in frustration, moving one hand from the steering wheel to Eggsy’s knee as Eggsy dragged his tongue over Harry’s neck.

 

“...God, Eggsy…” Harry mumbled as his pants became considerably tighter. Eggsy’s hand ran over his crotch, feeling his hard cock beneath the fabric, and let out a low moan of his own, reaching with his free hand to undo the button on Harry’s pants.

 

“Eyes on the road, Harry.” Eggsy said, and even without looking, Harry could hear the smirk in his voice as he bit at the skin just under his ear, hand moving past his pants to his briefs.

 

“Cheeky bugger.” Harry said, the minimal amount of clothing between them driving him mad. He began to count the streetlights they passed in his head to keep him on track. Eggsy kept the pressure on his cock, moving his hand rhythmically. Even counting the street lamps couldn’t save him from Eggsy’s next move though. He removed his lips from Harry’s neck, moving in the small confines of the car downwards.

 

“Eggsy, fuc--” Harry began, but was cut off with Eggsy releasing Harry’s dick from his briefs and guiding it towards his wet mouth. He licked the shaft and Harry’s hand went to Eggsy’s neck as he let out a gasp. He looked down to catch a glimpse of Eggsy staring up at him, green eyes glinting with mischievousness before he wet his lips further and guided him into his mouth. Harry moaned, stearing with one hand while his free one moved through Eggsy’s thick hair as he started to move his mouth up and down his length. Eggsy’s hands wandered, touching everywhere and anywhere as he moaned into Harry’s cock, saliva dripping from his shapely lips. Harry, enjoying the sight of Eggsy’s blonde head in his lap in short glances, his fingers tugging at his hair ever so slightly, frowned when he pulled onto his street.

 

“Eggsy, darling boy, we’re here.” Harry said, breathless. Eggsy gave one last particularly deep-throated suck that made Harry’s cock twitch and an audible moan escape his lips, before leaving his cock as he pulled into his parking spot. As soon as he was in park, Harry shoved his lips roughly on Eggsy’s, pulling at him by the skinny tie he wore, breathing him in as he passed his tongue over his bottom lip. Eggsy sighed.

 

“God, Harry, lets go, please.” He said between kisses. Harry turned off the car and gave him one last quick kiss before adjusting himself, zipping up his trousers with some difficulty.

 

“Don’t rush me, darling.” Harry said. Eggsy stared after him as he climbed out of the car, practically running after him towards Harry’s front door a moment later. Harry opened it and they both slipped in, Eggsy closing the door behind them.

 

It was like a replay of the last time, but unclouded by a haze of alcohol; Harry pushed Eggsy against the closed door, and their mouths met in a fury of passion, too impatient to wait for the bedroom. As soon as their hands were on each other, Harry could feel the difference--it was urgent in feeling, but calculated, slower, more appreciative than the last time they’d been this close. Eggsy’s hands moved from his neck, scraping down his chest and back up, reaching for his tie. As Harry’s hands worked deftly on loosening Eggsy’s tie, their kisses were slower than before, but just as deep, leaving them both breathless, tongues running over the others’, tasting and appreciating the feeling the wetness brought between their lips as their hips pressed together. Shoes were kicked off, and jackets discarded in the doorway when Eggsy spoke through light-fingered touches, Harry lost in the scent of pine and the feeling of Eggsy’s neck beneath his lips.

 

“Harry…” He breathed, his voice hitching as Harry nibbled on his earlobe. “Harry...I need you.”

 

Harry murmured into his ear. “Anything for you, sweet darling.” Eggsy melted into his hands that were firmly around his torso, feeling the skin of his lower back beneath his undershirt. He was reluctant, but Harry let his hands move from his waist, leaving the warmth of Eggsy’s skin. Eggsy pulled at Harry’s untied tie, still around his neck, and pulled him down to his lips, a movement that made Harry think of other things they could do with a tie and proper knot as Eggsy kissed him roughly. They practically ran up the few stairs together to Harry’s bedroom, and it was finally Harry’s turn to to pay Eggsy back for the frankly excruciating trip in the car.

 

Unbuttoning each other's pants as they crossed the room, they were discarded along with their dress shirts, leaving them in just their briefs. Eggsy’s mouth was hungry, licking and biting at Harry’s collarbone, hard enough that Harry was sure there’d be marks there the next morning, until they reached the bed and Harry pushed back on Eggsy’s shoulders. He looked surprised as he fell back, but smiled as Harry loomed over him. Harry drank in the way he lie then, sprawled out on the white duvet, lips swollen and chest heaving, breathless. His golden-brown hair was mussed from Harry’s fingers, and he could see at least two marks on his neck that were already turning a lovely shade of purple. Eggsy was every bit as fit as he’d remembered, and as his eyes travelled lower, he could see the outline of his cock in his briefs, hard and long. Harry’s mouth salivated.

 

“You’re a fucking God, Harry.” Eggsy commented, green eyes staring at him as Harry knelt at the foot of the bed, pushing Eggsy’s knees apart with his hands. Eggsy leaned up on his elbows to try and get a look at what Harry was doing, but Harry reached up and pushed on his stomach.

 

“Lie down, Eggsy.” Harry said, his voice low, letting his hand slip away to Eggsy’s cock, rubbing through the fabric of his briefs with his palm. Eggsy listened, lying back with a sigh, moving his hips with Harry’s hand as Harry’s lips pressed to his mid-thigh. Harry moved up, switching between legs, until he could feel the heat coming from Eggsy beneath his palm. He let his lips leave him for a moment as he helped Eggsy kick off his boxers.

 

He was as big as he’d felt, and Harry felt his own lust deepen as he continued with his kisses until he let his tongue roll over him, all the way from the base to the tip of his cock. Eggsy shuddered beneath his hands, and Harry pulled on his hips until he was buried deep in his throat.

 

“H-harry...fucking christ…” Eggsy murmured as Harry sucked on him, one hand gently massaging his privates and the other gripping at his ass. Harry looked up, and saw Eggsy staring down at him, his mouth ajar, breathing heavily as Harry put the full length of him in his wet mouth. All the evenings spent in that tiny shop seemed to find relief in that moment--every look, every flirtatious joke or movement, every near-touch between them finding solace in the intimacy of that look, filled with admiration and desire all at once. Harry quickened his pace, causing Eggsy to gasp audibly, fingers fluttering to his hand and tugging lightly, guiding his head up and down his own length. Eggsy’s moans and the movement of his hips with Harry’s lips around him only fueled the fire in Harry’s stomach, noticing how his bedsheets balled beneath Eggsy’s fists. It didn’t take long until Eggsy was mumbling again.

 

“God, can I Harry--” Eggsy tried to ask, but his head fell back on the sheets again, overcome by the ecstasy of Harry’s tongue. Harry just sped up in response, moaning into his cock, and he could feel Eggsy tense up beneath him. When he felt Eggsy’s cum hit the back of his throat, he swallowed, pulling him deeper into his mouth by his hips, Eggsy’s loud moaning like music to his ears.

 

When he finished, Harry released him from his mouth and Eggsy lie there panting a moment as Harry kissed up his torso. Eggsy’s hands unclenched from the sheets and moved to Harry’s hair and face.

 

“Are you tired, darling boy?” Harry asked, moving onto the bed with him, hovering over him as he kissed his neck, pushing his legs apart. Eggsy turned his face and started to kiss Harry’s neck, sucking on the sensitive skin that met his shoulder. He nipped at it, and Harry sighed into him, his head resting on the bed.

 

“Fuck no.” Eggsy mumbled, sucking harder at his neck, making Harry moan aloud. Eggsy seemed to enjoy it enough, because he continued with more fuvor, apparently wanting to make Harry his own in every sense. Harry didn’t mind--he revelled in the attention like the selfish git he knew he was, and let Eggsy make trails on his skin.

 

“Harry, have you got--” Eggsy began, but let the question die with a laugh when Harry was already off him, striding to his dresser.

 

“Eager, yeah?” Eggsy asked, eyes on Harry’s ass.

 

Harry shot Eggsy a filthy smirk over his shoulder and was gratified to see Eggsy shiver. “For you, darling, always.”

 

Harry fumbled at the drawer, noticing distantly that his hands were shaking. Finally, he managed to snag the lube, palming a condom as well. He could feel Eggsy’s eyes on him as he did, and attempted to calm his nerves. As he walked back to Eggsy, Eggsy himself wondered how in the hell he’d bagged a guy like Harry Hart. The types of men he was used to while working were low confidence, finish-fast men too repressed in their sexuality to ever be with someone like him in daylight. Harry though, he realized, was the complete opposite. Harry was confident, sure in every movement(at least to Eggsy’s eyes) and evidently in for the long haul considering all the foreplay. Standing at the edge of the bed, throwing the condom and lube on the bed, Eggsy sat up, eager to please Harry in every moment. He reached out and rested his hands on Harry’s hips, pulling him closer between his legs, pressing kisses to his hip bones. He felt Harry’s hands in his hair, brushing the strands back gently, a loving movement as Eggsy tasted his skin.

 

“Eggsy…” Harry breathed as Eggsy’s lips kissed the base of his cock. He looked up at Harry, who pulled lightly on his hair and leaned down, kissing him slowly as he pushed him back on the bed again. The kiss was hot and wet, Harry’s teeth biting gently at his lower lip as he grabbed the bottle of lube beside them. He broke away from the kiss only to squeeze some of it onto his hands, warming it between them before his fingers, precise and warm, pushed against his tight entrance.

 

Eggsy moaned as a finger slipped inside him, and Harry watched as Eggsy writhed beneath him, going slowly at first as he admired the warm flush on Eggsy’s face, keeping his hips pinned with his free hand.

 

“Fuck, Harry…” Eggsy moaned, licking his lips as he watched Harry work on him, lips kissing his inner thigh.

 

“Tell me what you want.” Harry said, brown eyes staring up at Eggsy. Eggsy’s head rolled back as he moved down on Harry’s hand.

 

“More, Harry. Another one.” Eggsy moaned. Harry complied, pushing another into Eggsy, stretching him, feeling his own abdomen ache with longing. Eggsy let out a satisfying yell that turned into a muffled moan, biting on his own thumb as Harry worked his fingers, curving them ever so slightly. As he did, he watched Eggsy tense up, both hands gripping the sheets now, his head tilted back.

 

“Harry, I need, you, please.” Eggsy begged, rolling his hips into Harry’s fingers. It was all the direction that Harry needed as his fingers left Eggsy reluctantly, reaching for the lube again. Eggsy caught his breath a moment as Harry worked himself, slicking the condom with one hand and the other spreading Eggsy’s legs, kneeling between them on the bed. Eggsy wrapped his legs around Harry’s hips, grinding them forward against Harry, smirking when it made Harry let out a moan.

 

“Fuck me, Harry.”

 

“As you wish, dear.” Harry cooed with a grin, leaning over and giving him a rough kiss before he pushed into him slowly. Eggsy cried out in pleasure as he pushed past the head, stretching Eggsy’s tight hole further than his fingers ever could. He stayed still a moment until Eggsy reached down and squeezed his thigh, nodding. Harry began a slow rhythm with his hips, enjoying the way Eggsy moved, trying to get more of Harry in him. Looking up at him, Eggsy grabbed Harry’s hand, leading his fingers up to his mouth. Eggsy sucked on his index finger, staring at Harry with insatiable eyes that nearly had Harry finishing then and there.

 

“You like that, Harry?” Eggsy asked, his voice heavy as he ran his tongue up his finger. “Say it. Say it, Harry.”

 

Instead, Harry reached to Eggsy’s cock, gripping him and moving his wrist in time with his hips. Eggsy cried out as Harry’s fingers slipped from Eggsy’s wet mouth as he braced himself on the bed, holding himself up with his other hand.

 

“Come, Eggsy. Come for me.” Harry whispered, bucking his hips against him, Eggsy’s legs squeezing tight around him.

 

“Harry. Harry…Oh, Harry, don’t stop.” Eggsy panted, hands gripping the sheets. Harry could feel himself tensing as he watched Eggsy’s expression everytime he thrust into him. He moved harder against him, and could feel Eggsy tense up beneath him.

 

“Eggsy, sweet boy…”Harry sighed as Eggsy climaxed, spilling come over his stomach and Harry’s hand. Harry let himself go a moment later, gripping Eggsy’s hips as Eggsy’s hands squeezed his thighs, watching him with a satisfied smile. Harry breathed heavily as he peeled himself away from Eggsy, standing at the foot of the bed, head swimming as he smiled a Eggsy who lay there, still panting, trying to catch his breath.

 

Harry reached out and touched his ankle, pulling a bit. Eggsy looked up, smiling.

 

“Come on.” Harry motioned. Eggsy lie back on the bed, groaning.

 

“Harryyy. Just come to bed.” Eggsy sighed. Harry smirked and grabbed his ankle tighter, actually pulling him a few inches down the bed. Eggsy, surprised, threw his hands up in defeat.

 

“Alright, alright.” He mumbled. Harry smiled and sauntered to the bathroom.

 

It was already steamy in the bathroom when Eggsy entered, looking Harry up and down with a sleepy but happy smile as he stepped into the standing glass shower with him. He wrapped his arms around Harry’s torso, resting his head on his shoulder, planting kisses on the wet skin. Harry looked over his shoulder.

 

“Tired?” He asked, water pouring on his torso. He turned to Eggsy and pushed Eggsy’s hair from his face with wet hands, slicking it back.

 

“Yeah. You were better than I imagined.” Eggsy chimed, revelling in the sound that Harry’s chuckle made in his chest as warm water poured over them.

 

“Imagined it a lot, hm?” Harry quipped.

 

“Only as much as you did. Admit it.” Eggsy replied with a wink. Harry smiled and pressed a gentle kiss to his lips.

--

 

As Harry watched Eggsy pull on his briefs and a too-large t-shirt from Harry’s drawer, he couldn’t help but feel he was absolutely and completely fucked. Not in the literal sense, although that was true as well (and probably the best fuck he’d had in years, mind you), but in the way that made him feel like he was vulnerable. Emotionally and physically, he was exposed to Eggsy in a way he hadn’t experienced in probably too long. Peering over the edge of his book as Eggsy sauntered to the bed, yawning, towel around his neck, he knew he was far too attached to the boy already.

 

Harry set his book aside as Eggsy switched off the side table lamp and crawled beneath the blankets.

 

“Steal peoples t-shirts often?” Harry asked, giving him a small smirk. Eggsy winked. It would have made Harry’s knees weak if he weren’t already in bed.

 

“Gotta have a momento, yeah?” He chimed. “Move over.”

 

Harry moved, but it felt odd. He had always slept in the centre of the bed, most often sleeping alone, but being delegated a side now felt invasive in a surprisingly good way. It felt good to have someone he could trust sleep the whole night beside him--he had been far too drunk last time to appreciate any of it, and he intended to make it up this time. He watched as Eggsy fluffed a pillow and lied down, the bed already warming thanks to the extra body heat from him, as he chatted about how flat the pillows were. Harry sunk down with him into the comfort of the bed, hands reaching out to find Eggsy’s body. He found him and smoothed his hands over Eggsy’s sides, effectively shutting Eggsy up as he moved his hands over his muscular back, noting every difference in his skin and the way he moved beneath him.

 

Harry pulled lightly at him and Eggsy shuffled closer so they both were in the centre of the bed now. Eggsy’s arm found its way around Harry’s waist, under his own arm.

 

“Thank you for forgiving me.” Harry said quietly, half murmuring into the pillow as he caressed Eggsy’s back, watching the outline of him in the darkness rise and fall with his slowing breaths.

 

“...go to sleep, Harry.” Eggsy mumbled, his voice already heavy with sleep.

 

Harry just pressed a small kiss to his forehead and let Eggsy fall asleep, playing with his blonde-brown hair as he did. Harry knew he wouldn’t fall asleep well; last time he had been aided by the magic of alcohol, but 100% sober and not used to another figure beside him, Harry lay awake. His thoughts swam about him; how Merlin would tease him tomorrow relentlessly about this (or more terrifyingly, just glower at him from afar), how Eggsy was far too good to be with him, how Eggsy would react if he knew the truth...That was the thought that scared him the most. If he knew, how would he react? Anger? Acceptance? Begging him to quit? Hurt? It hurt Harry’s head to think about.

 

Instead, he sighed and closed his eyes, breathing in the scent of Eggsy’s hair. He wanted to stay here in the moment with him, to truly enjoy the company of him even as he slept. As Harry drifted into sleep, he only thought of the man in his arms and not the countless other problems that usually kept him awake at night.

 

 

Chapter Text

 

Eggsy was the first to wake, likely out of previously established habits. Usually, he would be up at the sound of Daisy’s cries, typically around 5AM, feed her before her mother or Dean could get up, and be out of the house with an apple or whatever food he could carry by 6:30. Today, looking at Harry’s alarm clock on the bedside table, he had actually managed to sleep in until 7AM. An amazing feat. Too often he felt uncomfortable where he rested his head, always on the lookout for someone or another banging on his door with the smell of cheap alcohol and cigarettes in the air. As he squeezed Harry’s hand that was draped over his waist, enjoying the feeling of his warm breath on the back of his neck, Eggsy couldn’t help but feel at peace. He felt safe in Harry’s arms, lying in a sleepy haze, the bedroom door still open, their clothes strewn across the floor. It was a feeling Eggsy hadn’t enjoyed in years.

 

Turning on the bed, he faced Harry and studied the man’s features. He was sleeping peacefully, his mouth slightly ajar, his usually neat dark hair an absolute mess against the white pillows. Gently, Eggsy moved his hand to cup his cheek, making sure the handsome man in front of him was real. He ran his thumb over the laughter lines near the corner of his eye, smiling at the way the light from the window filtered into the room, highlighting his sleeping form. Groggily, Harry’s brown eyes fluttered open.

 

There was silence between them as Harry gave him a light smile. Eggsy didn’t know how long they stayed like that, in the warmth of the morning light, but it was only broken by Harry pulling him closer, their legs entwining, and planting a deep kiss on his lips. Eggsy sighed into it, running his hands through Harry’s hair as he kissed him back, lips moving together.

 

When they released each other, they let their foreheads touch, and Harry gave him that same soft, sleepy smile.

 

“Mornin, Harry.” Eggsy said, brushing a piece of his hair behind his ear.

 

“Good morning, darling.” Harry replied, his voice deep from sleep.

 

“‘m gonna go make breakfast, yeah?” Eggsy said, shuffling a bit. Harry groaned in response, pulling him closer again, pushing Eggsy’s head into his chest. Eggsy chuckled, planting a kiss there.

 

“C’mon, I’ll bring it to you in bed.” Eggsy laughed. He felt Harry’s lips on the top of his head, and a grunt that sounded something like “Alright” before his hold on him loosened and Eggsy could slip from the bed. The last time they’d slept there together, he’d been too nervous to even try waking him, but this time he had the satisfaction of knowing that Harry Hart was a late sleeper.

 

Eggsy picked up his briefs and slipped them on, grabbing a grey knitted cardigan of Harry’s that was hanging on the back of the door, before heading downstairs. He walked slowly, enjoying the massive amount of framed bugs and old historical etchings Harry had framed on his walls, crowded together like he had to decide what ones to put up because he simply had too many. He had noticed them last time, but hadn’t taken the time to really look at them, and he let himself wonder briefly where Harry had gotten them all, or why he even liked bugs. They’d never particularly bothered Eggsy, but he sure as hell didn’t put them framed on his walls. Pausing to look at one of them, he noticed the tiny writing beneath one orange and black butterfly. Comma Butterfly. Flew into my fucking window. was written there in delicate cursive. Eggsy had to stifle a laugh, realizing they all had similar captions beneath them. Stepped on it., Crawling on my counter. and In my fucking shoe. were amongst his new favourites.

 

Scouring Harry’s cupboards for something to eat was a chore. The bastard kept a neat house, mostly because he apparently didn’t eat here, judging by the state of clean dishes and lack of food in his fridge. Beneath the sink next to the garbage however, was a recycling bin nearly overflowing with washed out takeout trays, and Eggsy rolled his eyes, thinking of the garbage that Harry probably ate.

 

He managed to find the ingredients to at least make pancakes again, probably the only things that Harry kept stocked he mused. Before long, he’d stacked the tea tray with two cups and a silver teapot full of tea, and a plate of pancakes and jam. Smiling at his own handiwork as he ascended the stairs towards the slumbering gentleman.

 

“Harryyyy.” Eggsy cooed, sitting on the edge of the bed. He balanced the tray of food in front of him on the plush duvet, keeping one hand on it to steady it. Harry groaned, opening his eyes just slightly before closing them again. Eggsy laughed, reaching out and rubbing his shoulder.

 

“C’mon, Harry. Your food’s gonna go cold if you don’t eat it.” Eggsy said.

 

“Alright, alright.” Harry said in the hoarse tone that made Eggsy think of his voice, close and sweet in his ear last night, whispering sweet nothings. He shuffled on the bed, sitting up, and Eggsy smiled, hiding his dirty thoughts. Harry, rubbing his eyes, looked surprised at the prepared food and tea as Eggsy sat it on his lap. His surprised turned softly to a look of love when he looked at Eggsy and reached out to him, hand on the crook of his neck. He pulled him in and planted a gentle kiss on his cheek that made Eggsy blush with the tenderness of it.

 

“I don’t think I’ve ever had anyone bring me breakfast in bed. Thank you.” Harry said, leaning against his headboard as he poured the tea from the silver pot.

 

“Well, first for everything ain’t there?” Eggsy smiled, crossing his legs. Harry passed him a cup of tea and Eggsy took it from him, fingers brushing against his. Harry poured his own cup as Eggsy sipped at his, letting the warm liquid move down his throat, still raw from last nights activities. He watched Harry for a moment, who was still quiet, waking up. He was halfway into the pancakes when he finally spoke up again, looking more alert as Eggsy explored Harry’s room.

 

“I should leave for the shop soon.” Harry said, reaching for his watch on the bedside table. He worked it onto his wrist, and Eggsy felt suddenly uncomfortable, like he was being asked to leave. Before he could let his guilty thoughts overrun him, Harry spoke up again.  

 

“You’ll meet me there later, won’t you?”

 

Eggsy smiled, grinning ear to ear.

 

“Yea, o’ course.”

 

--

 

Eggsy looked at his two best mates, both dressed in baggy jeans and slaggy hoodies, stretching their arms over their heads. Nervously, he bit his lip, and Jamal was the first to notice it.

 

“Mate, if ya gon’ be like that, jus’ get outta here.” He said, rolling his eyes at him. Ryan punched Jamal in the arm.

 

“Ease off, will ya. Eggsy want’s us to meet ‘im, we’ll meet ‘im.” Ryan said pointedly, raising his eyebrows at Jamal. Jamal gave Ryan the finger, but looked over to Eggsy.

 

“He gonna be able to keep up though?” Jamal asked sincerely.

 

“He’ll be alright. He ain’t ever done this though, so be nice yeah?” Eggsy said. It had taken an insane amount of coaxing to get Harry to come to the edge of the docks today for something Eggsy thoroughly enjoyed: parkour. He’d been doing it since he quit gymnastics, to keep limber, he told himself, but he knew it was really because he missed the feeling of flying and bending, twisting in the air and knowing exactly where he was going to land. Hearing his heart thumping in his ears, loud and pumping the adrenaline through him. He really did miss it, and parkour was as close as he’d ever get to it without having to pay an arm and a leg.

 

“Here he is now.” Ryan said, lifting his chin towards Harry’s figure, rounding a corner and coming towards the edge of the loading docks where they stood. He was all cool and casual, hands in his pockets and shoulders straight. He was out of his suit, an odd thing to see him in public without it on, but Eggsy had told him it wouldn’t be exactly parkour friendly. Instead, he wore a black cardigan over a blue, lightly striped, button down shirt, tucked into the waist of his dark grey pants. His shoes, the posh git, were still a pair of oxfords, shined and black. If he tripped over them today, Eggsy said to himself, it wouldn’t be his fault.

 

“Afternoon, Eggsy.” Harry said, approaching him and leaning down to plant a kiss on Eggsy’s cheek that made a blush appear on his face when he looked at Jamal and Ryan. Both of them were making eyes at him. Eggsy just gave them the finger and took Harry’s hand in his with confidence. This was something he didn’t feel a leg of shame about; Harry was someone he could be proud of to have in his life.

 

“And you two must be Jamal and Ryan.” Harry said politely, holding out his free hand to them. Jamal was the first to take it, shaking it.

 

“Jamal, and that’s Ryan. Eggsy’s told us pre’ much nothin’ about you cept...everything. How do you put up with this kid’s blabberin?” Jamal said. Harry cracked a smile as he let go of Jamal’s hand and took Ryan’s.

 

“I think it would be better to ask him how he puts up with me, Jamal.” What a fucking gentleman, Eggsy thought, thoroughly embarrassed by his polite manners around the two biggest idiotic friends the world could have given him (but of course whom he would do anything for).

 

“Alright, alright, lets just get goin’, yeah?” Eggsy said, finally interrupting. “Limber up, boys.”

 

Immediately, Jamal and Ryan gave a loud ‘whoop!’ and began stretching, jumping up and down in place to get their muscles moving. Harry seemed hesitant, but Eggsy nudged him.

 

“Come on, you show me all that posh shit, it’s my turn to show you somethin’ from my world, eh?” Eggsy said, looking up at him with an encouraging smile. He bend down, stretching his leg out. “Follow my stretches. Those shoes gonna be good enough for ya?”

 

“Insoles. Should work fine. I’ve ran in late to work in them enough times.” Harry said, returning Eggsy’s smile. He followed Eggsy’s stretch first with his eyes, then did the same, touching his toes.

 

“We’ll see, mate!” Ryan piped up. “Fiver says ya fall at least twice.”

 

“I’ll take that bet.” Harry said with a glint in his eyes. Jamal whistled.

 

“Make it ten! I says you fall more than three times,” Jamal said. “We’re gonna have ta call life alert.”

 

Eggsy groaned but Harry let out a genuine laugh that surprised him.

 

“Well, are you going to bet on me too, or do I really seem that hopeless?” Harry asked with a chuckle, looking to Eggsy. Eggsy rolled his eyes as he stretched his arms and rolled his neck. Harry followed the motion with ease.

 

“Twenty says you do perfect.” Eggsy said, giving Harry a flirtatious wink. Harry seemed a bit surprised, his eyes widening just for a moment before he too rolled his neck.

 

“Well c’mon then, I got a pint to buy with my winnings!” Ryan said, rubbing the palms of his hands together and sprinting off towards the pallets stacked high along the dock. Jamal followed after him, and Eggsy looked to Harry.

 

“Just follow after me an--”

 

Eggsy was cut off by Harry sprinting after the other two, his long legs covering more ground than Eggsy would have thought possible. He’d never seen the man run before, but goddamn could he run. He’d already caught up to Jamal, who was already at the top of the first pallet stack after jumping from the iron rails that lined the dock. Eggsy had to blink twice before running to catch up with him.

 

Harry was fucking quick. He’d always wondered what he’d done to keep his body as fit as he did, but he wouldn’t have guessed it had been something as acrobatic as this. It clearly was though, as Eggsy, Jamal and Ryan were shown when Harry leapt off a second story ledge with a perfectly executed backflip, all of them heading into a more residential area. The stares were enough for the three of them usually, doing whatever trick they could off of a railing or climbing a drain pipe, but with a 40-something year old man...people were literally stopping in their tracks.

 

“Mate, you said he didn’t do this sorta shit before!” Jamal said, vaulting over a waist-high fence with ease. They were the ones following Harry now, who was climbing up a drain pipe to the roof of an old home.

 

“I didn’t think he did!” Eggsy said, dashing ahead and jumping over the fence, trying to catch up with Harry. Harry stood on the roof of the house, watching them, hands on his hips. He gave them a small, mocking wave, and Ryan gave him a double finger salute.

 

“Fucker!” He shouted with a laugh. Harry just smiled patiently, hardly looking like he was catching his breath even though they’d been going for blocks now. Eggsy climbed up the drain pipe like Harry had, and swung himself over the lip of the roof, the others following behind.

 

“Harry, what the fuck?” Eggsy said in an almost laughing tone. Jamal joined them, pointing at Harry.

 

“This bet was rigged!” He said, pretending to be mad as he caught his breath.

 

“Oh yes, very much so.” Harry said, rocking back on the heels of his shoes with a gleeful smile that held a certain devilishness to it.

 

Eggsy put his head in his hands, just laughing at the absurdity of it all.

 

“So you’ve done this before then?” Ryan asked, pulling himself over the edge of the roof.

 

“No, no, gymnastics when I was younger. Karate keeps me fit enough now. The youtube videos I watched this morning on your activities helped me with figuring out what this ‘parkour’ business was.” Harry said.

 

“You right fuckin git.” Eggsy said, pushing his arm lightly. Harry smiled down at him, and Eggsy felt his heart skip, the intensity between them continually palatable. He wanted to kiss him, right there on the rooftop, but felt far too awkward about it in front of his mates. Harry seemed to get the vibe, and looked towards the other two again.

 

“Well, there’s a pub two blocks from here,” Harry said, pointing to a blue tin-roofed building. “Whoever gets there last pays for rounds?” Harry said. Eggsy had no idea he was this competitive, but he barely had time to look at Jamal and Ryan before they were shoving each other to jump from this roof to the next, both of them sprinting off. When Eggsy looked back to Harry, he still stood there on the rooftop, hands in his pockets, looking cool as ever.

 

“You’re such a fucking show off, Harry.” Eggsy said, moving a step closer. He rested his hand on Harry’s cardigan and Harry leaned down to his level, pressing a sweet, slow kiss on his lips that left Eggsy wanting more when they parted.

 

“Let’s walk, shall we?” Harry asked, their faces still close. Eggsy pressed another quick kiss to his lips.


“Yeah. Alright.”

Chapter Text

 

“You’d like to what?” Eggsy asked, disbelief in his voice.

 

“Take you on a date. Is it really that hard of a concept to wrap your head around?” Harry asked sarcastically, looking over his glass of scotch at Eggsy. Eggsy, folding a dart of cotton pinstripe, had to look away from his brown-eyed gaze. They’d been dating for a while now, but Eggsy wasn’t quite used to it, and working in the small shop after hours, doing inventory, with Harry only steps away, was an intoxicating thought.

 

“I don’t know, Harry…I’m not exactly date material, y’know?” Eggsy said, motioning to his clothes. He wore a pair of slacks and a blue dress shirt he’d dug out of the back of his closet, a bit too big on him, tucked into his pants. The tie he wore was silk, but borrowed from the shop, Charles having thrown it at him hours earlier when he’d stepped in for his shift.

 

“Well, I’d like to get you a suit.” He said, setting his drink down as he rose from the couch. Eggsy looked from him, to the fine materials he knew were too far out of his price range.

 

“A suit. Like, a Kingsman suit?” He stressed, pointing at the material he’d just folded.

 

“Yes, of course.” Harry said, hands in his pockets, approaching him. Eggsy held up his hands.

 

“No way, guv. These’re way too expensive. Droppin’ something like that on me, are you crazy? I don’t deserve somethin’ like that.” Eggsy asked, thinking of the fine fabrics and heavy materials. He couldn’t lie, he’d dreamed of wearing one before, but owning one? He’d always known that was out of his league and denied himself even the thought of it.

 

“Well, I already paid Charles and he’s expecting your measurements tomorrow morning.” Harry said with a nonchalant shrug. Eggsy put his head in his hands, feeling warmth on his face from a mixture of embarrassment and disbelief.

 

“Harry, why would you do that...” Eggsy groaned. He felt Harry’s hand on the crook of his neck and shoulder, giving a light squeeze. Eggsy looked up, green eyes locking with Harry’s.

 

“Because you do deserve this, Eggsy. You deserve more than a suit, and more than I can ever give you, but I thought leaning you into gifts gradually would be best.” Harry said with a knowing smile. Eggsy peered at him and sighed in defeat.

 

“Fine! Fine, but I get to take you on a date sometime, alright?” Eggsy said, jabbing him in the chest with his finger, looking up at him. Harry smiled in a way that made Eggsy want to press his lips to his and melt into his arms.

 

“I’d love that.” Harry said with all seriousness. Eggsy made a mental note to make him regret it later, already cooking up the most cringe-worthy date ideas. Harry’s hand moved smoothly from his shoulder to his neck, interrupting his thoughts, brushing at his hair and sending a shiver down Eggsy’s spine.

 

“Come on then. We should get you measured.” Harry said, planting a kiss on Eggsy’s cheek. Eggsy moved towards fitting room two, but Harry grabbed his hand, giving a small click of his tongue.

 

“One does not use fitting room two when popping one’s cherry.” Harry said, and Eggsy looked wide eyed up at him. He didn’t soften his expression, but just sharpened it, giving a smirk as he laced his fingers with Harry’s, allowing him to lead him to fitting room one. As soon as Harry closed the door behind them, Eggsy felt the tension between them, and when their eyes met in the mirror, Eggsy caught a glimpse of the familiar hunger he’d seen in Harry’s bedroom over midnight kisses. He reached out to Harry, grabbing at his suit jacket, but Harry pulled back, tutting with a smirk. He put his hands on Eggsy’s, and Eggsy, confused, let go.

 

“Over there. Take off your shirt.” Harry said, nodding to the centre of the room. Eggsy stared up at him, an excitement building in him over the tone of Harry’s voice; commanding and mature.

 

“Alright then, sir.” Eggsy said, stepping backwards, eyes still locked with Harry as he loosened his tie. Harry raised an eyebrow, but broke eye contact when he went to the side of the room to grab a measuring tape.

 

Eggsy folded his shirt and sat it on the mahogany chair to his left, standing in the centre of the room.

 

“Arms out.” Harry ordered, stepping towards him. Eggsy obeyed, holding his arms out to his sides, inhaling Harry’s cologne as he stood a tad too close. He studied his face, looking up at him, as he took other upper-body measurements. He had a bit of scruff from the day already, and Eggsy could imagine the feel of it, rough against his face as they kissed. He had a cut just above his eye, apparently from dropping a box from the shelf on himself earlier, and his eyes were calculating and precise as they stared at the tape measure that he held over his body. He was thrown off his thoughts when Harry leaned forward, his breath on Eggsy’s neck, as he laced the measuring tape around Eggsy’s torso, under his arms. It sent a chill up his spine and Eggsy leaned into him, closing the small bit of distance between them.

 

“Stand up straight.” Harry said, his voice sharp as a tack. Instead, defying orders as always, Eggsy leaned into his neck, kissing the exposed skin above his white collar, just under his ear.

 

“Harry…you really want to take my measurements right now?” He asked, breathing into his ear before nibbling on the lobe, dropping his hands to rake down Harry’s chest.

 

“Fuck no.” Harry mumbled. Eggsy could hear the measuring tape drop to the floor and allowed himself a satisfied smile before going straight for Harry’s tie. Loosening it, he kissed and sucked on the skin of his neck, body curving into Harry’s hands like they’d always belonged there. Harry’s lips found Eggsy’s neck in return, and he felt Harry leave marks there that wouldn’t be gone by tomorrow, the sweet pain making a moan emit from his lips as he pushed Harry’s jacket off.

 

--

 

Merlin was going to kill him.

 

It was a passing thought in his mind as he pulled Eggsy’s undershirt off him, dropping the shirt on the floor of dressing room one. Merlin, or hopefully one of his goons he could later bribe to rid themselves of the footage, could of course see everything from the camera in the large, three-framed body-length mirrors opposite them. Certainly, it wasn’t the first time someone had been shagged in the dressing rooms--but for Harry it was his. He’d teased the former Lancelot, and even Merlin on occasion, enough to know that he wasn’t going to get off easy from this. Harry’s hands ran over Eggsy’s abs as the boy kissed him, devilish tongue fluttering over his bottom lip, and Harry let any care about Merlin or the camera dissolve. He’d take the scolding and teasing later. This, he knew, would be worth it.

 

Eggsy moaned into his lips when he palmed the erection straining against his slacks, applying a light pressure that Eggsy rocked his hips into. Eggsy’s hands unbuttoned his pants, and Harry kicked them off with urgency, wanting nothing more than to rush into this; he wanted to feel Eggsy on him, hear the uncontrollable moans he knew he was capable of making, and more than anything he wanted Eggsy’s own name on his lips like a prayer, whispered and hurried.

 

Harry nudged Eggsy back to the door, and felt Eggsy’s tongue in his mouth as he moved his hands to undo his pants. They were off as quickly as they could get them, and not a moment later, Eggsy was cursing into Harry’s mouth.

 

“Fuck, Harry.” he moaned. Harry shut him up with a rough, wet kiss, and was surprised when Eggsy seemed just as aggressive as he felt when he bit Harry’s lower lip. He could feel it swell and he groaned, their hips rocking in a slow but hard rhythm. Harry moved from Eggsy’s lips back to his neck, and then further down his torso, before kneeling on the floor in front of him, leaving a trail of blooming marks on his chest and abdomen. Harry pulled his boxers off and Eggsy ran his hands through Harry’s hair, looking positively divine with swollen lips and mussed hair, eyes heavy with lust as he caught his breath. Harry didn’t give him long, however, before his tongue was dragging over his shaft. Eggsy’s breath hitched and Harry gave a satisfied smile.

 

“Watch the mirror, Eggsy.” Harry said, his thumb moving over the tip of Eggsy’s erection. Eggsy’s eyes moved from Harry kneeling in front of him reluctantly, to the mirror across from them as he slipped Eggsy’s length into his mouth.

Eggsy’s moans and strings of barely audible curse words were melodious to Harry. Urging him on, Harry let his tongue roll over the underside of Eggsy’s cock as he sucked on him, the sound of it slick and wet. Harry looked up, enjoying the view of Eggsy’s eyes plastered on the mirror across from them while his hands ran through his hair.

 

“God, Harry, you’re so fucking dirty,” Eggsy moaned, hips moving with Harry’s mouth. “I’m gonna come if you keep this up.”

 

Harry sucked on him eagerly, but eased off after a moment. He didn’t want him to come yet. He wanted to see Eggsy ache with want beneath his own hands. And he did just that, hands roaming Harry’s body as he helped him stand up, mouths slipping together again. It was a short kiss as Harry pulled away, going for the lube and condom in his jackets inner pocket. There were a thousand pockets in the thing; a Kingsman should always be prepared, of course.

 

“You fuckin’ bastard, you planned this.” Eggsy smirked as Harry pushed his own briefs off. Harry smiled as he tossed the lube at Eggsy and rolled the condom onto his own erection.

 

“Doesn’t hurt to be prepared.”

 

--

 

Eggsy’s mouth practically watered as he stared at Harry as he rolled the condom over his own cock. His eyes dragged over the older man’s fit body, and Eggsy wondered how fucking often he worked out. Just another mystery into the tailor-shop worker life, he supposed. They were starting to build up.

 

Eggsy’s focus shifted to Harry though as he approached him like a lion, slow and confident, eyes doing the same look over Eggsy was certain he’d just given him. Eggsy bit his lower lip as Harry reached and took the lube from him, staring up at him as he grabbed at Harry’s length. Harry palmed some of the lube, then dropped the bottle to the floor, warming it between his hands as Eggsy stroked him, leaning into his neck to breathe in his cologne. When Harry moved his legs apart with his knee and his fingers moved beneath him to his hole, Eggsy breathed in sharply, his cock twitching beneath Harry’s other hand. Eggsy gripped Harry more firmly, working his wrist as he laid wet kisses against his shoulder. He breathed heavily as Harry worked his hole, stretching it and slipping in another finger hurriedly. Eggsy bit down on his shoulder and Harry moaned into his ear. Eggsy smirked.

 

“Like bein’ bit, guv’?” Eggsy asked, trying to imitate the way Harry purred sweet nothings into his ear. He supposed it worked because Harry’s hips bucked against his hand. Eggsy dragged his teeth over the skin there before he moaned into Harry’s neck, biting lightly.

 

“Harder, Eggsy.” Harry breathed heavily.

 

“Jesus, Harry.” Eggsy sighed as Harry’s fingers slid in and out of him. It was all Eggsy could do to bite harder on Harry’s neck, nearly losing himself in the bliss of Harry moaning his name. He managed to hold on though, and nearly cried out when Harry’s fingers left him and he felt Harry slip away, leaning down. For a moment, he thought Harry was going to kneel again, but instead Harry’s large hands grabbed his thights and hoisted him upwards. This time, Eggsy did cry out.

 

“Holy shit--!” He chuckled as he wrapped his legs around Harry’s waist, his back against the door. Eggsy linked his hands around Harry’s neck as Harry’s cock teased his ass, slick from the lube Harry had used on him. As Harry thrust into him, slowly at first, Eggsy let out a small shout, head banging back against the door, but moved his hips towards him all the same. The position itself lent to a different feeling Eggsy hadn’t ever had the pleasure of experiencing, and he let Harry know.

 

“Shit, Harry, fill me up, babe.” Eggsy moaned. Harry let himself get comfortable, nestled against Eggsy’s body, holding him up as he began to move. Harry rocked his hips against Eggsy’s ass and sighed into his neck, nipping at the skin just below his ear as his nails dug into his hips. They were a pretty image in the full length mirror, and Eggsy took the moment to appreciate the way Harry’s ass clenched, his entire body tight against his own. And his back, god, his back, every muscle on show for him.

 

Eggsy’s legs tightened around Harry as their breathing hitched, watching sweat roll down the back of Harry’s neck. Eggsy leaned his head back against the door again, his eyes moving to watch Harry thrust in and out of him with a concentrated look. Eggsy grabbed his own cock, stroking himself as Harry’s dark eyes dragged over him before tilting his head up, searching for his lips. Eggsy leaned forward eagerly and kissed Harry roughly, both of them moaning into each other’s lips.

 

Neither of them lasted long, the heat of the moment and the publicity of the area seeming to affect both of them. Harry’s speed picked up and he gave a final thrust into Eggsy, pulling down on his hips as he finished, breathing Eggsy’s name as he did. Eggsy swallowed his name from Harry’s lips in kisses and stroked himself a moment longer, his body tight like a spring, until he finally let go and spilled his seed over both of their chests. His entire body slumped, pleasure rolling through him as Harry pulled himself out of Eggsy and kissed him once more. Eggsy let his legs unhook from around his waist, knees weak as he leaned against the door, barely keeping himself standing.


“Christ, Harry.” Eggsy breathed, still trying to catch his breath from quite possibly the best shag in his life.

Chapter Text

 

 

“Just take ‘er for a sec, Harry! God, she’s not a fuckin’ glass slipper.”

 

“Eggsy I really have no idea what to do with her!” Harry protested as Eggsy shoved Daisy into his arms. He held her at arm's length and as she began to squirm, he grimaced. Eggsy seemed to be trying hard not to laugh.

 

“One arm under, one around, love,” he said, rolling up his sleeves, turning to the sink. Harry did as he was told, and put one arm beneath Daisy and one around her tiny back, holding her close to his chest.

 

“Am I doing this correctly?” Harry asked, looking over at him as Eggsy began to wash the dishes. Daisy grabbed at his collar, trying to get at the tie around his neck.

 

“If she ain’t cryin’, you’re doin fine, Harry.” Eggsy smiled over his shoulder. He flicked a bit of soapy water at them, causing Daisy to giggle gleefully.

 

“I’m not sure...she seems awfully...fidgety.” Harry said. Eggsy just shrugged and kept his attention on the dishes while Harry tried to hold Daisy, looking every bit as awkward as he felt. Daisy looked up at him with a curious expression, and she seemed to falter for a moment before Harry smiled. He had read somewhere that children mimicked behaviour. It should follow that if he smiled, she’d smile.

 

And she did. She giggled again and put Harry’s tie in her drooling mouth. It was a good moment, he thought, despite the ruined tie. Eggsy was washing the dishes from the evening’s meal (which Eggsy had made--Harry’s cooking skills were, of course, next to nil) in his warm kitchen, and himself holding Daisy for the first time. A giant stuffed teddy bear sat in one of the free chairs of the table, a present for Daisy he’d acquired before their babysitting shift had begun. First impressions, apparently, mattered quite a lot to children, but it was the way that Eggsy’s face lit up at the ridiculous thing that made walking four blocks with it and receiving every weird look possible, worth it.

 

“Daisy...how’d she get that name?” Harry asked. It seemed an older sort of name, and not one he heard often anymore.

 

“Dean used to, ah, bring mum daisies. Not much anymore, but he used to.” Eggsy said with a shrug. Harry felt suddenly awkward for asking, knowing that Eggsy didn’t like the topic of Dean, but as he looked at the little yellow haired girl in his arms, ruining his Kingsman-issue bulletproof tie,(which he couldn’t figure out why they couldn’t also make water-proof) he couldn’t help but give her another smile. The name suited her, a happy name, he mused. He was about to say so, but Eggsy looked over his shoulder at them and gave a horrified gasp at his tie in her mouth.

 

“Daze! Don’t eat that!” Eggsy said, his voice accusing and his brow furrowed. Daisy looked up at him and gave a pleading look, first at Eggsy, then to him. He couldn’t help but chuckle.

 

“If she likes it, it’s hers.” He said, shifting her slightly. Eggsy groaned.

 

“You’re gonna spoil her, mate. Next thing I know, she’d be chewin’ on my Adidas.” Eggsy said, shaking his head. Harry admired him from afar, wondering what it was to think like that, constantly--he had seen Eggsy with her before, just briefly of course, but he always seemed to have a third eye for what she was doing, always careful and gentle. He was a natural father, despite Daisy being his sister, and the love in his eyes when he looked at her was almost too much for Harry to bear. He wondered quietly if he’d ever looked at anyone in the same way, with an unconditional gaze of adoration.

 

Restless, Harry stood up from the table, Daisy barely seeming to notice as he did, still chewing on his tie. He moved into the living room with her, watching her eyes wander around the new surroundings. Approaching one of his framed butterflies, he tapped the glass with one hand, holding her with the other. It was a large, blue winged butterfly with black edges and a black body--a Blue Morpho he’d found sitting on his jacket in Costa Rica after a mission.

 

“Morpho peleides limpida, Daisy. Say it with me. Mor-pho pe-le-i-des lim-pi-da.” He said in a gentle tone. She just looked at him, then to the butterfly.

 

“...’uderfly?” She asked. He couldn’t help but give her a smile, butter melting in her hands. He already loved her. Funny thing, children. Children were generally foreign creatures to Harry, but as he looked down at Daisy, he felt warm and needed when he held her. He knew he was the only thing between her and the world, and he wanted to shield her in this moment for as long as he could.

 

“Yes, Princess Daisy. Butterfly.” He said. She smiled and pressed a drool-covered hand onto the glass frame, staring wide-eyed at it. She turned back to Harry and snuggled her head into his neck, wrapping her arms around his neck.

 

“Nap time?” She asked. He looked down at her, and could see her blue eyes drooping, tired. Chewing on his tie must have worn her out.

 

“I don’t know if you’re supposed to, but we could...just for a moment, hm? Don’t tell Eggsy.” Harry said, sitting down on the plush couch of his living room, then shifting her and lying down. She laid on his chest now, his hands around her, and it was pleasantly quiet albeit for the sound of clanking dishes in the kitchen, Eggsy still tidying up. Harry watched Daisy doze off to sleep, her tiny hands clutching onto the fabric of his dress shirt, and felt himself relax into the quiet lull of her tiny breaths.

 

--

 

Eggsy looked into the living room, wiping his wet hands on the dish towel, and saw Harry and Daisy, lying on the couch, completely asleep. The smile was instant on his face; an automatic reaction to seeing his sister safe and sound, and Harry, finally seeming to relax.

 

Harry, then, he mused, had taken to babysitting. Truth be told, he had been nervous about this evening - he was comfortable enough around Harry nowadays, but throwing Daisy in the mix would, he knew, either be a runaway success or completely disasterous. Harry, ever the gentleman, had acted like it was no big deal to babysit for an evening with him on their planned date night, but as soon as he’d handed Daisy over to him, he had seen the suppressed panic. He’d scrubbed at the dishes, worried all the while, but seeing them now, so comfortable already with one another, the worries melted away. Eggsy felt once again, like he’d done something right here - done something good not just for himself, but little Daisy, precious Daisy, who deserved more in her life than Eggsy knew he could give her. She deserved someone like Harry to look up to, and Eggsy knew then that he wasn’t going to let him go easily.

 

Eggsy leaned against the doorway, reaching into his pocket and taking out his phone. Silently, he snapped a photo of the sleeping duo, and smiled at the result; the fading light filtering through the windows illuminated their figures, and both of them had serene, quiet expressions of a good sleep. Eggsy pocketed his phone after setting the photo as his lock screen, then tiptoed across the living room floor to grab the blanket on the chair to his left. He draped the fleece over Daisy and Harry, admired his handiwork, feeling every bit of love and pride as he looked at the both of them, then went to make himself a cup of tea.



--

 

Two months of dating and Harry still wasn’t used to it. Instead of waking up to silence, he’d either be woken up by Eggsy gently setting a cup of tea on his bedside table, or by a text from the boy. He was everywhere Harry looked, even when he was alone; a forgotten jacket on the back of his dining room table chair, a yellow toothbrush in his bathroom drawer, and dozens of photos on his phone now of them both. Sitting in his office at Kingsman HQ, it was the photos he flipped through fondly. Seeing Eggsy on a regular basis  was both exhilarating and exhausting at once; dating someone again was joyful, and someone as youthful as Eggsy carried a lot of energy with him, constantly wanting to go out to a pub or a show and begging Harry to come with him to these informal dates. But it was exhausting as well - Harry often had to disappear for a few days at a time, always on official Kingsman business, of course. Hiding it from Eggsy was beginning to wear on him, not to mention he was significantly older than him, and despite keeping in shape, it was hard to keep up with a man in his twenties in the bedroom. He sometimes felt old with Eggsy, but more loved than he’d felt in years.

 

Looking away from a photo of Daisy and Eggsy on his phone, he turned back to the paperwork at hand, rubbing his hand over his eyes, pinching the bridge of his nose. On top of it all, the business with the Valentine corporation had him going in circles. The world had seen his V-Phone release yesterday, but Merlin’s team had still been working on it when he’d checked in with them two hours ago. It was nearing midnight, and Eggsy had gone from the first floor of the shop long ago, babysitting Daisy again. It was different, working with Eggsy, seeing him around the shop stocking shirts and learning how to take measurements from Charles, but it was calming at the same time. It certainly made going into HQ something to look forward to...but hiding it had become more difficult, and he’d received enough complaints from the other Kingsman about not being able to come in the front door anymore and having to use the alternative entrance to the tube. Harry had rolled his eyes, but Arthur was becoming more and more of a bother on the subject, dropping comments about the necessity of secrecy followed by critiques of Harry’s apparent lack of self control. Harry didn’t even want to talk about Lancelot and Merlin’s take; wanting to recruit the boy was insanity.

 

Two short knocks on his office door had him adjusting his glasses on the bridge of his nose, sitting back with a sigh.

 

“Come in.” he called, punching the code for the screen above the fireplace to turn back to a painting instead of the file he’d been looking at.

 

“Speak of the devil.” Harry said as Merlin strode into the room, looking as exhausted as Harry felt, a mug of coffee in his hand.

 

“You’re leaving for South Glade Mission Church. Tonight.” Merlin said, taking a long draw from his mug.

 

“Kentucky? What’s changed?” Harry asked with a raised eyebrow as Merlin sat down on the other side of his desk, sinking into the plush leather chair with a sigh and cracking his neck. Harry grimaced; he had always hated when Merlin did that, which meant that Merlin did it around him as often as possible.

 

“We got a tip from our informant in his development team; they’re launching tomorrow at the church. We’re not exactly sure what they’re launching, since the dev team works on separate components, never getting a look at the full thing, but his team was working on the signalling component - matched the pamphlet you caught while at his house last week. South Glade Mission Church.” Merlin said, observing him. Harry frowned.

 

“Am I getting backup? The others were all out on missions, last I checked.” Harry asked. Going into a situation where they barely knew anything was always dangerous, and while Harry didn’t necessarily work well with everyone in Kingsman, he’d rather go in prepared than lose his life due to pride.

 

“They’re still out. Lancelot will join you if she wraps up early and things are slow, and you keep tossing your handlers, so I’ll be directing you. Again.” Merlin said with a hint of malice at the end. Harry shrugged.

 

“It’s not my fault they’re all shit.”  Harry said, shuffling his papers into a pile, save for the ones at the top.

 

“And it’s not my fault you won’t let me hire a candidate who might actually be able to stand you for more than ten minutes.” Merlin said, giving him a pointed stare. Harry, putting his signature at the bottom of the papers in front of him, threw him a glare.

 

“I have a date with him tomorrow evening. You will not make me late, Merlin, out of spite like that time in Helsinki.” Harry said. If Merlin gave a knowing smile, it was hidden by his mug of coffee as he drank again.

 

“Wouldn’t dream of it.” Merlin said, standing up to go.

 

“Ah, a moment. Sign these.” Harry said, handing the papers to Merlin over the desk. Merlin took them from him, reading them while taking a gulp of coffee. One which must have been far too large and too hot, judging by the way he coughed for almost a minute after swallowing. Harry stifled his amusement, rather poorly given the murderous glare on Merlin’s face.

 

“You’re...sure about this? That sure?” Merlin asked, giving Harry a serious look now. Harry looked to the papers in his hand and then back at him, giving a nod.

 

“I am, and as I said, do not make me late tomorrow night.” Harry said. Merlin threw his hands up in mock exasperation, but gave Harry a small smile as he put the papers on the desk, setting aside his coffee a moment to grab a pen.

 

“Alright, whatever you say,” Merlin said, signing off on the papers. “I’ll file them tonight. Now go pack your overnight and be back here in an hour. Plane leaves then.”

 

“Thank you, Merlin.” Harry said with a small nod before scooping up his cell phone and striding from his office. He climbed into the Kingsman taxi a moment later, and sent Eggsy a text while he was in the back seat.

 

Going on a call tomorrow morning. I will be back in time for dinner.

 

He set his phone on his knee, doubting he would receive a reply this late at night, but he’d gotten messages at odder hours from Eggsy. His phone buzzed a moment later and Harry scooped it up like it was a gem in his hands.

 

You’d better. This suit looks too damn good on me for you not to see it.

 

Harry smiled at the small text, imagining the suit that he’d gotten for Eggsy hanging on the back of his bedroom door, waiting for the next evening. Harry had booked a spot at his favourite upscale restaurant weeks ago, and had been sorely looking forward to it since then. The atmosphere would be quiet, the air filled with smells of herbs and wine, and Eggsy would be sitting across from him, giving him that look of adoration he felt so undeserving of. Truth be told, he’d gotten him the suit just for the restaurant's dress code - Harry personally couldn’t care if he wore that god-ugly track suit of black and gold. Or simply nothing at all, if he could swing it. Somehow, he doubted Eggsy would be comfortable with that, if the fiery blushes that crept over his cheeks whenever Harry visually undressed him or whispered lewdly in his ear were any indication. Then again, Eggsy could more than hold his own, such as the time a few weeks ago when he had spent the evening practically deep throating his spoon, which had led to a hasty end to their date and an exhilarating tryst in the alley outside the restaurant. His boy was certainly unpredictable, to say the least.

 

7pm. I’ll be there.

 

A text came back quickly, just three words but it made Harry feel much more comfortable about getting on a flight to Kentucky.

 

I love you.

 

I love you too, darling boy. Harry replied, pocketing his phone as the cab pulled up at his residence.

 

--

 

Hours later, Harry stared down the barrel of the gun pointed at him, swallowing hard but otherwise leaving his expression emotionless. He had expected this. Maybe not today exactly, of course, but he had always known it was coming. A thousand other times, this sort of incident had happened, but this time, he knew there was no way out. Guards with guns stood behind Valentine and Gazelle. Gazelle’s speed would outmatch his own, and Valentine’s gun was pointed directly at his face.

 

He could turn and run, he thought briefly. But that would just mean a bullet in the back, and that was far more painful and a much slower death. No, he didn’t fancy that option at all.

 

Duck and punch the gun from Valentine’s hand. An image of Gazelle slicing him in half like the previous Lancelot flashed in his mind, and he ruled against that too.

 

No, this time, he was going to take a bullet to the brain, and die.

 

“This ain’t that kinda movie.” Valentine said, his frown deepening.

 

Eggsy was the last thing he thought of. Eggsy, with the perfectly content smile he got when drinking Harry’s best gin. Eggsy, holding his sister, cooing at her gently. Eggsy’s lips, pressed firmly and sweetly against his. Eggsy, turning from a skulking pickpocket, to an upstanding gentleman, all of his own hard work. Eggsy cooking breakfast, half naked in his kitchen, the smell of bacon wafting throughout. Eggsy vaulting from a second story ledge and nearly giving Harry a heart attack the first time he’d seen him do it, but only leaving him with an immense appreciation for his skills. Gary “Eggsy” Unwin. The man he’d loved. Harry had had a lot of expectations in his life, but falling in love had not been one of them.


Harry blinked as the bullet crashed into him. He vaguely felt tumbling backwards onto the pavement, but if there was anything past that, Harry wouldn’t have known. The last thing he thought was simple: He’s going to kill me for being late to dinner.

Chapter Text

 

 

Eggsy shifted uncomfortably in his seat, looking at his watch. Actually, it was Harry’s watch, slightly too large for his wrist. He’d nicked it from his drawer, and was seeing how long it’d take for him to notice. It’d been a week so far; not a bad track record.

 

His discomfort was becoming apparent, however, as it was the third time the waiter had filled his glass of water. Looking around him, Eggsy could see men and women, dressed in their finest, eating from china plates with glittering silverware. It was worse when he’d see their glances towards him, sitting alone at his table, their pitying looks killing him. Finally relenting and taking his cell phone from his pocket (a no-no at fancy restaurants, Roxy had warned him), he texted Harry.

 

Where r u?

 

He set it on the table and took a sip of his water. And another. And another. His eyes darted to the phone, to the window, then back to his phone. Nothing.

 

It was when the waiter went to fill his water a fourth time that Eggsy stood up, digging a small note from his pocket and setting it on the table, a tip for the waiter’s time. The waiter gave him a nod, and Eggsy left the restaurant with as much composure as he could muster. Which was little, considering the embarrassment he felt at having sat alone at a table for 45 minutes with no call or text from his date.

 

Outside, the air was cool on his burning face, a light breeze flowing between the posh looking buildings. He ripped at the tie around his neck as he started a quick pace, footsteps echoing in the evening air. Throwing the tie on the ground, he unbuttoned the first two buttons of his white dress shirt, his mind in chaos.

 

Harry had stood him up.

 

Harry had promised him, and yet he stood him up. He had waited in that goddamn restaurant like an idiot for almost an hour.

 

No.

 

No, he wasn’t the idiot anymore, Eggsy reassured himself. He was practically running down the street now, anger pulsing through him like adrenaline. Eggsy wasn’t the idiot. Eggsy had become something he’d liked. When he looked in the mirror, he didn’t see a small, slouching boy who gave up on everything he liked, anymore. He saw himself, caring for his sister, holding a job, looking at the happy expression on his mother’s face when he came home, despite the bruises that came and went courtesy of Dean. He could feel her pride, and he felt worthwhile of his friends’ praise. Jamal and Ryan were looking for their own jobs now, after seeing Eggsy doing so well at Kingsman. Roxy too had become increasingly important to him, not just as a friend, but someone he looked up to, someone he admired and wanted to do better for. And he was on that road. Sometimes it felt slow as hell, but seeing the savings starting to pile up in his bank account, having enough to buy a beer rather than put it on Dean’s tab, felt good. Or, enough to quit a job he knew he was too good for--enough to put his mom up in a good apartment with Daze while he joined the marines again.

 

So, Harry Hart was an idiot, and he’d fucked around Eggsy for the last time. Eggsy was good enough on his own. He was worth enough now. At the same time his heart was breaking, it was swelling with pride. For the first time in his life, Eggsy felt whole on his own. Angry as hell, but whole.

 

Eggsy rounded the last corner and practically ran to the stairs of the Kingsman shop, opening the door in a fury. Breathless, he stepped into the warm shop and saw not Charles, as he would have expected, but Roxy and Merlin, standing side by side, a tablet between them.

 

His words caught in his throat as Roxy and Merlin looked up at him, surprised. When Eggsy met Roxy’s brown eyes, he felt his stomach drop. She’d been crying. The tears were still on her cheeks, and looking at Merlin, even his eyes seemed red and tired-looking.

 

“Rox?” Eggsy asked, stepping towards her, anger immediately replaced by worry. He held out her hands to her and she walked to him, both of them embracing. Eggsy looked, confused, over her shoulder at Merlin, who avoided his gaze.

 

“Oh, Eggsy, I’m so sorry.” Roxy mumbled into his shoulder. Her embrace wasn’t one of her being broken, however. It was as if she was the one comforting him, stroking the back of his head and gripping him tightly, as if he was going to run away at any moment.

 

“Rox? Merl? What’s goin’ on?” Eggsy asked, his anger at Harry taking a back seat to the expressions of exhaustion and desolation they both wore. Roxy stepped back from him, but held his hand as he looked between them.

 

“Merlin, we need to tell him.” Roxy said, her voice strong and steady with a tone of authority. She gripped his hand tighter, and Eggsy couldn’t help but feel a knot in his stomach.

 

“We can. Harry changed his NOK papers before he left.” Merlin said, clearing his throat and staring at Roxy pointedly. Even she raised her eyebrows, surprised. Eggsy’s brow furrowed, frustration rising in him again at the mention of Harry’s name.

 

“Whatever you’ve got to say about that fucking git, I don-”

 

“Harry was just shot, Eggsy. He’s dead.”

 

Merlin’s words hit him like a rock, his own falling dead mid-sentence. It felt like someone had yanked the carpet out from under him. Even as he sat down on the couch where Harry had always sat, reading the god awful Sun, he could barely hear Merlin, his words like a wave. And yet, he was still incredibly angry. Angry that Harry hadn’t shown up for their dinner. Angry that Harry hadn’t texted him back. When Merlin explained how he’d been shot, and what their job truly entailed, he started to laugh, only slightly hysterically.

 

Roxy and Merlin went silent as his chuckle turned into a loud laugh that rang off the walls. It was absurdity, he knew, but he couldn’t help it. It flowed out of him, laughing at the ridiculousness of it all; how it explained every time Harry was late, revealed why Harry was always away on ‘business trips’...Eggsy had felt like he’d known Harry Hart was everything but a tailor, but had just pushed it from his mind. Eggsy’s laughter began to turn into gut wrenching sobs as he remembered the last time he’d seen Harry’s face, leaning into his for a quick kiss as he’d run out to Kingsman, leaving him and Daisy to play on his living room floor. It had been so peaceful. He was going on a date with Harry the next evening. This evening. He promised he wouldn’t be late. He wouldn’t be late. He’d promised.

 

“Eggsy…” Roxy whispered. Eggsy let his emotions was over him and he doubled over on himself, head in his hands. His stomach was in knots. He felt Roxy’s hand on his back, rubbing in small circles that brought him an odd comfort, grounding him in reality rather than letting his feelings take him away to where Harry was. He let himself stay like that a moment before his breathing evened, and though his heart will still heavy, he sat up again, barely meeting Roxy and Merlin’s worried gazes. He was being selfish. They’d known Harry longer than he had--they were hurting too.

 

“Eggsy, there’s something else. Before Harry left, he changed his next of kin papers. He listed you as his. This entitles you to all of his belongings and finances. He made sure you were well taken care of, Eggsy,” Merlin said, tapping at the tablet on his lap. “I’ve just transferred all the deeds and finances to you.”

 

“I don’t care about that. When can we get Harry back here? He needs to come home.” Eggsy said, his voice rough as he wiped the tears away from his face, trying to gain some sort of composure. And he really didn’t care about how many zeroes had been added to his bank account, or how many cottages he might now own in the middle of goddamn nowhere. He cared about Harry. He loved Harry. And he needed to come home. He needed to be buried with the last bit of Eggsy’s heart, six feet under, cold and dead.

 

“...we can’t go get him. Not yet.” Roxy said, her voice taking on that hard tone again. He looked over at her, puzzled.

 

“Valentine is planning a worldwide massacre. The other agents are out on missions, and we’re the only ones immediately available--we can get to Valentine’s base in a few hours. We don’t have time to go get Harry’s body.” Roxy said, rubbing her temples in that way she did when she was already exhausted. It was then that Eggsy noticed the ripped bit on her sleeve and the bit of blood on her lapel. She’d just come back from a mission, he guessed, or something closer to home.

 

“Rox, you okay?” Eggsy asked. He felt better comforting her than being comforted--it kept his mind busy.

 

“Yes, I just--”

 

“She killed for the first time today. She should be undergoing a psych eval, but like she said, we don’t have time.” Merlin said, brow furrowed as his eyes stayed glued to the screen in front of him. He was already working again, apparently. There was no rest for the Kingsman. Eggsy’s eyes went wide though and he looked at Roxy, putting a reassuring hand on her shoulder.

 

“Rox…” Eggsy said softly. Roxy nodded, waving a hand.

 

“I’m fine. I’m fine. They’d had me on easy missions before, just knock outs and stuff, but...” she said, trying to dismiss Eggsy’s worry. It couldn’t be done though, and Eggsy instead just stood up, moving to the counter to make them some tea. He felt odd as he did, his body feeling like it was on autopilot.

 

“Who was it?” Eggsy asked, trying to fill his mind with conversation rather than Harry’s face.

 

“Arthur.” Roxy said. Eggsy raised a brow and pointed upwards, where he knew Arthur’s office usually was.

 

“Arthur. Like, the Arthur?” Eggsy asked, thinking of the old bloke’s body still probably lying upstairs.

 

“Yes. He was part of Valentine’s plan.” Roxy said as the electric kettle began to bubble. Eggsy took out a tray and three cups.

 

“Eggsy,” Merlin said from across the room. Roxy and Eggsy both looked over at him as he stood from the chair. “I know Harry was perfectly opposed to this, and I hate to ask this of you, but I need you to help us. There’s no one else here we can trust. I have no idea how many people Valentine has in his pocket, but I need you to watch the shop. There’s a thousand and one things here that he absolutely cannot get his hands on. We never leave the shop unattended. It’s our Camelot, if you will. Valentine gets in here, and we’re fucked. Lancelot here and I need to get to our jet, but we need you to make sure no one gets in here.”

 

Eggsy nodded. “Just tell me what to do, ‘guv.”

 

“The windows are bulletproof, and I’ll lock everything down once we leave. I’ve seen your marksman points from your time in the Marine’s. Can I trust you with this, Eggsy?” Merlin asked, everything about him communicating the gravity of the situation. His shoulders were squared, and his eyes focused on Eggsy through his square glasses. Suddenly, the thought hit him like a brick in the face.

 

“Daisy. Daisy, I need to get Daisy. And mom! God. I need to go now. I need to make sure they’re safe.” Eggsy said his voice in a panic as he headed for the door. Merlin put a hand on his chest though, stopping him.

 

“They’re already in the cab over. I sent it for them,” Merlin turned the ipad to Eggsy, showing him a map with three moving dots. “Those two are your sister and mother. The third is my cab driver. ETA 10 minutes. This is the safest place they can be. Kingsman is soundproof, which should keep out the frequency that the phones emit.”

 

“...thanks, Merlin.” Eggsy said. Merlin nodded and looked to Roxy.

 

“Roxy, we leave in two minutes. Get whatever you need from the stockroom.” Merlin said. Immediately, movements turning into something akin to a prowling cat, Roxy turned heel for dressing room three. She left the door and pulled the first coat hook down, and Eggsy’s eyes widened as he saw the room expand open to reveal another beyond, loaded with walls of gadgets. Eggsy followed her in, Merlin behind him.

 

“Holy shit. You two weren’t fucking around when you said there was some spy shit.” Eggsy said, looking around. Merlin’s voice snapped him back into attention.

 

“I’m saying this once, Eggsy. Watch.” Merlin said, moving along the walls of equipment, pointing at each of them as Roxy loaded up a bag she’d pulled from a drawer. “Electric signet rings. Push down here to activate. Poison pens. Lift the hook up to ready it, down for deadly. Grenades. Poison knives in the shoe, come out with a click of the heel. All watches have one amnesia and one lethal dart--activate by using the hand adjustment. Kingsman umbrellas have shotgun rounds in the handle, but are best for defence, and you change modes by turning the handle. Kingsman issue guns, one shotgun, twelve normal 9mm rounds.”

 

He plucked a pair of glasses off the shelf, and handed them to Eggsy.

 

“What’ll these do, then? X-ray glasses?” Eggsy asked, a smile playing on his lips.

 

“Put them on and find out.” Roxy spoke, putting the bag over her shoulder. He shrugged and did so, but nearly threw them off when he did.

 

“Holy hell, is that a HUD? And your vitals? What the hell.” Eggsy cursed, taking them off and then back on.

 

“These are our first line of defence, Eggsy, and I don’t want you to take them off until we’re back. They record everything, and feed it live to me.” Merlin said, holding up his tablet which showed himself from Eggsy’s point of view. It was a bit trippy, he had to admit.

 

“I can keep in touch with you this way, and talk you through anything that might happen. They’ll also notify any other Kingsman nearby if you’re harmed, and they work as a shield as well--they’re made of bulletproof materials, just like that suit Harry gave you.” Merlin said, nodding towards the outfit Eggsy still had on.

 

Eggsy looked down at himself for a moment, all the wonder leaking out of him at the world of spy gadgetry he’d just been introduced to; it didn’t hold as much wonder without Harry there, guiding him through it. He wondered if Harry had ever intended to tell him, or just to clothe him in bullet-proof armour until he’d died.

 

When he looked back up at the sound of Merlin leaving the room, Roxy was already in dressing room one, waiting for Merlin.

 

“Don’t take them off. We’ll be back as soon as we can.” Merlin said. Roxy put a hand on the glass, her face stony looking, all business, but it softened as she caught Eggsy’s eyes in the mirror.

 

“Stay safe, Eggsy.” Roxy said as the floor below them made a grinding sound. Eggsy took a hesitant step back from the doorway, eyes darting to the floor when it began to lower.

 

Eggsy wanted to say a thousand things to them. Don’t leave me here alone. Don’t die. Don’t go. Stay with me. I love you. But Eggsy just waved his hand and turned from them, closing the door and going to the shop front to wait for his mother and Daisy.

 

“Eggsy? Its Roxy. You can hear me, yeah?”

 

Eggsy nearly jumped at the sound in his ears, gripping his chest.

 

“Fuckin’ hell, Rox. Scare the shit outta me.” Eggsy said.

 

“Sorry. I forgot you’re not used to it yet.” Roxy said. It was disorientating, knowing he was alone in the shop (save for Arthur’s dead body upstairs), but hearing Roxy’s voice so crystal clear.

 

“You need somethin’?” Eggsy asked, leaning on the counter, looking at the three tea cups he had set out for all of them. He wouldn’t need them now, and it scared him to think perhaps he wouldn’t need all three of them ever again. He could very well lose Roxy and Merlin too. He forced himself to take a shaky inhale through the fear.

 

“I love you. You’re not used to this, you’re a civilian, and you just lost Harry, but you’re my best friend. Please be careful.” Roxy said, her voice surprisingly gentle. He felt his heart go out to her; she really was his best friend, and someone he couldn’t live without.

 

“Don’t you leave me too, Rox.” He choked, watching his mother and sister pull up in the cab outside the shop through the blur of tears. His mother looked around with a measured expression, still wearing her house clothes, holding a squirming Daisy in her arms. A bag was hoisted over her shoulder, Daisy’s things for the night.

 

“I won’t,” She said, her voice reassuring. “I promise. Gotta go. We’re prepping the jet.”

 

Eggsy swallowed hard. Harry had promised him things too.

 

Eggsy strode to the door to let his mother in, waving at her through the window. Seeing her expression brighten though, made her face light up and Eggsy’s heart feel just a bit lighter.

 

“Love ya, Rox. See ya soon.” He mumbled. There was no reply on the other end, and Eggsy let his mother in, her mouth off and running about what was going on, and why he looked so distraught and why he was wearing glasses. He drowned himself in her voice, her free hand touching his face as soon as she’d dropped the bag inside the door, and tried to forget Harry Hart as the world was beginning to crumble around them all.

 

--

 

His mother lay sleeping on the couch of Kingsman HQ, Daisy sleeping on a bed made of throw cushions and bolts of material on the floor, and Eggsy watched them quietly, his eyes moving to the fireplace. One of the Kingsman issue guns sat on his lap, an almost-empty glass of the good scotch in his hand.

 

They’d heard the shouts and seen the violence outside of the shop, but like Merlin had said, they’d been safe, protected from the world that had descended into hell outside. When a man missing an arm had begun banging on the window, screaming at them, was when Eggsy had pulled the curtains closed, hoping Daisy was young enough to forget all of this.

 

His mother though had only fallen asleep after a strong drink, a meal and some coaxing. Daisy had been easier to get to sleep; all he had to do with her was tickle her until she was exhausted.

 

Eggsy though, felt like he wouldn’t sleep for a while, maybe never again. It wasn’t just the thought of more people banging on the windows and doors, deranged and crazed expressions of malice on their faces, but rather the pain that Harry had left in him when he’d died. He had been putting on a strong face for his mother, but once he’d received the all clear from Merlin who said they were on their way back, he’d taken a few too many drinks. On his fourth now, he was beginning to accept the idea that Harry wasn’t coming back. He was gone, and Eggsy felt numb from the pain of it. He couldn’t cry anymore. He couldn’t bring himself to collapse into the nothing that he felt. But he couldn’t eat, either, and couldn’t sleep. He didn’t want to. The gun was still sitting on his knee, ready to use.

 

“Eggsy? I’m coming up.” Merlin said. Eggsy gave no indication he heard him, and kept his gaze on the fireplace. It was a moment later he heard the door open behind him and felt a strong hand on his shoulder.

 

“Eggsy, are you sober enough to come with me for a minute?” Merlin asked. Eggsy nodded stiffly and set his drink aside, grabbing the gun. As he stood up, he looked around, and came to the alarming realization that Roxy wasn’t with him.

 

“Rox. Where’s Rox?” Eggsy asked, eyes going wide with fear. Merlin quelled him immediately though, putting a hand on his shoulder.

 

“Calm down, lad. She’s fine, just getting patched up in the hospital wing. Now go put your gun away and meet me in Harry’s office upstairs.”

 

Eggsy seemed to float through the motions of putting the gun back, setting it on the wall and closing the door behind him as he left. His feet dragged as he went upstairs, and he hesitated a moment when he saw the light for Harry’s office cast on the dark floor, the door slightly ajar. How many nights had he seen the same view, and come into that very room with a gallant stride, ready to bug the shit out of his boyfriend and distract him with paperwork? How many times had he and Harry shared kisses and late night talks in that office? When a voice called out from the office though, it wasn’t Harry’s.

 

“Come on in, Eggsy.”

 

Eggsy willed himself to move, choking down the tears he could feel threatening to burst forth. And when he walked into the room, it was almost unbearable. He could see Harry everywhere, in the glasses on the trolly cart in the corner, in the jumper that hung up on the back of one of the chairs, and certainly in the smell of his cologne that lingered in the room, sunk into the carpet and upholstery over the years. Eggsy’s eyes looked around the room, and Merlin seemed to wait patiently, sitting in one of the chairs in front of Harry’s desk. When Eggsy’s eyes landed on him, Merlin waved him over, gesturing to one of the chairs.

 

“Sit down, Eggsy.”

 

Eggsy did as he was told and Merlin looked at him seriously, handing him a glass of water. Eggsy took it, even though he felt quite sober. Not even the drinks could erase the reality of Harry’s death.

 

“Eggsy, we need to talk about what’s going to happen. The world is gone to absolute shite at the moment. Half the world’s leaders were just killed, and likely half of my staff, as we didn’t exactly get time to make sure everyone was safe.” Merlin said, rubbing his eyes beneath his glasses.

 

“What do you need, Merl?” Eggsy asked, almost robotically.

 

Merlin looked momentarily unsure. “...Harry was against this, but you’ve seen enough to know what this life is like now, and you can make your own decisions. I want you to be a handler for our Kingsman agents.” Merlin said. Eggsy blinked. The word ‘handler’ didnt quite register.

 

“A what?” Eggsy asked.

 

“Handler. Every agent has a handler. They function as a research analyst, using Kingsman databases during missions, acting quickly to deliver information through these,” He said, tapping his glasses. “that will help the Kingsman with their mission.”

 

“So you want me to be...a techie?” Eggsy asked, feeling like he was fighting through a fog to understand this all.

 

Merlin’s lips twitched, hinting at a tired smile which might eventually emerge.

 

“...Simplistically put, but yes. The training is hard, but it’ll keep you out of harm's way and provide you with income to help your family. You’ll also be helping us a lot...we’re going to need to refresh our ranks.” Merlin said, looking expectantly at him.

 

“...and Roxy approves?” Eggsy asked. He could care less about helping out Kingsman in general, as cool as it seemed, but if he could help out Roxy and Merlin...he would do anything. Roxy in particular. His best friend needed his help.

 

“She’s the one who suggested it, quite a long time ago I might add.” Merlin said with a knowing smile.

 

“...Alright then. Nothin’ to lose now.” Eggsy said, looking at the empty seat behind Harry’s desk. He felt Merlin’s hand on his knee, and looked back to him.

 

“Go home. Take a few weeks. We’ll be trying to recover Harry’s body from Kentucky, and I’ll keep you updated. Just...take your family home and rest. We’ll get started after that.” Merlin said, giving him a sympathetic look. Eggsy returned the look with a small smile.

 

“Thanks Merl.”

 

--

 

A week later and Eggsy still felt like he was floating as he was throwing his things in a box, despite his pounding heartbeat. They hadn’t had a chance like this in years, and Eggsy wasn’t waiting around for it. With a full bank account and Dean in the hospital along with half of London, Eggsy saw their chance and he’d taken it. Turns out, a shit ton of houses had gone down in value once people had been found murdered and bloodied in them, and Eggsy, with the help of Roxy, had jumped at the chance. Neither minded blood much, and he didn’t mind the idea of patching up a house - Eggsy had learnt things here and there, how to fix drywall and whatnot.

 

They had considered moving into Harry’s old home, but with Eggsy planning on taking Daisy and his mother with him as well, there simply hadn’t been room. But he hadn’t sold it either. Instead, he’d taken a walk every day for the last three, and simply stood in front of it, hands in his pockets, looking at the light that was still on in his office window, like he was coming back any moment. He hadn’t had the heart to even step inside yet.

 

So they’d bought an old Victorian, ten minutes outside of the downtown. It had only taken a day and a half to replace the drywall pieces where a bloke had been pinned to the wall with what looked like a railing from the bannister, and they’d had the blood-stained carpet floor replaced with a wood floor. Truthfully, Eggsy had felt guilty even touching the money that Harry had left him, but when Roxy had asked him to move in with her, he couldn’t say no. He wanted to live with her and his mum and Daisy - he wanted a family around him, and they were as close as he could ever get, despite the gaping hole in his heart where he knew Harry belonged. He loved Roxy and needed her, and she’d come up with some sort of word for whatever they were (queer platonic? Fuck he couldn’t remember.), but it didn’t fill him up with absolute joy and desire like his relationship with Harry had. Similar, but separate needs.

 

“Eggsy, we’re ready.” Roxy said, peeking into Eggsy’s room that was now bare. She held Daisy in her arms, who was tugging at her hair.

 

“Yeah, me too.” He said, closing the box. He hadn’t taken much from the room, choosing to leave the old bed and curtains, his old dresser and other, older pieces of clothes. He’d have time to replace it all later. He just wanted out of this life, away from Dean. He’d finally had the ability to make that happen, thanks to Harry, and he hadn’t hesitated for a moment.

 

“Ready to move, Daze? You’re gonna have your own room an’ everythin’!” Eggsy said in an excited voice for her, stepping towards them and tapping Daisy’s nose. She giggled and Roxy shifted her arms.

 

“‘Ello room! ‘Ello!” She said loudly. Roxy rolled her eyes, tickling Daisy a bit who giggled in response, twisting in her arms excitedly.

 

“She’s still on about that yellow room, huh?” She said.

 

“The princess gets what she wants, Queen Roxy. Ain’t that right, Daisy?” Eggsy asked, moving with them to the living room where his mother had the last box in her arms, the rest of the apartment bare with only the old furniture and some of Dean’s nicknacks around. She looked happy - tired, but happy. Half of London was in the shitter still, but people were crawling out of the woodwork to take over important roles in government and business--and his mother had been one of them, taking over as manager for the grocery store she’d been working at part time, since most of the other staff had been killed on V-Day, as they were now calling it. Long nights, spent cleaning and reorganizing the store and getting used to her new role seemed to be taking a toll on her, but she seemed happy about it. She’d even started a food bank with the store, since so many people had lost family caregivers. “Doing something real,” she’d said. It made Eggsy feel a little less broken.


His mum shifted the box and held a hand out to him, putting it on his face when he approached. She put a kiss on his cheek and he smiled down at her as she gave him a grin. “Lets get the hell out of here, Eggsy.”

Chapter Text

 

 

Living with Roxy, his mother and Daisy was everything he’d dreamed of.

 

He woke up with Daisy every morning, feeding and dressing her, and sending her off for the day to pre-school. She was always giggling and happy and full, and even when she cried in the middle of the night now, she could tell him what was wrong. She was picking up words quicker than he’d thought possible.

 

Roxy came and went as she pleased, but always tried to be home for movie night, when they all cuddled on the couch to watch films and have popcorn for dinner. They’d retire to separate rooms at the end of the day, but were inseparable otherwise, and the Kingsman issue glasses let them keep in touch even more now. They almost always had each other’s feeds on, and it was oddly comforting for Eggsy to listen to her buy milk from the corner shop or talk to Merlin about software updates for her equipment. It filled his life with a much needed normalcy, and he knew she got the same from it by the way she collapsed onto their couch, head in his lap, at the end of a long trip. He knew it in the way she savoured Eggsy’s cooking and texted him recipes to try. Kingsman offered little in the way of stability, but they’d found it despite it all.

 

His mother too, had taken beautifully to her role at the grocery store. They’d made her a part owner, after the previous one had died, and she seemed to be blossoming. She looked healthier, dressed better, did her hair every day...it made Eggsy feel proud.

 

As for himself, Merlin was apparently completely set on making him suffer.

 

Training as a handler, or a ‘techie’, as he liked to call it just to piss off Merlin, was a lot harder than he’d thought. Coding drills, research assignments, timed practices and hacking trials. Eggsy woke up with coding running through his head, and went to bed with it, and while it kept him busy, and the hours were set so he could take care of Daisy, it wasn’t enough to let Eggsy sleep without hugging a pillow to his chest, thinking only of Harry Hart, inhaling his scent and listening to his breathing. When it got hard, he  crawled into Roxy’s bed, and she wrapped him in a warm embrace, and fell asleep to the sound of her ocean sounds CD she always had on. They weren’t Harry’s arms around him, and frankly the CD was a tad distracting, but it helped.

 

On the nights when Roxy was away though, it was hard to sleep. He would sit up for hours, and eventually find himself running through the streets of London, trying to exhaust himself by breathing in the cool night air. And always, he would end up at Harry’s doorstep. He still hadn’t had the heart to go in, however. He would just stand there, at the end of the dead end, staring at the light still on in the office.

 

Tonight was one of those nights, and impossibly late, the dark circles under Eggsy’s eyes deepening with sleepless thoughts eating away at him. Roxy was out on a date with her newly acquired girlfriend, Tilde (a princess, apparently. When she’d gotten around to mentioning that, Eggsy had choked on his drink.) More than anything, it was the anger that pushed him on, feet pounding on the pavement as he ran through the abandoned streets.

 

Tonight though, he ran in a different direction. He didn’t want to remember Harry. He wanted to be over Harry Hart. He wanted to love his family and friends and just be happy with that, but when he thought of his empty bed and the smell of Harry’s cologne, his gut clenched without fail every single time. He wanted to be satisfied with the empty coffin they’d buried when they’d failed to find his body. And at the same time, he was angry that Harry wasn’t here so he could punch him square in his smug jaw for the months of lying and sneaking around. The thoughts ran through his mind at the same pace as his feet as they led him away from Harry’s house.

 

And sometimes, he did forget. Months seemed to fly by, and even Merlin started calling him by his code-name now - Guinevere. He didn’t get to have a knight’s name (combat-ready only Kingsmen got those), but he didn’t mind it, and shooting down the snickers from new recruits was always fun, considering there were quite a few of them now, seeing as how many had died in the V-Day incident. Work was a distraction for Eggsy, but a welcome one that he found he was quite good at, and he’d become a natural handler for Roxy. Merlin was still Merlin, thank goodness, as no one else could realistically handle his job it seemed, and Percival, now sporting a fantastic scar across his neck thanks to V-Day, had stepped up as Arthur. Bors, Gawain, and Kay were still alive, and positions had been filled for the rest since then.

 

The world seemed to be getting itself back on its feet, save for Eggsy. Whenever he thought of Harry, and the video he’d inevitably dug up on the archives of his shooting, he felt his stomach knot and the need for a strong drink rise in his throat.

 

Eggsy’s attention was suddenly drawn to his glasses, where Roxy’s feed popped up as Call Waiting. He touched the side of his glasses and was welcomed by her familiar tone.

 

“Hey Eggsy. You’re running, hm?” She asked. He could see her feed in the corner, showing their living room and a book on her lap.

 

“Yeah. How was Tilde?” He asked, letting his feet wander as he paid attention to their conversation.

 

“Good, good. She wants to have breakfast this weekend with us.” She said, playing with a corner of the book edge. Eggsy raised an eyebrow.

 

“Like Sunday breakfast?” He asked.

 

“If that’s alright? I know it’s usually a family sorta thing, but I suggested it.” Roxy said. Sundays were usually breakfast with his family and Roxy’s, held at their house--a day of the week when they usually didn’t have to work and could finally relax. Listening to Roxy, he could almost see the smile in his mind that rested on her face. He gave a low whistle.

 

“Gettin’ a bit serious there, eh Rox?” he teased. “I mean, it has been eight months or so since you saved her from that cave...Suppose it is time to meet the ‘rents...”

 

“Oh shut up.”

 

“You got a ring yet?”

 

“Eggsy I swear--”

 

Roxy’s voice seemed to drain away as he realized his feet had led him to Harry’s doorstep. Staring down the street, he could see the light on inside the window, as it always had been since he’d left for America, but something was considerably off. It gave him a feeling of de ja vu, leaving him feeling odd as he took steps towards the house.

 

“Eggsy, is that...? Did something just move?”

 

Roxy’s voice in his ear brought him back to reality. Someone was moving behind the curtained window of Harry’s home. Harry was long dead. It couldn’t be him. Eggsy wouldn’t allow himself to believe it, squashing the wild surge of hope in his chest.

 

“Rox, stay with me. I just have my watch on me, so if I get fucked by this burglar, you better come an’ save me, yeah?” Eggsy asked in a light tone, despite his heart clenching.

 

“Yeah, Eggs.”

 

Eggsy hurried to the doorstep and reached behind a loose piece of wood in the doorframe to grab the hidden house key that was always hanging there. He opened the door quietly and held his arm out, watch armed to stun mode, but hesitated a moment. The smell of Harry’s cologne hit him like a ton of rocks, strong and present in his home, and the familiarity of it all made his chest ache. He hadn’t stepped in here since the day Harry had died, and everything seemed to be covered in a thin layer of dust, only serving to remind him once again of the loss. Taking a breath and collecting himself, he ascended the stairs, Roxy quiet in his ear.  

 

When he pushed open the door to the office, however, Eggsy nearly let out a scream at the figure he saw sitting at his computer. He managed to just stand there however, mouth wide open and staring as tears came to his eyes.

 

Harry fucking Hart, wearing a black knitted cardigan over a white button down and comfortable looking black pants was looking up at him. The most glaring difference about him was the eyepatch he wore over his left eye, a nasty scar running across his temple and cutting into his hairline above his ear where his hair, longer than before, had seemingly refused to grow. He had a full beard, dark brown speckled with grey, and he wore a different pair of glasses, square like the Kingsman issued ones, but a bit more rounded at the bottom.

 

“...holy fuck.” Roxy was the first to speak, only being heard by Eggsy through his feed.

 

Eggsy’s hand dropped down to his side as Harry stood up from his desk, hand held out to him, but eventually dropping down.

 

“Ah...Eggsy, didn’t hear you come in.” he said quietly. Eggsy felt like he was going to vomit. He could already feel the tears falling down his face as a thousand emotions that he’d worked so hard to forget and push away seemed to be making their way to the surface again.

 

“Harry...God, Harry are you…Rox tell me this is real.” Eggsy demanded, taking a step towards Harry’s figure. Roxy’s voice was hoarse, but sure.

 

“It is. I’m bringing Merlin in on this.” Roxy said. Eggsy could see the movement in her feed and another being brought up on his own, Merlin’s.

 

“Eggsy, I’m--”

 

“I’m gonna throw up.” Eggsy said suddenly, feeling the bile in his throat. If Eggsy was being truthful, he’d thought a thousand times of Harry coming back alive, but none of those times mentioned puking as he desperately fought off a panic attack. He did though, right into Harry’s trash bin.

 

“Well that’s disgusting.” Eggsy said, hearing Merlin’s voice in his ear just as he finished. It was a surreal moment, listening to Merlin’s complaining as usual, but feeling Harry’s hand rubbing his back reassuringly, handing him a glass of water. When he turned to look at Harry, steadying himself and his stomach, he heard Merlin chime in more appropriately.

 

“Holy fuck.”

 

“Merlin, Lancelot, if you don’t mind, I’ll be having a minute with Eggsy.” Harry said, reaching out to Eggsy’s face.

 

“Oh no you don’t you fuc--!!”

 

“Eggsy don--!!”

 

Their complaints died away as Harry gently took the glasses from Eggsy’s face. Eggsy let him without protest, watching him fold them (turning them off), and set them on his desk. The world was quiet and all he could see was Harry, standing casually in his office like it was a regular evening, as if he hadn’t just blown Eggsy’s world apart.

 

And wasn’t that just as per fucking usual.

 

“Harry...where the fuck have you been?” Eggsy whispered, staying at a distance from him. He wanted to hug him, to kiss him, to touch him for hours to make sure he was real and not another fleeting nightmare. Another part of him, however, wanted to punch him square in the jaw. Harry had hidden absolutely everything from him, for months! And Eggsy wasn’t one to let that go lightly.

 

“In a hospital in New York. They apparently moved me there for specialist treatment some time ago. I was in a coma for four months, and it took me another four to get my motor skills back to a workable level.” Harry explained. Eggsy could see his hand twitch towards him, like he too wanted to reach out to Eggsy. Or maybe that was simply something left over from the whole getting-shot-in-the-head episode.

 

“And so you just, what, fly back here with no notice?! Don’t try to contact me?! Are you fucking kidding me, Harry?!” Eggsy yelled, anger heavy in his voice as he felt tears coming back to his eyes. “And then on top of it all, you lied to me for months about all of this! About Kingsman!”

 

“Eggsy, I couldn’t tell you, it was protocol.” Harry said calmly.

 

“I don’t give a damn about your shite protocol when I’m your goddamn partner! People in love don’t hide entire parts of their lives, Harry! They don’t lie for months!” Eggsy shot back, exasperated.

 

“I was following orders, Eggsy. And I didn’t have any means to contact you or the others...and actually, I had to smuggle myself onto a port ship. My glasses were destroyed along with everything else I owned. A fire in the hospital after, what are they calling it, ‘V-Day’? Yes, well, that disaster apparently led to the hospital’s holdings room being destroyed....and I went to your old home as soon as I arrived, but no one was there…” Harry explained, increasingly hesitant. Eggsy stared at him, feeling the absolute betrayal clawing at him again.

 

“A text? An email? Fucking christ Harry, how long have you been here for?!” Eggsy asked. Harry looked away, and Eggsy felt his stomach fall, knotting again. He brushed a hand through his hair.

 

“How fucking long, Harry?” Eggsy demanded, looking at him sternly.

 

“...three days.”

 

“And how long in the fucking country, Harry?!” Eggsy asked, his voice rising again, feeling hoarse.

 

“A week, but Eggsy, plea--” Harry pleaded, reaching out to him. Eggsy slapped his hand away, feeling disgusted, clenching his jaw.

 

Eggsy grabbed his glasses from the table and turned on his heel, hurrying out of the house as fast as he could with Harry following after him with some drivel about his mother in the countryside. It was at the foot of the stairs that he stopped and looked up at him, fresh tears falling.

 

“You’ve fucked me around for the last time, Harry. Fuck you and your bullshit. You couldn’t call me or text me once in your little week-long vacation with mummy!? I loved you, you fucking idiot. I grieved you, I buried you, I mourned you for months. Fuck you, Harry Hart.” Eggsy spat before leaving the house, slamming the door firmly behind him.

 

--



Roxy was waiting for him when he got home, sitting on the doorstep with a blanket around her shoulders. She stood up when she saw him approaching, and held open her arms which Eggsy gladly walked into, letting her blanket fold around him.

 

“What happened? Do you wanna talk about it?” She asked kindly, looking up at him with her arms still wrapped around his middle. He buried his face into her hair, breathing in her familiar scent and finding a semblance of comfort.

 

“No. I want to get drunk and watch a movie. Is Daisy asleep?” He asked. She nodded, releasing him and opening the door.

 

“Yeah. Come on. I’ve got a bottle of gin and Pretty Woman on my laptop.” Roxy said, taking his hand. Eggsy smiled at her as he kicked off his shoes.


“You’re tops, Rox.”

Chapter Text

The next week was hell. So was the one after that. Seeing Harry around HQ, dressed in his suits again, seeming as cool and calm as ever killed Eggsy. It made his nerves rock on edge, threatening to tip over, but thankfully, Harry didn’t say a word to him. The relationship between them held the air of a frozen iceberg, and everyone seemed to know better than to mention it. Merlin seemed to be the only one who could get them to talk to one another at briefings, not taking an ounce of their shit. Roxy held her tongue, but Eggsy could see the careful glances in his direction.

 

It was the third week when Harry actually managed to corner him. Eggsy had been so careful to avoid being alone anywhere near him, but a few days shut up in his office with prep work for Roxy’s long-term mission coming up meant overnighters were unfortunately necessary. He woke up to a cup of coffee being set down on his desk.

 

Looking up, he groaned. Harry loomed over him, holding his own mug of tea.

 

“Fuck off Harry.” Eggsy mumbled, removing his glasses and rubbing his eyes.

 

“That’s no way to talk to your new boss.” Harry said with a knowing smirk. It looked a little wobbly, like the slightest word would make it fall from his face. Harry looked like he was hurting and trying to hide it. Eggsy ignored his natural instinct to comfort and reassure and maybe track down the arsehole who made Harry look like that and teach them a lesson about being callous with Harry’s heart. He swallowed past the lump in his throat caused by the knowledge that he was that arsehole and snorted derisively instead. It came out a little more sniffly than mocking, but Eggsy hadn’t started tearing up like the last fifty times Harry had tried to corner him, so he was gonna count this as a win.

 

“So they finally made you Arthur. Right, well, I don’t give a flying fuck, so if you’d kindly fuck off, boss.” Eggsy said, turning back to the papers of blueprints on his desk, routes half plotted on them. He desperately tried to ignore Harry, whose sad sigh tucked at Eggsy’s heart. It wasn’t fair, how much of an effect Harry still had on Eggsy, even after everything. Maybe if he started humming obnoxiously Harry would leave him alone.

 

No such luck. “Eggsy, you must know how much I wanted to tell you. You’re a part of Kingsman now, you know how important secrecy is. And as for later…” he trailed off before continuing, softer and more hesitant. “At first, there was no way to contact you. The chaos of a quarter of world’s population dying didn’t leave a lot of infrastructure intact. And I was hardly in any shape to pick up a phone.” he finished ruefully.

 

Eggsy was well aware of this. He had seen the records Merlin had managed to find of Harry’s hospitalization. He knew how small a chance there had been of full recovery. It was a miracle that Harry had recovered at all, let alone so much. Eggsy just wished it had happened soon enough to save his shattered heart.

 

“And after?” Eggsy asked against his better judgement. “When you were better? When you came back and didn’t even call me?”

 

Harry straightened his cuffs, a nervous habit. After finding out about Kingsman, Eggsy had thought it might have been a deliberately crafted affectation, something to solidify the cover of innocent tailor. It was perversely reassuring to see that it was real.

 

“I wanted to speak to you in person. See you face to face. I thought it might help...mitigate any fall out.”

 

Eggsy snorted. “Well, you did a piss poor job of that.”

 

Harry huffed a bitter laugh. “I’m well aware.”

 

A pregnant silence fell, words left unsaid on both sides. Finally, Harry broke it. “Eggsy, I just wanted to ask if there’s anything I can do...anything at all…”

 

“Listen, Harry, I gave ya your money an’ deeds and shit back because I didn’t want anything to do with you. You don’t own me, and you don’t owe me shit, so what I’d like for you to do is fuck off.” Eggsy said, malice in his voice. Harry stared down at him, and Eggsy could see his grip on his mug tighten, his lips pursed.

 

“I want to be with you, Eggsy.” He sounded so sad, so honest, and Eggsy had to steel himself against it, knowing how hard that kind of honesty was for Harry. Little late now, though.

 

“Then make it up to me like a normal human bein’, ya wanker! Stop sending flowers and takeout to the house and buying Daisy presents!” Eggsy shouted, standing up from his chair, throwing his arms in the air. “And stop acting jealous of me and Roxy! She’s important to me, and yeah, I live with her because I need her and she needs me, but I sure as fuck ain’t sleepin’ with a lesbian. Yeah, she’s out. Dating some princess. Woulda known that if you’d bothered to fuckin’ check in at all.”

 

Harry seemed speechless, looking at the tea in his hand, eyes downcast. Eggsy gave a small huff and walked away, leaving Harry and his stupid coffee behind him.

 

--

 

Week four was something out of a horror movie. When he’d received the call, he’d been pulling files for Roxy’s mission the next day, doing prep. It’d popped on his glasses, a call from his mother, which was unusual in itself; she always preferred to text. Leaning back in his office chair, he took the call and just heard a small scream and a clattering sound. Then Daisy’s piercing cry echoing in his ears.

 

“You fuckin’ bitch!”

 

Dean. The voice was instantly recognizable.

 

Eggsy’s blood went cold.

 

“Mum, I’m comin’, help’s comin’, I’ll be right there, just hold on.” Looking at her location in his feed, Eggsy hung up and dialed 999 immediately as he sprinted from his office, throwing the door open and blowing past someone he didn’t get to even look at, papers flying everywhere. He didn’t bother to look back.

 

He managed to make it to downtown London in ten minutes, which seemed like a lifetime, taking the tube from HQ to the downtown shop, and when he’d finally gotten to the house, two police cars and an ambulance were already there, lights flashing. It was a jolting image, seeing the home he loved dearly being invaded by the man who’d made his life hell, who he thought he’d escaped months ago when he’d finally had the bravery to do so.

 

“Mum?! Mum!” Eggsy called out when he spotted his mother, back turned to him, talking with an officer in the doorway. A police officer tried to hold him back, but his mother looked up and Eggsy felt his heart break. She was holding Daisy, who appeared fine save for the tears running down her tiny face, but his mother was sporting a fresh black eye and he could see her hands bandaged.

 

“Eggsy!” She called out, hurrying to him. The officer let Eggsy go and he rushed to them, taking them up in his arms. He kissed their faces, looking down at Daisy with a smile.

 

“Oh Daze, you alright princess? You’re alright, you’re tough. Mum, are you okay?” He asked gently, looking at them and taking Daisy from his mother’s shaking hands. “What happened?”

 

“I just...Oh Eggsy, I just opened the door and he was there and he’d been drinking…” Michelle said. Eggsy held Daisy with one arm, her tiny arms wrapping around his neck, and touched his mother’s hair with his free one.

 

“Mum, ‘salright, yeah? You’re fine.” Eggsy said, placing another kiss on her forehead, his heart still beating like a drum. He’d been terrified. Absolutely terrified of losing his mother to that man, of losing Daisy.

 

“Yeah, I’m alright. He ran away before the feds got here.” Michelle said. Eggsy sighed, but nodded.

 

“‘Salright, mum. Go on, give the officer your statement. I’ll take care o’ Daze.” Eggsy said, giving her a reassuring look. His mother wiped the tears from under her eyes, wincing slightly as she touched her newly bruised one, but put on a brave face. Eggsy always admired her for that--no matter how tough it was, she always got through it, always had a brave face for her kids.

 

“Do I look alright then?” She asked, taking a shuddering breath. Eggsy laughed.

 

“As alright as you gonna look with that shiner.” Eggsy teased. Michelle smacked him playfully before going back to the officer she’d been chatting with.

 

“Eggsyyyyy.” Daisy whined in his ear.

 

“Yeah! Daze! Whats up, Princess?” He asked, holding her back to see her face. She looked less frightened now, and Eggsy wiped the few tears she had left away from her cheeks. She looked over his shoulder, and her expression brightened immediately.

 

“Harry!”

 

Eggsy sighed before he turned around, knowing exactly which Harry in all of London gave Daisy that excited look.

 

“Eggsy, is everything alright?” Harry asked, looking slightly disheveled as if he’d been running, his usually perfect hair brushing over his eyepatch. “You ran out of the office after dialing Emergency…”

 

Eggsy looked up at him with pursed lips, but the words he could normally say to him were held for later, when he’d be away from Daisy.

 

“Nothing. We’re fine.” Eggsy muttered.

 

“Harry!” Daisy shouted right in Eggsy’s ear. Harry’s eyes went to her, smiling almost instinctively it seemed, and Eggsy rolled his eyes, ignoring his fluttering heart and looking at Daisy.

 

“Two minutes with Harry, Daisy. Two minutes, thats all.” Eggsy said firmly.

 

“Two!” She parrotted and reached for Harry. Harry took her from him, holding her in his arms and smiling at her.

 

“And how is Princess Daisy?” He asked kindly. Eggsy tried not to look at them, fond memories being brought back of Harry napping with her and playing with her while he cooked. Homey memories he’d rather forget.

 

“Very good. Are you a pirate?” She asked, touching his eyepatch. It was slightly embarrassing, having Daisy point it out, but Harry seemed to handle it with grace.  

 

“Why, yes. I even went on a ship recently.” He said. She seemed satisfied with the answer and went back to playing with his tie, pulling it from being neatly tucked into his suit.

 

“Eggsy, is everything alright? Can I do anything?” Harry asked quietly, looking concerned.

 

Eggsy studied him a moment, and almost broke then and there. He wanted this back. He wanted a stable relationship for Daisy. He wanted to be happy that Harry was back. He wanted to function as a couple, no more secrets between them. Harry looked magnificent, on top of it all. His motor skills were seeming to improve every day (Eggsy refused to feel guilty about hacking his medical files), and he wore suits as cut as ever. The goddamn eyepatch, frustratingly, just seemed to add a sense of mystery to him.

 

“No. Dean just fucked us over again. He ran off, but we’re fine. Come on, Daisy.” He said as coolly as possible. Daisy whined, but went back to Eggsy with relative ease.

 

“Bye Harry!” Daisy said, waving at him. Harry gave her a small wave and a sad smile.

 

“I’ll be back to the shop soon.” Eggsy said. Harry shook his head.

 

“No, Eggsy, take the rest of the day at least. Anything pressing can wait. Your family is more important.” he said, looking at Eggsy with soft eyes. Eggsy hesitated, and then nodded, given him the best smile he could under the circumstances. Harry seemed to take this as encouragement to continue. “When you’re done, we can discuss putting you all up in a safe house for the time being, or moving you more permanently into a better location.” He hesitated for a moment. “You deserve to feel safe in your own home, Eggsy.”

 

It felt like his throat was closing. He knew that intellectually, had known as soon as it started that Dean was wrong to treat them the way he did. It was just the first time anyone had ever said it to his face. He hadn’t realized he needed it until now.

 

“Thanks, Harry.” he managed to choke out. Harry smiled back at him, his hand twitching as if restraining himself from reaching out. Eggsy paused, then moved closer. He went on his toes, placing a quick kiss on Harry’s cheek before stepping back, losing his nerve. Eggsy snuck a look at his face before hurriedly looking away. He felt like he wasn’t allowed to look at Harry when he looked so shattered.

 

Harry didn’t say anything, just stood there in silence, leaving Eggsy to rejoin his mother, feeling like he left his heart standing with Harry yet again.

 

-----

 

The rest of the day was hellish. The cops finally left after what seemed like hours. Eggsy and his mum quickly packed a few bags, neither of them feeling like staying in a place of destroyed sanctity. Roxy showed up just as they were finished, wrapping Eggsy in a tight hug without a word before packing her own bag. The Kingsman cab waited on the curb outside to take them to a temporary safe house until they decided what their next step would be.

 

They settled in the new house quickly enough, although the new surroundings did nothing for their collective frazzled nerves. Eggsy’s mum took a very long shower and he could tell from her red eyes that she had been crying. Roxy shook with a barely suppressed rage and Eggsy knew that it was only her iron self control that kept her in the house rather than out looking for Dean. Eggsy couldn’t help but be grateful for it, that she was here with them. His heart rebelliously wished that Harry was there too, no matter how awkward it would have been.

 

He didn’t know where they stood with each other now. Eggsy could feel that he was on the way to forgiving him, letting his transgressions slip away into the past. He could understand why Harry hadn’t told him, about both the I’m-actually-James-Bond-nice-to-meet-you and the surprise-not-actually-dead secrets. He didn’t think that he would have been able to make the same decisions if their positions had been reversed, but that wasn’t really the point was it? They were different people and could make different choices and that was alright. Harry was just an overgrown baby and always made the absolute worst decision possible, but Eggsy had kinda always suspected that he was a bit of a mess. After all, he did decide that the proper response to thievery was to hire said thief.

 

Eggsy’s thoughts were interrupted by the ringing of his mobile. He glanced at the caller ID before picking up. “Hey Jamal.”

 

“Eggsy man, you alright?” Jamal sounded incredibly worried and Eggsy felt a rush of fondness.

 

“Yeah bruv, we’re fine. Just a run in with a dickhead, that’s all.” Eggsy snorted. “Story of my life.”

 

Jamal huffed a laugh. “Yeah, no shit. Listen, I don’t know if you heard yet, but I’m pretty sure you don’t have to worry ‘bout Dean no more.”

 

Eggsy frowned. “What d’you mean?”

 

Jamal sighed. “I mean that Ryan was at the Black Prince and saw ‘im being put in an ambulance. Said the feds were there too, talking to some posh git.” He hesitated and Eggsy felt his stomach fall in the silence. “Said that the poncy bastard kinda looked like your man.”

 

------



Harry opened his house door with a polite smile, which widened into something more real at the sight of Eggsy.

 

“Eggsy, what a pleasant surprise. Please -” and he was cut off when Eggsy shoved him in the chest and into the house, kicking the door closed behind them. “Eggsy -”

 

Eggsy cut him off. “The fuck did you do?”

 

Harry looked at him warily. “I’m not sure what you’re talking about.”

 

Eggsy snorted bitterly. “Really? So you know nothin’ about Dean endin’ up in custody after getting the shit beat out of him, apparently by some “posh git”? Or about a restraining order against him in mum’s name, even though we never fucking got one? You know dick-all ‘bout that, yeah? Cuz it’s a fucking mystery to me.”

 

Harry tightened his jaw, his eyes on the floor. He said nothing for moment, then sighed, dragging a hand down his face. “I thought you might be pleased.”

 

Eggsy flung his hands in the air, needing some kind of outlet for the rage swirling inside him. “Pleased? The fuck would I fucking be pleased for?!” He took a breath in an effort to calm himself. It didn’t work. “You don’t own me, Harry! You don’t run me life! You lost any right to it when you lied to me for fucking months!”

 

“That’s why I did this!” The words seemed to burst out of Harry. “You told me to prove I care for you and so I did.” His angry expression crumpled into confusion. “I don’t understand, Eggsy. Didn’t you want Dean out of your life?”

 

“That weren’t your choice to make! This is our life, me and mum and Daisy, you don’t get to decide how it’s run! You do that, you’re no better’n Dean.”

 

A thunderous frown descended over Harry’s brow. “Don’t you dare compare me to that man. I’m not trying to control you, I was simply doing something that I should have done when I met you, that someone should have done years ago. I’m only sorry I didn’t do it sooner.”

 

Eggsy was already shaking his head. “That ain’t your choice, Harry. It’s me and mum’s, and neither of us asked you to be our knight in shining armour.”

 

Harry threw his hands in the air. “What do you want from me, Eggsy? You ask me to show you that I care, so I attempt to provide for your family, and apparently I fucked that up too. So why don’t you just tell me what you want because I will do anything you ask of me. What can I do to fix this?”

 

His exhausted tone seemed to cut through the rage induced fog colouring his vision and Eggsy finally noticed that Harry was standing with his back to the wall, exits through the door and a window in clear view. His knees were slightly bent, feet shoulder-width apart, fingers slightly curled. He looked like a cornered animal, preparing to snap at the hand about to deal a blow. Eggsy recognized that stance, that tension, the need to escape. He knew it intimately from living with Dean. Dean, who Harry had practically hospitalized the night before in some demented act of devotion, like a cat bringing home a dead mouse to show affection.

 

Eggsy approached Harry slowly, noting how he forced himself to not tense up at Eggsy’s increasing proximity. He looked up at Harry for second, read the true misery in his eyes, before gently grasping Harry’s hands with his own. He laid a gentle kiss on Harry’s fingers and felt a pang in his chest at Harry’s poorly stifled gasp.

 

“This ain’t what I meant. I just - I wanted something normal and steady with you, or as normal as we could get. Y’know, dates like we did, watching movies, meeting my mum. No more lying and fighting and not talking to each other. I -” Eggsy felt his throat tighten and pressed his face into Harry’s palm, holding his hand to his face. “I just wanna do whatever people in love do.”

 

Harry’s fingers tightened on his face. He rubbed his thumb over Eggsy’s burning cheek and coaxed him to look up. Harry’s eyes were the softest he had seen them, staring deeply into Eggsy’s for a moment. Then he leaned forward and pressed his forehead to Eggsy’s. Eggsy let him eyes flutter closed, focussing on the feeling of Harry’s closeness after so long being apart, after hating him and wanting him every time he saw him at HQ.

 

“Then how about this?” Harry’s voice was soft, brushing against Eggsy’s ears as delicately as his breath on Eggsy’s face. “I love you. More than I thought I was capable of loving anyone. I want you to be the last thing I see before I go to sleep, and the first thing I see when I wake the next morning. I want to kiss your lips everyday, make love to you every chance I get. I expect we’ll still have our problems and the occasional fight, but I want to work through them with you, knowing that regardless of anything else that you’re mine and I’m yours. I want to be beside you everyday for the rest of my life and realize each day how blessed I am to have met you.” Harry’s lips pressed a series of kisses down the side of Eggsy’s face, until they lingered next to his lips. “How does that sound, darling?”

 

Eggsy smiled, pressing his lips to Harry’s. “Sounds like a damn good start.”