When It Is With Your Body
Author's Notes: Flowers and chocolates and songs of praise to the wonderful Slidellra, who was my first beta ever, and who gave me huge amounts of help and was very patient and looked at all the chunks of this that I wasn't finishing, uh, thirty seconds before deadline. Any remaining idiocies are mine alone.
Story Notes: Written in June 2007. Set post-COTW. Het--but all the het is sublimated slash.
Ray figured out really quickly what the problem with the frozen north was. The problem was there was a fuck of a lot of frozen and a fuck of a lot of north, and fuck-all of anything else.
Okay, it wasn't, really, that there was nothing to think about up there. He could tell there was plenty to think about, because Fraser was always making thinky faces, and looking for firewood and eyeing their supplies and muttering calculations under his breath about calories required with cold and exercise, and Ray had the creepy feeling that all that was necessary to keep the two of them alive. But there was nothing that Ray was equipped to think about. And he wasn't going to ask Fraser about what he was thinking about, because it was pretty obvious that having to work that hard just to keep living was making Fraser really happy. And Ray wasn't going to strip that buzz by going, "Hey, clueless and kinda scared, here!"
So, his brain got bored. And when it got bored, it got stupid, and did stupid things.
He'd had dreams with guys in them before. But he hadn't worried about it too much, because there were a lot more with women. Also because, those few months when he and Stell had tried going to a counselor, they'd had a few separate appointments, and he'd actually brought it up. And the counselor (who was a woman--he probably couldn't have told a guy) told him they didn't necessarily mean a thing.
And when he started working with Fraser, well, Fraser was a little distracting, and those dreams got more frequent. And maybe tended to have a recurring star instead of random guys. But still, not very often, and he could wake up and say "Doesn't mean a thing," to Cheetah the turtle, because Cheetah always had kind of a disapproving look, those mornings. And then he could go out and forget about it completely because he was in Chicago, and there were stupid drivers to cuss at and bad guys to catch, and movies and chess, and dinner plans to make.
And now Fraser was the only driver, and he was driving dogs, and Ray couldn't have told you whether he was the worst dog-driver in the world or the best, because what the hell did he know about dogsleds? And there were no perps because there were no people, and no movies and no chess, and dinner plans were, "Here, Ray, can you heat up the stuff in these cans while I do 17, 454 important things to keep us from dying?" Sure, Fraser, I think I can handle that.
Ray tried to distract himself by being buddies with Dief. But it turned out, to his surprise, that he really didn't know Dief at all. Ray was kind of confused for a while (and, yeah, hurt) by how uninterested in him the wolf was now, but eventually he worked out that he and Dief had sort of switched places, because in Chicago Dief had been bored and mostly useless, except in the occasional emergency. Ray'd always thought of him as...kind of a clown. But up here...Dief had stuff to do and he was by God doing it good and hard. He was in charge of making sure that the dogs did what they were told, and he was in charge of guarding the campsite at night, and he was on, he was focused and working and a little nervous all the time, and obviously really enjoying himself.
Ray was kind of jealous.
So, all he had left to think about, all he had left in this big freezing expanse of nothing was Fraser.
And at first it was just in his dreams, and that was okay, even if it was every damn night now. Because, like the therapist said, all your dreams had to work with was what your brain took in during the day, right? And pretty much all he was taking in right now was Fraser. So, yeah, meaningless. But embarrassing, especially when he woke up with his sleeping bag sort of a mess, and sometimes he could smell it, that kind of sharp-but-bready smell, so god knows Fraser could smell it. And he was always tempted to roll over and look at Fraser and say something like, "Man, that was some dream! Every single one of the Bulls cheerleaders! Twice!" But he just kept his mouth shut, and cleaned up the best he could, and Fraser never said anything either.
He could deal with that. But the thing was, now he was starting to think that way in the daytime. He'd get in these weird trances, almost, when the sled was going, because they couldn't really talk, too much noise from the wind and the dogs and the runners cutting through the snow, so all the input he had was that wordless noise, and white everywhere, and the shifting of the sled under him and Fraser standing warm right behind him, legs up against Ray's back all day long, leaning against him on the turns, and Ray would just...drift. He'd startle back to reality to find that they'd stopped moving, that Fraser was looking at him kind of concerned and actually speaking to him, saying, "Are you all right, Ray?" which was a shocker because in whatever la-la land he'd been in, Fraser was talking there too, but he was saying--different things, like "Right there, Ray, that's good, god, yes, do that again..."
Thinking that way during the day was not okay.
So now he's been back in Chicago for a month. And the bad guys are doing their part to distract him, and it's kind of cool being Kowalski again, so he does better during the daytime. But the nights are still a little more...Frasery than he'd like. And waking up like that with Fraser a few inches away was embarrassing, but doing it with him a border crossing and six tundras away is just pathetic. Ray's hoping the whole thing will fade with time, but meanwhile, it sucks.
And things are different at the 2-7, aside from the fact that when Welsh yells at him he's yelling "Kowalski!" Stella doesn't show up any more, which is probably a good thing, although he's still trying to wrap his head around her and Vecchio and Florida. Huey and Dewey are off at their comedy club, which Ray's been to a couple of times in the hope that if he got drunk enough he wouldn't dream. Didn't help. But the big change is Frannie.
Frannie's stopped wearing clothes that look like she maybe stole them from her Barbie. Her stomach is covered, and her skirts almost reach her knees. And back before Ray got his life back, got himself back, whatever that was, less Frannie showing would have been kind of a relief. Because, then, he would sometimes catch himself looking at her and have to chant in his head "sister, she's my sister." But now that she isn't--well, he'd been looking forward to looking a little. But she's covered up a lot of the lookable bits, and she's just not--bubbly and talking all the time and irritating as hell, anymore. She's quiet, and without Fraser around she doesn't launch herself at anybody, and she does a much better job at her actual job, and she's really sorta boring.
Ray thinks he gets that. Not that he, you know, did any belly-button shirts. Or launching. But...there's nobody to show off for anymore. He'll come out of the interrogation room after turning some perp into jello, and he can't help it, he'll glance around for a red suit, somebody to think he's really something, and then he remembers and thinks, oh yeah. Go me. Rah.
So there they sit at their desks, doing their jobs, and Ray's pretty certain that a lot of the time Frannie's thinking the same thing he is, which is: My whole life tastes like cardboard.
And then one day Welsh comes up to Frannie's desk, and Ray's not paying attention for the first few minutes he's talking to her, but Welsh gets louder and louder, and after a while Ray notices that he's being a real asshole. Which is weird, because Welsh is never shy about telling you when you've fucked up, but he's usually got a decent reason, and this is just bullshit stuff. He's busting her over her phone manners with the public, which Ray knows just from sitting near her have been polite and helpful and boring (and why isn't he calling her into his office to bust her in person, anyway? Everybody's looking. Asshole.) And then he moves on to professional appearance, which makes zero sense because that's gotten way better (or at least way better for this profession) and then her handwriting, which, Jesus, that's rich, because Welsh's writing looks like you inked up a cockroach and then told it to dance. And the worst thing is Frannie's just sitting there and taking it, nodding and looking off into the distance and saying she'll try to do better--what is wrong with Welsh?
Ray starts to stand up, starts to walk over there and tell Welsh to back off. ("Shine up your armor, first, Ray," Stella says in his head, and he tells her to shut up.) But when he's up he gets his first good look at Welsh, and Welsh doesn't look like an angry asshole raving psychoboss. He sounds like one, yeah, but he looks worried and a little sick, and Ray suddenly realizes that he's trying to get a rise out of Frannie, trying to get her to call him Harding or throw a file folder at him or order a gelato maker for the break room, because she is freaking him out.
And if Welsh is freaking out over somebody, there's reason to freak. Ray could maybe do something here, maybe join Welsh on Team Cheer-Up Frannie in a Weird Way. But he's not gonna yell at her about handwriting.
Ray walks on over, and Welsh is saying, "...and it has come to my attention as of late, Ms. Vecchio, that you are leaving each night with your desk in serious disorder. The city of Chicago provides pencil cups for a reason," and Frannie opens her mouth to say one of the calm, dull things she's been saying, either, "I'm really sorry about that," or, "I'll fix that," or, "You're right, Lieutenant," but Ray dives into the conversation, says, "Hey, Frannie, you want to get some dinner tonight? My treat. To, uh, celebrate not being related anymore."
She and Welsh both blink at him for a minute, and then she nearly smiles, says, "Sure, Ray." And Welsh starts to head back toward his office, but throws back over his shoulder, "Pencils. Pencil cups. Consider their possible working relationship, Ms. Vecchio," and Frannie says, "Yeah, I got it, Harding, buzz off," and Welsh's walk gets back to as close to bouncy as it ever gets, and Ray feels a little better about everything
Ray lets Frannie pick the place, and they end up at an Italian restaurant in her neighborhood, naturally, and she's translating the menu for him and telling him what not to order because Raphael's cooking tonight and he doesn't understand that dish and you should only order that one when Joe's here. It's kinda nice because it so isn't a date, he's not trying to impress her, he can just sit here and let her impress him, and the names of the dishes sound nice coming out of her mouth, and he is, actually, impressed.
After they've ordered they fumble around for a while trying to find a good subject to talk about. Ray says something about the adventure with Fraser and Frannie flinches, and Frannie says something about Vecchio and Stella in Florida and Ray twitches. But finally she starts talking about Vecchio as a kid, dumbass junior-high stories, and Ray enjoys that, Ray can get behind those. So while they're eating he hears about Vecchio smoking a whole pack of cigarettes at age 12 and throwing up for hours and Frannie telling their parents there was a stomach bug going around school. About Vecchio at thirteen actually sneaking the car out in the middle of the night to practice driving, and Frannie explaining the bumper ding, telling her father she'd heard there were hoodlums going around the neighborhood with baseball bats doing that kinda thing.
"You're great backup," he says.
She grins, blushes, says, "Well, I couldn't let Pop--you know." He doesn't know, but he isn't gonna ask.
"It was sort of--when you were first here," she says. "It was sort of familiar. Lying for Ray, you know? 'He's right here! He never went anywhere! He didn't do anything!'"
She stops grinning, looks at her plate. "I thought--he used to tell me, when I'd do something like that for him? When I'd pull his ass out of the frying pan?"
Ray blinks and bites his tongue.
"He'd get all--that was the only time he ever told me I was great, you know? Respect. And I thought--after a year doing it. Well, but no, he's off to Florida with the blonde, he says he'll see us at Christmas! Uh. Sorry."
"S'okay," Ray says. But it's not okay, really, she just went out of happytalk and into my life is pathetic talk, and he's gonna be doing the same damn thing in a minute if he has any more wine, so he waves the waiter over and orders them both coffee.
"Did you know I got my own place?" she says, and he blinks, because that was a hard turn in the conversation, there, what?
"Yeah. My mom yelled at me for weeks," she says, proudly.
"Yeah. Kinda lonely, though. Quiet. I'm so used to having the whole family around."
"It's especially quiet at night."
Ray stares at her.
"Oh, hell," she says. "You know what? I'm tired of being all mysterious and subtle with guys."
Ray chokes a little on his coffee.
"I didn't ever make myself clear with Fraser, and he's gone. And Ray's gone and he never even said, 'Thank you, Francesca, for pretending this skinny Polish guy, no offense, was me for a year, that must have been tough, way to go.' And you were gone and I never really noticed you're a little bit cute until you were gone, but then you came back. And my apartment is--quiet."
"Um," Ray says, "what exactly are you...what?"
"Ray. You're cute, and you're kind of nice when you're not being an asshole, and I'm lonely. And I've got all this really expensive lingerie that I've never even used, and--just one night, okay? One time. For fun."
And Ray thinks: this is just right, this is exactly what he needs, why didn't he think of this before, he needs to have a hell of a lot of sex with a woman, just huge amounts of sex, and that will erase the Frasertape going through his head all the time, replace all the muscley with soft and the stubbly with smooth and yeah, this is it exactly.
He smiles at her, and he can feel it being a sweet non-asshole smile, and when they leave the restaurant he gives her his arm all nice and formal and she beams at him. It's good.
When they get to her tiny apartment she doesn't turn on any lights, just fumbles in the kitchen for matches and gets a couple of candles going. And Ray's grateful not to have better lighting, because from what he can tell in the dimness the whole apartment looks like Dief threw up after eating something large and pink and ruffly.
She comes back from candlelighting and looks up at him, gives him a sideways smile, looks down again. She's probably a little freaked, and Ray is too, because how long has it been? When did he stop even trying to date? And why did he stop even trying to date?
He puts his fingers under her chin, lifts her head up; and Jesus, she's so tiny, he actually has to take a step back from her to be able to bend down enough to kiss her. (Fraser and I saw eye to eye, something singsongs in his head, and he sticks that in a box marked Shut the Fuck Up.)
The kissing is nice, though, she tastes like some sort of unpronounceable Italian food and wine and coffee, and she's not shy, opens right up and takes his tongue in and seems to like it, gets very friendly with his tongue there in her soft mouth. And he gets that old rush again, the sweetness in his mouth sweeping down his whole body to turn into something bright and sparky and focused on his cock, yeah, this still works (and why wouldn't it work, shut up.)
He nibbles her lip softly and she moans, hey, he's still got moves. He stands back up all the way, grins down at her and says, "Lingerie?"
"Oh! Yeah!" she beams up at him. "Stay right here," she says and practically skips off to the bedroom, and once she's closed the door he cracks up because--hey, kissing was nice, but getting to show off new clothes gets her really excited, that's Frannie for you.
She takes a few minutes, and he just stands there in the flickery candlelight, not thinking about Northern Lights or campfire light or Fraser with a flashlight under his chin telling the stupidest fucking ghost stories in the world, not thinking about anything at all.
After the firelight and the stupid ghost stories, in the tent, he always had trouble going to sleep. Which was weird, because he'd never been so fucking tired in his life. Yeah, he was riding on the sled a lot, but he was also doing a lot of snowshoeing, which was one of those things that looks easy and kind of dorky, and turns out to be practically impossible and really, really exhausting. And he was just worn out, too, from the newness of everything--from never seeing a pizza parlor or a junkie or anything familiar at all, from never seeing another person besides Fraser, from never being able to get away from seeing Fraser.
So he kept thinking, I'm gonna hit that bag tonight and I'll be gone, baby. And it never happened--he'd just lie there, trying to figure out if Fraser was awake too, because his breathing sounded really slow and deep and regular over there, which with a normal person would have meant he was asleep, but with Fraser might just mean that he was breathing properly according to RCMP regulations. And of course he couldn't see Fraser at all, six inches away, because the dark here in the tent was actual black. Not gray, not black decorated with streetlights, just black. None more black. Freaky. He'd lie there in the total utter black, like somebody turned off the universe to save on the electric bill, and the only other person left in existence was either asleep or ignoring him, and then he'd tell himself that was completely stupid and of course Fraser was asleep and Fraser needed to be asleep because he was doing ninety-seven percent of the work, and Jesus, Ray, grow up, and---
"Fraser. Fraser? Talk to me."
And every single time Fraser would just start talking. Ray never knew whether he woke him up or not. He'd talk for a while about the day they'd just had, weather and arguments among the dogs, and for a while about what tomorrow might be like, and then when he'd wind down on those topics Ray would say, "Okay, just--recite something." Because Fraser had this big weird memory for stuff he'd read. Ray wondered, sometimes, where he put all the things he remembered. Like maybe he had extra brain lobes he kept in the sled, and switched them out depending on whether he needed "Distinguishing six million chemicals by taste" or "Reciting stories for my partner, who is apparently four years old."
But it always worked. Fraser had a good voice, a great voice, and it didn't really seem to matter what he was saying--Inuit stories or Robert Service or Rudyard Kipling or Paradise Lost, he'd get into a rhythm and Ray would find his own breathing settling into a groove with it, and he wasn't alone in the black, and he'd go to sleep. That was good, that was really good falling asleep like that. Even though he fell into godawful porny Fraser dreams and woke up achy, or somewhere past, every morning, it was worth it.
The last night, though. The night after Fraser said they were really pretty low on provisions, and they were within a day's travel of the nearest town, and maybe they should go and either restock for another leg of the search or, or discuss other plans. And Ray said yeah, but he wasn't sure to which part.
That night, Ray was lying in his bag, not asleep, listening to Fraser breathe like he was keeping time for piano practice. But this time he wasn't freaking out about the black, he was freaking out thinking about having to think, about having to make some sort of decision tomorrow.
"Hey Fraser. Tell me something that doesn't have snow in it or anybody dying."
"That narrows my repertoire considerably, Ray."
Fraser was quiet for a minute. Ray figured he was mentally flipping through his story file, mumbling "Snow. Dead. Dead in the snow. Snowed on after death..." But eventually he started talking again, and it was poetry, but not the bouncy Service stuff or the baffling Milton stuff. It was...Ray had never been much for poetry but these poems got some pictures bouncing around in his head that were...
"Fraser. Geez. These are filthy. I mean--they are, right? I'm not making that up?"
"Well, yes, the imagery tends toward the erotic, but you limited my options, Ray."
"I'm not complaining, just--wow. Who are these by?"
"Oh, sure.. That's, what, his porn name?"
"I'm afraid I don't follow you, Ray."
"Forget it," Ray said. "Keep going."
And Fraser kept going--this guy wrote a lot, apparently--and there were some war poems and some stuff about balloons and goats, but mostly it seemed to involve bodies, and Ray's body was starting to not wait to be asleep and dreaming, was starting to get really fond of Fraser's voice saying these things. Fraser's voice was getting slower and deeper and kind of husky, poor guy was probably embarrassed and tired of talking, but he couldn't stop now, Ray really couldn't deal with him stopping now. Ray was beginning to have a hard time lying still, he was wiggling a little in his sleeping bag, kind of in the rhythm of the poems, and he needed to stop, needed to tell Fraser to stop right now, except what reason would he give him?
And then Fraser started in on one that began with, "I like my body when it is with your body..." and Jesus. Ray tried to bite down on a little moan but he was pretty sure it made it out of his mouth anyway, and his hands were moving down there in his sleeping bag, stop that, stop it, but they weren't stopping. This poem didn't mess around with any maybe-that's-dirty-but-maybe-not stuff, either, it went right into muscles and nerves and trembling and firm and kissing. Ray looked it up, later, in Chicago--bad idea--and he was surprised how short it was, because it seemed to go on forever that night. Fraser with those words coming out of that mouth in the dark, his voice so familiar and so strange, Ray not able, not wanting to make himself stop, and then a line about "stroking the shocking fuzz of your electric fur," which, god, sounded like Ray's experimental hair, and Ray was coming in his hand, right there with Fraser still awake and still talking and listening, Ray was coming six inches away from awake alert Fraser and he was making noises that were small and quiet but couldn't have been anything else.
Fraser stopped talking. Ray waited for him to say something like "I never meant to send your thoughts in that particular very misguided direction, Ray, but I simply had no other options when fatalities and frozen precipitation were removed from my repertoire," but Fraser never said anything at all, and Ray didn't say anything, and the tent was so quiet and so black that Ray couldn't even tell when he stopped being miserably awake and started being miserably asleep.
The next day Fraser was busy and cheerful and exactly like normal, like he hadn't noticed a damn thing.. And Ray watched him being just exactly like normal, like nothing happened, nothing happened for Fraser, and after a while he told Fraser that they probably shouldn't reprovision and head out again. That Ray should probably just go home.
When Frannie comes back out of her bedroom, Ray snaps to attention all over, because she's giving him this look that is probably trying to be steamy but is mostly, "Oh, god, do I look okay?" and she does, she really does.
She's wearing this microscopic lacy thing, a Roosevelt or something like that. It's cut down to there and up to here, and Ray's pretty sure the "here" has easy-access snaps.
It's black, which sounds kinda cheesy but it makes her olive skin just glow in the candlelight, she's so pretty, and she put this on for him, wants him to want her, he's not all alone here with a stupid fucked-up one-sided piece of craziness.
He's moving to her and grabbing, lifting and kissing hard--stumbling and nearly falling over, because when their bodies met it was almost like she wasn't there, she was so light, he'd spent so many weeks with the only other person in the snowbound universe outweighing him. And his momentum has barreled them both across the room and against the wall because somehow his stupid body expected Frannie to be two hundred pounds of solid.
She's making a little noise in his ear that he doesn't like at all.
Fuck, he's scaring her.
He backs up, eases her down the wall with his hands that almost meet around her waist, says, "Sorry, Frannie, you're just so light, I wasn't expecting, I mean, not that you look like you'd be heavy, I mean, shit."
She relaxes in his grip, grins, says, "Dumbass." And takes his hand, leads him back to her bedroom. Good, he hasn't blown it.
More candles in there, more pretty glowing Frannie-skin, and Ray realizes that all the "pretty" and "glowing" stuff has been completely in his head so far, he hasn't said any of it, so he starts saying it, running his fingers up and down her arms that go from soft to textured with goosebumps as he touches her, and talks, so beautiful, Frannie, so soft, you look so beautiful...
She smiles up at him, a bigger smile than before, and he slides the lacy thing off her shoulders and just runs his lips over her skin where the straps were. He's missed this so much, breathing on someone else's skin and feeling her shiver, breathing in her smell; he could do this for hours, not even kissing or biting, just the slightest whisper of mouth over skin, god.
"God", Frannie says, and pulls him backwards on top of her onto the bed. He catches himself on his elbows carefully so he doesn't land on her too hard, but she's still pressing up against him all over and that's great, that's yeah. It's been way too long, and he moans a little--embarrassing, but then she pulls his mouth down to hers and it doesn't matter any more. She's good at this, a pointy little tongue flickering hard into his mouth, a bit of teeth against his bottom lip, and he's thinking maybe it's been just as long for her as for him, because he can already feel her hips rocking up against him--that was usually something he had to work for.
"Mmmmmmmpgh," he says, and slides his face down, kissing her neck along the way, down into cleavage where it's very warm, and he's getting his fingers under the straps and pulling the lace down out of his way. Suddenly there are breasts, yeah, breasts are good, and he rubs his face and hair gently over her, feeling the hot sparks of nipples against his cheeks. She gets gaspy and finally just grabs his head and hauls on it until he's got his mouth where she wants it, and he gives out a breathy laugh--pushy is good, pushy means he's wanted, here. Her nipple crinkles up even tighter just from the breath and he moans again, which isn't embarrassing any more because she's doing it too, and he fits his mouth to her, flicks with a tongue tip and rolls and pulls and sucks, the tiniest sting of teeth, and she's rocking up against him hard and making noises that sound like they started out to be words but got bitten into sharp pieces on the way out of her mouth.
He's missed this, he's missed the taste and the feel and the smell and being good at it.
He pulls down on the lace some more with fingers and lips and she helps, arches up and wiggles out of it, and soon she's naked under him and he's going to make himself useful, here, because once he's inside her he's going to last about eleven seconds, maybe twelve if he makes himself think about Welsh naked. He nuzzles down her soft little belly, with a tongue hello to the navel that makes her shiver and giggle, and then he's into the dark curls, rubbing his nose around, loving the smell and the wiggliness of her, ruffling up the hair that had gotten all pressed down flat by her clothes.
He wouldn't mind taking his time here but she's bucking up to meet his mouth, and the noises she's making now have his name mixed in with something garbled that he thinks might mean hurry the fuck up, Ray. So he nudges down a little further, leading with his tongue until he's sliding into slippery saltiness, and, oh, yeah, there it is, and he flicks his tonguetip on her clit, delicately, he remembers this, and moves his thumb up to just above it, presses and circles so she's moved around under his tongue and it's not long before she's grinding herself into his mouth and making almost-pain sounds, but they're not pain sounds because she's grabbing the hell out of the sheets and going rigid all over and then unrigid, the opposite of rigid, limp and loose under him.
She just flops there for a while, breathing loud, then says, "Holy shit, Ray." Which is the nicest thing anyone has said to him for a while.
He scoots back up the sheets and gets an arm under her, and he's honestly not trying to hint, there, just saying hi, but she grins up at him and then runs her fingernails lightly down his chest, and whoa, Ray is with the program, Ray is ready to carry on.
She looks down and takes notice of this, and looks pleased about it and a little smug, and then takes his cock in her hand and just pets for a minute, slow and sweet, and Ray's trying to keep his mouth closed because that way he's just saying, "mmmmmmm," not making, like, scary chimp noises or something. Then she's gripping, going at it a little harder, and throbbing is happening, and he starts to feel like his cock weighs more than the whole rest of his body, because it's so hot, heat makes you heavier, that makes sense.
His mouth opens a little but he manages to keep the noises down to just "aaaahhhhh."
She rolls away from him and he tries to say no, but it comes out naaaaaaah, and she's just getting a condom out of the nightstand and rolling back, so that's okay.
She tears the wrapper off and tosses it over a shoulder into the dark somewhere, and the not-looking-for-a-trashcan thing is insanely sexy. Then she's rolling the rubber down on him and he notices that her hands are so small that it makes his dick look just huge in comparison, hah, that's a neat effect, and right then at that pretty fucking perfect moment is when he has to get Fraser in his head again, goddamnit, Fraser lying near him in the dark saying softly, "nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands," and fuck fuck fuck, go away.
But that talking in his head doesn't ruin what's going on, doesn't throw him off. Makes him harder. Which is maybe worse.
She pushes him onto his back and climbs on him, slides herself down slowly, hot and squeezing and her rainsmall hands on his chest, and she rocks gently for a while, so slow that he's lasting longer than he thought he could, but after a while she speeds up and she's clenching, god, that's good, Ray squeezes his eyes hard closed and shuts up the voice in his head and just concentrates on the clench and the hot and the herness and hereness of her, arches his hips up into her and he's coming, it's so very very good and tight and her and good and not what he wants, at all.
She slides off him, deals with cleanup, snugs back down next to him. He puts his arm around her and runs his fingers through her hair until she's out, snoring a little, which makes him smile. Then he lies there a long time, awake alone, watching the candles gutter.
In the morning she hauls out a selection of cereals for him to pick from, which is good--he would have panicked a little if she'd started cooking for him. Cereal is not "look how domestic I can be, in addition to being a hellcat at night!" Cereal is buddies. And she's wrapped up in a big lumpy chenille robe, not anything lacy, so it looks like she's sticking with--what she made this sound like it was going to be.
Ray's body feels great, relaxed and pretty pleased with itself, and his head is indescribably fucked up.
To the point where, when Frannie leans over the table after the fourth time he's said, "Hmm," to something she said, when she raps her knuckles on his forehead and says, "Hey, what's going on in there?" he tells her.
And he realizes halfway through what a completely dumbass, mean, rude thing that is to do, because, one, it's ridiculous, it makes him look like an idiot, a junior-high-crushing idiot, (oh, and a gay-crushing junior high idiot, that's the best part, don't forget, he is having a gay crush here, welcome to a new world where Ray now also wants guys he can't have) and two, he's talking about someone that Frannie's been wanting forever, before Ray was even around, and that's gotta hurt, even if Fraser never did anything, would never do anything with Ray; and three, uh, they were just fucking and that can't feel like a compliment, can it?
But he doesn't stop, because the damage is probably already done, from the look on her face, which is not happy. And because--it would be hard to stop, once he's started. It's just tumbling out of his mouth, he's had nobody to talk to, nobody he could talk to about this, and once he gets going it's like a firehose.
Frannie sits there, getting drenched with all this stupidity that he knows she doesn't want to hear. And when he's telling her--he can't believe he's telling her--about the poetry nights, about that one poetry night, she looks--startled at first, and then really sad.
God. Way to go, Ray. He puts his face in his hands for a minute. "Frannie," he says. "I'm sorry. I'm having some sort of -breakdown, or something. You were, you were great, the whole night was great, I don't know why I--he's not interested in, in anything like that, in me, I know that, you're great, I'm sorry, shutting up now."
He peeks through his fingers at her to make sure he hasn't made her cry at how completely fucking insulting he's being--"Thanks for the fuck! Thanks for breakfast! I'm obsessed with a guy!"
But she's just looking at him with her forehead crinkled up, a figuring-things-out look, a Frannie-at-the-computer look.
"Tell me those poems again," she says, and he does, miserably, but he pretty much owes her whatever she wants, now. And to his surprise she gets a little smile going.
"Fraser," she says. "Fraser said that. Fraser said that?"
"Yeah," he says, "but he didn't mean any, he wasn't--he'd run out of other things to recite, he--" and it isn't until he's said that out loud that he realizes how ridiculous it is. Fraser could have recited the RCMP manual, or the Chicago Penal code. Or War and Peace, probably.
"Huh," Ray says.
"Yeah," Frannie says. She reaches over, puts her hand on his, gives him a complicated smile.
"Ray," she says. "I'm not your sister anymore, okay, but I still get to tell you--you're kind of a moron."
"Yeah," Ray says. "I really kind of am." And he squeezes her hand, and sneaks a look at his watch, and tries to figure out if it's too late at night in the Territories for a phone call.
End When It Is With Your Body by spuffyduds
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