Fandom: North of 60/Earth Angels
Category/Rated: NC17 Slash
Year/Length: 2001/~16,313 words
Pairing: Lloyd Hillard/Maximillian, and a surprise appearance by an old favorite...
Disclaimer: We don't own them; we just get to take them for walkies. They hate us.
Warning: This is not a nice story. Max is never pleasant, and Lloyd Hillard had his own set of faults as we recall. There is non consensual sex and some rather pleasant lobster thermidor in here.
Author's Notes: Lloyd was a really bad boy, and we thought we'd check him out to see what made him tick. We were rather surprised.
The men walked through the packed snow towards their helicopter, each one aware of the hostile eyes on them as they went. Lt. Lloyd Hillard concentrated on walking slowly. It wouldn't do to let the peasants see that he was scared shitless. He sauntered, although inside, his mind was screaming, run!
Almost there. The helicopter loomed, a black shape against the dazzling whiteness of sunlit snow, and he shivered inside his heavy-duty flying suit.
Another ten steps, Lloyd, baby... nine...
A shot rang out, and Lloyd felt a blow that pitched him forward to lie on packed ice, his face pressed against the cold, unforgiving surface.
"He shot me. The little fucker shot me."
He heard his own words echo strangely, and then, a buzzing darkness rose up to envelop him.
When he opened his eyes again, he was sitting on a hard, plastic chair in what looked very much like a doctor's waiting room. Elderly copies of McLeans and Time were stacked messily on a small, square coffee table. He looked down at himself. His flying suit was stiff with blood, but he didn't seem to have been injured. Frowning, he touched the dark stain and wondered just what had happened. He didn't hear the door open, so when someone sat down next to him it made him jump.
"Easy there, Tiger," a soft, soothing voice said as an arm slid possessively around Lloyd's shoulders. "I expected a little more awareness of your surroundings considering you're a military man. Aren't you trained for that sort of thing?" A throaty chuckle and the hand on his shoulder slowly moved to caress the back of his neck. "You know, watching out for the enemy at all times, never letting your guard down... All the things that make men into fighting machines."
"What the fuck?" Lloyd jumped, backing away from the possessive caress. His body connected with the wall, and he found himself standing, pressed against it, afraid for no apparent reason. Panting as though he had run a race, he stood immobile, suddenly realizing as he raised his eyes, that the man who had spoken was almost his mirror image. "Who the hell are you?"
"My name is Max, Lloyd," he smiled, raising a hand to halt the inevitable question. "How do I know you? That's easy. I make it my business to know everyone who comes around here, especially when they're as good-looking as you are." The smile widened, revealing teeth that looked at predatory as they did sexy. "And you're a *very* good-looking man, Lloyd - arrogant, too." He stepped closer, forcing the other man to press himself even harder against the wall. "That's exactly how I like them."
"You're messing with me." Lloyd didn't know why he suddenly felt fear melt icily down his spine to pool in his groin, but it was there, and his voice was high, childlike as he spoke. Coughing to clear it, he tried again. "Quit messing with me. I like girls; I'm not queer." He spat to one side, a nicely arrogant statement calculated to make his strange companion back off. It didn't seem to work, and Lloyd put a hand out to push the disturbing other man away.
Max grabbed his hand and smiled crookedly as he gave him a long, amused look. "I don't remember saying anything about you being queer, Lloyd. You really do need to learn to relax. Hey, I know," he said cheerily and immediately backing off. "Why don't we go find some local girls to have a good time with? You like 'em young, right?"
"Hey, what is this?" The flood of anger that Lloyd felt came almost as a relief. Now he had a handle on the weird things that had happened. "You're trying to entrap me, aren't you? Fucking Canadian cop assholes. I don't see what all the big fuss was. I just felt like partying. That kid didn't have to come play if she didn't want to. She seemed to like it fine when I went down on her anyway." He pushed himself away from the wall and slid out from round Max. "So cut the crap and just let me get back to the base with the guys. I'm gonna have to do some serious groveling there anyway, so why don't you let me go to hell my own way?"
"You know," Max smirked, holding his finger to his top lip as if giving Lloyd's words a good deal of thought, "it's pretty interesting you should say that. I happen to know that you are going to hell your own way. I'm just here to see that you get there in one piece. If there's anything I hate, it's damaged goods."
"I don't know what you're talking about, but you're full of shit. Get out of my way, man. I'm outta here." Lloyd growled and snatched his hand away from contact with Max. "Just go plague someone that likes it, okay?"
With a barely perceptible flick of his wrist, Max stopped Lloyd in his tracks by sending the chair sliding in front of him to block his path. Another slight movement and Lloyd was sitting down with a grunt.
"I think we got off on the wrong foot," Max smiled amiably and moved to crouch in front of Lloyd, his eyes taking in the flustered, angry expression with obvious delight. "I'm on your side, Lloyd. Why don't you tell me how those brain-dead peasants railroaded you?"
"Who are you working for, man? You're weirding me out." Lloyd's face was red, and his entire body was twitching nervously. "We just wanted to have a little fun; that's all. We wanted to have a drink, and party. That kid never told me she wasn't old enough. It's not fair to put the blame on me."
He ventured a look at Max, and saw a look of concern on the other man's features. "You know how it is, man? Those chicks look like they're seventeen right from the cradle."
"Tell me about it," Max said with a sigh and sympathetic shake of his head. "Do you have any idea the number of angry fathers who've wanted to take a shot at me? Is it really our faults that girls like that are drawn to us? No one told me I'd have to check ID before fucking them." His smile reappeared and he winked knowingly. "Am I right?"
"Yeah," growled Lloyd, moodily. "Not that I make a habit of fucking children, but that little girl was just asking for it. You know? She sat in my lap, she wriggled that ass of hers against me until I was just about coming in my pants." He shrugged, appealing to the better nature that he imagined Max might have. "What's a guy to do? I didn't want to have blue balls all night because of a little Indian piece of ass. You know how that is, don't you?"
Max casually rested a hand on Lloyd's leg, his eyes never letting the other man's gaze waver. "I certainly do. My friend's niece spent one evening being a fucking tease, so by the time we were finally alone together, I had to have her, you know? The shit really hit the fan when her uncle found out, but she looked a hell of a lot older than thirteen and he'd never really told me how old she was. How was I supposed to know?" His hand discreetly crept further up Lloyd's thigh. "You know, though, when they act like that, they're actually asking us to give them what they want." A dark flash filled his eyes for a split second and his smile turned predatory. "And there's nothing quite like virgin pussy, is there?"
"Nothing!" Lloyd had relaxed now, seeming to think that he had nothing to fear from Max. "Man, she was hot. She squealed a little when I stuffed her, but like I said, when I went down on her she really got off. Man, I'm getting hard just thinking about it." He rubbed at his groin, the arousal evident even through his flying suit.
"I can see that," Max said throatily, his fingers creeping ever closer to his target. "I'd really hate for you to be uncomfortable while we keep talking about how good it feels to have sweet, innocent bodies writhing underneath us." Now his hand was covering Lloyd's, and he gently moved it out of the way so he could touch the burgeoning erection himself. "Don't you love it when they fight you just a little? Like they don't want it when you know they do?"
"Yeah, man. They play all those pussy games, and I don't have any patience with that." Lloyd leant forward against Max's hand as though he hadn't really noticed it, and then suddenly looked down at his own crotch. "Hey, what the fuck are you doing? I told you, I don't do that locker room stuff. I'm a man, not a fucking faggot. Get your hands off my dick."
The smile vanished and Max's hand pulled back as if he'd been burned. With an icy glare he stood up and pointed at the door. "Feel free to get up and go. Sorry if I offended you." He chuckled ruefully. "I know how sensitive and moral you are, Lloyd. Too bad, really," he sighed, looking at his nails. "On the other side of that door is a kind of judgment you aren't ready for. I was just trying to save you from it."
There was a moment of measuring, and then Lloyd seemed to straighten. "Yeah, well, I think you're full of shit. Now, if you wouldn't mind showing me where the helicopter is, the guys are going to be mad that I've held them up." He turned to Max and extended his hand. "Good talking to you, Mr... er... Max. You'd be okay if you didn't go in for all that touchy-feely faggot shit."
Pivoting smoothly, Lloyd made for the door, hand out to open it, and flung it wide. Outside the door was an army of emaciated women, all with blood drooling from their mouths, knives and other weapons glinting from taloned hands. As they saw Lloyd, they gave a screech of triumph, and began to run for the door.
"Holy fucking Jesus!" yelled Lloyd, slamming the door shut and leaning against it, body taut with terror.
Max winced a little and took a seat in the abandoned chair. "Fucking? Yes. Jesus?" He tsked and shook his head. "'Fraid not. Now," he crossed his legs and leaned back, clasping his hands behind his head, "would you like to give me another chance before you bolt for the door? Trust me; the guys aren't really going to expect you to show."
"I don't understand. What's going on? Who are those women, and why won't the guys be expecting me? What are you doing here and why can't I just go?" His voice had become shrill as his questions had grown more extensive. It was suddenly apparent that Lloyd Hillard was himself little more than a boy as he stood against the door, trembling with fear. "Tell me what's happening, please?" he whispered.
Max's face softened and he stood to cross over to Lloyd. Placing a hand on his shoulder, Max caught his eye and held the frightened gaze for a few beats before speaking.
"I will tell you if you promise to trust me," he said, his voice pure honey as he gently squeezed Lloyd's shoulder. "I'll answer all your questions. All you have to do is come with me of your own free will."
"Where are we going?" Lloyd had lurched forward slightly, but seemed afraid to take a step away from the door. "What's going to stop them from coming in here?" He moved closer to Max as though acknowledging the fact that the other man could protect him. "They were... God, they were the most frightening thing I've ever seen in my life. I've had nightmares about things like that."
"I know," Max soothed, stroking Lloyd's hair as he led him towards a back door that seemed to appear out of thin air. "It'll be all right, Lloyd. I have a place near here. We'll get you a nice stiff drink and a nice, comfortable place for you to rest. You can tell me all about your nightmares. I promise those nasty things won't harm you as long as you stay with me."
Nodding, limp, Lloyd went docilely with the man who seemed to be offering him the easy way out of his problems. "I wish you'd tell me what's going on, please?" He cast a nervous glance over his shoulder as the two of them passed through the door and into a corridor. "Please," he said again as the man called Max led him to an elevator and thumbed the button that said penthouse. There hadn't been a building that was over three storeys high anywhere near that small town in northern Canada, he knew that.
"I will as soon as you're settled," Max said, still petting and soothing Lloyd as the elevator made its way to his floor. When the doors opened, he stepped out and pulled his guest along with him. "What do you feel like drinking?" he asked amiably, waving his hands and instantly changing his clothes from his black shirt and trousers to a black silk robe. Frowning, he studied Lloyd for a few moments then nodded at him. In an instant, Lloyd was no longer wearing the stained flying suit but was now clad in a dark green silk robe of his own. "Much better."
Lloyd had seemed to recover his equilibrium, but as his clothing changed he scrambled back from Max, pressing himself against the door once more, the sweat of panic standing out on his forehead in visible beads. "You... You're weird. Who are you? How did you do that?" He'd put a chair between himself and Max, and now he watched, white faced, as Max began to approach him again.
"I guess the time has come to level with you, Lloyd, my man." Max smiled as he straddled the chair and looked up at the confused young man. "You've got two choices: humor me and stay out of trouble, or piss me off and say hello to those lovely ladies out there." A quick nod and soon screeching and thumping could be heard on the other side of the door as if an angry mob were trying to gain entry.
Max folded his hands on the back of the chair and rested his chin on them. "Now, are you going to calm down and accept my hospitality? I'd hate to see you get ripped apart considering how much we have in common."
"No, please?" Lloyd seemed near to tears now. "Just tell me what's happening? I don't know what's going on." He looked at the upturned face of the man that had led him here, and shivered at the mild expression that he saw. Nothing seemed to faze this man. Nothing seemed to deflect him. He wrapped his arms around himself and cowered, feeling the warm breath from Max's smiling mouth hot on his belly as he stood at bay. "What are you doing to me?"
"I'm not doing anything to you," Max shrugged then stood up, kicking the chair out of the way so he could close in on Lloyd, pressing himself closer to the reluctant man. "Trust me," he whispered, forcing Lloyd's arms open and smiling when he held them behind Lloyd's back, "you'll know when I'm doing something to you." He leaned in as if to kiss the other man, but instead chuckled and dipped his head to brush his lips against the smooth skin of his neck. "I must admit that your fear is really, really intoxicating," he breathed against the pulse point beneath his lips. He snickered again and raised his head. "You want that drink now?"
A drink! That would be the answer. He was drunk - or no, he couldn't be drunk. He was sick. He'd caught the stomach flu that had landed them in that pissant little community, and he was hallucinating. The bottom line was plain. This was all in his imagination.
He pushed Max back, feeling strangely bereft that the warmth of his body was gone. "This isn't real. You're not real. That fucking little kid shot me, didn't he? I'm dreaming this. When I wake up it will all be normal again."
"Oh, okay," Max said, completely reasonable as he turned and headed for a wet bar that had materialized along with a tasteful yet modestly furnished living room. "Please, Lloyd, have a seat," he indicated a large overstuffed black leather couch. "Since this is your dream, tell me what you would like to drink. Name it and I'll make it appear." He laughed heartily and wrinkled his nose at Lloyd. "Aren't dreams cool?"
"I guess," said Lloyd, dubiously. "I'm not really enjoying this one." He thought for a minute. What would he drink? Not scotch, please. He was in enough trouble because of that stuff. "Gimme a screwdriver, please," he said. "Guess I need the vitamin C or something if I've been shot." As Max began to measure liquid into a cocktail shaker, he looked around. "So are you going to tell me what's going on, or do I have to keep on guessing?"
"I thought you had it figured out," Max shrugged, walking over to the couch with their drinks. "You were shot, now you're dreaming." He handed Lloyd a glass then took a sip as he sat down next to him. "Frankly, it's a little disappointing that you're not enjoying it. Change it if you don't like it."
"How do I change it? I don't understand." Lloyd looked defenseless as he sat in his robe, the cocktail untouched in his hand. "I'm sure it could be better if I could only find out how." He closed his eyes, concentrating hard, and then sitting back, a look of almost comic dismay on his face. "It's no good. I tried to think myself back to the guys and the helicopter, but it didn't work." A sudden thought struck him. "I am going to be okay, aren't I?"
"Why do you want to go back to the guys so badly?" Max asked, taking another sip as he watched Lloyd carefully. "Wouldn't you rather be on permanent leave, free to do as you please for as long as you please?"
"Hell, no!" Lloyd took a sip of his own drink, watching Max over the rim of his glass, rather as if he were a poisonous snake that might strike without warning. "I love to fly. I love to be with my buds too. We have a good time wherever we go." He laughed, looking younger than ever in his boyish enthusiasm. "They're my buddies. I can't let them down," he said softly.
"They're going to miss you," Max murmured. "They'll never really understand why you're gone, but they will miss you very much. You had some good friends there, Lloyd."
"What do you mean, 'had'?" Lloyd was shrill again. "Why are you saying this? I don't understand. Let me go back to them." His eyes were over-shiny with unshed tears, and he was trembling now, so badly that his drink slopped over the edge of the glass and onto his hand. "I want to go home," he whispered, half to himself.
"Careful, Lloyd," Max said, taking the glass from him, "you're about to melt my icy heart with all that emotion." Putting their drinks down, Max shifted on the couch so he was facing his guest. "I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you don't get to go home. You remember that shot? The one that ruined your adorable flight suit?" He grinned and squeezed Lloyd's knee. "It was dead on. Forgive the expression," he added with mock solemnity.
"You're telling me I'm dead?" Lloyd didn't seem to notice the hand on his knee. His face was ashen; his body shaking like a leaf as he began to make sense of the situation. He fell silent, his face twisted with sorrow, and some more painful emotion. "I can't be dead... It's not possible." He raised his eyes to Max's at last. "If I'm dead, who are you?"
"If you play your cards right, your new best friend. If not," Max's smile widened, "your worst nightmare." He stood up suddenly and slipped off the robe to reveal a modest pair of swim trunks. "Let's go for a swim, brand new pal o'mine." When he nodded in the direction of the hallway, the walls parted and the floor began to shimmer until a large pool appeared, the water so blue it looked like any perfect tropical sea. "You'll feel better after you take a dip."
"Yeah." Lloyd didn't sound convinced, but he rose to his feet anyway, dropping his own robe and standing, uncertain, clad in trunks of his own. "Guess it's a little different from the frozen north at that." As Max moved in the direction of the pool, Lloyd followed him uncertainly, arriving at the edge and standing, looking at it with eyes as round as pennies. "Boy, that Yukon is proof that hell does freeze over, I'm telling you."
"Hey, I know what you mean. I hate it here when winter hits," Max laughed. "It doesn't exactly get into Yukon territory, but it gets cold enough to make me miss the fires of home." With a wink, he dove into the water, swimming underwater with long, easy strokes and surfacing in the middle of the pool. "For the record, it never freezes in Hell," he shouted as he waved for Lloyd to join him. "Sometimes you need a sweater when the boss man is trying to be funny, but for the most part, it's golden."
"You... you're a devil?" Lloyd was white again, suddenly no doubt thinking that Lynx River might be preferable after all. "That means that I'm evil, and now I have to go to hell, right?"
"You don't have to do anything," Max said, doing the backstroke as he hummed to himself. "Free will. Prove yourself. End up where you deserve to be. Blah, blah, blah..." He ducked under the water again and, sleek as a seal, cut through the water to quickly resurface by the edge where Lloyd was still standing. "I'm only here to see that the journey is an interesting one. I'm not exactly a devil." He smiled up at him as a lie began to form in his mind. "I'm a free agent."
"So what am I doing here?" Lloyd tentatively stuck a toe in the water, as though afraid that it might burn him. "What do I have to do? I don't want to die yet. I wasn't ready." He sat down and slowly got into the water, still huddling at the edge, by the surround. "Tell me what I have to do."
The twinkle in Max's eye was hard to miss and he wasted no time in pressing himself as close to Lloyd as he could. "You have to prove to me that you are worthy of salvation, Lieutenant Hillard." His lips curled into a wicked smile as they brushed against Lloyd's ear. "You have to convince me that you're not a heartless bastard, that you're capable of putting others ahead of yourself. If you can do that, I'll see to it that you end up where you should."
"Thank you." For a moment, Lloyd's panic seemed to recede, and his body relaxed under the caress of the warm water. For a moment, it seemed almost as if he swayed towards Max, but then suddenly he leaned into the water and pushed away from the side of the pool, swimming furiously up and down as the water churned in his wake.
Max watched with obvious amusement as Lloyd swam back and forth, willing to allow him to expend some energy and rid himself of some of the frustration he had to be feeling. When he felt Lloyd had had enough, Max swam out to meet him in the middle of the pool, stopping him mid stroke.
"It's going to be okay, Lloyd," Max said as earnestly as he could. "It's normal to feel scared and confused when something like this happens. That's why I was sent to you. That's why I look like you. It's to make it a little easier if you see a familiar face." His smile was gentle as he touched Lloyd's arm, but he was fighting to suppress a snicker at the bullshit he was slinging. "I'm sorry if I made you nervous before. I'm usually better at this, but for the first time..." Blushing on cue, he averted his eyes. "We should see about getting you something to eat. Contrary to popular belief, one can eat in the afterlife."
"You're putting me on, right?" Lloyd had flushed a delicate pink as Max had spoken, and now he frowned. "What do dead people eat? Lady fingers? Corpse cakes? What?" He smiled a little wryly. "Okay, that wasn't funny, was it?" He made his way to the edge of the pool and hoisted himself onto the side, then sat looking down at Max and kicking his heels. "Okay, Clarence, what you got for dinner?"
Laughing, Max joined Lloyd on the edge of the pool. "I should warn you that not only do I have to earn my wings, but I have to earn my halo, too, so you'd better make this easy for me." He gave Lloyd's shoulder a good-natured punch. "Dinner will be whatever you like. You're the guest of honor, so I have to provide you with whatever you would like before we get down to business. Company policy."
"The condemned man ate a hearty meal, huh?" Lloyd's attempt at joviality seemed to fall apart in mid sentence, and all of a sudden, his shoulders began to shake. Deep, wracking sobs suddenly shook him as he crumpled.
Max sprung into action, sliding an arm around Lloyd's shoulders and pulling him close. "It's all right," he whispered, his voice soothing as he gently stroked Lloyd's back and hugging him close. "You're going to be all right. You're not condemned, Lloyd. You have a new chance at a different kind of life, that's all. Someone chose to take your other life away, but that doesn't mean you can't find pleasure in this one." As he spoke, his hands began moving with more boldness until he was slowly caressing the wet skin, the comforting touches becoming sensual as he continued murmuring kind words to the sobbing man.
Lloyd's crying was gusty, and now that the dam had broken, it was as though he were a small child. He leant on Max, his head resting on the damp shoulder as Max played with the hair at the back of his neck. "I didn't mean it," he sobbed. "I wouldn't have done it if I'd known she was only thirteen. She was the one that wanted to..." His hands clutched at Max, holding him tightly enough to cause bruises as he pressed desperately against him, soaking up the comfort that Max was giving.
"I know," Max whispered, "I know... You didn't do anything wrong, and you didn't deserve what happened to you." He pressed his lips to the dark, wet hair then carefully tilted Lloyd's head up. "You can't help wanting the things you do," he said, voice husky and intimate as he brushed a lock of hair from Lloyd's forehead. "There are so many things I want, but I can't have them because I'm not allowed. It doesn't mean I think it's wrong to want them, though." With a sigh he tenderly wiped the tears from Lloyd's face, stroking his fingers over the hint of stubble. "All the things I said before - about doing all those bad things - I...I was lying. I was trying to gain your trust, but... I am on your side, Lloyd. I'd like for you to believe that and to trust me. Do you? Do you trust me?"
"I... I guess I have to," sniffed Lloyd, somewhat childishly. "What do I have to do to get out of this mess?" He hadn't moved back, hadn't flinched at the tender caresses that Max was offering, indeed, he seemed to relax under the intimate touches.
"I'm being a baby." He suddenly shook himself, pushing back from the embrace and trying to control his outburst. "Sorry to act like an idiot. I don't usually do this..." Pausing and swallowing thickly, he looked at Max through thick, wet lashes that hung heavily over eyes that brimmed with misery. "So what can I get to eat? You got steak?"
"We have anything you like," Max smiled sweetly, getting to his feet and pulling Lloyd up with him. "What would you like with your steak?" he asked as they walked into what had been the living room but was now an ornately decorated dining room. On the large mahogany table, a banquet of the finest food the world had to offer had appeared. "If this is too much, I can tone it down," Max said, turning to Lloyd and brushing some invisible lint off the suit Lloyd was now wearing. "I just want everything to be perfect for you."
"My God!" breathed Lloyd, fervently. "You're pulling out all the stops, aren't you? I don't even know what half this stuff is. I'm a meat and potatoes sort of guy, usually, but I'd like to try some of this shit. I've never even seen one of those things." He indicated a fruit that sat in a basket on the table, it's brown, leathery skin appearing warty and misshapen. "What the fuck is that thing? Do you eat it or throw it at your enemies?"
"I guess you could do both," Max laughed, genuinely delighted at the reaction his efforts had received. "That is a fruit. Durian, to be exact. It's very delicious but the odor is something you might not like." He picked one up. "Would you like to try it?"
Bending to sniff the fruit that Max was holding, Lloyd suddenly sprang back. "Fuck! That's disgusting." He made a face, his nose wrinkling as he caught a whiff of the durian. "I believe I'll pass on it. I may be dead, but that smells like it died a long time ago." He surveyed the table. "Could I get a little of that, please?" he said, indicating a lobster thermidor in a silver chafing dish. "That looks more my speed."
"Excellent choice," Max said with an approving nod, indicating which chair Lloyd should sit in as a dish appeared in front of him. "What else would you like?" he asked, taking a seat next to him and staring as if he were completely taken with him. "You can think about it and have it, you know. You should try it. You might be surprised at how easy it is."
"I don't know what to have. What should I want?" Lloyd peeped sideways through his lashes at Max, and then lowered his eyes. "You want to tell me the things I can have?" He took a forkful of the rich food and placed it in his mouth, enjoying the taste. "That's wonderful," he said. "Are you sure that I won't get a huge bill for it?"
"I am absolutely positive. All of this is complimentary and to ensure that you are able to face the next stage with the right frame of mind." He reached for an empty wine glass and picked it up, sipping on the dark red liquid that had magically filled it. "There is nothing like a good glass of wine, don't you think?" he asked, offering it to Lloyd. "Do you like wine? I'd like to know the things you like, and I don't want to tell you what you can have. That's part of this whole thing. You are the one who has to decide what you want."
"Wine? Yeah, I guess," said Lloyd, doubtfully. "I don't mind wine." He took a sip of the wine in the glass that Max was holding, obviously expecting it to be durian flavored - or worse. His face magically cleared as the taste of the rich red liquid exploded against his palate.
"You might be a little effeminate, man, but you're one hell of a caterer." He chuckled, and for the first time it sounded as though he were relaxing. "So what else is good? Like I said, I don't know a lot about any of this shit."
"I'm a pate, brie, and cornichon kind of guy, myself," Max grinned, "but I'm not sure if you'd like that. Here," he stood up and reached for some roast lamb, "try this. You said you like meat." He held the morsel to Lloyd's lips. "This is sweet and tender and practically melts in your mouth. Don't worry about looking too effeminate if you like it."
"What's a cornichon," asked the pilot, accepting the meat from Max's fingers and absently licking them clean. "Say, that is good." He swallowed; opening for more as Max deftly snagged the tenderest slivers and held them to his lips. "Very good."
His voice had suddenly become husky, and it was obvious that he realized just how intimate the activity had become. He sat very still, as though attempting to get used to a concept he hadn't considered before today. "I'm straight, you know," he whispered, as though attempting to convince himself of that.
"I know you are," Max whispered, eyes never wavering as he continued to slip bits of meat into the willing mouth. "I shouldn't have made those advances on you before. I...I thought that maybe that was what you wanted, but you made it obvious it wasn't." Looking properly embarrassed, Max snatched his fingers away and wiped them on a serviette. "Sometimes I come on too strong, especially when I think I'm doing what people want. I've been warned about it, but I can't... I just really understand how it feels to want things you can't have."
"I don't understand," whispered Lloyd, his eyes wider than ever. "Are you telling me you want to... I can't even say it. Why would you want that?"
He shook his head and fumbled with his fork, spearing more lobster and raising it to his lips as he attempted to process the information that this disturbing man might be trying to seduce him. The two men sat in silence for a long moment, and then Lloyd laid down his fork and turned to face Max, a tight smile on his face. "I don't want to make you mad, or upset you, guy. You've been pretty good to me this past little while. I just don't... I don't know what you'd want." He flushed, and returned to his food as though burying his curiosity in it.
"I'm not mad or upset," Max said with a convincing tremor in his voice. "Sometimes I wonder why I have this job. I'd feel better if I could be on one side or the other, then I wouldn't have to worry about an eternity of damnation and torture if I give in to..." He shook his head as if trying to rid himself of terrible thoughts. "As for why I'd want...that," a nervous smile, "you have to know how attractive you are. That's what got you into this trouble, isn't it? You're so irresistible, young girls throw themselves at you and when you take what they're offering,*you're* the one who gets flack for it. Your kind of sex appeal must be a terrible burden." He lowered his head. "Especially when you have creatures like me noticing it."
"Hey," said Lloyd. "You're not a creature. You're as sexy as I am." He stopped short as he reflected on what he had said. "I mean..." The red tide rose up around his ears and he hung his head again. "I just meant to say that you... you're like me. You could even be me, how Ill be in a few years."
Picking up the wine goblet and taking a drink from it to cover his confusion, Lloyd sat, thoughts flickering across his face like leaves blown by a bitter wind. Finally, he put down the wine and faced Max again.
"I don't really know much about the guy stuff. What would you do to me?"
"I would...I would kiss you and I would... I'm sure you have a list of things you like done to you when you're being intimate, don't you?" Max smiled, making sure it wasn't too wicked as he leaned in. "Would it make it easier to think of a woman doing those things to you? Wait a minute," he pulled back with a start, "I shouldn't even be thinking about this stuff. You think about things and then you want them and then you get in trouble. I'm sorry, Lloyd," he said with a sigh, "but it'll just have to remain a mystery. I'm sure you'd prefer that, anyway."
"Yeah," agreed Lloyd, still red around the ears. "I just don't see how you can even think about doing that stuff. Don't you like to do girls?" He shuddered, theatrically. "I heard someone talking about the ways that guys do it. It sounds pretty damned disgusting. Don't you get diseases from doing that stuff? All that shit?" He pushed his dish away and sat back, leaning away from Max with his eyes wide. "I like to fuck, right enough, but I don't want anyone's cock stuck up my ass. Nobody's gonna shove their dick into me; I tell you."
He picked up his wine and drained the glass, the flush that had stained his skin slowly subsiding as he drank. Finally, he looked at Max once more. "You don't like that, do you?" he said, with a grin.
Max arched an eyebrow, trying hard not to seem too thrilled that it seemed he was going to get exactly what he'd been wanting. "I like everything; that's my problem."
Picking up a croissant, he began pulling pieces off and popping them into his mouth. "I used to be a pretty powerful guy with the man upstairs, if you know what I mean," he winked, the shy facade quickly fading, "but I started wanting more. Turns out that I had to do a one-eighty to get it, and by the time I'd finished having all the fun I could, I realized that I couldn't go back to where I'd started. Now," a bit of the demure persona returned, "I'm trying to make amends by seeing to lost souls like yours. Unfortunately, that means I can't partake in all the wonderful things I once did. If I do, I... That doesn't matter," he said with a shake of his head. "I know you'd never put me in a position to be damned for all time just because you might start to get a little interested."
Max narrowed his eyes as he brushed the crumbs from his fingers. "I can answer your questions, though. That shouldn't get anyone into trouble." He looked around then leaned in and whispered in Lloyd's ear. "Yes, I do like that, and, no, it's not disgusting at all. You'd be a very good top, you know. I'd love it if..." A frustrated grunt and he pulled away again. "I need to stop thinking about you that way, Lloyd. Now, if you have more questions, that's fine."
"You mean that you can't have sex? Will God damn you forever? Oh, I forgot; you're a devil aren't you?" Frowning, Lloyd reached for a dish of asparagus and picked a succulent spear, carrying it to his lips thoughtfully. "In that case, I don't see what his problem is. Aren't devils supposed to be able to do anything that's a sin?" Sucking the vinaigrette off the asparagus, Lloyd mouthed it absently as he thought things through. "Frankly, I don't think that's any way to run hell. If I were you, I'd make a case for doing it more and more, instead of less and less. After all, you're supposed to be bad, aren't you?"
He finished the spear and reached for another. "How do you mean, anyway, I'd make a good top? How would I do that?" Again, he sucked on the asparagus first, prior to opening his mouth and popping it inside. "Like I said, I don't know much about sex with a guy. Tell me the stuff you enjoy." "I'm... um..." Max's eyes focused on Lloyd's mouth each time he sucked a spear into his mouth, absently licking his lips as he tried to remember exactly what his plan had been. "I enjoy watching you do that," he finally said, nodding at the dish of asparagus. "The way you suck it clean before eating it. Your mouth is very sexy."
Clearing his throat, Max scooted his chair away from Lloyd. "And you shouldn't talk about Hell and being damned. You don't know anything about it. I know you humans; if you had a choice, you'd always pick heaven no matter what we might have to offer you." He sniffed and picked up his wine glass, having it turn into a brandy snifter as he raised it to his lips and swallowed the brown liquid in one gulp. "If I'm trying to get back into heaven, I cannot do anything I used to do." His eyes glimmered as he turned to Lloyd and fixed him with a curious look. "Are you trying to tempt me to return to my old ways, Lieutenant? Right now I'm thinking about how good it would feel if you fucked me, and that's no way to get back into His good graces."
"You want me to... I don't know if I could do that. I probably couldn't get it up for a guy." Lloyd was shuffling uneasily as he spoke, and turned his face away from the gently smiling Max. "I like girls best." He was coloring up again, the lines of his finely tailored suit marred by the evidence of a hard-on that belied the words that were falling from his mouth.
"I never said I wanted you to do anything," Max murmured, his eyes fixing on Lloyd's lap, "though it seems that you're thinking about it. It also seems you're not having a problem getting it up for me." He grinned and raised his eyes to Lloyd's face. "It's really too bad you can't have me."
"Why can't I have you?" blurted Lloyd, and then clapped a hand over his mouth, discomfited that he had said such a thing out loud. "That's just ridiculous, and I'm not getting it up for you anyway. That's just a reaction guys get when they talk dirty. Don't you get it popping up when you least expect it to?" He shifted uneasily in his seat and scratched himself ostentatiously. "It doesn't mean a thing."
"Of course, it doesn't," Max nodded, "and I won't even point out that our dirty talk had little to do with the girls you claim to like so much." Reaching his hand up, he wiped a stray spot of vinaigrette from the corner of Lloyd's mouth. "It's all right, though. Even if you did want me, you probably wouldn't be able to follow through."
"What are you trying to say?" Lloyd jerked his head back away from Max's gentle touch and half rose to his feet in indignation. "You think I'm one of those guys that come too fast and can't make it last?" Max hadn't moved, merely sitting looking at him as he ranted, with the same knowing expression that he found so mocking. "I'll have you know that people don't complain. I've got enough for anyone, and that includes you."
He sank back down into his seat, half ashamed of his blustering, but aware that it couldn't be called back. Reaching for his glass, which now appeared to contain an amber liqueur, he made a play of sipping at it while he recovered his composure.
"Maybe you're right," Max said with a shrug, "but it's all moot, anyway. I can't have you if I want to do the right thing, and you..." He smiled sweetly and reached for a fruit and custard tart, placing it in front of Lloyd then taking one for himself. "I hate to say it, but it doesn't matter what you want. You couldn't get me if you tried. We're not here for that, anyway. We're here to prove your worth."
"I... I don't want you." Lloyd licked his lips and cast a sidelong look at Max, now thoroughly confused as the words Max had said reverberated through his brain. "How do you mean, prove my worth? What do I have to do? Who will be judging my worth anyway? It's all so confusing."
"You're always being judged, Lloyd," Max said with a smirk. "From the minute you take your first breath to the time you find yourself in a place like this, everything is being watched. You weren't the greatest guy when you were alive, but you weren't a monster, either. Unfortunately, that means your final destination is a bit up in the air." He took a bite of his dessert. "I don't think it's a perfect system, if you ask me, and I'm this close to wanting to stay on the dark side, but..." Sighing, he sat back in his chair. "You know what? I really don't know what to do anymore. I'm just about ready to flip a coin and be done with it. I'm too old still to be sucking up to a couple of old fucks who can't settle their scores for themselves."
"There's always some asshole that wants to be in charge and doesn't have a clue," said Lloyd, with a snort. "I guess that's true here as well as in the Air Force." He watched Max as he relaxed back against the chair back with the sweet tart held delicately between his fingers. "You seem like a decent enough man to me - not a bit devilish if you don't mind me saying so. Maybe I can help you decide, and you can give me a clue about what it is I'm supposed to be doing to get things right. What do you say? Deal?"
Max studied him for a moment before slowly nodding his head. "Okay, deal. I guess I should tell you that it all comes down to free will. Basically, you get to make the choice about where you end up. It depends on who you are deep in your heart, and, really, you're the only one who knows for sure. I'm just here to add a bit of mystery and class to the whole thing. Personally, I'd rather just kick back and watch you guys do whatever you want while I have a beer and a hot dog." To illustrate his point, suddenly he was clad in a football jersey, blue jeans and tennis shoes. A can of beer materialized in his hand and he took a long drink. "You think it's possible for a henchman to burn out?"
"Possible, I suppose. It sounds a bit strange though, a demon, burning out." Lloyd was smiling a little now as he considered the concept his words evoked. "I must confess, you've been pretty good, fighting me off instead of tempting me. Not that I'd be interested, of course, but you've been straight with me. It almost makes me..." He stopped speaking again, his cheeks flushing as he spoke. Just fuck the old guys, man. Let's party. Those duds look comfortable. We could kick back and watch TV. You got football in the afterlife?"
Before Lloyd could say another word, the dining room had been transformed into a den complete with big screen television, dartboard, pool table and bar.
"Is this what you want?" Max asked with a pleased grin as Lloyd's clothes changed to match what he was wearing. "We can watch any football game you like. Call it fantasy football."
"Hell, I don't care. I'm a Rams fan, myself, but I'll watch any of them. Hey..." Making his way over to the pool table, Lloyd began to set the balls up to play. "You play pool, man? I love this game. Come on. Let's see if I lost my touch or not." As Max moved over to stand beside Lloyd, Lloyd surveyed Max from beneath thick lashes, and grinned. "You wanna play for something? I'll take you on."
Max laughed throatily and put a hand on Lloyd's back. "I'm not so sure you should make that offer to me, Lloyd. There are plenty of things I'd love to play for." He narrowed his eyes and leaned against the table. "How about a kiss? To play for, I mean."
"Well, okay," said Lloyd, with a grin. "I know you aren't gonna win, so it really doesn't matter! That's not what I want off you though. If I win, I want my life back. Is it a deal?" His smile was still present, but now it was a little strained, as though he were fighting to keep up front and centre.
"Hmm, that's an awful lot to ask for if all I'll get is one chintzy kiss." Max walked over to a rack of cues to select one, slowly fingering the end as he looked at Lloyd. "Since you're so sure you'll win, how about your life up against a blow job? If I win, I get to suck you off." Any pretense was gone as he stared intently at Lloyd.
"A blow job? You want to suck my dick?" Lloyd's eyes were wide, his voice expressing the incredulity he felt at the idea that another man would want to do such a thing. "My God, it's win-win for me then, isn't it? I mean to say, a blow job is a good thing, no matter who does it, don't you think? Why ever would you want to put my dick in your mouth? What on earth would you get out of it?" Lloyd found a cue of his own and sighted down it, nodding to himself and then reaching for chalk to rub on the end. "Okay. Wanna take a shot to see who breaks?"
"You can break," Max said with a confident smirk. "I'm not too worried about losing. In fact," he crossed over to Lloyd to take the chalk from his hand, his fingers brushing over the other man's as he continued to watch him with obvious interest, "I think you might throw the game just so you can see how much I'll enjoy having your dick in my mouth."
"You're full of it, my man," laughed Lloyd. "No, sir, I aim to go back and live out my allotted span a long way from Lynx River and those fucking Indians. I'll get me a pretty little girl who does as she's told and settle down, maybe even pop off a brat or two. What do you say? Doesn't that sound awesome?" Lloyd took the chalk back and laid it down on the edge of the table. "So go on; take a shot and let's see what you're made of."
Max chuckled to himself as he moved into position. "This is going to be so easy." One quick stroke and he sank all the balls. "I win," he laughed, turning to Lloyd with a wink. "So, do you want to stand up or sit down for this?"
"What?" Lloyd didn't seem to realize precisely what had happened. "I've never seen anything like that happen before." He stood, forlorn, as though he were stunned. There was a moment's pause and then he turned on Max, his face alight with fury. "You bastard. You tricked me, didn't you? You used magic."
"No, I'm really that good," Max smirked as the pool table transformed into a bed. "Of course I did. You never said I couldn't. Besides," he moved closer to Lloyd, pulling the pool cue out of his hand and tossing it aside, "I'm evil, Lloyd. I lie and I do anything to get my way; including pretending to be some goodie-goodie just to try and make you corrupt me. That wasn't working and now I'm getting impatient."
"Wh... what do you mean?" There was fear in Lloyd's eyes again as he swallowed nervously. "I didn't want to... I mean, I don't..." At his groin, the unmistakable swell of an erect penis gave his words the lie even before he spoke them. "It's only a blow job," he said under his breath as he stood by what had been the pool table, but was now far more sinister to him.
"I really like you, Lloyd," Max murmured, his voice as smooth as silk as he trailed a hand over his guest's now naked torso. "I've been watching you for a long time and you're just the kind of cocky bastard someone like me needs working for him." His gaze held the young pilot's as he raised his hand to cup the side of his face. "You take what you want and you never think about how it might hurt people. I like that," he whispered, leaning in for a kiss.
"You've got me all wrong. I care about people. I..." Lloyd drew a sharp, hissing breath as Max's touch tingled through him. "How... how did you do that?" he asked, eyeing what seemed like perfectly ordinary fingers with mistrust. "You're... doing something. It's... weird." As Max's lips brushed his own, he jumped. "No kissing! I never bet about kissing. Just the blow job..." The words died away as Max's mouth crushed his.
Max laughed as he swallowed the protests, his arms encircling the young man as he thrust his tongue inside the reluctant mouth. Fingers digging into the smooth flesh of Lloyd's back, Max deepened the kiss, his own naked body now pressing against the solid heat of the other man.
"I'll stop if you don't want this," Max whispered, mouth busy worrying at an ear lobe as he pushed Lloyd onto the bed. "Just tell me and I'll leave you alone."
"I don't..." Again, Max interrupted what Lloyd was going to say, claiming his mouth, his strength unstoppable as he muffled the protest that had been forming on the other's lips. Lloyd squirmed as he fell back under Max's weight, and felt his cock swelling as it pressed against a hardness that was almost familiar. He gasped as a hand was insinuated between their bodies to caress the burgeoning erection he was sporting.
"You really do want this, don't you?" Max growled against Lloyd's mouth. "I think you want more than just a blow job..." His hand moved down to tease between Lloyd's buttocks, laughing as the other man began wriggling harder, now fighting him to get away from the unwelcome touches. "Come on, Lloyd," Max snickered, pushing him down harder on the bed, pinning him so he could continue his intrusion, "it's obvious you want this. If you relax, you'll like this a whole lot more."
"No!" Lloyd was desperate now, fighting as hard as he could, but to no avail. Max was probing inside him with tingling fingers, pressing against his genitals as he sought to arouse Lloyd, and there seemed to be no way to stop the implacable advance towards whatever Max's goal might be. Wordlessly struggling, Lloyd began to sob.
"Aww, what's the matter?" Max teased, fingers pushing deeper. "I know you wanted me to fuck you from the moment you saw me. You wouldn't be hard if it isn't what you wanted." Still smiling wickedly, he moved into place, pressing the tip of his cock to the small opening. "You might want to brace yourself," he whispered. "This is going to hurt."
"No," whimpered Lloyd again, his face sheened with a sweat borne of panic as he felt himself penetrated. "Don't... please don't." The invading presence seemed to split him wide, burned him fiercely until he thought that he was going to die. The grinning face of his replica hovered above him, and he felt the hot flood of tears as he was filled by his aggressor.
"How does it feel?" Max asked, breathless as he began to thrust in and out of the tight heat, grunting and groaning with the pleasure of it all. "It feels incredible from this end... Nothing like a virgin..."
"You fucking bastard!" Lloyd was crying now, ashamed, furious, in pain, and still aroused in a way that he'd never experienced before. There were slick, sickening tingles of pleasure lancing through the agony of his burning ass, and he suddenly started to realize that he would soon come. "Oh, no. I'm not... I don't want it..."
"Yes...that's it, lover..." Max soothed, fingers frantically working Lloyd's cock now, urging him towards climax. "Just concentrate on how good it feels...how much you want it..." Thrusting harder, he angled his hips, watching Lloyd's face as he hit the one spot he knew would drive him crazy. "You love it, don't you? You couldn't wait for me to give it to you..."
"I hate you!" There was venom in Lloyd's voice. His face twisted in hatred as his hips began to buck in the final throes of orgasm. "You suckered me, didn't you? You played me all along the line, but I didn't do anything that girl didn't want me to do. For fuck's sake, you think I'd have had her if she'd told me how old she was?" As Max stroked into him, he suddenly cried out, his cock pumping come as he tried to hold it back.
Laughing triumphantly, Max soon followed suit, hips pumping hard as his cock exploded inside of Lloyd, sending streams of come shooting deep inside him. "I think you would have had her if she was screaming bloody murder," he grinned, bending his head to take Lloyd's mouth in a kiss, laughing even harder when he turned his head away. "You liked that, didn't you? I wanted it to be special, but you're so damn sexy, I couldn't help myself..."
"You bastard," said Lloyd again, his teeth grinding together as he attempted to control himself. "You don't give a shit, do you? You're such a hypocrite." He fell silent, obviously thinking about the situation he was in. "So, I guess that's it, isn't it? I'm stuck here with you, and you'll just mess with me whether I like it or not, won't you? There wasn't ever any chance that I could have my life back, was there?"
"Not really, no," Max smiled and rolled off Lloyd to lie next to him. "It's fun to fuck with people, though. I was kind of hoping you'd welcome the chance to stay down here and roll with the big boys." He propped himself up on an elbow and trailed a finger down Lloyd's chest, smearing the come that was beginning to dry on his skin. "I'm starting to fear that you're really good at heart. Do you have any idea how tedious that is?"
"Well, pardon me for living - uh, dying." Lloyd stammered over his words, wincing at Max's touch. "I don't know what I'm supposed to be here for. Are you keeping me here so you can keep on fucking with me?" He rolled onto his side away from Max, wincing as he felt the unaccustomed ache in his ass.
"You're here because you're such an unrepentant asshole," Max said matter of factly. "It would be one thing if you'd ever felt any remorse for the way you've fucked people over, but you haven't. I've watched you your whole life, Lloyd, and every time you had a chance, you chose to think you were better than everyone else. You're a prick, pure and simple. That's just the kind of man I want." Smiling, he wrapped an arm around Lloyd's waist and pressed himself to his back. "Come on, baby," he purred, slowly rubbing his spent cock against Lloyd's ass, "do you know how good it could be with me? Just admit that you don't give a fuck about anyone but yourself and it's clear sailing."
"Okay, I don't give a fuck about anyone but myself, and I don't give a fuck for you. Why don't you think about that for a while?" Lloyd was still distressed, his breathing irregular and his expression stormy, while his face was paper white. "I think I need to sleep for a while. I feel really strange."
"Aww, okay," Max said, kissing Lloyd's head then draping a comforter over him. "You get some sleep and I'll be right here waiting to give you a nice wake-up fuck."
Lloyd had been drowsing, his eyelids drooping shut as he attempted to get over the shock of the brutality of the rape he had just suffered. His ass hurt and his body ached from the struggle. Hand shaped bruises were beginning to form on arms and shoulders, hips and thighs, and there were tooth marks on his neck. He felt shivery and feverish. Max's words brought him back to full wakefulness. "No," he said, for what seemed like the thousandth time. "Don't do it again. It hurts."
"I'm not surprised," Max said from his seat in a plush chair across the room. He was wearing a fluffy white bathrobe and filing his nails. "It's going to hurt the first few times and then you'll get used to it. I bet you really want a bath, huh? I just had one and it was fabulous."
"Why do you want to do it? What do you get out of it?" Lloyd seemed at a loss. He sat up, pulling the comforter around himself as he did so. "Yes, please. I would like a bath." He wriggled, his face set in an expression of disgust. "I feel as if there were bugs crawling all over me. I feel dirty."
"I'm going to choose to *not* take that personally," Max said with a crooked smile, "but you will have to do me a favor if you want to get nice and clean." He untied the robe's belt and let it fall open to reveal he was naked beneath it. Easing back in the chair, he let his legs fall open with a contented sigh. "C'mere, Lloyd. It's time for you to learn how the other half lives."
"What other half?" The tone was flat, despairing. Lloyd made as if to get off the bed, but in the end just sat there, gazing dully at nothing. "I might have guessed you wouldn't let me have a bath. You're just jerking me about."
"I sense you have a problem understanding what a man could find pleasurable about sucking another man's cock," Max said as if speaking to a small child. "You're going to learn that. Now, come here. You will get your bath when you show me what a good boy you can be."
"Are you going to suck my cock now?" Lloyd moved slowly, dreamily, the comforter still around his shoulders as he dragged himself from the bed and stood up. "I don't think I want it at the moment. See; I'm all limp. It's not interested." He stumbled over to where Max was sitting. "Okay, now what?"
"You are really adorable, do you know that?" Max chuckled. "Of course, you do. No, see, you're going to suck *my* cock. On your knees, Lieutenant." He grasped his cock and began to slowly stroke it. "You're going to start out by touching me like this, okay?"
"You aren't serious," whispered the shaken pilot. "How can you think that I want to put that thing anywhere near my mouth?" He clutched the comforter around his shoulders and began to back away. "You can't make me do that," he said, hopefully.
"Actually, I can," Max nodded, crooking his finger and forcing Lloyd to kneel between his legs. "I know it feels like someone's getting ready to break your neck," he said sweetly, "but I promise it's just for effect. If you keep resisting me, I won't do a thing to your neck." He bared his teeth in a mockery of a smile. "I'll just disembowel you."
White as a sheet, Lloyd's face seemed to lose its cohesion. Eyes widened as his pupils expanded in shock, and his bladder relaxed, sending a stream of urine down his legs to pool around him as he knelt beside Max. He didn't speak at all, merely knelt, shivering as Max held him in invisible bonds.
"See? I knew you could do what you're told." Max smiled easily and forced Lloyd closer. "Now, I'm going to let you go and you're going to do what else I tell you, okay? I want you to say, 'Yes, Max,' if you understand."
Lloyd's voice caught, hitched, and he slumped a little as Max released him. Without prompting, he reached for Max's penis, tentatively caressing it as he sought for reassurance that he was getting it right. His hand was shaking, but as Max didn't immediately start the threatened disembowelment, he gradually seemed to settle, although his eyes were still wide and shocky and his breathing was rapid.
Max sighed and slumped down a little more in the chair. "Okay, that's good...what you're doing is good..." He reached a hand down to stroke Lloyd's hair, laughing when the other man flinched and pulled back. "Come on, now, Lloyd. You can't be afraid of me while you do this. I actually want you to enjoy yourself because I like you. You're like... a little puppy, complete with piddling on the floor." Grinning, he trailed his fingers over Lloyd's mouth. "I should make you lick up your mess, but I'm in a surprisingly good mood. All I'm going to ask you to do now is lick the head of my cock. Can you do that?"
Moaning faintly, Lloyd bent his head until he was a scant half inch or so from the rearing penis. He inhaled, but Max's body smelled only faintly musky, and at last, he stooped, his tongue poking out to lick at the bulbous crown that glistened with the liquid that pearled from the little hole in the tip. It didn't seem to taste too terrible, so he groaned, and tried it again, a little bolder this time.
"That's perfect," Max murmured, shivering at the contact. "I think you're going to be very good at this, Lloyd. In fact," he chuckled softly, "I think it's safe to say you're a born cocksucker." When Lloyd lapped at the head of his dick, Max groaned and closed his eyes. "Oh yeah...you're starting to like this, aren't you? You really do feel very good." His hand continued to caress Lloyd's face, and his cock seemed to stiffen and grow even more. "Now, I want you to put your lips around the head and suck a little. Tease me, Lloyd," he grinned and opened his eyes. "Use that gorgeous mouth of yours to drive me crazy."
"I don't... I don't know how." Lloyd's eyes were still black and huge in his face. "You can't expect me to know how to do it." He held the base of Max's cock stiffly in his hand and licked a little more at the end of it, jumping when a strand of pre-come oozed out, as if he had never seen such a thing before. The pressure of Max's hand on the side of his face was starting to be noticeable as he felt himself being pushed down against the rearing erection. Soon, all he could do was part his lips with a sob and allow it to enter his mouth; the salty taste of it a sharpness on his tongue as he began to suck.
"Oh, baby," Max groaned, delighted surprise in his voice, "I knew you could do this..." He moved his hips to push his cock in a little further, but frowned when Lloyd pulled back again. "Just relax, sweetie, and take more of it in, okay? You're doing really well...I know you'll get the hang of it. Do what you like having done to you. Do what you wish someone would do to you..."
Trying to get it over and done with as fast as he could, Lloyd began to suck the object that was being offered to him. Taste, touch, smell, all conspired to make his head swim as he attempted to get Max off rapidly and efficiently. He became aware of his position, kneeling in his own piss, and of the ache in his knees as he was forced to stay crouched, and prayed to whomever was listening that this would soon be over.
Peeping up at Max, he could see the handsome face that so nearly resembled his own was tight with pleasure, eyes almost closed and lips drawn back in a snarl as the demon drew closer and closer to whatever passed for orgasm in his strange world.
"Yes...yes..." Max moaned breathlessly, spreading his legs a little more. "I'm so close...you feel so good..." Suddenly, without warning, his hips bucked and he was coming hard, his come shooting into Lloyd's mouth to spill from his lips. "Swallow it," Max commanded, voice deep and menacing. "Swallow every fucking drop of it."
The taste was bitter, acrid, and stung his tongue. Lloyd gulped it and tried to get rid of it as fast as he could, miserably certain that he would never feel clean again.
As he felt Max's cock slowly deflate, he crouched miserably, sure that if he moved before he had permission that he would be made to do something even more distasteful. In his mind, what he had just done would be visible to anyone that met him. He was a cocksucker and a coward, and he always would be.
Max tsked and reached down to caress Lloyd's face with surprising tenderness. "Don't think that way," he whispered. "You're not a coward. You're smart to do as I say, otherwise you'd have to endure pain like you could not imagine." Smiling smugly, he moved to kiss the top of Lloyd's head. "You were wonderful, babe. You really earned that bath."
"Yes," Lloyd hung his head, miserably. "Please? I need to feel clean." Stumbling to his feet, he stood swaying in front of Max, all his bravado gone as he waited for what would come next.
Getting to his feet with a contented sigh, Max put his arms around Lloyd's waist to steady him. "You're a good boy, Lloyd." He gave him a lingering kiss then rubbed their noses together. "I really do like you. I'm looking forward to having you around. Now, go enjoy your bath." He turned Lloyd around to reveal a large bathtub filled with steaming, sweet-smelling water, and surrounded by candles. "Would you like a little help getting clean?"
"I... don't know. I don't know." Although the water was warm and enticing, Lloyd still stood, uncertain. "I..." He stopped, his face crumpling as he fought back tears that threatened to spill over and course down his cheeks. As Max pushed him gently towards the tub, he slowly made his way there, and when prompted once again, clambered in, wincing as he sat down in the hot water and his tender ass stung him. Slowly, he reached for soap, loofah and sponge, his eyes fixed on Max all the time, and began to scrub himself viciously, scouring until the flesh beneath his hands was red and sore looking.
"Aww, baby, what are you doing?" Max asked, his voice gentle as he reached into the tub to take the loofah from Lloyd's hand. "You're going to get all splotchy and I don't think that'll be a good look for you. Here, let me help you." Picking up a soft cloth, Max lathered it up and started washing Lloyd's back. "You're really going to like life with me, Lloyd," he said as he washed the young man. "You can have anything you want, as much as you want, and you get to be my favorite until I get tired of you." He leaned down to kiss Lloyd's ear.
A soft moan was all the response Lloyd gave, but he didn't flinch as Max kissed him. Finally, Max indicated that he should stand, and offered him a huge, warm towel in which to wrap himself. Accepting it with a murmured 'thank-you,' Lloyd stepped docilely out of the tub. "What happens when you get tired of me," he finally said, in a voice that was only just short of a whisper. "What then?"
"You continue to work for me and are free to hook up with anyone you like. There are actually a few others who look like you hanging around here somewhere. They're all happily playing with each other and I'm sure they'll let you join them if you wanted. I've got a lot of young girls, too," he smiled as he began drying Lloyd. "You would be free to be with them, too. Of course, if you make me happy, there's always the chance I might decide to make you mine for a very long time."
"But either way, I stay here, right?" Lloyd's eyes seemed to slide away from Max's, failing to meet the wickedly smiling gaze of the devil as he mumbled his query. "I mean, there's no way I'll ever get to go back and be who I was, is there?"
"Technically, there is, but you wouldn't like it," Max smirked. "You'd have to be a completely different person, and I think you're too selfish to do that." His arms slipped around Lloyd's waist and he kissed his cheek. "Putting others first isn't a concept you're familiar with, Lloyd, and if you get your life back you won't be able to have any of the fun you're used to. Honestly, is that what you want?"
"I don't know," said Lloyd, aware, even as he spoke, of just how lame that sounded. "What do you mean by putting others first? Why wouldn't I be able to have any fun?" He allowed Max to pull him up close without stiffening, almost grateful for the warmth and contact, even though this was actually his tormentor he was allowing to comfort him. "Tell me the truth."
"Think about it," Max murmured into Lloyd's ear. "When you think about goodie-goodies, don't you want to retch? That would not be the life for you, Lloyd, trust me. I think your best bet is to stay here and just give in to who you really are. If you want a trial period, I'll be happy to supply you with all the vices you'd like. You'd owe me, of course, but it would be a great sampling of what you'd have to give up if you think you don't want to be here."
"Tell me who I am really." Lloyd shivered in Max's arms and huddled closer. "What sort of vices do I want? I didn't think I was a bad man really." He seemed suddenly to realize just what he was doing and drew slowly back from Max's embrace, looking absently around for the comforter he'd been using. It had disappeared, of course, when it was no longer being used, and Lloyd looked in vain. "What vices do I like? I don't even know."
Max looked at him with an expression that would have been sympathetic if he were actually capable of feeling something as human as that. "Of course you do," he whispered. "You have my word that anything that brings you pleasure is enough to keep you here. See, the other side doesn't want anyone to have any fun at all but they expect absolute devotion with little to no pay off. If you ask me, it's a rotten deal. Unfortunately, I don't make the rules, I just follow them." He moved forward to slip an arm around Lloyd's shoulders as he led him over to a pillow laden bed. "Don't worry, I'm not going to fuck you," he said when the young man blanched. "You just look like you need to lie down."
"Thank you," whispered Lloyd. He sank gratefully back against the pillows. "You think I'm an idiot, don't you?" he said in a voice that was ragged from the crying he'd done earlier. "You can't mean that sex is bad. Why was it invented if it was bad? That's just dumb." He looked down at himself. He was still naked, his skin still reddened where he had scrubbed at it, but even so it could be seen that he was well made. "What would be the point of giving us looks, or appeal? Why would it take two to make children. That doesn't make sense at all."
"Ah, my sweet, dim little pilot," Max sighed, rubbing his hand over Lloyd's chest with a soft groan of appreciation. "It isn't the sex that's bad. It's the kind of sex you wanted. You like them young, Lloyd. You like to force yourself on them. I know about all the times you fucked your friends' girlfriends, I know about the pregnant girls you've walked out on, and I know about that lovely young thing who killed herself because of you when you could have prevented it. I'm not even going to get into the way you treat your family."
"I love my family, man." Lloyd struggled up onto one elbow, irritably brushing Max's caressing hand away. "And I never forced that girl. She was willing. She wanted it." It seemed as if the fight had returned to Lloyd after his passive behavior of the past hour or so, and he suddenly recovered some of the animation that normally characterized him. "And so what if I didn't get married to any chick that was dumb enough to get pregnant? So what if I went with girls that wanted me? They didn't want relationships, my man. They wanted to get laid. I fucked them, sure, but they fucked me too. We both enjoyed it and moved on. Where's the sin in that?" his face clouded momentarily, a thought chasing the others away. "As for Alannah, I couldn't do anything. She didn't tell me, okay? It wasn't my fault she killed herself. She knew I didn't love her. She told me she didn't care. How was I to know? Seems like you're gonna end up with ninety nine percent of the human race in here getting fucked in the ass. None of us are perfect."
Max's eyes darkened but he spoke in a soft, controlled voice. "Like I said, I don't make the rules. If you'd rather take your chances by slinging that bullshit at the powers that be, it's your choice. I'm just trying to help you out here. At least if you choose to stay here it won't be as bad as if you're forced to be here. What do you have against me, anyway?"
"That's a good question, isn't it? Let's see, apart from lying to me, raping me and scaring me 'til I piss myself, I guess you've been my bosom buddy." There was bitterness in Lloyd's voice as he spoke, and he looked as if he was about to say more, but the expression on Max's face seemed to bring him up short and he stopped. "But I suppose that whatever I do is going to land me in the shit. Might as well take the fun. Bring it on."
"I'm not sure you mean that," Max sniffed. "If you're going to be a bitch about it, maybe I should let you spend a little time with a few of my more psychotic friends. Maybe then you'd appreciate that what I've done to you is nothing to whine about. You're pretty lucky that I'm showing such interest in you. Ask anyone here and they'll tell you what kind of an honor that is."
"I... I don't know what you mean. You're going to give me over to some devils or something if I don't just give you whatever you demand?" Lloyd sounded utterly defeated. "I guess that I don't have much of a choice then, do I?" He pushed away Max's caressing hand and hugged himself. "Please can't you cut me a little slack? What do I have to do?"
"You make it sound like a chore," Max frowned, changing their surroundings with another wave of his hand. Now they were lounging in a large room decorated with expensive rugs and lush pillows, rich, embroidered fabric draping the walls as soft music played in the background. "I can give you such a fabulous life, Lloyd," he sighed, lifting a glass of red wine to his lips and taking a long drink. "All you have to do is make the choice to join me."
"Not a chore, but I want to know what you want from me. I can't just tell you I want to join you unless I know. You've got me here, and you're scaring me, but I have to know the truth. How can I make any choice unless I know the truth?" Lloyd hadn't even raised his head, so defeated did he seem now.
Max started laughing, being careful not to spill his wine. "Oh man, you are really something else, Lloyd. It's really pretty cute that you would expect me to tell you the truth about any of this." Still giggling, he sat up a little and cleared his throat. "Okay, okay. Here we go." Trying to keep a straight face, he looked angelically at Lloyd. "Contrary to popular belief, Hell is not a place of eternal suffering and damnation. It's a pretty cool party place, actually, and it's Heaven that's the real drag. Tell me, would you rather spend the day making love to more women than you can count, or listening to St. Peter telling his umpteenth story about manning those damn gates?"
"You're putting me on." Lloyd's head came up and he glared at Max, accusingly. "If it's such a great place, where are all the broads? And you can't be serious about St. Peter. I don't believe in St. Peter - in fact, I don't believe in you, come to that." He seemed to be recovering from the funk he'd been in just moments before. He didn't notice, and Max didn't point out to him the newcomer who had entered the room and now stood lounging against the door jamb, a twisted smile on his lips.
"I see you found another one then. What do you plan to do with *him*?"
Max grinned and shrugged his shoulders. "I'm not quite sure. I was thinking of having him join us here, but he's resisting me a little." Suddenly Max was on his feet and crossing over to the other man. "Do you want to help me convince him that we're the side to be on?" He brushed his lips against the slightly parted ones and smiled. "C'mon, Alex. You know you want to."
"I do, do I?" Alex returned the kiss, his tongue extended lewdly to press between Max's lips before his own pressed home. For a moment, the two men were locked tight together in a kiss that seemed to have no end, and then Alex shoved Max back, strolling over to study Lloyd, who was still on the bed, his face a mixture of surprise and mistrust as he realized that the newcomer was also his spitting image. "Are you quite sure, Max? He looks like me if they mixed him without adding salt or seasoning. He's bland and will satisfy you about as much as the average cotton candy."
"I've had him, though," Max said, a hint of a pout pursing his lips as he approached the two men. "I liked it. I think you'll like it, too. There's something about him I can't quite put my finger on." He climbed behind Lloyd and draped an arm across his chest, tugging on his earlobe with his teeth as he smiled up at Alex. "Let's keep him, Alex. I bet you could have a lot of fun getting him into shape."
"I don't know. He doesn't look like much to me." Alex had taken a knife from his pocket, and was now idly running his thumb over the blade, watching his own blood well up as he cut the flesh. "I think I'd rather take him to pieces and see if I can get him back together again; now that might be fun." Alex leaned forward and placed the point of his knife beneath one of Lloyd's terrified eyes. "Think we can get all the bits back in the right place, Max, my man?"
"Ooh, I don't know," Max said, his eyes lighting up, "but if we don't, can you at least keep the ass intact?" He held Lloyd's head still, looking at Alex admiringly. "I love the way you handle a knife, you know that, but how come you don't want to play with him?"
"What for? He's a cheap paperback edition of me. It feels like masturbation, and while I don't mind the odd jerk off session, I don't need to rely on my own right hand for thrills." Alex smiled slowly, an unpleasant smile that made Lloyd shrink back against Max. "I'd rather play for real than depend on cheap thrills like him."
"Well, it's no fun if you rip him apart," Max sighed. "He's worth more to me if he joins me of his own free will. I mean, where's the moral victory if you maim him and he has no choice but to stay?" He frowned a little. "Don't you want me to have what I want, Alex?"
"Well, of course I do, Max. It's just that you seem to want the wrong things. Why do you want him and not me?" Alex's smile was brittle, and he had resumed playing with the point of his knife, now running it over the palm of his hand to watch the split and part of flesh beneath it. As Max watched, he dipped his head and put out his tongue to lap at the welling blood that now filled his palm. "I think I'm rather more interesting on almost every level."
Max groaned softly and pushed Lloyd out of the way in his zeal to get to Alex. "You are, baby. You really are." He took Alex's hand and began to lick his palm, sighing as the coppery fluid filled his senses. "I really do enjoy everything about you," he murmured, licking a path up Alex's arm and leaving a red trail in his wake. "You are like no other, and you make me feel things that I would never allow anyone else to make me feel." He raised his face to Alex's, grinning at him with red tinted lips. "Why do you care if I add the flyboy to my little family?"
"Care? I don't *care*," said Alex, throatily, smiling gently as he held himself just out of Max's reach. "I just think that you're wasting your time. Look at him. He's small. He might share our features, but he doesn't share our vision." Alex put out his hand to stroke the side of Max's face, leaving smears of his blood to streak the handsome features. "Which would you rather have? Steak, or soya?"
"You know I'll always want you first," Max purred, turning into the caress before once again reaching for Alex. "I just thought that we could share him. Wouldn't you like to train him to be like us?" He nuzzled Alex's neck, looking completely harmless as he sought more contact. "Or do you think he's a hopeless case?"
"You think he has the potential to be like us? I don't know. I think he'd break." Alex ran bloody hands over Max, leaving rusty traces on the pale flesh. "Of course, that might be fun too. We could play with the pieces until they got boring."
"What do you think, Lloyd?" Max asked, turning his head to look at the frightened young man. "Is Alex right about you not being up to our level?" He sighed and slipped his hands down the back of Alex's jeans as he began rubbing himself against his favorite of all his followers. "Alex is the only man who could rule me if I let him," Max said, giving Alex a wicked smile as he clung to him, "so I value his opinion tremendously."
Lloyd had watched the exchange with wide, terrified eyes. When the knife had approached his face he had flinched, but not made a sound. Now he opened his mouth in an attempt to respond to Max's question, and found that he had no voice. He shook, a trembling that seemed to increase in violence as he watched the two beings. Suddenly, he leant forward and vomited, his body convulsing with the fright he was experiencing.
Max wrinkled his nose and moved Alex and himself out of the way of the sick. "Oh, man, all over my new rug, too. Lloyd, you really need to control yourself." He turned to Alex and kissed him soundly, writhing against him as he groaned deep in his throat. "Maybe you're right, Alex," he murmured, lips wet as they slid against Alex's. "Maybe he isn't strong enough. He didn't even like it when I fucked him. Can you believe that?" He drew back and fixed Alex with a look that was part conceit, part hurt. "He almost hurt my feelings."
"That won't do at all," said Alex, tenderly, biting hard at Max's shoulder as he gyrated against him. "He's got no taste at all, has he?"
Walking forward to carry Max back until he was leaning against the wall, Alex began to unfasten clothing - both his own and Max's, until they were both naked. "Perhaps you'd better get it on with someone that appreciates the talents you have," he whispered, seductively. "Or maybe you'd like for me to help you persuade him?"
"Do you think you could?" Max asked; voice thick with need as he wrapped his legs around Alex while the other man supported him. He nipped at Alex's jaw, licking and kissing him as he ground against him. "I'm starting to think he doesn't deserve to have any part of you." His eyes darkened and he cast a smoldering look Lloyd's way. "In fact, I can't think of anyone besides myself who deserves to be with you, Alex. He'll just have to suffer and watch us."
Engrossed in their own performance, neither being noticed Lloyd's expression of relief as they began to arouse each other. Horrified, he watched as Alex penetrated Maximillian, holding him easily as he began to fuck him with long, slow thrusts of his hips. Both men were growling, mouthing obscenities while they bit and scratched soft skin until it bled.
At one point, Max turned his head to flash Lloyd a feral grin, the blood still staining his face making him look like some sort of warrior.
"It feels so good," he growled, riding up and down on Alex's cock, his fingers digging into Alex's shoulders. "Getting fucked feels so damn good and you're too stupid to know it."
The soft grunts and groans as Alex fucked him soon turned into savage growls as Max neared orgasm. Crushing his mouth to his lover's he bit his lip and greedily lapped at the blood as it trickled down Alex's chin.
The shuddering climax that Max achieved was accompanied by howls, and Lloyd watched Max arch back, his cock sending spurt after spurt of white and sticky essence to cover Alex's belly and chest. Alex himself suddenly cried out and seemed to come, and Lloyd felt his own dick stiffen as he watched the two of them. It was with sudden dismay that he realized that he was fully aroused, and that both Alex and Max had turned to look at him with predatory smiles on their faces.
"Well, it looks like someone's finally getting into the spirit of things," Max murmured, dismounting with feline grace and taking Alex's hand as they both walked toward Lloyd. "How about it, Lloyd? Would you like us to make you feel more incredible than anyone ever has?"
"B..better? I.. I don't know." Lloyd shrank into the cushions, his hands moving to cover his still rigid penis. "You're going to hurt me. I don't want you to hurt me."
Alex frowned, pulling at Max's hand. "For fuck's sake, listen to him whine. Anyone would think you were going to slice him up, not suck him off. What a little coward. Where the hell did you get him from?"
"I took him after he was shot for fucking some little girl. I thought he had potential." Max made a face and observed the cowering man before him. "I guess I was wrong. He doesn't seem to want to join us at all. Guess he's more of an asshole than a really bad person." He rested his head on Alex's shoulder, and, for a moment, it was hard to tell just who was the one in charge. "If you give me the word, I'll let him go."
"You'd do that for me?" Alex slid his arm around the dark angel's shoulders, and pressed a wet tongue to his ear. "You're just too good to me, Max. That's why I love you." He surveyed Lloyd, who was still looking sick and terrified. "Shall I test my knife on that cock?" He giggled as Lloyd turned paler than ever. "Oh, for fuck's sake, get rid of him, Max. He makes me sick to my stomach."
Max scowled at Lloyd. "You could have had it so good, you know. Anyway, you should thank Alex for letting you get out of here alive. I'd just as soon watch him gut you as give you your life back, but he wants you gone." Leaning into Alex, Max nodded in the direction of a curtain that had just appeared. "That's the way out. Go before Alex changes his mind. He has to console me for the bad judgment I so recently displayed and may decide you deserve to bleed a little for making me wrong."
Lloyd sprang to his feet, eyeing the knife that Alex was still somehow managing to hold. Ducking his head nervously, he made his way to the door that had been indicated, his body shivering as he passed within close range of where Alex was standing. "Thank you," he mumbled as he stood by the door at last."
Turning his head to glare balefully at Lloyd, Alex growled, "Are you still here? Where's my knife?" and made as though to pursue him.
Max burst out laughing as Lloyd made a mad dash for the exit, and turned to Alex to give him a deep, passionate kiss.
"This is why I love you, Alex Krycek. Tell anyone I have a weakness and I kill you, but I want you to know how I feel." He smiled easily and kissed Alex again. "Promise you'll always be at my side."
"Promise me that you'll always make it worth my while, my Max," retaliated Alex, showing strong white teeth in a smile that had sharp edges. "I like it here, you know that." He snaked his arms around Max and bore him back onto the pillows where Lloyd had been lying, just as Lloyd himself flung himself through the doorway into blackness.
There was noise and pain, but he couldn't see anything, he could only feel, and he was confused. Loud beeps, running feet, and people yelling filled his senses, and he heard someone scream, "My God, he's alive. Get him onto the gurney. Move!"
The flurry of activity swirled around Lloyd, and everything was a blur of noise and sensation until it was suddenly dulled and faded into the background.
"Lloyd," a gentle voice called to him through the haze, "you're going to be all right."
"What? Who's there? Why can't I move?" His vain attempts at rolling over so he could sit up came to nothing as fierce agony lanced through his back and made him gasp. "What's happened? Where's Max?" The effort of speaking caused bubbles of something that tasted metallic to rise to his lips, and with an icy flood to his groin, he realized that it was blood.
"You need to relax," the soothing voice said, and Lloyd felt something cool brush against his forehead. "You're in the hospital and you're safe. No one is going to hurt you here, I promise."
The voice was somehow telling him the truth. Lloyd felt his body relax, and the pain seemed to recede as the gentle hand stroked his hair.
"What happened?" he said, thickly. "Why'm I here?"
"You were shot, and we thought we'd lost you. But you've been given another chance, Lloyd. You've come back to us and have a chance at life again."
Life. She had said life.
"I'm alive?" His voice was a mere whisper, a faded sound that he could barely hear himself. She patted him gently in confirmation, and he felt a vast relief. He was alive. The gruesome interlude was over. There would be no lookalike demons slicing his flesh or invading his body. The warning had been enough. He would change his ways.
This time, he would do better.