Part 1 of the Revelations series; Parts 2 and 3 are Morning and Bodie's Morning
Doyle stood looking down at the practise floor, back stiff and hazel eyes snapping with fury as he watched Williams and Bodie circling each other like stalking cats. Bodie was stripped to the waist, his smooth, pale-skinned torso slick with sweat, and his dark blue eyes never left those of the other man as he feinted and then attacked with deadly intent. Williams wasn't fast enough to dodge that murderous rush, and he went down hard; but Ray's teeth snapped together as he saw the way his hand managed to slide across Bodie's ridged stomach and down one thigh as he twisted out from under him. Bodie rolled lithely to his feet, dancing away easily as his opponent took a kick at his head, and Ray's heart lurched at the delighted grin on his partner's face as Williams scrambled up and they faced off again.
Dammit, Bodie, you stupid git, can't you see what he's doing, he thought furiously, barely managing to keep himself from yelling it aloud. Sometimes he wondered how the hell anyone as inherently sensual as Bodie couldn't seem to see what was in front of his face; he'd known the minute he walked into the briefing room two weeks ago and seen Williams standing beside his partner that the seconded MI6 agent had designs on him. They had been bent over a map, shoulder to shoulder, heads almost touching... and the surge of rage and jealousy had almost made him throw up. That was when he finally, finally acknowledged the reality of the undercurrent in their relationship that - be honest - had existed from the very first day they met. Women came and went in his life, affairs and encounters he genuinely enjoyed... but the truth was, he wanted nothing else but to be with Bodie, any way he could have him.
And now this smarmy, smooth-skinned pretty boy had turned up and set his sights on the tall, dark-haired ex-SAS sergeant who belonged to him. He bared his teeth in a silent snarl that would have sent villains screaming as Williams lunged at Bodie, getting under his guard to slam him to the ground and pin him down bodily; but it was the way the man suddenly went boneless, sinking his weight through his hips as they lay wedged together, that finally made him move. He was down the stairs before he even thought about it, blood throbbing in his ears as he clenched his fists so hard it hurt. The pain sobered him; if he was going in there, he'd better be cool, or else everyone in the building would hear about this, and he wasn't so far gone that he didn't know what that could mean to their jobs.
However, even as he opened the door Bodie was in the process of throwing Williams off him, and there was a set to his shoulders that Ray recognised. At some level, even if his intellect hadn't acknowledged it, he knew he was in some kind of danger; and he reacted viciously out of sheer instinct, rolling to his feet and backing away as the MI6 man lay gasping for breath at the ferocity of the blow.
"Nice move, mate," Ray said quietly, and Bodie rounded on him with the suddenness of a striking cobra, hands curled into claws that were ready to rip and kill. He held his hands up in surrender as he met the burning stare levelly - and something moved in the depths of those dark-blue eyes as Bodie relaxed and shifted his weight to stand open and vulnerable. In a split instant, everything changed, and Ray knew he wasn't the only one who'd been in denial - and suddenly he knew exactly what to do.
"I think you've had enough exercise for the day, son," he purred, letting his eyes flick over his partner's naked chest speculatively. "Come on, I'm buying."
"In that case, I'm drinking," was Bodie's drawled reply, and his mobile lips curved in a lazy smile as he looked at his partner through startlingly long eyelashes. "I'll just give Paul a hand, I think I hit him a bit hard."
Ray looked over at the kneeling man still clutching at his stomach, eyes narrowing as he saw the open fury in his reddened face.
""I can do that," he said softly. "Go put some clothes on, I'll meet you in the foyer."
"Don't be long." As he moved past, their hips brushed together, and it took everything Ray had not to turn into the contact and press closer. He tore his eyes away from his partner's perfect backside, turning back to look at Williams as the man drew himself upright to stand loose-limbed and alert in the centre of the practise mat. They glared at each other in silence until the door closed behind Bodie, and then Williams gave a snort of laughter.
"So, just like that. I almost had him, you know."
Ray's smile was feral as he drawled,
"Oh yeah, 'course you did. He really enjoyed having you squirming on top of him. That's why he almost gutted you just now."
He shrugged out of his jacket, kicking off his shoes and taking the half-dozen steps necessary to stand just out of arms' reach of the other man. The memory of him lying over Bodie, hips grinding, set the blood pounding in his temples, and his eyes smouldered dangerously.
"I told you to back off," he said softly. "I warned you."
Williams bared his teeth in a sneer, his eyes wandering down Ray's body to linger pointedly on his groin, and Ray struggled against the urge to go for his throat.
"Looks like I went for the wrong partner," he commented, then grinned mirthlessly. "He wasn't tagged, Doyle. There were no marks on him, in case you didn't notice while you were eyeing him off. Fair game."
"And just why," purred Ray, "would I want to mark that skin? I don't need to tag him. I know he's mine, Williams, and so does he." He flexed his hands carefully, watching for the opening he knew he would get as he finished,
"And no slimy little public school nancy boy is ever going to get anywhere near him."
Williams went white, launching himself with an inarticulate snarl of fury, but Ray was ready for him; he hit him once, a hard, brutal punch directly to the midriff, his full body weight behind it as well as three years' worth of pent-up frustration. The MI6 agent crumpled in silence, doubled in half with the intensity of the pain; Ray stood over him like an avenging angel until he was sure the man was still breathing, then bent to grab him by the hair and forced him to meet his eyes.
"If I ever again see you with any part of your body within a foot of him, I'll break your bloody neck. Understood?"
He waited until the tear-filled eyes closed in assent, then released him and stood up, retrieving his shoes and jacket.
"Remember to turn the lights out when you leave," he said casually as he walked to the door, "we're on an economy drive at the moment."
He slammed it behind him, leaning against the wall for a moment and closing his eyes in relief. It wasn't the first time he'd been that rough with someone, but it was certainly the first time he'd ever had a personal reason for it. And what a reason...
He arched up off the wall and all but ran for the stairs, his heart thumping painfully. It was one thing to beat the shit out of another man for making a move on his partner; but he'd declared himself by doing it, and now, he had to make it work.
I didn't imagine it, he told himself firmly as he took the stairs three at a time. I know him. I know what I saw. I know he wants it too...
He reached the top of the final flight, looking down into the foyer to see Bodie standing by the main desk, chatting to Freddie the doorman; suddenly his partner turned as if summoned, dark eyes glittering as he raked Ray from head to foot with a searing glance that set every nerve in his body screaming. Time without number, he'd seen him look at women exactly like that; now, finally, he understood why they all fell at his feet.
He descended the final few steps slowly, sauntering over to join them, his eyes never leaving Bodie's; as he stopped beside him, it was all he could do not to put out a hand to touch. They had to be alone, and quickly, and words needed to be said before anything else happened...
"You took your time," Bodie chided lightly, but his eyes were flame.
"Sorry - I made a bit of a mess in the gym. Had to clean it up."
The flames leapt higher, and Bodie smiled slowly.
"That calls for a drink. Come on, you said you were buying. See you, Freddie," Bodie tossed over his shoulder as he took Ray's elbow and hustled him gently toward the main door. He shook free automatically, but deliberately walked close enough that their hips bumped with almost every step, waiting until they were clear of the building before saying quietly,
"You don't really want to go to a pub, do you?"
"You don't really want a drink, do you?" Bodie's hand brushed the outside of his thigh, and Ray swallowed hard against the surge of blood to his groin. He was beginning to get very uncomfortable in these bloody jeans...
"Oh, I think I probably do," he replied feelingly. "I think we both probably need one."
"Probably," was the amused response. " Look, we've got an early start tomorrow. Come on, my place is closer, and I just bought a new bottle of Scotch."
"Is there any point?"
Bodie's voice was a purr of sound, and Ray looked sideways at him, holding his challenging, heavy-lidded stare unblinking for a long count of ten.
"I suppose not," he finally replied, and the full, pouting lips curved slightly.
"My car, then." He started to move down the stairs, and Ray followed thoughtfully. They got into the silver Capri without another word, driving in silence for a few minutes before he spoke again.
"You're taking this very calmly."
He watched that secret little smile twitch his partner's mouth again as he concentrated on his driving.
"I think I've been expecting it for years," he said quietly. "Haven't you?"
He glanced over briefly, his eyes intent, and Ray propped his chin on one fist and stared out the window.
"Yeah," he murmured. "Yeah, I suppose I have."
They drove the rest of the way in comfortable silence, occasionally glancing at one another, and it wasn't until they were climbing the stairs into Bodie's apartment building that Ray finally said what he was thinking.
"Cowley's not going to like this."
"He's not going to know, is he." Bodie pressed the button for the lift, turning to face him square on, barely three inches away; Ray just looked at him, half-strangled by the roiling in his stomach as he reacted to his sheer animal magnetism. God, he was beautiful...
"Besides, the cunning old sod probably suspects anyway. He's known us for a long time, Ray, and he's had a fairly chequered past himself. Nothing surprises him."
"It surprised me," muttered Ray, following him into the lift as the doors opened.
"Is that why it took you two weeks to admit it?"
"You knew?" Ray's voice climbed a notch.
"I knew you were pissed off about something," was the calm reply. "I wasn't sure what until you turned up in the gym, and then the penny dropped."
The lift reached his floor, and as they walked side by side down the hall he added softly,
"It surprised me too, mate. Really." He touched the back of Ray's hand lightly, almost in apology. "I've been telling myself I was imagining things."
"Yeah. Me too."
Bodie unlocked his front door and went in, leaving him to close it as he moved into the living room, and Ray watched intently as he shrugged out of his jacket and shoulder holster before going to the sideboard and fishing out two crystal tumblers. He had to bend over to do it, and Ray's breath caught as close-fitting pants stretched to tearing point over the tight, rounded backside. He'd never let himself notice before how long Bodie's legs were... and that rollneck jumper showed off more of the sleekly muscled torso underneath than it hid. A bottle of Cowley's favourite Scotch sat on the silver tray - well, the old bastard had good taste, he thought, amused, no wonder Bodie drank it - and he grinned as he walked over to the window, removing his jacket and holster as well before opening the blinds and staring out at the lights while he listened to the clink of glasses.
The well-appointed apartment was quiet, double-glazing blocking any traffic noise that might have been present, and to his own ears his breathing sounded loud, harsh. His heart was thumping so hard it seemed impossible Bodie couldn't hear it; but his partner only came over silently and handed him the drink, then leaned against the windowframe facing him. His dark blue eyes were brilliant, the powerful body loose and relaxed, and eventually Ray said,
"So. What happens now?"
Bodie shrugged fluidly, his pantherish grace making the movement a work of art as he pushed his sleeves up to his elbows.
"Depends. What do you want to happen?"
Doyle's hazel eyes were intent as they bored into his.
"You've done this before."
It wasn't a question, but Bodie shook his head silently, taking a swig of his drink before answering.
"No, but I've seen it happen. In the merchant navy, and then the army. It's surprising how easy it is to get really attached to another man, even if it isn't the way you're wired. It happens more often than the brass care to admit, and anyone in the services knows it. Most times, it never goes beyond really close friendship, but for some that isn't enough - and even then it's totally exclusive, one to one. It's only when you get bullies or perverts happening that things get out to the public, and then everyone suffers."
"You were only a kid when you joined the navy," Ray observed shrewdly. "You don't exactly crack mirrors now, but you must've been a pretty young thing. Did no-one ever try it on with you?"
"A few times." His grin was wolfish. "I'm Liverpool Irish, mate. How far d'you think they got?"
Ray blinked, then laughed helplessly, taking a large swallow of Scotch as Bodie continued,
"I like women, I always have, I like the way they feel and smell and the way they move. But I spend more time with you than I do with any woman... and I like that too."
Ray's breath caught as one big, gentle hand reached out to flatten possessively on his belly.
"I don't want that to change, Ray. I've got no problem with this. It goes one way, straight to you... but I know it needs a major change of perspective. Whatever you decide is fine with me."
Ray looked deep into the dark blue eyes with their incredibly long lashes, feeling the blood pounding in his gut, and managed to grate out,
"That little shit Williams was all over you like a rash, Bodie. How could you not know he was after you?"
"I suspected. You know me, Ray, I'm a bit touchy-feely myself, so I tend not to get over-concerned when someone else is. I realised you didn't like him, but you didn't say anything, so I let it go. I wasn't really sure until he started groping me in the gym - and you saw what I did to him.'
Bodie's fingers moved subtly; a wicked smile curved his mobile lips as Ray twitched in reaction, and he continued,
"What did you do to him?"
"Nothing he didn't deserve," Ray growled. "I'd already warned him what would happen if he didn't stay away from you. I left him lying in a heap with tears streaming down his face."
"You warned him off me?" Bodie's smile was beatific, and he flexed his hand suggestively.
"Three days after I got back. I saw it straight away..."
He lifted his free hand hesitantly to stroke his partner's face, and Bodie nudged into it like a cat, his eyes closing briefly.
"It just took me that long to accept it. I couldn't stand the thought that he might touch you," he admitted huskily. "Or worse, that you might actually want him to..."
Bodie's hand slid firmly around his ribcage to the small of his back, drawing him closer with easy strength until they were touching from chest to hip, and his eyes were almost liquid with emotion.
"No-one but you, Ray," he whispered. "Not ever."
It was so easy to lean closer, to curl his fingers in the hair at the back of the dark head and draw him into a tentative, almost delicate kiss; but Bodie had ideas of his own, and Ray shuddered in reaction as the sensual mouth opened under his, tongue darting urgently against his lips. So many times, he'd seen Bodie kissing girlfriends either hello, goodbye or with serious intent, and never let himself think about what it would be like to be on the receiving end... but now all the memories came crashing back, and he responded passionately, pushing his aching groin against Bodie's hard thigh and wrapping one arm around his neck to hold him close. It was so easy...
When the kiss finally broke, they were both breathing heavily; Bodie's eyes were huge and glittering, and he said huskily,
"Ray. I need to know something." He shifted his weight, letting their hips notch together intimately, and Ray was immediately and intensely aware that his darkly beautiful partner was as aroused as he was. Just as well... God, why does this feel so right...
"What," he growled, trailing a finger from Bodie's ear to the corner of his mouth, smiling fondly as he made a nip at it with his teeth.
"What upset you so much that you still went after Williams, even after I'd already flattened him?"
Doyle's jaw hardened at the memory of the spiteful, jealous tirade Williams had thrown at him, and it was with an effort that he kept the tension out of his hands.
"You were fair game, he said, because you weren't 'tagged'. Like you were some kind of pet."
"Oh yeah," drawled his partner sarcastically, "I'm just a fluffy shivering rabbit, that's why he ended up groaning on the floor."
"He said if you were mine, I should have marked you. Shall I?"
He ran his fingers across Bodie's pouting lips, then hooked them in the neck of the lightweight jumper to draw it away from his throat so he could fasten his teeth in the firm white flesh; Bodie made a noise halfway between a gasp and a groan, and he shuddered from head to foot.
"Whatever you want," was the whispered reply. "Just do it soon... "
-- THE END --