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Off Duty

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The result is final; Milan 3 – Ajax 2, progression is assured, the interviews over, the fans applauded. Pippo and Jon still squabble good naturedly over whose goal won the thing but my duty, for the moment, is satisfied. I said all the right things; “a hard won match, fought ‘til the end…difficult opponents.” It’s a script learned too well for mistakes, second nature now. I don’t speak my real thoughts; that we were overconfident and lucky, Ajax overconfident and careless. I don’t say that Peinar’s a twat and Ibrahimovic a bastard. It’s not a script I chose but I accept it as part of the football, part of the life I love.

Sandro’s been dragged off to the treatment room to examine his face after his bust up with Ibrahimovic. The rest of the team mills round, laughing while they shower and dress. They’re good natured when I urge them to hurry up and piss off. Sandro will be back soon and I have a lecture to deliver. My cock stirs at the memory of Sandro facing down Ibrahimovic, face bathed in blood and savagery; a lecture, yes…or something.

I may mention the futility of trying to trying to rip Ibrahimovic a new one on the sidelines. Sandro will mutter sulkily E chi se ne frega? I’ll answer, UEFA, and that will be the end of it. Yes, I’ll bring it up later, over drinks in the players’ lounge, not here. Not when we’re here, alone together. There are other places; bedrooms at anonymous hotels, a discrete address where people mind their own business. They don’t suit tonight; tonight wants a dirty, stolen hour in a dressing room that smells of sweat and men.

He can move as quietly as a cat and I shiver in surprise to see him standing at the door. Twenty minutes with the doctor hasn’t improved his temper, Sandro never could stand to be fussed over. An arched brow is all the instruction I get; shoes, shorts, shirt, shin guards fall to the floor. The armband goes with them; there are no captains in here, now. There is freedom in surrender and pleasure in giving of yourself, Sandro knows this but he’s perpetually surprised that I do. Experience can’t erase the flash of wonder in his eyes each time I sink to my knees.

He sighs when I release his cock and growls when I stroke him, smearing pre-cum over the head. I pay homage with my hands and tease with my tongue until a slap warns me to get serious. He purrs in triumph when I lower my head and take him all in, a silky, angry sound that’s mine alone. His hands move to my shoulders, gripping me tightly. There’s dried blood on his fingers, mingling with the sweat on my skin, salty and metallic. The scent makes me groan and my hips thrust vainly forward against empty air. Sandro laughs, tugging me off by my hair. He knots his hand in it to thrust me away.

“Wall.” His instructions are always brief; he dominates through action. The wall has been warmed by the shower but my back is cold and exposed and for the first time I feel vulnerable. Hands on my hips, chest pressed against my back and a thigh forcing mine apart and I’m whole again.

Sandro is football on a spring afternoon, grass, sweat and sunshine mingling with the antiseptic smell of doctors and something unknown; Ibrahimovic, perhaps. Sandro is bruising hands and filthy Roman words whispered with each thrust inside me. He is cruelty as he comes and pulls out, leaving me aching on the shower floor. Benevolence as his hand works between my legs and he silences my cries with a kiss.

It’s hard to wash the scent and feel of him off me. The balance of power restores itself smoothly as we dress. I straighten Sandro’s tie and he collects our dirty kits. He opens the door and I step out into the tunnel first. His shoulders relax and he falls a deferential hairsbreadth behind me.

“Oh, Sandro,” I recall my lecture “about this little scuffle of yours…”

He snorts, “E chi se ne frega?”