Q was swaying by his work station, legs feeling wobbly and unstable, he thought the only thing holding him up was his strong will and determination.
He barely slept last night, maybe two hours on the couch in his office, and upon waking up he promptly threw up what he managed to eat before falling asleep – couple biscuits and a gulp of sugary water. He couldn’t stomach his favourite Earl Grey for couple of months now, even a whiff of it making him feel totally nauseous so he switched up to the next best thing – hot water with two spoonful of sugar, sometimes with a dash of lemon or apple juice. It made him feel warm inside and the empty calories gave him a much needed energy bust.
He blamed the stress. Terrorist’s attacks all over Europe didn’t make for peaceful times and the longer the situation prevailed, the worse it seemed to become. Agent’s working overtime with barely a day rest between missions and Q-branch working shifts, being operative 24/7. Q didn’t quite remember the last time he was in his flat, the sense of responsibility holding him firmly in place deep in the bowels of MI6.
But the dark haired man felt he would soon be forcefully reminded of his humanity and connected to it weakness if his stomach wouldn’t settle by lunchtime, Q would be forced to go visit medical. He could barely stand as it was. Brow breaking out in cold sweat as his stomach cramped painfully for the up tenth time.
The boffin gave a deep sigh, rubbing a hand over his mutinous stomach.
He just started to type a new line of code when a wave of really intense pain shot from his navel southward and he could feel something start to seep out from his backside.
‘Great, diarrhea. From water, stress and air condition.’ He thought.
“I'll be right back” he muttered to one of his minions and hastily made his way towards the bathrooms, quick strides carrying him through the expanse of his department as he silently prayed that he’ll make it out before anything could be seen on his trousers.
Thankfully no one stood in his path and soon with a sigh of relief he was in the bathroom.
Q was just about to enter the stall when another wave of pain hit him, knocking breath out of his lungs, making his knees weak. He stumbled towards a wall, knees buckling as he slid down to the floor, his breath coming in labored gasps now.
It was so not a normal diarrhea… Did someone poison him? He wouldn’t put it past some of MI6 enemies to coerce one of his minions to put poison in the Quartermaster’s cup.
Sitting on the bathroom floor, back against the wall, Q spread his trembling legs apart and reached his soaked bottom. His hand came back bloodied and Q whined lowly in his throat. His body spasmed and Q could feel a new gush of wetness leak out, spreading red all over the floor. Reaching for his phone, Q managed to push the button that would connect him to medical before he passed out.
Q woke up on his back feeling dizzy, disoriented. Weak.
But he didn’t open his eyes straight away. Even if he wasn't a field operative, all MI6 employees were obliged to go through annual training in case of kidnapping, attack on MI6 or couple other scenarios. So the boffin kept his eyes close, his body still and tried to make us much sense of the situation as his clouded mind could.
First he tried to take stock of his health.
He was lying on his back, in a bed, as he could feel nice sheets beneath his fingers, a pillow underneath his head… But his hips were propped up, spine curving in, his knees slightly splayed.
And it hurt. He hurt between his legs, and his insides felt like someone took a baseball to it... From the inside... Q panicked.
They didn't train males to expect being raped! He... He didn't remember a party, didn't remember taking anyone home. The last thing he remembered was... bathroom. His eyes opened wide, frantic and only now he could hear the rapid blipping of machines, some commotion at the doors and then there were hands holding him down, hushing voices telling him it was alright, everything was fine, and then the world got blurry and dark again.
When he woke up for the second time he was much more aware.
He could clearly hear the bips of the machines. Medical. They must have found him in the bathroom.
It took him awhile before he managed to open his bleary eyes and look around.
Yup, medical. And he was still on his back, hips still propped up.
Reaching an uncoordinated hand out towards the bedside table, he managed to locate his glasses and with his limb trembling and doing weird wobbly movement he managed to put the spectacles on his nose.
There was the nurse button in his left hand and he proceeded to push it, closing his eyes tiredly as he waited for someone to come and update him on everything that happened.
Soon enough the boffin could hear footsteps approaching. The doors to his room slid open and one of the doctors stepped in. Q had seen him around couple of times, but never so much as exchanged a word with the man.
“Quartermaster, good to see you back with us. You gave us quite a scare with your reckless behavior. But before you panic again, you’re both fine, and-
“Both?” Q was confused. Did someone else from Q-branch got poisoned too?
“Yes, both, but if you want it to stay that way, you need to take better care of yourself.” The doctor said sternly.
“Wait, both?” The Quartermaster was totally baffled. Why him taking better care of himself could affect someone’s else life? Unless… “I’m… I’m pregnant?”
The doctor’s anger faded to disbelief.
“Quartermaster, you’re four months along. How could you not know?”
The man on the bed felt his eyes water.
“I didn’t… oh help me God, I had no idea…” he sobbed out.
“Shh... you must be calm now, everything’s fine. You’ll be on bed rest for couple of months, maybe until the end of your pregnancy, but you’ll be fine and will carry to term. We managed to find you in time. You’re malnourished, anemic, but a healthy diet and a lot of rest and there’s no permanent damage done.”
Q looked down at his body, trembling hands hovering over his midsection.
“How come I didn’t notice? Four months… I don’t even have a bump!” he looked up at the doctor helplessly, making the man smile at him despite himself.
“But you do… It’s small, yes, but it’s already there. You’ll probably have a growth spurt when you reach your fifth month. And before you ask – your baby is perfectly developed, everything is within the norms for male pregnancies.”
The boffin looked back down, hands finally lowering and cradling his stomach.
And yes, there it was, the soft swell that he just… didn’t notice. Or chose not to notice in all the commotion going around him.
He was pregnant.
“Is there anything I can do for you now? Q-branch has been notified you won’t be going back for some time, anything else?
After a moment of silence, Q replied, his voice strained but steady.
"I need double-oh seven back in London."
He slept a lot. And when he didn’t sleep he ate.
The medical went through a wide array of foods and in cooperation with the cooks they managed to find foods that were both nutritious, healthy and didn’t make the Quartermaster puke his stomach out.
They gave him back his laptop, but he was not allowed to do any serious work on it. It was mostly some emails, quick advice or a very short chat with one of his minions to give directions. And books and movies he didn’t have time before to read and watch. Now it seemed he had all the time in the world, and it was both relaxing and stressing because it allowed him time to think.
Go through his situation again and again, analyze how he got there, try and plan for the future, decide what he really wanted.
He was pregnant.
He was going to have a baby from a quick shag against his work bench in the Q-branch.
The boffin really should have paid better attention to his contraception shots schedule and who he let fuck him without a condom.
Q bit his lip, fingers pressing against his eyes, glasses pushed up.
How is he going to manage to carry to term, give birth and then bring up his baby all alone?
Would they fire him?
Bed rest and no stress - basically two things you just can't have in MI6. And a baby. Totally not in the employee manual.
"Q?" came a weary, slightly apprehensive question from the doorway
The boffin let his hands fall down to the beddings, smoothing the material over his midsection unconsciously, as he looked up at the figure looming in the entrance.
He asked to have the agent delivered to him the moment his feet touched the English soil, and hopefully, the said agent was still in the dark about the purpose of this little kidnapping.
"Double-oh seven, please, do come in."
He wouldn't use the agent's name.
They weren't in a relationship, they weren't even friends. The only thing between them was work, the shameless flirting, and the amazing sex with Q bent over his table, trousers around his ankles as Bond pounded him from behind, fingers leaving vivid bruises in the delicate skin of the boffin's hips
And now, the possibility of a baby from a high risk pregnancy.
The agent moved inside the room with easy, his steps sure and easy, choosing to stand by the foot if the bed rather than sit down in a chair on Q's left.
Bond looked thankfully unhurt, dressed up in a fine looking, soft grey suit and white shirt that made his eyes seem even more striking blue than they were usually.
The agent didn't say a word, apparently waiting for Q to take charge of the conversation.
The boffin gave a weak smile, lips a slight tremble, and then giving himself a mental shake and then firmly nodding his head, he started to speak.
"I'd ask you to sit, but I’m quite sure you would decline, and really, never mind, it won't take long. There's no easy way around it, so I'll just say it bluntly. Apparently I'm pregnant, it's high risk, and yours, just so you know. You have a right to know. I’m handing your care over to R, along with other agents. I'll be doing coding, mostly, for the next couple of months, no agent-in-the-field-leading. Oh, and you're grounded in London for the next five months, but besides that you're free to do what you want. Mostly. Thank you double-oh seven, you're dismissed." Q rushed through his little speech and then turned his head away, not wanting to see the agent’s reaction.
After what seemed like ages, Bond finally made his way towards the chair by Q's bed and sat heavily, head bowed.
The boffin kept his head turned away, biting his lip, hands nervously smoothing the bed sheet again, arms ending up laying limply by his sides. He was completely unprepared when he felt a warm, broad hand making contact, entwining their fingers.
"You're not alone Q."
The Quartermaster scoffed.
"Bond, we both know that what happened was just stress relief and nothing more."
The agent looked at him with a little, hopeful and warm smile, giving the boffin's fingers a gentle squeeze.
"Do we, Quinn?”
Four Months Ago
Thank you for your amazing comments! Much appreciated! *kisses*
Four months ago
Never had Q been so happy that he had total control over Q-branch, it’s safety and monitoring as he was now, laying sprawled over his desk, pants around his ankles as his well-fucked hole still convulsed weakly.
He was breathing heavily, sweat dripping from his nose and sliding over his right cheek still firmly plastered to the surface of his work station, hands laying now uselessly by his head, just seconds ago trying to countermeasure strong thrusts pounding his asshole to putty.
He heard a breathy chuckle coming from behind him, somewhere to his right.
“Bond, one inappropriate comment out of you now and I swear you’re going to regret it on your next mission.” Q mumbled, trying to make his voice as threatening as he could, which wasn’t much now that he was so well fucked and tired. He must make quite a spectacle now – bare bottom on full display, long, trembling legs trying to keep him upwards.
“Then I better keep my mouth shut and just enjoy the view, which, if you’re wondering, is quite breathtaking…”
Q hid his face in his arms, while simultaneously pushing his torso more fully on the table to lessen the strain on his legs.
“I hate you, Bond.”
After a moment he could hear the agent start to shuffle around too, probably getting ready to leave after their romp, so Q startled when he felt a warm wet cloth running up his butt crack, rubbing softly over his sore rim.
“Easy, Q” Bond murmured as he proceeded to clean up, settling one hand over Q’s spine, rubbing up and down to placate him.
Then he moved his free hand to the younger man’s hip, fingers settling perfectly over the bruises he made mere moments ago, eliciting a soft groan from the cherry lips.
The blond draped his body over Q’s back, wrapping arms around and tugging the unresistant body closer to him, pulling the Boffin’s naked bottom flush against his fully clothed crotch.
Q moaned weakly as sure hands cradled his oversensitive penis, running the cloth over the delicate skin and then down to press against his taint, pushing a sharp gasp from his lungs.
Bond pressed an open mouth kiss against his sweaty throat, just above the collar of his shirt, nose nudging behind Q’s ear tickling softly.
“You’re exquisite, Quinn.” James murmured, running one hand up the quartermaster’s quivering stomach, underneath his rumpled shirt and sweater to tweak a pert nipple.
“I might be young but if you think I can get it up again so soon-“
“Shh… Rest and let me take care of you.”
And Q let him.
He let Bond kiss and fondle his way down his body and tug his underwear and pants up his legs. Let the agent drape over him again and push more kisses to his neck and cheek as the older man tucked his penis back in his trousers, smoothing the shirt and sweater back down over it.
“Do you want me to take you home?” James asked him softly, tugging Q’s unresistant body up, supporting his weight against his own chest.
“003’s mission starts in three hours, I need to be here. The couch in my office will suffice” Q answered regretfully, and then huffed out a chuckle as Bond swiped him up in his arms bridal-style and carried him over to Q’s wished location, setting the boffin down gently, spreading him over the surface of the couch.
“Thank you, James” Q mumbled sleepily as his eyes closed. The last things he remembered was the agent tugging of his shoes off and then covering him with a blanket.
Later, Quinn wasn’t sure if the gentle kiss he felt against his temple was dream or reality.
Still Four Months Ago
Q wakes up with half an hour to spare.
Thankfully there is no one in the office yet, so he has time to delete all recordings of his lapse of judgement, pick up his stuff from the floor and put it again on the desk, and to go shower.
Despite Bond's gentle ministrations with the wet towel, he was feeling very sticky between his arse cheeks, still leaking Double-oh Seven's come from his pleasantly sore hole.
Getting under hot spray, Q ran soapy hands all over his body, unconsciously chasing the ghosts of Bond's own hands, pressing fingers to the bruises left behind on his hips and thighs.
He always bruised easily, he didn't hold it against the agent for maybe being too rough with him, too demanding. For him, the bruises were a sign of passion, want, even if for one, short moment in time. They were a pleasant memory, one that would stay with him a little bit longer than the ache between his legs, a little bit longer than the elusive, handsome agent himself, probably already gone, chasing this or that skirt for business or for pleasure.
He was there, in their place yesterday's night. He was now running his fingers over his round bottom, as Bond did then, fingers smoothing over the swollen, sore openness. He could still feel Double-oh Seven there, in his core, hot and insistent and oh so gentle...
He didn't want to remember that.
He didn't need that distraction.
Shivering, but for a totally different set of reasons now, Q quickly washed off the soap and got ready to face the day, and if he was a little bit more snappy than usual, well, it was a hard time for everybody.
Back to the Present
“If you’re quite finished with your drama, I think it’s time you saw your little bundle of joy, don’t you think?”
The doctor enter the room, pushing a cart with ultrasound machine in front of himself.
The unexpected visit startled Q out of his stupor, gaze flying up from where it was stuck watching his and Bond’s entwined fingers.
“Ah, yes, please.” He said to the doctor as calmly as he could manage. Bond only continued to smile at him softly.
“Quartermaster, please scoot a little lower on the bed and fold up your gown.”
Q could feel a blush tint his cheeks, but he complied with the doctor’s orders, uncovering his stomach. And the bump. How he managed to overlook all his symptoms and his body changing he still had no idea. The boffin looked up at Bond and found the man’s gaze resting on his swelling stomach, face somber and passive.
The moment was again broken by the doctor who already set up the machine and proceeded to squirt cold gel all over Q’s midsection.
In a matter of moments the screen flickered, and there it was!
Q’s face scrunched up to try and hold tears at bay, failing miserably. He gasped out, so full of emotions he could almost burst. It was so improbable! And yet, here it was… The curve of a spine, little feet, a shapely head with a button nose.
Q broke down crying.
Afterwards the doctor cleaned him up, gathered the equipment and left them alone in the room again.
“May I?” Bond’s hand hovered over Q’s stomach, and the boffin nodded weakly. The older man’s hand felt so warm now, the wide spreaded fingers almost totally covering the swell.
“One hell of a stress relief, eh?” Bond joked softly making Q huff out a quiet laugh.
“Doesn’t feel like it now…” The boffin looked up at the agent, their eyes meeting.
“No it doesn’t.” Holding the gaze steady Bond leaned in for a gentle kiss, his hand still splayed wide over Q’s stomach, a warm, steady presence.
“Double-Oh Seven?” Came the doctor’s amused voice from the doorway again, making Q jump a little. “The Quartermaster is on total pelvic rest for at least another month and a half, please don’t get handsy.” Leaving behind a baffled double-oh, he vanished again.
“Pelvic rest?” He asked.
“He meant no orgasms…”
“Oh.” The agent gave him a rueful smile. “Then we’ll save them all for later."
Without any questions asked Q got issued a private apartment on the top floors of MI6 with a splendid view over the river and a fully equipped prenatal care unit. A forever faithful team of minions installed a big, fully adjustable screen on a sturdy, crane-like structure in Q’s bedroom for which Q was immensely grateful. Being on bed rest was no walk in the park.
He was under strict orders to keep his body in a position that didn’t put any pressure on his cervix, which meant having his lower half always someway elevated and as he progressed he was advised to lay on his left side as much as possible compared to other, much more comfortable options.
Thankfully, after the initial scare, his pregnancy was developing as fine as it could at this point. He was visited every other day by a nurse and twice a week by the doctor, Jacob. And his every waking moment was haunted by Bond.
From an occasional visit, to spending whole days hovering near Q's bed, at some point the boffin realized that Bond has moved in. He was handing Q his glasses in the morning, checking if he ate in the evening, lurked in the shadows reading a book out loud in a soft, almost whispery voice when Q couldn’t sleep and was always there, cuddling him close in the middle of the night when his stomach and hips ached, skin and bones shifting and stretching to accommodate the growing baby.
Q never realised the moment it started to feel normal for him to wake up with Bond wrapped around his back, one hand possessively draped over Q’s hip, fingers just grazing over the ever growing bump as the agent breathed warmly against the back of his neck.
“We're really in it together then.” Q stated rather than asked one quiet morning when they lazed around in the bed, the Boffin’s head resting on the agent's shoulder, cuddled against his chest.
“That was rather obvious since that first night, wasn’t it?”
“I guess it was…” lifting his head up a little to look into the blue eyes Q smiled softly, pressing a kiss against Bond’s mouth. “Thank you James.”
“Bond, what’s going on?” Q shouted out sleepily, having just woken up from his nap to the sounds of arguing from the living room.
The voices quieted, followed by angry stomping coming his way, Bond appearing in the door frame.
“It’s nothing, don’t worry, it’s just Mallory making stupid jokes.” He murmured coming closer and helping Q prop up a little higher, fluffing his pillows almost as an afterthought.
“What? What jokes?”
“Good evening, Quartermaster, sorry to disturb, but I need Double-oh Seven in Beirut ASAP.”
Mallory appeared by the door, his face apologetic and demanding at the same time.
Bond turned around and faced his supervisor, his pose deceptively calm.
“I told you, I’m not going.” he said slowly.
“You seem to forget I’m your employer, and it's in your contract that you're on my every beck and call and I can send you wherever and whenever your country needs you.”
“Bond, you should go, you’re getting stir crazy here-” Q tried to reason softly, but was quickly interrupted.
“No. You told me yourself I’m grounded in London till the end of your pregnancy, to not make you stress out, and that's still months away.”
“No, you need me here, so I'm not going to just up and leave.”
Q fell silent at that, eyes skirting away.
“You thought I'll leap at the chance to go out on a mission, that I've forgotten what you asked me? What do you think this is? Me playing house because I feel guilty because I knocked you up?”
Q opened his mouth to say something, but closed it with a snap after couple unsuccessful tries to find a correct response.
Bond's shoulders fell. It was obvious that despite the talks, the reassurance, the kisses, Q still didn't trust him, didn't feel like Bond was there to stay. Support, yes, stay? Didn't think, or even hope.
The agent squared his shoulders and faced Mallory again.
"I'm sorry, sir,” his voice dripping venom on the last word “but I'll be unable to attend to the mission, I'm soon getting married."
Q's eyes were back on him, blown wide in surprise, but mouth turning into an angry scowl.
"I'm not marrying you!"
"I didn't ask you yet, did I?" Bond seethed exasperated and walked to a dresser standing in the opposite corner if the room pulling one drawer out with a sharp tug and rummaging through it. After a moment he turned around, something clutched in his fist.
He strode to the bed presenting Q with a little black box.
"James... " Q whispered almost breathlessly, all fight flowing out of him, replaced with this painfully deep feeling of raw wonder, sadness and sorrow. He felt like he disappointed James, doubted him, while the agent…
"I'm sorry, I wanted to make it special, but if I didn't do it now you'd never believe me later when I said I planned on proposing to you. Quinn, marry me."
Feeling his eyes tear up, bloody hormones, Q smiled brokenly.
"Still didn't sound like a question."
Rolling his eyes, Bond fell to his knees, hand outstretched towards Q, holding out the box.
"Quinn, darling, will you marry me?"
They married two weeks later, the doctor allowing Q to get up and about for a short while.
Bond insisted on buying Q a proper suit, and the boffin graciously agreed, but couldn't help grumbling underneath his breath that it was a waste of money to make him a tailored three piece suit while he was almost seven months pregnant. "Still, I'm glad you're not insisting on a dress." he joked weakly at one point.
Having spent the last weeks only in comfortable, loose pajamas it was hard to get properly dressed in something more constraining, but seeing the worshiping, amazed glaze in Bond's eyes more than made up for it.
Despite Q’s protests and attempts to keep the ceremony simple and the guest number to just him, James and a priest, the wedding ended up quite a social affair. Department heads and their families along couple of closest minions from Q-branch made quite a crowd.
Thankfully, minding Q’s health, he wasn’t required to stay long. They exchanged vows and rings and a small peck on the lips, that Q now secretly regretted. He should have full on snogged James, not this… almost uncaring display of ceremonials. His head felt like a storm was going inside and he almost felt like puking from all this constraint emotions. He was happy. Immensiously so. But still a part of him was afraid. Afraid to be left behind, alone, to show affection and then be abandoned.
He saw a flash in his peripheral and he turned abruptly towards it, his face going from angry to a tearful scowl in a matter of seconds seeing James’ smiling face, the man holding up a camera.
“Hey, Darling, what’s wrong?” Bond rushed to him seeing his pregnant husband’s face scrunching up.
Q wrapped his arms around the older man, hiding his face in his neck, breathing deeply and trying to control himself.
“I’m so sorry.”
“About what, Quinn?”
The boffin didn’t reply straight away, biting his lip hard as he tightened the embrace. Then he looked up into the worried blue gaze.
Q couldn’t help smiling when he heard the cat calls as he snogged the living daylights out of his Husband.
Couple of days after the wedding, Q found a picture on the fridge, pinned there with a heart-shaped magnet and he couldn’t help smiling.
Thank you all for such amazing and motivating comments!
I'm happy to be able to put a smile on your faces :))
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Couple months later
"Bond, I swear, if you don't call back within the next two minutes, I'm going to put glitter in your beloved Aston Martin's air vents! You were supposed to be here half an hour ago to take care of Jacques. I have a mission to oversee and I can't do it with a colicky baby over my shoulder!" Q vexed angrily into his phone held between his ear and shoulder, one hand holding a softly crying Jacques to his neck, the other warming up a pea filled pillow in the microwave to put against the baby's aching tummy.
He was so angry and frustrated he felt he was about to scream. Or sit down and cry along with his infant.
There wasn't really much that could be done for his son's aches, it just had to pass and it was driving Q mad. He hated not being able to do anything to help someone he cared about so much. He couldn't hack anything, no amount of code written would change anything.
Or maybe... Move some funding moneys to the Medical, make them research it more…
It still would take months probably, before they found something, drug development took ages...
The boffin groaned to himself.
Where was his loving, adoring husband that promised to cherish them both and stick together through thick and through thin when he needed him the most?
Jacques hiccuped against his neck, a loud wail breaking out a second later. Q rubbed his back soothingly, checking once more if the little pillow achieved the needed temperature. Judging it appropriate he took it out of the microwave, pressings it against his own cheek as a final precaution. Shifting the baby a little he put the pillow between the boy's tummy and Q's own chest. It allowed him to still hold his sobbing son close while the heat helped to soothe the baby's sour mood.
They tried everything Q could find out googling and interrogating everyone's grandmas, and the warm pillow was so far the winner.
The young man rocked softly side to side, holding the slowly settling and sniffling baby close, one hand running over the short, blond hair as he murmured a song under his breath. The baby was a spitting image of Bond now, from the pale blond hair to the baby blue eyes and Q couldn’t help but wonder if he’ll get darker as he grows or stay this light as he is.
It was another fifteen minutes before his phone gently vibrated against his tight.
"You can choose the color, you bastard, but that's it." Q seethed quietly into the receiver. "be on your guard, because it's going to hit you when you least expect it."
“Q? Everything all right?” Moneypenny. Of course. Of course Bond was still off the radar and the MI6 was chasing their quartermaster to do his job as he’s supposed to, but he bloody well can’t because one stupid agent just chose not to keep his word! Or pick up the bloody phone!
“Peachy, Eve, just peachy.” Q sighed resigned. “I’ll log in as soon as I can, James is still AWOL and Jacques is still colicky, I just managed to quiet him down. I trust R is managing the situation, yes?”
“You should find a nanny, would make both your life’s easier. Or I could come and-”
“Thank you Eve, but I just hear the lock turning. I’ll be available online in a moment.” Q lied and quickly disconnected the call.
He liked Moneypenny, but there was no way he was leaving his son with her unsupervised. Everything that made her a good agent in the field made Q’s hair stand on his back while applied to infant care. Just no.
Maybe when Jacques would be older. Like fifty. Maybe.
His baby was finally sleeping soundly against his chest, and he felt his heart melt for the up-tenth time. Pressing his lips to the soft hair on the baby’s forehead Q couldn't help but shudder, thinking what a miracle his son was, how close he came to losing him…
“I’m going to glue the comm to your ear, Double-Oh Seven.” He said softly finally for real hearing his husband enter their apartment.
“I’m sorry darling, M wanted a chat, couldn’t exactly decline.”
Bond wrapped his arms around the boffin and their sleeping baby boy.
“Has he really been so unsettled?”
“Unfortunately yes, kept crying his eyes out since the morning, I just managed to calm him down not five minutes ago.” Q looked up reproachably at the father of his baby. “I need to go log in, but I’m wary of letting him go. I don’t want to wake him…”
“You could have called Eve in, you know?”
“We’ve been through this, I’m not letting her anywhere near my loved ones.”
“Then how come you let her assist me on last month’s mission?”
“Because he’s my first born son, and you’re just the sperm donor that is always late!” Q seethed through his teeth, but upon seeing Bond’s stricken expression the wind left his sails. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean it.” He felt close to tears again.
“I’m sorry too.” James said morosely, voice void of emotions, and Q felt that it wasn’t the end of the issue, that his unfortunate words have really touched Bond deeply. “Come on, let me take Jacques- No, it’s going to be just fine, he won’t wake up, don’t fuss- and you go deal with the end of the world. We’ll wait for you in the bed with some take out, ok? Sounds good?”
Q nodded weakly against Bond’s shoulder.
They transferred the sleeping infant from arms to arms without the little one mewling even once and Q felt some of the stress and worry lifting.
“Thank you.” He pressed a kiss to the corner of James’ mouth. “I shouldn’t be long…”
“We’ll be fine. See you soon.”
When Q came out of his temporarily set up headquarters in one of the spare rooms of the apartment it was really late. The lights were out, with only a smudge of light coming from the bedroom at the end of the corridor.
Q dragged his feet towards it, deathly tired, but he knew it wasn’t the end of his miserable day. They still needed to talk about their fight.
He banged his fingers lightly on the doors before pushing them open and walking inside.
Bond was on the bed reading a book, Jacques sleeping soundly on his chest covered by a deep blue baby blanket. They looked adorable together and Q just couldn’t help smiling.
But then the blond man on the bed looked up at him, face blank, and it made Q’s smile freeze on his lips and die down.
The agent got up, moving slowly so as not to jostle the sleeping baby, and put the infant in the little cradle they had on the bed. “Go lay down” he said to Q moving past him “I’ll bring you food here.”
“James…” the boffin tried to stop his husband as the man walked by him, but he didn’t even pause.
Checking up on his son, Q took a deep breath, set up the baby monitor and closing the bedroom doors behind himself he went in search of the agent.
The man was in the kitchen, putting food from plastic containers to a plate.
“James, wha-” Q started before he got interrupted.
“From the start you haven’t been treating the baby as ours. It was always yours. Your pregnancy, your baby, your son.” James braced his arms, hands folded into fists, on the counter, his body still turned away from Q. “I’ve been more invested in this relationship than you ever did from the very beginning. For you it was ‘stress relief’, but for me…” Bond finally turned around to face the Quartermaster. “Dear God, Quinn. You’re all I ever wanted. I yearned for you for months…” Bond bowed his head, shoulders slumping.
Q cleared his throat nervously, opening his mouth to say something, argue-
“Stop. I know today was vexing for you, but the little spat drove the point home for me finally.” He looked up at Q. “It’s fine. I’ll take what you’re willing to give me and I won’t pressure you to love me, when you so clearly don’t.”
“You’re never here James!” Q burst out angrily. “I know! I know. It’s your job, I know better than anyone what you do and how your life works, but even between your missions you’re never… here. Like today! I can count on you in the field, I can trust you to make big decisions in favour of Jacques and me, but I can’t count on you in the little, everyday things!”
“See? It’s again Jacques and you, not us! It’s never us. And I’m not here, because you clearly don’t want me here!”
Q felt tears spring to his eyes.
This day was a nightmare from the moment he woke up to an empty bed again, James long gone to God only know’s where, through Jacques colicks, the mission that went to shit, and now this.
He turned around on his heel and headed straight for the couch in the living room sitting down heavily, pushing his glasses up as he hid his face in his hands.
He could hear James following behind him.
“I’m afraid to lose you, James. And I don’t mean the missions, though they scare me in their own right, but what I’m really afraid of is losing your interest.” Q looked up at the agent looming in the doorway. “You’re a womanizer, James. You have been for years, and I’m sorry for not believing that a couple of month of flirting, a quick shag over a table and then you finding out you’re going to be a father is going to change your inclinations.”
“I married you for God’s sake! Doesn’t it mean anything to you?” Bond seethed angrily.
“You’re a good man, James, doing what is proper when you have the chance. You’re really scarcely here anymore, when was the last time you ate breakfast with...us? I can’t help but wonder when you’ll get bored and won’t return even to sleep here.” Q’s voice gone down to whisper with the end of his sentence. The boffin swallowed hard looking at Bond’s passive face, blue eyes glacier-cold and looking to the side instead of at him.
The silence dragged out painfully and Q bit his lip trying to rein his emotions in.
“We need to move.” Bond finally spoke.
“What we need is for you to be more specific. Move where? Or how?”
“Out of MI6. You don’t need Medical at your beck and call anymore. So, we should move out. Find a place of our own so we’ll both have a chance to not be on hand for everyone here, because damn them all to hell, they think they own my every breathing moment between missions just because I’m on MI6 grounds, take real time off from work. If you want it, that is. If you want there to be an us.”
Q nodded his head, eyes finally overflowing with tears.
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Happy angsty Monday!
Q hired a new intern at it was driving Bond insane.
The man was taller and broader than James, dark blond with hazel green eyes and a crooked smile with fucking dimples. And he was a total nerd, specialist in coding and apparently good enough at it to make even Q impressed.
Whenever James came around Q-branch while his husband was there, which became more and more frequent lately, Jacques perched on the boffin’s hip or in the playpen set up for him in the corner of the room, glass walls to tune out the noise but perfectly on display for watching over. Along with cameras, microphones and enough additional tech to monitor his every breath. Q was thorough and not taking any chances and still didn’t find anyone trustworthy enough to fill the position of a much needed nanny.
Bond wasn’t pushing. He himself was wary to leave their son unsupervised with anyone for longer periods of time.
Having Jacques in Q-branch with the minions watching over him from time to time wasn’t ideal, but it was for now the best option they had when James was on missions or otherwise unavailable and Q had to actually go into MI6 office.
And he was breastfeeding, so separation would be hard on both bearing father and infant.
Out of all minions to take care of Jacques, it seemed the tall, green-eyed moron had the best approach to babies and was most often seen carrying the little boy around and reading to him.
What was worse, Q seemed to like him too. He chose the bastard to be the one to help him when they were moving out of MI6 to their new five bedroom apartment, and Bond was gone in the middle of their move. Of course M would choose that moment to send Double-oh Seven on a three weeks mission to Cairo.
So when Bond came back home to their new place, dead tired and bleeding from couple places and found the tall minion in his living room, reading to a smiling Jacques, he was pissed.
Q’s mumbling explanations and their guest leaving in a hurry didn’t help matters.
It was obvious the two spent a lot of time together and had an easy, relaxed manner around themselves, joking and laughing and worse of all, touching.
Not much really, but Q was a very reserved person so even a friendly pat on the shoulder from him, or one he didn’t flinch from, was a great achievement. It took Bond months before he could stand close enough to the Quartermaster for their shoulders to touch without the man moving away a second after.
And there they were one day in the Q-branch, Q and the tall minion, passing a fussy, hungry Jacques between each other, hands and arms brushing, tall asshole in Q’s personal space with the dark haired man not moving an inch while they finished their conversation.
The other minions fell silent when Bond walked in on that, atmosphere growing tense.
“Q, he’s hungry.” Bond murmured making his husband turn to him, slightly flustered, shuffling quickly to his office to breastfeed in peace and quiet, James on his heels.
“You’re awfully cozy with that jerk.” He allowed himself to comment.
“His name’s Ashton, just so you know. He’s helpful, brilliant coder.” Q answered while unbuttoning his shirt and letting his full breast fall from his nursing bra, helping his son latch.
“I’m sure…” James replied, settling in a chair opposite his family, enjoying the view while he still could. Like he said, he wouldn’t and couldn’t force his husband to love him. He would take all he was given and be grateful.
They moved in together, set up the apartment, spent more time together, but Q was still distant. They didn’t so much as cuddle at night and share couple of kisses that were more tender than sexual and it was months since Jacques was born.
It didn’t help that Bond was away so much. Again.
There was a soft knock on the doors and then they opened just a fraction, not enough to see inside but allow a person to be heard.
“I’m really sorry to disturb. Double-Oh Seven, M wants to see you.”
It was R thankfully. Despite trying to keep his cool James would punch the fucker Ashton in the teeth if it was him disturbing their quiet moment.
With a sight Bond got up, and after kissing Q’s bent head, he made his way to his boss.
Q was trembling.
Fingers pounding furiously over the keyboard, eyes jumping from one screen to the other as he tried to gather more data, see more, deduce more.
James mission went haywire.
It looked as something simple, go in, extract some highly valuable information and go out, but it quickly became obvious their intel wasn’t complete, they had a rat in their contacts in Chechnya and currently Bond was standing between a decision to save himself or get the bloody data risking his life more that Q determined was worth it.
“Damn it Bond! Get the hell out of there, it’s going to blow in under ten minutes!”
“I can finish my bloody mission just fine if you could just show me the way to the IT room, Quartermaster” came Bond’s panting voice over the comms.
“Negative Bond, turn left on the next cross of hallways and proceed to the exit. Extraction team on the way.”
There was the sound of a commotion, fight most probably, some shouts and then proceeded by two shots. And then quiet.
“Double-Oh Seven, report.”
Q’s hands flew over the keyboard even harder, hacking through security system after security system to get to the monitoring in the building.
It was not good. Q was sweating, getting more and more tense.
“Here.” came a gasping voice. “Got shot, minor, proceeding to IT room.”
“Negative, Agent. Turn left as soon as you’re able.”
“James, you’re not single anymore!” Q seethed quietly into the comm, desperate.
Bond chuckled mirthlessly in his ear.
“Nice of you to remember now.”
“What do you mean?”
“I mean the tall asshat.”
Sounds of more scuffle.
“I don’t understand. What does he have anything to do-”
Three shots rung out.
“He’s the safer option isn’t he? And always there.”
“Bond, this is really not the time-”
“Then when? Now it’s you that’s never available, Quinn. It takes two, you know?” James was gasping for breath, running through corridor after corridor, pushing his way towards the IT room. “Got it. Take me out of here, Q.”
Q bit his lip, swallowing hard, looking over his shoulder at Ashton. Was it...? Was he…?
“Straight ahead, five hundred meters, then right, two hundred, left and you should be in a stairwell, proceed up, helicopter should be landing in thirty seconds.”
Putting the comm down when Bond was safely picked up by the Extraction Team, Q sighed, rubbing tiredly at his face. It seemed they were in for a talk as soon as the agent was back in the country.
Not everything is at it seems, either good or bad...
Bond gritted his teeth as his hands folded into tight fists at what he was witnessing.
He knew it wouldn't bring him anything good, sneaking into Q-branch late at night, really, he should have expected it. But still nothing could have prepared him for what he saw. Standing there in the shadows, his heart breaking, feeling like a voyeur, spying on his… ex-lover, but still husband, and his newest tryst.
The men were laughing, smiling at each other, Q's arms around the taller man's neck as he proceeded to throw his head back in laughter, showing of the pale column of his neck.
And then they were kissing, asshat pushing Q back against his workbench before bending down slightly, hands slipping over the Boffin's tights before going under his knees, pushing the slight man up, sitting him on the desk, mouth never leaving the lush, cherry red lips of the quartermaster.
Bond's whole body was vibrating in anger.
He could shoot the damn minion, dispose of the hated rival… rival. It seemed Bond already lost, seeing how Q was lost in the passionate kiss, how he preened under the man's searching hands that were running all over his body, over the still slightly swollen post-pregnancy belly, cupping the perfectly rounded breasts, heavy with milk.
Touching everything Bond has been denied for months.
In the time after Jacques was born, the double-oh seven was made more than aware that Q did not wish to be touched in sexual manner, and at all in certain places. Breasts and lower stomach being a total no-go-zone.
And the agent could understand that, the Boffin's body changing with pregnancy and then after birth, the dark haired man needed time to get used to it, accept it and familiarise himself with his new shapes. But it hurt double now, seeing him so freely allow this intimate touch to this new lover.
Eyes on the pair, now almost totally undressed, Q laying down, long, smooth legs around the asshat shoulders as the guy pounded between his tights-
Bond jerked, coming awake just as the helicopter landed.
Dream. A fucking nightmare.
He ran a hand over his face, rubbing across his eyes to get rid of the afterimages as he swore under his breath. Fucking morphine. He hated pain meds, always twisting his dreams, relieving his body of pain but making it up with tormenting his mind.
He grudgingly accepted a hand to prop himself up into a standing position as he was ushered out of the vehicle and into what passed for hospital buildings in this area.
It seemed his life went from one nightmare to another.
It was an angsty beginning of the week, will it also end like this? Will it... end? Like this?
///Thank you all for the amazing, motivating, insightful and warm comments! <3
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Bond pushed at the entrance door to their apartment letting himself in.
The place was dark and quiet save a soft glow coming from the living room.
The agent was fairly sure Q knew exactly when he'll be back in the country but there was always the shade of a chance that the Quartermaster wouldn't care and have a certain guest over anyhow.
He thought he could deal with the rejection if faced only with Q, but if they would be having this conversation with the asshat present, some teeth would get loosened with a fist.
Bond breathed a slight sigh of relief when he saw his husband sitting alone on the couch, swaddled in the ridiculous orange blanket with blue kitten paw prints he loved so much, legs folded underneath his body. His head was bowed, hair falling into his face as he read a book.
Probably just noticing him in the peripheral of his vision, Q's head snapped up, mouth opening, but words seemed to die on his lips as he took in the agent’s sorry form.
“Whatever you want to say, not tonight Q, all right? Save it for later.”
And Q nodded his head, Bond's heart sinking even more.
They both kept staring at each other, not moving a muscle, frozen in their little word until Bond's left knee buckled from strain, making him stumble slightly and lean more heavily on the wall.
Q was up in an instant, long legs unfolding, and in couple of strides he was next to Bond, putting gentle hands on his arms and steering him towards the couch.
“Sit down before you fall on your stupid face. And stop bleeding all over my freshly painted walls will you?” Q chided gently, his voice soft and teasing despite harsh words. “Stay put, I'll bring the med kit.” He said leaving, going towards their bathroom.
Bond put his elbows on his knees, shoulders hunching, the movement making him wince.
Looking around, he pushed the covers to the side uncovering the abandoned book. ‘Parenting survival - how to take care of a infant singlehandedly’. Yes, that inspired all sort of confidence in Bond. He pulled the covers over the book before the dark haired man came back. One last evening of pretending everything was fine and he'll deal with the fallout in the morning. Moving his hands up, fingers massaging at his temples, trying to stave of a headache while he waited.
It was a testament to how tired and weary he was that he flinched surprised when Q knelled before him, hands without preamble going to the buttons of the agent’s dirty shirt.
They didn't exchange any words as the boffin helped him undress, pulling the bloodied material from his various wounds and cuts, peeling it gently from the bled through bandages on his upper left shoulder, before those too were removed. A graze, but it hurt as hell and bled crazily.
He was gently washed, warm, wet cloth moving all over his torso, down his arms and over his bruised knuckles. Then Q proceeded to tend to every abrasion he could find on the agent's skin, patting antiseptics and creams where needed. When his front was taken care of, Q bade him to turn slightly on the sofa, the boffin settling behind him before resuming his tender care. Touch precise and sure, nothing skittish in the movement. Soon his shoulder was freshly bandaged, the dark haired man tying a loose knot on his side under the armpit. Q's hands lingered on his skin, and then moving forward, slim arms embraced James's body from the back,the boffin's forehead resting between the older man's shoulder blades.
Bond lifted his hand up, settling it over Q's clasped together on his chest.
“A brave man, that friend of yours. I hope he knows what he's doing, playing such a dangerous game of seduction with a 00’s husband.” The agent murmured under his breath, resigned, but still, part of him angry, disappointed.
“It's fine Q.”
“No, it's not.” Q's deceptively weak hands pushed him away forcibly and soon the boffin was once more kneeling between his knees, looking up, his face comically twisted between anger and shame.
“I didn't know he was… courting me. I just had a baby! I'm not dating material!” He looked miserably confused, and Bond couldn't help laughing out loud, some of the tension leaving his body.
“I checked him thoroughly, he's spotless, it came to light that his father and cousin are also working for MI6. And I wish you have seen him code! He’s actually quite brilliant. And apparently, he has younger siblings that he helped take care of growing up, and he knew this neat trick of giving Jacques some warm water with just a dash of lemon and mint leaves that made him calm down even when the pillow wasn't helping, and he offered to help with the boxes and I just… he was useful, James. I didn't know he was… interested, until you pointed it out. And it seems all Q-branch suspected something was going on and I don't know how I'll face them again tomorrow… the rumors that must be flying around!”
Bond couldn't stop snickering. Only his Husband could be so oblivious to his own charms and how it affected people around him.
He tugged the unresistant body up, settling his adorable husband in his lap so they were chest to chest, slim legs cradling the agents hips.
“You're really quite oblivious aren't you?” He teased with a smile, watching Q bite his lip unhappily, before pulling the dark haired man closer, straight into a heated kiss, which his husband happily returned.
Bond buried his hand in the wild, dark hair, running the strands between his fingers delicately before gripping them more firmly, pulling, pushing his husband more into the bruising kiss. Q's own hands were running all over the agent's chest, insisting fingers kneading the tired muscles, but at the same time the Boffin's touch remained caring, always aware of the bigger cuts on his husband's body and artfully skipping over them, touch feather light and soothing.
Bond's free hand slid down Q's side, skipping under his loose shirt, finally allowed to touch the smooth, heated skin. He couldn't help himself, he slid the hand lower, cupping one round buttock and pulling Q even closer, grinding up, making his husband moan and gasp.
And that's when Jacques decided to remind his parents he was also present in the apartment and needed some attention, his cries echoing in the baby monitor.
Q collapsed on Bonds chest, body shaking with silent laughter.
“If there's one man you should be jealous of, Mr. Bond, he's in the next room. Dashingly handsome that one, and currently he really wants to get under my shirt to sate his hunger.”
Bond couldn't help laughing too. Oh the woes of young parents.
He wrapped his arms around Q, holding him close if only for a moment longer.
His lovely boffin nuzzled at Bond's neck, pressing a soft kiss there before propping himself up on James’ chest, giving him a rueful smile, cheeks flushed, lips shining and red. His face then grew serious as he cupped Bond's cheek in one hand, his green eyes boring into the glacier blue.
“You’re it for me James, I don’t want anyone else.”
That night they slept tightly entwined together, pressed chest to chest, full breasts against muscled chest, Bond's knee pushed firmly between the Boffin's legs. Nothing sexual about it, just the pressing, desperate need to be as close as possible.
It was close to dawn when Q had to untangle himself from his husband's firm hold and go attend to his mewling baby.
Jacques was awake again, fussing in his cot and Q just knew he'll soon break down in a cry. Pulling a robe on he quickly shuffled to the nursery, picking up his son and kissing one rounded cheek as the baby gnawed at one little fist, drooling all over.
Changing the nappy before his son decided to quicken his moves with screaming, Q swept the baby up in his arms and went back to the master bedroom, pulling the baby side bed closer to the main one and securing it in place, the boffin crawled into his vacated spot. Propping his pillows up, laying his son over his knees to tickle the little stomach with one hand while he undid the buttons of his own shirt one handed. Freeing up his breasts, he shifted Jacques to the crook of his arm and helped the baby latch to his nipple.
First couple feedings after birthing were an awful experience for both father and newborn. Jacques seemed too distracted and unhappy to suckle properly while Q almost cried in pain when the baby's toothless gums gnawed at his oversensitive nipples. But a couple of weeks in and they both found their groove and now the boffin loved to breastfeed, planning to keep doing it as long as he was able to.
He chuckled, feeling Bond move closer in his sleep. It amused him to no end that the agent, usually so vigilant and sleeping as a hare seemed to have no problem sleeping through his son's hungry mewlings and cries and midnight feedings all the time.
After some time Q shifted his baby to the other nipple and when finally Jacques was a happy, fed and burped baby, the boffin laid him down in the baby side-bed, covering him tightly with a blanket and then facing his child he slotted his back firmly against the sleeping agent's chest. Like an instinct, Bond's arm went to wrap around his husband's waist, warm palm resting just below Q's ribs, where his baby bump used to be, so many months ago.
The Boffin's gave a happy sight. Everything was perfect with his world.
********* end *********
I'm not marking it as finished, 'cos it's not! Interludes and some views of future following :)
EDIT: forgot to add my art!!! XD
EDIT2: added an 'end' comment up there, sorry for changing so much but it all is a work in progress :D Hope you'll stick around for more! Which will be coming soon!
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Chapter 10: Aftermath#1: First time after
Welcome to the new section of Aftermaths :D
Hope you'll enjoy this new part, and way of how I wind the story!
Thank you once again lovelies for comments! <3
Q stood totally naked in front of the tall mirror they had in the main bedroom, looking critically over his body.
He gained weight.
Not a lot, he didn't think that would ever be possible with his body type, but enough to be noticeable. By him. And James. His husband once commenting about his fuller buttocks in admiration.
And yes, his hips were rounder, the hipbones not as prominent as before and his normally flat or even concave at some time stomach was still rounded out with post-baby fat, skin slightly marred with stretchmarks despite all the creams he patted into it.
And he had breasts. They weren't big, just a full B cup, but he used to have a slim chest with only his nipples rising up in little peaks. He felt his new bosom looked enormous on his slim shape.
He still felt alien in this new shapes.
Running a hand over his limp penis, he gave a sight.
James didn't push for sex, but he… insinuated. Thankfully the agent didn't get too handsy with him yet, touch lingering, searching but not insisting. Q had no doubt his husband was starved for intimacy, and the boffin wasn't sure he was yet ready to give it to him, not fully.
Q had been so horny at some points in the pregnancy but the fear for his then unborn baby quickly staved off his fire. And since he gave birth, he was mentally a Mother and his libido mostly dead. He was no longer the free-spirited lustful youth that loved to get wild on the weekend and have a steamy one night stand.
He never before had a problem with sex, since the first awkward tumble when he was fourteen, through the first time he let a man mount him at sixteen and all through his secretly wild years that followed.
To an outsider he was timid, frigid nerd, but Q knew how to have his fun. Being aware that he had the carrier gene, he was always very strict and safe with himself. Before each escapade he checked if his contraception shots were up to date, checked his menstruation cycle stage and always carried his own condoms and some anti-sperm liquids. His partners were always made aware that if they wanted to stick it bare, they better go stick it somewhere else and the used condoms were checked for breaks.
The rough tumble with Bond took him by surprise. He was so exhausted then, stressed out with all the work, that when Bond’s shameless flirting became a physical touch it was like something broke in Q and he left all cautious to the wind. Being fairly sure he was up to date with his shots, and desperate enough to just forgo the condom… he had one of the best fucks ever. Walking to a new whirlwind of action just couple hours later, he just… forgot. It all became a nice dream his stressed-out mind allowed him.
And now it got to a point he had a child, a husband and he didn’t know how to go about getting intimate with the blond haired man. He used to really enjoyed sex and went wild with it, experimenting with a wide set of kinks. But him and Bond, they only fucked once and never did see each other naked even. Ok, that’s not true, Q has seen Bond in all his glory many times, both on missions he was supervising as well in private, the agent was far from being body shy.
But Bond never seen Q fully naked.
When they fucked in the Q-branch, the boffin didn’t even have time to take off his shirt and sweater, underwear and pants around his ankles. And after that, once he learned he was pregnant and on pelvic rest… there was no reason for him to show himself bare to Bond, always swaddling himself in big sweaters, snuggling under thick blankets and showering alone.
His husband has seen Q’s post-pregnancy breasts of course, the boffin was breastfeeding, but it never seemed important, like in sexual, body-awareness kind of way before now, he was taking care of his son, his breasts are for his child.
And now Q was forced to consider them in a sexual light.
He felt he should get intimate with Bond soon, the man showing a lot of patience and restraint for now, but no one could go without sex for forever. Q was fairly sure that Bond kept to his wedding vows, and seeing how invested the agent was in their relationship he wouldn’t destroy their fragile peace with sleeping around, but… things change.
Seeing how jealous Bond got over Ashton, Q felt better about himself and wanted also to do something for his husband. As a’ thank you’ and… ‘i love you’.
He didn’t exactly know when he started to feel this way, he could admit to having a long standing crush on the agent since their first meeting in the gallery, but love… it hit him hard how much he cared for the agent, how big a part of his life he became.
It was true it took him ages to allow himself to trust the agent, the blond a professional liar and deceiver, but their latest fight opened up Q’s eyes. He wanted them to be together, he wanted to trust the blond man and have his affection and to shower the agent with love and devotion in return.
They shared everything in life now.
Everything, besides Q’s body, at the boffin thought it was time to change it.
He went to his dresser and pulled out red, lace panties with little red bows to be perched atop his hip bones.
Pulling them up his smooth legs and settling them over his butt and crotch he gave himself a critical once over it the mirror. Yes, those still fit.
Reaching under the bed he tugged out a paper shopping bag, pulling out a matching red bra out of it. Once he put it on, the cups nicely framing his breasts, he covered his lingerie with the usual white shirt, pale orange sweater and checkered dark pants.
Time to seduce Bond and hope that he himself will have the strength to pull through it.
“No.” Q whispered fiercely untangling himself from James and moving himself to the armchair on the opposite side of the couch, wrapping slim arms around himself.
“I’m sorry for leading you on, I-I can’t deliver on-on it.” He tightened the embrace he had on himself. “I-I know you’ve been sleeping around. It’s fine. I don’t mind. Perhaps you should go out now, let the steam off.” He continued in a trembling, but harsh sounding voice.
“I haven’t been sleeping around, Quinn. Not on the missions and definitely not off them, and you know that.” Bond went to kneel before his husband, unwrapping the boffins arms and taking hold of the long fingers, entwining them with his own. He looked up at his lover imploringly.
“Quinn, what is this really about?”
The boffin bit his lip, a nervous tick he just couldn’t overcome, brow scrunching up. It took him a moment to gather himself and admit to Bond what he perceived as his faults, angry at himself that despite preparations he failed miserably.
“I’m not ready! My body still feels… weird. All soft, and-and tingly and sensitive. Raw. And I’m still flying high on hormones and I feel it’s still… not back to normal. Down there.” Starting with almost a shout and finishing up in barely a whisper.
The doctor said that from medical point of view he was ready for penetrative sex, all healed and tightened up, but for Q it still felt not quite as it should. He tried fingering himself in the shower once or twice, his belly feeling tight and aching for that sweet release he was denied for months now, but even a fingertip pressed against his ring felt... Alien. Wrong. Not as pleasant as it should. And…
“There’s more to sex than penetration, you know? There’s more to sex with you than putting my dick in. I’ve been celibate for over eight months now, save my own hand. I can go on another eight years if that’s what you’ll need.”
"Genital stimulus never did it for me. I need penetration to make me hard and come." Q blurred out.
“Let me try?” Bond smiled up at his flustered boffin.
"And my breast are sensitive, tender. I don't wish them touched in a sexual manner, they're for feeding. And you're a breast-kind-of-man, you’ll want to fondle them. And I still have postpartum fat around my middle, I hope you're aware of that. And stretchmarks. And..."
"Quinn, stop. For me you are perfect, just the way you are. One question, and think thoroughly before you reply - do you want to be intimate with me or not? I won’t be angry either way, I just want a truthful answer.”
“I do! But I feel like there’s so many things I’m no longer comfortable with… Kissing is fine, I adore your kisses. And cuddling…and that thing you do with your mouth against the nape of my neck...”
“Then that’s fine. I’ll respect every boundary you have, we won’t ever do what you’re not comfortable with, all right? You just have to tell me.” Bond brought Q’s hand to his lips, giving them a kiss. “This fine?” After having the boffin give a weak nod, he proceeded to put one finger after the other to his mouth, giving a gentle suck before moving to the next one. “And this?” He proceeded, mouth moving to the slender wrists, and then up the forearms.
At the end of the night Q learned that while his penis remained uninterested to separate touches, having his taint stimulated with gentle pressure and James biting his arse cheeks white stroking his manhood made all the difference.
Washing himself afterwards in the shower Q couldn’t help smiling broadly. His whole body was adorned with hickeys and bite marks, especially his butt, and from lower stomach up to his ribs. The agent taking special care not to even breath at the dark haired man’s nipples or hole, completely ignoring them in favor of worshiping the rest of the boffin’s body. He was sure he even had a love bite on his ankle. He looked down twisting his foot. Yup, there it was, Q smiled to himself.
Bond was an amazing lover, very generous and selfless. He put off his own pleasure to the very end, until he had reduced the quartermaster to putty, having him just lay there, on his back, feeling loved and happy and thoroughly sated. Only then did Bond take himself in hand, alternating that and rubbing his cock over Q’s knobby knee, dripping precum all over the skin of his tight before jacking off in quick, tight pulls, coming all over the boffin’s hips, spraying hot cum on his husband’s soft penis.
“Already up, Quartermaster?” Bond whispered into Q’s ear stepping into the shower behind him, wrapping arms around the slim body.
“I feel you’re up too, Double-Oh Seven” The boffin snickered pushing his bottom back, rubbing over his husband’s straining erection.
“My oh my, what should we do with the fact now?” The agent murmured softly, already kissing down Q’s neck as his hands began to wander again.
Chapter 11: Aftermath#2: Gift
Thank you lovelies for comments! :*
Always great to hear your thought!
“Bond, what is that?” Q pointed to a fairly sized, dark red box with an enormous white bow sitting innocently on the kitchen table by the set up breakfast. He just walked into the kitchen, Jacques in his arms and babbling happily.
The agent smirked up at him from behind his morning paper.
“A gift? What's the occasion?”
Q went to the counter seemingly uninterested, as he started to prepare a bottle for his son.
The agent put down his reading material and walked up to his husband, taking the happily squirming child out of his arm and lifting the little one right to the ceiling, blowing a raspberry on his tummy and making his son burst out in peals of laughter.
Then settling Jacques on his hip, Bond turned to his husband, wrapping the free hand around his slim waist and pulling the man closer, kissing his cheek.
“Why my dear, did you forget today's one of my favorite days of the year?”
Q smiled sweetly when Bond continued to pepper his skin with kisses, going down his jaw to the pale column of his neck.
“Valentine's, isn't it?”
“Exactly that, love. We like to make Mummy happy on all days of the year, don't we Jacques?” Bond turned to confirm with his son who was currently chewing on his daddy's shirt. “But on this day we like to make him real happy in a special way, hence the gift.”
“I told you not to call me Mummy, James.”
Q swatted at his naughty husbands with the baby cloth he was holding.
“Go and open your gift.”
“I'm going to regret it, won't I?” Q gave him a dubious look, going for the box. James had a… unusual taste in gifts.
The Boffin picked up the box, pulling at the ribbon and making it fall down to the table, Bond observing over his shoulder. It was quite heavy for such a little thing.
Pulling up the cover, Q smiled.
Sexy underwear. Hot pink lace panties. Of course.
He looked back at Bond.
“You really love me in lingerie, don't you? That's like, twelfth pair you gave me.”
“I love you in everything, but keep looking into the box, this pair is special.”
Q put the panties down on the table and reached into the gift box again pulling out a weird, oval and kinda flat object made of satiny silicone, one side adorned with little bumps.
“And what is that?”
James reached into his back pocket with a smirk, and soon the object in Q's hand started to vibrate.
“Oh my God you didn't just give me a sex toy in front of my son, did you?” Q glared at the Double-Oh.
“Guilty as charged I'm afraid.” Bond said pulling Q into a kiss and then spinning him around, giving the pert rump a swat. “Go and have a shower and put on your new panties while I feed Jacques and then I'll show you how exactly that toy works.”
“You know I have to go out to the Q-branch in an hour, right?”
“Of course, darling, don't worry.”
“I don't believe you James Bond.” Q murmured under his breath as he put the toy down and snatched the panties. The older man is going to be the death of him.
Q came out of the shower, body flushed from heat and his hair still slightly damp, naked save the new piece of lingerie.
The panties were actually very nice - pleated, frilly material in the front making a nice pouch for his penis and testicles with a tiny bow at the top, center made shiny with a little stone. His bottom was framed in lace and ribbon while the center part, going under his perineum was tightly pushed against his skin, material more sturdy there, double layered, kept secured with a webbing of ribbons going around his body in an almost jock-strap way.
He had a slight suspicion about why they had such an unusual cut, but decided to let himself be surprised by his ever thoughtful husband.
James was sitting on the couch, legs splayed wide, looking straight at Q with that damn half smirk on his face.
“In his cot, admiring the swirling airplanes and listening to Chopin, fed, burped and changed.”
“Perfect, and what's your plan for me?”
“Swirl around, let me admire you.”
“Bond…” Q admonished, suddenly awfully self-aware, wrapping arms around himself lightly.
“Go turn on the radio, there's a CD in.”
With a huff, the boffin went to the other side of the room and bent down to switch on the music. Oh, right. Music. That's why James insisted to have the stereo standing on the ridiculously low table, since it was Q that always was the one to turn it on.
He took his time unbending, running his hands up his smoothly shaven legs. Bond never insisted, but Q knew the agent enjoyed his quartermaster smoothly shaven. All over.
By the time he was fully vertical, Bond was behind him, spinning him around and pushing with gentle force against the closest wall, mouth insistently pressing against Q's pouty mouth.
“I adore you, Quinn.” James murmured against Q's lips, hands running all over the Boffin's body, petting, kneading. It didn't take Q long to return the favour.
“The sentiment’s returned, James, but I need to get going soon.”
“I know. I also know how to make you come back sooner from that awful place.” Q's breath hitched as he felt his husband's hand slide underneath his panties, fondling his ass, strong fingers pressing to his taint. In a moment the agent's other hand joined in in the fun, sliding underneath the lingerie with the toy he was presented before. The object fitting perfectly in the little pouch of material pressed tight against the Boffin's perineum.
“You can't expect me to wear it to work!” Q gasped out on a moan.
“I'm not expecting… I'm just asking you” kiss “very nicely” kiss “to not part ways” kiss “ with my little gift to you.” Bond finished up the trail of kisses going up Q's neck by biting softly on an earlobe. “Will you?”
“I already regret agreeing to it…”
Coming home after spending the longest and most uncomfortable day at work, his body aroused and almost oversensitive, Q was greeted with a fancy dinner, and wined and dined, taken to bed to make ever more pleasurable fun with his newest, most favorite toy.
Chapter 12: Aftermath#3 In or out?
Happy sweet&sexy Monday!
Easing Q into sexual intimacy after the birth of their son hadn’t been easy. Bond had suffered through the longest period of a dry spell ever in his life but having this now, Q mewling sweetly as they were grinding against each other, totally trusting and gone in his pleasure, the agent knew it had been worth it.
They were spooning, lying on their right sides, Bonds right arm wrapped around Q’s middle pulling the lithe body a little over himself as his body moved a little backward - not exactly on his side, neither fully on his back, their legs entwined. His right hand was tightly wrapped around the boffin’s crotch, fingers sneaking under tightly drawn up balls and pressing, massaging the taint as his thumb moved in little circles above the weeping erection which he was slowly jacking off with his left hand.
So far, it was their favourite position that allowed the both of them to be pleasured at the same time, Bond’s erection grinding against a perfectly rounded buttock, careful to not slip into the moist valley between the Boffin's buttcheeks.
Q had a lot of restrictions on sex now, which Bond did his best to respect, though he couldn’t help fantasizing. And watching.
The brunet had been right, the many weeks ago - Bond was a breast-kind-of-man.
And now, being not allowed to touch the wonderful roundness of Q’s post-pregnancy breasts, the dark pink areolas of his nipples that hardened into little perky nubs when the man was aroused, well, it was driving Bond slowly insane.
So he allowed himself a peek here or there, when he was sure Q wouldn’t notice him staring.
He totally understood the boffins reservations about his breast - they were a means of providing for their son, tender to the touch after the child fed. But in Bond’s mind it was as if Q had two sets of breasts. One for feeding, for taking care of Jacques and giving him comfort - Bond enjoyed watching Q breastfeed, the view inspiring the special kind of warmth in his heart that he just couldn’t help but call love, and this occurrence was never arousing. But seeing Q shower, droplets of water sliding down the perfect moulds, or when the brunet was dressing, putting on his nursing bra - Bond couldn’t help imagining cupping them in his own palms, suckng tender kisses to the rounded skin.
He moaned now, letting go of his husband erection, hand moving up the soft swell that was still on Q’s stomach, petting, enjoying, the movement stopping when he reached the first sharp nudge of a rib, respecting the boundaries.
He gasped surprised when Q took his hand into his own and moved it up onto the forbidden territory and closed their cupped palms over the swell of the boffins left breast, the double-oh’s hand tightening on it’s own volition, kneading as his thumb went to rub the nipple.
“It’s alright now.”
Bond smiled, pressing a kiss to his husband’s neck.
“Oh, and James? The condoms are in the drawer.”
Bond stiffened, quickly untangling himself from his lover to move above him, the brunet sprawled on his back beneath him, to look into his husband’s eyes.
Q was smiling brightly at him, sweaty locks of hair sprawled over the pillow.
“Are you sure, Quinn? Becaus-”
He didn’t manage to finish his sentence before the boffin’s arm were wrapping round his shoulders, pulling him closer, as the brunet’s mouth found his own, slim thighs parting and allowing Bond to lay in the cradle of the boffin’s hips.
“I learned my lesson, James. I’m ready. I’ll have you know I’ve acquainted myself to my little purple friend this evening in the bath. A much pleasurable reunion I must say.”
Bond groaned hiding his face in his husband’s neck as he imagined Q sprawled in the bath, one leg thrown over the edge as he worked the purple dildo in his hole.
“You little minx…”
He had Q straddle him to allow the boffin to easily change his mind, to be in total control of the intercourse.
But the brunet, it seems, came back fully into his sexuality, firmly grasping Bond's condom covered cock and guiding it into his lush hole and sinking down slowly, engulfing the blond's penis into the hot, wet cavern. Quinn's cheeks were flushed as he licked his lips grinning wickedly down at his husband as he put on a show, leaning back once he was fully seated and lifting his hips slowly up and down, and then grinding down, motion circular.
It has been almost a year since James had the pleasure of being inside Q and the double-oh was in heaven.
Seeing his lover boldly riding his cock, hips flexing, and sweet forces above, the bouncing breasts.
The boffin smirked down at him and once again reached for the blond's hand, guiding it to cup his breast.
“It's OK to touch now, James, I'm fully yours.” And leaning down, Q drew him into a soft kiss.
Chapter 13: Aftermath#4: in and out
This morning as a 'good morning' I got complimented on my work by a very nice person - so, this is a 'good morning' to them <3 And All of you out there lovely people too!
Have a great day at work!
Bond resumed the gentle motion of in and out as Q rode out his orgasm underneath him, head thrown back and mouth gaping open but barely making a sound. The boffin was really quiet with his pleasure and at one point Bond promised himself he would make his husband scream. But not now. Now he allowed Q to go through the throes of his passion as he pleased, watching, observing the reserved man as all the barriers fell away, as he became unguarded and vulnerable and trusting Bond to keep watch and take care of him.
And James was a very vigilant man, very much aware of Q and how his lover took his pleasure. When the boffin finally broke through the barrier of too-much-not-enough with a low whine, his body cascading to orgasm, Bond slowed down his thrusts, gentled them down, angling so he was rubbing against the front of Q's channel and only pulling out when the boffin’s body relaxed completely, a soft gasp leaving the cherry red mouth.
Q was hypersensitive for couple minutes after orgasm and couldn’t bear being penetrated, so Bond dutifully withdrew, resting on his elbows above his panting lover.
“I'm sorry, James, your cock’s. It's just too good.”
Q was looking apologetically up at him, gasping and flushed and sweaty and totally adorable.
“Don't worry about it Q.” he murmured lowering down enough to push a kiss under Q's jaw. His husband was lately trying to stave of his own orgasms to allow Bond to finish in him without a break, but they seemed unable to achieve that perfect state of balance, Q crashing through his orgasms much too soon (according to the stubborn boffin). James didn't really mind that much as his lover allowed him re-entrance couple minutes after, when he cooled down, and the double-oh would be the first to admit that he immensely enjoyed his husband's relaxed, post-peak, pliant body a lot.
“Maybe I should wear a cock ring.” Q mused running his hands over his own belly, smearing his come.
“Won't work, you come from penetration mostly, darling.”
“Then maybe a different position?”
“I like this one.”
“Reverse cowboy? Shouldn't put pressure against my prostate.”
“I wouldn't see your titties.”
“James!” Q swatted at the Bond’s shoulder “they're breasts, not… titties.”
“Whatever you say, love.” James smirked, playful-petulant, nuzzling against Q's neck.
“Oh come here, you idiot.” Q spread his legs again, angling his hips up and reaching down to guide Bond back inside, groaning when the agent pushed into his tired body, mewling contentedly when James resumed his rocking, slowly gaining speed and strength behind his thrusts, fucking hard into Q's pliant body till he crashed through his own orgasm, Q enjoying every moment of the harsh pounding.
Later, lying on their sides, Q's head pillowed on Bond's broad chest, the boffin's brain still couldn't let go of the issue troubling his conscience.
“Maybe a cooling-numbing lube?”
Couple days later
“James, you put too much - i still can't feel my chute…”
“But it worked, didn't it?”
“I hate you…”
Chapter 14: Aftermath#5 Left
///I shuffled chapters!! I think? I hope? Sorry and n-joy!
Bond came home deathly tired, still bloodied and bruised, skipping showers and Medical in favor of seeing his family sooner.
He has been gone for three months this time, the short stakeout he was sent on dragging for weeks and growing into a full blown intelligence gathering operation that he just couldn't abandon even for a day to go and visit his family.
So he spent long hours on the phone instead of much needed sleep, talking on secure line with Q, catching up on the life going on back in London, hearing what his boy's were up to. The boffin telling him all about their trip to the park and their little boy chasing ducks wanting to feed them and breaking in tears when the birds instead of being thrilled to get the crumbled bread from his palms have just ran away.
What saddened him even more besides not being there physically, was that he couldn't establish much contact through the phone with his almost two year old, the little boy totally uninterested in phones, way too little to connect the digitalised voice coming through the receiver with his daddy.
Bond left when he was eighteen months old, growing rapidly when he just wasn't there.
But now, finally, he was back. He bought a big teddy on the airport on his way back, dragging the furry toy by it's ear and hoping not to dirty it too much.
He closed the doors behind himself with a soft click, kicking his shoes off before looking down the corridor.
And there he was, the love of his life, wiping hands on a striped yellow apron and giving him a bright smile and he just couldn't help smiling back with a soft greeting.
And then there came the pitter-patter of little feet, his son running into the corridor with a merry laugh, but stopping short upon seeing Bond in the entrance, the toddler hiding shyly behind Q’s leg little face scrunching up as the boffin reached down to ruffle the short blond hair.
James face fell.
“He doesn't remembered me.”
“Of course he does, silly.” The brunet leaned down and maneuvered Jacques in front of himself. “Jacques, go greet papa.”
The little boy looked up at his bearer with doubt, giving a whimper.
“It's ok, love, go.”
James watched with breaking heart as his son's face scrunched up even more, tears starting to flow down rosy cheeks. But then the toddler turned towards him and broke into a clumsy, fast run giving Bond just seconds to kneel and catch his weeping son.
He stood up again with the toddler clutching tightly, little fists pushing almost painfully into his neck, the brunet coming closer too, leaning in for a kiss.
“He just missed you a lot, we both did.”
That night they all slept on the big bed in the master bedroom, James in the middle, with both his precious boys tightly tucked by his sides.
Chapter 15: Aftermath#6: History likes to repeat itslef
I'm really happy you all enjoyed my steamy sexy piece of a previous chapter :D
Luv ya all and as always - thank you for the comments! They make my day and make me want to write more!
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
“That’s awfully familiar, don’t you think?” James murmured in Q’s ear as he wrapped his arms around his husband from the back, rubbing his erection against the perfectly round bottom.
It was the middle of the night, they were completely alone in the deserted at this hour Q-branch.
Quinn laughed softly, fingers running over keyboard without stopping.
“Don’t get any ideas, James, I don’t have time.”
“You didn’t have time the last time we had fun here either, and look where it got us.” The agent started to pepper the boffin’s long neck with kisses, swaying them gently from side to side. “Where’s Jacques, by the way?”
“Where do you think? He’s with Mallory of course.”
It never ceased to amuse Bond, that out of all the people in Q’s life, he chose M as the most trusted babysitter for his firstborn.
Bond had been away on a mission when the head of MI6 became his son’s glorified nanny, so he was floored with shock when upon his return he walked into M’s office to give report and found the other man cradling his baby boy and reading him a story.
Swiping the baby up from unresistant arms he made his way down to Q-branch to demand explanations and to check on the Quartermaster himself. It was unheard of the boffin to leave his child alone or under the care of anyone else besides him and Bond. And yet, he found his son commandeered by the head of MI6.
Bursting into Q-branch he was floored again after hearing the most improbable story.
It turned out Mallory had perfectly honed child caring abilities that he gained while taking care of his own little brood. Apparently, he and Tanner had hit jackpot on the Chief Of Staff’s first, and so far, the last pregnancy - triplets. Bond swore to never again make comments on the shorter man’s round figure that came about to be the post-baby fat that he just couldn’t get rid of, having no time at all between work, babies and Mallory.
Mallory having a job that didn’t require much movement outside his office had taken upon himself the task of caring for Jacques whenever the little boys parents were unavailable. He even had a cot in the corner of his office.
“He’s spending the night or do we have to fetch him?”
“Night. I really need to finish this.”
James murmured with acknowledgment against Q’s ear, hands roaming the slim body, after a moment settling over Q’s stomach.
“Let’s try for another one.” he whispered into the boffin’s ear.
Q stiffened in his arms.
“James, Jacques is in his terrible two’s now, we just managed to get a routine and our apartment is freshly done with renovations and we did not include a second nursery. You really think this is a good time?”
“We’d manage. We did just fine on the first one, don’t you think?”
Q smiled and turned his head to the side to give Bond a kiss.
“Yes we did…”
Then his gaze turned skeptical.
“Are you sure you want another one?”
“Without any doubt?”
“None at all.”
Judging him sincere, Q seemed to relax against the double-oh, body slumping heavily, he seemed to burrow into the agent’s arm.
“I don’t want you to feel like I’m pressuring you. If you’re having doubts, we can take time, discuss it all, plan… Maybe in a year?”
Q bit his lip and looked from underneath his lashes at his husband.
“Bond… it’s a little too late for that…”
“What?” Bond’s felt the gears in his mind working furiously connecting the dots. “You-You’re already pregnant, aren’t you?”
Q’s hands covered his own, still resting over the boffin’s still flat stomach. No tell-tale bump there yet.
“Yes, I am.”
“How far along? You’re still flat this time.”
“Two months. I found out in the morning.”
Bond kissed Q’s neck, burrowing his nose in the hair at the man’s nape hiding a smile.
“What tipped you off this time? I hope nothing too dramatic.”
“Earl Grey. I can’t drink it anymore, makes me nauseous.” Q laughed. “I’m terrible at this figuring out I’m pregnant thing.”
“I think you’re horrible at the not getting pregnant without planning thing, love. How ever did you manage not to have a little brood by the time I knocked you up?”
“Pure luck.” Q turned around in Bond’s arms, wrapping his own around the agent’s shoulders and luring the blond man into a long, passionate snog. One day he’ll tell Bond that those are not his first pregnancies, that he had two abortions when he was much too young and much too poor. Today was a happy day, a celebration. No use in staining it with regrets from the past.
Pulling away from Bond’s lips, Q rested his forehead against the agent's, eyes closed.
“You knew I went to the Medical in the morning and what they told me, didn’t you?”
“Of course, darling. I’m a double-oh after all.” and Q could hear the playful grin in his husband’s voice and he couldn’t help a smile of his own. He had an amazing spouse.
Do you think it'll be a girl or a boy this time? :)
Chapter 16: Aftermath#7: Breakfast in bed
Just a little fluff for you all at the end of Tuesday!
///and go back to ch14! added sth little and shuffled chapters! sorry and n-joy!
James pushed the doors to their bedroom open with his shoulder, hands occupied with a breakfast tray packed full with a wide variety of bread, jams, juices, milk and banana pieces for Jacques.
His boys were still in bed, Q lying on his back, shirt pulled up as Jacques sat besides him, puny hands smoothing over the soft rise of the boffin’s stomach as he babbled something about baby, tummy and playing.
They told their son he’ll soon be an older brother three days ago and since that moment Jacques was fascinated with Q’s stomach, always patting it, touching and pressing kisses, face pulled tight with a childlike curiosity and still a little bewilderment as if he understood, but not really… got it yet.
Q grinned up at him when he walked in, that sleepy grin he adored on his husband, as he pulled up a little higher up on the pillows, patting the space next to himself and inviting Jacques to come sit next to him for breakfast in bed, the toddler complying with a smile, throwing himself in his mama's arms for a fierce hug first and then turning around to say ‘hi’ to his papa, arms reaching out for his favorite food so far.
“Patience, Jacques.” James admonished softly as he put the tray down and sat on the bed himself, distributing the food a moment later.
Handing Jacques his fruits, he got a very polite and well practiced “Thank you, papa.” and he smiled at his son, ruffling the short, light blond hair.
He loved his family. He loved this easy, relaxed mornings, and looking at Q, smiling down at their son as the little boy fed his mama banana pieces, he knew he would be forever grateful that Q chose to share all of this with him, that they made it work so splendidly.
Chapter 17: Aftermath#8: Nighttime drama
Added a Moments In Time - snippets to the series :)
Mostly reposts from my tumblr, bits and pieces that fit in this story line but are too little to warrant a full chapter here, so, yeah, for those without tumblr, go enjoy! :)
WARNING fluff ahead :D
Bond muted the tv even though it was playing it on very quietly, his lover tucked into his side, napping. But he could swear he heard a noise different to the ones he should be surrounded by.
Angling his head to the side he strained to listen, and… Ah, yes, there it was. Quiet sniffles coming from Jacques’ room.
Untangling himself from Q, pushing a pillow underneath the boffin’s head he tip toed out of the room and went to see what made his son wake up crying.
He pushed the doors to the nursery open and looked inside.
The blond boy was curled tight on his side, facing away from the door, body shaking from his sobs.
Walking closer to the bed, he sat down by his boy, reaching out to pet the tot’s side.
“What’s wrong, baby?”
Jacques didn’t reply him, just sobbed louder.
“Come on, give me a hug?” James prompted gently and soon found himself with a lap-full of a sniffling and hiccuping toddler.
Wrapping the child in a tight hug, he rocked side to side, pressing lips to the short blond hair on the boy’s scalp. Everyone said it was normal for kids to have nightmares, but it always worried him. He hated to see his little one afraid or crying, but he also hoped that the only monsters to ever harm Jacques would be the ones in his dreams, not the living, breathing creatures he had to deal with almost daily.
“Ready to tell me what’s wrong, Jacques?” he murmured gently when the tot’s sobs quieted down to sniffles.
“Mommy’s sick today. I hate Mommy sick.” the child mumbled into his shirt.
“I know love, but you don’t have to worry about Mommy, he’s fine.”
“But he pukey and sleepy all time.”
“It’s just your little sibling being fussy inside Mommy.”
“Fussey?” Jacques pulled away to look at him. The boy looked miserable, puffy, wet eyes and a runny nose, James reached to the bedside table for a tissue, wiping his son’s face gently and making him blow his nose.
“You don’t like mushrooms, do you?”
The little blond head shook no.
“Nope, ‘shrooms are blah.”
“And what did you do when you first tried them?”
“I told Mommy.”
More like cry out loudly and yell, spitting all around making gagging sounds, he thought but it wasn’t time to stroff his son but to comfort him.
“And you pushed your plate away and spit it out, right?”
“The baby is in Mommy’s tummy still, but what Mommy eats, the baby tries too. And it seemed your little sibling doesn’t like what Mommy’s eating now, or he or she wants something else. But the baby’s way of telling it to your Mommy is to make him spit it out. But out of his tummy. So he’s ‘pukey’.”
He wasn’t sure if he explained it correctly to his son, but well, he was giving this all parenting stuff his best shot, having no real experience, his own childhood being what it was.
He made so many mistakes with Jacques when he was born. But he learned. He learned how to hold his son, how to rock him softly to sleep, how to make the perfect bottle (and remember to test the temperature on his own arm first - he really thought Q would murder him that one time he forgot), how to burp the little boy and change a dirty diaper.
Remembering the first time Q trusted him enough to leave him alone with Jacques, he still felt hair stand up at the back of his head. He tried not to show it then, but he was terrified. Big, bad double-oh agent scared shitless of being left alone with an infant.
What if something happened and he couldn’t calm his son down, what if he hurt him and didn’t know about it? But he braved through it. They were both learning, Q and him, this being their first child. Oh the woes of first time parents.
Never did he suspect he’d ever get to experience that - having a child, his own child. He had an affinity to kids, a soft spot for them almost since he was a teenager. But having chosen the life he did, chances of settling down were at best, slim. Maybe he had a kid somewhere, there were times he was less than careful with his romps than he should, mission or life at stake, but if so, he’ll never meet them.
When he found out about Q being pregnant, of course shock was his first reaction, but the second one he felt just a second later was joy. Baby. His own and with a person he held deep affection for, too afraid to call it love then.
From their first meeting, starting out on rocky ground, through their endless bickering on comms, various spats and disagreements, somewhere along the way he learned to trust his Quartermaster, to respect him and sometimes even listen to his command. Then he fell under the boffin’s charm, got enchanted by his crisp, accented tone of voice, the way he held himself in Q-branch - all stiff back and serious face but broken here and there by that endearing chuckle or a shy smile.
It hasn’t been easy, their relationship. But they were both working on it, and now they were about to welcome their second offspring.
Q had been fine at the beginning of the pregnancy but the couple of last days seemed like all morning sickness from two pregnancies multiplied and gathered in the space of couple of days and had the Quartermaster sick like a cat, drowsy and weak and sleeping most of the time.
They’ve been to Medical for checkup, given some meds and told that Q needed a lot of rest and fluids and it all should settle down soon, just hormonal imbalance due to rapidly developing pregnancy.
“I made Mommy sicky too? When in tummy?”
He chuckled. Oh dear baby of mine, you made your displeasure of being overlooked known so much more fiercely, but it wasn’t the time or place to tell his young son that.
“You did, love. But it’s fine, every baby does it this way.”
“Mommy doesn’t hate me for it?”
“Of course not, he loves you a lot, just like he loves the baby in his tummy.”
“An’ you, papa.” Jacques leaned in to give him a fierce hug.
“And me” he smiled, petting the blond locks.
Chapter 18: Aftermath#9: Good thing there's nap time
“I’m not leaving you, Q.”
“Oh, I do hope so after you got me up the duff the second time, but this is just a week long mission in Bucharest. Surely you can manage without putting yourself in danger and blowing up half the city?” the boffin scoffed while folding down freshly washed toddler sized trousers and shirts.
“You know how my missions always end, Q. And besides, last time you wanted me not to leave London whilst you were pregnant.” James leaned in the door frame to his son’s room, child in question playing with blocks couple of feet farther away on his blanket.
“That was when I couldn’t stress about anything more that my pregnancy, now it’s different, everything's going well.” Q turned around to put the folded clothes onto the changing table when James sneaked right behind him to wrap arms around the brunet’s rounded middle.
“Extraordinarily well, if I may be so bold.” he whispered sultry into his husband’s ear, hot air blowing on the delicate skin as his hands pushed under Q’s loose shirt to touch the heated skin of his belly..
Since they learned about the second pregnancy, James was insistent on not letting Q hide away his changing body and was hell bent on them both enjoying this experience to the fullest.
Especially so, now that the boffin wasn’t on pelvic rest.
“When’s Jacques nap time?” He pushed his body snug against his husband’s rubbing his slowly rising erection in the valley between lush bum cheeks.
“Bond!” Q batted him away. “Really? Go and make us lunch you… perverted old man.” but as James was about to fully let go and go follow his Quartermaster’s orders, Q’s hand tightened over his for a second. “In an hour.” the boffin whispered and send him a secret, heated gaze.
An hour later James found himself in his favorite place, making love in his new, most favorite position to the love of his life.
They were in the bedroom, doors locked securely as not to wake up their son, James on his back while his pregnant spouse straddling him, hips flexing as he rode the thick cock embed deep inside, breast jiggling.
James sighted fully content to just lay there and admire his spouse as he took his pleasure, but after a while he broke his resolve and his hands began to wander. Starting at the strong, slim thighs, then up to the rounded hips, fingers sneaking in behind, to touch where they were connected making Q gasp, the other hand’s fingers gliding over the brunet’s weeping, straining erection.
“Stop touching my dick or this rodeo will be over sooner than you’d want.” Q moaned out trying to sound threatening as James’ thumbed his slit, grinning smugly.
So he, the ever obedient husband, moved his hands up, over the soft swell of Q’s stomach, caressing it lovingly. Entering his fifth month now, the boffin was starting to hit his growing spurt, belly rounding up more and more each day just as he had on his first pregnancy. But now James got to enjoy it too.
With a parting caress, he moved his hands up to finally cup Q’s breast. And weren’t they a sight to behold. Still no bigger than to fit comfortably in James’ palms, nipples dusty pink, hardened now into little nubs. The boffin stopped breastfeeding when Jacques hit eighteen months, his milk barely there by the time, more of a physical comfort for their son than real nutrition, and he confided in James that while it was an amazing experience, he would really love to be flat chested again. Well, wasn’t going to happen now for at least the next two years, for which he was secretly happy to his husband’s slight chagrin.
Leaving his left hand where it was, thumb circling the nipple, his right hand slithered up the sweaty skin, smoothing up the aristocratic neck, moving to cup Q’s lolling head, pulling him gently down for a kiss.
Smiling into the kiss, feeling the bump press flush against his own washboard stomach, James knew he hit jackpot in life.
Bracing his heels on the bed he started his own thrusting rhythm, making Q squirm in pleasure, mouth open wide, breath hitching, and soon it was over for Bond, and he was cumming helplessly, pumping his seed deep into the boffin’s willing body.
“That was fast.” Q lifted up smirking, still firmly embed. He leaned back on his hands, moving his legs to frame James’ chest so he could chase his own orgasm, putting maximum pressure on his prostate.
“Well, what can I say, you have an amazing cunt, darling.” James replied still trying to catch his breath, chuckling when Q flushed red from his words, his prick twitching excitedly. It was their long drawn teasing game. At first they had a pretty harsh argument about it, Q even slapping him in anger at being so crudely compared to a woman, insecurities coming back to life, but they talked it out since then. The issue coming down to James just liking some words and enjoying a bit of dirty talk, and well, the boffin was slowly getting into the groove of it. Not always, not all the time, but just once in awhile.
With a long drawn out sight, Q finally came, body sagging with weariness for a second, before his body spasmed , over-sensitivity making the boffin’s hole clench and then gape open, finally releasing James’ spent cock, sperm seeping out of the reddened muscle.
“I’m really thinking about making you wear rubber again, it’s just too much mess.” They started to do it without a condom soon after finding out that well, the main reason for them using protection - avoiding pregnancy - was, well, not an issue any more for some time.
“You know you like it, and, besides, I do all the cleanup.” James murmured as he helped Q lay down next to him, pushing a towel between the brunet’s legs to keep the cum from spilling on the clean sheets on that side of the bed as he rose and went to the bathroom for more cleaning supplies.
Coming back he smiled amused.
Q was laying as much on his stomach as he could at this point, one leg pulled up for leverage leaving his hole on display as the boffin drifted off to sleep.
Running a wet tissue between his husband’s ass cheeks to clean up as much come and lube as he could, James pressed a kiss just above his spine, before proceeding with drying his husband up.
Covering him with a blanket and leaving him to nap peacefully James went to take a shower.
An hour later the boffin emerged from their bedroom, body clad in loose pajamas and hair standing up in all directions, completely mussed up, eyes still sleepy.
“I’m still dripping James.” he complained as he moved further into the living room to join the blond on the couch, snuggling to his side.
James chuckled, wrapping his arm around the sleep warm body, slipping his hand down the back of Q’s pants, fingers going to circle the loose, wet rim, gently pushing inside.
“Yeah you are, what do you want me to do about it?”
“Is Jacques up yet?”
“No, I checked just ten minutes ago, still fast asleep.”
Q looked up at his husband with a wicked gleam in his eyes.
“A quicky in the shower? You can dirty me again and then really help with the clean up.”
Leaning down to give him a kiss, James compromised.
“You’re too far along for that. I’ll run you a bath and give you a really good fingering and maybe reacquaint you with one of your friends, hm?”
“Deal. But then we're talking again about that mission of yours.”
"We'll see if you'll be capable of speech after I'm done with you this time."
“Thank you R, I’ll take it from here.” Q nodded at his second in command with a soft smile, switching the connection from the room speaker to his earpiece and snatching his water cup he retreated to his office. He closed the doors behind himself and went to lie down on the sofa.
“James?” He asked when he got comfortable,a pillow behind his back and one between his knees as he laid a little bit more on his left side than on his back as per the doctor’s suggestions.
“Here.” came the gruff, tired voice in his ear.
“How are you really?”
“James.” Q scoffed displeased, his husband should quit with that macho bullshit right about now, or else.
“It hurts like a motherfucker but I’ll live long enough to see it scar.” the brunette chuckled lowly. Bond was, despite how he postured to the outer world, a deeply vain man.
“I do love your scars.” he whispered.
They both fell silent for a moment, Q rubbing his round tummy - six, almost seven month now and the little one was an active little butterfly under his skin.
“I’m sorry, darling.” Bond’s voice broke the quiet. “I should be there now, not stuck in this hell hole.”
“I convinced you to go, it’s as much your fault as mine.”
Now Q regretted pushing his husband to take this mission, but he could see the agent becoming restless, more twitchy and he thought that a week long mission would do him good. Too bad that Bond never followed rules of any kind and disasters were tight on his heels and one week turned to two and it’ll be another at least ten days before he’ll have his husband by his side again.
“Would you... “ he swallowed nervously “Would you want to know? If it’s a boy or a girl?”
He bit his lip nervously waiting for the reply.
“You didn’t before.”
“I was… scared. I didn’t want to know in case… if I imagined, and it wouldn’t… succeed, I-I don’t think I’d be able to take it. But now… It’s going fine. And we could prepare. Paint the room, buy clothes, toys…” he looked down at his middle feeling a little foot or fist pressing under his palm. He’d be both thrilled and scared if they’d have a little girl. How to bring up a daughter? Him and Bond being both male, they basically knew what a little boy needed, how he thought, behaved, what toys to get him, but a girl…? There were never a lot of females in his life, and from what he knew, Bond’s relationships with women were always at best - rocky.
“When’s your appointment?”
“In an hour. But I don’t have to ask now, I can wait for you to be there.”
“Make another in five days.”
“Jame-” there was no way the agent will make it back in less than a week’s time.
“Five days, darling. And on this one take the comms with you, I want to hear the baby's heartbeat.”
“Of course.” Q smiled hearing the determination and want in his husband’s voice.
As per James’ promise the agent was back in record time - bruised, battered and unspeakably tired as usual - but back, standing beside Q and holding his hand while the doctor moved the ultrasound wand over the boffin’s stomach.
Stopping the picture on the machine, the doctor turned to the expecting parents with a smile.
Hihi a cliffhanger :D
Don't kill me!
Chapter 20: Aftermath#11:Reveal
And it's a.... :D
//Sth for you in there Kimmy! ;)
They sat on their bed, Bond's back propped up with the pillows and Q resting between his splayed thighs, slightly on his side, head pillowed on the agent's firm chest while both their hands splayed over the boffin’s rounded tummy.
“I don't know how to take care of a little girl…”
“Same way you take care of a little boy, Quinn - with love and devotion and care. We learned with Jacques, we'll learn with her, don't worry about that.” Bond said bringing up Q's hand to his lips and kissing his fingers. “we'll be just fine.”
“Yes, just fine. She's still in my stomach and she already has a closet full of dresses and shoes, not to mention the ton of toys. We'll have to move again to a bigger apartment soon.”
Straight after leaving the doctor's appointment they planned to go do a little food shopping and then pick up Jacques and have a peaceful evening, but somehow instead of buying bread and vegetables and other eatable stuff, they ended up on a raid through baby shops.
Dresses of all shapes and forms and colors made their way into the basket, Q going through the available selection like a hurricane, closely followed by the double-oh.
They had a short argument about the color theme for their little girl’s nursery, both deciding that no, it won't be just boring pink and settling on beige and cream peach and soft browns with dusty pink being only an accent there.
The discussion was shortly followed by James sneaking in a light pink tutu into the massive array of dresses already in the cart, Q snickering softly.
“Then we'll move. We did that before too.”
“We have to think about names…”
James hummed in agreement. “But why do I get the feeling you already made up your mind?”
Q flushed, clearing his throat nervously.
“I'm always open for discussion.”
“Out with it, if it's not too horrible I might even agree.”
But Q fell silent, face growing somber for a while before he blew out the breath he had been holding and whispered softly: “Emily, I want to name her Emily.”
“Any particular reason?”
“It’s going to sound pathetic when I say it now, but… my cat, the only friend I had growing up, she was named Emily. Pure white, save for a grey patch on her left ear.” Q touched his own ear, eyes unfocused as he thought about her, the hard times they spent together, the little, cold room they called their own…
“You've never told me about your childhood.” Bond's voice pulled him out of his thoughts.
Q looked up at his husband, smile dancing on his lips again.
“Neither did you.”
“But you found my files and read them from start to finish, didn't you, you little minx?”
“Of course I did. What, I hope you didn't think I wouldn't run a thorough check on my baby daddy, hm?”
James tickled him lightly in playful revenge though his face hardened.
“I'm sorry James. I-I know, now I know, and… I'm sorry I snooped.”
Ticking Q face up and planting a kiss on the pouty lips James murmured against his mouth.
“It's fine. But just promise me, that one day you'll share your story too.”
“I will. Just… I-”
“Shh.. I understand.” James soothed him again, mouth pressing more insistent on the Boffin's lips, the kiss thorough and unhurried before he moved away a little with a grin, voice rough when he spoke.
“Her name will be Emily Charlotte Bond.”
Chapter 21: Aftermath#12: Here
Q pants through a contraction, this one harder than the previous ones, this one makes his eyes water and grip the bedding tight.
Jacques came within three hours from the moment the water broke. Emily was taking forever, Bond snickering that she'll be a proper lady, always fashionably late. She is, already, five days overdue.
The pain eases and Q falls back on the pillow, having bent over to ride out the discomfort. He reaches a hand up to swap his wet fringe from his sweaty brow.
“James? Give me a sip of water, will you?”
Ever attentive, Bond poured water into a cup and handed it over to his labouring husband, kissing his spouse's head.
“You're doing great, it'll soon be over and we'll have Emily with us.”
“You better be right. Bloody hell, didn't they all say a second birth was supposed to be even easier than the first?”
Instead of answering, Bond pressed his lips to Q's head again, hand caressing his nape.
“How are you fairing, Quartermaster?” Jacob Burn, same obstetrician that took his first birth, assisted him in the second one. Q trusted him immensely.
“It's better be time to push soon or I'm asking for cesarean.” murmured tiredly, head lolling back on the pillow.
“Let's check, then.” the doctor stood between the boffin’s legs, lifting the cover up as Q slid lower on the bed, spreading his legs. First time he was mortified, this time, he was too far gone on pain to care who sees his hole gaping open.
Only the prodding fingers made him wince, pushing around and inside his open channel.
“You’re barely at six centimeters, unfortunately. It'll be some time yet.”
Q groaned displeased.
Two hours later, the doctor came to check up on Q, called to the bed by the emergency button.
“Quartermaster, do you need to push?”
“Need, yes, want? Hell no.” The boffin panted between breaths, face scrunched up in pain. “And for God’s sake call me Quinn, we’ve been through enough together now.”
Bond growled unhappily by his side, but refrained from comment when Q’s hand went to squeeze his balls through the agent’s pants.
Never argue with a labouring person, not even non-verbally.
Emily Charlotte Bond was born not even half an hour later, greeting the world with a piercing scream.
Chapter 22: Aftermath#13: Emily
Q got the first experience of holding Emily, the squirming, crying infant was put on his chest. She was still covered in birthing fluid and blood, just barely swiped clean enough to clean her airways and make sure she breathed all right, the doctor cutting the cord between his thighs.
It was the second time he held a newborn, but it woke up the same emotions as the first time, maybe even more now that he knew what could, would follow. The first smiles, the first laughs, first steps, first time he’ll be called daddy, or papa or as Jacques preferred to Q’s slight dismay - Mommy.
The brunet wept as he cradled the tiny girl to his chest, fingers running delicately over the baby's cheek, the tiny head covered in black curls down her spine to hold a small, kicking foot.
“She's perfect. We made another miracle.” He finally looked up at his husband, the agent standing quietly by his side all the time, not uttering even a word. “James?”
Q smiled brightly, his own eyes brimming over again, laughing helplessly in joy, when he saw a tear slide down the stoic, serious agent's face, Bond doing nothing to wipe it away.
The boffin freed a hand and reached out, grasping James’ hand, shaking him out of the stupor.
“Hey, Love, you want to hold her?”
The agent cleared his throat, nodding, and soon a nurse handed him a soft towel to wrap the infant in for a moment and have her other Father hold her.
Q watched, full of wonder and joy and pride, as James took the baby girl from his chest and cradled his daughter in the crook of his arm. The double-oh still fearful and tense, but so much more confident than when he did it for the very first time with Jacques.
Bond watched mesmerized as Emily's tears and cries died down slowly to little mewling sounds, fist going up and wrapping around the agent's finger as he too, as Q has done just minutes ago, traced her little cheek and chin.
“Hello Emily.” He murmured softly
Jacques met his sister when she was almost twelve hours old, James bringing him to the room after both father and daughter had a short nap. The boy climbed on the bed, assisted by Bond and introduced himself very formally to his sister, the amusement of his parent’s immense. The little ones were precious to observe.
Jacques sat by Q’s side and watched the newborn who was mewling softly, legs and arms kicking as she got used to their weight and reach, the little boy’s eyes wide open in wonder and curiosity following each movement. Then he looked up at Q.
“She's so pink, Mommy! Even if you didn't tell me I'd know she's a girl!”
Q chuckled, reaching out and ruffling his son's blond hair, pulled him closer to kiss the little boy's head a moment later, James following his example soon after.
Day later, Q and Emily were released from the MI6 Maternity Ward and taken home by James, Jacques waiting impatiently for them at home with Tanner to show his baby sister his room and toys, discarding his parents words that she was too little to care about such things yet.
“Look up, Darling.” Bond called out softly walking into their bedroom, and when Q turned his head towards him, a bright smile on his face, James quickly snapped a photo.
It was Emily's first night home.
Q was lying on their bed on his left side, blouse undone and his breast out, right hand supporting Emily who was tucked close to her Mommy and suckling on a nipple.
“You both look lovely.”
“Thank you.” Q was all smiles. “Jacques asleep?”
“Yeah. Had to read him his whole book on dinosaurs before he nodded off though, he's so excited about finally being an old brother.” James replied while he undressed down to his boxers, clothes folded neatly on a chair.
He then got into bed behind Q, careful not to jostle his husband and daughter too much, he slotted his body tightly to the Boffin's. He put his head over the brunet's shoulder while wrapping an arm around the slim body.
Emily's fists were kneading Q's left breast as she drank, cupid bow lips wrapped tightly around a nipple and only parting a little once in awhile so she could take a deep breath, mewling softly.
“We're back to nappies, midnight feedings and hopefully no colics.”
“Oh I dearly hope no colics, Jacques’ were hard enough to last two babies.”
Bond kissed his husband's cheek.
“Thank you, Quinn.”
“What for this time?”
“For giving me two beautiful children.”
Q chuckled. “You old sap, go to sleep now. Your beautiful child will be up in two hours with a full nappy and it's your turn to change it.”
“Your will be done, Quartermaster.” Bond said seriously, nosing at Q's nape and peppering it with kisses before he laid down, arm still firmly wrapped around Q, his forehead now resting between the brunet's shoulder blades.
“I love you too.”
Bond smiled as he drifted off to sleep.
Chapter 23: Aftermath#14: Midnight wakeup
James woke up in the of the night with a jerk. For a second he wasn't exactly sure what woke him up, but then he felt it.
His lap was wet and cold.
Groaning, James propped himself up and with bleary eyes looked around for the usual culprit - Jacques.
Who was nowhere to be seen.
It was only him and Q in bed, Emily's soft breaths coming from the nearby side bed.
So it was either him growing old or Q had an accident. Once more.
First, and so far the last time it had happened was after Q finally got a proper night's sleep after that very hard bout of morning sickness, Emily pressing on his bladder and the boffin being too exhausted to wake up in time.
James will never forget the confused face of his husband as he woke up couple minutes after, when Bond was lifting him up from the wet spot and placing him on the rocking chair in the corner of the room. The poor quartermaster was mortified and embarrassed, face flushed red in shame while James stripped the bed and then put fresh beddings on, placing the plastic patch sheet over Q's side of the bed.
Then the agent went to the bathroom to run his husband a hot bath.
When he came back Q was just sitting there, face sour and unhappy, dark circles still underneath his eyes.
James shushed him, kissing the disarrayed mess of hair as he helped the pregnant man stand up, guiding him into the bathroom and telling him it's alright, it's normal, he was pregnant and exhausted and reminding him that one time Q puked on his sock after James tried to kiss him good morning - that was something to be mad about! Bond's kisses weren't supposed to make his husband puke his guts out! That made Q laugh, and after that, everything was alright.
He turned around and switched on the little bedside lamp on, and then lifted the sheet up.
And he froze.
Dark red, some clotted already, and… Some other fluid.
He remembered Q and the doctor explaining about excess spotting after birth, but it was shocking to actually witness it. They didn't sleep in one bed after Jacques was born and Q has been a lot more secretive about his body then, so the most he witnessed was the brunet frequently getting up and changing the covers or sheets.
At least he hoped it was just the spotting, but the blood was dark, for sure it wasn't fresh and pulsing, life threatening bleeding.
Carefully, he got up and went to the bathroom. He cleaned himself up and changed to fresh pajama pants and started a bath before going back to the bedroom, lining the tub with thick towels.
He lifted the covers off Q, who was still sleeping peacefully, out like a candle, and regretfully started to gently shake his husband awake.
“Quinn, darling, wake up, please.”
It took a moment before the boffin's eyes opened up a little, an unhappy scowl on his features that quickly transformed to worry.
“Is it Emily? What's wrong?”
“Shh, everything's fine, both kids are sleeping, no need to be alarmed.”
“Then, what-ugh, why would you wake me up?” Q shifted on the bed, trying to sit up but Bond’s hand stayed him. “Oh…”
James could see the exact moment Q realised why he was being woken up, face noticeably flushing in the sparse light coming from the bathroom, body going ridig.
“I-I’m so sorry, James. You, you should move to the guest room, for some time. It's, it's going to happen for quite some time yet…”
Smiling softly, James leaned in to kiss Quinn on the lips to shush him.
“I don't mind, love. That's not why I woke you up. I just want to take care of you, but needed you to be awake for that. Will you let me take care of you?”
“James… it's, it's not pretty and…”
“I know, Quinn.”
The boffin heaved a sigh and laid back.
“Do as you please then.”
“Can I undress you?”
“If you must…”
“Yes. Yes, you can, just… please remember I just gave birth, and-”
“Love, I saw you naked on the same day you gave birth, I was there when Emily came to this world and I do remember, quite fondly I must add, how your body looked after you had Jacques.” Q opened his mouth to say something but Bond held up his hand. “And I do remember your postpartum boundaries. Until your say so everything I do is just to be a helpful and adoring husband, nothing sexual.”
Q nodded, relaxing, body growing lax as he send Bond a soft, warm smile.
James reached out and took one of the boffin’s hand in his and gave it a little reassuring squeeze before he let go and started to tug down the brunet’s soiled pants and undergarments.
“Was it so after Jacques?”
“Y-Yeah… The first couple of days are the worst, then it’s… more manageable. James-”
“Shhh.” Bond leaned down to press a kiss against one knobbly knee before he got up and helped Q pull his shirt over his head. Having the boffin perfectly naked, he lowered down and bracing his hands under Q’s knees and behind his back he lifted his husband up in his arms with a little grunt, Q chuckling softly as he nuzzled against the agent’s neck.
“Before you say it, I’m not too old yet to carry you around.”
“Before you say it, I’m advising you to think twice about calling me fat.”
Totally pampered, squeaky clean and happy, Q got tucked back into a clean bed, a squirming newborn tucked in the crook of his arm as her hungry mouth searched for a nipple. She found it in a matter of seconds, sucking loudly and making Q groan painfully. He was still much too tender.
Propped up against pillows, tearing his gaze from his daughter he resumed his observation of Bond, who was picking up the soiled sheets and clothes and going away to put it into the washing machine.
“And bring me some orange juice when you’ll be coming back!” he stage-whispered to the retreating back of his husband.
“Yes, your Lordship” he got as an answer.
Q snuggled back into the covers, happy and smiling and content. Life had it’s ups and downs, nothing was always perfect, but this few moments here and there, were what made his life so amazing.
For months to come, Q would often come back in thought to this idyllic moments of love and devotion and care to find strength to push forward.
For no one could anticipate that one moment he had everything - a son, a newborn daughter, a loving husband, and the next…
The next, Bond was gone.
Chapter 24: Aftermath#15: Gone
Emily was twelve months old - stumbling around on unsteady feet and mumbling things that were not yet quite words but so very close to them Q was immensely proud.
Jacques was an energetic almost five year old boy, always getting in trouble ‘Like Papa!’ and in the evenings insisting to be read to a page of a grown up book - one page, each day.
And Bond… Bond was still missing.
Q never thought something could hurt so much, while his life didn't change. At all.
It was disturbing how little having or not having Bond around really changed his daily routine.
He got up, made breakfast for himself and Jacques, fed and changed and dressed Emily, supervised his son’s morning bathroom routine and which clothes the boy would choose to wear for the day. He got dressed himself and then drove to the Tanners, leaving his son in their care and taking Emily to work with him, just as he used to do with Jacques when the boy was little.
After work, when they’d all be home, he’d make dinner, play with the kids, read them stories and put them to beds.
And it continued so, without a break, for weeks. Months.
Bond just didn’t come back for that week here, a month there, like he used to.
Q’s life continued without that lovely break, that sought out moments that life got easier, more pleasing.
Only in the late evenings, kids already in beds, he’d sit down in the living room and allow himself a moment of grief, of anger and sadness, allowed himself to really miss James and wonder if he’d ever get him back, even for a short while, like always, but have him there one more time at least.
Have the blond man come and sit with him on the couch, give him kisses and cuddle him close, hands pushing, pulling. Needing. Insisting.
How many times they made love on this very couch, how many times Bond pinned him down here and ravished his body, harsh and fierce and sometimes almost painful.
He’d alway take care of Q after, gently helping him clean up, carry him to shower or straight to bed or if they were both too tired they’d just fall asleep there for a little while, wrapped in a blanket, entwined oh so closely.
James left on a mission when Emily was three months old, grumbling and fuming on the outside but it was obvious he was relieved to finally be back in the field. And Q… he let him go. No use to trap the agent home when everything was going good.
The boffin still had a month of maternity leave then, assisting the Q-branch only when necessary from the specially designed room in their apartment, the Tanners coming in to help him out and watch the children when necessary.
Only by pure luck, or curse, Q couldn’t still decide, he was present that day, watching quietly in his room as James mission took on speed and, not surprisingly, went hayware in a matter of hours.
He couldn’t do much, not logged in to the system as an active participant at that time, when Bond, instead of taking cover and waiting for backup chose to disconnect his coms and to run across the city in pursue of the the mark, blowing half the district in his wake. And then, it seems, himself.
Q could only scream helplessly as he watched his husband get shot at on a rooftop, the building collapsing in on itself a second later as a strong explosion teared through the construction, sending up clouds of dust and sand, obscuring the view.
As improbable as it seemed, Q hoped. Hoped so, so fiercely that Bond, again, would make it out alive. He logged in to the system, cracked all and every cctv in the area. There weren’t many of those, the territory of north-east asia had sparse supply of electronic devices, but he still tried. Changing the trajectory of satellites to have a better view, a constant view… but there was nothing.
It wasn’t the first time during their relationship Bond got himself into trouble, they even lost him couple of times on the coms for two or three days, once, as long as a week. But it never looked this bad.
And Q was helpless.
Sitting in the dark, observing the twisted chaos that used to be a building, tears streamed down his cheeks.
James was fine. He’ll be back home in a month’s time, max. He must have somehow survived the explosion. For sure.
Teams were sent to the place of catastrophe and many dead and mangled bodies were found.
Each time a DNA sample was sent to MI6 laboratories Q was praying it wasn’t a match to any of their employee data.
Then the day came he heard the distinctive ping of the Morgue Department notification, the icon glowing red on the side of his monitor and he felt his knees weaken.
Did they… was he-?
He spent what felt like an eternity looking at the red icon, dreading to move his mouse there, fearing what would happen if, when, he clicked on it.
He wasn’t ready to lose James.
If the sample was a match…
“Quartermaster?” R voice spoke softly from his side, but it still made him jump ”The body - it’s Xiao Feng, our informant, listed as an employee in our systems by mistake, that’s why we got the notification in red.”
He looked at his second in command with a blank look, face white and cold sweat breaking over his skin.
“Thank you, R,I-I think I’ll… go work in my office for a little bit.”
R nodded with a worried smile.
That was the first and only time Q had willingly gone to the Medical and got himself a sedative, his heart going a mile a minute and panic settling deep in his very soul as tears streamed down his cheeks no matter how many times he swiped his hand over his face to dry it all up.
On that day, he was a mess. All the stress of over two months of Bond missing finally breaking a dam and he just… melted.
He spent the rest of the day hidden in his office, sitting on his couch and wrapped in a blanket that still smelt of James, of their kids. He remembered all the moments James would visit him in the office when Jacques was little. They would sit on the couch, Q cuddled up by the agents side as he breastfed their son, James observing over his shoulders and kissing his ear once in awhile. All the evenings James would visit him with Jacques in tow, the toddler falling asleep before Q managed to free himself from work and then the agent would wrap the boy in the blanket and sit down with the boy sleeping on his chest as they waited.
Where was his husband now?
The fact they still hadn't found his body was a blessing and a curse. What happened to the agent? He wasn't in the exact place the explosion happened so Q didn't even consider the fact that nothing could have been left of the body. The man disappeared. Was he taken? Was he on the run?
Burrowing into the blanket he let his eyes close as he was taken under by the drugs in his system.
Going to the Tanners that evening, he spent fifteen minutes just watching the bell, not feeling strong enough to smile and reassure his children that everything was fine, papa was still somewhere out there and coming home soon.
When he finally found the courage to ring the bell he was immensely relieved it was Bill who opened the doors.
The older man smiled at him warmly and invited him inside, steering him straight into a study and sitting him down in a chair with a blanket over his shoulders.
“Why don’t you and the kids stay the night? The children would much enjoy it, they haven’t finished their play of dress-up quite yet.”
Q smiled at him, eyes going teary. He tried to blink them away but failed miserably.
An hour later Mallory found them sitting cuddled together in front of the fire, Q sleeping soundly, head on the other man’s lap, and Bill carding his fingers through the lithe man’s hair in a calming gesture.
After exchanging sad smiles, Gareth walked out quietly, locking the doors behind himself.
The boffin needed a peaceful sleep, a short respite from the drama going around.
Then everything calmed down.
The area was finally cleared and cleaned of all the debris, the mission taken over by another agent, and the search for Bond put on hold. Officially.
But every free moment he had, Q spent on tracking his husband, any trail he could find he pursued fiercely, every time his face scanner pinged with an over 70% match, the boffin’s heart stopped for one painful moment of hope. The feeling quickly died down upon closer inspection of the video clip - the face too pointy, the eyes too big, the nose too perky. Not Bond.
Each trail he stumbled upon, hunted down, it always ended up being a dead-end alley. Nothing. The moment that building collapsed it seems like Bond fell off the face of the earth.
And as it was, the boffin was quickly losing hope of ever seeing his husband again.
Chapter 25: Aftermath#16: Missing
Sipping on his morning cup of Earl Gray, sitting down in his pajamas in the living room, laptop forgotten on his lap as he stared out the window, Q was deeply in thought.
Early on in Bond’s disappearance it dawned down on him, that from the very beginning, he has been a single dad.
He needed and counted more on the Mallorys and the Tanners than he did on James.
Having his husband around wasn't the normality - him being absent was. The agent being home felt more like vacation, something immensely enjoyable and missed and awaited, but not normal.
Emily didn’t remember her papa, only made aware of the missing man by Jacques’ questions and teary tantrums and Q’s showing her pictures and explaining. She was yet too little to care, she didn’t understand there should be another adult, a blond haired man there to kiss her and cuddle her and lift her high up in the air, playing airplane. She had Q, she had Bill and Gareth and the Mr and Mrs Tanner.
But Jacques was a different matter.
The brunet’s heart twisted painfully in his chest every time Jacques would wake up in the middle of the night and ask for James, ask when papa would be home again and Q had no answers.
The toddler was used to Bond being away a lot, the boy braved through weeks of James being on missions, but this absence was dragging on longer than it had ever before and after all this time even Q’s hope was waning.
“Jacques? Baby? Where are you?” One night, hearing weird noises coming from within the house Q got up to check what was happening. He was quite sure the house was secure, the amount of electronic devices he had keeping watch all over the place plus all the traps made their apartment a place hard to break into. But one could never be too safe. Emily was sleeping soundly next to him so he left her tucked in the bed while he got up, turned on the little side lamp and went towards his son’s room. He felt mildly worried when he found the toddler’s room empty.
So he resumed his shushed calling.
“Jacques? Where did you go? Baby?”
Then, surprised, he realised that the noise was not coming from within the house but from his own room. He backtracked his steps and stood quietly, listening.
And then it was again, a shuffling sound mixed up with soft sniffles coming from his walk in closet.
“Jacques? What are you doing in Mommy’s closet?” If he wasn’t so worried, he might give a little laugh, but he remained serious as he walked to the place he kept all his clothes and slowly pushed the side-sliding doors to the side.
And there he was, softly illuminated by the bedside lamp, his boy was sitting in the far corner, various sweaters and shirts pulled from their racks and tucked around the trembling body.
“Baby…” Q whispered brokenly as he fell to his knees and moved towards his son, cradling the toddler close. Those were all James’ clothes, still smelling of the man’s distinctive cologne and that something special that Q always secretly loved, even before they first shagged. He remembered how the agent used to come to the Q-branch, he would always orbit around Q, making the boffin unable to concentrate on anything, and when he sneaked past him, Q could always catch this special kind of scent that was just, unmistakably, Bond.
“I miss papa…” Jacques whispered out against Q’s neck, his breath hot and wet with tears.
“I know, love, I miss him too.” Q rocked side to side, softly swaying, hoping to comfort whilst his own heart was breaking as he ran his hand through the boy’s short, blond hair. Jacques was a spitting image of James.
“When is he coming back? The m‘ssion ‘s toooo long, Mommy. Get papa to come back home.”
“I-I can’t, Jacques. I, I can’t make him come back.” Q’s voice broke, as he held his son closer.
He was trying, he was trying so hard to find any trace of Bond, but the man was just… gone. Truth to be told, it was a miracle they didn’t find James’ body in the debris left of the explosion, so that gave him a little hope. But for how long will it still hold? Should he start to prepare the boy for the painful truth? Should he stop pretending it was just a very long mission and admit to his son that his papa was missing in action, probably lost forever and neither of them will ever find out what happened to the man they loved so much?
“I want papa! Why can’t we call him? He called before!” His boy looked up at him with hope and anger, teary blue eyes and a runny nose. Q gently wiped a thumb over one red cheek, leaning down to kiss the boy’s head as he whispered against the soft hair.
“Papa is far away, there’s no phones around.”
“No truth! Doesn’t papa miss me? Did he forget about me?” little fists took hold of his shirt, tugging, demanding an answer, Q only pressed more kisses to the blond head, arms wrapping tighter around the toddlers trembling frame, a measly comfort.
“Jacques, no. Papa loves you very, very much and misses you just as much if not more. He-he’s just far, far away, but he-he’ll come b-back, you’ll see.” Voice trembling and breaking, Q wasn’t sure he was that convincing.
“I want papa…”
“Shh… I know, love, I know.”
He held the crying toddler close, rocking side to side as his own tears slipped down his cheeks. Sitting in the dark, surrounded by the smell of James’ cologne, he prayed.
Chapter 26: Aftermath#17: Memorial
Ping with a flashing blue LED light control on the top right on his monitor.
That meant an email from the higher ups, but not an urgent one, something he called a ‘team mailer’ if anything like that could exist in MI6. Putting away his cup of earl gray, fifth today, he clicked on his email app.
As he scanned the content of the email, his hands curled to fists, back tensing as he felt his fury rise.
“R, you’re in charge. 004 should call in in ten minutes, send him the prepared data pack.” he spit out, turning sharply on his heel and storming out, his minions sending him worried and pitying looks as he moved past them. They also got the email ofcourse.
He walked briskly through the long corridors and up multiple flights of stairs, too buzzed to wait for an elevator. Doors slamming open and shut as he moved up and up the building structure to M’s office.
Barging in, he didn’t even pay any attention to Moneypenny, who really, just raised her head, unhappy but understanding expression on her face, not even reaching for the phone to let Mallory know he was just about to be disturbed.
Pushing the doors to his boss’ office open, Q stormed in and slammed both hands on the man’s desk, but Mallory didn’t even flinch. He just lifted his gaze at his Quartermaster and leaned back in the chair, totally calm.
“What the bloody hell was that?”
“I’m guessing you refer to the email.”
“Yes, the email. He’s not dead!”
“It’s been a year, Quinn.”
“I don’t care! He’s not dead! You-You have no right to have a, a memorial service in his name!”
“It’s the company policy, as you are well aware. And it is his fifth, if memory serves right. If he’s alive, if, then he’ll… live through having his fifth memorial service and come back in all his glory when he’s ready. But till that time, some closure would do some people good.” Q fumed even harder when Mallory looked at him meaningfully. He was sure the man knew about all the extra hours he pulled.
“He’s not dead! I won’t be attending this, this farce!”
“And no one is forcing you. But maybe, really, Quinn… the children-”
“Don’t tell me how I should bring up my children, they’re just fi-”
“They’re not. Not Jacques. Emily is, yes, she has no recollection of Bond, but your son, he needs to understand that-”
“What my son needs to understand is that both his parent love him and that his father is somewhere out there and fighting to get back to us so we don’t need or appreciate people organising memorial services. Good day to you, Mallory, I won’t be attending.”
Straightening his back he moved to leave when Mallory’s voice called him back.
“You’ll be getting the widow’s pension funds added to your paycheck from next month and Bond’s insurance paid out in the next three weeks.”
That froze Q in his steps for a moment, before he turned sharply around and took couple of steps back to Mallory’s desk, leaning low and almost threatening over the man.
“I don’t need your money. He’s not dead, I’m not a widow. K-keep it.” he seethed through clenched teeth and then straightened up and walked out briskly, feeling the anger melt into almost paralyzing sorrow.
Each step he took, he could feel his body tremble more and more, his vision blurring.
He knew MI6 like the back of his pocket and not for the first time he was glad that he did.
Stumbling through corridors he found himself tucked away in one of the spare and long forgotten little offices. Closing the doors, pressing in the code to lock and cut the place from surveillance, he put his back against a wall, knees going weak as he slid to the floor, weeping silently.
Faith could only carry him so far.
Maybe Mallory was right? Should he finally tell Jacques papa was not coming back? That it was just them from now on and not to wait and hope?
As the man said, it was Bond’s fifth memorial service in the long years of him being the 007 and he always came back eventually, Q just had to stay strong, search harder.
Standing up, he wiped his cheeks and eyes, blown his nose out in a tissue and ran his hands through his hair.
He was going to find that bastard and rip him a new one for being away so long.
Filled up with new determination, he stalked back to Q-branch.
Couple days later, standing by his work station, back stiff, Q sent tight smiles to his coworkers as they wrapped up their work, leaving earlier to go attend the memorial service for the lost in action agent, double-oh seven, father of two and a loving husband, may God rest his soul.
Q watched with disdain as all his colleagues wore black and grey attires, respectfully mournful as they moved on tiptoes around him all day. He wore his cerulean blue jumper and held his head high.
And he dressed Emily in the brightest pink dress they had and convinced Jacques to also go wild on bright happy colours and now his son ran around the Tanner's house in bright green trousers and honey-yellow T-shirt.
Fuck all of them.
“You’ll be fine on your own, Quartermaster?” R hung back for a moment, expression worried.
“Perfectly so, R. Thank you.” he bit back in answer and for a moment it seemed R would say something more, her mouth opening and closing before she nodded firmly. Sending him a soft smile, she left.
And so, he was left alone in the spacious office, all the mourners gone to that farce of a ceremony.
Q seethed with anger the whole day and now he turned back to angrily punch on his keyboard, putting in line after line of new code to yet another layer of security. There was never such thing as too much security.
He was so immersed in his work that he jumped slightly when he heard someone clear his throat behind him.
The first couple of times he heard it, his heart stopped for a moment in painful hope. Now, he knew better.
The man moved to another department at one point, shortly before Jacques’ first birthday, prompted by Q’s awkward behaviour around him, but he still insisted they keep in touch. He had been visiting Q more and more as Bond’s absence seemed to drag on. And now, they had some sort of friendship bond that on some days made Q wonder where exactly it was leading.
“Quinn, I came to-”
He turned sharply from his screen to face the man.
“If you say the word ‘condolences’ I will rig your phone. And kettle.”
The man in question raised both his arm up in a gesture of surrender.
“I meant to say ‘comfort’. That, at least you can admit you need sometimes.”
Q scrunched up his face in distaste. The fact that once, once, the blond IT guy caught him out when he cried in his office after yet another ‘false alarm’ and he let the man console him didn’t mean he needed the attention and sentiment all the time when something disturbing happened. He needed ‘support’, but that the ex-minion knew perfectly.
“Shouldn’t you be elsewhere?” he still felt on the defensive.
“No, this is exactly the place I should be.” the man said in response, stepping closer and crowding Q in against the boffin’s work bench, arms going around the slim, stiff frame.
“Shh… it’s alright.”
Q found himself enveloped in a tight hug that he gradually, reluctantly, relaxed into, letting his forehead rest on the other man’s broad shoulder as he closed his eyes.
“Thank you.” He whispered softly, wrapping his own arms around Ashton, holding tightly and letting go of all anger and frustration he felt all day. They were silent for a long while, holding onto each other tightly, before Q gave a deep sigh and cuddled in even closer.
“Jacques learned how to write his name, be sure to praise him after supper, yes?”
“And I forgot to buy Emily’s nappies.”
“Don’t worry, I got it. I got you.”
Don't kill me?
//now, after seeing London Spy, Ashton looks for me a lot like Alex... What do you think?
Home life was far from being boring - Emily had a new tooth coming, so she was fussy and irritable (along being a very curious toddler that got into a lot of mischief with her brother in tow). It was much better and involved less crying than when her very first teeth dropped, but it was still a hassle to deal with the moody toddler. And Jacques just lost his very first baby tooth today.
Q would have been very proud and happy to join his little boy in the celebration if this miraculous event didn’t happen at four o’clock in the morning.
Why his boy was up at that awful hour, he had no idea, but he was woken up with the boy’s considerable weight jumping on him and a happy yell of “Mommy! My tooth is out! Call the tooth fairy, I’ve got a wish!”
So he sat up in the bed and turned on the bedside lamp and peppered the boy’s round cheeks with kisses, prompting his son to show him the missing tooth before he started to tickle the little monster, making pearls of laughter spill from the toothless mouth. Then Jacques presented him his milky tooth proudly.
“Come on, back to bed now, we need to put that tooth under your pillow for the fairy to find.”
He got up and holding his hand out to Jacques, guided them both back to the boy’s room.
Tucking him in, Q ruffled the boy’s light blond hair, smiling softly.
“Now, place your tooth under your pillow and make a wish. But remember, tooth fairies are not the most powerful fairies around, so the wishes they grant are just little ones to make children happy. Don’t be disappointed if you wish for the moon, but get a shiny, silver coin instead, ok?”
It was heartbreaking to see Jacques take his tooth in his palms and hold it close to his mouth as he whispered, the words like “papa” and “back” easy for Q to catch, before the boy placed the tooth beneath his pillow and laid down to snuggle in, blue eyes gazing intently at his Mommy. Q smiled at his boy, so much faith still, when he lost it all already.
“Good night, baby. Sweet dreams.”
Q leaned down and kissed the boy’s forehead.
He stayed for a while, watching his son sleep peacefully, before getting up and going to the kitchen, putting the kettle on. There’s no way he’d be able to fall asleep now, so with a cup of earl grey he settled down on the couch in the living room, laptop on his knees. Better to get some work done.
He got to work late, Jacques sleepy and cranky, but trying to put on a brave face when he found only a watch underneath his pillow. It was one of James’ old ones, small enough to fit nicely on a child's thin wrist, worn leather strap soft to the touch. But it was not Papa.
Q didn't have to wait long for Emily to recognise her brother was unhappy and to show her solidarity by throwing a temper tantrum and refusing to do anything her Mommy asked.
Buckling them both up in the car seats when Bill came for them was another fight, and then, when he finally stumbled into Q-branch he was met with another tornado.
003 wasn't playing nice in the Middle East and they had to gather new intelligence for her mission ASAP, while simultaneously covering up her tracks as she wrecked havoc on her way and then organising an extraction team from thin air.
A great morning that stretched well into the day.
No one got to go on the lunch break and even now, late at evening, the minions didn't show any will to stop their work, all immersed in discussions, making up plans, detailing each action for easy to follow instructions and arguing on which plan was better and what were the weak points to pay attention to.
And then Q-branch fell silent.
All the voices, the shuffling of the mouse, the keyboards clicking that were always present in the background just ceased to exist after Q heard the doors open.
No one made Q-branch this eerily quiet, except….
The boffin just knew, could feel it in his bones before he even turned.
James Bond came back to life again.
And he, himself, felt numb.
His heart frozen and unfeeling.
Through the long months he went through all the stages of grief and there was simply nothing left.
He cleared his throat before speaking, his voice collected and calm. “Bond.”
That voice. That memorable, deep timber he used to love so much, now, not even making him shiver.
He forced himself to turn around, mouth scrunching up in that fake, awkward smile that Bond had made fun of so many times.
All his minions stood dumbly in their spots, trying to seem not curious and awed and failing miserably. And there, in the middle, stood the infamous double-oh seven - a little older, a lot more bulkier, couple new wrinkles he could spot even from afar, especially around the agent's eyes, dress impeccably as ever in a dark grey, perfectly tailored suit.
‘So he did smile when he was away’ he thought with a tingle of sadness.
Giving another fake smile, Q fidgeted in spot, fingers weaving together. Nerves. So he did feel *something*.
“I'll finish up here, half an hour at most and we'll meet down in the car garage, shall we?”
As he turned around he could see James lose his gentle smile, that little spark in his eyes going out and face hardening back into the double-oh impenetrable mask.
And he felt sorry for James, but he just couldn't bear seeing the man now, he needed a moment to collect himself before he dealt with the agent reappearing in his life again as if nothing happened.
“As you wish, Q.”
The moment Bond left the room it was as if time started to flow again, hushed chatter filling the space as the minions tried and failed to returned to their duties, discussing the situation between themselves in hushed whispers.
He folded his hands into fists as he leaned over his laptop.
“Are you alright?”
It was R, standing quietly by his side looking worried as she put a tea cup on his table, a feeble excuse as he already had his steaming mug.
“Yes, fine.” His mouth trembled though, voice shaky.
“I'll finish up, you haven't seen each other so long…”
“So couple more minutes won't make a difference. Return to your station and give me that data sheet I asked you to send me ten minutes ago.” He snapped at her, feeling apologetic the moment he closed his mouth again. “I’m s-”
“Shush, I understand.” She smiled gently at him. “Take your time.”
Walking down the corridors of MI6 towards the garages, Q took a deep breath, his mind a mess.
James was back.
A little over a year and he was finally back.
Q fished out his phone and dialed Bill's number. The man picked up after the first ring, voice worried.
“Are you alright, Quinn?”
“No.” He replied tersely. So it seems the news traveled quickly, he wasn't surprised that much really. “I… will need a couple days off, and, and I'll call Mallory, but, can you, can the kids stay the night? I'll pick them up tomorrow, but-”
“No problem, take your time. I'll let Gareth know you'll be off for some time, don't limit yourself, take as much as you need.”
“I probably should, but, I… I can't believe it really. He's back but… I'm not… I'm not ready for him to be back, I-”
Q took a nervous breath, stopping himself, hand rubbing at his forehead, pulling at his fringe.
“It'll be alright, take your time, talk with him. And whenever you'll need me, I'm here. As is Gareth.”
Bill was always the calm one, keeping a cool head in nervous situations and he became Q's voice of reason and hope and reassurance.
“Thank you. I'll be by sometime tomorrow. Kiss Jacques and Emily goodnight for me, but, but don't tell them yet that he's back.”
“I won't, don't worry.”
It was the most awkward car ride Q has ever participated in.
When he made his way into the garage, James’ favourite Aston Martin was humming softly, waiting just by the entrance. The man behind the steering wheel was looking at him intently, blue gaze searching.
He got into the car, buckled the seat belt and turned his face to the window without saying a word.
And James let him be, putting the car in the gear and speeding out of the parking lot with practised ease.
It felt so unreal now, getting home from MI6 with his husband in tow. It’s been so long since they did that…
The city passed them by as if nothing happened, as if Q’s life didn’t turn in on it’s head again, as if his heart wasn’t about to implode with all the mixed feelings he had.
The moment James put the car in park in the apartment complex building garage, the boffin teared out of the car. Not waiting for Bond he walked briskly to the lift and took himself up to his apartment. Theirs.
He left the doors unlocked.
With trembling hands he took the kettle, filled it with water and put it on.
Bracing his hands on the counter, hands clenched into fists, he listened as the entrance doors opened and shut, someone pulling of their shoes, the soft sounds of steps coming in his direction.
He didn’t look up when Bond stood in the entrance to the kitchen.
Biting his lips when he heard the steps move away, back to the living room, he straightened up, reached for his cup and put the tea in. After a moment’s hesitation he pulled out another cup.
Both steaming mugs in hands he walked out of the kitchen, and fought to keep his hands from trembling too much and spilling the hot liquid. He put both teas on the coffee table before changing his mind and with his brew clutched in both hands he moved to sit in one of the armchairs, s far away from the agent as he could. Bond was left sitting alone on the couch, idly playing with one of the plush toy bunnies Emily adored so much.
Bracing himself, Q took a deep breath and looked up into the blue eyes.
“Double-Oh Seven, your mission report, please.”
ALTERNATE CHAPTER ENDING
The moment James put the car in park in the apartment complex building garage, the boffin teared out of the car. Not waiting for Bond he walked briskly to the lift and took himself up to his apartment. Theirs.
He left the doors unlocked.
With trembling hands he took the kettle, filled it with water and put it on.
Bracing his hands on the counter, hands clenched into fists, he listened as the entrance doors opened and shut, someone pulling of their shoes, the soft sounds of steps coming in his direction.
He didn’t look up when Bond stood in the entrance to the kitchen, eyes stuck firmly on the counter. He swallowed hard, cleared his throat and let the word slip out of his mouth in a hushed whisper.
Should I continue with the alternative? :D
Do you think they'll reconcile?
Chapter 29: New beginnings #2: Home
Thank you all lovely ppl for all your fierce and detailed comments and sharing of your opinions and ideas!
It means a lot to me!
No alternative ending! :D But that doesn't mean drama is over...
I'm not sure I'm doing so good mission-action-plot-wise, so pls just squint and... constructive-critique away if you wish :)
I tried my best.
Q's tea ran cold, and Bond was still talking.
Telling Q everything that happened since he left, telling everything he remembered, that is.
After the explosion he was quickly found by one of the members of Feng’s family, the informant that worked closely with Bond on that mission. The man's brothers knew what both men were implicated in, they knew they had to get Bond out of the city before the crime syndicate got wind of the agent surviving.
So they smuggled him out. Broken, bleeding, unconscious; swaddled in bandages to help him survive, to not let anyone recognise him.
He came to in a small village, somewhere in the middle of nowhere, Siberia, maybe two, three weeks later, he didn't know. He didn't even know his name.
The family he got placed at, Roman and Nadia, they told him he got in an accident in the mines in the next village over. That's why he got a concussion, broken leg and arm, crushed ribs. Why he was sore all over, his body scattered in bruises and cuts.
But he recovered.
They took good care of him, they knew all about re-convalescence, they had many men go through what he went. They learned. That far north there weren't many doctors so they learned what they could from generation to generation. And you either survived, got back to health or you died. There was no middle ground.
They just couldn't heal his mind.
He was given a name, Aleksey, they treated him as their own son and to anyone that asked introduced him as a cousin, twice removed, but here weren’t many people around to ask questions.
He worked, lived with them, tried to be part of the little society as he recovered.
But he did wake up screaming some nights, his mind plagued by visions both scary and worrisome, something always bugging him, not making any sense in his current life. His senses were to honed, the reflexes too quick to be just a miner.
Then, one day, he was repairing the roof, Tasha- that is someone- someone nudged the ladder he was on and he fell, hit his head again.
When he woke up two days later, he remembered everything.
And he had to go back to northern China, finish what he started, make sure the mission was completed before he could head back to London. And now, four months later, now he was back.
Q looked at him, mouth set in a thin line as cold realisation flowed through his veins. He put his tea away, head hung low as he gathered his thoughts.
“You had someone there.” a statement. Not a question.
Bond looked away.
“It was fleeting and-”
“I don't care!” He finally blew up. “You had someone while I was here, alone, bringing up YOUR kids! Emily's one year old! Where have you been when she started teething? Where have you been when she took her first steps!? Just so you know, she learned to walk before she spoke and she said her first word when she was ten months old! It was something stupid and hard to decipher, like, like pup! Or paps, or something, but she tried! And you were, you- I don't even know where, you don't even know where exactly! Fucking some skinny cunt, while your daughter - your child - grew up without her Father! And don't let me even get started on Jacques! He was devastated, he waited and prayed and cried. You don't want to know how painful it was to watch him cry his eyes out after you! He felt you've abandoned him, us! Emily doesn't even know you! But Jacques, he'll never forget you not being around for a whole. Fucking.Year.” Q choked, tears finally breaking out of his eyes.
“I tried to come back as quickly as I cou-”
“But not before having a bloody affair! And finishing that God forsaken mission!”
“I didn't remember, Quinn! I didn't remember you, didn't remember hav-”
“Stop! I-I can't- Four months, James! You just said it yourself - four months you knew and remembered and didn’t even *think* to contact us?”
“I didn’t want to do that to you, if something went wrong, if I really died, you’d have to go through it all again.”
“If you’d real- I can’t. This conversation is over.”
Q shot out of his armchair to stand over Bond and shout in his face.
“When will you finally learn to fucking LISTEN!?” Bond opened his mouth again. “Not a word more, shut up! If you learned to listen we wouldn't be in this, this hellhole of a situation! If you only listened and not went running blindly after that, that” Q made some vague hand gesture, the emotions overwhelming, making him struggle to find correct words. He turned his head to the side, giving himself a moment before he looked back at Bond. "I thought your priorities shifted, you promised, you-” he broke himself off. Then he seemed to deflate, like a puppet whose strings were cut. “I should have known better, but no, I trusted you. and you failed me.”
Seeing Bond try to open his mouth again, he lifted up his hand, stopping the man.
“Not a word more.”
He stormed out of the living room, the bedroom doors slamming shut behind him.
Sitting on the bedroom floor in the dark, his back resting against the bed frame, Q felt overwhelmed, his breathing coming in short, erratic gasps.
He hadn't had a panic attack in years, but now it was crushing his lungs and heart.
Pulling both hands over his mouth he squeezed his eyes shut and concentrated on his breathing.
His life was once again in an uproar and he felt trapped. In this shitty situation, in his room, in his home. And he couldn't even fathom falling asleep. He knew Bond was wide awake too.
Finally, after all this time, he had the man he had loved so much, missed so much, just couple of steps away but the distance felt like miles now. His choked on a rising cry, throat constricting.
He didn't know how much time passed before he finally managed to calm himself down. His body sagging in painful relief he made himself reach for his laptop. Nothing better to take his mind completely off his personal troubles than work. Pulling up his latest project, he started to type.
He must have fallen asleep at one point, his back was stiff and his neck and head hurt, leaning at a weird angle on the bedside table.
Pulling the laptop off his stiff legs, he gathered himself up and made his way to the bathroom. Washing up, his movement was mechanical, slow, his mind blank, void of emotions.
Dressed up in his usual checkered trousers and sweater he walked out to the living room.
Bond was sitting exactly where he had left him last night, a tumbler of amber liquid held in a loose grip.
“We can't go back to how things were, James.”
Bond nodded and then looked up at Q with a hopeful smile “At least not straight away.”
“James… too much has changed, too much has happened while you were gone.”
“You had someone too, didn't you.” Bond's voice was tight, clipped, anger shimmering in the background.
“You're hardly in any position to be mad with me about it. Were it true.”
“But there was… someone.”
“No. Just a friend. I knew he wanted more, he knew it was impossible.”
Bond's face hardened, lips pressed in a thin line.
Standing still, he observed his husband without saying a word before forcing himself to move again towards the entrance doors.
“Will you bring the kids?”
His heart constricted painfully at the hopeful tone in James’ voice.
“No, not yet. We need to decide what to tell them.”
“And by we you mean you. Or y-”
“Shut up James before you say something you'll regret.”
He walked out without a backward glance.
Chapter 30: New beginnings #3: Re-introductions p.1
Thank you as always for all the comments! I love getting to know your opinions and thoughts!
Sorry I've been away so long - finally took my vacations and let me tell you - they were amazing! :)
Get a tissue, the drama continues.
Q bit his lip as he walked down the street to the park they went so often to on the weekends.
His brain kick started again somewhere between shutting the doors and him descending down the stairs and now his head was filled with yesterday's events and revelations.
He didn't really know why he blew up on the point when Bond admitted, though vaguely, that he had someone while he was away. It's not like Bond never did sleep with anyone on the missions. The agent tried to avoid it, yes, but it did happen here and there. It was never easy, it wasn't something they both enjoyed, but it was a necessity sometimes and Q learned to live with it. Until now, he was living in the conviction he was the most important one in James’ life, him and the kids being the centre of James’ universe.
But when the dimwit chose to disobey his orders and give chase to the suspect, knowingly putting himself in danger, choosing the mission over returning home, Q's faith wavered.
Bond was doing so good until this point, the blond man really started to take care of himself (and the equipment) more seriously, keeping more in touch with both Q and Jacques during his missions. But on that day something changed and he lost James to the duty, to their country.
And he was left alone to take care of himself and their two children, one of them barely an infant.
Maybe that was what hurt most - being left alone. Again.
First his parents, all his friends and colleagues and now, his very own husband.
Q laughed bitterly to himself.
And he knew the man suffered the consequences if his own rash actions, he could see it in the shadowed, heavy, blue gaze, but that also didn't mean he would forgive Bond his actions.
He hurt, too.
His children hurt.
Bond broke them, broke them all apart by not putting them first.
Question was, did Q want to mend the break, now, that it was all so painfully obvious he wasn't the most important, that they were second, maybe even third, fourth… who really knew, how much down the line of importance to the blond haired agent.
And he missed Bond so fiercely…
With a sight he looked around the mostly empty park, pulling his parka closer around himself, glad he grabbed it at last moment before leaving.
He couldn't bear the thought of being alone with Bond now, he didn't know what to say more, he didn't want to hear more. And he didn't want to fight. But he also couldn't bear to stay away.
Picking up his phone, he called Tanner, telling him he'll be over in an hour to pick up the kids.
He was let into the Mallory's apartment by a somber faced Bill, the man just ushered him in with a gentle smile, not asking questions, not pushing. Just as if nothing changed.
And Q really appreciated it, having this couple more moments of what came to be normality.
He greeted his children, hugging a smiling and a little winded Jacques - the boy in the middle of a game of hide and seek with the triplets - then taking a little fussy Emily from Gareth’s arms.
“How's my little girl doing?”
“She's fine, just got up from her nap.”
“Oh, yes, right, that's her hour.” Q smiled softly, kissing the girl's forehead and cuddling her close, breathing in the baby fresh scent before pulling away a bit and running a hand through Emily's black locks.
Mallory cleared his throat.
“And how is… your guest?”
“He's… fine. Better than fine. It's…” Q’s throat constricted, as he scrunched up his face and looked away.
“Gareth.” Bill walked in and chided his husband. “Be more sensitive, will you?”
“My apologies, Quinn.” Gareth bowed his head to the brunet.
“It's alright, don't worry. It's just… hard, and… I don't know what to do now, how to…”
“Do you want to talk?” Bill came to stand next to him, laying a hand on his upper arm, trying to comfort him.
Q shook his head no.
“No, not yet, I… need to think it through myself first, but thank you for the offer. I… might need your help in a different way though.”
“Whatever you need, Quinn.”
“I… need to tell the children. And re-introduce them, and…”
“Of course. Jacques first?”
“Gareth take Emily and I'll go and find Jacques. Reading room? It's cozy.”
Q nodded again, thankful.
He sat on the couch for what felt like ages before the doors opened and Bill ushered in a smiling Jacques. The boy clutched sheets of papers in his hands and lifted them up proudly as he ran towards him.
“Look what I drew, Mommy!”
Q smiled at his son as the boy proceeded to sit himself on the boffin's lap to show his art, explaining all his drawing - here's a dog, there's a parrot and this there was the playground and all of Jacques' friends and this there was the park and the lake with the ducks and see that? That's an lonely island and Papa on it….
Q hugged his boy closely then, wrapping the child in his arms and holding tight.
“Mommy?” came Jacques soft question as the boy tried his best to turn a little to embrace his parent too.
Clearing his throat, Q tried to organise his words.
“Jacques, today… when we go home” he leaned back to see Jacques face. “There's someone there who missed you really, really bad and who loves you a lot.”
Jacques’ didn't seem to understand for a long moment before his little face lit up.
“Papa? Papa came back?”
“Yes, your papa is back-” Q’s voice broke.
Jacques looked up at him, face smiling, but blue eyes looking confused.
“You're not happy?”
“I-I am, but, but it's also complicated I.. I'm sad I had to miss him so long. I'm sad and angry I missed him so long and so much.” Q chose to be as truthful as he could with his little boy.
Jacques nodded, head bobbing as looked back at his drawings, his palms running over his pictures, smoothing them out, fingers dancing over the stick-figure drawing of James on a lonely island.
The little boy’s shoulders shook as he sniffed softly. Then he looked up at his parent, eyes brimmed with tears. “Me too, Mommy…”
Q smiled sadly at his son, smoothing the blond hair back and leaning in to kiss the boy’s forehead before pulling him in close, holding tight and secure as his son wept quietly.
At some point Q leaned back, resting on the backrest of the couch, never letting go of his son though, cradling Jacques in his arms. Slowly, the boy grew quieter and quieter and Q was sure the boy slipped into sleep, but when he reached out for a blanket to tuck around his son, the boy stirred.
“Can we go home now?”
“Of course. But I need to talk with Emily too, before we go. Do you want to go play some more while I do that?”
Jacques shook his head.
“Then maybe you’ll go help out uncle Bill in the kitchen?”
“Don’t want to… Can I go sit with uncle Garry in his office?”
“Of course, love.” Holding the boy close, Q stood up and walked out of the room in search of Gareth.
Chapter 31: New beginnings #3: Re-introductions p.2
Q got out of the car first, going to the back to open the doors and let Jacques out.
He picked his son up and walked around the car to meet up with Bill on the other side, giving him a soft, nervous smile.
“You go up, take as much time as you need. I’ll be around with Emily, just give me a call when you need us, ok?”
Q nodded, blinking furiously, a nervous tic he could never overcome.
He turned to face the building, looking up, made a step, then hesitated, half turning to Bill and looking at the man.
“Thank you, Bill.”
“No problem, Quinn. Now go, you waited long enough.”
Q nodded to himself, took a deep breath and walked towards the entrance to the building.
He set Jacques down on the floor and knelled in front of him, smiling softly.
The boy looked nervous, eyes teary as he fidgeted in place.
“Anything you’re feeling now, it’s alright. It’s alright to, to feel scared, it’s alright to feel happy and sad and angry. It’s alright to feel hurt and, and to want to hurt in return. Whatever you feel now, it’s completely alright. And you can tell me, and, and your papa, everything. Everything you feel. We both love you.” he caressed his son’s cheek. “Ok?”
Jacques nodded and moved in for a fierce hug.
After a moment the boy stepped away, and grabbing his mom’s hand, he turned towards the doors.
Walking in, Q wasn’t really sure in what state he’d find Bond, but calling in advance felt… awkward. He hadn’t wanted to do that.
Bond never got out-of-hands drunk, and the man used to drink a lot, so he trusted the blond would be as well behaved as always.
Peering into the living room, Q wasn’t that surprised to find James, again, just as he left him.
The blond his head towards him, expression hard but quickly softening when he spotted Jacques - the boy hiding behind Q’s legs.
And somehow it felt just like so many years ago - that night James came back from a long mission, Jacques, a toddler then, hiding behind Q. Both as heartbroken as then, if not more.
James slid down to the floor to his knees.
But the boy didn't run to him like last time. Jacques just stood there, clutching at Q's hand and obviously growing more distressed with every second that passed.
James glanced up at Q, feeling helpless.
But the boffin's full attention was on their son, he didn't spare James a glance as he knelled on the floor next to their child.
Q put his hands on Jacques cheeks, turning the boy's face towards him.
And Jacques broke down in tears, throwing himself into Q's embrace, hiding his face against his mommy's neck, the boffin pulling him into his lap as he rubbed the child’s back, comforting.
And James just sat there, on his hunches, helplessly observing his son's distress and being unable to do anything about it, knowing he was the reason for it.
Q was cuddling the boy, whispering softly and rocking side to side till the whimpers and wails died down to little sniffles. Then the brunet looked up at his husband and James felt blood freeze in his veins.
There was no doubt in the agent's mind, that in this very moment, Q hated him. He couldn't hide his surprise though when the boffin waved him in, asking without words to come closer.
So he did, shuffling on his knees till he was as close as he dared to come.
“It's alright love, it's ok. Your Papa is here, he's back and he missed you a lot. You missed him too, right?”
Jacques’ head bobbed ‘yes’ against Q's chest.
Q looked up sharply at Bond, making a little move with his head, exasperated when James obviously didn't follow what he was meant to do.
“Your Papa loves you a lot and he missed you and he's sorry. Aren't you, Papa?” Q said as softly as he could but James could see that the boffin would be seething the words through his teeth if it wasn't for the distressed child in his lap.
And something clicked in Bond's head.
“I missed you a lot, Jacques. And I love you, son.” He reached out to touch his son's back, his movement slow and unsure.
Jacques looked up at him, eyes red and his nose runny.
“I missed you, baby…” James tried a soft smile.
“I missed you, Papa….” Jacques' face scrunched up again as he crashed into a new wave of tears, but instead of burying into his mommy's chest, he reached his hands towards James.
“Come here, love” James whispered as he tugged the boy to his own lap, holding close, eyes burning. “I love you, darling. I’m here, love, I’m here.”
James didn't even notice when Q got up from the floor and walked away towards the couch, sitting down, watching over the reunion, face passive.
Whatever feelings he may or may not now have towards James, he knew Jacques needed his father. And Q will do whatever in his power to mend the father’s and son’s relationship.
At one point, Q stood up and went to make himself tea.
It seemed James found his footing with comforting his child for now so Q decided it was alright to let them be unsupervised.
When he returned he found his boys sitting on the couch, James even able to coax a small smile out of Jacques. Q was well aware that wasn’t the end, that it wasn’t all mended, but the first step was made. And it was made well.
Now it was time for Emily to meet her Papa.
He walked to the couch and crouched close to his son, reaching out and running his hand through the short blond locks.
“Will you be fine with Papa for a short moment? I'll go and bring Emily.”
When he was about to rise James’ voice stopped him.
“Quinn? Thank you, I-”
“Don't be mistaken James.” He broke through the agents sentence. “I'm not doing it all for your sake.” then he rose up, and with a final touch to his son's face, Q moved towards the entrance doors, fishing out his cellphone from his pocket.
Emily decided she didn't want to be carried, struggling in Q's arms, and with a heavy sigh the boffin let her stumble around on her own holding her hand tight.
It wasn't anything new, she loved to show off her walking skills, but this time Q’d prefer to hold her close to monitor her reaction to meeting James.
But no use making her fussy and disgruntled before the meetup, the more content she was before, the easier it all might go.
So he opened the doors and guided the toddler inside and then to the living room.
This time, James was prepared, standing and waiting. But no Jacques in sight.
Q looked around in search of the little boy, and finding him playing with his blocks in the corner, calmed him down a bit.
Emily tugged at his hand so he walked with her up to Bond and let go of her hand when she tried to get free, her head thrown back, and mouth open in wonder.
“Papa!” Emily squealed happily throwing her arms up in the world known gesture of “pick me up why are you taking so long”
“She… knows who I am?” Bond looked up at Q, his face a mask of surprise and wonder as he knelled and gathered the toddler close and then stood up again. It was funny to look at, Emily was perched on the agent’s hip and she was all adorably confused, hands mapping out the blond man’s face.
“Of course she does.” Q scoffed. “I read to her. I read to her every bloody night, showed her pictures of you, of us, told her all the stories about you. She wanted Pooh, no, I read her a chapter of Pooh and then I told her one of the stories about you, showing her your picture. I played her all CCTV feeds that were child-friendly, played her your voice. I have recorded all the times you told a bedtime story to Jacques over the phone, all the conversations you had with him when you were away on missions. She fell asleep to the sound of your voice, so she would know who her papa is, so she would know you and recognise you. Because I bloody believed you’d make it back like you always did before, you bastard.” Q’s lip was wobbling, his all body trembling.
“Quinn-” Bond took a step towards him, but the boffin backed away.
“Don’t.” Quinn whispered out harshly as he turned away and wrapped his arms around his thin body.
Bond looked back at the toddler in his arms, feeling lost and uncertain.
“Talk to her, you moron.” the boffin turned his head to look at him and send him a reproachful look.
So Bond did, bouncing her a little he said hello and then proceeded to ask her all the stupid little questions a doting father should know the answers too.
Q again slithered away, watching from afar, biting back tears and wondering, not for the first time, how his life got so fucked up.
Chapter 32: New beginnings #3: Re-introductions p.3
He sat in an armchair by the window, far from the couch and the rest of his family, observing and typing lazily on his laptop, not really paying it much attention.
James was still sitting on the sofa with Emily on his lap, the toddler still wildly fascinated with her Father and that she could touch him, touch his face, that he was no longer just an cold image on a tv screen. The agent was in turns reading her stories and making funny faces at her for the past hour and she was patting his cheeks, grabbing his nose and pulling on his brows and lashes all of which Bond just stoically allowed to happen.
But what seemed to escape the usually sharp agent, was Jacques souring face.
The boy was playing with his block still, huddled in one corner of the spacious living room and once in awhile shooting sad looks at his father and sister, jealous of the attention she was getting while he was once again, forgotten.
Q couldn't take it anymore. Putting the laptop from his knees on the coffee table with probably too much force, he got up.
“James, can you please come help me in the kitchen? Alone, please.”
He turned enough to see the blond open his mouth in protest before shutting it up again, no doubt noticing Q’s angry scowl. Staying long enough to observe James putting Emily down by the couch where her blanket was strewn along with her toys, he then made his steps further into the kitchen.
When James stepped in Q turned in on him, seething.
“What do you think you're doing?”
“Me? Nothing, I'm j-”
“Exactly! And you should be hard at work here.”
At Bond’s blank face, Q felt his hands clench into fists.
“I know it has escaped your notice, what with you being absent for over a year, but you, Mr Bond, have now *two* children. One of which has been sitting in a corner, wanting your hugs and attention, for the last hour!”
“Then he should have come and-”
“Wrong, James. He's a child, a little boy. He's shy, scared. He was a very outgoing, brave little boy, but then his father bailed out on him and guess what? That little boy changed!” Q gave a sad sight, anger leaving him as quickly as it gripped him at seeing Bond’s stricken face. “Being with Emily is easy, I know. She's accepting, she's happy. It seems all my IT magic helped her somehow, at least for now, but Jacques is a different matter. He's a little person now, with his own, developing character. He'll be moody, he'll cry and he'll be angry and he'll shy from you here and now. But you need to be attentive to his every feeling. And most of all he needs to feel loved, he needs to feel he's the centre of your attention, he needs to know you didn't abandon him because he did something wrong, that he was not enough. Do you understand me, Bond?”
“Perfectly. Though, are you sure you're not talking about yourself, too?”
Q's face hardened.
“When we'll be talking about me, you'll know it. This is about your son needing his father. Be the man he deserves or you'll disappear on my conditions. I won't have him hurt more.”
They stood for the longest moment, tense, before James’ shoulders slumped a and he took a step back.
Q cleared his throat.
“Don’t fuck it up. For them.” He turned away from James, the man’s face somber, and reached to one of the shelves. “Here, orange is for Jacques and pear is for Emily.” He turned back handing over two juice boxes. “Get Emily and go sit with Jacques and play with them both. Hold him close when you play. He needs you, he needs you to be his father.”
James looked up at him then, tried to say something and failed for the longest moment.
“I understand. Thank you, Quinn.” The agent whispered out before, with a gentle smile, turning away and doing his Quartermaster’s exact bidding.
‘I should make him wear a comm.’ Q thought when he stepped out of the kitchen and leaned on the wall, observing as James knelled by Jacques, the boy’s face lighting up like a sun when his papa handed him a juice box, his favourite one, before tugging him in close and asking about his newest construction. Emily squeaking happily at their side and trying to touch the high tower her brother built, being held back by James’ tickling fingers.
Emily was out like a light long before her bedtime. No doubt she’ll make up for it by waking up way too early for Q to be happy to deal with it, but there was nothing to do about it now.
He was only happy he managed to feed her before she nodded off, might make the chances of her sleeping all through the night higer. Laying the toddler down in her crib and tucking her in, he switched on the baby monitor and walked out to gather Jacques for bath time.
The boy went fairly easily, for once not really making a big mess of his quick shower and even allowed Q to brush his hair without making a fuss about it, but when the boffin tried to steer him towards his room, the boy stalled, stopping in the middle of the living room.
Running a hand through the blond locks, Q looked down at his son.
“You want to sleep with mommy tonight?”
Jacques looked up, his gaze unsure for a moment before nodding.
“Good. You want to say goodnight to papa?”
Jacques looked confused at that.
“Papa will be sleeping on the couch for some time.” He said turning his gaze back up to James, challenging, cold, daring the man to protest.
But the blond just nodded, face passive and closed off, before he looked at their son.
“Will you come hug me goodnight, Jacques?” James opened his arms and encouraged the boy to come closer for a hug which the toddler did, shyly walking towards his papa and then hiding his face under James’ chin.
“I love you, papa.”
Q woke up to the sounds of his son crying softly beside him.
The boy was curled on his side facing away from the boffin, little shoulders trembling.
Sitting up, Q reached to switch on the bedside lamp, before he turned towards Jacques, running a hand down the boy’s back.
“Baby, what’s wrong?”
At first Jacques didn’t reply anything and Q had to prompt him couple more times, cuddling to the boy’s back and holding tight.
“I want papa!” the boy finally burst out, turning around to burrow into his mommy’s chest.
With a sight Q moved to his knees on the bed before he gathered Jacques up in his arms, wrapping a blanket around the trembling form.
Carefully getting off the bed, Q the processed to walk out of the room and into the dark living room.
He stopped for a moment, unsure.
James used to have nightmares, sometimes, being woken up, startled, he was aggressive. It didn't happen often, less and less with every year… but Q had no idea how did James’ sleeping habits change in his absence.
“James?” He called out softly.
He was promptly answered by a gruff, but surprisingly awake-sounding voice, so he proceeded to walk to the sofa bed. James lifted up on one elbow, throwing the covers to the side, making space.
Q sat down and navigated Jacques to lay the boy down into his father's waiting arms, rubbing the child's back reassuringly as James whispered soothing words. He was about to stand up and go back to his own bed, but when he lifted up Jacques turned in his father's embrace, eyes wide.
“No, mommy! You stay too!”
Q's heart constricted painfully. He wasn't ready to be so close to James, to be so vulnerable, asleep next to the man that became a stranger.
He looked up briefly at James, the agent's eyes boring into his own as he moved back, freeing space and tugging Jacques with him. Biting his lip, Q laid down slowly, eyes never leaving Bond's steady blue gaze.
A year ago it would have been the most natural thing, now, it felt like a battle.
Jacques settled down, soothed and happy to have both of his parents with him, tucked into his. Father's chest, he had his arm wrapped around himself and made an impatient move with his hand promoting his mommy to hold his hand, completely unaware for the moment of the tension between his parents.
And Q took hold of his son's hand. As far and as close as he dared to be, still held ensnared by the striking blue gaze till his own eyes prickled with unshed tears.
Screwing his eyes tightly shut, Q prayed for the morning to come quickly.
Chapter 33: New beginnings #4: Bumps on the road so steep
Merry Christmas! <3
Over the next couple of days Jacques’ sleeping habits didn't improve much. Some nights he slept through no problem, some he started in his own bed and ended up on the couch with James in the middle of the night, on the way stopping by and dragging Q with him.
They were still dancing around each other, Bond and him. Civil to each other during day time, not talking at all during the awkward nights. Q could see his husbands eyes following him, yearning and sad and sometimes he felt a pang of… something. Regret, maybe. But mostly it just firmed his resolve to stay away until he could finally wrap his head around the situation, make a decision, maybe… for Bond to prove himself, to try and earn back the trust.
After the first rocky day, James got better at interacting with the children. He still needed a nudge here and there in the right direction, a helpful guideline on the kid’s favourites, but he was trying really hard.
They were going for walks to the park, the boys playing tag or football while Q assisted Emily toddling around on the playground, changed by James when Jacques got tired of running around, the boy ecstatic to be finally able to play with his father, no longer jealously watching other children.
It was… breathtaking to observe James, still agile, fast, strong, as if nothing ever happened to him, as if years didn’t pass. Still looking like the same man he met in the gallery so many years ago...
James will surely be back in the field in a couple weeks time...
...and Q will be alone with the kids again, facing it all again.
Even now, sitting in the comfy chair back in their warm apartment he felt suddenly cold, stomach rolling. He'll have to make James have a serious, long conversation with Jacques before the man's next mission. Explain, make everything perfectly clear.
Maybe… maybe even make that talk be… the parent’s separation talk.
Q closed the book he was trying to read and put it against his stomach, wrapping his arms around himself and the book, needing the measly comfort of such a hug.
It'd be safer.
For the kids, for his own heart.
No uncertainty, no doubts about their relationship and he'll make himself quit lo-
He jumped when the household intercom rang.
“Oh bloody hell, it's Thursday isn't it?” after a moment of startled silence, they weren’t visited often by unannounced guests, Q exclaimed as he shot out of his armchair. Walking towards the entry doors, stopping abruptly mid step, mind a mess, and then fidgeting nervously in place for a moment before he gazed at Bond.
“I-I’ll be right back, alright? Will you watch the children?”
Bond sent him a wry look.
“Ah, yes, of course you will. Sorry.” Running a nervous hand through his hair, Q walked out of the living room, murmuring couple of words into the intercom, and then walking out briskly, the entrance doors shutting softly behind him.
Bond got up from the floor where he was playing Lego with Emily and picking the girl up, he walked to the window going out to the main street. Without shifting the curtain, Bond looked from above as Q walked out of their apartment building in only his sweater, arms going around his own body to stave off the chill as he walked up to a tall blond. He did stop couple steps apart, but the blond quickly stepped closer. Pulling of his own coat and putting it around the Boffin's shoulders.
Q tried to step away after, but the other man didn’t let him, hand holding firmly to the brunet’s upper arm.
They talked, maybe even argued judging from the stiff manner they held themselves in, Q lowering his head and running a hand tiredly over his eyes under his glasses as the blond bowed his own head too, tried to look Q in the eyes, but the boffin practically shoved him away.
They were wrapped in a tight embrace moments after.
Bond stepped away from the window, expression sour and tense, he walked back with Emily towards her blanket, sitting back down and resuming their play as if nothing happened.
Moments after, Q came back to the apartment, a flush high on his cheeks.
James looked up, face impassive as his husband strode by him. His voice cold as he said:
“Remember to give him back his coat when you see him again.”
Q startled as he realised that yes, he still had the warm coat tugged around his shoulders, Ashton somewhere on the streets of London in his sweater only, and Bond's comment making it more than obvious the blond knew what went on.
Mumbling under his breath Q excused himself again, walking to his bedroom and pulling the doors closed.
Bond waited a moment before he too got up, leaving his daughter this time with her toys and sending what he hoped was a reassuring smile to Jacques when the boy walked out of his room, freshly out of a nap.
Standing by the not fully closed doors to the bedroom Bond pressed close to listen to the soft murmur coming from the room.
“… that thing with James, it just messed me up … I’m really sorry … next Thursday … as always? ... “
Bond stepped away, mulling over the bits of conversation, as he went to pick up his son, carrying the boy to the sofa to bundle him in a blanket. With a parting kiss to the boy's tousled blond lock, James headed to the kitchen.
Q stumbled his way into the kitchen couple minutes later, still shaken and his mind an even bigger mess after the short conversations.
He stopped abruptly for a second seeing James there, the man resting his hip on the kitchen counter, arms folded across his chest.
“Why didn't you let him come up as he, apparently, always does?”
“I-we, we're not ready for more… disruptions.” he moved towards the kettle to make himself busy, ground himself in here and now, hands still trembling.
He could feel the steel blue gaze following his every move even when the agent remained eerily stoic and static.
“Do you have feelings for him, Quinn?”
With a deep sight, Q rested his arms on the sink.
“I don't know.” Then he turned to James, face blank, but mouth set in a hard line. “The only thing I do know is that he was here when I needed support, and you weren't.”
Kettle left forgotten, Q rushed out of the kitchen.
They didn't really talk throughout the day, Q making all overdue laundry, ironing and every other tiny task he never could manage and/or finish before, now, allowing him to keep the distance without much fake excuses.
They were exchanging the bare minimum of contact and conversation to appear civil around their children, and by the time the evening was over, only Jacques ended up sending wary glances at his troubled mommy.
So Q did his best to smile more, to smile more sincere and, to not disturb the fragile atmosphere of peace they managed to uphold through the last couple of days.
Thankfully, Jacques didn't ask why uncle Ashton hadn't come today, too distracted and content with his father being around, playing all the games the boy enjoyed and reading him his favourite stories.
Many hours later, after finally putting the children to beds, Q disappeared into his own bedroom, shutting the doors firmly behind himself. He needed distance, he needed to think, to plan, to… come to some agreement with his multitude of feelings. Standing under the spray of the shower, head bent, he wasn't sure which of the drops running over the tip of his nose were just plain water and which ones were his bitter tears…
Sleep didn't bring him much peace either. He tossed and turned as his brain came up with multitude of scenarios and weaved them into his dreams making him shiver and sweat in turns.
He whimpered in his sleep, mournful, crying softly through the haze of his nightmares… and then he felt the bed dip behind him, strong arms wounding around his body as James spooned him, moulding his muscular frame around Q's back.
Keeping him warm, keeping him safe. Almost apologetic.
Q nudged back, pushing in even deeper into the embrace, needy and trustful as he finally fell into a deep, peaceful slumber.
Chapter 34: New beginnings #5: ...hold your breath and count to ten
It seems it has become their custom - sharing jabbing words or meaningless chatter during day time and saying everything without uttering a single sound during night time.
When Q woke up the next day the bed next to him was empty and devoid of the delicious heat of James’ body, vacated long before he rouse from his sleep, deepening the loneliness, the feeling of being empty and hollow inside. The comfort of the night spent in the tight embrace of his husband vanishing from his skin within seconds after waking up fully. He hated it, this mornings in an empty, cold bed.
Sitting up, he folded his knees up to his chest and put his head on them, looking to the side he stretched out his hand to run through the chilled, creased bed sheets, after a moment fisting his fingers into the material, holding tight. Something he obviously could not do with James.
Neither of them commented on the events of last night when they all sat around the kitchen table eating breakfast, but James’ blue gaze stared intensely at him, trying to sense him out, judge their footing yet again without really pushing for answers.
The relative peace of the meal was broken by Q's phone ringing, the tone a quiet soft bell the boffin had assigned to Bill Tanner private cell, so the brunet knew he didn't have to rush or worry. Getting up from the table and switching Emily from his lap to James’ he went to pick up the phone.
“Good morning, Bill.” He greeted softly.
“Quinn, how are you? Everything well?”
“As good as it can be, I guess…” Q turned around looking at his family, James spreading jam on Jacques’ sandwich while Emily tried to feed herself porridge, making a big mess of it, as usual. He couldn't help a small smile lifting up the corners of his lips - big, bad double-oh seven seemingly domesticated. “Is it a social call?”
“Unfortunately, no. I wanted to give you a heads up - Gareth wants Bond in in two days time, he needs to give report and we need to wrap up the mess this mission had been. He'll call officially tomorrow morning.”
Q gave a sight. Of course. Reality had a way of breaking all peace and quiet moments.
“Thank you, Bill. Am I needed there as well?”
“No, as long as Q-branch doesn't require your presence, you can continue your leave.”
“They're managing. I'll stay home for couple more days then.”
They were both quiet for the longest of moments, then Bill broke the silence again, voice soft and wary.
“How is it really?”
Q turned his back on the kitchen, voice dropping down to an almost whisper.
“It’s… hard. Unspeakably hard. He's… changed, and so are we. Emily is ecstatic, Jacques… too, I guess. But he has trouble sleeping, has nightmares again, he's… sometimes so shy and reserved around James… and then clinging so hard.”
“I… I don't really know what I feel. I…” Q refused to let his voice quiver, swallowing hard, he cleared his throat.
After a moment's hesitation, he forced out, voice barely a whisper.
“Ashton came by on Thursday, as usual…”
Bill didn't answer for the longest time.
“Quinn? Don't make any rash decisions now. He loves you, he came back to you. You're a family. “
“Sometimes… I'm not so sure anymore.” rubbing his eyes, glasses pushed slightly up, Q shook his head.
Q tossed and turned in the bed, his chest feeling heavy and hollow at the same time.
Tomorrow, the phone will ring in the morning and James will go back to MI6, back to being a spy and back to missions and being away…
This past week seemed like a dream, tingled with a nightmare on the edges, soon to become a thing of the past. James was going back to MI6. How soon will he be leaving for another mission? Hours? Days? Dare he hope… weeks?
Q sat up in bed.
Maybe, it was time to say goodbye to James on his own terms, not have the man leave him again, not have the job tear them apart again, but part as peacefully as it could be possible.
But last night… having James so close…
He missed it, he missed his husband.
Getting up from the bed he moved towards the exit of the room and opened the doors slowly, careful, not to make any sound as he peered outside, leaning softly on the door frame. He rubbed at his chest watching the meager light outline the shape on the sofa bed.
During the day he didn't let himself yearn, didn't let his heart and loneliness cloud his better judgement. It was like he was on a mission then, supervising an agent, making sure the story unfolded how he wanted it to, leaving little to nothing to chance.
But when the house fell quiet in the night time, shadow of longing fell heavily on his mind and heart..
Keeping his distance from James was both a safe line holding him to sanity and a torture that was slowly killing him inside.
And he felt his resolve breaking.
Would it be so bad to provide himself some comfort? He missed his husband, he missed the man's touch, his strength and sure touch. Remembering the night before, when he slept so well, so peaceful, wrapped in his husband’s embrace...
Still rubbing at his chest trying to ease the tight feeling, Q swallowed hard and moved away from the doorway, making his way towards the sofa.
He was stepping almost soundlessly, but as he got closer to the bed it became obvious James was not sleeping - blue gaze sharp and fixed on him as the agent moved back a little, lifting the covers up.
And Q allowed himself this weakness, slumping down onto the bed and slotting in close, arms wrapping around James’ chest, his head nudging under the blond's chin as the agent returned the embrace with a content, little sight.
Oh, how he missed this, how he missed feeling safe and protected and not having to be the strong one all the time. Though he couldn't really find this serene feeling he remembered so fondly, the experience now marred and weighted heavily down by betrayal and disappointment.
Even Bond's body didn't feel quite the same in his arms, it was broader, more muscled than it had been before. More scarred.
Running his fingers over James’ back he felt welts and ridges hidden by the thin blue T-shirt. Moving back slightly, body curling in on itself almost protectively, Q let his hand move to the agent's chest, running over the hardened pecks, finding new bumps here and there.
He slid his hand lower, until he reached the hem of the shirt, movement slow, exploring as he slid his fingers under the material, dragging it up as he smoothed his open palm against the agent's hot skin.
Moving his hand up, he hitched the material, bunging it up, asking without words for the man to get rid of his shirt. And Bond did, lifting up slightly to undress, allowing the boffin to do as he pleased.
Q's eyes roamed over the expanse of the muscled chest, fingertips following the trail his eyes made. James’ skin so changed now with all the new imperfections. A deep gash running from the man’s right, lower ribs all the way to the left side, over the man's hip had caught his attention at most and Q let his hand follow the path, whole body following as the boffin tried to mold himself with his husband again, holding tight, sneaking his leg between the agent's to be as close as possible.
James’ arms wrapped around him tight in return, big palms warm on the brunet’s back.
Q nuzzled into James’ shoulder, pressing dry kisses onto the smooth, heated skin there, so painfully familiar under his lips.
They’ve done it so many times in the past, just lazily kissing all over their bodies, fondling, touching, pressing… now it felt like scratching over a scabbed wound, which you really didn't regret doing as it brought you that bittersweet pain mixed with relief when the hurt faded for a second.
Nudging his head under Bond's chin again, Q trailed soft kisses up the throat to the edge of the man's jaw, deflecting, when James tried to kiss him on the mouth, but responding by pressing his thigh up, up against the rapidly rising erection.
Q leaned back, dragging his husband's unresistant body to cover his own, letting the agent slid between his spread tights, push their hardening cocks against each other's.
Not for the first time Q was grateful he allowed himself the comfort of sleeping without undergarments from time to time, making it now so easy to lift his hips and hitch his checkered night dress up to his belly, exposing his skin to James' hungry eyes. Then he reached between them, between his splayed tights to free Bond's erection, pushing the man's pajama bottoms as far as he could manage. The contact electric when their bare cock touched for the first time, making them both gasp.
Bond ground down, pressing him into the mattress, the move made gentle by wet kisses trailed over the boffin's collarbone and up to his ear.
Q let his hands wander, let James kiss and fondle him. A defeat and surrender at the same time. He splayed his tights wider, hooking an ankle over Bond's lower back and angling his hips to make the blond's cock slip and nudge against his hole, quickly followed by James' fingers pressing and massaging the tense muscle.
With a kiss to Q's cheek Bond tried to lift up, probably intending to go get supplies, but Q didn't let him, afraid the spell that held them now would be broken, afraid he himself might change his mind about proceeding.
James tried to open his mouth to speak, but Q was quicker. Pushing fingers against the crooked lips he shushed his husband and then proceeded to drag them down, opening the agent's mouth. With uncertainty in the blue gaze and not breaking the eye contact Bond took the boffin's fingers into his mouth, sucking and coating them in saliva.
Judging them wet enough after a moment, Q pulled them out and sneaked his hand down, back between his legs, swiping over James' leaking cock head he pushed it out of the way to push into his own hole.
Above him, James spit into his palm, wet fingers joining Q's making the boffin keen lowly.
It wasn't easy to get him stretched enough, the spit drying quickly, but Quinn didn't care. He needed it, needed to feel it, needed it to hurt as much physically as it hurt in his heart and soul.
Body twitching after James’ last press against his prostate Q decided he was ready and pulled the blond's fingers out of his arse and then took hold of Bond's thick cock, positioning it at his stretched entrance. He allowed Bond a moment more to add more spit to their joining.
When James finally slid in, skin dragging, the stretch a low burn, Q felt his eyes prickle, letting the tears slide down out of the corner of his eyes as the agent moved above him, gentle leisure rocking.
It was the longest and most painful coupling of Q’s life.
He cried, tears sliding down the sides of his face, but held tight onto the strong broad shoulders above him, not letting James go, breath hitching each time the thick length slid fully into him.
They didn't kiss, not on the mouth, the boffin firmly turning his head away whenever Bond's lips got to close to his mouth, so James was left to kiss off the tears trickling over Q skin, down the flushed cheeks, the pale throat.
Hot breaths mingling, their noises muffled and strangled, somehow needing the quietness for more reasons than not waking up the children. The silent, slow coupling soothing and hurting at the same time.
Pressing Q's leg up to his chest more firmly, James slid his thumb just behind the Boffin's testicles, pushing expertly, stimulating the already battered prostate from the outside and making Q spill his seed helplessly seconds later, James following soon after, collapsing briefly on Q's tired body.
When the blond finally lifted up and fell heavily to the side, he didn't let Q leave his embrace.
And Q allowed himself to be moved, molded, curling into the welcoming heat of his husband's body.
He was so tired. So bloody tired.
He woke up with a start in the morning, his body sore and sticky. Cold. He was alone in the bed. Reaching out his hand, he moved it through the beddings, finding it cold end empty. Again.
Then he heard Emily's giggle and opened his eyes.
James was in the kitchen, bare chested and dressed only in his pajama bottoms, looking relaxed and content. Emily perched on his hip, as he stood with her in the kitchen and made her a sandwich, whispering something to her to make her smile and hide her face against his shoulder in a shy mirth.
Q sat up in the bed and ran his hand through his hair.
Resentment and hate bubbling in his chest, the feeling of abandonment making him feel sick.
Bond chose that moment to turn towards him, smile bright and happy, and for some reason souring Q's mood even more.
Q lifted his head up, smile tight, as he said softly through his teeth.
“This doesn't change anything, James.”
Bond's smile faltered and fell, replaced by the steel facade that didn't show anything.
And Q, taken over by sudden anger stood up briskly from the couch, adjusting his night dress and hissing furiously in pain, he strode off to the master bathroom, shutting the doors closed behind himself.
Hands on the sink as he looked at his reflection in the mirror, taking in his bloodshot eyes, bitten lips and a full array of hickeys sucked into his skin, he felt truly broken.
With an angry pout he forcefully opened the medicine cabinet, rummaging through the pill bottles.
Morning after pill.
The last thing they need now is a baby from his reckless, stupid actions.
James put Emily on her blanket and gathered couple of toys around her before rushing after Q, barging into the bathroom and making the brunet squeal and back away in surprise.
The blond shut the doors and turned to face Q.
“I’ve had enough, Quinn. You needed space, I gave you space, but we need to talk and you won't let us have a proper conversation because you're running away all the bloody time.” Bond seethed, his voice raising slightly towards the end of his sentence.
“You can't say anything that will help this situation. I don't want to listen, I don't want to know. You made it painfully clear we are no longer top of your priority list, and nothing you can say now will change that fact.” Q turned away towards the counter, busying himself with packing up the meds and pill bottles but then turning his head towards James again, face twisted with hurt. “And you never said you were sorry. Are you even sorry, James?”
James didn't reply, looking away.
“Yes, that's what I thought…” Q tried to slip past Bond, judging this brief exchange over and done, but the blond didn't let him. Catching his wrist, James kept him fiercely in place.
“You knew when you married me that I serve the Queen and Country first.”
Q turned to him, an angry scowl on his face, his voice rising up with every word.
“I knew, but I surely didn't understand then. I didn't understand how much I would come to love you, how much me and the children depended on you. And you let us down, you discarded us, abandoned us and now-”
He didn't finish his sentence as Bond shifted his hold, placing both hands on Q's shoulders as he backed the brunet towards the wall, the impact making Q gasp out a startled breath, James boxing him in against the cold tiles.
“I love you, Qui-”
Q pushed him away, both hands on the blond's chest, and then he swung his right as hard as he could, open palm smashing against Bond's cheek making the blond's head turn sharply due to the impact, lip split.
“Don't lie to my face, you cunt.” The boffin managed to seethe out before Bond's training kicked in and the brunet found himself yet again pushed fiercely against the wall, this time both his wrists held in a bruising grip, up, on both sides of his head, James’ face inches away from his own as they both tried to catch their breaths.
“I love you.” The blond growled out again and Q's face twisted in an angry scowl, spitting in Bond's face, feeling hurt and angry and powerless. James calmly twisted his head to clean up his check on his shoulder, dragging the spit and blood from his split lip all over his bare skin. “I love you.” He repeated, eyes locked on Q,’s stormy green gaze “And I'm quitting the double-oh programme. You're more important. I… made a mistake, and I am sorry.” The words clearly painful in the proud man's mouth, but heartfelt and true. “I am sorry Quinn.”
Q holds his gaze, face hard and unforgiving.
“Don't make promises you can't keep, James.”
“I love you. And I am quitting.”
“You don't. You won’t.”
“I love you…” James leaned in, placing a dry kiss onto Q's cheek.
“You don't, James, you-”
“I love you.” And another kiss, and another, and another, each preceded with whispered words of devotion, until Q felt his throat tighten painfully, fighting back tears. Helplessly immobile, held forcefully against the wall. And fed lies. Surely they were lies.
“No, you don't James. If you did, you would never leave us, you would never leave me…” the boffin's voice broke painfully on a sob.
James continued to kiss all over his skin, the man's grip lightening on his husband's wrists when he felt the boffin’s body sagging, and letting go entirely to wrap the brunet in a tight hug, gathering the unresistant body close.
Q was crying, his sobs coming out unrestricted, loud cries muffled only by Bond's skin as he fell apart in James’ arm. He didn't even know when he lifted up his own arms to wrap around the blond, digging his fingers into the other's skin like claws. All his anguish, fear, sadness, every emotion he kept tightly in throughout the year finally breaking loose, tearing out of his heart and soul in loud wails, finally allowing himself to let go of the tight control he had forced upon himself to survive, to be strong for himself and the children.
James navigated them both to the floor, nestling Q into the cradle of his lap and legs, continuing to hold the brunet close, murmuring softly the words of love and apology without stop.
He didn't know how long they sat there before his cries died down, before he stopped shaking and his breath returned to normal.
A sleepy Jacques peeked into the bathroom looking apprehensive, but also serious and decided.
“Mommy your phone was ringing, the ‘mportant one.”
Q unwrapped himself from Bond just enough to reach out a hand towards his son, but when Jacques held out the phone Bond snagged it away.
“Bond. Yes, Sir, of course. Unfortunately I must decline. Reason? I'm suffering a massive onslaught of diarrhoea. Yes, Sir, the most awful one there is. Yes, Sir, I'll report in your office as soon as I am able. Thank you, Sir.”
“James…” Q looked up reproachful at his husband, but also unspeakably grateful.
The blond placed the phone down on the floor and looked his husband in the eyes.
The boffin couldn't help the smile blossoming on his face.
“Yes, Jacques? Mommy's the most important in the whole world, yes?” James asked his son, the boy standing by his parents looking wary and unhappy, clearly not knowing what to make of the situation as he clutched the hand his mommy held out to him after he passed off the phone to his daddy. So now he only nodded slowly.
“Why don't you run to the kitchen and get some cookies and bring them and Emily to the bedroom, hm? I think it's a perfect morning for staying in bed and cuddling, don't you think?”
Jacques smiled brightly.
“And chocolate ice cream and Paddington book?”
“Yes, those two too, run along now, love.”
Jacques distracted with his happy mission, Q nuzzled James’ shoulder, relaxing in his husband's embrace once more.
During the day, they somehow moved back into the living room, but they left the couch unfolded and after changing the sheets to clean one, cuddled there all together again. Watching cartoons, reading books and even having Q agree that yes, they could eat dinner in bed too, ‘but let’s not make it a habit, yes? It’s a… treat’.
It was a really good day, and for a first time in a long while Q felt really warm and fuzzy inside. Calm.
It took a long while to get children to bed after the relaxing and leisure day, but they managed finally, plying them with more stories and hot cocoa.
Coming out of the bathroom after his own nighttime washing routine, the boffin felt a painful pang when he once again saw Bond tamely sitting on the folded out sofa. The agent seemingly resigned to still stay there and not push his luck more, despite the events of the day.
Standing up straighter and making up his mind, Q cleared his throat to get the blond’s attention.
“Are you really here to stay? Did you really mean it all?”
James looked up at him, eyes steady and sure as they bore into his own “Yes.”
Q walked up to the sofa then and reached his hand out towards James. “Come on then.”
James got up, a soft smile playing on his lips as he took Q’s hand and let himself be led towards their bedroom, the boffin a half step in front of him.
The blond was taken completely unaware when while they were passing the short corridor, Q turned sharply, tripped Bond up and in a second had his elbow pushed painfully over James’ throat, choking him while his other hand twisted the blond’s arm behind the man’s back.
Q gave one more fierce shove, making a point, before he stilled. Eye to eye with the blond.
“Leave me again and I'll maim you. I'll break your spine. I mean it,”
Bond holds his gaze, dead serious, he nods.
Q hold on for a moment longer then lets go of the hand he twisted behind Bond’s back and moves both hands to James’ face, clawing at the hollowed cheeks as he, finally, pushes a bruising kiss to the agent’s chapped lips.
Bond growls as he embraces Q and pushes back into the kiss, arms wrapping around the deceivingly thin and fragile body. The boffin moans into his husband’s open mouth as he feels the big palms kneading his butt, yelping and giggling a second later when James lifted him up by his butt and carried him off to their bedroom.
Afterwards, sweaty and happy, they lay in bed in the crumpled sheets.
James is propped up a little against the headboard, Q sitting between his splayed knees, his back against the agent’s chest as the man's lips press close to his ear.
James tells him everything, everything he didn't want to know but needed to hear.
He tells him about this mission, the stupid decision to follow his mark, pride taking over, and… he wanted this to really be his last mission, he wanted to retire even before all this hit the ground. So he needed to finish this, no loose ends.
“I was… selfish, I wanted that last kick before I settled down for good, one more mission for the old times sake. Selfish and prideful and… cocky, in that moment. And in the end I did it, as I always did, finished the mission, came back alive… but the price of that… were you and the children suffering, was me missing pieces, big pieces of your lives. And, deep in the Siberian forests, my resolve that that it’s not a price I want to pay, firmed even more. I hope one day you can forgive me.”
He tells him about Natasha, about how she thought he called her his Queen when he was hallucinating - high on his fever, pain and meds, Quinn's name so close in pronunciation to the title. Q couldn't help a wince, if James only knew…
James tells him about when he woke up, realised how long has passed and… same, probably foolish principle took over him - he needed to finish it, once and for all, and then be back for good, never leave again. He wanted to see his kids grow up, he wanted to… grow old with Q.
Q turned in his arms and embraced his husband tightly.
He hoped, he hoped so hard that it was all true...
Chapter 35: New beginnings #6: Done.
Sorry all for taking so long!
Here's another sneak bit of Q's and Bond's lives :)
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Bond goes out to MI6 to give report and Q can't help feeling nervous and… scared.
The blond is, again, away from his sight which fills him with dread, makes his palms sweat and his stomach is left feeling unsettled. It's stupid, really. How much mischief can Bond get into in London?
Still, he's sitting on the couch wrapped in a blanket, one eye on the children playing blocks and the other on his laptop as he's switching from one CCTV to the other following the agent's footsteps.
Will they let him go? Will they let him retire?
He's… friends with Gareth, their children play together and he's one of the few people Q feels comfortable to leave his treasures with, but the man is still M, his boss, head of MI6 with a country to protect.
And Bond is still, despite all his actions and age, an asset. A valuable asset.
He closes the laptop lid the moment his husband steps into the building on the banks of Thames, his watch will let him know when the man emerges again.
There's a tracking device sewed into Bond's under wear… he's not proud of himself but it does make him feel a little bit calmer.
He's pretty sure James knows, he sent him a look when he was getting dressed today, but he didn't say anything.
Standing up, he goes to kneel on the blanket by Emily, cradling the toddler into his lap.
Now they have to wait and Q needs comfort and distraction, and so do the children. They were also kind of wary when Bond left in the morning. There wasn't a scene, but Q could see the guarded, mistrustful look in his son's eyes… so Q smiled brightly now, ran a hand over the short, blond locks and asked in a cheerful, interested voice: “Is that a castle, Jacques?”
It was hours before his watch beeped quietly, and Q almost didn't manage to stop himself from running to his laptop.
Lid opened, he quickly typed in all the passwords and soon he was following his husband's steps again. He was really considering going back to the smart blood project…
The blond's way was mostly uneventful, only when the man didn't turn left when he was supposed to, Q got a little worried and curious, but soon everything became clear. Of course James would go shopping the moment he got the time.
The boffin smiled fondly when James firstly went into a toy shop and left a half an hour later with two big bags, then there was a jewellery shop, a lingerie one and only then the blond's favourite suit maker.
Letting the man do his purchases in peace and secret, Q only observed the exits. He'll let himself be a little surprised.
When Bond stepped into their apartment, arms heavy with all the packages, Q couldn't help a little smile. And a relieved sigh.
“Hello.” He greeted his husband from the couch that he still occupied.
James smiled, all teeth and dimples, and Q knew, without being told - the man was out of active service.
Laying sweaty and sated on his side, Bond shuffling behind him as he settled in after cleaning them both up, Q again felt this bubbly kind of joy in his chest.
The kids were delighted with their new toys, half the play was unwrapping the boxes it seemed. The colourful paper being shredded to pieces by a happily screeching Emily, Jaques tying clumsy bows in his sister’s and mommy’s hair before abandoning the endeavour to go play with his new cars, legos and books, while the two year old cuddled her new plush toys.
They all sat on the floor, James and him taking turns in making photos.
It was domestic, warm, everything that has been missing from this house for so long.
Hours later, half a cartoon in, James swept Emily up and carried the little girl for bath. Q was torn between laughing and being stern and angry at the state of the bathroom after, the blond not making it easier - laughing hard at his expression as he swiped at his bubbles covered hair.
Q let the man tuck both kids in later, smiling as he heard the serious agent make up voices for each character he was reading parts for. The boffin even stopped for a moment to listen in on his way to the bathroom with the little package his husband pressed into his hands when the children were occupied.
It has been so long since he wore lingerie…
Smiling as he lifted the flimsy piece of cherry-red and black lace and ribbons up, he knew he had some prep to do before he slipped into this tiny piece.
Half an hour later, all smooth and shaven when he emerged from the bathroom, he found Bond lazing on their bed, waiting. So with a teasing smile, Q slowly undid the belt of his black silk robe to show the agent the full body piece he was gifted.
It wasn’t long before he was divested of all cloth and debauched.
Q snuggled into his pillow now, smiling and blushing at the memory, Bond finally settling in behind him to spoon him, strong arms circling his waist and the man fit his mouth next to his ear.
“You haven’t been wearing your ring…”
Throat tightening up suddenly, Q stiffened before relaxing again, sadness flooding his body.
“No, I haven’t. I took it off two months ago…”
Slipping of that golden circlet was one of the hardest things he ever did. Or it felt so at that moment at least. He placed it into the mahogany box, hidden deep in one of the drawers now, the box that also carried James’ wedding ring when the man was away on missions.
“I understand. But… Would you do it again? Marry me, again?”
Feeling his eyes prickle and throat tighten Q nodded his head.
“Yes, yes I would.”
Then Bond’s fist opened and in the palm he had nestled a beautiful, thick band, platinum ring with a cut out shape. Waveform?
“It’s my voice waveform.” Q heard James confirm, voice low and gruff. “I’ll never leave you.”
Q did a bad job of stifling a sob, and after a moment of hesitation, lifted his left hand, fingers spread wide. James slid the ring on his finger and of course it fit perfectly.
Their fingers entwined, Q turned his head, searching for a kiss which was quickly, urgently pressed into his lips.
They had a long way to go, they weren’t fine, they still had a lot to talk about and figure out and make up for, but in this moment it all was perfect.
Turning fully to face James, Q snuggled in, holding close.
If you want to see the ring - find it here
Lovely, aren't they?
Chapter 36: New beginnings #7: Still fighting
Q didn’t jump, but only because he had years of experience around double oh agents. He turned slowly to face the new comer.
They had a strained relationship now, when James was back.
Q delayed their Thursdays for two weeks now, asking the blond not to come and visit them. He still stood by what he told James before - they weren't ready for more disruptions. But it seemed neither men understood as they kept forcing the issue.
“Q.” The blond greeted back, head nodding towards the Boffin's hand, the gleam of the polished metal hard to ignore. “What's with the new piece of shiny?”
Clearing his throat, Q looked down at his hand too, reaching the fingers of his other hand to rub over the ring.
I'll never leave you.
James’ promise to him.
Before he could reply anything, he heard the blond chuckle dryly.
“That was fast. He's back how long? A month and a half?”
Dropping his hands to the sides, Q turned away towards his workbench, feeling chastened and not liking that.
“He's back. And he is my husband.”
They kept on having this conversation time and time again, Ash not happy with how Q was handling Bond's return, how he let the man back in so quickly.
And maybe it was quick, maybe at times too quick for Q, but the children needed their father and he really did miss the man too even if he resented him a bit, still.
Ash gave a sigh, turning and resting his back against Q's bench.
“Heard in the gossip mill he quit active service. That got you convinced? How many times did he do that in his lifetime?”
Q sent him a sharp look, suddenly angry.
“If you came here only to criticise my life choices, then I think it's time for you to leave.”
“Sorry, I'll stop. Just, remember, I will be there for you when he decides to up and lea-”
“-ve. I miss the kids, Q. I understand you don't want me in the apartment, but can we meet up in the park? Please?” the other man quickly changed the topic.
Biting his lip uneasily, Q thought back to yesterday's breakfast, when Jacques uttered the long dreaded by Q phrase - ‘uncle Ash makes it better’.
And James has been so proud, waking up way earlier than any of them to make the children apple porridge he somehow remembered his mother make for him, an unique recipe.
If he hadn't known and lived with James for years, Q probably would have missed it, but now he knew where to look for tells - the slight tensing of the jaw, that tiny way the muscle tensed above the agent's right eye. The blond was taken by surprise with that statement and not a little hurt.
But he played along, never breaking the smile as he questioned Jacques how exactly that other apple porridge was better.
Unfortunately, the boy pointed out as unrecommended all the ways that made James’ mother's one special - the use of nutmeg and vanilla instead of the so common cinnamon, the honeydew honey instead of sugar and how the apples were finely cut into little cubes and not just shredded in and that dash of sweet cream on the top instead of just milk.
Q never could quite manage to make it right, so he just stopped cooking this type of porridge. And one day, totally innocent morning he came home to the smell of porridge and apples in his kitchen, the children munching happily while he felt his gut rolling and sudden nausea almost forcing him to his knees when he didn't see James but Ash happily moving around the kitchen. For one breathless second he thought… he hoped…
Ash has made it only once after, against Q's express orders but to Jacques pleas. That second dressing down was what it took to make sure Ash never cooked it again but still, the damage has been done.
Later, laying a gentle hand on the tense shoulder while the agent was washing up the pots and dishes, he apologised. James didn't acknowledge him for a long while, then just turned to kiss Q on the cheek, saying that it was fine, that he understood and then returned to his task.
James has been quiet throughout the rest of the day, withdrawn and Q has been torn between feeling remorseful and… grimly satisfied, he supposed. It was a complicated feeling.
“I… don't think it's a good idea just now.”
Q didn't look at the man at his side, typing away on his laptop but mind drifting, uneasy. Jacques will want to see his uncle Ash at some point, the man acting as a step dad for some time now…
Ash was quiet too, and then he moved, softly embracing him and Q felt a kiss being pressed into the side of his head, to which, he unconsciously leaned in.
“OK, I won't push, I'm sorry. Please let me know when it'll be alright.”
Giving him a grateful half smile, he watched the blond leave Q-branch, unaware of a set of blue eyes following his every move.
“Let's get it out and over with this weekend, shall we?”
Q turned sharply to Bond. What was it today with the men in his life surprising him to the point of being spooky.
“You've seen Ash's visit I take it.” He was quick on the uptake. “And what are you doing at Six? And the children-”
“-are couple floors up with Tanner in Mallory's office.” Bond was quick to interrupt the questioning. “Actually M called me in to consult on a piece of intel for a mission of a young agent.”
James walked further into Q's office, closing the doors behind himself.
The agent hasn't been here in what felt like forever… and it warmed something in Q’s chest to see his husband in this space again.
Q lifted up his face when the blond leaned down to kiss him hello and watching the blond move away to the couch, he lifted his hand to fix his glasses, sending the man a warm smile.
“So? Invite the asshat over for Saturday or something.” James said after he seated himself down on the couch by the opposite wall.
Of course it was back to business with James and the man wasn't exactly known to let things go.
“James.” he scoffed at the name calling.
And suddenly, Q had a flashback to the time so many years ago when they sat just like this, opposite each other in Q's office, the boffin then had a tiny Jacques suckling in his nipple, and James observing them, sad and angry and jealous…
Q didn't really understand it then, just that moment, too enthralled with his baby, with the new programme and calculations they were going through. He had been too overwhelmed with his new reality to spot Ash’s flirtations, James’ silent jealousy and the way his husband just savored all the moments he was given preparing for the worst.
That time, after Bond was back from his mission Q was quick to abate the fear, to reassure James that he was the one and only…
How much things changed and got complicated since those days.
The worst part was that, in some little piece of his soul, despite all the love and devotion he had for James, despite how thrilled he was to have his husband back and how much he tried to trust the man to not make the same mistakes - Q did hold a fondness for Ash now, one that didn't have to do only with the man's coding skills.
It wasn't the maddening crush that consumed him for years before he gave in and let himself be ravished by double oh seven over his workbench. It wasn't the love, lust and sexual interest he held for the dashing agent… but it was something warm, a particular trust won over by Ash just being there, supporting, giving.
And if James didn't come back, couple more weeks or months would go past, and Q thought he would one day give into Ash’s gentle seductions. The man was easy on the eyes, just Q's type of tall and blond, he was caring, steadfast, trustful. There. And he was an amazing step father to his children, both kids loved him.
Looking up and James now, he knew his husband's mind was on those exact memories and thoughts.
Sitting on the park bench, Emily cradled in his lap and entertained with one of her dolls, Q anxiously looked around.
James and Jacques were couple feet away playing football, which probably shouldn't have surprised the boffin, but it did. He never would have pinned the blond as a footballer and… there was James, doing tricks with the ball and teaching them to Jacques.
He got so enthralled in watching his boys that he only noticed Ash when the man sat down next to him, leaning in for their usual peck on the cheek.
Q reacted automatically, allowing the greeting and then mentally kicked himself. He probably shouldn't have done it today.
“Good morning, Ash.”
But the man was no longer paying attention to him, lifting a laughing Emily from the Boffin's lap.
“Hello princess! How have you been? How's my little girl!”
That exclamation got Jacques’ attention and soon the boy was running towards them too, laughing and yelling.
Eyes on the agent, Q tried to figure out how the man will behave. They didn’t talk about Ash after agreeing to have the meetup, and now Q was thinking maybe that haven’t been the smartest move, though definitely easier.
He only hoped James wouldn’t do anything particularly outrageous in front of the children.
“Ashton” his husband came up to them, hand outstretched.
Ash stood up, Emily held up in one arm, and they shook hands.
“James.” the man acknowledged.
James was all charming smiles and politeness and Q wasn't really sure if that didn’t scare him more. “I’m very grateful you have looked after my family during my absence. Both my children mention you with fondness, I’m much obliged.”
Q stood up too, feeling awkward.
He sent Bond a warning look though when the blond casually hooked an arm around his middle.
“My pleasure, James. They’re all a real treasure.” Ash kept his cool, smiling politely too, though a bit tight.
They seemed to measure themselves with their gaze and Q couldn’t help doing the same.
Though he doubted the two of them would ever actually come to blows, he couldn’t help but join in the assessment of power and capability.
Ash was the tallest, shoulders broader - gym and martial arts, but Bond had buffed up during that year too. He wasn’t as pumped up as Ash though, his strength came from hard labor, muscles leaner, powerful in a fight as well as perfectly adjusted for speed of movement and running.
He shook out of the slight daze with Jacques tugging at Ash’s hand, breaking the tension that grew between the blond men.
“Come ooonnn! Daddy taught me a cool trick, wanna see?”
With a nod to each other, acknowledging it wasn’t finished but choosing to let it go for now for the greater good, both blonds went to play football, for now leaving Q with Emily.
They spent a lot of time in the park, both kids reluctant to let Ash go after not seeing the man for such a long time.
“Wanna come see my new toys? Daddy got them for me!” Jacques was tugging at Ash’s hand, a pleading look on his face.
“Maybe some other time, lad, alright? Your sister is due a nap and I need to get back to work.” he shot Q a look, making it obvious that if invited over by the grown up he would go, his words just a white lie for Jacques.
“Thank you, Ash. We won’t be holding you much longer then.” James’ smile was polite and easy, but his eyes were glacier cold.
They didn’t spend long on saying goodbyes.
Cradling an almost sleeping Emily in his arms, James made his way towards their apartment. Q and Jacques trailing couple steps behind them with the boffin shooting worried glances at his husband.
There hasn’t happened anything major between, but it was obvious that while Jacques was immensely enchanted with his daddy, he did share more of the jokes, stories and secret smiles and gestures with Ash. And James, ever the competitor, was hard pressed not to overdo on the play time, once tripping up the other blond as they were running around playing catch, which earned him a scolding look from Q.
With a tight smile, Ash said it didn’t matter, it was his fault and he needed a bit of a break to catch his breath.
So he left James with his son to their play and went to chat with Q and help Emily climb the wooden castle with it many ladders and slides, the little girl clinging to the man’s big hands as Q smiled brightly, letting himself be dragged into the easy conversation, forgetting about the world around them.
They used to do this every other Saturday if not often, as much as they managed, as much as the weather allowed. Ash would come over, help him gather the kids and then they would spend the day outside, carefree and happy. He sometimes would also go back home with them, help with bath and bedtime, reading stories aloud. And once the kids were asleep, he’d spend some quiet time with Q, sometimes have a meal or wine before the blond left.
He never stayed the night.
That was one thing Q was always insisting on, he wouldn’t trust them, he wouldn’t trust himself at night time, alone in the cold marriage bed with a warm with the knowledge that a handsome man laid just in the room next to his and would welcome him with open arms and open heart.
Sometimes the loneliness was just crushing him and had his resolve cracking under the warm smile of the tall blond...
Q came closer, sitting on the armchairs side by his husband, placing a blanket over Emily’s sleepy form. She was delightful like this, eyes blinking a lot as she tried to stay awake and hear one more page of the bedtime story, mouth drooling a bit when she took a half minute tiny nap here and there, cuddling her face in James’ shirt. Q chuckled, petting her dark locks.
“Maybe it’s time to sleep in your own bed, hm, darling?” he asked softly, voice just above a whisper.
“But you’re asleep already, princess.”
“Mommy noo…” she mewled out tucking closer in James’ warm embrace.
“One more page, Quinn.” James rumbled out, tightening his arms protectively around his daughter.
“All right. I’ll took in Jacques in the meantime then.”
“He’d make you happy.”
James walked into the bedroom, coming to a halt behind Q, catching the green gaze reflected in the mirror of the closet.
“I know. He did, he does. And if you didn’t come back, he would probably be the one to fill your shoes in the long run.” Q admitted freely, no use playing on it being different.
The blond send him a crooked, sad smile.
“Then why did you take my sorry hide back?”
Q turned to him with a soft smile of his own.
“Because you did too. The memory of the happiness you made me feel was sweeter than his could ever be. But I won't push him away, he's proven to be a loyal friend and I need one, so no more tripping him up or such other jealous displays, alright? I don't want to be in the middle of a cock fight.”
“I- I was never sure of your love. I never felt worthy enough. You were always so strong, so independent… you didn't even want to marry me, I still feel I forced you into it. Two babies I put into you… “
“I never thought I’d hold your attention longer than that one tumble, either. And I’m the youngest Quartermaster in MI6’s history, even your brute charm couldn’t force me into anything I didn’t want in the long run.” Q joked lightly as he reached out and drew his husband into his arms, embracing him lightly. So many years passed and they were both still stuck in the same insecurities it seemed, but still fighting, still trying to find their ways to each other, despite all the hiccups on the way.
“Go shower, you stink.” Q swatted Bond’s arse lightly, pulling away after quick peck on the crooked lips. “I’m not going anywhere.”
When Bond went out of the shower, towelling off the rest of the water from his scalp and shoulders, he spotted Q lying on the bed.
The boffin was fully naked, laying on the bed on his belly and reading a book.
He looked up with a warm smile for a moment, looking James equally naked form fondly up and down before he got back to his book.
Throwing the towel to the side, he walked to the foot of the bed, crawling over the slim body, blanketing his husband entirely and making Q giggle quietly.
He kissed the Boffin's cheek, nosed at the nape of the shapely head, breathing in the smell of the Brunet's shampoo locked in the dark, long locks before he made his way down.
Smoothing his cheek over the delicately rounded shoulder, nose tracing one pronounced shoulder blade… Nuzzling, licking he slid down the bed, tongue lapping teasingly at the delicious dip where Q's arse started. It was a really spectacular piece of derrière, round, bouncy… perfect for biting.
He nipped, and pressed his teeth into the rosy skin in open mouthed kisses, enjoying how Q squirmed under him, voice growing breathy.
Collapsing on the nimble body, he pillowed his cheek on one arse cheek, arm tightening around his husband's body in as much of a hug as he was able to manage in this position.
At Q's questioning little butt shake, he lifted his head up resting his chin in the valley of the rounded flesh, locking eyes with the brunet who was now looking at him over one shoulder.
“I missed you. I missed this closeness. I missed this lazy evenings when I could explore you, watch you come apart under my tongue… when I could hold you close and love you. Slow, proper, with care… like you deserve.”
Expressing his feelings usually wasn't a thing he did. It was hard for him to bear himself so much, to be so vulnerable. But this day, this moment… his heart ached.
He got accepted back into what he so foolishly and recklessly threw away. Not forgiven, not yet, there was still too much bitterness, too much sadness in Q's smiles, too much shadow in the green gaze.
But he was allowed this, to be here, with the man he loved, the man that gave him children he never thought he'd be lucky enough to have. Observing Ash and Q today, both of them acting so close to each other, and yet, he was the one allowed to be here, with Quinn, to hold him close.
“I love you.”
Q's face scrunched up, head turning away again, and James could see and feel the quartermaster move, taking a deep breath, before the man looked back at him, eyes reddened but dry.
“I missed you too. More than you could ever imagine.” his voice just above a whisper, rough and heavy.
James notices the way the brunet omitted his last statement, but he understood.
They had time and he had the opportunity to gain his husband’s trust and love again.
Chapter 37: New beginnings #8: Break
Hello darlings! Sorry it took me so long to update, but finally it's here!
Enjoy and let me know what you think! <3
With the peace and quiet in their household as they fully settle into a comfortable routine, came James’ nightmares.
It seems that up until this point the agent was still in mission mode, keeping together by sheer strength of will and training, because to break apart in the field is to die.
Q wakes up in the middle of the night to James twitching restlessly, and he knows better than to try to break the blond from the clutches of the nightmares, so he just gets up and goes to sleep with Jacques. Some night he wakes up to Bond prowling through the apartment, he’s calm on the outside, but his eyes have that shine to them that tell Q all he needs to know.
Then there are those times he wakes up to James sitting in the armchair in the living room, eyes bleary and tired. Those nights Q just walks back for a blanket and then wrapping it around them both, curls up in James’ lap for the remainder of the night.
Sometimes he’s woken up with a kiss to his nape as strong hands pull him in closer and he choses to ignore the tremor in the blunt fingers as they close over his own.
Sometimes he wakes up to a muffled scream.
“Why is papa screaming in the night?”
Q’s sitting on the sofa, immersed in his laptop when Jacques comes to him, looking unsure and wary, feet fidgeting.
“Oh, darling.” Q moves the laptop to the coffee table and pulls his son into his lap. “Daddy has nightmares sometimes, just like you have. It’s nothing to worry about.”
Only then Q realises that they’ve been lucky till now, that the children didn’t visit them in the middle of the night yet while James was having one of his nightmares.
He’s never been violent, but he did wake up with a snap couple of times when the boffin tried to wake him up before they decided it’d be better to just let the blond ride them out himself, the five fingered bruise on the brunet’s arm reminding them of that for days after.
Before James’ disappearance, the blond wasn’t having such violent nightmares, so they didn’t ever consider a child crawling to their bed at night a problem, save the fact that they had to be decent after their bounds of before sleep sex.
“Jacques, if you ever wake up in the middle of the night and want to sleep with us or you’ll hear daddy have nightmares, come to my side of bed first, ok?”
“Daddy might think you’re a little monster from his dreams and might try to scare you off before he truly wakes up. I don’t want both of my boys being scared because of dreamy monsters, alright? Please remember, baby, yes?”
Jacques just nods and hugs his mommy.
“... and then you disconnect the first cable and put in the code. It takes couple of minute before the second disc unlocks, and, yes, exactly. Do you remember that fail safe external thumb drive Andy was working on last month? It had some similar- no, Ash! It doesn’t blow up!” Q laughed into the phone he held between his ear and shoulder as he was typing something on his work laptop.
James observed from the other end of the room, a bitter taste in his mouth.
“Dada, look!” Emily sat in his lap and doodled what James hoped he was identifying correctly as a cat.
“What’s that, honey?” he asked either way.
James looked closer at the picture of black lines and circles and pointy ear things. He had no idea from where she knew that character.
“Beauti-” he looked sharply up hearing another pearl of laughter fall from the brunet’s lips. “-ful.”
Q has been talking more and more often with Ash on the phone in the last weeks, sometimes all serious and work related, sometimes just a catch up, sometimes involving kids chirping happily on the phone too.
They went with Ash to the park couple more times since that first outing too, and James tried to behave, tried to blend in and swallow down the bitter pill of being pushed to the background when Ash was present. He thought it’s normal, the other blond was now scarce in the kid’s life, while he was there now constantly. Still, it hurt.
“Oh, you didn’t! Ash... “ Q scolded with a big, playful grin on his face.
It hurt not to be the centre of his husband’s attention at all times, too. It was selfish and he knew it. He was… jealous.
Trying to block out the beloved voice, James concentrated on doodling with his daughter.
They were in the bathroom, only in their pyjama bottoms, the boffin drying his face after he washed his teeth and face, the blond circling his hips with his arms and nudging in close.
“James!” Q hissed a moment later, as the blond’s teeth sunk into the skin of his neck, mouth closing over and sucking hard, insistent. “I’m going into the office tomorrow and it’s too hot for turtlenecks…”
“Exactly.” James grumbled out.
That made Q stop his squirming and turn slowly in Bond’s arms to face the man, green eyes serious and calculating as they stared into the blue gaze.
He didn’t say anything in the end, just leaned in to press his lips against the blond’s, not closing his eyes.
I see you. I see what you see.
Somehow, they stopped having sex.
By the time James notices it, it has been almost three months without them getting intimate in this way.
Slowly, their closeness started to involve more cuddling, more just being together and exchanging little pecks on the lips. Not even full kisses.
Gone was their unsated lust and bone crushing need to press their bodies as close as humanly possible, to kiss and bite and stake and claim that blew up between them since the moment they reconciled.
They still cuddled, fell asleep tightly entwined, but this closeness never seemed to turn into reciprocated arousal.
Bond tried to explain to himself that it was fine, that's how relationships sometimes worked, they didn't always rotate around physical needs. They did go through very long dry spells before, after the babies were born. Still, there was a gnawing worry in the back of his head he couldn't help.
The boffin wasn't distant, they were talking, laughing, doing all the little domestic things as a family - meals, play time, watching cartoons and all the different bedtimes routines, all the walks and trips. But something was missing, some little spark lost between them.
And James blamed Ash.
The man was a contestant presence in their lives and now James started to realise just how close the blond was to his family when he was absent and that he was wrong to push Q into the first meet up with the other blond. Despite all Q's words and claims, the boffin's actions proved to be contrary - he did care about Ashton and they were competing.
Ash was always sitting too close to Q, standing, so their shoulders always brushed. The tall blond was always finding ways to at least half hug Q, they always kissed cheeks on hello and goodbye.
James brought roses home one day and a little package from their favourite lingerie shop. Q smiled brightly, but without that adorable, still slightly embarrassed, but excited gleam in the green eyes and the flowers ended up in a vase on the kitchen table and the gift box, unpacked, in the top drawer of their dresser.
Bond allowed himself a little secret smile as he saw the man twitch surprised and reach for a gun strapped to his right side as he spoke. If James was intending to shoot him, Ash would have never had made it. Walking leisurely out of the shadow, arms slightly lifted from his sides indicating he wasn’t armed nor did he wish to reach for his weapon.
“James.” The other blond greeted back when he saw who approached him, shoulders slightly relaxing, but not fully. Good.
“I won't waste both our time here, so I'll just keep this short: back away from my family.”
“Really? You’d scoop so low as to come and threaten me?”
James didn't answer straight away. He did, didn't he? Reach the end of his rope. Relationships still made him feel clumsy, even after years of being with Q. So what he lacked in civilian life skills, he filled up with training, and it the field it all came down to eliminating threats. And Ash was a threat to him.
He'd, probably, never scoop as low as actually getting rid of the man, or implicate him and then blackmail, but…
Anything it takes so secure a mission’s success.
Taking a deep breath, James assessed his opponent once more. At the last moment, he changed tactics, going with his gut feeling and… baring his soul.
James must give it to Ashton, the man was subtle in his withdrawal. A missed meeting here, a re-scheduled to never one there, a cut phone conversation every once in awhile.
Q almost doesn’t figure it out.
The looks he throws Bond all day can mean anything, really, and Bond is both fearful and… oddly calm about it. They need to hash it out either way, can’t continue as they were for much longer.
It’s late and it has been a quiet evening, the kids falling asleep quickly and without a fuss for once as Q read them stories. James observed from the doorway for some time, head resting on the frame and listening to his quartermaster’s soft voice.
There was a calmness in it, a tenderness. Warmth.
Taking a slow step back, James merged into the shadows of the corridor, making his way to the living room.
He sat down on the couch, switching on the telly and mindlessly switched between channels.
Q came in, quiet as a ghost, and if not for James’ training he’d be caught unaware. But he sensed him, saw him in the corner of his eye.
The boffin came closer, bent down to tug the remote from his unresisting hand and pressed the red button on it. The room drowned in sudden silence as Q moved to straddle his lap, settling heavily across his body.
For the longest moment they didn't say a word, Q resting outstretched arms over his shoulders as green gaze bore into blue, face impassive. Then the brunet leaned in, pressing a soft kiss to James’ lips.
“I’m sorry. I didn’t notice what I was doing.” Q ducked his head. “Well, no, that’s not true...I did… I think I… wanted to hurt you. As you’ve hurt me. But it has gone too far. It was petty and immature to ban you sex and actively work to make you jealous. On Ash’s expense. But that was the one thing I could make myself do. I couldn’t distance myself physically from you, I couldn't make myself stop touching you, being close to you. I still miss you too much, I'm still… scared to let you out of my gaze. But this one thing I could deny you, sex. And I won’t lie that I am still… conflicted over Ash, the relationship that we all now have, it’s all very difficult...” Then he lifted his head again to look into James’ eyes. “But what you did wasn’t that much adult either. Threatening Ash away? Really James?”
Bond grinned ruefully in answer, but feeling his heart constrict painfully.
“I did what my training told me to do - eliminate the threat. Don't worry, I didn’t torture him or blackmail him. Much.”
“And yet, you love me still. Hopefully.”
Q’s smile was soft as he moved one hand to James’ cheek, caressing.
“I do.” the boffin whispered against his husband’s mouth, kissing him deep and heartfelt.
Hours later, watching the sunrise make a soft halo around Q’s hair as they still grinded softly together in passion, the slim brunet cradled in James’ lap as the blond sat cross legged, hands on the lovely rounded hips as he helped his husband rise and fall in a gentle wave, James broke out in a whispered litany of words. Of love and praise, apology and promises which Q kissed off of his lips and given in return.
They settled in a new kind of routine, they talked everything out and established new rules.
When they met up with Ash now, very rarely, but still at least once a month, Q kept his distance to both of them, taking a step back and allowing the two blonds to spend time with the kids on their own, without throwing himself in the mix.
Ash, true to his promise to James, didn’t try for romance and flirting anymore, he kept up the friendly demeanor and professional relationship though, and Q was thankful and happy that he could keep the other man as a friend in his and the children’s lives, his heart settling and no longer so much torn.
They met up frequently with Gareth and Bill and their triplets instead.
The kids loved to play together while the adults enjoyed conversations, carefully skipping work talks.
On the sunny, warm days they went out to picnics and Tanner smiled often at Q and Bond over the vast picnic blanket, observing how easily they all behaved now around each other, how much in love they still were.
“I’m glad you took him back.” he said one day, after pulling Q away for a little stroll.
“Me too. Despite everything, he’s the one... “ the green eyes darkened a bit in the old hurt though. They still stumbled once in a while, but now, they were both sure and ready to fight for their marriage and family and face the bitterness of a year of absence and James’ stupid choices.
“Mommy!” Q had just enough time to swiftly turn around and catch his little girl as she ran to him, arms outstretched and laughing loud. He picked her up, doing a half turn and swinging her around. “Hello, love. Where’s papa and Jacques?”
“Right besides you, love, as always.” James whispered by his side, one hand holding Jacques up on his hip, the other wrapping around Q’s waist. “Come on, I promised all the kids icecream, lets go.”
“No, no, no, Emily you already ate two pancakes with chocolate, good that mommy’s at work or he’d have my hide for letting you eat that many sweets!” James picked up his daughter from the chair as she was leaning over the breakfast table reaching for more of her lately favourite food.
Jacques was sitting on the other side of the table eating his apple porridge and flicking through his book on cars with rapt interest, James’ latest gift to the boy, and the man couldn’t be prouder to finally interest his son in something he considered his own passion.
Q was back on a more or less fixed schedule of going in to work and working remotely when he could, so sometimes they managed to eat breakfast together, but today he was called in very early, some new threat appearing on the horizon.
The phone rang and James sat Emily in her high chair and moved towards the shelve, asking Jacques to have a look at his sister whilst he answered.
He picked up the phone and swiped on the screen.“Bond.”
As he listened to the voice on the other side of the receiver, he felt the smile on his lips melt away and the blood run cold in his veins.
“I’ll be there right away, Sir.”
Chapter 38: New beginnings #9: Yet again
James walked down the MI6 building towards the Q-branch after his meeting with M. Heart heavy and mood grim, he dreaded seeing Q now, but he had no choice. It had to be done.
Silence met him as he entered his husband's branch, all minions shooting him careful looks as they shuffled from desk to desk, unsure of what will happen soon.
He didn't knock as he entered Q's private office and for a moment stopped dead in his tracks.
Ashton was there, kneeling in front of Q who was sitting in his chair behind his desk, elbows resting on his thighs and head bent, held between his splayed hands.
Ashton stood up after he spotted who came in, brows tight, radiating anger as he turned on Bond.
“You promised him! You fucking promised him to never ever leave again!”
Bond's face was passive. He knew it well, he knew he was breaking his word, but apparently there wasn't a choice, he was the only one who knew precisely where the village was, who knew the people there and whom those people trusted enough to give the precious, time sensitive documents MI6 found out it needed.
“Leave us.” he demanded from the other blond.
Ash sent him another stormy look but listened, knocking his shoulder hard against Bond's as he left, doors shutting quietly.
With a heavy sight, James went to kneel before Q.
He didn't know what to say, he didn't know if Q would welcome his touch now.
“They want to send you out tomorrow morning, the way you said you came back, plane to Krasnoyarsk, train to… whatever that damn place was called, and then you're on your own. A month they said.” Q's voice broke the silence. It was rough, obviously he cried and James’ heart broke even more.
“I told M-”
“I know. He knows. Fuck, he's, he's my friend, he saw me, he saw Jacques, he was there when you-, and yet-!”
“I won't go.”
Q lifted his head up then and looked at James, glasses askew and his eyes red, tears running down his cheeks.
“We both know that's a lie.”
James gritted his teeth, looking away.
Q's gentle hand on his cheek turned his face back.
“It's alright, James, it's alright.” his voice went soft, resigned, as he reached out with both hands then, asking his husband to hold him, and James did.
Pulling the willing body out of the chair and into his lap, James cradled his lover close, burying his face in the dark locks as he felt his own eyes burn.
Ash waited outside of Q-branch for him, lounging in the corner.
“I backed off, because it seemed you were really trying. And for reasons I don't understand he really does love you, but when you leave this time be sure I'll be there for him in every way he needs me. I'll fight for him again, and this time, I will not lose to the shadow of you.”
Something snapped in Bond.
It wasn't his choice, it wasn't his decision, and damn that bastard for implying that!
All the anger and frustration that started with M’s call in the morning, the fact he'd have to leave his family again, break the promise he made on which they rebuilt their lives. And now Ashton’s further threatenings to take his family away…
James rounded up on the other man laying a hard punch to the man's solar complex.
After one breathless second, Ash reciprocated with a punch of his own and then all hell broke lose and the men were fighting full force, laying punches where they could reach, tearing at their clothes and throwing each other against walls, neither of them holding back.
They didn't hear when someone spotted them and called in for security, but soon they were being pulled apart, guards swarming around.
Panting, they looked at each other, the security officers herding them apart.
The blond cursed. Of course Q would come to inspect what was the commotion outside of Q-branch was.
He turned to his husband sending him a crooked, flat, bloodied smile.
The brunet's face was drawn tight with exasperation and displeasure, his eyes still red and lashes wet as he stepped closer, one hand going up to the blond's chin to turn the man's head this and that side to inspect injuries.
James had only a bloody lip and a bruised cheekbone, as opposed to Ashton's black eye and cracked eyebrow seeping steadily blood into to the blond's good eye.
His delight was slow lived though when Q pulled his hand away to deliver a sharp, hard slap to his face.
“To medical, 007. And then come back to Q-branch. R will guide you to the correct lab to be outfitted.”
Then Q turned away and sending a similarly scathing look Ash’s way, he walked away.
Snarling through a poor nurse trying to patch him up, James’ head was in an uproar. The calm that washed over him after his scuffle with Ash long gone now, allowing the anger to come back.
They needed to send him out into Siberia, into that little town hidden deep in the forests and plains of that God forsaken country. He didn't know how to pinpoint the exact location on map, there was no one they could send in his place to track down his saviour, to track down that family that kept him safe and healthy and apparently guarded more secrets that now needed fetching.
He had the knowledge of the location, they knew him and hopefully would share their knowledge with him willingly and quickly. A month.
Gritting his teeth, he moved away from the careful hands pressing alcohol douched cotton to his lip.
“Enough.” He bit out. Then remembering his manners and imagining Q's displeasure, he added. “Thank you.” as he rose up from the chair.
Time to go back to Q.
He got ushered by a stone faced R into one of the branches bunker lab's, doors closing swiftly with a click behind his back.
There were lots of shelves by the walls, couple desks and chairs and in the middle of the room, some beeping equipment. Q stood by it, looking into one of the microscopes standing on a long table nearby.
“Q.” James greeted softly.
His husband didn't acknowledge his straight away, taking a moment longer to inspect whatever it was he had under the lenses. But when he faced James, there wasn't a hint of his distraught husband present anymore, in his place stood a composed and competent Quartermaster.
“Please sit down, 007, and pull up your sleeve.”
A chair was indicated and James did as he was told.
His arms was caught swiftly in some contraption, his skin cleaned with an antiseptic and then he felt a quick and quite painful jab.
Q stood over him, face pensive.
“Smart Blood.” He said looking up. “So I'll always know where you are and what's your vital stats. It's still only a prototype, really, but… I'm fairly confident in it.”
Catching the cold fingers of Q's hand, James gave them a gentle squeeze.
“Shoot me up with couple trackers too, will you? I'm coming back. I promise.” He knows it sound hollow and fake. He promised so many things already…
Q didn't reply. Just held his hand tighter, not looking at James, lips set in a tight line.
They came back home in silence too. Only Q's clutching hand on his arm betraying the emotions and that they weren't ok.
After hours of crying and screaming, Jacques and Emily finally exhausted themselves out enough to fall into pitiful slumber.
James’ heart bled, looking at his children's pain.
Q was against James’ just disappearing, saying that it'd be too much like last time for Jacques, that James had to try to explain and sooth and reassure his son. To say goodbye properly.
It was long and painful, the boy going into hysterics and first running away and hiding and then refusing to let go of James for even a second, little fists clutching painfully at his father's body.
Now they all laid, tightly entwined together on the big bed in the master bedroom. The children sleeping while James and Q talked softly, going through all scenarios, plans for the future, means of communication, all procedures, contacts that could help them out if needed and ways they could stay in touch if the mission went sour.
In the early hours of the dawn, James rose up from the bed. With Q's help he untangled the little hands fisted in his shirt and being as quiet as possible to not wake their children up, he moved towards bathroom.
Maybe it was cruel to them, but they decided that after last night it was best to leave them sleeping as James left, to save them more goodbyes.
They showered together and then James shaved as Q went to prepare them breakfast.
Walking into the kitchen, James paused mid step. His breath hitched as he watched his husband as the man poured water into cups. Quinn's hair was in disarray, the sun playing in the stands, he was bare footed and wearing one of James’ shirts. The material hung on the brunet's thin frame, makings him look fragile and soft. Breakable. Though James knew it to be far from the truth. Quinn was the strongest person he ever met, putting to shame even James himself.
Unfreezing from his spot, he came to Q and embraced his lover tight from behind.
He never wanted it to happen again, never wanted to leave his husband, his children. It was supposed to be an easy mission, just a retrieval. But everyone knew that all missions could go haywire in a matter of minutes, James’ ones especially.
He closed his eyes, just breathing in Q's scent and rubbing his cheek on his husband's, turning his head softly when he felt a slim hand on his opposite cheek, holding him firmly in place.
Then Q turned in his arms and he allowed it, kissing the cherry red lips delicately until Q didn't pull away from that too.
Without understanding he let his husband do as he pleased, everything becoming obvious as he watched Q reach under his shirt and pull down his own underwear.
James watched the flimsy material slide down the long legs to pool down at the kitchen floor until his face wasn't guided up, to look into the expressive green eyes.
He didn't waste a moment longer, stepping closer he lifted Q up, sitting the brunet on the kitchen counter and running his open palms over the smooth, hot skin of the shapely thighs that spread open under his touch. Then lube and a condom was pressed into his palm and a hot mouth urged him to go faster.
Slipping from Q’s hot body, James helped his husband down, holding him tight until he was sure that the weakness left the long legs.
Q pressed a lingering kiss on his lips and then rested his forehead against his, eyes closed as their breaths calmed down.
Half an hour later he was on his way to the airport, the vast unknown in front of him yet again.
Chapter 39: New beginnings #10: Overcome
Sorry it took me so long!
Thank you for all of your lovely comments and support! <3
Hope you'll enjoy this chapter :D let me know!
Hope you all had a Merry Christmas time and I wish you all luck and happiness in the New Year!
Sitting in a hotel room in Krasnoyarsk, James smiled down onto the tablet he held in his hands. They’ve been on the call for the last two hours. It started with a nervous looking Q, sour faced Jacques and a confused and on the brink of tears Emily, but now it was back to easy banter and chit chat. Only when it came to saying goodnight did the atmosphere became tense again.
“I need to get going...” James said softly looking at his family on the other side of the screen. “We'll talk again tomorrow, alright?”
Jacques’ lip trembled precariously while Emily just snuggled deeper into Q's embrace, expression twisted in a scowl. She obviously was more than ready for bedtime, almost tired enough to work herself up into a fuss.
“Jacques… Daddy loves you a lot, you know that, yes? I'll be back before you know it.”
They boy just nodded with a brave face as he rubbed with a fist at his eyes.
“I love you too, Emy, lots and lots. Now Mommy will put you to bed and you'll quickly fall asleep to dream up new drawings ideas, alright? Sweet dreams, princess.”
Emily waved him goodbye and mashed her face into Q's chest, fisting hands in his sweater.
“All right. Safe travels, James.”
“Goodnight, Darling. Love you.”
“Love you.” Q whispered switching off the connection.
First couple of days after Bond's departure Q was in shambles. Nervous, twitching, waking up in cold sweat in the middle of the night…
Mornings were the hardest, as always.
Waking up alone in the vast, cold bed again, no leftover warmth in the pillow next to him, no low, grumbly voice reaching him from the living room or bathroom, no memory of a kiss pressed to his cheek as James left for his morning run…
He made himself throw up one day from stress and bad thoughts, stomach in knots.
After that it took him a day and a half to make the SmartBlood program connect with an armband to transfer and emit his husband's pulse so he could feel it around his wrist, know when it sped up with activity and when the man slept. It calmed him just enough to start sleeping through the night after a week.
Waking up to the sound of your child crying is heartbreaking. Q heaved a sigh as he threw off the covers and got up to go and sooth Jacques. The poor boy was having a really hard time with James being away again. Always asking about his papa and demanding to talk with James whenever it was possible.
Q was thankful he managed to reroute some satellites so they had constant connection with James.
Judging by the wails, the boy worked himself up a lot and Q felt his own eyes pickle slightly. Sparing a moment to concentrate on the bracelet, on the pulse of his husband, Q was fairly certain James wasn't yet asleep. He turned back to grab his phone off the bedside table and send a quick message to James.
Clutching the phone in his hand he made his way to Jacques' room. On his way he looked into Emily's room. Thankfully, she was fast asleep. She was dealing with the situation much better than her brother, for her it seems it was just like it was before - seeing James only on the screen and on photos and having Ash around for playtime seems alright in her books.
“Jacques, baby, what's wrong?” Q whispered as he came to sit on the boy's bed, hand reaching out to smooth the blond locks.
“I want papa…” came the pitiful whimper.
With a sigh Q laid down and cradled the weeping boy close, making shushing noises and gently rocking back and forth as he kept looking at his phone over his son's back.
When the little LED light flashed blue indicating a message, Q quickly unlocked the screen and read through it.
Pulling away a bit to look at Jacques’ face he gave the boy a soft smile.
“ You want to call papa? He's awake and missing you too.”
Jacques nodded fiercely, little fists smudging tears from his eyes.
Q shifted to lie on his back with Jacques tucked into his side and first reached for a tissue to help his son properly clean up and then switched the bedside lamp on.
Set up, he dialed James number for a video-call. He couldn't help a bright smile of his own seeing the beloved face on the screen.
“Remember to pack only your toys, Jacques!” Q shouted after the running boy's back. Collecting the kids from the Mallory's after a long day, Q didn't want to have to drive back if Jacques borrowed some of the triplets toys as he was sometimes wont to do.
It was done with all parties agreeing at the times, but when bathtimes and bedtimes rolled out, moods changed.
Q adjusted Emily on his hip, giving her a little bounce. As he reached down to take a bag.
“Let me.” A voice stopped him in mid move.
It was a wonder to have the other man there, despite the looks shot to him by Bill.
The other man stopped him for a moment before they left, Ash already by the car and strapping in Jacques.
“I hope you know what you're doing.”
Q gave him a quizzical look. Yes, Bond and Ash weren't the best of friends, the fight they had before James’ departure making it even more than obvious (Ash still had a black eye from that exchange), but James wasn't here now. He wasn't there to help Q out with the children and Q desperately needed that help. And Ash was a great help and the children adored him. No wrong in that. He wasn't doing anything untowards and neither did Ash.
“He's just being of help.” Q said looking straight into Bill's eyes. Then, with a nod, he walked away down the drive.
Q looked past James into the tiny room the blond was given.
“It was my room before, when I was recovering.”
Q made a noncommittal grunt in response. The room didn’t have proper kind of walls, the house was made of tree trunks and it shown the inside - bare rounded wood, only in places decorated with some things that brought to mind tapestries, or a poor attempt at those.
There was a small window and a narrow bed. James’ backpack stored in a corner, his overcoat thrown over the bed.
They fell silent for a long moment, James’ expression souring and sobering with each moment. Not that Q saw it, looking to the side at the children playing in the middle of the living room.
“Quinn-” he didn’t manage to finish though as a woman’s voice was heard, muffled, in the background, calling James’ name.
James scowled, annoyed.
Q tried at a smile.
“You should go. The sooner you obtain what you went for, the sooner you’ll be back.”
James nodded and reached to switch off the connection, but before he managed that, Q’s soft voice stopped him.
“James? By whatever means necessary. I want you home as soon as it’s possible.”
The blond’s expression was far from happy, but there was a determined seriousness in his eyes.
It was, after all, just a mission. Though it seemed both of them struggled with that though much more now than they used to.
Q woke up in the middle of the night, sitting straight in his bed, the band around his left wrist throbbing wildly.
Quickly, he reached for his laptop, firing it up and bringing up the SmartBlood app and checking on the GPS signal. It was static, not moving. In the location he previously established as James place of living in the tiny village.
Was he… with her?
For months he didn't spare her even a fleeting thought, but now…
Shutting down the lid and placing the laptop back on the nightstand Q laid down on the bed staring at the ceiling. If James was with her, why did it matter even?
007 was on a mission, and during their marriage and before he observed the blond's various honeypots and he was fine with it. They were part of the actions that needed taking in order to complete the mission, to reach the bigger goal. Yes James tried to avoid them, figure out other ways, but sometimes it was unavoidable.
It didn't matter to James, it didn't matter to Q.
They were both aware that that was part of the work, and as killing, not always easy and pleasurable. So why now this thought was making Q's heart race and a sour taste appear in his mouth, especially after he gave permission to James to do just that?
He turned on his side and angrily fluffed his pillow.
The pulsating from the band was slowly going down to the normal rhythm and Q debated with himself if he should take it off or not, disgusted with himself or James, he couldn't tell.
Before he could come to a decision his phone pinged announcing a text message and Q jumped.
Jacking off and thinking of you. Thought you should know after you felt it. the message read and Q couldn't help a smile. That bastard. Of course Bond would do it after Q admitted to making the band.
Then the phone pinged again. I want a band like that too so I know when you're getting naughty.
I'll make it cock ring shaped for you. he typed back. And wasn't that a thought.
It’s been a little over four weeks since Bond left.
The last time he checked in, he said there’ll be some people visiting the village in the next couple of days and the agent had high hopes of them spilling the beans.
Q really hoped it was true and that James would be able to make his way home after that.
It was really hard to go back to being a single parent again… Again he was forced to rely heavily on the Mallorys and Tanners for help with the kids. And Ash.
It was as if James never came back, it was that smooth and seamless how the tall blond came back into their lives. Unasked, he appeared every Thursday to take the children to the park and to ice cream and cakes, he was there in the mornings, when Q had a hard time dressing Emily and Jacques was in the mood for toasts that Q just didn’t have time to make. And he was there in the evening, when the house got quiet and Q drowned himself in some pet projects to not think on James’ absence.
“A truce.” he said that first time appearing on Q’s doorstep “for when he’s away. I just want to help out, be there for Emily and Jacques. Nothing more, nothing less.” And Q believed him, maybe foolishly but he did, and let him in.
Making Q a cup of tea, preparing breakfast in advance, laying out clothes for the children for morning… Q really appreciated the help.
Ash was a more hands-on parent than James, much more organised when it came to dealing with toddlers and little children, more aware of the various needs and able to predict some temper tantrums and was brilliant at turning Emily’s attention from the frilly socks she really didn’t want to wear, but had to, as they were going out. One should wear socks in boots, after all.
But he was no James.
What was worse was that Bill was apparently catching up on what was going on in the Bond's home. He didn't comment, save that one time, and he didn't try and tell Q it was all a very bad idea, but he sent him this long calculating looks that made Q feel very self conscious...
Feeling bad for yet again using the other blond, yet Q enjoyed the help and silent attention he himself was getting. There was no harm in that. He knew where his heart laid, and Ash knew it too, yet the blond still decided to be a better man and be there for Jacques and Emily.
Ash passed him in the kitchen in the morning, a lightly thrown “Good morning, beautiful.” and a casually pressed kiss to his neck had Q taking a double look on the situation.
Hands stopping, while he washed the dishes, he looked at his bubbles covered fingers.
Wasn’t he doing, again, exactly what he was afraid James would do with that russian woman?
Shooting a calculating look at Ash, Q decided it was time to wean himself of this this easy situation.
Kids already in beds, Q was sitting in the kitchen with his laptop open and absentmindedly coding a new program. He was taking a sip of his tea when Ash spoke.
“You should leave him.”
Q sent him a cutting look, quickly putting the cup down.
“James. You should pack his stuff, now that he’s away and send it to some hotel.”
“You’re forgetting yourself, Ash.” Q stood up and closed his laptop. “You should leave, it’s late and you’ve been drinking.”
“Just a glass of wine. Come on, Q, this? Us? Look how well it has been working out.” Ash made a wide gesture. Then he took a step closer to Q. “You’re so lovely, Q. You’re wasted on a man like him.”
“Ash, just go home. We’ll talk tomorrow.” Q made to step around him, but Ash took hold of his arm and spinned him half-round, backing Q into a nearby wall and pressing insistent, hot lips against Q’s own, pressing his body close to Q’s, a knee shifting between the boffin’s legs.
For a split second Q’s eyes closed and his mouth slacked, falling open to the searching tongue, his arms lifting up to...
The room resonated with a sound of Q’s open palm hitting Ash’s cheek after he shoved the other man away.
“Don’t you EVER do that again!” Q seethed between clenched teeth, hand wiping his own mouth. He wasn’t shouting only because of Emily and Jacques sleeping in the next room.
Ash’s eyes were full of disbelief as he cradled his bruised cheek.
“No! Don’t you Q me. You-you have no right to do that, to-to kiss me… No!” He spread his palms flat out towards the blond as Ash made a wobbly step towards him.
“I wanted to talk to you tomorrow, explain that we have to stop this thing that we had going. It’s, It’s not right. Not towards you, nor James.”
Q gave a heavy sight, angry and disappointed. In himself, mostly, and wasn’t that the worst feeling?
“I do have a… certain weakness for you and by God, yes! If James didn’t come back when he did I’d shag you silly soon after, and hopefully you’d stay for a long time with me and the kids, but… I’m sorry. I love James more. Despite all the pain and heartache and… and all the chaos he brings to my life, he’s the one. And I- I can’t do it to him. We can’t be anything more than friends, Ash. So please, please, for the sake of my children and me, never ever kiss me again or touch me in sexual manner! And never again try to talk me into leaving my husband!”
“I still love you, Q. Nothing changed. I care for you deeply, for your well being, and he is not good for you! Look at you! Tired, prickly all the time… thinner, you’ve lost weight again, your cheeks…” he lifts a hand to Q’s face from which the boffin turns his head away. “Q, please…”
“Ash, we agreed to just be friends, you backed off romantically. It worked, we were good as just friends…” Q looked at him sadly.
“You were good with us being just friends, Q… I always hoped. I still do.”
Ash turned around, making as if to leave, but before taking a step he looked back at Q.
“If he won’t come back this time, I’ll still be here, just the same. Wanting you and loving you, just the same. I’ll wait for you to love me back just as much as I love you.”
Q swallowed hard, his chest flooding with ice and suddenly feeling wobbly on his legs.
He watched Ash take his stuff and walk out and only when he heard the front doors lock did he allow himself to collapse back in the chair, breathing heavy with a sweat on his brow.
“Are you alright, Quinn?” James’ face was full of worry. “You look pale.”
“It’s the light here, don’t worry, I’m fine.”
“Papa!” Emily squealed happily as she ran towards Q and the laptop. Placing hands on the table she tried to hoist herself on her mommy’s lap. With a smile, Q helped her up, sitting her securely across his knees and cuddling her close, breathing in the baby fresh scent.
“So, papa,” Q addressed James, “what have you been up to lately?”
He gave a soft smile at his husband and drown in listening to the man’s low, grumbly voice.
He couldn’t wait for James to be back home.
Chapter 40: New beginnings #11: Here we go again...
Hello darlings! Sorry it took me so long to update!
Hope you'll all fine :)
new trigger and thus new tag will be added, see the bottom notes to find out more!
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
It was another busy day at Q-branch. It seemed all was happening at the same time - 006 in Peru tracking drug lord gone atomic bomb hunter, 002 in Tajikistan on a rescue mission and his very own double-oh seven still somewhere in Siberia. Though with that last one he really didn't have much to do about, just waiting and being on standby.
Q’s eyes were jumping from one screen to the other, fingers pounding lightly on the keyboards pulling up data, following CCTV cams, sneaking past security codes as he searched, chased for relevant information.
Finishing up one line on investigation, Q allowed himself a little breather, straightening up his back, rolling his shoulders and stretching up his arms, joints giving up little creaks.
Lately it felt like he's been running himself to the ground, his body tired and achy.
Well, it wasn't that much of a surprise really, with an overactive five year old chasing all over the place after a little lady of an adorable sister and his husband miles away. And with Ash no longer in the picture.
He really didn't realise how much having Ash around eased his everyday struggle...
It was a wonder to have lovely Mr and Mrs Tanner, agent's Tanner parents doing their best to take care of five children between their little families.
He will be forever grateful to have the older pair extend their help to his little family. He had a really hard time trusting people, even worse if he would be required to trust his children's safety to a total stranger. He knew the pair was tightly secured by MI6, and both of them being retired agents helped to ease his mind.
He didn't know what he'll do when Jacques will be old enough for school in a couple of years.
But, they were making it work now, so no use stressing about that for some time yet.
And James would be back, hopefully soon, and hopefully this time he’d be finally allowed to retire for good.
He gave a sight, returning to work. Soon it’ll all be put to rights.
To his left he heard a soft clink, someone putting a steaming cup on the edge of his desk.
He murmured a quiet thank you, eyes glued to one of the screens, catching a thread he didn't connect to the rest of the puzzle before. Now, he began to pursue it mercily.
Mindlessly, he reached for his signature cup, lifting it to his lips and taking a perfect, little sip of his beloved blend.
And almost spitting it back out when a fierce wave of nausea hit him.
No, no, no, bloody hell no.
They have been so careful! Always with a condom, always checking it afterwards...
How the hell then…?
He was pregnant.
They weren't ready for another one.
They were barely organised to fit their lives around two little munchkins, but a third one?
Q took a deep, shuddering breath, teeth clenching against the rising nuesca, body shuddering with the emotional turmoil going through his head.
No one knew he was pregnant, no one suspected.
And Bond wasn't due to return for another two weeks at least. Maybe three.
He would be back to fine in two weeks if he got an abortion now. No one would know.
Swallowing hard, Q put the cup down with a clink.
He was starting to breath hard, palms sweaty and legs trembling - the telltale sign of a panic attack he didn't have in years.
Clearing his throat nervously, he turned to his second-in-command.
“R, please take over for a moment.”
Giving her a tight smile at her absent minded nod, he turned and walked as calmly as he could from the main room towards his office.
He closed the doors and rested his back against them, soon sliding down to sit at the floor, head buried in his palms.
Finding out he was pregnant for the second time, oh it was a joy. A nervous one, but still, a joy. He wanted that second pregnancy. Maybe not that soon, not that quick after having Jacques, but he was so thrilled when Bond found out and he was happy, they were both happy.
He enjoyed himself while pregnant for the second time, took it easy, taken care of himself as he should have done while pregnant with Jacques and it was a easy, book-perfect pregnancy, save that one hard bound of morning sickness. It was nothing like the stressful horror of worrying every breathing second about his baby as he done the first time around.
He was surprised at himself, but both times, the thought of aborting the pregnancies never even entered his mind. From the very first moment he knew, he wanted them, wanted to keep them.
But now… oh it would be so much easier…
No one would know.
Just one more secret, another lie by omitting, just a pill and couple hours of agony and… as if nothing happened.
He felt his breathing finally start to calm down.
That evening, on his way home he stepped into a pharmacy, buying a test, just to make sure, have a visual confirmation of what he was totally sure of.
He collected his children from Mrs Tanner, Emily tucking herself tightly against his neck when he picked her up, Jacques pulling at his pants leg also demanding attention. He ruffled his son's hair as he looked down at him with a smile. His baby boy was growing so fast… they both were.
Holding Emily close he remembered her being a tiny little thing, easily fitting into the crook of his arm. Not a walking toddler, babbling happily and trying to play chase with her older brother.
Much later, when he tucked Emily and Jacques in for the night, reading them stories and singing their favourite lullabies so both his darlings would fall asleep quicker, he marveled at his little family. Could he fit another baby in his life? He couldn't really imagine it if Bond didn't come back, if the man wasn't around during the pregnancy and after.
Kids asleep, he locked himself in the bathroom with the test.
Watching the pink lines appear, just like he anticipated, he cried.
Tucking Jacques and Emily into their little beds, the children asking about their papa again and again… it broke his heart. What about a third one? Three fatherless children and him, a single parent.
Should he wait with the decision until James was back? Should he tell his husband before he aborted? Or should he just go through with it and never mention it?
If he waited for James to come back, no longer than three weeks though, he still could have a safe abortion by that time.
Pressing a trembling hand to his abdomen he looked down the length of his body.
*****NEW TAG NEW TRIGGER***
Abortion and abortion discussion ahead
So? What do you think?
(It's all plotted out now, but it's always great to hear your thoughts :) )
Hello Darlings! <3
Sorry it took me so long to update.. hope you're still here!
Thank you so much for all your comments and support :*
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Since he found out, Q was varying between being overly cautious of his health and not caring at all. It was hard to maneuver himself out of drinking his trademark Earl Grey tea, the nuesca catching up to him every other day at random moments. Thankfully, this time his morning sickness was relatively not bothersome compared to what he went through with Emily. Though Earl Grey still made him gag.
He strived to make his own ‘tea’ which actually was hot water with a dash of beet root and soda concoction he came up with so his drink had the proper color if not smell. Q couldn’t stand the smell of bergamot either…
Five days. Five days since he made the test and his world tumbled down yet again.
On day two he closed himself in his office and cried for two hours straight feeling scared and overwhelmed.
It was just too much. Too much was going on in his private life recently. Work he could deal with, it went better or worse and sometimes utterly tits up, but his private life? Q could feel himself slowly breaking.
He wanted it all to stop.
And one of the ways would be to go to the clinic and take the pill without telling anyone.
Done and over with.
Just one more lie by omission, just one more thing he could and would never tell anyone. Just one more thing he’d force himself to forget until it’ll be wiped from him memory.
Only that never worked. Not really.
He loved James, he loved the children that man gave him. And a part of him already loved the one he was carrying now.
But there was no way he could do a pregnancy and birth on his own, no way he could deal with all that and already having two kids, and later, three, and caring for all of them on his own. And do his job. Which he loved and was damn good on. People depended on him, the Country depended on him. He couldn’t let any of them down. Not them, not Jacques nor Emily. He had to be a good parent to them all.
James never stayed for long, could never stay still in one place. And it was fine, he loved him exactly how he was. He never made himself believe, maybe even hope it’ll change.
Always going away, always being gone for a long while, always coming back, but not to stay.
So, he thought, this little life growing in him would have to become another sacrifice on the altar of responsibility to what he already had in life.
He tried to stop himself, but his hand did often wander down to cup over his still flat stomach.
Milliseconds at a time, all night long the other moments.
But there was nothing to be done, maybe in a way it was saying goodbye, saying how sorry he was.
That damn screw didn’t want to come loose whatever he tried.
Cursing, Q let the whole mechanism of a compact catapult fall to the table. Damn it all to hell, he was too tired to deal with it now. He’ll ask one of the minions tomorrow to deal with it.
Hands running through his hair, he walked past what was lovingly called the radio station.
There was some static coming through on one of the channels, one LED light starting to blink and emit the signal of an incoming call and only then Q did realise his bracelet was pumping madly, Bond obviously in exertion.
Switching couple buttons he connected the call.
“Q!” suddenly the beloved voice came through and Q’s heart beat faster. “I know there's nothing like an extraction team anywhere in hundreds miles radius, but I need some assistance!”
“Status, 007.” he asked, moving swiftly to his work station.
“I've got the data, they're not happy about it. Five men in pursuit.” There was a sound of bullets being fired before James’ voice came again “three men in pursuit. If there's anything like timetables for trains from… ugh, wherever I’m heading towards now, I'd love to know!”
“On it, 007.”
Despite his foul mood just moments ago, a smile stretched Q's lips as his finger's flew over the keyboard organising his husband’s return.
The day Bond was supposed to be back he made sure the children could stay with Gareth and Bill so they had peace and quiet to talk just after the agent arrived. He reluctantly without much choice timewise, decided to wait, to have this talk before he made any appointments… James accused him too many times of not treating them as a unit, as a family. They were both in it together, for the long run.
But Q was also sure that if he let it steam, Bond would for sure notice something was bothering him and confront him in the least opportune moment about it.
So Q wanted to do it in his own place and time.
He set up dinner, as sometimes he was wont to do when his husband got back from missions - nothing fancy, nothing overly romantic, just a meal for two.
He was forever thankful they didn't have a set custom for when James got back from missions. Sometimes they spent an evening together, just lazing about, the two of them alone and later went to pick up their son, sometimes Q was waiting with Jaques with freshly baked cookies, sometimes Bond came to an empty apartment, Q at work, Jacques with the Tanners.
So this set up he had today wouldn't, thankfully, seem suspicious at all.
There was noise by the front doors and Q went to stand by the entrance to the corridor, smiling as the doors opened up and James walked in.
Feeling his throat tighten a bit, Q didn’t wait for James to undress. Striding to the blond in couple fast steps, he wrapped his husband in a tight hug breathing in the stale smell of sweat and pines and gunpowder. It should make his nose crinkle, but all that just meant he had James back with him. The lack of sour tang of blood making something unclench in his stomach - safe and sound and not hurt then.
“Hello to you too, darling.” was murmured against his ear as James’ arms came up to wind around his body too, enveloping him in warmth and security.
Q couldn’t say a word. He felt overwhelmed and suddenly frantic. He was holding himself together when James was away, he had to be strong again and survive on his own, but now with James back he let himself be weak, needy, craving love and closeness and attention.
“I missed you so much…” Q finally managed to whisper out, eyes screwed close, burning with unshed tears.
James’ arms squeezed him tightly for a second, his nose nuzzled into his hair and a kiss was pressed onto his head.
“I missed you, too. Love you.”
All thoughts of serious conversations and pregnancies flew out of Q’s mind as he pulled back a little so he could find James’ lips with his own.
He clawed at James cheeks, tugging on the silly big ears as he devoured his husband mouth hungrily. James didn’t remain passive long, his big palm holding the back of Q’s head, fingers holding onto Q’s wild mane of hair.
“Kids?” James just managed between kisses.
“Tanner’s.” Q whispered back, moving his hands lower and frantically undoing James’ tie and starting in on the shirt buttons, pushing the material off the wide shoulders along with the blond’s coat. “I need you, God I need you James.”
“Need you too. Always.” Not wasting a second longer, James’ fingers were also on Q’s clothes, tugging and undressing as he guided them towards the bedroom.
They were both laughing as they parted just enough to tug off their socks, mouths still connected, still kissing.
First to completely undress, James pushed Q onto the bed, tugging the boffin’s trousers and pants the rest of the way off.
Q lifted up on his elbows to look as James crawled up the length of his body till they could kiss again, their mouth pressing against each other is sweet abandon. Oh how he missed it, James’ kisses, his weight over him.
Q spread his legs, let James slide in between so their hard cocks could rub together.
He didn’t really pay much attention to what James was doing as long as the man’s hands were on him, his mouth against his. There was something that should have disturbed him when James reached to the side in search of lube and condoms.
Something should make him worried and anxious as James rummaged blindly in the bedside drawer, pulling things out at random, throwing them out when the shape didn’t match the items the blond was looking for.
Never mind. He’ll cleanup later.
Singing to himself under his nose, Q went about heating up the food and loading two full dishes.
It was so good to have James back, to have James make sweet sweet love to him. Q snorted under his nose. No, he couldn’t call the desperate, lustful tumble making love exactly, it was fast and hard and exactly what they both needed though. James’ teeth and lips leaving marks all over his body as Q tried to do exactly that too in return.
Mark, possess… stake their ownerships of eachother again.
He felt achy in all the right places, he felt loved and cherished and had hickeys up and down his neck. Like fucking teenagers. Having James back was such a joy.
With a spring in his step he walked back towards the bedroom, smiling, he put an extra swing into his hips.
And he stopped short seeing James holding up a blue box in his hands.
The box Q berated himself time and time again for buying, intending to throw it out before it would be found. But it was too late now.
“James, don't.” he said desperately, putting the plates quickly on the nearby chest of drawers before taking a step towards his husband, movement faltering the moment the man lifted the cover off the box.
Q felt his heart sink, cold flooding his belly.
He bought the little infant shoes when he went shopping for baby stuff for Emily and Jacques. He was browsing through shampoos, powders, nappies, clothes… and then there they were. Little blue boots. In the exact shade of James’ eyes with tiny snowflakes and snowcats embroidered on them. He just had to have them.
Later, rationality, he knew he shouldn't have bought them, as there would be no one to wear them… and keeping them, for later, when, if, they planned another one just would be too painful.
But he kept them. Just for a day. Then another. Promising himself he'd throw them away before James came back. But he forgot. And he kept them in the bedside drawer...
He felt like throwing up, watching his husband's face as he lifted the shoes from the box, face shocked and eyes wide open, and before the man's face could break into joy, Q felt his mouth move.
“I'm not keeping it.”
James looked up at him, not understanding.
“You're not… keeping it? What…?” and then the shock passed, understanding settled as James’ expression shuttered into a cold mask. “Oh.”
“I'm so sorry.” Q said miserably. “It's. Just, ah, we're not ready for a third. I'm not ready for a third.”
“You want to terminate.” it wasn't a question but still Q felt the need to answer.
“Yes.” Then he flinched, mind stumbling, faltering “I don't know.”
James turned away swiftly, baby shoes crunched in a tightly clenched fist.
Tears sprung to Q's eyes, damning himself yet again for forgetting to throw out the boots, for letting James see, imagine… He never saw his husband so angry, so hurt.
“You chose the cruelest way to tell me about it.” The man murmured, face still firmly turned towards the window, back stiff and shoulders tense. “Really, Quinn? Why buy and keep baby shoes, on display for me to find, when you want to have an abo-”
“I'm sorry! I never planned for you to find the shoes! I bought them on a whim! I went shopping and then I saw them and I-I just wasn't thinking! I wanted to throw them out before you came back. I forgot… I forgot! I wanted to sit you down, explain. Something! I-This, I never meant for this to happen.” He broke down in tears, voice trembling. “I never meant for any of this to happen…”
He felt weak, head spinning.
Walking couple steps towards the bed he sat down heavily, knees jumping nervously as he wrapped his arms around himself feeling cold and miserable.
“You never planned for Jacques, and yet, you wanted to keep him, desperately so, even when it was such a struggle. What about Emily? You didn't want her either?”
“I did! She was a surprise too, but I wanted her! I was scared, but so, so happy to be pregnant the second time-”
“Then what the bloody hell is wrong with this one that you want to abort it!?” Bond finally blew up, turning towards him.
“Jacques will go to kindergarten soon, Emily is not yet ready for nursery school, and, and you were gone… you’re alway gone! And you can’t even imagine how hard it is to be a single parent with two children! And thank God for the Tanners or I don't know what we'd do! We're not ready for a third! I'm not ready for a third!” He repeated, trying to explain himself the best he could, tears streaming down his face. He felt weary and defeated, so regretful. “I’m sorry I told you… “
“What? Sorry you told me?” Bond walked up to him with quick strides, all muscles tense and his pose mildly threatening as he loomed over Q’s shrunken form. “You'd just go and have an abortion without telling me?”
“Yes, I planned to.” Q admitted bitterly.
Bond fell quiet.
“Then I'm sorry that you indeed told me when you already made up your mind.”
Q watched helplessly as his husband gathered up the rest of his clothes and hastily put them on, moves angry and jerky. Watched, from behind a curtain of tears as his lover walked out to the living room, clothes rustling as he dressed. The front doors opened and then were slammed shut, making Q jump and shudder.
He was left all alone. Again.
When Q felt he could stand up without falling over or feeling too nauseous, he went to the doors on unsteady feet. Checking the lock and making sure the doors were closed, Q leaned his forehead on the cool metal. It felt good against the heated, swollen from crying skin of his face. He blinked couple of times, breathing deeply…
... only to swallow hard a second later.
There, in the corner by the door laid the little shoes, slightly crumpled, discarded.
He choked up on a sob.
Picking up the boots he cradled them against his chest and shuffled towards the main bedroom.
Hours later he woke with a start.
Lifting his head that felt heavy like a ton of bricks and stuffed with cotton at the same time - he always felt plain awful after crying, he tried to look around. He didn't have his glasses on, but after so many years, he couldn't mistake the silhouette by the window for anyone else save his husband.
Seeing him woken up, James moved closer, sitting on the bed besides him, carding fingers through his dark stands.
“I'm sorry Quinn, I shouldn't have spoken so harshly. You're right, we already have two amazing kids, it's enough.”
Q squeezed his eyes close, blocking out his Husband.
“It's your body Quinn, your decision. I can't-I won't force you to have this baby. What you said before… you're right. We have our hands full with Jacques and Emily, and yes I… haven't been much around lately to give you the support you need and deserve. Two is enough.”
Eyes still firmly closed he listened to Bond breath, not replying, not moving a muscle.
He was so, so tired.
Just to make clear, I do not support nor disapprove of abortion. Everyone should be able to choose, decide for themselves. It's such a personal, complicated matter...