The Ojuka Effect
"Suspended. Two weeks without pay. Use the time to reflect, 3.7. Why it is we have Controllers and orders? Why it's important that all operatives follow them as directed?"
"Doyle's one of our own," Bodie felt compelled to remind Alpha One angrily.
"Yes, and he knows the risks and dangers, same as you. He's prepared for them. It's his job." Cowley's voice conveyed irritation and indifference.
Provoked, "We're expendable," Bodie retorted bitterly.
"Exactly." Cowley picked up the phone and his look dismissed 3.7.
Bodie argued no further; he turned and left. It wasn't Cowley's tone or look of dismissal that had Bodie hastening out of the office as though burnt. It was his own sudden realisation that Doyle's well being was first and foremost in his mind.
The CI5 agent left the building, then the car park and headed away from CI5, away from home, away from his thoughts.
He drove in a northerly direction with no real destination in mind. That way, he figured, he was assured of a long drive with less traffic. He put the job and home behind him but found it much more difficult to escape his thoughts.
He had always remained detached when needed, which, oddly enough, had been most of his life. So why now? There had been many more dangerous assignments. Ops where both of them had come close to losing their lives. So what made this assignment different?
The fact that Alpha One thought them expendable was not new information, and up until today that concept had not really bothered him all that much. It wasn't even his expendability that was irksome, only Doyle's. At no moment could he now envision leaving Doyle to fate's chance, not if he could affect the outcome.
He acknowledged, somewhat belatedly, that this line of thinking had been hovering on the fringes of his thoughts for quite some time. Today proved that those kind of thoughts were no longer on a subconscious level. Usually they had been sublimated or ignored, but now, evidently, they had moved up to a conscious level, controlling his actions. Damn, now he was forced to confront them.
Bloody Ray Doyle.
He wasn't even here and he was causing him to analyse and confront. But what the hell was he confronting anyway? His mind wanted to rebel against this avenue of thought and his stomach aided the interruption by growling its hunger. Bodie didn't notice either. His mind was in turmoil, his thoughts askew.
Upon review, Bodie wasn't so much stunned at his actions, but at the implications of what they meant. Cowley's orders had been paramount up until the moment he knew that Doyle was in real jeopardy. No contemplation had been needed, no moralising dilemma, no decision, just what was. Doyle's life was the most important aspect of his world.
And that realisation shook Bodie's foundation. He would be the first to admit that Doyle was the finest partner he'd ever had. He would be the first to admit that Doyle had become his best mate, but when had he become his whole world?
Because, that's what a blatant disregard of direct orders meant, that Doyle was now the primary focus in his world. Just where did that leave him?
Thoughts too difficult to wrap around, Bodie forced his concentration back onto the road. Taking stock, he found he was hours north of London and had no real desire to make the return trip to his flat. He located a hotel off the M1 near Lutterworth and procured accommodations for the evening. Still wanting to avoid his tumultuous thoughts, he headed for the nearest pub with the intention of eating then getting royally pissed.
Aim achieved and barely able to stay upright, Bodie ambled back to his room. He thought of stopping by the bog but was too tired to go further than his bed and flopped down. He was asleep before his head had finished making a dent in the pillow.
Morning didn't bring answers, only more questions.
Bodie shaved and showered to replace the fuzzy-headed, muzzy-mouthed hangover sensation with a slightly more human feeling. After a meal at the pub, he thought of driving back and found himself still reluctant to do so and opted for staying put. He paid for another night before collecting his running togs from the boot. All the while keeping his clamouring thoughts at bay.
The hotel was situated on the outskirts of the town of Lutterworth and Bodie stuck to the non-populated area during his run. He found ironic solace during the run through the local cemetery. No longer able to avoid his thoughts, Bodie let them queue up to be sorted.
When had Doyle become more important than his duty to CI5? More important than even his own life? How the hell did this happen? He had erected walls for just this reason.
Bodie thought over his life, the lack of love and commitment that riddled his existence. He knew he had remained committed to every job while he did it and when he encountered doubt, he left. He had felt very committed to CI5 and the Old Man, but that paled in comparison to Doyle.
When faced with the crisis of resolve between duty to CI5 and Doyle's life there had never been a conflict of conscience or doubt where his choice would lie; it was with Ray Doyle, would always be Ray Doyle. It hadn't always been that way, but that was past, it would be that way from this point on. Bodie faced it now without alarm.
Never had he even felt such commitment in his life. Never to family, women, or duty. Now, in one compact package, it was a commitment of a lifetime, of that he was absolutely sure. Odd how that one fact seemed to be accepted without further reproach or trepidation. Doyle was now one of those that he would protect beyond the call of duty or personal survival.
Bodie took a shuddering breath. He recognised the significance of these thoughts; he had let Doyle in and now feared his loss. Something he had hoped to avoid all his life.
He was faced with a decision and he wasn't sure how it had got to this. They were a fiery team from the beginning. Chalk and Cheese, Cowley's words, but more like vinegar and oil -- just didn't mix. But successful op after successful op and his misgivings about the copper had faded and in its place a trust had grown. A trust he had taken for granted until Marikka.
The betrayal he had felt at Ray's hands had been almost crippling. Cowley's seeming defection had been expected and had held no great significance. CI5 was always placed before the agent in peril, but Doyle's apparent culpability had made him reckless. Only after hearing the tapes Doyle made had he realised that his partner had never doubted him and that was the only reason he'd stayed with CI5.
When he had been forced into a similar position, it had been repugnant and had only been accomplished with the utmost reluctance. Doyle had eventually understood the situation that he had been forced to participate in and its conclusion that resulted in driving that Holly bitch out of their lives. He had never examined his immediate antipathy to the woman; he had only known that she wasn't the right sort for his partner.
He thrust into his conscious thought what he hadn't allowed in before, that his doubts about Cowley first started after the Hanish impostor op. Alpha One had been willing for them to be terminated during the execution of the assignment as well. The fact that he had relented when directly confronted was part of the reason he had continued with CI5. The other reason had been Doyle himself. He had realised then that he was in CI5 as long as his partner was.
In this new reality he had forced himself into, he knew this was more than a mere partnership or best mates, they had passed that. This new feeling was more ... what? Like the ancient brotherhood of warriors? Closer than brothers on the field of battle.
His rational side told him they were already that way -- they'd die for each other, live for each other. Such honestly fuelled further honesty and forced him to admit that he craved Doyle's company.
All his free time was usually spent with his moody, snarky partner. Double dates had been set up just to maximise his time with Doyle even more. Sex with their birds happened in the same room. His orgasms had always seemed more intense after watching Doyle's body arched in climax.
Bodie wasn't sure that what he was feeling was all that brotherly. That thought froze him in his mental tracks. When had double dating been about Doyle? It should have been about getting his end away. Panic set in and propelled the self-proclaimed loner out and into the closest pub for the food and noise; anything to keep these new disturbing thoughts at bay.
Bodie repeated the previous night's drinking and eventually made it back to his room. He made it to the bog this time and remembered to drink water to lessen the hangover effect in the morning. Sleep came quickly to his relief.
Bodie woke with a gasp, remembering clearly the green eyes that had startled him even within his dream. The green eyes that didn't belong to a fantasy bird, but to his very male partner.
What was Doyle doing in his dream? Why would he superimpose him over some bird? It could well be just a reaction to his perplexing thoughts of yesterday. His hand automatically gravitated downward to his hardened shaft. An erection not dimmed by the identity of his dream lover. The eyes had been directly over him; he could remember the press of the lean frame against him. Not a female anatomy, but a male body that he had recognised as Ray.
The dream recall didn't diminish his erection -- only seemed to fuel it to further hardness. Still caught on the edge of his dream world, Bodie continued it with his conscious thought and allowed the dream Doyle free reign within his mind. His fingers caressed, alternating between his cock and balls. He felt the throbbing heat expand in his hand. The dream Doyle rubbed his body up and down along his groin. Green eyes bored into his, seeing past the surface, and Bodie revelled in the wantonness. He spilled over the edge in hard pulses that left him sated, tired and without rational thoughts.
Those hit him the following morning, when he woke with dried semen on his hand, belly and sheets. He smiled, pleased until he remembered the image that had sent him over the edge. He jumped out of bed and quickly entered the shower to wash away all evidence, but to his dismay, he found his thoughts unruly.
He could remember the imagined feel of his dream image and was startled at the reactionary tingle deep in his groin. In an effort to ignore it, Bodie made the shower water cooler and he handled himself more roughly to drive away the arousal. He finished his morning ablutions with a focused intent, designed to eliminate extraneous thinking. All thought of further contemplation was lost to the hammering on his hotel room door.
Expecting housekeeping, Bodie was surprised to find his partner standing there instead.
"Doyle. What are you doing here?"
"I could ask you the same thing." Doyle entered past Bodie, not waiting for an invitation. "What in the bloody hell are you doing here in the back of nowhere? You just took off and what?.... drove until you ran out of petrol?"
Bodie closed the door automatically. He watched his partner wander about the small room, casing the place as though he expected more.
Doyle finally settled for the only chair. "So what the hell are you doing here, Bodie?" he asked again.
"Suspended for insubordination. So I just went for a drive." Bodie lifted his shoulders in an uncaring movement.
"Without your overnight bag and your regular shaving kit? That's your emergency gear from the boot." Doyle pointed to the shaving kit visible from where he sat.
Bodie sat on the unmade bed with a shrug. "Cowley said to think. Guess I am."
"I see, you only think when ordered. No wonder I'm the brains of the outfit."
"It's what I let you believe," Bodie quipped automatically then looked at his partner truly bewildered. "How'd you find me?"
"Murphy recognised your motor on his way back from that op up north past Rotherham. Thought you were on another assignment."
Bodie stared at his partner, trying to find some semblance of his dream image. With a sudden fascination, he discovered it was there, a sexy quality that was both sensual and erotic.
Doyle was staring back with confusion. "Bodie, are you all right?" He dropped all pretence and asked with his serious tone, "What the hell did the Cow say anyway?"
"Didn't follow orders, did I. I'm supposed to dwell on why I should. We're expendable and I should learn to live with it."
"Well, we already knew that. It was clear last year on the Tinkerbell op. He was willing to throw us to the wolves over the Molner case as well. What happened this time? This one seemed fairly straightforward for Cowley." Doyle had been treated at Casualty and missed Cowley's briefing with 3.7.
"Only because I didn't follow orders, mate, direct orders. I knew Cowley and the backup wouldn't arrive in time and I was right. So I moved in alone."
"Good thing, was enough of a distraction for me to get the upper hand. Still had to burn me wrists to do it."
"Yeah, well, Cowley didn't see it that way. Just me flouting his authority. He didn't even understand why until I spelled it out for him." That memory got up Bodie's nose afresh.
"What was that?"
"Couldn't let you die, mate," Bodie clarified.
Doyle nodded in understanding. "We watch each other's backs." 4.5 studied his partner, he knew there was still something more. He opted for the direct method. "So, what else?"
3.7 watched his partner in return as he wondered how much truth he should share, then figured fuck it. He owed Ray the truth or as much as he had figured out. Whatever the end result, it would affect him as well.
"Your life was at risk. It didn't matter to Cowley. It did matter to me. Enough for me to disobey direct orders. Enough to loose my job without a qualm of doubt. Enough to put my life on the line."
Doyle knew that his partner was not teasing. He knew that this was probably one of the more serious moments in their years together. He was not prepared for the emotion that welled up inside.
"I believe I can say the same."
Bodie broke eye contact and let his head fall into his hands. He rubbed his temples, trying to make sense of this stuff, but was still coming up with conflicting thoughts.
"Never doubted that." Bodie knew that was true. Push come to shove and Doyle would throw out the rulebook.
"Okay then." Doyle thought that should be it, but his partner was still tense.
Wearily, Bodie shook his head, "Nah, you don't understand, but it's probably better that way. I've always avoided entanglements."
Doyle might have left it like that if he hadn't seen that lost and forlorn look before Bodie shuttered it away.
"Bodie," Ray waited until he was sure that his partner was listening. "I'm thinking that there's more going on here and that we really need to talk this one through."
Face blank, voice neutral, Bodie responded with the right amount of curiosity. "Talk what out?"
Doyle leapt up, frustration seeping into his voice, "Bloody hell, Bodie, about whatever happened at the end of the Ojuka op or why Cowley was so furious. Or why you did a bunk without calling and you didn't even check up on me, which is out of character. So, Bodie, choose one, I'm easy." He sat back down with apparent calm, except for a throbbing vein at his temple.
Green eyes flashing impatience, a scowl that had frightened many a grass into talking and Bodie couldn't help but smile. Doyle was fun to look at even at his most irate. He found he had to curb the desire to go over and give him a cuddle.
And there it was. His mouth went dry as it dawned on him why Ray was so important; he was in love with him.
That's why Ray was the dream lover and why orders could mean little. Lots of little things fell into place. He stood and walked to the loo, closing the door behind him. He flushed the toilet and ran the sink water, which he splashed over his face to give himself more time. More time to put into perspective this startling discovery.
What Bodie wasn't sure about was what to do now, where to go from here. If Cowley ever realised the why, he'd be out of CI5. If Doyle actually realised, he'd be minus a mate and that was worse. So, what were his options?
Quit, spill his guts to Doyle or keep the status quo. He didn't know which way to go. A pounding on the door broke into his reverie.
"You fall in?" Doyle questioned, his voice half sarcastic, half concerned.
Bodie opened the door with a smile. "To weak to move, so hungry I am. Pub down the road does a good bangers and mash." He moved across the room so that he didn't have to meet Doyle's eyes.
Doyle knew that confidence sharing was at an end, for now. "Lager okay?"
"Just the way you like it, old son." Bodie grabbed his jacket and opened the door with panache and style. Locking the door behind him, his eyes locked onto the moving curves as he followed Ray to the car park.
He'd watched that bum for years, always enjoying the ease of movement. His normal gait was one of sensual grace, always beckoning him to follow. He could pinpoint the moment when he engaged in actively watching, but always put it down to keeping track of his trouble magnet partner.
And he was trouble. He just hadn't envisioned exactly how much and to whom until now.
He was hard just thinking about Ray's bum. He ached to reach out and cup the cheeks that were taut against the jean fabric. He wanted to drive himself deep within, wanted to ravage his mouth and tangle his fingers in the mass of curls. He knew he was more than lost.
They ate, drank and played darts before walking back to Bodie's room replete and a tad tipsy.
"You gettin' a room?" Bodie pointed to the booking counter.
"Nah, your bed is big enough for three, let alone the two of us," Doyle answered reasonably.
Bodie didn't really want to share a room with Doyle so soon upon discovering his changed feelings but he knew that objecting would only raise questions that his ferret of a partner would want answered.
"Too cheap?" Bodie retorted as he turned his key in lock.
"Thrifty. No sense wasting funds."
"It's my dough we're wasting," Bodie reminded his partner. He flipped on the tube, switching channels, hoping for a game.
"See, good sense, dough's already been spent."
Doyle flopped on the bed and Bodie made do with the chair as they watched second runs of shows they never cared for the first time.
Bodie used the loo before shedding his trousers and leaving them folded over the back of the chair.
"Shove over, mate. Give me room. It's my bed, ya know."
Doyle, half asleep, rolled over to one side as he kicked off his clothes into a discarded heap on the floor. Bodie half wanted to get up and fold the clothes, knowing what they'd look like in the morning, but was afraid that Ray would steal more of the bed.
Sleep claimed both easily. An uncomfortable mattress kept tired bodies vying for the perfect position. When found, both dropped off into the deeper sleep realm.
Bodie came awake slowly, feeling content until he realised that he was completely entangled in Ray's limbs. Ray's head was stuck into the side of his neck as his curls were caught in his beard stubble
He didn't move.
Bodie recognised immediately that this was the reason he felt content. Doyle was in his arms, complaisant and uncomplaining. Of course, he was still asleep. Bodie ignored that as he stored away this memory for a future fantasy. He hugged the body closer and closed his eyes, letting the drowsy feeling take control.
Bodie knew he must have fallen back asleep because their position was different. Ray's thigh was draped across his lower torso and the bend of Ray's knee was pressed against his manhood. Said manhood, trapped in the crack provided, filled and exceeded its usual morning proportions.
He was unable to escape without incurring possible bodily harm or alerting Doyle to the perilous position, to his partner's embarrassment or even anger.
Bodie remained as still as he could. The desire to arch against his confines was great but he exerted all his concentration into keeping still.
He was shocked into a complete frozen state as the pressure surrounding his cock increased and a muffled voice with evil overtones rasped, "You've found yourself in a precarious or even dangerous position, mate."
Bodie tried to clear his throat but his voice was still froggy sounding. "Lumpy mattress. We must have tossed about a great deal seeking a comfortable position."
"Seems I found one. What about you, mate, you comfortable?"
"Been more comfortable." Bodie couldn't read Ray's tone, couldn't fathom a twig what his partner was up to.
Ray squeezed his knee joint and felt Bodie's erection twitch. "Unless I miss my guess, you appear a bit randy."
"Morning erection and all. Doesn't help much, you pressing against it." Bodie's voice tried for nonchalant, but it came out even more strangled sounding.
"Think I helped it a lot. I'm sure it's doubled in size. Larger even when you were last with Susie, that double date in Soho."
"Well, what do you expect, squeezing it and all. Of course it reacts, not dead you know." Bodie didn't know if he was more frustrated or exasperated.
Ray chuckled evilly, "Definitely not dead." He pressed down harder as he squeezed and was rewarded by more swelling and a groan. Ray repeated the actions several more times.
It was a full minute before Bodie realised that his pants were down around his knees and he was skin to skin with Ray. He bit back another groan and tried for anger.
"What the hell are you doing, Ray?"
"Testing the waters."
Bodie became angry then. "Just winding me up, are you?" He made an effort to pull away only to have the hold on his prick more established. "Okay, so you got me going, leave off, now."
Instead of Ray releasing his hold, he shifted closer to Bodie and pressed his leaking erection against Bodie's hip.
"I'm in this as well. I want to do something about it together."
Bodie said nothing, just pulled Ray up on top of his body and let their cocks align naturally. They bucked and thrust and carved out an ancient rhythm until their bellies were splashed with their mingled essences.
Bodie remained silent, just holding Ray in place, committing it all to memory.
Sun and a full bladder woke Bodie but he was loath to move, Ray was still within his arms and he really wanted to keep him there. The biggest unknown - he had no idea what his moody partner would be like now.
His stirring must have roused Ray, for he stretched full out before he padded off to the loo. Bodie stared after him, his lack of reaction to waking in a clinch had him puzzled. He quickly kicked off the pants strangling his knees and waited by the door for Doyle to finish.
Bodie closed the door and rested his head against the wall. He needed to cool off his expectations. More than likely, Ray would be dressed and ready to start back. He rinsed off his face then used the flannel to wipe off the dried semen from his belly. Proof it wasn't all a dream.
Taking a deep breath, he re-entered the room to find his partner sitting up in bed, obviously naked under the sheet.
Doyle patted the empty side of the bed as he said, "Let's talk."
Bodie knew it wasn't all his fault, but he prepared himself for almost anything. Forgetting his own nakedness, he moved to the bed and shifted himself under the offered sheet.
Doyle asked softly, "Did this have anything to do with yesterday?"
"I didn't start this, Doyle."
"Yeah, but you didn't knock my block off, either."
Bodie shrugged. "It's only natural..."
"Natural to let your male partner keep your prick trapped, then burst an orgasm harder than I can remember doing?"
"Yeah, something like that." Bodie hoped that his loquacious partner would rationalise it out for the both of them. His hopes were in vein.
"Don't think so, mate, I'm not a bird."
"Know that, never had a moment's confusion." Bodie didn't want to offer any more than necessary. Doyle's silence and apparent acceptance prompted another line of thought. "You've done this before." It was a statement, not a question.
"Yeah, art school was a place to experiment. Did a lot of that, I did. Scientist at heart."
"Mad scientist, more like."
"Have my moments." Doyle cocked his head as he directed his gaze back to his partner's eyes, "And you?"
"Some, in Africa, for relief mostly. Some developed relationships over there, but I learned early on to avoid those entanglements."
"Helping a mad scientist, seems like." Bodie might feel besotted but he wasn't stupid. More than like, this was a lark for his partner. He knew he had to tread carefully.
"So it was a one-off? A release of tension created by Ojuka? Huh, Bodie?" Doyle recognised that his partner was about to erect his wall and knew a direct question would keep the door open at least.
"You're the one that said testing the waters," Bodie threw right back.
"Not for a one-off." Doyle took his gaze from the revealing outline of Bodie's genitals and aimed it at his face. "Are we entangled?"
Bodie shrugged eloquently. "Wasn't expecting this. You came in under the radar. You're strong and capable, not like a bird, but I catch myself protecting you. I never stopped to wonder why until it was in direct opposition to orders."
Doyle started to interrupt but realised that the wall was down and his partner was being honest. He kept his mouth shut.
"Did it instinctively before yesterday. Now, I know I won't follow an order if it's going to lead to your death."
"And this?" Doyle reached out with his hand and cupped the swell that his eyes kept returning to. The reaction was instantaneous as he felt the prick and sacs fill.
"No one-off for me, mate. It's an entanglement." Bodie's breath was hardly steady.
"I believe I can say the same." Doyle let his honest feelings show on his face as his hand moved from the sheet covered crotch to the smooth bear chest.
Bodie closed his eyes, savouring the exploration of Ray's fingers. They didn't remain on his chest long. After teasing each nipple, the hand resumed its wanderings downward, this time under the sheet.
His prick in Ray's hand felt as natural as anything that had come before this day. Ray seemed to know how to turn him on better than he knew himself, then Bodie found himself unable to think at all. A warm, moist cavern engulfed his cock and a nose snuffled his balls. He wanted to hold back, to make it last longer, but Ray stole his control. He placed him at the brink and held him there for a few extended seconds then sent him cresting over.
Bodie's guttural groan of, "Ray," was enough of a reward for Doyle.
With a new freedom unleashed within Bodie, he rolled over and explored every centimetre of Ray's skin, every follicle available to him between his neck to groin. He mouthed each testicle independently, then both together. Then, when Ray's thrashing body seemed unable to take more, Bodie swallowed Ray's swollen shaft deep into his throat. Working his tongue and throat muscles as he'd been taught as a merc, Bodie put his all into his effort to please his partner.
Bunching muscles alerted Bodie that orgasm was imminent and he pulled back just enough to swallow without choking. Doyle collapsed much like a wet noodle and Bodie was more than content.
Sleep quickly claimed the sated men.
Bodie woke without trepidation. The only unknown this time was life, but Ray's part in it was certain. Just as he knew when his partner had his back, he knew this. He realised that the matrix of his life was interwoven with Doyle's. A complex pattern that bound them tightly without visible bindings, and Bodie accepted in a bemused wonderment that this decision, once made, was for the rest of his days. How he could react this way was contrary to all he had been up until now, but this felt right, Doyle at his back, by his side and in his arms.
-- THE END --